We Are Having A Swimmingly Good Time This Summer

This summer I decided instead of going on a long weekend vacation we should put our money into something that would last longer. I joined a spa. It cost way less than a vacation and we got it for 14 months and can go 7 days a week if we want.

The spa has three pools and we are loving life. It feels wrong to be enjoying myself while my husband works all day but we would be sitting home looking for things to do through the summer and he would still be working so may as well do it pool side. He has to work right?! It is not like we won the lottery or anything!

I finally have been able to use my waterproof for more than 1 picture.

Here is my Goddess and her friend in the pool.

Here they are in a friend's pool taking pics of each other. It is amazing how clear it is underwater.

Goddess recorded the fish tank under the water which I had not seen yet. I wish she would have taken her time so I could see what was going on but maybe next time I would head down.


To order this camera head over to Amazon. Way cheaper than a GoPro and it comes with a ton of accessories.

This is not an Ad. Just sharing a camera I got back in August of last year.

7 Tips to For Growing a Green Family & A Growing a Green Family" Prize Pack #GIVEAWAY

Environmental experts Rosaly Byrd and Laurèn DeMates present readers with an optimistic yet realistic approach to sustainable living in Sustainability Made Simple: Small Changes for Big Impact Rowman & Littlefield).

7 Tips to For Growing a Green Family

Summer is here and we are loving the green that we see around us! It’s also a perfect time to bring new, sustainable habits into our daily lives that we can stick with all year long. Check out the following 7 practical pointers for going green.

  1. Bring air purifying plants into your home. Improve the air quality in your home by introducing plants that act as air filters, absorbing the harmful gases and toxins from furniture, paints, and plastics. Peace lilies, golden pothos, and Boston ferns are only a few examples of the many plants that can help remove benzene and formaldehyde from the air in your home.
  2. Look for local, seasonal foods. Eating local and seasonally means you are likely to avoid the food miles and greenhouse gas emissions associated with foods that aren’t in season and travel a long way to get to your table. In addition, seasonal foods can be less expensive and taste better. Because it is picked only when it’s naturally ripe, seasonal produce retains all of the nutrients and flavor that is lost when food is harvested prematurely. If you are feeling ambitious and have space, you can even start your own vegetable garden for the most localized produce possible.
  3. Start a compost (or look for compost programs in your neighborhood). Don’t let your fruit and veggie scraps go to waste in the landfill, where they will ultimately contribute to climate change by emitting methane. Instead, start a compost in your yard or look for programs in your community that collect organic material for composting. Compost is a natural fertilizer and can be added to your garden or potted plants.
  4. Swap or donate clothes. Swapping clothes that your kids have grown out of with other parents is a great way to share and/or get “new” clothes without actually purchasing anything. If you can’t think of anyone to swap with, then donating old clothes is another great option. 

    Swapping or donating clothes helps with spring cleaning and extends the life of each item.
  5. Use non-toxic products. If you are taking on some serious spring cleaning, make sure you are using non-toxic cleaning materials because chemical-based supplies contribute to water pollution and can be harmful to your health. Websites and apps such as GoodGuide and EWG’s Guide to Healthy Cleaning help to find safe and gentle cleaning products. You can also make your own with baking soda, white vinegar, and lemon.
  6. Clean out your air filters. This spring is expected to be warm as we continue to break records for global temperature records. For many of us, this means turning on air conditioning and (ideally) cleaning out or replacing the air filters. Air filters that have not been cleaned or replaced in a while can mean that free-flowing air is being blocked, making the system work harder to push air out. Clean filters will not only prevent unnecessary energy use and greenhouse gas emissions, but will also save you money on your electricity bill. 
  7. Plastic-free picnics. Spring is synonymous with picnics. To minimize your negative impact on the environment during these outings, swap out plastic single-use containers and utensils for reusable non-plastic items. It can be easy to rely on single-use plastic items such as water bottles, cutlery, plates, and cups, but it creates a lot of waste that will most likely end up in a landfill (or even in the ocean)! Look for glass jars and cloth bags to carry and contain your goodies and bring silverware from home to cut down on the waste you create.

Rosaly and Laurèn are co-authors and founders of The Sustainability Co-Op blog, which strives to understand and communicate the interconnectedness between global and local societal needs and environmental concerns.

The 411:

Part 1 of the book was a lot to read. It covers the big issues as like air pollution, deforestation, loss of carbon sinks, climate change and more. It also gives a ton of information in grayed boxed sections about the contaminated water problem in Flint, the garbage patch in our oceans, the Amazon and more. The book also places the blame on certain groups telling us who is doing what. 

Part 2 was my favorite section of the book. I actually loved it. There was a ton of info how to change our personal carbon footprint such as using less plastic bags, air conditioning and heating suggestions like closing shades to keep the room cooler, being conscious of when we use the oven (we have started doing this, hanging our clothes instead of using the dryer and so much more. 

Many of these are things we have always done but a lot of them were things that have fallen by the wayside including a few new things LIKE finding out if our electric company has partnered with a technology company. They have and this month we decided to buy a new fridge and our electronic company is taking our old one AND giving us a $50 check because our new one uses less electric. LOVE THAT!!!! Check with yours the next time you are getting rid of yours appliances. They unit must work but hey they remove it and a check?! SO worth it.

There is a really great section about the kitchen and the dining room table that suggests eating local and seasonal. Helping the farmers in my area is important to me but did you know that eating food out of season increases your chance of consuming a whole lot of chemicals. The food is being shipped so you are also contributing to the extra cost of energy being used for that.

The book and the bag above are great. I love the bag so much it is my GO TO BAG for when we head out to the pool. It carries all our snacks and never gets wet! How cute are those cherries?!

About the Authors: Rosaly Byrd is the co-founder and author of the blog The Sustainability Co-Op that works to engage readers on global environmental issues. She also writes as a freelance blogger for the Huffington Post. Rosaly has lived in Haiti and Brazil, working on environmental policy and sustainable development for the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and UN Development Programme (UNDP). Rosaly holds a Master’s degree in International Affairs with a focus on international environmental policy from University of California, San Diego School of Global Policy and Strategy, and a Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Arts from Florida Atlantic University Harriet L. Wilkes Honors College in Jupiter, Florida.

Laurèn DeMates is a sustainability professional committed to improving the environmental impact of government, corporations, and individuals. Her work has included applying behavioral and social science-based strategies to increase energy efficiency in the federal government and assisting companies collect and analyze corporate social responsibility metrics. Laurèn is a LEED Green Associate and a co-founder of The Sustainability Co-Op blog. She graduated from the University of California, San Diego with a Master’s degree in International Affairs, and from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo with a Bachelor of Science degree in Social Sciences.

This book definitely has me thinking differently about a lot of things so I am so happy to report that I have a book to giveaway to one of my readers as well as more information    

Stay on top of things by visiting and subscribing to Lauren and Rosaly's blog at 

Enter the Giveaway

Disclaimer: I received a copy of the book and large reusable Baggu tote bag to review. My reviews are 100% honest and true based on my personal opinion not on a company’s description or request. I am not employed by any company I review for. No monetary compensation was received.

Fandango & Disney to Host "The Lion King" Sing-Along Event in LA on 8/5


Celebratory Evening Will Include Musical Performances, Kids' Activities and Special Guests

Disney's Animated Classic Will Be Available On Digital & on FandangoNOW August 15

LOS ANGELES (July 19, 2017) - Fandango, the leading digital network for all things movies, is teaming up with The Greek Theatre in Los Angeles, Walt Disney Studios and the Walt Disney Signature Collection to host an exclusive screening of The Lion King Sing-Along at the famed outdoor venue. The beloved Disney classic will be available for all fans on FandangoNOW on August 15, followed by the Blu-ray and DVD release from Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment on August 29.

Attendees will enjoy the animated adventure's soundtrack under the stars, while laughing with Timon and Pumbaa, crying with Simba and Mufasa, and bursting into song with their favorite characters during this special screening of the beloved film.

"We're excited to bring the 'Hakuna Matata' spirit to Angelenos this August, with a special screening of 'The Lion King' Sing-Along at the iconic Greek Theatre," says Fandango Chief Marketing Officer Adam Rockmore. "The event is part of our multi-year partnership with The Greek, designed to create memorable experiences for movie fans of all ages throughout the year."

The fun-filled screening event is open to the public and tickets are available for $12.00 each at Ticketmaster or at The Greek Theatre box office.  The Fandango event will feature musical performances, kids' activities and special guests.

"The Greek Theatre is excited to host this one-of-a-kind event with our valued partner, Fandango," says Becky Colwell, General Manager of the Greek Theatre. "It makes perfect sense to show Disney's animated epic musical film, 'The Lion King,' at a venue that has hosted thousands of musical greats over the years!"

Fans who buy tickets to see "The Lion King" Sing-Along at The Greek Theatre will also have the opportunity to purchase other Disney classics on Digital HD at a discounted price on video on-demand service FandangoNOW.

Featuring more than three hours of classic bonus material, the Walt Disney Signature Collection edition of "The Lion King" will invite viewers to observe recording sessions, step inside the story room, witness the evolution of a villain, and join Nathan Lane (voice of Timon) and Matthew Broderick (voice of Adult Simba) for an extended conversation about the film's extraordinary legacy.

About Fandango
Fandango is the ultimate digital network for all things movies, serving consumers with best-in-class movie information, ticketing to 29,000 screens, movie trailers and original video content for movie discovery, and home entertainment.  Its portfolio reaches more than 60 million unique visitors per month, according to comScore, with 205 million app downloads, and includes popular movie properties Flixster, Rotten Tomatoes and the Tomatometer(tm) rating, and Fandango Movieclips, the No. 1 movie trailers and content channel on YouTube.  Its new premium on-demand video service, FandangoNOW offers new release and catalog movies and next-day TV shows on a wide variety of connected, over-the-top (OTT) and mobile devices.  Also part of the Fandango family are Latin America's leading online ticketers, Ingresso.com and Fandango Latin America, formerly Cinepapaya. Movie fans can find Fandango on Facebook at www.facebook.com/fandango, Twitter @Fandango, and many other social platforms.

About The Greek Theatre
The Greek Theatre is a world-class, outdoor 5,901-seat music venue located in Griffith Park, Los Angeles, California. It was built in 1929, opening on September 29 of that year. Designed by architect Samuel Tilden Norton, the theatre stage is modeled after a Greek temple.  The Greek Theatre is owned by the City of Los Angeles, Department of Recreation and Parks, and is operated by SMG World. The venue is among the City's most cherished public sites. The historic Greek Theatre stands as one of the nation's most beloved and recognized outdoor entertainment venues. Throughout its history, the Greek has played host to some of the biggest legends in music. This iconic venue has also served as a site for numerous high school graduations, community events and backdrops for television shows and motion pictures. For more information visit:  www.lagreektheatre.com

Expert Tips For The Perfect Closet!

Getting Organized For Back To School Just Got Easier

 Tips and Tricks from ModularClosets.com


Good organizing habits are the foundation of a well leveraged education. Without them, it’s hard to keep on top of classes and ahead of projects, tests and essays. Whether in middle school or high school, it’s important to have the tools in place that will keep kids organized and focused on the task at hand.
A Few Excellent Ways to Stay Organized!
  • Get rid of clutter! If you don’t need that textbook from two years ago, either store it away, sell it or toss it! Old notebooks and papers could be useful, but they need to be filed and stored in storage boxes, if you really want to keep them around. Avoiding too much ‘stuff’ in your study area ensures less distraction and more study action!
  • Don’t create piles, but instead that make sure every item you bring to your study space has a ‘home’. It doesn’t take long for piles to get unruly and then finding what you need, when you need it, ends up taking longer and longer. That’s a distraction that nobody needs!
  • Use an organizer to keep track of your time and make sure that you have allotted enough time for assignments and tests. Last minute cramming or writing never generates the best results. If you don’t have all your work organized on paper (or electronically), it will be impossible to stay on top of what is due and when.
  • Keep distractions to a minimum: no TV, plug your phone in another room and put it on silent mode when you’re studying. It’s too easy to convince yourself that you need a study break that involves streaming your favorite TV show online!
  • To keep certain important reminders and papers in your face and handy, use a magnetic board right over your desk. This way, anything that you need to have at the ready is right there for the taking.
  • If you have a small desk, a wall organizer for essentials like pens, pencils and notebooks is a great idea: it keeps everything handy, but off the limited flat space that you need for your computer and books. Plastic containers on your shelves are also great ways to keep your extras—pens, pencils and so on—handy but put away.
  • It’s easier to keep all your papers and notes organized with a rolling file cart. Use colored file folders—a different color for every subject—so that you can see quickly and easily what you’re trying to find. Also, if you decide that you need to move your study area for a little creative inspiration, you can roll your files along with you!
  • Organizing your stuff isn’t just about desks and pens. You also need to keep on top of your laundry, your bags, accessories and more. A well designed, easy to install DIY closet system is just the ticket to make sure that all your stuff has a home and that you can find each item, quickly and easily.
  • Extra shelving is ALWAYS a good idea and can help you keep your books, magazines and other materials organized and tidy but still accessible and at the ready. Get some magazine holder boxes for the extra papers and periodicals that you want to keep and use the same color coding system as you did with your files. Presto!
Get organized and you’ll see the results in better habits and better grades. If everything you need is handy and easy to find and reach, you’ll be less distracted and be able to focus on what’s important!
CharlopCloset1 - Copy 2

Bio: Marty Basher is the home organization expert for ModularClosets.comModular Closets are high quality and easy to design closet systems that you can order, assemble and install yourself, in no time at all. Affordable and easy, what more could you want in a closet system! With Modular Closets, any space can become usable space, for storage and organizing. Visit the website at  https://www.modularclosets.com or on social media: FacebookTwitterInstagramYouTube
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Dear Readers: At this time all giveaways on Maria's Space are for the United States unless otherwise noted.