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Feb 27, 2013

I love to iron and that makes ME crazy?

I have been seeing a lot of talk lately on Facebook and Twitter about ironing your clothes. I find is astonishing that a great majority of people don't even own an iron. Some said that they have one, but would have no idea of where to find it. There were a few, very few that religiously iron. I enjoy ironing. Each and every morning, I iron my husband's work clothes (even on jeans day). I can't wrap my mind around the thought of my husband going into work in a wrinkled shirt or trousers. I feel like it is a reflection on the type of housewife that I am. It's my job. Call me old-fashioned, because I am... and rather proud of it too. It's funny that others think I am the crazy one because I do iron! I am thinking they are the crazy ones for walking around with wrinkled clothing on.

About a month ago, my beloved purple Shark professional iron died on me. I was devastated. I only had it for a little over a year and it quit on me. I really didn't want to get a new iron because the one I had was everything I wanted in an iron. I knew I had to get a new one right away because I could not find my back-up iron. Hey, doesn't everyone have a back-up iron? *winks*
I went to Walmart which is where I got the last one and they were completely sold out of the one I wanted. I had to get an iron right away because... because I just had to! I went with a Hamilton Beach which I grunted and groaned about. I did not want that brand but the alternative was going to several other stores and that was not what I felt like doing. It cost me about $30 and you know what? It actually works quite well. I loved my 1600 watt iron and this one is 1500 watt. I don't really see any major difference except the last iron had a larger soleplate.  It has a super long cord and great steam action. It also has the auto shutoff feature if the unit is left on for 15 minutes unattended. It was a great purchase. I really hope it will last me at least a year. I might consider purchasing a second one as a back-up since it was so inexpensive.

Another item I bought was the Faultless Maxx starch in the spray bottle. I usually get the one in the can and I am now trying to figure out why I have been doing that all these years. The Faultless Maxx is awesome and does not spray unevenly like the aerosol cans do. It also has a nice, light fragrance and leaves a crisp finish. I am so happy with my purchases and always looking for ways to make my homemaking more pleasurable. If you are looking to buy a good iron at a decent price, I recommend the Hamilton Beach Professional Iron with the stainless steel plate as well as the Faultless Maxx starch.

P.S.- YOU better not be laughing at me! :)

This is not a sponsored post and I purchased the above items myself. I just wanted to share my thoughts since I loved the items so much.
Shelly, Mom Files

Feb 25, 2013

See how Smooth Fitness is saving my family money! #SmoothBlogger

My family is on a very strict budget. If we don't have the extra cash for things, we just don't buy them. We have been members at our local health club for a few years on were on a special that was offered for a limited time. Of course, that limited time ended and the new price would have skyrocketed to $90 a month! With super high gas and food prices, we need an extra $90 each month. Also, with the kids' and husband's busy schedules, the gym membership was not being used like it should. We were throwing our money away because nobody had the time to go. 

Our Smooth Fitness treadmill came in right on time! We received it last week and  we were all eager to test it out.  My first impression when I saw it being hauled in by the delivery guys was, "WOW!" It was a lot bigger than what I was expecting.
My husband and I have been looking at treadmills for a while and most of what we have seen in the local stores were on the cheap side. They looked like even I could break it because of how lightweight they were. Our Smooth 5.65 Treadmill looks and feels like what you would see in a gym. We love that it can handle up to 300 pounds. It was important for us to have a high-quality machine since there will be 4 of us using it on a daily basis. Each family member has their own set of goals they want to achieve. Right now we are all in the process of starting off slowly to get our bodies conditioned for the goals we have planned for ourselves.
I love the very simple, user-friendly display. My husband experimented with one of the pre-programmed routines on the treadmill and he had to surrender after 15 minutes! He realized he needs to work up to that stage. His biggest goal is both weight loss and cardio strengthening. I plan to purchase a new bathroom scale so we can track his weight each week. Having this treadmill in our home is going to help him so much since work, college classes, being a dad and a husband often gets in the way of getting proper exercise. I want to see my husband around for a very long time! I will say this, so far one of the great side-effects of working out for my husband has been better sleep. He struggles with falling asleep at night and after only 3 days, he has been crashing hard! Of course we all know that the sleep is so important to be able to function properly each day.

Please come back in a couple weeks when I discuss through video, more about how the Smooth Fitness treadmill works. If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to leave a comment or shoot me an email.

Stay connected with Smooth fitness on the web, Facebook and Twitter.

I am participating in a campaign as a Smooth Fitness Ambassador and will be reviewing a treadmill from Smooth Fitness in exchange for my honest review. All thoughts/opinions expressed are always my own.
Shelly, Mom Files

Feb 22, 2013

Soft Scrub Total All Purpose Bath & Kitchen Cleanser Review & Giveaway (3 winners)

If you have been a long time reader, you should know by now that I love to clean! One part of me still relies on the old school favorites like Soft Scrub. While this product has been around for quite some time, there have been some recent improvements that make it even better. NEW Soft Scrub Total All Purpose Bath & Kitchen Cleanser has:
  • All-new bottle design
  • New cap for improved dispensing
  • Improved formula with superior cleaning power
I really do love the bottle design and the ease of dispensing. You can beat a cleanser that can be used all over the house and it is tough on stains, yet gentle to surfaces. The new formula has a lot less residue and makes for easier rinsing. I really love the subtle lemon scent as well. I have used Soft Scrub to clean my stainless steel pots and pans and they are left sparkling! I love the nifty surface guide on the Soft Scrub website that helps you find the right product for all types of surfaces.

Be sure to "like" Soft Scrub on Facebook for product information and tips.

Would you like to try the new Soft Scrub Total All Purpose Bath & Kitchen Cleanser? Three lucky Momfiles readers will win a coupon good for one FREE bottle of Soft Scrub (any variety, up to $3.49)
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Giveaway is open to US Residents only and will end on March 2, 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!

Soft Scrub provided a free sample of their Soft Scrub Total All Purpose Bath & Kitchen Cleanser for this post. My participation is voluntary and my opinions, as always, are my own. 

Shelly, Mom Files

Feb 13, 2013

Spend President's Day Weekend at Myrtle Beach with the "Presidential Perks Package"

Just in time for President's Day Weekend: Myrtle Beach Seaside Resorts announces its "Presidential Perks Package" featuring two nights in an oceanfront condo on the world-famous Grand Strand at unprecedented rates.  Now is the perfect time to take advantage of a warm-weather beach vacation and enjoy an extended holiday weekend. Just looking at the photo below makes we want to go!

Myrtle Beach Seaside Resorts Announces ‘Presidential Perks Package’

Offer Includes Two Nights of Discounted Oceanfront Accommodations
Over President’s Weekend

(NORTH MYRTLE BEACH, S.C.) – Myrtle Beach Seaside Resorts (MBSR) – operator of the area’s premier oceanfront condo-hotel and vacation rental properties – announces the “Presidential Perks Package” featuring oceanfront accommodations and daily breakfast over the extended President’s Day Weekend starting at $172.

The package includes two nights in a one bedroom oceanview condo at Avista, Grande Shores, Horizon at 77th, Prince Resort or Seaside, daily breakfast and a box of the President’s favorite locally made salted caramels.

“The upcoming long holiday weekend is the ideal time for families, couples or girlfriends to take a winter break and enjoy the Grand Strand’s world-famous beaches and area attractions,” says Helen Staton, Director of Reservations for MBSR.

The offer is valid for stays booked February 13-18 and coincides with the Myrtle Beach Marathon and the 12th Annual Kidz Time Festival.

All lodging options provide easy access to dining, shopping, sugar sand beaches and other area attractions on the world-famous Grand Strand. The “Presidential Perks Package” is the perfect opportunity to take advantage of a warm weather winter beach getaway.

Rates are based on double occupancy for a two night stay. Includes taxes, resort and processing fees.

For additional information and reservations: Myrtle Beach Seaside Resorts, (888) 571.4104

About Myrtle Beach Seaside Resorts:

Myrtle Beach Seaside Resorts is a collection of six oceanfront and ocean view condo-hotels in North Myrtle Beach and Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Avista Resort, Prince Resort, Horizon at 77th, Grande Shores, Seaside and the Towers at North Myrtle Beach all provide the comforts of full-service resort hotels with the space and luxury of condominiums.

Each property features modern d├ęcor that reflects a coastal lifestyle and breathtaking views of the pristine northern region of the world-famous Grand Strand. Elegant yet affordable, units are spacious one to three bedrooms with fully-equipped kitchens, washer / dryer, and private balconies. All hotels have fitness centers, an array of indoor and outdoor pools, on-site dining and access to world-class beaches.

For additional information: Myrtle Beach Seaside Resorts, (888) 571.4104

Shelly, Mom Files

Post Honey Bunches of Oats Tropical Blends Review & Giveaway

For many years, I have been a big fan of Honey Bunches of Oats cereal. I have tried just about every variety except the newest addition, Tropical Blends Mango Coconut. This flavor has real coconut and mango flavored flakes combined into those signature "bunches" as well as real coconut shavings and the classic flakes that make Honey Bunches of Oats oh so yummy. I really do love anything with coconut or tropical fruit for that matter. The mango flavor was okay but I was not overly thrilled about it.  The cereal overall is still delicious and exactly what I would expect from this brand. I really like how much coconut was in it. Honestly, I would have loved to see it in a pineapple coconut flavor or just coconut alone.

I feel good feeding my family any cereal from the Honey Bunches of Oats family. It has a lot less sugar a lot of other cereals without sacrificing taste.

Honey Bunches of Oats Fruit Blends - Mango Coconut has:

  • Four nutritious grains: rice, wheat, oats and corn
  • Heart healthy** (0g trans fat, 0g saturated fat, 0mg cholesterol per serving)
  • 10g of whole grain per serving†
  • 9 essential vitamins and minerals
**Diets low in saturated fat and cholesterol, and as low as possible in trans fat, may reduce the risk of heart disease.

†Nutritionists recommend eating 3 or more servings of whole grain foods per day. (About 16g whole grains per serving or at least 48g per day.)

Find out more about Honey Bunches of Oats on their Facebook page and follow them on Twitter @HBOats 

Would you like to try the new Tropical Blends Mango Coconut? Three lucky Momfiles readers will win a coupon good for one FREE box of Honey Bunches of Oats (any variety, up to $4.49)a Rafflecopter giveaway

Giveaway is open to US Residents only and will end on February 23, 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!

Post provided a free sample of their Honey Bunches of Oats Tropical Blends for this post. My participation is voluntary and my opinions, as always, are my own. 

Shelly, Mom Files

Feb 11, 2013

Easy mid-week meal | Sausage Gumbo Recipe

As a busy mom, I do what I can to take the occasional shortcut at mealtime to help give myself a break. I cook dinner 5-6 times a week and sometimes I want to go with something quick. One of my go-to meals is a simple Sausage Gumbo. I have made traditional gumbo before and it took 2 hours! With this recipe, you don't need a lot of ingredients and the entire meal takes under 30 minutes to cook from start to finish.
All you need is:
1 package sausage of your choice
1& 1/2 cans of stewed tomatoes
1/2 bag of frozen sweet corn
1 bag of frozen cut okra
1/2 bag of frozen onion and pepper blend or you can use fresh if you want (frozen cuts out chopping time)
Sugar (optional)
Sriracha (optional)
Dried seasonings of your choice. I use my usual ones.
Rice of your choice (I use Jasmine)

I start off by putting my rice on to cook. Usually by the time it is done, the rest of the meal will be close to being finished. Next, I slice the sausage in circles and toss them in a heated pan with just a touch of oil. Brown the sausage to your liking and add in stewed tomatoes, okra, corn, onion and pepper mix and about 1/4 cup of ketchup. I add some dried seasonings at this point but avoid too much salt. I add a pinch or two of sugar and a few squirts of sriracha to balance it out. Now add some water. The amount will depend on how soupy you want your sauce. Usually around 3/4 cup works. Now you just simmer on medium heat until the okra gets tender. Taste for any additional seasonings and you are done! You can even add shrimp or chicken if you want to.

I like to bake some corn muffins sometimes and eat the gumbo as a soup without the rice. It's light yet filling and the family loves it.
Shelly, Mom Files

Feb 5, 2013

Old Orchard Juices and Teas Review & Coupon Giveaway {5 winners}

Are you looking for ways to save on giving your family juice and drinks and not sacrifice quality and taste? Old Orchard frozen juice and tea concentrates might be the answer you are looking for.
Old Orchard offers many flavors to choose from including Southern Style Sweet Tea, Classics like Grape, Apple, Pineapple and Orange, as well as a variety of juice blends. I found the Old Orchard frozen concentrates at my local Walmart. There were so many to choose from! I picked out the Sweet Tea and the 100% Juice in Pineapple Orange. I really love the convenience of having a frozen concentrate for those times that we run out of drinks. The plastic containers can be microwaved if you are in a rush and recycled. Of course you can't go wrong with having less packaging. I plan to save the containers to use as seed starter pots for my Spring planting.

I mixed up the Pineapple Orange juice as directed on the container and enjoyed a glass of it with my breakfast this morning. For those calorie conscious folks, each serving of Old Orchard drinks have only 90 calories. Not bad at all! The taste? Absolutely delicious. I will have to keep a half dozen of assorted flavors in my freezer at all times. To find a store near you that carries Old Orchard frozen juice, go here. Stay connected with Old Orchard on Facebook and Twitter.

I have a set of 4 coupons for any variety of teas or juices for 5 Momfiles readers to win. Enter below:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Giveaway is open to US Residents only and will end on February 14, 2013. Five winners will be chosen at random and will be contacted via email. Momfiles is not responsible for any lost or stolen prizes. Good luck!

Old Orchard provided me with coupons for FREE products in exchange for a product review. All thoughts/opinions expressed here are my own, as always.

Shelly, Mom Files

The pros and cons of making a will online

With the prolific rise of the internet, it is possible to buy practically anything from the comfort of your own home. And it’s not just useful for its ability to allow you to buy a new pair of shoes or a new handbag; the World Wide Web has also paved the way for people to create legal documents online and even make a will.

Creating wills online is a modern phenomenon and being so new many people have concerns and reservations about the validity of creating a will via the internet. If you are thinking of making your will online as opposed to going to a bricks and mortar solicitor, you may want to take a look at the following pros and cons of online wills.

Less expensive
Making a will on the internet is considerably less expensive than having it made out by a professional solicitor. An online company that specialises in creating wills will generally charge a one-off fee for the service which would work out significantly cheaper than having a solicitor create the document as they usually charge by the hour at quite a hefty rate.
Further savings can be made when writing a will online as many companies offer discounts to people who get their friends and family signed up for the service too.

It can take several months for a solicitor to draw up a will for you. Using the internet for the service can significantly reduce that amount of time, and you can even have a documented will and testament in as little as 15 minutes. Whilst this is only a sample will, and may need to be taken to a solicitor’s office to be verified, the bulk of the work will be done saving you time and money.

Less security
One of the main reasons we create a will is for peace of mind. It is important to remember that if a will has been created by somebody who is not deemed mentally capable then it is not legally valid. In this sense it is perhaps safer to personally interact with a professional solicitor to give you that additional peace of mind but many online services offer phone helplines and other services to help bridge this gap.

Shelly, Mom Files

Feb 3, 2013

I'm a Smooth Fitness Ambassador #SmoothBlogger

Hi everyone! I am thrilled to announce that I am an official Smooth Fitness Ambassador. I will be receiving a new treadmill very soon to keep and review. Me and my husband have been talking about getting one for months now so this is perfect timing for us! I am not a big fan of working out in front of other people so the gym membership we had was wasted. This treadmill will be a great asset to our family.  

I will be posting about my family's experiences using our new treadmill over the course of the next four months. Each of us have our own fitness goals. My daughters want to keep their bodies conditioned for the sports season, my husband needs to lose some weight and I need to build up my strength. I turn 40 this year and really need to step my fitness game up. Here is what our folding treadmill will look like... 
I can't wait to share the details of this gorgeous machine and look forward to answering your questions as well. Connect with Smooth fitness on the web, Facebook and Twitter

I am participating in a campaign as a Smooth Fitness Ambassador and will be reviewing a treadmill from Smooth Fitness in exchange for my honest review. All thoughts/opinions expressed are always my own.
Shelly, Mom Files
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