How I Lost 5 lbs in a Week!

How I Lost 5 lbs in a Week  - Keep Moving Forward With Me

It’s no secret that we are working on living healthier. From clean eating to more family fitness, we are doing all we can to move forward and give our family a healthy new start.

This month has been particularly busy with house hunting, a blogging conference coming up this weekend (SNAP! Yay!), and planning for our trip to Disney World next month. When a family member mentioned a book that was working wonders for them and their weight loss, I cheered for them, but left it at that.

A month later, they had reached awesome weight loss goals and I decided I better give this book a second look! The book is The Fast Metabolism Diet: Eat More Food and Lose More Weight.


 

Let’s be honest, I am wary of the word “diet” and having to eat a certain meal plan every day. I know the importance of clean eating and avoiding processed foods, but have such a hard time on a limited diet. I was immediately impressed by the variety of foods you can eat on the plan.

When I started reading The Fast Metabolism Diet, the first thing I loved was that you switch up your meal plan every few days. I get so bored of eating the same thing or same types of things every day so this was perfect for me. I also liked that the plan provides you with easy, tried and true recipes. Every single one we have tried, we have liked! I’ve posted several of the pictures on my Instgram feed and my friends have been drooling over them.

The first week was an adjustment for me – our fridge was OVERFLOWING with fruits and vegetables. But by the end of the week, that produce was completely eaten and my husband and I both had more energy. It was also nice not to have to count calories or be hungry – I still got many of the foods I loved and my body got better fuel to burn off fat. I lost 5 pounds and my husband lost 8! Along with the recommended meal plan, we drank lots of water and did one day of cardio, one day of weight lighting, and one day of stretching/yoga.

For the most part, we stuck with the recipes in the book, but during the second week, my husband came up with one of his own. We added Tropical Oatmeal into our Phase 3 meal rotation.

Phase 3  Tropical Oatmeal

The recipe is simple!

Tropical Oatmeal
Serves 1
1/4 cup steel-cut oats
1/2 cup fresh berries
1/2 cup fresh pineapple
Stevia
Ground Cinnamon

Bring 1 cup coconut milk to a boil on high and add the steel cut outs. Remove from heat and let soak-in for 5-7 minutes. Add the fresh berries, pineapple, stevia, and cinnamon to the top an enjoy! So simple! You can also soak the steel-cut oats overnight and try baking it in the oven – I am going to try that next week!

But back to the Fast Metabolism diet and the yummy recipes in the book!

The Fast Metabolism Diet divides the week into three phases:

PHASE ONE (Monday-Tuesday): Lots of carbs and fruits

Strawberry French Toast - Keep Moving Forward With Me

This is such a yummy phase! The Strawberry French Toast recipe is one of my favorites.

PHASE TWO (Wednesday-Thursday): Lots of proteins and veggies

Phase 2 Stuffed Mushrooms for the Fast Metabolism Diet
Phase two was the trickiest for us with so much protein and veggies, but snacks like this Stuffed Mushroom saved us!

PHASE THREE (Friday-Saturday-Sunday): All of the above, plus healthy fats and oils

Phase 2 Three Egg Salad

This Three Egg Salad was my favorite recipe from Phase 3. So simple to make! You can find all of these recipes in The Fast Metabolism Diet book as well as the Cook Book!

Just a little disclosure, this is not a sponsored post. I bought the book on my own to try and I have loved it! The only affiliate links in this post are the ones from Amazon.com (thanks for supporting me!)

My husband and I are working on a few of our own recipes that work with each of the phases! And I was so happy to see that the author, Haylie Pomeroy, has more recipes online. You can see many of them on my Pinterest boards.

What are your favorite healthy foods to eat?

What are your favorite healthy family activities?

 

Getting ready for healthy summer snacking with Quinoa Chips! #giveaway

Healthy Snacking - Quinoa Chips - Keep Moving Forward With Me There is a new favorite chip in town! My family tried out the Hummus, Lentil, and Pomegranate Chips from Simply 7 for the Super Bowl, but I couldn’t wait to get my hands on the quinoa chips! We are fully converted to the ancient super-grain quinoa so I was uber-excited to see how it tasted in chips.

The Quinoa Chips did not disappoint! They made an appearance at our Sunday family dinner with extended family and disappeared quickly – especially the barbeque chips! Since that night my four-year-old son has begged me to buy more of his favorite chips. Quite a compliment coming from my somewhat selective little eater. He even went so far as to save the bag and give it to me so that I knew what kind to get. That little man, who is now the biggest fan of barbeque quinoa chips, is in the middle of the picture below.

kiddos2

Those three little people are so important to me and as a mom I want to know what what I am giving them is healthy. We definitely love our sweets, too, but I feel so much better knowing what is going into their tummies. What I love about the Simply 7 Quinoa Chips is that they are:

Gluten Free Certified
Non-GMO Project Verified  
No Trans Fat
No Artificial Colors or Flavors
No Preservatives
Vegetarian
Vegan
Kosher

All the fun and crunchiness of chips without the preservatives! Plus I love that they are getting more quinoa into their diet. We are adding these chips to our summer staples for all of our barbeques and family gatherings. The quinoa chips come in all my favorite flavors – barbeque, sea salt, cheddar, and sour cream with onion.

Be sure to check Simply 7 Snacks out at their web-site and social media sites!

Simply 7 

Facebook

Twitter

G+

You can buy on their web-site or in bulk from Amazon.com

Now for the fun part – enter to win Quinoa Chips of your own!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Simply 7 provided me Quinoa Chips to review.

What are your favorite snack foods?

What flavor of quinoa chips would you like to try?

Here’s what some other bloggers think about the chips, too!

LINKY FOR REVIEWS!!!!!

Get-Away Giveaway – 5-Night RV Rental Vacation

 

Vacation Giveaway - Keep Moving Forward With Me

Hosted by Mamas Spot

Are you ready for a vacation? So am I! And what could be better than a FREE five day RV vacation? I traveled in an RV as a child and I LOVED it! I felt like I was riding in luxury as we made our way down to Lake Powell. 

Access RV is giving away a 5 night RV Rental vacation with 800 miles included in one of their current year 31′ double slide out motorhomes!! RV includes TV/DVD with 5.1 surround, GPS navigation, back-up camera, power awning, Serta Pillow-Top mattress (my personal favorite!), air conditioning, unlimited generator use, final cleaning and dumping and much more! Sounds like travel done right!

RV Information - Keep Moving Forward With Me

 

Our lucky winner will have until June 1st 2015 to use this amazing opportunity!

You and your family or friends could be going to Yellowstone, Grand Tetons, The Grand Canyon, or anywhere the adventure takes you! Forget camping – go glamping with all the necessities!

RV Vacation - Keep Moving Forward With Me

Ready to start your adventure? Hurry and enter using the rafflecopter form below:

Vacation Dates are not available from July 23rd through Sept. 2nd. Vacation does not include insurance which can be provided by your auto insurance company. Drivers must be 25 or older with a valid drivers license and proof of insurance. Additional miles can be purchased at $1.55 per mile. A refundable security deposit is required at the time or reservation. Sales tax is required of $156.47.  For additional information, floor plan, etc. visit our website at www.accessrvrental.com. This certificate expires June 1, 2015

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Have you traveled by RV before?

Where would you go on an RV vacation?

BYU Women’s Conference Giveaway

I am so excited about today’s giveaway for tickets to the BYU Women’s Conference! If you have never been to the conference before, I will tell you all about it and hopefully you will understand why it is something that should be on your to-do list. You need this! If you have already been to the conference, you know exactly what I am talking about! The giveaway will be at the end if you are just too excited to read about it!

giveaway

BYU Women’s Conference is a two-day event held in Provo, Utah where tens of thousands of women come to be uplifted and inspired. The two days are filled with classes that each touch on a different subject that may be something that you are going through in your life or need some help with. There are classes ranging from depression, to tips to make your marriage more successful to learning how to share your religion through social media. There really is a little bit for everyone.

This year, the conference will be held May 1-2 and in addition to the classes being offered, there are some other fun highlights as well. A favorite is the concert that is held Thursday night in the Marriot Center. It is sponsored by Deseret Book and they are bringing in some amazing artists this year! Mercy River, Hilary Weeks, Sandra Turley and so many others!

Another thing that is a highlight that hasn’t been available in years past is the Sacred Gifts exhibit. It is a once in a lifetime experience and it’s free. Just make sure to reserve your tickets ahead of time and hurry because they are going fast!

Lastly, if you go to women’s conference this year, be sure to take part in some of the amazing service opportunities that are offered. You can complete kits while attending classes, or Thursday before the concert, you can go participate in an amazing evening of service. It is truly an experience you won’t want to miss out on.

Now that you know a little bit about what it is, how would you like to win tickets for you AND a friend?! BYU Women’s Conference is graciously offering to give away 3 sets of tickets so that 3 of you can go with a friend to the conference. If you already purchased your ticket, never fear! You will be reimbursed. We would love for everyone to have this opportunity and I am thrilled that 6 of you will for sure! To enter to win, just use the Rafflecopter form below. The giveaway will be open from today (4/14) until Sunday (4/20) and the winners will be announced and emailed on Monday (4/21). Good Luck, and I hope to see you at Women’s Conference!

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More ways to save for Disney + $20 Disney Gift Card Giveaway

More ways to save for Disney - Keep Moving Forward With Me

Last year I shared some of the ways we are saving for our Disney vacation. With our vacation coming up next month, it’s time to update with more ways to save for Disney!

1. As I mentioned in my last post, saving for a Disney vacation boils down to determining the amount you need to save, dividing it up into monthly achievable amounts, and working toward it each month (my next tip will help you with that!). Some months I do great earning money with freelance writing and yard sale groups; while other months I concentrate more on coupon savings from our monthly budget. Find out what works best for your family and stick with it! I’ve listed a few of the coupon and cash back apps I use below as well as some more ways we’ve been able to bring in extra cash.

Get Away Today - Keep Moving Forward With Me2. If you are new to planning Disney vacations, well-established Disney gurus like Get Away Today are invaluable! They can help you with all the details and take the stress out of vacation planning. Get Away Today is the leader in Disney vacations and since several of my blogging friends rave about them – I just had to check them out! Here’s what I found out:

Get Away Today offers the great deals on hotels including free night specials and exclusive offers like free breakfast, free parking and waived resort fees at select hotels. (cha-ching – love those savings!)

• Discount Disneyland tickets

• Free gifts with package purchases (your kids will love this!)

Get Away Today currently has a Layaway Lock-in plan that allows you to hold your vacation (Southern California only) for as low as $125 down. Lucky for the Disneyland fans! Here are more details about the Layaway Lock-in plan:

1. $125 fee includes non-refundable $50 Layaway Plan fee.

2. $125 down payment for each room if multiple rooms are purchased. $50 fee

only applies once if rooms are booked together.

3. Make as many payments as you’d like prior to travel.

4. Vacation must be paid off two weeks prior to travel.

5. Layaway Lock-in plans may be set up online at www.getawaytoday.com or over

the phone at 855-GET-AWAY.

This Layaway Lock-in plan works perfectly with what I mentioned above about saving for a vacation. The earlier the book, the more you save. You determine the amount and when you make payments up until two weeks before the trip when you pay it in full. Start planning your summer vacation and get $10 off with this exclusive code for my readers (KeepMoving). Stay tuned into Get Away Today on Facebook for the heads up on more deals!

3.  Sponsored Tweets. If you are an avid tweeter and have followers who like to click on your links – this money-maker is for you! You set a price to be paid per advertised tweet based on your number of followers. Last August I started at .50 cents a tweet and I am up to $2.00 a tweet as my followers have grown and more people have clicked through my links. I only select tweet ads that are applicable to me and then I can personalize them. People won’t click if they don’t relate! If you are social media savvy or a blogger – this is a simple way to make a few extra bucks. I’m almost up to $100. Sign up and tweet away!

4. Shopmium.I love the new coupon apps available on your smart phone! I use several and every little bit helps. They are simple to use – see what products are available, purchase them, save your receipt and click a picture, submit, and see the moola! Right now Shopmium has Fage yogurt, toothpaste, Heinz ketchup, Mini Babybel cheese, Smuckers fruit spread, and more. If you use any of those products – you need to sign up and save on your groceries!

Just download Shopmium on your Iphone or Android and sign up with my referral code: GFCEAFVU. When you sign up, you get a Lindt chocolate bar … for free! My favorite thing about Shopmium is that there is not a minimum payout. The coupon amount goes directly into your paypal or bank account – no waiting! In the spirit of full disclosure, this is the first time I have referred Shopmium and the other coupon apps so I have not made any money from referrals – just the coupons! If you do choose to sign up, it will give me a referral bonus and you will help me on my way to Disneyworld!

5. Ibotta – Another great couponing app and the first one I signed up with! A feature that sets Ibotta apart is that it also gives cash back for restaurants like Chili’s and Quiznos. They have a larger database of coupons including ones that are specific to certain stores. Ibotta also has bonuses that are fun and will save you extra money. When you sign up for Ibotta, you can earn a $2 bonus right away. You can cash out after $5 to paypal or get a Starbucks or iTunes gift card. I’ve been using Ibotta casually and have a balance of $20 – that’ll pay for snack time at the Disney parks just by couponing and buying products that I would have bought anyway.

6. Checkout 51. I downloaded the Checkout 51 couponing app the beginning of March and have received $6.25 cash back in my account. This app has a smaller amount of cash back offers that are updated weekly, but it includes products like milk, apples, peanut butter, and bacon. They didn’t have a link I could pass on, but if you search for it in the app store, it will come up. Their payout level is $20 and they mail you a check.

7. Shop At Home. Shop At Home is similar to Swagbucks and Ebates in that you get cash back from any of your online shopping. I take a quick peek at whichever has the highest cash back rate and then shop through that site. If I am going to be shopping online, I may as well be getting money back! For example, this week I am shopping for a wedding gift at Target – I can go through Shop At Home and get 4% cash back.   If I want to do some early souvenir shopping, I can shop the sales at the Disney Store  before the trip and get cash back by going through Shop At Home as well! Get an Easter dress from Kohls (because they are doing a fabulous $10 off $30 in children’s apparel and shoes) and receive 4 percent cash back. You can see how it slowly starts to add up!

8. Watch for good credit card offers. Disney teamed up with Chase earlier this year and had a fantastic promotion. We signed up for a Disney credit card and were able to get a $200 Disney gift card after we purchased a certain amount. We put our Disney vacation package on the credit card which easily met that amount. We paid it off right away from our vacation savings so there was no interest and now have $200 for dining at Disney!

9. All of my extended family knows we are going to Disney this year. While I don’t go around asking for Disney gift cards and cash, if someone does ask what we would like for our birthdays – we tell them Disney gift cards or things for the trip. We’ve tied many of our birthday and Christmas presents into necessities for the trip. My children may find a few trip essentials in their Easter basket this year, too!

10. I am still entering giveaways as much as I can! I spend about five minutes a day entering giveaways from blogs and occasionally win helpful prizes! Since I last posted I’ve won a $50 VISA gift card, tickets to local events, and several Amazon.com gift cards that have helped with groceries.

I hope you find these tips helpful! What are other ways you save for a Disney vacation?

I’d love to pay it forward to one of my lucky readers! I’m giving away a $20 Disney Gift Card to help get you started on your savings!

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This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for your support! 

 

Thoughts on Motherhood Realized

Motherhood Realized - Keep Moving Forward With Me

Curling up with a book I can’t put down is one of my guilty pleasures. This month I am reading Motherhood Realized: An Inspiring Anthology for the Hardest Job You’ll Ever Love. The book is written by ladies from an organization I just can’t get enough of - Power of Moms. I first attended a Power of Moms Retreat back in 2011 and I’ve been hooked ever since. Like-minded, deliberate mothers coming together to share helpful (and often hilarious) experiences – sign me up!

The first chapter is written by Catherine Arveseth of the blog Wild and Precious. I enjoyed hearing this lovely lady speak at the Motherhood Realized book launch event as I’ve been reading her blog for years. She has two sets of twins and her insights are invaluable. Here are a few of my favorite posts from her delightful blog.

1. This blog post convinced me that I need to make a fairy home in our backyard for our daughter! Just do a search for “fairies” on Catherine’s site and you will see so many magical ideas!

2. I adore Catherine’s recap of her children’s favorite books each year. I love gleaning suggestions from fellow literature-loving families.

3. And though I treasure book suggestions and memory-making fairy ideas, what I love most about Catherine’s site is the realness and her gentle reminders to live in the moment. This post captures a glimpse into a positively gleeful rainy day and I love it! There are many more sweet moments like this on Catherine’s blog!

Now back to Motherhood Realized! Catherine’s chapter, “Watching You,” speaks to those moments when we glean inspiration from other mamas. She gives several examples of mothers she has observed and closes with this inspiring quote,

I am who my child needs! Keep Moving Forward With Me

 

That is an affirmation all mamas should say in the mirror every morning, “I am exactly who my children need.” I need to tape that to my mirror!

One of my favorite parts of the book Motherhood Realized is that each chapter closes with a question and a challenge. Inspiration AND a call to action – that’s what I need!

The question for this chapter is, “What have you learned from other mothers you have watched?”

This past year I’ve been overwhelmed with examples of quiet, but brilliant motherhood.

So many of my sweet friends have struggled with getting their babies earthside this past year. I’ve watched as they’ve placed careers and life as they knew it on hold as they’ve clung to the opportunity of being the vessel of life for their child. I’ve prayed and cheered with them as week by week they have soldiered on through their pregnancies and weeks, even months of bed rest and hospital stays. Mothers are patient. Mothers give their all.

I’ve watched from across the country as a dear friend became a mama of multiples – triplet baby boys + a two year old boy. As those babies have grown into toddlers, I’ve admired her ability to capture the moment and get in the picture with her brood of busy boys. Mothers see the bigger picture beyond diapers and dishes.

Motherhood Matters - Keep Moving Forward With Me

I’ve discovered that mothers need mothers and mothers need other mothers, too. I still call my mom and I am delighted at the relationship my daughter has with her “mom mom.” I’ve laughed and cried with friends in the thick of early motherhood years like myself and gleaned from the wisdom of mothers who have been there and gracefully passed through that.

What an insightful exercise it has been this week to think of the mothers that I watch in my life! I am grateful for the many examples I have. This post has been just a peek into one of the chapters in Motherhood Realized: An Inspiring Anthology for the Hardest Job You’ll Ever Love. I am excited to dive into the next chapter and share more of the quotes and insights with you. Treat yourself and the moms in your life to this lovely anthology – you’ll love it as much as I do!

What have you learned from your mom?
Who are the mom examples in your life?

I am a volunteer Power of Moms ambassador. This post contains Amazon.com affiliate links – thank you for supporting my site!

Tips for running The Color Run with children + $5 off code!

Tips for running The Color Run with children - Keep Moving Forward With Me

 

One of my favorite memories from last year was running The Color Run with Lily, my six year old. The Color Run is definitely a family-friendly race and we saw tons of families on the course.

We had so much fun that it is already on our calendar – August 23 in Salt Lake City! The 2014 Kaleidoscope Tour is going to be big – new t-shirts, new headbands, new wristbands, and they’ve added sling bags for everyone that is registered! Check it out:

Color Run Swag - Keep Moving Forward With Me

 

 

 

 

 

Did you know that The Color Run is the single largest event series in the United States? I believe it! These people know how to party! Here are my tips for running The Color Run with children.

1. Bring sunglasses or goggles, My daughter was concerned about the color dust getting in her eyes and borrowed my sun glasses at the start of the race. We also had bandanas to cover our mouths during some of the extra colorful times.

The Color Run - SLC - Keep Moving Forward With Me

2. Be flexible. My daughter loved running under the arches and when race works tossed colors at us, but the color sprayers were not her favorite. We avoided the sprayers at her request after the first one and lingered longer under each of the color arches. Your child may be different! Be ready to have fun in many different ways! Don’t be afraid to jump right in and get covered with color.

3. Do a few practice runs before hand to prepare for the 5k. My daughter and I took a few short runs together before the race. We still ended up doing a lot of walking, but we had a blast!

4. Dress the part. Grab anything white (that you don’t mind getting colored) from your closet. The more fun the better. Tutus are completely acceptable. Make sure to bring an older pair of running shoes that can get colorful, too.

5. Have towels on hand for the car-ride home. There were drying stations at the race, but it is still a good idea to cover up your car seats just in case!

The Color Run - SLC - Keep Moving Forward With Me

6. HAVE FUN! Arrive early and stay later for the dance parties. Lily loved meeting the Utah Jazz dancers.

The Color Run - SLC - Keep Moving Forward With Me

The race is untimed and geared toward runners/walkers of every level! If this is your first race check out my blog post on 5K Tips and Tricks!

Sign up and join me in the fun! My readers can use the code COLOR5OFF to get $5 off their registration! The code is good for ANY CITY so you can join the party from any of the races around the country. Be sure to type the code in instead of copy/pasting. Sign up before May 1st because that is when the prices go up! Prices are cheaper if you join with a team as well. Plus it is more fun with friends!

The race is untimed and geared toward runners/walkers of every level! If this is your first race check out my blog post on 5K Tips and Tricks!

Are you running The Color Run this year?

What is your favorite Utah race?

Thanks to The Color Run for providing me tickets to run the race! I only write about events and products that my family and I personally love. 

Fresh Express Tex Mex Salad + Coupons and a free app!

Fresh Express Tex Mex Salad - Keep Moving Forward With Me

This month we are swapping greens into our meals thanks to Green Moms Meet and Fresh Express! From breakfast, to snack, to lunch, to dinner … I am excited to transform some of our favorite meals into healthier salads. We started our week with this delicious Tex Mex Salad! All you need is:

Fresh Express Tex Mex Salad

Fresh Express 50/50 Mix

Lake Country Asiago Cheese from Costco

Grape Tomatoes

Black Beans (drained)

Corn

Southwest Tortilla Chips

Lime for squeezing

Add all the ingredients together and enjoy! Simple, right?

Now I need to find 29 days more worth of salad swaps! Luckily, I am not alone in this endeavor. Fresh Express has made it uber easy for me and has even created an app to help me add greens to my daily meal plan.

I’ve been playing with it all morning and I love the suggestions! Once you sign in, you can select certain meals that you crave – from Chicken Alfredo to Grilled Cheese – and Fresh Express will provide you with a healthier green alternative. Know what my guilty pleasure is? Junior Bacon Cheeseburgers from Wendy’s! Clicked on it in the app and I was immediately directed to a yummy recipe! Try it here.
Fresh Express App - Keep Moving Forward With Me

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The app also helps you track your calories and exercise – perfect for me because I am headed to Florida in six weeks and getting in shape! Now for my favorite part, you can input the codes from your Fresh Express salad bags and they will send you valuable coupons. Win – win!

Fresh Express at Target - Keep Moving Forward With Me

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

To prepare for my month of salad swaps I headed to Target to stock up on Fresh Express salads. Holy salads! I was greeted with a wall of options – more than even fit in my picture! Loved the variety from Baby Kale to Spinach to Spring mixes and more. These salads are all table ready. Fresh Express salads are thoroughly washed, rinsed, and gently dried, then sealed in patented “Keep-Crisp®” breathable bags to keep their just-picked freshness, without preservatives.

Yesterday we began our salad swap! One of my favorite ways to add veggies to breakfast is by adding them to eggs. I sauteed onions, grape tomatoes, and Fresh Express spinach before adding my eggs in to scramble. So simple and so delicious.Fresh Express Spinach, Veggies, and Eggs - Keep Moving Forward With Me

 

I’ve also been known to sneak greens into smoothies. So easy to add a handful of spinach or baby kale – especially when Fresh Express does the prewashing and drying for you!. Here is one of my favorite green smoothies – this recipe has lots of yummy mix and match options! My Berry Oatmeal Smoothie would also be delicious with some baby kale thrown in – I am excited to try it.

Simple Green Smoothie - Keep Moving Forward With Me

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And if you are looking for a delicious seafood salad – check out my Grilled Tilapia Salad that can be made with Fresh Express baby kale. It is one of our family favorites!

Grilled Tilapia Salad - Keep Moving Forward With Me

Do I have you seeing green yet? Join in on the 30-day Salad Swap challenge and be sure to download your free app to help get you started!

Be sure to LIKE Fresh Express on Facebook to stay up to date on their latest offers! You can also follow Fresh Express on Pinterest for a plethora of salad recipes and ideas! They have a board for every month of they year – check it out!

You can stock up on your own Fresh Express salad kits with coupons available from Green Moms Meet.
I received this product for free from the sponsor of the Moms MeetSM program, May Media Group LLC, who received it directly from the manufacturer. As a Moms MeetSM blogger, I agreed to use this product and post my opinion on my blog. My opinions do not necessarily reflect the opinions of May Media Group LLC. or the manufacturer of the product.

What is your favorite salad?

How do you get greens into your family’s diet?

LDS General Conference/Easter Giveaway – $100 Deseret Book Gift Card and $250 worth of prizes!

LDS General Conference & Easter Giveaway

Design by AshLee Winterrose of Mama Bear Designery

General Conference and Easter will both be here before we know it and I couldn’t think of a better time to team up with thirteen of my favorite bloggers to host a fantastic multiple gift giveaway! Who is excited about $100 to Deseret Book and over $250 worth of amazing products?!?!

For this giveaway, we each chose some of our favorite General Conference and Easter-themed items to give back to our readers, just to say thanks for all of the encouragement, comments, and time that you take out of your busy day to check in with us. We really appreciate it!

Plus, we hope this will give everyone some great ideas when it comes to entertaining your little ones during Conference or filling those Easter baskets.

Take a minute to meet the lovely ladies who put together this giveaway!

LDS General Conference/Easter Giveaway


Tara – Keep Moving Forward With Me
Becky – Love to be in the Kitchen
Jonie – Just Between Friends
Michelle – A Little Tipsy
Allison – Cupcake Diaries
Katie – Clarks Condensed
Audra – Reality to Dreams
Jennifer – My Daylights
Alexis – We Like to Learn As We Go
Debra – Housewife Eclectic
Dani – Love Me Dani Marie
Cambria – Live to be Inspired
Melea – Freebies 2 Deals
Aleisha – She Calls Me Mama Leisha

And now on to the fun! Here are the goodies!

Conference
LDS General Conference/Easter Giveaway

One grand prize winner will be spoiled with:

          1. $100 Gift Card to Deseret Book courtesy of our blogger team!
          2. $75 Thrive Favorites Package from Krisi Lee, Thrive Life Independent Consultant. This prize package will put you on the right track for preparedness and it includes:
            THRIVE 10 grain pancake mix #10 can
            THRIVE Freeze dried Corn – Pantry Can
            THRIVE Freeze dried Mangos – Pantry Can
            THRIVE Freeze dried Meat or Cheese (your choice of Ground Beef, Chopped Chicken or Monterey Jack Shredded Cheese) – Pantry Can
            THRIVE Honey Crystals – Pantry Can
            THRIVE Macaroons – Pantry Can
            5 in 1 Survival Whistle
            5 Emergency Drinking Water Pouches
          3. Scentsy warmer with plate ($50 value) from Scentsy by Tracy Lynn to keep your home smelling spring-time fresh!
          4. $30 credit to La & Ca Ties to perfectly accessorize your little ones with ties for Easter!
          5. $40 credit to Daylight Digital Designs. Choose from customized invitations and announcements or get custom jewelry for your daughter’s Easter basket!
          6. 2 Missionary Tool Kit card packs ($20 value) from Missionary Tool Kit. These scripture reference cards are designed to work with Preach My Gospel. More than 50 gospel topics in an easy, quick to find format!
          7. Gift Basket ($30 value) from Sego Lily Soaps because Mom needs something in the Easter basket, too! The beautiful gift basket contains:
            3 popular luxury soaps – Lavender, Love Spell, and Lemongrass.
            24 ounces of all natural Lavender mineral bath salts in a decorative jar.
            1 Strawberry Lip Balm, full of good oils and butters, with NO Petroleum or Mineral oil.
            1 Mesh Scrubby, to maximize lather and exfoliate your skin
          8. LDS Piano Music Pack from Day Murray Music for the music lover in your family!
          9. Faith in God Study Guide ($8.50 value) from A Lively Hope. It includes:                             journaling questions for all of the required activities
            places to draw and doodle
            questions and activities to help you internalize the scriptures and strengthen your testimony
            prompts to assist in setting goals
            copywork to aid in memorization
            exercises to help you memorize the Articles of Faith
            pages for additional handouts and photos
          10. Your choice of this dapper bow tie or this bow in coral and white wonderful ($16 value) from The Posh Society.
          11. A Mormon Mom Planner ($29.95 value) from In the Leafy Tree Tops to keep you organized!
          12. A Clicker Kit and special gift from Hilary Weeks. The power of positive thinking is amazing and the clicker kit will help get you on the right track!

Our lucky runner up will also get:

            1. $40 Gift Card to Deseret Book
            2. 2 Missionary Tool Kit card packs ($20 value) from Missionary Tool Kit.
            3. Faith in God Study Guide ($8.50 value) from A Lively Hope

 

Enter in the rafflecopter below and show some love to our gracious sponsors who have provided the prizes! The giveaway runs until March 30, 2014 at midnight. It is full of easy click entries so get to clickin’.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Be sure to check out our HUGE collection of General Conference Activities and Ideas, too! We’ve got you covered with recipes for conference breakfast and reverent ways to involve your children in General Conference!

General Conference Activities

Design by AshLee Winterrose of Bear Mama Designery

General Conference Activities and Ideas

General Conference Activities Design by AshLee Winterrose of Mama Bear Designery

As a Latter-day Saint, I look forward to hearing from our wolrd-wide church leaders twice a year at General Conference. The event is held in downtown Salt Lake City, but is also broadcast to LDS church buildings worldwide as well as on the Internet and television. I am so excited to listen with my family!

Each year, I find myself asking, how do I prepare myself and my family for General Conference? The church has put together amazing resources (available at the above link) and I have also teamed with some of my favorite LDS  bloggers to share our favorite conference traditions, recipes, and activities. You can check out their fun links at the bottom of this post! 

General Conference Activities - Keep Moving Forward With Me

My three children are ages 6, 4, and 2. Each year since our oldest was born, we have tweaked our traditions, but the basis is the same. A family gathered together listening to the prophet and apostles! A typical conference weekend for us includes delicious recipes, quiet activities for the little ones, and this mama saying a little prayer that our preparation pays off! Here’s a little sneak peek into a few of our favorite recipes and quiet activity ideas!

Come Listen to a Prophet’s Voice … General Conference Preparation

My two oldest love watching this youtube video every year to help them learn the names of the apostles. Sometimes we have it on repeat over breakfast (at their request!).

As mentioned above, our kitchen table is prime real estate when it comes to places to learn! Kids have to eat so I take advantage of it. I first saw this at my neighbor’s home and I love the possibilities! I bought this clear, durable table cover  and rotate the content that goes underneath as my children learn or memorize it.  Right now we are working on learning the Family Proclamation with these printables from Chocolate on my Cranium. You could easily print off pictures of the first presidency and twelve apostles as well to help your children learn and recognize them. Easy pop quizzes at the dinner table!

Learning at meal times - Keep Moving Forward With Me

General Conference Breakfast Ideas

Before the Saturday and Sunday morning sessions, we like to have a big family breakfast to start our day. These yummy blueberry crepes are on the menu for Saturday morning and I am debating between Cupcake Diary’s cinnamon and sugar pull-apart rolls and Love to be in the Kitchen’s homemade cinnamon rolls for Sunday morning! Can you tell I am a fan of cinnamon baked goods? We are going to be snacking on Live to be Inspired’s banana bread some time during the weekend as well!

Blueberry Crepes - Keep Moving Forward With Me

 

General Conference Traditions and Quiet Activities

With three young children at home, I like to start General Conference weekend with a plethora of printables (see the blogger links below!) and quiet activity ideas. We’ve watched conference from our version of King Benjamin’s tents, illustrated the stories we are hearing on giant pieces of butcher paper, and played conference bingo many a time! I also like having a big basket of books available for my children to look at and read. I’ve listed some of our favorites below.

LDS Children's Books - Keep Moving Forward With Me

Books are a big part of our General Conference preparation! Earlier this year I helped make flip books with text and pictures for The Family: A Proclamation to the World from the Chocolate on my Cranium printables. My daughter loves reading her book because it matches the songs she is learning in Primary. She’s learned so many big words from reading it so often!

My children also have books with pictures of the Savior put together by their grandmother. She took card-sized pictures of the Savior by Greg Olson and put them in the sleeves of photo books to make darling books for each of her grandchildren. She wrote her testimony in the cover which is sweet for the children to have! My kids love looking through those as well.

Story of the Walnut Tree is one of our favorites to read while getting read for conference. It is the story of the walnut tree from President Hinckley’s home that was used to build the podium for the conference center. Knowing the story gives my children something familiar to look for during the sessions.

I am going to add The Giver of Holy Gifts to our collection this year in the children’s Easter baskets. The beautifully simple children’s board book shows some of the images from the Sacred Gifts art exhibition taking place at the Museum of Art at BYU right now and talks about Jesus’ holy gifts to us.

If Jesus Came to Visit Me and others by Jill Roman Lord are sweet board books as well. Perfect for the 2-6 year old crowd to look through during conference. We also have The Story of Easter and others by Patricia Pingry in our book basket for conference.

Session Breaks 

LDS General Conference Activity Ideas - Keep Moving Forward With Me

In between sessions, we like to let our children get all their energy out! Whether it is a picnic in the back yard or a quick family walk to the local park. It definitely helps to let them play to their hearts content and get the wiggles out! After an hour or so of outside play, afternoon nap time is much more likely to happen!

72 Hour Kits - Keep Moving Forward With Me

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In between the Sunday session, we like to update our 72 hour kits. So many stores have case lot deals and emergency essential sales. General conference weekend is a great time to see what you have and add what you need! I stay tuned to sites like Freebies2Deals to get the heads up on the best local and online preparedness deals. My children love rotating out the older clothes and munching on the 72 hour kit snacks!

Find more ideas on my General Conference and Primary Pinterest boards! Be sure to check out these fabulous ideas by my blogger friends as well! Psssstttt … be sure to check in tomorrow because my blogger friends and I are celebrating this wonderful time of year with a HUGE giveaway … $100 Deseret Book Gift Card and over $250 in prizes!!!! Time to fill those Easter baskets!

We would love if you added your General Conference traditions to our link up! Just two requests, please link back to this post and it must be General Conference related!

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