Saturday, November 1, 2014

All About The Benjamins #HighValueHop - Win a JBL Charge Portable Wireless Speaker $150 US 11/17



Welcome to the All About the Benjamins 
Giveaway Hop hosted by Mama NYC
November 11 - 17, 2014

This hop is like no other because every single prize up for grabs is going to have a value of at least $100!!! Looking for some great gifts for the holidays? This is it!! This is an amazing high value hop, so definitely consider taking the time to visit the blogs daily to get those extra entries for retweeting and any daily freebies you can.  


MY GIVEAWAY

Are you a music lover? Do you have a "gadget guru" on your holiday shopping list? My giveaway is for an awesome JBL Charge Portable Wireless Speaker valued at $149.95!! 



The JBL Charge delivers unsurpassed portable audio performance from your mobile devices and tablets. You get 12 hours of playback time from its built-in, high-capacity, 6000mAh Li-ion rechargeable battery......and....it can even charge your other mobile devices on the go via its built-in USB port!!! 

You'll get great sound with two 1-5/8-inch (41-millimeter) full-range drivers and a built-in bass port, it produces full-range JBL sound with exceptional bass.

It also wirelessly streams audio from any Bluetooth-equipped smartphone or tablet. The JBL Charge wireless speaker is a portable audio powerhouse for any environment. Perfect for indoor or outdoor use and is compact enough to easily carry in a backpack!

Included is:

 1 JBL Charge stereo speaker with Bluetooth technology
 1 USB adapter
 1 micro USB cable
 1 Neoprene™ carrying pouch
 Quick-start guide


Ready to enter?? (of course you are!) 

Just fill out the form below! Only one entry per person/email/IP please! Winner will be randomly drawn and contacted by email once winning entry has been verified.  Then winner will have 48 hours to respond or another winner will need to be drawn!


This giveaway is open to those 18+, residing in the US only and will end at 11:59 pm on November 17, 2014.

If you'd like to keep up-to-date on more great posts & giveaways like this one, please consider liking my Facebook Page.

Good luck and don't forget to hop down the linky below to find more #HighValueHop prizes!!!

xoxo,
Gigi

JBL Charge Portable Wireless Speaker $150 US




Disclaimer:  The host & participating bloggers in the All About the Benjamins hop are not responsible for sponsors who do not fulfill their prize obligations. Please check each individual giveaway for eligibility & other requirements as theirs may be different from mine.  My Fab Fit Forties is self-sponsoring her own giveaway and, as such, will be responsible for prize fulfillment. This giveaway is not affiliated with JBL.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Four Tips to Help Avoid Being Tricked by Treats This Halloween


Halloween can be one the worst times for someone who is trying to watch their weight and keep healthy. You really have to either have a complete aversion to sweets or an unbreakable iron will to not dip into the goodies that seem to be in our face right before & after the big day! 

Between candy coming into the house from the kids and leftover candy from handing it out.....attending treat-filled Halloween parties and then facing all the leftover candy your co-workers bring to the office next week, it can be easy to justify a few extra treats here and there. But neurologically, sugar is a stimulant which keeps us craving it the more it is eaten, says Andrea Szebeni, a registered nutritionist and dietitian with the Lighthouse Recovery Institute.  

Szebeni, who helps young women overcome eating disorders, provides these four tips on how we can enjoy our favorite treats without going overboard: 

Be realistic - Telling yourself you will never have another Twix when it has been your favorite Halloween chocolate for the last 15 years is probably not realistic, Szebeni says. The key is setting guidelines. For example, if you have three Halloween parties in two days, don’t try every dish and nibble on bite-size candy bars at each party - 6 small bites are the same as eating a king-size candy bar.

Plan ahead - Have a light snack before you leave the house so you are not hungry, which could make it easier to justify bad choices.

Make things easier for yourself - Instead of bringing wine or more sweets, bring a dish that’s healthy and delicious and can be the perfect choice for you, Szebeni suggests. Be the hit of the party by bringing a pumpkin dip with vegetables or freshly baked parmesan kale chips with apples, cheese squares & blackberries.

Detox your taste buds - Over time we adapt to eating hyperpalatable foods that are high fat, high salt or high sugar. By eating these foods regularly, we literally erode our taste buds. The good news is that you can renew your taste buds. Try abstaining from processed foods and hyperpalatable choices -- even for just one week. “As you begin to incorporate back certain foods that you enjoy but know should be limited, you’ll see that by only eating them periodically you will still enjoy them without feeling the need to overindulge,” Szebeni says.

Inconsistent nutritional habits can also contribute to sugar cravings, Szebeni says. Not eating small balanced meals consistently throughout the day will make it much harder to stop eating. “Begin eating every 4 to 4½ hours and watch those cravings go away,” Szebeni says.

I think those are some great tips - I definitely do the "Plan Ahead" when I know we're going out to a get together where there's going to be a lot of fattening foods - and if we're going out to eat, I love ordering a side salad before I even look at the appetizer or entree part of the menu.  I find it really helps from over ordering.

I had no idea that your taste buds could get eroded away...but it completely makes sense.  When I detoxed from sugar (man were those headaches horrible), anytime I would have anything with sugar in it after that, it just tasted different....and it wasn't something that I craved like before. So maybe my taste buds were renewed and they didn't like sugar! Works for me!

I also make sure that I don't have any leftover candy - I know that I'll mindlessly snack on it if it's here.....so aside from a couple Reese's Cups that I will fully savor & enjoy (the "Be Realistic" tip!), tomorrow will be business as usual for me. Enjoy a little bit, but be mindful of what's going in!

With Halloween kicking off the "Season of Sweets", how do you handle being surrounded by so many treats?

xoxo,
Gigi









Lighthouse Recovery Institute is a licensed drug, alcohol and eating disorder treatment center in Delray Beach, Fla., specializing in recovery for women. At the Lighthouse Recovery Institute, our mission is to help each client attain peace, happiness and permanent sobriety. With more than 30 years of experience in the treatment of drug abuse, alcohol abuse, eating disorders and trauma, our passionate team of doctors, therapists, and specialists provide nothing but the highest quality of care for every woman who walks through our doors. 


Fashion Accessory Trend: Fringe & Chain

As I was walking down Walnut Street today, I noticed a few trends being showcased in the front windows --- namely, accessories with fringe and chain details.

The fringe looks ranged from cowboy chic to straight off the runway -- and I liked them more than I think I would - although this trend seems like one that could go horribly wrong if you don't wear it as your only statement piece -- I'd say pick the footwear...or the bag...or the jewelry...less is definitely more!

The chain bags and footwear are a perfect mix of femininity and boldness.

Let's take a look at a few examples of these trends!




Fringe Benefits




Chain Reaction

Chain Reaction by myfabfitforties


What do you think of these trends? What pieces do you like the best?

xoxo,

Gigi

Well THIS Is Awkward....(advice sought!!)


Let me preface this by saying I will make this as short as I humanely know how ....("sources say" I have a tendency to go on and on....) I've been a little slow on the comment approvals today because I decided to take my show on the road per se and got a little...side tracked.  

Background.  We have a vacant rental property in New Jersey. It's where my husband lived before we were married, it's where I keep my classic car "The Green Meanie", it's where I will many times ship & receive things at the post office there as I've discovered there's a few people with "sticky fingers" working in the Philly P.O. system. We've rented it in the past, but decided to sell it and put that money (if any is made!) into our little Key West  shoebox.  I pop over every week or so to check on it, to give it a once over cleaning wise, and sometimes just to work quietly without a bird pooping on me! 



Up until a couple months ago, we had a guy coming in fixing our list of "to-do's" - nothing major, just things we didn't want to, or know how to properly, do ourselves.  This work ended in August, we paid him, got our key, and everything was a-okay.    Let me say this person is the husband of someone my husband works with.  I will also say (but will bite my tongue when telling the following to my husband)............I was against this from the start.  Maybe it was too many episodes of Judge Judy or just knowing that nothing good comes from hiring a 'friend'  (even though we don't really know him..or her..very well) to do work for you.  My husband thought it would be awkward to not hire him - I thought "just tell her your wife already hired someone and didn't tell you - so...position not available...." - but no...so the guy was hired and worked on the house for several weeks on and off.

I know you're now thinking something has gone wrong with the house and we have to go back and forth with this guy.................let me just say... I WISH it was just something wrong with the house.



I'm going to say this part and I know you will know what I mean....you know when you just know someone has been touching your stuff? The place is empty, but I have some kitchen & bath mats down, paper towels, toilet paper, a box of granola bars in the cabinet and bottles of water in the fridge.  Last month, I started thinking "did I drink that water?" knowing that I went there with six bottles....drank one.....so why are there only three bottles left? Or the toilet paper roll would be half used....(or half left....depending on where you fall on the cup half full/half empty scale!!)  No one else had a key to the place except me, my husband, and each of our best friends (one in NYC, one in FL) --- it wasn't up for sale, the work was done & key returned, etc.

I asked a neighbor (who we always referred to as "Mrs. Kravitz" ) to just kind of keep an eye on the place (a "case" I knew she would be ready to report for duty on!!)



Even though we have moved, Mrs. K must have rubbed off on me because I'll have my eye pressed firmly to the peephole watching the "action" on the street...my husband will say "You're totally being a Mrs. Kravitz right now..." - to which I respond with a "Shhhhh!!! I think she's about to break up with this guy!!!!"

Anyway....

I get to the place today and before I am even through the front door, Mrs. Kravitz is there with her camera.  She starts showing me photos....


I was a little miffed, but kind of relieved when I saw our "handyman" parking and going into the house....miffed that he made himself a key & thought it would be okay to go into the place......but relived that it wasn't a 'stranger' who decided he would 'live' in the vacant house.

Next photos...another car pulling up...and a woman getting out....that's not his wife...

(hmmm, maybe she's a 'client' and he's using the house as his 'office')

Next photos....(and Mrs. Kravitz must have been loving this)....them kissing by their cars...butt grab...the whole shebang...(no question, this was not a business meeting - this was not a 'so good to see you again, cousin Sally' type deal....)

(now I'm feeling like I'm watching an episode of "Cheaters")

She had two other days with the same type of pictures.

SO...........

That's where we're at folks...


My first thought was to call him up myself and say "Look, I know what you're doing & you need to do it someplace else or I'm telling the cops, my husband, your wife....." 

My thought being....if I tell my husband the whole enchilada...now he's in the awkward position of knowing that the husband of one of his co-workers is cheating on her...(and he was worried about it being awkward saying "sorry, we already have a handyman!" PUH!! That's what we call in Kravitzville, "small potatoes" buddy!) -- I'm sure he would keep that to himself (but it would very much eat at him)...and the cheating will eventually be discovered (it usually is, right?)  and I don't want it to turn into "well they knew about it....I even used their house" --- and somehow 'blame' for this pickle will be placed on us (which usually happens when someone wants to deflect attention away from their own bad behavior). I don't want to cause stress for my hubby or make his workplace uncomfortable.

Or I tell him and swear him to secrecy...or I tell him the guy's been coming into the house, but leave out the little 'extra'...

I have a feeling if I say something about the "indiscretion" it's going to wind up like this:


OR...do I act like I did not even see the cheating footage (I don't know this person or his wife), but do confront him on coming into our house without permission (making a key!?!!) and let him know we've got people watching and will be hooking up a security camera (lie, but whatever...)??? Just enough to scare him away.....


If this guy wasn't connected to my husband's job, I probably would handle it in an entirely different way....like calling the cops for someone entering our property without permission. I mean, that's a crime, is it not?! Not to mention, he could've opened that door when I was in the house - sometimes I take the bus - he wouldn't see another car in our space.  I would have done my best to kill him then ask questions later. Not to mention the grossness of knowing they're not there playing checkers in the place when they're there! I've seen "20/20" - don't make me whip out the black light!



So much for being short.....

Okay, now put yourself in my shoes....do you...

a.) Get key back & give warning (no cheating mentioned)
b.) Get key back & tell him to take his side-piece action someplace else - this is our house, not the "Stikit Inn" bed & breakfast.
c.) Tell husband the entire deal 
d.) Tell husband about the key access, but not the cheating
e.) Have Mrs. Kravitz call the cops the next time she sees a stranger entering the house and let those chips fall where they may
f.) Make him come in and steam clean the carpets again - then demand the key back? (I'm only halfway joking)
g.) Have a photo of them kissing blown up and put on a billboard near their home
h.)  Something else

As of right now, I'm leaning toward just acting like I didn't see anything other than him coming into our house by himself...when he wasn't supposed to, get the key back, and be done with it.  


Part of me is also thinking I would be mad if someone knew my husband was having an affair & didn't tell me.....but I think that would apply to friends or family.....I don't think I'd want to hear it from the cashier at ShopRite.  I don't think I would know this co-worker if I bumped into her at the store...so it's not like we're even on an acquaintance level.

Another part of me thinks - I need to warn people about this guy - if he's getting keys and trust from people to do work on their homes and making duplicate keys (he's a licensed contractor)...

If nothing else, this is exactly why I don't like doing any kind of business with friends or family....even the best intentions have a way to come back and bite you in the tukas.



Thoughts?

.....and now it's 2pm and I've gotten absolutely ZERO of the things on my list of 'do today's' done!! Arrggh!

xoxo,
Gigi


***UPDATE*** Of course the second my husband came through the door, I spilled the beans.  We decided best course was to.....change the locks (I don't know why I didn't think of that instead of concocting some elaborate "Home Alone" burglar alarm system!!!) and carry on like we know nothin' about nothin'. - without knowing what their situation is, are they 'separated', taking a break, etc., there's no need to make things awkward at work for anybody.  I've also given "Mrs. Kravitz" the green light to call the police should any weirdness go on there..I don't know if he could try and get in another way or what.  I wouldn't anticipate him trying to get in and then calling about it (outing himself for having a key) --- so I'm hoping this is the end of it, that we're doing the right thing, and I am happy that this is going to be "Exhibit A" if there's ever another time we're tempted to hire a friend or acquaintance!! Thanks for your input, everybody. I was so frazzled & upset about it, I couldn't see straight!! 


Anything Goes Fall Giveaway Hop - Win Your Choice of $25 Gift Card - US Only - Ends 11/11


Anything Goes Fall Giveaway Hop


Welcome to the Anything Goes Fall Giveaway hop Event! 
Hosted By: The Simply Me Blog

The Event goes from October 30 - November 11th

I've joined up with some great bloggers to bring you some amazing giveaways! The complete list of bloggers can be found below.  Each of us are offering a prize valued at $25 or more - and with an "anything goes" theme, you just never know what you might find!!

The  Grand Prize  is being sponsored by Winning Moves Games and ECBC - make sure you go check it out!

MY GIVEAWAY

If you're like me, you're still not fully believing that the holidays are less than two months away (I went into a panic just writing that!!) -- so we're all thinking about decorating, entertaining, gifts, and all that good stuff. 



My prize is geared towards helping you get a little holiday shopping done....the winner will get their choice of $25 gift card from any of the following places:

*Walmart
*Target
*Kohl's
*Starbucks
*Best Buy
*Amazon

I'm happy to either mail the winner a physical gift card or send it to them via email (if offered by the store).

If you're ready to enter, just fill out the form below.  Only one entry per person/email/IP please.  Winner is randomly drawn and will be contacted via email once the winning email is verified.  Winner will then have 48 hours to respond to email or another winner will need to be drawn.

This giveaway is open to US only and will end at 11:59pm on November 11, 2014

Good luck and don't forget to go down the linky when you're finished entering mine to find more terrific giveaways!!

xoxo,
Gigi

Choice of $25 Gift Card - US




Disclaimer: Products for the grand prize were provided for review. No payment was received to write the review. All opinions are honest. The sponsor is responsible for shipping the Grand Prize, not the bloggers involved in the giveaway event. My Fab Fit Forties is responsible for her own prize shipment as it is a self-sponsored giveaway!

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Gorgeous Nail Can Be Yours with Trind #TrindNailTips + Giveaway $90 US/Can Ends 11/11


Like our skin, our nails can also take a beating as the weather gets cooler - brittle nails, rough cuticles...but Trind wants to help you maintain beautiful nails this Fall - and beyond!


Trind has been an expert in nail care for over 25 years and is Europe's most trusted & respected line of hand and nail care. It is found in the finest perfumeries from St. Tropez, Paris, Stockholm, and Milan - and everywhere in between

Trind is now fast achieving the same status in the United States & Canada, as more and more women are discovering their great products!

Here's a really short video that can help you learn more about their company & products:



Their amazing nail care line is geared to help all women have strong, flexible nails by producing products with long-lasting effectiveness!

Whether you're trying to strengthen your nails after acrylics have been taken off (and isn't that a horrific sight?!) or you just have nails that won't grow - maybe Trind can help you achieve beautiful, natural nails!


How to Build Your Best Nails
*Dehydration can lead to cracks & splits in your nails. Keeping nails hydrated starts with keeping your body hydrated. Drink lots of water every day - at least 6 glasses. Sip, don't gulp!

*A healthy diet of fruits and vegetables packed with vitamins and enzymes is essential for maintaining all over health, including healthy nails. Make sure you eat lots of foods rich in sulfur and silicon. Fish and broccoli are two examples of such foods. And don’t forget foods packed with the biotin, such as whole grains.  

*If you don’t like drinking milk or are allergic to it, try drinking carrot juice instead which is high in calcium and phosphorus - all essential in maintaining healthy cuticles & nails.

*Do you find yourself always on the go, but want to keep up with a proper diet? Eating real food as opposed to protein bars and supplements is always better for our bodies. Try to eat as much natural food as possible to maintain strong & healthy nails!

*Vitamins or supplements, in addition to proper diet, increase your chances of having strong & healthy nails. The most important ones being Vitamin A, Vitamin C, calcium, folic acid, protein, Vitamin B12, and zinc. Always check with your physician first before taking any supplement!

*In addition to using the Trind Moisturizing Nail Balsam and Trind Cuticle Repair Balsam, if you simply increase the amount of vitamin A & calcium in your diet, you can experience very positive results when you’re trying to prevent dry and brittle nails.

*Trind Moisturizing Nail Balsam and Trind Cuticle Repair Balsam can be used daily. Just like drinking water every day, the Trind balsams always keep your nails hydrated. Think of it like conditioner for your nails.

You can keep up with Trind on Facebook and Twitter and follow #TrindNailTips to find great tips, giveaways, and new products as they come out!

THE GIVEAWAY 


One lucky winner will receive the following:


1.     Trind Moist & Shiny Kit  - which consists of the Nail Magic Buffer, Moisturizing Nail Balsam, and Nail Repair. This kit is designed to give you strong, healthy nails in as little as 2 weeks.  This is one of Trind’s best sellers for women who need to repair those dry brittle nails.  If your nails just won't grow, this is the kit for you!

2.      Three Caring Colors nail polishes in a gorgeous fall color lineup:

       *Red Shimmer
       *Dark Tan
       *Deep Blue Shimmer

3.     A beautiful black patent leather look makeup bag

I found the nail polishes to be very creamy and easy to use - very smooth and you don't need to use coat after coat after coat to get good coverage.  The below pics are just one coat.

They're also very gentle, as they're made with strengthening ingredients to help keep your nails as healthy as possible!


This giveaway is valued at approximately $90!

If you're ready to enter to win** this kit and get your nails in tip-top shape, just enter on the form below!

Only one entry per person/email/IP please! Winner is randomly drawn and will be contacted via email once winning entry is verified and eligibility is established by sponsor** Winner then has 48 hours to respond to email or another winner will need to be drawn.

This giveaway is open to both US & Canada and will end at 11:59pm on November 11, 2014

Good luck!

xoxo,
Gigi

Trind Nail Care Kit $90 US/Can

**Please note that there are several blogs offering this same giveaway -- now that's good for you - more chances to win --- but please note that you can only win once during this giveaway campaign as winners are limited to one prize only.





Make Sure Your Pets Are Happy Campers This Fall


Fall is the perfect time to load up our pooches and enjoy a camping adventure! Like humans, dogs like a change of scenery every now and then too - and there's usually no shortage of entertainment once they get out in the great outdoors - rolling around, jumping in the water, and exploring parts unknown can also bring comical results -- so bring your video camera - you never know when you could strike YouTube gold!!

With all the fun to be had, it's very important to keep some general health & safety rules in mind when heading into the wild with our furry friends.

1.) It's always a good idea to get your pets checked out by a vet before any trip - to make sure they're caught up on all vaccines and to get a good once over to make sure they're healthy enough for travel.  You'll also want to be sure to pack a copy of their vaccine record to bring along with you. Make sure to pack any medication they'll need as well.

2.) Bring lots of toys to occupy their time - a bored pet can often turn out to be a barking annoyance to other campers - and you could wind up with a destroyed tent....("Sorry!! I was bored....but if it makes any difference, your backpack was de-lic-ious!!!)


3.) Have a nice long retractable leash (and pack a spare) so you give them lots of freedom while still being able to control them if necessary. You definitely don't want to find out the hard way that your lazy-bone of dog can amazingly turn into the a world record breaking sprinter the second he sees a squirrel!! 

4.) Keep your pet in the tent with you and not outside of it or tied up when it's time to go to sleep.  You can even buy a pet sleeping bag!


5.) If your little guy or gal isn't used to being in the great outdoors, it could be quite an eye opener for them...and paw opener if you're not careful.  It's always a good idea to take a little time before your pet's 1st time camping trip & spend a bit more time with them outdoors...a little training, if you will, for toughening up their paw pads, getting them used to the different terrain, sights, and sounds that await them.  You'll find a little prep work can lessen the stress for both you & your pup!

6.) You'll need to pack the same things for your dog as you would for yourself & the rest of the family - food, a first aid kit, a blanket, towels - if it's sunny & your campsite isn't very shady, consider bringing pet sunscreen as well! If it's really unseasonably warm, pack a cooling vest (Ruffwear makes good ones!)

7.) Most tempting (and poisonous) plants will be right at dog level and can be mighty tempting to a curious pup.  It's always a good idea to familiarize yourself with these plants that could be dangerous if ingested, or irritating if walked through.  Make sure you know what to do in case of poisoning - and always do a little pre-trip homework and put the number of a nearby Vet or two into your phone, just in case.


8.) Check for ticks daily - on your family, on yourself, and on your dogs.  Know how to remove a tick if you do find one.

9.) It's a good idea to feed your dog inside the tent and don't leave any leftover food out -- otherwise, you might have a bear or some other unwanted visitor stopping by for dinner! If you plan on spending a lot of time hiking or otherwise being on the go all day, consider packing some freeze dried dog food - it's much lighter to carry around.

10.) No one wants to see pet waste -- even in the great outdoors.....if your camping facility doesn't have a place for you to dispose of it, carry a fold-up shovel and bury it - making sure you do this at least 200 feet from any water and that the hole is 6"+ deep.  If you don't have a weak stomach - and don't feel like burying it, you can bring cat liter with you in a double lined ziploc bag (a big ziploc bag) - put any waste in it - and carry out to dispose of properly once your (hopefully short) trip is over.  Personally, I shovel.


Looking for a place to camp that will also welcome your pet(s)? Check out Pet Friendly Travel (they have a special section just on campgrounds).  Dog Friendly lists campgrounds, hotels, dog friendly cities & attractions, and more.....and you can download the free Good Sam Camping App (on iTunes or Google Play) to find pet friendly RV & campgrounds in the US. 

Have you taken your pets on vacation and/or camping trips before? Do you have any tips to share?

xoxo,
Gigi