Tuesday, June 29, 2010

A Great Place To Run and Walk!

I have a little place that I go when I take my dog for an early morning run/walk.

It's very quiet, it's very beautiful and we both love it.  I've always loved to hike, bike and run--just never all at the same time.  I'm either on a hiking kick, a biking phase or a running stage.  For a long time, I swore I'd never run again.  I preferred the less jolting activities of hiking and biking. But my weight has given me fits lately. I need to do something.  I can't cheat when I run.

 I've started out walking for 5 minutes and running for 5 minutes for an hour.  But this is the place my dog and I go.  No one bothers us, no prying eyes here at 6:30 am.  Just me, my dog, the road and an occasional lake bird.  Yes, we have a beautiful backdrop! 
Evee is a real motivator.  She runs like the wind, and loves to chase birds in flight, ducks in the water (yes, she loves to swim) or, unfortunately bikers, cars and runners.  Of course, she always comes back to see that I'm doing OK and she tries to get me going even faster by circling behind me, ever herding.  That's why I need to have her out early in the morning before anyone comes out.  I can't enjoy a walk where I have a dog tugging on a leash wanting to aggressively herd anything that comes by.  But it's good for me as well to rise early.  Getting up in the morning and exercising really kick starts my day!


Wednesday, June 23, 2010

A Way To Get Fresh Fruits and Vegetables For Low Prices --Bountiful Baskets

 bountiful baskets food co-op

My brother and his wife, Alicia, just started participating in Bountiful Baskets.org.  It's a co-op where you sign up to volunteer and reap the rewards of a fresh fruit and vegetable delivery to a specified place in your city.  Before you read any further, it is currently only available in Idaho, Utah, Wyoming, Texas, Washington, Arizona and Nevada.  But with more participation and widespread demand, I'm sure it could spread out to other states.  I haven't tried it before, but my brother says it is really good.  They deliver a very generous amount of random seasonal fruits and vegetables to you and you take what is given.  But it is really good stuff at a really great bargain.  He showed me the tomatoes and they looked delicious!  I definitely want to try this!  I'll let you know how it goes!  If you have some experience with Bountiful Baskets or food co-ops, please fill me in as well!

I went on to be a huge fan of Bountiful Baskets and for about a year and a half I faithfully went every week to pick up my basket of fruit and veggies at great prices.  I became disillusioned, however, when I saw that the amount of fruit and even the quality of the fruit sometimes wasn't as great a bargain as I thought.  I slowed up my participation and finally quit once I moved to Sandy from Provo.  I do have fond memories of this time and maybe will start up again this summer!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Athletica $50 Gift Card Giveaway!

Congratulations to Random.org selection #25!  DuMei said:
follow athletica via twitter @dmetd42 #2 dumei42 gmail com
She has been notified and will respond back within 48 hours to claim her win!  If not, there will be another drawing and another winner will be selected!
In case you were wondering, to get the most out of a workout, you absolutely must have need the proper sports apparel!  For example, you don't wear jeans to go bike riding(on long bike rides, you'd get chaffed), you don't wear shorts to go skiing (although there are always the smart-A exceptions) and you don't wear ski boots to dance!  
Athletica.net has the right sports apparel for yoga, dance, running, weight lifting, cardio workouts, cycling, aerobics and more!  They outfit both men and women in most sizes! The shipping is free for many orders and the clothing is both super comfortable and very stylish!  You can buy online in the comfort of your own home! Sound intriguing yet?  Wait until you visit their site!  I love their clothing.  I'm sure you will too! 
Me popping some Yoga poses in my Athletica.net Combed Cotton Cami and Jazz Pant

Right now, Athletica.net has some great sale bargains on Women's  fitness capris, Women's Tanks and T's, Men's Fitness Pants and Women's combed cotton basics, to name just a few!  

Also, have you heard of the new Bamboo fabric? Athletica has it and it will really enhance those hot, summer workouts by its natural wicking ability.  Read about what it can do for you in Athletica's blog!

Athletica.net would like to have one of my readers, including those from Canada, to see for themselves what a great company this is!  Here's what they want you to have!  A $50 Gift Card towards whatever you'd like!  Stupendous!  Here's how you can do that!  First fill out a comment for the Mandatory entry and fill out as many comments for extra entries after that as you would like!  It's easy. 

MANDY:  Visit Athletica.net and tell me something that you'd like from there!

Extra entries: (Please leave the number of comments it says for each entry with your e-mail included!)

+2 Follow 'AGalNeeds...' publicly with Google Friend!
+2 Subscribe to my RSS Feed!
+2 Follow Athletica on Twitter!
+3 Read my review, comment on it and come back and tell me you did!
+1 Follow me on Twitter and Tweet this:  #WIN @Melahelen $50 from @Athleticaweb! http://bit.ly/bQj1h5 7/7/10 #Giveaway Hot yoga, aerobic, dance, biking and running apparel!
(Can be done daily for an extra entry every day!)
+3 Grab my AGalNeeds...button and post it on your blog!  Leave me the link!
+2 Enter any other of my giveaways that are going simultaneously with this one!
+1 Enter another of my giveaways!

Well, there you have it!  Thanks so much for entering and I hope YOU win!  Winner will be selected with Random.org at 11:59 pm, 07/07/10 and notified by e-mail.  Winner will have 48 hours to respond, after which time I reserve the right to choose another winner!  I was provided with the clothing pictured in this post for this review and giveawy!
Disclosure:  I received product in exchange for an honest review! 

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Sportswear! This Company Definitely Has It!

 Have you been looking for practical, comfortable, dependable, stylish sportswear?  Then Athletica.net is the right place to go!  I ran into this good company a few weeks back and got it confused with another company with a very similar name.  I know, sometimes I amaze myself with how I'm even functioning at any kind of level!  I finally have it figured out.  Athletica.net has everything to do with great sportswear for your body!  

I was excited to get a yoga outfit, the combed cotton cami and the combed cotton basic jazz pant. I ordered it in medium and I absolutely love it!  But even more interesting is my husband really loves it.  There's kind of a story here.  When I first received it in the mail, I immediately went and tried the items on, as I do whenever I receive something to wear via the mail.  (I love clothes!  I'm glad our society doesn't, as a rule, run around in the nude because then we wouldn't get to wear fun clothes!) 

I have learned to respect the practice of Yoga, but it's been awhile since I've done a really serious practice. (Maybe because I've been sitting on my arse blogging lately?) I know that my practice is not as intense as it used to be, simply because I can't do what I did before...  But Yoga is an amazing thing.  You can pretty much start wherever you are and just build from there.  Never be in competition with anyone but yourself!  

So these new yoga clothes were going to be my motivation to jump back into it and start getting my yoga back! I tried on the yoga outfit and wowsie!  I really thought I was a medium, but it just fit so tight, like a glove.  It wasn't really uncomfortable, but it showed every bulge I had.  I really must have put it on this winter but apparently was in so much denial.  I was in a foul mood after that.  

My husband came home, knocked on the locked door, I opened it, still in my yoga apparel. Now, he's a wise man.  He knew not to say one word, positive or negative. Whenever I come home from the hair salon or am in a new outfit, he knows that I am probably just getting used to how it looks and sometimes I may like it, but other times, I may be hating it.  So he's learned it's just best to wait a few hours or even until the next day to voice his opinion.  It's better for me (and him) that way!   

I was obviously not in a great mood, so he just let it go.  

The next day, however, he told me what he thought.  He LOVED it and he thought I looked "hot" standing there when I opened the door in it.  Who knew?  I certainly didn't!  Hot was and is not the first word that comes to mind when I see myself in that outfit! 

But I started to take a new look at the outfit. Hmmmm....yes, it did show all my bulges, but it also showed off some curvature too.  Maybe that was what he was talking about! 

Needless to say, today I took it out again, and this time did a whole hour long workout in it!  It was great!  I've almost got my yoga game back! 
Anyway, get ready because I will be having a giveaway from this great company, and will give you the scoop on it!  I MAY even give you a picture, if I'm brave enough.  Just know, my hubby was a real cutie and although the yoga outfit is great, sometimes it takes a great husband to make you feel your best!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

My CSN Giveaway! $40 Gift Card

Congratulations to #205, Kristine!  Her entry was:
I haven't quite figured Network Blogs out, but I think I am following you there!  (For the record, I checked and she is following me!) Yay!  You have been notified and hopefully you will respond within 48 hours! 
Today is the big day to roll out my CSN Giveaway!  I'm sure you have seen quite a bit here and there about CSN and its many positive renderings! So let me tell you what I would get if I, personally, won $40 to CSN right now!  The summer months are upon us and I've got a couple of simple summer needs - because after all 'A Gal Needs' quite a few things and among them is...

Rachael Ray's 'Bubble & Brown' 2-piece stoneware baker set, so I can entertain my guests in style because I want to cook a lot this summer!  This is on sale for $39.95! (shipping not included). My favorite color is the yellow set!

Oh, but the Cuisinart Round Classic Waffle Maker looks so great!  And it is only $29.95! (Shipping not included).  

Here is something I could see in my garden!  A hummingbird sundial! This is only $33.12 with FREE shipping!
Those are just a couple of things I would eye if I had a gift card to shop at CSN!  What do you need?

To WIN a $40 Gift Card to CSN Stores, just do this mandatory entry and any other extra entries you think you'd like to do!  

MANDY:  Find one thing at CSNStores.com that you absolutely NEED this summer!  Come back and tell me in a comment!

Extra entries:
 (+1 daily) Follow me on Twitter and tweet this~#Win a $40 shopping trip to @CSNStores! http://bit.ly/dlxTQc 6/28/10! #Giveaway Very Cool!

(+5) Blog about this giveaway!  Link it back to this post and leave me the link!

(+3) Follow on Networked blogs! (On my right sidebar)

(+3) Grab my button and put it on your blog!  Leave me the link where you did that!

(+2) Friend me on Facebook! (We'll hang out!)

(+2) Tell me about something you want to do this summer!

Thanks, everyone, for entering and best of luck!  Thanks to Ashley at CSN for this generous giveaway! This giveaway will end on 6/28/10 at 11:59 pm MST.  The winner will be chosen with random.org and notified by e-mail.  I will also post the winner after the contest closes on this post, so check back! 
Disclosure:  I received no compensation or product for this giveaway!  

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

CSN Store Review and Upcomoing Giveaway Announcement!

I really enjoy shopping online, for just about everything.  Even if I end up traveling to the store, I use the internet to research my product of interest to become more educated on what is available out there and at what prices.  CSN is a great resource to do that research because they have such a huge selection of brand names at such competitive prices that you really can't go wrong.  For instance, if I was in the market for, say, bathroom vanities, I could go to CSN's main website, click on the button to view all of their stores, and on that page refer to Home Improvement. There I would find the selection for Bathroom Furniture.  From there I would find an instruction link called Vanities 101.  This is a valuable resource that talks about the purpose and function of different kinds of vanities, how to choose a vanity that fits your space, mirror info, do-it-yourself info, links to many name brands specializing in vanities and many other helpful tips on how to choose the right vanity for you! Or if you just want to go the simple route, just type 'Bathroom Vanities' into the search box and you will be connected to 19,845 different styles and brands of bathroom vanities!  Just one example of how CSN can help us everyday!  It's not just a lot of online stores (over 200, as a matter of fact), it's also a great resource for information! 

So I'm excited to announce my upcoming giveaway for a CSN gift card.  It will be for $40 and there are so many things you can get with that.  Also, there are items that are labeled 'no shipping', which is nice because you can use the whole $40 for the product!  Another great resource is the e-mail notification service when a product is out of stock.  Simply click 'Notify Me' and you can be notified by e-mail when that item is back in stock!  So join me this week, when I open up my CSN giveaway and hopefully you'll get to experience first hand, like I have, what CSN has to offer!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Misikko 1" Corioliss Classic Giveaway!

So I'm loving my new Hana Professional 1" Flat Iron (Pink Edition)!  I used it for the second time today and I could really get addicted to this!  All things in moderation though, right?
To read more about my first experience with my own flat iron, read my review!

Another wonderful Misikko Flat Iron is the Corioliss Classic 1" Flat Iron!  It is among the 10 top rated and top selling flat irons at Misikko as best basic, and includes a free heat proof pouch to carry it in!  Naturally you have the Misikko guarantee which states, 
Misikko guarantees the authenticity of each and every item we offer.  Misikko.com is dedicated to only the highest quality beauty products at the most competitive prices. Thank you for allowing us the opportunity to present our guaranteed authentic high quality product line to you.
I am really excited to announce that Misikko would like one of you to have the Corioliss Classic for your own!  Not only that, but included in the mix will be a free bottle of Hana Shineshield, the famous heat protectant with jojoba oil that will make your hair gleam. 
 Read what one customer had to say about Shineshield:
I really never thought product made as big a difference until I tried Shine Shield. I've always had nice irons like the fhi, jrs, and hana but I always used the cheap drugstore iron sprays and wondered why my hair never had the shine to it that I get from the salon. This is seriously the best thirty bucks I have ever spent on my hair and I've gotten my mom, my sisters and everyone to try it!
Here is all you need to do to be entered into this generous giveaway by Misikko:

MANDY:  Visit Misikko and mention in a comment about one special that they are having right now!

Additional Entries - (The number of extra entries allowed for each item is listed in parenthesis. Please leave a comment for each entry--that way it increases your chances to win!):

(+1) Follow Misikko on Twitter!  Leave your Twitter name in the comment!
(+1 daily) Tweet about this giveaway!  Leave your tweet status each time you tweet in a comment.
(+5) Blog about this giveaway with a link back to this giveaway post!
(+3) Sign up for the Misikko newsletter!
(+2) Follow me on Google Friend Connect!
(+2) Follow me on Twitter!
(+2) Have you tried a flat iron before? If so, what is your experience?  If not, why not?
(+3) Read my Misikko Review and make a comment over there and tell me that you did here!
(+3) Grab my AGalNeeds....Button and put it on your blog!  Leave me your link!

 This giveaway is open to US and Canada and will run through June 21, 2010, 11:59 PM MST and the winner will be chosen with Random.org then notified with e-mail, so please make sure that your e-mail is readily available either on your profile or in your comments!  Thanks to YOU for entering and special thanks to John at Misikko for this GREAT giveaway!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Misikko Hana Professional Flat Iron Pink Edition Review

When I received the Misikko package in the mail, I stared at it and it stared back at me.  It went on like this for a week before I finally opened it.  My experience with flat irons is a mixed reviews one. While I have never owned one for myself, I have gone and had my hair done where they have been used. Sometimes I liked it and other times I felt like my hair got overdone.  I finally got to the point where it was going to be me using one myself or not at all, because I didn't like the way my hair looked about half of the time. I guess I'm getting pickier in my over-35ishness. So when this chance came, I was a little bit nervous.  After all, who am I to think I could do my own hair better than a trained beautician?

Finally, I opened the box and it was so beautifully packaged that I was immediately won over! What company sends you scented roses included in the packaging?  There was also a free heat proof mat for my flat iron and a heat proof sleeve for transporting purposes!  But that's not all, I received a 2 oz. size sample of Hana Shine Shield with jojoba oil and panthenol for leave-in style protection and  shine, a booklet with instructions and information about my flat iron and a small satin bag with hand sanitizer and nail grooming accessories.  Wow!  Now that's what I call Customer Service.  I'd like to say thank you right now for all of that.  Now I feel bad for not opening the package for so long!
Next came the time to do my hair myself.  I have thick, wavy hair that has gotten dry recently.  It's a real pain to keep it up and I find myself looking at women who look like they have naturally healthy hair and wonder if they can just roll out of bed with it looking wonderful, like that.  Or do they use flat irons?  Not sure.  But that is the kind of look I'd like, at least occasionally.  Like I said, I'm picky about my hair.  I don't like my hair to be totally straight in front.  But the back can be as straight as it can be and I won't mind.  So how did my hair turn out the first time I used the Hana Professional 1" Flat Iron?  I was VERY encouraged.  The back of my hair was straight but I didn't straighten the front all the way, just enough to tame it down. I liked how it made my hair look healthier and shinier!

All in all, I was very pleased and excited about my first try with the Hana 1" Flat Iron (Pink Edition) and I'd just like to thank Misikko for the chance to see for myself what a great quality flat iron can do!  Incidentally, this particular flat iron is rated Best Flat Iron and is on sale for $118.98 with free shipping!  Knowing now what I know, I feel it's one of the best beauty investments you can make!  Also, on their website is a number for free individual styling and hair advice from a professional! In addition, Missiko has a full range of professional hair dryers!  I feel that this is the route to go when selecting a new hair implement because of the customer service, the great prices and the high quality of the products!  So I've got my eye on the T3 Tourmaline Evolution Dryer and the FHI Heat Digital 1 " Curling Iron for my next hair conquests!