Tsue ~ That's What She Said: February 2012

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Keeping Kids Safe During Weather Emergencies and Natural Disasters ~ Champions For Kids SIMPLE Service Projects #EnergizerCFK #CBias

As my area of the country is on that welcomes precipice of Spring, doing our best to fend of cabin fever, this Mom still knows there is potential for winter hazards as temperatures fluctuate between freezing and above.

In fact, we have a very old tree in our backyard who has graciously managed to withstand the ice storms.  We've been fortunate in minimal power outages due to winter weather over the last couple of years.

Others in our area have not fared as well.  Although my family has resources to lean on in the event of a winter weather emergency, muddling through is still a challenge.  I can only imagine how difficult power outages, blizzards and ice storms must be for families who are already struggling.  As icy weather prepares to make way for the spring threat of tornadoes, what better time to focus our family's giving efforts to keeping children in need safe.

How fitting that our favorite charitable resource, Champions For Kids, has teamed up with Energizer to promote this month's giving focus: Light Up A Life through SIMPLE Service Projects!

Up for another SIMPLE challenge, my children and I embarked on a familiar trip to our local Walmart to see what we could find to pack our Light Up A Life Care Kits!  Fortunately, our shopping trip was a success and we discovered all manner of items to help us on our mission to keep kids safe during weather emergencies!

Gloves, hats and mittens galore - all on sale 50% off!  Perfect for stretching our giving budget a bit further.

Wet Ones Singles!  They kill 99.99% of germs and are hypoallergenic!  A convenient choice for our kits, as well as a gentle one, as we do know the personal sensitivities of the children who will receive this kits!

Fun, Disney themed Energizer flashlights, perfect for small hands but with a big enough light to keep them and their families safe and visible during emergencies!  This Mom really appreciated that Energizer included the necessary batteries right in the package!

Armed with a collection of goods from our trip (you can view it pictorially through my Google + album)  as always, I'm struck by how our big-hearted effort is really just a drop in the bucket of need in my area.  I admire the aggressive goal of the Champions For Kids program and their aim to inspire 20 million into the kind action of giving by 2020.

For the Energizer SIMPLE Service Project, my family decided to take a more aggressive approach and invited the members of one of my son's activity groups to join us in giving to keep kids safe.  We shared the program information by email, printed out copies of the Energizer Light Up A Life Project Card to bring to one of the meetings and shared how rewarding our participation in the Champions For Kids projects has been for our whole family.

We were touched to receive some generous contributions from some of the families.  Although I had hoped for a greater outpouring, I'm not discouraged.  We hope that each family we shared the program with will, in turn, challenge their own families and continue to spread the word.  (Of course, I'll be working on my persuasive skills for sharing the next Champions For Kids project!)

My motivation to inspire?  My family has been donating to the City Rescue Mission of Lansing, an organization of giving that has been reaching out to the needy in our community for over 100 years.  I recently had opportunity to speak with the director of the program and learned that their Women and Children's Shelter provides overnight refuge to 30-50 children per night.  This is just one facility in the Greater Lansing area.  Although my family is giving more than ever, my heart hurts that I was only able to provide Care Kits for six children, although others will certainly appreciate the extra books, mittens and gloves, as well as the nutritious snacks we purchased with the money that was donated.

There were countless other products we would have liked to have included in our Care Kits: whistles, bandages, toothpaste, toothbrushes, rain ponchos, underwear, socks and something to snuggle.

The need is great.  
Are you One of Millions?

 I am proud to be working as one of the millions of Champions for Kids.  This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias.  The experiences and opinions above are both honest and my own.  Some information and image sourced from Champions for Kids  #CBias  #EnergizerCFK  Tree Image.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Essential Lessons for Children ~ Global Community, Charity, Bright Futures

As a mother, I have explored what lessons, insights and experiences are important to teach my children on many occasions, with some reflections very similar and others varying over the years.

The peace and quiet joy of laying in the green grass on a summer's day, not doing anything at all.

The welling of passion and emotion one experiences through music, both through performance and passive appreciation.
To aggressively explore their passions and to learn with insatiable hunger, never accepting one source as an ultimate authority.
To cherish and protect nature.  To give more than they receive.   
To embrace the global community.

This year, more so than others, as a family we have been challenging ourselves to give more.   More of ourselves, our time, our resources.

While thus far our efforts have been targeted specifically to those in need in the United States, I am reminded that need knows no political or geographic boundary.

Bright Future International (BFI) has been providing help to children in Russia, Panama, Rwanda, Kenya and other countries. The mission of BFI is to help children develop vital human qualities: compassion, a feeling of self worth, humility, a desire to help others and social skills. These are the qualities that are not taught in conventional schools and are deficient in many societies.

When one considers the full scope of need across nations, realization can be halting, even discouraging.  Inaction, however, merely serves to breed more despair and desperation.

Having recently been introduced to the good works of Bright Futures International, my reaction is simply one of gratitude.  Gratitude for their efforts to seek out opportunities to enrich the lives of those in needs, as well as provide easy means for those who are able to contribute, to make a difference.

One of the organizations currently in focus of the Bright Futures International organization is Heshima Kenya, the "the first and only organization in Kenya devoted to identifying, protecting and empowering unaccompanied refugee children and youth living in Nairobi.".  With special emphasis in providing for and protecting adolescent girls, the efforts of this organization certainly have hit home in my heart.  Heshima Kenya is only one of the organizations supported by Bright Futures International.

Giving A Child A Brighter Future With Just A Click ~

Simply "like" Bright Futures International on Facebook and $1.00 will be donated to assist children in need through organizations in Kenya, Burundi and Russia.

Supporters who contribute $15 or more will receive a free DVD of “A Merry Christmas” music video, which features stars like Stevie Wonder, Dionne Warwick, Larry King, and more.

What lessons do you consider essential for your children?
How do you and your family reach out and make a difference in the global community?
Tell me in a comment below!  I'd love to learn your thoughts!

I participated in a campaign on behalf of Mom Central for Bright Future International. A small donation to Bright Future International was made in my name from Mom Central as a thank-you for participating.  The opinions above are both honest and my own.  Images and information sourced from various BFI sites.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Take Over Tuesday Social Media Hop ~ Gaining Followers In All The Right Places ~ #CMM

Welcome to 

Take Over Tuesday Social Media Hop
Gain Friends and Followers 
In All The Right Places
Your Hostesses are:
   Closer to Lucy             
 Have Sippy Will Travel       
 3 Princes and a Princess 2         
Just Like June (formerly The Thrifty Things)       
That's What She Said

Add your link to any or all of the Social Media Follow Groups below!  Follow as many people as you would like and be certain to leave a comment on their page to let them know you are a fan!

Please be certain to follow your hostesses.  Your presence and participation is appreciated and we will always follow you back!

We'd love for you to grab the Take Over Tuesday button to display on your site!  
The more the merrier!

Google + Linky

Facebook Linky

Twitter Linky

Pinterest Linky

GFC Linky

Please be certain to join us again next week for 
Take Over Tuesday!
~ Guests welcome ~

The Teen Diva and The Pimple ~ the Battle for Healthier Skin ~ X-Out

I still remember my teen years fairly well.
I remember feeling as if I couldn't dare step outside the house if my hot roller efforts failed me; a bad hair day was a crisis beyond reasonable comparison.

With the exception of perhaps one thing.
One angry red thing.
One thing that had the uncanny ability to look like a mountain, instead of a mole hill.
That stubbornly refused to cooperate or be hidden.
With a wicked knack of popping up at the most inopportune times,
and without the least inclination to be discreet...
the blasted pimple.

One of life's earlier lessens, inconveniently illustrating that life is, indeed, not fair,
and that Mother Nature can be, beyond un-kind, down right cruel.

While I have gads of sympathy for the Diva's monthly flare ups, like my mother before me, as much as I would like, I cannot stop the world from spinning for her.

However, this savvy Mom knows that there is always a solution and the Diva is quite excited to explore a new one that is quite promising...

X OUT, Teen Acne Treatment.

For thirty days, the Diva will be testing this hot new teen targeted acne solution, from the makers of Proactiv®, while she teaches her younger brother, 11 yrs old today, about how to combat breakouts and face the world with clear eyes and skin.

From our initial exploration of the two product kit the Diva received to test, her optimism is high and anticipation of improvement great.  The X OUT system is simple to use, even with her busy schedule of school and sports.

X Out™ is one multitalented teen acne treatment. It schools break-

outs in 3 different ways.

Cleanse 2 minutes, 2x's a day, morning and night. Wash-in and rinse off. 

Dab it on annoying zits and head to bed. Does fighting pimples get any
easier than sleeping?

For more intense cleaning, leave it on for 10 minutes while you watch
TV, space out, annoy your little brother, or pwn some n00bs and then rinse off.

Stay tuned to learn more about X OUT Teen Acne Treatment, when the Teen Diva shares her take, experience, results and tips!

Do you have a teen who suffers from acne?
As a parent, how do you help and support them through this teenage trial?
What products or solutions have worked for you?
Tell me all about it; I love to hear your thoughts in a comment below!

  I wrote this review while participating in a test drive campaign by Mom Central Consulting on behalf of X Out and received a X Out product sample to facilitate my review, one to giveaway, and a promotional item to thank me for participating.  The opinions above are both honest and of our own experiences.  Some images and information sourced from various X OUT  online sources. Hot Rollers Image.

From Fabulous To Family Friendly ~ Link Up With the #G!veaway Gala To #W!n #CMM ~ Feb 27

Welcome to the Giveaway Gala. A collection of featured giveaways from 5 blog's including a linky for you to link up your giveaways!

This linky will be hosted on 5 blog's giving you the benefit of reaching all of our combined readers. So feel free to check out giveaways and link up your giveaways. We only ask you link directly to your giveaway, any links to your homepage will be removed.

Week 2/26 Featured Host Giveaways:

Have Sippy Will Travel:
Handheld Camcorder + Coke 3/5
Sneezy Wheezy Day kids book 3/1
Educational Insights Game - Grandma's Trunk ends 2/29

3 Princes and a Princess 2:
Mohawk Home Area Rug Of Choice Up To $399 3/15
Sleep Innovations Gel/Foam Mattress Topper (ARV$240) 3/01
Find It Games 3/05

Closer To Lucy:
Disney Live! TN Area 3/01
Adventures Of Chuck DVD 2/28
Printrunner Custom Printing 2/29

Just Like June:
Pouchee Purse Organizer 3/02
BH Cosmetics 3/09
Zazzle Business Cards 3/03

That’s What She Said
Fashion To Figure *Winners Choice* 3/05

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Preparing For Natural and Unexpected Disasters ~ Energizer Light Up A Life ~ Champions for Kids

More taunting sun outside my window, giving one the hope that spring is just around the corner.  The bright rays are deceiving, however, as I note yet another light blanket of fresh snow.  All the same, although concern of winter weather hazards still plague many, the warmer temperatures will soon be here, and with it, the potential for unexpected danger across much of the country - Tornado season.

Tornadoes are more common in the United States than in any other country.1

Unlike some other natural disasters, the lurking threat of a tornado springing up is one that keeps this Mom ill at ease. The tornado season in the US is typically begins in March and lasts well into August, although winter twisters have been documented.  2011 was an exceptional year for tornadoes and I can recall the panic I felt welling up during several Lacrosse games, upon seeing the skies change dramatically and hearing the warning siren sound out its alert.  Although I knew my daughter, her team and the spectators could quickly take shelter in the sturdy stadium outbuildings, I scrambled to call my son at home a few blocks away, while his father slept in preparation for a midnight shift.

1,897 tornadoes reported in the US in 20111
As this next season is almost upon us, I'm struck that, despite my angst last year, I have really done nothing to ensure my family is prepared.  Certainly, as events occur, we have impromptu discussion, in which I discuss matters of safety and hurried run through a quick checklist.   We always have flashlights about the house and bottled water just in case, but certainly not anything as coordinated as an emergency kit.

Violent tornadoes—those rated EF4 or EF5 on the Enhanced Fujita Scale—occur more often in the United States than in any other country.1

The bottom line:  we are not prepared.  

Educated and certainly with the resources and time, should be decide to make use of them, if my family is not prepared, what of families and children in need?  When a parent is struggling with the heart-wrenching mission to feed and shelter their child, contending with an existing personal crisis, preparing for unexpected emergencies is likely not a top priority.  With winter weather hazards still a concern across much of the nation,  and welcomed spring thaws bringing with them the possibility of flooding and tornadoes, having an emergency kit at the ready at all times is essential.

As my family makes a commitment t better educate ourselves, be prepared and create a family emergency kit, we will also be participating in the February Champions For Kids SIMPLE service project ~ the Energizer Light Up A Life campaign.  Creating some Care Kits for children in need will be so SIMPLE to do while my family prepares for our own safety.

Although my family's previous participation in the Champions for Kids Abbott Pack A Snack  program certainly filled a need and provided benefit to many children, we overcome by the sheer number of children in need in our community.
Over 9 million children suffer from non-fatal injuries each year, and accidents are the leading cause of death for children.  Additionally, dangerous weather events cause hundreds of deaths and thousands of injuries every year.2
In attempt to spread the caring and giving to even more children, my family has reached out to members of one of our children's extra curricular groups, my son's Destination Imagination team and organization, to join us in both spreading the word about how SIMPLE it is to make a meaningful difference, as well as to make contributions for our Energizer Light Up A Life Care Kits.  As SIMPLE as a quick email and spreading the word in our regular meetings, we hope to expand our contribution, helping even more children!  We are excited about the potential to give even more, by banding together with other families to create Energizer Emergency Care Kits that will help a child and their family in the event of winter disasters, like power outages and snow ins, as well as for other seasonal concerns, such as floods and tornadoes and even unexpected disasters, like fire.

How does your family stay in the know and prepared for unexpected disasters?
Has your family been affected by a natural disaster?
What would you put in a Care Kit to keep children and families safe during winter weather hazards, or other unexpected dangerous situations?
How do you make a difference in your community?
Have you ever inspired others to join you in a giving effort?
Tell me in a comment below!  I'd love to hear all about it!


How it works:  
Gather your friends, family, and co-workers to help children stay safe and be prepared by putting together Care Kits for kids! Include items like band-aids, hand wipes, tissues, flashlights, extra batteries, and bottled water! Give the Care Kits to an organization in your community that serves children (like a school, shelter, religious organization, or nonprofit). Click here to send us your great Report and Photos!

I am proud to be working as one of the millions of Champions for Kids.  This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias.  The experiences and opinions above are both honest and my own.  Some statistics and image sourced from Champions for Kids 2.   Tornado Statistics. 1 #CBias  #EnergizerCFK  

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Disney Live! ~ Three Classic Fairy Tales ~ #G!veaway

Courtesy of our good friends at 
Closer to Lucy

Obviously if you’ve spent anytime clicking through my pages you know that little girl is in love with all things Disney.

For her it’s not about the fairytale. It’s about pretty dresses, a happy ending, and sing-song dancing.I can’t wait to surprise her a night at amid the Disney Live! presentation of Three Classic Fairy Tales.  They will be here at Tennessee Performing Arts Center for one day and we will be going!

We will be joining Mickey, Minnie, Donald and Goofy as they bring the timeless fairytale adventures of CinderellaBeauty and The Beast, and Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs to life right to us!

Featuring dynamic storytelling, award winning music, stunning costumes and glittering special effects, audiences will be captivated by the humor, fun and adventure of these spellbinding stories. Dream with the princesses, cheer for the heroes as they conquer evil villains, and marvel as these classic tales are brought to life in a theatrical experience that’s pure magic. I know she will be ecstatic!

Check ticket sales and locations for your area!

If you live in the GREATER NASHVILLE OR SURROUNDING AREA….I have a surprise for you!  One lucky Lucy reader will win tickets for a family of four to attend the 6:30pm showing on March 4th!  Who knows maybe we can all sit together :)

A Mother's Treasure ~ Reflections On Children

Our children are miracles,
they are the most interesting persons
we will ever meet.

Full of imagination and creativity
the likes of which
we can only marvel upon.

Both brilliant and beautiful,
with none other just the same.
Yet while we know,
in the quiet of our hearts,
that they are truly the most precious creature
whose toes were ever tickled by new grass,
or whose laughter rippled through the evening air
as they chased fireflies.
With smiles brighter than the sun,
and hearts full of adventure,
they are
in the simplicity of their desire
to conquer any challenge
the epicenter of their universe
and mine.

Dandelion Bouquet Image.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Take Over Tuesday Social Media Hop ~ Gaining Followers In All The Right Places ~ #CMM

Welcome to 
Take Over Tuesday Social Media Hop
Gain Friends and Followers 
In All The Right Places
Your Hostesses are:
   Closer to Lucy             
 Have Sippy Will Travel       
 3 Princes and a Princess 2         
Just Like June (formerly The Thrifty Things)       
That's What She Said

Add your link to any or all of the Social Media Follow Groups below!  Follow as many people as you would like and be certain to leave a comment on their page to let them know you are a fan!

Please be certain to follow your hostesses.  Your presence and participation is appreciated and we will always follow you back!

We'd love for you to grab the Take Over Tuesday button to display on your site!  
The more the merrier!

Google + Linky

Facebook Linky

Twitter Linky

Pinterest Linky

GFC Linky

Please be certain to join us again next week for 
Take Over Tuesday!
~ Guests welcome ~

Natural, Organic Solutions for Beautiful Hair ~ Hamadi ~ Nature's Basin ~ Review

With long locks, maintaining sleek and shiny condition is a top priority for the Teen Diva and I.  While the boys are not terribly picky about which hair products they use, we girls are much more discriminating.  We demand quality and performance for our crowning glories and consider the products we use carefully.

When it comes to our hair, we've discovered natural and organic hair care products provide us with the best results, as well as fit our need expand our eco-friendly efforts, both in action and by purchase.  Having recently discovered an excellent source of natural, organic beauty products, Nature's Basin, the Diva and I were quite excited to test a product from the Hamadi Organics line of exceptional hair care products.

With superior quality products of the finest natural and organic ingredients for women, as well as men and children, the Diva and I were delighted to explore Nature's Basin.  With selections for skin care and makeup, as well as body care and hair products, the Nature's Basin line has all our beauty bases covered.

Many of today's beauty and body care products are made up of varying mixtures of synthetically produced chemicals. The skin is the largest organ in your body. Individual ingredients vary in their ability to penetrate the skin, some are absorbed in tiny amounts while some can reach the blood vessels below the skin and be transported around the body. While one product may contain very small amounts of some of these ingredients, it is the accumulative effect of applying various products regularly that causes concern.
A primary concern, with our longer hair lengths, is finding quality conditioners that will effectively treat our length, without adding undesirable weight and residue.  We were quite excited to try a product from the Hamadi Organics line!

Tested on Actresses, Never on Animals™
Made with 100% Organic Essential Oils and Plant Extracts.
Completely Biodegradable.  
No Artificial Ingredients.
No Perfumes or Colors.
Absolutely Luxurious.

Our delightful test product - Hamadi Shea Rice Milk Conditioner.  

Our Experience ~ 

This Hamadi formula is designed to gracefully detangle all hair types, including our own fine tresses.  Available  only in four and eight ounces containers, we were initially skeptical about how much of a test we might be able to conduct, typically requiring a fair amount of product to treat our full lengths.  Our concerns were quickly vanquished as we noted the thick, rich consistency of this potent conditioner; requiring only the smallest amount to work through our hair.  

Immediately upon opening the bottle, we were at once enchanted by the graceful, natural scent of the essential oils, Ylang Ylang and Clary Sage.  Not at all a heavy perfume, rather light, fresh and delightful.  We were pleased to note the inclusion of Shea Butter in the formula provided a naturally occurring sun screen, adding yet another desirable benefit.

Beyond the scent and preferred ingredients, our functional experience with the Hamadi Shea Rice Milk Conditioner was ideal:  effectively conditioning and treated our hair, yet leaving it soft, manageable and glowing.

Nature's Basin offers several desirable products from the Hamadi Organics line, such as Honey Soy Milk Hair Wash and Shea Leave In Cream Conditioner.  After our wonderful experience with the Hamadi Shea Rice Milk Conditioner, the Diva and I are quite enthusiastic to further explore the line.

Discover Nature's Basin ~ 


Are you committed to buying natural and organic beauty products?
What hair challenges are you seeking to solve?
Have you discovered an organic product you love?
Tell me about it in a comment below!  I'd love to hear your thoughts!

I received product from Nature's Basin to explore for the purposes of creating this feature.  The opinions above are both honest and my own.  Images and information sourced from various Nature's Basin and Hamadi sites.  Hair Image

Friday, February 17, 2012

Long Hair Care and Styling Tips ~ Detangling the Mystery

When I was quite young, long before I possessed the will and good sense to insist otherwise, my hair was styled in a very short bob, leaving me looking not unlike the Campbell's Soup Kids.

Although I've toyed with various lengths since then, I invariably let any shorter styling grow out to longer lengths.  The Teen Diva and I both have fine hair in plentiful quantities; a wretched curse if one desires a fuller, curly look but a blessing while straighter, sleeker styles are the rage.

Some time ago, through passive decision, I stopped having any significant length removed during routine trims, rather, letting my hair grow as it may, with a mind to donating the length to Locks of Love.  Resulting, my hair has reached unprecedented lengths, adding challenge, as well as a bit of mystery, to my daily styling routines.

Despite the fine nature, the thickness of my hair at longer lengths has necessitated a reconsideration of my typical daily shampoo regime, my schedule is usually far too busy to devote the necessary time to drying.  Although I prefer the fresh feel of daily cleansing, through trial I've discovered that a messy bun or variety of braid on the days in between shampoos.  Heavier conditioning with quality product and a routine of deep conditioning is a must!

Curiously, as my hair as grown to different lengths, its behavior and willingness to behave tends to vary.  Smooth and sleek, sans assistance just a few inches ago, I now find a stubborn wave that will only be tamed with aid of my ghd styler. 

Most troublesome, the longer length has made some sort of sleeping accommodation a necessity; neglect resulting in a mass of tangles, more severe than I care to tackle.  The prevalence of evening braids a mystery no more.

Renoir "The Braid"
Long hair care tips is brought to you in association with ghd.  The opinions and experiences above are both honest and my own.  Hair Image  Renoir "The Braid"{{PD-Art}} .

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Mom As A Magnet ~ A Tale of (No) Personal Space

What is it about being a Mother that draws them to us?
Our inherent, nurturing nature?
The, often deceiving, well-practiced look of saintly patience?
Our ability to listen, at length, to philosophical waxing, on all manner of topics from nail polish and gossip to the power of trading cards and all things strange, mystifying and plastic?

It's okay to take the credit!
They don't have to know that we are simply half deaf now and too tired for any other expression!

While I am glad that my two-legged children seem to have a deep seeded fondness for me,
I have to wonder at the pointed penchant the four-legged crew holds for me, as well.
Invariably, as I sit down in my office, the cat seeks me out,
as her personal jungle gym,
preventing me from any meaningful effort or accomplishment.

As I try to shuffle her over to one shoulder and fervently hope her tail will stop twitching across my face,
I wonder do I possess some special Mother scent, a pheromone perhaps?
Or is it simply, that I am, by default, the feeder of the pet crew
and she is hoping to persuade me into an extra meal?
Inquiring is an exercise in futility.
She merely makes herself more at home.

Ah, well.
The tasks can wait until tomorrow,
when there will be, as typical,
more to do than time or energy permit.

This day weary Mom is off to bed.
The Labrador will wait until I settle
and then find his spot
with Mom as his pillow for the night.

Cat Image.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

NYC Spending Spree Sweepstakes ~ Top Dentists Teeth-Whitening Makeover ~ You +1

Everyone wants a brighter, whiter smile.

No debate there.
A dazzling grin showing off your pearly whites lends, not only to your glam factor,
 but to your self-esteem, as well.

Over the counter whitening remedies are budget-friendly in the short run, however certainly not a permanent solution to your quest for a brighter smile.

What if you could get a professional teeth whitening makeover 
and combine it with a dream day of shopping in NYC with your favorite gal pal?

I know, I'm so there!

Toss in all expenses paid travel, a professional photo shoot 
and $1000 to shop the day away
and you have the Who Makes You Smile Sweepstakes! 

Enter Sweepstakes                  See Official Rules

Courtesy of Top Dentists, 
you can enter to win daily per person to win:

Grand Prize
The top contestant chosen by the official judges will win an all-expense paid trip to New York City, including:
  • Teeth-whitening smile makeover with New York City Top Dentist, Dr. Robert Rawdin.
  • Photo shoot with a professional photographer—plus Hair and Makeup for winner and guest.
  • Airfare and hotel for the winner and guest (Two economy class flights; one hotel room).
  • $1,000 AmEx Gift Card for spending money.

Regional Prizes
The top contestants living within 100 miles of the regional prize locations will win a free teeth-whitening session with the top dentist in their area.

Regional locations:
Troy, MI: Dr. Craig Goldin
Philadelphia, PA: Dr. Leonard F. Tau
Aventura, FL: Dr. Steven J Rosenstein
Austin, TX: Anne Lyon
Beverly Hills, CA: Dr. Danny Shiri

Daily Prizes
Every contestant has the opportunity to win a daily-teeth-whitening prize from our sponsor Love That White Smile!

Sweepstakes ends on February 24, 2012 11:59PM EST

Who would you take to NYC if you won the Grand Prize?
Have you ever had your teeth professional whitened?  
How was your experience?
Where would you shop in NYC if you had $1000 to burn?
Tell me in a comment below, I'd love to hear your thoughts!

Thank you to Top Dentists for sponsoring this introduction.  Images and information sourced from various Top Dentist sites.  Opinions above are both honest and my own.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Fashion To Figure ~ trendy fashions at best prices ~ Giveaway

Craving trendy looks that fit both Mom's bodies and their budgets?  Fashion To Figure may be the answer you've been looking for!  Specializing in looks that allow fashion to meet a woman's needs, Fashion To Figure has a long tradition of catering to women size 12 and up.

More than 100 years ago, our great-grandmother created the full-fashion market.  Bringing fashion to the figure continues to be our passion today. We believe fashion is a state of mind, not a size range.
Matte Sateen Cropped Jacket

With a diverse line of looks and styles, suitable for every woman occasions, Fashion to Figure can accommodate your wardrobe needs, from casual day looks and well into an active evening out.

Chiffon Halter Top with Ruffled Neckline
Designed to flatter a curvaceous figure, each Fashion to Figure item considers cut, shape and colors that flatter in creating styles that will put you at ease.

Lace V Neck Dress with Panel Skirt
A full line of accessories, from jewelry, to bags and more, you will find carefully selected accents for your new looks.

Stretch Bracelet with Rhinestone Accents
For home, office or play, Fashion to Figure has a wide offering of trendy styles for sizes 12 to 26.  Whether you shop in store or conveniently online, adding stylish new elements to your wardrobe, you'll be surprised at just how affordable it can be.

Fashion to Figure is generously offering That's What She Said readers an opportunity to win a selection from their line:  Winner's Choice of one item, up to $30 value.

This giveaway is open to residents of US, 18+ and will end on Monday, March 5, 2012, at 12:01am EST.

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Fashion to Figure is responsible for supplying and shipping prize.  I received no compensation in exchange for this feature.  Images and information sourced from various Fashion to Figure sites.  Facebook is not involved in, nor responsible for this giveaway in any fashion.

Thinking Spring ~ Getting Ready To Shed Sweaters and Weight

As the weather outside teases and taunts, changing from sunshine to snow, my thoughts are focused ahead to spring.  Each time the sun shines through the window, I realize how much work there is to do in the weeks ahead, from cleaning windows of winter residue, to donating my family's unused items to switching out heavy winter wardrobes for lighter warm weather wear.

Of course, that leads me to other nagging thoughts, those of preparing myself for wearing lighter clothing, shorts, skirts and the dreaded bathing suit.  With a forty something birthday only days away now, I'm wishing a few Mom pounds were melting away, as well.  Each year, the battle seems to shift more from one to maintain to a battle to minimize the effects of my less than cooperative metabolism.

If only there was a Mom Fairy with a magic wand, that could kick start my metabolism, as well as supply a personal assistant, or, at least, an extra day or two in the week.  Accommodating a regular work out routine is something easily thought of, but much harder to maintain with consistency.  One of my aunts recently underwent lap band surgery and is fairing well, however her situation was a bit different from my own.

After both my pregnancies, the difficulty of maintaining my ideal weight seemed to become somewhat more difficult, in increasing degrees after each.  The last, a C-section delivery by necessity, seemed to add more than it's fair share to the challenge.

For the time being, I'll look forward to the warming days, eating more apples and plenty of brisk walks with the dog, as well as a bit of hope for just a little bit of fairy dust.

As a participant in the Bucks2Blog campaign, I have been compensated in exchange for creating this feature.  The opinions above are both honest and my own.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Take Over Tuesday Social Media Hop ~ Gaining Followers In All The Right Places ~ #CMM

Welcome to 
Take Over Tuesday Social Media Hop
Gain Friends and Followers 
In All The Right Places
Your Hostesses are:
   Closer to Lucy             
 Have Sippy Will Travel       
 3 Princes and a Princess 2         
Just Like June (formerly The Thrifty Things)       
That's What She Said

Add your link to any or all of the Social Media Follow Groups below!  Follow as many people as you would like and be certain to leave a comment on their page to let them know you are a fan!

Please be certain to follow your hostesses.  Your presence and participation is appreciated and we will always follow you back!

We'd love for you to grab the Take Over Tuesday button to display on your site!  
The more the merrier!

Google + Linky

Facebook Linky

Twitter Linky

Pinterest Linky

GFC Linky

Please be certain to join us again next week for 
Take Over Tuesday!
~ Guests welcome ~

Friday, February 10, 2012

Fabulous Prom Dresses ~ David's Bridal ~ Making Dreams Come True

While I am only blessed with one biological Teen Diva, this Mom has the good fortune of being able to enjoy formal dress shopping with two teenagers each year, with double the glamour and glowing smiles.  One of the Diva's devoted BFFs is a regular now, for all our formal shopping trips.  Three years ago, the Diva came to me in tears, after learning this sweet girl wouldn't be able to attend an all important semi formal dance due to hard times that had befallen her family.

Touched by both my daughter's concern, as well as compassion for her friend, I was more than happy to ensure that lack of formal attire would not stand in the way of her ability to attend that memorable event, nor others in the future.  No girl should have to miss out on such a special night.

Metallic Platform Sandal ~ David's Bridal 
This year, in particular, is quite special as both of my girls will be attending Spring Prom.  With high anticipation of the ultimate in fabulous, full length gowns, shopping for formal dresses can be an exhaustive affair; not just any formal dress will do.  Preparations and shopping for formal dances are special times for my "daughters" and I, from salon pampering to hunting for the dresses of their dreams.

While formal dress shopping for two has quite the impact on our budget, this year, That's What She Said was generously offered an opportunity to explore the David's Bridal 2012 Prom Collection..  Our experience was nothing short of magical, with expert staff on hand to guide us every glittery step of the way and stunning prom gowns to select from.

We visited David's Bridal on a Saturday afternoon, expecting the store to be fairly busy.  Upon arriving, the store was bustling with both shoppers and staff.  We noted the newly arrived 2012 Prom Gown display, prominently featured at the front of the large store upon entering, as we waited in a queue.  Despite a dozen shoppers in front of us, we were pleasantly surprised to be quickly acknowledged in a welcoming fashion and assigned to a consultant who immediately assisted in helping us to select our the first round of gowns and led us to our dressing area.

The Diva is now a Junior in high school, so we are well versed in shopping for formal attire, having previously traveled the state in search of the perfect gown for prior special occasions.  Immediately, I appreciated the expansive design of the store, clearly planned to accommodate the busiest of days.  I further found the organization of gowns to be quite easy to explore, with Prom dresses prominently displayed, yet near the other non-bridal gowns, which were organized by size, hue and length.  Had this trip been for selecting an attractive dress of great value, we would not have been disappointed, as we found an ample selection of gowns on sale.

The service we received was simply phenomenal and unexpected as there numerous soon to be brides shopping during our 3+ hour adventure.  However, the store was well prepared for a busy day and while I did not perform a precise head count, between managers and consultants, there may have been a dozen staff members on the floor.  Although our consultant also worked with another guest, she was incredibly attentive and pleasant; we never wanted for her for more than a moment before she was at our disposal.  With generous sized dressing rooms, a Mom could easily accompany her daughter within for assistance, although most of us shopping that day were relegated to wait patiently, taking advantage of the comfortable chairs that were positioned frequently about the store.  Thank goodness, as every shade and style of formal gown was explored, from dreamy ball gown, to sleek and sparkly, to fun floral designs.

With so many stunning selections, it was no surprise that the Diva had difficulty in narrowing down to just one gown.  Fortunately, our consultant was prepared for just such a glamour emergency!  Even the store manager made herself available to help out; she had stopped by several times during our adventure to admire and reflect with us.  With a ready arsenal of delightful "games", specially designed to de-stress the important final decision making process, they were skillfully able to help the Diva determine exactly which stunning gown was truly the dress of her dreams.

In the end, the dream dress was none other than the Cinderella style, flowing ball gown that she has been dreaming of since childhood.

For once, this Mom did not have much to say.

Fortunately, I had a ready supply of tissues handy.

David's Bridal offers a phenomenal selection of gowns, both in store and online, with everything from short and sassy, to trendy high-low styles, to sophisticated glitz to flowing ball gowns, exclusively designed.  In store, the selection of gowns rotates, to helping to ensure that your Diva's selection is specially her own.  With an in store fitting team on hand for consultations, you can be assured that the gown of her dreams, fits like a dream!  When alterations are anticipated, I strongly encourage you to shop early, not only for the best selection, but to accommodate scheduling a fitting appointment and allowing ample time for alterations to be completed before the big day.  Both online and in store, you'll find a wide variety of accessories to complete the dream look, including shoes, jewelry, hairpieces and bags.

That's What She Said thanks 
David's Bridal, 
the wonderful staff of the Okemos, Michigan location 
and Mom Central for facilitating this opportunity, 
ensuring both my Divas' dreams come true
 for Prom Season 2012.

I wrote this review while participating in a campaign by Mom Central Consulting on behalf of David’s Bridal and received a gift certificate to facilitate my review.  The opinions above are both honest and of our own experiences.  Some images and information sourced from David's Bridal online.
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