Thursday, July 29, 2010


Greetings to all. It's been a while, I know. My computer decided to comp[letely go on the fritz (with my help) and now I have no way to access the internet which has turned out to be almost like losing my left arm. It's weird. Unfortunately though, my last post was a giveaway - which was awesome, but I wasn't going to post it until I heard back from Philopolis. So I had listed that date for the (at the time) future, and then promptly forgot all about it. So now I'm left with the job of leaving an apology to you all, but with the promise that I will be back, when I can get a GEEK over, but for now - the giveaway iosn't legit or active. MY APOLOGIES!! It's completely tacky and professional, but that seems to be my murphys law of late. So until I can get back on and vent all about how I can't wait for school to start (taking care of the cabin fever, my-kids-are-bored-and-wanting-to-kill-each-other) then I'm stuck borrowing someone elses computer and leaving quick How's-your-father's.

But I'll be back. Count on it. :)

Tuesday, July 20, 2010


For all you military Moms/Wives/Sisters etc. out there, you will absolutely love this store I'm about to feature! The name is "Philopolis" & the brains behind this wonderful store is Tiffany, who is a military wife to a 2 time OIF combat veteran, with 2 little boys.
She's not only creative - she's looking for a way to provide hand made, beautiful dresses to those in the army who are ranked lower, aka - paid less. I think that's not only heroic in it's own way, but a lovely thought.

What Tiffany at Philopolis creates is alittle of everything! She has every taste covered. From retro - to classic, army (I loved the "Hooah" design!) to modern.
She has boys and girls sets, dresses, booties, clippies - a wide selection for every mom looking for that "different" edge to their childrens clothes. That's what attracted me to Philopolis in the beginning, I liked the fact that what she has created wasn't anything I had seen on any other kids, and it was cute!
Tiffany has alot of creative style, which she proves  in her work and it definitely comes through.
She has high quality workmanship & the "Heart Tank Dress" (which in this case, my 7 year old took one look and staked her claim, so it's a "tank" for her, and a "dress" for my 2 year old - which is so versatile that I was over the moon!) was adorable! I noticed everything about the dress was definitely well made.
Some hand-made clothing you can purchase, has almost a frayed, "worn" look to it? Well, in this case - I could have picked this up from a boutique at Red Cliffs (a shopping area in my city) The fabric is soft, the way Tiffany has made this tank is like she pored over every single aspect of it - and then some.

Quality is too weak a word, I was definitely impressed - and am DYING for summer so I can see my girls (depending on who wins the fight for that day on who can wear it) without having to put a thick long sleeved underneath to keep them warm!

I asked Tiffany some questions about herself, her craft & why she does what she does, & here's what she had to say ...

How did you begin Philopolis, & is there a meaning behind the name?
I chose the name Philopolis becuase I have always dreamed of haveing my own little utopia (Jungle fantasy like but, more on the jungle side not so much fantasy...LOL) and thought the "olis" would make it my own on top of my last name Phillips. It took me a while to get it right but being silly with the names Philopolis came to is unique, has my name, and only 1!! 

 When did you start designing?
 I have been designing since I was very young. I began with cards to scrapbooks to purses and was always afraid of sewing clothing but I loved to design it. So when I got my first sewing machine in 2007 I took a whack at sewing and was very natural at it!

When did you know you wanted to open a store & start a company?
I have ALWAYS had an interest in business since I was very young. I have been a little entreprenuer since I was about 10 years old!

Is it hard being a Mom with 2 boys and working on your store?
Sometimes, I do work around it though. My babies are ALWAYS #1 but, when they need me and I am almost done with a project that can get frustrating!
When & why did you add the 'ACU Military' look to your store?
That was actually the first items in my store. They sell little ACU uniforms for children at the PX but they start at size 4 and my son was just an infant at the time and he needed things that would fit him. My good friend had a little girl the same age and nothing was out there for little girls. I thought I would start something new! But, now I have grown so much I am adding regular non-military clothing!!

Has it had great success?
HUGE!! People love the little ACU outfits...they are mostly used for newborns who are Military brats and Homecomings!

Can you explain what E-1 to E-4 Military Officers are - & why they can use your help?
 E-1 thru E-4 are enlisted personal not quite up on there in the Military!!LOL
They are your privates and specialists. After that it is E-5 through E-8 and those are the enlisted Sergants. O-1 through O-? are the officers
What I want to do with this little program is give away a FREE dress to a family expecting a homecoming and are the rank of E-1 through E-4! When you are that low ranking, married, have kids, etc. money is SUPER tight and those people can only dream of having those items and I want to offer it to a special person each month. With my Husband just being an E-5, 1 rank higher then that bunch I just cannot afford to purchase the fabric to do that by myself I will have to rely on donations! My goal is to get 3-5 dresses or boy sets out a month!

I want to add here, is you are interested in helping Tiffany & donating money for fabric so she can continue in this noble endevor, then please contact her at Philopolis & do what you can, I can't think of a better way to help those who serve our country, yet can't afford a dress or cute outfit for Homecoming. Tiffany has really come across a fantastic idea, and I hope she can continue to help those families.

Philopolis has also generously offered to give one of her, much coveted dresses away today, to one lucky reader!


Mandatory entry
: To be eligible to win with Philopolis & "20 to Life" you need to go to Tiffany's extrodinary store & choose 2 items you think would make a great addition to your child's wardrobe!

Extra entries:
+1 Become an email subscriber to "20 to Life"
+1 Become a Facebook Fan of Philopolis!
+2 Take either one of my free buttons!
+2 Become a blog follower of Philoplis!
+1 Tell me what the special 'military' material Tiffany uses is called
+1 Follow Philopolis on MySpace!
+1 Tweet Daily, up to 2x a day
+1 Facebook Fan "20 to Life"!

This giveaway will run from 2.21.10 until 3.02.10, please leave separate comments for each entry, winner will be selected via Random.Org & emailed. They will then 48 hours to respond, or another winner will be drawn.

**Please note, I received no form of monetary compensation for my opinion/review. I did receive a product from the company in order to give a fair & balanced review and any opinion, statement etc. expressed in said review in solely my own & was in no way influenced by a third party.

Good Luck! 

Friday, April 30, 2010

i'm not dead.

miss me much? I've neglected my blog for almost a month now, & am yearning for the days where I had to get on to post about this or that, now it seems there's too much 'real life' events shaping my life right now, that's it's been almost impossible. I barely even check my emails anymore!

Let alone all the (seriously wonderful) companies whom I've been ignoring (unintentionally!!) with products they want me to show to you with giveaway potential. Although recently I saw an article based on the legalities of "Giveaway Blogs" & there was varied opinions on either side of that debate - I'm fairly certain I'm well entrenched somewhere in the middle - (ugh. I'm such a passive aggressive!)But it was definitely something to think about.

So, if you want an update of where I've been I can give you the cliff notes version.
  • I recently started working out - as in, more than a quick walk to my mail box - & am starting to view that with something other than disdain. yay!
  • We've decided to start some heavy legal (and very private - sorry) processess, I'll keep you updated using only code words and signals of course.
  • I've made a huge push to make our family closer to one another. (Some of my younger minions were starting to have problems at school which made me consider that maybe we weren't as close as I envisioned us to be when I'm lost with my "online face"). You 'll know this one, you stare at the screen, occasionally laughing, while clicking away furiously on your keyboard & moving your mouse when you see fit. Something topples over in the next room creating an earth shattering sonic boom & you'll call out "What was that?!!" without moving your eyes from the screen. It may be a talent (at least - I consider it one) but it's not exactly healthy. Not in the doses I was feeding to my family anyways.
  • I've decided to domesticate myself, as much as is safe for mankind at least. Cooking, baking, dressing in something other than sweats & last nights p.j t.shirt - well, by one in the afternoon at the latest!

Seeing it all there, written down - it doesn't look like much (and I'm fairly certain I've left out 5 or 6 major events which I'll recall as soon as I hit Publish Post) but it has wiped me out. I would love to take some time out at this place I saw on the travel channel, somewhere in the Carribbean with nothing but white, sandy beaches, pina coladas, and getting caught in the rain. Paradise.

So the plan of attack from here on out? Try and even things out. So my presence here is felt, (including those giveaways. If the companies haven't written me off in a huff and gone elsewhere. I have some brown nosing to do .....) yet keeping my family life well balanced and nutritious. Fingers crossed & wish me luck.

So I'll see you soon. And just really fast - Tammy did you see? THERE'S ANOTHER BOOK!! (BDB)!!

I don't expect anyone else to get that, but it's very exciting in the world of supernatural romance novels. :D

The song should speak for itself. if you paid attention ....

Monday, April 12, 2010

silent library. laugh out loud funny.

So I was looking over my blog, or my "special place" as it's been dubbed (thank you Lena) & it's been really "down" of late. Which, yanno - death tends to do that to people, but today I'm posting back as my usual slightly crazy, addicted to all things lamb chops, sarcastic pants-wearer.

Last night I couldn't sleep. Which those of you who've followed me for a while are aware I suffer (and suffer is definitley the appropiate word. Not being able to sleep? I'd rather chew glass. Really.) from insomnia. Only my insomnia calls the shots. There are nights I'll get a long blissful nights sleep - usually when I have nothing but housework planned for the next day, and others where I'll have PTA, work, scout meetings and then some for my day - and won't catch a glimpse of the sandman. (If you are now humming 'Enter Sandman' in your head - you are sunglasses cool.) Anywaaaaay, when I can't sleep I'll try different rooms, different beds, (that sounds weird & unusual. We actually have a few spare beds) well last night I ended up in front of the second living rooms t.v on the couch. So of course I start watching t.v, and around 5am I find this absolute GEM of a show that I cannot believe I hadn't heard of before.

Naturally it was a trashy MTV show (yes. I've been known to catch a few of their fabulously bar-lowering shows) but this one had me laughing SO HARD I was crying. Literally crying. If you haven't heard of it, it's called "Silent Library" & it's an offshoot from a Japanese game show (don't they just have the weirdest game shows?) But it basically involves 6 friends, in a library they deal out cards and all choose one at the same time, the one who receives the skull card has to be 'punished'. And the punishments have to be endured in silence. Otherwise they lose the money prize. It reeks of frat boys, but I just fell in love. Perhaps it's my grief making me pathetic - but I don't even care. If something makes me laugh now-a-days, I'm on it like flies on ... well. You get the picture. Unfortunately I could only find one decent copy & the other one I posted is the original Japanese version. But if you can find recent episodes, Let.Me.Know!!

I can't believe I haven't stumbled on this comedy gold sooner. That's what happens when you monitor what your kids watch. Which so isn't MTV. Enjoy :D

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Advice, death & Eggs ?

It feels weird to post after being MIA for so long, but I thought today I'd leave some words of wisdom, some pics, and some advice. Aren't you lucky?

I had a death in my family recently, I won't go into details, but suffice to say, death puts a few (hundred) things into perspective. It's always such a shock when you realize you will never see that person again. You remember every small memory you have of them, and you can even remember the way they smelt. What perfume, or cologne they wore, what movies they liked, and these things become something you cling to for a time. You analyze the way you're living your life, & think of things you can improve, you try and explain these things to your kids, & realize that death is inevitable. It comes to us all. For whom the bell tolls, so to speak, and there's really no easy way to ease the blow for anyone.
I've lost a few people close to me, & it never gets any easier - which I don't think it's anything that should become easier, but with time - the hurt morphs into something else. Something you can bear, something that doesn't stop your breath during the day, or have you shedding a thousand tears over the slightest word.

So my advice to you is to hold your children closer, hold your husband tighter, love with all you can and be kind to those around you, because tomorrow, you may not be here to kiss the owie, soothe the "monsters" or sympathize with that hard day at work where everyone else got it wrong, but your man was right on the money :D

So I'll leave you with some pics of our Easter weekend, (which was so much fun, btw) & my head seems to be slowly re-attaching back to my body - when that happens -  more giveaways as well.

Happy (belated) Easter Weekend.
And a shout out to Brother & Sister Degen who have left today (which saddened everyone, while delighting them as well.) for their mission to Nauvoo. The field is ripe & ready to harvest & we wish you all the best, while we miss you fiercely. xx

Thursday, April 1, 2010

How do you spell crisis in the plural?

So, I'm having some real life crisises, crisis', crisis's .... how is that spelt? I haven't ended my giveaways (although, fyi - they ARE ended.) I haven't even had time to get on and close them! I'm hoping tomorrow night wil yield some free time so I can take care of that. I've been completely neglecting my poor blog, *pats* & as soon as things offline sort themselves out into some semblence of sanity, then I shall, but my most humbest of apologies.

It's been one of those weeks where everything is up in the air, twisted & malicious at times, God putting me in my place, so to speak. (With aLOT of help from my kids) and that light at the end of the tunnel? It's a train. And the silver lining? A Boeing 747. So once this train wreck of a week has passed, then I'll be super - back to normal, I don't even feel the urge to add sarcasm. SARCASM! So something is definitely off, but yanno - this too shall pass. So instead of my usual, pithy self - despite what Heff says (my blog does too rock) here's some inspirational & political motivators.

and last - but definitely not least ....

Peace out, y'all. (BBS)

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Blog prejustices?

I've noticed that there are several types of bloggers and wondered which catergory I fall into. I've actually been told that these are the "unspoken prejustices" of blogging - a sort of online do's and don't, which if you don't know about, could cause you to commit a social faux pas. So I thought I'd post these (Malik - unfortunately you fall into the 2nd one :P)

1: Blog Snob: This type of Blogger will ignore comments from anyone with less than 2-300 followers, despite how nicely you might compliment their new layout, or how adorable the picture of some meal they cooked for dinner (yawn) looks. Approach at your own risk.

2: Blog Flirter: This type of Blogger will seek out "cute" profile pics, strike up conversations, that eventually lead to comments of how cute you are and how much they'd love to meet you. This type of blogger should be avoided at all costs - not only are they superfical, they most likely have several STD's unknown to the medical profession. BEWARE.

3: Blog Avenger: This type of Blogger will utalize their blog to make derogatory posts about other bloggers they feel have 'wronged' them in some way. They make posts directed at the object of their displeasure, causing your IQ to drop, merely by reading it. This blogger is sometimes worth a laugh - but at their expense.

4: Super Blogger: This blogger will post about everything and anything, they are constantly on top of returing their comments, doing their giveaways, and checking out any new blog that catches their eye. This type of blogger can make you feel inadaquate, unintentionally. Great for a read - don't try and keep up.

5: The Rest Of Us: This type of Blogger will make mistakes, not always get their giveaways ended on time, forget to return comments, although they have the best of intentions.
They also get on sparingly, yell at their kids & are often times late & forgetful. These blogs are worth following as they exhibit some human like traits.

I (obviously) fall into the last catergory, I forget, I digress, and I ramble. I'm a mess, I can't always finish what I set out to do - usually due to real life, I love my kids madly and am in dire need of a holiday :D

Mike - thanks to you for pointing these out to me - even though you fall into number 2 as well. HA!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Terro Ant Killer GIVEAWAY!

I saw a post from Kailani at "An Island Life" (killer blog, fyi) about this new ant killer (well - I hadn't heard of it, so new to me) called Terro. When I saw the post, I thought  "I don't have an ant problem right now, so I'll pass on this one." Literally within hours, my husband walks into the kitchen & starts swearing about 'bloody ants!' which I thought was definitely Murphys Law. I contacted the Terro people & was excited to try this product, & thought I'd give it a month or so to see how well it worked.

A. B. says...

"I love your product and I recommend it every time"

I just have to say that every summer I have ants that come inside my house and every summer I do the same thing. All I do is go out to the store, get some Terro Liquid Ant Killer, put it in their path, the ants come like mad to the bait, and within a day or two they are wiped out. I love your product and I recommend it every time I here someone say they have an ant problem. I hope you don't change whatever your doing right and that you continue to make a great product.
May 11, 2003

I could not have been more impressed! We bought our house late last year, and it had been vacant for a while, so of course every roach, ant & spider within a 40 mile radius decided to make themselves at home. We contacted our regular spray people, and they managed to take care of everything - except for the ants. They were everywhere! The kitchen, lounge (or living room, as Americans would say), the back porch, the kids' rooms - MY room - including my jetted tub. They were in my tub! Nothing seemed to work - we got rid of our terminators, since they weren't cutting it, we tried store bought brands, home remedies, everything short of calling in an exorcist.
Well - then winter hits, and they seemed to disappear - which I knew was a small reprieve, until recently. They decided to make themselves known by getting into any open container & causing us to throw it away.

Anyone with a really serious ant problem, knows how hard, annoying & stress inducing these little critters can be. The wasted money with food, covering everything, checking on a daily basis to see where they've moved too once their favored spot becomes compromised. WELL! Terro was an absolute God send!
I was skeptical at first - to be honest, I figured we'd tried so many other options, that this one may work for a time, but I didn't hold out much hope. I was happily proven wrong.

Terro is really easy to use, I was given some liquid ant baits, which is a food based product - similar to pancake syrup & a death trap for ants. They enter the small capsules of honey like stuff, (it also contains 5% of Borax - which is what kills them) feed on it and pass it back to their ant brothers. Causing a "kool aid" type of effect and killing them all. (Was that too crass a joke to make ...?)

The other product I tried was some of these little grain type granules - insecticide, if you will (in a convenient shaker bag) that you can spread around the perimeter of your home, and this one takes out not only ants - but fire ants, bill bugs, grubs, roaches (sweet!), sod webworms, earwigs, crickets, chinch bugs, army worms and any other "normal" type of foundation bug. This one I particulary liked, because it isn't a spray, it's not going to spread, & you can use this one on lawns. I noticed with the sprayers we had coming, whenever they would spray around the edges of our grass - it would start to look dry & parched, which is not attractive at all.

Naturally, with any kind of bug killer, you do need to be watchful of where you put these traps down (such as, being careful around areas of food prep. and especially around kids). Honestly though - so far since we've had these ant killers protecting our home, I have not seen ONE ant. It's fantastic!! No more feeling them crawl on me when I'm curled up on the sofa (a complete pet peeve) and I'm mostly impressed with the fact that they claim "It Works!" - and it's actually something I can vouch for. It does work, it's amazing, and with it comes a peace of mind - since I'm no longer dealing with an ant issue. Terro is.

They also stock a variety of other baits - and for other pests. Spiders, fuit flies, termites - just check out their website out for the extensive list

Win It!
Terro is offering two (2) of my readers some of this amazing ant killer product, you'll receive a box of Terro Liquid Ant Baits and a bag of the Terro Outdoor Ant Killer Granules!

Mandatory entry: You need to be a follower of "20 to Life!" to be eligible to enter this giveaway.

Extra entries:
+1 Become an email subscriber of "20 to Life!"
+1 Become a Twitter follower of Terro Ant Killer
+1 What kind of appliances are in the kitchen on the video for Terro?
+1 Grab my button & leave a link for where it is
+2 Tweet, up to twice daily

WIN some great Terro Ant Killer products! Safe, easy & EFFECTIVE! @TerroDeadAnts @Malisce

This giveaway will run from 3.26.10 until 4.9.10, please leave separate comments for each entry, winner will be selected via Random.Org & emailed. They will then 48 hours to respond, or another winner will be drawn.

**Please note, I received no form of monetary compensation for my opinion/review. I did receive a product from the company in order togive a fair & balanced review and any opinion, statement etc. expressed in said review in solely my own & was in no way influenced by a third party.

Good Luck!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

everybody was kung fu fighting

Fair warning - this post will be a long one, although I'll try and tone it down to the bare minimum. On with the show!

First up - the awards. I was truely flattered to receive these awards from some lovely ladies, & they all have fantastic blogs. I'm listing these in no particular order, & I recommend scooping them out and leaving some comment love for each, a lot of work goes into their blogs, & they absolutely deserved the awards they were given.

Chacoy (my Utahn friend who is coming to see me & drop her darling boy off) from Ma 2 1 Cute Boy honored me by dropping 2 awards on me. The "One Lovely Blog" award, and a new one I haven't seen making the rounds - but I'm glad to accept it - the "Happy 101" award. Chacoy - you're awesome, I love you - and get better SOON!

Tree from Mother of Pearl It Is gave me the "One Lovely Blog" award AND the "Beautiful Blogger" award - thank you so much love, I appreciate it greatly.

Kati, from Lady Bug Mama of 2 graced me with "Happy 101" award, which I'm accepting gracefully & greedily. Not an easy feat.

 Christi from Living Green in a Colorful World gave me by far the coolest award I've seen yet - the "Master of -" award. (This one you have to list 6 things you're Master of, and pass it on to 6 other bloggers. And aww yeah I'm digging the picture, no matter how gay they may look. It's completely awesome - thank you!)

 Tracyo (a lovely Canook ... is that even politically correct? I just wanted to post that word. Canook) from The Daily Mom Diaries threw me the "One Lovely Blog" award AND "Beautiful Blogger" (which is one of my favorites :D

I'm humbled. Coming from such amazing bloggers themselves, I'm flattered & instead of nominating 40 or so blogs - I decided to nominate 5 blogs & they can take their pick as to which award they want. I'm going to go with the "Master" award and list 6 things that I consider myself a Master of, cos I haven't done that one before and all I can think of (Tracy - Stir Fry Awesomeness) is "...everybody was kung fu fighting. na na na na na na na na na - those cats were fast as lightning..." I'll have that song in my head ALL NIGHT now.

              The nominated blogs (all are fantastic) are as follows, in no particular order:

So take your pick, post your award with pride, and nominate someone/s worthy. As for me - here are the 6 things I consider myself a Master of ...

1: I'm Master of my Domain (Seinfeld anyone?)

2: I'm a Master at multi-tasking. I can do hair, while changing a diaper, yelling out examples for homework, giving the evil-eye to encourage someone to "finish all their breakfast" while side-stepping all the little Zhu Zhu pieces that weren't picked up from the night before.

3: I'm a Master at perfecting the "Mom" tone. I only need to utter a one syllable word & it strikes fear into the hearts of any child doing exactly what they're not supposed to be doing.

4: I'm a Master at guessing what lines come from what movie. I can hear half a quote and nail it within seconds.

5: I'm a Master at spotting dirt on a kids face from 45 feet away

6: I'm a Master at finding any and every excuse to not do any housework. I can milk any kind of pathetic reasoning for weeks at a time.

And there you have it. My Master Mind abilities. Over the years I've honed these skills to be finely tuned, and I don't recommend trying them at home without adult supervision.

Now for my "Wordless Wednesday".

I don't even think I need to say anything. One of the late greats, & a fine figure of a man at that (that was for you C ;)

So in summation, Thank you to the wonderful bloggers who honored me with awards, you like me. You really, really like me. *kisses* to you all, I have more giveaways I've been remiss in posting, so my bad, I'll get on that ASAP. In the meantime - (as I'm posting this, I'm tapping my foot and humming along to "Kung Fu Fighting" I knew it would invade my every thought!) some words of wisdom to live by ...

"If you've got them by the balls - their hearts & minds will follow"
 John Wayne                              

That would make a fabulous tattoo, doncha think?

A different sort of moon.

I know I keep saying I'll (eventually) get around to posting about my awards, which I've dubbed 'my pretties' - and I will. Tomorrow. Or any other day that isn't right this second (although I am sending love thoughts to the ladies who deemed me worthy).

So tonight, I was driving home from a friends house, it wasn't really that late - around 10:30ish & I stop at a red light. (You should know before I proceed, I have terrible road rage. I mean - I will literally sit there yelling & screaming at some poor, unsuspecting stranger, looking like a crazy lady - for something as unforgiveable as forgetting to indicate - americans call it a "blinker", I call it your "indicator".)

So anyway - I'm stopped a red light, paitently waiting for it to change, and a car full of testostrone & hormones (16 year olds) pull up beside me. They start gunning their engine and grinning at me, possibly expecting me to swoon or be so impressed I'd flash them a "I'm so very impressed" smile.
Instead - it pissed me off. I gave my best scathing "really?" look (keep in mind, this is to a car full of teenagers. Yes - I know I look pathetic, but as I said before, my road rage knows no bounds, nor age limitations) Which only encouraged them. So eventually the light turns green, and I pull out slowly, warily eyeing them up and wondering what they're going to do next. Well - they gun it - too hard, stall their car, and being the adult that I am - I couldn't resist laughing and actually giving them the 'thumbs up'. Much to their chagrin, I'm sure. So I'm driving along, blissfully unaware that the next 5 seconds are going to scar me for life, when this car full of punks (and I'm refraining right now from calling them far worse) cuts me off. NO indication, NO curtesy, nothing. So I'm (naturally) furious, and decide I am going to ride their bumper as a little petty "get back". So while I'm trying not to actually hit them, I'm  making damn sure I drive obsenely close to their rear, when I notice the driver waving his arm out the window, so I take a closer look, expecting to see something but I'm not sure what.
Three of these little bastards brats have their backsides pressed up against the back window, and ARE MOONING ME! Mooning me! I backed off hard and fast, bewildered, violated & feeling like a complete and utter pervert. They all then stick their heads out the windows and give me the same "Haha thumbs up" sign I had graced them with.

Kudos to them, they got the better of me. All the way home, all I could do was turn my music up to drown out the picture of three young kids showing me their butts. Needless to say, my road rage was banked and on hiatus for the duration of my trip home. The worst part is, I feel like some sort of molestor, as I'm sure their mothers would be less than impressed that I copped an eyeful of their buttocks. Despite the fact, I hadn't done anything other than stoop to their level. I'm well & truely warned for the next time though.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

new moon. of course.

So I caved. In fact - I didn't really cave at all, the whole thing was planned, but since I don't want to come across as excited as a 15 year old girl, "I caved".

I went and bought New Moon - for my kids, or so I tell people who ask, when secretly since devouring the entire series in a few weeks, I've been waiting on pins and needles for the movies to come out.
We had a midnight showing at a friends house with our kids - of course they loved it, and this elicited whispered conversations of "I'm on Edwards side" "Edward?? Jacobs so much cooler" "But Edward lives longer. Jacob will get old, like Mom" <--- this was actually a conversation which - up to that point, I had been quietly enjoying. That was where I cut in with an equally whispered "Shhh. You're missing the movie .... & making me feel old" was left unsaid.
All in all, it was a good time & even as I write this, my girls are huddled around the t.v , watching the movie again, giggling & making comments about who they would marry.

And today is a good friend of mine's birthday - which she shares with her son. So "K & D"

See you late on tonight xx

Friday, March 19, 2010


Morning all. I've been working far too much - in the last few weeks, my teeny baby daughter has become a virtual stranger. When she's in distress - she's taken to calling out for 'Daddy!', something none of the last 4 kids have ever done. This is new to me, and I almost die a little each time I hear it. Because in the last few weeks, she's replaced me - her rock & never-going-anywhere Mommy, with Daddy, whose been around more. It absolutely bites.
I was with her in the shower the other day - something she loathes, (she can't stand the water getting in her eye and is constantly wiping her face) well she had also just woken up, & I asked my husband to grab her so I could bathe her while I was in the shower. As soon as her feet hit the tile her wails were bouncing off the walls, her cries of "DADDY!!" reached a serious fever pitch that caused my husband to walk back with a sad "awww baby. I'm sorry". And I was right there, trying to calm her - but to no avail. She wanted, needed and had to have Daddy. Mommy has been gone too much, and hasn't been there for almost every second of her days - which I'm about to change. No more working, no more anything, and when things are back to normal, I'll be sure and let you know. :)

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Ramonna's ring of your choice - GIVEAWAY

This Giveaway is CLOSED. Congratulations to Tabathia! #27

I have a thing for all things vintage. I can't get enough of antiquities, & have an affinity for the victorian era (mixed with some modern classic) So when I found Ramonna's jewelery store, I was transfixed. I loved what she had to offer.

Primiarily she deals with making rings, but they're gorgeous. When I contacted her, she sent me a ring to review, and it was beautiful - shaped in a diamond, with an orange stone, it fit perfectly, & went with everything in my closet.

It has a "white washed" feel to it, but it's definitely something that has become my favorite piece of jewelery. Ramonna is located in Oradea - in Europe, & has an eye for making creative pieces with originality and flair.
I was really impressed with what she creates, and she has agreed to give away a ring of the winners choice - and this is about the easiest giveaway I've had on my blog ever.

To Enter: All you have to do is go to Ramonna's etsy store and "heart" it (make it a favorite). It doesn't get much simpler than that.

Extra entries:
+1 Become a blog follower
+2 Email subscribe to "20 to Life!"
+3 Tell me exactly where Oradea is located in the world (other than "Europe")

This giveaway will run from 3.19.10 until 3.27.10, please leave separate comments for each entry, winner will be selected via Random.Org & emailed. They will then 48 hours to respond, or another winner will be drawn.

**Please note, I received no form of monetary compensation for my opinion/review. I did receive a product from the company in order to give a fair & balanced review and any opinion, statement etc. expressed in said review in solely my own & was in no way influenced by a third party.

Good Luck!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Checking in.

Have you ever had one of those days when you get some really bad news and time slows to a crawl as you try to figure out where to go from here? I had one of these days yesterday, and am still at a loss as to how to overcome it. The thing is - I can't talk to anyone about it - lest I burden them with it, so it's pretty much a 'lone wolf' thing, which makes it worse. On top of that - my kids - ever perseptive - can sense theres something amiss, and the more I shine my fake smiles and words to make them feel encouraged, the more their brows furrow and they whisper among themselves. At least eventually I'll figure it out, but until I do - I might be even more absent from blogging as I have been. I've neglected my blog, for which I feel awful, but when I list my priorities, it just doesn't seem to rate that high - although I love doing it!

Also - a friend of mine was diagnosed with anorexia, so if anyone has any suggestions on how to help her - I would be grateful. She doesn't have an "image" problem, she just doesn't want to eat and when she does, feels sick and most times throws up. So if anyone knows how to combat this, please let me know so I can map what to do for her. And since so many of you favor emailing me personally instead of leaving comments - that's fine too. And thank you,. In advance.

On a brighter note - I was working with a friend of mine yesterday and we were using her mothers car (which she is very protective of) well my friend rolls down the window and we hear this awful screech sound, and she rolls her eyes and says "I hope nothing happens while I'm using this car. Cos that would be my luck for something to break - even though it's falling apart as it is - but I'll end up paying for it"
Literally 2 seconds later we hear a huge crunch! She had backed into a one of those huge trash cans, and all I could do was laugh at the irony of it. She throws me  a furious  look  and says "Don't.EVEN.say.another.word" It was great - luckily there was absolutely no damage, but damn if it wasn't funny!

So I will get to listing more giveaways sometime in the very near future - and I was given more awards (thank you ladies!) and will be accepting them as well. Bear with me, I have too much going on. ugh.

Seen as I always feel the urge to leave something at the end of my posts - I found this hilarious picture - although, it's somewhat "raunchy" so be warned. But funny as all heck. I laughed for a good ten minutes. So enjoy - I'll be back tonight, tomorrow or when I can with all those promises I made. xx

Monday, March 15, 2010

Soda Stream (valued approx. $100.00) GIVEAWAY

This Giveaway is CLOSED. Congratulations to Bethany! #1

I was so excited to bring this to you. I've discovered not many people know what a "soda stream" is, so let me enlighten you. When I was growing up in New Zealand, we had one of these and they're FANTASTIC!
Basically what they are is a machine (worth $100.00) and you take a bottle, fill it with water, place it in the machine, push the button that carbonates the water and then you add a flavor. So then you basically have a healthy soda. When I was given the opportunity to give one away - I naturally jumped on it.
The Soda Streams come in an array of colors & flavors.
I have one myself, my favorite flavor is ginger ale, but what I love most about these machines is that they're easy to whip up for your kids - for something different to drink. It literally takes about 2 minutes from start to finish. They also have energy drinks, diet flavors, regular flavors & sparkling water. The selection is endless and well worth it.
You also can purchase the accessories from Soda Stream for a killer price. These soda streams are definitely a must have in your home - and the sleek design makes it so they fit right in with any decor. I chose the red & silver one, and it looks great in my kitchen.
This is a product you really have to taste to appreciate, and trust me - it's definitely worth it.

As you all know I have Lupus, so I have to be careful with what I eat & drink, including "sweeteners" they contain something called Aspartame which is awful for your body. Most everything that is "low sugar" has aspartame in it, and I have to avoid it like the plague! Well these items don't contain it!!

"Regular flavors contain no high-fructose corn syrup, and diet flavors are sweetened with Splenda® brand sweetener, not aspartame."

If I wasn't already sold on Soda Stream - that would be the clincher. These soda streams are high quality, taste great & remind me of a summer day with a bunch of kids hanging out at your house and looking for something to quench their thirst.
They sell over 25 flavors, and the ones I've tried so far - I've fallen in love with. My kids were so excited, they not only enjoyed helping me make them (it's easy for kids to operate too - another plus) they had a blast experimenting with different tastes, mixing and matching "(that was the only thing I stayed away from!) but it's something you want to add to your kitchen. On the Soda Stream website they have all the information you need for the nutrition aspect of the Soda Streams, they're also Kosher certified, recipies you can whip up, they have it all. They're also enviromentally friendly, they don't use plastic bottles, & I personally, think it's classier, & the way to go.

Calories Carbs Sugar Sodium Caffeine

Pepsi® 100 27g 27g 25mg 25mg

Coca-Cola® 100 27g 27g 35mg 23mg

SodaStream Cola 34 9g 9g 2mg 15mg

7-UP® 100 26g 26g 50mg 0mg

Sprite® 100 26g 26g 45mg 0mg

SodaStream Lemon Lime 36 9g 9g 25mg 0mg

All SodaStream regular sodamix uses a mixture of Splenda® and sugar. Diet flavors are sugar-free, sweetened with Splenda® brand sweetener. Comparison is based on 8 fl. oz. serving size (0.34 fl. oz. of SodaStream sodamix per 8 fl. oz. of water).

And today, luckily someone can win one!

Win It
Soda Stream has graciously agreed to let me give away a  Fountain Jet Soda Lover's Start-Up Kit (approx. $100 retail value.) It includes the winner's choice of black/silver, white or red/silver Fountain Jet, CO2 to make over 100 liters of soda, 2 reusable carbonating bottles, a sample pack of flavors, and 3 full-sized flavors of the winner's choice!

Mandatory entry: In order to be eligible to enter this giveaway, you need to enter my "Hooks of Hope" giveaway.

Extra entries:
+1 Twitter follow Soda Stream
+1 Subscribe to "20 to Life"
+1 Facebook follow Soda Stream
+1 Become a blog follower of "20 to Life"
+1 Facebook fan "20 to Life!"
+2 Tweet about this giveaway (up to 2x daily)

WIN a SODA STREAM!! w/ @sodastreamusa & '20 to Life' Make your OWN healthy soda/sparkling water or diet @ home!

+1 What's the fourth letter of the title for this giveaway?

This giveaway will run from 3.15.10 until 3.31.10, please leave separate comments for each entry, winner will be selected via Random.Org & emailed. They will then 48 hours to respond, or another winner will be drawn.

**Please note, I received no form of monetary compensation for my opinion/review. I did receive a product from the company in order to give a fair & balanced review and any opinion, statement etc. expressed in said review in solely my own & was in no way influenced by a third party.

Good Luck!

Saturday, March 13, 2010

vegas baby!

ok, so I had these posts set up in advance while I was doing the Sin city thing, but I COULD NOT resist posting this. This just reminds me of clubbing. While we're on the subject - the chick in this video has the EXACT shoes I have. As well as swim suit. funny eh? And to the NZers. Yes - it IS as sweet as they say. Toni - you, me, Vegas & watch the sun come up. I love you chica. :)
p.s I'm listing a killer giveaway tomorrow. tres chic.

Friday, March 12, 2010

my post yourself replies & happy FF!

Happy FF, if I don't get back to you anytime soon, forgive me - I will eventually, I just have alot of 'real life' things going on, but I'll get there.

Does anyone else hate Blogger as much as me? It took me FOUR attempts to post ONE giveaway - I was cussing up a storm, & eventually had to calm myself down, cajole the bloody thing with sweet talk & baby the hell out of it. I was less than impressed.
I also had to visit the doctor today - only to find out my doctor was out of town, & I was given his subsitute. Happy camper I was not, I then had to recount my entire medical history, (with dates. DATES!! Who remembers dates of when they last had a pap smear check!) Only to have him eventually tell me to come back on Monday when my doctor was back in town. Good freaking grief.

I also promised another fellow blogger - who weirdly asked to remain anonymous (??) that I would finish up with my end of the "Post Yourself" bargain in which you post 5 things about yourself, but the questions are given to you by someone else. I would have thought that this kind of thing was meant to be a 'link back to the blogger who gave me my questions' but he has asked to remain within his anonimity. So be it.
Here were my questions - keep in mind. I DID NOT CHOOSE THESE.

1: If you could go anywhere in the world, where would you go - and with whom?
2: You're on a desert island with Bill Gates, Edward Norton & Ellen Degeneras. Who do you kill, who do you send for help and who do you shack up with. (ick.)
3: If you could have one super power - what would it be?
4: Favorite item of clothing
5: If you could chose an alternate life - what would it be.

*deep breath*

Here goes ...

1: New Zealand, no question. With no arrest warrent out for me (long story) & with Katie. ;)

2: ummm. I'd send Ellen Degeneras for help - she's not much good with anything else - but I guess I wouldn't want to kill her. I'd kill Bill Gates (I spend waaay too much time on the computer, and that's partly your fault Bill. Sorry.) And of course shack up with Edward Norton.

3: I'd probably want to fly. That or be invisible ... no. I'd rather fly.

4: Distressed Sliver jeans with the holes in them. No contest.

5: I'd want to backpack and stay in hostels around the world.

And there you have it. I'm a murderer who can fly to New Zealand, wearing my silvers, while shacking up with Norton. What a life. I'm not sure if I nominate someone else now - I'll have to check, but if so - *looks at Half Crazy Mommie* you're it.

I also have to mention an award I got, but have yet to claim, from Lady Bug Mama, but I'll do that when it isn't almost 12, & I didn't have a trillion things to get done tomorrow - including working. again. BUT! I'll also be going to Vegas - so that just makes my whole week. Wait - year. Makes my whole year.

I wasn't going to but I was asked to please leave one more video before going to Vegas - so k. It's weird, in fact I wouldn't even watch it - just listen to it, it's much safer. But it's beautiful, haunting, all that Tori Amos is anyway & has Adrien Brody in it. Not too shabby. I used to listen to this at least 40 times a day. Enjoy. xx

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Hooks of Hope 'chocolate covered cherries' GIVEAWAY!

This giveaway is CLOSED. Congratulations to tracyo comment number #4

Hooks of Hope is an adorable store on etsy - but this one, I found to be really different. Kati (& Lynda) own and operate the company, and what they make are what they call "Hooks", essentially wash cloths, blankets, & bags, all hand-made & all crocheted. I found them to be of a high standard & made to last. 

What Kati sent me to review was a set of cloths for either the bath or the kitchen (I opted for the kitchen) & the set was called "Chocolate Covered Cherries, mini deluxe". A mini set means there are three, instead of five. I've always had a 'thing' about dishcloths, I find them disgusting. I always wonder how many germs and bacteria are swarming my dishcloth, and therefore my counter, since that's what they're used for. With Kati's hooks, they're machine washable - definitely a plus, they come in fantastic colors - and another service that Kati offers is if you can't quite see the color that will match your kitchen or bathroom - or whatever you have in mind, she can customize some to your style & taste.

Hooks of Hope have a selection of different 'hooks', baby blankets, dish/wash cloths, bags and even scarves. They're crocheted & are to a high standard. But another reason I fell in love with Hooks of Hope was the fact that Kati & Lynda give 15% of ALL proceeds toward a charitable organization. This year it happens to be "Post Partum Depression" & as a mother, I think quite highly of their choice. What amazes me is the selflessness that comes with what they do. There's an obvious passion to their craft & just the fact that they give to various charities is humbling.

I, naturally wanted some insight into why they do what they do - and here's what Kati had to say:
How did you come up with the concept of Hooks of Hope? Around this time last year, my mom and I were busily preparing for our shops grand debut on Etsy. It all came about because mom and I had this grand idea that we could use our crocheting "habit" to do something great. Why not crochet, make a little money to cover our costs, and donate the rest to charity? And that's exactly what we've done. We chose to name our shop "Hooks of Hope" because we like to think that each of our "hooks" (aka crocheted items) give the gift of hope with every purpose to someone who benefits from the money we donate to charity.

How do you decide which charity you'll donate to? The charity we are currently donating to is Postpartum Support International. We chose this charity because it provides assistance to women going through postpartum depression...a condition that I myself struggled with after the birth of my first son. Hopefully, with even the small amount we are able to give we are able to "give hope" to at least one person struggling through this very difficult condition.

In May we will be choosing a new charity to donate to for the following year. We are hoping that our Facebook and Twitter Followers will help us decide which charity to choose this year and will begin providing them with choices to choose from next month.

Do you have any personal experience with any of the charities you've featured? Yes, I struggled with postpartum depression after the birth of my first son. Luckily, I was able to recognize the symptoms right away and get the help I needed to overcome it. Postpartum Support International is great in that it helps those who may not recognize the symptoms right away know what they are and provides resources to make getting help a much easier process.

How do you come up with the ideas for the products you make?
Coming up with product ideas is probably my favorite part of running Hooks of Hope! I love looking at different color combination's and imagining what they may look like together in a scarf, handy hook set, or blanket. I try to keep myself inspired by as many things as possible when in the "development" phase. Usually, inspiration comes from places you wouldn't typically associate with crocheting. Web page colors, clothing sets, and even booklets I use in my dietetic internship have inspired my color combinations. My boys are also big inspirations and sometimes even help my pick the colors to use.

How long does it take you to finish say - a set of dishcloths? totally depends on what else is going on in my life! TYPICALLY, a set of dishcloths takes me 2-3 days. A scarf takes about a week while a blanket takes more like a month or more. Usually I have multiple projects going on at the same time which changes the overall production time for each. I do accept custom order requests and those I work hard on to finish as fast as possible so that my customer isn't waiting around too long for their order to arrive. I know that when I order something online I want it so much faster than I typically get it. I try to be conscious of that when working on custom hooks.

I'm absolutely impressed with the generous nature of Kati & her mother, and love that they give so much back!

Win It
Hooks of Hope are offering one reader a set of the Chocolate Covered Cherries mini deluxe (the same one I received - they're beautiful) dish/wash cloths!

Mandatory entry: To be eligible to enter, leave a comment stating a worthy charity or cause you think would benefit from Hooks of Hope.

Extra entries:
+1 Take a look around Hooks of Hope & leave a comment with some items you thought were adorable!
+1 Follow this blog
+3 Tweet about this giveaway (2x daily)

Win w/ @HooksofHope & 20 to Life a set of choc. covered cherry dish or wash cloths!

This giveaway will run from 3.11.10 until 3.18.10, please leave separate comments for each entry, winner will be selected via Random.Org & emailed. They will then 48 hours to respond, or another winner will be drawn.

**Please note, I received no form of monetary compensation for my opinion/review. I did receive a product from the company in order to give a fair & balanced review and any opinion, statement etc. expressed in said review in solely my own & was in no way influenced by a third party.

Good Luck!
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