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Sunday, June 29, 2014

Smart Shopping

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of White Cloud . All opinions are 100% mine.

I'm always on the lookout for a great deal.  I do what I can to save money but when it comes to some things (macaroni and cheese instance) it's not worth it to me to save a little bit of money to sacrifice on a lot of quality.

Toilet paper is one of those things for me.  We buy nice toilet paper.  We probably should buy the cheap stuff, especially now that we have kids who help themselves to it, but we don't.  That's why I was so excited to hear about White Cloud toilet paper and their Coupon on Facebook.

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White Cloud has the quality I am used to at a fraction of the cost.  In fact, I can get 16 rolls of White Cloud for the same price as 12 rolls of the Quilted Northern I usually buy.  The new 3-ply is softer and thicker, and the new quilted pattern provides a premium look and feel.  The 2-ply is now stronger and softer. Consumers can use less, making the roll last longer.  Premium TP for a fraction of the cost?  Sign me up.

Right now if you Like White Cloud on Facebook you can get a free 4-pack of White Cloud’s new and improved premium 3-ply Ultra Soft & Thick Bath Tissue with the purchase of any White Cloud Bath Tissue through a high value coupon ($1.97 off) by sharing the coupon on the social channel of their choice (Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest).  Follow White Cloud on Twitter or Follow White Cloud on Pinterest while you're at it!

Don't like sharing things on social media?  You can pring a $1 off coupon if you just 'like' their page.

Use the coupon and you get 8 MORE ROLLS than if you paid the same price for Quilted Northern.

White Cloud is sold exclusively at Walmart.  Store Locator

Disclaimer: Limit One (1) Coupon Per Purchase. White Cloud® Bath Tissue is only available at Walmart stores. No facsimiles or reproductions. May not be sold or transferred. Must present coupon at time of purchase. Any other use constitutes fraud. Valid only in USA. Void where prohibited, taxed or restricted. Case value 1/100¢.

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Thursday, June 26, 2014

The best thing we ever did to date night

We started something amazing in our marriage.
His/her dream date night.
I found this article online and immediately fell in love with the idea.  It sounds selfish but hear me out.
I've been married almost 9 years.  We had gotten into a rut where we were doing basically the same thing for date night every week and it was kind of lame.
So...we started this.  We do it every week.  We switch off.  One week it is my turn and I get to plan whatever I want to do on date night.  I don't have to think about if my husband would like it or anything - I just get to do what I want.  Then next week it's his turn.
My husband and I are very different.  We are into a lot of different things, which is good, but it makes it so we are also pretty independent.  We don't have many shared hobbies, which is why this is so perfect.
It forces us to get out of our comfort zone and do things we wouldn't normally do together.  It is adventurous and exciting.  I feel like a newlywed.  It allows us to explore each other's interests and leaves us feeling connected and closer.  I love it.  I've been telling everyone I know about it.
So...the first week was my turn.
We started off with sushi at Happy Sumo.  VIP nights are buy-one get-one-free nights.  As we sat down he looked around and turned to me and said "this is nice".  Success.

After dinner we walked over to Provo Beach Resort and rented a tandem bike for $8.  HELLO?!? Cutest date idea ever!  I thought he would be thrilled because he loves riding bikes but as soon as we got on I could tell in his hurry to get out of there he was a little embarrassed.  So embarrassed he wouldn't let me take a picture.  BUT he insisted that it was MY night and we got to do whatever I wanted.  He liked it.
We giggled.  We flirted.  He was in charge of steering and I loved it because I could just talk-talk-talk and he had nothing to distract him.  AND I got exercise so I didn't have to feel guilty about missing the gym.  Win win.

After biking we got Blue Bell ice cream cones at Ike's at Provo Beach Resort.  It was amazing.  I am honestly getting all twitterpated just thinking about it.
His turn was tonight.  All of my friends were dying to know what he was going to pick.

It started off with McDonalds.  "Where should we go for dinner?"  "It's your pick.  Your night."  "Oh yeah.  This is AWESOME."

I'm going to be honest, I did not see his pick for our activity coming.  He had just finished the book "If I Can't Have You" about Susan Powell's disappearance and all of the twisted facts surrounding it.  He heard about a book club in West Valley with her real friends that was open to the public and wanted to go.
I'm going to be honest, it is something I would have never, ever done had it not been for this his/her dream date thing.  I was so nervous before we went but it was his night so I wasn't about to back out.
It was fascinating.  I won't say it was super fun because it was really sad but I am really glad I went.  He leaned over to me several times and said "this is so much fun".
This is why I love this idea so much!
It got me out of my element.
It got us doing something together we wouldn't normally do.
We were adventurous and had fun and did something that meant something and I feel closer to him because of it.
And there you have it - the two most-fun date nights in the last 5 years (by far) were within the last two weeks.
So stay tuned...
I'm going to take him to get pedicures soon.  (Don't judge...a lot of my friends' husbands love pedicures.)
He is taking me 4-wheeling.
I want to go to 7 peaks WITHOUT the kids.
He wants to take me to Buffalo Wild Wings.
Here I go feeling all twitterpated again...
Shoot me ideas for fun date nights!  What would YOU pick for your dream date?

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Medical Transcribing - FAQ

I have had a lot of people email me about how to get into medical transcription lately (11 people in the last week, in fact).  Since a lot of people seem to be interested in what I do, I thought I'd post some of the FAQ I get.

In case you missed my first blog post, this is how I got into this.  It's legit.  I seriously love it.  It's my dream job.  I choose my hours and get paid for what I type.  I don't have to sell anything.  I don't have to work while my kids are awake.

  • What is your favorite part of your job?
          I think my favorite part is doing something during the day that stays done.  It gives me a sense of accomplishment.  My second favorite part is that when I want something - anything - and it isn't in the budget (like when I want to buy new clothes or $40 shoes or go on a weekend getaway with my sisters) and my husband is hesitant I can say just work extra that week and pay for it and it's not a big deal.
  • How do you work (close to) full time without getting a sitter and without plopping your kids in front of the TV?
          It's hard but doable.  I think I could only do it on a short-term basis without any help without going crazy.  I work from 1-2 every day while my kids nap.  Then after my kids go to bed I work from 8 to midnight.  7 days a week.  During the school year, I work for just over an hour while my oldest is in preschool and my baby naps during the morning twice per week, bringing my total hours to about 37 each week.
  • Is it hard to get a job once you are certified?
          Right now, no.  In fact I keep getting emails for companies wanting me to apply because they have more jobs than they can fill.  See?
          I don't know for sure because I signed up in 2010 and the price has changed but somewhere around the same price as one semester of tuition would be at UVU.  I just learned if you are a military spouse you might get all your tuition fees covered at no cost to you.  I also know that right now they are giving away a free iPad if you enroll by June 30.  (My husband would have died if I would have gotten a free iPad for enrolling...)

Email me if you're interested.  I have a lot more information I won't bore you with in this blog post.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Taco night

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Sam's Club. All opinions are 100% mine.

Last night we invited my brother and his wife over for a late night date night.  We love themed parties so we planned a fiesta complete with tacos and The Three Amigos.  I've always loved taco nights so I was stoked.

We found this TACO BELL® Taco Night Party Pack at Sam's Club.  For only $8 it comes with everything to make 22 tacos!  (Just add ground beef and toppings)

We opened the box and in less than 15 minutes everything was ready.

Turns out 22 tacos is way more than 4 adults can eat in one sitting but we still had fun taking our time experimenting with all of the toppings.

We called this one the "double decker" and used nacho cheese and beans layered in between the hard and soft shell.

My brother named this one "taco fresca".  Mmm...looking at these pictures is making me hungry.  I think we're going to have to have another Taco Night soon.

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Keeping it real for Mother's Day

This post brought to you by New York Life. All opinions are 100% mine.

This video made me tear up a little because the message is so true.  No matter what may be going wrong in your life there is still good to find to be happy about.  This is something I have been thinking a lot about lately.

My name is Jessica and my life is not perfect.

Sometimes life gets hard.  Sometimes I struggle.  I cry.  I worry.  I get tired.  If I let it, my struggles can take over my life, leaving me with an overwhelming feeling of hopelessness.  But like this little girl, I need to remember to live in the positive.

I was talking on the phone to my mom this week who pointed out that just because a few aspects are hard doesn't mean everything in my life is.  I have been trying recently to notice the beauty around me and let myself be happy in it.  I love smelling the lilacs on the way to my pick up my daughter from preschool.  I love watching the rain.  I love cuddling my sleeping babies.  I love singing Frozen with my girls at the top of our lungs in the car.  I love talking walks in the sunshine.

The hard things don't go away.  They are still there but they are bearable when broken up by sweet, precious and sacred moments with the ones I love most - moments like dressing up for a mid-afternoon tea party with my tinies.

So this Mother's Day I am going to try a little harder to be The Happiest Daughter.  I am going to try harder to spend my day Celebrating Good and recognizing the beauty around me.

New York Life is celebrating all the good around family moment this Mother’s Day.  Learn more about how New York Life can help you and your family Keep Good Going

What do you do to celebrate the good?  Leave a comment and let me know!

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Saturday, June 7, 2014

The Power To Choose

This post brought to you by New York Life. All opinions are 100% mine.

I have been a long-time advocate of the idea that you can be anything you want to be if you just work hard enough.  You can choose your own destiny.  Why settle for less than you want?  Obviously there are exceptions to this rule but for the most part I really believe that if you have dreams you should reach for them and if you have wishes you should work toward them.

Case in point: my husband graduated college and found an entry-level job at a local company with the potential to move up in the corporate world just after we had our first baby.  It was what I had always dreamed of happening but the problem was it wasn't his dream.  After two short weeks it became very apparent that he didn't want to be "stuck" in a desk job forever.  Instead of telling him to stick it out and make it work because it made the most financial sense, I realized it was more important to have a husband who really loved his job...really loved...and was happy.  I encouraged him to figure out what his dream job would be if he could be anything he wanted and 2 weeks later he went back to school.

We started over.  It took 4 more years of school and a second Bachelor's degree before he had a real shot and getting the job he wants.  It required me going back to work and working full time from home to help support our family so he could go to school full time.  (Luckily I too thought about what I would love to do and found my dream job too so it wasn't as awful as it could have been).

We were just talking about this the other day, about if our sacrifice was worth the risk.  My husband showed me a convocation speech Jim Carey gave just last week (Jim Carey...I know right?!?) in which he said "I learned many great lessons from my father, not the least of which was that you can fail in what you don't want, so you might as well take the chance at doing what you love".  This statement sums it up perfectly.

It's a concept my parents did a very good job of teaching me that I want to in turn teach my children.  I really do want my two little girls to live their dreams, become the person they really want to be and reach all the potential I see in them.  I realize my dreams will not necessily be their dreams and I hope like the mom in the video My All-Star Daughter I have the strength to support them in those dreams.

How do you help those you love fulfil their dreams?  Learn more about how New York Life can help you and your family Keep Good Going.

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