Sunday, August 15, 2010

Win a $100 Gift Card of YOUR Choice!! **(this post on top until 8/15)**

Here's a little back story for this contest. You all know that I am recently in remission. Before that though I was doing chemo for 2 years! Yuck!

It's very hard to stay healthy and get all the nutrients you need when you are doing chemo, not only does the chemo do harm to your body, but you also have no appetite. While I was going through chemo I also was dealing with a nutritionist who had me start drinking Vega shakes and smoothies. Vega is a nutritionally complete power food that also happens to be vegan, so it was perfect for me. Lucky for me I LOVE the taste of it too, so I went through tons of it!

Well now I need your help to win the Vega Smoothie contest! I really really want to win this contest, so I need all your votes.

In order to say thanks for voting for me I am going to give away a $100 Gift Card to the store of your choice! Here are the details:

MAIN ENTRY: Go to http://bit.ly/aoqnHj and cast your vote for me to win (you'll have to make a log in, but hey it's worth it!) Pay attention to which vote # you are.  Then come back here and leave a comment saying that you voted and which vote # you were. **If you vote more than once per day (i.e. with your email and your hubby's email etc.) leave each vote number... ALL votes count as one entry here!!!  Don't forget to leave me your email address so that I can contact you if you win!  (1 ENTRY DAILY PER VOTE)

BONUS ENTRY: Tweet about this contest and post the link to your tweet here. (1 ENTRY DAILY)  You can use this tweet if you like:
Win a $100 Gift Card at http://bit.ly/9COOWM Ends Aug.15, easy daily entry! @Natr_nVideoGamz #Contest #Win #Giveaway RT

You can vote once per day per log in, so make sure you vote daily and get your spouse/kids/etc. to vote too!  Open to US and Canadian residents.

I'm running this contest until August 15th, so you've got time to get lots of votes in and increase your chances of winning! And not only that, every time you vote you get entered to win a $95 Vega prize directly from the Vega contest too!

Now start voting :) http://bit.ly/aoqnHj

Friday, June 11, 2010

proactiv giveaway!

When I was a teenager I had bad skin.  Didn't we all?  It was embarassing and a real self-esteem killer.  As I got older my acne disappeared, but my oily skin stayed.  Even to this day I have very oily skin. 

I remember as I was getting older (even through my 20's) my mom would tell me that I would "grow out of it" one day, and not to worry.  But it just didn't happen.  Don't get me wrong, having oily skin helps keep wrinkles away, which has contributed to my skin looking younger than it actually is.... but I don't want it to look teenager young!  Between that and the braces I feel like I should grab a napsack and head back to highschool (do they even still use napsacks in high school, or does everyone have laptops now?  lol.  I don't know anymore.)

When I was given the Proactiv system to review, I really didn't think there was much it could do for me.  I don't have acne, just very oily skin and very large pores that I've had since I was about 13.  For the sake of reviewing it I thought I'd give it a try anyway to see how well the system worked as a general cleanser.....

.... WOW!  I am in shock!  My huge pores that have been my arch enemy since my early teens are so much smaller!  My skin hasn't looked this good since.... well my skin has never looked this good!  I really thought Proactiv was only for acne, but I am simply amazed at what it has done for my "mature" oily skin.  I'm hooked now. 

It's so nice to be able to feel better about my skin without having to pay an expensive visit to the dermatologist.  As a 30-something woman I really thought that at this point I was stuck with the skin I had and that the best I could do was to try and prevent wrinkles, but I was wrong.  I am so thrilled to have tried this.  I am not sure how well it would help a 30 something person with dry skin or normal skin, but if you have oily skin try it out (and let me know what you think)!  I love this stuff.

THE GIVEAWAY:
To celebrate my new found love of Proactive (lol) I am giving away a 1oz. tube of the Proactiv Solution Refining Mask.  It refines skin tone and texture, clears up blemishes, and helps reduce the appearance of pore size.  It is also good for emergency blemish treatment. 

Giveaway ends July 2nd at 11:59pm.  Open to US and Canadian residents.  Please remember to leave your email address so I can contact you if you win.

MAIN ENTRY:
-For your main entry leave a comment telling me why you would like to try the Refining Mask, OR tell me why you love Proactiv.  This MUST be done before any other entry.
Don't forget to leave your email address so I can contact you if you win.  (1 ENTRY)

BONUS ENTRIES:
-Enter my $100 Gift Card Giveaway here http://survivelivethrive.blogspot.com/2010/06/win-100-gift-card.html and come back here and leave a comment with which vote number you were (don't forget to leave your comment in the other giveaway as well)  (2 ENTRIES PER DAY!!)

-Tweet about this giveaway and come back here and leave me the link to your tweet (1 ENTRY PER DAY)

Thursday, May 27, 2010

a busy month.... and my new friend!

It's been a very busy few weeks for me!  I've been working sooooooo hard on my yard preparing it for summer.  My yard is very big (274' long), and all I have to use at the moment is a weed whacker (that only reaches about 1/4 of the way down the yard since it is electric and that's as far as the cord goes), and a manual push mower... that doesn't actually cut weeds or anything thicker than grass.  I also have 2 huge 100+ year old oak trees, a pine tree and several other random trees... all of which love to drop branches and limbs into the yard that I need to pick up before I can mow.  Craziness. 

At least I am getting some very good exercise doing all of that!  Plus I have taken on some yard clean up jobs in the neighborhood to make a little extra money on the side.  Little do they know that I LOVE being outside, so it really doesn't feel like work to mow someones lawn or clean up after their doggies.

Since I have been spending so much time outside I ended up making a new friend!  I haven't picked a name for him yet, but he has certainly taking a liking to me.  He is a cute little Robin (I joked to my husband that the is my new "breast friend" since he is a robin red breast.... I guess it wasn't funny since I just got some major eye rolling from him in return lol).  Every time I go out to do yard work he is right there with me.  Whether I'm mowing or cutting branches or raking he's right there, only a few feet away.  I love it!

I had to post a few pictures because he's such a cutie.  Don't mind the weeds, these pics were taken at the beginning of my yard clean up adventures.  I've draw circles around him in some of the pics so he's easier to spot.


 





And here's a video that I thought was cute.  He was apparently trying to see just how many worms he could fit into his mouth at one time.

video
And of course I had to add this cute pic of my one of my bunnies (named Bunny) using another of my bunnies (named Alistair) butt as a pillow.



If anyone has any suggestions on what I should call the robin let me know :)  I'd like to stop calling him "that robin that follows me around"  lol.

Monday, May 3, 2010

the wedge - finally comfortable sex! & $25 eden fantasys giftcard giveaway!

For those of you that have never been through it, let me tell you that chemotherapy sucks.  Not only does it make you physically exhausted, it causes pain, and of course kills your sex drive..... and those side effects don't stop when you go off the chemo.  They can last for months, even years.  Blarg!  Talk about taking the romance out of a relationship.

Of course as all of you fellow mom bloggers out there know, pregnancy and child birth can also have detrimental effects to your sex life, as can mommyhood in general....

Which brings us to The Wedge!  I was fortunate enough to get this product to review through edenfantasys.comThe Wedge is a position pillow that helps out immensley during sex.  Basically it is a large (much larger than I expected) inflatable triangular wedge.  It comes with a very nice soft (suede feeling) red cover, and a bright yellow foot pump to blow it up (good thing, I'm sure if you tried to blow it up manually you'd probably keel over).  My first word of advice with the wedge is to use the pump to blow it up in advance.  Although it only takes a minute or two to inflate, the pump makes this ridiculous whistling sound when you use it.. not too loud, but I'm sure it would be a mood killer in the heat of the moment.  So do yourself a favor and try to anticipate your activities ahead of time ;)


I know nobody wants TMI about my own personal experience with it, so I'll try my best not to offend.  I love the wedge!  My hubby (and I'm certain that many of you ladies out there can relate to this), like the "view" when I'm bent over.  He prefers this position for sex, for oral (him giving), etc... ok so I'm not doing to good with the TMI thing ;) The reason it's important to let you know that though is that being in that position is very difficult for me.  It gets exhausting quickly, and physically is a hard position for me to hold for any length of time because I'm still lacking strength from the chemo.  This is where my wedge has been a miracle worker.  Because of the shape of the wedge it is the perfect height for you to lean over and be completely supported.  It can hold all your weight, and it is very firm when inflated, so you feel totally secure.  Then you are free to relax and enjoy yourself, you don't have to worry about holding yourself up, or your legs getting tired, or losing your balance and potentially breaking your hubby's parts ;)

       
Of course this isn't the only position the wedge helps with, it's just the one that has come in the most useful for us personally.  There are many other positions that it helps with, that both increase comfort, and the view of the events taking place... trust me this is much more comfortable to prop yourself up on than a bunch of pillows.  It's soft like pillows, but with way more support!  Don't worry The Wedge does come with instructions and pictures that show different postions and uses to help you out.

Something I have found with the wedge though, is that it's not just for sex!  It's so comfortable to lay on while reading in bed, or watching TV.  Like I said it gives way more support than pillows do.  I can see it being useful for other things as well... resting your pregnant belly on.... holding your hips up after "doing the deed" when you're trying to conceive... it's really very handy to have!  Also, the price is fantastic when you compare it to the prices of other sex pillows and supports.  I love that it's inflatable too, it makes it easy to store away, or take it with you on vacation (it even comes with patches in case you were to somehow pop a hole in it, but it is very thick strong material so I think it's unlikely that would happen, especially with the cover on).

Now it's your chance to check out Eden Fantasys!  They have been generous enough to provide me with a $25 gift card to give away to one of my lucky readers!  You can use it for sex toys, or lingerie, or massage oils, or candles... anything you want that they sell!  Doesn't have to be something dirty :)

For your main entry, it's easy!  Just leave a comment below telling me that you'd like to win!  Don't forget to leave your email address so I can get in touch with you if you win!  This entry must be done first before any bonus entries!!  I'm going to run the giveaway until May 21st winner will be chosen by random.org.

For bonus entries (you must also leave your email so I can get in touch with you if you win):
- Follow me on Google Friend Connect (1 entry)
- Follow my other blog Happiness is Nature and Video Games (1 entry)
- Follow me on Twitter (1 entry)
- Tweet about this giveaway and post the link to your tweet, you can use this if you like (1 entry daily):
RT Enter to #win a $25 gift card from Eden Fantasys! http://bit.ly/d5rbRO @Natr_nVideoGamz #giveaway #contest



product picture
$59.99The wedge
Position pillow by Doc Johnson
Material: Polyester
This product was provided free of charge to the reviewer.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

better than the real thing!

I recently had the pleasure of trying out Revlon's Beyond Natural professional eyelashes.  A.M.A.Z.I.N.G!!!
Revlon Fantasy Lengths Maximum Wear Self Adhesive Eyelashes, Defining 1 pr
I am so thrilled with them!  I was lucky enough to not lose my hair when I did chemo, but it did thin out, and so did my eyelashes.  I couldn't believe what a difference it made to put the Revlon ones on!  My lashes looked so long and full, it's amazing.  Actually, they looked better than they ever have, even before the chemo.

I was able to try a few different kinds.  Some of them you put on with glue, which sounds scary but it's really quite easy.  You just apply a thin bead of glue to the lashes (the false ones, not your own) and then gently press the lashes on to your existing lashline (they come with the glue).  The others come with adhesive strips, so no gluing needed, which would be a bonus to those of you who have lost all of your lashes due to chemo because the adhesive strip just sticks right to your eyelid, and may work a little easier than the liquid glue.  I did find though that the ones that use the liquid glue lasted a bit longer than the ones with the adhesive strip.

In any case, just stick them on and ... Voila!  Move over Betty Davis!  You'll be looking better than ever in less than 30 seconds!

Removing them was a breeze too.  Just gently pull from one corner.  I make sure I'm extra gentle when I take them off, that way I am able to reuse them a few times.  Then just use a little eye make-up remover or facial cleanser to get the glue or any residual adhesive off. 

I love that these lashes make me feel beautiful when I'm wearing them, which is a rare thing when you're recovering.  Of course their not just for cancer patients!  These lashes make everyone's eyes look fantastic.  They also come in so many varieties, some are longer, some are shorter, some are intensifying, some are volumizing, some are defining.  I've tried out a few kinds, and I'll wear a different set depending on what I'm doing, or the look I'm going for.
Revlon Fantasy Lengths Maximum Wear Self Adhesive Eyelashes, Defining 1 pr

I'm SUPER excited to be able to let you try them too!  I'm giving away two packages of Revlon Beyond Natural or Fantasy Lengths lashes each to 2 lucky people!

Here's how to enter:

MAIN ENTRY:  Follow me on Google Friend Connect (right hand tool bar) AND leave a comment under this post.  Don't forget to leave your email address so that I know how to contact you!

BONUS ENTRIES:  You can get bonus entries by doing the following, but don't forget you MUST do the main entry first.  Don't forget to leave your email address.

  • Follow my other blog Happiness is Nature and Video Games for 3 entries!
  • Follow me on Twitter Natr_nVideoGamz for 1 entry!
  • Tweet about the giveaway daily and leave a comment here with a link to your tweet for 1 entry per day!
  • Blog about the giveaway and leave a comment with a link to your entry for 5 entries!
  • Enter my Stephen King book giveaway The Wastelands HERE for 1 entry!
Remember to leave a separate comment for each entry, and PLEASE leave your email address so I can contact you if you win. Giveaway is open to US and Canadian residents. Winner will be chosen randomly April 28th. Good Luck!

welcome to the twilight zone

Okay, I've made this new blog because my other blog (Happiness is Nature and Video Games) is getting too many personal posts in it.  I want to keep it focused on books, video games, the nerdy/geeky side of me ;) 

So that brings us to this shiny new blog.  A place to put my musings on mom stuff/cancer stuff/ health and beauty stuff, etc.  Also a much more appropriate place for some of the super awesome items that I have here to review and give away!  There might be a few parallel posts for a bit on both blogs while I'm making the change, so sorry for bringing people into the twilight zone.  I just like to have my stuff organized, know what I mean?

Thanks for joining me over here too, I really appreciate it :)

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

walking to save women (aka having cancer made me get off my ass)

Some of you already know I have cancer, and that I recently got the news that I am in remission.  Hooray!  Only three more years until I am declared officially cancer-free.  I know I'll get through it though, I'm in remission, and I'm staying there! 

Within days of finding out I was in remission I walked into Shoppers Drug Mart and saw the pamphlet for the Weekend to End Women's Cancers walk.  I picked it up and browsed through it... a 60km walk over 2 days where the proceeds go to finding a cure for breast cancer and gynecological cancers.  Hmmm.... I have gynecological cancer....  the walk is on my birthday weekend....

I decide that it can't be simply co-incidence that I just went into remission, this walk is fundraising for gynecological cancers, and it's on my birthday weekend.  I bring the pamphlet home with me and promtly sign up for the walk.  Then it hits me.  The realization that I have just agreed to walk 60km.  I don't mind that I've commited to raising a large sum of money for the cause, that I can deal with.  The problem is that I've been sick, for a few years now.  I've been home.  Sitting.  Puking.  Playing video games.  I'm not sure of the last time I walked 1km, how in the world am I going to manage 60???

Since signing up though I've been following my coaches advice.  Start small.  I started out walking 1.5km, then 2.6km, 3.5km, 4km, all in the comfort of my home on my manual treadmill.  Then on Sunday I participated in an official training walk for The Weekend.  It was a 5km walk around the mall before opening hours, so we even got to do a little shopping with no other people in the mall.  That in itself is a fantastic experience, especially if you're like me and can't stand the crazy crowds usually associated with downtown shopping malls. 

The 5km itself was just fine.  It made me realize that walking longer distances really isn't that hard when you've got something to distract you.  Walking on the treadmill staring at a wall makes time drag on for an eternity (although on a side note I've recently realized that I'm talented enough to play my Nintendo DS while walking on my treadmill...wooo!).  In fact after finishing up the 5km I walked another 2.5km.  Yay me!  Of course I paid for it that night and the next day.  I still get so rundown sometimes, and it seems to take me forever to recover from anything.  Unfortunately the effects of chemo stay with you for way too long after you've finished.

Now my problem is that it is soooo beautiful outside, that I want to start walking outside.  Plus the coaches said that only walking on a treadmill is not a good idea because you're feet have to get used to walking on pavement.  That's all good, I want to be outside roaming around my part of the city... but I have no idea of distance.  How am I supposed to know how far I've walked?  I thought of thinking of it in terms of time, but I don't know how accurate that would be because what if I slowed down to enjoy something that caught my eye?  I really wish I had a better sense of distance.  I really have no idea how far things are.  If anyone has any advice on this I'd really appreciate it.

Right now I'm off to go pick up some Lego (oh Lego how I love you!), and then I'm going to try to get in my first outdoor training walk.

Oh!  Stay tuned, I'm going to be starting a new blog with my home/cancer/health/family posts.  Posting about cancer walks on my gaming/book blog seems counter productive.  Procrastination and motivation just don't mix.  Once I start it I'll post the link.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

adventures of a 30 something gal with braces


I'm not sure how many of you out there have had braces as an adult, but it's a pretty crazy thing to experience.  I got my braces on about 10 months ago (not that I'm counting lol), and life has certainly changed since then.  The story of how I got my braces is a long one that deserves it's own post when I have more time.

Since I've had my braces on I've suddenly become 16 again, at least in my appearance.  I get asked for ID everywhere we go.  Add to that the fact that people now look at my hubby like he is some sort of perv when we are out in public.  To be honest though, I really don't mind all of that, I love my new straight smile.... even if it is silver and shiny. 

I never had a straight smile when I was growing up, my teeth were very crowded, and although I was considered pretty I would never ever smile.  I was too embarassed.  Now that my teeth are straight I can't stop smiling though!  It's really amazing what it can do for a persons self-confidence.  People always say that no one discriminates against people that have crooked teeth, but that is simply not the case.  It's an inconvenient truth that the way we look (smiles included) makes an impression on people.  Once I got my braces on people actually said to me, "Oh it will be you're going to look so great once your teeth are straight!".  Nice.  Whatever, it is what it is.

Now that my front teeth are straight I'm dealing with the pain of moving my molars so that my bite lines up properly.  Ouch.  I got my wires changed last week and I've had terrible headaches everyday since then.  I've been surviving on mashed potatoes, oatmeal, and melt in your mouth cookies.  I really can't complain though, I'm am perfectly happy to go through all the anguish to get the final results.

When I got my braces on I was told that I would have them on for 24 months, but now I'm being told that my teeth moved so quickly that it will probably be over much sooner than that.  I have speed braces on which work differently than traditional braces, the wires are able to move on their own through the brackets so they don't need elastics... which, as the name implies, speeds things up considerably.  Honestly, I'm kind of enjoying having them.  I don't mind if I have to wear them for another year.  I don't mind feeling young again.  I don't mind brushing my teeth 5 times a day to make sure I don't end up embarassing myself when friends arrive for tea ;)

Now I have to decide what to make for dinner, and I think it's a toss up between creamed corn, mashed potatoes, and soup.  My hubby must hate the week after my orthodontist appointments ;)

Friday, March 26, 2010

the weeks winnings

Wooo!  I was fortunate enough to win something this week!  And since I said I would post all my winnings, that is exactly what I am going to do. 

Now don't get me wrong, I'm not rich now.  I haven't won anything of any huge significant value.  I won't driving any new vehicles, or topless tanning on an exotic beach.  That doesn't mean I'm not excited.  It's the start of a trend for me!  (If I say that it makes it true right?)  I'm just starting out small.

So here's the list... drumroll please...

Yesterday I won 1000 iCoke points (and now my iCoke account is screwed up and won't let me play anymore, so if any iCoke tech guys happen to be reading this... please fix my account!  I like the roll and win game). *ahem*, moving right along... Then I won a free music download from a box of Alphabits, which I promptly used to download the Opeth song "Throat of Winter" from puretracks.com.  For those of you who don't know Throat of Winter is from Blood and Metal, which happens to be the soundtrack for God of War III, and the God of War series of games happen to be my favorite games ever, and Opeth happens to be my favorite band ever, so all of these things mixed together make me a happy girl.

Blackwater Park

Okay, focus... Then (and I'm super excited about this) I won an Ugly Doll from TheBigToyBook on Twitter (@TheBigToyBook).  They also had a super fun giveaway party last night too I might add.  They're my new fave toy store for sure.  I know a certain little someone who's going to be very happy when it arrives!

Ugly Doll Classic Ox

Finally today I woke up to an email saying that I had won advance passes to Max Manus for next Tuesday.  I'm very excited about that one too, but the show is at 4pm, and everyone else I know is working, so I'm not sure who I'll be able to take with me... booo.

All in all a very good 24hrs! 

I'm also super excited to be doing my first organized training walk for the Weekend to End Women's Cancers on Sunday.  The big 60km walk isn't until Sept, but since I'm recovering from chemo I figure I need all the extra training I can get!  Unfortunately it's at 9am.  I'm not sure who invented being awake and doing physical acitivity before 11am, but I'm not pleased.


100 Pack Pink Ribbon Breast Cancer Awareness Temporary Tattoo Tattoos

Monday, March 22, 2010

watching hoarders makes me itchy

I turned my TV on a few hours ago for some background noise and a mild distraction while I am doing work on my laptop.  I haven't changed the channel at all, so I've ended up watching a few hours so far of "Hoarders".  In case you've never watched Hoarders before it showcases the lives of families (usually 2 families per episode) who have extreme issues with hoarding stuff... garbage, animals, paper, crap....

Anyway, everytime I watch this show it makes me itchy.  Seeing how dirty their houses are, and how unsanitary they are.  Ack.  And then it makes me want to get rid of everything I own.  Now, I'm no hoarder, but everyone has stuff they don't need.  Oh don't throw out those magazines, I might read them one day.  Oh I'm going to keep that dress I've had since tenth grade because it might come back in style.  You know how it is. 

So everytime I watch this show I end up getting rid of something, and after I do I'm always surprised at how relieved I feel. It's nice to have a little extra space, or at least to know that something useless is out of the house... or that someone else is getting some use out of something you have no use for anymore.

Right now I got an episode on pause (thank God for PVR's) because I suddenly feel the need to put my dishes away and wipe the potato chip crumbs from off the couch next to me ;) 

After I finish the episode I'm certainly going to need some stress relief.  Screw Calgon.... Kratos, take me away!

Monday, March 15, 2010

an experiment in procrastination

Having an unfortunate amount of time on my hands I have decided to do a little experiment, for no one's benefit but my own.

I have heard in the past of people who win all the time. Contests, sweepstakes, lotteries, things of that nature. There are even e-books and blogs about how to become a master contest winner. I on the other hand never win anything. Ever. That is not to say that I haven't had my share of good fortune (mixed of course with my share of bad fortune).

I got my braces (that I am currently sporting) for free because of one incredibly generous and empathetic person. That is of course balanced out by the fact that I had to go through my entire teenage years and twenties with crooked, crowded teeth... leaving me socially and emotionally scarred. Kids can be so cruel.

I also am overjoyed to finally be in remission, free from any evil life sucking cancer cells. This is obviously balanced out by the fact that I had to deal with cancer for several years, and the physical, emotional and financial toll (of which I am still feeling the effects).

So, of course life is always give and take. You give so much, and you get something in return. Now, however, I am fascinated by these people that just get. Huge windfalls drop at their feet, and they are giving very little (only the time it takes to fill out the entry forms) in order to receive it. Can this really be true? I can sometimes be a pessimistic person by nature, but now with my new lease on life I am trying to change that. Thus begins the experiment.

I want to see if it is really possible to become a "winner" in this sense. So for the next month I am going to enter a minimum of 50 contests/sweepstakes etc. per day. There are many websites out there that have listings of all the various contests going on throughout this great nation that we are eligible for, so this really shouldn't be a difficult task. In fact maybe I will try to make it double that amount. Maybe I will do it for two months. I haven't quite ironed out the details.

The simple fact is that I am going to enter as much as possible (min. 50/day) for at least a month and I will see how long it takes me to actually win something. I suppose if nothing happens in the first month I will just keep going. At some point I will either win something big, or prove everyone wrong. (Of course I am hoping not to have to prove anyone wrong).

We shall see. I will post my progress, and of course any winnings I may encounter.