Almondina Toastees Review and Giveaway

Almondina Toastees

Disclosure: I received the product(s) mentioned in this review at no cost to me so that I could provide an honest review of the product(s).


Almondina, The Delicious Cookie Without the Guilt™, graciously recently sent me three different flavors of their Toastees snacks for me to try — Cranberry Almond, Coconut Orange Almond, and Sesame Almond. There are four flavors total — Lemon Poppy Almond was not included, but it sounds like an interesting flavor!

Almondina Toastees

I’m very glad that I am in the habit of taking pictures and testing the products immediately or soon after receiving review products because my husband and son got a hold of these and, well, lets just say all three bags disappeared within a couple of days!

Depending on how long you’ve been following my blog, you may remember my other review on Almondina’s cookies. These are very similar to their Original Cookie that I tried a couple of years ago, but Toastees are about 1/3 the size, making it a delicious and healthy bite-sized snack.

Almondina Toastees

I normally go over everything that a product contains, but this time I’m going to tell you what Almondina Toastees does not contain:

  • no added salt
  • no added fat
  • no trans fat
  • no preservatives
  • no cholesterol

Almondina Toastees
 
Almondina Toastees are perfect for snacking at the office, school, road trips, and parties. They’re all-natural, dairy free, and contain 1 to 2 grams of protein. Each serving has 70 or less calories per serving (4 pieces)! You can either eat ’em by themselves or you can pair it with other things like yogurt, ice cream, cheeses (like Laughing Cow!), and even coffee.

I’ve already made plans on ordering some more of these — especially the Cranberry Almond!
 
 
 
 
Almondina’s Toastees are available at many fine stores, including: Sprout’s, Giant Eagle, Harris Teeter, Kroger Michigan, many others and is a featured product on Amazon. If you don’t have any of those stores near you, you can always get them directly from their website, Almondina.com.

You can find Almondina on Facebook and Twitter!

Want a gift pack of Almondina like the one that I received? Enter to win below, using the giveaway form! This giveaway is sponsored by Almondina and is open to those residing in the continental 48 states in the US. The winner will be chosen randomly from the entries received via the giveaway form below. I will email the winner — the winner needs to respond to my email within 24 hours, otherwise a new winner will be chosen. Please note: The winner will be required to provide their mailing address and phone number for shipping purposes.

Good luck, and thank you for reading my review and visiting my blog!

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Becoming a stay at home mom, again.

I was a stay at home parent for the first few years of B’s life. I was young, he was my first child, and we didn’t want to put him in childcare. At first, I enjoyed it. I was able to be with him every morning, every afternoon, and every evening. I was able to prepare and feed him breakfast, lunch, snack, and supper. I was able to give him the attention he needed while he was so little, and sweet. I was able to nurture him when he was hurt or sick. I was always there whenever he needed something.

But then, after a while, things changed. It became harder, and more tedious. I had this little, rambunctious toddler running around me all day, every day. It became easier to frustrate me, and it got to the point where I never left the house to do so much as check the mail. I had no help during the day, no local friends, and no love or support from my family, except for my grandparents, who did not even live local. I was depressed. And there were days where I hated myself because sometimes I resented B for it. I often imagined myself as a normal twenty year old with friends and a school schedule to see what it’d be like if he weren’t there. I hated myself when I felt that way because none of that was his fault. He was still the sweet little boy we brought home from the hospital, so how could I feel those horrible things when I had the privilege to stay home with him? How dare me for feeling that way. I was officially the world’s most horrible mother, and I sure felt that way.

I eventually found a safe haven in World of Warcraft. A good friend of mine introduced me to the game and I was unsure about it at first, but it became my escape. I would play all day and all night. I would get frustrated with any interruptions of my game play, and I would neglect most, and sometimes all, household duties that needed to be done. I only got up from my computer desk to use the restroom and eat, and I would rush through my mommy duties so that I could re-escape into the game. It gave me an outlet and I had friends, even though they did not live near me. I was eventually diagnosed with mild to moderate depression but I never took any medication because we couldn’t really afford it due to lack of health insurance, and because I was afraid of becoming a zombie every day. But, eventually things happened. I ended up separating from his father, making a drastic move, all while dealing with family issues and struggling with a general lack of identity.

Things eventually got better and I started to build something that resembled a life. And now, almost four years later, I found myself in the living room of our wonderful new home with my husband, discussing the possibility of my becoming a stay at home mom, again.

We have a pretty normal schedule for a family in today’s time…two working parents who have children in school and daycare. But it gets a little more complicated than that. B was diagnosed with ADHD this past summer and he’s been having trouble with reading, and English in general, in school. They allot time for the kids to complete any homework assigned that day once he arrives at daycare every afternoon, but we feel like he needs more one-on-one attention. Both me and my husband have been working full time and we don’t make it home until close to 6PM. As every parent knows, it’s incredibly difficult to divide only a few dark, measly hours in the evenings among double-checking homework, deciding on and preparing and cooking supper, chores, and bath time. In fact, it’s a nightmare.

It’s also incredibly unsettling to know that he goes straight from school to daycare every afternoon during the week to be in the care of another group of people until I can pick him up every evening. My husband has a long commute from home to work and vise versa, so he’s not able to make it to his daycare before they close. This leaves the pick-up responsibility to me. It ends up leaving us in a difficult spot because it forces me to leave work early and, while my manager and supervisor have been great and understanding towards our situation, I still sometimes can’t help but feel bad. It not only isn’t fair to them, but it’s also a slight loss of pay that ends up adding up over time.

Don’t even get me started on housework. I honestly don’t see how working parents can maintain a clean house. I just don’t. I’m convinced that it’s not possible, as there is simply not enough time to complete all of the household chores that call my name when I walk in the door every night.

As far as me personally…I have about 13 years of website design and graphic design experience, among other things, but what I don’t have is a degree that says I have that experience. I had B at a young age and I haven’t really had the time or the money to re-enroll in school up until now, so continuing my education is something that I want to seriously pursue this year. And, lets face it — it’s not that realistic to work full time and take online or night classes, as studying and schoolwork would take up what little family time we have left after we get off work.

We went over the pros and the cons of me no longer working full time. We went over what my day-to-day goals would be for myself, our family, and our home. We went over our budget at least five different times…not that it lessened my worries in that department. Even though I would be doing website design and graphic design work from home, and maybe some babysitting, it would still be a potential loss of a stable and consistent income.

After discussing all of those things on a few different occasions, we keep coming to the same conclusion. If we don’t do something, things will continue as they are. While we’re doing okay right now, we just want more out of life. I’ve always wished I could successfully pull off the housewife and stay at home mom roles, unlike my first attempt. It hasn’t even been an option up until now, but we feel like it will be best for our family now — especially as we’re wanting to have another child. I want to be sure that B gets the help he needs with his ADHD and his school. I want to finish my education and continue doing website and graphic design, as well as blogging. I want to be there for, and take care of, my still-sweet B and my incredibly hard-working and supportive husband. So, we officially decided that I will be a stay at home mom! Again!


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Note: This giveaway is not being hosted by The Nikki Theorem. I am not responsible for any aspect of this giveaway. This is one of many giveaways that I am promoting. Feel free to enter. Good luck! :)
 


 

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