Review

September 7, 2012 by Tracy

I am soooo excited to have been given the opportunity to review “Cleaning House” by Kay Wills Wyma!!  Every single one of the over 270 pages of this book are worth reading. I LOVE not only the knowledge Kay shares in this book through her 12-Month “Experiment”, but the manner in which she brings about the information.  Her down to earth, honest account of the 12 tasks made this book so relatable to my own family life.

Kay’s experiment came about from realizing that her kids were living with an attitude of entitlement. Do you do everything for your kids? Do they EXPECT that you will do everything for them? If you answered yes, then this book is for YOU!

It’s not just for reading, but also for implementing the concepts of each task Kay describes. From making the beds, and  cooking, to cleaning toilets, party planning, and serving others, Kay covers it all and tells all. The good the bad and the ugly. She shares the laugh out loud moments as well as the touch your heart moments and the not so heartfelt moments.

I am determined to keep this book off the shelf and handy at all times, as we jump into our own rendition of “the experiment”. We are going to start small, and I haven’t actually started anything with the kids yet because well…Hi my name is Tracy and I am a procrastinator.  I’m excited, though, to announce that I have made MY bed everyday for the last 3 weeks. Ha Ha! Other than that,  I’ve just been evaluating the task at hand thus far. I have learned something important these last couple of weeks that my kids have been on a hurricane hiatus from school. I need a forced schedule. I need discipline, and accountability. So, I will be setting a date in which to get phase one started. (October 1st) Now, there, I’ve said it, AND put it in writing. No, I won’t come and change the date when you are not looking. I will also be occasionally blogging about our ins and outs in hopes that will give me some of the accountability that I need. Here is glimpse into how we will begin the experiment…

I will be following Kay’s advice on getting each of the kids a jar, and filling it with a monthly “allowance” of an amount that hubby and I will decide on at a later date. (Did I mention I’m a procrastinator?) Money will be snatched from the jars when violations are discovered. We are going to start small….very small…probably just making of the beds for the first few weeks.

I have also discussed with my girls ages 10 and 6 about helping with dinner on certain nights. Kay covers this in Task No. 2 Kitchen Patrol. I’ll be doing it a little different than her, but my girls will sit down with me and plan a weekly menu. They will be able to select at least one meal they will be able to cook together with little assistance from me. Yes, we’ve discussed it, and have not put it into practice yet. Baby steps…I tell you!

Okay, so the actual implementation of this book will likely do a lot for my character as well as theirs, if we ever get started…LOL!

Disclosure: Waterbrook Press has provided me with a copy of Cleaning House; however, all views expressed in this post are that of my own.

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August 1, 2012 by Tracy

Welcome to my Lilla Rose by Tracy Grand Opening Party!!!!! I have so many exciting things to tell you, so be sure you read through, then enter to win a FREE Flexi-Clip!!

What is a Flexi-Clip? Well, first off let me tell you it’s awesome! I signed up to be a consultant because these clips are not only beautiful…

but they work like no other hair clip I’ve ever used. I have 2 girls, and nothing would hold their hair. One has super thick and one has super thin hair, so bring on the Flexi-Clip!  What makes them so great? Well they flex…like their name says. They are made of music wire, so they are very strong, but they will bend around your hair and hold it….comfortably. That’s another thing that my girls would always complain about, the discomfort of other clips or barrettes. (Can’t wait for them to wear these clips to school!) Okay, that is not all…the pin is also a very important part of the Flexi-Clip. The pin has 3 notches, so it locks into place depending on the thickness of your hair. (and btw it is permanently attached to the clip, so you won’t ever loose the pin) Here we are with our Flexi’s!! ♥

Now, sizing IS important, so that you can be sure you have the correct size clip for your hair type and style you want to wear. The Flexi’s come in Mini, Extra Small, Small, Medium, Large, Extra Large and Mega.  FYI: Small is the most popular clip. Just keep that in mind, but to help you out you can watch the sizing video here. What if you watched the video, get your clip, and it’s still the wrong size? No worries…Lilla Rose will exchange it for you.

Head over here and check out not only the tons of beautiful Flexi-Clips available, but also the Hair Bands, Hair Sticks, You-Pins, Bobby Pins and O-Rings.

BUY 3 GET 1 FREE + FREE SHIPPING

Now, as I mentioned before this is my Grand Opening Party, so on with the festivities!!!!!  During this party which will last from August 1st – 15th I am offering all NEW Lilla Rose Customers Buy 3 Flexi-Clips Get 1 FREE (Up to a $16 value)!!!! Whoo Hoo!  But wait, during the month of August when ordering from a party, all orders of $20 or more get FREE shipping!!

Now in order to take advantage of these awesome deals, you MUST follow these directions:

1. Click through to my website using this link. (only this link will give you FREE shipping)

2. If you order $20 or more worth of Lilla Rose products, your order will automatically receive FREE shipping.

3. Want to get a FREE Flexi-Clip? Buy 3 Flexi-Clips using the link in number 1, (so you’ll also receive FREE shipping), then email me at [email protected] with  your customer number  and the item number of the clip you would like to receive FREEPlease note: The FREE clip must be valued at $16 or less. The FREE clip will be ordered separately by me, and will also ship separately from your order. AND you MUST be a NEW Lilla Rose Customer to receive the FREE clip.

WIN A FREE FLEXI-CLIP

I am also giving away a FREE clip to one lucky person. (Winner chooses design.) One winner will be selected on August 16th and will have 48 hours to respond or another winner will be selected. Open to US residents 18 years or older only. Facebook is in no way associated with this giveaway. Just follow the fun rafflecopter form below to enter to win!! GOOD LUCK!

Make sure you keep an eye on my Lilla Rose by Tracy facebook page for even more!!

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July 24, 2012 by Tracy

On Day 1 of our Staycation we took a day trip to Avery Island home and birth place of Tabasco! We toured the factory and also toured Jungle Gardens located on the Island. We had an awesome time!!! While touring the factory we learned the process of making a bottle of Tabasco, and get this…it takes over 3 years to make Tabasco Hot Sauce. They process the peppers the same day they pick them, but then they spend 3 years aging in these barrels.

It was really cool watching the bottles travel down the assembly line. So, how many bottles do you think they make everyday?

I bet you didn’t think it was over 700,000!! WOW! At the time we were passing through, they were on bottle number:

Once the rain settled down, (and let me tell you it stormed while we were there) we made a our way to the Tabasco Country Store for some samplings and to see all things Tabasco! Hubby had fun trying all the different flavor sauces, and more. There was even ice cream flavored with a pepper sauce. It was YUMMY! and had a nice spice of course.

While on the Island we also toured Jungle Gardens. This area of the island is also owned and cared for by the McIlhenny family. The views are breathtaking. Being from South Louisiana, I have to admit, I often take views like this for granted, but just look how beautiful. There are no words, so I’ll just share a few pics…. (oh yeah there are alligators in that 2nd pic)


So, I know you guys couldn’t make the trip with us today, but I have some good news!! Tabasco is going to give one of my readers this  TABASCO® Family of Flavors Gift Box – with 7 Flavors!!

Just use the rafflecopter form below to enter to win. One winner will be chosen on July 31st and have 24 hours to respond or another winner will be selected. Good Luck!

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Tabasco is providing the winner with the 7 Flavor Box Set. I was in no way compensated for my post, and all opinions expressed are 100% my own.

July 19, 2012 by Tracy

Seal of God written by Chad Williams was a VERY interesting read! The book was not what I expected, but wow! Not that I thought becoming a Navy Seal would be a piece of cake, but again wow! You will follow Chad not only on his journey to deciding to become a Navy Seal, but he takes you through every grueling moment of training. After accomplishing what I think most never could, he graduates and serves as a Navy Seal. He then takes you on his journey to becoming a “Seal” of God. To say that Chad was a rebellious person would be an understatement. But his very openness about his life before, during and after the SEALS it what makes this book very hard to put down.

Disclosure: Tyndale House Publishers has provided me with a copy of Miracle For Jen; however, all views expressed in this post are that of my own.

June 18, 2012 by Tracy

Here it is!! The 6th and final Audubon Nature Institute Ticket Giveaway!!!  Congrats to last week’s winner Jeni B.

Here’s your LAST chance to win 4 FREE Tickets to the Audubon Zoo, Audubon Aquarium of the Americas or the Audubon Insectarium! (Winner’s Choice)

Are you loving the bonus entries?? Well, you’ll once again have the opportunity to earn bonus entries for sharing this giveaway with your family and friends!! All you have to do is send your family and friends here to enter to win. When asked how they learned about the giveaway have them enter YOUR name and you’ll snag 5 EXTRA Entries for each person you refer to the giveaway!! So enter below and start SHARING!! (Please note all extra entries will be added at the end of the giveaway!)

It’s super easy to enter using the “rafflecopter” form below, and you can complete as many or as little of the entries as you choose. There are also a couple daily entries, so bookmark this page and come back every day.

One winner will be selected on June 24th, and will have 48 hours to respond or another winner will be selected. Giveaway is open to US residents 18 or older only. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook or Twitter. And as always if you have any questions, please contact me at [email protected] Good Luck!

Enter below, then scroll down to check out all the fun we had at the Audubon Aquarium of the Americas!

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So last weekend after we left the Audubon Insectarium we headed down the street to the River Walk for lunch. Shrimp Po-Boy?!? Yes, indeed! After lunch we walked over to the Audubon Aquarium of the Americas all located only a couple blocks from each other with a beautiful view of the Mississippi River and the Riverboats!! I would have gotten some pics for you guys, but it was raining.

My son was so excited and couldn’t wait to see the sharks!! But first we saw lots of really cool fish along with the awesome stingrays, which the kids said looked like they were smiling at us. As you enter through the tunnel of water there are hundreds of fish are swimming all around you!!!

One of my favorites is the saltwater aquariums. The brightly colored fish and coral are just gorgeous! I would LOVE to have a saltwater aquarium in my home one day! It wouldn’t be complete without a Seahorse…

…I just love them!

What’s that smell?

The kids were also really lucky to be visiting while the Animal Grossology was in town! It’s there just for a limited time. There were some interesting smelly things that the kids approached with caution…lol! There were also quite a few other interactive games for their enjoyment.

Now, I truly loved the next area. Get ready for some Stingray Petting! How Cool?? So Cool! You just put your hand in the water and they swim up to your hand.

And how cute are these little guys…

And then there were the SHARKS!! Such amazing animals to watch! And do you know what other animals are pretty amazing to watch?  The Jellyfish! I was so mesmerized by them.

These were just a few of the amazing animals that can be seen at the Audubon Aquarium of the Americas. Time it right and you can also watch the feeding of some animals like the Penguins!  We truly had a wonderful animal filled day!

I was provided tickets from the Audubon Nature Institute; however all views expressed are 100% my own.

June 11, 2012 by Tracy

Congratulations to Lori S. winner of last week’s giveaway!! Here we go…another chance for you to win!!!

Again this week I will be giving you a chance to win 4 FREE Tickets to the Audubon Zoo, Audubon Aquarium of the Americas or the Audubon Insectarium! (Winner’s Choice)

Once again you’ll have the opportunity to earn bonus entries for sharing this giveaway with your family and friends!! All you have to do is send your family and friends here to enter to win. When asked how they learned about the giveaway have them enter YOUR NAME and you’ll snag 5 EXTRA Entries for each person you refer to the giveaway!! So enter below and start SHARING!! (Please note all extra entries will be added at the end of the giveaway!)

It’s super easy to enter using the “rafflecopter” form below, and you can complete as many or as little of the entries as you choose. There are also a couple daily entries, so bookmark this page and come back every day.

One winner will be selected on June 18th, and will have 48 hours to respond or another winner will be selected. Giveaway is open to US residents 18 or older only. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook or Twitter. And as always if you have any questions, please contact me at [email protected] Good Luck!

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Next week make sure you head back over here and enter to win the final giveaway!

This weekend hubby and I and the kids ventured out to the Audubon Insectarium to catch a glimpse of some BUGS! BUGS! and more BUGS! And we even ate a few…oh what fun!

First we caught a glimpse of some pretty interesting bugs in the Live Animal Encounters. Roaches that didn’t even look like roaches because they actually evolved to mimic another bug, and these really pretty and shiny bugs that we found out are actually used to make jewelry in other countries. How neat is that?!

Along our way to the Bug Appétit we saw bugs like the really pretty pink katydid, and a blue crawfish, and the kids played in a “bug”.

Then, we entered Bug Appétit, the official Bug Tasting Zone! Have a look at what was on the menu…


We all tried the “Cricket” cookies.

No, I’m serious we did….Look!

Hubby was a little more adventurous and tried a few other things as well. He said the “Roasted Crickets” were quite delicious.


After we finished up, the kids were talking among themselves, when I heard Gracie say, “Yes, but it was just chocolate.” That’s when I realized she thought the cricket on top of her cookie was a really cute chocolate chip just in the shape of a cricket. Upon realizing that she had indeed just eaten a cricket she responded with, “Nooooooooo!”

And then I got the “how could you let me eat a bug” look. Ahh well, she got over it pretty quick. LOL!

We then moved on to learn about those pesky termites which hubby knows about all too well. (He’s an exterminator, specializing in termites.) Very interesting little bugs, just none that I want making a home anywhere near mine!

Now this is our 2nd visit to the Insectarium, but our first time viewing the animated 4D movie “Awards Night”! The host – a bug voiced by Jay Leno. It was super cute, and we loved the 4D effects!!

My oldest could not wait to get to the butterfly room!!! But first we got to look at beautiful butterflies and bugs preserved onto boards. The colors were just amazing.

Last stop was the butterfly room. Where hubby and I were quite popular. They kept landing on my shirt and on hubby’s hat. Such beautiful little bugaroos and great way to end our visit to the Audubon Insectarium!!



Stay tuned to next week’s post where I will tell you all about our visit to the Audubon Aquarium of the Americas!!!

I was provided tickets from the Audubon Nature Institute; however all views expressed are 100% my own.

May 21, 2012 by Tracy

Congratulations to our week one’s winner Bradley – Entry #101! Are you ready for the 2nd of 6 giveaways giving you and your family a chance to visit the Audubon Zoo, Audubon Aquarium of the Americas or the Audubon Insectarium with a FREE Family 4 Pack of tickets! (Winner’s Choice) There are multiple entries in which you can receive, and be sure to come back daily for bonus entries. One winner will be selected on May 28th, and will have 48 hours to respond or another winner will be selected. Giveaway is open to US residents 18 or older only. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook or Twitter. It’s super easy to enter using the entry form below. If you have any questions, please contact me at [email protected] Good Luck!

Enter Now, then scroll down and read my full review of our visit to Audubon Zoo! And be sure to come back next week for your 3rd chance to win!

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My family and I visited Audubon Zoo yesterday, and we had a fantastic time! I love a day of making memories with hubby and the kiddos. Here are my little monkeys hanging out!

The Audubon Zoo has always been one our family’s favorite outings.  The kids all have their favorite animals they can’t wait to see, but upon exiting the zoo when asked which was their favorite of the day the list went on and on.

When we arrived we were just in time to catch one of their Critter Chats. We had the opportunity to get up close and personal with some interesting “critters” like a rat snake, tarantula, iguana, and the cutest of them all the hedgehog. Look at that little face.

Next we headed to the World of Primates…

This area is my absolute favorite. I just love watching these animals especially the Orangutans.  They usually always put on quite a show for everyone. Silly monkeys…

After the World of Primates we decided to break for a picnic lunch. We had packed our lunch and snacks, but there are several places around the zoo in which you can get something to eat/drink. There’s the Flamingo Cafe, Zoofari Cafe, and the Cypress Knee Cafe as well as carts along some of the paths.

After lunch we headed to the Dinosaur Adventure! My son could not wait to get inside and find the T-Rex. These dinosaurs were HUGE! They moved… they roared… their eyes were looking right at you..lol! He loved it!!! Then we asked him to stand next to the T-Rex for a picture, and he didn’t think that was a good idea. But he did it anyway and even managed a little smile! It’s pretty much all he’s talked about since.

  

From there it only seemed right to head on over to the Reptile House to check out some living and breathing reptiles.  And with so much still to see, we then headed to the African Savanna, and the Louisiana Swamp (complete with the white alligator). Then there was Jaguar Jungle and the South America Pampas and the Sea Lions. I think I could sit all day and watch the sea lions just glide through the water – it’s so peaceful!

Then we had a nice ice cream treat from Haagen Dazs (Yum!) before heading to see the last animals of the day in the Discovery Walk and the Asian Domain – home to of course the great big elephants and the beautiful white tiger. Ahh, taking a much needed afternoon nap. My kiddos were about to do the same… all the way home.

Thank you Audubon Zoo for a fantastic day full of lions, and tigers and bears..oh my! We loved every minute of it!

I was provided tickets from the Audubon Nature Institute; however all views expressed are 100% my own.

May 11, 2012 by Tracy

First I must say, Disney on Ice presents Dare to Dream is – FUN FOR THE ENTIRE FAMILY!! Last night my family and I attended the show at the Baton Rouge River Center and it was a HIT! WOW!!! I knew my daughters ages 6 & 9, would love it, but my son age 4 as well as both hubby and I loved it as well! In fact, my 6 year old repeatedly thanked me for bringing her throughout the entire show.

We absolutely loved watching the movies we’ve seen so many times, come to life on the ice. It was just so beautiful. Included in the show are Princess and the Frog, Cinderella, and Tangled.  The music is all your favorite tunes right out the movies. The skaters were magnificent and the backdrops and props were spot on.

And Tangled…Wow! Without giving away any surprises, some parts were SO beautifully done! Bravo! to the skaters!! Beautiful….just beautiful!

I highly recommend this show, you will not be disappointed! If you are in the Baton Rouge area there will be shows all weekend  (May 11th and 13th). You can check show times here. If you are not in the Baton Rouge area, you can go here to see if there will be a show coming to your town!

Oh yeah, and if you look closely in the picture above, you just may be able to recognize some surprise special guests that also made an appearance!

And this was my little princess anxiously awaiting for mom to pick up the tickets!!

I am a Feld Family Ambassador, and in exchange for my time and efforts in attending shows and reporting my opinion within this blog, as well as keeping you advised of the latest discount offers, Feld Entertainment has provided me with complimentary tickets to Feld shows; however, all opinions expressed are 100% my own.

March 12, 2012 by Tracy

My family and I attended the Advance Auto Parts Monster Jam this weekend! How did we rate the show? It got 5 thumbs up!! This is the first monster truck show that we have ever been to, so we didn’t quite know what to expect. Many had suggested we bring earplugs because it can get very loud. It was really loud, but with earplugs in place, we were all set.

My 4 year old son is a HUGE monster truck fan, but I didn’t know what my girls would think of these very big loud trucks. Well, my 9 year old, after taking a few minutes to get use to the noise, really did enjoy herself! My 6 year old (who we often refer to as Pinkalicious because she is such a girly girl and LOVES pink) was immediately hooked as soon as “Madusa” drove her “pink” monster truck onto the track!!

Oh yeah a pink monster truck!!

Though we did not know any of trucks/drivers before the show, we quickly had our favorites. My son instantly became a “Grave Digger” fan. ”He’s the fastest monster truck ever!” He has continually reminded us all weekend as he reenacts the show with his set of monster trucks which now of course includes the very famous “Grave Digger”!!

I would definitely recommend Monster Jam, as a fun event for the entire family! Go here to see if Monster Jam will be coming to a city near you!

I am a Feld Family Ambassador, and in exchange for my time and efforts in attending shows and reporting my opinion within this blog, as well as keeping you advised of the latest discount offers, Feld Entertainment has provided me with complimentary tickets to Feld shows; however, all opinions expressed are 100% my own.

March 6, 2012 by Tracy

Miracle for Jen, is truly an amazing story, and should be on the top of your MUST read list for 2012.  I feel blessed to have had the opportunity to read this book and share my thoughts with you all. Miracle for Jen is a true story written by Linda Barrick.

On the night of November 5, 2006, the Barrick family was struck by a drunk driver. All 4 members of the Barrick family were injured. While they sustained significant injuries, Jen, Linda’s daughter, was the most severely injured. Jen suffered a severe brain trauma, and was in a coma for 5 weeks. When she awoke from the coma, she didn’t know her middle name, that she had a brother, or what a shoe was, but she remembered every word to every praise song and could recite scriptures that she had learned prior to the accident. Though, when asked a question, Jen could barely get out an answer, when she sang and prayed her words were clear.

This book is so inspiring, and such a wonderful testimony of God’s love and His promise to work all things together for good. As I read the book, I kept finding myself wanting to share what I’d just read with my husband. It was a blessing to be able to see God’s presence throughout the story shown in details and circumstances that only He could have crafted.

Throughout the book, Linda shares some of Jen’s journal entries – things she’d written to the Lord. I was so touched by Jen’s writings (especially at the young age of 15) that they continually inspire and challenge me to grow deeper into my own relationship with God. One of my favorite quotes from Jen’s journal entry is this, “The things of this world don’t matter. Only what I do for You does! Continue to grow my faith & allow me to know you like never before!” This quote was written just 2 days before the crash. WOW! It’s no secret Jen is an AMAZING young lady with a heart for the Lord, and He is using her in ways she never imagined. Jen’s story has forever touched my heart.

Disclosure: Tyndale House Publishers has provided me with a copy of Miracle For Jen; however, all views expressed in this post are that of my own.

Below you can watch a short trailer provided by Tyndale House Publishers.  Scroll down for the giveaway!

Would you like to win a copy of Miracle For Jen? Tyndale House Publishers is giving one of my readers a copy of the book. All you have to do is enter using the rafflecopter form below. Good Luck!

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