Thursday, July 23, 2015

A New Way to Store & Share Family Memories with RealTimes + $300 Giveaway #RealTimes

This is a Fashionista Event and a promotional item was provided to me. Hosts for this event are Still Blonde after all these Years and ModlyChic. All opinions expressed below are 100% mine and mine alone unless otherwise specified. Please do your own research before you commit to buying a particular good or service as your results may vary.



When my sister and I were much younger my mom loved capturing our every moment on film, and by every moment I do mean EVERY moment; I'm pretty sure there's a blurry close up picture of my dad and I eating ice cream on the couch....Anyway since we didn't have a digital camera back then, she lived on disposable cameras and the shelves filled with numerous photo boxes of picture after picture of memories in the basement proves that!


























That love of capturing memories was passed along. To ME! Of course I continued the tradition of disposable cameras up until my family gifted me my very first digital camera when I was 17 back in 2007. Not counting the handful of scanned printed pictures from my childhood that are on my laptop, I have numerous pictures and photo albums dating all the way back to 2007.

On a somewhat unrelated note I think I was destined to be a blogger even before it became a blip on my radar because even back then my camera and I were inseparable!






As a blogger, jewelry designer, and amateur photographer I take pictures of all kinds of things but my favorite pictures are the ones of my family. As it is both my parents aren't too fond of having their pictures taken and my sister essentially lives up in Wisconsin and we don't get to see her very often so family photos are very far and few in between and very, very precious.

You don't think about it in real time but it's amazing, in picture format, seeing how myself and my family have changed since 2007.



























What if, Universe forbid, something happened to all my pictures I've been storing up since 2007, not just on my computer but on my smartphone as well? A careless tip of a glass of water (true story unfortunately) or a accidental slip of the hand into a waiting toilet (again, another true story) can wipe out your pictures entirely if nothing is backed up, at the very least on social media.

I was lucky enough to keep my old computer running after that water incident but the phone that got dumped in the toilet...lost ALL those pictures. It was a hit but thankfully that was just small scale; it would be beyond devastating if something happened on a larger scale to all those priceless family memories.






I can tell you as a blogger and an avid lover of photography my camera goes where I go whether it be digital or phone (or both most of the time) and I snap sporadically; nothing is safe from the lens and if they're with me my family knows to duck and cover when I'm on a photo kick! Thanks to digital and video cameras, it's easier than ever to take countless pictures and short films of my family and friends and share them across every social media platform you can imagine which I've done numerous times over.

What if things got even easier than that? Imagine those numerous pictures and videos you take on a daily basis all seamlessly and easily organized into one simple slideshow to keep and share with family and friends near and far away.

With RealTimes you can spend less time organizing, editing, and posting each individual picture and video and, instead, instantly and automatically create montages that are perfectly organized by location and date just from your media, thus enabling you to spend less time on the computer and more time capturing countless more priceless memories!






Subscribers can sign up TODAY for their free plan which includes 2GB of storage OR from July 14th through August 30th you have the chance to get 30-days of their Premium RealTimes for FREE with coupon code COUPONSCOM15 (originally $4.99 per month or $49.99 per year).



Connect: 






{The Giveaway}




$300 Target Gift Card!! 







{The Rules}


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

 2. NEW RULE--You MUST leave a 1 to 3 sentence comment on my post in order to be eligible for the giveaway. Short, one to two word answers will be deleted from the post and entries associated will be deleted from the giveaway.

3. Contest will run from Thursday, July 23, 2015 through to Friday, July 31, 2015.

4. Open to individuals 18 years or older.

5. Open to US residents only--Sorry everyone else!



a Rafflecopter giveaway




Good luck!






Giveaway Disclaimer: Still Blonde after all these Years, Modly Chic, and Fashionista Events bloggers are not responsible if prize is not delivered.  We will make every attempt to help you claim your prize. This giveaway is open to US residents only, 18 years or older and will run from Thursday, July 23, 2015 12:00pm EST until Friday, July 31, 2015 10:59 pm EST. The winner will be chosen through Rafflecopter.com and be contacted within 24 hours of the drawing.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Stopain Migraine: Quick, Easy & Natural Migraine Relief + Stopain Giveaway #Migrainerelief



As if several chronic illnesses and conditions weren't enough, I also have to deal with sporadic migraines once or twice a month that can last from a day to several days. Just recently I had a migraine that lasted all of 2 whole weeks. Granted it fluctuated in severity from day to day but at the time it seemed like the migraine would NEVER go away!

Migraines affect 36 million men, woman, and children in the United States; that's nearly 1 in every 4 people in any given household. Migraines and headaches might be regarded as similar but migraines can and are more severe and sometimes debilitating lasting on average between 4 and 72 hours.

Each person who suffers from this medical condition has their own unique triggers but there are several common triggers that seem to consistently affect a large number of people. I know I have several more triggers that aren't covered below but here are five of my common triggers that end up with me sleeping it off in a dark room for several days:






As if food allergies and sensitivities weren't devastating enough to deal with on a daily basis, I have to watch what I eat and be very careful because in the past, certain foods in my diet have triggered day-long migraines. Even if I know which food(s) triggered me and do my best to actively stay away from them, sometimes something I inadvertently eat can trigger a surprise migraine.







Insomnia is very prevalent in my life and the lives of fellow chronically ill people so it's not uncommon to go days without a wink of sleep. I have tried many different treatments, therapies, supplements, and other things to help combat the insomnia but nothing seems to do the trick; it ultimately comes back, especially when it's least wanted! Of course my body seems to do better on little or no sleep but there comes a point where it's too much and my head is the one that suffers for it.






I can predict a storm coming in faster than the local weather casters just by my aching joints and or throbbing head. Each storm is different of course, but it's almost always guaranteed that I have some sort of ailment alongside Mother Nature's fury. I've learned early on I must do something about my barometric pressure headache as soon as I can because if I don't, left alone it can quickly morph from a nagging headache into a several day migraine before I realize it happened.






I, along with the 50 million other Americans who suffer from seasonal and perennial allergies can probably relate to this trigger. It's inevitable. What's the worst about this trigger is there are no options-I'm gonna get a migraine along with all the other symptoms of seasonal and year long allergies whether I like it or not, especially the first time of the season when we take that step to turn on our air conditioning on in the Spring or our heat on in the Fall. Never. Fails.





It goes without saying that society this day and age has a go-go-go-keep-going mentality and with that lifestyle and line of thinking comes a lot of negative side effects on our fragile bodies. Stress may not seem like a big deal since it's become almost normal and natural in our everyday lives but it has been proven to bring down the immune system, promote anxiety, give a person chest palpitations and shortness of breath, weight gain and or weight loss, and many more so it's not a far reach that stress could bring on a nasty migraine.





Stopain Migraine is unlike any oral migraine medication on the market. It's a fast-acting topical relief gel that is applied to the back of your neck and ears up to 4 times a day to help alleviate migraines. The best part about this product is it does not contain aspirin, caffeine, or acetaminophen-it's all homeopathic! Not only that but aside from the natural main ingredient, Stopain Migraine is also fragrance free, free of dyes and free of preservatives.

Applying Stopain Migraine is as easy as 1, 2, 3!

1. Pump Stopain Migraine gel onto your fingers; the pump uses airless pump technology so you can use it at virtually any angle and one pump delivers the exact dose of gel you need for application. No more, no less!

2. Apply and rub gel on one half of the back of the neck and behind your ear. Repeat for other side of neck.

3. If after 30 minutes you haven't noticed a change in your migraine reapply Stopain Migraine. You can reapply up to 4 times a day!

If you're more of a visual learner you can always check out their video on how to apply Stopain HERE.






I found the application process to be very straightforward and easy, the gel itself refreshing with an intense cooling and tingling sensation and it only took a few minutes after application to activate. The gel did have a strong menthol odor to it but it was very pleasant and didn't interfere with my sensitivities at all. I've not had much luck with Western medications so the fact that Stopain is homeopathic made me extremely happy and very eager to give it a try!

I actively applied Stopain Migraine to help with my two-week-long migraine and, while I can't say it took it completely away, I did notice a decrease in the level of my pain and discomfort which I greatly appreciate. I did have to reapply it several times throughout the day but it was very easy to do and didn't disrupt my routine.



LIMITED TIME OFFER! Print a $3-off coupon for savings on Stopain Migraine topical pain relieving gel for migraine relief. Available now at Walmart! Click here to print the coupon: https://goo.gl/ljQxyw

While you're at it why don't you head over to Stopain Migraine's Facebook page where you could win 1 of 10 $50 gift cards to Walmart where you can pick up Stopain Migraine for yourself and help stop your migraine dead in its tracks! Weekly winners are announced on their Facebook page each Friday through 7/17-Enter here: http://bit.ly/1GEiBb



Stopain Migraine is available at Walmart stores and www.walmart.com. To learn more about Stopain Migraine, visit www.stopainmigraine.com and LIKE the brand on Facebook.

This is a product-provided, sponsored conversation that contains affiliate links. I received a package of Stopain Migraine for my own personal use. All opinions, text and experiences are my own.




Migraine Research Foundation -- Fact Sheet. (n.d.). Retrieved July 13, 2015, from http://www.migraineresearchfoundation.org/fact-sheet.html

Allergy Facts. (n.d.). Retrieved July 13, 2015, from http://acaai.org/news/facts-statistics/allergies


Wednesday, June 17, 2015

2015 Gluten Free Allergen Friendly Expo & Giveaway #GFAFExpo

Disclaimer: I was provided admittance to the Gluten Free Allergen Friendly Expo in Schaumburg, Illinois at no cost to me to facilitate this post on The Eclectic Element and the giveaway prize was provided free of charge from several different companies. All opinions and expressions below are 100% mine and mine alone unless otherwise stated.






It's that time of year again. The time of gluten free goodness, of allergen friendly companies, of like-minded people and of learning and knowledge. And, of course, swag.

Lots and lots of swag.

The Gluten Free Allergen Friendly Expo is a place where people who suffer daily from food allergies and intolerances can go and connect with people and companies that can make their life just a little bit easier.

I was lucky enough to be able to go to Last Year's Expo and thankfully, this year, was chosen to attend again with my GF bestie, The Wholey Trinity, by my side!


The Arrival





Truth be told I wasn't sure I was going to be able to make it. With everything that has been happening with my health and it being so unpredictable from day to day, I waited until the morning of to say yay or nay; I felt like someone had hit me with a mack truck when I woke up that morning but someone, somewhere must have been looking out for me because I was able to force the issue.

The conference bloggers got let in 45 minutes early to take a look around and get acquainted with our conference sponsor, Massel.












The national sales manager of Massel, Marc, took very good care of us bloggers! Before we were unleashed to mingle and gorge ourselves with a variety of food stuffs, Marc took some time to get to know us and introduce us to his great products. 

Massel offers gluten free and vegan bouillon cubes and seasoning for cooking. They're motto, "Quality you can taste," and just from sampling the select few things they had to offer at the expo, you can truly believe in that motto! Bloggers got to try their chicken stock, beef stock, and vegan beef/chicken stock (yes, it's a thing-a delicious thing). 

Massel and Marc even brought all the bloggers a gift in the form of a mysterious bright red box with a pretty yellow bow which we found out later was filled with a soup mug and Massel goodies!  


Hannah of The Wholey Trinity
 

After the meet-and-greet and the demonstration we were all set free! Just like last year there were 5 to 6 long rows packed full of companies and products just waiting to be explored, sampled, and learned about.

The Expo

We were only able to attend one day of this 2-day expo; let me advise you if you're ever able to attend and have the means to do so, stay for both days! Being let in at 9:45am to leaving at 4:00pm still wasn't enough time to see and do everything we wanted to see and do. 

We managed to do the best we could with what time we had though!






I saw a lot of familiar "faces" like the big names, Glutino, Enjoy Life, Kinnickinic, and Pamela's as well as many new names and faces, a good majority of which can be found locally around the Chicagoland/Illinois area all the way to a few states away.






Like last year the majority of companies that made an appearance where food related but there were some non-food related companies and products that captured my eye, one of which was a very neat up-and-coming product that tests your food for traces of gluten before you eat it. 

I also nearly bought myself a nice new allergen friendly sheet set in a cheerful color and would have, too, if not for the lack of money!





Reconnecting & New Friends


Of course I had one of my best friends by my side but it also felt good meeting new people and reconnecting with some familiar faces. 




I was thrilled to see my friend from Red Apple Lipstick again and she was as fun and lively as ever! She even helped me pick out a new lipstick that is next on my absolutely-must-buy list.




And of course we can't forget Yogi, GoPicnic's mascot who hasn't changed a bit since last year's expo.




The Recap
 

Until next year...


All in all I'd chalk this year's GFAF Expo up to a huge success! New companies and people met, reconnection with some old friends, tummies full of delicious and delectable goodies, and swag bags that filled the back seat of the car AND the trunk...

I already can't wait until next year! 

If you'd like to see more pictures of this year's expo you can do so on my Facebook.





Connect: 




*****************************************


Thanks to multiple gluten free* and allergen friendly companies at this year's expo, Hannah of The Wholey Trinity and I have come together to provide one of our readers the chance to feel like they were able to attend even if you didn't! 

A big thank you to these companies who donated to this fantastic goodie prize package:



I also have included some coupons, information, and samples from other companies I gathered, too, so you'll be receiving a box chocked full of a little bit of everything.

After you've entered my giveaway make sure to head over to The Wholey Trinity and enter hers!


 
{The Giveaway}


Gift Bag of Goodies from the GFAF Expo!! 




{The Rules}


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

 2. NEW RULE--You MUST leave a 1 to 3 sentence comment on my post in order to be eligible for the giveaway. Short, one to two word answers will be deleted from the post and entries associated will be deleted from the giveaway.

3. Contest will run from Monday, June 17, 2015 through to Monday, July 1, 2015.

4. Open to individuals 18 years or older.

5. Open to US residents only--Sorry everyone else!




a Rafflecopter giveaway



Good luck!








*Not all products in the prize package are gluten free. Make sure to read all labels before consuming.

Giveaway Disclaimer: This giveaway is open to US residents only, 18 years or older and will run from Wednesday, June 17, 2015 12:00am CST until Wednesday, July 1, 2015 11:59 pm CST. The winner will be chosen through Rafflecopter.com and be contacted within 24 hours of the drawing. You'll then have 24 hours (1 full day from when the winning email was sent) 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. The Eclectic Element and all related parties are in no way liable or responsible for unfulfilled or damaged prizes.





Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Trips to the Edge: Tales of the Unexpected by Diane Wing *Book Review*





Author: Diane Wing
ISBNN-13: 9781615992621
Page Count: 46 pages
Publisher: Modern History Press
Release Date: January 10, 2015



Synopsis:


The great and imaginative Diane Wing is at it again, this time creating a read that's comprised of 4 spine-chilling short stories that will bring you face-to-face with the long lasting consequences of a person's actions, through a seemingly-perfect different dimension, dining on sumptuous new cuisine in a mysterious new restaurant, and exploring the dark side of jealousy and revenge. Through her words Wing brings to life these impossible realities and makes the reader almost believe the impossible can be possible as they make their way through each short story. Add in an ominous, dark twist to each plot line and you've got Trips to the Edge.


My Thoughts:


I'm always so very excited when Diane contacts me with another opportunity, especially when it involves her books. She has such a unique writing voice and always adds a little bit of darkness to her tales which never fails to capture my attention from the get go. Whether it be my sense of whimsy she captures with her imaginative writings of mythical creatures and other realms or my love of being creeped out with her ominous plot twists, I can't seem to get enough! Plus, if you've read any of her work, she tends to include in her stories something....more; a lesson that needs to be learned perhaps or possibly just a deeper meaning hidden behind seemingly simple things like a walk in the park, a winding road that dead ends, or a new restaurant. Either way the reader comes away not only entertained by the story itself but also with their own personal line of thinking somewhat transformed. 


Trips to the Edge can be purchased through Amazon.com or Barnes & Noble.






Monday, April 6, 2015

Come Join Me: Gluten Free Allergen Free Expo Coming to Chicago + Giveaway #GFAFExpo

Disclaimer: I received a complementary expo ticket to facilitate this post and giveaway on The Eclectic Element. Some affiliate links can also be found in the post below. All opinions and expressions above are 100% mine and mine alone unless otherwise stated. Please do your own research on a product or service before purchasing as your results may vary.



It seems these days I'm running in to more and more people that have to watch and really be cognizant of what they eat. Whether it be gluten and wheat, dairy, nuts, processed sugars, GMOs or something else, people are starting to slowly, one by one, wake up and realize what we've been putting into our bodies most definitely is NOT treating them like the temples they should be!

We, society as a whole, are probably the sickest we've ever been and the "food" that is suppose to be fueling our bodies is just working to make us sicker. The good news that comes out of that tragic situation is, like mentioned above, people are starting to realize this and where there is a need and demand for something, new and improved healthier companies and products will follow.

This is exactly why I'm so excited to announce the return of the 2015 Chicago Gluten Free Allergen Free Expo!

I was super lucky to be able to go to last year's 2014 GFAF Expo as an expo blogger with one of my good friends Hannah of The Wholey Trinity. As a first timer, it was incredibly amazing to see what this event had to offer...





Now that I know what to expect this year, I'm ready and raring to go get my gluten-and-allergen-free on! This really could not have come at a better time either; I've been so very sick from the end of Fall, beginning of Winter last year until now and I know I'm going to have to bite the bullet and not only go gluten-free again but watch everything I put into my mouth.

I'm hoping that attending this year's expo will give me a new lease on this whole "diet" thing (if you can really call it that). Learn all about new companies and what they have to offer while giving new products a try and learning about how I can better myself without starving and or depriving myself of the enjoyment I SO love getting from my BFF food.

Not only will you find at least 100+ sponsors and vendors of all different shapes and sizes offering their gluten-free, dairy-free, nut-free, and other allergen-free wares from all different kinds of foods and many, many different desserts to makeup, skincare, and more, depending on which day you go, you can also sit in on several different informative classes.

Just a few classes you might be interested in this year: Nutrition and Gluten-Free Baking, Get Rid of Toxins- in your Diet and your Life, or even Traveling the World Gluten Free and Allergen Free. For a complete list of classes and their days Click Here.

Between now and May 1st if you purchase your ticket(s) through the link below you'll receive 20% off with the code ADVANCE as well as a FREE 1-year subscription to Delight Gluten Free Magazine! Just click on the picture to take you to the purchase page.





{The Giveaway}


Win 1 of 5 FREE one-day tickets to the Chicago Gluten Free Allergen Free Expo*!!







{The Rules}


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

 2. NEW RULE--You MUST leave a 1 to 3 sentence comment on my post in order to be eligible for the giveaway. Short, one to two word answers will be deleted from the post and entries associated will be deleted from the giveaway.

3. Contest will run from Monday, April 6, 2015 through to Thursday, April 16, 2015.

4. Open to individuals 18 years or older.

5. Open to US residents only--Sorry everyone else!




a Rafflecopter giveaway




That's 2 mandatory entries + 41 possible
extra entries which = 43 entries total!

Good luck!












*Ticket good for 1 of the 2 days, either Saturday, May 2nd or Sunday, May 3rd.

Giveaway Disclaimer: This giveaway is open to US residents only, 18 years or older and will run from Monday, April 6, 2015 12:00pm CST until Thursday, April 16, 2015 11:59 pm CST. The winner will be chosen through Rafflecopter.com and be contacted within 24 hours of the drawing. You'll then have 24 hours (1 full day from when the winning email was sent) 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. The Eclectic Element and all related parties are in no way liable or responsible for unfulfilled or damaged prizes.

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