Archives for October 2009

NESCAFE Taster’s Choice: Review and Giveaway

hypothesis The NESCAFE Taster’s Choice Stick Packs will be a great way for my husband to save time in the morning as well as save money from skipping the local coffee house without sacrificing flavor.

materials One week supply of NESCAFE Taster’s Choice Stick Packs in Original, Decaffeinated, Hazelnut, Vanilla and Columbian, and two NESCAFE travel coffee mugs.  About NESCAFE Taster’s Choice:

nescafelogo “Instant coffee is prepared in the same way as roast and ground coffee, but with an added step at the end of the process. NESCAFÉ TASTER’S CHOICE is made by first selecting premium blends of coffee beans and roasting them to perfection, the coffee beans are ground and brewed. The resulting brew is a high quality coffee which then gets freeze dried to preserve and fresh lock the rich roast flavor and aroma of NESCAFÉ TASTER’S CHOICE. The benefit is you get to simply add back hot water to brew the coffee fresh in your cup. No machines, no hassle. It’s as simple as that.”

results Because I am not a coffee drinker, my loving hubby stepped in and agreed to take the “What Flavor are You?” one week taste test for NESCAFE.  We were supplied with a Flip camcorder in order to document hubby’s reactions to the different varieties, so go ahead and check out what he thought!

summary

Overall, my husband loved the NESCAFE stick packs!  They were a very convenient way to get his cup of coffee on the go.  Because he was able to take these coffee packs with him to work, he eliminated the need to stop at his favorite local coffee house (which saved us money!).  He liked each variety available, but enjoyed the Decaffeinated the most.

Are you a coffee lover?!?  Spending too much at the coffee house (did you know that if you visit your coffeehouse three times a week, you are spending roughly $500 annually?)  NESCAFE Taster’s Choice has generously donated one Instant Coffee Kit (one week of stick packs and two travel coffee mugs) to one lucky Not-So-Blog reader!

How to enter:

1. Visit NESCAFE Taster’s Choice and tell me which variety you would love to try!

Additional entries

1. Blog about this giveaway and link to The Not-So-Blog (10 extra entries).

2. Follow me (@BridgetteLA) and NESCAFE on Twitter and Tweet this giveaway. Every time you tweet you get an additional entry! Unlimited! (You must have over 50 Twitter followers to qualify for unlimited entries!)

3. Subscribe to my blog.

4. Become a Fan of The Not-So-Blog and NESCAFE on Facebook.

5. Favorite me in Technorati!

Contest ends at 11:59pm CST on November 20th. Prizes not claimed in 72 hours will be forfeited. Open to U.S. Residents only.

This review is the opinion of The Experimental Mommy. Other may have a different experience with the product. Thank you to NESCAFE for supplying the product for review.

Am I compiling a Holiday Gift Guide?

I have received several emails from readers and businesses alike asking if I am going to be featuring a Holiday Gift Guide on Experimental Mommy.  As a matter of fact, I am taking part in a collaborative gift guide with the Double Duty Divas!

divasgift125red

Several bloggers are coming together to post their favorite products in one expansive list and our traffic has exploded in the last few weeks!  If you would like to advertise your business or get your product featured, please inquire at notsoblog (at) gmail (dot) com.

Go to the Movies on General Mills! Giveaway!

I love to go to the movies!  But having kids has certainly changed the frequency with which we choose to go to the theater.  My husband and I treated our daughter to a “Lily Day” which consists of our undivided attention to do anything she chooses together as a family.  Of course, she wanted to see the Hannah Montana movie.  Even though my husband was THE ONLY man in line for the Hannah Movie, he happily sat in the theater because it was Lily’s special day.  However, he was NOT so happy with the cost!

Movie ticket prices had soared reaching $9.00 a ticket, popcorn prices were insane and drinks the size of my head.  Lily had a great time, but we left the theater feeling robbed!  Because of the expense of going to the movies, we haven’t gone often.  But with the holiday season fast approaching, I know there will be some great children’s movies coming out!

movie_logo

Starting in November, when you purchase two boxes of specially marked packages of General Mills’ cereals, you can receive a FREE movie ticket (up to $12.00)!   My kids go through TONS of cereal, so we should be able to rack up lost of free tickets!  Once you purchase the cereal (Honey Nut Cheerios, Lucky Charms, Cinnamon Toast Crunch, Trix and Reese’s Peanut Butter Puffs), simply visit the General Mills website to enter the code found inside each box and print your free ticket.  Your tickets can be used at any participating theater!

Can’t wait to take your family to the movies?  General Mills and MyBlogSpark have teamed up to offer one Not-So-Blog reader FOUR free movie tickets (up to $12.00 a piece) and one coupon for a FREE General Mills cereal!

How to enter:

1. Tell me what is your favorite movie!

Additional entries

1. Blog about this giveaway and link to The Not-So-Blog (10 extra entries).

2. Follow me (@BridgetteLA) on Twitter and Tweet this giveaway. Every time you tweet you get an additional entry! Unlimited! (You must have over 50 Twitter followers to qualify for unlimited entries!)

3. Subscribe to my blog.

4. Become a Fan of The Not-So-Blog on Facebook.

5. Favorite me in Technorati!

Contest ends at 11:59pm CST on November 18th. Prizes not claimed in 72 hours will be forfeited. Open to U.S. Residents only.

This review is the opinion of The Experimental Mommy. Other may have a different experience with the product. Thank you to General Mills and MyBlogSpark for supplying the product for review.

I wonder what happened to……

My husband and I have known each other since 6th grade.  He sat in front of me in homeroom, next to me in History and behind me in Science.  He tortured me with all the silly ways middle school kids express their admiration for each other, such as pulling my hair, prank calling my house and writing mean notes about me to his friends.  It was love at first sight! LOL!  But seriously, we have known each other for more than half our lives, so we share many, many memories.  We often get into discussions where we wonder, “What ever happened to so-and-so?”  Because we share a lot of the same life experiences, we share a lot of the same friends and it is fun to reconnect!

We will usually try searching Google and Facebook for our long lost friend, but if the search turns up empty, we aren’t really sure where else to go.  I recently was introduced to a site called MyLife.com which is a comprehensive people search engine that can help you reconnect with old friends and even find out who is searching for YOU!  About MyLife:
MyLife is the world’s first single source for people search. For the first time, people can turn to one place to find people reliably and easily, and manage multiple relationships across social networks and online channels. With the industry’s most powerful online and offline people search capabilities, the largest database of 750 million profiles, and advanced tools to help people find anyone, anywhere across the Web, MyLife is the most effective and efficient way for people to find and keep track of everyone in their life.

I had the opportunity to try out this service to see who I could find.  It was very easy to set up my profile and you can provide as much information (Facebook account, MySpace page, etc) or little information as you wish.  I easily found my high school and was instantly connected to 183 fellow alumnae.  Pretty neat!  I also did a reverse search to see if anyone is trying to track me down.  Apparently, I am not all that popular because only two people have recently wondered where the heck I’ve been!

Check out this fun service!  A subscription is billed monthly at $1.99 a month.

Text Message Baby: Giveaway

In the last few years, text messaging has become increasingly popular (maybe even more popular that actually talking on the phone!).  To be text-messaging savvy, you have to be hip enough to know the lingo. I’m sure you’ve all heard of LOL (laugh out loud) or TTYL (talk to you later), but what about IWMB or G2GP?  Stumped?  That’s because text messaging isn’t just for teens and adults anymore according to Text Message Baby!  This unique eco-friendly boutique has designed hip onesies and tees for babies and toddlers using popular (or not so popular) text messaging acronyms and icons.  About Text Message Baby:

textmessagelogo In the summer of 2008, I decided to share my family’s love of text messaging with you by creating an adorable line of baby clothes that feature funky text message graphics and whimsical emoticons that are as unique as your baby’s personality. I wanted to bridge the gap between the high-tech world and real life through my humourous collection. Available in many bright colors, not only are Text Message Baby’s products fun to wear, they are safe for the environment because they are made with 100% certified organic cotton fibers. All of our products are hand-printed using citrus oil based inks which are also 100% biodegradable and non-toxic. You can be certain your purchase promotes a cleaner and healthier environment.”

textmessage

One of my favorite products is the “IH8PZ” (I hate Peas!) onesie.  Actually, my youngest daughter came home with a note from her daycare teacher last week that said in big bold letters, “AUBRIE WILL NOT EAT PEAS!”  So, it seems like my little one would be the poster child for this onesie!  LOL!

Is your little one a Text Message Baby?  Please use the coupon code SAVE15 on any purchase to receive 15% off! The generous people at Text Message Baby didn’t stop there!  They are donating one “IH8PZ” onesie (available in sizes 3-6 months, 6-12 months or 12-18 months) to one lucky reader!

How to enter:

1. Visit Text Message Baby and tell me which onesie you like best!

Additional entries

1. Blog about this giveaway and link to The Not-So-Blog (10 extra entries).

2. Follow me (@BridgetteLA) and Text Message Baby on Twitter and Tweet this giveaway. Every time you tweet you get an additional entry! Unlimited! (You must have over 50 Twitter followers to qualify for unlimited entries!)

3. Subscribe to my blog.

4. Become a Fan of The Not-So-Blog and Text Message Baby on Facebook.

5. Favorite me in Technorati!

Contest ends at 11:59pm CST on November 12th. Prizes not claimed in 72 hours will be forfeited. Open to U.S. Residents only.

Wordless Wednesday

026 Lily’s 1st pyramid!

She was “Cheerleader for a Day” at my husband’s alma mater’s homecoming football game!  She LOVED being a real cheerleader and even got do to her first stunt!

WINNERS

Lots of giveaways have ended recently, so it’s time to hand out the prizes! Congrats to the following winners:

Aunt Jemima Pancakes: Amber G.

Disposer Care:  Kathy S.

Hasbro Game Night:  Nad

Fresh Organics:  Clarissa N.

Sandra Magsamen Ceramic Plaque:  Clarissa N.

Weil Baby Newborn Gift Set:  Kim

Sweet Dreams Maternity Gift Card:  Laura D.

Beaute de Maman products:  Janna J., Charlene K., Rosa

Safety 1st:  Patti H.

Alpha Sherpa Backpack:  Susan

Copper Gifts Cookie Set:  Samantha

Bake Me a Wish Cake: Jillian

Warm Biscuit Treat Bag: Sylvia

Frito Lay Tailgating:  Ali

Bed Bouquet:  Chris and Heather C.

FoldTuk:  Joanne P.

Thanks to everyone for participating and visiting these awesome sponsors!  If you are a winner, you will be emailed shortly.  Please claim your prize within 72 hours of the email, or prize will be forfeited.

Learning to Cook in Style!

One of the best sayings that describes my competence in the kitchen is, “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks!”  I never learned how to cook fabulous Martha Stewart-esque meals, or even how to make a simple casserole.  Wouldn’t it be great to WOW my family and friends this holiday season with a jaw dropping, tastebud popping meal?

This October, the Hilton Branson Convention Center Hotel is holding a Cooking School weekend so participants can learn to cook in style!!  Starting with a wine tasting reception, guests will attend a cooking demonstration by Chef Nathan Reed learning how to prepare the appetizers served at the reception such as Fried Butternut Squash with Aged Balsamic and Parmesan Cheese.  The next day, participants will learn how to cook an elaborate 4 course meal featuring Newman Farms Smoked Pork Loin that will be sure to amaze your guests.  The package which includes deluxe accommodations for two nights at the Hilton and cooking class for two people is only $398.00!  While staying at the Hilton Branson Convention Center Hotel, you will be within a short distance to many of Branson’s popular attractions such as golf courses, lakes, museums and live entertainment!

If you are looking for a great winter getaway, check out the Hilton Branson Convention Center for a list of all the fun possibilities for you and your family!

Silk Heart Health SoyMilk: Review and Giveaway

hypothesis Because my husband and I are both on weight loss programs, we are looking for ways to cut our calories.  Silk Soymilk is a great way to lower our calorie intake while providing heart health advantages.

materials

One half gallon of Silk Soymilk, a recipe for frozen fudge chip freeze and a very skeptical family.   About Silk Heart Health soymilk:

silk

Silk Heart Health is a new soymilk product that combines the heart-health benefits of soy protein and plant sterols. Both have been proven to help reduce the risk of cholesterol and heart disease.
A recent study found that people who enjoyed three servings of Silk Heart Health per day for four weeks, as part of a sensible diet, lowered their cholesterol by 7%.

results While the health benefits of Silk Heart Health are wonderful, my husband nor I have high cholesterol.  Since this was our first experience with soymilk, I decided to find a tasty recipe that included the vanilla soymilk and try to win over my family.  I ran across a great recipe in my Hungry Girl 200 under 200 cookbook, and decided to give it a go!

Ingredients:

1/4 cup light vanilla soymilk (we used Silk!)

One 25 calorie diet hot cocoa packet

1 tablespoon sugar-free chocolate syrup

1 tablespoon mini semi-sweet chocolate chips

2 packs of no-calorie sweetener

1 cup of crushed ice

2 tablespoons of Fat-Free Reddi-wip

Mix the cocoa with 1/2 cup warm water until dissolved.  Add to blender with all other ingredients except Reddi-wip. Blend for 30 seconds on high speed.  Pour into tall glass and top with Reddi-wip and a few chocolate chips.

003

Let me tell you, for a chocolate milk-shake type beverage for only 138 calories, I was in heaven!  It was very rich and chocolaty and NONE of my family (who would have turned their noses up at soymilk) noticed that their regular whole milk (which ads a TON of calories to this recipe if substituted) had been swapped for Silk Light Vanilla soymilk!  In fact, my husband was so shocked that he decided to try a glass of soymilk on it’s own with dinner and enjoyed it.

summary

Have I convinced you to try Silk?  Do you normally purchase Silk soymilk in your home due to lactose sensitivity or allergy issues?  Check out this great coupon for $0.55 off of a half gallon on any Silk product!

Silk Soymilk has also donated a coupon for a FREE half gallon of Silk Soymilk AND a pedometer to FIVE Not-So-Blog readers!

How to enter:

1. Visit Silk Soymilk and tell me which half gallon you would buy!

Additional entries

1. Blog about this giveaway and link to The Not-So-Blog (10 extra entries).

2. Follow me (@BridgetteLA) on Twitter and Tweet this giveaway. Every time you tweet you get an additional entry! Unlimited! (You must have over 50 Twitter followers to qualify for unlimited entries!)

3. Subscribe to my blog.

4. Become a Fan of The Not-So-Blog and Silk Soymilk on Facebook.

5. Favorite me in Technorati!

Contest ends at 11:59pm CST on November 9th. Prizes not claimed in 72 hours will be forfeited. Open to U.S. Residents only.

This review is the opinion of The Experimental Mommy. Other may have a different experience with the product. Thank you to Silk Soymilk for supplying the product for review.

Saints Sightings at local Boo at the Zoo!

One of our Halloween traditions is taking my daughters to our local Boo at the Zoo for some not-so-spooky fun.  This year, we had a great time trick or treating, riding the carousel, playing games, touring a real ambulance and talking to…….DREW BREES!  My husband has a major man-crush on Drew ever since he became the New Orleans Saints Quarterback, so you can only imagine the smile on his face when he spotted his idol!  Y’all, he was literally giddy.

020

Drew isn’t only an amazing football player, but has done many great things for the children in the City of New Orleans!  It must have been “Saints get in free” night or something, because we also spotted Billy Miller and Robert Meachem!  After many minutes of discussion, Jennifer actually got up enough nerve to ask Drew for a picture.  He was very nice and agreed to take a picture with her son….he will now be the most popular kid at school! LOL!

Believe it or not, the whole night wasn’t about the Saints!  We actually did let the actual kids do a few fun things as well, but that’s a whole other post!

Geaux Saints!

ETA:  Believe it or not, we also spotted four Saints players (including Drew Brees) in Quiznos today eating lunch before leaving for Miami!  Good Luck, Boys!  We’ll be watching!