Walmart Exclusive Thomas & Friends Journey to Rewards & Giveaway

This is a partnered post.

I don’t think that little boys every grow out of Thomas & Friends. My son went to a modeling gig last night and they had a kids room for the kids to play in while they waited for their turn. He went straight to the Thomas & Friends toys. It’s really great of Walmart to team up with Thomas & Friends for the new rewards program.

The Thomas and Friends Journey to Rewards program is where moms can buy Thomas and Friends toys and get rewarded with Walmart gift cards for their purchases. The Walmart-exclusive Thomas & Friends Journey To Rewards program is the only place where you can earn rewards for your purchases of Thomas & Friends product purchases.



Walmart and Thomas and Friends want me to share with you the Benefits of Thomas and Friends and the educational benefits of Thomas and Friends.

Benefits of Thomas and Friends

Thomas & Friends: In today’s fast-paced world, Thomas & Friends give children and families a time and place to slow down, share, imagine stories, and make new friends. They deliver messages about important values through imaginative, relatable storytelling and characters … and always in the friendliest, most engaging ways!

Growing Imaginations, Learning Life’s Lessons

Thomas & Friends storylines involve everyday ups-and-downs that show the value of friendship and teamwork, giving children plenty to think about. Through engaging scenarios and realistic details played out in bright, bold colors and captivating animation, these stories help children’s imaginations grow – and make them want to create adventures of their own

So realistic

When you read Thomas & Friends stories with children or observe them watching the show’s episodes, you’ll notice they’re especially fascinated by the details of Thomas’ world … by the engines’ faces, the colors and numbers that identify them, and all the workings of a train yard. Based on real steam engines, everything Thomas and his friends do relates to the way real-life railways operate. Their surroundings on the fictional Island of Sodor depict a traditional English countryside in the era of steam railways.

Friendship and cooperation go hand-in-hand.

Much like children at a playground, Thomas and his friends are always interacting with each other and sharing jokes, squabbles, schemes, friendships, and rivalries. Children identify with the characters and learn about interaction, problem solving, compassion and more.

Timeless life lessons in every story.

Through the adventures of Thomas and his friends, your child will learn important life lessons about the value of friendship, fair play, teamwork – and what it means to be a Really Useful Engine!

Learn as they Play

The Benefits of Train Play

Children learn best when they’re active and engaged. While train play may seem simplistic compared to high-tech toys, trains are actually one of the most powerful developmental toys you can give a child. It’s because of the interactive way children play with them, becoming conductors of their own worlds which they control, experiment with and journey through.

Skill-Building with Thomas

While “little engineers” are riding the rails with Thomas & Friends, they’re also developing valuable skills that will serve them well now and down the track.

Cognitive Skills

Train play is brainy business! Fitting together track, constructing layouts, and dreaming up adventures on the Island of Sodor takes creativity, logical thinking, and planning. For Thomas’ youngest friends, learning to recognize and name colors and numbers is another part of the learning fun.

Physical Skills

Train play gets little ones up and moving! They develop hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills as they make deliveries to Knapford Station, guide engines along the track, and create the best route to Tidmouth Sheds and other destinations.

Social Skills

Train play is full of feeling! As children act out stories from the Thomas & Friends books, TV shows or DVDs – or even dream up their own incredible adventures – they’re learning valuable lessons about teamwork, sharing and kindness, and becoming more aware of their own emotions, too.




Just go to the Thomas Journey To Rewards site, signup using the promo code, and you will be entered. 



Here are the rules and regs:

25 Pumpkin Recipes Worth Trying

Today is the first day of Fall and to me Pumpkin is the essence of Fall. I love Pumpkin. Pumpkins are very versatile in their uses for cooking. Most parts of the pumpkin are edible, including the fleshy shell, the seeds, the leaves, and even the flowers. In the United States and Canada, pumpkin is a popular Halloween and Thanksgiving staple. Pumpkin purée is sometimes prepared and frozen for later use and it’s super easy to do.

Pumpkin Recipes

  1. Easy, Quick Pumpkin Muffins
  2. Homemade Pumpkin Spice Coffee Creamer Recipe
  3. Pancake Muffin Recipe Using Pumpkin
  4. Whole Wheat Cranberry Walnut Pumpkin Scones
  5. Pumpkin Spice Buttermilk Donuts
  6. Pumpkin Dip
  7. Pumpkin Pie
  8. Whole Wheat Penne with Pumpkin, Sausage, and Chard
  9. Copycat Starbucks Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins Recipe
  10. Pumpkin Cookies with Caramel Frosting
  11. Skinny Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins
  12. Pumpkin Cheese Ball Recipe
  13. Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Muffins
  14. Pumpkin Pancakes with Cinnamon Syrup
  15. Pumpkin Fluff
  16. Pumpkin Muffins with Crumble Topping
  17. Soft Baked Pumpkin Oatmeal Cookies Recipe
  18. Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies
  19. Quick and Easy Pumpkin Cake with Cream Cheese Icing
  20. Pumpkin Cheese-Cake Balls
  21. Pumpkin Chili Recipe
  22. Pumpkin Pie Muddy Buddies Recipe
  23. Pumpkin Pie Squares
  24. Pumpkin Magic Bars Recipe
  25. Heirloom Pumpkin Bread

Bucket List Item #23 Interview Jennifer Garner #DisneyInHomeEvent #VeryBadDayEvent

From the time I started doing interviews and blogging there was one person that popped onto my bucket list of things to do before I die. I wanted to be able to one day interview Jennifer Garner, I love her. There was something about the character she played in Alias and how she played her that I just fell in love with so I feel like I’m on cloud nine knowing that next week I’ll be interviewing her along with other cast members of the new movie ALEXANDER AND THE TERRIBLE, HORRIBLE, NO GOOD, VERY BAD DAY.


Not only do I get to see the movie and interview actors, the producer but I also get to participate in a Disney In Home Press day, visit Disneyland’s Halloween time but I get to do so much more. In fact, I wanted to share with you a sketch of my itinerary for the entire week, next week.

Follow along using #DisneyInHomeEvent, #SleepingBeauty & #Maleficent

7:30-pm Break into 3 groups and begin rotations:

Group 1: House Tour

Group 2: Bonus Presentation with David Jessen (Vice President, Content Enhancement) and special appearance by Sarah Hyland – @Sarah_Hyland

Group 3: Legacy of SLEEPING BEAUTY with Don Hahn (Executive Producer, MALEFICENT)

Thursday, September 25th

Follow Along using #DisneyInHomeEvent and #FireAndRescue


10:30am Meet with Assistant Fire Chief, Steve Martin to discuss the research that went into the making of PLANES: FIRE AND RESCUE as well as National Fire Prevention Week

2:30pm Sit down with Paul Gerard (director, creative development) & Jeff Howard (co-writer)

Friday, September 26th

Follow Along using #Disneyland & #HalloweenTime

10:15am BIG HERO 6 4D Sneak Peak (

Follow Along using #VeryBadDayEvent

7:30pm – 9:00pm: Screening of ALEXANDER AND THE TERRIBLE, HORRIBLE, NO GOOD, VERY BAD DAY (80 minutes) – popcorn and drinks provided

9:00pm Depart theatre


Saturday, September 27th



Follow along using #DisneyInHomeEvent and #StarWarsRebels

10:30am –11:30am Screening of STAR WARS REBELS: SPARK OF REBELLION (60 minutes)



Follow Along using #VeryBadDayEvent

12:00pm–1:00pm: Lunch at the junket

1:25pm – 1:45pm: Group interview with ALEXANDER AND THE TERRIBLE, HORRIBLE, NO GOOD, VERY BAD DAY Producer Lisa Henson

2:05pm – 2:25pm: Group interview with Steve Carell (“Ben” – @SteveCarell) and Jennifer Garner (“Kelly”)


2:25pm – 2:45pm: Group interview with Ed Oxenbould (“Alexander”), Dylan Minnette (“Anthony” – @dylanminnette) and Kerris Dorsey (“Emily” – @kerrisdorsey)

2:45pm – 3:05pm: Group interview with Bella Thorne (“Celia” – @bellathorne)

Follow Along using #DisneyInHomeEvent and #StarWarsRebels

3:15pm – 3:35pm: Group interview with Freddie Prince Jr. (voice of “Kanana Jarrus” – @RealFPJr) and Taylor Gray (voice of “Ezra Bridger” – @_Taylor_Gray_)

3:35pm – 3:55pm: Group interview with Vanessa Marshall (voice of “Hera Syndulla” – @vanmarshall) and Tiya Sircar (voice of “Sabine Wren” – @tiyasircar)

3:55pm – 4:15pm: Group interview with STAR WARS REBELS: SPARK OF REBELLION Executive Producer Dave Filoni - @dave_filoni

Follow Along using #VeryBadDayEvent

7:00pm – 9:00pm: Dinner at a location where ALEXANDER AND THE TERRIBLE, HORRIBLE, NO GOOD, VERY BAD DAY was filmed


WOW, it’s going to be a jam packed week, I mean honestly I get exhausted just looking at the schedule and all the work I’m going to have to do afterwards but I’m so blessed to be able to mark one of my bucket list items off my list. YEAH!  I’m so excited!!!!!!

My Little Pony Friendship is Magic: Keys of Friendship

Ponies make the best friends! With that in mind, My Little Pony Friendship Is Magic: The Keys Of Friendship now on DVD in the U.S. and Canada from Shout! Factory Kids in collaboration with Hasbro Studios. The 5 episodes include “Rarity Takes Manhattan,” “Pinkie Apple Pie,” “It Ain’t Easy Being Breezies,” “Twilight’s Kingdom, Part 1,” and “Twilight’s Kingdom, Part 2.” A fun sing-along is included as a bonus feature.


Since her arrival in Ponyville, Twilight Sparkle has learned the true meaning and value of friendship. With her very best friends — Rainbow Dash, Rarity, Pinkie Pie, Applejack, Fluttershy and, of course, Spike — Twilight goes on the greatest of adventures and comes back with even more lessons. All of this has earned Twilight her wings and the crown of a Princess and now you can learn what Princess Twilight Sparkle has learned and take with you The Keys Of Friendship.

The My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic series is currently airing on The HUB TV Network in the U.S. and on Treehouse in Canada.

Also available on DVD from Shout! Factory Kids:

My Little Pony Equestria Girls

My Little Pony: Classic Movie Collection

My Little Pony: A Very Minty Christmas

My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic – A Dash Of Awesome

My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic – A Pony For Every Season

My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic – Princess Twilight Sparkle

My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic – Pinkie Pie Party

My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic – Adventures in the Crystal Empire

My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic – Royal Pony Wedding

My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic – Season Two

My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic – Season One

My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic – The Friendship Express

My Little Pony – Twinkle Wish Adventure

The Book of Life Sweepstakes Travel to Riviera Maya @WorldMarket #BookOfLife

This is a partnered post with Cost Plus World Market and their partnership with Fox’s movie #BookOfLife all Opinions are my own!

I’m very excited that it’s starting to feel like fall outside and things are starting to look like fall in the stores. The Fall Decorations are my favorite one of the reasons being they include Halloween Décor. I love Halloween, I love decorating and having Halloween themed parties. Of course the kids love Halloween candy, but we also love Halloween themed movies. 


Last time I went to the movie theater with my children I saw a preview for a Halloweenish movie The Book of Life. The Book of life is a cute movie about a Hispanic Romeo and Juliet. It’s an animated movie of a Romeo and Juliet-inspired love story set during a Day of the Dead celebration: Manolo (Channing) is a young matador who wants to shed the expectations of his family to follow his dreams of being a musician and his best friend, Joaquin (Diego), is the successful pride of the town. They compete for the heart of Maria (Zoe). In order to win Maria’s heart and save her life, Manolo must face his greatest fears and follow his heart to rewrite his destiny. Based on the cultural celebration of “Dia de los Muertos” (a day of remembering the memories of lost loved ones)Starring the voices of Channing Tatum, Zoe Saldana, Diego Luna, Danny Trejo, Cheech Marin, Directed by Jorge Gutierrez (El Tigre, Mad TV) and produced by Guillermo Del Toro (Puss in Boots, Kung Fu Panda, Pan’s Labyrith)

With the release of this movie in theaters October 17th Cost Plus World Market is offering the Book of Life Sweepstakes.

World Market’s Book of Life Sweepstakes

· You could win a trip to the Riviera Maya & FREE Movies for a Year!

Book of Life Sweepstakes

· Grand Prize Package:

o 5 Days/6Nights at Grand Velas Riviera Maya (hotel & accommodations)
o Free Movies for a year
o $1,000 World Market gift card
o Book of Life Merchandise

· Plus, three (3) first prizes: $500 World Market gift card
· Sweepstakes ends October 24th, 2014

Book of Life Shop

Another exciting thing that Cost Plus World Market is doing is creating creating a fun Book of Life Toys inspired by the film.

Book of Life Shop

· The Book of Life shop includes inspired toys from the film

o Book of Life Tin Keepsake Box
o Book of Life Guitar
o Book of Life Maracas
o Book of Life Castanets
o Book of Life Manolo Rubber Duck Bath Toy
o Book of Life Chuy Stamp
o Book of Life Light Show
o Book of Life Kaleidoscopes
o Book of Life Swirly Slime
o Book of Life Flashlight Picture Projector


Watch the movie in theaters and get the merchandise at Cost Plus World Market. Which Item do you think you would enjoy the most??

Guess Where I’m At? #IFBC2014 #IFBC

I have been sponsored by Johnsonville to attend this conference.


This weekend is a much needed getaway for me. I’m in Seattle at the International Food Blogger Conference and I’m so excited to be here. If you follow along on my site, you know that I’m home schooling and I need a break!

I’m so looking forward to drinking wine and eating small bites here and there. It’s like a perfect little getaway. I’m excited to meet with all the different sponsors. Here’s a LONG LOOK at what I’ll be doing:

Friday, September 19

1:30 – 4:30 PM Optional Excursion: KitchenAid® and Sur La Table present: Create buzz and build excitement for your blog through recipe development and a preview of new products. SOLD OUT!

4:30 – 6:30 PM A Taste of Washington Cookbook Launch! Get the details here.

6:30 – 9:00 PM Grand Opening Reception Hosted by Raincoast Crisps, Bristol Bay Sustainable Salmon and Accolade Wines
Grand I & II

Register for the conference, visit the Gift Suite, & enjoy light bites, wine and more! Here is just a sample of who will be featured in our fabulous Gift Suite with gift bags provided by                      

Aneto Natural

Bigelow Tea

Bob’s Red Mill
Lágrima Pure Vanilla Extract

California Endive
Manitoba Harvest

California Olive Ranch

Chipotle Mexican Grill
Pearls Olives To Go

Choco Perfection
Pyure Brands

Cosmos Creations
Rodelle Kitchen

Food Should Taste Good
Sahale Snacks

GimMe Health Foods
Redwood Hill Farm & Green Valley Organics

Saturday, September 20

7:00 – 8:50 AM Breakfast hosted by Noosa Yoghurt
Grand 1 & Foyer

8:00 – 8:50 Breakfast Session: Mooove Over Pumpkin Pie…You’ve Got Noosa Now!
Grand 1 & Foyer

Noosa Finest Yoghurt was founded in 2009 by a collective of Aussie ex-pats and Colorado natives who set out to bring the best tasting Aussie style yoghurt to the U.S. Just in time for fall, Noosa is officially debuting its Pumpkin flavor at IFBC! Its rich spices and highest quality, as-real-as-it-gets pumpkin puree promises to win over hearts and taste buds. It seriously tastes like your grandmother made her homemade pumpkin pie and placed the fall favorite in a bowl.

It’s whole milk decadence is apparent in every spoonful, just like the other Noosa varieties. Come to breakfast on Saturday and try your new favorite breakfast treat. Pour yourself a cup of coffee and mix your very own Noosa parfait with delicious toppings, along with fruit and muffins. Koel Thomae, Noosa’s founder, will talk about her start in the U.S. and how she makes the best-tasting yoghurt on the market. Plus, you’ll love her killer Aussie accent.

9:00 – 9:10 AM Conference Welcome
Grand III

9:15 – 10:00 AM Keynote Speakers
Grand III

Join us for a compelling keynote address from Karen Page and Andrew Dornenburg, award-winning authors of The Flavor Bible, What to Eat with What You Drink, and more!

10:00 – 11:10 AM Modern Editorial Photography (and Video): Scrappy Light, Hidden Props and Magic with Todd Coleman, Tasting Table’s Creative Director and Co-Founder of Delicious Contents
Grand III

Join Todd Coleman and learn how to achieve/manipulate/create various looks through composition, selection of tones as to exposure, propping with everyday items that we’re all surrounded by (but fail to see), lighting with inexpensive equipment from aluminum foil, speed lights, flashlights, and more!

11:30 – 1:00 PM Cooking Demo With Thierry Rautureau, The Chef In The Hat. Featuring Urbanspoon and Oxbow Farm
Grand III

Get ready to laugh and learn! Award-winning chef, The Chef In the Hat, Thierry Rautureau, will host an informative cooking demonstration. Rautureau has a knack for taking simple ingredients from leftovers in your fridge to seasonal produce and turning them into culinary marvels. Even the seasoned cook will find themselves saying ah ha! Also, in celebration of the launch of their new Popular Dishes feature, Urbanspoon – a leading restaurant discovery app has always helped you find out where to eat, and now it you find what to eat – is providing a sample of one of Chef Rautureau’s most popular dishes at his new restaurant, Loulay. Chat with Urbanspoon during the demo using #IFBCCookingDemo.

1:00 – 2:30 PM Lunch Hosted by Ninja Kitchen @NinjaKitchen with Celebrity Chef Devin Alexander.
Grand I and Foyer

Join Ninja® for a delicious lunch where celebrity chef celebrity from “The Biggest Loser,” Devin Alexander will be sharing stories from her culinary journey, along with healthy cooking tips. She will also demonstrate “wow” recipes in Ninja’s new one-touch blender featuring smart technology.

2:30 -  3:50 PM Food and Wine Discovery Sessions 

Session 1 (Food): Know Your Beef, Know Your Butchery: Cut Education Session with the Beef Checkoff @Beef
Grand III

Love to BBQ? Dream of doing your own butchery or just want to know the best cuts to serve? During this fun session, Beef Checkoff’s meat scientist will be answering questions about popular cuts, sharing DIY butchery tips and demystifying beef choices. Don’t miss it!

Session 2 (Food & Wine): Discover The World Of Wine with Bordeaux Wines
5th Avenue, 4th Floor

The world of wine may seem overwhelming to some but in a few sips we’ll have you speaking like a connoisseur. In our session, we’ll walk through the fundamentals of wine tasting and writing starting with one of the oldest wine regions in the world, Bordeaux. Whether you’re a wine newbie or seasoned expert, come participate in our blind tasting challenge and more!

Session 3 (Food):  It’s A Speed Scratch Party: Entertaining Recipe Ideas You and Your Readers Will Love! presented by Krusteaz
Grand II

Join Krusteaz’s Culinary Specialist Malia Hasegawa and event stylist and entertaining personality Jennifer Sbranti of Hostess with the Mostess for a fun and informative session filled with delicious, “out-of-box” recipe demos and tips plus creative entertaining ideas.  If you and your readers are looking for Pin-worthy speed-scratch inspiration, from weekday family dinners to something to wow impromptu drop-in guests – this is the session for you.  Join us for some tasty inspiration and entertaining eye candy!

4:00 – 5:20 PM Breakout Sessions

Session 1 (Writing): So, How Did it Taste?
5th Avenue, 4th Floor

How many adjectives do you string together when describing food? Come learn something new with author Dianne Jacob: using metaphor, simile, contrast, humor and other literary techniques to wake up your food writing. A writing exercise lets you try out these new techniques.

Session 2 (Food): Cooking Backwards: The Art and Science of Local and Seasonal Cooking
Crescent, 4th Floor

A writer (Audra Mulkern), two farmers (Megan Boyce-Jacobs and Christina Miller) and a professional recipe developer (Greta Hardin) will share their perspectives around reverse engineering your menu, creating seasonal meals and planning for the off season, creating budget-wise meals, substituting ingredients and thinking outside the box, connecting with farmers, and more!

Session 3 (Tech):  How To Build and Manage Your Brand
Cascade, 2nd Floor

Join marketing and brand-building experts Angie Schneider from Porter Novelli and Barnaby Dorfman, co-founder of, as they discuss strategies for success, pitfalls to avoid, and tactical tips for bloggers looking to build and maintain their brand. Also, learn how you can manage your brand through inexpensive outsourcing with companies like oDesk.

5:20 – 7:00 PM Pre-Gourmet Fair Reception Hosted by Butterball and Woodbridge
Grand I

Enjoy Appetizers & Wine Pairings with Dad Blogger and Butterball’s® First Male Turkey Talkline Host RJ Jaramillo! Join Butterball and Woodbridge as they host the IFBC Pre-Gourmet Fair Reception beginning at 5:20 PM on Saturday, September 20th. Butterball spokesperson and Dad Blogger RJ Jaramillo will demonstrate how to prepare and serve a simple gourmet appetizer with the help of Butterball’s new recipe app, Butterball Cookbook Plus. Learn more about how Butterball’s collection of products can become a part of your family’s holiday traditions. Plus, enter to win Butterball’s 2014 Blogger Contest! More details to be announced soon!

7:00 – 9:30 PM A Taste of Seattle & Gourmet Fair
Grand II & III

Enjoy sampling a variety of gourmet goods from producers and nibble on cuisine prepared by some of Seattle’s best chefs and restaurants!

Bordeaux Wines

Safest Choice
Butterball Turkey

Better Bean

Meyer Anolon
Redwood Hill Farms

Sante Nuts
Green Valley Organics

Dream Host


Lindsay Olives

House Foods
Bigelow Tea

Raincoast Crisps
Bristol Bay Regional Seafood Development Association

Noosa Yoghurt
< a="">Krusteaz</TBD<>

Blue C Sushi

Isernio Sausage Company

Miller’s Guild
Blackfish Wild Salmon Grill & Bar

Cupcake Royale
KuKuRuZa Gourmet Popcorn

Minds + Machines


SousVide Supreme

Journeys East
Crisp Cooking

Fortunate Nora

Sunday, September 21

7:00 – 9:00 AM Breakfast hosted by Bigelow Tea

8:00 – 8:50 AM Breakfast Session: Third Generation President & CEO Cindi Bigelow of Bigelow Tea Shares the Facts About Tea (along with a few fun family stories!)
Grand III

Do you know where the intersection is between a peaceful feeling that comes from practicing yoga and the burst of energy from caffeine? It’s IN a cup of tea.  Tea contains L-Theanine, a naturally occurring component in tea that increases mental alertness and, at the same time, relaxes the body. This is just one of many fun and educational facts you will learn from Cindi Bigelow whose grandmother started Bigelow Tea in her kitchen 70 years ago when "Constant Comment"(r) tea was created. Join Cindi Bigelow for breakfast, bring your questions and get ready for a great start to your Sunday morning and the final day of IFBC!

9:00 – 10:20 AM Breakout Sessions

Session 1 (Writing): Joe Yonan, author and food and travel editor of The Washington Post
5th Avenue, 4th Floor

Join Joe as he talks about the importance of risk-taking, changes of outlook, and the search for sources of inspiration for your writing. He’ll tell how he decided to leave his job for a year to get his hands dirty on his sister and brother-in-law’s homestead in southern Maine, trading his Washington Post office for some gardening gloves, a wheelbarrow, and piles — and piles, and piles! — of manure that needed hauling. More importantly, he’ll talk about the effect that year has had on his approach to his work, and hopefully inspire attendees to imagine ways, big and small, they can shift their own perspectives.

Session 2 (Tech): Beginners Guide to Getting Online With Google+
Grand II

Being an active participant in Google+ is the fastest way to have your new content found and shared. Google indexes Plus content continuously. How to get started in this new social structure is both daunting and freeing. Starting fresh allows you to classify your audience into contactable circles of interested readers, show a bit more of your personal interests, and make lots of new contacts both domestically and internationally using the exciting free tools like Hangouts on Air. This hands on session with Dr. Jean Layton, the Gluten Free Doctor, will start at the very beginning, with your profile set up, then progress through setting up a page for your blog. Don’t forget to bring your laptop.

Session 3 (Tech): Action! Creating Compelling Video Content
Grand I

Dream of shooting food videos in your kitchen but don’t know how to do it alone? Erin Coopey, The Glorified HomeChef, will show you how to create your own video content single-handedly, from setting up your studio to shooting to editing, and more! In this session you’ll learn how to write your script and create a story board, the essential props and tools you need, how to edit, and more!

10:30 – 11:50 AM Breakout Sessions

Session 1 (Writing): Professional Recipe Development with Shauna James Ahern, the Gluten-Free-Girl
5th Avenue, 4th Floor

What is the process of developing a recipe? What sources and methods does Shauna use? How do you ensure the recipe is truly original? Join Shauna in learning all about professional recipe development.

Session 2 (Tech): The Rules Have Changed: SEO for Bloggers in 2014 and Beyond

Join Moz’s product strategist Tim Resnik as he reviews the latest tips, tricks and tactics for optimizing your blog for search in 2014 and beyond. He’ll cover keyword and topical research and optimization, tools of the trade, and the latest with Google+. You will walk away from session with a list of immediate actions to improve your site.

Session 3 (Tech): Self-Publishing e-Books on
Grand I

More and more we’re gobbling up rich content on electronic devices. Food blogger and author Vicky McDonald from will share her experience on what it takes to self-publish and market a beautiful e-book. Also, learn from’s Jon Fine as to what programs and services are available to all authors – traditional and self-published – including information on KDP, CreateSpace and more. So whether you’re already published or if you have dreams to publish, this is the session for you!

12:00 – 12:30 PM Conference Close
Grand III

2:00 – 6:00 PM Optional Class: Hungry for Words: Clarifying Voice & Story with Author Kathleen Flinn
5th Avenue, 4th Floor

You’ve got an idea for a food memoir, or a narrative or even a cookbook, but you’re not sure what direction to head or how to contain the many many idea you’ve got exploding in that industrious head of yours. Or, you’re debating the route you’ve taken with your blog. Even a cookbook needs a narrative, a hook, a clarifying concept. A blog needs an identity. A memoir needs a clear narrative. When facing a big project, it’s easy to look at the examples of success. But imitation begs a question. What makes you unique? What’s your story? In this four-hour optional workshop, we’ll spend some time looking at these questions, along with what makes notable food stories endure, regardless of the media in which they appear. You’ll complete a series of exercises to help you start thinking about your how to find a voice for your work. We’ll discuss and flesh out your concepts within a small group environment. The most difficult part of being a writer is finding your voice; the toughest part of being an author or a blogger is determining a clear way forward. Let’s start the process of finding both together.

$75/person the a 4-hour course

What’s Coming Out of Denny’s Diners HQ & Test Kitchen #DennysDiners

I had a great time at #DennysDiners HQ and Test Kitchen. They know how to cook and make delicious treats all year around. Did you know that they actually make changes to the menu every quarter and some of those changes include Holiday Features? YUM too. And sadly that’s all I can tell you about what’s coming up for this Holiday Season, It’s Good! SO keep an eye out for the new menu in October.

But rest assured there are still some really great items that you might not know are on the menu right now. I tried them when I was invited to the Denny’s Diners HQ and Test Kitchen last month with my other ambassador friends.


I have to say that I think I must have been living under a rock because I had no idea that Denny’s was making these delicious things called pancake puppies. I had some while I was in SC with Denny’s and vow that next time I take my family there I’m ordering some as an appetizer for the whole family to enjoy. It’s like having donuts they are so good. image

And I also tried The New Chicken Salad Sandwich and I loved it. I was really trying to only take a few bites out of everything because we were trying so many items on the menu, this I wanted to finish. It’s roasted seasoned chicken, celery, red grapes, toasted almonds and mayo. You can have it served with your choice of wavy-cut French fries, hash browns, seasonal fruit or dippable veggies. 


Another item I can share with you is the Wild Caught Salmon and it was surprisingly really good. Fish is a tricky thing to cook and have the flavors come out and Denny’s accomplished it. Look at it, doesn’t it just make you want to dig right in?


I did finish the salmon!

Want to know what I learned about the brand?

Denny’s really wants to make their customers happy and remember that they are more than just a after 2:00 AM place to eat. They are an all day diner fit for families with a very versatile menu. They have a rewards program and kids eat free. For every 1 adult meal two kids can eat free on Tuesday’s from 4PM to 10PM. They understand the importance of children’s health by offering healthy options and are part of Kids Live Well AND as you know they support No Kids Hungry a charity I’m very fond of.


They also have a rewards program, a birthday grand slam, and special discounts for seniors.  So plan a trip to Denny’s and try their menu, see their specials and go often so you don’t miss any of the changes that might pop up. You’ll love what’s coming for the holidays!

Holiday Family Travel Includes Culture at Outrigger Waikki Beach #Travel

This holiday season, whether travelling with teens, tweens and/or toddlers, the key to planning the best family vacation is to discover a prime location full of culture, unique activities, and gorgeous scenery.  At Outrigger, those family vacations are not only made easy but also provide the atmosphere to create genuine memories.Outrigger Waikiki Beach

It’s a great family travel suggestion; staying with Outrigger’s Hawaiian properties.  Named as two of the “Top Hotel and Resorts in Hawaii” by Travel + Leisure magazine  Outrigger Waikiki on the Beach and Outrigger Reef on the Beach have built a reputation for providing an unparalleled guest experience and providing impeccable service on one of the most picturesque and luxurious beaches in the world.  Outrigger was launched in Hawaii more than 65 years ago and with its year-round tropical warm weather, pristine beaches, and wide array of activities we can see why Hawaii is a popular holiday location and was ranked as the top destination for families by Trip Advisor.

Each of the Outrigger Hawaii beachfront resorts is dedicated to providing the best experience for families with children of any age.  Outrigger Resorts is where local culture meets premier hospitality.

Some of the unique holiday cultural experiences at the Hawaii properties include:

· The art of bamboo stamping

· An introduction to native plants and their uses

· Ukulele lessons

· Jewelry making

· Make a Hawaiian bookmark

· Hula lessons

· History of Polynesian tattoo design

· Santa Claus arriving by canoe!

Holiday season is the most popular time of year for families to travel to Hawaii. We encourage you to share this information with your readers and invite them to discover the rich local culture of the islands by visiting and

Free Movie Tickets To Disney’s Alexander and The Terrible, Horrible, No Good Very Bad Day #VeryBadDay


We are offering FREE tickets to see the movie and there are activities online that Teachers and Parents can download to do with kids. To Enter the #VeryBadDaySweeps visit . You will also find the Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day activities.









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SlugTerra Return of the Elementals

Samples Received


The big screen adventure Slugterra: Return of the Elementals is coming to DVD! Today September 16, 2014, Shout! Factory, in collaboration with Nerd Corps Entertainment, will release the epic sci-fi comedy adventure feature Slugterra: Return of the Elementals on DVD. The DVD has a MSRP of $14.97, and also includes a bonus “Slugisode” as a special feature. Fans can pre-order their copy now by visiting

Continuing the story from the hit TV series currently airing worldwide on Disney XD, Return of the Elementals welcomes a new member to the Shane Gang: Junjie, a master of the mysterious art of Slug Fu. But even with the power of five slugslingers working together, the Shane Gang find themselves in over their heads as they race to protect the ancient Elemental Slugs, the ancestors of all slugs found in Slugterra today. In the wrong hands, they could bring Slugterra to the brink of destruction. So when an evil alliance starts hunting down the Elementals, Eli and his friends take off in pursuit of the greatest threat their world has ever faced.