Sam´s Club Pillsbury Chocolate Chunk Fudge Brownies

For the Independence Day holiday this year my husband and I welcomed his family and some friends over for dinner and movies. It was an awesome time hanging out and just relaxing at home.

Well mostly relaxing. We did spend a bit of time preparing the food. My husband was the grill master as always preparing some Bar B Que Chicken, Roasted Corn and of course Hamburgers. I was in the kitchen making some mean mashed potatoes, pork and beans and brownies.

Okay so I admit it, I didn’t actually bake brownies. Curiosity of My Blog Spark and Pillsbury I was provided with a gift pack and a gift card to Sam’s Club and was able to pick up a great holiday dessert for the family. With a taste as delicious and authentic as if you baked them at home, Pillsbury Chocolate Chunk Fudge Brownies are a blend of 3 types of cocoas with real chocolate syrup and milk chocolate chunks to make a delicious fudge brownie—they’re the perfect solution when you’re pressed for time like I was.

Along with my coupon for the brownie tray I also received a cake decorating kit to add personal flair to my brownies. While that process didn’t turn out as smoothly as I had hoped, it was fun trying.

Well everyone loves brownies but not everyone loves to bake so if you would like to win a brownie pack of your own we will provide you with a Pillsbury Chocolate Chunk Fudge Brownies gift pack that includes $25 Sam’s Club gift card to use to purchase the brownies, frosting, and a large container for transporting the brownies. Also, when purchasing Pillsbury Chocolate Chunk Fudge Brownies at Sam’s Club, you have the chance to support your local school with Box Tops for Education. Each package of Pillsbury Chocolate Chunk Fudge Brownies has 6 Bonus Box Tops that can be redeemed to earn cash for the K-8 school of your choice.

For a chance to win leave a comment below with the details of your favorite brownie recipe. Don’t like brownies, let me know your favorite holiday dessert. Please be sure to leave a valid email address just in case you are chosen as a winner so I can contact you.

A winner will be chosen on Saturday, July 17 using random.org. Good Luck!!!

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My True Blog Voice Discovered

A few weeks ago I wrote a open and honest post about my reflections on this blog and where I felt my blog voice was lacking. Today I come back to you changed, refreshed and whole.

I have found my voice.

In my roll as a follower of Christ, wife, mother, daughter, church employee, servant and friend, it is important that I am constantly representing a life that is full of Godly attitudes and temperament.

Why should I care about what others think about me?

Because simply: I do care. In my heart I believe that my life as a follower of Christ should always represent the teachings of Christ.

Does this mean that I am perfect and always nice?

No way … those of you who know me personally know that is not the case. I get angry, I get frustrated and I have a problem with really setting way to high expectations for my self and those I work with. But it is how I handle the angry and frustrating times that is important.

Needless to say that is how I want my blog voice to come across. I want people to read my blog and know where my heart and intentions are coming from. I want to be real with my readers and followers … and give them a fresh look into different life situations and circumstances. A source of entertainment and information. I want, when people come to my blog and read what I have to say … for them to feel as if I am just their long time friend calling them up one morning and sharing what I went through that day. Not some professor teaching, or advertiser selling stuff. Just a girl chit chatting about nothing and everything.

Branding My Blog and Creating my Tagline

During my stay at Bloggy Boot Camp this month I learned a lot about the world of blogging and the different steps need to help make a name for yourself. Just as in real everyday life, your image, your voice and the tone you set are important key factors in how those around you accept and follow you.

One word came up several times of my day at boot camp … Branding.

Question of the day? What is your Brand?

Not only have I not taken the time to think about what my brand was, I certainly don’t have it branded across the board with my blog, twitter and/or Facebook accounts. I didn’t even have a tagline. I knew about being authentic and transparent for my readers, you know … being the real me. However, I never truly understood how important it was for my branding. I didn’t even take real care and consideration into my image and blog design. I just had up a template that I thought was … cute … not considering the functionality of it.

Well things have changed and I am turning a new leaf and getting A Fresh Start with my blog.

I have started this journey of blog brand discovery just this weekend and expect by the end of the week I will have a true enlighten of where I should be with this blog today and where we are going tomorrow.

Looking forward to sharing with you how I established my blog title A Mom’s Fresh Start and my new tagline ‘A Good Way to Start Your Day.’

My Bloggy Boot Camp Expierence

This post is more then overdue, but like they say … ‘Better Late than Never.’

I am excited to announce that I was blessed to be able to attend my very first blogging conference earlier this month. I am a member of an awesome social network called SITS(the Secret is in the Sauce). Their motto is the ‘Secret to Success is Support’ and they are a group of women bloggers who are dedicated to supporting one another by leaving comments. The founders of the group Tiffany and Heather have graciously dedicated their efforts, time and resources into developing this group and offering amazing events throughout the year.

This year their focus on their Bloggy Boot Camps offered in various cities across the nation. Lucky for me their first camp was held right around the corner from where I lived so I jumped at the opportunity to attend.

And I am so glad that I did.

Like it is with the rest of my life since my son was born, I was LATE. I mean almost an hour late to the event. So all the lovely SITS girls attendants were already seated and in full swing of the event. The first speaker was already in full swing and everyone was siting comfy in the conference room taking notes on their computer, note pads or phones.

We all sat, like school girls soaking in the wealth of knowledge that all the ladies provided. I can honestly say, I learned more about blogging and social networking that day then I have over the course of my blogging ‘career.’

The topics were were enriched with were:

  • Building our Blog Audience

  • Social Media and Branding

  • PR Road Map

  • The FTC

  • and All about SEO

There are quite a few tips and tricks that we were introduced to that will help us better spread our message out to our readers and to help builder a bigger readership.

One of the many things I enjoyed about the conference was the table hoping. They had selected different tables for us to all sit at in order to help us network, meet other bloggers and to avoid the common problem of just sticking to one crowd. Doing this helped me to met some very interesting, smart and creative women. I am going to attempt a twitter roll call of all the fascinating bloggers I was blessed to meet.

Attending this conference just let me intrigued and interested to see just what else I can learn to help enhance my blogging experience. Can’t wait for more. And I am so excited that they will be coming back some-what to my area … just one state away. Already checked with the hubby and he is on board and ready to support the trip.

Roll Call:

Dianna – http://www.kennedyswith2girls.blogspot.com @DiannaKennedy

Corrie – http://mypickletalksautism.com @Pickletalks

Debra – http://randomthoughtsofacitymouse.blogspot.com

Lara – http://chickennuggestsofwisdome.blogspot.com @dipaolamomma

Amy – http://www.originalcouponcoach.com @OrigCouponCoach

Kristin – http://www.lovefeasttable.com @LoveFeast

Diane – http://www.inmyownstyle.com @inmyownstyle

Sarah – http://www.jacobscure.org @jacobscure

Jill – www.scarymommy.com @ScaryMommy

Catherine – www.evolvingmommy.com @evolvingmommy

Cara – www.landofbean.blogspot.com @Carabee

Jennifer – www.hipasiwannabe.com @mammamania

Angie – www.seriouslyahomemaker.com @SeriouslyAHome

Jayme – http://www.tatertwins.com @TaterTwins

Mel – www.melsboxofchocolates.com @boxofchocolates

Sunday – www.domestic-superhero.blogspot.com @xtremeparnthood

Catherine – http://livingmaryland.com @safirecat

Melissa – www.organizedlifebydesign.com @multitaskingme

Shell – http://thingsicantsay.blogspot.com @shellthings

Kimberly – www.sewsimplemommy.com @sewsimplemommy

Amy – http://www.teachmama.com @teachmama

Michele – http://scrapsofmygeeklife.com @scrappinmichele

Kristen – www.chaoticcreationsbykristen.com

Sandwich Revolution House Party

Sandwich Thins Party

Last month I was so glad to have been chosen to be a part of another House Party and present another great product to my friends and family. This party couldn’t have come at a better time. My family as you know just relocated to Maryland and we need a great way to welcome our friends to our new home. And what better way then to offer some great food.

House Party sent me a Sandwich Thins package earlier in the month that included:

5 $4 off coupons for Sandwich Thins rolls and 1 Sandwich Thins Cutting board for me as a host. Then 15 $1 off coupons for Sandwich Thin Rolls, 15 Sandwich Thins reusable grocery bags, 15 Sandwich Thins grocery list pads, 15 Sets of Sandwich Thins recipe cards, 45 blank recipe cards and 15 Sandwich Things rolls nutrition facts and healthy fun tips.

Using the Sandwich Thins House Party page I found some great party ideas and games to share with my guests. I really think everyone enjoyed the game we played. I chose a ‘best sandwich’ contest game. The object of the game was for the guest to get into groups of 2 and come up with the most creative and tasty sandwich using only 5 ingredients (not including the Sandwich Thins). My husband and I, along with my sister-in-law put together all the ingredients and had everything set up around the dinner table. They had 5 minutes to chose their ingredients, assemble their sandwich and present it to me for pictures and inspection.

Once every team had finished their sandwich creation, they cut of a corner for the judge (my wonderful husband) to test them out. Of course he loved that part. Everyone had a blast and all the sandwiches tasted delicious.

Up until this party I hadn’t really tried Sandwich thins but I am glad that I have found them. Nice, light and tasty choice of sandwich roll. Perfect size also, even fits hamburger patties.

Highly recommened them!!!

Finding My Own Inner Voice

So lately I have had the feeling that when I post on this blog I wasn’t being real. I took some time and went back to read some of my posts. Not the giveaway – reviewy posts, but the personal be myself posts (which all should be anyway) and I just didn’t hear myself. You know when you read your own writing you can just hear yourself speaking out load as you read … well I was hearing someone else. I heard the person I thought my blog should be representing. And I realize now just how wrong that is.

I wanted to produce a blog that was about me, and my thoughts and feelings. Instead I feel that 75% of the time, I was so focused on producing material in a way that would ‘please’ everyone and ‘fit in’ with the crowd.

Well I don’t want to fit in any more.

Not that there is anything wrong with the ‘typical mommy blogger’ blog. I just realized for myself that I don’t want that at the cost of losing myself.

If I am going to have followers and readers and supports and such and such, I have to just be myself.

So I have devised a plan to help me treat my blog as a real friend and just be real with it. I have decided to name my blog and actually give it a personality (all in my head). And I am naming my blog, St. Tomb (Stop Trying To On-Up Other Mommy Bloggers).

Now it is just like talking to one of my real friends … just hope St. Tomb doesn’t get bored of me and my blabs as fast as my other friends do.

Free Cookie Alert!

I just love sharing free stuff with you. This time it is a sweet treat!

Nabisco has great savings and offers for free cookies each Monday in March. Just go to http://www.facebook.com/nabiscocookies and become a fan of Nabisco cookies. Starting March 1, there will be a new savings offer posted every week for a free package of Nabisco Cookies (when you purchase a package of Nabisco cookies and a gallon of milk).

This information is brought to you free and clear from our friends at TwitterMoms.com.