Not In Jersey: October 2017 October 2017 - Not In Jersey

October In Review

Tuesday, October 31, 2017


Why yes, it is the last day of October! Here’s a look at our month with Shoes To Shiraz and her monthly Month Review in Numbers Link Up!

Month Review In Numbers

Days It Took Me To Switch My Calendar To October – 23

Days The Kids Were Off From School – 5 for Gabbie and 6 for the boys, plus 2 half days and one late start.

Days We Dog Sat – 4

Holidays Celebrated – 2:
Sukkot | Simchat Torah

Pumpkins Purchased – 5

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Posts About Travel – 2:
San Diego | Chicago

Reviews Posted – 4:
prAna | Rack from Cave Tools | Ribbet | BRÖÖ

Books Reviewed – 4

Items Checked Off Our Fall Bucket List – 5
Drink Apple Cider | Pumpkin Patch | Decorate Sukkah | Make Chili | Make Soup


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Items In My October Picture Folder – 308

Pictures Shared On Instagram – 15

Total Blog Posts – 18

Happy Almost November!


How To Share And Show Off Your Perfect Photo

Monday, October 30, 2017

How To Share And Show Off Your Perfect Photo

This summer, back when we were in Cleveland, I somehow managed to take the perfect photo of my 3 kids together. They were playing on a slide and sliding into each other and having fun doing it. Here is the photo:


I knew right away that it was a great photo, and because I use my camera for most of my photos, I uploaded it to my computer right away, rather than keeping it hidden from anyone other than myself. But how else could I share, show off, and enjoy this photo?

1. I shared it online, of course. I don’t post all my photos to Instagram, but this one made the cut, and it was shared in my blog post about our day in Cleveland.

2. I set it as my computer background. Since I have my desktop and laptop connected by using the same Windows login, it shows up on both computers!

3. I had it framed and printed! It’s been awhile since I’ve ordered prints of any of my photos, although I sometimes think about doing so. Once in awhile I create books that feature our travels and this photo would be featured if I got around to making a book of our summer trip. Since none of that has happened yet, when I was contacted by keepsake and asked if I would try out their app that allows you to effortlessly print, frame, and deliver your photos, I knew right away that I wanted to order this photo!

Keepsake is available both as a web version and as an app. I used the web version because my photo was saved on my computer, but I love that both options are available. On the site, when you choose “Start Framing,” you are able to upload your photo from your computer, Facebook, Instagram, Dropbox, or Google Drive. You can crop your photo, and then click on “Select a Frame” to see all of the framing options.


What I really liked about the site is that you can see the your photo featured in all of the available frames!


The frame sizes range from 7” x 4 ¾ to 24” x 16” and come in a variety of colors and styles. Most include a mat as well. All of the frames are handmade in the USA from high quality hand-cut wood and the prints are made using high-end industrial printers to ensure premium quality.

I decided to go with a medium sized frame which measures 13 ½” x 9 ¾” because I was not sure if I would have a space to hang up the largest size frame. I was torn between the Carolina Blue and the Carolina White. Both have a rustic detail that I like a lot, and I might have chosen the blue normally, but I thought my picture looked best with the white.


This is a screenshot of how my photo would look in the frame as I considered whether to choose it.

My frame arrived packaged well and included a wire across the back for hanging it, along with a nail and hook, which made me happy because I did not need to search for any supplies – I could hang my new frame right away! At checkout, you are also able to specify if you want a standing frame instead.


My kids liked it too!


And here it is, hanging in my living room!


Now, whenever anyone comes over, they are sure to see my perfect photo.

Want to order your own framed print? You can take 15% off with the code nij15 at Keepsake right now!

I was provided this product in exchange for my review. No other compensation was received and all opinions are my own.

How do you share your photos?


Hooray, It’s Friday! Featuring BRÖÖ Craft Beer Shampoo and Conditioner

Friday, October 27, 2017


Time for some random Friday rambles!


Today the boys are home from school and all three kids are off on Monday due to conferences. I got to read their report cards yesterday and I am so happy that all three are doing great – to the best of their individual abilities! Gabbie pulled off all A’s yet again, Zachary is keeping up with his work without the extra help he has needed in the past, and Simon seems to be off to a good start in his class too.


I received this product for free from Moms Meet, May Media Group LLC, who received it directly from the manufacturer. As a Moms Meet blogger, I agree to use this product and post my honest opinion on my blog. The opinions posted are my own.

So, did you know beer actually does make everyone better looking??

Beer has long been one of the home remedies that people used to nourish their hair and BRÖÖ uses all-malt, freshly-hopped craft beer as the main ingredient in their clean, ultra-performing hair care and grooming products. Their product line is full of B vitamins, proteins, and minerals which make hair shiny, healthy, and strong, and their products are free of sulfates, parabens, silicones, and other harmful chemicals.

Malted barley in beer nourishes, repairs, and protects hair, while the hops in beer are full of essential oils that protect hair from environmental stressors. I was a little concerned that I would smell like beer when using this shampoo and conditioner, but instead my hair smells great! The thickening shampoo and conditioner is made with notes of orange, grapefruit, and vanilla cream. It is infused with extracts of aloe leaf to soothe and is topped with caffeine to wake up your hair follicles!

Lucky for me, my hair is already thick enough that using thickening shampoo and conditioner is not usually on my radar. However, BRÖÖ leaves my hair soft and manageable, which makes me happy. I have also tried the moisturizing version of their shampoo and conditioner and my hair felt less dry immediately (plus it smells like flowers!).

BRÖÖ is sold at Walmart. To find one near you, visit: or order online at Walmart: You can also save $1.00 by printing this coupon!

For more info visit:
site | facebook | twitter | instagram



I finished knitting this scarf. I think I like how it turned out!



I received an awesome box of socks from Living Royal! Visit me on Instagram to see more of them!



In case you missed it, this week I posted about:

mugrack  ribbet  chicago


Have a great weekend!


Linking Up With:
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Chicago By Foot

Thursday, October 26, 2017


You may remember that we traveled to San Diego while Zachary was away at camp. Our trip was immediately followed by camp visiting day, so we flew to Chicago, stayed two nights there, and then drove to camp in Wisconsin to see Zachary. We had already visited Chicago earlier in the summer, but there were just a few places I wanted to check out while we were there again – namely the Buckingham Fountain and Cloud Gate, aka The Bean. We mainly walked around and I took some photos that I want to share now!


What’s Up Wednesday–October

Wednesday, October 25, 2017



What’s up everyone? It’s time for another break down of the month in questions from What’s Up Wednesday!

1. What we’re eating this month…

Vegetarian Chili

Too much Starbucks

I made this roasted potato dish earlier this month.

Last night I made Jenna’s Taco Soup. It was so good!

2. What I’m Reminiscing About…

Maybe the summer because I’m almost done recapping our summer travels.

3. What I’m Loving…

I was finally able to download the newest iOS on my phone and when I did so, I freed up 6 GB! Now my phone doesn’t tell me it’s full all the time!

4. What We’ve Been Up To…

We’ve been enjoying the fall weather and activities.


5. What I’m Dreading…

Dave is traveling in a few weeks and I hate that! It’s obviously easier than it used to be when the kids were younger, but it’s still difficult when he’s not here.

6. What I’m Working On…

Getting back into regular exercise and eating better. I really need some inspiration!

7. What I’m Excited About…

A new Home Goods store just opened here so I’m planning to check it out today!

8. What I’m Watching / Reading…

I’m still rewatching Friends. In the later seasons there are definitely episodes I don’t even remember that well! As for regular TV, I watch The Good Doctor, This Is Us, Chicago PD, Chicago Fire, and Grey’s Anatomy – although it bores me. I think Chicago Med starts up again soon too.

For what I’m reading, you can find my most recent reviews here.

9. What I’m Listening To…

Nothing special!

10. What I’m Wearing…

Fall clothes, if possible! The weather is still fluctuating over here.

Outfit from prAna

11. What I’m Doing This Weekend…

It’s conferences Friday and Monday so the boys are home both days and Gabbie is off Monday too. Gabbie has a Bar Mitzvah party on Saturday night and a Bat Mitzvah service project on Sunday morning! Then there is a tour of Jewish places in Kansas City Sunday afternoon. It’s really for the older kids, but we all want to go!

12. What I’m Looking Forward To Next Month…

My birthday! I am getting old, but not old enough to dread a birthday, I suppose!

13. What Else Is New…

We watched a dog this past weekend. He was a cutie. Of course, I would probably say that about any dog!


Bonus Question: What Is Your Favorite Thanksgiving Side Dish?

That’s right, Thanksgiving is next month! It will be the first time in a few years that we aren’t going to be with family. My favorite side dish is stuffing!


What’s been up with you lately?


How I Create Free Pinnable Images Using Ribbet

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

How I Create Free Pinnable Images Using Ribbet

Earlier this year, I started including pinnable images on many of my posts in the hopes that they would be shared on Pinterest. I used picmonkey for creating these images. However, recently picmonkey began requiring a paid membership in order to save any edited photos created on their site, whether saved to your computer or to the site – they used to only require payment for use of their advanced features, and later only if you wanted to save to their hub. Because I love free programs, I searched for one that is like picmonkey but does not charge, and I found Ribbet. I would have to say it is not as advanced as picmonkey, but it does allow me to create my images for Pinterest the same way I did on picmonkey. Here’s how I do it:

From this screen, click on Home on the top left.

Notice how there is an option to open the last photo I was working on? In order to create a new image though, I choose one of the demo photos.

Choose Resize at the bottom of the left hand sidebar.

Uncheck Keep Proportions and enter the dimensions 735x1101.

Now you will find the photo you want to use as your background for your image. Many people suggest using a vertical photo for this purpose, but as long as you have a full version of a photo, it will be large enough to fill the space you need. You just may not be able to use the whole photo. At the bottom, choose Upload a photo and you will see it on the bottom toolbar.

Drag the photo onto the image.

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Using the lines around the new photo, drag it until it covers the whole thing.

At the top, choose stickers, and scroll down the sidebar to Geometric.

Choose the second shape, which is a rectangle.

Drag the rectangle across your photo and adjust its size to the place you want it.

You can change the color of the rectangle using the Properties square that comes up. I always click on the current color (black) which brings up an eyedropper tool. Then I choose a color from somewhere on the photo. This tool will match the rectangle to that color.

I use the Fade option to make the rectangle see-through. I usually fade it about 30-35%.

To add your image title, choose Text from the top of the page. At the bottom of the font bar, choose Load My Fonts, or use one of the ones Ribbet offers.

In the box on top of the Font options, type in your text. You will have to include a hard return where you want the text to split. Then click on Add.

Using the Text Properties box, center your text and change the color to black.

Now drag the text on top of your previously made rectangle. You will probably need to adjust the size of the text box so that it fits.

Now, click on Save and save the photo to your computer! Make sure you give it a name that matches the image you have created!

This image looks just like the images I was previously make using picmonkey. Ribbet does have a paid option, but I am thrilled that I don’t have to pay just to create a simple image like this one! What do you think?