>U Mom Knows Best: June 2018

Friday, June 29, 2018

FREE Gatorade Bar

 FREE Gatorade Bar Receive ONE (1) FREE Gatorade Almond Butter or Recover Bar (2-2.8 oz.). Available in most stores. My teen loves the taste of these protein bars.

Exp 07/15/2018

 This Friday, June 29th, 2018– ONLY, you can load a coupon to your Kroger (or Affiliate) Plus Card for a FREE Gatorade Bar.
Although 06/29/2018 is the only day that you can load the coupon, the coupon offer is redeemable through 07/15/2018

What is the Free Friday Download?
Every Friday, you can download a digital coupon for a FREE item! This offer is available exclusively to Customers with a Smiths Food and Drug or other Kroger store reward card.

How does it work?
Visit this page on Fridays.
Download the digital coupon for the product between 12am-11:59pm PT. You can view your coupon under the "My Coupons" section of your digital account or the Mobile App.

Redeem your coupon in-store within 2 weeks.
Your coupon will automatically be applied at checkout when you use your Shopper's Card.
Remember to check back the next Friday for a new offer!

Don't forget to save even more money with other great coupons under the Savings & Rewards Tab!

The Benefits Of Simple Weightlifting

       My body looks so awesome thanks to simple weightlifting!

 When I was younger, I did not think I needed to lift weights. I thought that running was enough for my body to stay in shape. I would talk to fitness trainers who suggested that I add weights to my exercise routine. The trainers said that it would be good for my body, I did not listen. I thought weights were slow and boring. I wanted a fast workout that I could do in thirty minutes and that is why I started running as I learned that I could either walk for 45 minutes or run for thirty to burn the same amount of calories. I enjoyed the speed of running and did not want to slow down for the weightlifting. Fast forward 30 years and as I entered my fifties, my arms started to get flabby. My teen liked to call them BINGO arms. So I started eating better and added 10 more minutes to my running. My arms lost some weight but they still were flabby.

A free gym membership was all it took to start lifting weights.

   Last year my husbands work started offering free gym memberships, so I decided to check it out. At first, I found the gym boring. My running was more exciting. When summer ended, I forced myself to go to the gym three days a week and started lifting 5 pound free weights. At this time, my teen also placed a pull-up bar in my kitchen and I watched him use it. When I realized that I could not do one pull-up, I knew it was time to get serious about weightlifting. I did not like how weak my arms were. So I started to use the weightlifting machines at the gym and forced myself to lift heavier weights.

A year later, I like how my arms look!

  My arms are now toned and strong. I can even do pull-ups! I am glad that I forced myself to lift weights. I still lift weights 2-3 days a week. My routine is six arm weight machines at the gym for 20 reps. I am not going for bulk so I am lifting at the most 50 pounds. What I like is my routine only takes 10-15 minutes. I even do some arm work with those stretchy bands while I make my smoothie. I now know that weights are important and wish I had started them when I was younger. If I did not have a gym membership than I would use free weights like kettlebells

Weights are great for all ages!

  I see how weak my father-in-law's arms are and that motivates me to keep using weights. So don't wait until you are older and have flabby arms. Start lifting some 5-pound weights. Keep your muscles strong. Just 10-15 minutes, 2-3 days a week is all you need. When I don't have time to get to the gym I put on some music and lift my kettlebells at home. Don't make excuses about working out, even moms can sneak in exercise with these Workout Tips For Stay At Home Moms.

                                Do you lift weights? 
        Will you make simple weights part of your exercise?

Thursday, June 28, 2018

Skullduggery Crafts Are Perfect For Summer Fun & Giveaway

Keeping the kids busy this summer!

       I received craft kits from Skullduggery to facilitate this post.

  The kids have been out of school for about a month and like most kids, they are always bored silly. So I have been trying to keep them busy with some fun craft kits. When I look for craft kits, I like ones that make cool items that we can use. I like craft kits that make lasting memories. I also like craft kits that take several hours or days to create. That way the fun can last for a long time and keep the boys busy.

Summer is perfect for outdoor craft fun!

   When I saw this stepping stone casting kit, I admit, I was thinking about how great it would look in my yard. I was glad that the boys wanted to make a stepping stone for me. I really loved that the kit came with everything to make the stepping stone. The step by step instructions made it easy for my boys to create the stepping stone. The kit included lots of stickers so the boys could make a stone with hearts and butterflies as they know they are my favorite. The stickers also included letters and sport thems. The boys were able to mix up the casting material by themselves in the included bag. All they had to do was add water to the plastic bag and knead it together. The material was easy to pour in the mold. It only took an hour to dry into the stepping stone.

I love how the stickers made impressions on the stepping stone.

 After the stepping stone dried, the boys had fun painting it. The boys made me a cool stepping stone that we placed in the front yard for all to see. I made sure to save the plastic mold so we could make more stepping stones.

A fun way to grow herbs!

  My youngest son loves to grow plants so he loved that he could create a flower pot. The Perfect Craft Herb Garden Kit even included seeds to grow some herbs! My boys were happy that the craft kit had enough casting mix to make two flower pots so they could paint them how they wanted. I just loved the pretty flower stickers that came with this craft kit. The flower pot had to dry for 24 hours so my boys had to wait a day before they could paint. That gave them plenty of time to come up with ideas on what colors they wanted to use.

  After the boys painted the flower pots, the hot sun quickly dried the paint. The kit even included pods of dirt that expanded with water. So the boys added the dirt pod and water to the pots. They were amazed at how fast the dirt pods expanded and filled the pots with soil. There was plenty of herb seeds for both pots. My youngest son will be in charge of watering the plants as I don't have a green thumb. I can't wait for fresh herbs to use in my cooking. Our kit included a mix of herbs like marjoram and basil. I am thinking these herbs will be great for a pizza.

The stepping stone and flower pots look wonderful in my front yard! I will be buying some more craft kits as my boys really enjoyed making these.

What craft kit would your kids enjoy?

Discover these two craft kits and others.


Enter to win a Skullduggery craft kit. I am giving away a craft kit to one lucky winner. The best part is the winner can select the craft kit of their choosing. Enter on the form below.

 This giveaway is open to US residents 18 years of age or older.  Chances of winning this giveaway depend on the number of entries. All entries will be verified. The winner will be notified within 48 hours of the end of the contest and will then have 24 hours to respond to the email or a new winner will be chosen. Void where prohibited

Monday, June 25, 2018

Summer Sparkle Party With e-cloth

Perfect cleaning with just water!

      I receive a party pack with an assortment of e-cloth products to showcase and sample with my friends from Tryazon.

 During the summer, the local parks in my city serve a free lunch for all kids. My friends and I enjoy meeting at the park near my house for lunch and plenty of outdoor play. While the kids play, us moms enjoy talking with each other. We moms love our time together. This past week, I had a bunch of samples to bring to the park as several companies sent me items to share with other moms. One of the items that I had to share was e-cloths. My friends were excited to learn about these microfiber cloths that clean with just water.

 e-cloth aims to supply the most effective, healthiest and more environmentally friendly cleaning products at a good value to the consumer. Their chemical-free products use only water to remove dust, grease, oil, grime, dirt, and bacteria. These microfiber cloths are proven to remove 99% of bacteria. 
  The kids were happy with our sampling event as I brought brownies. The kids grabbed a brownie and went off to play. I shared with the moms how awesome e-cloths were. I already used their general cloths in my kitchen but was excited to try out some of the other cleaning cloths and mop. I love how these cleaning cloths clean with just water so I did not have to use nasty chemical cleaners. Just look at all the e-cloths I received!

  I also received a Home Cleaning Set (8 pieces) to share with my friends. I had everyone choose which one they wanted to try at home. Everyone had a hard time deciding which one to choose as they wanted to try them all. I love that each cloth had a different purpose and most were labeled. The e-cloths with the non-scratch scrubber was pretty cool!

The party was a great time and my friends were excited about cleaning without chemicals. Each guest also received a Glass and Polishing e-cloth. I love these cloths for cleaning my windows and phone screen.

Friday, June 22, 2018

FREE Dave's Killer Boomin Berry Bagels

I love the taste of these bagels!

 FREE Dave's Killer Boomin Berry Bagels Receive ONE (1) FREE Dave's Killer Boomin Berry Bagels (16.75 oz.). Available in most stores.

Exp 07/08/2018

This Friday, June 22th, 2018– ONLY, you can load a coupon to your Kroger (or Affiliate) Plus Card for a  FREE Dave's Killer Boomin Berry Bagels.
Although 06/22/2018 is the only day that you can load the coupon, the coupon offer is redeemable through 07/08/2018

What is the Free Friday Download?
Every Friday, you can download a digital coupon for a FREE item! This offer is available exclusively to Customers with a Smiths Food and Drug or other Kroger store reward card.

How does it work?
Visit this page on Fridays.
Download the digital coupon for the product between 12am-11:59pm PT. You can view your coupon under the "My Coupons" section of your digital account or the Mobile App.

Redeem your coupon in-store within 2 weeks.
Your coupon will automatically be applied at checkout when you use your Shopper's Card.
Remember to check back the next Friday for a new offer!

Don't forget to save even more money with other great coupons under the Savings & Rewards Tab!

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Gramma In A Box Is A Care Package Filled With Sweet Love

Grandma sends the best packages!

                       I received a package from Gramma In A Box to facilitate this post.

  I am going to be a grandma soon and I can't wait! I just wish I lived closer to my daughter so I can spoil my first grandbaby. I will just have to spoil my first grandchild with packages from grandma. One idea that I will be spoiling my grandbaby will be a monthly care package of goodies. I love baking so I will be sure to send some cookies in these boxes. When my granddaughter gets older I will send her a Gramma In A Box. That way my granddaughter can make her own treats every month.

    The monthly Gramma in a Box includes cookies, frosting, and sprinkles 

use code 10off to save $10 off your first box

  My boys and I had fun checking out the Gramma In A Box! This fun box was filled with baked cookies with frosting and sprinkles as well as two easy candy crafts to make other delicious treats. I loved that the box included step-by-step instructions with illustrations. Also, all the ingredients were packed in small containers so it was easy for my boys to know what they needed for each goodie. All the ingredients were included. All we had to supply was a bowl, a knife, and a spoon.

The instructions were easy to read!

My boys looked at the easy to read cards that even had pictures on them. They were excited to decorate some cookies. I loved that the frosting was ready to use in small bags.

Each box includes three treats!

 The box that we received had three treat projects. My boys got to frost cookies and decorate them with these cool emoji sprinkles. The next treat was chocolate covered pretzels that included sprinkles. The last treat was a great way to use up the melted chocolate as the boys made Bear Smore Bark.

The best part was the eating!

  My son enjoyed licking the extra frosting. Licking the spoons is always the best part of baking. My boys loved that they got to eat their creations. This box of sweet treats brought back memories of making cookies with my grandma. I remember making peanut butter cookies with her and it was my job to do the criss-cross on the cookies.

Cookies always taste better when grandma made them!

 My boys had so much fun making their own treats. There was plenty of treats to share with dad and big brother. I even had fun decorating a cookie with the boys. My boys agreed that this is a box that they would love to receive from their grandma every month. Find out how you can send this delicious box of treats to your grandchildren. Make sure to use code 10off to save $10 off your first box.


use code 10off to save $10 off your first box

Monday, June 18, 2018

Easy Baked Parmesan & Tomato Zucchini Gratin

When your garden is overflowing with tomatoes and zucchini!

 I love when my neighbors give me their extras from their gardens. I am always happy for fresh produce. When my neighbors give me zucchini and tomatoes, I love to make this super simple side dish that I discovered on the Good Cook website. This delicious side dish uses just six simple ingredients and takes less than 10 minutes to prepare. This dish is a gorgeously simple side dish for your next potluck, party or holiday menu. I just love how the gooey cheese just makes the summer squash taste so good. I can eat several servings of this dish as it is that good. So when you have too many zucchini and tomatoes, this is a must-make side dish. If your garden is still growing, these vegetables are always so inexpensive at most stores so you can create this dish year round.

 This scrumptious side dish looks so beautiful in a 1.5 Quart Ceramic Covered Casserole but it can be easily doubled to fit in a  9×13″ 2.5 Quart Rectangle Ceramic Dish if you need enough to serve a crowd.

  I love how easy it is to line the zucchini and other vegetables in rows. All the color of the squashes and tomatoes looks so colorful. I used salad tomatoes but for even more color you can use other tomatoes like kumato tomatoes or other heirloom varieties. When life blesses you with more tomatoes than you can use, make oven roasted tomatoes.

 After arranging all the colorful vegetables in the ceramic casserole, drizzle them with the melted butter. Then sprinkle with parmesan cheese and bake in the oven. For even more flavor, add some garlic to the melted butter. This dish bakes without its lid but the lid makes it so easy to transport to your next potluck. This simple side dish is always a hit when I bring it to cookouts.

 I am loving this covered ceramic casserole dish. It is too pretty to store in a cabinet so I store it on my china cabinet shelf. The ceramic dish goes from the oven to the table so that means one less dish to wash. I find myself reaching for this casserole dish all the time as I love that this dish can go in the freezer, microwave, oven, and dishwasher.


Baked Parmesan & Tomato Zucchini Gratin

1 sweet onion, sliced thin
2 zucchini, sliced thin
2 yellow squash, sliced thin
4 tomatoes, sliced thin
1/2 cup butter, melted
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
fresh chopped parsley for garnish
salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
 Place onion slices in the bottom of a Good Cook 1.5 Quart Casserole dish. Stack together zucchini, squash, and tomatoes, laying the stacks horizontally across the top of the onions. Drizzle with melted butter. Sprinkle with parmesan, salt, and pepper. Bake for 17-24 minutes, or until parmesan is golden brown and zucchini is tender. Garnish with parsley. Serve and enjoy!

Notes: I used 2 salad tomatoes and cut them in half after slicing. I also arranged my onions with the other veggies instead of placing them on the bottom. My dish came out so delicious.

       Ready to take to a potluck!

Sunday, June 17, 2018

It Is A Tara Thing And My New Office

I love my new office!

I have had my new office for about a month and I am loving it. It was a great decision to convert our unused office into my new photo studio/blogger room. This room has made my house less cluttered and it has helped me be more efficient with my work. Having a clean space does wonders with my creativity. I just love sitting in this room and working. I originally bought the white table for a place to take pictures but I am also using the table as my desk. I just love having my morning coffee and looking out the window as I answer my emails.

 The kids know that my new space is off limits to them. They are not allowed to play in there or bring their toys/clutter into my new room. When they whine about it being no fair, I just show them my new mug. My new personalized mug says it all!

I love that my new coffee mug has my name on it. It just makes me feel so special. When I was younger, my name was not common. I remember going to stores on vacations that sold items with names on them and never find a single personalized item with my name on it. I would spin the rack around at every store hoping this would be the store that had the pin, cup, or another item with my name on it. I never gave up, I checked every store on every vacation.

So when I discovered this store that put my name on a personalized coffee mug, I was thrilled, over the moon thrilled!  The wait was over and my name was finally on something! I love that my name is on a cute coffee mug. You can even buy this mug with your name on it! You can even get your name on a t-shirt or other items. My next mug will have my website name on it.

Do you have a unique name that is impossible to find on personalized items?

Friday, June 15, 2018

The Incredibles Are Back And Incredibles 2 Is Awesome!

I loved every minute of the movie!

  My youngest son and I were treated to an advanced screening of Incredibles 2 and it truly was an incredible movie. Hard to believe that the original Incredibles came out 14 years ago. My youngest two boys were not even born back then. The older one remembers watching a DVD of the first movie by the younger one does not remember the movie. I loved the first movie but the second movie was even better! I think Jack-Jack stole the show with his cuteness but the other original characters were just as amazing. The Incredibles are back fighting their enemies but this time around Jack-Jack has powers and joined the family to fight the bad guys.

 I usually don't get into Super Hero movies but this one kept my full attention for the whole movie. The movie starts with the Incredible family having to go back into hiding and the "Super Relocation" is being shut down. Feeling doomed the Incredibles dread going back into society but after being contacted by a superhero fan, tycoon with a great offer, they come out of hiding to fight crime again along with other superheroes like Frozone. At first, the tycoon only hires Elasticgirl so Bob is left to take care of the family and it is during that time he discovers that Jack-Jack has various super powers. Then Helen confronts the Screenslaver during her mission. I think the scene with Edna was pretty funny too! The excitement continues......

INCREDIBLES 2 opens in theatres everywhere on June 15th!

Fathers Day Gifts That Save The Environment

            Give dad gifts that are great for the environment!

             I received samples from Haggar and Contigo to facilitate this post.

 This Father's Day my husband received some cool gifts that are environmentally friendly. Earlier this year my husband got a new position as a supervisor and my boys and I decided that he needed to start dressing the part. His old position as a health inspector had him crawling on restaurant floors so a wardrobe of cargo pants and Hawaiian shirts were fine but now that he is a boss behind a desk, we thought dad could use some new clothes. My husband likes to be comfortable so he thought his cargo pants were fine. So I had to find some dress pants that were comfortable and looked great for his job. This wife found pants that were comfortable and they were also great for the environment.

Haggar E-CLO Dress Pants Are Sustainable!

 Haggar actually received an inaugural REPREVE® Champions of Sustainability award earlier this year. Their E-CLO Dress Pant features fibers made from recycled water bottles. How cool is that and what a great use for all those disposable water bottles that people buy. These environmentally friendly pants have saved the equivalent of more than 130 million recycled water bottles! Haggar has worked with Unifi, Inc. for over 5 years, using fabric made from REPREVE upcycled fibers.

 This year, Haggar also donated to the National Parks Society to celebrate Earth Day.

  Once my husband saw the pants, he realized that he needed new shirts. Yea to him giving up Hawaiian shirts! He can save those colorful shirts for his days off and vacations! So this past weekend, my husband selected some new shirts to go with his new pants. This wife thinks his new look is quite sexy. Men in shirts and ties just look so fine!

  The Haggar E-CLO Dress Pants come in many styles and colors so I am sure you can find a pair that your dad will love. My husband loves dark colors but I might try to sneak some other lighter colors into his wardrobe. I am loving that these pants are no-iron as that is one less thing for me to iron.

 Since my husband updated his wardrobe to his new position at work, I thought that it was also a perfect time to get him a new coffee mug. My husbands old coffee mug was peeling and had seen better days. The Contigo Couture water bottle was a perfect coffee mug for him. This thermal bottle keeps drinks cold up to 24 hours or hot up to 10 hours! The twist off lid will keep his coffee from leaking in his work bag.

With its tasteful metallic color, you might think the Contigo Couture THERMALOCK Vacuum-Insulated Stainless Steel Water Bottle belongs in an art gallery.

 My husband likes the color that the boys selected but this cool looking 100% BPA-free stainless steel water bottle also comes in many other colors. This sleek water bottle fits perfectly in his work bag pocket and in most car cup holders. If my husband wants to use it as a water bottle, the top is wide enough for ice cubes. My husband actually wants me to buy him another Contigo Couture so he has one for coffee and one for water.

Some might say that pants and a water bottle are boring Father's Day gifts so we also gave dad a delicious box filled with sweet treats and an amazing piece of cookware.

How will you celebrate Father's Day?

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Mom knows best