Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Summer Wasn't Perfect, and That's Okay.

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In Florida, Summer easily sticks around until the middle of October -- but in most parts of the country (and especially on the Internet), it's winding down. Bloggers and those on social media everywhere are showcasing the last of their super fun summer activities, creative crafts, and amazing vacation photos.

All summer we have been quietly living our lives here at the Hill house. We've gone to the beach, hung out at the pool, house-hunted (still no luck) and I was fatigued and sick with the nausea that accompanies the first trimester (in case y'all forgot, I'm pregnant lol).

Every season, I make a declaration that it's going to be the BEST ______(summer, Christmas, vacation, etc) EVER!! I set my expectations SO HIGH because I want everything to be just so perfect that my kids will carry the memories of their magical childhood throughout life (and so I will be remembered as an amazing, loving mother). It's a curse, really. The truth is, nothing is perfect. Sometimes we have an awesome time, sometimes we have a good time, sometimes we have a just-okay time, and sometimes it straight up sucks (like one trip we took to the beach this summer).

As I slowly release those unrealistic expectations of perfection -- I am realizing that it's okay to just be together. It's okay that my blog doesn't showcase an awesome new craft or activity or perfectly decorated room every day. It's okay that I haven't been on Instagram for the whole summer. It's okay to just live our lives peacefully and, dare I say, even predictably at times. I don't need to make every single moment of my child's lives pure magic -- because they are happy just being kids. They are happy that their mama and daddy love each other and love them and there is food in the fridge and days at the pool and dinners together and warm clean beds to sleep in. These unrealistic expectations of perfection are completely self-imposed. The guilt I sometimes feel at not meeting them only serves to steal the every day wonderful moments I risk missing while I'm waiting for (or stressing over) the picture perfect ones.

The kids aren't wringing their hands about the perfect summer or wondering how they will fill their days with amazing, perfectly constructed crafts or Pinterest-perfect recipes to prove their days were awesome. They're just happy to live, play, learn, create, and be.

And I could learn a lot from their example.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

#AirKingU Twitter Party! $300 in Prizes! -- US Only

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 If you're following me on Twitter (and I hope that you are) you know that I've partnered with Air King Ventilation for a second year! Air King is dedicated to educating the community about climate change and what's a better time to 'school' people on their partnership with ENERGY STAR® and what we can do to save energy and MONEY than back-to-school season! 

I'm hosting a back-to-school edition Twitter Party at #AirKingU!

When: Thursday, August 28th, from 1pm-2pm (Eastern!)

Where: On Twitter, using the hashtag #AirKingU

Who:  Please follow your HOST(s) @HillHouseRock and our AWESOME SPONSOR: @AKVentilation

What: We'll spend the hour gettin' our learn on with Air King -- they'll educate us about the ENERGY STAR® program and ways we can take steps to help the environment, beginning with signing the ENERGY STAR pledge! Also, Air King is generously giving away some FABULOUS prizes!

How: RSVP by submitting your link below (scroll down), then join us on Twitter under the hashtag #AirKingU to participate in the discussion. Those who have RSVP'ed and are participating in the discussion with the hashtag are eligible to win! Eligible to US residents only. You must have RSVP'ed and be participating to be eligible to win prizes!

Prizes: Air King is generously giving away:

FOUR (4) $50 Visa Gift Cards throughout the party to eligible participants.  
GRAND PRIZE:  $100 Visa Gift Card! 

RSVP: Please RSVP by entering your Twitter name in the name field and your Twitter URL in the URL field below. Then, RT the tweet below to let us know you're joining us!

Disclosure and Rules:

This Twitter Party template is the creation of Tara Hill© I am being compensated for my participation in this party. Air King Ventilation is a client of mine and the sponsor of this event. Open to US residents only. Twitter party is from 1pm to 2pm (Eastern) on Thursday, August 28, 2014. Prizes are chosen at random (random.org) from all eligible participants who have RSVP'ed and are abiding by these terms. Winner(s) must respond to public announcement within five (5) minutes to the Twitter account of @HillHouseRock or will forfeit their prize and another winner will be chosen. Participants must be tweeting during the party hour with the hashtag #AirKingU to be eligible for prize. Only ONE account per individual can participate in the discussion to be eligible to win unless a "Twitter Jail" account is disclosed and being used due to inability to participate under a user's original account. You must be following hosts and sponsor to be eligible to win a prize. Any other questions can be directed to hillhouserock@gmail.com

Monday, August 11, 2014

CLOSED: WINNER SELECTED {Giveaway} Sign the ENERGY STAR® Pledge with Air King -- You Could Win a $50 Gift Card!!

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Disclosure:  I'm providing PR services for Air King and am being compensated as part of this promotion. My opinions are entirely my own and all information provided is true to the best of my knowledge.

Lately, I've felt inspired to only support companies and campaigns that fit our family's values. Imagine my delight when Air King Ventilation contacted me to help them raise awareness of climate change and their partnership with ENERGY STAR®­ to reduce greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs)! So, I'm partnering with Air King who will be 'schooling' us on ways we can save energy and money!

I love incorporating 'green' products in our household whenever possible and making small changes to create a greener world! Air King is going to help all of us do that by sending us to school! It's back to school time for the kids -- so Air King is running with this opportunity to 'school' us on how we can save energy, reduce our carbon footprint, AND save money by using ENERGY STAR® qualified products in our homes and taking steps to save energy in other ways!

We're calling it #AirKingU -- because at the end of this giveaway and Twitter party on Augst 28th, we'll all be making more educated choices about how we use energy! Remember that hashtag, because we'll be using it for our upcoming Twitter party!

This isn't the first time I've teamed up with Air King. You may remember our very successful social media campaign and Twitter Party from last year! Since then, Air King has won TWO more prestigious ENERGY STAR® awards for their amazing work at reducing climate change with their ENERGY STAR qualified products. They are also passionate about educating the public on steps they can take to reduce their carbon footprint and save money on their energy bills using ENERGY STAR® qualified products! 

Who is Air King?
Here's a refresher course on who Air King is and what they do!

Air King Limited provides excellent quality ventilation products for our homes and businesses at a great value -- while also making a huge impact to reduce our carbon footprint and reduce energy costs. Basically, they make products which are essential to our homes and businesses, such as exhaust fans and range hoods (among other products!). Air King's main mission is to make homes healthier, more comfortable, and more convenient -- and have exceeded those goals for over 40 years!

Air King wanted to do more, though. They wanted to impact generations to come by providing products that would reduce the carbon footprint of homeowners across the nation and reduce greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs)!  That's why they've partnered with ENERGY STAR® to offer a wide range of qualified products that reduce greenhouse gas emissions, use less energy, and save you money!  Air King offers many products that meet ENERGY STAR's quality standards for earning the blue and white label most of us recognize!

Air King Limited has done such an incredible job reducing greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs) through their ENERGY STAR qualified products,  reaching the community, and raising awareness of this important program -- that they've earned the coveted ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year award for three years and counting! Their passion for providing quality, energy efficient products and educating the public on reducing their carbon footprint makes them a leader in ventilation products for homes and businesses.

Photo courtesy of Air King and used with permission from their Facebook Page

Don't worry -- no pop quizzes, but it's good to know!

ENERGY STAR is a voluntary program from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) that helps individuals and businesses save money and protect the environment through superior energy efficiency. You may recognize the label from some of your appliances or products you've purchased! ENERGY STAR qualified products that receive the label have been independently certified as using less energy. In addition, they save money on electric bills and help protect the environment by reducing one's carbon footprint, which helps fight climate change. Now you're going to look for that label around your house, right? I know I did! Please take a moment to read more about the ENERGY STAR program here!

Get Ready to Ace This! 
Okay, it's not a test but you can earn some extra credit!

So,  you may be wondering what you can do to help Air King Ventilation in their partnership with ENERGY STAR to help reduce your carbon footprint, help reduce greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs), slow climate change and save money by using ENERGY STAR qualified products. We can all do our part by pledging to make our homes more energy efficient and by rethinking the products and appliances we use every day!

It's as easy as A-B-C and 1-2-3!

1. Agree to make small changes in your home to fight climate change!Sign the pledge below as your first entry into the giveaway.
2. Below the pledge, enter the Rafflecopter giveaway to be eligible to win a $50 Visa gift card for back to school or to improve your home's energy efficiency!
3. Commit to following through on those changes and telling some friends!

Even though I am not eligible for the giveaway, I took the pledge too! It only takes about two minutes and I feel so good to be doing my part to help the environment by changing a few simple things in my home!

Please note: taking the pledge is a mandatory entry in the random giveaway. However, your pledge answers have no impact on your chances of winning, so please answer honestly! 

Don't forget to enter the Rafflecopter giveaway after signing the pledge to be eligible to win the $50 Visa Gift card! 

One lucky earth-lover will win a $50 Visa Gift Card for signing the ENERGY STAR® pledge.  Loads of bonus entries below!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Terms and Conditions: Open to US residents only. Giveaway is open  from  August 12, 2014 to 11:59pm on August 26, 2014 EST. Air King Limited is sponsoring this giveaway as an ENERGY STAR® partner. ENERGY STAR® is not affiliated with this giveaway. One winner chosen at random through Rafflecopter will receive a $50 Visa Gift Card.  You must sign the ENERGY STAR pledge on this page or through Air King's Website to be eligible for the prize. You must provide accurate information. Winner's information will be shared with Air King Limited only for fulfillment of prize. Winner has 48 hours to respond or will forfeit prize and another winner will be chosen. Prize is fulfilled by Air King Limited, not Hill House Rock. Hill House Rock holds no liability or responsibility in fulfilling the prize. Twitter and Facebook are in no way associated with this giveaway.