Jan 30, 2013

The newest additions that make me love homemakin' even more

Last week, I witnessed something horrific that I hope I never have to go through again. I watched the top heating element in my oven burn and spark from one end to the other. I was devastated. I use my oven almost daily... sometimes even up to 3 times a day. What was I going to do? I have nagged expressed to my husband over the last 3-4 years how much I would love to upgrade my range and have a convection oven. We made plans to do this next year but I had to do something soon. I searched online and looked at dozen of ranges from different stores. I already knew that the option of convection would more than likely not be in my price range. I was so surprised when I found one that was affordable . I went with a Frigidaire Speed-Bake range from Lowe's. I would have loved the smooth top but since I cook in cast iron pots and pans a few times a week, I knew it wouldn't be a good choice. I had to stick with the old school electric coils. I am SO happy with my purchase and since Sunday, I have baked different things a total of 8 times. Hey, I need to get my practice with the convection feature!
I am loving the gorgeous color I have been getting on my sweet baked goods and the less baking time as well. I just roasted a whole chicken today and it was perfectly brown and crust on the outside and moist and juicy on the inside.

Another item I got this week is the Silpain baking mat. I reviewed the Silpat late last year and was excited to see what the Silpain was like. Silpain is different from Silpat because the surface is like a fine mesh that is made specifically for baking doughs and breads. 

I made my Cheese Spinach & Artichoke Crescents on the Silpain and I could see the difference with how nice and crusty the crescents came out.
Of course, there was no sticking so I was very pleased with the results. I am already making a long list of things I want to bake in the very near future. I better make sure to incorporate some low-fat and healthy items with the desserts and pastry ideas I have in my head :)

I just had to share my newest kitchen toys. If you own a convection oven and have any tips you can share, I would greatly appreciate it!
Shelly, Mom Files

Jan 25, 2013

Tide To Go Stain Eraser sure comes in handy!

I received some samples of Tide to Go Stain Erasers a while back to try out. We were heading out to a birthday party last weekend and being the mom I am, I made my little one eat something before we left the house. Of course, it would be 2 minutes before it was time to go when William dropped the last forkful of his lunch on his good shirt. I didn't have much time to iron a new shirt and change him so I remembered I had a Tide to go eraser stashed in my purse.
All I remember is repeating, "Please work, please work, please work!" I opened it up and folded the sides up as directed. As you can see below, I had a bit of an accident because I squeezed too hard and spilled the cleaner down his shirt!  Luckily it worked out just fine. The stain came out and we were out the door, looking sharp!
I gave my husband a couple of these to keep in his wallet for the occasional accidents he has at lunch. I can't tell you how many times he has come home with a stain on his shirt or tie. This is a great item to keep in your purse or wallet especially if you eat on the run.


Product Information: 

Instantly start to remove even tough grease stains while “on the go” with the Tide to Go Stain Eraser, a combination of a powerful cleaning solution that breaks stains down and a micro-fiber pad that lifts and absorbs them.

Available Sizes:
Tide to Go Original 1 ct, 4 ct &16 ct.


Stay connected to Tide on Facebook and Twitter

I received products samples from Tide and all opinions expressed are my own.
Shelly, Mom Files

Hats Off to Helping Kids with Kohl’s Cares Books and Plush Toys for $5 Each

I have been a Kohl's shopper for several years now, ever since a store opened in my area. If you regularly shop at Kohl's Department stores, you might have noticed the Kohl's Cares stands over in the checkout areas featuring a series of children's books and plush toys for only $5 each. Kohl’s donates 100 percent of the net profit to children’s health and education initiatives nationwide. You can't go wrong with buying such good items for kids at a great price, and giving back to communities nationwide at the same time!

I have purchased both a book and plush toy in the past as birthday presents for younger children. The recipients always enjoyed the gift and the parents appreciated it a lot. In these days, $10 is a good deal for a birthday gift! It is also a great way to start a book collection for you own child. The books are really big and are a great value.
My son William is enjoying going through the pages of his new Dr. Seuss’s Sleep Book along with his new coordinating plush character. 
For Spring 2013, Kohl's Department Stores is bringing the charming stories from legendary author Dr. Seuss to children and families across the country with playful and affordable books and plush toys that will delight readers with their magical rhymes and quirky illustrations. This spring, Kohl’s offers exclusive hardcover editions of classic Dr. Seuss books including The Cat in The Hat, Horton Hears a Who!, Sleep Book, ABC’s and Happy Birthday to You! along with coordinating plush toys for just $5 each through the Kohl's Cares cause merchandise program. Since the program’s inception in 2000, the Kohl’s Cares philanthropic program has raised more than $208 million for children’s health and education programs in local communities across the country.

Kohl’s will once again feature Dr. Seuss story books in the Kohl’s Cares cause merchandise program. Children will be enchanted as they learn to read the whimsical tales from Dr. Seuss, and customers will be proud to support the program knowing Kohl’s donates 100 percent of the net profit to children’s health and education initiatives nationwide.

Kohl’s Cares Cause Merchandise for Kids


  • The Cat in The Hat and Cat in the Hat plush: Join Dick and Sally as they embark on an unexpected adventure with a giant cat wearing a hat, transforming a rainy day into a fun-filled afternoon. 
  • Horton Hears a Who! and Horton plush: Children adore the story of loveable Horton, an elephant who hears a cry for help from a tiny speck of dust and does his best to protect the tiny creatures who live on it from those who see them as insignificant.
  • Dr. Seuss’s Sleep Book and Sleeps plush: The perfect bed time story that is sure to help everyone wind down from the hustle and bustle of the day – including the grown-ups!
  • Dr. Seuss’s ABC book and Alligator plush: A quick and colorful way to learn the alphabet with Dr. Seuss and his colorful friends.
  • ONLINE EXCLUSIVE - Happy Birthday to You!: Everyone loves their birthday and with Dr. Seuss’s joyous tale, readers will see firsthand the thrill of celebrating a birthday as it is done in Katroo.
  • ONLINE EXCLUSIVE - Dr. Seuss’s ABC book’s Rhino plush: Fun to snuggle and huggle this adorable Rhino plush, kiddos will have a new friend to read with.


Kohl’s Cares Cause Merchandise for Grown-Ups


  • Good Housekeeping Light & Healthy Cooking and Good Housekeeping Drop 5 Lbs: Spring into Healthy Eating with two great books! Following the treats and sweets from the holiday season, testing out new recipes from Good Housekeeping Light & Healthy Cooking and getting diet and healthy eating tips from Good Housekeeping Drop 5 Lbs is the perfect way to stay true to New Year resolutions.
  • Dr. Seuss All Occasion Note Cards: As a thank you note or just to connect with a friend or loved one, these delightful all occasion note cards are sure to bring smiles to the faces of recipients with their colorful and quirky illustrations. 

In addition to the merchandise program, Kohl's Cares features a scholarship program, which recognizes more than 2,200 young volunteers each year with scholarships and prizes; the Associates in Action program, which encourages associate volunteerism and has donated more than $61 to youth-focused nonprofit organizations to date; and fundraising gift cards for schools and youth-serving nonprofit organizations. For more information, visit www.kohlscorporation.com. For a list of store locations and information, or for the added convenience of shopping online, visit Kohls.com ,  or join the discussion on Facebook  or Twitter

I received samples from the Kohl's Cares program in exchange for spreading the word on this great initiative. All opinions are completely my own. 
Shelly, Mom Files

Jan 24, 2013

I swore I would never do it. I lied...

I have often talked about embracing my gray hair. I said I would never consider coloring my hair. I said I would let nature do what it wanted to. I lied. I am starting to freak out over all the gray hair popping up all through my jet black locks. Most people think I am crazy and don't notice my grays. I notice them. It looks like a silver fountain cascading at the top of my head. I don't like it. I just happened to qualify for a Klout Perk a couple weeks ago and it was for hair color by Revlon. I even got to choose the color. I am way too chicken to change the actual color of my hair so I chose black. I plan to cover my gray when I can get up the nerve to go through with it. I better check the expiration date on the package.
I think the whole turning 40 this year is freaking me out just a little bit.
Shelly, Mom Files

Introducing Purex® Crystals for Baby {Review & Giveaway}

Hi everyone! I wanted to introduce you to the newest product in the popular line of  Purex Crystals, made specifically for babies. Purex Crystals for Baby was developed with babies' gentle skin in mind.
Just like the other Purex Crystals, they are 87% natural. You add the hypoallergenic, dye-free crystals directly with your laundry detergent. The scent is very soft and baby-inspired. I LOVE it! It's not overwhelming and our clothes came out so soft. Even if you don't have a baby, it is wonderful for all clothes, sheets and towels. It is a great addition to the Purex Baby detergent. Of course, you can't beat the great value! Purex Crystals for Baby would make a great add-on item for a baby shower gift. Purex Crystals for Baby will be available at Walmart stores in early February.

Right now you can enter Purex Crystals for Baby- Welcome to the World Sweepstakes. One grand prize winner will receive $1,000 while 250 additional winners get FREE Purex Crystals for Baby.

How would you like to win a coupon to try out the new Purex Crystals for Baby for FREE? Enter below (3 winners)
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Giveaway is open to US Residents only and will end on February 3, 2013. Three winners will be chosen at random and will be contacted via email. Momfiles is not responsible for any lost or stolen prizes. Good luck!

Purex provided me with a sample of Purex Crystals for Baby in exchange for a product review. However, all the opinions expressed here are my own.
Shelly, Mom Files

Jan 18, 2013

It's never too early to start looking for prom dresses {Promgirl.net dress review}

It's still so hard to believe that this is my oldest daughter's senior year of high school. There are so many things going on all the time that range from studying and college applications, to sporting events and social gatherings. In the next few months my daughter will be going to her high school prom. We have discussed it over the years but now it is officially creeping up on us! My daughter is one of the hardest people I know to shop for when it comes to dresses. I received the Clarisse Short Dress 9031 to review from Promgirl.net. I wasn't sure what to expect since it was being ordered online. Is it going to look like it does in the photo? What is the quality going to be like?

When the dress arrived, it came packaged in a large box. When I opened it up, the dress was hanging on a hanger in a plastic garment bag and neatly folded. When I took the first look at it I was instantly all smiles. It was a lot sturdier and fuller than I was expecting. When my daughter got home she completely freaked out and fell in love with it. She loved everything about it, especially the color. The one thing that photographs don't pick up well is the sparkle that is throughout the skirt part of the dress. It has multiple layers of tulle so it had a fuller appearance. When my daughter tried it on I thought I was going to cry. It was the perfect color and length on her. Her little brother said it best when he screamed out, "Oh wow, you are a princess!". 

It is a well made dress and it has optional straps. My daughter will wear it with the straps and we will have to get it taken in slightly in the bust area since she is really tiny. I will note that she got a size 0 and it was still a little loose in the bust which means if you have a little more on top, this might work well for you. We really love the sparkle of this dress and the bow on the back jazzes it up a little more. I think with this dress, she will not need to many accessories. I think some chunky bracelets, sparkly shoes and dramatic hair and make-up will be perfect.
This is the photo of the Clarisse Short Dress 9031 in gold. It also comes in blue and is available in sizes 0-10. 
I highly recommend checking out the amazing selection of dresses on Promgirl.net. There are so many colors, lengths, price ranges and styles to choose from. As a matter of fact, they have more than just dresses for prom. They offer dresses for many occasions like Homecoming, Military ball, Graduation, Sweet Sixteen, cocktail, formal and more! I feel like ordering a dress online gives a less likely chance of seeing another girl wearing "your dress". I will definitely be going back to Promgirl.net for my younger daughter in the next two years. I forgot to mention, they ship very fast. If you have a teenage daughter in need of a dress, I urge you to check them out!
Shelly, Mom Files

Jan 13, 2013

Shabby Apple Dress Review & $50 Gift Card Giveaway

**Closed** 
Winner is Loremil
When I was contacted by Shabby Apple to work with them, I was thrilled. I have always admired their gorgeous dresses over the years and just adore the retro style. I was able to choose a dress to review and believe me, it was a very hard choice to make! There was something about the La Noche Negra dress that attracted me. I think the first thing was the color. I can't seem to stay away from black! I also really loved the idea of that front panel/pleat. It seemed like it would be good at helping to mask that "mom tummy" a bit. The back of the dress is the same way as well.
I ordered the dress in a size XS. I was a little leery about the size so I read some reviews and made my decision from there. It turns out that the extra small was just right for me. The dress fit me almost identical to the model in the photo. The only difference was the length. I am 5'2" so it fell right below my knee. I like how it fit me around the mid section. I think the design was very slimming. My husband and children really loved it on me. The part that surprised me was that the dress had pockets. I thought that was clever. The panel/pleat in both the front and back were flattering. It is made of  lightweight cotton poplin material (perfect for the warmer months) and the big, metallic buttons added a little something extra to this very simple dress. This dress is perfect for me since I tend to like a more casual look and it can be dressed up with the right shoes, accessories and hair style.

Right now Shabby Apple is offering all Momfiles' readers a 10% discount (valid until 2/08/13) by using the code: momfiles10off. Stay up-to-date with sales, discounts and new items on ShabbyApple.com, Facebook and Twitter.

So are you ready for a giveaway? One lucky Momfiles reader will win a $50 Shabby Apple gift card to buy anything they like on the Shabby Apple site. Enter below:a Rafflecopter giveaway

This giveaway is open to US Residents only and will end on January 27, 2013. One winner will be chosen at random and will be contacted via email. Momfiles is not responsible for any lost or stolen prizes. Good luck!

I received a complimentary dress for review purposes. All thoughts/opinion are my own. 
Shelly, Mom Files

Buying for Baby: Adorable Babygrows


There’s nothing nicer than buying for baby, provided it doesn’t break the bank of course! Don’t let a big shock at the tills ruin your purchasing pleasure – it’s perfectly possible to find adorable babygrows, bodysuits and more at teeny, tiny prices.

The humble supermarket is one place to find great deals on all the basics needed to kit out your tiniest tots. George at ASDA has a fantastic range of cheap yet cheerful essentials from ‘tiny baby’ size upwards, helping you to keep the cost of this expensive time manageable.

Buying baby essentials from the supermarket is also a fantastic time-saving option for busy mums. Simply throw baby’s new wardrobe additions in the basket or trolley while you shop – or shop online at ADSA Direct if braving the supermarket seems too much of a daunting prospect with your precious newborn.

What to Buy?

Babygrows
There’s no need to spend lots on little outfits for a very young baby – as tempting as it may be. Little ones love to be comfortable, and soft, comfy outfits are perfect for sleeping, rolling, sitting and crawling in. Babygrows (or sleepsuits as they are also known) are ideal not only for night time, but also for casual days spent relaxing at home. They are also great for putting on under a pramsuit or snowsuit for cosy and comfortable trips out in the pram.

As your little one grows, simple babygrows are ideal to wear at night. They’re unable to ride up like pyjamas, keep feet warm and cosy and have easy popper openings to make those night time nappy changes a doddle.

Pretty, detailed babygrows are great for showing off in the daytime, so stock up on sweet patterns and fun character designs. When it comes to nightwear babygrows, fleece is a good choice of material for winter – it will keep baby snugly, warm and cosy (although be careful to check baby for signs of overheating).

Bodysuits
Bodysuits are another baby wardrobe essential, and are likely to be worn under every outfit until your tot is out of nappies. Like a vest, but fastening under the nappy, a bodysuit adds an extra layer of warmth and comfort. During the summertime they also make ideal nightwear, to keep baby cool yet covered.
There’s really no need to spend a lot on patterned or character design bodysuits, as they are worn under clothes the majority of the time so not seen. In summer, you could however pair a bodysuit with a little skirt or pair of shorts, for a cute yet cool and comfortable hot weather outfit.

Outfits
Of course, you’re likely to want to buy some sweet little outfits for those special occasions, days out or trips to playgroup. Keep your baby’s comfort in mind with soft fabrics and designs that allow for flexibility of movement and your baby can look great without feeling hindered by cumbersome clothing.

Enjoy shopping for your baby but don’t let the basics break the bank. Choose quality baby essentials from the supermarket for the easy way to fill baby’s wardrobe with adorable babygrows, bodysuits and more!

Sponsored post/I was compensated for this article

Shelly, Mom Files

Jan 11, 2013

Mom's fashion should be No nonsense

This post brought to you by No nonsense. All opinions are 100% mine.

Being a mom is a tough job in itself, but being a mom who looks like she's got some sense of fashion sometimes seems impossible. For me, my fashion sense usually refers to wearing black, grey, denim and of course, black. My family often expresses how I need to add some color to my every day look. No nonsense tights and leggings  are an affordable and simple way to incorporate a splash of color. No nonsense tights and leggings can be easily found at food and drug stores as well as mass retail stores.This is great news especially if you are on a tight budget.  I created a look that takes my usual love of black and kicked it up with some purple tights. What do you think? I could see myself exploring different colors and looks with these fun tights. I plan to show my family that my wardrobe can consist of another color besides black!

No nonsense is teaming up with fashion expert Jill Martin to show women how to wear the latest trends that include colored tights and essential leggings. She will be very active on social media to give her tips and advice. I know I need to take some time to get some of her advice. I am turning 40 this year and really could use some fashion help! Check out the short video below:

Be sure to stay connect to No nonsense on Facebook and Twitter @benononsense for more ideas and fashion inspiration. 
Visit Sponsor's Site

I haven't shaved my legs in 6 weeks

It's true, I am not lying. I haven't shaved my legs in 6 weeks!  Mind you, I usually shave 3-4 times a week. How is this possible? I started using VEET® Hair Removal Cream . I received a bottle of the VEET Gel Cream Pump to test out and have been using it once a week, for 6 weeks. I have noticed smoother skin longer compared to traditional shaving. It makes me wonder why I haven't been using VEET all this time! It is so easy to use and takes about 3-6 minutes. When you wash the cream off, all you feel is super-moisturized and smooth skin. I don't know if I will ever shave again!
About this product: 

Get touchably smooth skin for up to twice as long as shaving with VEET® Hair Removal Cream. Unlike shaving that can sometimes dry the delicate surface of your skin, the formula from VEET contains ingredients that can help restore skin's hydration levels. This formula is designed to work close to the root of the hair. Therefore your hair can take noticeably longer to grow back and your skin stays smoother for longer!* This specially designed Sensitive formula is enriched with Aloe Vera and Vitamin E to ensure maximum respect of your skin.
*Than shaving with your regular razor.

Stay connected with VEET on Facebook.
Shelly, Mom Files

Jan 9, 2013

Eating Light Magazine | Recipes with 400 calories or less!




Kick start your New Year’s resolution to shed those unwanted pounds with help from your favorite magazines!  Good Housekeeping, Redbook, Country Living and Woman’s Day bring you Eating Light, the latest Hearst Special. Eating Light provides a 13-week quick and easy eating plan sure to eliminate all of your diet stresses and guide you on your journey to better health. Each week of the plan features six 400 calorie or less dinner recipes, slim-friendly restaurant suggestions (because a girl’s gotta eat out sometimes) and various ideas for the best breakfasts, lunches and snacks to satisfy your appetite. What’s inside?

*Comfort food recipes with a healthy twist—including pizza, chicken pot pie and chicken fingers!
*Guilt-free “sweet treats” that will make your taste buds pop
*Cheat sheet for restaurant dining without losing control
*Quick tips and guidelines to answer your dieting FAQ’s

Eating Light is available for $9.99 and can be purchased at your local supermarket, newsstand or bookstore. A digital edition is also available at Zinio.com or Nook.bn.com.

I have picked out a few recipes that I will be making soon and I will be sure to post about them. I was so impressed with the variety and love how many vegetarian recipes are in there. This will come in handy for making meals that will please my entire family and helping my husband shed some weight at the same time.

For even more photos and inspiration, check out their Facebook  and Pinterest page.

I received a review copy of the magazine. All opinions expressed are my own.

Shelly, Mom Files

Jan 7, 2013

Getting ready for kindergarten

The time has come. It was 5 years in the making. Kindergarten registration is here. Today kicked off the start of Expanded Choice applications in our School District. If you want your child in either a Magnet program or to attend a school you are not zoned for, you must complete an online application. Although we live so close the the elementary school that I would like William to attend, we are not zoned for it. I had to fill out Choice applications back when the girls were Will's age. We want him to go to the same school his sisters went to. Me and my husband laugh at how we are starting all over again!
William is so excited and seems ready for school. I know he will do well socially but I still have my mom worries. With William being the last baby, he has been very babied and I take full responsibility for that. I can't help wanting to do everything for him. He's my baby! I know that I have learn to let go. I have to let him become more independent. I think about things like; will he be able to wipe his nose properly if he sneezes? Will he be able to clean his bottom properly if he goes to the bathroom? Will he eat his lunch? I have so many things going through my head! I have vowed to work diligently with him to get him well prepared for kindergarten. I guess all I can do is know that it will all work out. I was frantic when the girls were starting school too. It sure will be strange when he is gone all day and I will be home with just the dog. I know myself though, I will do what I did with the girls. I will volunteer every single day a few times a week. I am looking forward to all the fun things involved in kindergarten :)
Shelly, Mom Files


Jan 6, 2013

Sriracha | A must-have in my kitchen

I have talked about my must-have staples in my spice cabinet before, but I left out something very important... sriracha. Sriracha is a sweet, tangy paste made with sun-ripened chili peppers, garlic, vinegar, sugar and salt. I love it SO much. I use it on and in just about everything savory. There is something so perfect about the balance of heat, garlic and chili that makes it irresistible. I think from getting more "mature", I can't seem to handle very spicy, hot condiments like I used to.

It's amazing how a few squirts of sriracha can transform a dish. My husband isn't quite sold and still prefers the traditional West Indian pepper sauce. I need to find sriracha in mini-bottles so I can stash one in my purse! I am serious :-)

Are you a sriracha fan?
Shelly, Mom Files

Jan 5, 2013

Influenster Holiday #VoxBox 2012 Review

I was so lucky to get chosen to receive the last Influenster VoxBox of 2012, the holiday edition! It contained a NYC New York Liquid Color Lipshine, Kiss Nail Dress, Goody Quikstyle Brush, Quaker Real Medleys Oatmeal+, SoleSociety discount offer and  EBOOST Natural Energy packet.
The first thing I tried (well more like my son tried) was the Quaker Real Medleys Oatmeal+ in the Summer Berry variety. I really liked how hearty this oatmeal was in comparison to the usual instant oatmeal. It was full of dried berries and the serving was really big. He really enjoyed it and kept going on about how full he was.  I will be buying these for road trips and even for my husband to keep in his desk at work as a quick breakfast option.

I was really excited  to test out the Goody Quikstyle Brush. It has these unique micro-fiber "bristles" that are supposed to help reduce blow-drying time. The brush is also supposed to be good for detangling. I can't be certain if it really lessens the drying time but it works so well for detangling! I think one of the best things is how big the brush is since my hair is so long. It really makes blow-drying easier. You can clean it by giving it a little wash with your regular shampoo and air dry it. This is something I would actually buy in the future.
Next up, Kiss Nail Dress. I was originally going to let one of my daughters try these out but I decided to step outside of my comfort zone and get a little crazy. Kiss Nail Dress is basically nail polish stickers that require no drying time and last up to 10 days. The application process is relatively easy except I had a hard time getting the stick edges to smooth out. I also did not like the strong odor that they gave off. I think my nails had a strong chemical smell for at least 48 hours. I almost took the darn things off! I found that after two days, the edges were smooth and the look really grew on me. I think this particular color pattern (called Shrug) was good for me since you couldn't tell if the tips were wearing down. I kept them on for 7 days and could have gone longer, but I had to remove them since I had one nail break and I was forced to peel off the nail strip. They came off easily but I feel like the surface of my nail looked rough, almost like it was stripped. Thankfully they looked normal the next day. I am still not sure if I would buy these in the future but they are a fun nail look without the hassle of drying time or using polish remover.
I really liked the NYC New York Liquid Color Lipshine in the color Nude York City. It was really smooth, shiny and creamy at the same time. It felt good on my lips and smelled almost like candy. It didn't last very long but I guess most lip glosses wouldn't. I would love to try a darker color in the future. They retail for about $2.50 so that's not bad at all.

The last two items were the EBOOST supplement packet and the $25 off a purchase from Sole Society. I know for a fact I will not try the EBOOST because it does not appeal to me. I looked at the shoes from Sole Society and was not impressed at all. Also, I am one of those people that needs to try on a physical shoes before I purchase them.

All in all, this was a really good VoxBox and I look forward to the next one! Thank you, Influenster!
Shelly, Mom Files

Jan 4, 2013

Boost your laundry and more with Borax {Review & Giveaway}

If you have been a reader for a while now, you would know how much I love old school methods. I received a box of Borax Detergent Booster and after reading the box alone I asked myself, "Why on earth have I NOT been using this stuff all these years!". I remember always seeing a box in the laundry room growing up, as I'm sure most of you have. I think I always associated Borax with only laundry. Turns out, there are many uses. You can use it to clean garbage disposals and drains, dishwashers, carpets and rugs, toilet bowls and of course, for laundry. It softens hard water so it enables your laundry detergent to do what it's supposed to do... clean your clothes. I added a 1/2 cup of Borax along with my regular detergent to a load of whites. I noticed how much brighter they were and the best part was there was no bleach scent left behind. Borax is 100% natural and I will be replacing my bleach with it for my whites. 

Borax works in all machines as well as with cold water. I still can't believe I have not been using this stuff all this time! You can't ever go wrong with old school, multi-purpose and affordable! 
Check out this video to see how Borax works in your laundry...  

Giveaway: 3 lucky Momfiles readers will win a coupon good for one FREE bottle of Purex Baby detergent. Enter below:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Giveaway is open to US Residents only and will end on January 19, 2013. Three winners will be chosen at random and will be contacted via email. Momfiles is not responsible for any lost or stolen prizes. Good luck!

I received products samples for review purposes and was supplied with FREE product coupons to give away. All thoughts/opinions are always my own.
Shelly, Mom Files

Jan 3, 2013

Coca-Cola's "Pay it Forward" for 2013 { Giveaway} #spon


Do you know anyone between the ages of 16-21 that is doing amazing things? Maybe they are high achievers in school, doing community service work or trying to start their own business. I know plenty of youth (including my own teenage daughters) doing positive things that I would love to see receive a great reward. I think about the amazing job my oldest daughter did as the chair of a service project she participated in for her school called H.O.P.E. 365. The organization collects food items, coats, money, hygiene items and even donation of blood to give back to the local community.  She spent numerous hours planning, organizing, standing outside in the cold collecting food donations and all of the countless things that went into making it a success.
Here she is with a portion of the food items that were collected. It was over 20,000! 

Right now, Coca-Cola is kicking off 2013 with its second annual Coca-Cola “Pay It Forward” program through My Coke Rewards.  Coca-Cola’s “Pay It Forward” program celebrates and acknowledges the richness of African American heritage and helps parents, relatives, mentors, friends and the community support aspiring young people achieve their dreams by nominating them for unique and exciting apprenticeship experiences. 



Four lucky nominees will be rewarded with the unique and exciting opportunity for an apprenticeship experience with one of the country’s most respected celebrity history makers:  business mogul Magic Johnson; chairman and CEO of BET Networks, Debra Lee; or hip hop artist and philanthropist, Common. I think all three of them are the perfect mentors! 

Parents, relatives, friends and mentors can nominate aspiring youth between the ages of 16-21, now through March 2nd for a chance to win the apprentice experience. You can nominate up to five young people (the young person can also nominate himself/herself) and be entered for a chance to win a $5,000 sweepstakes with each nomination!

I actually nominated my oldest daughter and it took me about 3 minutes to complete. You must sign in with your My Coke Rewards account to start. If you don't have a My Coke Rewards account, you can sign up for one very easily. Once you are logged in, click the "nominate now" button. The first screen asks for the youth's name and email address. Next, you pick the first and second choice for which apprenticeship you think is best for that youth. Last, you answer 3 questions about why you chose the person you are nominating. Each question allows only 50 characters so it goes quickly. It's that easy! At the end of your submission you will receive a confirmation email. So who do you think you would nominate for this amazing opportunity? 

I am thrilled to be able to offer a fantastic prize pack valued at $120 (provided by Coca-Cola) for one lucky Momfiles reader to win! The prize pack will include: 
  •  $100 Amex card to help you and your family “Pay It Forward” in the New Year 
  • Coca-Cola “Pay It Forward” journal
  •  Coca-Cola “Pay It Forward” t-shirt

This giveaway is open to US Residents only and will end on January 18, 2013. One winner will be chosen at random and will be contacted via email. Momfiles is not responsible for any lost or stolen prizes. Good luck! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway The prize was provided by Coca-Cola Company. The Coca-Cola Company is not a sponsor, administrator or connected in any other way with this giveaway. I was compensated for my time to share information about the Pay It Forward campaign.
Shelly, Mom Files

Jan 2, 2013

Easy Shrimp & Grits {Recipe}

I made this yummy shrimp and grits dish for dinner last night and it was so good, I thought I would share my recipe. It was very easy and doesn't require a lot of ingredients or time. This was my first time cooking this particular dish and I honestly didn't know what to put in it. We were in Whole Foods (my new favorite store) and picked up a 2-pound bag of peeled and deveined Key West shrimp. I came up with the rest of the ingredients off the top of my head.
What you need:
1-2 pounds of peeled, deveined shrimp rinsed and dried (I used 2 lbs)
1 lemon (I used organic Meyer)
Your favorite dried seasonings (you can see my usual ones here)
Sriracha hot sauce (optional but recommended)
3-4 tbsp pure butter
1 small chopped onion
couple cloves finely minced garlic
fresh, chopped Italian parsley
chopped roma tomatoes
Your favorite brand of grits cooked the way you like it.

What you do:
I like to get my grits started first since they take longer to cook than the shrimp. I cook mine for a minimum of 20 minutes and add some sea salt and a couple tablespoons of pure butter.

Next step is to season your shrimp with what you like. Avoid salt because some seasonings have enough salt in them already.

Heat a large skillet on high heat and add 2 tbsp of your butter. Add your chopped onion and saute for a couple minutes. Now add your shrimp and garlic and cook them for a few minutes. Squeeze in a little sriracha to taste and some lemon juice. Now add the rest of your butter (this helps make a sauce). Last, toss in your Italian parsley and chopped roma tomatoes. Take your shrimp off the stove so your tomatoes don't cook. Serve your shrimp over the grits and enjoy!

This meal took me about 25 minutes to make and my family LOVED it. It cost us about $20 for our family of 5. Not bad considering what a restaurant would charge for this! I think next time I will add some fancy cheese to the grits and maybe even some fresh chopped chives or scallions at the end of cooking.

Let me know if you try this recipe!
Shelly, Mom Files
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