Disclosure: I was not financially compensated for this post. I received a sample of the product for review purposes. The opinions are my own, based on my personal experience with the product.

Brought to you by…my husband Clifford!

Tuesday was supposed to be a picnic in the park with the kids.

We had the fixings for sandwiches a blanket and a Frisbee. My wife had a bag full of deli meat, cheese from Applegate.

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The Applegate Naturals meats are our choice because they are antibiotic free. They come from humanely raised turkeys, pigs and whatever animal produces Genoa salami — more pigs I think. Their tagline for beef products is, “Our cows are on grass.”

Despite the lack of nitrates that make other deli meat moist, the smoked turkey and roasted turkey breast were both moist and delicious. The sodium in both turkey choices were 360 mg — not extremely low, but not bad for meat with no added nitrates. The uncured Black Forest ham contains only the nitrates naturally occurring in sea salt and celery powder.

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Applegate’s website (applegate.com) is worth checking out just for the deli counter video. You have to watch it to understand. Imagine if Chick-fil-A cows talked. It’s sort of like that.

I watched the video on the Applegate website while we waited for the rain to stop. I also cleaned the kitchen and took the dog for a walk. Coming in with wet shoes and a drenched dog, I decided a picnic was out. Thankfully, I had everything I needed for lunch, because by this point, the kids were all starving.

I did take the time to put the sandwich stuff on Wilton Armetale. We have a couple collections of the dishes that shine like silver, but can be abused by a family without losing a family heirloom. So today, the bread went in the Flutes and Pearls oblong bowl.

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The healthy choice always seems to be unpopular among the juice-box crowd. Grace likes strawberries — but not local ones — just those from Costco. The Kayla loves green grapes. But for her, they start going bad seconds after they are removed from the vine, whether they originated from an organic vineyard outside Traverse City, or came to Michigan via train from Argentina.  Despite their pickiness, all four kids enjoyed something from the Applegate deli. The boys liked the meat, while both girls enjoyed sandwiches with the cheddar. I’m the only one who would touch the Sir Kensington’s Spicy Brown Mustard. It’s made with Maple Syrup, which maybe all brown mustard is, but Sir Kensington uses only Vermont Maple Syrup. Suddenly, I’m thinking waffles sound good for dinner.

I wonder how brown mustard would taste on waffles?

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Kristen: Kristen is a wife, mom, blogger and Brand Ambassador. She has four children; 2 boys and 2 girls. Kristen enjoys her role as a stay-at-home mother. Her oldest children are home-schooled. Her interests include gardening, coffee, reading, cooking and finding new ways to be eco-friendly. You may contact Kristen at mudpiesandtiaras at gmail dot com. Click here to meet Kristen

Disclosure: I was not financially compensated for this post. I purchased the product at a discount for review purposes. The opinions are my own, based on my personal experience with the product.

Now that we are having warmer weather, my kids are spending a lot of time outdoors.  I love that they are getting some fresh air and burning off some energy at the same time.  So, when I received the Big Ol Bouncer Inflatable Moonwalk, I knew it would be the perfect addition to our backyard fun!

We couldn’t wait to get it out of the box!  Along with the bounce house, the air pump, stakes, instructional dvd, and storage bag were also included.

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We paid it out on the flattest part of the yard and hooked it up to the blower.

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We turned it on and watched it inflate.  It took less than 1 minute!

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We then secured the jumper with the included safety stakes.

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My youngest son was extra excited because the bounce house arrived on his fifth birthday so he got the honors of being the first to try it out.

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Little Miss joined him as we waited for some friends to come jump with them.  With 12×12 feet of jumping area, this bounce house is big enough for several kids at once.  The specs recommend up to 6 users at a time with a maximum weight of 100 lbs per user.  This means all of my kiddos can use it at the same time :)

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As you can see, they had a blast on the bouncer!

I was really impressed by the quality of the bouncer.  It has commercial vinyl impact surfaces and double and quadruple Stitching.  It has held up really well to all the boys jumping and rolling around in it.  And I love that they are landing on a nice, cushioned surface!  The kids also really liked the entrance ramp that allowed them to easily climb into the house and slide back out.

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When the kids were finished jumping, we turned the blower off and let the bouncer deflate.  There were some storm clouds rolling in so we helped the process along by letting the kids roll on the bouncer once it was mostly deflated.  I have to admit, when we looked at the storage bag, we were skeptical.  My hubby actually said, “There’s no way that’s going to fit in there”.

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We folded it as the directions showed and prepared for the moment of truth.  I am happy to say, both the bouncer and the blower actually fit into the bag really well!  Plus it takes up way less room to store than we had anticipated.

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We are so happy with our bounce house!  Not only is it great for outdoor play, but we can also set it up in the basement on cold or rainy days.

A friend of mine recently rented a bouncer for her kids’ birthday party and she paid $200 for just one day!  Blast Zone has a big selection of quality inflatable bouncers starting at only $169.99!  They also have a line of inflatable water parks which can be seen at http://www.blastzone.com/shop/pc/Inflatable-Water-Parks-c3.htm.  Any of these would be perfect for the hot summer months!

Blast Zone has agreed to give all of our readers a 10% discount off all bounce houses now through May 2015.  Just use the code BOUNCEBLOG,when ordering. At this time, BlastZone.com does not have coupon functionality, so you will need to call in your order to receive the discount.

Now, just in time for summer vacation, Blast Zone is giving away a Magic Castle Bounce House to one of our very lucky readers!

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Belinda is a wife, mom, blogger, and Brand Ambassador. She has six children including 5 boys and 1 girl. Belinda enjoys reading, photography, crafts and DIY projects, and watching her boys play soccer. You may contact Belinda at mudpiesand tiaras at gmail dot com. Click here to meet Belinda

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone.
#NudgeThemBack #CollectiveBias

One husband, one wife, two girls, two boys and one cat.  You might think that our house and family were full.  But we wanted to add one more member to our household.  We really wanted a dog.  We have wanted one for awhile, but we needed to wait until we were moved into our new home and all settled in.  Around the first of March we moved into our new home.  Within a month we felt settled and decided to start looking.  Eventually we met a puppy named Gemini and applied to adopt him.

Nudges #NudgeThemBack #CollectiveBias #ad

This photo above is the day we first met our puppy.  At that point his name was Gemini and he was 14 weeks old. Here he is (below) on adoption day!

Nudges #NudgeThemBack #CollectiveBias #ad

The kids decided to name him Dutch!  Since the day he arrived he has been everyone’s best friend.  He goes everywhere with us!  The other day when I was at Wal-Mart, I found a new product that I wanted Dutch to try.  They are new and are called Nudges® Grillers.  I found them as I was browsing through all the dog treats.

Nudges #NudgeThemBack #CollectiveBias #ad

What impressed me about these Nudges® Grillers was that they are made in the USA with only USA-sourced protein and REAL MEAT is the first ingredient.  We truly want only the best for our Dutch!

Nudges #NudgeThemBack #CollectiveBias #ad I decided to get Dutch the Nudges® Grillers in Chicken and Steak.  They also had Nudges® Grillers Chicken Bacon and Nudges® Grillers Beef and Cheese.  I also saw a different product called Nudges® Sizzlers, but those will have to wait til another day.  Our entire family gathered to see how Dutch liked his new treat.  So before he even got to try any, we had to cuddle. LOL!
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The girls each gave him a Nudges® Grillers in Chicken flavor.  The final verdict?

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2 Paws up from Dutch! He loves them!

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It feels good to give Dutch these treats too, knowing they were made in the USA.  It is easy to give Dutch socialization.  He lives with 6 people and a cat.  It’s easy to socialize him with dogs at the local dog park.  We find it easy to provide for his mental needs…he is never bored with 4 kids around.  But finding the right food and treats for him can be tricky.  We are all thrilled that Dutch loves these Nudges ® Grillers.

Visit nudgethemback.com and let me know which treat(s) your pup would most like to try!

 

Kristen: Kristen is a wife, mom, blogger and Brand Ambassador. She has four children; 2 boys and 2 girls. Kristen enjoys her role as a stay-at-home mother. Her oldest children are home-schooled. Her interests include gardening, coffee, reading, cooking and finding new ways to be eco-friendly. You may contact Kristen at mudpiesandtiaras at gmail dot com. Click here to meet Kristen

Disclosure: I was not financially compensated for this post. I received a sample of the product for review purposes. The opinions are my own, based on my personal experience with the product.

 

Our boys love playing with their cars, tractors and trains.  It’s great on sunny days because they can take them outside and play for hours.  On rainy days though, they can get restless.

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Luckily, I have a new rainy day secret for keeping the boys entertained for hours! InRoad Toys PlayTape.

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This product is simple and yet brilliant!  It is tape that can stick to your carpeting and flooring and make roads and tracks for cars.  The tape does NOT leave any residue!  It is super easy to take off and super easy to go on.  Even Benjamin was able to make his own roadways.

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They offer different colors of tracks and different kinds…like traditional roads or train tracks!  We had the traditional roads.

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I just cannot emphasize enough how easy these are to set up.  Plus, when you are done you just throw them away.  But each roll of tape will last you quite awhile!  These are great ideas for party games!  Parents will love that they don’t need batteries, they encourage imagination and take up almost ZERO storage space.

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This is a fun treat to pull out for the kids on rainy days.  You can take this and a few cars with you when traveling and you are instantly ready to play no matter where you go!

Who in your life would love InRoad Toys PlayTape?  Leave a comment and let me know!

 

Kristen: Kristen is a wife, mom, blogger and Brand Ambassador. She has four children; 2 boys and 2 girls. Kristen enjoys her role as a stay-at-home mother. Her oldest children are home-schooled. Her interests include gardening, coffee, reading, cooking and finding new ways to be eco-friendly. You may contact Kristen at mudpiesandtiaras at gmail dot com. Click here to meet Kristen

Disclosure: No compensation was received for this! I am just giving this away for fun! All opinions are my own.

It’s Summer! Time to open the doors and get outside and play!  Bring out the sidewalk chalk and bicycles.  Pull out the scooters and jump ropes.  Turn off the TV and get outdoors!  Wonderful right?  Sure, it’s all great…until it rains.  Then the kids get restless and the house feels hot.  I have a great sanity saver though!  I am giving one reader a Chuck E. Cheese Guest Pass!  This gets you 4 small drinks, 1 large pizza and 30 tokens!!!

Sounds like fun?  Enter below!

Kristen: Kristen is a wife, mom, blogger and Brand Ambassador. She has four children; 2 boys and 2 girls. Kristen enjoys her role as a stay-at-home mother. Her oldest children are home-schooled. Her interests include gardening, coffee, reading, cooking and finding new ways to be eco-friendly. You may contact Kristen at mudpiesandtiaras at gmail dot com. Click here to meet Kristen