"Integrity is telling myself the truth. And honesty is telling the truth to other people.” author Spencer Johnson

Saturday, April 24, 2010

The Real Housewives of New Jersey: Season One DVD Review & Giveaway

Real Housewives of New Jersey Yes, I am a fan of "The Real Housewives" series. I started watching the original Housewives several years ago and got a kick out of watching how the rich & famous lived in California. Now comes what I would say is my favorite ladies to watch, The Real Housewives of New Jersey.

These women are real and they are raw. You mess with them, you will feel their wrath. And you aren't dealing with one woman. Oh no! You're dealing with a family of women. Let me just say for the record, it doesn't pay to be on their bad side. Being an observer, I wonder why anyone would egg them on. It's hysterical.

Let me introduce you to the Housewives:

caroline-125x125Caroline is the matriarch of the Manzo family. She doesn’t take anyone’s crap and she is a straight shooter. It’s obvious she loves her family fiercely and will protect them to the end. Can I be honest and say I wish she were my big sister. Not kidding. Family is serious business to her and she’s got your back!

dina-125x125 Dina is Caroline’s younger sister and is married to Caroline’s husband, Al. Dina’s husband isn’t part of the show because he made the choice not to be. Dina has a daughter who she treats more like a sister or BFF. I like that Dina has chosen to step back from her career to a certain degree while since she’s missing so much of her daughter’s life.

teresa-125x125_0Teresa is a hoot to watch! She doesn’t seem to live in the same reality of any other woman on the show! She goes shopping 3-4 days a week and can easily drop over a grand, in cash, while doing so. They just finished building a house that took 3 yrs!! She is also trying to get her oldest daughter into the acting industry (but she’s not a stage mom, so she says). Teresa had her “bubbies” done this season and it was hysterical!

jacqueline-125x125 Jacqueline is married to Dina & Caroline’s brother. She doesn’t come from wealth and is probably the most level headed and easiest to “relate” to. She actually reminds me of my sister-in-law, Liz, whom I love! She has a teenage daughter from a previous marriage and 2 sons from her current marriage. Right now Jacqueline struggles with being friends with Danielle and maintaining her relationship with the family.

danielle-125x125 Danielle has 2 daughters and a sketchy past. She seems to enjoy stirring up drama and brings it with her wherever she goes. Danielle has no problem trying to convince Jacqueline to stay her friend even when it could jeopardize Jacqueline’s standing in her family. She has no respect for the other women and portrays herself constantly as the victim. You can see she tries to act as though she doesn’t realize people are going to have certain reactions and then when they do, she’s like, “gee, I didn’t know that would happen”. For real? She’s easy to dislike.

About the DVD:

real-housewives-of-new-jersey-season-2-preview DISC 1 (approx 157 min): Season Preview / Thicker Than Water / Mama Knows Best / Not One of Us / bonus – Text Bios

DISC 2 (approx 135 min): Black & White & Read All Over / Casinos and C-Cups / The Last Supper (Finale)

DISC 3 (approx 180 min): The Last Supper Director’s Cut / Reunion: Watch What Happens, Pt. 1 / Reunion: Watch What Happens, Pt. 2 / The Lost Footage / bonus – Quiz

My Review:

I hadn’t had satellite for almost 2 yrs so I’ve missed all the fun new shows. I was so glad to have the opportunity to watch The Real Housewives of New Jersey Season One. I ended up watching them all in one night I was so hooked!

We all have our guilty pleasures, and this definitely became mine. I wish we had Bravo with our satellite package, but since I don’t I will either have to watch it streamed on the computer or wait for the next season come out on DVD. I’m serious, this is my favorite Real Housewives! I’ve seen the other shows, but I think the “family” part of the show makes it more Real! You can choose your friends but you can’t choose your family, so that’s what adds to the show.

rhnj_about Now, this isn’t for everyone. They do say the “B” word on occasion and Danielle introduces her daughters to the guys she “dates” which I think is unhealthy. Teresa lives a lifestyle that is so beyond knowing there’s a recession it’s not even funny, although she is fun to watch. There’s also a LOT of drama, and that’s where you get sucked in.

You can purchase your own copy of The Real Housewives of New Jersey: Season One on Amazon.com or Walmart.com. It’s worth the entertainment!

Would you love to win MY copy of The Real Housewives of New Jersey: Season One? Was only watched for the review one time. If so, here’s what you need to do…

REQUIRED: Tell me which NJ Housewife you think you’d be like. You can either go by my personal description above or visit the bio pages HERE.

Giveaway is open to US residents 18 yrs and older. Please remember to leave your email address or have it available on your Contact page. No email/contact info = No entry. Giveaway ends 5/12, 10pm CST. Winner will have 48 hours to respond to the winning email.

Extra Entries:

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the product review place button I found out about this awesome giveaway at The Product Review Place Blogger Select Group! I’d also like to thank Jelena on behalf of A&E Home Entertainment for sending my review copy. The opinions expressed in this review are mine and may not be the same experience as others.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Growing Tree Toys

As I get this site up and running, I am looking for new companies to be connected with. There are so many out there it's hard to know where to start. I typically go to Google and start typing in random words that I think might give me new, fun companies that might find Marvelous Mom Reviews a great place to be seen!

One of the companies I recently connected with through their Blog Network is Green Tree Toys. They have been connected with bloggers for a number of years. They give updates on toy brands, announce that they are looking for bloggers for a certain product, member discounts, and sponsorship opportunities. There is a wealth of information on Green Tree Toys.

So, what happens when you join Green Tree Toys Blog Network? You are given the opportunity to win a $100 gift certificate! Wow, that's to start off with! You can take advantage of the Membership Discounts if they are available (coming in May).

I'm pretty excited about their Educational Line of toys. I love when my boys learn while exploring, playing, and pretending! My boys would have a hey-day in the Science Kit section! And with today being Earth Day, it's great to know they have Eco-Friendly Toys! I also like how they break down each toy for us parents to understand more about the toy such as : Developmental Benefits, Types of Play, Eco-Friendly, and the Product Rating.

I would encourage you to check out their site and if you're a blogger to learn more about their blogging program. It will be worth the visit! Can't wait to bring you a Product Review down the road!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Where Are All the Giveaways?

So, you may have wondered what's going on here at Marvelous Mom Reviews. Eh, then again, maybe not! Quite possibly you are receiving this email in your inbox and you're wondering where it's coming from since you haven't received an email from MMR before. *grin*

I wanted to let you know that I'm working on getting some reviews set up for MMR. Seems that companies aren't very eager to have someone review their product on a new site. That's even after I've told them that I already have a following and Followers are coming over from my Woven by Words site. That still hasn't enticed very many anyone. Trust me, I will keep on keepin' on! I plan to make this site work and get some great reviews and giveaways for all of my followers and subscribers!

I am hooked up with several product review groups and am hoping that I'll be able to get some leads through there! If you have any ideas of companies willing to work with a newly created PR site, but run by someone who has already been doing them, I'd love to hear from you.

While we're at it, I thought I'd do a plug for the 2 Giveaways I have currently running on my Woven by Words site:

$10 WalMart gift card sponsored by Olay and MyBlogSpark Ends 4/26

As Long As It Takes CD by Meredith Andrews (Contemporary Christian) Ends 4/19

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Dunkin’ Donuts® Retail Coffee Tax Day Survival Tips

DunkinTurbo 1. Set aside some quality tax time. Brew a cup of Dunkin’ Donuts® coffee at home, find the materials you need to prepare your taxes, and retire to a quiet spot to get started. You can complete your return manually on paper, with Free File, or commercial software. If you use a tax professional, make sure to gather all your materials before sitting down with him or her.

2. Consider an extension. If, for any reason, you can’t file your income tax return on time, simply request a filing extension by April 15th. This gives you six more months to complete your return and avoid late filing penalties. Use Form 4868, which you can get at IRS.gov. But you still must pay now what tax you’ll owe to avoid late payment penalties.

3. Check out new tax breaks for certain 2009 purchases. If you bought a home, you may qualify for a tax credit. If you bought a new car, you may be able to deduct the sales tax. Find details about these new breaks at IRS.gov.

4. File electronically. To get your tax refund as quickly as possible, file your income tax return electronically and request that the refund be deposited directly in your account. You can have the deposit split among two or three accounts, including bank accounts, IRAs, health savings accounts, Coverdell education savings accounts, and a TreasuryDirect® account for I bond purchases.

5. Adjust your tax withholding or estimated taxes. Is it bad to be owed a tax refund? It’s nice to have the extra cash now, but getting a refund means you’ve really made an interest-free loan to Uncle Sam. A better strategy is to adjust your tax withholding or estimated taxes for this year so you pay an amount that is closer to the amount of tax owed; this gives you the use of your own money throughout the year.

6. Contribute to your retirement fund. The tax year is over but it’s not too late to put money in a regular or Roth IRA for 2009. Assuming you’re eligible, a contribution to a traditional IRA made by April 15th is deductible on your 2009 return. If you opt for a Roth IRA contribution, you can’t deduct it but will build up tax-free income for retirement.

7. Reap eco-credits. If you added insulation, energy-efficient windows, or solar panels to your home, you not only reduced energy costs but also may now qualify for a tax credit. The credit limit for installing solar panels and other alternative energy additions is 30% of cost; for other improvements, there’s a $1,500 cap. The tax credit reduces your tax bill dollar for dollar.

8. The standard deduction isn’t standard anymore. If you don’t itemize, you may be able to bulk up your standard deduction by adding amounts for being a senior, paying property taxes on your home or sales tax on a car purchase, or for suffering a loss in a federal disaster. But you’ll have to complete a new form, Schedule L, to total up your standard deduction.

Order a free sample of the new flavor, Dunkin’ Turbo: https://dunkinathome.safeprocessing.com/(S(qwglte55ct1kxe455nv0xs55))/Offers/DunkinAtHome/148/Offer.aspx

Barbara Weltman is an attorney, prolific author with such titles as J.K. Lasser’s Small Business Taxes, J.K. Lasser’s 1001 Deductions and Tax Breaks, and The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Starting a Home-Based Business, and trusted professional advocate for small businesses and entrepreneurs. She is also the publisher of Idea of the Day® and monthly e-newsletter Big Ideas for Small Business® at www.barbaraweltman.com and host of Build Your Business radio. Follow her on Twitter at BarbaraWeltman.

© The J.M. Smucker Company.

© 2010. DD IP Holder LLC (as to Dunkin’ Donuts and all other trademarks, logos and trade dress of DD IP Holder LLC) used under license.

This post is provided by Stephanie Robinson at The Product Review Place and the above companies. I was not provided any compensation for posting this information. I will not be held liable for any information above that was provided for this post.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Nine Things Nathan Noticed At Night by Christy Baldwin

Nine Things Nathan Noticed At Night

by Christy Baldwin

Illustrate by Sarah Barnes

ISBN-13: 978-0976507215
Publisher: Tribute Books

About The Book:

Nine great things happen when the sun sets for the evening. Each page includes a statement about what is happening and then some fun facts and information about that event. Written from a Christian perspective, the story describes how God made things when He created the Earth. While the story was written specifically for ages 3-8, children of all ages will enjoy this book. Even adults can admire the beautiful watercolor artwork.

My Review:

I like how the author created this book. She started out with Nathan learning something specific about the night. Then the reader learns more about that specific "something". Along with the details, there's a scripture included that fits the topic.

I know that the ages from the publisher say it would be good for a 3 yr old, but maybe only with the pictures and the scripture. The details given with the event are definitely more for an older child. I would say it's more educational and is great information for someone to learn something new.

For example, Nathan learns that crickets chirp at night. The reader also learns that the male crickets rub their wings together for various different reasons (which are listed). And the scripture reference to go along with the crickets is Job 35:10 "God, my maker, gives us songs in the night." So, you can see that this book is pefect for a wide range of ages!

About The Author:

Christy Baldwin: Writing has been a passion of Christy’s since she was very young. As a child, she loved to write stories for her grandfather and poems just for fun. Now that she is a stay at home mom, she has plenty of time to write (ha, ha!). She really enjoys writing stories that she thinks her two children will love, and she sometimes even writes about them. Christy also likes to write poetry, mostly about Christian topics from Scripture passages she discovered during Bible Study or a cool message given on Sunday. Christy has a B.A. in Elementary Education from Cedarville University in Ohio and she is currently pursuing her M.S. in Special Education from the University of Scranton in Pennsylvania. She has also done college work in Literature. Her students have included fifth-grade inner city kids enrolled in an alternative education program, preschool children and church youth groups. Christy volunteers her time with the local district of the Boy Scouts of America, her church and H.A.N.D.S. of Wyoming County Family Resource Center.