Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Planned my vacation on a budget! And it still cost us over $500.00.

This is our beach...  Oxnard Beach, California and yes, totally beautiful and we live here every day and can see this beauty as much as we want.  But even we like to get away and see some other places that are around us.

So I planned out in great detail a vacation to Long Beach, CA.  We were visiting two places and eating at Denny's and staying at the Motel 6 (because they take dogs).  I had it down to under $200.00 for 4 days and 3 nights and that included our membership to the Aquarium of the Pacific!  

What we didn't plan was the rock that some random car hit and it cracked my front window. And the car that hit the front end of my car when John was in the drug store.  The driver never left a note.

This is just a little note to say that you can plan everything for your vacation down to the last dollar and still get unexpected events that will cost you more than your vacation!  I plan to blog about our wonderful vacation in the days to come.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Pearl Mountain Image Converter Review and Giveaway

Conversations with Carolyn shares their review and giveaway of the Pearl Mountain Image Converter.

Pearl Mountain Image Converter is a photo converter as well as batch image converter, which helps you convert images to other formats, resize, rotate, crop, add watermark, apply effects and add border to thousands of images at a time. As a blogger and photography hobbyist, this is tremendous for me because I am able to add a watermark to any of my pictures and re-size them to be the perfect size for anything I need. One of my favorite hobbies is taking pictures. 
 Pearl Mountain Image Converter allows me to convert thousands of files at once in batch mode. It's a huge time saver. Pearl Mountain Image Converter supports the most popular image formats: BMP, JPEG, TIFF, RAW, PNG, GIF, TGA, and PSD, and almost all image formats. You can re-size your image for any different use; email, the web, Facebook, photo prints and much more!
You can save operations that you usually use as profiles and bring convenience to you in the future.  Pearl Mountain Image Converter lets you add image and text watermark for Image Copyright Protection. As a beginning photographer I know that this is really great for me and for the intermediate and professional photographer as well.
Here are some more great features I get with this program:
  • Convert thousands of files at once in batch mode.
  • Supports the most popular image formats: BMP, JPEG, RAW, PNG, GIF, TGA, and many others
  • Convert between many different image file formats.
  • Resize image for any different use, such as for web, e-mail, photo printing,Facebook, Pinterest, mobile phone, ipod/ipad/iphone, etc.
  • Add image and watermarks for Image Copyright Protection
  • Adjust image brightness, contrast and saturation in batch to make your images look more special.
  • Apply border to images.
  • Crop photos, removing unwanted areas.
... and much more.

I was so happy to do this review because overall I really had a need for a program like this and I just wasn't able to learn all about Photo Shop at this time.

And now the GIVEAWAY (there are 4 full version license codes available for this giveaway and they will come to you in your email but don't give your email in the comments, only in the giveaway, you'll see what I mean.)  Thanks and best wishes!

Disclaimer:  As a Tomoson reviewer I was sent the full free version to own and review.  I was not compensated in any other way.  Any opinions in this post are my own.  Also, FaceBook has nothing to do with this review or any part of the giveaway.  They cannot be held responsible for anything.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Coconutty Pancakes aka Puff Pancakes

 Coconutty Puff Pancakes

3/4 cup flour
1/2 cup shredded coconut
1/3 cup nuts
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
2 eggs
3/4 cup coconut milk
1/2 cup crushed pineapple
1 TBL coconut oil

ingredients are ready

ingredients are split by dry on left and wet on right

Mix together flour, coconut, nuts, baking powder, and salt in a bowl.  In a separate bowl, combine eggs, coconut milk, and pineapple.

Stir the dry ingredients into the wet. 

Heat the coconut oil in a skillet (or in our case on the Avon Puff Pancake Pan)

Spoon batter onto hot skillet making pancakes 3 inches in diameter.  We of course did them in this Puff Pancake Pan.

Cook until puffed and dry around the edges.  Turn and cook other side.

Server with syrup of your favorite topping.  Makes about 16 pancakes or the "puff cakes" that we made.  
I used the Fat Toad Farm Vanilla Bean Caramel on mine!  I am so in love with their Goat Farm Products.   Feel free to visit them and check out their products.  The caramel is incredible! 

If you would like to purchase an Avon Puff Pancake Pan with Tongs from me please contact me at carolyncavies@yahoo.com  Thank you!

Friday, May 25, 2012

How I pray for my readers

I recently celebrated my 1st year blogiversary.  I was really excited because I actually completed one year of a project that I set out to do.  This may sound odd but it’s been so difficult with the autoimmune diseases that I really never know what day I’ll be able to blog and what day I won’t. 

Along with thinking about blogging I thought about praying.  That’s because I started another project on Oct. 31, 2011 and that is my Prayer Journal.  I took a composition book and started journaling my prayers (because I suffer from something that is called, “Fibro Fog” and it’s very difficult for me to pray in the same way that other people may pray.)  

I don’t close my eyes, bow my head and think through my prayers in my head.  Instead I write them to God.
What you may not realize is that I actually pray for YOU!  It’s true.  I ask each week that God speak to the people that I write to through my blogging.  I have no idea who is going to read which post, nor what they will think when reading it, nor do I know what they are thinking unless they reply to the blog entry with a comment.
So I will write to you what the first two things that I wrote in my prayer journal say.  This may/may not surprise you.

1.     I need to spend more time listening to others than I do talking.
2.     I need to not be critical of others even if I believe those things are true.

When I write my prayers I pray I just talk to God as if I were writing a letter to Him.  It works for me!  When I come across someone online who is asking for prayer, I just write it out to God and commit it to Him.   I try to never embarrass anyone by asking them more than they want to share with me and in the left-hand column I have the section marked as this “Answered.”  This way I am committed to praying for this person until I find out that they have come to a conclusion of what they were asking for. 

So you may wonder about those first two prayers that I wrote.  Well they have not yet been “answered.”  I’m still working on them today and every day.  The one person that knows me best is God and then is my husband, John.  He never reads this journal but he knows about it.  I decided that I needed to amp up what I am doing in prayer about my husband and bought a journal with thought provoking questions and verses and comments.  It’s called, “Closer to MyHusband.”  I’ll still pray for him in my Prayer Journal but I will do more of this in that journal and commit more of my prayer journal to praying for you!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

French Toast Cupcakes

French Toast Cupcakes:

1 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. salt
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted then cooled
2 eggs
1 tsp. maple extract
1/2 cup whole milk
Maple Glaze:
2 c. powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
2 tbsp. butter, softened
3-4 tbsp. milk
1/2 tsp. maple flavoring

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line baking pan with paper liners.

2. Mix together flour, baking powder, cinnamon and salt in a small bowl.
3. In a large bowl, whisk together butter, sugar and eggs until smooth. Make sure the butter is cool or you’ll have scrambled eggs.

4. Whisk in maple extract and then alternate between whisking in flour mixture and milk. 

5. Make three additions of flour mix and two of milk. Beat until smooth.

6. Scoop batter into prepared pan and bake 20-25 minutes until golden brown and tops spring back when lightly touched.

7. Cool the cupcakes on a rack for 10 minutes, then remove from pan and cool completely.

8. For the maple glaze, combine powdered sugar, vanilla, maple flavoring, butter and milk.

9. Stir well until the mixture has the consistency of a glaze.

10. Finally, cook up a ton of bacon till it’s nearly crunchy, then cut up the strips into teeny squares and sprinkle ‘em on top of the frosting.

Monday, May 21, 2012

SOBE LIFEWATER Review and Giveaway U.S. Only

A free sample of the NEW RELEASES of SoBe Lifewater Pomegrante Nectarine with Coconut Water and the SoBe Flavors with Benefits LipBalm and coupons (Free 20 oz. Bottle of Any Flavor SoBe Product ... Max Value is $1.79) is what I received from Bzz Agent to write this review!  And this is a favorite of mine so I am so happy to share this with all of you.  I am giving away here 3 of those coupons! 

In the above picture are other flavors that I buy of the SoBe Lifewater, only I buy the 0 calorie ones. The ones that I buy are:
Mango Melon, Fuji Apple  Pear (my favorite), Black and Blue Berry, Strawberry Dragonfruit and Yumberry Pomegrante.  Right now I have three in the refrigerator getting cold and 10 on hand waiting for me to refill the refrigerator!   

What a dilemma I have on hand when I go shopping weekly for my SoBe Water!  The free one that I received as a sample only has 80 calories and is sooo good.  I really never liked coconut water until I had this one and now I'm going to use a coupon myself and try that one again and the Mango Mandarin and give one to my husband of his choice.

SoBe Lifewater is available at my local Kroger store, Ralph's here in Southern California.  Be sure to look up your local Kroger store and try these out for yourself.  And for the winner, you are about to experience a real delight!

Here are some facts about the SoBe Lifewater:

1.  There are over 25 exotic flavors to choose from..
2.  There are no artificial sweeteners.
3.  New SoBe Lifewater with Coconut Water features flavor twists with Mango Mandarin, Pacific Coconut and Pomegrante Nectarine.
4.  Combinations like Fuji Apple Pear and Yumberry Pomegrante will leave you perplexed... and satisfyingly hydrated.   (I think that's what I really feel with the two mentioned here is that I can drink one of either of them and feel so full too.  It's great for my diet!)
5.  Sacrifice calories but not taste with 0 Calorie SoBe Lifewater.
(I used to drink Vitamin Water but that tastes nothing compared to this zero calorie water!) 

Learn mote about every SoBe offering by watching a short, transfixing video on each HERE!  And see the full line up HERE!  Here are Teas and Fruit-Flavored elixers.

And let's not forget the LIZARD!  Here is their story. While relaxing in South Beach (Miami) a lizard on the side of a local hotel caught the eye of the founders and all their logo problems were solved!  I love that lizard.  

Please use the comment section to tell me which of the waters that you would like to try and if you have ever had SoBe Lifewater before reading this review and giveaway.  Thanks!  

 Disclaimer:  As a bzzagent I was sent a campaign kit for SoBe Water (as pictured above).  This post is part of my sharing by word of mouth.  I was not compensated in any other way.  Any opinions in this post are my own.

And now the GIVEAWAY:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Happy Blogiversary to me Giveaway! USA only!


That's right!  Here at Conversations with Carolyn we (John and I) are celebrating our blog's one year anniversary!  The year has gone by so quickly!  In the one year so much has happened but probably nothing quite as wonderful as John's retirement.  God really planned his retirement at the perfect time.  Two years early but not early enough for all the many things that we've gone through in the year.  If you're a first-time reader of this blog today, you will just have to go through the topics and see all that has happened.  If you have been with us for the year then you know various topics that we've covered!

Well, I could write more but let's get this party started!  I am giving away 6 gifts to you that we bought (just so you know you're not getting any freebies we received!)  There will be 6 winners.

These are the gifts:

 Beard head mustache (walrus black) that attaches to a beard head.

      Pink feather hair clip.

Blue and black feather hair clip.

Neon feather hair clip.

Cranberry Mango Scentsy Circle

Cinnamon Bear Scentsy Circle

Let's just jump to the RAFFLECOPTER now and get busy!  In the comment section which is mandatory, we would like to know one topic (or more) that you enjoy reading on our blog.  Thanks!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Shaklee Review & Giveaway!

I  (was fortunate enough that Renee, a mom and an independent distributor for Shaklee, asked me to do a review for Shaklee's products. I had heard of Shaklee before, but I knew next to nothing about them. After a very pleasant phone call with Renee, she taught me that Shaklee was the first company out there to offer environmentally friendly products. At the end of the call I could not wait to try out the products she was sending me!
Renee sent me 16 oz. bottle of Basic H2, a 3 pack of Get Clean Spray Bottles, 9 oz. jar of Scour Off Paste, and 16 oz. of Dish Washing Liquid Concentrate, along with a packet of information.
I want to first share some information on each product with you. Basic H2:
  • Safe: Nontoxic, no toxic fumes, no hazardous chemicals, fragrance free, mild on your hands, pH balanced, and no chlorine.
  • Here's the household uses for Basic H2: General cleaning, windows, mirrors, glass, pots & pans, floors, dusting, fruits & vegetables, handwashing woolens, nylons and all fine fabric, spot remover, aquariums, removing fish odors, removing boat algae, reducing odors in diaper pails (I use Basic H2 for this the most), wallpaper, frying vats, and many more.
  • Personal uses include: Hands, Bathing, removing gum from skin, carpet or clothes, painting and dyeing, cleaning shoes, and cleaning eye glasses (another one I use frequently).
  • You can use it for automotive uses, such as washing your car, cleaning the engine (will not affect paint, gaskets or insulating material!), cleaning the battery terminals, and helps get tires off easier when you're changing them.
  • There's many other miscellaneous uses as well! The list just goes on and on!
Dish Wash Liquid Concentrate:
  • Completely safe (non-toxic, hypoallergenic, does not contain chlorine, is mild on your hands, is pH balanced, and has no hazardous chemicals)!
  • Very powerful (tough on grease, has long-lasting suds, and can use very little and it goes a very long way (one of the best parts).
  • The second best part is that it is green; has natural ingredients, is biodegradable, has no phosphates or dyes, comes in recyclable packaging and is safe for septic-systems and graywater.
  • Can also use for grout & tile, pans & stained dishes, pots, pans and PYREX, oven cleaner, mineral deposits in toilet bowl, and tough stains in sink.
Scour Off:
  • You can use scour off on baked enamel, chrome, ceramic tiles, stainless steel, glass, porcelain, and most hard metal surfaces. (Do not use on gold, brass, copper, sterling silver, corian, or surrel.)
  • There are many uses for the kitchen, bathroom, outdoors, and vehicles!
  • Scour off is biodegradable, pH balanced, certified Kosher, and has no toxic fumes, no alkalis, and has a pleasant scent.
I (used the Basic H2 on my kitchen
Here is a before picture:
How gross, right? We had had a party the night before, so that would be why it's so nasty. I figured what better time than now to see if Basic H2 actually worked!
All you need are one of the spray bottles, the Basic H2 and I used a rag. You just fill the spray bottle with water, then put a 1/4 teaspoon of Basic H2. Then you just spray and wipe away! I let a couple of the spots soak because it was pretty stuck on, and it wiped away so easily! Here is the after picture:
What a huge difference! Another great thing about the Basic H2 is that there are absolutely no fumes! I can't even begin to tell you how much I hate cleaning because of the fumes almost all cleaning solutions put off. It's so nice not having to deal with it anymore! Next, I used the Dish Wash Liquid Concentrate.
I didn't take any pictures of the process because, well, who wants to look at dirty dishes? I didn't want to subject my readers to that! Haha! But let me tell you - I will not be using any other dish washing liquid! It got off grease and dried on spots on all the dishes, and I hardly had to use any of it! I swear, you can barely tell I used any of the stuff! This bottle will last me a long time! The Scour Off I used on the rims of our tires. Unfortunately I do not have any pictures of the before and after because our camera started acting up, but they have never been so clean! It was so easy to use, and although there is a slight scent to the paste, it was actually a pleasant one! Thank you so much for reading my review on Shaklee products! I can't wait to try some more of Shaklee's wonderful products! Thanks to Renee, I'm able to offer my readers a giveaway! I'm giving away a free membership to Shaklee, a bottle of Basic H2 and 3 spray bottles. This giveaway starts at 12:01am on 5/18 and ends at 12:01am on 5/26. The winner will then be selected and have 24 hours from the timestamp on the email I send to claim their prize. If the winner does not reply by 24 hours, then the next winner will be chosen and contacted. a Rafflecopter giveaway 

Disclaimer: I received one or more products for free. All opinions are strictly mine.(this is the review by:

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Purse Giveaway

Twisted Orchid Handbag {Review - Giveaway}

Twisted Orchid Handbag Review & Giveaway

After stumbling upon Twisted Orchid's website, and falling in love with some of their handbags. I decided to reach out to them. They were quick to respond to my question, and to my delight a product review and giveaway was approved.

Twisted Orchid - The Company

Twisted Orchid is a premium shopping destination for stylishly chic purses and handbags. From the pages of People Style Watch to Lucky, Elle and Oprah,trendspotters and fashion provocateurs alike are buzzing about their incredible selection. Read more about them here and you can also find them on Facebook.

Handbag - Brown Cinch made by Mad Style

Twisted Orchid Handbag {Review - Giveaway}
I decided to review their Brown Cinch, when it arrived I was even more amazed, the image on their site didn't do it justice. This handbag is a true beauty and I've gotten many compliments on it. Twisted Orchid Handbag {Review - Giveaway} - Back PocketTwisted Orchid Handbag {Review - Giveaway} - Front View Twisted Orchid Handbag {Review - Giveaway} - Lining inside I love the color, I have many black handbags but didn't have any brown ones. I wanted a bag that would match a suit I had for interviews, this turned out to be perfect. It is roomy enough to carry all the beauty things us women carry around, my cell phone, journal, my kindle and for all those things that somehow find their way into them. (little gadgets and goodies our family hands to us while out). The bag is made of faux leather exterior with a zipper entry, a little pocket with zipper on the back, a cell phone pocket, wall pocket and a center compartment on the interior, all with zipper closures. I love the interior fabric and design. This is an amazing handbag. Thank you Twisted Orchid for giving this opprotunity to review this classy, stylish handbag. I would like to award your product a
5stars product rating Twisted Orchid {Review & Giveaway}
As I mentioned earlier Twisted Orchid would also, like for one of our lucky readers to have their very own Twisted Orchid product with a retail value of $80.00. Please click on the Rafflecopter below and enter with as many chances as you like. Don't forget that you can come back daily and tweet the giveaway for extra entries. There is also a freebie that can be done daily, so stop back by each day and get two easy entries.

Visit Twisted Orchid today and receive %20 off your purchase. Just enter promo code "TWISTED" during checkout. Don't forget to stop by their Facebook page and tell'em Scattered Musings sent you!

Mother's Day May, 2012

Mother's Day is all about my wonderful Mother IN Law (my best friend for 18 years now and Mom) Shirley Mullin.  She's now  89 years young and living in the nursing home here in town because she is on Hospice (she survived cancer surgery for her colon).  We are so fortunate to have her right here and town and can see her as often as we want.  And she loves it!  This is a picture blog of our day with her on Mother's Day, 2012.

Shirley with a beautiful new blouse I bought her for Mother's Day!  She needs new clothes for the different seasons still.  

Shirley with another beautiful blouse I bought her for Mother's Day.  She is the best dressed woman in the nursing home!!

Shirley wearing the third and final blouse I bought for her for Mother's Day and she looks sooo good!!

Shirley with one of the cupcakes that John and I made for her for Mother's Day!  She really loved them!!

Shirley and her Mother's Day feast at the nursing home!

Shirley with the picture of her son, John, in the hanger at the Commemorative Air Force where John volunteers!   She has this picture next to her bed.  Awwww!!!
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