Monday, November 28, 2011

One Thousand Gifts–Week 25


251. Having to celebrate the 6th birthday of my 3rd son which means he had the privilege to go sleep on the top bunk.

252. Seeing his face when he opened up the card I made him – priceless!

253. angry birds….

254. putting the Lemax houses/animals out on the mantle

255. Survival Week at swimming lessons… which means the kids get to go in the pool all dressed-up!

256. First snow fall!

257. high temperature – though it melted the snow… – almost wish I could go camping!

258. my family

259. playing in the snow after swimming

260. my camera







Saturday, November 26, 2011

An Out of the Box Offer from Kraft Canada

Recently while being on Facebook, I discovered a new marketing online offer from Kraft Canada. The from Kraft Food offered a samplicious package which contains full size samples of their new products on the market. More the 15,000 sample boxes were available.

Anyone could sign up but you had to pay 9.95$ of shipping charges to get the box. At first I was wondering if this was a scam but someone took the initiative to call Kraft Canada to ask them if this was true. It sounded too good to be a real deal. But it was!

I jumped on the offer, shared it on facebook and twitter. Then I waited for my package to arrive.

Within a week and half, my doorbell rang. Outside the door my postman was holding my Samplicious package. The first question he asked me was: “Can you tell me what’s in there because I have four of those in my van?” I laughed and told him that it probably won’t be the last ones either… I told him what it was and immediately he said “Where can I get one of these?”. I had to inform him that it was sold out at this point in time. I suspect that
these packages were gone like hotcakes.

I opened the box in front of him and we were both impressed with the full size products.

My postman went on his way to deliver the other samplicious packages and the rest of the mail and I brought the box for the kids to see. They couldn’t believe their eyes. Usually when we get a sample of a product, we receive a sample which is a few to taste it. But this time it was full size boxes in the box. Also included in the box were three coupons for full size products at the grocery store for the cheese products. The only items that didn't stay in our house were the gums as we are not chewers of gum. I kept one of the new Trident flavors but I gave the rest to my mother-in-law when she was visiting. The other product that might not find supporters in this house is the Kraft Whipped Cheese Dill flavor. I figure the kids can eat it... *grin*

The fact that many Canadian sites are promoting the daily deals found everywhere on facebook and twitter, helped Kraft Canada to spread the word on this out-of-the-box offer.

Though we loved our package and I think it was an original way to promote new products, I think Kraft Canada would have been wiser to use only coupons to exchange at the grocery store for full size items. It would have cost less money for everyone I think. Though as a stay-at-home mom who also homeschool my four kids, I appreciate the fact that I didn’t have to run around for each of these products. But I think it would have been fun to go with the kids to get the products at the grocery store.

Now I suspect that this strategy is to stir the consumers to purchase the products they have loved from this package. Though we loved them some of these products are so expensive that I will never consider purchasing them on a regular basis.

Take the amOOza twists cheese snacks for example. This is one of the products I had to go to the store to get. The snacks are fun to look at and delicious while we eat it but the price tag attached to them is over 6$ believe it or not. When I was at my local Loblaws, I had found two of the three products that I had received a coupon from. Well with the amOOza! alone I had reached the maximum of allowed coupons from the register. My cashier had to call a supervisor to allow my next coupon to be keyed in. I thought it was hilarious!

I would be curious to see if the strategy of creating the Samplicious packages will created a love affair between the customers and the products offered.

What do you think of this out of the box offer from Kraft Canada? Do you think it will encourage customers to purchase their new products? Would you have paid for the shipping charges or would you prefer to only receive coupons to exchange at the grocery store?

Note to me readers:  This was a post done for the course Applied Social Media in Business that I am currently completing to get my Social Media Certificate

Monday, November 21, 2011

6 years old already?

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Happy birthday to my third son.

Love you lots.


One Thousand Gifts–Week 24


241. Touring the Police Headquarters of our city with my oldest son and other homeschoolers.IMG_1664_thumb1

242. A field trip at the dentist with a good report for all the kids and I.

243. The Love & Respect conference this past Friday and Saturday.

244. Getting together with family for the birthday party of my 3rd son.

245. Knowing that God is in control about everything in your life.

246. A wonderful husband

247. Making an angry bird cake for my son’s 6th birthday (which is on the 21st)

248. Friends who encourages you.

249. Knowing that in three weeks I will be done my Social Media certificate when I complete the two courses I am doing right now…. must persevere….

250. Trying new recipes…


Monday, November 14, 2011

What about my childhood shaped me for blogging and reviewing.

For this specific blog post, I needed to answer one of the questions asked in the article "Do People Know Your Story?" from John Jantsch for one of the courses I am taking to complete my Social Media certificate. I decided to answer the question: What about your childhood shaped you for this moment?


Recently, while doing an earlier assignment for the Digital Communications course I am currently doing to complete my Certificate in Social Media at Algonquin College, I realized that a specific experience in my life had prepared me somewhat to become an online journalism doing reviews.

While I was in high school, I was part of the student newspaper called “L’Informateur” back in 1985-1986. I was responsible of the middle section of the newspaper which consisted of the numerous news of what was going on at the school during that particular week. As a reporter I would meet with the various teachers/nurse/event organizers and so on to ask them what news would they want to see in the next edition. I would then organize the information so that it would be easy to read in the middle section of the newspaper. Sometimes there was so much information to post that I needed to include another page. Here’s an example of the page I was responsible of. The scan is not perfect but in case you are wondering yes I still have all my copies of “L’Informateur” from the year I was part of the writing team. What can I say… I am sort of a packrat!

At one point during the year, we also created a weekly story called “Super Gaétan” and everyone was responsible to the story line at one specific time during the year. The highlight of my participation to the student newspaper was definitively our visit to the headquarters of La Presse in Montreal during the printing of the next day’s paper. We learned quite a bit on how a newspaper was produced (The arrow indicates me in the picture!).

But after high school, I concentrated on my studies and worked as well. It is not until I was a stay-at-home mom and starting to consider homeschooling that I renewed my interest in writing but this time via a blog post. Before that every now and then I would write in a journal about what was going on in my life. But blogging was different… and when a friend of mine encouraged me to participate to the new viral marketing project of a homeschool magazine in the US I discovered reviewing products was interesting. Once my nine month commitment for that first year was completed, I started reviewing novels. During my third year with the TOS Crew where I reviewed numerous homeschool products, it dawned on me that I could do this for other products as well like toys for example.

In a way I am still informing other about products/books available out there and give them my honest opinion about them. Though the way of doing it is different – after all I am doing it online now, the idea behind it is similar than when I was responsible of the middle section of the student newspaper. Essentially, I test the product at home and give the positive and negative on the said product. If it is a book, I say what I honestly think about it and how it touched me in some ways.

So in a way I consider myself as a digital reporter who is involved in the product testing and reviewing of products and books. Who would have known that being involved in a student newspaper would have opened doors later in life in doing something that I enjoy.

How about you? What childhood activity has shaped you for whatever is going on in your life right now?

Note to my readers: I am currently doing two courses to complete my Social Media Certificate. One of the course is Digital Communication. This is my second blog post assignment. I will post my assignments here.

The author of this blog also post regularly on Canadianladybug Reviews!

One Thousand Gifts–Week 23


231. a husband who loves to cook and create new recipes

232. my camera – which allows me to take nice pics

233. a wonderful package of FULL SIZE samples from Kraft Canada

234. The sound of Canadian geese flying above our house early in the morning.

235. The full moon through the clouds at night.391360_10150357029101596_524001595_8857865_247062695_n

236. Remembering the sacrifice of many so that we can have freedom in Canada.

237. The warm temperature even though it is November… we could still be camping if the campsites were open!

238. Spending time with my husband on Friday because he usually go in for his contract. It was closed on Friday due to Remembrance Day.

239. A private tour of a new Soy beverage company in town and free samples to product test.

240. Yummy apple sauce donuts!



Monday, November 7, 2011

One Thousand Gifts–Week 22


221.  A doctor available when you call in the morning to see your child who isn’t himself.

222.  PINTEREST which encourages me to do new things…

223. An empty garage so we can park there and have no frost on our vehicles

224. The generosity of my oldest son who bought little things for his two Sparkies brothers for Christmas with his own Awana shares.

225. Making Challah breads with my oldest son.  I made one while he made the other one for his Awana gold assignment.

226. The flexibility that homeschooling permits me to have sometimes.

227. The companies I review for – they are such a blessings.

228. A self-Clean oven.

229. Dates with my love.

230. Tickets for the upcoming Love & Respect Conference.


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Saturday, November 5, 2011

Reflecting on the past

Yesterday I did a quick run at the local Wal-Mart because I needed some things….

When I came out of the store, I ended up behind an older lady who walked slow.

I thought of passing her but decided against it.

Part of me was impatient…. I will admit it.

But as I walked slowly behind her, I became more patient.

She had grey hair.   A pink coat. A little cart behind her that she was pulling.   She was walking alone going back to the residence near by more than likely (there isn’t any houses close by).

And when  I passed her once on the parking lot, I didn’t think much of it.

But when she was close to me has I was putting my bags in the truck she said “Nice day isn’t it”.  To which I responded “Yes it is.”

I watched her going by and going to the sidewalk toward the residence.

That’s when it hit me.   My eyes got blurred… and I thought of my own maternal grand-mother.

She walked a lot.   I believe she had a little cart as well for when she would go her groceries in the village where she lived.

She wore a pink coat.. too when she crossed the street back in 1992.  Nov 6th was the day.   She was hit by a neighbor who decided to go on the main street without looking… 

IrèneFontaineBoisséAs I looked at this older lady walking away in her pink coat and her white hair, I suddenly missed my grand-mother.

She would have love my husband and the kids.

Who would have thought that my small encounter with an older lady that morning would have brought up emotions from 19 years ago.

My grand-mother was a devout catholic.    I am quite certain that I will see her in heaven.  

I can’t hardly wait for that.  

Je t’aime grand-maman!   À bientôt!


Personal blog of a homeschool family. We love to travel with our RV when we can. Fishing, discovering new places, photography are some of our favourite activities!


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