Friday, February 26, 2010

I was a guest poster

I don't know if you've seen this fabulous blog, but Nate, from KNOX-esque, was king enough to offer a guest post position, which I immediately accepted!!
So it was posted today, and I had butterflies while reading it! You'd think this is was my first guest blog or something.
So anyway - head on over and check it out. But fair warning - it's definitely not all peaches n cream, like I am here. I think it's the fact Nate blogs with Wordpress. It makes people act different .... enjoy!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Scrubz Review & Giveaway!

This giveaway is CLOSED. Congratulations to Midwestern Gone Idahoan! #4


Most of you have heard of Scrubz, and if you haven't - then you're in for a real treat! I was lucky enough to be sent some "All natural Body Sugar Scrub", and I chose 'Miss Floral' for the scent, I was pleasantly surprised!

I had tried Scrubz before, a friend of mine had some which I tried, & I liked it then - but having your own is different. I'm able to use this product everyday, and it does exactly what it claims to do!

"..massages your skin, helps improve circulation,
exfoliates old skin cells & opens up pores,
leaving skin with a lustrous glow!.."

My skin is softer, & I absolutely feel like I'm glowing when I get out of the shower after using the body sugar scrub. It's fantastic, and I'm making sure it's kept in my daily regime, that every girl has!

Scrubz also has a range of different products, all natural and all great. Lip by Scrubz, Oil by Scrubz, Kids Scrubbez - the list is extensive, as is the different scents. There are floral scents, minty, woodsy, citrus ... and on and on!

Win It!
Check Scrubz out for yourself - they have a great site, and take a look around. And today I have four $15.00 Gift Certificates, from Scrubz, to give away to four lucky readers.

By entering this giveaway you give SCRUBZ permission to contact you via email one time. This is not signing up for the newsletter, you need to do that on the website.

Mandatory Entry: Become a blog follower & leave me a comment (with your email address)

Extra entries: 

+3 Subscribe to "20 to Life!"

+3 Sign up for the Scrubz newsletter.

+1 Grab my button, and leave a way to find it.

+1 Fan "20 to Life!" on Facebook.

+1 Tweet about this giveaway (up to 2x daily)

WIN a GC from Scrubz with "20 to Life" blog.

This giveaway will run from 2.25.10 until 3.9.10, 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 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, February 24, 2010

Wordless Wednesday - A sisters moment

Isn't it funny (& I know you know at least one person who has pointed this out) how Wordless Wednesday is usually accompanied by a paragraph or two explaining the picture?

I adore this picture, I caught it when G was 'offguard' and not posing (as she does, being the Diva in the fam.)
I love the look on her face. She's looks so tender and interested at this small bundle of pink that wakes her up in the middle of the night, just a sisters curiosity & moment to just pause & "Look."
(A was about 5 days old in this shot. And if you look closely, you can see Q sprawled out watching t.v with no interest whatsoever in the goings on of a baby, lol. Typical.)

I also suggest swinging by 5 Minutes for Mom (another fan-TAB-ulous site) if you want to take a gander at more WW, & why not do one yourself? Go on! It's fun and I'll even come by & be all up in your business nosy. I promise.)

I also want to do a quick 'found-who-left-me-the-Beautiful-Blogger-award-I-couldn't-find" piece really fast - it was thanks to the lovely Suzanne from Midwestern gone Idahoan !! She is seriously a craft super hero, so take a gander at her site, she does good work. And to Suzanne - THANK YOU for the honor you bestowed upon me, I'm truly grateful, thank you!


I know I've posted a lot today, tune in tomorrow for some more great giveaways, (oh yes. You will want to check this out!) but now, I'm out, PEACE!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Pleased to meet you, Joliene, :D

I have been remiss in a few things. FIRSTLY! I received some awards & didn't follow through with the passing them on, or thanking the passer.
First of all Tammy, from Tammys-Two Cents was kind enough to grace me with the Sunshine award.
Then Jess, from It's all about the Savings  gave me the Beautiful Blogger award THEN someone else has given me an award (a blog mom/friend mentioned it to me) but I'm thinking it must be on a giveaway post, since I can't find it - and I only check the giveaway ones when I'm about to Random it, (which is why yours took me so long to see Tammy!) Annnyway -stop by these two wonderful blogs, they do a great job - Tammy your floor pics were great, and I loved how everyone got involved :D and Jess - the Birthday Freebies - niiice. Thank you both for the honor - & I also appreciate mystery award #3, when I find you. And I will.
It’s All About Savings

I was contemplating going all cherry-pop happy today, & couldn't muster the enthusiasum. So I nixed that pretty dang quick.
This morning as I was looking around, I found a couple of new sites that had a common theme - which mainly was "Confessions" and "Being Yourself". Well - I have a confession to make. I'm not 'being myself', when I'm online. I'm polite, courteous, even forgiving of perceived slights. I make light of things that in real life, may have slaughtered me, laughed at something my kids did, when really, I was laughing, while holding & kissing, and being a Mom. (Which can't be summed up in 4 sentences)

Offline - I can be a real hard-ass. I love my kids with a ferocity that would rival most mother bears, my husband and I have "off" days, ones where I'm seeking refuge at a girlfriends house to bitch & whine & ultimately go home refueled.
I don't take friendship lightly, I don't eat enough (in the last year I lost close to 90 pounds, I kid you not, just from being sick, going off certain meds. I was on for Lupus & losing my appetite)
I can unfairly ground one of my kids, getting the wrong end of the story.
I like hard music - as in the kind you see 20 year olds head-banging too, I have a tattoo, my accent hasn't completely dried up, but it's getting close.
I gossip, (however hard I try not too) I worry over little things like a dirty look from someone, a harsh word, a certain tone. I sweat the small stuff. As well as the big. And I've kicked some serious ass in my time, as well as gotten mine kicked.
Basically, I'm human. But online, you wouldn't know any of that, I am just one of the many Moms who get online & blog/chat/whatever.
I think it's much more interesting when you know who the "who" is behind the blog. OH! One more thing - (Katie, you will love this)
My real name is : Joliene. A closely guarded secret, & not one freely given. I.Hate.It.
(Sorry Mum), but it's just one of those names that I cannot stand, hate to hear it, on me at least. I can see it on someone else and think - 'it suits her'. Why not me? I have no idea, I'm more of a ... I actually don't know. A "Joe" I guess. And to top it off - it was after the DOLLY PARTON song!! Oh, the humanity ...

This (early) White Stripes version, does make the song sound bearable (who am I kidding? I absolutely LOVE this version, but still. The.Name.Sucks. enjoy!)

Monday, February 22, 2010

Belly Charms "Swarovski Pearl Initial Bracelet" - Giveaway!

This Giveaway is now CLOSED. Congrats to Tabathia! #105

This giveaway, for me - is monumental. The company I'm featuring today is called Belly Charms, owned & operated by the lovely Sonya, & alot of you wouldn't know it, but thanks to Sonya and Belly Charms - my blog is where it's at today. I'm dead serious, (although I won't go into the exact reasons, suffice to say I've been wanting to feature Sonya and Belly Charms for a very long time!) a few months back I won a giveaway hosted by Felicia from Go, Graham Go! and it was this amazing bracelet from Belly Charms.

I was absolutely stunned when  it arrived, encased in a velvet jewelry box the bracelet had the first initials of everyone in my family (it was a single name bracelet, and I was in no way going to narrow it down to just one child when the bracelet was as gorgeous as it was, and I knew I'd wear it almost everyday - so initials it was!) I chose the pearl color (Tahitian) & Sonya was not only solicitous she paid attention to every detail.

Helpful, generous - she asked that I send my bracelet back, when she noticed in my blog post that the size I had ordered was a size too small for my wrist (although I was still going to wear that bad boy - no matter what!) & Sonya re-sized it for nothing! I was so, so impressed, as I was a giveaway winner - not an actual paying customer - but to Belly Charms - there is no difference. Sonya cares for everything concerning her beautiful creations, & she doesn't only have bracelets, in fact her store started with , yup - belly charms.

When Sonya was pregnant with her 1st son, she had to take her belly button ring out, and of course her hole closed on her - so she had it re-pierced, only to find out she was pregnant a second time, lol!
This time though, she was determined to keep a cute little belly ring in, so she used a PTFE bar (a short term for teflon, basically) but after her second son was born - just didn't like the "steel" rings anymore.

So - Belly Charms was created! Sonya has all sort of cute charms and everything can be customized! She has Team Bling, Names, Vital ID's (for kids' to wear, for medical & sport safety), Anklets, Bracelets, Pendants, Toe Rings - the list goes on & on. Belly Charms uses Swarovski crystals to accentuate what she makes, & combined with the Sterling silver, some of her work is simply gorgeous! Her dedication to detail & love for what she does, shows with her work - the pieces she creates are things you want to wear, I've had several people comment on my bracelet, how beautiful it is, where did I get it? It's worthy of being a family heir, (which mine will be) that's how fabulous her products are!

And everything that Belly Charms has to offer, is of the highest possible standard that Sonya can bring to her customers, there's definitely an aura of class with Belly Charms.
Another interesting fact about Belly Charms, and Sonya, was that she has  some special bracelets made for 'Breast Cancer Awareness' & she donates 20% of sales from that specific collection to the American Cancer Society! Generous, as I said before. She also offers free shipping on orders over $20.00 to the U.S & Canada!
And in following with Sonya of Belly Charm's generosity, I am going to add a little "extra" something to her giveaway.
The winner will also receive their choice of any Sterling Silver Toe Ring that Sonya has on her site!

Belly Charms has a sophisticated edge, everything in Sonya's store is stylish, original & is obviously the result of someone very passionate about what she does. Sonya is a true artist! I asked her a little something about herself, & was thrilled with her answers, I think most of us, as Moms with kids - can appreciate what she had to say ...

Is it hard to run a company, raise 2 boys while being a STHM?

Photobucket Yes.  You have to really love what you do.  My boys ( 4 and almost 3) are not in school yet so most of my work is done late at night when everyone is sleeping...OK So I started answering this at about 6:14am then a little voice screamed"Mommy" so I went and got in bed next to my  3 year old until he went back to is now 6:45 am - good example :)  
I love being home with them during the day.  I am also an aerobics instructor.  I teach in the mornings mainly, so I take them with me when I go to they gym.  They love it and it is a great way for them to play with other kids.  I am on the go 24/7, but would not have it any other way.  My husband is great -  when I am really busy, he will take over the kids for a few hours.  I try to ship out all belly button ring and Vital ID orders within 24 hours.  I believe in shipping everything ASAP.  He is very supportive of my businesses and helps me come up with new ideas too.  We have just moved and I finally have my own office.  Could not be happier :)

How do you come up with the ideas for the style of your products?
 I honestly just make them up, I am always on the lookout for new charms for the maternity belly button rings.   My boys are only 13.5 months apart so I spend about 4 years straight either pregnant/nursing or both.  I would have loved to have a pendant that said " I am pregnant, not fat" 
Especially for the second pregnancy.   I  am always throwing things out there to my husband. I started my website  on with about 5 products.  When I first published, it had 20 products...... I now have over 400 items on my website.  I just keep learning new things and adding more products.  Since 90% of what is sell are maternity items, I am always on the lookout for ideas.  In the last year I have learned to make Glass Tile and Scrabble Tile Pendants, they are lots of fun and just so cute for a mom-to-be.

How long does it take you to complete a bracelet or an anklet?
I am very picky about what I make.  If  I make a bracelet or anklet and it is not "Perfect"....I will take it apart and start over.  Many of my customers have told me just how much they love their mother's bracelets and how much having something with their children's names means to them.  I want each one to be perfect.  
I would say average time is about 45 minutes to an hour for a single strand.  Double and Triples strands take longer because I want all of the beads to line up perfectly.  I have spent as much as 4 hours on one of these.

 How did you come across the idea of donating proceeds towards Breast Cancer Awareness?
One of the chairperson's for the local BC foundation was given one of my bracelets as gift.  She loved it and asked If I would donate a few for some giveaways at their charity events and that is how it got started. 
I am also a big supporter of the March of Dimes, my oldest son was born at 34.5 weeks and spend 10 days in the NICU.  He is a perfectly healthy little boy today.  For the last 4 years I have been a team captain for the March for Babies in Palm Beach County.  This is one charity I truly believe in and hearing all of the stories of these tiny little premies will bring tears to your eyes.  It is incredible to see a  healthy little girl and learn that she was under 2 lbs when she was born!


What one thing can you never leave home without?
 I can't leave home without my Blackberry.  All of my orders & inquiries come to it and I like to stay on top of things.  When we moved last month, we were without internet for 4 days, and I was emailing all of my customers from by Blackberry to let them know their orders would ship on Monday!

Don't you just love her? I adore her work, her style, her passion for what she makes, & as a person she has been incredibly fantastic to work with.
My favorite answer was definitely about starting her answer at 6:14, and being able to get back to it at 6:45, lol - that definitely sounds like my home and I'm sure most of you could relate!

Win It!
Today Sonya and Belly Charms has graciously offered to give one of my lucky readers a
  Swarovski Pearl Initial Braclet - Your Color Choice  [up to 5 sets of initials]
as well as the "extra" Sterling Silver Toe Ring!

Mandatory entry: To be eligible to win this amazing bracelet, you need to visit Belly Charms & leave a comment with what item from her store you would love to have!

Extra entries: 

+1 Become a Blog Follower of "20 to Life!"

+3 Facebook fan Belly Charms & "20 to Life!"

+1 Name a pregnant celebrity who would look great sporting a Belly Charm!

+3 Grab either Sonya's button , or mine, with the link where to find it! (top, left of blog)

 +1 Twitter follow "20 to Life" then tweet about this giveaway!

WIN w/ @BellyCharms & "20 to Life" Swarovski Pearl Initial Bracelet!! Gorgeous *bling* for Mommies & More!

+2 Email subscribe to "20 to Life!"

This giveaway will run from 2.22.10 until 3.4.10, 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, February 20, 2010

"Achieve Anything In Just One Year!" by Jason Harvey - Review!

I was given the opportunity to review a fantastic new book, "Achieve Anything In Just One Year be inspired to accomplish your goals",written by certified Life Coach & founder of the "Limitless Institute" (a non profit organization that studies human motivation & personal development) Jason Harvey.
At first I was somewhat skeptical (as is my nature) but definitely curious.
This book will take you a year to read. (Hence the title)
If that doesn't pique your interest, I'm not sure much will! What John has created is a daily quote. Every day you turn to whatever page you may be on, and spend 10 to 15 minutes alone, in a quite spot, reflecting on your days "quote" and your days assignment. It's always something relatively simple, and always easy to accomplish.
Jason has also included some insight into the message of the day, and I've found them to be smart, pointed and very, very true.
On day 17, the quote is from Michelangelo, and the assignment is to look at where you're aiming. Basically, if it's too low - then you aim higher. Always aim high.

I know some people hear "Life Coach" and think of new age gurus and tie-dye (lol - at least I used too) but all a Life Coach is is someone who can make you look at YOURself and point out where you need to make changes - well I guess really, you're figuring out where you can improve and change, but a Life Coach will give you the tools.

I really enjoyed Jason's book, it was humorous, it was insightful and so far - very helpful.
Really it's for those people who are sick of doing the same thing over and over - even his introduction points out a man sick of doing all those little every-day obligations. Where's the optimism? Where's the excitement? When he was young (as with all of us) there was a 'take-on-the-world teenager, ready to live life and looking forward to the challenge, I see it with my son now (14) he's so bright-eyed about the future. There are limitless possibilities! He can go anywhere, be anything, achieve all he wants too!!
I know we all felt that once, and you can again, you can find out how to live your life - with Jason's book - "Achieving Anything In Just One Year"

Finally, here's a step-by-step blueprint for achieving your dreams by a deadline! In just 365 days, Jason's superb advice will lead you from listlessness to life. And the best part is that 'Achieve Anything In Just One Year' specifically shows you how to find your true life's path."
-Amy Greenough, Ph.D., Boston, Massachusetts

 "Jason's approach to achieving your dreams and being a success is exciting and challenging. His life changing book helps you discover what you love and helps you create a life that shows it. I wish I had this book twenty years ago!"
-Benjamin McKenzie, Entrepreneur, Toronto, Canada

Jason also has a blog where you can get personal advice and lessons/tips/advice on personal motivation & happiness. Here is one of his Top Ten motivational quotes of all time :

Life has no limitations, except the ones you make. —Les Brown

Don't really click, this image is from Amazon, I couldn't find any other.

Haven't we all felt uninterested in our lives? Almost as if there's something missing, another daily grind, and I know I've met some days with a world-weary *sigh*. Well all you need is 15 minutes a day, with Jason's book and some true reflection & honesty. (I know I sound like an infomercial ad, but Jason Harvey's book is that great - I really, after my whole 13 days, have a much better, optimistic outlook on everything! I even over-use my exclaimation points now, lol)

I also found if you think that day's advice doesn't really apply to you - if you think hard enough you'll find it really does. Everything in his book can be for a Mom at home, to a career-driven husband, or someone fresh out of college. I will be having my son read and do "Achieve Anything In Just One Year" by Jason Harvey - and I know I'll be doing him a huge favor!

As an interesting side note, I went looking for images to use for my review, & Amazon (which is where the pic of the book is from) and they're sold out - now that's convincing! This man knows what he's talking about!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Pieces of me - random

I haven't gotten on here in a while and really just chatted, I've been busy doing this & that, (while feeling like I'm not really achieving anything, yanno?) and the only time I'm leaving something here, is when I'm posting a giveaway. So here I am! And I decided to leave a little piece of me here today.

So I love music - everything I do from house-work, to messing with the computer, I have to have something blaring, and depending on my mood, anything from Tori Amos to Lamb of God (seriously.)
ummm, Love movies! Good movies, that is. Anything quote-able, funny and unique - love it.
I like die-hard friends. The ones who will walk to the edge of hell for you - those are among my prized possessions.
Annnnd - New Zealand chocolate. Gotta have it, love it to death! oh yeah *nods* - you should try it sometime, should you be so fortunate. :D
That's my small post for today, pieces of me, and true to nature, I thought I'd leave you with a song, so - I never watch American Idol (I heard your *gasp*) but a friend of mine actually got me hooked on one season, and it was the one with Adam Lambert - who I thought OWNED THE WHOLE SHOW!
Every song he sang had it's own spin on it, he was awesome!!
Now, apparently he has a c.d out, and I though "Oh, here we go - trying to ride the tails of minuscule fame. Ugh" (I actually thought "UGH", lol.)
But no! I stand corrected! He has some talent ladies and gents, this song is great! I heard it once, loved it - and now rark the radio whenever I'm in the car and I hear it, my kids, of course, cowering down in embarrassment. Such is life - on with the show!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Crazy Dog T.Shirt (Nacho Mama sister site) Giveaway!

This giveaway is CLOSED. Congratulations to happyenchilada, comment #4!

I was lucky enough to be able to review some t.shirts from Crazy Dog, which I know most - if not all - of you have heard of before. You may not know that they have a sister site, Nacho Mama.
Crazy Dog offers a wide selection of t.shirts some of which are hilarious, cute - and downright politically incorrect :D
There's nothing I like more than a store with a sense of humor - and this company has it in spades.

They have varied movie quotes - classics and new classics. Karate kid, Back to the Future, Office Space - I was offered a shirt to review & couldn't decide between quite a few of them, & the kind people over at Crazy Dog sent me three shirts!
Schrute Farms Beet (from the NBC sitcom, The Office) Initech (from Office Space) & The Michael Scott's         
Dunder Mifflin Scranton...Race for the Cure... (from The Office) & I couldn't have been more pleased! The quality of the tees is fantastic - and interestingly enough, I noticed that my 'Initech' shirt was made in Haiti, & with everything going on there right now, anything to help some people with employment, has my full support!

The shirts are made of cotton, which is great for durability - they hold some
elasticity - and the sizes range from small to 3XL, so anyone can deck themselves out in these stylish tees.

For those of you who know anything about me,   you know I love anything humourous, and the dryer, the better (although it's not a quality smiled upon, sarcasm reigns with me!), so when I saw the selection that Crazy Dog & Nacho Mama carried, I was in heaven!
The site is easy to navigate, so if you follow the links, they will easily lead you to what you're looking for.
Funny, offensive, 80's, movies, retro, junk food - the list is endless!

They're also made of heavy cotton, the stitches are nice and tight (I am DYING to add a Michael Scott "saying" right here, which is also another t.shirt that Crazy Dog carries, however, in the interests of being appropiate, I shall refrain) and all in all, I thought they were well made - durable, and attention grabbing.

They come in a variety of colors, they have baby doll tees, for the ladies and basically it's a great way to show some personality, individuality and uniqueness.

The one thing I would change, is that Crazy Dog include a "baby doll tee" option for all their tees, not just the ones that they think girls will buy.

Most everyone I know has heard of, and absolutely loves what Crazy Dog has to offer - the prices are fantastic, the tees are even better and Crazy Dog has great "promos", especially on their Facebook Fan Page, which I suggest you check out.
I'm a huge fan, their stock is unrivaled in quality, variety & originality!

And today, they've offered one of my lucky readers a chance to win a tee of their choice! 

Win It!
Mandatory Entry: To be eligible to win a one-of-a-kind Crazy Dog T.shirt of your choice is to go to their Facebook Fan page & join as a follower/die hard fan! It's as simple as that! If you don't "do" Facebook, what you will need to do, is go to their store and choose two t.shirts that made you laugh - and laugh hard. Easy enough?

Extra Entries:

+1 Become a blog follower using Google Friend Connect

+2 Become a subscriber to Crazy Dog T.Shirt's website (right hand side of the home page, near the top)

+1 Facebook Fan "20 to Life"

+1 Twitter follow CrazyDog

+1 Follow me on Twitter

+1 List two (2) tees you loved from Nacho Mama!  

+2 Tweet about this giveaway (2x Daily)

WIN YOUR CHOICE of Tee from @CrazyDogTShirt & "20 to Life" blog @Malisce Original, funny & AWESOME!

+2 Grab any one of my buttons!
+10 Purchase any T.shirt  from CrazyDog for 10 extra entries!

This giveaway will run from 2.17.10 until 2.27.10, 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!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Spoiled Sweet Tutu & Bow [Your Choice] Giveaway! +something extra!!

This giveaway is now CLOSED. Congratulations to Erica G!

I know how many of you are Moms to little princess', and as I have 3 myself, so you are going to want to check out my latest giveaway. I (serendipity-ly) found this fantastic store called Spoiled Sweet (originally Repunzels bows n clips's) & was immediately enthralled! Christen,the stores owner & operator, had some fabulous tutu's & bows (a few onesies & inital shirts), which of course, any little girl is going to love to put on, but the quality & selection Christen had, basically put anything else to shame.

Full, colorful tulle, which has been made-to-last, in my opinion. (I say that with sincerity, as my 2 year old has a love for all things dressy - and will change into those things several times a day. Christens of Rupunzels Designs tutu's held up to the brutality with class).
It still held the full look, & these can be worn with anything. (I personally liked the boots n tutu look that my 8 year old seems to favor.)

Christen was also amazingly kind enough to send not only one tutu with a matching head bow - but three, for all three of my girls, as well as a crocheted hat touched off with a maribou puff! (Perfection - and generosity, all the ingredients for a fantastic place to shop!)
I've never met a more caring company owner and was so excited to get her name out there.

First of all - you can basically customize anything in Spoiled Sweet's store - if you can think it up - Christen & the co-owners (here sister & a talented friend) can make it. Within the store is a color reference for thread, bows, tutu's, etc. so you can mix n match, design what you want, or browse the selection of ready-to-ship that Christen has in store already!

The bows themselves were cute & fluffy, and have been treated so there is no fray (which is something I can't stand in a bow, when it starts to wear and fray) & they stay in the hair - despite the running, jumping, playing, and yelling that may go on  with the wee head underneath it - they hold fast.
The bow's also have a "no slip grip" for fine baby hair, so even your newborn - or fine-haired baby can look pretty, fashionable & ready to go.

The other interesting thing I found out about Spoiled Sweet, other than the high quality work that she managed to pull off with tulle (tulle, to me, always looks so fragile - but not so, as I found out with Spoiled Sweets' tutu's & bows) was the fact that her tutu's can fit any girl, of any age.
My girls age range from 2 to 7 (a brand new seven at that!) to an 8 year old, and all of Christens creations fit perfectly. And I mean - perfectly!
My 8 year old has a slender waist - with long, long legs (not from me. I wiiiish) and her tut fit her snugly, she's in love with it - and even wore it to a birthday party. It didn't look too short, as most dress' tend to look on her.
My 7 year old suffered from failure to thrive as a baby, and as a result has always been beyond petite - she still fits in to size 2 clothes (of course, depending on where I get them from) but her tutu was perfect! It fit her teeny waist, didn't fall off or down, which will usually discourage her from wearing clothes when they don't fit, thankfully - Rupunzels was a perfect fit for her.
And my 2 year old is  your (anything but) "average", healthy 2 year old. And her tutu does not leave her waist, unless she's shoving herself into something else, to quickly replace it with the tutu again. And if she doesn't have it on - her "baby" does.

What I love, is that the selection carried in Spoiled Sweet means I can stock up enough to add to my daughters play wardrobe, as well as their "wearable" clothes - there is every color imaginable, and that suits my over-active imaginative girls just fine.

Spoiled Sweet will fit your child, no matter the age or waist size, and I think that makes her stand out.
Her work is superb, I'm truly impressed, the ribbons (accentuated on her tutu's) add to the classiness of the piece, and little girls are transformed into princess', rock stars - or just themselves, by wearing what she has created.

Christen herself has been an absolute pleasure to work with - patient, kind and thoughtful, and she recently teamed up with her sister and another friend to further widen the range of items they carry, and what was created is now called "Spoiled Sweet" (originally Repuzels Bows n Clips)

Christen does fabulous work, and as an homage to her, and the fact that she patiently waited while I took my time reviewing & posting her giveaway (personal reasons) I decided to add a little something "extra" to this giveaway. If you are the lucky winner, and favors your comments number, as well as the awesome - Pick Your Own Tutu AND Matching Head Bow that Christen is offering my (oh-so-lucky) readers, I will also be sending you something 'extra' as a 'thank you' for entering Christens giveaway, and forgiving me for waiting so long to bring you a truly fantastic store that is well worth taking a long hard look around! I'm also not posting what it is, as it is a surprise! But one I think you'll like!
So! What do you have to do to be eligible to win these great prizes and one-of-a-kind tutu?

Win It!

Mandatory entry: To be eligible to win a Tutu of YOUR choice with a matching bow (& a "surprise" extra) you need to go to Christens store, Repunzels/Spoiled Sweet & choose what tutu and bow you would pick, if you won this giveaway (this is not binding, you can change your mind!)!

Extra Entries:

+1 Become a blog follower using Google Friend Connect

+1 Become a follower of Spoiled Sweet's blog using Google Friend Connect

+1 Facebook Fan "20 to Life"

+1 Twitter follow Spoiled Sweet

+1 Follow me on Twitter

+2 Tweet about this giveaway (2x Daily)

WIN YOUR CHOICE of Tutu & Bow & a surprise "EXTRA" w/ Spoiled Sweet & 20 To Life blog @Malisce @SpoiledSweet8
+2 Enter Half Crazy Mommies Shake N Bake giveaway

+10 Purchase anything from Spoiled Sweet for 10 extra entries!

This giveaway will run from 2.16.10 until 2.25.10, 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!

Monday, February 15, 2010

Celtic Woman - Songs from the Heart - Review

Have you ever had a moment where you thought something was going to be pretty good - & it ends up being out of left field - leaves you dazed, breathless and stunned, good? I mean really good?
Anyone who knows me, understands my love for music - any music, so when I was sent the new C.D from Celtic Woman called "Songs from the Heart" I was excited to review it, but I had no idea what I was in for!

Celtic Woman is made up of 5 singers who voices are so sweet and angelic that it almost brings tears to your eyes. Máiréad, Lynn, Lisa, Alex & Chloë are five women who have exquisite voices - the heavens weep, I'm sure, when they sing from their hearts.
They have a stage presence, when they perform, that will leave you riveted.Their passion is unrivaled & they sound superb!

I had never heard of these woman before, but am a fan of Celt music - the soothing tones, the images they invoke, I used to lull my eldest son to sleep by playing Celtic music softly while nursing him.
I was absolutely delighted from the first stirring notes, to the very last fade-out instrument. Captivating with repose, I was hooked!

Among some of my favorites was "Fields of Gold", a Sting classic and remake, sung by Lisa who nails it to perfection. I don't know the technicalities of what it takes to sing, but I can certainly recognize true talent when I hear it - and it's what every lady in the band  excudes.
"When you Believe" which is a song from the soundtrack to 'Prince of Egypt' literally bought tears to my eyes. I was swept up in the majesty of it. All 5 of these ladies put their heart & soul into what they sing and it shows in their expressions and their voices.
What I found most interesting was the way they manage to bring Irish elements to their audience in a very modern way.

Celtic Woman is an all-female musical ensemble conceived and assembled by David Downes, a former musical director of the Irish stage show Riverdance.
The group has undertaken a number of world tours. Cumulatively, albums by Celtic Woman have sold over 50 million records worldwide, making it one of the most commercially successful musical acts in the world.   Taken from Wikipedia

Each of these woman have backgrounds seeped in music. Chloe, who is only 16 (!) recorded her first album at 12, her second at 14 - she also started her musical career at the age of 4 weeks old by singing on her mothers television show!

Lynn has performed to a live audience as the lead vocalist for "RiverDance?", during the opening ceremony of the Special Olympics.

Lisa has a proven background in music as she has key roles in musicals such as Chicago (as Kelly), Chess, Oklaholma and Grease!

Mairead has been a deicated fiddler player since she was 6, and then began pursuing a career as a violinist with the RTE Concert Orchestra. Irish Music Magazine voted her the Best Traditional Female in 2003.

Alex has performed with the Icelandtic Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, The Danish National Symphony, the RTE Concert Orchestra and also sung on the Evita soundtrack with none other than Madonna!

They certainly have the credentials to back up their amazing voices.

I was decidedly impressed & when it comes to music I am critical, cynical and thorough in my observations.Celtic Woman enthralled me. They have done some fantastic remakes of songs you will have heard before - "Fields of Gold", by Sting, "When you Believe", from the soundtrack to the Prince of Egypt, "O, America!", "Scarborough Fair", by Simon & Garfunkle (although this was before changes were made to the original line-up.) But still, a stunning - brings-you-to-your-knees song. They have a variety - before and after the line-up change, & each song is almost better than the last - and I've never said that about a group that I'd never listened to before.

Currently they are performing around the country on their "Songs from the Heart, 2010 tour" & I encourage anyone interested in an evening of splendor, sophistication and beauty to check when they are coming to a city near you - you will not regret it. I will be purchasing my seat to listen to these angelic voices first-hand, and can't wait!

Celtic Woman is all over the Billboard charts, selling more than 3.8 million records in the U.S. alone, and has had 7 sold-out US Tours. They are currently kicking off their tour which includes dates at New York City’s famed Radio City Music Hall. They’ve performed on Dancing With the Stars and will have an upcoming PBS special.

3.8 billion! But trust me, they have earned & deserve all these accolades and much, much more. I can't praise them enough, I was bought to tears by more than one song, & haven't stopped listening to them since I popped the c.d in. They are amazing - and I urge you to check these ladies out!
Celtic Woman, Songs from the Heart. 

I couldn't resist, so I posted some youtube videos so you could hear first-hand how stunning these woman are. Breathtaking & amazing come to mind, watch & enjoy ....

"Fields of Gold"

Fields Of Gold

Celtic Woman | MySpace Music Videos

"You'll be in my Heart"

"My Lagan Love"EMI link:
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