There’s an App for that!

Okay, I am so excited!!  Did you know you can download me in the Google Play store?  Yes, I have my own app that can be used on any droid!  Now you can take DonnasDealsAndMore with you!

So, what does it do?  I’m so glad you asked! Let me show you :)

Donnas Deals Android App    Donna's Deals Android App

You can view the latest posts in either a list or gallery view!

  

You can “star” your favorites to go back to them and click on each individual post to read! Plus it will update you when there is a new post (you can choose automatic or manual updates in the settings).

I have to thank the amazing Nick over at FeedChimp! (Nick@feedchimp.com) He made this awesome app for me!! Not only did he do excellent work but he was fast, efficient, and friendly!  If you’d like your own app he is your man! Please tell him you heard about him from Donna’s Deals and More!

So, what are you waiting for? Getting the app is easy and FREE!!  You can go to the play store on your droid and search “Donna’s Deals” or go HERE

Look! There I am far right column, in the middle! :)

MOM

I love Mother’s Day and the celebration of Mom!  My Mom was amazing!! She fought breast cancer the last 4 years of her life.  It eventually spread to both her bones and her liver.  She went home to be with Jesus on August 16 this past year.  It is really weird to have Mother’s Day and not have her here.  So in celebration of my Mom, I’d love to share some pictures I have of her with you! (and some other Moms I love!)

Mom

Dad, Me, and Mom

  Myles &  I with my parents  at our wedding

Me and my Mom

 

My family

My mother in law, sister in law and me

My Momma Daffy (she’s like a Mom to me!)

So, if your Mom is not here, reflect on the wonderful memories you have! If you have your Mom, hug her tight and tell her you love her!!

v zivo in nikoline pozabi
“live and never forget”

Freebies for Fighters

Let’s face it, cancer totally stinks!  My mom fought breast cancer (which spread to her bones then liver) over 4 years and lost her battle August 16th, 2012.  She was an amazing woman! I also have an amazing friend, Cassie, who is currently fighting (she’s only 35!) breast cancer.  She is a talented photographer and I highly recommend seeing her work HERE :)

I am so excited to share this post brought to you by Heidi over at SaveMoreSpendLess

My sister-in-law Amanda S.’ mom Carmel has Hodgkins Lymphoma Cancer and we are trying to brighten her day by getting her a few things. She is currently under going chemotherapy which has caused her to loose her hair so we are looking for caps, scarves, things that are cute to cover her head. Along the way we found some different things as well so we posted those as well

I know that there are millions of Americans suffering from this disease and every little bit helps them in their time of need. If you can help, have a contact I don’t have listed or just want to send a card to Carmel please send me an email at smslwithheidi(at)gmail(dot)com.

A special thanks to the fellow bloggers that helped me compile this list. They include: Kelli Avery from Freebies, Deals, and Steals and Inside My Head with Kelli.

As well as Mellissa Hanks from Something Like Life and of course my blogging buddy Marci from Couponin’ Momma of Texas.

Hats and Scarves

Breasts Friends Hat Project offers free hats to women that are in treatment for cancer. Or email@breastfriends.com

Caps Against Cancer offers free ball caps for patients who have experienced hair loss due to chemotherapy treatments.

Hats for Happiness are free hats that are either new or lovingly worn.

Heavenly Hats provides free hats to cancer survivors around the United States.

Good Wishes, Strength, Style and Dignity provide a wrap for your head.

Wigs

Free Wigs for Kids for children under the age of 18.

Crickett’s Answer For Cancer. Wigs and other head fittings as well as salon services for wigs. Free to any woman with breast cancer. CrickettsAnswer@comcast.net; 717-843-7903; 301-935-4411

Y-ME. Wigs and styling tips for women with limited resources. YourShoes 24/7 Breast Cancer Support Center; 800-221-2141

House cleaning

Cleaning for a Reason provides free four monthly cleanings for women with cancer, not available in all states. 877-337-3348

Misc

Free tote bag with “goodies” inside from the Lydia Project

Free non-toxic household cleaners from ComforTree

Fill a Heart–Pillows for your chemotherapy ports and comfort

Meals on Wheels

Free In-home-delivered meals for income-eligible adults and children. Available in most areas of the country. Some programs also offer other home-related assistance, such as grocery shopping; 703-548-5558;

American Cancer Society has programs available to help cancer patients call 800-ACS-2345 to locate a chapter near you.

Susan G. Komen for the Cure Click the link to find the one closest to you.

PG has been known to help some cancer families out. I personally do not know this I’m just passing on what was told to me.

1 Up on Cancer is a great resource page

Cancer Angels is just like it sounds, it made me cry reading the description.

Cancer related discounts from Happy Chemo

Journal/Web blog for your cancer journey found here.

Sarah Kathryn Davis her story and blog

 

Please feel free to pass this information along to others!!

 

I am Gluten Free

Did you know that May is National Celiac Awareness Month?  Do you know what celiac disease is?

What is Celiac Disease?

(Pronounced: SEE-lee-ack disease)

Celiac disease (CD), also known as celiac sprue or gluten-sensitive enteropathy, is a genetically linked autoimmune disorder that can affect both children and adults. In people with CD, eating certain types of grain-based products set off an immune response that causes damage to the small intestine. This, in turn, interferes with the small intestine’s ability to absorb nutrients found in food, leading to malnutrition and a variety of other complications. The offending amino acid sequences are collectively called “gluten” and are found in wheat, barley, rye, and to a lesser extent, oats  (Celiac Sprue Association)

CD affects an estimated 3 million Americans.  I am one of them.  At first I didn’t want to believe it.  I like bread, and pasta, and well most everything containing glutens.  I also couldn’t understand why this was such a “new” disease and my grandparents didn’t have to deal with this.  I learned that back in my grandma’s day they came out with a brand new, more “fluffy” flour to bake with.  Guess what makes flour fluffy … Gluten!  We have so much more gluten in our diets now.  Removing gluten from your diet isn’t just for those with CD and gluten intolerance.  It’s actually good for everyone.  I know that my family has benefited from a gluten free diet.  If you’d like to learn more about the effects of gluten I would highly recommend Wheat Belly: Lose the Wheat, Lose the Weight, and Find Your Path Back to Health by William Davis.

At first I was really discouraged that I was going to have to change my diet, but it turns out there are tons of yummy alternatives.  I still enjoy bread and pasta, they’re just gluten free.  I have included a list of some of my faves at the end of the article.  It’s also pretty easy to adjust most any recipe to GF.  My husband loves my GF Brownies from scratch (see recipe HERE).

I am really excited about a program called Spread the Bread.  Rudi’s Gluten Free Bakery is offering a give a dollar get a dollar program.  All you have to do is select one of four organizations (Celiac Disease Foundation, Celiac Sprue Association, Gluten Intolerance Group, and National Foundation for Celiac Awareness) to receive a $1 donation from Rudi’s and then you’ll be able to download a $1 coupon for any Rudi’s Gluten Free product.  :)

 

Here are some of my favorite GF products:

Udi’s Cinnamon Raisin Bread (I also love their multigrain bread)

Tinkyada Pasta (all kinds of noodles)

 Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free baking products (flour, oats)

Lundberg Garlic Primavera Risotto (they have lots of yummy flavors)

 

What are some of your favorite GF products?

 

Autism Awareness: Moving Beyond Awareness Into Action and Promise

Autism Awareness Month Almost Over, Now What?

30 Days of Autism Awareness Month Challenge Begins at the Cafe

My friend over at Kat’s Cafe had  this idea. It goes something like this: we participate in an awareness campaign (like this one for Autism Awareness) and it gives us a sense of purpose, a sense of healing, and even, maybe, a sense of achievement — we did something.

Here is her post from her blog:

There’s something inherent in any kind of cause marketing (just another fancy name for trying to convince you to care about a cause instead of a product) that is almost counterproductive to the purpose and potential it represents. Inaction.

There. I said it.

The sad fact of the matter is, that the end of this month will come and go, and our lives will be very much the same.

For being a family mired in the ‘having of autism’ we won’t suddenly be miraculously understood by that clerk at the store, and we will still feel isolated and alone because it’s just too hard to find someone willing to watch the guys so we can go out … our lives don’t change because of a campaign like this.

Sometimes the big organizations are a bit richer, are able to fund more research and put out more information and resources, but how does that help those of us in the trenches?

What if that wasn’t the case though?

What if we could turn Autism Awareness into Action?

What if, alongside the great quotes and warm fuzzy pictures we could have actionable ways to help those within the autism community? And what if, instead of simply pinning a pin, you are part of a pinning movement? What if, instead of taking part in a Facebook contest, you could not only win great prizes all in the name of Autism Awareness, but could also pledge to make a difference.

Not by sharing a photo or graphic (though I’m all for that too).

Not by writing moving posts (though I’m all for that too)

Not by being brutally honest about life with three boys on the spectrum (and a hubby too) … though, heck, I’m for that one too.

What if …

What if, when someone pinned a great graphic, or entered a great Facebook contest, they were given ways to help someone who was autistic feel less isolated? What if they were given things they could ACT on that could make a difference? And what if YOU could help?

And just for the heck of it, let’s dream big here, what if they were part of a Twitter Party that gave prizes for the best brainstormed ways to help a family  who has an autistic child be a part of the community again? What if we could have a Google+ Hangout and come together to discuss ways to make Awareness EQUAL action?

I think we can.

I think you can.

And I think we should.

Want to be a part of it? A part of the discussion, a part of the movement, a voice among many, THE voice that helps to make a difference?

Join me!

During the month of May, Kat’s Cafe is joining with some phenomenal sponsors and a whole host of bloggers to prove that WE CAN move past awareness, into actionable goals and to-do lists, into simple and complex things we can do to create change.

Not talk about change. But create it.

This is the moment where you decide if you want to be a part of it.

Because it’s going to be big.

One person can make a difference, but many, working together, can promote understanding, respect, hope, and change.

Over this weekend I’ll be releasing more information, a special section of the Cafe, and a Blogger’s kit to be involved in this very different kind of awareness campaign.

If you have been around the Cafe, you know that my graphics will be a part of this – and I’m busy working on some great ones to go along with this campaign.

If you want to feel more than warm fuzzies, if you want to take a big step out with me, do me a HUGE favor, right now.

Take a deep breath (not the favor!).

Think of all the ways you can help this message spread. You can share it, pin it, like it, tweet it, +1 it, reblog it (absolutely!) and right now … you can become even more involved too.

Fill the form out if you want to be a part of the blogger’s Awareness Team, leave me a comment to say hi, you love the idea, or have this even better idea about how to make it better.

Actionable Autism Awareness. It’s cause marketing, social media for social good, and a promise too … working together we can make a real difference!

[PS - Still signing up some last-minute sponsors. If you want to donate a prize, your organization's support, or something more, fill the form too - I'll get back to everyone who responds!]

Read more: Autism Awareness: Moving Beyond Awareness Into Action and Promise http://katscafe.org/2012/04/27/autism-awareness-moving-beyond-awareness-into-action-and-promise/#ixzz1tMoorh3p

 

I am excited to be joining with her! Will you join with us too? :)

Am I Insane?

 

Am I insane?  Yes, I think I am.  I just started that crazy work out called Insanity.  Now some of you may think I’m a little crazy even before you found that out, but shhh, that’s not what this post is about ;)

When I got married 6 years ago I was a size 2! Yes, it’s hard for me to believe too.  Married life has been wonderful.  We have tons of fun, grew closer together, and ate lots of good food.  I look at pictures of me and think how did I let that happen?  I’m not severly overweight, but I am definitely not a healthy weight.  I  have set a “weight goal”  and I do understand that muscle weighs more than fat so I’m not really stuck on the number of pounds.  I really would like to be healthy and a size 4 or 6.

I did my weigh in on Saturday and that was enough to make me cry, but it also gave me determination.  I also started using FitnessPal and love it! You enter what you eat and how much you excercise and it tracks it for you.  Don’t worry you can leave your food diary on private ;)  It really makes me think about what I’m eating and putting into my mouth.

And, as I mentioned before I started Insanity.  All I had to do was the “fit” test but it was straight cardio!  I felt super unfit, lol!  But that’s okay, I have heard a lot of testimonials that you should go at your own pace (even if mine is a crawl) and you will see results.  I’m excited and will definitely share my results with you!

I also have a great support team!  I am telling you that accountability is essential!  I have a great body coach who never asked me to post this, but I just love her and think you all should know :)  I also have friends who ask me about my day, my excercise, and what I’ve eaten ;)  I am the type of person who would never touch it again unless someone lovingly kept kicking me in the behind.

I’m inviting you to join me!  We can support each other and share our victories!

*These are my own opinions.  I was not paid or given compensation for writing this post

 

Created by MyFitnessPal – Nutrition Facts For Foods

Forgiveness

Did you ever do anything you knew was wrong or that you regretted? I know I have.  I also know that if I am truly sorry and ask God for forgiveness He will forgive me.  The problem is that until recently I wasn’t “living” what I believed.
I would pray and ask God to forgive me.  I would lay it all at the alter.  Then when I was done, I would take it all back off the alter and carry it with me until it burdened me again.  I would repeat this cycle daily.

Romans 4:7-8 says ““Blessed are those whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered.  Blessed is the one 
   whose sin the Lord will never count against them

Once I am forgiven it won’t be held against me!  Why I never grasped this concept before is beyond me, but I can’t tell you how freeing it is! Jesus died on the cross to take away my sins.  He paid my debt in full!  It is an amazing feeling to know you are forgiven.

 

Living a Victorious Life in Christ

God has a purpose for everything and nothing that is done is done outside of His knowledge. He is all knowing and many times things may happen in our life that seem bad, but God does them for a reason. God never means for evil to come upon the ones that love Him. Take a look at these verses:

Jeremiah 29:11
For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.

Isaiah 55:8,9
For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.

We cannot see but what’s right in front of our face. We are limited to what our eyes see happening. God sees ALL and knows ALL. He knows exactly what needs to be done in our lives to bring us to that place we need to be. He uses MANY different ways to bring us there. Some ways are not as pleasing as other ways. We are to walk by faith and not by sight. If we get upset over anything that God does in our life, we are not trusting Him and walking by faith knowing that He ALWAYS knows what’s right. And in realizing this we are able to adjust our thinking. Walking by faith is just that… walking and believing God to guide us exactly where He wants us no matter how He brings us there without foreseeing where He has us going. We cannot see our expected end… but God does. If we want to fulfill God’s Will in our life we must trust Him, and trust He is doing exactly what needs to be done in our life to bring us to the place He wants us to be. He tells us to count it all joy and cast all our care upon Him.

James 1:2
My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations;
1 Peter 5:7
Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.

He tells us to be content. God will never lead us astray. No matter how bad things appear, He will NEVER leave or forsake you.

Hebrews 13:5
Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.

Furthermore, God tells us what we should be thinking about.

Philippians 4:8
Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.

Many may say “Well I’m not strong enough yet to cast it all to God and count it all joy”. I just want to say, none of us are strong enough to do it. But if Christ is in you, the strength is in you. The strength comes from putting off the old man and putting on Christ. Christ’s power in you will overcome always and all you have to do is let it. We must make the desision to surrender your ways of thinking and let Christ reign in our mortal bodies.

Romans 8:11
But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you.

Believe He will do it and He will. If He is in you, He said He will do it. He told us the way. The battle is in our mind. Resist the devil and all the doubt and the devil will flee.

James 4:7
Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.

There has got to be a time where we say no to the devil and yes to God within ourselves. We cannot continue to walk through life as a defeated Christian saying things like “I’m just not strong enough”… “God’s working on me”… God has done everything He is going to do. Jesus won the victory at the cross. and you have His Word in your hand. Christ in you has ALL the strength and power you need. No more excuses. Don’t let the devil wisper that you’re not good enough. Tell him “WE ALL ARN’T GOOD ENOUGH BUT CHRIST IN ME IS!” Don’t quench the Spirit that is within you. Rise above this battle and start stomping on the enimy. He just want’s to keep you in that rut so you continue to be downcasted. There is NO reason to be downcasted with your Creator on your side! The more Word you learn and the more Word you get inside you the more God will be able to show you these things. They are easy to see because God has so plainly set them before our eyes. These verses I post up here I don’t have to look up. I know them, they are in me. I go to them in my heart every time I need them (and I need them everyday). We ALL need them in us. They are our key to a victorious life! Christ is the Word, and with the Word in you nothing will ever keep you downcasted. He is victorious!

It’s all in how we look at it. You have the power in you right now to ALWAYS live a victorious life because Christ is forever victorious!

Don’t give that strength to the devil. He does not have you defeated. You ARE strong enough! You can let Christ do it through you!

Praise God for His great love :)

*This blog post was written by my wonderful hubby

I Want to be Beautiful

This seems to be a desire of the majority of girls and women today.  Why do we think we’re not beautiful? Why do we think we’re not good enough? Sure, TV, magazines, and the fashion industry have a lot to do with what we think beautiful is, but it goes deeper than that I believe.  Where are you looking for beauty? Your size? Your complexion? The color or style of your hair?  I don’t think that any of that defines your beauty.  You could have a gorgeous model but if she had a foul mouth, lied and was an awful friend would you still consider her gorgeous?

I heard a saying today that I really like; it is “Pretty is, as pretty does”  When I was little I was told not to act ugly.  You see my actions can also be defined as beautiful or ugly.  I think your perception of an individual and their beauty changes as you get to know them to depending on their behavior.

So what is beautiful?

Proverbs 31:30 says, “Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.”

I Peter 3:3-4 says, “Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes. Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.”

I believe that when I am obedient to God and I listen to Him that I become more beautiful.  Think about the attributes of Jesus.  He was humble, meek, gentle, and compassionate.  The list goes on.  I want people to be able to say those things about me! When I live the way I am told to in the Bible I will begin to reflect Jesus and when I do that my beauty shines through!

There is a song called “Beautiful” by Bethany Dillon.  The chorus says,

I want to be beautiful, make you stand in awe, look inside my heart and be amazed. I want to hear you say, who I am is quite enough. Just want to be worthy of love and beautiful.

We are all worthy of love because of who God is.  And we are so beautiful to Him! I am going to work on listening and obeying so that my beauty will shine through.


Taking a Stand Against Childhood Cancer

I am super excited to be helping out a great cause! I am joining with my fellow mark. girls and the amazing foundation Alex’s Lemonade Stand.  They are a foundation that raises money and awareness of childhood cancer causes, primarily research into new treatments and cures. They encourage and empower others, especially children, to get involved and make a difference for children with cancer.

I have an opportunity for you to help too!  Every time you purchase something “Lemon Sugar” from me I will donate my commission to the cause!

You can find all these amazing lemon sugar products in my mark. store at www.ShopMarkNow.com in the “Bath & Body” section.

If you are a mark. girl and would like to get involved or make a donation to the cause you can head here.

Lunch Date with Lil

I have 5 amazing munchkins (nephews and nieces) whom I adore.  I was able to spend the day with my 3 yr old niece, Lily.  It was so much fun! We went shopping together and then she helped me make grilled cheese for lunch :)

I think the highlight for her was dessert.  I have a yonanas and we made ice cream! This little gadget is pretty neat.  You take frozen fruit and are able to turn it into soft serve ice cream in just a few minutes.  Lily had so much fun making the ice cream and even more fun eating it :)

Now that she is off with her Mom to go home and nap I’m thinking a nap wouldn’t be such a bad idea ;)

What Am I Settling For?

On Thursday mornings I attend a ladies’ Bible Study at my church and I love it! We have been going over the names of Jesus.  One of the verses from our study this morning was John 6:35, “Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.”

The example was given of going grocery shopping when hungry.  Anyone who has done that knows exactly why you don’t :) It seems that things you would never buy suddenly sound very yummy.  In other words you “settle” for whatever is in front of you.

Now when Jesus tells us that He is the “bread of life” I know it’s not physical, but spiritual.  I’ve always grown up in a home where devotions and reading your Bible are important and I really enjoy (and feel the benefits of) it when I’m in the Word daily myself.  I will admit that when I’m busy or crunched for time I don’t always give myself adequate time to spend with God (reading the Bible and/or talking to Him).  Sure, I pray throughout the day and I think about Him, but I haven’t spent that quality time with Him.

Now, thinking back on the grocery illustration I wonder what I’m settling for on those days I don’t have devotions or a quiet time. If I haven’t been filled with wonderful and sustaining “bread” what am I turning to when I’m hungry? I know I feel better when I eat healthy as opposed to junk food or fast food.  And, I know I feel better when I’m filled with spiritual bread (God’s Word).

John 15:1-4 says, “I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful.  You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.”

Philippians 4:13 says, “I can do all this through him who gives me strength.”

So, I need to remain in Him because apart from Him I can do nothing AND I can do all things through Him because He gives me strength.

Hmmm, this seems like a “duh moment” for me.  Why am I not spending every morning reading and praying? I think I’m gonna work much harder on that ;)