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walmart moms

It's no secret that I LOVE my slow cooker -- actually, let's make that slow cookers, because I have several different models to fit any occasion.

Let's see... there's the basic 5-quart Stainless Steel Crock-Pot (my tried and true fave). There's also the Crock-Pot Little Dipper, which is perfect for keeping dips, sauces and gravies warm, and my Programmable 4-Quart Oval Crock-Pot. Oh, and I almost forgot my Crock-Pot Triple Dipper that's perfect for walking tacos on game day!

Yes, my husband's been on me to get rid of one or two, but I can't bear to part with any of them. In fact, I just added one more to my collection (shhhh...) -- the new Crock-Pot Casserole Crock. If you've ever been frustrated with the way your slow cooker enchiladas, casseroles, or lasagna turn out, you need one of these new crocks! The rectangular stoneware is the perfect size and shape for cooking these dishes, and the lids locks on securely for easy transport on the go.

It's also perfect for my family's favorite slow cooker chex mix recipe. Though I did have to halve the recipe in order to make it fit in the smaller format, the wide flat bottom speeds up the cooking time to about 60 minutes, instead of the 90 minutes in the original recipe. Plus, you can turn it off and serve it right in the crock. You really should try this recipe for your next game day get together -- it's always a hit!

Enter The Ultimate Crock-Pot #CrockStars Contest

As I mentioned in the video, if you're a savvy slow cooking fan, the Crock-Pot brand is kicking off its annual Ultimate Crock-Pot CrockStar Contest. Your original slow cooker recipe could earn you the title of "2014 Ultimate Crock-Pot Crock-Star," plus $5,000 and be featured on!

Here's how to enter:

  • Upload a 1-2 minute video prepping your favorite original slow cooker recipe using a Crock-Pot Slow Cooker on
  • Submit your original slow cooker recipe text.
  • Entries will be accepted through October 31, 2014.

If you enter the contest, please be sure to come back and leave a comment with your name. I'd love to vote for your recipe!

Walmart Moms Disclosure


Cleaning For A Reason with Swiffer And Walmart

by Tara Kuczykowski on October 16, 2014 · 0 comments

You've probably been seeing a lot of pink in stores recently since October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Swiffer is one of these brands -- they recently released a limited edition pink Swiffer Sweeper and Swiffer Duster, with a portion of the proceeds benefitting breast cancer research.

Added bonus, they're really cute. I ran across a large pallet of them at Walmart yesterday, so look for them in stores now!

I've had a number of friends touched by this terrible disease recently, so I'm thrilled to see brands partnering with various organizations to fund research. Every little bit helps, right?

But what about the women that are already battling this disease right now? Fighting cancer is difficult enough, but living with it is even tougher... and that’s where Cleaning For A Reason steps in. Cleaning For A Reason is a non-profit organization that partners with maid services to offer free professional house cleanings to improve the lives of women undergoing cancer treatment.

To date, they've provided more than 17,000 cleanings for women with cancer with a value of more than $4.5 million. Isn't that incredible? I mean, what an amazing gift for these women -- allowing them to focus on getting well.

Swiffer, in collaboration with Walmart, is helping Cleaning For A Reason go one step further by providing care packages filled with a variety of products for the recipients of these free cleaning services for the month of October. The package includes Olay Regenerist Microsculpting cream, Crest Pro Health Clinical Gum Protection toothpaste, Oral B Pro Health Clinical Pro Flex toothbrush, Swiffer Duster 360, Pantene Beautiful Lengths shampoo and conditioner and Bounty paper towels.

Cleaning for a Reason was recently named by Reader's Digest as one of the 25 Best Things to Happen In America, and I couldn't agree more. If you use a maid service or have friends that work in the industry, please ask them if they've heard of the Cleaning For A Reason foundation. As the demand for services increases, they're always looking for new partners.

If you know a woman that's currently battling breast cancer, please point her to Cleaning For A Reason at

Walmart Moms Disclosure


Do You Have A Cold/Flu Get Better Kit?

by Tara Kuczykowski on October 1, 2014 · 0 comments

The weather is turning colder, which means that, unfortunately, we're on the brink of cold and flu season. We've already passed one particularly nasty cold around our household, and I'm definitely not anxious for another bout.

So when Walmart asked me to put together a Cold/Flu Get Better Kit, I couldn't help but think to myself, "What a fantastic idea!" I mean, how convenient would it be to have a small arsenal of meds and such to combat our family's colds and flus already on hand? Usually I'm running to the store for this and that on an as needed basis, which is not only stressful and frustrating for me, but leaves the sick family member in misery far longer than necessary.

Walmart is a one-stop shop for cold/flu needs, so I made a list of my necessities and went shopping. My first stop was the pharmacy area to stock up on pain relievers and more. Here's a list of what I bought for my kit:

  • Equate Ibuprofen
  • Equate Acetaminophen
  • Equate Junior Strength Ibuprofen
  • Equate Junior Strength Acetaminophen
  • Equate DayTime/NiteTime Sinus
  • Equate Nasal Spray
  • Equate Children's Multi-Symptom Cold & Fever Liquid
  • Halls Cough Drops
  • Palmer's Cocoa Butter Swivel Stick

As you probably noticed, I chose the store brand Equate products in almost all instances. I've always been very pleased with how well they work for our needs, and choosing store brand is a simple and easy way to save in the pharmacy area.

I think all of the items are pretty straightforward for a cold and flu kit, but you might be wondering about the Palmer's Cocoa Butter Swivel Stick. I discovered these when my kids were very young while looking for something to soothe their chapped cheeks in the wintertime. It's now a staple in my purse each winter because it's perfect for soothing chapped skin and lips, most especially around the nose area that gets rubbed raw from tissues. And the scent is just heavenly!

Speaking of tissues, no cold and flu kit would be complete without several boxes of Kleenex. I'm a big fan of the Kleenex Cool Touch tissues -- they're so cool and soothing, and I tuck the Kleenex travel packs into purses, backpacks, sports bags, car consoles, and more.

I also picked up a couple of cans of Progresso Chicken & Dumpling soup to keep in the pantry. I think it's safe to say that we all far prefer my homemade chicken noodle soup when we're sick, but the Progresso will do for an easy lunch when one of us is feeling under the weather.

In my opinion, prevention is far more important that treating the symptoms once we're sick, so I also grabbed a bottle of Bolthouse Farms C-Boost juice. The extra vitamin C will help boost my kids' immune systems to hopefully help them fend off germs before the get sick. I also do a lot of reminding them to take extra care in washing their hands thoroughly and frequently.

Rice Heating Pad

One last thing I'd recommend for any cold and flu get better kit is one of these no-sew rice heating pads! We actually have several of them, keeping some in the freezer for bumps, bruises, headaches and such, and several others that we can warm in the microwave to soothe aching muscles.

What items do you keep in your cold and flu get better kit?

Walmart Moms Disclosure


Buzzle Ball | The New Puzzle Challenge!

by Tara Kuczykowski on August 26, 2014 · 0 comments

I've loved puzzle games for as long as I can remember. I don't recall when I got my first Rubik's Cube, I do remember getting a Rubik's Magic for Christmas when I was 8 years old... I loved that thing and played with it frequently -- until I wore the wires out.

My 11-year-old son is very much the same, and he's always loved any type of game or device that challenges you to solve some a puzzle. So when Walmart asked if any of my kids would be interested in trying out the Buzzle Ball, I took one look and knew he'd have a ball with it (no pun intended, lol).

The Buzzle Ball is similar to the Rubik's Cube in that you twist it, trying to align certain colors, but that's where the similarity ends. The Buzzle Ball is obviously round, but it also adds a ring around the outside, adding another dimensional challenge. The pieces twist in all directions, making figuring out how to align them difficult to say the least.

In fact, we're still attempting to solve it a week later! I mixed the Buzzle Ball up for my son after we first received it, and apparently I did a very thorough job on it, because my husband, my son and I've all tried it on and off to no avail. We've all come very close, but those rings seriously throw a wrench into the mix!

But honestly, that's what we love most about the Buzzle Ball. It's a fun little puzzle game that's ultra portable, very challenging, which stimulates and engages the mind, and you can pick it up and put it down at will. Add in the fact that it's made in the USA, and it's definitely a product that I feel good about purchasing for my kids.

The Buzzle Ball will be available in Walmart stores this month priced at $19.97!

Walmart Moms Disclosure


Despite the state of denial I've been living in for the past few weeks, my two oldest boys headed off to middle school earlier this week. I'm not even sure how it's possible -- it feels like they were just born yesterday!

I'd be lying if I said I let them go without a trace of anxiety. I remember middle school all too well... struggling with more difficult classes, the insecurities, trying to find my "tribe", made all the more difficult by raging hormones that wreak havoc on your body and skin.

Gah, that's one period in my life that I have absolutely no desire to revisit!

I guess it's the mama bear in me, but I'll do whatever it takes to protect them from the worst of it whenever possible...

I've noticed some minor issues with pimples and blackheads with both boys over the course of the summer, so I was very grateful when AcneFree introduced themselves to me and asked if I'd be interested in having my boys try their 24-Hour Acne Clearing System. I figured it's never too early to teach them good skincare habits, hopefully saving them from some of the acne issues that both my husband and I experienced when we were younger.

The AcneFree system uses micro-sized benzoyl peroxide, which is designed to work faster and penetrate deeper into pores. Their studies show that you can see results in as little as 1-3 days, and my boys did see impressive results by the third day.

Though the system is designed to use all three products daily, my boys have found that they don't need to use the lotion every day. Washing their face with the face wash and using the toner daily, while adding the lotion on alternating days, has been very effective at keeping their skin relatively clear without overdoing it.

And the best part -- the AcneFree 24-Hour Acne Clearing System is on rollback right now for just $13.97! The weekly dermatologist visits that I needed in high school were at least twice that -- and likely much more (obviously I wasn't footing the bill).

AcneFree has also partnered with SoftLens to help students put their best face forward this year. Though my boys don't need contacts, I've heard great things about the SoftLens daily disposables. With benefits like the following, I'll definitely consider them in the future if we have the need!

  • No daily cleaning, storage, or care required; wear them for a day, then, throw them away
  • Simple packaging makes it easy to pack contact lenses in your travel bag, gym bag, or your purse
  • High Definition™ Optics help reduce blur, halos, and glare across a full range of conditions
  • Slow release packaging solution delivers outstanding all-day comfort

Be sure to ask your doctor about a 5-day supply of SoftLens daily disposables, as well as a $20 Contact Lens Fitting Fee Rebate with the purchase of a six-month supply!

I know I can't protect my boys from all of the difficulties that middle school will entail, I'm glad I can at least help ease the way with products like these.

Walmart Moms Disclosure