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My Homemaking Mentor Academy: Enrollment is Only Open until April 3

(Note: The links in this post are my affiliate links. If you need more info, check out my disclosure policy here.)

First of all, I just want to apologize for telling you all about this amazing academy so late in the game. Enrollment is only open through tomorrow, April 3. It’s been a crazy week, and I did not feel up to blogging. But, there is still a little time, so check it out.

My Homemaking Mentor is an online training academy designed for Christian women who want to craft a gospel-centered home. I am so excited about this academy. The courses offered are extremely practical and helpful. And better yet, you get LIFETIME access to all the courses included now and any added in the future. Plus, you will be part of an awesome community of like-minded women.

What is included in the academy?

15 full courses on homemaking
50+ practical videos
12 Titus 2 mentors to guide you through the academy
Printables & worksheets
Instant and lifetime access to the academy, including any future additions
The ability to listen and watch anytime, anywhere, on any device

You can also check out the link below for a more in depth look inside the academy.

What is the cost?

$99, which may seem high, but as I mentioned, you get lifetime access to all that is offered now, in addition to any future courses added, and I know that more will be added. They also offer 100% money-back guarantee if you are not completely satisfied, but I know this academy is amazing, so I doubt that gets used much.

Why do I need this?

Lets face it. Not all of us had great mentors, teachers or parents modeling for us what homemaking is all about. It’s not like it’s taught in schools. So where do you learn about what homemaking is, and not only homemaking, but biblical homemaking? There are many resources spread out all over, but this is a resource all in one place that you can keep coming back to again and again.

I have not personally gone through the academy yet, but I love what’s in the courses and know the importance of each subject matter. I have spent many hours researching these things for myself before the academy ever came to be.

In our budget right now, $99 is just not gonna work, so I completely get that. If you are a little tight on funds right now, Jami Balmet does offer a FREE e-course, which I highly recommend as well. It’s called Finding Joy in Your Home, Essential Habits for Christian Homemakers. This is also a great introduction to the types of courses you would find in the academy.

Again, I apologize for posting this so late, but I wanted to make sure you at least had an opportunity to check it out for yourself. If you do end up joining, please let me know. I would love to hear your feedback.

Happy Homemaking!

3 Silicone Kitchen Products I Love

I know Silicone baking mats and other such products have been around for a while and I just wasn’t sure about them. I am not quick to jump on most bandwagons. I like things to be tested by someone else before I will invest in the new and latest thing. But when I heard Sally from Sally’s Baking Addiction rave about them when I heard her speak at a baking expo, I was sold. So I asked for some baking mats for Christmas and it was love at first use.

The links below are my affiliate links, but the opinions are all my own.

3 Silicone Kitchen Products I love:

Silicone Baking Mats

Now that I have them I have been wondering how I ever lived so long without them. Seriously, I love these baking mats! They are so versatile and make for some very easy cleanup. You just put them right on top of your cookie sheets and the cookies bake very nicely. It’s kind of like putting parchment paper down, only you don’t throw them away.

I love the fact that I have three different sizes too, though I mostly use the larger size. And I also love the fact that it shows different sized circles on it. It makes it easy to plop the cookie batter right in the circles so I don’t have to guess where I should place on the tray.

Did I mention they are also great for rolling out dough on because they have a naturally stickiness to them so it will stick to the countertop and not bunch up when you try to roll out a dough. They are so versatile and they keep everything from sticking to the bottom of your pans. Say goodbye to burned cookie bottoms and pan scraping and hello to silicone baking mats. Read more

First Encounter with Markers a Success

mr sketch2I received a free sample of Mr. Sketch Washable Markers via Mr. Sketch and Crowdtap. I remember using the Mr. Sketch markers when I was in grade school and how I loved the smells then. Smelling these markers sure brought me back.

Maddie is just about two and we hadn’t tried any markers yet. Mainly because I did not own any other than permanent, and even though I’ve made plenty of mis-judgements as a mom, even I know enough not to place a permanent marker in the hands of a toddler. Recipe for disaster! Read more

Screamin’ Sicilian Pizza Review

imageWe have deemed Friday night our new frozen pizza night. By the end of the week, I am drained and cooking is the last thing on my mind. So it’s wonderful to have some frozen pizzas on hand to just pop in the oven. Needless to say, I was super excited when I was chosen to receive a coupon for a free higher-end frozen pizza from BzzAgent and #ScreaminSicilian. I think I may have seen this brand in the store, but never really paid it any attention.

I got my coupon and then headed to the store to check it out. I was a little disappointed with the variety offered at Meijer. They only had two kinds, and neither was the one I had really wanted to try. I ended up getting the Supreme one.image

We tried it out a few weeks ago and it was yummy! It didn’t make us scream, but I did enjoy every bite! If it went on sale, I would definitely purchase again. Thankfully, it did go on sale at Jewel so I picked up a few more. They had many more varieties at Jewel so I chose a few different ones to try out in the future.

Last night we ate the Mambo Italiano, which had meatballs on it. This was the one I really wanted to try. I love meatballs and pizza and it sounded like a great combo to try together. It was just ok. Didn’t knock my socks off. It was still good pizza, but I guess I just had higher expectations.image

The one thing I didn’t like about both pizzas is that the toppings didn’t seem very evenly distributed and had to be hand spread out some before I put in the oven. Not a huge deal, but something that I noticed.

Overall, a good frozen pizza, which is very filing. However, most places sell it regular price for $7, which I think is very high for frozen pizza. So I would say, if it goes on sale, stock up. Otherwise, see what else you can find.

These Shortbread Cookies are Addictive!

File Oct 06, 7 58 13 PMLand O’Lakes has a new product out which is a European Butter. I had no idea what that was, or that it even existed, but apparently there are lots of versions out there in the stores. Who knew? I guess I just don’t pay attention to everything, unless I need to buy it. Meijer didn’t carry this brand, so I used my free coupon from BzzAgent at Wal-mart.

So, what is European Butter? It has a higher fat content, with 82% milk fat and fresh sweet cream.

My coupon came with some recipes you could try, and while many looked good my eyes immediately settled on the Gooey Butter Shortbread. I love shortbread cookies and figured this was the perfect time to try this new recipe, all in the name of research, right?image

They were so good! Seriously, addictive! I am not sure if I make them again with regular butter if they will turn out as well or not. I may try. But as is, they were ‘one is not enough’ good. Ok, maybe even ‘two is not enough’ good. Did I mention how addictive they were?image

I would love to try out some of the other recipes as well, but the box of butter only has two sticks. Not enough for more than one recipe. And it’s kind of expensive compared to regular butter. So it definitely will not make it on my list very frequently, if at all. But, if you have a little extra wiggle room in your budget or just want a special treat, I’d say go for it.image

Once I try them with regular butter I will let you know how they turn out. It may be a while, but then again, they were so good, that maybe it will be sooner rather than later!

Baking Soda is so Versatile

imageI received a free box of Arm&Hammer Baking Soda via Smiley360, along with a little booklet detailing a variety of ways it could be used. I already use it in my refrigerator and in cooking, but there is so much this inexpensive little product can do.

The first way I used it was in the bottom of my dishwasher to ward off smells when it’s starting to fill up, but not quite ready to be run yet. This worked great! I will definitely do that more.image

The second way I used it was for an art project with my daughter. We made “paint”. It was so easy and she loved it. Plus, all the ingredients were edible, so I didn’t have to worry when she stuck her thumb in her mouth. I’m sure it didn’t taste all that great, but at least it didn’t harm her. And clean up was super quick in the bathtub. Everything washed right off with no problem. I think we’ll do this again and make multiple colors to try next time.imageimage

There are so many uses. You can check them all out for yourself by visiting the Arm & Hammer website. Thanks Smiley360, for this fun free sample.

Quaker Oats Steel Cut Quick 3 Minute Oatmeal

oat6I received a free sample via Quaker Oats and BzzAgent of their new 3 minute Steel Cut Oatmeal packets. The packets were blueberry/cranberry flavored. I didn’t know much about steel cut outs except that they take longer to make and are healthier. I don’t have much time in the morning to prepare breakfast so anything quick, easy and healthy sounds good to me. I was excited to try.oat1

oat2It does take a few minutes in the microwave to cook, but it is very simple. The first time I tried it I misread the instructions so I put it in for 3 minutes and when it came out it was very thick and stew like. This wasn’t really a problem because that’s how I like it.oat4

The second time I tried it I followed the instructions and put it in for 3 minutes at 50% power. That made a big difference. It was much more watery, but did thicken up after it set for a few more minutes. I think if I tried it again I would maybe go half power 3 minutes and regular power a minute or so. I like it a little thicker.oat5

Overall I was pleased. It was a little sweet, but not too over the top. It had good flavor and it was simple. It’s not something I will keep in my pantry on a regular basis, but I might buy it if there was a good sale to use for those mornings when I need something quick and I’m out of everything else.

Thank you Quaker Oats and BzzAgent!

Crowdtap Campbell’s Sample Box

campbellsct01A few months ago I was so excited to receive a box of goodies from Crowdtap with samples from Campbell’s. Who doesn’t get excited about free food? So what did I think? It was a mixed bag. I will preface my review by saying I am not a fan of processed foods and starters because I think I can do a better job with seasonings, etc myself. However, the starter sauces are much more quickly on the table for dinner.

1. Skillet sauce – Chicken Parmesan: Just ok. It was a quick easy meal.campbellsct07 campbellsct08

2. Skillet sauce – Sesame Chicken: Nothing like what you would get from a restaurant. Neither myself or my husband enjoyed much.campbellsct13 campbellsct14

3. Starter Cream – Cream of Potato Soup: Just ok. Not much different than just making it from scratch.campbellsct05 campbellsct06

4. Starter Savory Portabello Mushroom  – Pasta with sausage: Did not care for.campbellsct02 campbellsct03

5. Kettle Chicken Noodle Soup: This was pretty good for instant soup. It definitely could have passed for homemade instead of store bought.campbellsct04

6. Tomato Chipotle Soup: Another favorite. Paired with grilled cheese it was just the right spiciness to make it an elevated tomato soup. I would buy this again.campbellsct09 campbellsct10

7. Prego – Light Alfredo: Again, just ok. Nothing grand.campbellsct11 campbellsct12

So overall I would say that I still am a fan of Campbell’s soups, but that’s about as far as I’ll go. If you want a quick easy meal they have some good options to help you, but if you want something with lots of yummy flavors I’d say stick to homemade.

Thanks Crowdtap and Campbell’s for the yummy samples. I really enjoyed this campaign!

Baby Orajel Naturals Might Bring Relief

IMG_0316I was fortunate to receive a free sample of Baby Orajel Naturals teething gel from Smiley360.com. I was excited to try it because Maddie was just starting to teethe and she was super fussy. However, I quickly ran into a problem. How to get it on her gums? It says to use your finger or a q-tip. She was not very cooperative with having me get this product on her gums. Eventually, I stuck with the finger method and with many trials was finally able to get it on. She did seem to calm down not too long after the application. Now she lets me put it on without a problem. I think she actually enjoys it because she watches me put it on my finger and lets me rub it on her gums.

orajel happyI’m not 100% sure how well it works, but it does seem to bring some relief and since it’s all natural I feel much better about giving it to her. And let’s face it, teething is miserable so anything that helps is much appreciated!

Secret Outlast Completely Clear Gel Review

I was fortunate enough to nab a free sample of Secret Outlast Completely Clear Gel deodorant from BzzAgent. I have been using it for a few weeks now and I have to say I really enjoy it. I was skeptical about how I would like a gel because I have used one in the past and didn’t care for it. I’ve settled into a nice white solid routine.

That being said, I think I would buy this new gel again. Even though it goes on wet, it dries quickly and I didn’t have to worry about any white marks on my clothing at all. That was a huge plus. It also seemed to work well and keep me dry all day long.

The only negatives were that it was hard to get the right amount. It says to turn the knob a few clicks. Sometimes I would turn it and none would come out and other times I would turn it once and too much would come out. Thankfully you can kinda play with the knob to get the desired amount, but that is the one thing that was slightly annoying to me. And I really don’t think it lasts 48 hours as advertised.

But if you are looking for a good deodorant to keep you dry and streak free, this is a good bet. I would definitely purchase once my sample runs out.

If you are interested in free samples check out BzzAgent to see if you qualify for any campaigns. They are not paying me for this review. It’s just my honest opinion after trying the product.