Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween!

{Image Credit}

Happy Halloween to all my friends, fans and readers! 

I hope you and your families have a fun and safe holiday :)

Chris Mann: Roads *CD Review*

I really don't watch the reality show, The Voice, so I had only heard of Chris Mann through the One2One Network's campaign awhile back when they were trying to help him succeed on the show. Actually, I had not heard him sing at all before this review!

I received my copy of Roads yesterday and was anxious to listen to all eleven tracks on it. I didn't know what to expect from this guy since I hadn't heard him sing and was very surprised when I hit play! Mr. Chris Mann as a phenomenal voice! It's pure talent and you can immediately tell from the moment he starts to sing.

There's so much raw emotion and soul in that voice, too!

Roads consists of eleven tracks:

1. Roads
2. Need You Now
3. Cuore
4. The Blower's Daughter
5. My Way
6. Unless You Mean It
7. Always On My Mind
8. On A Night Like This
9. Ave Maria
10. Falling
11. Viva La Vida

You'll find a mixture of all sorts of different genre music from country to Broadway brilliantly transformed into something completely different by Chris.

Along with his soulful voice, the background music is melancholy and almost chillingly beautiful. I really enjoy when a broad range of instruments can be heard in a song or album aside from the norm and I was definitely pleased to hear things like pianos, violins, flutes, and harps among other things.

While I thoroughly enjoyed the album, the music and instrumentals and the singing, I thought the lyrics in the songs were a little bit repetitive at times, especially in the songs The Blower's Daughter and Cuore.

Aside from that little detail, this album really blew me away! I'd even go as far as saying that Chris Mann's voice and style remind me of two of the greats: Michael Buble and Josh Groban, two very talented and inspiring men.

If you're interested in picking up this album, head on over to iTunes or Amazon!


Disclaimer: I was provided a copy of Chris Mann's newest album, Roads, in CD form to facilitate this honest review courtesy of One2One Network. All thoughts, opinions, and words expressed in the above post are mine, and mine alone except where otherwise stated.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Emani How 2Be Guide Giveaway ends TONIGHT!

If you care about what goes onto your skin and ultimately into your body, this giveaway is for you...

Don't miss out on winning the How 2Be Guide in Rebel natural makeup kit from Emani!

Ends tonight at 11:01pm CST!

Monday, October 29, 2012

Guest Post: Massage Therapy for Cancer Patients

As many of you know, I've done a lot of alternative healing therapies in my 8+ year healing journey...Reflexology, hydrogen peroxide therapy, numerous vitamins, minerals and supplements, meditation, chiropractic, homeopathic, and who can forget massage therapy! 

{there's a lot more to that list but I didn't want to bore you!}

Massage therapy can be an essential tool to help any person regardless of their ailment, but today's guest post by Melanie L. Bowen mainly focuses on massage therapy for cancer patients


Massage for Cancer Patients: Special Considerations

Over the years, massage therapy was frowned upon as means of natural treatment. The theory was accepted in massage literature and passed from therapist to student. The medical community retained the belief that cancer cells moved to other parts of the body from tissue manipulation and were pushed into the venous and lymphatic system.

As more knowledge about the mechanism of cancer is studied, the more it is accepted that massage and tissue manipulation does not spread the disease.  An obvious observation is that exercise, similar to massage, is not contraindicated and does not extend cancer to other parts of the body. However, many contraindications do exist for cancer patients, and the massage therapist must incorporate specialized techniques and considerations.

The Condition of the Patient

Massage therapy for patients during diagnosis is much different for patients in medical treatment, recovery, and in the end of life stage. Understanding the patient’s current condition, level of pain and anxiety, fatigue, and current medical interventions, is necessary to administer the proper massage techniques. It is perfectly acceptable to ask the patient to identify what part of the body is affected by the cancer, and assess the level of pain they are experiencing.


Weak patients experiencing pain may not tolerate the prone position or even side lying. Consider massage in a chair with easy access. The patient can rest the upper body on lap pillows and lower their arms at their sides comfortably with support. Cancer patients may only be able to tolerate massage to small areas of the body. For example perhaps massage treatment for a mesothelioma patient would differ than if someone was suffering from leukemia. Focus on the hands or feet can relax the muscles, promote the release of endorphins, and increase circulation to the body.

Cancer Patients are Isolated

Many patients are lonely due to the restrictions of their illness.  Weakness, long periods of hospitalization, and medication routines may keep them from their job or usual social settings. Some do not have supportive family members and spend long periods of time alone. Isolation can result in mood changes and depression. The powerful healing touch of massage promotes human connectedness and decreases the feelings of isolation. A well-prepared therapist can be a caring and attentive listener, allowing the patient to vocalize emotions and concerns.

With more studies recommending massage for cancer patients, it is imperative for the therapist to advance their knowledge in oncology. Modifications to massage techniques for the oncology patient are derived from good clinical judgment and sound practices. Massage is a vital addition to the supportive care for cancer patients.

Music Moves Me Monday(10/28)

Welcome to Music Moves Me Monday 113th week!

This meme is hosted by a group of seriously great people-Dolly of XmasDolly, Lorie of The Shewbridges of Central Florida, Stacie of Stacie Uncorked, Callie of JAmericanSpice, and of course we can't forget Cathy of Cathy Kennedy's Blog!

Also introducing this month's honorary co-conductor,  Rebecca from Everyday Life!

Here are the rules if you wanted to participate::

First step: Run over to You Tube, (or wherever), and lock and load! Get your pick for the theme of the week.

Second Step: Grab our "Monday's Music Moves Me" button::


Third step: SIGN THE LINKY - Dance (follow) your host/hostesses, and grab their buttons.

Final step: Start lookin' for a partner and boogie on down to her blog, and say hello, and tag (follow) her/him, and leave a nice comment. If you've been tagged (followed) be hip, and get on over there, and tag (follow) her back and leave a comment.


Since Halloween is two short days away, you could take a wild guess as to what today's theme is...

Enjoy ^.^

I keep seeing this commercial on TV and it makes me giggle because that's what I like to imagine the kid-at-heart inside me looks like. And yes, I'd scream like that on Halloween, too ^.^

Kmart New Dubstep Halloween Commercial

When Halloween rolls around, this is always the tell-tale song that gets me in the holiday spirit! The movie is a classic as well ;)

I Put A Spell On You--Hocus Pocus

Have a musical week everyone! 

Mailbox Monday(10/29)

Mailbox Monday divulges into the inner workings of my mailbox throughout the week. From books to jewelry to free samples to random magazines and letters-You never know what will be in the mail this week...


 Ever since meeting Diane Wing of Pathways (review, interview & giveaway), I've been blessed with so many wonderful opportunities! 

One of which is reviewing just one of the many books under her belt, Thorn Manor

I can't wait to sink my teeth into this thrilling read ^.^ 

Thanks to a sweepstakes this time, I was able to get my hands on a $100 Marshall's gift card! 


Don't tell my sister ;)

She loves T.J. Maxx and Marshalls.

Teeth and gum care, here I come!

I'm lucky enough to review this Oral-B Professional Precision 1000 electric toothbrush :)

I'm excited to break this puppy open and give it a go!

You'll want to keep an eye out because there's also a looming giveaway for one lucky reader ;)

What did YOU get in the mail this week?


Friday, October 26, 2012

The Country Barrel *Giveaway*

I've always been pretty eclectic when it comes to my different tastes; food, entertainment, friends, home decor....

I don't care if my different tastes end up clashing-I can't help what I like!

That's why when I was contacted with a special offer from the lovely owners of The Country Barrel, I couldn't turn them down. I mean have you SEEN their absolutely adorable products?!

About The Country Barrel:

"Creating is something of a passion for us, which we love to share with others. We believe that there is a purpose for everything and the inspiration to create comes from absolutely anything. We offer a wide variety of different creations from Ball Mason Jar Solar Lights to Wine Cork Letters and we try to have "something" for everybody. All of our items are upcycled, fun, functional, and affordable. Everything we make is one-a-kind creation, and we take pride knowing that nothing will be duplicated. Creating with your hands ensures that this cannot happen, and we will always keep it that way."

Here are just a few of the mason and ball jar products you can find at The Country Barrel...

Set of 4 Regular Mouth Mason Jar Luminaries

Antique Blue Pint Mason Jar Soap Dispenser

Set of 2 Regular Mouth Mason Jar Flower Frog Lids



1 winner will receive a $25 gift certificate to The Country Barrel! 

{The Rules}

1. You MUST use the name and email you want to be contacted with in the Rafflecopter.

2. Contest will run from Friday, October 26th, 2012 to Friday, November 16th, 2012.

3. Open to US and Canada only,18 years or older--Sorry everyone else!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

That's 2 mandatory entries + 35 possible extra entries which = 37 entries total!
Good Luck!

Disclaimer: I was in no way compensated for the above post. All opinions expressed in the above post are 100% mine and mine alone unless otherwise stated. This contest is open to US and Canada only, 18 years or older and will run from Friday, October 26th, 2012 6:00pm central standard time until Friday, November 16th, 2012 11:01 pm central standard time. The winner will be chosen through and be contacted within 24 hours of the drawing. You'll then have 48 hours (2 days) to claim your prize and send me all applicable information-If I haven't heard from you within that time frame, I will be forced to choose another winner.

Krafty Max Originals Special Deal!

The holidays are coming up pretty darn fast and before you know it, it'll be crunch time. I mean we're almost into November and the big shopping days (Black Friday and Cyber Monday) will probably be here before you know it!

Personally, I don't like to feel pressured when purchasing gifts and the closer the holidays loom, the more pressure a person feels to get all their shopping done among everything else going on.

Speaking of shopping, I enjoy giving gifts that are handmade, whether by me or someone else. Not only is it a nice gesture for the person receiving your gift, but you're supporting the handmade community as well as the artist you're buying from! It's a win/win/win :)

If you're like me, this deal from my longtime friend Max of Krafty Max Originals is for you!  Until the end of the year, if you purchase a $25, $35, or $50 gift certificate to her handcrafted jewelry shop, you'll be receiving more money for your money!

Personally, I think that's an incredible deal and opportunity to get more bang for your buck! Plus you'll be knocking some holiday gifts off your list--if you plan on purchasing gifts for other people that is.

You may in fact choose to spend the money on yourself and that's just as good ;)

Just some goodies you can find in Krafty Max Originals...


Items in Post: 

Top Left: Zaira Teal Free Form Beadwoven Necklace with Silver Plated Beads

Top Right: Green Pine Cone and Acorn Swarovski iPhone or Smart Phone Charm

Bottom Left: Ballerina Girl Beadwoven OOAK Bracelet

Bottom Right: Carnelian Leaf and Swarovski Crystal Necklace Set

Disclaimer: I was compensated for the above post. All opinions expressed above are 100% mine and mine alone unless otherwise stated.  My opinions are strictly informative; please make sure to do your own research into a company and/or particular product before committing to purchasing.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Candy Unjunked-UNREAL™ Candy *Review*

I absolutely love chocolate as much as the next woman (it's more of a chocolaty devotion really), but the unfortunate thing about that is I can't handle eating the candy bars that are on the market. Even if it's just a single bar, I pay for it later and it just ends up not being worth the couple of minutes it took to eat the darn thing!

Imagine my complete excitement when I start hearing whispers of a new line of candy that hit shelves just recently. One without all the added junk to it and that's just as reasonably priced as the other products out there. 

I give you UNREAL!

About UNREAL: 

"The American candy industry’s Goliath just met its David – and they are armed with chocolate candy treats. Not ordinary candy, of course.  That’s the point.  It’s UNREAL™ candy.  Candy with a conscience. A post-Halloween feud between Boston entrepreneur Michael Bronner and his now 15-year-old son Nicky fueled an unprecedented nationwide launch of a new mission driven food company called UNREAL™ Brands. With a simple idea brilliantly executed, UNREAL™ Brands has become a magnet for creative and entrepreneurial professionals.  With incredibly diverse backgrounds they are an eclectic mix you’d never find in any other company in the world.  But it works.  Why?  Because they’re drawn together by a common mission.  To challenge what we’ve come to accept in our food.  To change the way junk food is made."

Unjunking one's candy is no easy task-it took the company's founders 2 whole years, thousands of recipes and probably a whole lot of patience to perfect their first line of 5 different candies, which consist of UNREAL™ 41: Candy Coated Chocolates, UNREAL™ 54: Candy Coated Chocolates with Peanuts, UNREAL™ 5: Chocolate Caramel Nougat Bar, UNREAL™ 8: Chocolate Caramel Peanut Nougat Bar, and UNREAL™ 77: Peanut Butter Cups.

Yes, these all probably sound a wee bit familiar and from the graphic below, they may look a wee bit familiar as well, but what I can tell you that's NOT familiar is the fact that, unlike those other candies out there that taste good but are pure junk, these taste good and are UNjunked! 

No high fructose corn syrup. No hydrogenated oils. No artificial colors or flavors. No GMOs.
60% more protein and 250% more fiber on average per serving than the leading competing brands. 

I will admit ever since I heard about this candy being produced, I wanted to review it. When I was given the green light, you have NO idea how excited I was!

For this delicious review, I was lucky enough to be sent all 5 products from UNREAL's line of candies. 

As soon as I opened the box, I was fascinated by the futuristic and modern looking packaging; it really did look like something straight out of a futuristic sci-fi movie! 

I wasn't quite sure where to start, so I went for the UNREAL™ 5: Chocolate Caramel Nougat Bar first (the equivalent to a Milky Way bar).

I really couldn't help but compare this candy to the candy I've had in the past. Even though I haven't had some of the 'other' candy bars in awhile, I could tell the subtle differences right away, the first being the chocolate was a lot more flavorful instead of being overly sweet. Secondly, there were some coloration differences in the candies that used colors (candy coated chocolates & candy coated chocolates with peanuts). Instead of being blindingly bright, they coloring was more REAL; colors that you're more apt to find in the natural world.

After all was said and done (and eaten of course), the best part of the whole thing: I didn't have as sever a reaction as with the 'other' candy bars! I unfortunately do still have to watch my sugar intake and even though UNREAL candy has 30% less sugar than the leading candy bars, it doesn't matter in the scheme of my sensitive body.

Everything in moderation people! 

Aside from the taste of candy itself, I'm incredibly impressed by what goes IN to it; The dairy used comes from pasture raised cows in New Zealand and California without antibiotics or added hormones.  The organic palm kernel oil from a sustainable and organic plantation in Brazil.  Traceable cacao beans from farms in Ghana and Ecuador.  Natural colors are used instead of synthetic dyes, like red from beets and blue from purple cabbage....

If that isn't impressive, nothing is!


Disclaimer: I was provided samples of UNREAL candies from UNREAL to facilitate this honest review. All opinions expressed above are 100% mine and mine alone unless otherwise stated. My opinions are strictly informative; please make sure to do your own research into a company and/or particular product before committing to purchasing.