Thursday, April 24, 2014

Thomas & Friends: Railway Mischief Review

Start Your Engines For Exciting Adventures 
With Thomas And His Engine Friends 
Available On DVD, Digital HD and Video On Demand April 15, 2014 From Lionsgate 
And HIT Entertainment
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Street Date: 4/15/14 

DVD SRP:  $14.98
 What did we think?  I think the bonus features are great. I love it when a movie has games and other activities for my son to enjoy.  I also like that the video encourages team work and working together with your friends.  My son really likes the hide and seek game on the special features.  He also really likes the DVD.   Definitely a great addition to my Thomas fans DVD collection.  

It’s time to travel down the tracks with Thomas and his engine friends for mischievous adventures on the Island of Sodor in the all-new Thomas & Friends®Railway Mischiefarriving on DVD, Digital HD and Video On Demand April 15, 2014 from Lionsgate and HIT Entertainment.  Featuring five brand new episodes, this DVD will be available for a suggested retail price of $14.98. Grab your train whistles, put on your engineer’s caps and get ready for trainloads of fun with everyone’s favorite Number 1 Engine!


Cinders and Ashes! There’s trouble on the tracks for Thomas and his friends. Gordon and Cranky don’t want to listen to really useful advice from Paxton and Kevin. Scruff, Winston and Stafford lose track of themselves, causing confusion and delay! Sometimes engines need a little help from their friends to chuff and puff full steam ahead!

Episodes include:
·                             “Gordon Runs Dry”
·                             “Kevin’s Cranky Friend”
·                             “Scruff’s Makeover”
·                             “Wayward Winston”
·                             “Steamie Stafford”

·        All You Need Are Friends Music Video
·        Guess Who? Puzzles

Follow Thomas and Friends on the Website / Facebook / Twitter 

" We received a complimentary copy of Thomas & Friends Railway Michief for reviewing purposes. Even so all opinions shared here are our own. Thanks"

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Thomas & Friends: Trouble on the Track Review

Hey friends I'm here to tell you about an all new Thomas & Friends DVD.  This DVD has 5 never before seen adventures.  I'm not sure about your train fan but mine was bouncing up and down when the package arrived with Trouble on the Tracks.  I love that Thomas always puts a smile on his face.

What did my train loving boy think?  He says, "Its fantastic mom!" He is 5 years old and if the DVD does not hold his interest he'll get up and change it or find something else to do . That was definitely  not the case with this Thomas video. He has watched it several times so I'd agree it is fantastic!  He wants to take it to school and share with classmates soon. They have special Fridays every now and then where they get to watch a movie and popcorn . He thinks all of the other boys in his class would give it a high five. I thought that was pretty cute .
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Street Date: 4/8/14
SRP: $14.98
Start your engines for the most action-packed, never-before-seen adventures on the Island of Sodor with Thomas and his engine friends in the all-new Thomas & Friends®: Trouble on the Tracks available exclusively at Walmart on DVD and available on Digital HD and Video on Demand April 8, 2014 from Lionsgate and HIT Entertainment.

These five, high-speed episodes challenge Thomas and his friends to be Really Useful Engines in every situation.  So grab your engineer’s cap and join the exciting fun with Thomas, Paxton, Salty, Henry and Toad in Thomas & Friends®Trouble on the Tracks


Cinders and ashes…there's trouble on the tracks for Thomas and his friends! The Troublesome Trucks delight in causing chaos for Thomas, as Annie, Clarabel and Toad encounter unexpected high-speed adventures. Oily Diesel gives Paxton a fright, while Salty's spooky story has the engines running scared. All Aboard for fun and exciting escapades with Thomas & Friends!

Episodes Include:
·        “Thomas the Quarry Engine”
·        “Not So Slow Coaches”
·        “Flatbeds of Fear”
·        “Disappearing Diesels”
·        “Toad’s Adventure”

·        Guess Who? Puzzles

Thomas the Tank Engine™ was created by a father for his son nearly 70 years ago and today is enjoyed by families in more than 185 territories and in 30 languages.  The #1 True Blue Engine and his friends invite children to enter a world of imagination through the tracks of a train and the words of a story. Children embark on adventures with their engine friends while experiencing timeless life lessons of discovery, friendship and cooperation. 

Thomas & Friends is the number one preschool toy license in the US and has been a top five preschool entertainment brand in the US since 2009[1].


Follow Thomas : Website / Facebook / Twitter

"Living at the Whitehead's zoo was provided with a Free copy of Trouble on the Tracks for reviewing purposes. All opinions about the DVD our our own. Thanks"

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Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Slow Cooker Taco Soup Recipe

It turned chilly again today in Florida.  I'm not sure where the cold snap came from but I can tell you I'm ready to send it back. We were already enjoying the pool and the sunshine. What's better on a chilly day than soup.  This soup is really very budget friendly which makes it even better . It is also freezable which I am going to be taking full advantage of this week.I will put the leftovers into  individual containers for lunches and dinners when it is just me or to help me out during the work week.  Yes, every now and again it is just me.  Plus with my schedule these days I can use all of the extra short cuts and help available.   I received a pack of Tuttorosso tomatoes for review. We're going to use the 28 ounce diced tomatoes and puree in our soup today.  I have used Tuttorosso Tomatoes in several other recipes.  I am always pleased with the end results when I do so. They are not to sweet and not to tangy.

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Slow Cooker Taco Soup

Here's what you need:

  • 2 1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 2 cups of boiled shredded chicken
  • 1/4 cup of taco seasoning 
  • 1 -28 ounce can of Tuttorosso diced tomatoes
  • 1- 28 ounce can of Tuttorosso tomato puree
  • 1- 14 ounce can of black beans drained
  • 1- 14 ounce can of pinto beans drained
  • 1/8 teaspoon of red pepper (optional)
  • 1/8 teaspoon of salt 
  • 1 can of whole kernel corn drained (optional) * I leave the corn out because I don't like corn but if you want something extra this goes with it well.  

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What you need to do: 

Throw everything into your slow cooker giving it a good stir. Cover and cook on high 4 hours.  Serve it with cheddar cheese sprinkled on top .  I serve this with cornbread muffins.  You can also serve it with a side of Frito's or Tortilla chips.  If you want something else add a scoop of sour cream.  

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What did we think of the Tuttorosso tomatoes used in this recipe?  We used a 28 ounce can of Tuttorosso Puree.  Tomato puree  is really good in pasta sauces. We used it to give our soup a thicker and creamier taste. It was an excellent add in for this.  We also used the diced tomatoes in a 28 ounce can. These tomatoes are all natural and they work perfectly in soups making them just what I needed for today's Taco Soup recipe.  These tomatoes are so red when you open the cans you know that your opening a can of goodness.

 Tuttorosso also has a new line of no salt products. You can find no salt in the peeled plum tomatoes, tomato sauce and also crushed tomatoes.  I am watching my salt intake more these days. With all of the stress of life lately I have had higher blood pressure. It is important for me to keep it under control without having to take medication so I try to do what I can to manage it.  One of those things is watching my salt.  The new line from Tuttorosso makes doing this even easier.

Tuttorosso has recently changed their label also.  They use to have recipes on the back of the cans.  Personally I like to get a recipe on the back of the can. It can give me a new idea and I may have all of the other ingredients on hand. I was not sure what I thought of the new label design at first.  Now,  on the back panel of your label you will find tips and tricks to help you with your cooking.  What do you think about that?   I think it is neat that they are telling you which type of tomato works well with what type of dish.  I know sometimes when I am trying something new finding the right can to go with what the recipe needs can be confusing.  I also like that there are cooking tips. You can learn something new everyday if you want to.  What I really like about the label is the health information.  With some new health concerns recently diagnosed in our family what we are putting into our bodies is more important than ever to me. This label is so easy to read and so appreciated by this Mom!!

 photo photo.jpg Not only does Tuttorosso have great canned tomatoes. They also have a fun new facebook contest all about family and celebrating your traditions. Catch my post  who inspired me in the kitchen and learn more about it or just visit Tuttorosso on Facebook. Either way we're sure your going to want to take a minute and share your story to enter.

"This post was sponsored by Tuttorosso. Even so all opinions and the above recipe shared here are my own . "

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Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Earth Day Activities for Children

April 22nd is Earth Day. Earth Day is celebrate annually on April 22nd to demonstrate support of environmental protection.  In preschool we talk about ways we can help the world.  We also get crafty. One thing about preschool we know how to recycle and reuse!  Trash is some of our favorite crafting materials.  Here are a few activities we are doing this year for Earth Day.

Coffee Filter Earth's

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  • coffee filters
  • food coloring blue and green
  • 2 cups 
  • water
  • paintbrushes or droppers
Add a few drops of blue food coloring to a small amount of water in a cup.  Do the same in a second cup with the green.   Have the children use the paint brushes or droppers to add blue and green to the coffee filter to make their own version of the Earth. 
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You can also make these with water color markers. Have the children color them and then spray them with a water bottle to let the colors run.

Water Bottle Greenhouses 

  • 2 - water  bottles , or soda bottles 
  • scissors
  • soil
  • tape or glue
  • seedling or plant
1. Your going to cut 2 (2 liter) bottles in half.
2.  Take the lid from one water bottle and poke holes in it. This will be for drainage later. 
3.    Take the top half of one bottle and place it spout down into the wider base part of  one of your bottles. (see pic) You want this to be the lid that has the holes in it.
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4.  Secure the two parts with either glue or duct tape.  I used duct tape but either works.
5.   Add your soil and seed or small plant now. We planted started squash seeds today.
6.  Now take your 2nd water bottle top. Push the sides in slightly and this will slide into the other bottle.  I took another piece of tape and secured it here just to have things nice and tight.

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7. Place it in a window or area it will get some sunshine.  Your seed should take off pretty quickly and since the bottle is clear you should be able to see what the roots do.  I'll post an update when ours start growing so you can see =)

We're also going to be working on our Spring Garden more outside this week weather permitting.  What Earth Day activities do you have planned? 

You Might also Like these past Earth Day Projects:

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You and a Friend will Win a Sears Gift Card @ReviewDadMedia #MissionGiveaway

MG Banner LogoI am a woman who really does not care to shop for most things . I'd rather be on the beach somewhere or on a trip.  When it comes to bigger ticket items particularly electronics or man stuff I need help.  I am seriously challenged when it comes to shopping for some of these things.  How great would it be to have someone handy to answer all of your questions and even earn points while you get the help you need.  I say ," that is pretty cool! " This weeks sponsor @ReviewDadMedia  is a personal shopper who can do just that. Check it out!  

About Our Sponsor

shop your way personal shopper Review Dad - Shop Your Way Personal Shopper
Shop Your Way allows you to earn and redeem points both in-store and online at Kmart, Sears, Lands’ End, Sears Auto Centers, and mygofer. When you sign up for FREE, you also get a "personal shopper" whose expertise can be called upon when needed. Make Tim (Review Dad) your personal shopper by signing up today! What is a personal shopper?
It means that Tim is available to help answer your questions about products and departments where his experience and knowledge might be useful to you. Confused about television screen resolutions and refresh rates? Need some advice on computer upgrades? Wondering which video games are appropriate and fun for your kids? Tim can help. What are the benefits? Earn 10 Points for every $1.00 spent on qualifying purchases Earn and redeem Points at Kmart, Sears, Lands’ End, Sears Auto Centers, and mygofer Earn Points at Kmart Pharmacy and Sears Home Services Return merchandise without a receipt Redeem Points immediately or save them for up to a year Access a Member-only website to review purchases online, get credit for past purchases, and manage your account online Bonus Members are eligible for Bonus Offers eReceipts Exclusive offers when you reach VIP status 90 days of free 2-day shipping with Shop Your Way MAX as a member benefit

The Prizes

shop your way prize image You and a friend will each receive a Sears Gift Card. Keep: $75 Sears Gift Card Share: $25 Sears Gift Card

How to Enter

The Giveaway will open up on 4/22/14 12:01 am EST and Close on 4/25/14 at 11:59 pm EST.

Complete the mandatory entries on the Rafflecopter below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway Mission Giveaway started with Madame Deals and her $100 story where with $100 several people received the help they needed. We are on a mission to help people help each other! We have gathered a group of bloggers that want to make a difference. Together we are Mission Giveaway! To ask about becoming a sponsor, please contact Amee or Dawn at for details. Take a look at our Media Kit to see what Mission Giveaway has to offer. Are you a blogger that would like to participate in Mission Giveaway? Find out how you can join us. Find our official Terms and Conditions on the Madame Deals Media page.

"Living at the Whiteheads Zoo is in the Mission Giveaway Blogger Group and is sharing this post as part of that group. We are not being compensated in any other way.  Living at the Whitehead's Zoo is not responsible for the fulfillment of this prize.  Thanks!" 
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Monday, April 21, 2014

Who Inspires You in the Kitchen? Tuttorosso #CelebrateYourTradition

Every family has some sort of tradition when it comes to food.  Sunday dinners, holidays, or just a favorite food.  Celebrate your tradition Contest by Tuttorrosso gives you the chance to honor or thank someone special who has inspired you in the kitchen.  Maybe your traditions have led to the passing down of a favorite reicpe?   Wondering who or what inspired me?

Mom -   There is just nothing so good as Mama's cooking and my Mama can make a meal.  My favorites gosh there are so many.  To name a few I love her roast, gravy and rice, country fried steak and hamburger and rice.  I mean look at that plate don't you just want to grab a fork and dig in .Yum!

 photo roastbeefdinner.jpg Granny I. -  Man oh man how I wish I had paid more attention to this ladies cooking.  She has been gone for many years but I can still taste her cooking . She was a true Southern cook and always I mean always had a delicious hot meal on the table.  I spent many many hours sitting in her kitchen right on the counter watching her whip something up. My  favorite thing ever was getting to taste it right out of the pot.  Food always taste better out of the pot (just saying).

Granny S-  her biscuits are talked about all over no lie.  She can whip up some spaghetti that will make you cry and the cakes this woman bakes up oh my.  And don't forget her fried chicken ! My Granny makes the best best fried chicken .

Granny S. and my Mama make up all of our special holiday meals and that is a tradition we all look forward to.  Luckily Thanksgiving and Christmas only come once a year because we do some serious eating.

You can tell I am blessed with some amazing amazing inspiration.

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Share who inspires you and you could Win! 
As part of the Tuttorosso Facebook Contest - everyone who enters will receive a digital recipe book with coupons, recipes and cooking tips.  One fan will be chosen for the grand prize a Celebration Prize Pack that includes a Juliette Serving Bowl, round platter, sauce ladel, pasta pot set and a Tuttorosso heirloom wooden spoon. In addition a $300 gift card will be given to the winner to create a celebration for that special person.  The total prize value is $550!! Wow!!  Head on over to the Tuttorosso Facebook page and share your story now. Contest begins on April 16th and will be going on through May 7th.

I cooked up some tasty Taco Soup this week using Tuttorosso diced tomatoes and puree.  Head on over and check out what I have to say about them and my recipe on 4/23. You'll be glad that you did!  You might also like our Slow Cooker Spaghetti Sauce which also used Tuttorosso Tomatoes or our All in One  lasagna recipe.

"This post was sponsored by Tuttorosso Tomatoes. Even so all opinions and the above inspiration was completely my own."

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Saturday, April 19, 2014

Easy Egg Salad Recipe for those Leftover Easter Eggs

What will you do with all of those leftover Easter eggs?  My kids love to dye eggs , but not one of them likes to eat them.  We always have piles of eggs leftover after the big day.  So, what can you do?  Make egg salad for lunches the next week of course.  Here is a really easy egg salad recipe that we enjoy.  And if you have leftover ham you can add that in too.  It gives it a twist and makes it even better.  We rarely have ham leftovers though.  Everyone likes ham in this house.

Easy Egg Salad Recipe

  • 6-7 hard boiled eggs (you can do more If you'd like you just may need to add extra mayo)
  • 4-5 large tablespoons of mayonnaise
  • 3 tablespoons of relish
  • 1 tablespoon of spicy mustard
  • salt and pepper to taste 

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What do you do?  I just use a fork to slice up my eggs a bit.  You can  cut them up mash them up as you can see from the photo I leave mine kind of chunky.   Then mix in all of your other ingredients.

Serve it up on toasted bread, a croissant or bun.  Today we're having ours on honey wheat toast.

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If you would like to add your leftover Easter ham you can do it in a couple of ways.  Dice it up and add it into the egg salad.   That is how I like it . Or add a couple of slices of ham to your bread or roll and then top it with a nice spoon of egg salad.  Anyway you do it I'm sure it will be great and you'll be using up what you have on hand.

Hope you guys have a great Easter!
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