HERSHEY’S CAMP BONDFIRE – Sharing S’More Summer Memories With #Smores And #CampBondfire

HERSHEY'S CAMP BONDFIRE

Its almost August. For some August is just another month. For me it’s a month that represents family vacation and a lot of memories. Every year now, for more than fifteen years, my family has gone on a camping vacation in upstate New York. I go partially for the family tradition, partially for my Dad, partially to watch the NASCAR race, and partially for the trip. I have memories of camping with my family and some of my brothers, as well as my husband and my own children, going back for many years. During the day we could all relax, sightsee in the area, swim, go to the racetrack, relax, whatever. At night everyone could sit around the campfire, talk, and make S’Mores. This year is a little bittersweet, as my brother LB2 can’t be there. He isn’t just one of my younger brothers, he’s my friend. And every year now for a good ten years, my brother has handled the campfire on our annual family camping trip.

Early each evening he gets the campfire started.

HERSHEY'S CAMP BONDFIRE

By nightfall the campfire is burning steadily.

HERSHEY'S CAMP BONDFIRE

This is the time when everyone relaxes and unwinds.

HERSHEY'S CAMP BONDFIRE

HERSHEY'S CAMP BONDFIRE

HERSHEY'S CAMP BONDFIRE

And of course we make S’Mores. What’s a camping trip or a campfire without S’Mores?!

The other day my oldest son and I were talking about our upcoming trip. Despite the fact that the size of my extended family is smaller I’m still going. My brother LB2 is hoping that he and his family will be able to join next year. In the mean time we’ll do what you’re supposed to do around a campfire. Talk and laugh, share memories, remember memories and make new memories. When I think of our family campfires, memories come flooding back. Hunting for perfect sticks for making S’Mores in the dark, because we hadn’t thought to do it in the light. My brother mooning us. Me mooning my brother. Campfires so large that they burned through the night. My oldest son getting scolded and told to go to his room, to which he replied “it’s not a room it’s a camper”. Late night Walmart runs down a mountain to buy more Hershey’s so we could make more S’Mores. (Speaking of more Hershey’s, did you know that Hershey’s makes more than 500 million Hershey’s Milk Chocolate Bars a year!) Talking smack about our favorite race drivers. Talking about our hopes and dreams for the future. This year will be a little bittersweet but on the other hand it isn’t forever, and we can remember all of the past years campfires and the memories from them. See the campfire doesn’t last forever, but the memories do.

HERSHEY'S CAMP BONDFIRE

We don’t have a fire pit or anything in our yard so we tried an experiment this week – Micro S’Mores. Microwave the usual ingredients for 15-20 seconds. It isn’t perfect but it did the trick and gave us the S’Mores flavor we had on our mind after the talk of all of the campfire memories. We’ll be making them the proper way in a little over a week.

Hershey’s is hosting CAMP BONDFIRE on their Facebook page throughout the summer. Now through September 7, S’mores fans nationwide can visit CAMP BONDFIRE at the Hershey’s Facebook page (www.facebook.com/hersheys), an interactive Facebook application where families will discover new ways to “bond” around the campfire and create S’mores-inspired memories all summer long. CAMP BONDFIRE will also offer weekly tips, stories and activities focused on a variety of themes and encourage fans to join the fun by registering to be a “Camper of the Week” for a chance to win outdoor prizes like a backyard fire pit. Campers can also capture their own memories and share their photos in the Fireside Memory Book at CAMP BONDFIRE. While on the Hershey’s FAcebook page S’Mores lovers will be happy to find a printable $1 off coupon towards their next purchase of two packages of Hershey’s Milk Chocolate bars.

Does your family ever gather around a campfire and make S’Mores? Do you have a favorite memory?

This post is part of my participation in the HERSHEY’S CAMP BONDFIRE campaign with The Motherhood. As always any personal opinions expressed are my own.

GIVEAWAY – Hershey’s Track And Field Games 2011

Hersheys Track And Field Games Logo

When i was growing up everyone played outside. Outside was where the fun was. We played everywhere – in our yards, on the streets, in the woods, anywhere we could. We had a blast and looked forward to being out there. Punishment truly was being grounded and having to stay in your room. You couldn’t see your friends there, and you couldn’t have fun exploring and playing outside. These days, lots of kids prefer to be indoors, watching television or playing video games. I’m thankful that while my oldest son does like those things, he likes being outside just as much or more. As parents it’s our job to encourage our kids to get outside and have fun. It’s good mental and physical fitness and something they need to be healthy. Hershey’s Track And Field Games are a great example of a program designed to help kids get active and learn life lessons.

ABOUT HERSHEY’S TRACK AND FIELD GAMES

Since 1978, The HERSHEY®’S Track & Field Games has helped more than 10 million children get active and learn valuable lessons such as sportsmanship and hard work. Now in its 34th year, HERSHEY’S Track & Field Games hosts thousands of boys and girls, ages 9 to 14, in nearly 4,000 North American communities. They will compete this spring and summer in track and field events ranging from the standing long jump and softball throw to a variety of running and relay races – and all at no cost of entry. All you need is a pair of shoes.

To program culminates each year with the HERSHEY’S Track & Field Games North American Final Meet in Hershey, Pa. Held each year in August, the North American Final Meet hosts 450 outstanding young participants in a fun and exciting, all-expenses paid weekend trip to Hershey. During the weekend, participants tour the world’s largest chocolate factory and visit Hersheypark amusement park, among other exciting activities.

Nine-time Olympic gold medalist Carl Lewis and Olympic decathlon legend Rafer Johnson will again return as HERSHEY’s Track & Field Games ambassadors in 2011.

To further encourage physical activity among kids and families, Hershey is teaming up with the Nike Reuse-A-Shoe program to collect old, worn-out athletic shoes to be recycled into Nike Grind, a material used in creating athletic and playground surfaces, as well as select Nike products. Program participants will be invited to bring used athletic shoes to state and provincial meets, which will then be recycled into Nike Grind. A HERSHEY’s Track & Field Games playground will be awarded to a participating local community as part of the program’s work with Nike’s Reuse-A-Shoe program. Since its inception in the early 1990’s, Nike’s Reuse-A-Shoe program has recycled more than 25 million pairs of athletic shoes into Nike Grind. So lace up your children’s favorite pair of sneakers and get ready to cheer them on at the finish line!

To learn more about HERSHEY’S Track & Field Games, and to find a local event in your area, please visit www.hersheystrackandfield.com.

MORE INFO

Hershey’s Track And Field on Facebook

Hersheys Track And Field Prize Pack

WIN IT!

ONE winners will receive a HERSHEY’S Track & Field Games prize pack, which includes a drawstring backpack, visor, water bottle and rubber band shoelace stoppers.

HOW TO ENTER. (MANDATORY)

To enter visit the Hershey’s Track And Field Games site and then leave a comment here telling me if there is a program in your area.

BONUS ENTRIES – LOTS OF THEM!

1 – Leave a comment on MY NEW FACEBOOK PAGE stating which giveaway you’re entering. (sidebar)
1 – Subscribe to my newsletter. (sidebar)
1 – Subscribe to my RSS feed. (sidebar)
1 – Follow me on Twitter AND leave your Twitter name here. (sidebar)
1 – Blog about this giveaway, including a link here.
1 – Place my button on your blog. (in sidebar)
1 – Visit one of my other blogs – From Val’s Kitchen, Val’s Views, Game Review Network and Living With Special Needs – and leave a comment on any post there. Then return here and leave a comment on this post telling me one thing you read or learned there. (That’s two comments you need to leave for this bonus entry, one there and one here.) Unlimited entries for this method of entry.
1 – Visit HereAndThere.US (my Mom) and leave a comment on any post there. Then return here and leave a comment on this post telling me one thing you read or learned on my Mom’s blog. (That’s two comments you need to leave for this bonus entry, one there and one here.) Unlimited entries for this method of entry. Leave an additional comment for each entry you qualify for. You must have completed the first entry according to the instructions to be eligible for any bonus entries.

THE SMALL PRINT.

The winner will be selected using the “And the winner is” plugin. US addresses only please, no PO Boxes. This contest will end on Friday 04/29/11 at 11:59 pm est. If you’ve entered any of my giveaways before then you know that only comments containing all of the requested information will be eligible for entry. The winner must contact me to confirm they wish to receive the prize within two days of my email notifying them they’ve won. Good luck to everyone!

The prize pack, information and additional prize pack to give away were all provided by The Hershey Company through MyBlogSpark. This review has not been monetarily compensated and is based on the views and opinions of my family and/or self. Please note that the opinions reflected in this post have not been influenced by the sponsor in any way.

THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED.

Hershey’s Holiday Stocking Giveaway

What are some of the things you think of when you think of Christmas? For me it’s Christmas trees, decorative lights, stockings, and candy. Ever since I was a small child I received a stocking on Christmas Day. Generally it contained candy and maybe a stocking stuffer or two. It’s a tradition that my parents still have today, and one that we’ve adopted. We’re not alone in our tradition. According to a survey by the National Confectioners Association, 89 percent of adults will include candy in their winter holiday celebrations.

Hershey's Kisses Red For stockings we always put in our favorites, most of which are Hershey’s candies. My favorite is the Kit Kat, followed closely by Hershey’s Kisses. RB and TJ both love Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. For guests (and family) I always have a candy bowl, usually filled with Miniatures and Kisses. Do you know how many varieties of Kisses there are? I’ll tell you. Seven. Milk Chocolate, Milk Chocolate with Almonds, Mint Truffle, Caramel, Special Dark Mildly Sweet Chocolate, Cherry Cordial Crème and Candy Cane Mint. Anyway.

Hershey's Miniatures That’s pretty much the extent of how we incorporate candy into our holidays. This year, upon visiting the Hershey’s Kitchens, I learned of other ways to celebrate with Hershey’s. You can even use Hershey’s candies to decorate! I saw small wreaths and trees made out of Hershey’s kisses, they were amazing! And let’s not forget that you can use Hershey’s candies to bake all sorts of yummy treats. After all, forty percent of holiday candy is purchased for candy dishes, baking and crafting!

To view a complete list of Hershey’s holiday baking recipes and craft activities, visit www.CelebrateWithHersheys.com. Hershey’s complete seasonal collection can be found at retailers nationwide.

Hershey's Holiday Stocking Giveaway

WIN IT!

ONE winner will receive a Christmas stocking full of candy from Hershey’s including

  • Rolo Reindeer Cane (3.44oz)
  • Hershey’s Milk Chocolate Santa (1.2oz)
  • Hershey’s Cookies ‘N’ Crème Nutcracker Moulded Bar (3.5oz)
  • 1.45 oz Seasonal Hershey’s Kisses Brand Solid Milk Chocolate Santa Hat
  • Hershey’s Pot of Gold Truffles Sampler (1.05oz)
  • Reese’s Peanut Butter Trees (10.8oz bag)

HOW TO ENTER. (MANDATORY)

To enter visit the Celebrate With Hershey’s site and then  leave a comment here telling me something you’d like to try making.

BONUS ENTRIES – LOTS OF THEM!

1 – Subscribe to my newsletter. (sidebar)
1 – Subscribe to my RSS feed. (sidebar)
1 – Follow me on Twitter AND leave your Twitter name here. (sidebar)
1 – Tweet this giveaway with this message – #Win #Hershey Chocolate #Giveaway @valmg http://tinyurl.com/2w9gyvx
1 – Friend me on Facebook. (sidebar)
1 – Blog about this giveaway, including a link here.
1 – Place my button on your blog. (in sidebar)
1 – Visit one of my other blogs – From Val’s Kitchen, Val’s Views and Game Review Network – and leave a comment on any post there. Then return here and leave a comment on this post telling me one thing you read or learned there. (That’s two comments you need to leave for this bonus entry, one there and one here.) Unlimited entries for this method of entry.
1 – Visit HereAndThere.US (my Mom) and leave a comment on any post (except a giveaway post) there. Then return here and leave a comment on this post telling me one thing you read or learned on my Mom’s blog. (That’s two comments you need to leave for this bonus entry, one there and one here.) Unlimited entries for this method of entry. Leave an additional comment for each entry you qualify for. You must have completed the first entry according to the instructions to be eligible for any bonus entries.

THE SMALL PRINT.

US addresses only please, no PO Boxes. This contest will end on Friday 12/17/10 at 11:59 pm est. If you’ve entered any of my giveaways before then you know that only comments containing all of the requested information will be eligible for entry. The winner must contact me to confirm they wish to receive the prize within two days of my email notifying them they’ve won. Good luck to everyone!

THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED.

Hershey’s Better Basket Blog Hop To Support Children’s Miracle Network

I’ve known Connie Foggles online for quite some time. I was thrilled to have the opportunity to meet her in person at the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration last month. I haven’t included myself in tons of pictures on my blog (or anywhere else) because of my weight. It’s been that way for years, I just don’t like looking at myself in pictures. Which is why I was surprised that Connie knew me by sight. Anyway. Connie surprised me yesterday by sending me a virtual Easter basket. Now this wasn’t your average virtual Easter basket, this was a special basket.

The basket Connie sent me is part of the Hershey’s Better Basket Blog Hop, which is a campaign where Hershey’s will donate $10 per each blog participating to the Children’s Miracle Network. The Better Basket Blog Hop starts today and will end on April 4, 2010.

Thanks for including me in this Connie! To pay it forward I would like to give a virtual basket to the following bloggers.

Pat. @ Here And There

Chatbug Karen

Jennifer @ The Dirty Shirt

I hope you’ll take a moment to hop over to their blogs when you have a free minute and say hi. They’re all fantastic women.

Thanks again to Connie, for including me in this. And thanks to Hershey’s and the folks at Collective Bias, for putting the campaign together. You can participate if you like, just follow the guidelines below.

HERSHEY’S BETTER BASKET BLOG HOP RULES

  • Copy and paste these rules to your blog post.
  • Create a blog post giving a virtual Easter Basket to another blogger – you can give as many Virtual Baskets as you want.
  • Link back to person who gave you an Easter Basket.
  • Let each person you are giving a Virtual Easter Basket know you have given them a Basket.
  • Leave your link at BetterBasket.info/BlogHop comment section. You can also find the official rules of this #betterbasket blog hop, and more information about Better Basket with Hershey’s there.
  • Hershey’s is donating $10 per each blog participating to the Better Basket Blog Hop to Children’s Miracle Network (up to total of $5,000 by blog posts written by April 4th, 2010).
  • Please note that only one blog post by each blog url will count towards the donation.