Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Top 10 Toys For Cats!

I was looking for cat toys online and found this list. Here's a link to a free cat scratch post too!

1. Laser Light - The laser light is by far our favorite toy, and our humans like playing with it, too! We spend an hour every evening playing, “Chase the Fairy.” This is a great little bargain at about $7.99, too! Every cat should have one.

2. Turbo Scratcher - Number two most favorite toy is the Turbo Scratcher. This has a durable, hard plastic ring with a ball that can’t escape (and rolls REALLY fast) and a refillable cardboard scratching center. Every feline from kitten to mature cat loves this toy! These are only about $11.99 and worth every cent.

3. Kitty Tunnel - This toy barely ranks below the Turbo Scratcher. We love our Kitty Tunnel! It’s good for chasing and hunting and hiding and rolling and napping. It’s a great thing! $22.99 is a little on the high end, but that’s for a fancy expanding one. And we would still want it even if mom had to spend a little more. Kitty tents, by the way, aren't as great because they collapse on us.

4. Kitty Kat Circus - We kittens really dig this toy and can spend lots of time being entertained by it. Our older brothers and sisters weren’t so impressed. This one is $24.99, but it is pretty durable and can be taken apart easily and put away if needed.

5. Peek-a-prize Toy Box - This is a square box with lots of paw-sized holes stuffed with kitty toys. It is a wonderful toy that keeps us busy. It comes in different sizes, starting at $24.99 and is cool enough to splurge on the price.

6. Race and Chase - This has a mouse inside a durable plastic wheel. The mouse is so hard to get, but we love chasing him anyway! This is a reasonably priced toy at around $12.99

7. Boxes and Baskets - There's nothing better than a cardboard box, and they are completely free! We also like baskets in all shapes and sizes, though.

8. Catnip Mice - Still an all-time favorite, they must be on our list because no kitty can be happy without catnip mice. If they have feathers on them, they’re even better!

9. Feathers on string - Feathers on anything!

10. Balls - Fuzzy balls, jingly balls, little balls, big balls, we love balls! Our favorite are an orange, rattling tennis ball by 9-lives.

Found here.

Free cat scratch post here!

Monday, September 29, 2008

Top 10 Frozen Drinks!

Summer is now officially over, but my husband Clive and I still like to enjoy homemade frozen drinks. Here is a list of the Top 10 Frozen Drinks. I also found this link to a free margarita maker!

1. The Frozen "Texas Twister"
Do it up in larger-than-life style with this frozen margarita that'll cool those hot spots.

2. Frozen Margie-Cadorita
Avocado makes it creamy and delicious; don't forget the chips.

3. Frozen Hurricane (N'Awlins Style)
Here's a tribute to the Bayou State that's "big" on rum and "easy" to make.

4. Amazing Grace
It's coconut, rum and pineapple juice. What could be more inspirational?

5. Frozen Irish Banana
Once you taste this Caribbean escape, you'll go "bananas."

6. Frozen Waterberry Batida
Take a sip and listen for a bossa nova band playing gently in the breeze.

7. Arturo's Positively Frozen Positano
You don't have to be under the Tuscan sun to enjoy this tequila drink with a Campari twist.

8. Frozen Mint Julep
You can party with these babies until the belles freeze over.

9. Caf'Cino Freeze
Here's a cup of summer morning joe you won't soon forget.

10. The Steve-O-3-O Fav-O-Freeze
This taste experience will take you back to the sweet, sunny days of Creamsicles.

Recipes found here.

Free frozen drink maker here!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Enfamil vs Similac - Which Brand Is Better?

Decide for yourself!

Free Enfamil here!

Free Similac here!

The debate continues: to bottle feed your baby Enfamil or Similac infant formula? Well, in the hope of making this decision easier, let's take a look at what both products offer.

Mothers about to give birth have a tough decision to make: to breastfeed or bottle feed? Mothers who choose to bottle feed face another difficult decision: what infant formula to use? Enfamil and Similac are both firmly placed as being amongst the best, top-rated brands of infant formula available today. But is one better than the other?

Well, the above question is a little meaningless as both manufacturers make different types of infant formula. Enfamil make Enfamil LIPIL - this contains DRA and AHA; Enfamil LIPIL Gentlease - contains reduced lactose for babies with a lactose intolerance; Nutramigen LIPIL - designed for babies with hypoallergenic formula designed for babies with cow's milk protein allergy symptoms such as colic, rash, and diarrhea; Enfamil ProSobee - a soy-based infant formula; Enfamil Premature LIPIL - designed specifically for feeding rapidly growing premature and low birth weight infants; Enfamil with Iron, the list goes on. Likewise, Similac makes many different types of baby formula;

Similac Advance - contains DRA and AHA; Similac Organic - certified USDA Organic and uses cow's milk produced without the use of growth hormones; Similac Isomil Advance - soy based infant formula; Similac Lactose-Free Advance - specially formulated for babies with lactose intolerance; Similac NeoSure Formula - helps meet the nutritional needs of premature and low-birth weight babies; the list goes on.

Therefore one should compare like with like. However, most parents, who bottle feed using Enfamil or Similac, will use Enfamil LIPIL or Similac Advance.

Why Enfamil is better?

Enfamil does contain more levels of DHA and AHA than does Similac; about 17mg compared to around 11mg. Many parents have noted that Enfamil doesn't pack like Similac, which takes the guesswork out of whether you've sifted the powder correctly before scooping. Finally, Enfamil is cheaper than Similac.

Why Similac is better?

Enfamil formula is made using palm olein oil; Similac does not. One study suggests that formulas with a fat blend including palm olein oil (e.g., Enfamil, Prosobee) cause less frequent and firmer stools. Similac claim that their infant formula provides 50% more calcium absorption than Enfamil. They also claim that their new, improved formula has fewer bubbles and therefore makes babies less gassy. Finally, Similac claim that switching to Similac Isomil Advance will reduce fussiness, gas and spit-up in most babies in about 3 days.

Many parents complain that the brand of infant formula they're using causes constipation, gassiness, spit-up and colic in their baby. Often times switching brands eases the condition; often times it doesn't. Usually, it is choosing a different type of milk formula which is specifically made for the condition that eases the baby's discomfort. Unfortunately, the debate as to whether Similac or Enfamil causes adverse reactions for babies is contradictory and often quite heated. One camp will give a big thumbs up for Enfamil, whereas the other camp will rave about the benefits of Similac. Sadly, doctors and hospitals can fail to give guidance, as many are under contract to supply one brand or the other - hardly independent advice.

Whichever brand you choose, be it Similac or Enfamil or some other, you can rest assured that it has been passed safe by the FDA. All brands for sale contain all the nutrients that your child needs for healthy development. If your baby is perfectly happy with the infant formula you are using, then stick with it. But if not, then by all means change brands, but first try to ascertain what might be causing your child's discomfort and select the right type of infant formula that will relieve the symptoms.

Found here

Free Enfamil here!

Free Similac here!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Tips For Setting Up Your Above Ground Pool

Wow, I can't believe I found this!

We don't have a pool in our backyard and I was talking to my husband about pools the other day. Granted, summer is just about over - but maybe we'll install one next year. I searched online and found this great pool for FREE. This has to be a $1000+ item but they are offering it for free.

I'm going to fill out the info later tonight. If it gets here soon enough, we'll probably install it right away. It might be getting a little cold outside to use it now, but its perfect for next summer. My kids will be so happy!

Don't we wish these pools would have been on the market when we were kids! These pools put the plastic pools from my childhood to shame.

But there IS a little more to setting them up then tossing in the hose. Just follow your pools directions, but keep these tips in mind too.

1. Put down a layer of level sand under your tarp or ground cloth to make it more stable and resistant to tears.

2. Place the filter in a corner area of your square ground cloth so it is more likely to remain upright and away from the mower.

3. Your filter has to plug in, be sure and use a bright colored extension cord to eliminate trips and falls.

4. Always have a patch kit or two on hand, they do work well but you may lose a lot of water if you have to run to the store when and if you need one.

5. Get as many wrinkles out of the liner as possible starting with the middle.

6. Add the water slowly until all the wrinkles have been smoothed out. Too much water makes it hard, if not impossible, to work out the wrinkles.

7. Double check to make sure the drain plug is in.

8. Double check to make sure your pump hoses are secure and burp the air out of the pump before you plug it in.

9. Read the chemical labels and learn what to add when. It really isn't that hard if you consistently take care of it.

10. Have Fun!! Be sure and supervise your children carefully and to keep the chemicals out of reach. Also remember that pool covers are meant to keep debris out of the pool and are not meant as a safety device to keep children safe. That is your job, you will be the lifeguard always on duty with a pool in the yard.

Found here.

Free Aruba Pool here!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Fish Tank Maintenence Tips & Tricks

I've always wanted to own an aquarium. I know that starting one can be very expensive and after doing some searching I found these free fish tank kits.

I hope this can be helpful to some people who want to own a fish tank but were put off by the start up cost.

Owning an aquarium full of beautiful tropical fish can be very enjoyable. Many people say that watching the fish is a very relaxing past time and the living beauty it provides the home is very satisfying. The fish make outstanding pets as they hardly take any time for care and do not require any demands for your time. There is one thing that is required thought and that is maintaining and caring for the fish tank. Fish tank maintenance is a very important part of tropical fish ownership.

When performing fish tank maintenance it has been thought that it is best to remove the fish from the tank. Nothing could be further from the truth. It is best to leave the fish in the tank when cleaning the tank or changing the water. The fish will become stressed when you are chasing them around the tank and then temporarily putting them in a different environment.

During fish tank maintenance you do not need to remove all the water anyway. You can remove a quarter up to half the water and then replace it with clean water. It is best to put pure water without chemicals like chlorine into the tank.

Many aquarium owners perform too much fish tank maintenance. It is generally not a good idea to clean the tank that often. Many people remove everything from the tank; gravel included, and will clean it thoroughly. The problem with this is that it removes the good bacteria that the fish need to remain healthy. If the fish tank is getting overly cloudy and filthy then you should look into getting better filters and ensure that the water is getting oxygenated well enough.

Little things can help with fish tank maintenance as well. Over feeding your fish can lead to the water getting cloudy and polluted. The fish will be tempted to over eat and could die as well.

Fish tank maintenance is something that you should not do a lot of actually. The more you have to do to clean the tank then the more you need to look at how effective your filters and oxygenation system is working. Ideally you want the fish tank to become a self-sustaining system and not one that you are burdened with fish tank maintenance all the time.

Fish tank maintenance is not something that should burden the aquarium owner. You should very rarely have to clean the fish tank because just as in nature you will have found the right balance and the system will sustain itself naturally.

Found here.

Free fish tank kits here!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Home Winemaking In It's Busy Season

I found this article, which is great. I've really wanted to start making wine. I found these Free Wine Making Kits which is a perfect way to start.

From The Buffalo News:

Cynthia Jarosz, of Lackawanna, started making red wine at home about a year ago, after a doctor suggested her husband, Dennis, drink more of it for health reasons.

“We’d never been wine drinkers,” she says. “Neither of us really cared for wine, but now we like it.” And her hobby, she is quick to admit, is addictive.

“I’ll ferment anything now,” said Jarosz.

On the other hand, Art Hook, of Clarence, loved wine from the start and has been making it at home for 39 years. Hook has a cellar full of smartly labeled wines from Chardonnay to Pinot Noir and enjoys at least a glass or two a day.

“I haven’t bought a bottle of a wine in a liquor store for years,” he says.

Truth is, in Western New York at this time of year, the barrels and carboys and pails are a-bubbling all over, reminding us of a scientific miracle: When the sugar in crushed grapes (and other fruit) is exposed to the yeast in the air, it turns to alcohol, thus creating a beverage as old as time itself.

Of course, there are various ways to bring about that transformation. You can, like Jarosz, buy a wine kit that contains grape juice concentrate, yeast, sometimes clarifying agents, and then you can can buy other kits that provide the reusable equipment like fermenters, and siphons, air locks, corkers and hydrometers to measure specific gravity.

Then you just follow directions to mix the ingredients and get down to work, racking (siphoning off clear juice), fermenting, bottling and corking along the way.

Get A Free Wine Making Kit Here

Kits, which cost anywhere from $59 to $160, make things easy. Plus, they provide almost instant gratification. Jarosz, for instance, took a double gold medal at the Home Winemaking Competition at America’s Fair in August for her Valpolicella. (She took silver medals for her Luna Rosa medley and Raspberry wine, as well.)

There are other routes, however. Like Art Hook, you might work from the fresh grape juice that is now being shipped in plastic pails from California vineyards. He says it’s a much easier and speedier method than the one he used when he made wine with his grandfather, who used grapes.

Today, many local winemakers, such as John Iacono of Lancaster, start with the fruit. Much of it is shipped here in 10- pound boxes from California.

He’s been doing it for 42 years, using the methods he learned when he was a boy in Italy. He buys the Muscat, Zinfandel and Alicante grapes, and “grinds” or crushes them before siphoning the mix into barrels to let the natural yeast rip. The skins and stems go to a local priest who makes grappa, and by April, a zesty high-alcohol wine is the result.

Nobody knows how many home winemakers there are in the area, but most wine suppliers say that the number is growing.

Bob Mercurio, the CEO of James Desiderio & Sons on Bailey Avenue, suppliers of both grapes and juice, says that the next few weekends will be busy.

And though there are still a couple hundred people who are still grinding, squeezing and barrel fermenting, he says, “the real growth is in the juice. “We see juice selling 10 percent more each year,” Mercurio says, adding that it makes wine making so easy that the hobby now is becoming popular among people of all ages.

“There are a lot of young professionals who make wine now,” he said.

According to Becky Dyster, who has owned Niagara Tradition Home Beer and Wine Supplies on Sheridan Drive in Tonawanda for 17 years, there are at least two reasons why home winemaking is so popular in this area: “We have a strong group of of Italian/American immigrants who were always interested in the subject, plus a bunch of fruit and grapes that grow here,” she says.

Dyster, who is herself a winemaker, says there is also a money-saving aspect.

“You can make a pretty decent wine from vinifera grapes from $1 to $4 a bottle once you’ve made the initial investment in equipment,” she points out.

But Mike Ditanto of Ten Thousand Vines, on Camp Road in Hamburg, thinks there’s much more than money or economics involved. Nostalgia, he says, plays a big role.

Nostalgia and love.

“It is a heritage thing. People remember going down into grandpa’s cellar and looking at the wine press,” says Ditanto. “I’m actually surprised how many younger people want to make wine with their fathers. It has become an intergenerational thing.”

Found Here.

Free Wine Making Kits here!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

$1000 Pier 1 Gift Card?!?!

$1000 PIER 1 GIFT CARD!!!

I LOVE this place. My husband and I go there all the time. They have some of the best furniture around. Our whole dining room is from Pier 1 even down to the champagne glasses. I was sooooo happy to find this deal I had to share it with you.