Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Cleaning Kids Toys

I tend to cringe when I see commercials using bleach to clean kids toys.  Toys get gross because kids put them in their mouths, have sticky fingers, and play outside.  I honestly do not want my child to put bleach in their mouth!

This last weekend my sister put Basic H2 to the test on my nieces toys.  She mixed 1/4tsp of the sample in 16oz of water to make the All-Purpose cleaner.  She sprayed the toys and wiped them off.  Viola!  It really is that simple AND it is SAFE!  

Before: You can't tell, but they are pretty dirty!

Sooooo Simple!

All clean! 
The bonus is that this only took not even 10 minutes to do.  The entire bottle you see in the above picture costs $0.03!  

Thank you for cleaning my sensory ball, Mommy!  

Monday, October 29, 2012


FREE Shipping for all new or current members with an order of $50 or more.  Now until the end of the month!  

Time to start thinking about Christmas gifts.  Shaklee makes your Christmas shopping easy!  

Go HERE to start shopping.   

As always, FREE membership with the purchase of Vitalizer.   

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Weekly Meal Plan 10.28--11.3

I'm a little late on my meal plan, but I have a good reason!  I was gone Friday, Saturday, and came back today.  I enjoyed some great girl time with my sister and adorable niece.  That girl is amazing!  

On Saturday my sister and I took off for some hard core shopping.  8am-2:30pm and my feet are still killing me!  We hit up a lot of great places and scored some great deals.  

I was able to go into Trader Joe's and Whole Foods to get a few things I only get to stock up on once or twice a year.  Those stores just aren't around here, but I wish they were!  

As you can see above, I went to Teavana!  That store is dangerous for me.  My husband and I both love tea.  He will only drink it hot, but I love it iced or hot.  I splurged and got us a great herbal blend.     

I hope you had a fabulous weekend.  I am just finishing this up and I need to switch one more load of laundry over.  Then I plan on taking a super hot shower.

Here is what we will be dining on this week.  Enjoy!    

Weekly Meal Plan:

Sunday: Popcorn, apples with caramel sauce

Monday:  Hamburger gravy over mashed potatoes, peas

Tuesday:  Homemade chicken noodle soup

Wednesday:  Leftovers

Thursday:  Baked chicken, quinoa, steamed veggies

Friday:  Hot dogs (nitrate free), kraut, fruit

Saturday:  ???

Thursday, October 25, 2012

My Shaklee Story!

Finally!  I finally get to share my story with you!  Grab a cup of tea and enjoy.

This story starts clear back in 2008 when my husband and I decided we wanted to start a family.  I had always been interested in adoption and talked to my husband about it.  We talked for MONTHS and decided it was time to start saving our money.  

In April of 2009 we started the adoption process.  It took us until November to get everything squared away.  By the end of November we had a copy of our homestudy in our hands and our profile books were going to be seen.  

This was so exciting! The adoption agency told us we could possibly be parents at any time.  It wasn't common, but there is a chance a woman will go to the hospital and decide they do not want to be a parent.  That meant we could get a call whenever!  This kind of freaked me out.  I am a planner.  A BIG planner, so we set up our nursery, got all of our cloth diapers, and got a car seat.  

The weeks started dragging into months with no word from the agency.  We would call and they would tell us they hadn't shown our profile.  We kept getting told we need to be patient.  I'm sorry, but you don't tell prospective adoptive parents to be patient!  

Again, the months were passing by.  We would call and get the same answer...they hadn't shown our profile.  Talk about frustrating!  In July of 2010 I was standing in the garage with my husband when I opened a letter from the adoption agency.  I broke down.  I could not take it anymore!  So much time had passed that we were going to have to fill out all the papers again, go through our FBI checks again, and pay A LOT of money AGAIN.  

That day we tore that letter up.  It was heart breaking.  We had been living on pins and needles for MONTHS thinking we could be parents.  In that entire time they had only shown our profile a handful of times.  They would not return our calls in a timely manner.  It simply felt like they did not care.  How much time and money were we supposed to invest in this?

That day we made the decision to seek fertility help.  We were pretty sure something was wrong with me since I would go a year with out a cycle.  I would go to the doctor about my weight gain and lack of cycles and I would get told the same thing over and over and exercise!  I just wanted to scream "BUT I DO THOSE THINGS!"  

I love my family doctor...I really do, but I know my body and I know it is not normal to gain 60lbs and not have a cycle for a year.  However, I made my yearly appointment so I could talk to her about being referred to an reproductive endocrinologist.  

She agreed to this, but thought it would be a good idea to get my husband tested first since he is in a wheel chair.  We got his consultation appointment set up for September for a specialist 2.5 hours away.  After three appointments, it was confirmed he had male infertility.  We had a very hard decision to make, but overall it was easy.  If we wanted any chance at being parents we would need to use donor gametes.  

I was then referred to a R.E. in the same hospital.  In February I had my first day of appointments.  We were there a total of 5 hours and found out I have PCOS, hypothyroidism, and diabetes.  FINALLY!  I had answers!  It was confirmed that I do not ovulate on my own.  The course of action was to put me on what she referred to as a "safe fertility cocktail".  At this point I did not care!  I just wanted a baby.  My husband wanted a baby.

I started the cocktail and was so so so so sick!  I couldn't handle it, but I plugged along.  I contacted my friend Erin at Healthy Branscoms to see what she recommended.  She told me I needed to try Vitalizer and Vivix.  I bought them and tried to take them.  Honestly, I was only able to get them down a few times a week because the fertility drugs were making my stomach so upset.  

In April I did ovulate (due to the drugs) and we attempted our first IUI.  It failed.  We were only given a 7% chance of conceiving, but I prayed day and night that we would be that 7%!  In May we tried our second IUI and failed.  I was getting so frustrated!  Then in June we tried our third IUI.  We were hoping third time was the charm...nope.  

After the third failed IUI I needed a mental break.  I was tired of tracking ovulation.  I was tired of obsessing about things.  I was tired of taking drugs that were making me sick.  And I was tired of seeing our money dwindle away.  

For the month of July and first two weeks of August I stopped everything.  I decided to take my Vitalizer and Vivix everyday and see where thing lead me.  Sure enough in August I did ovulate, so I went in for our 4th IUI.  

Guess what!?!  It worked!  I am now carrying our little "Shaklee Miracle".  I 100% believe the Vitalizer and Vivix are what helped us conceive our little one. 

I was in such shock and disbelief that I took 5 pregnancy tests that morning.  YEARS of frustration and heartache were now a distant memory. 

I had spent years watching everyone around me have babies with no problems.  I was happy for them, but it hurt.  It hurt so bad I had to distance myself.  One of my friends and I decided to start families around the same time and she now has two little girls.  The youngest one being one.  I felt miserable and couldn't force myself to be around that.  That may make me a selfish person, but a piece of me just broke inside when I thought about it.

We have spent around $20k just trying to start our family.  The adoption agency doesn't give you your money back and hospitals require services paid in full for infertility.  Plus we had the OUTRAGEOUS cost of donor gametes.  Infertility can be a huge financial strain and it was. 

Everything was 100% worth it in the end! 

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Guess What!?!

Can you guess why we are all smiles?!?

 After YEARS of heartache and disappointment...

We are going to be parents!!!

Our little Shaklee miracle is due the beginning of May!

The reason I have never shared my "Shaklee Story" is because THIS is my story!!!  I can't wait to tell you how I threw away the fertility drugs and used Shaklee instead!  Stay tuned for that SOON! 

Friday, October 19, 2012

Weekly Meal Plan 10.21---10.27

My oh my!  Time is sure flying!  I can't believe it is almost Halloween.  Do you decorate for Halloween?  I have a few decorations, but I rarely set them out.  Instead I decorate for fall from mid Sept until Thanksgiving.

Weekly Meal Plan:

Sunday:  Slow cooked whole chicken, mashed potatoes, veggie
Monday: Homemade chicken rice soup (AGAIN!  Because this is so awesome.)
Tuesday: Homemade sweet and sour chicken, rice

Wednesday: Leftovers!

Thursday: Waffles or pancakes, fruit

Friday: Gone!

Saturday: Gone!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Healthy Skin

I am the furthest thing from a beauty guru, so if you are looking for make-up and fashion tips....please look away!  *LOL*  While I do love make-up and fashion, I wouldn't consider myself knowledgeable to give advice.  :)

One thing I do know a little about and that is skin care.  I have been obsessed with not getting wrinkles since I turned 20.  I am now 30.  No joke when I say I have tried most products on the market.  Some of them are drug store brand, while others have been up scale brands.  

The problem with this...I have such sensitive skin!  EVERYTHING I would use caused my eyes to burn.  It was awful.  Then I found Enfuselle.

Long gone are my days with burning eyes, and itchy cheeks.  My skin care routine includes the Purifying Cleansing Gel, Eye Make-Up Remover, Eye Treatment, and the Hydrating Moisturizer.  It might seem like a lot of products, but it isn't.  This is what works for me.  Some people might find they need less products and some might need more.  Everyone's skin is different!

I had horrible acne as a young teen, but luckily I grew out of that.  My mom would take me to the doctor and they would prescribe horrible creams that would dry my face out so much it would CRACK!  I wish I had known about Enfuselle then.

Since starting Enfuselle about 6 months ago, I can count on one hand the number of blemishes I have gotten.  My eyes no longer burn and my skin no longer itches!  

My friend Erin over at Healthy Branscom's has a WONDERFUL Enfuselle story. 

She is such a beautiful person inside and out!  

If you are on the fence about spending more than drug store prices....DON'T be!  Enfuselle products might cost a little bit more, but they last a LONG time.  I bought my products 6 months ago and I still have about 2 months more use out of them!  That is 8 months of products I use DAILY!  

What type of skin do you have?  Winter is horrible on mine, so I'm glad I have my Hydrating Moisturizer! 

Monday, October 15, 2012

Chicken Rice Soup

I think everything great starts with onions, carrots, celery, and garlic!  

1c chopped carrots
1c chopped celery
1 small onion chopped
1 clove diced garlic
1 c chopped kale
2 cup shredded chicken
5 c chicken stock
2 c cooked rice
salt and pepper

This soup is delicious!  You can add whatever you want and it will still be good.  :)

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Weekly Meal Plan 10.14--10.20

Eeeks!  I just realized I didn't do a meal plan this week!  With all fairness family was in town starting Friday night, so meal planning was the last thing on my mind.  Here is what we will be chowing on this week!

Weekly Meal Plan:

Sunday: I had great plans for something "good", but it was a LAZY Sunday.  I even overslept for church!  We honestly just had some canned soups and leftover chocolate mousse pie.  I could have lied and said I made something healthy, but I like to keep it real. ;) 

Tuesday: Homemade chicken fried rice

Wednesday: White chicken chili (from freezer) and apples

Thursday: Brats, green beans, sweet potato fries

Friday: "Mini Thanksgiving" Crockpot turkey drumsticks, mashed potatoes, gravy (for my husband because gravy is disgusting ;), corn.

Saturday: ???

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

My Favorite Salad

It is simple, refreshing, and healthy!

Fresh tomatoes
Italian dressing

If I have avocado I love adding that as well! 

Image Source
Have you ever bought the Italian dressing in the packets?  I LOVE this stuff.  I use these packets in so many recipes.  Plus it is great just as a dressing.  Just add vinegar, oil, and your pack.  Simple!  

What is your favorite simple salad?  I know this is more of a summer salad, but I love it year round.  :)

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Save Money on Cable

It is fall, so that means all the new television shows are on!  I'm not a huge fan of watching tv.  I used to be.  I am ashamed that I remember a time when I would watch 10+ shows a week!  Now I only have a couple I watch.  

Last fall my husband started watching Person of Interest and told me I should watch it.  Well, I didn't even though it looked like something I would like.  Then for some reason our DVR didn't record the last two episodes for him.  I told him to just go to the CBS website and watch.  Since it was the first season of the show you could not watch it online.  Bummer.

That is when he discovered Your TV Series.  It is awesome because you get to watch a lot of shows for FREE!  We thought we were going to have to wait and buy Person of Interest when the season was released.  This eliminated that expense for us.  I was able to watch the whole series this summer and got seriously addicted!  I then moved onto Game of Thrones.  I may or may not be counting down the days until the next season airs!  

I love Your TV Series because we only have basic cable and G.O.T is on HBO.  I don't know about you, but I'm not going to buy HBO just for one show that is 10 episodes a season.  

If you don't want to waste the money on adding to your cable package, check to see if Your TV Series has the show you want to watch.  You could save yourself a lot of money!  The only down side is that it does take about a week for them to put the episode up.  That really doesn't bother me since it would take me a week or longer to watch it if I had it on the DVR. 

This is also perfect for someone who doesn't want to spend the money on cable.  I have a friend who doesn't have cable because it was a waste of money for her family.  Instead she utilizes Netflix, network websites, and Your TV Series.  With the holidays coming it could be a great time to trim the "fat" off your monthly bills.  This is a great place to start. 

This post is linked up with Frugal Tuesday Tip.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Weekly Meal Plan 10.7--10.13

Dang!  Time is sure flying.  It is hard to believe it is the second week in October already.  Here is what we will be eating this week.

Weekly Meal Plan:

Sunday: Chicken and rice soup (I made beef and barley last week instead.)

Monday: Gone

Tuesday: White chicken chili enchiladas

Wednesday: Leftovers

Thursday: Vegetarian Lasagna.  It will be loaded with veggies.

Friday:  ??? Not sure.  I can't think of anything at the moment, but it will be edible.  :)

Saturday:  Family in town.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012


I'm very excited to announce my October special!

Blissful Firefly Lane OCTOBER SPECIAL!!!

*Become a Shaklee member and place an order for $99 or more and receive FREE standard shipping/handling!

*Become a Shaklee member and place an order for $200 or more and receive FREE standard s/h PLUS 5% off!

Ask me for details! As always you can join FREE with the purchase of Vitalizer!

Monday, October 1, 2012

DYI Fall Centerpiece

I'm kicking off the week with a super EASY do-it-yourself craft.  Not only is this craft easy, but it is cheap!  Especially if you have some of the pieces already.

I made two (one for me and one for my mom), so you will see the supplies for both.

1. 1/2 gallon mason jar
2. Spanish Moss
3. Fall flowers
4. Fall embellishments
5.  1/2 paper towel roll
6. Raffia

The next step...use your imagination!  I used the paper towel roll so my flowers would be more stable.  You do not need to do this.  It just depends on what kind you use.  I used a plastic spoon to hold the roll in the center while I added the moss.  

 I think they turned out cute!  The one on the left is mine and the right is my moms.  Both of these together cost $15 because EVERYTHING was on sale at Hobby Lobby.  You NEVER pay full price at Hobby Lobby.  :)   If you do have a full price item make sure to print off their 40% coupon from the website!

What do you think?  Did my $15 and 30 minutes pay off?  To purchase an already made centerpiece I would be paying way more.  I have found that it pays off to do crafty projects yourself!

This post has been linked up to Frugal Tuesday Tip.