Wednesday, 30 August 2017

Canvas Factory for All Your Printing Needs - Plus GIVEAWAY!!

Disclaimer: I was provided with a print from Canvas Factory in order to give you my honest opinions. The photo used was my own, your pics, quality and designs will vary depending on your resolution/quality/choice of print etc. Your experiences may differ to mine. Thank you. 

I have always loved photography and have always seemed to own a camera. I remember the days when you had to walk to the shop, hand over your film and wait few days for your photos to be processed - never really knowing if the quality was good or bad until you got them back. 

Now, of course, we can take photos on our phones, cameras and other devices and see out pictures instantly and even edit them almost as quickly and have them printed out in moments - this is where Canvas Factory comes along to brighten my day. 

Original photo taken in my back yard.

Personally, I love to see my photos in print. I love to make photo albums and love to display pictures on the walls. I like the fact hat I can look back at old photos of my family, myself, my dad, in print. Of course social media was not a thing back then, but nothing online is safe and if a site closes tomorrow, all your pictures are going to go with it and it is nice to know there is something to hold on to. 

I was recently asked if I would like to try out Canvas Factory for a print of mine and, after utilizing their services before, I jumped at the chance to say yes. The site is very straightforward and easy to use - you just upload your high-quality photos to the site, choose your settings and canvas type, background, layout and size and pay the cost to create your artwork. 

Once ordered, your canvas print is shipped directly, and securely, to your door within a week or two and you can proudly display it on your wall for the world to see. 

I uploaded a photo that I took earlier this year in my back yard and was eager to see what it looked like in print and on my wall. I chose to wrap the photo around the canvas, a black background, fit the photo to the frame and crossed my fingers that the quality of the image was good enough for a 16x20 print. 

Order and preview from Canvas Factory.

When my canvas arrived, I was SO thrilled with the results. The quality of the canvas is good, the photo is printed well and the quality of the overall finish product was perfect for hanging in any living space to give the photo the attention it deserves. 

I was very pleased withe the family photo I had printed previously, but even more so with this print from my yard, as it is going to be a print that I will sell in the future and this is the first time I have put it out there for display. I am very pleased with this piece and can't thank Canvas Factory enough, seeing as the service was simple and easy to use and really was no hassle at all with the results that I wanted coming to fruition in a very timely manner and with good quality. 

Finished Product.

*** GIVEAWAY ***

If you would like to have one of your photos put into print, too, here is your chance! Canvas Factory has given me a code to allow ONE LUCKY READER the opportunity to win a print of their own, which you can upload, order and have sent to you, just like me! If you would like to see your photo in print, on canvas, then just enter via the rafflecopter, below! Come back daily for your extra tweet point! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Giveaway open to USA and Canada only and ends GOES LIVE: 8/31/2017 and ENDS: 9/21/17. 


Tuesday, 8 August 2017

Memories are made here - at the fair!

We took a trip out to the fair this weekend and the look on Bronson's face was pure joy for the entire day. This kid never ceases to amaze me at how fun and loving he is to be around - he is so full of innocence and genuinely super-excited about anything even slightly fun or awesome. 

Bronson is also GREAT for my daughter. He helped her get over her fears on some rides that go a little too high or fast for her liking and she, in turn, comforts him and makes sure he sits still on whatever the ride might be. I definitely think they are the best to have for one another and are both really lucky to have the bond that they do. 

The fair we went to had animals, showings, car races, bike races, a car show and fun and games that you usually find at the fair along with music to come in the week. We paid just $30 for a car load of us on opening day and took a picnic so we didn't have to pay $9 for a burger or $8 for fries, could avoid the deep fried oreos/pbj sandwiches and even deep fried cheesesteaks (what???). 

All the food did smell good though, but the food we took was way healthier. Fruit, light sandwiches, water and other low cal snacks and so on that the kids would enjoy (rainbow goldfish etc) and that we could snack on through the day. My dear friend Debbie was with us and looked out for my bag while I went on some rides with the kids, plus took my kids on rides, herself so we could all have a little go on something and mostly so that the kids could have fun. 

We avoided all the big rides - a little cause we had the kids, a little because of the ride fail in the news a few weeks ago (in Ohio) and also because one of us has a bad back and the other doesn't want to get sick, so between us we had a great time and didn't miss out on those crazy tumbling, rolling, you-must-be-crazy-to-go-on-that kind of rides, without really looking like a bunch of pansies. 

Did I mention the food smelt good??

The animals were a load of fun, they had pigs, goats, cows, sheep and even rabbits for the kids to look at, pet, talk to and what not. Both the littles really enjoyed the animal area and we did go back a couple of times through the day and sat and watched some of the animals being entered into the shows. 

We tracked the other side of the fair for the races and saw some cool kids having fun with their races - some with incredible talent and who would be more than welcome to drive me anywhere!! Some older kids and adults also races various vehicles and I did get a few shots. Bronson absolutely LOVED the races and loved all the noise that came with it. I learned so much about him in one day, my heart was melted. 

Autumn had a blast taking in all the animals, I think she would have been there all day if we'd have let her. She wants to be a singer and a vet when she's older, and an artist and a dancer, so I guess when she's ready to go to work as a dancing, singing, artistic vet she can take on her own business and fill it with all the crazy ideas she has and the love she has for these animals, but for now she got to visit with them a while and was happy. 

We did try and win a goldfish at the fair, but they weren't easy to win and I didn't want to spend any extra money so we went out and picked up a fish for $2.99 instead after the fact and she now is the owner of a little white Betta called angel (I got Bronson one, too and he's called "Fish" because at least Bronson can say that!). 

The kids plodded around the fair with Debbie and I for a grand total of 6 hours. One minute it was 1:30pm and the next it was 7pm! None of us knows what happened there, but we sure must have been having a lot of fun. After the fair we went out to eat at Red Robin on a gift card one of us had, thus the bill was lighter and finished off a really nice, long, fun day with the kids, which was something a little different to our usual "Debbie Days" for which Autumn gets super-excited for along with Bronson. 

We eventually made it home and the kids were almost the perfect kids all day. They didn't want the day to end and, once we had convinced Bronson to wave bye to Debbie (which he did for like 20 minutes) it was off to bed and goodnight! They slept for 9 hours total and it was utter bliss. I still got up at 3 or 4am though because I am a nut job, but it was such a great day out, a great night's peace and I would do it all over again any time. 

I am glad we got to go to the fair after all, this year as we had originally decided we just couldn't afford it. If you are thinking about avoiding the fairs this year, just think again and plan to take your own food, plenty of fluid, perhaps a change of clothes for the kids and look up your fairs to see if they have discounted tickets for different days of the week, you just never know!

Thanks so much for sharing this mini adventure with us! 

The next one is going to be a fabulous ride! 

Love and Pancakes...

-MGM xxx

Nutrisystem and where I am now.

Disclaimer: I was given products in order to give my best opinions of actual use and experience with the products. Your  results, opinions and experiences may differ to mine, thank you! 

So, it has been over a year since I first started on Nutrisystem and have definitely had more of a positive experience than a negative one and I would definitely have started Nutrisystem if i'd gotten a time machine, gone back to when I made the decision to start, and started again. It was worth it. 

Nutrisystem Breakfast Omelette.

I lost 40lbs in total with Nutrisystem and then hit a solid plateau, which has not gotten any better no matter which avenue I chose to take to get things rolling again - and believe me I stuck to this plan and tried everything that was suggested but with not much luck or change other than maintaining the weight once I had lost that 40lbs. 

Nutrisystem Ravioli and some veg.

Recently I was placed on some steroids, again and am now taking a new birth control pill and, since starting both of those, I have started to gain a few pounds rather than lose or even maintain and so even sticking to the plan religiously has not been helping over the last few weeks, at all. 

Nutrisystem Meatballs with some greens.

I have upped exercise, am drinking enough water, I am exercising and moving around, I am basically doing what I am told and I honestly love to eat healthy and so get all the fruits or vegetables, extras or whatever I am supposed to have and stear clear of the things I am not supposed to indulge in - heck, we just went to the fair over the weekend and didn't even touch any of the vendors other than to grab a bottle of water! 

The food on Nutrisystem has remained a constant success with me in terms of taste and I have been able to work the meals into something nice with veggies at every meal so it doesn't feel like a small portion AND builds up my daily need on those said vegetables - mostly with the veg I pick up at the farmer's market every Thursday. 

I have tried so hard on this plan, and I am even in a weight loss group with other people who are very encouraging to stay on plan, plus a separate group that helps to boost confidence and posts points when you keep up with certain aspects of losing weight (like avoiding sweets etc), yet as hard as I try the weight just doesn't seem to want to move. 

Healthy sides and snacks are easy on the plan.

I have decided that soon I will be coming off of Nutrisystem as I feel confident that I can actually keep portion sizes small and on point by myself, now and that I will be able to try and give my body yet another boost by giving other foods a try  for a while to see if that is the kick start that this annoying plateau actually needs. 

Either way, I am so grateful to Nutrisystem for allowing me to work with them and for the opportunity I have had to shift some of this weight that has been plaguing me for the longest time and to give me the confidence I needed to realize that I can do just about anything, even to lose weight, if I put my mind to it and pick myself up and get on with it. 

The left is me at over 300lbs and the right is me quite a few lbs down!

In all, I have definitely enjoyed 95% of the foods, with one or two foods not exactly the kind of food I would personally eat, but am satisfied that there was so much choice throughout the time I have been on this plan. My stand out favourite breakfast is the omelette. My favourite lunch is the white bean chicken chili and the best dinner, to me, is the fagioli. The top snack on my list are the cheese puffs and I do like the tiramisu. 

My overall opinion of Nutrisystem has been constant in that I think the choice is vast, the plan is easy to follow and if you follow it to a "T" the results that are advertised are not unrealistic. I was over 300lbs when I started this plan and I still have a lot of weight to go, but to have lost 40lbs on Nutrisystem when nothing else had previously worked is a great big hats off moment for me and I recommend at least giving them a go, even if you have tried other methods for losing weight. 

Nutrisystem gave me back a lot of confidence.

Thank you so much, Nutrisystem for showing me how to use smaller portions, how and what to eat to make a rounded meal and how to keep going through the day with the idea that keeping metabolism going through the day is a big key to losing the flab. 

My weight loss journey is ongoing and I will be keeping that in mind as I come off of some of the medications I have been taking, and trying hard to continue to eat right and exercise daily. I am more confident and happy to make better decisions and will continue to do so as I go into a new phase. 

Thanks so much to everyone for following my journey, so far - please continue to follow me to the end of my Nutrisystem one and do also let me know where you are at in your weight loss journey and what you do to kick that weight off, or maintain where you are now! I would love to hear from you!