Thursday, May 31, 2012

My Dad's Kind of Luau Father's Day Giveaway

HEY DAD IT"S 5 O'CLOCK SOMEWHERE!!

DO YOU HAVE THAT GREAT DAD THAT DESERVES HIS FUN TOO?

ENTER THIS GIVEAWAY BROUGHT TO YOU BY

COUPON HAULS AND DEBBIE DOES COUPONS

ALONG WITH THE MANY OTHER GREAT BLOGS LISTED BELOW

ONE LUCKY PERSON WILL WIN A

Margaritaville Frozen Blender

Jimmy Buffet Greatest hits CD

Margaritaville Mixers

Margaritaville LOGO shirt for Dad

To all the Dads that were our 1st love: THANK YOU!!

The First Man That I Loved is so special to me

You are the first man who cared that I was here

held me so gently and wiped away my tears

a shoulder to lean on, and chase away my fears...

All you have to do is enter via the Rafflecopter entry form below!!!

**This giveaway is open the U.S. only. The prizes are going to be shipped directly to the winners from the page owners of Coupon Hauls. The other sponsors in this giveaway are not responsible for the shipping of these prizes. This giveaway is also in no way sponsored or endorsed by Facebook or Twitter.. This giveaway is sponsored by all of the participating blogs.** Void where prohibited.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Wordless Wednesday




While the sitter was napping someone decided to let himself outside. 

Do you have a Wordless Wednesday post? Link up below! Go here for more Wordless Wednesday!



Monday, May 28, 2012

Happy Memorial Day

Memorial Day is such an important day in our country and in our culture. Today is the day that we remember those who served, those who are serving, and those who may serve in the future. 


I grew up in a military community, joined the Air Force, married an Airman, left the Air Force, and live on an Air Force Base. My friends are military, my kids friends are military brats, my kids are military brats (!) and my mom was a military brat. 


Both my grandfathers on both sides of my family served. My cousin served. My friends from high school serve. 


The military community is small, we haven't even been in for that long and I already have experienced that first hand. We help each other, even when we don't know each other. 


So on Memorial Day, when the whole country takes a second to remember and to think about the community I live in and live with. It feels really good. 


Today all our thoughts and prayers go to not only the families of those who have made the ultimate sacrifice, but to those who came home, sometimes broken, physically and emotionally. 


Thank you for all that you have done. 

Friday, May 25, 2012

Chocolate Pudding Cookies





I pinned this on Pinterest a while ago and I've been thinking about it ever since. While I was in school I didn't have a lot of time for baking (sadly for me, not for my waistline), but as soon as the semester was over and my parents had left and I had time to breathe (deep inhale and exhale) I baked these cookies! 


This recipe was slightly altered from the recipe on Sunday Baker. You can read the original recipe there, which is double this recipe here, as well as see other awesome recipes for yummy foods! 


Ingredients: 



2 1/4 c. All-Purpose Flour
1 tsp Baking Soda
3/4 c. Butter, softened
3/4 c. Brown Sugar, packed
1/4 c. White Sugar
1 (3.9 oz) package of chocolate instant pudding (the original recipe calls for vanilla, I used chocolate, you could probably use anything)
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 c. of whatever yummy things you'd like to throw in (I used chopped walnuts and Ghiradelli bittersweet chocolate morsels) 




Instructions:



Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Mix together flour and baking soda, set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar. 
Beat in pudding mix until it is well blended. 
Stir in eggs and vanilla. 
After it is well blended slowly mix in the flour mixture. 
Stir in your yummy things (chocolate chips and the like).
Place cookies 2 in. apart on parchment lined cookie sheet, bake for 8-12 minutes or until golden. 
Let cool. 
DEVOUR and hide from your significant other. 






I'm kind of a messy baker when it comes to putting the dough on the sheet. My cookies are usually funny sizes and shapes, some much much bigger than the others. This was the first time I tried to make them all the size they are supposed to be. It was worth the effort! They look better and they baked more evenly. I don't have a little cookie/melon scoop, so I just used a Tablespoon and a really small rubber scraper to get the dough out. Worked like a charm!


Be forewarned, if you make this with the chocolate pudding mix it is very, very chocolatey! Especially if you add in chocolate chips later ;) you're going to need one of these! 



Memorial Day Weekend Recipes: Rib Rub and BBQ Sauce

I love grilling. I also love making things from scratch. Making fantastic ribs really isn't that difficult. If you're serious about your ribs, be sure to plan ahead. You want to give the ribs time to soak in the flavor of the seasonings, and you want to give your sauce time to sit and let the ingredients mix. 


This Kansas City Style Rib Rub Recipe is my favorite! It's really simple and actually tastes great on the ribs with no sauce. If you like a bite to your ribs, add an extra teaspoon of Cayenne. 





Ingredients



1/2 c. Brown Sugar
1/4. c. Paprika
1 T. Black Pepper
1 T. Salt (I prefer Lawry's)
1 T. Onion Powder
1 T. Garlic Powder
1 T. Chili Powder
1 tsp. Cayenne Pepper


Mix the ingredients in a bowl until well blended. You can store it in the refrigerator in an air-tight container for up to 6 months


This Coca-Cola BBQ Sauce recipe comes from the Neely's on the Food Network. It was the first BBQ sauce recipe I ever tried from scratch, nothing else compares


Ingredients



1 c. Coca-Cola
1 c. Ketchup
1/4 c. Worcestershire Sauce
1 tsp. Liquid Smoke
1/4 c. A-1 Sauce
1/2 tsp. Onion Powder
1/2 tsp. Black Pepper
1/2 tsp. Garlic Powder


Combine the ingredients in a sauce pan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce the heat slightly until you get a nice simmer. Simmer the sauce for about 6-8 minutes, until it's been reduced by about a quarter. Store the sauce in jars and let cool to room temperature. This will also keep in the refrigerator for several months


I hope you try these out! Do you grill? What's your favorite recipe?

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Sponsor Spotlight: MyBabyClothes.com

You can win a $25 GC to MyBabyClothes.com in the Pirate Plunder giveaway which ends 5/27!!



I love shopping for new clothes for my kids, but sometimes I get tired of looking at the same colors and styles all the babies are wearing. For instance, when Carter's releases their new line of onesies for the season, I immediately begin seeing them on every baby at the grocery store! Sometimes it's nice to have something different and unique, and shopping at baby boutiques online is a great way to find that special outfit for your little one! 






I was so excited when I was given the opportunity to review a piece of clothing from MyBabyClothes.com! MyBabyClothes.com was founded by a couple in Georgia, they specialize in affordable, comfortable and cute clothes for your baby! 






Since my first baby was a girl, and my second a boy, I've discovered that there is a much smaller range of cute clothes for boys than there are for girls. It can be really hard to find something that isn't sport related, or has more than just brown and orange on it! But, MyBabyClothes.com has a really great selection of boys, as well as girls, clothing. 


I received a Ruffle Butts Blue "Star" One Piece to review. The first thing I noted when I took it out of the package was the quality of it. The fabric is stretchy, soft and thicker than most onesies you buy in a department store. The design is adorable, I love the big star on the butt! The fit is really nice as well. Mr. C is somewhere between 18months and 2T sizes, but there was only 12-18months available in this particular outfit. I decided to try it out and I'm glad I did. Mr. C is pretty average as far as 12 month olds go, and it's not too tight on him at all. 


I can't get over the star butt!




Of course we can't forget the girls! Every little girl needs at least one tutu in her life. The tutus here are affordable as well as adorable! 






MyBabyClothes.com also has a huge selection of accessories! Check out these hats and headbands! I can't believe how many hats they have to choose from. Makes me want to have another baby just so I can buy newborn hats :) 


This one is my favorite :)


I'd really recommend MyBabyClothes.com to anyone who is looking for unique, affordable, and cute clothes for the kids! 

I received a piece of clothing from mybabyclothes.com in exchange for this review. However, my opinions are my own. If you have questions or concerns please read my Disclaimer, or email me by clicking on the "contact me" tab at the top of the page.

Aloha Friday 5/25


Welcome to Aloha Friday! It's a weekly blog event that started at An Island Life where I ask a simple question, answer it, then invite you to answer it also! 





Memorial Day weekend is almost here! The sales! The food! Who's going camping? I'm not, but if you are I hope you have fun. And everyone be safe!! For goodness sake, I make a point to not drive anywhere past the afternoon on Memorial Day because people get crazy! I think it's the beginning of summer, it gets to you. Or at least that's how it felt in Alaska, coming out of the cold, dark winter... anyway. :) 


This week's question: Who wears the grillin apron in your house? You or your significant other? Someone else? Let me know! I'm curious. :) 


My answer: I love grilling! I know Mr. Eight does too but he's been on nights pretty much all 3 years we've been married and so he hasn't been around to do a lot of grilling in the day time. On top of that, for the entire time he's been on nights he also did not get holidays off. Lucky for us, this year he's doing something a little different right now and so he has a 3 day weekend just like normal people! Yay! I'm getting off track. 


The point is, if I wanted something grilled I had to do it myself. We recently went out and bought a really nice propane grill. I've learned how to work it but for some things I miss charcoal. I did ribs for the first time on propane and I didn't like it that much. I like doing the wood chips, banking the coals, all that jazz. If I do ribs again this weekend I think I'll bust out the little charcoal grill for it! I'll be posting my favorite rib rub and bbq sauce recipe soon too! 


Let me know how you feel about grilling and don't forget to link up below! Plus, checkout the Aloha Friday Blog Hop hosted by Local Sugar Hawaii and What Jean Likes!




Nap Time Timer





A few months ago Miss M (now 29 months) decided she was done with naps. For almost a week I would put her in her room for a nap and then spend the next 25 minutes listening to her scream, cry and bang on her door and walls. I would get so angry and frustrated. I just wanted some down time! 


In the end I decided it wasn't worth the battle, I was getting too worked up trying to get her to sleep that it wasn't worth it. While Mr. C was napping I would sit her down with her favorite show and attempt to do some homework. It didn't always work out that way. Needless to say, her No Naps decision was detrimental to my Grade Point Average. 


Recently, though, she's been getting more and more tired in the afternoon. A couple days ago she actually fell asleep sitting up on the recliner watching The Lion King. It was cute, but it was also 3PM when she fell asleep. Way too late for a nap. 


Earlier that same day I had been at neighbors visiting, relishing in the fact that I had no children with me (Miss M had gone for a bike ride with Dad and Mr. C was sleeping). Her 4 year old came downstairs and she asked him "Did your timer go off? Go ahead and watch one show." She then explained how she had stopped setting the oven timer she used for his "quiet time", and instead had given him his own timer to take to his room. When the timer goes off, he can come back downstairs. Brilliant! 


Yesterday I tried it out. I have a little green timer I got in the aisle at the commissary, the kind with a magnet that sticks to your fridge. I decided to start her off easy, since I wasn't sure she would go to sleep. I set it for 30 minutes and brought it to her room. I handed her the timer and she immediately got excited, putting it to her ear to hear the ticking. She set it next to her head on her pillow and listened while I explained how it would ring and when it went off she could come back downstairs (she's only just recently learned to open her bedroom door so this is a new concept for us). 


I left the room and waited a minute, didn't hear anything, and headed downstairs. That's when it happened. I was alone on the couch, with my laptop, Mr. C was sleeping, Miss M was in her room. THIS CONTINUED FOR 30 MINUTES! 


Exactly 30 minutes later I heard Miss M's door open and her little feet on the stairs, "It went off! I go downstairs now!" Beautiful. 


I just hope the novelty doesn't wear off too soon. 

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Sponsor Spotlight: Shoeszoo Shoes

You can win a pair of Shoeszoo shoes in the Pirate Plunder giveaway that ends 5/27!





Shoeszoo specializes in soft soled, adorable, leather baby shoes. They sell worldwide! Shoeszoo is a Top-Rated Seller on Ebay with over 50,000 Feedbacks and 99.9% of them positive! Shoeszoo also provides free shoes for babies suffering from clubfoot. If your baby or a baby you know suffers from clubfoot, contact Shoeszoo. 






Mr. C has chubby wide little boy feet, much unlike his sisters, and finding shoes that fit him well is a pain! Since we live in such a warm climate he hardly has shoes on as it is, but he's an avid crawler, and when we go to the park I want to be able to let him crawl around on the padding without tearing up the tops of his toes! Shoeszoo cow leather shoes are perfect! They are easy to get on and off, so no struggling with chubby toes! Even Miss M, who is 2, can pull these on and off with ease. 






Soft soled shoes are said to be better for babies learning to walk, since it's important that they feel the ground with their feet. Mr. C has just started taking his first steps and I know that these shoes are going to be very helpful in his walking endeavors :) 


The best part of Shoeszoo shoes? The price! The shoes range from 8.99 - 12.99, and little booties go for 15.99. Look for a 5% off code on the side of the shop: SHOESZOO7, for everyday savings! For even more savings check out the Special & Sale section for clearance items! Shipping is just $4.75 to the US, $2.00 to Canada and $5.95 Worldwide!






Sizes range from 0months - 8years and at this price you can't go wrong! I have a few pairs stashed in the closet for Mr. C when he gets bigger :) I'd recommend these shoes to anyone with kids 8 years and younger!


I did NOT receive merchandise from Shoeszoo for this review. My opinions are my own and have not been influenced by others. Please see my Disclosure Policy for more information, or contact me. 

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Wordless Wednesday 5/23

Beach Day at Ko'Olina Lagoon 4 :) 






For more WW, go here and don't forget to link up below!

Sponsor Spotlight: Baby Babu Cloth Diapers

Baby Babu is a new cloth diaper company on the market that just opened this year. Part of their grand opening campaign involves giving away a lot of diapers! How awesome is that?? Baby Babu will be giving away one diaper every month right here at Eight Days a Week for an ENTIRE YEAR! (You'll see the same giveaway on other blogs so watch out for those too!)



The Diaper: I received a MOOOO cow print diaper to review. There were two things that were a first for me involving this diaper. First, the leg gussets. I've actually never owned a diaper with leg gussets! Second, the double pocket openings, I have not had the pleasure of owning a diaper with both front and back pockets. Before trying this diaper I didn't really care about pulling the inserts out of my pocket diapers, it doesn't bother me at all. Since I've had my Baby Babu diaper though I love that I don't have to pull the insert out! It comes out all on its own in the wash, every time. I love it!




This diaper features double row snaps with a third hip snap to prevent droop, it looks a lot like the butterfly wings on BumGenius diapers. The insert can also snap into the diaper to keep it from sliding out. Baby Babu diapers are also the one-size three row snap style of diaper we have come to know and love. Designed to adjust for babies 8-35 lbs, this is a diaper to take you from newborn to potty training. 






Baby Babu also has some cute prints not as popular in the other pocket diaper companies, adding a little bit of uniqueness to your purchase. 






This is a pocket diaper which looks similar to many other diapers already out there, so what you want to look for is how the quality, price, shipping and store policy compares. I was impressed with the quality, the inner leg gussets are great for those big messes (the kind Mr. C frequently outputs ;) ). The price is definitely comparable, at only $11.99 for one pocket diaper, print or minky, it's definitely a deal! They also offer bulk prices for parents who are just starting out You can get 15 diapers in a mix of gender specific and gender neutral for just $150!


Aside from pockets, Baby Babu also sells OS diaper covers, wet bags, AND biodegradable disposable diapers. So for those who still want to be green but can't handle the fluff laundry, this may be the option for you!


Overall, I'm really impressed with my Baby Babu diaper. We've had no leaks and no problems. It even survived a trip to the beach and a few dunks in the ocean :) The fit is really snug, but not too tight, and the insert is super absorbent. I'd recommend this diaper to anyone who is looking to supplement their stash, or to those who are just starting out. You can never go wrong with a good pocket! 


I received one diaper from Baby Babu to review. My opinions are my own and are not copied from elsewhere. I used this diaper for 2 weeks before writing this review. If you have any questions or concerns please see my Disclosure Policy, or contact me.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

My Baby Boy is Growing Up

Exactly one year ago today I was in the hospital, eagerly awaiting discharge approval from the pediatrician and OB. Mr. C, my good little eater, was intermittently nursing and sleeping, happy as they come. I was busy texting and Facebooking and trying to fit a shower in while Mr. Eight went to get the car seat. I can see it all like it was yesterday :) 






Of course I have the normal feelings and thoughts right now, the same ones every mom has around this birthday, and maybe every birthday thereafter: "I can't believe my baby is one!", "Where has the time gone?", "When will he start sleeping through the night??" Ok, so some of you may be lucky enough to not have to wonder about that last one, but as I sat with him at 3:30AM this morning nursing him back to sleep, I thought, "I'm ok with this." Even though I'm tired in the morning and I'm, initially, not very happy about dragging myself out of bed in the early morning hours for a feeding, he's my baby, and most likely my last, so I know I'd better just enjoy it while I can. 






Ask anyone who knows me. Mr. C is my little baby. I am in complete denial that he is a one year old. He will always be my little snuggle bunny, keeping me warm while Mr. Eight was TDY for 4 months. I hope some day he reads this and is completely embarrassed that I shared it with the world :) (By the way, you are the best snuggle bunny!)


I'm scared and excited about what the next year will bring. My single, biggest hope is that I can keep Mr. C out of the E.R. before he turns 2. I promised Grandma I would try! He is a climber and a dare devil and an all around boy, climbing up furniture and diving back off them, crawling full speed ahead into the waves at the beach. I have a feeling the odds are not in my favor. 


We have the whole summer ahead of us, and I'll (hopefully) complete two semesters of graduate school before his next birthday. Just like I completed my last two semesters of my undergraduate schooling before he turned 1. I wonder if it will go by just as fast as this year has. 






Le sigh. My baby boy is growing up. 

Friday, May 18, 2012

Aloha Friday Blog Hop

Well this is totally late but I love blog hops and I wanted to share this one I just found! I hope everyone had a lovely Friday and are looking forward to an even better weekend!! 


Welcome to the "Aloha Friday Hop", hosted by Local Sugar Hawaii and What Jean Likes!  Aloha Friday Blog Hop is a brand new weekly feature that will run for 6 days and occur every Friday at 12 midnight Hawaii Standard Time.  Aloha Friday Blog Hop is a great way to meet new people and learn new things as well as increase your blog followers! So let's have some fun!!
Aloha Friday Blog Hop
<div align="center"><a href="http://www.localsugarhawaii.com" title="Aloha Friday Blog Hop"><img src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-Q0bc1JG0Lxo/T6_NsiF9wiI/AAAAAAAAAh4/kN5KRsmf5d0/s400/draft.jpg" alt="Aloha Friday Blog Hop" style="border:none;" /></a></div>

  • Follow us via Google Friend ConnectTwitter and Bloglovin!  
  • Link up your blog name and URL with our Linky below.  You can do a separate entry for your blog, Twitter, Facebook, Google+ or Linky.  We want everyone to get lots of follows and some sugar!! 
  • Grab our Aloha Friday button and include it in a post about the event on your blog and in your sidebar (if you want) to show some love and let everyone know that you participate in the weekly blog hop!
  • Go to as many blogs on the Linky as you want and FOLLOW them!!  Be sure to tell them that you are from Aloha Friday Blog Hop!!! 
  • If someone is nice enough to follow you, why not show them some Aloha and some sugar and Follow back any followers you have gained from the Aloha Friday Blog Hop!


  • This is all about sharing the Aloha spirit with other bloggers out there and helping each other to gain some exposure and find some awesome blogs to read!!!  You don't have to be from Hawai'i to participate!  In fact, we encourage and welcome people from all over the world to join us on this Aloha Friday Blog hop!



    What's neat about our Blog Hop:
    -Put the same linky list code on your blog and you'll have the exact same list!
    - Your blog visitors can add their blog to your list and it will show up on Everyones lists!
    **Leave a comment with your blog address if you are new to our hop so we can follow you back**

    Happy Aloha Friday!


    Remember, if someone follows you, follow them back! Show some Aloha! This is a Blog Hop!

    Aloha Friday 5/18

    Welcome to Aloha Friday! It's a weekly blog event that started at An Island Life where I ask a simple question, answer it, then invite you to answer it also! 





    The 'rents have been visiting and this week we took the kiddos to the zoo. Miss M has been talking about the elephants so much it had turn into a kind of inside joke between Grandma and her. We finally went and it was a lot of fun, like usual. I'm a big fan of the zoo! I've been to a lot of zoos since I joined and started moving around the US, but the Honolulu zoo is one of my favorites. You're almost guaranteed to see some cool animal action :) 

    This week's question: Are you a fan of your local zoo? Or, what is the best zoo you've ever been to? 

    Thursday, May 17, 2012

    Pirate Plunder Giveaway 5/27

    Welcome to Pirate Plunder




    Mr. C is turning 1 and we're celebrating by giving away some Loot for you and your little one!


    I can't BELIEVE my little baby is already 1! It seems just last week I was super pregnant, juggling finals and a 17 month old Miss M :) 






    Since he's the last baby we're planning on having I decided to really go all out for his party. I joined up with my neighbor whose son was turning 4 and we headed to the beach! We called it Pirate Palooza and it was a blast! Thus Pirate Plunder was born! In true mom giveaway blog fashion I've put together this pretty awesome giveaway for my readers! 




    Two lucky winners will have a chance to win!



    First Prize: Awesome Pirate Prize Pack (Appx value of $140):




    • $25 Gift Card to MyBabyClothes.com
    • 2 pairs of kids shoes from Shoeszoo 
    • One Diaper from Baby Babu
    • $25 Gift Card to Kranky Krab Children's Art
    • Wool Lamb Wreath from Bossy's Feltworks 
    • "Today a Reader" 10x8 print from nJoyArt




    Second Prize: One Baby Babu Diaper AND One Pair of Shoes From ShoesZoo!


    The First Prize is a fantastic bundle of goodies! Check out these great sponsors:




    Baby Babu Cloth Diapers


















    Kranky Krab Children's Art + More
















    Bossy's Feltworks




















    nJoyArt




















    MyBabyClothes.com




















    ShoesZoo






















    With TWO chances to win you can't go wrong! Use the Rafflecopter form below to enter, there are plenty of extra entries but only the easy one is mandatory ;) Be sure and come back to tweet and share daily for even more entries! Giveaway ends May 27th at midnight EST. The winner will be notified via email and entries will be verified! Once the email has been sent you will have 48 hours to respond. Giveaway is open to US only, must be 18 or older to enter.


    a Rafflecopter giveaway

    Tuesday, May 15, 2012

    Wordless Wednesday 5/16

    This is my first WW with my new camera :) Thanks Mr. Eight! What a great Mother's Day present! 








    (I had to include this because, thanks to Diego, Miss M was able to correctly point out the Scarlet Macaws and I thought that was pretty cool!) 


    Thanks for joining me for Wordless Wednesday! Please link up below and leave a comment if you feel so inclined :)