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February 27, 2019

GIVEAWAY: Turbotax!!!

Do Your Taxes w/TurboTax® This Year. File Online With Confidence.

#1 Rated Tax Software · Free State Filing · No Tax Knowledge Required

...offers one of the simplest ways to file a tax return

We've been using TurboTax for the past few years and plan to continue doing so because it makes filing taxes easier. I wouldn't say it makes them "easy" because ours were very complicated, but it was such a huge help. Since we had a failed adoption in 2012 and then a successful finalized adoption in 2013 we had the adoption tax credit to figure out for 2012, 2013 and 2014. And then again with the adoption of our second and third children this makes filing SO much easier!!! Without the help of Turbotax we would be lost. 

What I like about TurboTax is that with just a click you can get explanations of what tax words mean, or in which situations you would quality. It leads you to answers instead of having to scour the web for them. It's a click away. I also appreciated that they cover EVERYTHING. They lead you through income and can even pull up records from employers (not all, but many). They ask about your investments, your loans, your deductions etc. You just keep pressing on until you're done.


New this year is TurboTax Live, which gives consumers on-demand access to personalized chat, phone, or video-based tax advice from a credentialed tax expert (CPAs, Enrolled Agents, or Practicing Attorneys) who can also review, sign and file the customer’s return.

...and now 2 of my readers will have a chance to file their taxes with Turbotax this year.  Each code below is good for one free federal + state preparation and e-file. See below...

WIN IT: 3 readers will each win a Turbotax Premier code to do their 2018 Taxes!!!!


HOW TO ENTER:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

February 20, 2019

THE RESTORATON SERIES : JONATHAN’S WALK

For years, Jonathan has been in prison. As a result, he has missed milestone moments with his family. He wasn’t there for his daughter’s first day of school or a thousand little experiences with his wife and as a father, he is devastated to be separated from those he loves most.‍ Jonathan has been looking forward to his release from prison for over a decade. 

So many life events have been missed and he is now ready to be with his wife and kids again. Of course, this transition isn't going to be easy. The odds are against him: with over half of prisoners returning to prison within two years, Jonathan is aware of the challenge set before him.‍ Still, he is determined to take the skills he has learned into the world outside of incarceration and stay there, helping build the community that he is part of for years to come.

Prison Fellowship presents The Restoration Series: Jonathan’s Walk, a 5-part documentary film series following one man as he re-enters his community after 15 years in prison. It demonstrates in imagery, powerful storytelling and social interaction what it means to be human and the shared need of all people to see communities restored. 

Though America is home to only 4% of the world's population, we house more than 20% of its prisoners. Recidivism–the tendency of a criminal to reoffend—is out of control. The Restoration Series tells the story of men and women who have experienced The Academy, a revolutionary in-prison program that is combatting incarceration and recidivism head on.


My Thoughts:
I have family members and friends who have been to prison. It was a life changing experience for them. Going to jail was the shock they needed to finally turn their life around and make changes for the better! Small decisions can affect your life FOREVER. This series really shows you how one action or one choice can lead to missing out of amazing experiences like the birth of your children, seeing your kids grow up, being able to say goodbye to a loved one. Hopefully this series will make people stop and think before they make life altering decisions. If this can help keep people out of the prison system, then I think everyone should watch this!!!

 Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway.  Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation.  I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.

February 04, 2019

My Favorite New Accessory | A Unique Wood Watch by JORD


My Favorite New Accessory | A Unique Wood Watch by JORD

If you know me you know that I get on certain creative kicks from time to time. When I was in college it was all about art and drawing. When I graduated it became cake decorating. After that I moved on to nail art, and now fashion and beauty are my passions, and I've recently gotten into accessorizing, especially with watches. In 2017 I asked for 3 different watches for Christmas if that tells you anything. After all I had to have one in every type of metal to match my jewelry, right? Recently someone asked me if I had tried wooden watches, and I hadn't. At first I was thinking they would look rustic or like a camping accessory, but I was wrong!

I discovered a brand called Jord (pronounced Yode). They are based in St. Louis, where they are constantly developing new designs. The watches are are a sophisticated mix of natural, and largely re-claimed materials, combined with quality movements and components.  They are made to fit your wrist, so they're customized watches for you. They come in a variety of colors from golden to deep brown, black to red with all types of watch faces. I was really impressed with what I saw, and when I got mine in person I was even more impressed.

I received the Frankie watch, made with zebra wood which has a light yellow-brown color and a large circle face. When I ordered it, they had me measure my wrist so it could be made to fit me specifically, and it fits me perfectly! The watch face is a bit larger than I typically wear, but I like that it's a statement piece. People will notice this watch! I picked this color combination because I feel it will match almost anything. It's versatile, but still eye-catching.



These are also excellent gift ideas. They can be customized; you can pick the face plate and the wristband combination you would like. You can order it to size the recipient perfectly. In addition, many of their watches are able to be engraved and personalized. I think that this would make a great gift for dads, moms, husbands, sons etc. They have a one year guarantee, free worldwide shipping and can be returned or exchanged, which always makes online shopping less stressful. I would LOVE to receive one of these for a gift. There were so many other styles I wanted to try, but whittled it down to only one.

...and if you've been dying to try one, here's your change!


WIN IT: One reader will $100 off their next purchase at JORD! Everyone who enters will receive 10% off just for trying!


HOW TO ENTER: www.jordwatches.com/g/melindajoy

(giveaway runs for 4 weeks from the date of this post)

Wooden Wrist Watch


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January 09, 2019

GIVEAWAY: Day by Day Bible

ABOUT

Many people are unfamiliar with the stories of the Bible and how they fit together into the grand narrative of God’s Word. God gave us the Bible to reveal great truth about himself and about our lives, and he wants to draw us into the ongoing story of what he is doing in the world. The CSB Day-by-Day Chronological Bible features a clear narrative approach to the Bible, arranging the complete text into a fresh chronological reading plan with daily readings guided by Dr. George Guthrie.
In this plan, the books, chapters, and verses of the Bible are thoughtfully arranged so readers can track the story of Scripture, day-by-day, from beginning to end, understanding the flow of events and how the grand narrative of Scripture applies to everyday life. Unlike other chronological Bibles, this arrangement is not date specific (e.g. “January 1”), so the reading plan can begin at any point in the calendar year.
Features Include: 52 weeks of readings (six readings per week) in chronological order, Scripture presented in three main acts (God’s Plan for All People; God’s Covenant People; God’s New Covenant People) and seventeen total scenes, an introduction for each act and scene to orient the reader to its importance in the grand story, single-column text with plenty of space for taking notes, concordance, smyth-sewn binding, presentation page, and full-color maps.
The CSB Day-by-Day Chronological Bible features the highly readable, highly reliable text of the Christian Standard Bible® (CSB). The CSB stays as literal as possible to the Bible’s original meaning without sacrificing clarity, making it easier to engage with Scripture’s life-transforming message and to share it with others.
I can't wait to get my copy and start reading. One of my New Year's resolutions is to read my Bible more and be more consistent, so this will greatly help with this goal!
WIN IT: One reader will win this Bible for themselves!
HOW TO ENTER:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

November 30, 2018

Adventure Bible: Polar Exploration

With over 9 million copies sold, the Adventure Bible brand is beloved by Christian
schools, churches, and families alike. Now, the #1 Bible for kids, including all of the
trusted essentials loved by parents, is available in an exciting polar exploration
theme!

Ready for a frosty Adventure? Embark on a fun, exciting trek through God’s Word
with the NIV Adventure Bible, now in an all-new polar exploration theme! While on
this arctic adventure, readers meet all types of people, see all sorts of places, and
learn all kinds of facts about the Bible. And most importantly you’ll grow closer in
your relationship with God.

Features of the NIV Adventure Bible, Polar Exploration Edition include:

•             The same trusted Adventure Bible content in a frosty new theme
•             Full-color images of polar animals, arctic outposts, and icy landscapes
throughout make learning about the Bible even more engaging
•             Life in Bible Times—Articles and illustrations describe what life was like in
ancient days
•             Words to Treasure—Highlights great verses to memorize
•             Did You Know?—Interesting facts help you understand God’s Word and the
life of faith
•             People in Bible Times—Articles offer close-up looks at amazing people of
the Bible

•             Live It!—Hands-on activities help you apply biblical truths to your life
•             Twenty polar-themed pages focus on topics such as how to know you are a
Christian, famous people of the Bible, highlights of the life of Jesus, and how to pray.
•             Book introductions feature arctic art and important information about each
book of the Bible
•             Dictionary/concordance for looking up tricky words
•             Color map section to help locate places in the Bible
•             Complete text of the New International Version (NIV) of the Bible
•             Thrilling new glacial cover on metallic paper

My son has been obsessed with polar animals lately - penguins, arctic fox, polar bears, seals etc, so he will be thrilled to open this on Christmas morning! It's a gift I know he'll look forward to reading.

November 16, 2018

Holiday Gifts from Crayola


I've been a big fan of Crayola products ever since I was a kid, so I was thrilled to take part in this year's holiday campaign with Crayola. 

My kids had a chance to try out 2 of their hot holiday gift items.  Now, I'm an artist at heart, so I am thrilled that my kids enjoy art and creating as much as I do. We can spend hours coloring or doing crafts, so I knew they would love these Crayola items.

First they tried the ultimate light board. It allows kids to draw or trace on a clear board with special "glow" markers, turn the lights off, and see their creation glow. They loved being able to trace their favorite cartoon characters or draw silly robots and bring them to life when the lights went out.


The second item was the color chemistry lab set. We've had tons of fun with this. We've made multiple volcanoes (first with fizzy tabs and water, secondly with vinegar and baking soda), painted pictures with saltwater, watched wooden pencils "bend" in a cup of water and much much more. These gifts encourage the imagination and provide hours of fun! Check out some of their gifts below:

Color Chemistry Lab Set: http://bit.ly/2OqvQHlColorChemistry
Silly Scents Sticker Maker: http://bit.ly/2OXxrl4StickerMaker

Many thanks to Crayola for the chance to try out these amazing holiday gifts!!!



November 01, 2018

Giveaway: Holy Roar - Chris Tomlin

This album is a bit slower in pace, but it's very relaxing and calming. If you're looking for a super upbeat album, this may not be for you, but if you are looking for an album to soothe your soul, check it out! My favorite song is #8 Is He Worthy.

Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway.  Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation.  I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.

WIN IT: One reader will win this CD for themselves!

HOW TO ENTER: a Rafflecopter giveaway
how

Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway.  If you have won a prize from our sponsor Propeller /FlyBy Promotions in the last 30 days on the same blog, you are not eligible to win.  Or if you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again.  Winner is subject to eligibility verification.

October 31, 2018

The Field Toy (great gift idea!)


What is "THE FIELD"?
Created in Ireland, the Field toy helps inspire real world, screen-free, and imaginative play. This must-have field toy is free of batteries and features lush green grass, hedging, traditional wooden farm gates, farm animals, a tractor, and more! Creative play is proven to have intellectual, emotional and social benefits, and The Field toy is the perfect way to help boys and girls ages 3+ get away from the screens and use their own ingenuity to develop a farm world right in front of their eyes. Available in either 26” x 17” or 12” x 17”.


My thoughts:
When this arrived my kids were literally jumping with joy, and so was I. When my kids get excited about non-electronic toys and games I am one happy momma. In today's society so much revolves around screens, so I love toys that make my kids want to step away from that and use their imagination. My oldest son loves animals so he loved creating a farm, making a corral for his animals, and "mowing" the grass with his little tractor. My daughter was happy join in the fun! My two year old son was also intrigued by this faux grass toy. He just wanted to touch it. :)




Purchase:


Many thanks to HC PR for the opportunity to try this out and use our imagination!!!

October 15, 2018

GIVEAWAY: Smile Brilliant!

Who doesn't want a whiter smile? I've teamed up with Smile Brilliant! to bring you this giveaway. One of my readers or viewers (if you found my via youtube), will win this teeth whitening kit!!!



Head on over and see details on how to enter in the video below:



September 18, 2018

GIVEAWAY: Fandango Giftcard



ABOUT Little Women:

Sisters—and dreams—are unique in their ability to inspire, encourage and change the world. For 150 years, Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women has motivated women of all ages to dream together and celebrate family. Coming to theaters for the first time, a modern retelling of LITTLE WOMEN brings a new generation together with their mothers, sisters and friends.
From girls playing in the attic to women living with purpose, the March sisters—Meg, Jo, Beth and Amy—are committed to always supporting each other. Yet, growing up sometimes means growing apart. An aspiring writer, Jo leaves for New York determined to publish a novel. In the wake of rejected draft upon draft, her editor challenges Jo to write about something more interesting—her family. When tragedy brings the sisters back home, sticking together takes on new meaning. As Jo comforts her sick sister, Beth asks for one thing: a story. Jo knows the perfect one … by heart.

Coming to Theaters Nationwide on Friday, 9/28/18!!!
Watch the Trailer Here:


WIN: $25 Fandango Giftcard!!!

HOW TO ENTER: a Rafflecopter giveaway

September 17, 2018

GIVEAWAY: Healed by Grace DVD




ABOUT

Jesse is approaching her 15th birthday and the only gift she desires is a horse. Unbeknownst to Jesse, her mother Brandy is in the throes of a cancer diagnosis which has Jesse’s father jumping through unexpected obstacles.  He signs Jesse up for summer camp, but when summer camp falls through he decides to have her stay with her estranged grandfather, an old gruff horse trainer named Gauff. Gauff, still recovering from the death of a special horse named Grace, now faces the challenges of teen negotiation. Gauff finds he must swallow his pride and ask his daughter Brandy for forgiveness.  A humorous and inspiring story of how God’s grace works in mysterious ways.

I personally love a good animal movie that will move me to tears, and this was no exception.
Available on DVD on Sep. 18
Watch a clip here:

WIN IT: HEALED BY GRACE combo pack

HOW TO ENTER: a Rafflecopter giveaway  

July 04, 2018

Thank A Teacher


Create and upload a teacher thank-you for a chance to win a $10,000 classroom makeover, $1,000 for you and your teacher and even have your thank-you note featured on a box of Crayola crayons!

Here's our thank-you to our favorite teacher....dad [also an educator by profession] :)


Ten grand prize packs will be awarded, inclusive of:
  • $10,000 classroom makeover for the teacher
  • One year supply of Crayola products for the school
  • $1,000 scholarship for the student
  • $1,000 gift card for both the teacher and school 
  • Free CreatEd seminar for the school
In addition to the grand prizes, one lucky entrant will have his or her thank you note featured on a special pack of Crayola crayons this holiday. In addition, a weekly sweepstakes will run concurrently with the contest, offering entrants a chance to win $500 gift cards for themselves and their teachers.  The contest and sweepstakes will run through August 25, 2018.

For official rules, visit www.Crayola.com/ThankATeacher

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