Monday, December 11, 2017

Kroger's New Spa Line, Facial Masks -- product review

Kroger has a new line of spa products out. As a member of the MyMagazineSharingNetwork, I was given a free sample of the facial sheet masks and under-eye care product to try. I like beauty products and don't get to pamper my self with things like face masks as much as I would like to, so I was all up to try these out.
I have now tried two of the products. First, was the Brighten Under Eye Care. These were easy to use. Just two little patches that you place under the eye area and leave on for 20 minutes. When done, peel off and pat in any leftover liquid. They felt a bit weird, but not too bad. Let's be honest, as a mom of a toddler who still doesn't sleep through the night, I can use some under eye care. I don't know that these made a huge difference, but the area under my eyes was a bit brighter or shinier after using the product. I would possibly try these again.

Next, I tried the Deep Clean Facial Sheet Mask. This was my first time using a mask like this. It was an interesting experience. I don't really know that I would be up for using another one of these. First of all it was cold on the face. That may have been nice in the summer, but in the winter, no, Second, it just felt awkward on the face. You are suppose to leave it on for 20 minutes. I lasted maybe 15, and was done. Third, I looked like something from a scary movie. Seriously. Good thing my toddler was still sleeping when I tried this out.
I don't think my skin felt any cleaner when I was done. It does fell smooth and moisturized though, that is good. Overall, not sure the facial sheet mask is for me. I think some people would enjoy it though. They are inexpensive, so it is worth a try.

There are other products available in Kroger's New Spa Line as well. I think I would really enjoy some of the other products, like the Epson salt bath soaks, or the relaxing lotion. Those sound really nice to me. I'll pass on the facial sheet mask though. #KrogerSpaLine #MyMagazineSharing

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Baby my Baby - product review

*Disclaimer: This post contains affiliated links. I received free samples of products and coupons for products in exchange for my review. All statements and opinions are my own.

Through Kroger' program MyMagazineSharingNetwork I received a group of products and coupons for products all baby related. These products are perfect for my house considering I have a toddler and we are still in the diaper, wipes, and baby food phase. The main question they are wanting answered is this: How do you baby your baby? I've com up with some of the go to item that we use and love. I'm also including some non product related ways that I baby my baby.

We are now at a stage that we generally use the same kind of diapers on Kizzy consistently. When she was younger it didn't seem to matter as much and I went with what was on sale and what I have good coupons for. I still try to catch sales and use coupons, but we use mainly these diapers.
  • Huggies Little Movers Slip on Diapers. Kizzy doesn't like to hold still for diaper changes and these make it so much easier. 
  • Pampers Baby Dry diapers. These are great for night time. Kizzy can go all night without being changed and not have a leaky diaper. 
  • Huggies OverNights diapers. These also work well for night time diapers. 
Food is another area where we have some favorite items.
  • Similac formula. When Kizzy was on formula as her only food source we gave her Similac Advance and it worked great for her. 
  • Yogurt Dots or Yogurt Bites. My child loves these! We don't have a specific brand that we get. Gerber and Beechnut make some good ones though. They also have some that are fruit and veggie dots. We like those too. 
  • Spaghetti-Os. Maybe not the healthiest thing, but Kizzy will actually eat them. Kizzy has been very slow to eat solid foods, so any food that she will eat well is a winner for us. 
  • Food Pouches. Again, there are a lot of great choices. When Kizzy first started eating baby food I thought I would make her food myself. Well that didn't last long. Making your own is great cause you know exactly what goes into it, but sometimes convenience wins. Now days there are so many great options in the world of baby food and it is pretty affordable as well. One in particular that Kizzy seems to enjoy a lot is Kroger's Comforts for Baby Banana Blueberry and Oat food pouch. 
Other products that we love and use.

  • Johnson's Baby Shampoo with Lavender. Not only is this relaxing for evening baths, but it leaves Kizzy's hair smelling so good. 
  • Baby Trend Expedition Jogging Stroller. Easily the most used item we bought for Kizzy. I use this stroller daily. It has held up great and it is super easy to maneuver. It is also quite affordable compared to other jogging strollers. 
Others ways that I baby my baby.

  • Plenty of play time. I believe that this is important for Kizzy's development. 
  • Daily walks. We all need the fresh air. 
  • Reading to her. I want her to have a good vocabulary and to be a reader herself. 
  • Learning and play time outside of the home. I have recently started taking Kizzy to a weekly Preschool Play time at our local library. Look into your local libraries to see what activities they offer. 
  • Plenty of snuggle time. Kizzy is a snuggle baby and she gets plenty of snuggles every day.
So, there are just a few of the ways that I Baby my Baby.

#BabyMyBaby #MyMagazineSharing

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

He Calls You Beautiful -- book review

Let's be honest, the Song of Songs (or Song of Solomon) is not my go to book of the Bible to read very often. In fact the only time I usually read the SOS is when I am reading through the whole Bible. So, a book that is based on the SOS intrigued me from the start; just cause I wanted to know how the author would interprets the SOS. The SOS is one of those books in the Bible that we don't often hear preached or taught on. When it is talked about, it often either focuses on being a representation of Christ and the church or as a love story with the focus on marriage. There is nothing wrong with those applications, but it can cause some confusion when you hear both sides and don't know which is right. I appreciate Dee Brestin, the author of He Calls You Beautiful, because she takes the approach that it is both. The SOS is a book of poetry, and just like all poetry it can have multiple applications.

It is obvious that Brestin has done her research and studied the SOS. With that said, this book doesn't come across as just facts and information, i.e. textbook style. Brestin does a descent job intertwining information and personal story. I will say, at times I felt there could have been more written on the explanation or information side of things. There were definitely points where I thought this was lacking. Although, she does recommend reading the SOS along with the book. I did not do that and it may have helped some things make more sense. If you are wanting a deep theological study of the SOS then this is probably not the book for that. If you are wanting a book directed toward women with a focus on the SOS then this book is a good choice.

A benefit of this book is that it is designed to have a study and reflection part built into the book. There is a Q&A section at the end o each chapter. You can certainly do this on your own for a personal study, or you could use it in a small group setting. There are some additional guides at the back of the book for someone to use to facilitate a small group setting. Brestin also has some additional resources available on her website to use along with the study portions. There are video clips to correspond with each chapter in the book.

Friday, September 1, 2017

Nature's Recipe Dog Food -- product review

*This post contains affiliated links. I was given a free sample of the product in exchange for my review. The opinions stated are all mine though.

Thanks for Kroger's MySharingNetwork I had the opportunity to try a new dog food by Nature's Recipe. Ok, my dog was the one who gave it a try. I'll pass on sampling dog food. My toddler would b more than happy to try some though. Thankfully my dog liked this food so much that Kizzy didn't have to chance to sample it.

We tried Nature's Recipe Grain Free in the pumpkin and salmon flavor. It was a hit! Previously, like since we got our dog, Kona, seven years ago, we have mostly fed her another popular brand of dog food. Most of the time she will eat it ok, but sometimes gets picky. It was not a grain free dog food though. And while grain free dog foo tend to be a bit more expensive due to them not having a bunch of filler product, they are worth it. 

Kona suffers from doggy allergies and dry skin, which makes her an itchy mess. We get her an allergy shot once a year to take care of that issue, but her vet recommends that we give her fish oil daily for her dry skin. This dog food contains Omega 3s and with it I don't have to put fish oil on her food everyday. So, because of how good this food is for Kona and how much she likes it, we are making the switch to Nature's Recipe

Sunday, July 9, 2017

When God Made You -- book review

I love a good children’s book, and I especially love one that has great illustrations. This book hits both of those things. When God Made You by Matthew Paul Turner is such a beautifully written book for children. There is a ton of rhyme in the book which makes it fun for kids. I read this book several times to my daughter, who is just under a year and a half, and she enjoyed listening as I read because of the fun rhyme to the words. She may not have understood a lot of what I was saying, but she still liked the book. More importantly though, this book has a beautiful message and one that I believe is important for children to learn early on. The message of the book is God created each person for a special purpose and he knows every part of them and they are loved by Him just as they are. Kids need to know this deep inside of them (well, adults do too.)

I also want to point out that the illustrations, by David Catrow, in this book are absolutely wonderful. It is full of bright colors and great drawings. The pictures tell a story of their own. The story of the pictures goes right along with the words of the book, they flow beautifully together. I enjoyed looking at these illustrations just as much as reading the book.

I would recommend this book to anyone who has kids. I think this book would also make a great gift. I’m sure that I will read this book to my daughter many more times in the coming years.

I received this book for free from Blogging for Books for this review. 

Friday, July 7, 2017

Private Selection -- Product Review

*This post contains affiliated links. I received these products for free in exchange for my honest review.

Summer is upon us, and with that comes summer food. Cookouts, salads, watermelon, ice cream, and the list goes on. Kroger has a line of products under the label Private Selection. I have tried many of the Private Selection items before as I am a regular Kroger shopper. With their #MyMagazineSharing program I was able to try two more products. I received full sized samples of their Green Chile Ranch Seasoning Rub and their Texas Inspired BBQ Kettle Potato Chips.

First, lets talk about he potato chips for a quick minute. I generally do not pick BBQ flavored chips if I am buying chips. I do really like kettle style potato chips though. These Texas Inspired BBQ Kettle Potato Chips were very tasty. There was a bit of tang to them. I don't know if that is generally true of Texan BBQ as I am not a Texan, not even close. I did eat my share of these chips, but my husband was the one who was really into them. He finished off the bag. (Please see the above picture of the crumpled bag that I dug out of the trash in order to get a picture of it.) So, these chips passed the taste test at our house and I would purchase them again.

Second, the Green Chile Ranch Seasoning Rub. Ok, I do not usually cook with a lot of spice mixes. I just use my general spices most of the time. Their is some convenience to spice mixes or rubs though. I actually tried this out two different ways. I first tried the rub on some chicken breasted that I just roasted in the oven. That turned out just ok. The second time that I tried the spice rub it 1 used it in my Southwest Chicken Salad. The flavor went great with the salad and was really good. Here is what I put into my salad, which is a quick summer favorite around this house.

Southwest Chicken Salad

  • chopped romaine lettuce
  • 1 can of drained and rinsed black beans
  • 1 can of drained corn, can also use fresh of thawed frozen
  • 1 tomato sliced
  • 1 diced avocado
  •  2 chicken breasts grilled and sliced. Use whatever seasoning you would like. 
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • Southwest ranch dressing
  • Optional things that you can add to the salad are croutons, green pepper, onion, tortilla strips, cilantro, salsa, sour cream

Monday, June 19, 2017

The Very Good Gospel -- book review

Let me begin this review by saying that when I chose this book I thought that is was written by a different Lisa Harper. The Lisa Harper that I assumed was the author of this book is a well known speaker at mostly Christian women’s events and an author as well. The Lisa Sharon Harper who is the actual author of this book is also an author and a speaker, but with a much different focus. I thought I was getting a book about God’s Word that may be somewhat light and an easy read. What I got instead, with The Very Good Gospel, was something much deeper and focused on justice through the light of God’s Word and works. With that said, this book was still an interesting read.

Lisa focuses on a few main things all wrapped up together; the brokenness of the world that we live in, what God intended for us and what He can do for us in this brokenness, and shalom. This isn’t a book of light, fluffy, feel good topics. Lisa addresses such issues as equality, race, brokenness, shame, hurt, hate, war, and more. Lisa addresses these topics from a very personal place with stories from her own life and real life examples. All of this helps to bring a tone of gentleness to what in reality are hard things. She also intertwines Scripture and deep theological studies of God’s Word that relate to whatever topic is being discussed.

We cannot deny that we live in a broken and hurting world. It is easy to see this, just read a newspaper, turn on the TV, look at social media, the brokenness is everywhere. The heart of The Very Good Gospel points us toward the fact that in the midst of all this junk, God wants to heal, restore, and be in relation. That right there is the gospel message; a God who wants to work in and through us to have shalom.

This book was not my typical read. I will say though that for the most part I got a lot out of it. There were parts where I had “ah-ha” moments. There were other parts that I just read through. There were parts where I thought, “Hmm, I’m not sure I agree with that.” An interesting part of this book, that adds to it, at the end of most chapters there are questions and activities for self reflection. In my opinion this book would be a great read for someone who wants to know more about social justice in the light of God’s Word. Although, many others could get a lot out of this book.

I received this book for free from Blogging for Books for this review.

Friday, June 9, 2017

NESTEA -- product review

*This post contains affiliated links. The opinions about the product are my own. I did receive this product for free in exchange for my review.

Kroger has a newish thing they are doing called My Magazine Sharing Network. Basically anyone can sign up for the program and this allows you to do missions to earn points. The missions are usually trying a new product, spreading the word about it on various social media, and giving them your opinion. The best part is that you get free products for your participation. I love free!

One of the products that I recently got to try out is the new NESTEA. (Actually I received three coupons to get this item for FREE. So, I received not one to try for free, but three.) By the way, if you follow this link to the NESTEA website, you can get a free bottle of tea for yourself.

This revamped version of NESTEA is available in three flavors: lemon, black tea slightly sweet, and peach. All are good. In my opinion the best part besides the fact that they taste good is that they removed a bunch of the not so good for you stuff. No more high fructose corn syrup, artificial colors or flavors. That right there would persuade me to choose this tea over other teas that may contain those things. I would most definitely drink this tea again, even if I have to pay for it.