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Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Christmas Special Giveaway-For the Women in your Life


Valerie at Hachette Books is giving us an
early Christmas present!

FIVE copies of The Love Revolution by Joyce Meyer
and FIVE copies of How to Be a Hepburn in a Hilton World by Christy Jordan to TEN lucky winners.

That's right 10 lucky people get one of the books. Wouldn't they be great Christmas, Birthday, Confirmation or Graduation Gifts?
So start on your Christmas lists early and sign up to win one of these books!

GIVEAWAY:
5 copies of each book!

ENTRY:

Make sure in your FIRST post that note WHICH one of the books, or you would like EITHER one of them, this will ensure that winners get their choice!

- Subscribe to the blog (1 entry)
- Follow this blog (1 entry)
- Enter/have entered any of the Welcome to Fall Ya'll giveaways (make sure to tell me which
one you entered (1 entry)
- Put the "Welcome to Fall Ya'll" Button on your blog or website (2 entries)
- Follow me on Twitter AND tweet about this contest (2 entries):
- Blog about this giveaway (3 entries)


Contest will end on October 8th at midnight. Winner will be picked by Random
Number (random.org) on October 9th and emailed. One winner's info is received, it will be forwarded to Valerie and Hachette will mail the books out to the winners!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Giveaway/Review: Joshua Bell's At Home with Friends CD

** THIS CONTEST IS CLOSED **

I think I am in total AWE of Barbara Jones and the One2One Network she created.

Seriously, it is like she just KNOWS what i need to be listening to, and she sends me a review copy. It's starting to get really eerie!

Course it's because she KNOWS her stuff having worked with Columbia's marketing department- and WOW has she sent me THE relaxation album of the year.

If you thought Your Songs by Connick was super, you're gonna fall IN LOVE with Joshua Bell. Truly, madly, deeply in love with his music.

Grammy Award-winning violinist Joshua Bell has been in the spotlight since he was 14 years old. Fourteen! Now, 20 years and 30 original albums later, (ok, I am seriously feeling old and unaccomplished) Joshua has the public’s attention like no other classical violinist of his time, captivating audiences worldwide. He’s a soloist, chamber musician, orchestra leader and he’s earned countless awards and honors for his work as a concert stage performer and recording artist, including “Classical Artist of the Year” and “Classical CD of the Year” by Billboard Magazine. But DON'T let that turn you away from him!. He’s the first musician to have a classical music video played on VH1, (cool or what???) and he’s appeared on Sesame Street. And you know he’s big if he’s been on Sesame Street (there's a whole book to be written on THAT subject, but we'll save that for later) .With this new album, Joshua fulfilled a lifetime dream of recording a CD of instrumental and vocal duets with an amazing roster of musicians and friends.

This album is like a tour of the world, literally.

You've got Celtic, Latin, Bluegrass, Asian, Broadway, Jazz, Classical and Pops genres blending together to make a cohessive album that brings you on a wave of emotion from one song to the next and leaves you wanting more!

It is also a very relaxing album. you can ask my daughter,after humming along with I Loves Your Porgy, she was out by the 3rd song, Course this is my fault for letting her listen to classical and opera music as an infant, as soothing music to sleep by. Nope, no lullabies for her-just Salvatore Licitra's tenor of Puccini and Verdi!

This cd is SO perfect for a relaxing evening, chilling in the car, or as the perfect background music for a dinner party or wedding reception. It is JUST that superb that it can cover that much variety!

Check out the track list:

I Loves You Porgy featuring Chris Botti, trumpet
Come Again
featuring Sting, vocals
Oblivion
featuring Carel Kraayenhof, bandoneon
Cinema Paradiso
featuring Josh Groban, vocals
Para Tí
featuring Tiempo Libre, various
My Funny Valentine
featuring Kristin Chenoweth (kudos on her Emmy win!), vocals
Maybe So
featuring Edgar Meyer Sam Bush and Mike Marshall, strings
Grieg: Sonata No. 3
featuring Sergei Rachmaninoff (Zenph re-performance)
Eleanor Rigby
featuring Frankie Moreno, piano & vocals
O, Cease Thy Maiden Fair
featuring Nathan Gunn, baritone
Il Postino
featuring Carel Kraayenhof, bandoneon
Left Hand Song featuring Regina Spektor, piano & vocals

Chovendo Na Roseira featuring Dave Grusin, piano
Look Away
featuring Edgar Meyer, bass and Chris Thile, mandolin
Variant Moods: Duet for Sitar & Violin
featuring Anoushka Shankar, sitar
I'll Take Manhattan
featuring Marvin Hamlisch, piano
Left Hand featuring Regina Spektor, vocals



Oh yeah, that’s right. Left Hand Song featuring Regina Spektor--this fan-favorite has never been recorded before. At Home With Friends is your only chance to own this song. You don’t want to miss this opportunity.

Click here for a sneak listen of the songs on the album being released TODAY!

THEN come back here and tell me your favorite track off the new album for a chance to WIN YOUR VERY OWN COPY!!!!!!!!!!




Main entry (must be done FIRST):




Go to the new album link and tell me ONE track you love! Make sure I have an e-mail address, with your comment, so I can contact you, if you win! If I don't have a way to contact you, you will forfeit your win!




Open to anyone who is a resident of the US.






Extra Entries
(please post each entry separately, i.e. 2 posts for subscribing):


- Subscribe to the blog (1 entry)
- Follow this blog (1 entry)
- Put the "Welcome to Fall Ya'll" Button on your blog or website (2 entries)
- Enter/have entered any of the other Welcome to Fall Ya'll giveaways
(let me know which you entered) (1 entry)
- Follow me on Twitter AND tweet about this contest (2 entries)
- Blog about this giveaway (3 entries)




Contest will end on October 12th, at midnight. Winner will be picked by Random Number (random.org) on October 13th, and emailed. As soon as winner's info is received from winner, info will be forwarded to company for them to mail you the CD.



NOW it's Fall...........

Okay it is NOW officially Fall in my part of the South--

we woke up to 61 degees and NO humidity.

Yup it's FALL !!!

Product Review Update: Little Miss Boutique

I just HAD to make sure everyone of my faithful readers saw the NEW variations on the tassel hats that Little Miss Boutique who was one of our Welcome to Fall Ya'll giveaway sponsors, have come up with!

Aren't they just the MOST ADORABLE hats you've ever seen? Can't you just PICTURE the Christmas shots in the studio or in the snow?????

I'm personally really leaning toward a variation on the red and blush tassel for darling daughter for a Christmas present!

Monica Wharton has taken some ADORABLE pix for Sami and Alicia! If you live in the San Ramon, CA area and would like a session with her you can find out more information at monicawhartonphotography.com.

So if you're starting to think about Christmas presents, go back and check out Little Miss Boutique! Remember they have teen and adult sizes too!

Winners, more winners!


More winners this past week!

Thanks to ALL who have entered-keep checking back for more
neat stuff!

1. Little Miss Boutique Crocheted Hat/flower-
#2, Sylvia

2. Fortune Quilt Book- #6, Stacey

Mailbox Tuesday/Giveaway: Nature Valley Granola Nut Cluster prize Pack Giveaway

** THIS GIVEAWAY IS CLOSED ** I was recently given the opportunity to review Nature Valley Nut Clusters in all 4 flavors (honey roasted pecan, cashew (YUM, my favorite), roasted almond, and nut lovers) by My Blog Spark.

WOW- they're like taking your favorite granola bar, rolling it in peanut butter, making them into small balls and baking them. They are BEYOND good! I love that they are in bite size pieces in a small bag, that has at least 30 pieces in it!

They are crunchy but filling, the perfect for an outdoor snack, a meal alternative, or just as a healthy snack while running errands. Like you, I had seen them advertised, but didn't think they were going to be any different than a granola bar and since I grew up on those, I just wasn't interested. Boy was I wrong! I am definitely adding these to the shopping list for Me to have around for to-go snacks!

And LOOK what
Nature Valley is offering
you my faithful readers!


GIVEAWAY
:
A SUPER sling style backpack
FULL of 4 bags (1 of each type)
of the Nature Valley Nut Clusters,
1 set of small palm size Binoculars (perfect for hiking, biking, or just
keeping in the car), 1 screw top
metal water bottle AND 1 palm size
REALY bright LED flashlight!

Is that not super or what?

Main Entry:
Go to Nature Valley's website and tell me what nuts are in the Nuts Lover Nut Clusters flavor!

Open to anyone over 8 (with parent's permission) in US and Canada


Additional Entries:

Please post each entry separately, i.e. 2 posts for subscribing:
- Subscribe to the blog (1 entry)
- Follow this blog (1 entry)
- Enter/have entered any of the other Welcome to Fall Ya'll giveaways
(let me know which you entered) (1 entry)
- Put the "Welcome to Fall Ya'll" Button on your blog or website (2 entries)
- Follow me on Twitter AND tweet about this contest (2 entries)
- Blog about this giveaway (3 entries)

Contest will end on October 8th, at midnight. Winner will be picked by Random Number (random.org) on October 9th, and emailed. As soon as winner's info is received from winner, it will be forwarded and gift pack will be mailed directly to them.







Monday, September 28, 2009

Product Alert: Halloween Ornaments!

pumpkin ornament
OOOOOOO.........

I just got the new Bronners catalog in and WOW they have Halloween black cat ornamentornaments!

LOOK how cute!

Pumpkin

and this cute kitty:


and let's not forget about
the BOO factor:ghost ornament
aren't you just in LOVE with them?????

ornament stand
And they have an adorable
stand to put them all on!

(I'd probably paint it black, thats
just me!)


and look at this candle holderpumpkin light
- is it just TOO
sweet and cute?????

Giveaway: West German Estate Necklace (and bonus!)

** THIS GIVEAWAY IS CLOSED *** 

 



I fell in love with this necklace
when I saw it and knew it would
be an interesting and wonderful addition to our Welcome to Fall
Ya'll Giveaway bonanza!






The necklace is composed of gorgeous fall color high quality plastic (but really really look like
glass almost) stones accompanied by gold metalwork and accented with a matching beaded tassle at the end. See it here in the right. Can't you JUST imagine wearing this over
a turleneck and under a blazer. It can be dressy OR casual!

The seller advised she had bought it at an estate sale and
the only information she had from the seller was that it was from West Germany and their mother had bought it in the late 60s/early 70s.

As an added bonus, I am throwing in the one earring that they had to go with it. It is a beaded floral design with matching beaded dangle (sorry for the bad pix- had problems getting a good shot without too much flash) . It has a clip style back and would be PERFECT to wear as a matching pin on a coat, blazer or hat. It would be very easy to convert it to a regular pin backing if you wanted to!



GIVEWAY:

One necklace with matching clip earring.

MAIN ENTRY:

Easy entry time- tell me how you'd wear this set!

Make sure you have an email in your entry, if I can't reach you to notify you that you won, you forfeit your win!

Anyone over 18 and a resident of the US can enter!

BONUS ENTRIES: (please put one entry per comment post, just duplicate it for 2nd comment post, if you have earned 2 or 3 entries for it!)

- Subscribe to the blog (1 entry)
- Follow this blog (1 entry)
- Enter/have entered any of the Welcome to Fall Ya'll giveaways (make sure to tell me which
one you entered (1 entry)
- Put the "Welcome to Fall Ya'll" Button on your blog or website (2 entries)
- Follow me on Twitter AND tweet about this contest (2 entries):
- Blog about this giveaway (3 entries)


Contest will end on October 12th at midnight. Winner will be picked by Random
Number (random.org) on October 13th and emailed. As soon as winner's info is received, set will be sent out to them within the week.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Definitions: Drama/Precocious

Drama-
1. a composition in prose or verse presenting in dialogue or pantomime a story involving conflict or contrast of character, esp. one intended to be acted on the stage; a play.

2.the art dealing with the writing and production of plays.

3. any situation or series of events having vivid, emotional, conflicting, or striking interest or results:

Precocious-
1. unusually advanced or mature in development, esp. mental development:
2. a precocious child.




AKA:

Two and a half year old is in front room playing with her toys,

then suddenly runs into dining room, bent over, holding her stomach,

screams "MIMI" (grandma), Mimi jumps up

and child puts hand on forehead and says "I'm sick, I'm gonna faint"

and proceeds to fall on the floor
(making sure to DRAMATICALLY place her arms in a cross position and legs askew, which
requires more than the 10 seconds to fall to the floor in a true faint....)

When Mimi says "oh Dear" and hollers for Poppa (grandpa), child smiles and tries not to giggle................


Have I mentioned I have a drama queen in the house yet?????

Book Review: True Blue

WOW- True Blue has got to be one of my TOP FIVE books of the year!

I've always liked David Baldacci's books, but this one, this one is supreme in its genre! the book is SO realistic it's downright scary. I've sent my life around cops- the lingo, the feel, the attitudes, EVERYTHING is 100% authentic. BUT, it's still highly readable by anyone, because Baldacci does a great job of explaining the whats and whys behind their world!

I wish it was releasing sooner than its October 27th release date because I can't wait for everybody who loves a GREAT mystery to read it! You will get through this book in 1-2 days, guaranteed!

The story follows Mason "Mace" Perry, who was a kidnapped and framed for a crime. She was a top cop on the Washington D.C. police force and she was sent to jail, loosing everything she held dear-her badge, her career, her freedom. She spent two years in prison and the book starts with her release and her relationship with her sister, who happens to be the Police Chief of D.C. mace is intent on one mission: to get back on the force and exonerate herself in the process. She sees her only way to get back on the force is to solve a major case on her own, and prove that she has the right to wear the uniform again. But even with her police chief sister on her side, she has to work in the shadows: the vindictive U.S. attorney, who put her behind bars, and hates her sister, is looking for any reason to send Mace back, and to ruin her sister's career.

When Mace shadows her sister one night she meets Roy Kingman, a young lawyer at a high-paying job at a law firm in Washington, who is the witness/complainant on a crime that mace's sister is investigating. Mace and Roy soon link up and they investigate the death at Roy's firm. They soon start uncovering surprising secrets, from both the private and public world of the nation's capital. The fairly routine homicide soon takes a terrifying and unexpected turn-into something complex, diabolical, and possibly lethal mystery.

True Blue is a great ride- no questions are left unanswered, you walk away feeling fully satisfied and happy with the book!

About the Author
David Baldacci lives with his family in Virginia. He and his wife have founded the Wish
You Well Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting literacy efforts
across America. He invites you to visit him at www.davidbaldacci.com and his foundation
at www.wishyouwellfoundation.org, and to look into its program to spread books across
America at www.FeedingBodyandMind.com.

Not only can he write extremely well, he's a great guy! Doesn't that make you feel all warm and fuzzy when you buy his books? It does for me!

Giveaway/ Review: Catwalk,a Feline Odyessy by Kathie Freeman

** THIS GIVEAWAY IS CLOSED ** 

 
Catwalk" is the story of grey tabby cat, who was picked out of a pet store by a nice young couple and named Tiger. The story is told from the cat's point of view and is very endearing and heartwarming, and quickly draws you in.

Anyone who has pets and then has children, will recognize the patterns that affect Tiger, after the nice couple has a baby. I am sure there are a lot of people in the same situation who choose a different path, but for the story, the baby's arrival soons leads to her being banished outside, and when she becomes pregnant, being banished to an industrial park.

Tiger is able to find shelter and caring people to help her with her kittens. Though she does get a new name, Tuffy, for her herculean efforts to keep them all together. But tragedy continues to strike around her, and she finds herself transported across country, landing in Cajun territory. She soon meets a game warden and his wife, some hobos, and finally a Mexican American family.

Throughout the story Tiger remains a survivor. She suffers abuse but carries on. In many ways the tale reminded me of my favorite childhood read, Black Beauty. Her spirit and hardiness keep her going as she struggles to cross back across the country to find her true place, with those that love her the most.

You'll need some tissue for this book, as scenes may remind you of your past animals/pets. But it would be a GREAT story to read to your children as a bedtime story. They'll root for Tiger/Tuffy and love the ending! This books would also make a GREAT Christmas present for any cat lover on your list!

And LUCKY you, Kathie Freeman has offered me another copy to giveaway!


Giveaway: One Catwalk book

Open to anyone in US and Canada (under 18 with parent's permission, of course)


Main Entry:

- Tell me the name of your favorite pet you had growing up! If you didn't have any pets (poor you!) then tell me what animal you most wanted growing up!


Extra Entries:

- Enter/entered any current Welcome to Fall Ya'll Contest (1 entry)

- Subscribe to this blog (1 entry)

- Follow this blog either via RSS feeder or Blogger (1 entry)

- Follow me on Twitter and Tweet about this contest (1 entry)

- Put the "Welcome to Fall Ya'll" Button on your blog or website (2 entries)

- Blog about this giveaway (3 entries)




Contest will end on October 10th at midnight. Winner will be picked by Random Number (random.org) on October 11th, and emailed. After winner's info is received, author will be advised, and she will then mail out package to the winner directly.

Product Alert: Baby Sherpa Back Pack


Why is it that as your kids get older you have to schlep more stuff with you when you go off an all-day jaunt or vacation? Remember
when all you needed was one SMALL diaper bag???? Those days are GONE aren't they?

Karen over at Frugal Mommy of 2 Girls has found THE solution-
the Baby Sherpa backpack!

Here's some info on the bag:
Alpha Sherpa leads the pack with its great looks and padded laptop sleeve. The Alpha Sherpa Backpack has an abundance of special features to suit your travel needs. The high tech design features superior construction that simply outdoes the competition with room for everything from cell phones and ipods to lunches and laptops.
Alpha Sherpa is 5 gear bags in 1
Padded Laptop backpack- holds most 14 inch laptops
Cooler soft-sided storage for snacks & beverages
Parent pack “ includes a bonus change pad, insulated bottle holder, abundant storage
Video padded, interior pocket.
Pockets for your mobile devices and other valuables

Check out Karen's Frugal Mommy of 2's blog post about her giveaway for a special 20% off code!
AND you can enter her giveaway as well!

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Recipe Weekend & Book Review: Benny & Shrimp/

BENNY & SHRIMP COVERI like to venture off into the foreign book section every now and then. I usually come out with an unique, interesting and engrossing book! Benny & Shrimp is no different!

The book follows 2 people as their lives intersect at the local cemetery (in Sweden), and what happens next.

Shrimp is a widow whose sparse all white apartment echoes the emptiness in her soul and character. She mels into the background as everything she wears is neutral or beige. yet her strong intellect serves her well as a childrens librarian. She is coping, but not really enjoying life, when she meets Benny.

Benny has recently lost his mother and he is having a hard time running the family farm by himself. His commitments to family have eclipsed his own yearnings, and now he is adrift, immersing himself in work, to keep his mind occupied. his fear is becoming an old bachelor and having no one to pass the farm on to. yet, he finds it hard to voice his true needs and wants.

When Benny and Shrimp meet, there are no sparks or immediate feelings for each other. It is when a chance occurence in the cemetery makes them both laugh at the same time, that they see possibility and a fellow soul in each other.

The story goes back and forth between their characters points of view, each telling their version of events that have occurred. It was cute that when it was Benny's time there was a row of cows across the page. Shrimp got a stanza of poetry.

As time goes on, they both realize that they are polar opposites-she abhors his mother's cross stitch pictures and the echoes of settling down in his house. He hates her modern world of opera, avant garde plays and fancy dinner parties. Yet....they share something unique- they are either totally right for each other or totally wrong for each other- and they know it.

The precursor to the ending is expected, the ending is not! the author surpizes us, as her characters surprise themselves, giving us hope when things see unsurmountable.

It is easy to get beyond the Swedish localities, culture and names for things, once you get nto the book. the story is universal, it could be west coast/east coast, Southerner/Yankee, young/older-the basic idea is the same. This is a rare little book- it will keep you hooked and keep you wondering what happens later, if there will be a sequel. Always a plus when you don't want to leave the characters!

So go check out this book- I know you'll love it!


Recipe Time! Somehow every time I read the title of this book I thought of Paula Dean and her brother Bubba. Don't ask me why, I just did. So it seemed natural to pull a recipe from her cookbook, The Dean Family Cookbook, to go along with my review of the book!

And lo and behold there it is- my FAVORITE fall chowder recipe-

Corrie's Creamy Corn and Shrimp Chowder

Ingredients:

6 ears corn, kernels cut off the cobs, cobs reserved
2 Tbsp (1/4 stick) butter
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
2 Cp chicken broth
1/2 Cp heavy cream

salt and pepper
1 1lb.
large shrimp, peeled, deveined, and cut into 1-inch pieces
3 green onions (scallions), white and light green parts, trimmed and chopped

Directions:

  1. Put the corn cobs into a large pot with just enough water to cover (break the cobs in half if they don't fit). Boil gently for 20 minutes. Discard the cobs and reserve the corn-infused water.
    Substitution: If you're out of fresh corn, you can use frozen corn from the grocery store- it would be 3 cps needed of the frozen corn. Frozen is WAY better than canned, so try to substitute with it. Cook it per bag directions, if you don't have enough water left over for step 2, add water to make needed 3 cps total.
  2. In a medium saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the corn kernels, chicken broth, cream, and 3 cups of the corn water. Season with salt and pepper to taste and bring to a boil. Lower the head and let simmer for about 10 minutes. Add the shrimp and simmer until just opaque, 2 to 3 minutes.
  3. Ladle the chowder into soup bowls and garnish with the green onions. Serve hot.
Note: you can also add Ore-Ida O'Brien Hash Browns and reduce amount of corn if using frozen for a really great Fall chowder! You can also sub crab, lobster or crawfish for the shrimp- YUMMY any way you try it!

Giveaway: Italian for Beginners by Kristin Harmel

** THIS CONTEST IS CLOSED **

Don't you just LOVE surprise giveaways????

Miriam over at Hachette is offering us TWO copies of the new and much heralded book by Kristin Harmel: Italian for Beginners!



Italian for Beginners is the story of thirty-four-year-old Manhattan accountant Cat Connelly has always lived life on the safe side. But after her little sister gets married, Cat wonders if she has condemned herself to a life of boredom by playing by the rules. She decides to take a chance for once, accepting an invitation to spend a month with an old flame in Italy. But her reunion with the slick and gorgeous Francesco is short-lived, and she finds herself suddenly alone in Rome. Now, she must see if she has the courage to live outside the lines for the first time – and to face a past she never understood.

It will take an unexpected friendship with a fiery Italian waitress, a whirlwind Vespa tour of the Eternal City with a handsome stranger, and a surprise encounter with an old acquaintance to show Cat that life doesn’t always work out the way you expect, but sometimes you have to have fall in order to fly.

Check out the book for yourself above and then check out the authors website for an interview with her about the book


Giveaway:
That's right, TWO of you, my LUCKY readers, will be able to WIN your OWN personal copy of Italian for Beginners!


Entries:
Must be residents of the U.S. and age 18 and older.
Make sure I have an e-mail address, with your comment, so I can contact you, if you win! If I don't have a way to contact you, you will forfeit your win!


Please post each entry separately, i.e. 2 posts for subscribing:

- Subscribe to the blog (1 entry)
- Follow this blog (1 entry)
- Enter/have entered any of the other Welcome to Fall Ya'll giveaways
(let me know which you entered) (1 entry)
- Put the "Welcome to Fall Ya'll" Button on your blog or website (2 entries)
- Follow me on Twitter AND tweet about this contest (2 entries)
- Blog about this giveaway (3 entries)


Contest will end on October 5th, at midnight. Winner will be picked by Random Number (random.org) on October 6th, and emailed. As soon as winner's info is received from winner, it will be mailed to Michelle, who will then mail cd to the winner.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Product Review- UPDATE - Wat-aah


That's right- you can purchase this super
water online at Amazon now!

$12 for a 12 pack, that's ONLY $1 per
bottle- is that a good deal or what?

Check out my earlier review here

AND they have t-shirts as well!

I know a certain toddler who'd love one, how about yours????

Giveaway/ Review: Your Songs CD by Harry Connick Jr.


** THIS CONTEST IS CLOSED ** WOW- guess what was released yesterday AND came in the mail today?

That's right- Harry Connick Jr.'s Your Songs, his new cd!

Serendipity thy name is One2One Net ! because a friend and I were just this past weekend discussing how she wanted to get the new cd to listen to to see if she wanted to play it for a special event she is hosting! AHHHH- the universe at work again!

Connick's new cd includes classic songs by some of the greatest musicians of all time, with a full jazz big band and string orchestra! The song list includes (Originally performed by in parenthesis):
All The Way (Frank Sinatra)
Just The Way You Are (Billy Joel)
Can’t Help Falling In Love With You (Elvis Presley)
And I Love Her (The Beatles)
(They Long To Be) Close To You (The Carpenters)
Besame Mucho
The Way You Look Tonight******** my FAVORITE ********
First Time Ever I Saw Your Face (Roberta Flack)
Your Song (Elton John)
Some Enchanted Evening ****** 2nd favorite ****
And I Love You So (Don McLean)
Who Can I Turn To? (Tony Bennett)
Smile (Charlie Chaplin)
Mona Lisa (Nat King Cole)

You can preview the songs on Amazon- click HERE. So you see- perfect for any special occassion or event, as EVERYONE can dance to them and know most of the lyrics!


If you order your own copy from
Connick's website
you'll be eligible for special downloads!



Click HERE for a special preview of the
making of the cd!

Connick will be on TV promoting and
performing the new songs as well:



9/25 – Oprah “Live Friday”
9/28 – Today Show
9/29 – The View
9/30 – Imus in the Morning
9/30 – Letterman
10/1 – Today Show
Week of 10/5 – Rachael Ray

Connick has come a LONG way since we played together in a band concert in high school! (EEKS, I am THAT old???? arrrgghhh)- and it is my pleasure to be able to share his newest cd with you.

Giveaway:
That's right, one of you my LUCKY readers will be able to WIN your OWN personal copy of Your Songs!

Entries:
Must be residents of the U.S. and age 18 and older. NO PO Boxes.
Make sure I have an e-mail address, with your comment, so I can contact you, if you win! If I don't have a way to contact you, you will forfeit your win!

Anyone over 18 and resident of US can enter!

Please post each entry separately, i.e. 2 posts for subscribing:
- Sign Up for Harry Connick Jr’s Newsletter, then come back here, and let me know you did.
(1 entry)
- Subscribe to the blog (1 entry)
- Follow this blog (1 entry)
- Enter/have entered any of the other Welcome to Fall Ya'll giveaways
(let me know which you entered) (1 entry)
- Put the "Welcome to Fall Ya'll" Button on your blog or website (2 entries)
- Follow me on Twitter AND tweet about this contest (2 entries)
- Blog about this giveaway (3 entries)


Contest will end on October 5th, at midnight. Winner will be picked by Random Number (random.org) on October 6th, and emailed. As soon as winner's info is received from winner, it will be mailed to Michelle, who will then mail cd to the winner.


Giveaway/ Book Review: Beautiful Mess, the Story of Diamond Rio

** THIS CONTEST IS CLOSED ** 


Thomas Nelson booksellers recently gave me the opportunity to preview the forthcoming book: Beautiful Mess, the Story of Diamond Rio.


I have fond memories of seeing Diamond Rio in concert at the Santa Rosa CA) County Fair years ago and have always liked their music, so I was escited to preview the book!

The book is neat in that it actually is THREE books for the prce of one- you have the print copy, plus you can go online to the publishers website, enter the books ISBN and your info, and you can download BOTH an audio AND an e-book version. Definitely a great idea in these days of home budgets!

The book is divided into 3 parts- the rise of the band, band bios, and their topping of the charts up to current day. The book was written by the band in conjunction with Tom Roland, who is a Nashville area enterntainment journalist

I found the first section very interesting- I had no idea the many ties to Opryland that the group had, or the type of trials they had leading up to getting their first recording contract. I had no idea the band had been originally called Tennessee River Boys. The second section was devoted to all the band members bios. It was nice to read about each members upbringing and to see family photos. The third section was the weakest, in that it was really just a chronicle of the bands success. When it picked up the thread from the first section it got really intriguing. The book ends with up to date info on the members of Diamond Rio and their various charity events. I found their devotion to helping others, as they had been helped, to be very moving.


Giveaway:


The book is a quick read and a must for any Diamond Rio fan! So I've decided to give this copy to you, in the spirit of giving back, as Diamond Rio does!



Entry:


- Enter any of the Welcome to Fall Ya'll giveaways (make sure to tell me which one you entered) (1 entry)

- Subscribe to this blog (1 entry)

- Follow this blog either via RSS feeder or blogger (1 entry)

- Follow me on Twitter and Tweet about this contest (1 entry)

- Put the "Welcome to Fall Ya'll" Button on your blog or website (2 entries)- Blog about this giveaway (3 entries)


Open to anyone in US


Contest will end on October 9th, at midnight. Winner will be picked by Random Number (random.org) on October 10th, and emailed. Package will be mailed out after winner's info is received.

Read for the Record: October 8th

"Will you read me a story?"

This simple question is an invitation to share the joy of reading with a child in your life on October 8th, 2009, by helping Jumpstart Read for the Record, by reading the Hungry Caterpillar.
Jumpstart believes that reading aloud with preschool children lays the groundwork for strong literacy skills and future success in school and in life. Jumpstart’s created Read for the Record in 2006, as an international campaign to bring preschool children together with valued grownups in their lives to read the same book, on the same day, in communities all over the world. In 2008, they broke their own world record with nearly 700,000 readers sharing the classic children’s tale, Corduroy. On that one historic day, one amazing book was read aloud in classrooms, libraries and homes from Japan, Germany and Brazil, to cities and rural communities across America. Hushed with wonder and tickled with giggles, children around the world simultaneously experienced the joy of reading.
If you order your book the Jumpstart themselves it is TAX DEDUCTIBLE- it's like getting a free book!





How else can you jump in and make a difference?

So get your copy of the Hungry Caterpillar and be ready to make a difference in a child's life!
I know I will be! And don't worry, I'll give ya'll a reminder before the 8th!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Need a Halloween Costume????

okay, okay, I admit, I am sorta BALLISTIC re getting Halloween costume ready MONTHS early, but then I like to be prepared!

Hubby and I have our costumes set because we are planning on using them for double duty this year and attending local Renaissance Fair. But I had to do a last minute (as far as I was concerned) search for a pirate outfit for darling daughter, as she is going as a cute witch (sort more like a fairy witch) for Halloween and decided she wanted to be a pirate like daddy, when he wears his costume....oh oh, like mom, like daughter...SIGH...

So I wanted to pass n some great site info and sales for Halloween costumes and items for decorating/giving away Halloween night!

1. BUYSCOSTUMES.COM With code scary20, you can save 20%, with FREE shipping on any order over $75 til September 25th at midnight!

2. HOLYCLOTHING.COM I've used this company for everything from Halloween to formal occasions- their dress are JUST that versatile! AND best still they range in size from Small to 7x! Note- I usually go up a size or two depending on the cut, as I've found their easier to custom tailor to me that way, espcially in the bust area.

Subscribe to their newletter and you get a $5 off coupon!

3. ORIENTALTRADINGCOMPANY.COM they have the BEST prices on 12 piece kits and cute
Halloween items to hand out! And their shipping is extra quick! I recently used them for
pirate items for a party, including hats and swords!


Hope this helps all you procrastinators (HA HA)!

Giveaway: Southern Fried by Cathy Pickens and Magnolia Stationery

** THIS CONTEST IS CLOSED ** 


I love a good murder mystery, and when it's set in the South (Darcus, SC), it's even better! The Darcus area has been home to Pickens' family for over 300 years- you just KNOW she's gonna get the details right!

This is the debut novel for Pickens, which is really surprising, as it is SO good! I just recently came across her books while at a used book store. I'm not hunting down the rest of the Avery books!

Southern Fried starts with Avery Andrews getting fired from her big city lawyer job and goes back home to Dacus to rethink her career and life. (hmmm, this is a theme recently in books I've read, must be the karma thing working). Instead of quiet retrospection time, Avery gets roped into some cases courtesy of her caring aunt. She takes on the case of Melvin Bertram, whose wife disappeared years ago, only recently to be found.and turns sleuth to try to help him out of a dire situation.

Their is lots of charm and satirical humor in the love of an ex-classmate who can't live without her, so keeps planning odd suicides (which don't work). The tale is filled with authentic characters from small towns in the South, and her locales form part of the story.

You can read an excerpt on Amazon, click here.

Check out Ms. Pickens website, for her other 4 books centered around Avery!

I'm doing some fall cleaning, so I thought one of ya'll would like some love from the South, in a little carepackage of a giveaway today!



Giveaway:


One winner will receive The Souther Fried Paperback AND a set of 8 Magnolia Notecards and a Magnolia Pocket Notebook with matching pen!




Entry:

- Subscribe to the blog (1 entry)

- Follow this blog (1 entry)

- Put the "Welcome to Fall Ya'll" Button on your blog or website (2 entries)

- Enter any of the other Welcome to Fall Ya'll giveaways (let me know which you entered) (1 entry)

- Follow me on Twitter AND tweet about this contest (2 entries)

- Blog about this giveaway (3 entries)



Contest will end on September 29th, at midnight. Winner will be picked by Random Number (random.org) on September 30th, and emailed. Package will be mailed after winner's info is received!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Wordless Wednesdays............

The ARTIST at work..................



Please note- a NEW use for the many Home Depot Aprons that we seem to acquire at every Audubon Nature Event-darling daughter just HAS to have a new one every time.....

next it will be shoes.....oh wait, she's already there.....she has more than I do...LOL

ah, the perils of having a budding fashionista!

New Product Preview: Biologic VET

In this day and age when we eat healthier, and strive to locate organic products for ourselves, and products suited to our lifestyles/ages, we frequently forget about our pets. They age like we do and have similar special needs like us. If your child needed specialized food you would get it for them, so why not for your pet?

But it’s not as simple as opening a can, a box, or a bag. Dogs and cats have a unique biologic makeup that requires precise daily ratios and proportions of vitamins, minerals, fatty acids and other nutrients, that is different from humans. Even when we choose their diet with great care, these nutrients are difficult, if not impossible to obtain from wet or dry pet foods. Due to exposure to light, air, heat and humidity over time, nutrients lose potency and absorbibility in the manufacturing process. And that’s why BiologicVET has created a line of canine and feline nutritional supplements for daily maintenance, as well as specific conditions.

BiologicVET nutritional supplements are all natural, great tasting (ok, well they seem to be-it's not like our pets can talk and tell us this, but they're not going acckk and looking at us like we killed them, so we'll assume they taste ok) and easily added to your pet’s meal.


BiologicVET was developed by Franco Cavaleri, a prominent nutritional biochemist and researcher in animal and human wellness. Cavaleri has recently authored the new book, Potential Within – Your Dog’s Health. Cavaleri says "This line is a reflection of our passion for your pet’s quality of life, which of course is an important element of yours!” Cavaleri is also the best-selling author of Potential Within: A Guide To Nutritional Empowerment.
Every BiologicVET product contains no artificial colors, flavors or preservatives, and are manufactured in accordance with GMP (Good Manufacturing Practices), meaning that the quality of all raw materials is certified and tested before use. In addition, BiologicVET uses an airtight seal on all packaging, thus guaranteeing the potency and freshness of all products.
BiologicVET offers two products that are recommended for daily use for all cats and dogs, and five condition-specific formulas. All products are designed for dogs and cats.

DAILY MAINTENANCE PRODUCTS
  • BioVITES is a daily multivitamin powder formula containing key vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that replenish the immune system and support general health at every stage of your pet’s life. Among the many benefits of this product are improved heart, liver, lung and dental health, better energy, digestion and stress management.
  • BioFATS is a liquid supply of Omega 3-6-9 fatty acids designed for skin, coat and general metabolic health. It also helps relieve skin irritations, allergies, excessive shedding and joint discomfort.
CONDITION SPECIFIC PRODUCTS
  • BioJOINT: For pets with joint pain or arthritis lacking mobility and dexterity. Ideal for pets with chronic progressive joint pain or welling of joints and tissues. This product helps your pet to be more comfortable and to increase physical activity.
  • BioSKIN&COAT: Perfect for pets with poor skin and coat health including skin irritations, hot spots, chronic scratching and allergies. Also formulated to treat faded, lackluster coats.
  • BioSLIM: For overweight or less active pets with weight management problems and low energy levels, this formula helps burn excess body fat, not muscle. It also supports heart health by lowering cholesterol.
  • BioSPORT: For very active pets that require high energy for their daily activities, including police, field, herding or racing dogs. This formula improves muscle tone while reducing risk of energy, and has numerous other benefits, including optimal hydration and electrolyte balance.
  • BioSENIOR: For older/senior pets suffering from age related deterioration, lack of energy, arthritis and osteoporosis, this formula promotes healthy cardiovascular function and bolsters the immune system among its multiple benefits.
BiologicVET products are available at pet and health food stores across the U.S. and Canada. To locate a retailer, or to learn more about the formulas, their ingredients and the company’s unique approach to pet nutrition and wellness, please visit www.biologicvet.net.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Mail Box Tuesday: Giveaway: Solavie Desert Hair Care Duo-Pack

** THIS CONTEST IS CLOSED ** 


I received the Solavie Desert Hair Care duo-pack last week to try and review.

The duo pack is PERFECT for traveling, and is packaged in completely recyclable 3.4 oz. bottles that snap together in a sturdy “yin-yang” configuration. This not only saves space, but eliminates the need for outer packaging, thus conserving the earth’s forests. So you can be 'green' while getting clean! Even better, all the combinations do double duty as shampoo/body wash and conditioner/styler. So you can go from 4 products to 2, and not have to guess what the hotel will have when you get there!

Do we really need shampoo/conditioner based on WHERE we are, not our hair TYPE? You BETCHA! Each of the 6 environment types (Mountains, Urban, Tropics, Shore, Plains, and Desert) all produce different needs and stresses on our hairs. For example, Arid dryness, blistering sun, heat and sandy wind gusts found in a desert environment can expose skin and hair to extreme dehydration, irritation and stress. So while your regular shampoo/conditioner may work at home, the environment affecting your hair while on vacation may make it seem like you're not even using it!

Each Solavie Eco-Global environmental type product contains mineral-rich volcanic spring water from the mountains of Sun Valley, Idaho, as well as a customized selection of phyto-nutrients from hardy plants native to that environmental area. These ingredients help plants survive and thrive in their natural eco-system, and in these formulas, help skin and hair to flourish like the plants in that environment.

The Desert products are designed to draw moisture into skin and hair, and KEEP it there, despite the drought-like conditions outdoors. It includes doses of Aloe and Yucca Extracts for long-lasting hydration,Camphor, Rosemary and Sage oils to stimulate and purify pores and hair follicles, helping to prevent acne. Rosemary is also known as a natural protectant against sun damage. Desert Rose is a soothing, and hydrating oil that also produces a wonderful sense of well-being and calm. The formula also contains Alpha Lipoic Acid, St. John’s Wort, Soybean Oil, Green Tea Extract, Squalane, Avocado Oil and anti-oxidant rich Vitamins A, C, and E. Volcanic spring water boosts the efficacy of these ingredients and helps deliver nutrients deep into skin and hair cells.

I have to admit I was somewhat sceptical, but I thought I'd give it a go. No I live in the deep South. Desert we aren't, BUT some of the same conditions apply- the humidity doesn't ADD moisture to your hair, it sucks it out like a Hoover on 9 cups of espresso. If you have naturally curly or wavy hair that's thick, like mine, you know once the humidity sets in you'll be combating FRIZZ on a daily basis and NOT winning.

So imagine my surprise when I got out of shower after using the products once only each as shampoo/conditioner, skipped any after product, and sat on front porch for 35 minutes and there was barely any noticable puffiness/frizz. It stayed that way even when it almost completely dried. Can you say WOW with me???? And the smell? YUM YUM, I LOVE sage adn rosemary together- it leaves such a clean, fresh smell.

Now I have to admit the next morning it was not the same story, as I slept badly, and woke up with severe case of pillow head. BUT here's the weird part- ALL I had to do was to wet my hair down some, and I swear I could FEEL my hair relax and settle back down. Then after being pulled up all day, when I finally let my hair down, that night, it was STILL relaxed and frizz was at a bare minimum. OK, round one goes to Solavie hands down!

But then there's round 2:
I thought I'd give the Solavie products a super test by having just colored my hair two days before the first wash. I wanted to see if it could keep my hair soft and the color true (I had recently switched to sulfite free shampoo for when color is new- it works like a charm to extend the life of it). Well, 2 washes later (I can't wash it everyday otherwise it would be ballistic, every other day is max I can do), and the color is STILL great, and my hair is still soft, and appears very much relaxed. I LOVE THIS STUFF!

Now granted, the days have been 'mild'- 80-90 degrees with 60-70 percent humidity, as it's end of summer here still, but I can imagine it would be a HUGE improvement even in June/July!

I can't wait to get the products I need for different times of the year and see how that goes. I think I have found the magic elixir for my hair. So repeat after me- GO BUY THIS STUFF!

So run to the Solavie web site and check out their face products as well. I know once you try these products, you'll be convinced that you've missed out on something all along and your hair will love you for finally finding it!

Giveaway:
And now, lucky you, Megan from Solavie has agreed to giving away another Desert Vacation Pack! You will get the same full size pack that I received-how great is that????

AND if you decide to order NOW in advance of seeing if you won, Solvaie is offering FREE shipping, while supplies last!

Main Entry:
Go to the Solavie website and tell me one thing about the product best for where YOU live!

Extra Entries:
(please post each entry separately, i.e. 2 posts for subscribing):

- Subscribe to the blog (1 entry)
- Follow this blog (1 entry)
- Put the "Welcome to Fall Ya'll" Button on your blog or website (2 entries)
- Enter any of the other Welcome to Fall Ya'll giveaways (let me know which you entered)
(1 entry)
- Follow me on Twitter AND tweet about this contest (2 entries)
- Blog about this giveaway (3 entries)


Contest will end on October 1st, at midnight. Winner will be picked by Random Number (random.org) on October 2nd, and emailed. As soon as winner's info is received from winner, it will be forwarded to Megan, and she will have the duo-pack shipped to you!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Giveaway: Willowbranch Kids Crochet Hat with Flower

**THIS GIVEAWAY IS CLOSED **


SIGH...another stroll though Etsy and look what I found! Is it NOT the most perfect hat for Halloween??????


Yup, I found Willowbranch Designs and their super hats and clippies. I was so enthralled I had to buy some hair clips immediately. After speaking with Holly, she agreed to do a hat for a giveawy in our Bonanza!


How lucky are you?????

Here's a little bit about Willowbranch Designs:

My name is Holly Becker and I'm 32 years old. I am married and have a 15 month old daughter, who is often my inspiration. In fact, my business, The Willow Branch is named after her. I work full time and I love my job. I make my accessories in my free time, in the evenings and on weekends. It is my creative outlet. There is always some kind of artsy, craft stuff strewn accross my dining room table!

My designs are all original and most are one of a kind. I like to use ribbon, fabric, felt, buttons and fun embellishments I find along the way.

(check out this ADORABLE hair clippie/brooch she sent me- is it not JUST a piece of art????)


Right now I'm making girls' accessories only, but there are plans to add some things for boys in the near future. I alsolove to work with customers to make custom items that are perfect for them.

I've been a part of the Etsy community for a couple years now. I started as a buyer. When I decided to give my business a name, it didn't match my Etsy username, which I had set up years before. So my Etsy account under willowbranchkids is fairly new. I set it up so my shop name and user name would be similar. I am a huge Etsy fan and buy all my gifts there!

Visit Holly's Shop:

http://www.etsy.com/shop.php?user_id=7791666

Willowbranch Kids will ship the hat to the winner within 2 days, after receiving winner's info, so winner will have it in time for October festivities!



Giveaway:


One winner will receive a purple waffle hat with a Halloween-themed bow. The bow is made with orange and white polka dot ribbon and a fabric flower made of black cotton fabric with orange, green and purple polka dots. Loops of purple yarn add an extra touch and layered felt finishes off the center. The hat is very stretchy and fits lots of ages, from toddlers to big girls.



Photos are of Holly's 15 month old wearing it, as well as a

9 year old. It is really too cute and fun for the holiday season!



Main entry (must be done FIRST):
Go to Holly's Etsy shop and tell me ONE other item you love, that isn't the giveaway item! Make sure I have an e-mail address, with your comment, so I can contact you, if you win! If I don't have a way to contact you, you will forfeit your win!

Anyone over 18 and resident of US and Canada can enter!



Extra Entries
(please post each entry separately, i.e. 2 posts for subscribing):



- Subscribe to the blog (1 entry)
- Follow this blog (1 entry)
- Put the "Welcome to Fall Ya'll" Button on your blog or website (2
entries)
- Enter any of the other Welcome to Fall Ya'll giveaways (let me know
which you entered) (1 entry)
- Follow me on Twitter AND tweet about this contest (2 entries)
- Blog about this giveaway (3 entries)


Contest will end on October 3rd, at midnight. Winner will be picked by Random Number (random.org) on October 4th, and emailed. As soon as winner's info is received from winner, it will be forwarded to Holly, and then she will be mailing the hat directly to the winner!


Have fun entering! You're gonna LOVE this hat!

Great Deals for YOU!

*** coming soon ***