Family * Travel * Food

SOL REPUBLIC Music Made Me Do It- The Ultimate Giveaway #MMMDI

If there is any one thing that I can think of that just about every person has in common, it has to be MUSIC. No matter what genre, artist or group, we all have songs that have have special meaning or keep us going when we need a boost. I can recall so many instances where music took over me and helped me though situations tough situations or motivated me to be the best.

I remember being a very young adult and living with a room mate. I would go to the night clubs with friends and I was known as the more shy and reserved one. The minute I would hear the bass pumping out of the speakers, it's as if something would take over me and I would be ready to hit the dance floor. While everyone else was drinking alcohol to have a good time, I was getting lost in the music. It was all I needed to truly enjoy myself. When the DJ would play "my jam", we would all run out to the middle of the dance floor and dance into the wee hours of the night. Fast forward to being a 40-something mom of 3-- music still plays a big part in my life. I have a lot of responsibility and motivation doesn't always come easy. I sometimes have big events coming up where I am in charge of organizing most of the details. I get so flustered and stressed to where I don't know where to start. I slip on my SOL REPUBLIC headphones, choose one of my favorite tunes and turn the volume up. After a few songs, I'm ready to take on those mentally draining tasks. Another time where music saves me and also encourages me is when I am working out. As long as my favorite tunes are in my ears, I push myself harder. Music makes me do it!

Right now SOL REPUBLIC is having a Music Makes Me Do It contest where they want to see you Tweet, Instagram, Facebook, Youtube-- share on social media what music makes YOU do. It can be a picture or a video, or just text-- it's up to you! All you have to do is use the hashtag #MMMDI Check out the video below...

Guess what? The amazing folks at SOL REPUBLIC are providing the ultimate prize pack for one VERY lucky Mom Files reader to win.

The prize pack will include:
1 SOL REPUBLIC Deck speaker
1 SOL REPUBLIC Punk speaker
1 SOL REPUBLIC Tracks on-ear headphone
1 SOL REPUBLIC Relays in- ear headphone
1 SOL REPUBLIC Master Tracks over-ear headphone
1 Tracks HD on-ear headphone
1 Jax in-ear headphone
This is an over $700 value! In order to qualify to win this prize, you must share a public link to your social media post and include the hashtag #MMMDI. Failure to complete the mandatory entry will disqualify you from this giveaway and extra entry options will not count. Enter below:
a Rafflecopter giveaway
This giveaway is open to Canada and US Residents only and will end on November 27, 2014. One winner will be picked at random and mandatory entry will be verified. Winner will be emailed for mailing information. Mom Files is NOT responsible for prize fulfillment or for any lost, stolen or damaged prizes.

I was not compensated for this post. I am simply sharing a promotion offered by SOL REPUBLIC because I think it would interest my readers. Prize is provided by SOL REPUBLIC. 

Healthier Snacking with Nonni's #THINaddictives - Review & Giveaway

I received products samples in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own as always. 
I'm a natural born snackaholic. I crave snacks throughout the day and always like to find something different to try. I have been a huge fan of Nonni's Biscotti for many years. I was excited about their latest product-- THINaddictives. The name was very fitting for this amazing snack. 
I received a couple boxes of THINaddictives in two varieties-- Banana Dark Chocolate and Blueberry Oat. They are jam packed with almonds and have the most crunchy texture, with a lightly sweet taste. The added blueberries, banana and dark chocolate really stand out in these almond thins. They are great with coffee or tea in the morning and can be taken on-the-go for a quick, satisfying snack you can feel good about eating. 
The new flavors maintain the product’s tradition of being made with real, wholesome ingredients, like California almonds and fruit baked into every bite. Created for those seeking a healthy indulgence, THINaddictives are:

·         Low in sugar (5 grams or less per serving)

·         Low in carbohydrates (14 grams or less per serving)

·         Low calorie (100 calories per serving)

·         Available in five delicious flavors, including Cranberry, Cinnamon Raisin, Pistachio, NEW Banana Dark Chocolate and NEW Blueberry Oat.
Nonni’s THINaddictives will host a Facebook giveaway to honor the new flavors May 19-June 1. Fans can choose whether they are “Team Banana” or “Team Blueberry” to entered for a chance to win free THINaddictives!

Be sure to connect with Nonni's THINaddictives for products updates and promotions on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.

Would you like to try some THINaddictives for yourself? Five Mom Files readers will each win 2 coupons good for a FREE box of THINaddictives. Enter below:
a Rafflecopter giveaway
This giveaway is open to US Residents only and will end on May 24, 2014. Please follow giveaway rules in Rafflecopter widget. Five winners will be chosen at random and will be contacted via email. Mom Files is not responsible for any lost or stolen prizes. Good luck!

Being fake can get you more likes. Say what?

Today I checked the mailbox like usual and the only thing that came was the latest copy of Seventeen magazine. I subscribe to it for my daughters because I had to use up some My Coke Reward points and figured they may like it. I know growing up, I adored Seventeen magazine along with other teen-geared publications. I mean, what girl wouldn't want to look at the latest fashion trends, make-up tips and cute boys? I glanced at the top of the magazine and it caught my eye. It read, "Pretty Selfie Secrets, Beauty tips that will get you "likes". 
I was really bothered by that. Why do you need selfie secrets and why does it matter how many "likes" you get? If you are a teenager, chances are that "likes" equal popularity. I just had to see what Seventeen magazine was selling our teenage girls. I saw the "Fake perfect skin" part. It gave advice on what products to use on your face to make yourself appear to have perfect skin. What on earth? Why would anybody want to give the illusion that they have perfect skin when people that know you in real life know about any imperfections you may have? The article gives more tips about make-up tricks to make you look selfie ready. 
I really thought it was sad. It tells girls that they can't be pretty as is or with minimal make-up. It sells the idea that making yourself look flawless will make people like you more (get likes). I immediately discussed this with my daughters and they were both disturbed by it all. I do my best as a mother to set a good example to my girls about being loving yourself including your flaws. Also, too many selfies make you look like a narcissist. You have to really feel badly inside if you slather on a ton of make-up and post photos of yourself fishing for media likes. And we wonder why our girls have such low self-esteem. SMH. I just had to share this.

10 Trends that need to be left in 2013

There are so many things that have been abused in 2013 that I really think should stay in 2013.

  1. Wearing leggings as pants. I won't go into details with this one. I'm over it. 
  2. Inserting the word "really" too many times in conversation. It is the most overused word of 2013. PLEASE stop it. 
  3. Women and teenage girls and their 1,238,749,739 selfies All. Day. Long. We know what you look like. Obviously you love yourself. Narcissistic much?  
  4. The mustache trend started a few years ago and I would love to see it go away for good. 
  5. Over-sharing on social media. When you have to post the events of your life from the moment you wake up until you go to sleep, you have a problem! 
  6. Duck lips. I know it's nothing new. 
  7. Re-posting videos that exploit children. I don't need to see any toddler in a diaper nasty dancing. It's not cute! 
  8. The phrase "turn up" can die.
  9. Bitstrips. It was so cute for the first week. Very cute. Then all the people of the world jumped on the Bitstrips bandwagon. 
  10. Instagram followers that sell "skinny wraps". No thank you. *block*
Please add anything you want to see gone before we head into 2014. 


Anytime is #ThomasTime Facebook App and King of the Railway Prize pack Giveaway #spon

CLOSED- Winner is Vanessa Toscano. Congratulations! 
HIT Entertainment has asked me to help promote the “Anytime is Thomas Time” sweepstakes. All opinions expressed in the post are my own and not those of HIT Entertainment.

I can recall the days of William being 2 years old and his love for Thomas and Friends. He loved watching the DVDs we received as a gift when he was a baby. I think it was then that William became a big fan of all things that go! I will never forget when he was getting his first haircut by his dad. He wore his vintage Thomas t-shirt. Isn't this the cutest thing ever?! I still have that shirt tucked away in a box of keepsakes. 
As he got older, he got into the toys and books. To this day, he still enjoys his "Right on track" board book that has a magnet board on top. It is designed for drawing on according to each page of the book. William likes to take it in the car when we travel. 

He owns a couple of the toy trains and loves to make them roll fast across the kitchen and dining room floor. Our next door neighbor purchased the big Thomas and Friends train table and William loves to go over and play. It's fun, even for older kids! 
Right now, you can go to the new "Anytime is #ThomasTime" app on Facebook. Parents are encouraged to upload photos of their children during “Thomas Time” moments on the Thomas & Friends Facebook page ( There will be daily prizes as well as one grand prize. For generations children have grown with Thomas & Friends, experiencing moments with Thomas in many ways, including:

Bedtime/Nap time (Thomas pillows, blankets)
Playtime (can encompass toys, trains, etc.)
Meal time (Thomas cups, plates, etc.)
TV Time/Movie Time
Learning Time (Thomas books, puzzles, etc.)
Summertime (Thomas beach towels, bathing suits, etc.)
Party Time (Thomas birthday parties)
Story Time (Thomas books, E-books, apps)
Family Time (Day Out With Thomas)

Giveaway: One Mom Files reader will win a "King of the Railway" prize pack including:
Thomas & Friends King of the Railway DVD
Thomas & Friends King of the Railway Book
TrackMaster Set
Thomas & Friends Backpack

Enter below...
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Giveaway is open to US Residents only. Giveaway ends on September 13, 2013 and one winner will be selected at random and contacted via email to claim prize. Be sure to follow contest rules stated in Rafflecopter widget. Mom Files is not responsible for any lost or stolen prizes. Good luck!

Disclosure: I am receiving a prize pack to thank me for helping to promote the Anytime is Thomas Time app. 

A brand new look for Momfiles

I am so excited that after so many years, Momfiles finally got a fresh, new look! I really wanted something very simple with a tiny pop of color. I am so happy with it. A big thanks to Kreated by Kelsey for hooking me up with the new look. She's awesome!

So what do you all think of it? I still have some things to clean up so ignore the obvious broken bits.


Are people really who you THINK they are?

The husband and I were having an intense conversation this morning about our online circle of friends. Every day we log into our Facebook accounts and read the good, the bad and the ugly that goes on day-to-day of our "friends". Dwayne was saying how people assume so much off of posts that they fail to realize what is really real. For example he was saying how you might have a person living a certain lifestyle through social media and in reality this person might be going through a domestic violence situation. This is very true. We don't necessarily reveal the whole truth about ourselves online. Dwayne and I constantly go back and fourth about online interaction and how real-life interaction is dwindling. Then on the other hand, if you are not involved in social media you will get left behind. For me, I get so much from my online friends. I have learned so much that has helped me in my life and I love to share my views with others. If I can encourage just one person in some way then I feel I am using social media for good. I have made some amazing connections as well as some creepy ones. I do learn from both sides in different ways every day. It's funny that I do have local, personal people in my life that it seems to be a greater struggle to get together more than my online contacts. Interesting....

Shelly, Mom Files

Do people take your blogging for a joke?

A lot of times when I tell people I am related to or those I know very well that I am a blogger, they say they don't have time for the computer like I do. They brush off what I do as if it is strictly a hobby and act as if I must not have anything better to do with my time. I hear things like "I don't know how people can stay on Facebook all day" or "I don't have time to look at blogs and don't know how stuff like that even works". Well I have been doing this now for years and at first it was more of a personal journal/social thing. It has blossomed over time and I now have PR firms I work with that provide me with products to review, host giveaways and sometimes even pay me to write. Blogging has become a part-time business for me. It has allowed me the opportunity to contribute to my household no matter how small it is. I don't want to sit on a computer all day long. I don't want to Tweet or Facebook all day long. I do it throughout the day in between taking care of my homemaker/SAHM duties. I do it because it helps my family. I never set out to become a "Mommy Blogger". It just happened one day. It is a lot of work to put out good posts and reviews. Some are easier than others. I really wish I would get the respect I deserve for my contributions as a mom blogger.  After all, don't moms know best anyway?
Shelly, Mom Files

My 1,000th post!

Wow, I can't believe that I am writing my 1,000th post. I had to look a couple extra times to make sure that was the correct number! So now what? I don't even know what to say. I have connected with so many amazing and interesting people over the last 4 1/2 years. I have made so many friends that have become very near and dear to me. I never would have imagined that you could make friends with complete strangers in other parts of the country. I have learned so much along the way and have grown as a person. I really can say that my life have changed for the better through blogging. There have been many opportunities and perks but the personal interaction has been most valuable to me. It astonishes me how very small the world can be through the blogosphere. I want to thank everyone who takes the time to read Momfiles, comment, email, Tweet, Facebook....simply just staying connected with me. It has been such fun and I plan to hang around for a while. Much love to you all!
Shelly, Mom Files

Are you "in" Google+ ?

Seriously, don't we have enough to keep up with and now there is Google+? I am "in" and honestly I don't see what all the hoopla is about. I don't even know how to use the darn thing and it seems like it's way over the top. I like simplicity. Some people have said it is like Facebook and Twitter in one place. I think I am more partial to Facebook by itself as well as Twitter by itself. Maybe I'm just too old school to appreciate all this social networking technology. I am trying to figure how the heck you delete it!

What about you? Are you a part of Google+? Do you like it? Am I missing something? Please share..

Shelly, Mom Files

Delete Delete DELETE!

I have been in a serious cleaning mood lately. This includes my online life. Both Dwayne and I came to the realization of just how much time social networking takes up in our lives. So many important things would get pushed aside so we could be more 'social'. Well enough is enough. We both deleted our Facebook and Twitter apps from our phones. Dwayne got rid of his Facebook account and I was about to get rid of mine. The only reason I did not was due to some groups I am a part of that are pretty important to me. I am getting ready to close off my wall and disable comments. I thought I was going to miss it and although it has just been less than a week, our lives have improved so much. I have lost interest in so much of the crap that people put out there for the world to see as well as all the complaining and whining. We really think Facebook is a bad thing when it is not used in the right way. Dwayne and I are planning get-togethers with REAL people more often. Now that is what I call being social! I will continue to post on my Momfiles page. I am enjoying living in real life :)
Shelly, Mom Files


I have not been writing much. I have not had a whole lot to say. I have felt like savoring moments with my kids who are growing up way too fast. I am realizing more and more each day that my kids will need me less. I was on the computer several weeks back and William was nagging me to do something (I can't remember what it was exactly). I told him to give me a moment that I was working. A week later he sees me on the computer while I was on Facebook. He asked in that sweet baby voice "Hey Bawbi, you working?" It was that moment that I realized I was spending too much time on the daggone computer. And not just the computer, the smart phone too. Facebook, Twitter, email and text at my fingertips. I felt so much guilt and have vowed to do a whole lot less of that nonsense. After all, why do I need to know who "checked in" where and how many people hate the weather, the world, is in a relationship but it's complicated, etc... All of that does nothing for me and yet I got sucked into it. I have not been posting much on the blog because I have been living life physically. Some days I wonder if I even want to keep the blog. I have noticed so many other bloggers feeling the same way lately. Oh well, I guess I'll just go with the flow and see what happens from here....
Shelly, Mom Files

If you are on Facebook....

I wanted to share some information --Energizer is donating $1 to Susan G. Komen for a Cure for every new “like” on the Energizer Bunny Facebook page (up to $15,000). That’s right. All you have to do is “Like” the Energizer Bunny! So please, if you are a Facebook account holder won't you help out a great cause that costs you nothing but a key stroke?

Shelly, Mom Files

WTH? Wednesday

So many things make me say WTH?! First up...Why in life do people think it is okay to call married folks (with kids) house after 10 pm? It is so freakin' inconsiderate and rude. I hate that. Another thing that makes me say WTH is when your "friends" on Facebook go through your friends list and request to be friends with your friends. Childish and stupid. Can you say "Remove from friends"? Another WTH is when newbie bloggers steal from seasoned bloggers. It is tacky and tasteless so stop it. Be original and find your own way. I also don't understand how people steal your little catch-phrases and make it theirs. Once again, be original. Can you tell I'm annoyed? Got anything that has you saying WTH?? Share it in the comments!
Shelly, Mom Files

Some great guidelines for Facebook

For a lot of us who are frequent "Facebookers" I have taken the time to compile a list of no-no's for Facebook.

* It is not nice to go through other people’s friends list and add them without knowing them. If you are just trying to have a lot of friends, this is not a good way.
* If you invite someone to join your network, site, mafias, farms, etc. or any other interest and they have not responded, this is a good sign they are NOT interested. Frequent invites are annoying and need to stop.
* If you send too many virtual gifts to others, you might get blocked from their stream.
* It is not cool to use a fake name or picture. It can hinder you from people you actually know from adding you.If you go as Mike "Keepin'itPimpin" Johnson and you have a profile pic of Lil Wayne, chances are you will NOT get added.
* Cursing on your status or on someone’s wall. In my book that is almost instant deletion. Keep it clean, you never know who can see it. I have a teenager on FB so I respect her.
* If someone removes you as a friends leave it alone. They had their reasons so don’t be childish sending daily requests and messages asking why you deleted them.
* If you keep your wall closed and do not allow comments on any of your photos, status or notes then why are you on FB is the first place??
* Do not friend strangers just to pitch your business to them. Collecting email addresses from your “friends” is just wrong. I do not want to buy your organic juice, host a party or purchase panties that will make me melt away my fat. Thanks, but no thanks!!
* If you have an issue with someone or have something personal to discuss DO NOT post it on their public wall. Inbox them. There are some things that should never be publicized.
* It might be a good idea to not tag someone in a photo that could cause humiliation or problems for them. I have seen people in provocative photos posted by others. While on the subject of photos, you might want to be careful what you post. Jobs are looking at FB and a lot of people have been terminated over FB. It’s not that important people!

Please, if you have anything to add by all means we want to hear it!!

Shelly, Mom Files

You are a freakin adult!!!

If you have a Facebook account you might notice a trend in grown folks behavior. Some ppl Lyke 2 tYPe liKe dis nd SpElL LykE dis. If you are a teenager then I will give you a little bit of a pass. Now when you are a parent of teenagers then you just have a problem. If you take so much time to purposely misspell words and think you are cool, you thought WRONG. I have asked my teenagers what they think about adults doing it and they thought it was tacky and very uncool. They even think it's stupid for their own friends to do it. The older one told me if I ever did that on Facebook she would delete me from her friends list! Let me not get started on some of the very risque photos that are being posted. I see this with people that have their own kids on their friend's list. Hmm, don't go into politics ;)

My point to this post is that your children watch you and tend to follow in your foot steps (bad or good). Don't you find it your responsibility to be a good role model? There comes a time that we all have to grow up already! Not saying you need to break out the walking cane and Geritol just act your age.

Getting things together

This is going to be one of those very random posts so here I go... First of all I have made a decision to deactivate my Facebook account for at least a week. Most people are in shock and wonder why. It's simply for me to take a little more time to focus on everyday tasks as well as work on some things that I have neglected. I am assisting Dwayne with his business and I need to get a good sense of organization and planning. My office is in shambles so obviously I need to get cracking on that ASAP.

My toddler son is curious and very fast. I can't take my eye off of him for even a minute. He found a glass that way left out that contained a little bit of leftover adult beverage and thankfully it spilled before he could take a sip. That was a bit of an eye opener that once again organization is needed.

With Christmas on it's way I have all these lavish plans to bake bake bake. I plan to do just that. I had to come up with a good teacher gift idea for over 12 teachers that would not break the bank account. I decided on making some mini lemon pound cakes and presenting them nicely wrapped in cellophane and fancy tissue paper. I might even go the extra step of printing out homemade gift tags with the recipe attached. I will post photos once I complete them so you can see how they turned out. I might just post the recipe as well.

The biggest thing I want to do is take time daily to stop and smell the roses. Life is not as complicated as we make it. Simple is good :)

Social Networking and teens

It's many of us are on these networks. I am on so many I have lost count. Social Networking is a growing trend and even kids and teenagers are a part of it. Dwayne and I let our daughters each get a FaceBook account to keep in touch with friends and family. It's been really good especially for our older daughter since she started high school and most of her friends attend different schools. I wish we had these types of services in my school days! Now all of this comes with a list of rules. We approve all photos before they are uploaded. I have seen some photos that teens post and it is appalling! Friends can only tag photos we approve of. No IMing. You must ask permission to go on and you have a set time. They have ONE time to mess up and poof! It's deleted. Not on hold or you can't use it for 2 weeks. DE-LETED.

So far they have been following the rules and have had no problems. Some people may think we are a bit overboard and really we don't care. We want our children to be a part of all the technology we have but it comes with limits and we care about their safety.

How about you allow your kids to partake in any social networking? Do you have any special rules or guidelines you want to share?

Are you on FB?

Sheliza Ismail's Facebook profile

Are you on Facebook? Well if you aren't, I encourage you to join! I know some of you think that something like Facebook is for losers but really you would be amazed what a great tool it can be. You can keep in touch with family, friends, blog pals, Twitter contacts and people you haven't thought of in 100 years! I really like the fact that you don't necessarily have to 'speak' to anyone. You can check in on them and see what is new without having the obligation of physical interaction. You can view your friends' photos, videos, notes and more. I have been able to link up with a lot of people from blogland and even those that thought they would never join (you know who you are!) Feel free to add us to your friends list. Those of you that are addicted to FB need to join a support group lol! Trust me, you can get addicted and I am no loser!

Dwayne Ismail's Facebook profile

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