Secret® Clinical Strength ~ A Give Away!

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Whether it’s caused by a work deadline, chaotic day with the kids, or visit from the in-laws, stress stinks… literally! 

Out of the three causes of sweat—heat, activity, and stress—
stress sweat has been proven to smell the worst. (Lucky me! HA HA!)

Luckily, Secret® Clinical Strength has got you covered when stress strikes.

Walmart is a one-stop-shop for all of your personal care needs. 

Find Secret Clinical Strength 
products at your local Walmart store or online at 

Secret Clinical Strength Information
Moisture activated, and formulated with odor neutralizing ingredients that release a fresh scent, Secret Clinical Strength is proven to give you 4X* the protection against stress sweat. You can feel confident that Secret Clinical Strength will provide stress sweat protection regardless of what the day brings. Visit for the scoop on stress sweat!
*vs. wetness protection required of an ordinary antiperspirant
Secret Clinical helps protect against the three causes of sweat:
·         Heat
·         Activity
·         Stress Sweat – especially stress sweat!
Why does stress sweat smell worse?
·         Sweat caused by physical activity and temperature is produced by eccrine sweat glands, and is 99% water and 1% nutrients
·         But stress sweat produced from the apocrine gland increases bacterial, and Water + Nutrients + Bacteria = Odor

Available in three varieties and four scents:

·         New! Clear Gel
o   No white marks
·         New! Invisible Solid
o   Goes on dry and stays dry
·         Smooth Solid

o   Contains skin smoothing conditioners

·         Completely Clean
·         Powder Protection
·         Ooh-la-la Lavender
·         Sport Fresh

I like the more gentle, soft scented things for my every day life, 
so I picked the powder protection.

My alarm goes off most mornings at 5 am most mornings, and I don't hop back into bed until 10, 11, sometimes midnight.

 I'm not used to being able to smell my own deodorant throughout the day, but at random times when wearing the Secret Clinical Strength deodorant, I would get an occasional whiff...
That's how I know it's working, I suppose?

I have found with Secret® Clinical Strength I'm not having to reapply deodorant between life gigs during the day - There's a win/win!

Which variety would YOU choose?

Thanks to Walmart, you can win a gift card to head out and purchase your own 
Secret® Clinical Strength products!

To enter - toss your name in the Rafflecopter hat below!
Good luck!

 *** Walmart gift cards and information have been provided by Secret I have been given a Walmart Gift Card in order to faciliate this give away. ***

FitBit ... Frustration

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

A couple of months ago, we indulged ourselves with the latest Wireless Activity & Sleep Timer device...

Not meant to be a competition, it has been fun to compete against each other a little ~
 (husband and wife) 
as well against as a couple of friends.

For the record, I always lose. 
Every time...

How many flights of stairs can you pull off in a day?
(Not many, when you work in a one level office building and your home only has a half flight of stairs.)

Can you get to 10,000 steps in each day when you sit at a desk for 10 hours or more?
(Rarely, but it's been fun trying, even if it means walking laps around the parking lot on errands.)

FitBit stats via the computer app on a 'good' day...

These were purchased not for the competition factor though, but to be used as an eye opener.

A competition within myself, if you will.

~ Little did I know just how 'eye opening' my device would be ~ 

The fit bit dashboard for last nights sleep...


In bed for 6 hours and 9 minutes.
Actual Sleep time, 3 hours and 30 minutes.

No wonder.

No. Wonder.

Now, of course I have no clue how accurate this thing really is.
For all I know, it doesn't even work, but what if it does?

Last night and the night before...
The dark blue is supposed to be sleeping minutes...
The light aqua color?

Last night...3 hours and 30 minutes asleep.
196 minutes restless?

The night before that?
2 hours and 4 minutes asleep?
112 minutes restless?

 The night before that?


What would this have shown when we had two babies under 15 months?

 I don't always have terrible nights...

I somehow managed one night last week, 
according to my FitBit Force bracelet, 6 hours and 34 minutes of slumber, 
with only 19 restless minutes.

Compared to the 2 hours and 48 minutes I got on Friday night.
(Incidentally, we stayed in Friday night, watched a movie...)

Our Fit Bit Force bracelets were meant to be eye openers for us.
Turns out mine really is...

I wanted something in front of me, showing me that I needed...................

I hate to think what this would have liked like a few months back.

I have stopped turning the computer on at night for various reasons, but one of them being the fact that I was staying up until midnight, 1, 2 am....
doing this, that and the other thing.

Getting caught up on my pictures, on blogging.
You may or may not have noticed things are getting quieter on this here blog.

There are lots of reasons for that.

Taking back my time, for one.
And our kids are getting older, for another.

The other day, our 8 year old googled herself, unbenownst to me.

She just came out of her bedroom to show me a picture on her Samsung Galaxy Tablet - 
She found a few pictures, and was really excited about one in particular 
one from her Manic Ceramic 8th Birthday Party.

She googled herself.

I'm glad that over the years I have thought long and hard about what to share on this here blog, 
and what not to share.

 Being a kid is hard enough without parents sharing, and oversharing on their online platforms.

I'm not saying I haven't overshared, because I know that I have, at times.

But I'm saying that I am making a conscious effort to NOT share too much going forward, about those I love as they get older, as they find themselves, as they come into their own even more than they already have. It's up to me to teach my kids about their online footprint. Footprints that they are ultimately responsible for.

It is no longer my place to share everything.
So, if I'm not sharing my life so much, and I'm not sleeping...

I suppose my house should be spotless, no?

*** And for the record, our FitBit Force Bracelets were recalled, and will be going back, soonish. Any other recommendations for a favorite Wireless Activity & Sleep monitor? ***

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Giving Back with #HormelFamily

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Hormel Foods Donates $6.5 Million in Cash and Product Donations During Third Year of On Our Way to Ending Hunger Program

AUSTIN, Minn. | February 17, 2014
In recognition of completing the third year of its On Our Way to Ending Hunger program, Hormel Foods Corporation (NYSE: HRL) today announced that donations to hunger relief organizations throughout the United States and abroad totaled more than $6.5 million during fiscal year 2013. 
The On Our Way to Ending Hunger program focuses on collaboration with retailers, nonprofit organizations and government agencies to address hunger relief, nourishing the hungry both domestically and internationally, as well as motivating individuals and corporate partners to take action against hunger.
“On Our Way to Ending Hunger is how our company is helping to address the very real issue of hunger in this country,” said Julie H. Craven, vice president of corporate communications at Hormel Foods. “Through our plant community donations program, employees are able to make a real impact where they work and live, aiding local hunger relief organizations and strengthening their communities. Additionally, through ProjectSpammy, we have the opportunity to make an impact outside of our own communities.”
Throughout fiscal year 2013, Hormel Foods donated more than $220,000 to local hunger relief organizations in more than 20 communities where it has U.S. manufacturing facilities. Each plant identifies the organization(s) within its community to support.
Addressing disaster relief needs last May, Hormel Foods donated 165,000 Hormel®Compleats® microwave meals to Feeding America in support of tornado relief efforts in Oklahoma. Additionally, the company donated 3,456 cans of Hormel® chili with beans,Stagg® chili and Hormel® Mary Kitchen® roast beef hash to the Hawaii Foodbank through the American Institute of Architects Honolulu eighth annual Canstruction competition.
Last year marked the fifth year of production for Spammy, a shelf-stable poultry product fortified with vitamins and minerals, to help prevent malnutrition in children in Guatemala. The country has one of the highest poverty rates in Latin America, and working with its international partner, Food for the Poor, Hormel Foods shipped 2.4 million cans of Spammy product for individuals in need. Hormel Foods employees also participated in three trips to Guatemala, engaging first hand in Project Spammy.
Hormel Foods also continued its important relationship with Hunger-Free Minnesota in 2013. Hunger-Free Minnesota is a statewide coalition of community and corporate organizations aimed at closing the “missing meals” gap in Minnesota.
About Hormel FoodsHormel Foods Corporation, based in Austin, Minn., is a multinational manufacturer and marketer of consumer-branded food and meat products, many of which are among the best known and trusted in the food industry. The company leverages its extensive expertise, innovation and high competencies in pork and turkey processing and marketing to bring branded, value-added products to the global marketplace. The company is a member of the Standard & Poor's (S&P) 500 Index, S&P Dividend Aristocrats for 2013, Maplecroft Climate Innovation Indexes, Global 1000 Sustainable Performance Leaders and was again named one of “The 100 Best Corporate Citizens” by Corporate Responsibility Magazine for the fifth year in a row. Hormel Foods has been recognized on the G.I. Jobs magazine list of America’s Top 100 Military Friendly Employers in 2012 and 2013. The company enjoys a strong reputation among consumers, retail grocers, food service and industrial customers for products highly regarded for quality, taste, nutrition, convenience and value. 
For more information, visit

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Tuesday, March 11, 2014

We have had the longest. winter. ever.
We've been cooped up inside, with temps far below zero, colder for longer, than anyone can remember for what feels like eternity.

We've had a LOT of inside time over the last four (feels like four hundred) five, maybe six months...

During that time, it has allowed us to pilfer through closets, dressers, nooks, crannies and everywhere in between. If you could SEE my 'guest room' - you'd faint.
My husband jokes that he is going to snap a picture and send it in to the Hoaders TV show.

Sadly, that's how that room looks right now - SCARY!
oh, we've taken plenty to the second hand shops, tossed a bunch in the trash or recycled it.
Brought a few dozen boxes of hand me downs to friends...

But still...

When you are trying to simplify...
oh the stuff!

Why the stuff?
Because there is some cash in that pile...buried deep within the depths.
Cash that can offset the swimming lessons, softball season, 
baseball season, knitting classes, dance team fees...

That's what brought us to 

Because if we are going to sell this stuff...
then we need some serious attention put on our stuff!

Build-a-Sign has many signs all made up and ready to order by simply visiting their website.

You can do what we did -and custom design your own, vinyl, weather proof sign!

Doesn't that look sooooo much better than the tiny 'garage sale' signs or the spray painted cardboard that you see around town?

It's been tooo cold to get outside and see how this looks on our driveway - but the children did humor me recently and each take an end...
(Thanks guys!! Spring is coming, I swear!)

Our sign is 3 feet by 6 feet - done in red and yellow, with a bit of orange and white.

This big, bright sign is sure to grab the attention of passers by, right?

I'll know for sure as soon as this snow melts, because I'm not waiting much longer after that to pile my driveway full of 'treasures' that are just waiting for a new home!

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*** I was not compensated for this post, however, I was given a complimentary sign in order to facilitate this blog post. ***


Tuesday, February 25, 2014

A lover of food that is both good, and simple for the non-kitchen friendly person like me,
Hormel products have become a staple in my family's home. From pepperoni for tossing into recipes or simply eating as a snack on the go, to their chili line, perfect for chili cheese dip or the occasional celebratory chili dog 
We find ourselves turning to Hormel Foods time and time again.

A  new addition to the Hormel Foods family, and to the Gust Family...

New Hormel® Black Label® thick cut bacon varieties – Unique bacon flavors have been popping up on restaurant menus lately, and now we can have the same treat at home! Hormel has added three new savory and sweet varieties to its popular Black Label bacon line:  Cherrywood, Pecanwood, and Brown Sugar. 

Great on burgers, sandwiches, or as a way to add sizzle to your breakfast routine.

One of our favorite ways to incorporate bacon is by creating delish club sandwiches at home in the toaster oven. We simply take thinly sliced deli meat, top with a couple of slices of bacon and a little shredded cheese, and pop it into the toaster oven for a few minutes.
Restaurant quality dinner sandwiches at home!

Using our trusty (tiny!) indoor Forman Grill - 
We can quickly fry up bacon any time of the day...

And if that means breakfast for dinner ~ 

Well, we are ok with that.

Breakfast for game day fuel?
That's pretty fun too!

#7 pancake for my player who wears the 7, and IS 7, with a side of Hormel Sausage!

What is your favorite way to eat bacon – BLT, with eggs and toast, or on its own? 

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The Small and Mite-Y

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Minnesota = Winter = Hockey

We've come a long long way since last year
our first year of official MITE-y hockey here in the great state of Minnesota!

We weren't off to the best start, all the way back in September,
 when we had our first ice time for this season...

but we've found our groove...
or I should say, he has...

It's amazing how far he's come since those first few times out on the ice...

This year our fantastic coach has even added scrimmages against other Mite teams from around the Metro.
Sometimes they come to our arena.
Sometimes we 'travel' to other arenas in other suburbs.

It's been super fun to watch the kids put it all all together in a 'game' ~
even if it is a game where no one keeps score. 
No one, of course, except every single kid who is out there, dressed in full gear ready to win!

And speaking of full gear, at our very first 'away game' - our opponents had fully dressed, geared up goalies!
We, however, do not play goalies at this level.

That one wasn't so fun for us.

But it sure is fun to see them out there, like the 'big kids' are.

Practices get long, but Sundays...'Celly Sundays'

Practicing their celebrations...

And when they get to use them in their *games* ~ it is just so so fun to watch!

As our season begins winding down, (only 4 more weeks to go!)
 we look back on what was a super fun season. 

A season of learning and growing. 

A season of cultivating friendships, both on and off the ice.

I still don't know what next year will hold on the hockey front.
Will he still want to play?

It'll be his choice.

What we as parents have to decide, however, is what color he suits up in.

If we stay in our current home...does he continue to suit up for the Black and Gold?
Or...does he dress in Navy & Gold, with his classmates from school?
So far, the only kink in our open enrollment.
(If you are an open enroller, I'd love to hear what you do for sports & extra curriculars!)

(Mites from Lakeville, Prior Lake & Burnsville after a recent game.)

Maybe I could ask BatGirl, if she shows up for another hockey game soon?
She was the most adorable fan I've ever seen!

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2014 Food Trends in the Twin Cities

Monday, February 10, 2014

We are over a month into the new year.
New Year, New Resolutions.

Leave a comment below with your Food Resolution for a chance to win one of two,
 THIRTY DOLLAR gift cards to Cub Foods!

While we don't make 'resolutions' in our home, we do make several goals.
One of those goals is food oriented...not so much the counting calories way of goal setting, but the spending less, buying fresh way...

A recent food trend forecast recently released shares many interesting tidbits forecasted for the Twin Cities Food Market.
Do any of these ring true for you?

Leave a comment below with your Food Resolution for a chance to win one of two,
 THIRTY DOLLAR gift cards to Cub Foods!

(Please remember to leave your email address in the blog comment 
if it is not active in your blogger profile! THANKS!)
Comments will be closed on Wednesday, February 19th. Good Luck!

Area Food Experts Predict Minnesotans Will Crave Healthier, Handheld, Local Fare 
with a Dash of Purple Pride
MINNEAPOLIS, Feb. 3, 2014 — Cub® Foods, a trusted local resource for fresh, quality food, recently polled Minnesota-based chefs, culinary experts, food critics, bloggers and food enthusiasts for key food trend predictions for 2014. Continued growth in demand for local and organic foods, as well as a focus on healthier food choices, especially those for kids, are predicted to be among the top food trends this year.  When it comes to specific foods, look for ancient grains like quinoa, along with kale and other “superfoods” to find their way onto more plates in the months ahead.
The 2014 Cub Foods Food Trends Forecast also shows that Minnesotans will pay more attention to portion sizes, snacking more, rather than eating full meals. This trend will also serve to reshape dinner parties as hosts focus on offering a variety of healthier options and taste experiences, moving from traditional full-course meals to small-plate, tapas-style affairs.
“Food trends are great indicators of broader social trends in our community,” said Darren Caudill, vice president of merchandising and sales for Cub Foods. “Our firsthand view into the grocery shopping habits and food preferences of local consumers allows us not only to respond to but to anticipate their evolving needs and interests.”
Predictions for the 2014 Minnesota food scene include:
Local, Farm-to-Table and Organic. Fresh and local, as well as organic foods are among the most significant trends, as the desire for simple, more natural and locally sourced foods continues to grow.Demand for gluten-free options will also increase.
Handheld and Healthy. Handheld, transportable meals and snacks will take new shape as people will seek healthier items with quality ingredients that they can tote along with them. From portable breakfast foods to lunchbox-sized items to fun and nutritious snacks for the whole family, on-the-go is the way to go.
Purple Pride Veggies. Several experts cited increasing interest and demand for purple vegetables such as purple green beans and purple carrots. Perhaps a fresh start for the Minnesota Vikings this year is driving the increased interest in purple veggies?
On the Rise. Ancient grains, kale, superfoods and greens will appear in more dishes. In addition, businesses that specialize in making one type of food or drink (e.g., cheese, distilleries) will gain popularity. We’ll also see more whole animal (nose to tail) served.
BIY (Brew It Yourself) Projects. Homebrewing continues to take hold in the Twin Cities as more people seek neighborhood acclaim as its master brewer. Look for more home dinner parties centered around pairing homebrews with food.
Small Is the New Big. Look for smaller servings to start nudging out bigger portions. Snacking will emerge as a replacement to traditional meals, particularly at lunch. Small party foods also will be big. Instead of sit-down dinners, demand will grow for healthy, yet tasty alternatives to traditional party fare for tasting and sampling.
Self-preservation. The home also becomes a food factory as more people experiment with emerging preparation techniques such as quick pickling, canning and smoking.
Marvelously Multicultural. Latin and Spanish ingredients and dishes are expected to be popular choices in the Twin Cities this coming year. Of course, they will be organic and healthy and, perhaps, presented as a fusion with another cultural flavor.
What’s for Mealtime? For breakfast, we’ll eat more eggs, and for lunch, we’ll experiment with unique, gourmet, artisan sandwiches.  
About Cub Foods
Cub Foods offers customers the freshest produce, widest selection and food expertise throughout the store to meet their everyday grocery needs. In addition to innovative local, ethnic and organic food sections, Cub stores offer shoppers multiple in-store services including fresh bakery, full-service deli and meat departments, pharmacy and banking. Cub Foods, based in Stillwater, Minn., was established in 1968 as one of the nation’s first discount grocery stores. Cub was purchased in 1980 by SUPERVALU and currently operates 67 stores in Minnesota and Illinois. For company news and information, follow us on Twitter at @CubFoods and Facebook at, or visit our website at

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 *** The above information was provided by Cub Foods and their advertising partners. The gift cards are also being provided by them. ***