Ridin’ in Style: Our New MiniVan and Evenflo Carseat!

**I participated in this sponsored campaign on behalf of One2One Network. I received the carseat mentioned for free, but as always, all opinions stated are my own.**

I never thought I’d be a minivan mom.  Not that I have anything against moms with minivans.  My own mother was one, and I drove said minivan for several years in high school.  I just figured we’d never have enough kids to need a minivan, and since we’ve always had a Ford Explorer with a third row seating option…we’ve never really needed one.

However.  Between the Explorer breaking down numerous times in our 6 years of owning it, the third row being virtually inaccessible to anyone over 45 lbs, and a 3rd baby {and 3rd carseat} on the way….it was inevitable.

Chrysler Town and Country..the perfect fir for our new Evenflo Carseat - Palmettos and Pigtails

So Dave and I broke down {after the Explorer did.  Again.} and headed to Carmax.  We got a fantastic deal on a 2013 Chrysler Town and Country with all the bells and whistles we need {which is not many!}.  I just wanted heated seats {didn’t get them}, a DVD player for long trips, and an easy entry to the “way back” row.  Two out of three ain’t bad!

Interior of new Town and Country minivan...compliments our new Evenflo Symphony DXL Carseat perfectly! Palmettos and Pigtails

To make my week even better, I was sent a FREE Evenflo Symphony DLX carseat to try out.  It was just in time too, since Baby Boy will be arriving in about a month, and Millie’s hand-me-down carseat was getting old, squeaky and stinky.  I was thrilled when I realized that the Evenflo carseat accommodates kids 5-110lbs…so just about when Millie is ready {and big enough!} to graduate to a booster seat, Baby Boy will be ready to leave the carrier and venture into the Evenflo carseat as well!  But I love having versatile carseats, because with our busy schedule, who knows which kid will be riding in which carseat….and all THREE of my kids can ride in this new one!

I just love the look of the Evenflo carseat…I find it very stylish and gender-neutral.  Millie just loves that it has cup-holders! And according to a study conducted by American Baby and Safe Kids Worldwide, new moms are 300% more likely to get into an accident than other drivers, in part due to tending to an upset baby.  But we’ve found the fabric to be really soft and the whole carseat to be really comfy.  And happy baby means a safe driver!

Riding in Style in her new Evenflo Symphony DXL Carseat!  Palmettos and Pigtails

One of my biggest concerns about the new minivan, is that it has leather seats {yay for wiping down, boo for sticking to sweaty legs!}, and to top that off…they are black.  And since all of our cars live in the driveway since the garage is Dave’s workshop, that means the sun will be beating down on black leather seats all. summer. long.

But, the silver lining is that the Platinum Series of the Evenflo Carseats feature NASA-developed Outlast® technology, a temperature regulating fabric that keeps babies and toddlers comfortable during hot and cold weather.  Which is key, because Millie is a sweaty kid.  It’s nice to know that the sides of the carseat have little buckle pockets to keep the hot metal buckles off of her as well.  Summertime in the South is a go for this carseat!

Riding in Style in her new Evenflo Symphony DXL Carseat! Palmettos and Pigtails

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#BigBabyGiveaway all April Long!

Scroll down to the next post to see my most recent post!

Don’t forget to enter our biggest giveaway ever!  Over 20+ items to win, totaling over $550 worth of products for moms, babies and kids!  Enter everyday by sharing the giveaway on Facebook and Twitter!

April's Big Baby Giveaway!  Enter each day!

 a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Big Baby Giveaway – It’s Finally Here!!!

Y’all know that we are expecting our first baby boy in about a month, and we are soooo excited!  Even though it’s only been two and half years since we had Millie, I’ve forgotten how exciting baby stuff can be!  And there are so many new and innovative items out there!

Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails

I am completely addicted to Etsy.  I not only sell my baby items on there, but I LOVE finding other moms who have a passion for hand-making items for children.  And I can’t think of a better win than to buy something that I need, from someone who has a passion for children and moms…and cares enough to take time out of her busy day to make those items at home.

So, today I am ECSTATIC to bring you my Big Baby Giveaway!  I have been working with a ton of talented Etsy and local artists and experts to bring you a collection of maternity and baby items that any Mom would drool over!

Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails

And over the next few months, I’ll be introducing you to some of these ladies {and gents} on a deeper level, as I gush over the items that they have so graciously provided to me!

But for now, let me show you what’s in the baby giveaway, and who will be giving it to you!

Let’s begin with a big, beautiful bag to put all of your prizes in!  Lauren from Thirty-One Bags is giving one lucky winner a Ziptop Utility Tote to store all of your goodies in!  This multipurpose bag can be anything from a hospital bag to a pool bag!  The winner will get to choose their fabric and put a monogram on it as well!

Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails

I met Olivia, the founder of Developmental Duffle, at a Family Expo here in the LowCountry.  She is a local gal who took the task of finding developmentally appropriate toys for children {birth-five years} into her own hands.  She now compiles duffle bags full of educational, enjoyable and enriching toys for new moms.  And she has been gracious enough to give the winner of my baby giveaway a complete duffle bag full of infant toys!

Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails

Swati is a new friend from Etsy.  Her shop there, Tinytweets, specializes in retro-modern handmade accessories for your new baby.  She is giving away an oh-so-cute fox pillow and one of the cleverest items I’ve seen in awhile, an Aventi bottle wrap {It’s a cozy for your baby’s bottle!}.

Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and PigtailsBig Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails

Rene and Jeremy’s CD, It’s a Big World World, is one of my family’s all-time favorite albums.  Their harmonies are soooo relaxing….I listened to them during both of my labors so far, and plan on continuing the tradition with this baby too!  They’ve also got some great covers and awesome sing-alongs.  It’s one of the few “kid” CD’s that I {gasp!} will listen to when the kids aren’t even around!!  Click on the picture to go to their site and hear some music samples.

Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails

I met Heather from Gemini Red Creations when I went to Bloggy Boot Camp in Charlotte last year.  Not only is she a part of my tribe, but she makes some beautiful jewelry and baby items!  She is contributing a car seat tent, a car organizer, AND a door latch cover!
Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and PigtailsBig Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails
Grace Hill Media promotes faith-based and family friendly movies to the public.  They are giving away a copy of Veggie Tales: The Little House That Stood…a kid-friendly version of Matthew 7:24 verse about building your house on a solid foundation.
Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails
Y’all have already met my girl, Holly, from Bunyoni Blankies!  She is the brains behind these ingenious carseat blankets that keep your lovey warm AND safe in his carseat.  My little friend Connor got to try one of these cozy blankies this past winter and loved it!
Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails
Amber teething necklaces are all the rage these days.  From curing teething ailments, to ear infections to sleeping through the night…every baby needs one!  Monica from Bouncy Baby Boutique is donating one of her Honey and Lemon Amber Teething Necklaces to my winner.
Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails
My friend Stephanie is an amazing author and blogger over at Binkies and Briefcases!  You may have read her hilarious contributions for the book, I Just Want to Pee Alone.  Well, she has moved on to writing children’s books as well now, and tackles the hard subject of kids and grief in her new book, The Cookie Jar Parable.  The winner of my #BigBabyGiveaway will win a copy of the ebook.
Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails
My old friend Chandler {whom I used to work with about 10 years ago at summer camp!}, is donating a Norwex Basic Household Cleaning Pack.  This pack of chemical-free cleaning products includes an Enviro-Cloth for everywhere, a Dusting Mitt, and a Window Cloth.  Perfect for those nesting days before baby comes…and everyday after baby comes!
Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails
Carrie from Venezia Art for Kids creates beautiful prints using your child’s name and themes from nature.  Perfect for nurseries all the way through childhood bedrooms!  The winner will get to choose a 10X20 paper name art for their child, made to order.
Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails
Rachel from 38 Stitches is donating a set of 3 cloth blocks.  The winner will get to choose which fabric prints they’d like from the 38 Stitches Etsy Shop.
Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails
I met my friend Alison at Bloggy Boot Camp as well, but since she is also a local gal, we’ve also had a chance to hang out with other LowCountry Blogger tribe members.  Alison blogs over at TheAlisonMarieBlog, but is also a successful Shaklee rep.  Shaklee promotes an overall healthy lifestyle, including weight loss, beauty, home care and nutrition.  Alison has been kind enough to donate some organic ShakleeBaby Soothing Lotion to the baby giveaway.
Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails
Blessing and Light is an Etsy shop dedicated to creating original concrete bookends, magnets and garden markers.  They are graciously giving you your choice of any two blocks to create a bookend set!
Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails
Every girl loves a bright chevron scarf in the Spring…Hold Me Close creates beautiful and fashionable infinity scarves that double as a nursing cover!  The baby giveaway winner will win a gift certificate for one of these beauties!!
Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails
Baby Greeters is donating three sets of washable nursing pads and a flannel burp cloth with mink backing to my baby giveaway. Winner chooses the fabric from a HUGE selection!!
Big Baby Giveaway-Over 20 prizes for Mom and Baby from Palmettos and Pigtails
Can you believe you can win ALL of those fabulous gifts?!?!?   It’s over $550 worth of products!!! I’m so excited for you! =)
Below, you’ll find the rafflecopter that you’ll use to enter the giveaway.  Be sure to follow the directions  on the entries you are interested in…because this is such a HUGE baby giveaway, I’ll be double checking the winning entry to make sure that you actually complete the entry {i.e. leave a comment, “Like” a Facebook page, etc.}  No cheating…. :)
You DO NOT HAVE TO complete all of the entries!!  If you have already completed one of the entries {i.e. if you already “Like” Palmettos and Pigtails on FB}, you get to click on that entry button without doing anything!!  And be sure to share this giveaway with any friends you have…if they win and don’t have kids….maybe they’ll give it to you!!!

Good Luck!! {Giveaway ends April 30th!}

 a Rafflecopter giveaway

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The Best Thing about Being a Mommy Blogger

This post is written by me on behalf of Liz Lange and Ergobaby.  Product was provided.

As you know, a couple of weeks ago I was able to escape for a few days to sunny rainy San Diego, CA to attend the SITSgirls’ Baby Bloggy Boot Camp.  A special blogging workshop just for mommy bloggers!  I arrived a day early, hoping to enjoy my first trip to California by being a tourist.  However, the weather had other plans and it rained for my entire weekend out there!  I was able to grab a few minutes at the beach in between rain showers though…

Bloggy Boot Camp for Mommy Bloggers in San Diego #LizLange #ErgoBaby #ad #swag

The water was freezing, but my ankles were swollen from the flight…so it was totally worth it!

Bloggy Boot Camp for Mommy Bloggers in San Diego #LizLange #ErgoBaby #ad #swag

I was lucky enough to stay at the Bahia Resort over in Mission Beach.  They treated me like a queen, going above and beyond with extra {like 10!} pillows for this preggo, and post-its to compensate for my lack of business cards!

Bloggy Boot Camp for Mommy Bloggers in San Diego #LizLange #ErgoBaby #ad #swag

Bloggy Boot Camp for Mommy Bloggers in San Diego #LizLange #ErgoBaby #ad #swag

Bloggy Boot Camp for Mommy Bloggers in San Diego #LizLange #ErgoBaby #ad #swag

Bloggy Boot Camp for Mommy Bloggers in San Diego #LizLange #ErgoBaby #ad #swag

I was bummed that I forgot my business cards at first, but the silver lining was that handing out post-its was a great conversation starter, and the sticky backs ensured that no one misplaced them! The conference itself was invaluable.  Tiffany and Francesca did a fantastic job of balancing networking, humor and workshops to make the whole day really enjoyable, as well as educational.  They also do a great job of ensuring that new bloggers know their worth, and teach them how to turn their blogging “hobby” into a business that is fulfilling and financially worth it.  And of course, as a mommy blogger, how to balance IT ALL!

Bloggy Boot Camp for Mommy Bloggers in San Diego #LizLange #ErgoBaby #ad #swag

And then, of course, there was the SWAG.  I don’t know anyone who doesn’t like getting free stuff.  Pens, water bottles, and keychains are the norm.  But not the SITSgirls.  They treat their mommy bloggers RIGHT! =)  They had some fantastic sponsors at Baby Bloggy Boot Camp that gave us samples of products, and some very helpful demonstrations!

Bloggy Boot Camp for Mommy Bloggers in San Diego #LizLange #ErgoBaby #ad #swag

Since I’m only 8 months pregnant, I haven’t been able to personally test most of this stuff out on a real baby yet.  But, I can tell you that now that the weather is nicer, I am living in my Liz Lange Maternity dress.  It’s flattering and soooooo comfortable!  And since you can buy that brand at Target, it’s price point is perfect as well.

Bloggy Boot Camp for Mommy Bloggers in San Diego #LizLange #ErgoBaby #ad #swag

And then there was Ergo Baby.  Every mom’s best friend!  And they were kind enough to bring me Ergobaby swaddlers, an Ergobaby wrap AND a brand new Ergobaby 360 Baby Carrier {not even on shelves yet!}.  I simply cannot wait for Baby Boy to arrive so I can wear him all over town.  For now, I’ll Dave will be practicing with Mongo the Monkey.

Bloggy Boot Camp for Mommy Bloggers in San Diego #LizLange #ErgoBaby #ad #swag

And since I accidentally grabbed a “girl” pack of diapers from The Honest Company {and they were size 3}, I sent them to Betsy to try out on baby Rosie.  She LOVED the adorable prints and stretchiness of the diapers for Rosie….especially now that Ro is all over the place!  I kept the samples of baby wash, laundry detergent and hand soap for myself!

Bloggy Boot Camp for Mommy Bloggers in San Diego #LizLange #ErgoBaby #ad #swag

It was a whirlwind of a rainy weekend, with the sun finally coming out on my flight home.  But every second I had out in CA was worth it, from the much needed “me time” cooped up in my hotel room, to the “polar bear plunge” that my toes made, to the new friends and great information I gained at the conference.  ‘Til we meet again San Diego!

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This post is written by me on behalf of Liz Lange and Ergobaby.  Product was provided.

Valentine’s Day Giveaway! #BelkValentineAd

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Hope you are staying warm and toasty with your honey this weekend!  I just wanted to send you a quick reminder that my Belk giveaway ends tonight!!!

Don’t forget to enter today!

#BelkValentineAd $75 Belk GC Giveaway from Palmettos and Pigtails

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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#BelkValentineAd and $75 Belk Giveaway

*This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Belk.  I was compensated for the items in the post.  As always, opinions are my own.*
#BelkValentineAd Belk Giveaway for TWO $75 gift cards from Palmettos and Pigtails

Last week I told you a little bit about how I was going to actually date my husband this year for Valentine’s Day, and thanks to Belk, we are all outfitted!  Our packages came in the mail this week, so I thought I’d give you a sneak peek of our gifts!  {And then give one of two chances to WIN a $75 gift card to Belk!!}

First up, is the iLive Bluetooth Speaker and Stereo System.  I admit that this ended up being a gift for the entire family {and one we’ve been enjoying all week!}.  It sits up on our bar, and charges our cell phones and iPads, while playing music through bluetooth {meaning, my phone doesn’t HAVE to be on it to be used!}.  I’ve found that it’s a good place to keep my phone though, since I can never find it!

#BelkValentineAd iLive Bluetooth and Stereo System…$75 Belk GC Giveaway from Palmettos and Pigtails

For myself, I got a new Karen Kane Wild Card Foldover Maxi Skirt.  It’s super soft, and the fold over waistband is really comfy on my ever-expanding waistline!  {And I just checked the price on this puppy….normally $108, and today it’s $37!!}.

The bag I got for myself was the New Directions Contrast Handle Tote bag {also on sale!!}.  It’s huge, and has a ton of pocket storage.  And I love that it has the choice of handles, or a long cross body strap.

#BelkValentineAd Karen Kane Maxi and New Directions Tote…..$75 Belk GC Giveaway from Palmettos and Pigtails

 And finally, I got Dave some new shoes.  He’s literally worn holes in the bottoms of his last pair, so I thought he could use a style upgrade, and some better quality kicks for work!  These are Florsheim Getaway Slip-ons in brown.  Obviously modeled by Millie, since Dave won’t receive them until next week for our date!

#BelkValentineAd Florsheim Getaway Slipons and a $75 Belk GC Giveaway from Palmettos and Pigtails

Those are some big shoes to fill!  Anyway, It’s so exciting to get packages in the mail, right?  So, enter my giveaway below, and if you are one of TWO winners, you’ll get a $75 gift card to Belk in the mail!  The giveaway ends on Valentine’s Day, so good luck!

#BelkValentineAd $75 Belk GC Giveaway from Palmettos and Pigtails

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{Giveaway} Bunyoni Blankies

Y’all, have you ever come across someone who you feel like you have known forever?  A kindred spirit?  I feel that way about Holly, from Bunyoni Blankies.  She came across my blog about craft shows, and we’ve been chatting ever since.  She and I have many similar passions and I am thrilled to have her as a new sponsor on the site.

Bunyoni Blankies, a Baby Blanket Giveaway from Palmettos and Pigtails

Here’s a little write up she sent me to introduce herself and her carseat blanket company:

Christ follower, wife, mom, maid, chef, business professional, and business owner….just a few of the many hats that I wear in a 24 hour span! I am often described as passionate and quirky to those who know me best! I grew up in a very small town in Central Illinois….so small that my classmates used to drive tractors to school. True story! I left my small town behind to graduate from Illinois State University with a degree in business. I was always convinced I was an inventor, but just didn’t know what I had invented yet. The amount of napkin drawings of what I perceived as the next best solution are endless! My husband and I have a beautiful daughter Ava (4),  and in 2012 welcomed little brother Owen.
 
As a new mom four years ago, I realized that I wasn’t quite sure what God was thinking allowing me to be a mom. I really struggled with the “hallmark” moments. I am SO passionate about solving everyday frustrations for new moms! Being a mom is tough and any little help we can get with the small tasks allow more time to just enjoy our precious little ones!
I am now acting as a Business Analyst with a fortune 50 company and putting a lot of energy toward my brand in solving everyday frustrations for new moms with Bunyoni Blankies, LLC. Any small impact I can make in the life of a new mom is such a joy to me! I am so blessed to have a great network of friends, family and supporters! At the end of the day, I’m just a crazy “kid” trying to figure out this thing called life and live it to the fullest every day!
 

Holly was great enough to send me my very own Bunyoni Blankie to try….however, since my little guy isn’t arriving until May, I passed on the carseat blanket to my friend Cassie and her newborn son, Connor.  And it arrived last week,  just in time for that freak winter chill that blew through the LowCountry.

Let me tell you, he was snug as a bug in that blankie!  All of Holly’s prints are reversible, with a pattern on one side, and a solid color on the other.  There are holes in the blanket to feed your carseat straps through, but they are also big enough to easily slide the straps off as well, if you want to keep the blanket on the baby even when he isn’t in the carrier.

Cassie and Connor are just loving their new Bunyoni Blankie!  Holly has a ton of new spring flannel prints on her website….here are just a few of my favorites.  Click here to see all of her winter prints.

And now you can have one too!  Holly is offering 10% off to my readers with the code PALMS on her website, or you can enter the giveaway below!

Win one of the four Bunyoni Blankies shown in the picture above. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck, and don’t forget to share this giveaway!!

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Get Snack to School with eMeals!

It’s time…..{cue ominous music}….

Have you noticed the oh-so blatant sections of Target and Walmart dedicated to paper, pencils, crayons, etc.?  Not to mention the hoards of sticky and sugary snacks that have been on sale {mostly on end-caps, calling out the names of the preschoolers in your buggy?}.

I don’t know about you, but there is something about  beginning a new school year that makes me both dread and eagerly anticipate the middle of August.  I admit that I’m excited for those precious few hours of “no-kid” time that are soon coming my way.  And I’m a nerd excited for brand new boxes of crayons, unsharpened pencils and clean book bags.

Free Back to School packet from eMeals...featuring a free week's meal plan and shopping list, a school checklist, and lunchbox notes.  Plus a discount code!

But I’m equally disheartend to know that my littlest Little will be in school two days a week, and my Big Girl is {eep!} big enough to go to school 4 days a week.  Two of those days overlap, giving me….10 whole hours a week of NO KID time!  Exciting.  I know.

Confession time.  So….10 whole hours of no kid-excuses.  Which means I can’t blame any non-progress on the girls.  I have NO EXCUSE not to have a clean house {on those days at least!}.  NO EXCUSE not to have blogging DONE by the time they get home from school.  NO EXCUSE not to have healthy, well-planned meals and snacks at the ready.

And here’s where I scream for help!!!!  And once again, eMeals.com to the rescue.

Free Back to School packet from eMeals...featuring a free week's meal plan and shopping list, a school checklist, and lunchbox notes.  Plus a discount code!

Y’all know how much we love eMeals around here….even if they weren’t one of my sponsors, I’d still toot their horn.  We love them that much.  And August is my absolute favorite eMeals month because they always have awesome deals {think 15% off with code SCHOOL15}, and incredible extras for their subscribers.  This month, they gave me a FREE Back to School packet to share with you.  It includes a checklist for preparing for school, some printable notes for lunch boxes AND a whole week’s worth of lunch plans.

Free Back to School packet from eMeals...featuring a free week's meal plan and shopping list, a school checklist, and lunchbox notes.  Plus a discount code!

Free Back to School packet from eMeals...featuring a free week's meal plan and shopping list, a school checklist, and lunchbox notes.  Plus a discount code!

Click here to see the whole packet!

Free Back to School packet from eMeals...featuring a free week's meal plan and shopping list, a school checklist, and lunchbox notes.  Plus a discount code!

So over our vacation, I had several friends ask me what the “deal” is with eMeals.  So, I figured with school coming quick, and schedules getting hectic soon….it would be a good time to tell y’all why we truly love this program.

So here’s the deal with eMeals.  You sign up with them and choose which meal plan fits your family { i.e. clean eating, slow cooker, vegetarian, paleo, low-fat, etc.}  They have a ton…I think there are over 50 meal plans available overall.  And you can switch plans if the one you initially choose doesn’t end up working for you.  Then, you choose what size family you have {1-2 or 3-6} and what grocery store you shop in.  We are currently using the low-fat plan for 3-6 people {so we ALWAYS have leftovers!} for Publix.

Free Back to School packet from eMeals...featuring a free week's meal plan and shopping list, a school checklist, and lunchbox notes.  Plus a discount code!

Click here for the whole meal plan and grocery list!

And then each week, eMeals sends me an email with that week’s meal plan.  As you can see, each meal has ingredients listed and simple directions all on one page.  Most of our meals take about 30 minutes to prep…although there are a few slow-cooker ones as well.  In the email, they also have your grocery list for the week.  The meal plans are based on the items that are on sale at the grocery store you chose, so they list the sale price on the grocery list too.  And any staples that you may already have are listed in a separate column.  On average, we eat 5 out of the 7 meals a week.  So I quickly just cross off any ingredients we won’t be using {or that I may already have}, and take the list with me to the grocery store.  The average weekly groceries on the list are about $80, but I NEVER spend that much because I end up crossing about a third of the ingredients off.  It’s fabulous!  {and if you plug in the ingredients into www.southernsavers.com, you can also find coupons to make your grocery trip even cheaper!!}.

Bottom line, for just a few dollars a month {$7}, I have all of my meals planned for me and a grocery list to boot.  They are so easy, and eMeals quite often sends me free holiday meal plans as well {think Thanksgiving meal planning….done!}.  And 15% off with code SCHOOL15.  Click any of the links above or over on my sponsors list to go straight to the website!

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*Disclaimer:  I LOVE eMeals, but they also gave me a free year’s membership.  I am a part of their afflilate advertising program which means I get paid a bit for each person who signs up for the program through the links and buttons on my site.  As always, I gave you my honest opinion about eMeals in this blog post!*

New Music from Courtyard Hounds

I didn’t really get into country music until high school.  Then I just listened to the stuff that was cool back then…a little Alan Jackson, a little Garth, and a LOT of Dixie Chicks.  I think the first {and longtime favorite} song I heard of theirs was “Goodbye Earl.”  I just loved their sass and twang.  And I remember listening to “Wide Open Spaces” while dreaming about moving out of my parents’ house and “Godspeed (Little Man)” while dreaming of future children.  Truly a band that’s been with me for many years!  Well, those dixie friends of mine disappeared for a bit, but are now back, with a brand new band, sound and album!  I have the absolute pleasure today of sharing a little it about The Courtyard Hounds with you today!

Courtyard Hounds' new album: Amelita

After a few years away from the limelight and the Dixie Chicks, two sisters {Martie Maguire and Emily Robison} were ready to get back into the studio with the creation of Court Yard Hounds.  Amelita, out now, marks the Court Yard Hounds’ second album.  And I was lucky enough to get a copy of it to enjoy!  When I first got it, I was tickled at the name…..not quite the same as my little Amelia’s….but still, I got an immediate good vibe from Amelita!

The Courtyard Hounds

 Have you ever found a song, {or, if your lucky} an album of songs that hit you right in the heart?  Like the band was singing right to you?  Or maybe even about you?  That’s kind of what end up happening with this CD.  Here’s a snippet of “Aimless Upward,” which was one of my favs….

And then the rest of the songs on the CD just ended up being fun to listen to! Even the girls enjoyed “Rock On” as they boogied in the back seat of the car!

You can buy Courtyard Hounds’ new album, Amelita now on iTunes or on Amazon. And keep up with the band by following them on Twitter or Facebook.

 And from “The World Smiles,” a fantastic quote and general motto for life!

If I believe in the good stuff and open my eyes up…then the world smiles….

Palmettos and Pigtails

I participated in this campaign for One2One Network. I received a free copy of the CD to facilitate my review. By posting, I am eligible for incentives. All opinions stated are my own.

“The Conjuring” Horror Movie Giveaway

I don’t know about you, but I could use a break.  A kid-free night out.  And maybe I’d even invite Dave!  I can’t tell you the last time I went to the movies.  No really….I just sat here {unsuccessfully} for like 30 seconds trying to remember the last movie I saw in the the theater.  Anyway, my friends over at Grace Hill Media have yet another giveaway for you today.  Usually they give me family-friendly movie passes or DVDs to give away…so it’s kind of refreshing to get an adults-only prize to give you this time.

If you love to be scared….this is the giveaway for you!  The Conjuring is a BRAND NEW movie out in theaters this week.  Super scary….so I’m gonna give you 4 tickets {more friends to huddle close and cover your eyes with!}  Perfect for a double date!

4 Tickets to The Conjuring Giveaway from Palmettos and Pigtails

Synopsis:
Does evil exist? What is strong enough to defeat it? These are the questions raised by this thriller directed by James Wan (SAW, INSIDIOUS). A family moves into a farmhouse in Rhode Island and finds themselves terrorized by an angry spirit. With the help of Ed and Lorraine Warren, they discover that the strength and power of a mother’s love can overcome any obstacle.

Here’s the creepy trailer…..Palmettos and Pigtails

Super easy to enter today!  Share it with your friends!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Hurry!  The giveaway ends on Thursday night!!!