Monday, March 31, 2014

Canyon Bakehouse :: Delicious Gluten-Free Breads & More {TWO Winners - Giveaway Ends 4/13}

Anyone that eats gluten-free will probably tell you that they really miss eating regular bread. I know that's true for me. However, with so many gluten-free options today, needing to follow a gluten-free diet is hardly as difficult as it may seem. In fact, Canyon Bakehouse has an entire line of wholesome gluten-free breads and more that are fabulous.

 I received complimentary product for review purposes. All opinions are 100% my own.

I try my darnedest to not fall for the gluten-free frenzy that you see at the grocery store. It's just so easy to see the words gluten-free and just buy what ever it is, only to find out later that what you bought has really horrid ingredients! Been there, done that.

With Canyon Bakehouse, I feel really comfortable with their natural, minimal ingredients. They use 100% whole grains and clean ingredients in every product. It's hard to find a gluten-free bread that is GMO-, dairy-, nut-, and soy-free, but Canyon Bakehouse has done it! I love that their facility is a dedicated gluten-free bakery, making way for their products to be Certified Gluten-Free. Best of all, Canyon Bakehouse is family-owned and located in Loveland, Colo. 

Canyon Bakehouse sent me an assortment of their breads to try.

Cinnamon Raisin
Deli Style Rye
Hamburger Buns
Rosemary & Thyme Focaccia
Cranberry Crunch Muffins

Upon receiving all this bread, into the freezer they went. As with other gluten-free breads I've tried, it's best to freeze until use. Gluten-free breads tend to get stale and dry out quickly in the fridge or out on the counter. We pulled out several slices at a time as needed and this seemed to work out well.
There are two breads I miss most. A classic soft and moist sandwich bread and a dipping bread. Canyon Bakehouse has not disappointed! The 7-grain is an a-maz-ing bread, and especially great for sandwiches. It's super moist, fluffy, and really tasty. I will be buying again and again. We've gotten out of the daily sandwich for lunch habit, but on our weekly homeschool group day an easy packed lunch with a sandwich is a must. 

The Rosemary & Thyme Focaccia has satisfied my craving for restaurant-style dipping bread with oil and vinegar. It's fantastic warmed up and pulled apart to dip, which is how we enjoyed it. I love having this bread option for having guests over, especially when eating gluten-free can typically be so limiting. 

Mmmmmm, Cinnamon Raisin. Toasted and slathered with grass-fed butter of course! Seriously, I was shocked by the normal texture on all these breads. Shocked!

The Cranberry Crunch Muffins are an awesome option for breakfast or snack. The outside texture was a bit weird to be honest, but the inside is pretty moist and fluffy as they should be. I love the crunch from the millet, poppy and sunflower seeds in these, and the extra tangy sweetness from the occasional cranberry. We enjoyed these for breakfast, and hope to see more flavors come out in the future.
I'm not a rye bread person but Canyon Bakehouse makes a mean Deli Style Rye. I went back for seconds with a load of butter, really. Although I tried to get around to making burgers, it just didn't happen in the time I've had these buns. So, look out for a peak of gluten-free burger deliciousness on my Instagram coming soon.
Really, none of these breads or the muffins tasted like they were gluten-free. No one would ever know they were different than their gluten-filled rivals. I've been around gluten-free replica foods long enough to know a good brand when I find one. Canyon Bakehouse has not only nailed the texture and flavor, but also the clean ingredients too. Two thumbs up for Canyon Bakehouse.

Win It!
TWO winners will receive the same Canyon Bakehouse goodies I reviewed!

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Thomas & Friends®: Trouble on the Tracks {DVD Giveaway Ends 4/11}

Thomas & Friends®: Trouble on the Tracks is arriving on April 8th with five never-before-seen adventures for your Thomas & Friends fans! This new program will be available exclusively at Walmart on DVD, and also on Digital HD and Video On Demand from Lionsgate and HIT Entertainment.

And the fun just keeps on coming! Here's another Thomas DVD with brand new adventures with Thomas and his engine friends. The Island of Sodor is buzzing with excitement once again! Buddy's always ecstatic when a new Thomas DVD comes, this one included. Another must-have for your little Thomas fan!

I received a Thomas & Friends®: Trouble on the Tracks DVD for review purposes. All opinions are 100% my own.

Cinders and ashes…there's trouble on the tracks for Thomas and his friends! The Troublesome Trucks delight in causing chaos for Thomas, as Annie, Clarabel and Toad encounter unexpected high-speed adventures. Oily Diesel gives Paxton a fright, while Salty's spooky story has the engines running scared. All Aboard for fun and exciting escapades with Thomas & Friends!

· “Thomas the Quarry Engine”
· “Not So Slow Coaches”
· “Flatbeds of Fear”
· “Disappearing Diesels”
· “Toad’s Adventure”

DVD Bonus Features
· The Earl's Quiz
· Guess Who? Puzzles

Thomas & Friends®: Trouble on the Tracks will be available on DVD with an SRP of $14.98.
Win It!
One winner will receive a Thomas & Friends®: Trouble on the Tracks DVD courtesy of Lionsgate and HIT Entertainment!

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Insulating and Refractory Materials for Your Business Needs

Disclosure: This is a guest article.

Insulation materials are only as good as the raw materials and production process that went into making them. In many cases, the name that goes on the materials has a track record and service history of producing a certain type of product as its core business. When customers hear that name, they recognize it for its innate sense of high quality and learn to depend on that name to deliver just what they need for the job at hand.

The insulation materials business is just like that.

What Goes Into the Product Make a Whole Lot of Difference

Selecting manufacturers who use high grade raw materials may lead to more expensive material costs, but the costs are justified by the overall dependability of the project. Raw materials, additives and the overall condition and shaper of the finished product must all come together to form a singular insulated product.

Not All Insulating Materials are Created Equal

Depending on the process utilized to create and form these insulating products and materials, some materials can withstand extreme weather conditions better than others. Other insulating materials are a better fit for high pressure environments, especially extreme water pressure. The job or project determines which insulating materials would work best to get the job done.

Sustainable Energy with Effective Refractory Materials

Biomass energy is an energy source that has been human usage for years, but it has only been over the last two decades that this energy source has been seen as a “renewable energy source.” Given its origins with plant life and natural vegetation habitats, biomass energy comes in a close second to hydropower when it comes to sustainable energy sources. Developing effective refractory materials can assist in the sustainability of biomass energy sources. Amassing and safely storing large quantities of such energy sources like plants and other fossil fuels will require refractory materials that can withstand the fluctuations in temperature that come with such mass quantities of energy. Therefore, the refractory materials selected for transferring such energy must pass muster and serve as effective tools for ensuring that the job gets done and done right.

People can search and find refractory materials here and there, but some of the best refractory material options will be with companies like Oxidizer. Oxidizer takes care to not only build a quality insulating product but to also stand behind its quality as well.


Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Help Pediped Reach 50K Likes Before Easter!

In honor of spring time and a robin's hunt for eggs, Pediped is going hunting for Facebook likes! They're getting close to 50K likes and have set a goal to reach it before Easter. 

Their new Facebook campaign will unlock a special prize at each milestone along the way to 50K. The first prize (a giveaway!) will unlock at 47K likes! 

Pediped kid shoes are awesome, so we better boost their fan base PRONTO so we can all get a chance to win a special prize!

Hop over to Pediped's Facebook page and give them a "like"!

I received no compensation for this post. All opinions are 100% my own.

Photography comes to heal the pain caused by distance, time and death

Disclosure: This is a guest post submitted by Kira B.

This beautiful picture that now hangs on that white wall in the living room was taken by an old New York photographer. Two sisters having the best time of their lives are in the picture, with the Statue of Liberty in the background. That photograph portrays not only siblings traveling. There is a lot more. It was the last time these two sisters traveled together. One of them was about to stay in the huge city, the other one was about to leave for her hometown. Now, that photograph is not only a piece of hard paper. It is an incredible memory that has the power to transform the pain into warm.

Looking at a picture, where you are so happy being next to your loved ones, feels like drinking a hot tea that you simply adore. Especially when you’re alone and you look at that photograph just like when you’re cold, all you need is some hot black tea with lime. You look at it and you start thinking about how lucky you are to have these people in your life. Many times people who are far away from their families and friends, find relief in pictures, videos that bring them all the beautiful memories.

The photograph of you and someone who you care about but is far away, sometimes, is everything you need. We all know how hard is to be alone and to feel down. All you get to have is memories, you start breathing with them. That’s how photography helps us, giving us the chance to relive specific moments again, when we need it the most.

Photography comes to heal the pain caused by distance, time and death. Even in movies you can see super heroes traveling to different planets and taking pictures of their loves with them. It is important for those movie heroes, it is important for us to hold on to precious photographs.

There is a special emotion deep inside every photograph that includes families, relatives, friends, people who just care about each other. They have no idea that the way they hold their hands, the way they smile and look at each other, screams with emotions. You can see kindness, love, sadness and so many other feelings in one photograph that brings a separated family together.

When one sister flies over the ocean, the other one starts opening photo albums, computer fields and media libraries on the phone. That’s how she gets to not only remember the best moments of them being together, but also to review them.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Umi Childrens Shoes :: Ready for Warm Weather {Giveaway - Ends 4/6}

 I received complimentary product for review purposes. All opinions are 100% my own.

Every summer Buddy practically lives in sandals. With California heat combined with my hot-body little boy, close-toed shoes are simply off limits for about four months. At the same time, Buddy doesn't walk well in thong-style flip flops, and quite frankly, they aren't that great for growing feet anyway. With the arrival of spring, it's time to check out this season's new styles from Umi.

This is the Reece II sandal. Perfect for every day of warm weather, a special day out on the beach, or your family's camping trip in the mountains, this style is a must-have this spring and into summer.

The Reece II features a thick, grippy sole, textured footbed, and water friendly materials for every summer activity. This is the Choco Multi color which boasts a bright orange, a couple brown tones, and a bit of black too.

The orange footbed appears to be made of EVA, or perhaps some other type of water friendly foam material. The raised texture helps with airflow and also grip if wet or a bit sweaty. The lining of this style is made of black neoprene, which is soft and aids in overall comfort.

With a three-point closure system, the Reece II can be adjusted to fit your child's foot just right. It's also great for quickly taking them off quickly, or for a thorough cleaning after playing through the mud.

The hook and loop (velcro) extends over the entire length of each strap closure. Velcro can often wear out before the rest of a sandal so I'm always glad to see that details aren't skipped with Umi.

Despite printing the size chart provided by Umi on their website, the size 34 we ordered are still about a whole size too large for Buddy. Because of this it's hard to say exactly how comfortable these sandals are if they were the correct size, but I have no doubt they will be great in just a few months. At this point I can't adjust them any smaller. 

Buddy has noted that the textured orange footbed is not his favorite, but I have to think that with normal wear the footbed will soften and it's just a feature he's never experienced before. 

I think the Reece II is a smart design for busy summer activities. It's a very sturdy sandal and with the high quality of Umi, I would expect them to last all summer. I just wish they were Buddy's size to wear now!

Camping in the wilderness or making sand castles, these water-friendly sandals can keep the pace with even warm weather activities.

  • Durable outsoles
  • Waterfriendly materials
  • Manmade uppers with neoprene and microfiber linings
  • Three adjustable hook-and-loop straps
  • - See more at:
    The Reece II is available for $55 in three fun color combinations to suit your son's individual style. Order now at or find a location near you!
    Win It!
    One winner will receive a $60 gift card for a pair of Umi Childrens Shoes!

    Thursday, March 20, 2014

    Uber Sacramento :: Your New Favorite Way to Get Around Town

    This article was written by me on behalf of Uber. All opinions are 100% my own.

    Uber is a mobile app that connects you to your own private driver at the click of a button. Now in the Sacramento area, Uber's car service is like getting your own chauffeur with a stylish and sleek black car experience. 

    In addition to Sacramento, Uber serves major metropolitan areas, including Los Angeles, Chicago, Boston, Washington, D.C., and more. Starting with just one driver in San Fransisco in 2009, it's safe to say that Uber holds great value for anyone requiring transportation.

    With it's easy-to-use app, Uber offers users an incredibly easy and comfortable way to get from point A to point B whether it's a special night out, a trip to the airport, or anything between. 

    How does it work?
    Uber is very easy to use. Simply use the Uber mobile app to request a car and it will be curbside within minutes. Track your driver so you know exactly when they'll arrive! All rides are billed directly to your credit card so there’s no need to carry cash. Uber offers multiple vehicle options to choose from, with the most economical ridesharing option, uberX being 20% cheaper than a Taxi. There's no need to tip an Uber driver, as you've already paid your fare with the mobile app beforehand.

    Uber offers three ride options, with example vehicles within each option - the low-cost uberX (Toyota Prius, Honda Accord, Hyundai Sonata), an original UberBlack (Lincoln Town Car Executive, Mercedes-Benz S-Class, Lexus LS), or a roomy UberSUV (Chevrolet Suburban, Lincoln Town Car Stretch, Cadillac Escalade).

    Curious about what an Uber ride will cost you in Sacramento? Simply use the Uber mobile app or visit to receive a fare quote in an instant.

    Awesome for Families
    Looking for an easier way to get the kids to where they need to go? Uber is the easiest and most efficient transportation that will lessen the stress of getting to those appointments on-time. Request a ride through the Uber app, and in just minutes a car will be curbside, ready to take you and the kids wherever you need to go. School, doctor's appointments, big grocery runs to Costco, playdates and special occasions are now easy and stress-free allowing you (a mom on-the-go!) to spend more time on more important things. And now their eco-friendly car option, uberX, is also cheaper than a taxi.

    Exclusive Promo
    Get $25 off your first Uber trip with code ReynoldsMom. New users only and expires on 6/30/14.

    Sunday, March 16, 2014

    Spring Essentials from Kohl's #MC #SpringAtKohls

    I participated in a campaign on behalf of Mom Central Consulting for Kohl’s. I received a Kohl’s gift card to facilitate my post and as a thank you for participating.

    Last week I headed to my local Kohl's to shop the beautiful new spring collections that just arrived. Yes, I said SPRING! It's just about here, and so picking up a few new spring pieces is certainly in order.

    My favorite part about my recent shopping trip to Kohl's was seeing all the color and textures of spring. Mixed media tops are a huge hit, along with feminine blouses, dresses, anything pink, nautical stripes, bold statement necklaces and roll cuff denim. There are definitely a lot of ways to spruce up your wardrobe this season with all these very fun trends!

    There are two essential spring looks that I'm particularly excited about: feminine blouses and statement necklaces.

    While at Kohl's I picked up a peasant top from ELLE, and a bib statement necklace from Apt. 9. As soon as I saw them, I just knew they were the perfect additions to my spring wardrobe. 

    I consider this feminine blouse an essential this season simply because it's so darn versatile, and lends the perfect feminine touch to even a casual look. It features many details like 3/4 sleeves, a tie-front scoopneck, smocking on top of the shoulders and a fun dot texture. It's somewhat sheer and can easily be layered with a color underneath too. 

    Pair this top with a pair of your favorite cropped roll cuff jeans, sandals or flats and a colored belt for an easy casual look. Feel feminine and pretty without too much fuss!

    This necklace really sends a casual outfit into a chic and fashionable one without too much effort. The gorgeous colored cabochons add just the right pop of bold color for a variety of tops.

    Add the necklace, a maxi skirt, and a jean jacket to-go with my favorite new blouse and you have the perfect Sunday church look or for a date night out. I loved putting this look together! 

    As part of my shopping trip to Kohl's I filmed a short 1-minute video about the items I picked and why. It will be published on Kohl's YouTube channel very soon too!

    Moms, perhaps you're wardrobe is a bit tired. Perhaps your infant or toddler has ruined and stained every nice top you own. Perhaps you just don't have time to shop and treat yourself. I'm telling you now that you deserve a couple new items for your spring wardrobe. There's nothing quite like a new blouse or piece of jewelry when you need a pick-me-up to help spruce up your wardrobe at the same time. For me, a new blouse or cardigan each season tends to help me make several new looks without spending too much.

    From LC Lauren Conrad and Simply Vera Vera Wang to Jennifer Lopez and ELLE, there are several brands at Kohl's that will surely speak to your personal style. Be sure to shop now to get in on the fabulous new spring trends this season!

    What spring trend are you most excited for?


    Friday, March 14, 2014

    Teach Your Kids Electronics with EEME's Project Kits {Review & Special Offer}

    As a homeschooling family, I'm constantly on the hunt for opportunities to teach Buddy whatever I can in everyday life situations. Lately, he's been utterly enthralled with how things work, specifically batteries and electronics. Since this mama doesn't really understand the how of electronics too well, I simply pass on the conversation to Daddy, but I'd like to dig a bit deeper with Buddy also. Since we love monthly subscription boxes, kits and projects around here, it was exciting to see EEME pop up and offer up their first electronic project kit to review with Buddy.
     I received complimentary product for review purposes. All opinions are 100% my own.

    EEME makes hands-on project kits teach kids about electronics. Each project kit is paired with online curricula to not only teach kids how to assemble the light, buzzer projects, but also to teach them how circuits and electronic components such as resistors, transistors, capacitors, and LEDs work.

    We received Project Genius Light, the first project of five (currently) from EEME. This project contains the components needed to assemble a simple LED circuit system, including a baseboard, breadboard, resistors, circuits, LED, and battery pack. Keep in mind that we also received the enclosure cover, nuts and thumb screws to close the baseboard as part of the Pro subscription plan versus the Basic plan. The educational experience is the same, but the price is $29.95/month for Pro compared to $18.95/month for Basic.

    Assembly of each project takes place by following the interactive online curriculum for each project. For Project Genius Light, there were 22 steps to follow which included mostly short videos and several multiple choice questions to ensure your child is learning. Taking about an hour to complete, your completed LED circuit system (with photoresistor) will light up when dark, and dim when light. Super cool!

    With this project your LED circuit system is already built by step 4. From there, you learn about all the components and switch some around or add more to see what happens. I had no idea how a breadboard worked, but now I can tell you where the bus parts and terminal strips are among many electrical engineering concepts as a result of the curriculum. Each video step also has instructions on the side for each step, and of course you have the ability to stop or go back through at any time. I appreciated this since I was learning for myself, and trying a relay a few things to Buddy at the same time.

    EEME project kits are best for kids age 7-12, and I couldn't agree more. Although Buddy and I were able to work through this first project together, at age 5 he struggled with understanding what we were doing a little bit. He's a curious little guy about everything electronic, and he was thrilled with the final result of the LED getting brighter when the photoresistor component was covered. But for fear of burning out our LED light by putting any component in the wrong spot I unfortunately had to be limit the hands-on experience for Buddy. We'll definitely be revisiting this project in the future!

    Each month's project builds on the previous month's knowledge and interactive quizzes reinforce kids' understanding of the why's and the how's. EEME's goal is to provide a curricula that will teach kids the fundamentals of electronics, while fostering their curiosity and critical thinking skills. I think EEME projects are an excellent and powerful hands-on tool for homeschooling families, particularly for a unit study on electronics.  

    FREE Virtual Project
    Sign up for FREE on EEME's homepage to access a fun virtual project experience and to preview EEME's video curricula! I actually learned a few things and think it's a great taste of the physical projects EEME offers.

    Subscription Options & Special Offer
    Plans start at $18.95/month for Basic or $29.95/month for Pro and both plans include free shipping. For $5 off your first month, use this link to receive up to 25%!

    Connect with EEME on Facebook, Twitter, Blog, and Pinterest

    Tuesday, March 11, 2014

    Ozeri Rev Digital Bathroom Scale with Electro-Mechanical Weight Dial {Review}

    Disclosure: I got this product as part of an advertorial. All opinions are 100% my own.

    Although I don't believe the number on a scale is indicative of your overall health, weight is indeed an important factor to consider. With a worn out bathroom scale and a desire to keep tabs on our weight around here, the opportunity to review a new scale from Ozeri came at the perfect time.

    The Ozeri Rev Digital Bathroom Scale with Electro-Mechanical Weight Dial is made with aesthetically pleasing impact-resistant tempered glass, and a large 5.5 inch mechanical dial display. Weight is displayed on the dial and LCD display simultaneously for a definitive weight check every time using four high precision GX sensors that weigh up to 400 lbs.

    With StepOn technology, which means no tapping-before-use required, this scale is super easy to use and both the electro-mechanical dial and LCD display actually illuminate during use. There's even a built-in alarm option that reminds you to measure your weight at the same time each day. The 24H/Alarm button is underneath the scale and can simply be pressed to activate or deactivate this alarm feature. Weight can be displayed on the LCD display in either pounds or kilograms by using the Unit button also underneath the scale. The underside also features four slip-resistant feet for ultimate stability and grip.

    With it's ease of use, Buddy hops on the scale without help, and proudly declares his weight to us. He's in a major growth spurt right now, and the proof is on the scale!

    I love the inclusion of the dial which seems to give this scale an old-school yet modern feel with the LCD display and sleek glass platform. We're very happy with this scale and I don't see why anyone wouldn't be! It's affordable, beautiful, and easy to use.

    You can purchase this Ozeri Rev Digital Bathroom Scale on for $29.95.
    I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

    Friday, March 7, 2014

    Casio CTK-2300 Keyboard {Review}

    Music is a big deal in the Reynolds household. We constantly surround ourselves with music through Pandora, TV, movies and random singing throughout our day. As Buddy gets older, we’ve seen the pure joy and excitement that comes when he gets to play an instrument or sing a song in his weekly homeschool group too. Kids are just fascinated with music and instruments, and that's an interest to grab ahold of and foster! Whether it's the piano at grandma’s house, the tin whistle he plays in his homeschool group, his toy harmonica, train whistle, or play guitar, I want music to continue to be an integral part of Buddy's life

    As a girl I had several years of piano lessons. When we visit my mom and have the opportunity to play her piano, I seem to pick up right where I left off and play a tune or two that I memorized years ago! It's really a joy and accomplishment to me when I see that I can still actually play. In fact, lately I've had the urge to revive my piano playing days and even teach Buddy at home too. Without a piano though, that's a bit tough! The next best thing was to research portable keyboards which led me Casio, a world leader in innovative electronic products.

     I received complimentary product for review purposes. All opinions are 100% my own.

    Casio kindly sent my family the CTK-2300 keyboard. This portable keyboard is just a taste of the insanely cool features that higher-end Casio portable keyboards can hold, and yet the CTK-2300 is filled to the brim with plenty of neat functions in itself. I, for one, was astounded to see all the things it's capable of!

    The CTK-2300 keyboard offers pure playing pleasure with 61 piano-style keys. Discover the instrument's numerous features: whether you want to dive into a colorful world of 150 rhythms, use the sampling function together with the five Voice Pads or connect a CD or MP3 player via the audio input so that you can play along with your favorite songs on the keyboard. The CTK-2300 provides a huge range of features and functions. And the step-up learning system makes it easy to hear the progress made in your playing skills.
    • Five Voice Pads
    • 48-Note Polyphony AHL Sound Source
    • 400 Tones, 150 Rhythms, 10 Digital Reverb Effects & 110 Built-In Songs
    • Step Up Lesson System
    • Can be powered by batteries or with the included AC adapter
    Although the features on the keyboard are rich, you’ll just have fun learning and playing around on the keyboard like Buddy. Just discovering the different each of the 400 tones was entertainment in itself! The keys are somewhat weighted, so just resting your fingers on the keys isn't going to sound them all off. It feels very much like a piano to me! I do love the volume control though, since experimenting with all the features can often sound like utter chaos.

    We’ve really enjoyed the Step Up Lesson System feature that teaches you how to play with a little extra help from the digital screen. In fact, Hubby learned to play a few Christmas songs this way, without having to read music. He played the guitar as a teenager, but never learned to read music. With this function, learning to play a tune right away doesn't necessarily require knowing how to read music.

    The CTK-2300 includes an A/C adapter and Song Book. You can also purchase additional accessories including a bench or a keyboard stand. The Song Book has 89 songs, with varying levels from beginner to expert. For those with some playing ability already, this is a great start to learning to play new pieces. 

    We’ll be using this keyboard to teach Buddy how to play and perhaps get him professional lessons in the near future. For now I'm working on teaching him how to hold his hands lightly on the keys and play gently. He's so eager to learn more that he's constantly asking me to teach him how to play. I'm off to find a children's lesson book to help him learn to read music and play beginner songs!

    I'm so excited about this new adventure in learning for Buddy. The Casio CTK-2300 keyboard is certainly working out great for our family. It's a teaching tool that will be around for years to come, so I consider it a great investment for any family that enjoys music. It doesn't take up much space, and the opportunities for learning are endless.

    The Casio CTK-2300 keyboard retails for $169.99 and can be purchased at