Camping With Chevrolet #Chevy4G

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Chevrolet. The opinions and text are all mine.

I snuck away with my family on a camping trip this summer and it was awesome. We went fishing and bike riding, made s’mores and barbecued hotdogs.

One of the beautiful things about working online is that you have the luxury of setting yourself up to leave, as long as you complete your work ahead of time and have some sort of Internet connection to peek in on potential time sensitive emails. The last thing I want is to sabotage future jobs or be part of the bottleneck stopping other people from completing their jobs while they wait for a reply from me.

If I’m going away for an extended time (longer than a weekend), I’ll let people know I’m going to be gone and come up with a backup plan so they’re not waiting on me for anything. But in the case of this camping trip I thought I could sneak away and not tell anyone. I could check on my work first thing in the morning, maybe again midafternoon and one last time before bed. Surely I could complete any outstanding work from my phone while camping!

Except that my phone could not connect to anything at all.

When I learned that Chevrolet is the first automotive company to bring 4G LTE Wi-Fi into their cars, trucks and crossover vehicles I instantly began thinking of all the moments an Internet connection would have come in handy (obviously while parked) and that camping trip was the first on my list.

If I’d had the luxury of internet access from the comfort of our car I definitely feel like I could have relaxed a little more during our trip.

Apparently the 2015 Malibu and Impala (pictured below) are available with built-in 4G LTE Wi-Fi and can connect up to seven devices. The other 2015 models pictured will be equipped with Wi-Fi soon!

I’ll take one of each!

Chevrolet is merging the physical freedom of the car with the virtual freedom of Wi-Fi to become the first and only car company to bring built in 4G LTE Wi-Fi to the largest vehicle line-up. Visit http://s.chevy.com/TBX to learn more.

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Chevrolet. The opinions and text are all mine.

We Don’t Like Bugs

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of K9 Advantix® II. The opinions and text are all mine.

We fostered rescue dogs for two years before we decided to take the plunge and adopt one. I wanted to make sure my kids could be gentle with an animal in the house and I wanted to slowly warm my husband up to the a life long friend.

When we got Jack it was completely on my husband’s terms. He had a specific “type” of dog in mind and I hunted one down that fit his checklist.

Small? Check.

Non shedding? Check.

Family friendly and smart? Check check!

Jack is a shih-tzu mix and was such an amazing fit for us that two years later we found him a girlfriend to match. As pack leader, I take on the duties of chasing the dogs down the street when they slip out the front door.

As assistant pack leader my husband takes care of everything else. He is hyper aware of excessive itching, allergies, and God forbid he see a flea on one of those animals…he starts attacking every freckle he finds on every human in our house.

We don’t like bugs on our animals. Ever.

And I don’t like chasing them home from the neighbors house, but I don’t think there is a solution for that yet. In the mean time, Bayer K9 Advantix® II is exactly what we need to keep my husband from attacking freckles on the rest of us. Once we protect our dogs with Bayer’s repellent he can rest assured there are no ticks, fleas, and mosquitoes around to be concerned with and we will all be happy!

The bond between you and your dog is a special one, and you’ll go to great lengths to keep your furry family member safe and healthy. K9 Advantix® II is a once-a-month topical application for dogs and puppies that REPELS and kills ticks, fleas, and mosquitoes. Visit http://petparents.com/products to learn more.

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of K9 Advantix® II. The opinions and text are all mine.

4 Successful Summer Morning Habits

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Silk. The opinions and text are all mine.

I’ve been enjoying summer time with my kids this year. They’re definitely becoming little self managers as they get older, but here are 4 successful summer morning habits I try to encourage them to follow to make sure things run smoothly around here!

1. Sleep In

THEY’RE SLEEPING IN!! Every morning I let this little nugget of goodness seep into my consciousness. They’re. sleeping. in. I’ve always been a huge advocate of lots of sleep…not just because the house is a million times quieter and they look so cute, but because so much growing occurs during sleep. It’s taken seven years, but they’re finally allowing themselves to rest.

2. Get Creative

My kids are pretty good about balancing TV/tech time with creative play, but sometimes need a little creative encouragement to put the gadgets down. There is a golden hour every morning when they ignore me completely and play on their own.

3. Get Outside

I feel guilty if my kids are inside all day so if I’ve finished working and can see they’re starting to climb the walls, we leave. Sometimes it’s the library, sometimes it’s a water park or zoo, sometimes it’s the grocery store, and sometimes it’s bike riding with friends…but I need to get those legs outside! And probably mine too.

4. Eat!

It starts in the morning, but all day long “I’m hungry” is the number one complaint here so I nip it from the start by prepping platters of food at a time and we have an open smoothie policy. Add any fruit/veggie of your liking to any healthy drink of your liking and BAM…make your own smoothie. Under my supervision of course, because they’ll destroy my kitchen making the simplest of concoctions if left to their own devices.

For this smoothie Maile is using the new Silk Protein + Fiber Almond Blend. I love that they can excitedly put a drink together using so many healthy ingredients. It sure makes morning meal planning a whole a lot easier!

Visit Silk on Facebook to get your Silk product coupon.

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Silk. The opinions and text are all mine.

Sex Tape In Theaters July 18!

I can’t wait to see Sex Tape in theaters July 18th!

Not my sex tape, the movie Sex Tape. Initially I was reluctant to write anything about ANYONE’S Sex Tape until I watched the trailer for this movie and then I was hooked, take a look:

The gist is that Cameron Diaz (who plays a mom blogger) and Jason Segal decide to spice up their passionless marriage by getting creative in the bedroom. They film the entire thing and then accidentally send it to “the cloud”.

Can you even imagine? The idea of any unwanted content making it’s way through the in boxes of everyone you know is terrifying enough, but if it was content like that I would die a thousand mortifying deaths.

I’m looking forward to seeing how this resolves itself and in the mean time am excited to share I’m being featured as a guest blogger on the Sony Pictures Who’s Yo Mommy blog that Cameron Diaz’s character owns.

I’ve written up my own list of 10 ways to keep passion in a marriage and spoiler alert, none of them include sending a sex tape to “the cloud” so I’m already winning!

sex tape 2

Not A Numbers Person

I decided I would take control of my family’s finances while I was pregnant with my firstborn baby. No, finances are not my forte. No, I did not pass any math class with anything higher than a C average. In fact, my C’s were celebrated.

My history of not being a “numbers person” did not deter me from taking charge of our bank account. I could balance a checkbook AND pay bills. How hard could it be?

My husband was supportive (albeit cautiously) and handed over the reigns to our accounts. And I was amazing. I kept track of every dime, checked our accounts frequently and made our payments on time. Until I didn’t.

I started slipping up on my bill paying routine and wouldn’t you know they actually charge a late fee when you don’t get those in on time?

I decided to set up an automatic payment plan where money was withdrawn from our accounts to pay our collectors and I wouldn’t have to lift a finger. I thought this was a great idea.

After a few months I realized my bank was actually charging me a fee each time I used this new method of payment. In fact, every single time a payment went toward our bank issued credit card, they tacked on an additional 5 dollar service fee.

I was outraged. How dare the bank offer the ability to make automatic payments online and yet not be forthcoming about the fact that they actually CHARGE to use that service!

When I called the bank to complain I was assured they actually do not charge for this service and I was all, “Impossible, clear as day I see a recurring charge for these scheduled payments.”

And then I realized I had set up payments to occur AFTER the actual bill due date. Because when you log in to pay a bill on the 5th that was due on the 1st and decide to set up bill pay to happen automatically every month on the 5th…well you continue to receive late fees because your bill is supposed to be paid on the FIRST.

Leave it to me to manage to set up a late bill pay for myself.

Luckily my supportive (albeit cautious) husband was able to laugh (AND LAUGH) about my mishap instead of making me feel terrible for losing money each month.

At least I have a wonderful lesson to pass on to my own children when they’re ready to take control of their finances, chances are one of them might not be a “numbers person” either.

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of SunTrust Bank. The opinions and text are all mine.

At SunTrust Bank their purpose is lighting the way to financial well being. They help you get organized, make a plan, and stay on track so you can get and stay in control of your finances. When you are confident about about your money, you can save for your goals and splurge knowingly on what matters most to you.

To get started visit suntrust.com/getorganized.

5 Ingredient Holiday Cookies With Kraft

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Kraft. The opinions and text are all mine.

The season for cookie baking is upon us and I’m getting a little help for the holidays from Kraft! Santa Claus isn’t the only one who loves to munch on sugar filled treats, we’ve been indulging around here as well. This weekend I scooped up an extra jar of Planters Natural Peanut Butter while finishing up my Christmas shopping at Target and got to work on my favorite 5 ingredient holiday cookies. I love these cookies because they’re flourless and easy to whip up quickly.

I’m so grateful that Kraft provides natural ingredients to some of our pantry staples. In my efforts to cook from scratch more often with real ingredients, I love to see companies I’ve grown up with offering solutions I’m comfortable with.

For these cookies I used:

-1 Cup of Planters Natural Peanut Butter
-1 Cup of Sugar
-1 Egg
-1 Teaspoon Vanilla
-A handful of kisses

Simply combine the first four ingredients, bake at 350 for 10 minutes and when you pull your tray of baked cookies from the over, press a kiss on top!

So easy, even a child could do it. Take a look at my boy and me baking these delicious cookies together!:

You can receive up to $20 in savings on participating Kraft products, only at Target.

Happy holidays!

From shopping for gifts to planning family dinners, it’s hard to keep up with all your holiday to-do’s. This year, Kraft is helping out with great weeknight meals and entertaining ideas to make the season a little bit easier. Plus, Kraft is offering up to $20 in coupons, redeemable exclusively at Target, to make food shopping easier and to help you have a happy holiday season.

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Kraft. The opinions and text are all mine.

Long Lasting Holiday Traditions And A $500 Grand Prize

I have a box in a storage closet that I keep filled with batteries. I like to call it post traumatic battery collection disorder because I was the victim of a gift that required batteries one fateful Christmas morning and guess what? We had none. And guess what else? The grocery stores were closed.

christmas morning4

I can still remember the gift, it was a battery powered microphone. A MICROPHONE! This was before karaoke was common and I had never in my life had the luxury of belting my favorite Olivia Newton John tunes through a microphone before. My very own microphone!

Except…we didn’t have batteries.

The only thing worse than counting down the days until Christmas and waiting up all night for Santa is probably opening a gift you longed for only to find you weren’t actually going to be able to play with it. Okay worse than that might be not having a Christmas at all, but for me at the time it was very sad.

How I would have loved for that pink Energizer bunny to come scooting through our home that day with a basket of Energizer Max batteries.

christmas morning

Oh my parents hunted for batteries. Maybe we can remove the batteries from the remote control? Wrong size. Maybe we could borrow the batteries from your sister’s Baby Crawls A Lot…not over her dead body. We were left battery less. I made the most of the day. We opened other presents and our extended family came over for Christmas dinner. But I still feel like Christmas dinner would have tasted a lot better with some background vocals provided by yours truly on the microphone I didn’t have batteries for.

THIS is why we are always stocked. Not only are we always stocked, but it is not uncommon to find me opening packages to install batteries before I carefully slip them back into their packages for wrapping. My kids will not want for batteries on Christmas morning. Or ever.

Check out SheKnows Winter Holidays and read about more Christmas inspired fun and enter to win a $500 grand prize by participating in this Long Lasting Holiday Traditions Challenge!

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Energizer. The opinions and text are all mine.