“The Real Mom Review is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com."
A real mom of 4 reviewing various products & services with honesty & integrity. From natural beauty products to household items to groceries - the truth - so you can save dollars, time & sanity. No flames, no games, just a real mom reviewing.

Saturday, December 31, 2011

Low Carb Noodles? Shirataki To The Rescue!

I don't eat pasta.
I used to, but it's not a part of my low carb lifestyle, and I haven't indulged in nearly 2 years (April makes 2 years of living la vida low carb!).
But I sure did like it. And sometimes, although not too often, I miss it. I still cook it for the fam on a regular basis, and it can be hard to dish out their saucy food on noodles while mine goes onto nothing, or maybe some cooked french cut green beans (surprisingly good, actually).

Well, tonight I had noodles.

Don't scold me...I didn't cheat.

I had tofu shirataki noodles I picked up from Virginia's Health Foods in Mobile the other day.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Did you win? Here's the winner...

...of the $78 value Monet Neck Ring:

Monica P (GFC follower Mo)
Thank you all for participating.

I hope to have another giveaway for you all soon!

Merry Christmas to all my followers!

I would like to wish all my followers who celebrate Christmas a very merry one!
I hope you have a joyful celebration day.
This is my favorite time of the year and a very important day in my faith.
We will be celebrating the observance of the birth of Jesus Christ as a family
and I will be taking a few days off from blogdom.
Merry Christmas!


Sunday, December 18, 2011

Dry Shampoo...Everyone Should Have Some. Seriously!

I have found a highly useful weapon for my beauty arsenal.
Dry shampoo.
You need some. I won't go without it. Seriously.

Friday, December 9, 2011


One word that doesn't typically come to mind when thinking on the delights of Christmas?

Monday, December 5, 2011

New Year, New Necklace! $78 Jewelry Giveaway

As the New Year quickly approaches,
you will no doubt be thinking of how you're going to celebrate it.
Where will you go?
Whose party will you attend?
What will you wear?!?

How about a new, classy, golden "Neck Ring" by Monet?

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Win $5,000 for your favorite school! Easy entry!

You have a chance to win $5,000 for your favorite grade school or high school.

All you have to do is register and watch the trailer for "Game of Your Life" right here:

Movie Synopsis
(Provided by Vocal Point)

Zach, a high school gamer who lands a scholarship to an elite video game design program, has a bright future as long as he can survive the intense freshman year project that eliminates half the class in the first three months. But when Zach learns that his father is in financial trouble, he has to make a choice that will affect his future and the lives of everyone around him. This humorous and heartfelt drama is a great reminder to kids – and all of us – that the choices they make impact the people around them. “Game of Your Life” airs Friday, December 2nd 8/7c on NBC

After that, ask all your friends, family, teachers, fellow parents and PTO members – everyone you know – to watch it so they can vote for your school once a day, too.
After all, if any one of the people you tell wins, your school wins $5,000!
Good luck!

(Disclosure: I received nothing at all to post this. I just thought it seemed like a cool, decent, family movie...and hey, there aren't too many of those these days! Plus, hey, $5000 for a school!)  

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Scrapbook Software WINNER!

I'm pleased to announce the winner of the My Memories Suite v2

Digital Scrapbook Software giveaway:


I used Random.org, which generated the random number 2...so Amy~* wins.

Congratulations Amy!

Remember, if you didn't win, don't worry.
You can purchase your copy of My Memories Suite at a discount.
Simply copy & paste this unique coupon code at checkout: STMMMS46560.
This code provides a $10 discount off the purchase of the My Memories Suite v2 Scrapbook software and a $10 coupon for the MyMemories.com store - a $20 value!
I'd like to thank MyMemories.com for providing me with 2 copies of their wonderful digital scrapbooking software - one for me to review and one to give away to a reader.

Disclosure: I received a free copy of the MyMemories Suite software for the purpose of reviewing, and a free copy to use in this giveaway. Although I received free items, as always, my opinions are completely my own. Also, if you use the provided "coupon code" to order your own software, not only will you receive $20 in savings, but I'll receive a $20 finder's fee.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving Dear Readers

I just want to take a moment to tell you all that
I wish you a very blessed Thanksgiving.

I'm grateful for your readership.
The Lynds gathered around the table

May you and yours see God's blessings all around you
this day and every day!
A "silly shot" of us!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Shop Small! Small Business Saturday is Coming

I want to encourage you all to show your local pride and
help fuel the economy by Shopping Small THIS Saturday...on
Small Business Saturday.

Yep,  that's Nov. 26. But don't stop there. Why not try it throughout
the entire holiday season? Consider helping them by going to the shop around the corner.  Find the stores and restaurants near you that are small and independently owned and give them your support this Christmas Season.

I became aware of Shop Small Saturday through a focus group I belong to called Vocalpoint.
Info on Small Business Saturday from Vocalpoint:

About Small Business Saturday:
First there was Black Friday, then Cyber Monday.
Now there is Small Business Saturday on Nov. 26th, a
day dedicated to supporting the small businesses that
fuel local economies and invigorate our communities.

What do you think about it?
Will you give it a try?
Drop me a line about your feelings on it.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Scrapbookin' Made Easy - GIVEAWAY!

I'm not a scrapbooker. I tried to be one, once upon a time. I just didn't have the time. It's not something I enjoyed enough to make time to do. I admire the beautiful pages scrapbookers create, and the lovely albums that result from their hard work...but me...scrapbook?

Enter My Memories Suite Scrapbook software...the entirely new (to me, at least) world of digital scrapbooking.

No tedious cutting, or measuring, or stencil usage.

No bags full of expensive tools & papers & stacks of pictures awaiting my time & patience...mocking me and accusing me of lack-of-follow-through.

Instead, I can simply click, drag, and use my creativity to embellish the digital photos I already have loaded on my computer. It's SO simple (and very fun)!
Oh, the control-freak in me LOVES it.
Here's a sample of a photo album page I created in very little time:

And here's a sample using the software to make a cool party invitation:

It would be so easy to use the software to create all kinds of things, aside from photo albums.
Maybe...Christmas cards? Place mats or cards? Birth announcements? 
Wedding announcements? Seminar handouts? Science project display sheets?
Posters for events? Posters for candidates such as homecoming queen, class prez?
I've only scratched the surface here.

Would YOU like to join the world of digital scrapbooking?
My Memories Suite has not only given me a copy of their fab software to try out and review, but they've offered a FREE copy to one The Real Mom Review reader, too! That's a $39.99 value.
How awesome is that?!?!

The Giveaway winner will be chosen via random.org, on Monday, Nov. 28th at 9pm Central.

If you don't win, don't worry. You can purchase your copy of My Memories Suite v2 at a discount. Yay! Simply copy & paste this unique coupon code at checkout: STMMMS46560. This code provides a $10 discount off the purchase of the My Memories Suite v2 Scrapbook software and a $10 coupon for the MyMemories.com store - a $20 value!
To enter:
(mandatory entry method)
You must be a GFC (Google Friend Connect) follower of this blog to enter the giveaway. You can do that on the right side bar of this page. If your comment is chosen, but you aren't a GFC follower, your entry will NOT count.

+1 Then, go to MyMemories.com 
and pick out one of the pages/digital scrapbooking kits that you like best. Come back here and tell me in a comment. Be sure to leave your email addy in the comment.

Extra entries:
(be sure to come back & comment for each of these extra entries, & please leave email addy in each comment)
+1 Like The Real Mom Review on Facebook (top left side bar)
+1 Like MyMemories on Facebook ( My Memories on Facebook )
+1 Like this post on Facebook (top left side bar)
+1 Leave a new comment on any other post on this blog
+1 Subscribe to this blog via email (very bottom of this page)


Must be US resident. Leave a separate comment for each entry method, telling what you did. The more comments/entries, the better your odds of winning, of course. Be sure to leave your email addy in each of your comments so I can contact you if you win. Can be in format "janedoe at yahoo dot com" to avoid spam bots. Mandatory entry is required before any other entries will count. If I cannot verify your entry, it will not count. Winner will be chosen using random.org. Winner will have exactly 48 hours to respond to my notification email or a new winner will be picked, no exceptions. By entering you agree to the rules of the contest.

Disclosure: I received a free copy of the MyMemories Suite software for the purpose of reviewing, and a free copy to use in this giveaway. Although I received free items, as always, my opinions are completely my own. Also, if you use the provided "coupon code" to order your own software, not only will you receive $20 in savings, but I'll receive a $20 finder's fee.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Can YOU Shake Your Booty? Wii Zumba 2

I can!
And with a little more practice (okay, maybe a LOT more), I might look skilled while doing it.
So, you'd have to live under a rock to not know about the wave of popularity that Zumba has recently ridden. But maybe, like me, you're not keen to shake your moneymaker (and fall out from exhaustion or smack someone next to you with the errant hand) in front of an audience. That's where the Wii comes in.

With Wii Zumba 2, you can have loads of fun, get heart-pounding exercise, and sweat off some pounds while tightening up the parts of you that ought NOT be jiggly. And you can do it without an audience. Aaaaand, you can learn how to dance like a Latin star if you apply yourself. Bonus!
Oh, and you don't have pay for ongoing classes, babysitters, nor gas to drive to classes, nor fancy workout wear (unless you just want to!). These are definite positives in a harsh economy where many of us don't have a dime to spare.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

More Humane, Quality Coffee?

I love coffee.

I have a "most loved" coffee.
I drink 2-4 cups per day, depending on a number of factors.
I am willing to spend more money on quality coffee.

My fave: Starbucks Sumatra, Whole Bean, freshly ground by me.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Hallelujah! Drugstore Hairspray That Works!

Let me introduce my hair. Yes...my hair. I have naturally curly hair.

older photo of me that shows my curls well
 Somewhere along the path through puberty my fine, straight hair apparently had a nervous breakdown from all the hormone surges and got all frazzled (and frizzed!). It got progressively curlier until I gave up and let it do its thing. I mean, it wasn't that hard to embrace curly hair in the 80's & early 90's...after all, lots of girls paid good money to get similar curls. Yet, in the mid 90's, straight was the thing, and for the most part, has been since then...although some of us are rebelling and accepting our curls again.

I tend to do both. Since I live in the heat and humidity of Coastal Alabama, during summer, I generally let my wild hair have its way. But in the cooler months, with less humidity (and sweat) I might straighten it once or twice a week.
As such, when you go through all the work to do that, the last thing you want is to devote an hour to smoothing out that frizzy mess just to have it slowly puff up & frizz out 30 minutes after you're out the door!
(Poor idiot I am, I did exactly that for a class reunion this past summer, painstakingly getting my coif just-so, then before even half the guests arrived at the reunion, which was on a deck overlooking Mobile Bay, I had to go clip my hair up on my head b/c I looked like one of those little troll dolls from back-in-the-day. Sigh.)
look familiar?

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Can YOU guess the best kid shampoo?

I have 4 kids, and through the years I've used more than my fair share of kiddie shampoos, I assure you. With 2 remaining small ones, I'm still a frequent purchaser of them. I've tried many different brands, and lots of them certainly have merit. Alas, I DID settle on one eventually, and I have stuck with it for quite a few years, now.

Which one is it? Here are your clues (dont' peek to the bottom!):

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Winner! Winner! We've got a GC Winner!

Congratulations to
Heather E.
of Florida!

Heather won the Giving Thanks $25 Great Gift Card Giveaway.
Heather has chosen the Old Navy GC.
Feel free to congratulate Heather in the comments section below, too.

I thank you all for participating and sincerely hope you will visit
this blog frequently to find honest, objective reviews on
products & services.
You can always count on me to tell you like it is!

Hopefully, now that I have more blog followers, I might receive more
things for free, which enables me to pass those things on to you, my awesome readers.
And everyone loves freebies, right?!?

So stick around and let's see what else we can get into together!  ~Jean

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Do YOU Do Toilets?

If there’s one household chore that has “ick-factor”, it’s scrubbing toilets. I think you’d have to be a freak-of-nature to enjoy scrubbing toilets. That’s why I (and many other people) have tried every new toilet product that has come out over the years. I’ve tried special scrubbing brushes, special scrubbing chemicals, those little things that clip to the side of toilet & purport to keep things cleaner for longer while giving you fantabulously fresh scents, those interesting little tablets that you drop into the tank & they’re supposed to prevent the need to clean for 2000 flushes or so, and probably a few others I’ve managed to forget. I’ve even gone quite simple and used plain old baking soda or a sprinkling of Borax. So, in light of my quest to avoid “doing” the toilets, I was excited to receive a Scrubbing Bubbles One Step Toilet Bowl Cleaner Starter Kit free from BzzAgent.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Giving Thanks $25 Great Gift Card Giveaway!

I'm getting warmed up for Thanksgiving!
I've got so much to be thankful to God for, I've decided to bless someone else.
I'm very excited to announce a great $25 gift card giveaway.
You get your choice from ONE of the FOUR different merchants:


Old Navy



You should be able to find something great for yourself or a gift for someone else at one of these stores.

Must be US resident. Leave a separate comment for each entry method, telling what you did. The more comments/entries, the better your odds of winning, of course. Be sure to leave your email addy in each of your comments so I can contact you if you win. Can be in format "janedoe at yahoo dot com" to avoid spam bots. Mandatory entry is required before any other entries will count. If I cannot verify your entry, it will not count. Winner will have exactly 48 hours to respond to my notification email or a new winner will be picked, no exceptions. By entering you agree to the rules of the contest.

Follow this blog via Google Friend Connect (GFC). Do this on the right hand side of the blog. If you follow under a different name, be sure to list it in the comment.

Additional Entries:
+1 - Subscribe via email (waaaay down at the very bottom, in the white section).
+1 - Follow me on Facebook (top box, left hand side). Leave your Facebook name in the comment if it isn't the same as displayed with your comment.
+1 - Meaningfully comment on a different post on this blog. But be sure you come back to this post to comment & receive credit! Let me know the title or product you commented on.

Drawing will be held on October 17, 2011.
Thanks so much & good luck to you!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Blue Diamond Almonds - Little Gems of Tastiness!

Oh. My. Goodness.
Blue Diamond's Bold Habanero BBQ Almonds are freakishly good.
I'm positively addicted.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Ready To Stir Things Up? Stick Blenders!

I make a lot of things from scratch around here. In part, to save money...in part, for better health...and, in part, because it usually tastes much better. So, I have a lot of tools that help me do this.

After an ant invasion over this past weekend, we cleaned out & re-placed all my lower cabinet "stuff". There were a number of items that I decided that I could live without, seeing as how I hadn't used them in a year or more. But, there were some things I realized I use a lot. My Hamilton Beach 2 Speed Hand Blender is perhaps one of my most-used tools.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Spastic About Uncomfy Seams in Socks?

I belong to BzzAgent and recently was sent several pairs of socks to try out. I received Hanes Comfort Toe Seam Socks for ladies in several different varieties.

Now, I'm a little demanding of my socks...I like them to be thicker, with good cushion-factor. I want them to hold up well to a lot of washing. I prefer they not cost a small fortune, either.

My husband and my youngest son, however, are spastic about uncomfy socks. They have to fit just-so, can't stretch out too quickly, can't have bothersome seams, or "seam nipples" (I have no idea how else to describe those little pointy parts at the sides of the toe seams...sorry). I'm not real crazy for socks that have seam nipples, either, come to think of it.

Monday, September 19, 2011

The Sweet Taste of Fall?

Can autumn have a taste? Sure! Lots of them, too, no doubt.
One of my favorites is caramel apple. Clean the drool from your mouth and stop fretting over whether to indulge or not. If you are careful about what you eat, like me, then I have a guilt-free option for you: Werther's Original Sugar Free Caramel Apple Hard Candies.

I live the low-carb life, and as such, a caramel apple would NOT be on my "approved" list. But with these little gems, I get my caramel apple and get to eat it too! You can have 5 pieces for only 40 total calories. There are 14g of carbs, but all 14g are from sugar alcohols, so they *shouldn't* have much of an effect on your blood sugars. However, if you are sensitive to sugar alcohols, as some are, you can just have 1 or 2 candies, instead of the whole 5, and you should be safe. Usually, 1 or 2 is satisfying for me anyhow.

They have a nice balance of tart green apple flavor and caramel (a Werther's classic!). It's done very well. To me, the sweetness is just right. And, I may be partial because I haven't had real sugar in a really, really long time, but I don't get the "fake sweetener" taste, nor any after taste. But, as I said, I haven't had real sugar in ages, and when you don't have it, you kinda forget what it used to taste like. So, your experience could be different from mine...especially if you're still having sugar, or you've only been sugar-free for a short time.

I'm very happy with these little pieces of fall flavor. No, it's not a real caramel apple, but I couldn't go there. At least this way, I get the taste, even if I don't get the "chew action". Oh, the chewy-gooey-goodness of caramel. If only...

Saturday, September 17, 2011

I love amazon.com! Saturday quickie ;)

Just a quick shout out because I'm trying to win an amazon $50 gift card. A fellow blogger is giving it away here: http://www.moneysavingmommainnnj.com/2011/09/5000-amazon-gift-card-contest-info.html

If you're interested, you should try to win, also. I really could use it for some specialty low-carb items I'm in need of.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Is there such a thing as Easy Money?

In 2013, towards the end of the year, Pinecone Research STOPPED paying you for surveys and started using a points system to "earn" stuff. I found this to be lame & quit.
Now, you have been updated!
Not usually.
However... I have found an easy way to make a little extra cash. I fill out PineCone Research surveys. Now, a lot of survey sites give you points that you s-l-o-w-l-y accumulate and eventually you can trade them in for gift cards or get a check, once you have enough. This survey company isn't like those.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

 What's swirly & sweet & a healthy, cool treat?
Philly Swirl Sweet Delites!
1st the nutrition deets: 14 calories per bar, made with real fruit, sugar free, fat free, gluten free, and low carb (only 4g carbs, with 1g fiber & 3g sugar alcohols...you can view the nutrition label at the bottom of this post.) The box has 3 flavors: raspberry & vanilla, cherry & vanilla, and orange & vanilla. There are 10 bars per box. I paid less than $2 for the box at my local wallyworld.

The good: The taste is cool & sweet. It hits the spot when you want a popsicle, but don't want to blow your diet/healthy eating. Great on a summer day. Nice sweet treat. Unlike many other sugar free sweets, it's not loaded with sugar alcohols, which can cause gastric distress (ummm....yeah, gas).  My kids all liked them. They were inexpensive, which is really nice to find in a sugar free/low carb treat! Plus, they're made in the USA :)

The not-so-good: In my opinion, the flavor focused more on the vanilla/cream flavor...not the fruit. They could stand to have a stronger fruit flavor, in my opinion. Each bar is kind of small, too. But hey, for 14 calories, whaddaya expect?

So what's the verdict?
I like 'em. I would buy them again. Both for myself, and for the kiddos. I always like to find healthier alternatives for them, also.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Want Lustrous Locks? Skip this!

     Last weekend I wanted to restore some shine to my hair after a harsh summer. I figured a clear gloss (which I vaguely recall seeing in a magazine, or maybe it was on the web?) would be just the thing.
     I went to the store and shopped the hair color aisle for a bit. I only found one clear gloss - the Garnier HerbaShine Treatment Clear Gloss.
Garnier HerbaShine Treatment Clear Gloss

     So I bought it. I followed all directions except for one: I left the follow-up deep conditioning treatment on for extra time. This is the stuff you apply after you've colored, rinsed & re-rinsed, so I know this couldn't have affected the outcome.
     Well, I ended up with hair that was significantly lighter (enough that several people noticed the next day), and not any glossier. Got that? NO added shine, but instead, I got washed-out, faded-looking color. I happen to like my hair darker, so this was far from a desirable outcome. In fact, now I must "fix" what I mistakenly did.
     I don't typically color my hair, so I will have to guess what color to use to get my darker hair color back, hoping not to mess up again. Additional cost, time & probably hair damage. Yay.
     Ohhhh, I wish I had never gotten the bright idea to spiffy up my 'do. Next time, I'll just stick to my deep conditioning treatment and call it a day.

Save yourself the money and skip this one, ladies.