Daily Break

Trying out a new site for smiley360.com called Daily Break. It’s like a trivia site and you can supposedly earn prizes for answering trivia. It seems to me like it would take forever to earn a prize but I put the app on my phone and it is a lot of fun to play when I’m waiting to pick up the kids or something like that.

Kroger Spring Dinners

I think this has been the most fun BzzCampaign so far! Thanks bzzagent.com!

I received a free pork loin, free cake mix & icing, free Mac & Cheese, and free crescent rolls. We invited some friends over for dinner, added a salad, and some mashed potatoes, and had a wonderful feast!

For the pork loin I just used a honey glaze so it was lightly sweetened. It turned out moist and delicious!

I forgot to get a picture before we cut into it, but you get the idea. Very tasty!

I sliced the leftovers really thin and we put some bbq on it for bbq sandwiches the next day. We all wished there was more!

For the chocolate cake. I added some marshmallow creme to the chocolate icing and had a chocolate marshmallow cake.

VERY yummy! I like to dress up my boxed cake mixes and this one turned out delicious! Definitely making this one again!

My kid’s favorite item was the crescent rolls.

I have to buy more of these every time I’m at the store. Everyone loves them so much and at $1 a can they fit great in my grocery budget.

The only item we didn’t really like was the mac & cheese, it was a little thin so we’ll probably stick to our usual boxed kraft mix.

Overall, we loved trying out some Kroger brand foods and sharing it and some great fellowship with friends! I really hope bzzagent does more campaigns like these because I’m always looking for an excuse to have friends over and show off my cooking skills (this time with a little help from Kroger)!

Garnier Fructis Hydra Recharge Review

Thanks to Bzzagent I got to try a full set of Garnier Fructis Hydra Recharge products. Shampoo, Conditioner, and Moisture Plenish Treatment for free.

I have loved these hair care products! They’re all about putting moisture back in my hair and leaving my hair shiny and weightless.  The Hydra Recharge range contains superfruits goji berry, passion fruit and kiwi to actively replenish without heaviness. My hair is soft and shiny without being weighed down or oily. They definitely live up to their advertising!

The Hydra Recharge Shampoo has these cool “moisture beads” in it that make it really fun to wash my hair. It’s like a massage for my hair every time I use it! And on top of that, I love the mild smell of all the products, light and refreshing.

Next I use the conditioner and then right after that the Moisture Plenish Treatment, which is supposed to be in for 1 minute. So, I rub the Moisture Plenish Treatment in then finish the rest of my shower and then rinse it out.

I love the way my hair feels right afterwards and the softness lasts well into the next day so if I don’t get to wash my hair every single day it’s not a big deal. And with little kids, that’s a wonderful thing!

Children’s Mucinex

I received a free Children’s Mucinex from Smiley 360 about a month ago and got to try it out when my child was sick last week. She had a pretty bad cold and I ended up trying the Children’s Mucinex as well as Benadryl for her cold.

Benadryl dried out her sinuses so I ended up having to use a moisturizing nasal spray as well to prevent nose-bleeds but otherwise benadryl relieved all her cold symptoms.

Mucinex seemed to clear up her cough but her nose dripped constantly (which drove her crazy – I think we went through a box of kleenexes in a couple of hours). So, I’m not sure that Children’s mucinex was really our best option for a cold. I am glad it relived some of the congestion but there are other cold products out there that seem to work better for me.

Garnier Fructis Triple Nutrition Miracle Dry Oil

Garnier Fructis Triple Nutrition Miracle Dry Oil…a really long name for a very simple product.  NEW Garnier Fructis Triple Nutrition Miracle Dry Oil is a breakthrough multiuse formula that delivers rapid-action nourishment to treat your hair, body and even dry areas on your face with no oily residue.

  • Combines three weightless oils – olive, avocado and shea – to transform dry hair and skin
  • Made for everyday use on your hair, body and face
  • Instantly absorbs in a touch with no oily residue
  • Can be used on damp or dry hair
  • Available for suggested price of $5.99

I received a free Miracle Dry Oil product from bzzagent.com. After using it for a few weeks, at $5.99 this isn’t a bad deal, but I wouldn’t say it’s great.

Pros:

  1. I really love the smell of this product. It’s a little fruity and a little powdery at the same time.
  2. It honestly absorbs really fast, I almost don’t have to rub it in (which is nice since I’m 7 months pregnant and it’s getting hard to reach my feet…).
  3. My kids love being sprayed down with their “lotion” after a bath, so this makes it a lot easier to keep their skin from drying out.
  4. Yes, it does moisturize my skin really well.
  5. Doesn’t break out my face or leave it oily when I use it (I do spray it in my hand and then rub it on my face, I wouldn’t recommend spraying directly on your face).

Cons:

  1. When I used it on my hair (right after a shower) it weighed my hair down and after a few hours my hair looked really oily (almost like I hadn’t washed it for a week). It did the same thing to my kid’s hair as well so I don’t really like this product for hair.
  2. The spray bottle tends to spray oil all over – I have to either stand on a towel to use it or wipe the floor off when I’m done so I don’t slip (my kids love being sprayed with the oil though so I’m not sure if I would prefer a pump cap over a spray cap or not)

My opinion, I love it on my body and my face! It absorbs fast and moisturizes well. My kids love it because it makes putting lotion on fun. But I won’t be using it on my hair again anytime soon – maybe on a heavier or coarser hair it would work but it just didn’t do it for mine.

Simple Truth Organics

This has been one of my favorite bzz campaigns so far! Check out bzzagent if you want to get your own products to try and review.

There was lots of tasty free food with this campaign. All items are free from 101 artificial preservatives and ingredients so you can feel better about the delicious food you serve your loved ones. With a full line of products from meat and produce to dairy and canned goods, you’ll find Simple Truth and Simple Truth Organic exclusively at the Kroger Family of Grocery Stores. Plus, since they’re store brand, they’re cheaper than the name brand organics which makes purchasing organic a lot easier on my grocery budget!

Frozen fruit: I tried a bag of mixed berries. This was delicious! I made a smoothie for me and the kids (which I loved but because of the blackberry seeds the kids weren’t too fond of it). I also thawed the fruit and piled it on top of pancakes, then added some whipped cream. That was delicious! The fruit was just sweet enough to go great with my pancake!

The kids did not want fruit on their pancakes but after breakfast, the they ate whatever fruit was left in the bowl, so they definitely liked it as well.

Sparkling beverage: I just love that this has cane sugar in it – and a few other ingredients that I can recognize. I really like the taste of a drink with cane sugar and the Kroger Sparkling beverage is delicious! A friend of mine compared it to izzy beverages because it’s basically like carbonated fruit juice. Very tasty and something I’ll be buying again as a special treat for me!

Sweet Potato chips: These I wasn’t so fond of. They’re like baked chips so they’re thicker and chewier than my usual lays potato chips. They aren’t bad, they just didn’t satisfy my “I want something salty and crunchy” craving. If you’re looking for a healthy alternative to potato chips these are great though.

Almond milk: I was totally unprepared for the nutty flavor of almond milk since I’ve never tried any almond milk before. I tried the chocolate almond milk and the almond plus the strong cocoa flavor was pretty strong. I didn’t like it cold but it was delicious hot with some marshmallows or whipped cream. Just like a good, strong, hot cocoa!

I have a friend though, who loves almond milk. She prefers vanilla and she really liked the Simple Truth brand. It saves money and is just as good as a more expensive brand.

Health and Wellness bar: I stuck this in my husband’s jar of breakfast bars and forgot to keep an eye on when he ate it. So, I’m really not sure what he thought. He didn’t complain though so it must have been tasty. A breakfast bar with all natural ingredients really has to be tasty, I’m just disappointed I didn’t get to it before he did…

All in all, I really enjoyed this campaign. Pretty much everything was delicious and I love that they cost less than the bigger brands!

Cafe Escapes

Yet another fun free product from bzzagent! Nescafe Cafe Escapes for your Keurig brewer. I got to try six different flavors, Chai Latte, Milk and Dark Chocolate Hot Cocoa, Café Mocha, Café Vanilla, and Café Caramel. Café Vanilla was definitely my favorite and Café Caramel was great as well. These two are their newest flavors and whatever they did different to them was totally worth it. I thought the other four flavors were a little watered-down tasting. The flavor was good, just kind of weak. So Café Vanilla and Caramel are the two flavors that I would purchase again.

This was such a great bzz campaign for February and March because it’s still cold out and hot chocolate goes with practically everything I want to do. From catching up on my “Once Upon A Time” episodes to reading my book of short stories, or just hanging out with my Husband in the evenings. I definitely enjoyed trying all these hot chocolate flavors!

Morning Star Farms Veggie Burgers

Thanks to bzzagent.com I got to try Morning Star Farms veggie burgers for free. I tried the Grillers Original variety but they have several different flavors. I really wanted to try the Black Bean burgers but since they’re Spicy Black Bean burgers and I’m not a big fan of spicy I didn’t want to ruin my first veggie burger experience with a too-spicy burger.

I was really surprised, the Grillers Original tastes just like a regular hamburger. It’s a little thinner and a bit less filling than the burgers I usually make but put it on on bun with some mayo, tomato, lettuce, and cheese and you can’t even tell that you’re eating a veggie burger.

I think the texture is a little softer than a regular burger and these veggie burgers would be perfect for when my next baby is almost ready to eat meat. These burgers would be easy to chew and still provide a great source of protein for a toddler.

I also tried one of the burgers my favorite way, just cooked and cut up with a little bit of ketchup on the side. On a sandwich I didn’t notice the texture difference but just cut up and eaten plain I did notice that the veggie burgers is a little softer than a regular burger. It wasn’t bad, just a little different than what I was expecting. I may try it with mushroom gravy over mashed potatoes next time, that would be pretty tasty, and the potatoes and gravy would compensate for the texture difference!

I haven’t tried their veggie bacon yet but this recipe for a BLT and avocado looks delicious!

I love BLTs and I’ve never thought of putting an avocado on before.

Morning Star Farms has all sorts of great veggie recipes on their website!

Premama Prenatal Vitamin

PremamaPrenatalDrinkInBox

I received a free 30 day supply of Premama Prenatal Vitamins to try and review. I got signed up for this a little late and they wanted a review by today so I’m going to review my 3 days of using the vitamins so far and then post another review the end of the month when I’ve had more time to try this.

First of all, I have a really hard time with prenatal vitamins. I’m currently pregnant with my third child and up until now (I’m 19 weeks) I have avoided anything but the occasional children’s vitamin. I tried so many vitamins with my first two and every one of them made me sick. I have morning sickness the first trimester and if you add nausea from the vitamins as well (I actually feel better when I’m NOT taking them) I just couldn’t do it this time.

I have heard that a liquid vitamin is a lot easier on your stomach than a pill but I really hate the taste of vitamins – I don’t even like the chewable vitamin C’s I prefer to swallow them whole and then drink something right after to get rid of the taste.

All that said, I was really excited to get to try the Premama Prenatal Vitamins. They’re a powdered drink mix, which is pretty close to a liquid vitamin in my opinion and supposed to help with nausea. I’m currently in my second trimester and don’t have nausea anymore so I can’t really say if the vitamins help with this or not, I am planning to have a fourth though so I’ll give these vitamins a try then and see what happens.

On my first try, I didn’t mix the mix with quite enough juice (they recommend that you mix it with juice) and I didn’t stir it in very well so it was rather gritty. My second try I used more juice and stirred it longer and it worked much better. Just make sure you stir the mix well in a full 8oz of juice and you won’t have any problems.

I was very pleasantly surprised that this drink mix has no bad taste! I completely expected my juice to taste nasty and that I would have to somehow choke this vitamin down. Definitely not the case. I’m so pleased!

They use a special iron blend (you can read about it here) which is supposed to be easier on your stomach. My iron levels are always really high (still normal, but on the high side) so I was so happy to see that they are using iron that’s easier to absorb and less likely to build up and make me sick. After 3 days of taking this I still feel great and if the vitamin was going to make me sick it probably would have done so by now.

My opinion, I really like this vitamin so far. A pill is more convenient, but since this is easy to get down and doesn’t make me sick I can deal with having to mix it every morning. I’ll do another short review the end of this month after I’ve used the vitamin longer but I’m pretty confident that I’ll continue to like it.

Covergirl BlastFlipstick

For my latest BzzCampaign I got to try 3 of the new Covergirl BlastFlipsticks. I love trying out new makeup!

These Flipsticks  are so cool! They have a coordinating creamy color on one side and a sparkly color on the second side. So I can go straight up dark or light or flat or sparkly or combine the colors however I want.

The colors last a long time – I can eat a meal and still have color from my lipstick left. The lipstick is soft and creamy feeling and doesn’t dry my lips out. For under $10 a stick this is a great deal for me!

My 4 yr old loves these and with it being winter and she needing moisturizer on her lips I let her use it whenever she wants, they definitely help keep her lips moisturized and she has no trouble applying them herself.

They have 13 different shades (really 26 if you count that each stick has two shades) I tried the following shades.

Vixen: I loved this one. Burgundy and pearl pink shades. The pink is just light enough that you can barely tell I’m wearing it and if I want to add some depth I just swipe on a tad of the burgundy over the pink. A great shade that I can wear with everything.

Mink: I really liked this one as well. Deep brown and gold shades. The dark brown is the base and the gold is the sparkly side. The brown is a little dark for me to wear alone but with the gold over top it’s perfect. A great neutral for when I don’t feel like pink.

Stunner: My least favorite of the three shades. Bright pink and gold shades. This one is just a tad orange for me. It’s really bright and stays on a long time so if I want something more dramatic this works but it’s not great for me everyday.

My opinion, the Covergirl BlastFlipsticks are a great lipstick, at a great price, and come in some great shade varieties. I’ll be buying these again when my free products run out.