Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year...and a few New Year's Resolutions too!

We've managed to come up with a few New Year's resolutions...what about you?  Have you given up completely?  I used to never make resolutions because I never kept them, but decided that this year would be the year that I would take the time for myself and my kids to make sure I follow through with them.  It's only fair!  So what are they?  Well, I won't tell you all of them (you'd get bored), but here are the highlights....

I will put a stronger focus on losing weight...I tried this past year, but didn't put enough effort into it and stayed pretty much at the same point so I will be exercising more and making a dent in the numbers.  We will be inviting friends over the house more often!  When my husband and I first married, we had friends over almost every other night and at least weekly but since we moved to Texas it just hasn't been the same (so watch for the invites, or remind us to invite you over more).  With our schedules and crazy life, we neglected that, so this year it will change!  First off, that means cleaning and organizing the house!  We will be starting a family game night each week so that it becomes second nature for our boys as they grow up! 

My youngest (age 2) said he wants to learn to ride his bike better and move up in swimming classes.  My oldest (age 4) said he wants to make sure we take the dog on walks each week and be able to swim the length of the pool!  The list goes on and on, but I won't bore you with the details.  We tried to make quantifiable goals that once they were completed, we could check them off so it's more of a 2011 to-do list.  It seems manageable, it seems doable, and really, that's what counts!

So Happy New Year to you!  May all your resolutions be kept this year!

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Surfin' Saturdays! Facebook Link Up Week!

Welcome to the 24th Surfin' Saturdays hosted by Chubby Cheeks Thinks, Two Monkeys & a Washtub, And Then There Were Four and  The Coupon Challenge! Each week we will be surfin' a different social network. You will have to check back every Saturday to see where we will be! One week it may be a facebook hop and then the next an email hop! It will be lots of fun and you will get to meet new people and see old friends as well!

We kindly ask that you follow these simple requests
  1. Follow the hostesses in the first four spots (We will follow you back! Just please leave a comment letting us know that you are following us!)
  2. Please only link up the network that is being hopped that specific week.
  3. No spam please. These will be removed. 
  4. It would be wonderful if you are linking up this week if you could add our button to your sidebar or in a post to help spread the word! :) The more people that join, the more fun it will be! (Plus if you add our button to your sidebar you can grab 5 extra entries into any ONE giveaway each week!)
  5. If someone follows you please feel free to follow them back! If you follow me and leave a comment you are guaranteed a follow back!
This is a new list every Saturday, so please remember to come back and link up!
This week is FACEBOOK!
Please link up only your FACEBOOK page!



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Trinity Kids - and the 8th Annual Heart & Soul Charity Auction! Help the kids of North Texas today (or in your local community through RFKC)!

The kids of North Texas need your help!  If you're looking for somewhere to donate, and just haven't found an organization that touched you, read more about Trinity Kids and donate now or plan on attending the live/silent auction in February!
Trinity Kids is a 100% volunteer organization (no paid staff), so the maximum amount of each donation goes to the kids. Trinity Kids relies mainly on fund raising and one of their largest fund raising events is coming up on Saturday, February 5, 2011. The 8th annual Heart and Soul Charity Auction will be held at the Bob Duncan Recreational Center in Arlington, Texas from 6 – 9 p.m. Trinity Kids is in need of items to be donated for the auction, as well as people to come to the auction and buy the items.

Did you know that Texas Child Protective Services investigated over 50,000 reported cases of child abuse and neglect in the DFW Metroplex in 2009, including 61 deaths. Now, more than ever, children in North Texas desperately need help to overcome the scars of abuse, neglect and abandonment so that they can more fully live their lives without fear!

The Heart & Soul Charity Auction helps to increase awareness and raise money for abused, neglected and abandonded children of North Texas. All proceeds go to Trinity Kids, an all volunteer, non-profit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to meeting the needs of abused children through one week summer camps.

On average, Trinity Kids takes approximately 60 – 70 kids to camp each year and try to take equal numbers of boys and girls. Trinity Kids is always in need of men to be volunteers and often times can’t take as many boys as we would like because of a shortage of men volunteers. Unlike traditional camps that average 8 – 10 children per guide, each guide only has 2 children, so the guides can focus lots of attention on their campers, which they rarely get. All of the children at camp are either in Child Protective Services custody or have been in custody, and unfortunately the majority have been sexually abused.

You can donate to Trinity Kids through their web page.  Donate your time or contact me if you'd like to donate goods or services to the Heart & Soul Charity Auction!  Tickets to the Heart & Soul Charity Auction are only $15 per person. The event includes a catered dinner by Mercado Juarez, live entertainment by the Crosswinds Jazz Band, a silent auction and a live auction managed by professional auctioneer, Shawn Hardin.



Interested in finding out how to help in your community?  You can read more about Royal Family Kids Camps, search for local camps and supporting organizations (like Trinity Kids), and donate today!

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Chicken Soup for the Soul - Think Positive : Book Review & Giveaway

Chicken Soup for the Soul - Think Positive is 101 true stories about how positive thinking can change your life!  With its 101 stories of optimism, faith, and strength, this book will encourage you to stay positive during challenging times and in your everyday life. Real-life stories from people, taking a positive attitude to the ups and downs of life, and remembering to be grateful and count their blessings. This book continues Chicken Soup for the Soul's focus on inspiration and hope and its stories remind us that each day holds something to be thankful for. A great start to the New Year!

As with the many Chicken Soup for the Soul books, it's always a great reminder that we can use positive thinking to adjust and improve our lives.  Moving into the new year, this book is a great reminder that we should be counting our blessings and changing our outlook for the better because we should all be making every day a special day!  I loved the stories in this book and even on the rough days, this book is a great book to grab and remind yourself to think positive because there is probably a silver lining in the situation even if at first you don't see it!  My favorite quote in the book is, " Positive anything is better than negative thinking."  from Elbert Hubbard.  I truly believe that if you can be positive good things will happen, but sometimes we all need a few reminders!

Buy It!
You can purchase Chicken Soup for the Soul - Think Positive in bookstores, directly from Chicken Soup from the Soul or purchase from Amazon!

Win It - Giveaways Details!
Two winners will receive a copy of Chicken Soup for the Soul - Think Positive!  This giveaway is open to US & Canada will end on January 10th at 10:00PM Central.  I'll email the winners who will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen.

Mandatory Entry!
Let me know why you'd like to receive a copy of this book!

Extra Entries!
(If it states 2 extra entries, please leave 2 comments)
Follow me on Google Friend Connect (see right hand side bar) (+1 extra entry)
Like Two Monkeys & a Washtub on Facebook (+3 extra entries)
Like Chicken Soup for the Soul on Facebook (+3 extra entries)
Comment on the Milkbone Bark it Furward Post (+5 extra entries in all giveaways, only one comment please)
Subscribe to Two Monkeys & a Washtub by e-mail/RSS feed (+2 extra entries, you can do both)
Follow monkeyswashtub on Twitter (+1 extra entry)
Follow Chicken Soup for the Soul on Twitter (+1 extra entry)
Tweet up to 3x daily, must be 1hr apart, leave one comment with the link to your tweet (up to 3 extra entries daily): 
Win ChickenSoup-ThinkPositive @monkeyswashtub from @chickensoupsoul  (2win *US&CAN*) Ends 1/10!
Vote for me on the Fence (+2 extra entries daily)


Disclosure:  I received a copy of of this book for review in exchange for my honest opinion.  No additional compensation was received.
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Thursday, December 30, 2010

Purex Complete Crystals - Review

Recently I got the opportunity to join a group of amazing bloggers and become a Purex Insider. What does this mean? It means I get to bring you all the latest Purex news and products info as soon as it is available which is definitely exciting!

Hitting the stores earlier this week was Purex Complete Crystals. Not sure What Complete crystals are? Purex Complete Crystals are what Purex is calling Softener reinvented!  Purex Complete Crystals are in a unique crystal form not a liquid. It is 92% natural, this product’s unique crystal form works differently than traditional oil-based softeners that coat fabrics with oily residue, because it infuses fibers with long-lasting fragrance. In addition, since you add it directly with your laundry, this means no more waiting for the rinse cycle, no messy residual gunk in your washing machine, and no more stains from spilling liquid fabric softener.

To use this new laundry softener, simply add Purex Complete Crystals Softener directly with your laundry at the beginning of every wash cycle to infuse fabrics with long lasting freshness.  Purex Complete Crystals are are safe for all laundry and will not harm, wear down or discolor your fabrics like oil-based softeners.

Safe for all fabrics, including baby clothes, athletic wear, towels, and whites. Unlike other softeners, Crystals will preserve the flame retardant benefits of your children’s clothes, retain your athletic wear’s wicking ability which draws sweat away from your body, maintain your towels’ built-in ability to absorb water, and keep your white clothing from yellowing and graying vs. using traditional softeners!  This product won’t harm your clothes and is safe and convenient for the entire family!  Yea!

Currently Purex Complete Crystals are available at Wal-Mart in the following scents: fresh spring waters,  lavender blossom, and tropical splash.

In addition to checking out Purex Complete Crystals in the laundry, we also dropped a few in the bottom of the garbage cans and the diaper pail because the scent was amazing on our towels and sheets so we wanted to freshen the entire house as well!  These are pretty amazing little Crystals so if you happen to see them, you should definitely grab some for your laundry too!

Disclosure:  As a Purex Insider, I received a trial size Purex Complete Crystals for review in exchange for my honest opinion.  No additional compensation was received.
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Giveaways Ending Tonight...

Giveaways are ending tonight....with more coming in the new year so enter now!

 

Chex Prize Pack Incl. $25 Kroger GC*US* Ends 12/30



Mrs. Butterworth Syrup *US* Ends 12/30



Blue Platypus Vintage Chic Clothing *US* Ends 12/30


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You called?

You called?  Oh, you didn't need me?  I should stay on the sofa...really, are you sure?  I think you really need my assistance baking cookies....I'd be good at cleaning up what I knock off the counter you know!  I'm even smiling...see I look cute, so you really should call me to come and help! - Logan
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Wednesday, December 29, 2010

AVEENO Nourish Hair Care - Review

When it comes to hair care products, I love trying new things since I never truly find something that suits me for long than a couple months.  With long straight blond hair that is super fine, I love trying out new volumizing hair care products.  I received AVEENO Nourish + Volumize Shampoo and Conditioner and Nourish + Style Volumizing Foam.  Typically my hair becomes pretty lifeless and flat about two to three hours after styling, so I give up and wear it straight but was pleasantly surprised to see a lot more lift at my roots with this combination of AVEENO products after just a couple uses.  My hair feels healthier and definitely has a little more bounce.  I'm definitely planning to purchase more AVEENO Nourish when it hits store shelves in February...I just hope my supply can stretch that long!

 
Don't worry if you need something other than volume for your hair, AVEENO Nourish Hair Care has a product made just for you too!

 

 
 

 
  • NOURISH+ SHINE Shampoo and Conditioner
  • NOURISH+ MOISTURIZE Shampoo and Conditioner
  • NOURISH+ REVITALIZE Shampoo and Conditioner
  • NOURISH+ VOLUMIZE Shampoo and Conditioner
  • NOURISH+ SOOTHE Shampoo
  • NOURISH+ Condition Leave-In Treatment

AVEENO® NOURISH+ Shampoos and Conditioners have been clinically proven to leave hair stronger, softer and with a healthy shine in just three washes  The formula, which includes the Nourishing Wheat Complex, targets and help repair damage, fortifying hair with proteins and conditioners where it needs it most.  Each use helps to increase hairs resilience against future damage, and gentle enough for color-treated hair!   AVEENO® NOURISH+ Shampoos and Conditioners were developed with a team of experts, including a leading dermatologist and hair stylist.  Products will be available February 2010 at food, drug and mass merchandisers with a suggested retail price: $6.49 - $7.49, 10.5 oz. bottle.

 
In addition, AVEENO has partnered with celebrity hairstylist Patrick Melville.  Patrick Melville is recognized as one of the top stylists and educators in the industry and currently serves as the AVEENO® Celebrity Hair Consultant. Having groomed the tresses of everyone from A-list celebrities, rock stars and models to beauty and fashion editors (Ashley Judd, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Demi Moore, Eva Longoria, etc) Patrick brings his hair care expertise and passion to the AVEENO® Brand. A native of England, Patrick’s career has graced the pages national magazine across the globe. Patrick’s in-depth styling experience makes him a wealth of knowledge for all things hair care related.

Patrick would like to share the following tips & tricks with you for amazing hair heading into the new year:
  • Get ready for this year by going with a look that can be worn from the office to the office party. Keep it sleek and simple with an up-do in the morning and be sure to take any accessories, pins, or hair ties you need to re-primp and jazz it up at the office. Remember less is more: adding a simple headband or jeweled-piece provides that extra layer for a perfect evening look.
  • Always prep your hairstyle with a proper wash. Remember to comb any tangles out before you wet it and use warm water to open the cuticles of the hair and to wash all the oil and dirt off. Then, you only need a dollop of shampoo to rub your hands together and apply to your scalp. Take note that you should put the shampoo on your scalp and not at the ends of your hair. Rinse your hair with cold water afterwards to close the cuticles and add to the shine of your hair. Whether you are looking for a smooth, wavy or curly style, I recommend using AVEENO® NOURISH+ Shampoos and Conditioners to keep your hair naturally beautiful for any occasion.
  • To flatten frizz on the go, dampen your hands with a finishing spray or smoothing agent like the AVEENO® NOURISH+ STYLE Shine Crème. Run hands through your hair, and then loosely pull your hair back into a bun. Wait 15 minutes and take your strands down for flawless, shiny hair in minutes.
  • When you're strapped for time do the T-zone blow-dry: dry down your part and around your hairline only. Not only will you look finished, but your hair will thank you. For best results with lasting hold all day long, use the AVEENO® NOURISH+ VOLUMIZE Shampoo and Conditioner in addition to the NOURISH+ STYLE Volumizing Foam - this combo will give you great volume and hold your style for 12 hours. (There's even a video and step-by-step instructions on the website to help you learn more!)
  • Many people make styling curly hair harder than it needs to be. Classic curls are in this season, so if you have them, rock them! To define and pump up those curls, use a conditioning leave-in treatment with a curl-defining spray to add softness and de-frizz those curls. I love to use the AVEENO® NOURISH+ STYLE Curl-Defining Spray Gel on my clients.
  • Think about giving the gift of beauty for the Holidays (or as an after holiday special surprise). Not only is it practical, but there’s no better gift than that of pampering someone you love. I recommend a gift certificate with at least one product to round it out, like: The Patrick Melville Salon Signature Blow Out with the AVEENO® NOURISH+ STYLE Shine Crème. It provides nourishment needed to keep hair healthy looking and manageable after the salon.
Disclosure:  This post was written for Family Review Network & AVEENO who provided the complimentary product for review in exchange for my honest opinions.
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Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Extending the giveaway for Blue Platypus until December 30th!




I realized today that I never announced a winner for Blue Platypus, and that's because this particular giveaway wasn't highlighted on my sidebar!  I love the ingenuity of their vintage chic style and hope you'll stop by and check out their site.  Please visit the review and giveaway post for all the details, but Blue Platypus deserves a little more attention!

Giveaway is extended until December 30th at 10:00PM Central so get your entries in now!

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Monday, December 27, 2010

Winners! Yea! Winners!

With the holidays, I'm a little behind on announcing winners - sorry!  Thanks to these amazing sponsors and all those who stopped by to enter.  Once the new year gets going, there will be lots more so be sure to stop by and visit!


ERGO Baby Carrier *#116 erin (blogger was giving me editing issues the night I attempted to post)



Daryl Hall & John Oates CD Box Set * #52 Gina P

$25GC for VinylizeIt Wall Decals * #45 Kara



Lovable Labels - Label your kid's stuff pack * #13 leann_mac

Milk-Bone Prize Pack * #30 katy

Thanks again to everyone that stopped by and entered and be sure to check out the current giveaways too!

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Spice up your new years with EdenFantasys!

This post includes links to an adult shop, if you are under 18, please do not click the links!
Whether you're going out with friends first or planning to put the kids to bed early and spending some much needed time together toasting to the new year, don't forget to spice up your new year with EdenFantasys!  EdenFantasys is an adult shop with so much more to offer!  The reviews are truly helpful on the products if you really want to know if something will work for you when you purchase it!  In addition, you won't be disappointed if you visit the forums on EdenFantasys either.  In the forums, you'll find discussions on everything from relationships to sexual health and general Q & A about EdenFantasys.

Sex toys - EdenFantasys adult toys store

Like I've said in the past, you don't have to worry about being embarrased when a package arrives at your doorstep from EdenFantasys, but make sure you know when it's coming so you don't open it in front of the family thinking it's a box from somewhere else!  I've always been satisfied with communications from EdenFantasys too!  It's great when an adult company sends you an email asking if you'd like a copy of their newest magazine in print form mailed to you instead of just sending it out!  With your best interest and privacy in mind, EdenFantasys is an adult shop you should definitely check out if you haven't shopped there before and want to spice up your new year!

Disclosure:  I am a member of the EdenFantasys Ambassador Program and receive gift cards in exchange for honest review posts about the company.  These are my honest opinions about EdenFantasys.
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Sunday, December 26, 2010

Mrs. Butterworth's Syrup in Limited Edition Holiday Bottles Review & Giveaway!

Deck the halls with Mrs. Butterworth’s syrup! Just in time for the holiday season Mrs. Butterworth is getting dressed up for the festivities.  There are three LIMITED holiday bottles that are a part of the 2010 decorative series.  Whether you like to sing carols all season long, act as Santa’s little helper or be the joyful gift giver, there is a Mrs. Butterworth’s bottle- perfect for everyone!

Whether you choose to serve it on pancakes, french toast, or waffles (like we did), it tastes so yummy!  My kids loved the Mrs. Claus bottle we received and thought it was pretty neat to have a special holiday-themed bottle and couldn't wait to use it again and again!  Don't worry though, Mrs. Butterworth's didn't change the syrup, these are amazingly cute decorative labels that are perfect for continuing the holiday celebration! 

Buy It!
You can find Mrs. Butterworth's Limited Edition holiday bottles in select markets, so have fun looking for them to share with your family!

Win It - Giveaway Details!
One winner will win a Limited Edition bottle of Mrs. Butterworth's syrup!  This giveaway will end on December 30th at 10:00PM Central.  I'll email the winner who will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen.

Mandatory Entry!
Let me know what your favorite holiday breakfast tradition is in your family and what food you plan to use your Mrs. Butterworth's syrup on!

Extra Entries!
(If it states 2 extra entries, please leave 2 comments)
Follow me on Google Friend Connect (see right hand side bar) (+1 extra entry)
Like Two Monkeys & a Washtub on Facebook (+3 extra entries)
Comment on the Milkbone Bark it Furward Post (+5 extra entries in all giveaways, only one comment please)
Subscribe to Two Monkeys & a Washtub by e-mail/RSS feed (+2 extra entries, you can do both)
Follow monkeyswashtub on Twitter (+1 extra entry)
Tweet up to 3x daily, must be 1hr apart, leave one comment with the link to your tweet (up to 3 extra entries daily): 
Win Mrs. Butterworth's Syrup @monkeyswashtub! US- Ends 12/30!

Vote for me on the Fence (+2 extra entries daily)


Disclosure:  This post was written for Family Review Network & Pinnacle Food Groups who provided the complimentary product for review in exchange for my honest opinions.  No additional compensation was received.   
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Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas!  Hope you have a wonderful day celebrating with family!  We're enjoying our time together today...playing in the paper is sometimes just as much fun as opening the presents!
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Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas Eve!

Taking a couple days to spend with family!  Hope you enjoy Christmas Eve and Christmas Day with your families!  I'll stop in to wish everyone a wonderful holiday, and I'll be back soon with some great reviews and giveaways (and announcing winners)...but today it's all about making Muddy Buddies Chex Mix, Chocolate Dipped Pretzels with all the toppings, sugar cookies, chocolate chip cookies, fudge, divinity, and just making a mess of the kitchen because you never know what Santa's favorite treat will be!

We'll be leaving a plate full of goodies along with hot chocolate and we can't forget the reindeer...so Oatmeal on the lawn (eventhough it's forecast to be raining, the kids are insisting) and carrots with the cookies!  Have a wonderful holiday with your family and friends!  I'll be back online soon!
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Thursday, December 23, 2010

It's all about the paper!

Sometimes the paper is the best part about Christmas presents!
(taken Christmas 2008)
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Wednesday, December 22, 2010

RAZ reminds us to remember to give this holiday season! (Random Acts of Zhu)

Sometimes as a blogger I am given the opportunity to participate in some really amazing projects, and Random Acts of Zhu was definitely one of those amazing projects this year!  Cepia, LLC, the makers of Zhu Zhu Pets wanted to reach out to local communities in the most amazing way by distributing 10,000 Zhu Zhu and Kung Zhu pets nationwide this holiday season.  In order to reach the most deserving charities and kids in local communities, Cepia, LLC reached out to bloggers it had worked with in the past and sent them each 104 hamsters to share with their charity of choice!  Like I said, sometimes as a blogger, I get the most amazing opportunities, and giving back to the community is definitely the best!  It's always a great reminder to give to others this holiday season, so let me tell you a little bit more about my charity of choice in North Texas!

Trinity Kids touches the lives of abused, neglected and abandoned children of North Central Texas by providing FREE activities that are designed to provide fun, safe and positive memories.  Every summer, children ages 7-11 attend a week-long residence (overnight) camp for FREE and several times each year teenagers enjoy FREE one & two day events with caring adults. Local social service organizations and their appointed foster families refer children to Trinity Kids for each event.

Trinity Kids volunteers demonstrate Christian love and care, modeling non-violent, positive ways of life as an alternative to the negative and hurtful experiences of abused children.  I'll be writing more about Trinity Kids and their camp program and ways to donate and volunteer soon!  Here's what it takes to wrap 104 little hamsters for a holiday party for the kids of Trinity Kids!




Disclosure:  I did not receive anything personally for this post, only the ability to choose a deserving charity to distribute 104 Zhu Zhu pet hamsters to deserving kids this holiday season!
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Monday, December 20, 2010

Winners! Lots and Lots of Winners!

Like I always say, the best part about hosting giveaways is announcing the winners!  I've sent all the emails so if you see your name below, you should have received an email!  Please let me know if you didn't get it!
Snaps Collar (2 win) *US* Ends 12/16 - #74 jenzen69 & #65 Rudy - The dog with a blog


6CD Music for Little People Prize Pack *US* Ends 12/16 - #111 G_Mimi


Money Savvy Piggy Bank *US* Ends 12/16 - #92 manthas24


DiDiPop Goes to Hawaii CD *US* Ends 12/17 - #23 chelsei


ERGO Baby Carrier *US&CAN* Ends 12/18 (To be announced shortly, my web browser was having issues when I tried to scroll through the 800+ comments to verify validity)


Smart Tea Maker *US* Ends 12/18 - #93 jenzen69


OhMiBod - Feel the Music (adults only) *US* Ends 12/19 - out of just over 100 entries, RA (initials for privacy won)


$50 Eden Fantasys GC (adults only) *US* Ends 12/19 - out of nearly 200 entries, PW (initials for privacy won)


$30 Playful Threads GC *US* Ends 12/19 - #123 Stacey L


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Chex Mix and Kroger - The Perfect Combination for the Holidays! Review & Giveaway!

When it comes to holiday get-together, we love having Chex Mix around!  Sure, we could purchase the pre-made bags at the store, but those just aren't as much fun as making and trying all the amazing recipes and mixing it up with your kids!  Really, you can't go wrong when it comes to having Chex mix at your holiday festivities because everyone loves it!

Continuing through December 25th, Kroger will have Chex cereal on sale so make sure you stop by and stock up to make all your holiday snacks!  There are some great recipes available to try this year, from the salty to the sweet and even gluten free options!  If you're looking to try something other than just the "original Chex mix" you should check out all the recipes!

Buffalo Chex Mix
I think we'll be making the Muddy Buddies and Buffalo Chex Mix this year to snack on over the holidays!  I know my boys will love anything that includes chocolate and peanut butter, and my husband loves all things buffalo sauce flavored so these should be a hit at our house!  I can't wait to start making all the holiday goodies on Christmas Eve.  This will definitely be one of the first things we make so that everyone has something yummy to munch on all the way through the New Year!
Muddy Buddies

Win It - Giveaway Details!
One winner will receive a two boxes of Chex cereal and a $25 Kroger gift card!  This giveaway is open to US only and will end on December 30th at 10:00PM Central.  I'll email the winner who will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen!

Mandatory Entry!
Visit Chex and let me know what amazing recipe you'll be trying with your family this year or would love to try or make every year!

Extra Entries!
(If it states 2 extra entries, please leave 2 comments)
Follow me on Google Friend Connect (see right hand side bar) (+1 extra entry)
Like Two Monkeys & a Washtub on Facebook (+3 extra entries)
Comment on the Milkbone Bark it Furward Post (+5 extra entries in all giveaways, only one comment please)
Subscribe to Two Monkeys & a Washtub by e-mail/RSS feed (+2 extra entries, you can do both)
Follow monkeyswashtub on Twitter (+1 extra entry)
Tweet up to 3x daily, must be 1hr apart, leave one comment with the link to your tweet (up to 3 extra entries daily): 
Win Chex Prize Pack (incl $25 Kroger GC) @monkeyswashtub from #myblogspark ! US-   Ends 12/30!

Vote for me on the Fence (+2 extra entries daily)


Disclosure:  We received two boxes of Chex cereal and a Kroger gift card courtesy of Chex, Kroger through MyBlogSpark in exchange for our honest opinions.  No additional compensation was received.
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Friday, December 17, 2010

Surfin' Saturdays enters week 24 - let's follow each other through Google Friends! It's GFC week!

Welcome to the 24th Surfin' Saturdays hosted by Chubby Cheeks Thinks, Two Monkeys & a Washtub, And Then There Were Four and  The Coupon Challenge! Each week we will be surfin' a different social network. You will have to check back every Saturday to see where we will be! One week it may be a
facebook hop and then the next an email hop! It will be lots of fun and you will get to meet new people and
see old friends as well!

We kindly ask that you follow these simple requests

  1. Follow the hostesses in the first four spots (We will follow you back! Just please leave a comment letting us know that you are following us!)
  2. Please only link up the network that is being hopped that specific week.
  3. No spam please. These will be removed. 
  4. It would be wonderful if you are linking up this week if you could add our button to your sidebar or in a post to help spread the word! :) The more people that join, the more fun it will be! (Plus if you add our button to your sidebar you can grab 5 extra entries into any ONE giveaway!)
  5. If someone follows you please feel free to follow them back! If you follow me and leave a comment you are guaranteed a follow back!
This is a new list every Saturday, so please remember to come back and link up!
This week is GFC!
Please link up only your Blog if you have some way for people to follow you!



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Friday's Kid Tested Recipe: Candy Christmas Trees (Not really a recipe, more of a fun craft!)

This week I thought I would share what we made for my son's preschool class!  He wanted to take goody bags for his Christmas party but instead of just filling a bag with candy and toys, I thought we would get a little crafty and have some fun with it!


What you'll need to make these!
Pastry bags (typically come in 12 or 24 packs, make sure you buy clear - I had a hard time finding clear this year and those I found were from Wilton and had a big logo which made the trees smaller since the bags had to be trimmed at that spot)
Lollipop sticks (We used the long thin white ones sold near the candy making items at the craft store)
Twist ties
Pipe cleaners (We opted for gold, but you could easily use brown for a tree stem or green or red)
Yellow jelly beans
Red jelly beans
Green jelly beans

Tips:  You can find jelly beans in bulk at most grocery stores and some Target stores.  These were selling for $7.50 a pound at ours, so we opted for only yellow jelly beans and then found bags of Holiday Mike & Ikes that came in red, light green, and dark green!  You could also use Holiday M&M's and grab a single bag of yellow M&Ms at a party supply or craft store for the star!

How to make them!
Place 3-4 yellow jelly beans (the star on top) in the tip of the pastry bag followed by a couple handfuls of mixed red/green jelly beans (the decorated tree)
Insert the lollipop stick into the jelly beans and tightly twist the pastry bag around the lollipop stick
Holding the lollipop stick and bag with one hand, use the twist tie to tightly twist the bag shut around the lollipop stick
The pipe cleaner becomes the stem and should be used as decoration covering the twist tie and remaining part of the bag
We added a ribbon and gift tag to our trees and placed the trees in a foam plate inside a basket for presentation (pictures don't do it justice) for the Christmas party!

What are you making for holiday treats?  Have you found any great treats to give as gifts that are fun to make?  I'd love your ideas, so leave me a comment!
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I'm a wife and working mom of two beautiful young boys! I am lucky enough to have my mom watch the boys while I work so I can be a mom and have a career!

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