Friday, August 1, 2014

For the Love of Cheese, Let's Celebrate Summer! {Weber Grill Prize Pack Giveaway}

 Kraft logo
While spring was coming to an end and the hot days of summer began to roll in, this year I focused on staying realistic about what the season would entail.

Although I'd like to say that I pictured leisurely, relaxing days — the kids are out of school, so we'll have plenty of time to enjoy the park or go on a picnic or just kick back and play in the yard, right? — I also knew that the various camps, sports, lessons, classes and events that my girls were signed up for would greatly impede on that daydream.

Instead of putting my feet up in the hammock, my free moments would be mostly spent in the car shuttling someone to their next activity while going to pick someone else up from their current one. Just call it Mom's intuition (or, more accurately, experience from the past few summers).

Therefore, I also knew that I wanted to be sure to carve out plenty of those carefree moments, for myself as well as for my family. After all, when we all look back, the most memorable days are going to be the ones spent together laughing and having fun, right?

This summer, I found my inspiration in a unique (but not completely unexpected) location. This is, after all, Wisconsin. So it isn't that big of a surprise that a lot of our fun has been centered around the one and only CHEESE!

Kraft for the love of cheese

That's right, we're not the only ones shining a spotlight on cheese. Right now Kraft is all about celebrating cheese-filled recipes this summer with their For the Love of Cheese website and sweepstakes!

A place to visit for delicious cheese recipes, information about Country star, Brad Paisley's summer tour, videos and personal recipe favorites, and a national sweeps for a chance to win a VIP Brad Paisley Concert experience for four and a lifetime supply of cheese*? Yes, please!

*Awarded in the form of a check for $8700. To enter and for Official Rules, click here: www.fortheloveofcheese.com.

Brad Paisley contest

It isn't hard to pinpoint meals around our house that involve cheese (mmm, cheeeeeeese...), but one weekly favorite is definitely quesadillas. The combination of tasty tortillas, melted cheese and any number of fillings heated to perfection? They are definitely something that the whole family gets excited about and if there was a way to keep them warm in a lunch box, I'm sure they'd be requested there, too!

While we do own a quesadilla machine that makes it fast and easy, it is also extremely simple to cook these up right in the oven or even on the grill! Just think of your guests' surprise when you whip up grilled quesadillas at your next BBQ!

Caprese Quesadillas

These Caprese Quesadillas were inspired partially from Kraft's recipe for Basil & Cheese Wedges and partially from my adoration for a classic Tomato, Mozzarella & Basil Sandwich.

And the result is nothing short of divine! Eat them plain, dip them in guacamole, drizzle a little balsamic vinegar... the options are endless!

quesadilla recipe

Kraft Recipes is hosting my complete Caprese Quesadillas recipe and instructions (for the oven as well as the grill), so head over today if you're looking for a delicious and simple way to include the love of cheese into your next meal or cookout!

This summer, be sure to browse the large number of recipes available found at For the Love of Cheese to discover a tasty selection of appetizer, meal or even dessert ideas that are creative, delicious, fun and perfect for a tasty, carefree summer.

And don't forget to enter for your chance to win a VIP Brad Paisley concert experience and a lifetime supply of cheese* (*awarded in the form of a check for $8,700), plus other great prizes awarded daily (NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Begins 5/5/14 and ends 9/7/14. To enter and for official rules click here: www.fortheloveofcheese.com)!

Plus, thanks to the generosity of Kraft, one person will be even more prepared to include their favorite cheeses in their upcoming summer fun, because...

 One lucky person will win a
For the Love of Cheese Grilling Prize Pack* (ARV $75)!

*Prize Pack includes (1) Weber Smokey Joe mini grill, (1) guitar-shaped cheese board, and (1) Brad Paisley Recipe Book


This post is a part of a partnered campaign with Kraft Foods, however, all thoughts and opinions shared are honest and my own.

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Why Type When You Can Scan with the Zcan+ Scanner Mouse {Review & Giveaway}

Zcan+ logo
While I don't claim to be at the forefront of new technology (I'm actually a bit ornery and resistant to change), as soon as I go without one of my devices or gadgets, I start to feel as though I'm missing a limb. How did I get along before my smartphone or my printer?

Along those lines, the next item that is surely going to join the must-have list for personal and business use is none other than the Zcan+ Scanner Mouse.

zcan+ scanner mouse

At first glance, the Zcan+ Scanner Mouse looks like just about any mouse, complete with a scroll wheel and a shiny white casing. However, the secret lies hidden underneath, where there is a built in scanner that uses OCR (optical character recognition) software, allowing users to not only control the pointer on their screen, but also scan any tables, documents or images!

Even better, unlike traditional scanners that simply transfer an image from one place to another, the material scanned with a Zcan+ Scanner Mouse is then able to be edited. Instead of just pulling up a jpg image or a pdf document, users can actually change the scanned material in in Excel, Word or Powerpoint instantly.

Considering that I utilize a scanner quite often for blogging as well as for personal use, it didn't take too long before I knew that I needed to try out Zcan+ for myself.

Zcan+ mouse

Right out of the box it was easy to see that Zcan+ didn't take much knowledge or technical skill. Simply plug it in to the USB port of your computer, install the provided software and start scanning!

zcan+ scanner mouse review

While it didn't take long for the necessary files to be setup in my computer system, it did take quite a few minutes for the actual installation process to occur. I could see why Zcan+ included a message letting users know that things weren't stalled if it seemed like nothing was happening!

Zcan+ installation

Once all of the installation and setup was complete, however, there was no wait or time needed to learn how to use Zcan+. Just click and scan!

Zcan+ instructions

This user-friendly mouse can truly scan just about anything and everything — it even comes with a small protective cover/sleeve to eliminate the worry of damage if you are scanning old photographs.

Whether you are scanning recipes to try, pictures drawn by your children, craft ideas for upcoming projects, business cards from a meeting or conference, knitting patterns for future use, receipts that you'll need for your taxes or much more, Zcan+ does it quickly and easily.

portable scanner

Once you start scanning and moving Zcan+ back and forth across the page, your image immediately appears on your computer screen. If you accidentally lift the mouse off of the page, you simply place it back down on an area that has already been scanned and it continues without problem.

Zcan+ scanning

When you are finished scanning, all sorts of options are available to crop, zoom, rotate, erase, change colors and much more.

Zcan+ cropping

The result is that you're left with exactly what you want to keep and can put it directly into a jpg, png, Word document, pdf and more... and remember that if there is text (for example you want to make a slight change to DIY instructions you just found), you can edit right away!

Zcan+ also takes things even further by including an app in their software that allows users to connect to Dropbox, Evernote or Google Translate. The latter means that if you have found a tasty recipe in Italian, you simply scan it, click Google Translate in the app, and have the real time translation right away so that you can start cooking!

But wait, there's still more! Along with all of the other features, Zcan+ Scanner Mouse also has added the convenience of sharing to its list. That's right, after scanning in your items, there is no need for any extra steps, you simply click "Share" in the software and can upload directly to Facebook, Twitter or your email directly.

kitchen storage

In all, I love the concept of a portable scanner mouse and Zcan+ has thought of everything to make their product user-friendly and extremely convenient. The only thing I would change is that this is a corded mouse — I'm a devotee to my cordless one — but Zcan+ already has an answer for that, too.

Head over to Indiegogo right now where you can support (and order at an early bird lower price) Zcan Wireless, the world's first wireless scanner mouse!

Whether at home, work or school, the Zcan+ Scanner Mouse has the ability to surpass language barriers (it supports 60+ countries' languages) and make it a snap to store and organize just about any information. Never wonder where a lost receipt is, wish that you could preserve your great-grandparents photographs or try to keep track of the birthday party ideas you've been ripping from magazines again!

For more information about Zcan+, visit their website and be sure to connect with them on Facebook and Twitter as well. This handy mouse can be purchased now on Amazon where it retails for $79.90.

But, thanks to their generosity, one person will soon see just how easy and fast it can be to scan nearly anything and everything, because...

One lucky person will win a Zcan+ Scanner Mouse!

zcan+ scanner mouse giveaway


A big thank you to DTOI for providing a Zcan+ for me to review as well as for one lucky giveaway winner. The opinions shared are my own and honest and if you really need to see more, click here to see how I roll.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Nenuco & Her Little Sister by Famosa {Review}

 Nenuco logo
Sometimes I look at my children and can't believe that it has been nearly eight years since Big Sister E entered our lives and suddenly turned my husband and I from a couple into a family.

As well as giving up our lazy weekend mornings and endless free time for relaxing, the dynamic in our household changed because my husband and I had this living, breathing little being who needed us to provide for her every minute of the day.

After two years of getting used to a responsibility that enormous, we doubled it by adding Little Sister B to our household and completing our family of four. As well as the changes that meant for Daddy and I, it was a near-magical experience to be able to provide Big Sister E with a playmate, companion, secret-sharer and best friend that she would now have for a lifetime. 

But that's not to say that she really had any understanding of the concept of being a big sister. A baby? What do you do with one of those? So, while I will forever cherish having two girls and getting to see them grow up together, one thing that I would have done differently is prepare Big Sister E a little more before her sister's arrival with something amazing like Nenuco & Her Little Sister by Famosa.

Nenuco & Her Little Sister

A leading Spanish toy company that has been manufacturing toys for over 50 years, Famosa has long been known for crafting high-quality dolls with engaging and unique features... which have been favorites of my girls for quite some time now. Our Nenuco Sleep With Me Baby Doll & Cradle is constantly moving from one room to another and class is nearly always in session with our Nenuco Let's Play School doll and playset!

Therefore, I had no doubt that one of their newest additions, Nenuco & Her Little Sister, would be just as well-received. What better way for any girl to practice feeding, bathing, dressing and nurturing as she prepares for a new sibling in her life?

Nenuco sister dolls

A double doll set that is appealing to any child expecting a younger sibling, Nenuco & Her Little Sister feature matching jumper outfits and easily showcase the sweet, innocent bond that sisters share.

Nenuco & Her Little Sister review

As always, the details that Famosa put into these Nenuco dolls are just the right touches to make them that much more special.

The individual eyelashes, the adorably cute carved lips, ears, fingers and toes... the little sister even has a soft, huggable body and a delicious baby powder scent. Love!

Nenuco dolls

As I suspected, these sister dolls have been a wonderful inspiration for all sorts of imaginative play in and around our house.

The big sister takes care of the little sister, helps get her food, gives her baths, puts her to bed, holds her hand during doctor visits and more — all things that warm my heart knowing that my daughters are only subconsciously recreating the care, affection and devotion that passes between them.

Nenuco review

Although bringing home a new baby can be a bit baffling and frightening for a little girl, giving her the ability to physically act out her own mothering before and after her sibling arrives can greatly ease any worries. I love that Famosa has created the perfect embodiment of the nurturing relationship between sisters and that this set can be treasured for so many years of wonderful play!

Retailing for $26.99, Nenuco & Her Little Sister dolls are designed for ages 2+ and can be purchased from Toys "R" Us or on Amazon as an amazing gift for any soon-to-be big sister or existing sisters. Be sure to visit the Nenuco website to find out more about their full line of high quality dolls and accessories — and check out their fun free games, coloring pages, puzzles and parent sections while you're there!

You can also connect with Nenuco on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube so that you can stay up-to-date with everything that this innovative company has to offer.

Other than the Nenuco & Her Little Sister that I was provided by Famosa in order to facilitate my review, I was not compensated or enticed to do this post in any way. This review is solely my honest opinion about this product.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Forget Running Errands for Your Favorite P&G Products — Have Them Come to You from Walmart.com! {$25 Walmart Gift Card Giveaway}

Walmart logo
Before I had kids, I never wanted to do any shopping by myself. Everything from grocery shopping to strolling through the mall to running to the drugstore was just so much more enjoyable if I could talk my husband into coming along with me.

Now that I have children? Even a trip out to pick up a gallon of milk by myself is a luxury.

Fortunately, with so many options for online shopping these days, even if I can't find a way to leave the house on my own, I can still order just what I need right from my computer at any time of day. Besides, who wouldn't rather shop when it is convenient for their own schedule? For me, that means no matter what the weather and at any point in the day when yes, I'm still in my pajamas thank you very much.

Which is why there is no reason to take time away from summer fun and drag my kids to store after store when just about every essential we need can be delivered right to our door from Walmart.com anyway!

Walmart.com

Everyone already appreciates the convenience, assortment, and savings of shopping for typical household items at Walmart stores, so it makes perfect sense that ordering them online at Walmart.com would be just as great... minus having to actually make the trip!

Walmart appRunning low on your favorite P&G products such as Tide laundry detergent, Bounty paper towels or Charmin toilet paper? Don't take time away from summer travels, trips to the beach, picnics in the park and more when shopping on Walmart.com (or by using the Walmart app) gives you the option to shop wherever and whenever you want – at your own leisure.

Even better, Walmart.com offers different payment options, including the option to Pay with Cash if you don’t want to use a credit card online. Also, you can choose to have your purchase shipped directly to your house (shipping is free if you spend $50 or more) or shipped for free to the nearest Walmart location for a quick and easy pick-up with Site to Store.

What more could I ask for? Let's shop!

online shopping

With one single click, I love that Walmart.com lays out their large assortment and great savings on household items, especially on my favorite P&G products. In a matter of minutes, I can virtually browse through all of the items that we use daily around our home (and seem to always be running low on), see specifications, read reviews and add to my cart.

After deciding whether I want my purchases shipped to me or if I'd prefer to pick them up at my nearest Walmart store...

Walmart shipping
I love how it is so easy to see various arrival dates depending on the shipping I choose or if an item is available right now in my nearest Walmart store!

...all I have to do is sit back and wait for P&G goodness to be delivered right to me!

We are forever trying to keep stock in Bounty Select-A-Size Paper Towels, Charmin Ultra Soft Toilet Paper Mega Rolls and Tide 2x Ultra For High Efficiency Machines Liquid Laundry Detergent, so being able to order them directly from Walmart.com is a definite time-saver. Not to mention that having someone else deal with the moving, lifting and shipping of to get these heavy, bulky things to my door is always a relief!

P&G products

Walmart.com offers the great variety and savings on everyday low prices that we all have come to know and love from our local Walmart stores, so whether you need Pampers Cruisers Diapers or Swiffer Dry Sweeping Sweeper Cloths Refills (or just about anything else), this is online shopping at its most convenient.

Find out more about all of the high quality P&G products that you can stock up on at any point day or night by visiting Walmart.com and downloading the Walmart app today.

Plus, thanks to the generosity of Procter & Gamble, one person will be even more prepared to make their own money-saving purchases from Walmart.com as well, because...

One lucky person will win a $25 Walmart gift card!

25-Walmart-Gift-Card


The Walmart gift cards and information have been provided by P&G. The opinions shared are my own and honest and if you really need to see more, click here to see how I roll.