May – 2011 – Frugal Novice
Monthly Archives

May 2011

Kitchen Magician & Magic Bullet Recipe Contest

Magic Bullet proudly announces the first annual Magic Bullet Kitchen Magician video recipe contest.

For the next month, Facebook fans of Magic Bullet can submit an original video of themselves making their most creative recipe with the Magic Bullet for a chance to be named the Kitchen Magician, star in a Magic Bullet online infomercial and win $10,000! While only one person will win, everyone who enters the contest receives 20% off a Magic Bullet product. For more information or to enter the Magic Bullet Kitchen Magician video recipe contest, visit www.KitchenMagician.com.

Pedigree Ambassador Update

Josie has been on the Pedigree Small Breed Nutrition food for three weeks now, so I figured it would be a good time to update y’all on how the transition is going.

She loves it! We had been feeding her a food that included larger pieces, but this food is much more suited for her little mouth. She has completely transitioned over to the new food and there haven’t been any hiccups throughout the process.

Our routine has always been to feed her once a day. We put out her whole day’s portion, and she’s good about nibbling a little here and there throughout the day. Since switching to the new food it seems like she doesn’t ask to go outside as often, which is really nice. Her skin and coat seem to be the same as they were since beginning the food – really good condition. Her fur is shiny and soft.

She seems like she’s maintaining a healthy weight on this food, and is as healthy as ever!

I told Brian it looked like she was posing for that photo. :)

We are really happy with using the Pedigree Small Breed Nutrition food for Josie, and will likely continue to purchase this food for her even after the ambassadorship is over.

Don’t forget – to find out more information about Pedigree and keep up with their updates, visit them at Pedigree.com, follow @PedigreeUS on Twitter, or “like” the Pedigree Adoption Drive Facebook page.

I wrote this review while participating in an Ambassador campaign by Mom Central Consulting on behalf of Pedigree and received dog food to facilitate my reviews and a promotional item to thank me for taking the time to participate.

Wordy Wednesday – May 11

Using my phone to take photos of J at a birthday party on Saturday didn’t work too well – he barely ever sat still long enough for me to take a picture!

This photo is significant because until Saturday J had always avoided getting on inflatables, saying they were scary. We talked a little in the car on the way to the party – I told him it was ok to be scared, but that if he was brave and tried it, he might end up liking it. Once we got there and he saw all his friends, he saw them playing and having fun. He was tentative at first, but by the end of the party he’d forgotten all about being scared, and had a blast with his friends!

Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides – Giveaway


Captain Jack is back and PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: ON STRANGER TIDES sails into theatres everywhere on May 20th! Captain Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) finds himself on an unexpected journey to the fabled Fountain of Youth when a woman from his past (Penélope Cruz) forces him aboard the Queen Anne’s Revenge, the ship of the formidable pirate Blackbeard (Ian McShane).

Want more info on the movie?

  • Visit the official website at: http://www.Disney.com/Pirates.
  • “Like” PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN on Facebook at: http://www.Facebook.com/PiratesoftheCaribbean

To celebrate the upcoming release of the newest installment of Pirates of the Caribbean, I’ve got a fun giveaway from Disney!

One lucky reader will win a Pirates of the Caribbean prize pack, which includes a t-shirt, bandana, and temporary tattoos!

This contest is open to all US residents. Entries will be accepted until the end of the day (midnight CST) Friday, May 20, the day the movie is released.

Mandatory Entry: Comment on this post telling me your favorite character from the Pirates of the Caribbean movies.

(Only valid after the required entry has been completed)

Please leave a comment for each extra entry – if you blog about this giveaway and get 2 entries, for example, comment 2 times.

  • Sign up to receive my newsletter {1 extra entry}
  • Sign up to get my updates in your e-mail {2 extra entries}
  • Subscribe to my RSS feed {2 extra entries}
  • Follow me on Twitter {1 extra entry}
  • Follow me through Google Friend Connect (over in the sidebar) {2 extra entries}
  • Click the Facebook “Share” button below this post to share it on your FB wall {1 extra entriy}
  • Click the “Tweet” button below this post to share it on your Twitter feed –  can do up to two times per day {1 extra entry per tweet}
  • Blog about this giveaway and link it back here; comment with the URL to your post {2 extra entries}
  • “Like” Frugal Novice on Facebook {1 extra entry}
  • Unlimited Extra Entry Option: Leave a NEW comment on as many other posts as you like and get one entry for each comment (entering another giveaway counts too). Be sure to let me know which posts you commented on below.

Note: I did not receive a product or compensation for writing this post.

Don’t forget, PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: ON STRANGER TIDES sails into theatres May 20th, 2011 in Disney Digital 3D™!

Make Memories and Meals with Coca-Cola – With Giveaway!

I love cooking, as I’m sure you know if you’ve read my blog for any length of time. I’m always excited to find new recipes for my family to try, and Brian and I have a lot of fun working together in the kitchen. Now that the boys are getting a little older, we have started letting them help us cook and hope cooking will be something we enjoy as a family for years to come.

For us, and for many families, the kitchen is the place in the home where some of our best memories are made. When families spend time cooking together and enjoying meals together, they create memories that summon all five senses. For as long as most of us can remember, Coca-Cola has been a part of the experience. From birthday dinners to summer BBQ’s, millions of families have enjoyed a Coke with their meals and celebrations (or even mixed into the ingredients themselves!).

Recognizing the brand has become a special part of people’s lives, Coca-Cola has launched Cooking with Coke – a site dedicated to Coke-loving moms and families. The new site provides a place to share recipes, family stories and mealtime traditions. Visitors to the site can build a personalized recipe book from any they like and share tips on how to get the whole family together.

This site is a lot of fun! Since I’m a Texan and all, I was immediately drawn to a recipe for Coca-Cola BBQ sauce submitted by Chef G. Garvin – I am definitely adding this to my menu plan for next week! They have it paired with a pork loin, which is something I’ve never tried cooking before, so that’ll be fun to try too.

The Cooking With Coke site also allows readers to contribute recipes of all kinds. I saw one for Spinach and Artichoke Dip that looks really good, and pretty much every dessert recipe on the site looks like something I’d want to try. I think I’m going to enter a few recipes of my own and get the chance to win a Chef Essentials Prize Pack!

Another great feature of the site is the ability to compile recipes into a digital cookbook. It’s a really easy-to-use setup that lets you get organized and share favorite recipes with friends and family via Facebook, Twitter, or e-mail. You can even print your cookbook if you want a hard copy.

One lucky reader will win a 12qt pot and steamer with lid by T-Fal ($59 value), courtesy of Coca-Cola. This contest is open to all US residents. Entries will be accepted until the end of the day (midnight CST) Thursday, May 26.

Mandatory Entry: Visit Cooking With Coke and comment here with the link to a recipe you’d like to try.

(Only valid after the required entry has been completed)

Please leave a comment for each extra entry – if you blog about this giveaway and get 2 entries, for example, comment 2 times.

  • Submit a recipe to the Cooking With Coke site and comment with a link to your recipe {8 bonus entries!}
  • Sign up to receive my newsletter {1 extra entry}
  • Sign up to get my updates in your e-mail {2 extra entries}
  • Subscribe to my RSS feed {2 extra entries}
  • Follow me on Twitter {1 extra entry}
  • Follow me through Google Friend Connect (over in the sidebar) {2 extra entries}
  • Click the Facebook “Share” button below this post to share it on your FB wall {1 extra entriy}
  • Click the “Tweet” button below this post to share it on your Twitter feed –  can do up to two times per day {1 extra entry per tweet}
  • Blog about this giveaway and link it back here; comment with the URL to your post {2 extra entries}
  • “Like” Frugal Novice on Facebook {1 extra entry}
  • Unlimited Extra Entry Option: Leave a NEW comment on as many other posts as you like and get one entry for each comment (entering another giveaway counts too). Be sure to let me know which posts you commented on below.

Note: The prize was provided by The Coca-Cola Company. The Coca-Cola Company is not a sponsor, administrator or connected in any other way with this giveaway. T-fal® had zero involvement with this contest. I received a product sample for this post. All opinions in this post are honest and are my own.

Suggest Ideas for Future Printables or Downloads

You might have noticed I’ve offered a few printables on here recently. I enjoy providing resources for y’all and hope to continue to do that in the future, along with downloads like eBooks, etc. I’ll create PDF files and add them to my resource page for you to have continued access to. I’d love to get your feedback on some ideas – would you like to see any of these?

  • Father’s Day card
  • Father’s Day craft
  • Cookbook
  • How To Get Started Blogging eBook
  • ABC coloring pages
  • Puzzles/Games

I look forward to hearing what y’all have to say! Also, if you have any suggestions for things you’d like me to share, please comment below. Another question – would you prefer for me to have various projects broken up into individual files for you to download? I could also combine PDF files to make a bigger, comprehensive download. Which do you prefer?

Disclosure: http://cmp.ly/3

Bokoo Covers Review & Giveaway!

If you’re a parent of children in car seats, the likelihood is pretty good that you’ve had the task of dismantling the car seat to get the cover off and wash it. We’ve had to do it several times and it can be a real pain!

Thanks to its patented design, a Bokoo Cover can be taken off and washed as often as necessary. The ability to remove and clean the cover without disassembling the whole seat or having to uninstall the car seat from the car eliminates misuse and saves you time (and what parent doesn’t want to save time?). Covers are tailored to each car seat manufacturer’s model. One-size-fits-all car seat covers can be too small in some areas and too big in others, creating an inappropriate fit.

Bokoo Covers cares about safety, too – they are the only cover manufacturer on the market that has crash tested its covers on the specific car seat it’s designed for, according to the National Highway Traffic Administration Standard FMVSS 213. All Bokoo Covers have been lab tested and approved for ECO TextileClass 1 for Babies. This, along with the hypoallergenic fabrics, ensures that Bokoo Covers are easy on both your child’s skin and the environment.

There are currently covers available for the following seats:

  • Chicco KeyFit
  • Chicco KeyFit 30
  • Graco SnugRide Model 1759425
  • Graco SnugRide Model 1761417
  • Britax Boulevard
  • Britax Boulevard CS
  • Britax Marathon CS
  • Britax Marathon TM
  • Eddie Bauer Deluxe 3 in 1, Model 22790 WPR
  • Safety 1st Alpha Omega Elite, Model 22456 TTN
  • Safety 1st Alpha Omega Elite (COSCO), Model 22456 PRO
  • Safety 1st All in One 3 in 1, Model 22178
  • Safety 1st Alpha Omega Elite, Model 22187 REM
  • Graco Turbobooster PTE (seat only), Model 1758123
  • Graco Turbobooster Pedic, Model 8E02ABY
  • Graco Turbobooster Pedic, Model 8E02RNK
  • Graco Turbobooster PTE (seat only), Model 1758124
  • Graco Turbobooster, Model 1757861

They have a variety of different colors available – organic fabrics, too – and you can even build your own cover, with personalization if you’d like!

We got the chance to review a cover for the Britax Marathon car seat that we have. It was SO easy to put the cover on, especially after having experienced the challenge of removing and replacing the Britax cover. It seriously took less than three minutes to put it on! The car seat itself is black, and it can get really hot in the summer – the light colored cover really helps it stay cooler, which J appreciates.

We actually got two covers to review, and although I was really tempted to use both, I thought it would be great to share one with one of y’all in a giveaway! I’m really excited that one of you will get the opportunity to try a cover for yourself (you can also buy one at BokooCovers.com, by the way!)

One lucky reader will win the same style of cover as we received for review, one for the Britax Marathon, in Almond (ARV $69.00). This contest is open to all US and Canadian residents. Entries will be accepted until the end of the day (midnight CST) Tuesday, May 24.

Mandatory Entry: Go visit the “Build Your Own” page on BokooCovers.com and comment below letting me know what color combination you’d pick for your cover!

(Only valid after the required entry has been completed)

Please leave a comment for each extra entry – if you blog about this giveaway and get 2 entries, for example, comment 2 times.

Note: Bokoo Covers provided the two covers. I was not compensated monetarily for this post. Any opinions are honest and my own.

Menu Plan Monday – May 9-13

Menu Plan Monday

It’s 11:00, so the day is almost over, but it’s not too late to say Happy Mother’s Day! I hope you all had wonderful days with your family. Brian got me silverware for a gift. Silverware.

GIANT silverware that I was realllllly wanting for our dining room. YAY! I love it! Not the most conventional gift ever, but totally wonderful. Yesterday I took J to a birthday party, and when I came home this was waiting for me. He’s so thoughtful! C “helped” put it up and was very proud of himself, by the way. I also got a very sweet tile decorated by J, and a card with handprints from C.

I guess it’s only appropriate on a day like today to reflect a little on motherhood. I can’t say enough what it means to me to be a mother to my boys. They’ve changed my life completely, from getting me used to living on tiny amounts of sleep, to brightening my day every day. They’ve taught me patience, and how to appreciate little things I might not notice otherwise. They’ve taught me that playing with them is a lot more fun, and a whole lot more important, than pretty much all of the tasks I might have on my to-do list. I’m not a perfect mom, but I’ve kind of learned that’s ok too, as long as I keep trying my best and learning from the hiccups along the way. I never could have imagined how much I would love these two little boys, how fiercely I want to protect them, and how I would simultaneously want them to stay this small forever… but can’t wait to see what wonderful things are in store for them.

I of course have to say Happy Mother’s Day to the moms in my life – not just my own mom, who is one of the sweetest, most patient people I know – but to all the others out there that influence me and have helped shape me into the mom I am. I am so thankful to have such wonderful women around me (or a phone call or Facebook message away – you know who you are). :)

On to meals for the week… I totally haven’t gone grocery shopping yet, by the way. Yesterday was just too busy, and I didn’t feel up to it today like I had planned. So, tomorrow it is – hopefully, haha!

Monday: My brother’s coming over again for his last dinner of the semester with us (sniff sniff – I have loved having him come over!) and we’re also watching our good friends’ girls while they have a date night. I’m planning to do a pepperoni pizza & green beans for the kids and a baked potato pizza with salad for the grown-ups.

Tuesday: We’re planning to meet up with some friends we haven’t gotten to see in a while. Not sure if we’ll end up at Chick Fil A – as much as we love eating there, the chaos and noise isn’t always conducive for conversation! The appeal of free kids meals is pretty strong, though. Decisions, decisions!

Wednesday: ?? Mystery night. Not sure what we’re going to have yet.

Thursday: Lemon pepper chicken, wild rice, and cooked baby carrots.

Friday: BBQ Chicken Sandwiches and baked sweet potatoes (probably french fries for the boys)

I hope you all have a wonderful week! Be sure and check out the awesome giveaway for $100 cash I’m doing with four other lovely bloggers!

Subscribe and WIN – $100 Cash!

$100 Cash Giveaway

Did you know that you can get blogs delivered right to your inbox? That’s right! Email subscriptions are a great way to stay up to date with your favorite blogs. When you subscribe to a blog by email, you will get one email each day with posts from the last 24 hours. You can read the full post right through your email, and then you can click the title of the post to go leave a comment on the blog. It’s so easy!

I have teamed up with four other awesome bloggers to bring you the Subscribe & Win $100 Cash Giveaway!

You can enter this giveaway on each blog for more chances to win:
1. Angelica’s Awesome Adventures
2. Frugal Novice
3. The Life of a Sippy Cup Mom!
4. The Life of Rylie…and Bryce too!
5. Three P’s in a Pod

When the giveaway closes, we will combine all entries from each blog to select a winner. You can enter the giveaway on every blog listed, so make sure you visit each one and comment there to increase your chances of winning!

~*~Enter to win $100 Cash!~*~
(payment paid via PayPal in US dollars)

Mandatory entry: Subscribe by email to all five blogs I just mentioned (the links for subscribing are listed below). You MUST activate your subscription to be eligible. Please leave a comment letting me know you subscribed to all the blogs. (Please provide in that comment the email address that you subscribed with.)

You can either visit each blog above and subscribe through the sidebars, or you can click on each link below:

Giveaway will end on May 22nd at 9:00pm EST. The winner will be chosen by random.org. The winner will be notified by email within 24 hours, and you will have 48 hours to respond. If no response is received within that time frame, another winner will be chosen. Please leave your email address or make sure it is in your profile so we will have a way to contact you. We will announce the winner once they have been confirmed. This giveaway is open to residents of the US and Canada. (Payment will be $100 US Dollars.)

Caillou Classic Doll & Bath Time Vehicle Review

The boys have watched Caillou quite a bit, and were really excited when a package containing Caillou toys arrived. If you haven’t ever seen the show, it centers around a 4-year-old boy and his family. Caillou is a 4-year-old boy who is fascinated by the world around him and has a vivid imagination.

The Caillou Classic 14.5 inch doll has a vinyl head, a soft body & the classic Caillou outfit. It’s a great size to play with or snuggle, and it seems like it will hold up well to the inevitable wear and tear that comes along with kids! The boys liked it and had fun playing pretend with it, but really loved the boat.

Like I said, the Bath Time Vehicle was a BIG hit. There’s a propeller underneath that you can wind up so that the boat moves across the water in the bath.

Caillou and the dinosaur each consist of separate pieces, and the boys had a blast swapping out their heads so Caillou had a dinosaur body. This boat is a great bath toy that really fosters the imagination and creativity, and I love that there aren’t places for water to get inside the toys like some soft bath toys.

These and other Caillou toys are available at Toys R Us stores and website.

Note: I received the Caillou doll and bath toy through my affiliation with Team Mom. I was not compensated monetarily for this post. Any opinions are honest and my own.

OtterBox Pink Strength Case Giveaway – TWO winners!

Mother’s Day is just a few days away, so it’s only fitting that I squeeze one last Mother’s Day giveaway in, right? OtterBox has generously provided me with not one, but TWO Pink Strength Blackberry cases to give away.

These are limited edition pink and white Commuter Series Strength cases for the BlackBerry Curve 8500/9300 and BlackBerry Bold 9700 series smartphones. Since May 2010, OtterBox has donated over $163,000 to the Avon Breast Cancer Crusade from the sale of these cases! You can find out more and see the full array of cases by clicking here. Purchase any of their limited edition pink and white Strength cases, and 10% of the purchase price will be donated to the Avon Breast Cancer Crusade.

TWO lucky readers will each win one of the cases shown above. This contest is open to all US & Canadian residents. Entries will be accepted until the end of the day (midnight CST) Sunday, May 22.

Mandatory Entry: Comment below telling me which of the two cases you’d like to win! Couldn’t be easier, right?

(Only valid after the required entry has been completed)

Please leave a comment for each extra entry – if you blog about this giveaway and get 2 entries, for example, comment 2 times.

Note: OtterBox provided the cases for the giveaway. I did not receive a product for review, nor was I compensated monetarily for this post. Any opinions are honest and my own.