Reviews, giveaways and memes - Jumpin Beans

23.2.12

Near South Georgia? @WWE #Smackdown Headed to Albany

I am so excited and you just have no idea!
I have blogged before about how we are WWE fans in this house...
Well, get this...   Last time I was back home, I was told that the WWE would be headed to my hometown!
What?  Albany, Georgia?  The Good Life City?  (Home of Paula Deen, Luke Bryan, Deion Branch, Nancy Lopez, Ray Stevens, Ray Charles, Buster Posey and More!!!!)

Anyways....
So, I found out that the WWE was headed here...  It is Smackdown... The Road to Wrestlemania!
I really wanted to go, but I just could not justify a road trip down there right now...
BUT, now I can... We are headed to Smackdown!!!!!
It has been a LONG time since wrestling was in my hometown... I remember going when I was younger, but that was ages ago!
Image from WWE
I am just so excited that WWE Smackdown is headed our way!!!!
Okay, let me tell you this...
We took the boys to WWE events in Atlanta...
The Georgia Dome holds around 71,000.....
Phillips Arena holds around 18,000....
The Civic Center in Albany holds around 10,000.
Talk about a closer experience, no matter where you are sitting ;)
I am so excited and if you live anywhere near Albany... Are wrestling fans or anything like that...
YOU NEED TO GO!
Just head on over to the Albany Civic Center Box Office  and order your tickets now!
Can March 3rd get here faster, please?!

Side note, I tried to look up a few places that Albany was sort of close to.
There really wasn't anything on their websites, so they might want to take note and make a change to that...
Talk about a way to attract visitors...
But anyways, after a bit of research:


Here are a few area's close to Albany... 

(Thanks to distancebetweencities.net for helping on that!)


Atlanta, GA to Albany - 186 miles
Macon, GA to Albany - 110 miles
Columbus, GA to Albany - 86 miles

Tallahassee, FL to Albany - 88 miles
Dothan, AL to Albany - 84 miles


So- Remember...
Albany, Georgia... 
WWE Smackdown 
Saturday, March 3rd at 7:30

See you there!!!
Come back afterwards to see pictures from our time there!!!!!!!
FTC Compliant Review Policy: The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are NOT influenced by monetary compensation

You Have No Idea How Much I Love Her Writing... @jodipicoult


If you have been with me from the beginning, you may remember when I first blogged about Jodi Picoult.  
I was in love with her writing style the moment I started reading the pages of Change Of Heart.  That was years ago... Not sure exactly when... But anyways, I knew she would be an author that I would follow.  


I have read all but 2 of her books... Why have I not read them?  Honestly, I just have not had the extra money to go out and grab them yet... But, I will buy them soon.  One day... Honestly, I really will!  If you don't believe me, let me tell you why I will... Because I own ALL of her books! 
Image from Amazon.com
 On to the latest book.  I heard that Jodi Picoult had a new book coming out... Lone Wolf.  I was, of course, hopeful to get the opportunity to read it...  Then, one day... A package came in the mail.  I opened it up and was in heaven!  " The latest Jodi Picoult book is here!"  I screamed out to Marc!  Yeah, I am also the crappy friend that immediately had to text a picture of it in my lap to a dear friend of mine that is also a JP fan.  Not to mention, I do believe I sent out a tweet about it...

JP is like a drug to me, I really can not quit her!  
I started reading it right away!  Let me admit something... When I read her books, it is hard to stop.. as I am sucked in more and more page by page... It really is a deep love that I have with her writing style!  I remember when I was pregnant with Broxton, I was reading all of her books, as she was a pretty recent discovery for us... Once we finished Change of Heart, we went out and had to read all of her books up until then!  I took her books everywhere... since I was pregnant, I was at the doctor often and each visit, he would ask what book I was reading... He would then look and see it was yet another JP book.. Come to find out, his wife was a fan...  Small world!  

Now, why do I love her writing style so much?

Because it is different to me.

You see, each "chapter" is one of the characters point of view.  
Each "chapter" has the characters name at the top and then whenever it is their view point, they have their own font style.  One might think that with it having each characters point of view that it would jump a bit, but the way she does it is flawless...

Jodi tells the story in the way that it flows from one to the next.... 

Also, the MAIN reason I love her writing...
She doesn't just write a book.. She makes you think... 

The book you read isn't just some story, it provides thought provoking questions...
(Not to mention, she even posts Book Club Questions on her site to help you with discussions! )  


 

Synopsis:

Edward Warren, 23, has been living in Thailand for five years, a prodigal son who left his family after an irreparable fight with his father, Luke. But he gets a frantic phone call: His dad lies comatose in a NH hospital, gravely injured in the same accident that has also injured his younger sister Cara.
Cara, 17, still holds a grudge against her brother, since his departure led to her parents’ divorce. In the aftermath, she’s lived with her father – an animal conservationist who became famous after living with a wild wolf pack in the Canadian wild. It is impossible for her to reconcile the still, broken man in the hospital bed with her vibrant, dynamic father.
With Luke’s chances for recovery dwindling, Cara wants to wait for a miracle. But Edward wants to terminate life support and donate his father’s organs. Is he motivated by altruism, or revenge? And to what lengths will his sister go to stop him from making an irrevocable decision?
LONE WOLF looks at the intersection between medical science and moral choices. If we can keep people who have no hope for recovery alive artificially, should they also be allowed to die artificially? Does the potential to save someone else’s life with a donated organ balance the act of hastening another’s death? And finally, when a father’s life hangs in the balance, which sibling should get to decide his fate?
Quite honestly, I was not sure how much I would be into the whole "wolf" aspect of it all, but NOT surprisingly... Jodi Picoult sucked me in and made me hold on... Each page sliding into my heart... 
This is more than a book about a "lone wolf" but is so much more about a family!!!!! I will tell you, I did find learning about the wolves to be very fascinating... I was thinking it would not be intriguing to me, but in fact, it really was!  

Lone Wolf is available on February 28th.  You can pre-order now!  
Of course, follow Jodi on Facebook and Twitter...
(I do, that is how I was into countdown mode for her latest book!)

FTC Compliant Review Policy: The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are NOT influenced by monetary compensation

Justin Bartha is Just So Sweet- The Rebound on DVD

Justin Bartha is just a cutie. He is actually a bit older than me, but he has a baby face and when I see him, I think of a young boy... Like a friend of my brother or something... I know, I know!!!
I just finished watching The Rebound starring Justin Bartha and Catherine Zeta-Jones.
Wow, it amazes me to think that he is the same guy that was in The Hangover and National Treasure!  I love knowing that he has the acting ability to handle the different roles that he has been in!
The Rebound is no exception!  I hate to admit it, but I can not think of any movies she has been in, I think I am more familiar with her name because of her marriage... Where as with Justin, I know his movies... but nothing about his personal life.
The start of the movie pulled me in with the soundtrack... and then as the movie started, I was wondering if this was going to be more of a comedy than a "romance comedy."  I loved how it played out...
I loved seeing the dates that Catherine Zeta-Jones goes on... and how she meets Justin Bartha!
Very cute movie!!!!   Do I recommend it?  Yes, guys and gals alike will love it...

SYNOPSIS:
Upon discovering her husband’s infidelity, Sandy (Zeta-Jones) and her two kids move from the suburbs to pursue a new life in the big city. There she meets Aram (Bartha), a local coffee shop employee whose wife only married him as a means to getting her green card. The two strike up a friendship which eventually evolves into something more. But it isn’t long before they’re faced with the big question - “Is this real or just a rebound?”


Now that you know this is a movie you want to see... 
Head on over and take THE REBOUND QUIZ to see what age mate is right for you...


FTC Compliant Review Policy: The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are NOT influenced by monetary compensation

22.2.12

I Want to Go to Broadway - @ANNIEonBroadway is Headed There!

How many tomorrows do I have to have?
I heart Annie.
Always have.
Maybe it was because we were both redheads..
Maybe it was because of the singing..
I don't know..
BUT-
I do know, I heard that The Musical Annie is headed to Broadway... 
And I WANT To Go!
I love her!!!!
It's a Hard Knock Life, You Know?
Head on over and visit the Annie On Broadway Site Today... 
And Tomorrow too :)

Click here to follow Annie On Broadway on Facebook and Twitter.

***** This is not a paid or sponsored post... 
I was asked to spread the word and will be invited to a special event this spring. *****

We are Loving our Pantone: Colors book from @AbramsAppleseed

When you are teaching your children colors, do you sit there and work with all the different hues?
Or do you just work with the primary colors?
I know with Broxton, we started with the basics, red, orange, yellow, green, blue and purple.
Once he knew those, we started pointing out different shades of the colors.  
See that orange car?  But then, he would argue that was not orange, as it wasn't the color he had learned!
We tried to explain that there was more than one shade of a color, no matter if we were looking in books, riding down the street or coloring on the porch.

Recently, I was sent a book that I knew was going to be great to work with Broxton!
It is the Pantone : Colors from Abrams Appleseed!
Now, let me tell you about this...
I actually added it to the gift bag for Broxton's birthday this past weekend.
Well, as soon as he opened it, his friend Garret grabbed it and started to have "school" going through all the colors!  I thought it was cute and that it was a hit...
UNTIL Garrets daddy saw it.    You see, Mark (with a K, not daddy Marc)  works for a sports logo company.  He saw it and was immediately hooked into it.  No, he did not take the book away from the kids, but as soon as it was placed down... He snatched it up and started exploring.  He thought it was the neatest book and wanted to know where to order one... 
If you are wondering, just click on the PANTONE : COLORS link to order yours... 
This book covers 9 colors... and each color has 20 shades.  
Yes, we know that is just a VERY small number compared to the Pantone scale, but this is a board book geared to the 0-5 age group.  Let's don't over load them... Yet!  

I really love how the book has a monochromatic color on one side... then the page opposite the picture has the other shades of that color.  It also has the Pantone numbers and the color name in the box with it.  This book has been spotted in the hands of Broxton daily!!!
I highly recommend it for all houses.. I mean, who doesn't love colors?!  

Remember to follow Abrams Appleseed on Facebook and Twitter.

FTC Compliant Review Policy: The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are NOT influenced by monetary compensation

21.2.12

Help Spread Smiles and Donate Money - No Cost To You


Now this is a really cool email I received... 
PLEASE pass this along...


Lets raise that donation amount :)




I received this last week:





Today, HP launched eSmiles, a project that will build financial and emotional support through HP’s ePrint technology for children and their families staying at five participating Ronald McDonald Houses in the U.S. For every well wish or “eSmile” sent, HP will donate $1 and is committed to help raise $10,000 for each House.

Through pilot programs around the world, the HP eSmiles program has already raised over $120,000 for participating Ronald McDonald Houses in Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong and the Netherlands. The program will help drive further awareness and support for participating Ronald McDonald Houses – globally and in their local communities.

The Ronald McDonald Houses that will participate in the U.S. launch include San Diego, Orange County, Chicago, New York City and the Atlanta Gatewood House in your neighborhood. HP has donated a Photosmart 7510 e-All-in-One to each House, which allows the families to receive eSmiles from around the world. Each participating House will have its own customized ePrint address, allowing you to select exactly where you want to send your eSmile.

----------------------

Once again:
The participating Ronald McDonald Houses include, San Diego, Orange County, CA, Atlanta, Chicago and New York. Every time an eSmile is sent to one of the five houses (either via hpesmiles.com or by sending directly to the printer’s unique e-mail address),  HP donates a $1 to that house.


**** This was not a paid/sponsored post... 
I just wanted to share. ****

Please let me know if you do this and/or share with your friends/readers!  

Shirts That Go for the Transportation Lover You Know

Some time ago, I saw the cutest shirt on someones blog...
Of course, I had to do research to see what all was available and let me tell you, I was happy with what I found!!!!
If you are looking for a cute kids or toddlers t-shirt for one that loves transportation...
Shirts That Go is where you need to be shopping!

I headed over and immediately fell in love with quite a few different ones.
Broxton came over to see what I was looking at and he was wanting to look at all of them!

I was so excited when I found out that I would have the chance to host a review of one for my blog!
Broxton is really into all the transportation things right now...
Our house is a parking lot for all sorts of toys!  From trains to firetrucks, tractors or helicopters to school buses, we have them all!  That being said, I knew it was going to be hard to pick what shirt would be best for him!
I had him come to the computer to look at all of them.  I told him he could pick out one shirt for his birthday.  We looked at pretty much every single one of them!  

   
We finally had it narrowed down to just a handful.  I really was leaning towards the firetruck or the school bus... As those shirts were just too cute...
But, then, I kept being drawn back to the train.  Since daddy works on a train, that always rates first... Well, for the most part!



Would you like to know what we went with?  (Remember, Broxton had the final say...)
Broxton opens up his TRAIN SHIRT.

Which meant he head to wear it to the circus!!!
Normally Broxton wears a 4T in shirts... as he has a long upper body.  I read on their site that the shirts run a touch small... So, we ordered the 6T shirt.  Now, it is a bit long on him, but that works for us, as that means he will have the time to grow into it more, versus grow OUT of it faster.  
I really liked how the colors were and how soft the shirt felt.  It felt as though the image was printed on the shirt, not just ironed on.  You know what I mean?  How some printed shirts have the rough feel and you just know it is going to peel off and leave it all ugly after a couple washes?  Now with this!  
I am very impressed... Broxton must have been too, as he begged me to let him wear it again the next day.  He did not care that it was dirty and stunk from the circus, he just wanted to show it off... Not to worry, I did not let him!  I told him he has to wait until it is washed :)

Head on over to Shirts That Go to see what all they have to offer...
I am excited, as they just added kids army tank t-shirt and a kids police car t-shirt!



Honestly, I can not wait to order more... When you order 3 or more, you also get a really cool gift box that I know Broxton would love to have to put his odds and ends in!  


FTC Compliant Review Policy: The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are NOT influenced by monetary compensation

Fully Charged At the Circus #RBBBATL




Last year was Broxton's first time going to the circus and we had a blast.  
That being said, I knew that I wanted to take him whenever they returned... Not to mention it seems to be right around his birthday, so that makes it extra special.

A friend of mine saw that Ringling Bros and Barnum & Bailey were headed our way...
They called to see if we were planning on going, as they remembered how much we talked about enjoying the show last year.  Of course, we were... So, they got tickets to go the same night.

Marc, Broxton and I got there early for the "media behind the scenes" event.  

We got to listen to the animal handler talk... Broxton got to pet the horses...  




We even got to watch an elephant up close and personal!
After the different animals, Broxton had the chance to meet a few of the different clowns.  I know that some kids are scared of clowns, but he was cracking up laughing at them!!!!


After that, we headed over to the Wardrobe area for Broxton to try on an outfit before the Pre-Show started...
Broxton petting the horse.
Broxton meeting a clown.
 Once the Circus Pre-Show started, Marc and Broxton grabbed seats down on the end to see the animals again while I meandered around looking at all the activities going on.  I HIGHLY recommend going early to see this!  (It is included in your ticket price and there are great photo opportunities!) 

We were able to watch the elephant paint a picture, that was later given to someone through a drawing held right before the show started...


The start of the show!!!!!
Broxton laughing at the clowns!  (I could have listened to this forever!)

 Once the show started, it was over...

We had to grab the lemonade and popcorn...I do believe this is going to be part of our circus tradition...

Then, we were in for a treat!!!!

This particular show is called "Ringling Bros and Barnum & Bailey : Fully Charged."  

We had a great time!  From all the circus acts going on, to the excitement of all the children...
I ABSOLUTELY LOVED watching and listening to Broxton laughing at everything the clowns did!  
It was worth it all, to see the excitement on his face!

My favorite part of the show!!!!
Of course, I love the elephants too!

 Once it was over, I had to ask Marc his favorite:  He agreed with me.. The guys on the silver circle thing... AWESOME!  Broxton loved the clowns the most!!! (He has even had to reenact them for us!)
My friends loved it all and thought the acrobatic work was the best....

Of course, we ALL agree... We will be going next year... 
And we for sure recommend it... 

It really is the Greatest Show On Earth!  
For Children of ALL Ages!!!!


Click HERE to see where it is near you!!!!

FTC Compliant Review Policy: The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are NOT influenced by monetary compensation

20.2.12

I guess Leappad from @LeapFrog is the IT toy right now...

We put much thought into what we wanted to get Broxton for his birthday...
Instead of toys, we wanted to get him the Leappad from Leapfrog...
Family and friends gave us money and that is our plan...

But, I had no clue that it was the IT toy...
So, we have traveled ALL over the area looking...
No luck!  We have tried to buy online...
No luck!
Even the Leap Frog store is out of stock!!!!
Image from the Leap Frog Store.


Has this ever happened to you?
What toys was it?
I feel like this was how parents felt during the craze of Tickle Me Elmo days!!!!

Family Night with Coke and American Idol #Giveaway

How long have you been an Idol fan?
I watched in the beginning...   Then, work schedule did not allow for it.
BUT, we would put the start of Idol on (when the not so good were trying to get that Golden Ticket to Hollywood)  Hey, I worked in a bar and people thought it was funny...


Last Year, Marc and I started watching it each week. We would have our favorites and each week we would judge the competition.  I mean, really... We were just like J.Lo, Stephen and Randy.  You know that Marc has Coke running through his veins, so all he really needs is the coke glass that is on their table to be just like them!




As we go into the 11th Season of American Idol, Coke wants to continue bringing you fun things to do as a family for Family Night.  I can tell you this... Each time Phillip Phillips is on, my facebook page goes into overload!  Want to know why?  He is from Leesburg, Georgia... That is right there by my hometown of Albany!  Some of my friends know him... (No, I don't, but they do!)  So... I can pretty much bet that Family Night has lots of cheering for Phillip!  


Coke is giving one of the lucky readers of Jumpin Beans the chance to have a fun family night of your own!
One winner is going to win all the items needed to make American Idol night fun at your house!
(Valued at OVER $100)


  • (1) Handheld Camcorder
  • (1) American Idol – The Hits Volume 1 CD
  • (1) Coca-Cola and Pringles coupon
    Think about it..
    You could have your own A.I. auditions and record it on your new camcorder...
    Hey, there are lots of people discovered on You Tube...
    So, if you think you have what it takes (or a friend does) just upload them on there!  

    As if the prize isn't enough... 
    Head on over to the My Coke Rewards Page.. 
    They have TONS of fun things to do, all tying in with American Idol!

  • The prize was provided by Coca-Cola, but Coca-Cola is not a sponsor, administrator, or involved in any other way with this giveaway. All opinions expressed in the post are my own and not those of Coca-Cola.
  • Entrants must be 18 or older and located in the US only. Winner to be chosen at random.



  • a Rafflecopter giveaway

    So Lucky for the Photographs

    I tell you, I posted the other day about being terrified three years ago...
    But then, I never came back to tell you just how wonderful my life is now..
    I know you know, but it is nice to think back.

    Three years ago, I am a first time mom.
    Hubby is deploying.
    I am scared.  But, I am so blessed.
    I was there, for so many of his firsts...
    and I am so thankful.

    I remember going in for my C-Section....
    I remember Broxton being born, but then... I did not hear him crying, so I started crying...
    Marc could not figure out what was wrong with me, so I was freaking out about not hearing him cry, he assured me that he was crying and all was okay.
    Then, they showed me my baby.  All was right in the world, except... I wanted to hold him first, and Marc was the one showing him to me!  See, the little things had me all emotional that day!  Ha ha ha.
    I saw the loves of my life... The best things that have ever happened to me...

    Long story short...  I knew then and there, life for me had changed.
    I was finally taken back to my room...
    Broxton in my arms... I knew then, I had never, ever known a love like the one I was holding.
    Then, lets kick it up a notch and add a bit of excitement...
    TORNADO WATCH!  Yes, time to wheel us out in the hallway!
    Are you kidding me?  Nope, not a chance...
    So, here we are hanging out in the hallway... Good times...

    I will say it again... Looking at Broxton, I just saw LOVE.
    After things settled down that night, I spoke to one of my best friends in Ohio.
    All I could tell her was there was no way to describe this feeling...
    It was simply put "love"  I cried and cried and was completely amazed.

    As the days passed, I soaked up each second I could of Marc and Broxton.
    I would watch as Marc just laid there staring at Broxton. I would not even try to think of the thoughts going through his head... I mean, here he was, laying there at his newborn baby, preparing for deployment!
    I tried to give them time to each other, but at the same time, I was a mom.  For the first time!  I was loving it.


    Lucky for me, my mom came to help me the week after Marc left...
    At that point, we had friends over and once again, I knew I was blessed.
    Friends and family are everything to me and I have it all.

    It has been three years since those first terrifying days...
    I have had the honor to be a mommy to the sweetest baby boy I know...
    Watching as he learns new things...   Each day is a new discovery and I am so lucky he lets me be a part of it!  We have had the time to share as he learned to roll over, heard his laugh for the first time, learning to walk and talk.  Letting him pick out his clothes.  Watching as he always picks out the kidorable rainboots to wear.  We have learned our letters, numbers, colors and shapes... But each day is more.
    I love watching as he and daddy explore new things.  As he continues to grow into a wonderful young man that will eventually be to grown to give me kisses and proclaim that he wants to marry me, as he loves me with all of his heart!

    For now, I will soak up every minute and try to remember to keep taking photographs, as those can always bring me back to when he was just so little....


     
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