Friday, November 21, 2014

The Healthy Shopper Fall 2014 Picks {#Giveaway}

We absolutely loved The Healthy Shopper products from this spring. The BBQ sauces were amazing. I jumped at the chance to use their Fall 2014 products because I just knew I would not be disappointed.

The Healthy Shopper is a coupon book for natural and organic products in Canada. They pick the products that they feel are some of the best on the market and feature them in their coupon book. Here are the products they are featuring for the fall.
Olympic Dairy’s new Chia yogurt, the first yogurt on the market with chia seeds. The addition of chia seeds makes Olympic yogurt even healthier and completely surpasses other yogurts that contain artificial colours, flavours and preservatives. Chia is also considered a super food and is a source of protein and fiber. It’s the richest plant-source of healthy Omega 3 oil,important for heart and cholesterol health, and is now recognized as a weight-loss helper too. Olympic yogurt also contains pre- and probiotics for an extra immunity boost. Flavours include strawberry, vanilla, plain and pandan.

Our personal favourite, Made Good Organic Granola Bars and Granola Minis. They’re nut-free, making them a school safe lunchbox essential and each bar or package of minis is made with whole grains and a vegetable powder equivalent to the nutrients found in one serving of vegetables. This yummy snack meets a minimum of 20% of an adult’s required daily intake of vitamins A, B1, B6 C, D and E coming from the vegetable sources. Made Good Organic Granola Bars and Minis are non-GMO, wheat-free, vegan and Kosher. Flavours include chocolate banana, chocolate chip, strawberry, apple cinnamon, and mixed berry.

I couldn't keep these in the house. They were seriously devoured a few packages within minutes and I had to hide the rest of them so we could enjoy them at an upcoming football game. They were soft and chewy and so easy to eat while at the football game.

The Healthy Shopper encourages Canadians to put healthy and organic options in our shopping baskets. Today, parents want less and less artificial ingredients and more natural when it comes to feeding their families, with 58% of them purchasing natural and organic. So, The Healthy Shopper Picks have become a much anticipated and trusted resource for educating consumers on finding healthier organic alternatives to some of our favourite products.

You don't have to take my word on how good the products are because The Healthy Shopper will be giving one Canadian It's just my life... reader a chance to win this awesome prize pack.

Happy Eating!                                            

Disclosure: It's just my life... did not receive compensation but did receive products for review purposes.. All opinions on this product are my own and may differ from our readers’ opinions.

Friday, November 21, 2014 by Annie Brown · 0

Monday, November 17, 2014

Staying on Budget by Menu Planning - November 17, 2014

Staying on our budget for the month is difficult to do with the ever rising costs of food in our area. I am sure we are not alone in the rising costs of food and it can really cut into a budget.

I find Menu Planning to be my saving grace every week. I plan my meals for the week and even sometimes on a Sunday you will find me cooking up a storm with the chili, soups and stews for the week so they are ready to eat and I pack the rest away in the freezer for quick meals on those busy days.

Do you plan ahead when you are making meals?

~ Monday ~
Homemade Pizza

~ Tuesday ~
Lazy Day Casserole

~ Wedneday ~
Garden Vegetable Soup

~Thursday ~

~ Friday ~
Chicken Parm

~ Saturday ~

~ Sunday ~

Monday, November 17, 2014 by Annie Brown · 0

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Some Laughter to Brighten your Day #StreamTeam

The wind is blowing through the trees and the temperature has dropped. For family movie night this week we are looking for a movie to snuggle up with on the couch. Mr. Popper's Penguins was the perfect movie to pick with those adorable little penguins.

Mr. Popper's Penguins was inspired by the classic Newbery Award-winning children's book. My daughter is the perfect age to enjoy Jim Carrey's antics on the screen.

Jim Carrey, Mr Popper,  plays a successful Real Estate Developer in New York City who gets an inheritance from his father that turns out to be five penguins. Mr. Popper's is a divorced father of two and when he decides to hand the penguins over to the Central Park Zoo his son arrives and thinks the penguins are his birthday gift.

Mr. Popper makes a promise to his son to keep the penguins in his apartment. He takes care of the penguins for his son but later he does come to love these precious penguins.

We all thoroughly enjoyed Mr. Popper's Penguins and it left us all laughing and smiling for the evening. If you are looking for a good feel good movie for the family Mr. Popper's Penguins is definitely that movie.

If you have already seen Mr. Popper's Penguins there are more funny flicks on NetFlix this month for you to choose from...

Big Kids
1. Shrek Forever After
2. Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs

3. Despicable Me
4. Dr. Suess' The Cat in the Hat
5. Kung Fu Panda 2
6. Mr. Popper's Penguins

Little Kids

*** It's just my life... is a member of the Netflix Canada #StreamTeam. As part of my affiliation with this group I receive products and special access to Netflix events and opportunities. The opinions on this blog are my own. ***

Wednesday, November 12, 2014 by Annie Brown · 0

Monday, November 10, 2014

Eating on a Budget for a Family

Living on a budget and still eating healthy is very important to my family. I like to get the most out of our money while still eating healthy without all the prepackaged foods. I know it sounds nearly impossible but I am always up for a challenge. I actually thrive on the challenge. One way to help with that is by menu planning each week and taking into consideration our schedule for the week.

~ Monday ~
breakfast - cereal
lunch - Soup & Sandwiches
supper - Leftovers

~ Tuesday ~
breakfast - Oatmeal
lunch - Nacho Dip
supper - Costco

~ Wednesday ~
breakfast - toast and smoothies
lunch - Egg Salad Sandwiches
supper - Chicken Stew

~Thursday ~
breakfast - oatmeal and fresh fruit
lunch - Soup & Grilled Cheese
supper - Lazy Day Casserole (Open Cabbage Rolls)

~ Friday ~
breakfast - waffles
lunch - leftovers
supper - Homemade Pizzas

~ Saturday ~
breakfast - Turkey Bacon & Eggs
lunch - Ham Sandwiches
supper - Taco Soup

~ Sunday ~
breakfast - muffins/bagels
lunch - leftovers
supper - yet to be decided

Monday, November 10, 2014 by Annie Brown · 0

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Mexican Food Night Turned Me into a #mexicanchef

The past few days have been very stressful and full of activity at our house this week with our dog having seizures and her just wanting to be cuddled all the time not leaving me a whole lot of time to cook our daily meals. The Old El Paso Restaurante kits arrived at my house just in time to say the least.

Mexican food night is my favourite night! Earlier this week Old El Paso Restaurante arrived on my door stop in three great flavours to tantalize our taste buds - Chicken Tinga,  Baja Fish and Steak Carne Asada. I couldn't wait to plan my meals for the week and add in the Chicken Tinga for my family to try.

All I had to do was add chicken to my Old El Paso Restaurante Soft Taco Kit so that made dinner very quick and easy for life on the go! All I had to do was to make sure the chicken was thawed in time to cook dinner. The marinade for the chicken was so easy I just had to add water, onions and chicken to the pan. The smell just went through the whole house while it was cooking making our mouths water.  

Once the chicken was done cooking we pulled it out of the pan and shredded it up for our taco feast! We let the water in the sauce evaporate before serving and I am telling you it was so good. We added our favourite fixings to the mix and enjoyed tacos packed with flavour.

You don't have to take my word on how good dinner was my friends at Old El Paso have offered one lucky reader of It's just my life... a chance to get their #mexicanchef on with a great prize pack that includes all three Restaurante taco kits PLUS a $75 visa gift card to help you purchase all the essential ingredients to create your own Mexican meal at home!

Here's how you can enter:
  • Just Tweet or Instagram a photo of your favourite Mexican-inspired dish using the hashtag #MexicanChef and then leave a blog comment with the link to your post so I can check it out
  • One winner will be randomly chosen using the giveaway link below 
  • Entrants must be Canadian residents (excl. Quebec) 18+ 
  •  Contest is open from November 6/14 to November 30/14

Good Luck,                                                           

** Disclosure: Posted by It's just my life... This post is sponsored and I recieved compensation and product was provided. The opinions and comments on this blog are those of the author. **

Thursday, November 06, 2014 by Annie Brown · 0

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

#ShiftAShade This Fall with Clairol

If you watch my videos or follow me on social media you may have noticed that my hair colour changed. I documented my transformation on YouTube as well as on instagram as I had you all come along with me on my trip to the big city.

I was met at the door by the Clairol team when I entered Hair on the Avenue to have my before photo taken. Then I was off to meet with colorist extraordinaire Luis Pacheco to choose my new hair colour. I gave him free reign on my hair colour because the dye comes out and the hair grows has always been my theory and besides he is the professional not me.

Before Shot
I had already started to go darker with my hair a few years ago but I definitely never would have been brave enough to go this dark without someone else's professional opinion. Sometimes you just have to take a leap of faith that things will be how they are meant to be. As you can see by my before picture I was a mousy brown at best. Although it did compliment my skin tones a lot better that my natural dirty blonde hair colour it still didn't have the zing I was looking for.

After a wonderful consult with Luis from Hair on the Avenue they ended up using Clairol Nice and Easy R4/131 Rich Dark Brown. I have to say that I was more than pleased with the results of the new colour. I love how it compliments my skin tones and makes me glow! I am getting compliments on my hair colour where ever I go and every is telling me to keep my hair colour this colour as it really suits me! Thanks so much to the Clairol team for allowing me to have such a pampering day.

You can Shift A Shade too! Here's a coupon for Clairol's Nice and Easy.

For more of a look at my day you can find the YouTube video here:

Disclosure: I am a P&Gmom. As part of my affiliation with this group I receive products and special access to P&G events and opportunities. The opinions on this blog are my own.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014 by Annie Brown · 0

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Experience the #CheeriosEffect {#Giveaway}

We all have that person in our life who is always there and supporting us no matter what. Someone who knows what we are thinking even without it being said.

I have been fortunate enough to be able to share my life with that person. Thirty-two years ago I met a boy who would change my life forever. He is my soul mate and love of my life who can still give my goosebumps by just touching my arm. We have conquered cancer, heart attacks and so far nothing can shake the foundation we have. He is my biggest cheerleader and the shoulder I can go and cry on when needed. He is the "o" that makes my life whole.

We all love to connect. 
That’s the Cheerios Effect.

In today's busy world it is easy to forget to connect face to face. Acknowledging those you are walking by in your day is almost unheard of since we are all walking around looking down at our handheld devices instead of where we are going.

Below you will find Justin & Savanna's Story -

Share your #CheeriosEffect Story to WIN

Cheerios is encouraging Canadians to share their personal connection stories at, where each unique story will be brought to life with a personalized video of Cheerios connecting in a bowl. They are also offering one of It's Just My Life readers a chance to win a $100 Loblaw gift card and 5 boxes of Cheerios for bringing their story to life at Click on the photo below to view my story.

Here's how you can enter: 

  • Visit to create your personal connection story video 
  • Follow and Tweet your story to "@anniecannie Here's my #CheeriosEffect. (link to story)"  (failure to use hashtag will not count in contest entry) 
  • One winner will be randomly chosen using the giveaway link below Entrants must be Canadian residents (excl. Quebec) 18+ 
  • Contest is open from October 22/14 to November 7/14

                Good Luck,                                                 

** Disclosure: Posted by It's just my life...  This post is sponsored and I recieved compensation and product was provided. The opinions and comments on this blog are those of the author. The connection story is honest and my own! **

Wednesday, October 22, 2014 by Annie Brown · 0

Monday, October 20, 2014

Menu Planning Monday - October 20, 2014

Time to use up the turkey we have left over so I can make space in my freezer and fridge!

~ Monday ~
breakfast - smoothies
lunch - ham & cheese sandwiches (heated), salad
supper - Turkey, Stuffing, Gravy, Mashed Potatoes, Coleslaw

~ Tuesday ~
breakfast - bagels and yogurt
lunch - leftovers
supper - Pancakes

~ Wednesday ~
breakfast - toast and smoothies
snack - yogurt
lunch - Noodle Soup, Fruit
snack - brownies
supper - Turkey Noodle Soup

~Thursday ~
breakfast - oatmeal and fresh fruit
snack - apple slices with dip
lunch - english muffins pizzas
snack - organic teddy bear crackers
supper - Sheppard's Pie, Garden salad

~ Friday ~
breakfast - waffles
lunch - leftovers
supper - Turkey Pot Pie

~ Saturday ~
breakfast - waffles
lunch - HM Mac n' Cheese
supper - Pork Chops, Rice, Veggies

~ Sunday ~
breakfast - muffins/bagels
lunch - soup
supper - Hot Turkey Sandwiches, home fries

Monday, October 20, 2014 by Annie Brown · 0

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

The Baby Event is Back! #PampersParty

#PampersParty Twitter Party Oct. 16th 8pm EDT 
more information below

When it comes to shopping I know you all like to save money and with your busy schedule getting done all the errands in a timely fashion is very important. Being able to just go to one store and find great deals as well as getting your shopping done quickly is not only important to you but to me too. I prefer to shop at stores that have all my items so that I can spend more time with my family and less time in the stores.

To make your life easier The Baby Event is back at Loblaws, Atlantic Superstore, Extra Foods, Your Independent Grocer, Zehrs Markets, Valu-mart or Real Canadian Superstore from October 10-23. The event includes exciting offers on all things baby to make shopping even more convenient! Check out the flyer from your participating stores for details!

Here are some great tips to put to use:

1. Always go with a list. Do you often find yourself aimlessly wandering around the grocery store, forgetting what you’re missing at home? By making a to-buy list you can target exactly what you need, allowing you to get in and get out. And, you can save money by only purchasing necessities!

2. Navigate the store like a pro If you visit the same store each week, organize your list by aisles to save you from backtracking.

3. Schedule a shopping day Pick one day a week and designate as your “shopping day”. This way everyone in the family knows to request the items they need before then, which will help you avoid multiple trips to the store.

4. Pick a store that has everything you need Don’t waste time travelling, going from store to store. Instead, visit a store that meets all your needs – from food, to clothing to baby necessities like Pampers.

Also why not head over to the twitter party happening tomorrow night. Remember to head over to Kidsumers to RSVP for this event for your chance to win some great prizes.

See you at the party! 

Disclosure: I am a P&Gmom. As part of my affiliation with this group I receive products and special access to P&G events and opportunities. The opinions on this blog, as always, remain my own.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014 by Annie Brown · 0

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

CatDog: The Complete Series

CatDog aired before my youngest daughter was even born but that didn't stop her from enjoying the series on DVD. Every night before bed she requested to watch CatDog and that became the tv show that we would wind down to every might.

So you think you have trouble dealing with your sibling? Then you’ll howl with laughter and meow for more watching the madcap misadventures of the feline and canine brothers who bring a whole new meaning to the idea of “family bonding” in CatDog: The Complete Serie

Brothers Cat and Dog couldn’t be more different — Cat is clever and cultured, while Dog is a na├»ve but lovable goofball. But they definitely share one thing in common: a body! This crazy set of conjoined twins find themselves in all sorts of silly adventures, but through them all, the two misfits stick together…whether they like it or not!

On DVD October 14, 2014!

Originally airing from 1998-2005, CatDog: The Complete Series features an all-star voice cast which includes Tom Kenny (SpongeBob SquarePants, Rocko’s Modern Life), Jim Cummings (The Super Hero Squad Show, Reno 911) and Carlos Alazraqui (The Fairly OddParents, Rocko’s Modern Life).

MY RATING: 4.5/5

** Disclosure: Posted by It's just my life... I was provided promotional material by the manufacturer or a representing PR agency. Images, information and prize provided by PR agency. The opinions and comments on this blog are those of the author. **

Tuesday, October 14, 2014 by Annie Brown · 0

Friday, October 10, 2014

October is the most mysterious month of the year on Netflix #StreamTeam

Nothing better than to settle in with your family for movie night to enjoy a good mystery on NETFLIX. For my family this week it was Spy Kids: All The Time in the World.

We have been watching the Spy Kids movies in this house for years. Spy Kids: All The Time in the World is the 4th movie in the series. We really enjoyed this movie and I thought it was a good way to pass the torch to the next generation of Spy Kids.

Movie Summary:
Marissa Cortez Wilson (Jessica Alba) has it all: married to a famous spy-hunting television reporter (Joel McHale), with a new baby and intelligent twin step kids, Rebecca (Rowan Blanchard) and Cecil (Mason Cook). When maniacal Timekeeper (Jeremy Piven) disrupts her domestic bliss - threatening to take over the planet - Marissa comes out of retirement as a top secret agent. With Armageddon quickly approaching, Rebecca and Cecil are thrust into action! With a little help from some familiar Spy Kids friends, Carmen (Alex Vega), Juni (Daryl Sabara), and their faithful dog Argonaut (Ricky Gervais) and some mind-blowing gadgets, they just may be able to save the world!

My daughter has continued to watch this movie since she first viewed it on our family movie night. As a matter of fact she liked it so much she wants to be a Spy Kid for halloween this year.

What are some of your favourite mystery movies on Netflix this month?

*** It's just my life... is a member of the Netflix Canada #StreamTeam. As part of my affiliation with this group I receive products and special access to Netflix events and opportunities. The opinions on this blog are my own. ***

Friday, October 10, 2014 by Annie Brown · 0

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Chicken Soup for the Soul - Reboot Your Life {#Review}

Chicken Soup For The Soul: Reboot Your Life

We all have time when life just feels like it is stuck. We are always doing the same old, same old and nothing is changing. Why not recharge and change the path you are on. Read the inspiring stories about finding a new path to happiness to help you get back on the right track.

Find your drive to make the changes in your life to get to moving forward and following your dreams. I always find it encouraging to read motivational stories. Each story shared is roughly about 3-4 pages each. The stories are written by every day people like yourself. 

The chapter titles are:

  • Do It Now
  • Follow Your Heart
  • Take a Chance
  • Find Your Purpose
  • Start Over
  • Mind Your Health
  • Overcome Adversity
  • Listen to Your Friends
  • Take Time For You
  • Adjust You Attitude
This book is a great addition to the Chicken Soup for the Soul series and is perfect for every one.

What is your favourite Chicken Soup Book?

Connect with Chicken Soup for the Soul -
Find More on their Website 
Find them on Facebook
Follow them on Twitter

** Disclosure: Posted by It's just my life... I was provided promotional material by the manufacturer or a representing PR agency to facilitate this review. The opinions and comments on this blog are those of the author. **

Thursday, October 09, 2014 by Annie Brown · 0