Friday, August 31, 2012

Michael is Famous!

It's still exciting for me when I get published in a magazine, even though I've been in over 100 of them. Every now and then a magazine will ask for a picture to go with an article, and over the years most of my kids have been in them. Michael has never been in one, though.

So I perused the online issue of San Diego Family today for my article on Lego Afterschool Enrichment Programs and there was Michael! I was so excited. He doesn't really care, but I think it's cool! Check it out ... page 50!

Big Brothers Rock

Stuff like this kinda makes me wish I had a big brother when I was growing up! Here's a fun video of Joel giving rides on our sidewalk. Still waiting for the Mexicans to show up and walk it like our neighbor "threatened."

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Thankful Thursday: I Love Cascade Dishwasher Pods

No, I did not receive any of these to review. I wish. More like they had a big tub of these in the kitchen at Kingfisher Bend Ranch in Evanston, Wyoming and I used the living crap out of them. But they seemed too expensive for me to use at home. Then I remembered how EASY they were to use. Just toss one in and go.

We run the dishwasher AT LEAST once a day around my house so these are a lifesaver for me. I am happy to go all Pioneer Woman and scrub laundry on a washboard and do dishes by hand, but when you get the go-ahead from your rockin' husband to buy THESE, you buy them, dangit. I mean, it's not like I'm askin' for Prada heels or Chanel glasses. Wait, I do have Chanel glasses. Never mind on that little spoiled brat splurge for ME by ME for my 40th birthday party last year. Think they can turn those into bifocals soon without messing up the frames?

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Wordless Wednesday with Linky: My Mommyvan Bumper Stickers

You know you want a Kerrie Show bumper sticker for your ghetto sled, too. You can TOTALLY have one, too. Just order one from VistaPrint like I did. I'm thinking of getting my car one of those cool WRAPS ... the entire van will be a big ad for my blog. Absolutely worth the few hundred bucks.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Tackle-It Tuesday: Still Not Spackling the Kitchen Walls

Here is a picture of a huge tub of what I like to call SPACKLE. It's just a fun word to say. Try it.

It theoretically covers gashes in walls and other non-pretty spots made by wallpaper stripping. THREE layers of wallpaper, to be specific.

I say THEORETICALLY because you have to actually open the tub and use it for it to work. I can't seem to get around to doing that. Maybe that will occur during Labor Day weekend, when Aron is home and we have no plans.

Perhaps I will have some lovely pictures of spackled wall for you next week, readers. Wouldn't that be awesome? Aren't you excited? Will you be thinking of me spackling all weekend long and anticipating Tuesday's post? I know you will!

Monday, August 27, 2012

Review of Dr. Max Powers Stretch Mark Intensive Treatment

This is what I love about my little side job of blogging and reviewing: I get cool products to try out and then I let you know what I think of them ... honestly.

Alrighty, so we all know I have five children. That's five full-term pregnancies, folks. That's five nice, normal, healthy pregnancies where I gained an appropriate amount of weight with each kid, give or take 10 pounds! I've had nurses tell me I don't have very many stretch marks for having so many kids, but they are still there. You just have to smoosh my stomach around below my belly button and you will find them. I did take a BEFORE shot, but for a change I ain't sharin'. Let's just say I'm not at my fighting weight.

So of course I applied to review this product. Below I pasted how the product website bills this cream ... more of something for weightlifters who get stretch marks on their arms and shoulders than for preggies and post-preggies, but I figured it was worth a shot. I'm not convinced that a stretch mark is a stretch mark is a stretch mark ... a little stretching on the arms slowly over time is maybe not comparable to a belly stretching over weeks, then doing it again a couple of years later. But what do I know?

From the product website:
This treatment is designed for those who are prone to stretch marks on upper arms and shoulder areas. The cream has been formulated to provide nutrients and vitamins to skin that promotes elasticity and collagen to prevent and reduce the appearance of these stretch marks associated with increases in size.

Weightlifters may experience stretch marks due to the over stretching of skin leading to a breakdown in elasticity. A scar forms on the skin leading to what is commonly known as a stretch mark. Striae is the medical term for stretch marks caused by a sudden change in the size of the body, such as pregnancy, rapid muscle bulking, or adrenal gland disorders. While most of the marks are permanent, there are ways to reduce and prevent them from occurring. 

Okay, so I gave it a shot over the course of a few weeks. I didn't apply it three times a day like it said to do for my kind (breeder), but I was applying it at least once a day. It did seem to somehow lighten my stretch marks. If I'd had breast stretch marks from being pregnant and nursing, I would've used it there, too, but I don't have that particular variety. In the interest of TMI, I do have stretch marks on my hips from growing too fast when I was like 12-13 years old, but I didn't try the cream there, either. At the price of only $14.99 for the jar, it's really worth a shot. Besides, you need to be moisturizing your body anyway.

So ... I recommend this for PREGNANT WOMEN ... preferably pregnant for the first time and in their first trimester. It's the same cost as some of those other tummy rubs for pregnant women, and it's ORGANIC and smells good and rocks. And it's in a 2-ounce container, so you can carry it with you and put it on whenever you want.

I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

Moshi Monster Monday: MISS KRISTIN'S STASH!!!

You asked for it, and I got the recon photos for you of Miss Kristin's STASH! Back here I blogged about where my kids get most of their Moshi Monster cards and figures and other stuff. But I could have kicked myself because I didn't get photos! So here they are! We love Miss Kristin! And let's not forget Mr. Kristin, who can always be found holding down the fort and making dinner while the deals take place.

First you are let in the house with a secret password. Then you are led up a dark corridor, at the end of which you will find a wall full of books and a floor full of toys.

The magic desk where the and eBay sales take place.

She also deals in Littlest Pet Shop.

Doesn't she look shady? This is a rare photo of Miss Kristin dealing Moshis to my son. He might be  handing her a hundred-dollar-bill for all I know. She is most generous and fair and I can never repay her for the cool stuff she's procured from the United Kingdom to resell to Moshi-poor children in America. This woman is a saint in my book.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

The Coolest Pool on Earth

Just a few quick shots of Jordan's swimming pool in her backyard, where we try to make it on Sundays in the summertime. Lately it's been chillier at night (in August?!) so the kids make it inside the back door to ... yep, sit and watch Disney on the boob tube. Kids. Sheesh.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Back to School Time: Target Bins Rock!

I know, it seems like all I do lately is write about products I like. Some of them I get for free and write about for free and then beg the company for one to give away, some companies pay me for my time to review their product and want my honest opinion, some stuff I just write about that I bought my very own self. This post is about the THIRD variety: stuff I bought all by myself with the help of my man's paycheck.

So I went to Target = TROUBLE FINANCIALLY. My husband starts to call me after about an hour of being in Target because he knows there just went like 200 bucks. Well, it was back to school time, so whaddya expect?

Well, I did make a splurge. These great bins. I got 5 cuz I gots 5 kids. Theoretically each kid will keep their own crap stuff in their own bin. So far it's working ... if I find something of theirs, I put it in the correct bin. Sometimes they pack up their bin if we are going somewhere so they have something to do all ready to go. They were $8 each and worth every penny. Below, stuffed with school supplies.

Little Sam even got one ... he picked this one out with the cool design. He's such a little model. You'd think we'd been taking pictures of him since seconds after his birth. Wait, that's all my kids. Don't look at my perpetually messy desk behind the sweet kid.

What do you do to stay organized ... homeschooling or not?

Friday, August 24, 2012

When Was YOUR Last Tea Party?

Do you want to know the political parties I most identify with, by the way? The Fiesta Party, the Cocktail Party and the Tea Party, but not the one you're thinking of.

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Thankful Thursday: My Husband

Yeah, I know my husband isn't like a PRODUCT that I am thankful for, and I am definitely not doing a giveaway of him ... this week (check the left side of the blog for current giveaways and sometime you might see my husband listed on there ... just kidding!).

I just wanted to take a post to say how thankful I am for him! He's been out of town for about half the year. We got to go to Wyoming with him for 5 weeks (see Wyoming under Categories and you can see all the fun we had), which was AMAZING, and we are so thankful for that. He worked long hours there, but we got to have him all to ourselves on Sundays.

Anyway, he is home now and we didn't really have any good Turf Wars like we usually do when he's been gone a long time and Momma's been runnin' the show (The Kerrie Show, you know). Having him home has taken so much of the load off of me ... I'm more pleasant to be around because I have someone helping with the kids and with the house and watering the grass and garden and taking the kids on long bike rides and someone to confide in. My best friend is back.

Lately we have been talking about the future ... do we want to move to a place with some land? How much will that cost? How much will it cost to replace the roof ourselves (meaning him and some friends with some pizza and beer)? New windows? How much fun will we have working side by side this winter tearing down wallpaper and spackling/sanding walls and painting the entire main level? Will we want to kill each other or kiss each other?

Is it wrong that I think it's so hot when he does things like wash our daughters' hair in the sink after getting the gum out?

I love you, Aron. Are you happy that I'm posting about  how much you rock instead of posting about giveaways all the time?! It's all for you, baby!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Christmas Lists in August

Tent ... well, I'm entering giveaways so maybe Santa will bring one
Cool dresses ... Santa shops at Goodwill, right?
Dog ... check. Coming in October and not from Santa
Wyoming trip ... I wish.
Hairbrush ... yeah, she really needs like 10 of these. Keeps losing them and has this fine hair. I'm thinking dreadlocks.
Another doll like Laura ... it's an American Girl knockoff, so that's doable
Moshi comic book ... better get to writing and illustrating that because they don't exist yet.

What's on YOUR Christmas list?

Monday, August 20, 2012

Moshi Monster Monday: Web Sites to Check Out

Congratulations to Amy L. and Tami S. for winning the Moshi Monsters cards and figures! I'll be contacting them via email today to find out where to send their prize package! If you're disappointed that you did not win, just hit the left side of the blog for many more giveaway opportunities! I like participating in cash giveaways most definitely and there's a Kindle/Keurig one coming up, as well as some fun baby stuff.

Today's Moshi focus is going to be on cool, fun or helpful web sites that will help you with your game or just let you have fun checking out Moshi Monsters.
Michael and a pal playing with their Moshi Monsters figures. I call this Moshis Unplugged because they aren't playing the online game!

Head here for the Moshi Monsters game. I have a free membership but it's VERY limited. For $5.95 per month per kid they can have unlimited play, catch unlimited Moshis and have access to all the cool missions and the entire map of the joint. It's not just a video game; it helps kids with reading, math and with logic.

SuperCheats has many Moshi codes for getting cool stuff when you play the online Moshi Monsters game

Moshi Wikia is super informative about all things Moshi

Feel free to add your own helpful sites in the Comments section and I can put those in another post!

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Sponsor Spotlight: Kidini and Copy Kids

What parent isn't concerned about their child's safety? Who wants their kid to be pushed around by a bully? I was bullied as a kid on my way home from elementary school and remember feeling very weak and scared. I was also bullied in middle school. Those bullies like to pick on scrawny girls! Sure, I homeschool my kids, and we don't encounter this kind of thing as often as some, but it's still out there. My kids still come into contact with other children, and bullies are everywhere.

That's why I love the Kidini Bully Prevention and Child Safety Kit they sent to me to try out. It comes with a Parent and Child Activity Book to help your child recognize bad situations and know how to get out of them. It also comes with Character Collector Cards and 2 CDs, one with stories and one with songs (like little mantras!).

Kidini also offers Kidini Karate classes at schools and daycares. Learning self defense is a great way for kids to learn confidence.

To place orders for the activity packet (normally $11.99 but available to you for only $9.99) go to:
Contact: Carson Ashworth

Now it's time to worry about the health of your child (it's always somethin' with parenting, isn't it?!). The Copy-Kids Eat Fruits and Vegetables DVD is divided into 12 chapters which are an average of 7 minutes each and focus on a different fruit or vegetable. This DVD is valued at $19.95 and is perfect for kids 6 months to 5 years old. The premise is that kids copy what they see other kids doing. If they see other kids eating all sorts of great foods, they will also do that. I see that happening when we go to my healthy pal's house ... my kids try things I don't normally serve because they see their friends eating it! For instance, I don't love mushrooms, onions or peppers, but I do want them to try new things. I didn't used to like tomatoes until I helped my husband grow them in our own garden. Let your kids pick out the produce after watching this DVD! This DVD is super cute and shows little kids inspecting, talking about and eating each vegetable or fruit and loving it! This is such a great idea! If you don't win this giveaway, head here to buy the DVD!
Copy Kids has made an amazing video to get kids to eat their fruits and veggies! This video is valued at $19.95.
For the Back 2 School Blogorama Bonanza, I'm thrilled that Kidini will be sponsoring a giveaway of one of their Bully Prevention and Child Safety Kits, and Copy Kids will be sponsoring a giveaway of their Fruits and Vegetables DVD.

The Blogorama Bonanza Back2School event starts August 20th at 10:00 a.m. Come back at 12:00 a.m. to enter to win a CopyKids DVD and a THREE Kidini Bully Prevention and Child Safety Kits (give 2 to your friends or to your child's teacher!). You know what a blog hop means: lots of great bloggers giving away lots of great prizes!

Disclaimer:  I was not compensated for this post.  I received products from Kidini and Copy Kids to review and give away.  They have sponsored the Blogorama Bonanza Back 2 School 2012 Event.  I gave my honest opinion on the products reviewed.  I am not responsible for shipping or lost items for the prize  giveaway.   Kidini is shipping the prize for giveaway; I will be shipping the Copy Kids DVD personally.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Taking Kids to the Cemetery, Talking About Death and Spirits

Today marks 30 years that my Great Aunt Eva June Michael Wilkerson has been dead. In her honor we are going fishing because she loved to fish with her husband. She didn't have any kids but was the best mom ever, if you know what I mean. My daughter Eva is named after her. My son Michael is named after the whole family ... there were 7 kids in my grandma's family.

Yesterday we had to go to the Scout shop, which is up the street from where my mom works. She works at a florist. I decided to visit her and get some flowers and take a trip across town to Aunt Eva's grave. It was a last-minute adventure. Here are some pictures!

I have some funny videos to upload to YouTube soon ... of the kids yelling at each other to get off the headstones and me saying, "They are dead. They don't care. Just stay on our family's headstones because they know our kind of crazy."

Eva's grave. She was married to Max, who was her second husband. Like me, she was married to a real jerk the first time around and found her true love the second time.

All my kids hanging out with Eva and Max, who loved kids! So many things I could say about Eva, but the things I remember the most are that she was a great cook, worked as a lunch lady, worked at Russell Stover so she knew what every chocolate was by looking at the top, ate Tic Tacs and always let me sit at her vanity and put on her red lipstick and powder my face. And she loved flowers. And ornery kids. And cussing.

This picture makes me think I should have named Sam "Max" instead ... Sam and Eva are so close. But I didn't want the same initials on two kids since I write about them all the time in shorthand. Goofy me! Yes, Eva is wearing boy clothes today.

This is the headstone for my mom's cousin, who died in a car crash when she was 14. My kids and I talked about it and how the headstone says, "She is not dead, she is just away."

Me and the naughties. We had a lot of fun at the cemetery, if you can believe it. We were surrounded by lots of family ... I took lots of headstone pictures. My grandma is the last of her brothers and sisters for many  years now.

Little Eva hanging out with Aunt Eva. Are you shocked that she is standing on the headstone? Guess what? When you walk anywhere in a cemetery you are walking over dead bodies. Last week one night while we were praying in our bedroom, our bathroom light randomly went out. The light bulb was fine. We think it was Aunt Eva messing with the lights. We choose to not be freaked out by stuff like that and are happy to know our dead family members may be watching over us ... including my dad's grandma (Nanny) and Papa Guy and Max and Aron's grandparents and more. It's comforting to us.

This is Joel POUNDING AUNT EVA. Okay, so she used to get little kids in a hug and pat their back and say, "I'm gonna pound you!" So we all pound our kids now and Aunt Eva needed to be pounded.
I later told Michael thank you for coming along with me on our little journey and he says, "I didn't really have a choice." Yep, that's the Michael family humor in him = ornery! One last weird note: my grandma has these dolls called Pickaninnies ... it's like a racially bad word, I know. These are the cutest little black dolls ever and they are the only thing I have spoken up about wanting to have when Grandma dies because they were Aunt Eva's. Here's the thing:

There are 3 BOY dolls and 2 GIRL dolls, just like my family!*

*Yeah, I know I could still get knocked up and all that, then I'll just have to hit eBay to buy more of them to make the set like my own family. That's me ... always thinkin'. Now I know my mom is crying over this post and my dad is passed out on the floor with me mentioning having another kid. Gotta go. My work here is done.

Back to School Spree Blog Hop/Fit Moms for Life Giveaway! #b2sspree

Hey there! Thanks for stopping by, and sorry this giveaway is over. There's still a review below, though, then I'd love it if you'd head to the TOP of the blog (picture me as the flight attendant I almost was giving you directions with my arms) to check out the GIVEAWAYS tab, which also includes the link to my Free Blogger Opps site. Then you may head to the RIGHT side of the blog for my most popular posts. May I suggest you click on LAUGH? Always something funny going on with all these kids running around!

Yes, folks, it is time for another awesome blog hop on The Kerrie Show! I just can't seem to stop giving things away! This one is hosted by Formula Mom and 7 On a Shoestring, which means they do all the heavy lifting and you do all the benefiting! This one has 104 blogs you can hop to, all with great prizes. With that many giveaways to enter, you are bound to win SOMETHING! And you'll discover some great new blog-readin' in the process! I've even done the math for you (and for me because I also like to win stuff!), and you start at the top or the bottom, but you only have to enter about 7 giveaways per day for 15 days. So keep coming back here to enter! Also, I have a daily tweet option, so you can get an extra 5 entries every day you do that for me!

What's my offering on this one, you ask? Well, let me just tell you!

I received a great book called "Fit Moms for Life: How to Have Endless Energy to Outplay Your Kids" by Dustin Maher. It is full of before and after stories of moms just like me who have completely transformed their body using Dustin's exercise techniques, DVDs, boot camps, and tips about everything from using food as fuel (instead of as an emotional crutch like I am prone to do lately), setting goals, keeping a food journal, taking measurements to measure progress, recipes and so much more. It also discusses how being a fit mom helps you create a fit family.

My favorite piece of advice in the entire book is to give myself 2-3 "cheat" meals per week. EXCELLENT!

Be sure to visit Dustin Maher Fitness (that's your first entry on my Rafflecopter) and Fit Moms for Life. Dustin is giving away the softcover version of his book PLUS the first DVD in a series of 12, valued at $47. This is open to residents of the USA and Canada only. You can enter below using the handy dandy Rafflecopter, which helps me pick a winner on September 1. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Disclosure: Formula Mom7 on a Shoestring, and the Back to School Spree bloggers are not responsible for sponsors that fail to fulfill their prizes.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Thankful Thursday: Oliver's Labels

I have been given a rockin' product to review once again. They are called Oliver's Labels and they are so cool! Below is a picture of one of the labels on my laptop. You can see that it says "if found, visit" then you enter the number at the top of the sticker to get contact information for the owner. Try it! You enter your information and then Oliver's Labels lets ME know how to get in touch with you to retrieve it!

Here's a picture of  one of the small, name-only labels on Michael's new homeschool bin. These are great for things you might send to school with your kids or put on other things where it's okay for your kid to be identified by name if his stuff gets lost. I put "McLoughlin" on my labels because I couldn't just pick one kid's name to put on. You, being normal and probably not having 64 kids, would probably get, say, a set of labels with your daughter's full name on them and a set with your son's full name :-)

Here are just some of the uses I came up with around my own house for these great labels, which come in many different sizes:

  1. Put them on/in shoes
  2. Makes the tagging of camp clothes simple
  3. Coats/jackets aren't lost for long (we find so much stuff like this at the school across the street when we go play at the playground)
  4. One less step in your life will be checking a lost and found bin for your kid's stuff ... you just wait until Oliver's Labels contacts you and lets you know where the thing is. Or someone can just bring that jacket to your kid's classroom instead of letting it rot in the lost and found bin.
  5. Special dolls
  6. Put them on the tags of stuffed animals
  7. Put them on your kid's shirt when you go to a crowded place for easy paging, especially if your child is very young
  8. The designs may be cute, but I'm telling you many adults need these things (you saw my laptop!)
  9. Get some of the labels that say ALLERGIES or NO NUTS to protect your child from a potentially bad health situation.
  10. Leave your ideas in the Comments section!

Check out Oliver's Labels at their website, on their Facebook fan page, and on TwitterFree shipping on orders over $30. With so many cute designs and fonts and more, there is something for everyone! Next I want to see this company make labels with a tracking device so my kids will stop asking me where everything is :-)

 I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. 

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Vintage Barbie Fun: My Teen Son Is Going to Kill me for Posting This

I die when I see this vintage black Barbie dress and also the vintage tutu.
These are pictures of my 3 boys plus my 2 girls and their friend playing with the vintage Barbies my mom has gifted to me. She gave them to my girls, but I have claimed them until they are older. I will probably keep a few of my favorite outfits because they are my only link to decent fashion! Mom, who knew your GRANDSONS would also be playing with the Barbies?!

You gotta love the huge fish ... from my mom's husband to the kids. It's like a huge pillow and they love it.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Tackle-It Tuesday: Homeschool Bookshelf Help and Excuses

Here's a picture of my messy bookshelf from over 2 years ago. You have to hit the link to see it. Then hit this link to see the AFTER shot from then. It obviously did not stay that way because we are discussing it again. My excuses include (cue whining): I have a lot of kids; I'm a homeschooler and we have a lot of paper; I'm a writer so I'm a creative type and don't like to clean; my parents made me their only child slave so I am rebelling against my husband daily by not picking up. Didja like those?

So here she be last weekend. Don't get me started on all the stuff on the walls and the floor. We like to draw and create and save stuff, but not in a hoarder way.


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