Kids Love Disney on Ice

Last week, we were given the opportunity by Mom Central to take part in the Disney On Ice event in Charlotte, NC. This was our third Disney on Ice event, and they just keep getting better. What does this expression on my daughter’s face tell you?

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Is that not priceless?

Both of my girls were so excited and L even went and told her teacher that she had went to Disney World the night before ;). She truly thought she was at Disney World. The event was so spectacular and kept the girls attention the entire time. I loved how this Disney On Ice event was set-up. This was all about the Celebrations throughout the year. They did Birthday, Valentine’s Day, Halloween, Christmas and a Princess Ball. Also they had a feature of a Japanese Holiday. Each part of the show just kept you so intrigued. Both my husband and I thoroughly enjoyed ourselves.

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The props they use on the ice, just brings the whole show to life right in front of your eyes. Being able to experience it as a family is definitely the way to go. You can see here from our pictures how the show just captivated everyone’s attention.

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We promised the girls they could have one thing, so they chose snow cones. They did the Mickey Mouse cups which were 10.00 each for the snow cones. We made sure they didn’t see the Tinker Bell ones that were 15.00 each. ;). The cups are great souveniers and they girls are still requesting they drink out of them at meals.

The Halloween part of the show may scare some kids, so just wanted to give a heads up. You may want to just take a bathroom break during that part. Both of my girls were fine, but I could see how it may effect some kids.

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If Disney on Ice is coming to your town soon, I do have a coupon code you may be interested in:

A SPECIAL OFFER FOR YOU!
- The coupon code will be ‘MOM’— four tickets for $44 for weekday shows Monday-Friday and $4 off all tickets for weekend shows.  Any additional tickets beyond the 4-pack for shows during the week are still priced at $11.
- The tickets can be purchased from http://www.ticketmaster.com and by entering the MOM code in the “MC promotion” box when purchasing tickets.

Disclosure: Mom Central Consulting and Feld Family Activators did provide the tickets to the event for our family.

Deep Wounds Can Be Healed

This blog post has been on my heart tonight. It is really personal but I thought I would share my story anyways. I touched on this story a bit with Sarah from Real Life Blog last Thursday on our trip to Raleigh, NC. Here goes!

Tonight when I was putting the girls to bed.. I heard M talking real softly. As I was kissing L good night, I leaned over to M and said: “Who are you talking to?”
M said: “I am talking to God, mommy”

That immediately warmed my heart and just out of blue she said: “Mommy, when I get home from school tomorrow night.. I want us to read my bible together.” This speaks so much volume to me, you just don’t know.

You see…I was always brought up in a Christian home and we were always in church. I got married to my highschool sweetheart right out of highschool. The relationship did not work as we were so young that we didn’t make it work unfortunately. I got out of that relationship and started seeing the man that is now my hubby today! Just a couple months into that relationship, I found out I was pregnant.

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This was not good :(. I cried so much. On one spectrum, I was so thrilled to finally be a mom, but on the other spectrum I was scared to death. My whole family is real religious and loves our almighty God. I have several preachers in my family. So as you can see, being pregnant out of wedlock was not good. I remember calling my mom and telling her first. Her own first words to me were “I am really disappointed in you.” “We never dreamed of our daughter doing this.”

I was the child that never partied, never got drunk, never smoked, always made straight A’s, worked two jobs in highschool to help my family make ends meet. So my pregnancy was just wrong. Everyone around me was judging me so bad and looking down on me. The one person that I thought would really judge me was my BF from highschool Holly. But… I was totally wrong. She did not judge me at all. She was there to comfort me through so many tears and helped me get through those first couple of months. No one knew, but as I would cry so hard everyday… the thought that ran through my head was I should just kill myself. That way I wouldn’t disappoint anyone anymore.

As time moved on, my family accepted what happened and started treating me with respect again. BUT… I was still facing God. I served him so wrong. I was scared to even step foot in church… afraid of what would happen. Life went on and I had my wonderful, super fab, M. She was beautiful and I could never imagine life without her. As we were going on with life… I was still so scared to go face God. Then unexpectantly, I got pregnant again with L. Here we go round 2. Pregnant again out of wedlock. I waited till I was 5 months to even tell my extended family and 12 weeks to tell my mom and dad this time. I had lost lots of weight so it was easy to hide. Then we had our wonderful, super fab, L. Life was so grand. It was soon to be hubby, myself, and my girls. Life was complete. Or was it? We still needed God in our lives. I was so scared though since hubbs and I were not married that God would not accept us.

Hubby and I did eventually get married. I was just so scared to get married incase of having another failed marriage, but we both took the leap and did it :). Yay.. finally! We have now been married almost 2 years and brought God back into our family…. its just wonderful. Those deep wounds have been healed and I am not scared of facing God anymore!

So with M saying what she did tonight, just spoke so much to me. I am raising her right in the eyes of the Lord. He is shining bright in our lives now. Everything is going to be A-OK! We have found a great church family where we can be involved and be accepted for who we are. The girls can be involved with children’s activities and I am excited to go to my first Womens Ministry group this Wednesday. I just feel so at peace now with all that has went on the last 7 years. God is helping me heal those wounds.

This  morning in Church a song was being sang by a wonderful lady and there was so much spirit with people praising the Lord, crying happy tears because they were moved so much. Both hubby and I looked at each other and were crying. Neither one of us were ashamed as we are born again Christians and we are where we are suppose to be. We all feel whole again. We are now complete as a family!

As we were walking in from Church this afternoon… hubby said: “Jen, we need to find a nice home wall accent that says This House Serves The Lord!” I said AMEN to that!

I know my past is not perfect (I am sure people will still look down on me) but I am thankful that I can repent my sins and be forgiven. I can start walking on the right path now and it just thrills me so much that my girls want to follow that path with us.

This post really means a lot to me and thank you so much for letting me share it!

BlogHer 2009

Where do I even start? I went into this weekend not knowing what to think, but never imagined it would be this huge and intense. I had an absolute blast and would totally do it again!

Now, lets get a rundown of the 3 days. Traffic was a nightmare from the airport to the hotel, so I was late getting in Thursday and my roomies Mommy Musings and Deb Mom of 3 were left waiting. I’m sooo sorry. They understood though. It was all good. I did miss a couple invited parties due to this, but again it was ok!

Thursday, when I met my roomies, I was so excited. I could not have picked better roomies. We all had a blast. Sorry about falling asleep each night LOL, but my eyes just would not stay open for some reason ;). This was the first time ever I met Deb and she was just so much fun. We really connected and had fun doing several things together throughout the weekend. She is just as sweet as I imagined!!!

Thursday night, we did attend the People’s Party. What a madhouse that was… but we did get to meet some great ladies and network with some PR companies. We also got to check out the new line of Crocs. My girls will be so excited. I have uploaded the new line to my Flickr account in which I will post at the bottom of this post. Then we headed to the Room 704 party, which was just craziness. I have never seen so many disrespectful people all over a bag a swag. Just silly. Anyways we escaped that madhouse with Stef (MommyMusings), Shannon (Cajun_Mama) and Leigh (Themeparkmom) and walked across town to get a midnight dinner. Thank you Shannon so much!! It was great and I just loved hanging out with the ladies. We laughed so much!

Friday we woke up to Breakfast, then it was time to hit the Expo Floor. The Expo Floor hit me by surprise. I didn’t know it would be that HUGE, but it was great to see all the companies and network/connect with them on a mom/consumer level. We had some great conversations especially with McDonalds about using Twitter and getting into the social media scene more with moms.

Ragu sponsored the lunch for us Friday and I have to say, In my opinion it was marketing gone right! The lunch was super fab, the food was great, and just the way they handled the whole thing was awesome. I took pictures as well!

After lunch we met up with Maria Bailey in her MomTV Suite. This amazing lady really has it going on. She looks out for us moms so much and connects with us on so many different levels. She had her Suite opened up to us all and was interviewing all that wanted for MomTV. We had the chance to meet several moms in there as well. I finally met Audrey and Adrianne there as well. Very genuine ladies!

We headed back to the room at this time to get all dolled up for the evening. We then went out to the Lobby and headed over to the Suave party. They had some amazing Cucumber Mojitos and it was fun just sitting back with some amazing ladies. Here I got to meet Marianne from Riding With No Hands. Such a great person as well! Then we headed back for the TypeAMomFluence Party. Fun times again connecting with more bloggers. I got to meet the person I really wanted to and she sat at the table with us Kingdom First Mom. She has to be the most caring, sweetest, funniest person. I really enjoyed talking with her. Also, I finally got to meet Amy from Crunchy Domestic Goddess. She was such a beauty and very down to earth. Really enjoyed her. I did start crying in front of her about missing my girls and she gave me a hug. Thank you Amy!!

Now onto Saturday… we started with Breakfast again of course. We got to meet the super fab Katja Presnal… she was really a lot of fun, and so genuine. It was actually her first BlogHer as well so she understood how we were feeling. Such a great lady!!

Stef and I were back down on the Expo Floor and ended up with about a hour conversation with WalMart with just us. It was such a great, thorough conversation about our thoughts, concerns and tips. They ended up bringing out the video camera and putting us on camera which I thought was really cool. It really showed they cared what we were saying. I look forward to what they will be unveiling soon! Then it was time for Paula Deen. I will be uploading some video of her. She had to be the funniest session all weekend. I LOVED her and you will too after I post the video.

Then Stef and I skipped out onto the town. We went over to Navy Pier and just had a great time doing the tourist things. She bought me my first Chicago Hotdog and it was soooo fabulous!!! LOVED IT. It’s definitely not your ordinary hotdog.  Stef and I had such a great connection the entire time we were there. I’m so glad she got to come and enjoyed my time with her sooo much.

That evening we headed back to get ready for BowlHer. It was the best party of them all. We went to a lot of parties and this took the award. We got to walk the red carpet, hear some great singers, bowl if you wanted and just had fun connecting with everyone. Even my Weight Watchers PR Gal spotted me out of everyone and came up and introduced herself. It was so awesome meeting her!! Thank you for coming up to me Nicole :). Brooke White from American Idol really put on such an upbeat and fun show. It was here I met Resourceful Mom as well. She is so nice. I met a lot of bloggers here I wanted to as was and got to say hi :).

After BowlHer we left for the CheesburgHer Party. This was too funny. Even a bachelor party had hopped into our party crowd. You were definitely shoulder to shoulder in there, but it was quite funny with us all in their hats. Look at the pictures ;). Mcdonalds definitely did this party right with all the cheeseburgers and hamburgers you wanted. Great times!

I know I am leaving so much out and leaving out several wonderful bloggers out too. Just know I had fun meeting you all. It was a blast. I will say this… It did hit home this weekend of some bloggers I follow that were not genuine at all. Which I don’t understand because we are all bloggers. I don’t think there should be a pedestal for any of us, but it is what it is. I really enjoyed connecting with all the genuine ones :).

I didn’t take a lot of pictures as I would forget my camera a lot… but take a look at the ones I did :)

Take a look!

I do want to give a huge shout out to my sponsors for making this happen for me. Primrose Schools who I got a chance to tour… I really love how they are making education fun and such a great learning experience. Also Tropical Traditions who is helping us live a healthier life! I just love their coconut oil and use it for so many things. You have to try it :)

Low Fat Icecream Treat

As you all may or may not know, I am on a weightloss journey. Take a look at my journey so far if you have not :) It has been one more ride. I am always on the hunt for healthy items for my family. As I have blogged about before about my love of Skinny Cow Icecream, it just keeps getting better. Skinny Cow has came out with icecream sandwiches in six different flavors:

1) Chocolate Peanut Butter
2) Cookies N Cream
3) Mint
4) Strawberry Shortcake
5) Vanilla
6) Vanilla/Chocolate combo

We were treated to the Vanilla/Chocolate combo to review this past weekend. I knew I would just love them, so I immediately tore into them. My girls saw what I was eating and asked for one. They are the real taste testers. Let’s just say they did not move out of their chairs while they were eating. The smile on their faces is all it took for me to know they were real winneres here in our household.

They are only 1.5 grams of fat of the ones we reviewed. You would think it would be lacking the good tasting that we thrive in desserts. Absolutely not… the flavor is delicious and it does leave you very satisfied until the next day of dessert ;).

Another big plus is they are only 2 points on the Weight Watchers plan. So you can enjoy a great treat and not feel guilty about taking up a lot of your daily points that you are allowed. The serving sizes are not little baby serving sizes either… this is a very sensible portion size that like I said will leave you feelinig very satisfied.

Have you tried any of the other Skinny Cow Icecreams? Leave me a comment and let me know which is your favorite!

Ultimate Blog Party 2009

Ultimate Blog Party 2009

Hey there…. I am so excited to get this party started. Come on in, grab you a drink, and let’s start mingling.

Please meet your host Jen Houck:

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Hey ya’ll (southern girl and all ya know), I am so glad to “meet” you. One Moms World is so happy to get to mingle with each and every one of you. What better way to bring in the first day of Spring!

Let’s me tell you a little about myself. I am a work at home mom (since early 2003) of two beautiful girls. They are playing it up at the park now so let’s take a sneek peak at them:

Big Sister:

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Little Sister:

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This has been one more long winter, so we are enjoying this warm weather that has been brought our way by the good ole Mr. Sunshine.

I have been blogging since August 2005 and just have loved it from the first minute I started blogging. It helps connecting with other parents and sharing the journey of the curvy road of parenthood. They say life comes at you fast…. I believe that 100%. There is never a dull moment and I could not imagine life any other way. I enjoy being home with them and seeing them grow.

Also, I am a weight watchers fanatic. As of yesterday, I am down 34.6 pounds. I enjoy sharing videos of easy weight watcher meals here, along with easy weight watcher desserts. I believe in sharing recipes that will help you lose weight, but that also has a really good tasting and are EASY to make. (Moms have limited time ya know!) Hey, if I can get my husband (the pickest eater of all) to enjoy these recipes, you know they have to be good. So keep checking back with new recipes each week. Right now, I would like you to pick up a bowl of our Weight Watchers banana pudding. It is so delicious and you can’t even tell it is missing the fat.

Recipe:

  • 1 Big Box of Vanilla Pudding Mix
    (Follow the recipe on the box for the 5 minute pudding)
  • Add in sliced bananas to the mix
  • A Box of Reduced Fat Vanilla Wafers
    (Layer your 13 x 9 dish on the bottom with Vanilla Wafers)
  • Pour the prepared pudding mix on top of the wafers
  • Sit the dish in the fridge for about 30 minutes to let it set
  • Once set, layer the top with one regular container of Fat Free Cool Whip.

You are all set to enjoy a wonderful guilt free dessert.

While you are here visitng… do not forget to enter our giveaways:

Win an Autographed Music CD

Leave me a comment below so I can come mingle in at your party as well. Happy Ultimate Blog Party 2009. Woot Woot!!!

Also don’t forget to check out the Prize page. I couldn’t believe all the prizes. I am going to put my picks below :)

#58 Kitchen Aid Stand Mixer
#1 $100 GC to Pedal Cars/Rocking Horse
#19: Target Gift Certificate
#71 Flip Flops for Mother and Daughter
#79 Cute Clips
#106 Melissa and Doug’s Dress Up

I Finally Found Myself

As I was sitting in church this morning, it really came to me. I have finally found myself. I really am Jennifer Houck.

I will be honest and say the last 3 to 4 years, I have lived my life to please others. It didn’t matter what I was doing, I just wanted to make everyone happy. Everyone always came before me and even my family at times. I would hide behind this computer screen and be someone that just wasn’t real. I knew I was depressed. I felt like I never really got over post-partum depression. Last three years have been so hard with all the ups and downs in life, it would just spiral me out of control.

The last 3 months have been very changing for me. I have woke up and realized what type of person I was being. I was wallowing in my own pity in hopes that it would make me more happier. That has all changed so much. I am so happy now and have found myself. I am a mom, I am a wife, I am a sister, I am a daughter, I am a grand-daughter, I am an aunt, and so on. I really truly know who I am. The most important, I am a child of God. I have turned to him so much in the last 3 months and so letting him guide our lives… it is soooo wonderful. I have never been happier and felt so blessed. It’s like this big rock has been lifted off my chest.

I am not hiding behind the computer screen anymore. I know how to turn it off and put it away. I just love life and could not be more grateful. God will provide for us and lead us not into temptation if we just will follow. I am not hiding behind my doors in my house anymore. I gladly open the door and go outside to the real world to be involved. I love helping others and being there for others, I just know my boundaries now and don’t have to make sure I am pleasing everyone.

I am down now 30+ pounds too and still going until I meet my goal. I am doing it the healthy way and have got my whole family on board with this new lifestyle. It’s so great because we all are working together to rid our bodies of toxins and replenishing with all healthy foods and vitamins. It just makes you feel great about your own inner and outer self.

Life is so awesome now that I have found myself. I am embracing life and my surroundings. I am paying attention to the small things and not only trying for the large things. Thank you Lord for waking me up and realizing there is life out there. I love my life.

As my daughter asked.. “Mom, are we rich?” I said, “We are indeed Rich… Rich in LOVE!”

I just wanted to share this with my grateful mommy blogging community. You have been on this ride with me for 3.5 years, and I just wanted to shout from the roof tops.. I have found myself! YES!!!

Weight Watchers Update

I did a VLog of my progress so far with Weight Watchers. Note in the video how my youngest comes in to play with my hair ;). She is so attached to my hair. I love it!

Also my oldest M is my camera woman.

Enjoy :)

Celebration of a Year

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It has been one year since we said “I Do’s” forever.

We have been together for 7 years and I will say this last year has been the absolutely hardest year of our lives. I made the comment last night, that since we survived this last year, we will make it through anything now.

It’s been a year… and I will be honest and say there were fights along the way. If it wasn’t for our great love between us and the good Lord up above, I don’t even know how we would have survived. Now you know why I was so glad to see 2008 GO.

I do love hubbs very much and so thankful for the two beautiful girls we have together. I am so excited to make this year the best year of marriage instead of the hardest. We are finally moving into our own home in two weeks and I cannot wait.

  • Thank you my love for being “You”.
  • Thank you for being there to pick me up when I am having a bad day.
  • Thank you for getting in the floor to play multiple board games with the girls.
  • Thank you for putting up with my mood swings.
  • Thank you for pulling for me through this weight loss.
  • Thank you for keeping us sane in living with my parents through the last year.
  • Thank you for providing for us.
  • Thank you for your loving and compassion you give to us all as a family.

Here’s to many more years together. I love you so much!!!

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Homemade Cards

Change #3

This year is going to be the year of homemade. Anything we can make at home with my girls and I… we are going to do it.

M had a birthday party in December right before school let out, so I wanted to make sure we did the Thank You cards so she would have them when school was in for her and her fellow students.

We spent time and M came up with the idea of doing snowmen on the front of the cards. She did long hair for the girl snowwomen and antlers for the boy snowmen. I thought they turned out great.

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After she was done, I wrote a note on the insides of each card. All I did to get the cards that size was take a piece of 8 x 11 paper and cut straight from top to bottom. Then I would fold over.

Just another way to use our creativity and have great family time. Also, I truely think in my opinion that people actually love homemade cards a LOT more than just if you bought one from the store. Agree? :)

New Hot Mommy Christmas Gift

You know I have been asked several times this holiday season of what I would like to have for Christmas… well funds are extremely tight this year due to my hubbs being out of work so all I really “want” is for our family to be together and celebrate this wonderful Christmas season together.

But…. and you knew there would be a but right?

I can still dream and wish Santa would leave me something under the tree right? I most certainly will! So… my cell phone with verizon is two years old now and I have been scoping out a new updated cell phone. Well moms…do I ever have the Hottest Christmas Gift for you.

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Are you drooling yet? Well just let me tell you what the saavy features are on this phone.

It is pretty much an all in one phone for the busy moms that we are. It has full html web browser to access the internet on the go and email, it has a full fledged camera that even a National Geographer used to take  pictures overseas, it has a touch screen with several drag and drop features. Girllll can we say KEEP IN TOUCH, literally.

If those features are not the icing on the cake, then this will be. A music player with FM radio. This makes me jump up and down because I would love to have my music player included on my phone so I can have it altogether with me when I am out walking. It’s way too hard keeping up with all these gadgets on you when I can have it all in one portable unit.

Plus since we are busy moms, its easier to keep up with one unit instead of 3 or 4 to risk of losing.

The camera on the phone I would so love, because when you take a picture, you can just crop right on the phone and post to your blog all from this great Windows SmartPhone.

While I am dreaming of sugar plums, I am going to dream that Santa is leaving me one of these under my tree ;). Hey you are never too old to believe!

What do you moms think of the new SmartPhone?

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