• Giveaway: Tickets to see Mamma Mia!

Good Gossip: Engagement, baby news and sweet celeb husbands

Good Gossip slider 700Yes, we do love a little celebrity gossip but we also know it’s not cool to do something we teach our kids NOT to do. It’s never okay to indulge in stuff meant to humiliate or hurt another person. That’s why we came up with the concept of “Good Gossip,” which is celeb news minus any mean stuff. Have as much as you want and share it with your celeb-loving friends because this “dish” is all guilt-free.

colton dixonDo you love a good engagement story? We do, and we’ve got one for you. Remember Colton Dixon, who was an American Idol contestant during Season 11? He recently got engaged to his girlfriend of 3 years, Annie Coggeshall. He proposed to her at Disney World and hid her engagement ring in Cinderella’s slipper. The wedding also had a fairy-tale theme. The couple wore Mickey Mouse ears when they cut their wedding cake, and later they rode away in a Cinderella-style carriage. Congrats to the newlyweds!

cat deeley 2015Cat Deeley, host of the summer dance show So You Think You Can Dance, became a mom last month. She and her husband, comedian Patrick Kietly, welcomed a baby boy into the family. Congrats to the new parents!

chris stapletonI think we can all agree that we are LOVING this quote by country singer Chris Stapleton. When asked about how he gives credit to his wife for the success of his album, he said “I don’t give my wife any credit, she’s earned every bit of it. She’s the sounding board for everything. She’s a highly intuitive, wonderfully decisive and creative person. As a joke I say that she has great taste in everything but men.”

ian somerholder instagramIan Somerhalder, star of The Vampire Diaries, also had a sweet quote about his life and his wife to actress Nikki Reed, who starred in the Twilight movies. When asked about his last moment of bliss, he said “Every single morning I wake up. Every single day. Look who I get to wake up with. And we’re under kitties and dogs, and it’s just pure bliss. It has to be a conscious effort to wake up and recognize all the beauty in our lives. I’m grateful.”

Source: People magazine, January 25th and February 8, 2016 edition

Giveaway: Valentine’s Day Date Night Package


Good Monday morning, mamas!

Valentine’s Day is this weekend (Sunday, to be exact), so we’re giving away a LOVE PACKAGE in honor of the holiday of love.

Look at all the awesomeness the winner will receive:

♥ An overnight stay at Hyatt Place with her favorite person (and the lucky mama will be able to choose her night to stay; it doesn’t have to be Valentine’s Day!)

♥ A package of delicious Kyya Chocolate that includes a variety of their most popular bars, including 72.5% Midnight Hispanolia (with hints of burnt orange and dark cherry), 72.5% Ecuador (with hints of cherry), 50.3% Dark Uganda, 50.3% Uganda Sea Salt Almond, 33.3% Uganda Milk and 33.3% Uganda Milk Almond.

♥ A 60-minute Swedish massage from the Revive Medical Spa. Ahhhhhhhhh. We’re feeling relaxed already.

What’s not to about this package?!

ABOUT HYATT PLACE: Sometimes you just need to get away, but it  just doesn’t sound doable to leave town — and leave the kiddos — for several days.

That’s when a LOCAL overnight stay makes sense. You get away for the night, recharge with your husband (or your besties) and still make it to your kid’s events — or work — on Monday. The Hyatt Place in Rogers/Bentonville is the perfect way to “get away from it all” without going too far.

hyatt rogers bentonvilleWe’re  sure you’ve spotted this hotel from the interstate as you drive through Rogers (it’s at 4610 W. Walnut St). Their logo has the cute dots that we always notice when we’re over that way. We love the upscale vibe of this hotel inside and out.

While you’re relaxing at the Hyatt, you can enjoy the (coffee, beer and wine) bar, grab ‘n go items at the Gallery Market, the fitness center and more. And we know you’ll love your bright, airy guest room. Sleep late at the hotel, if you want, because the kids won’t be there to wake you up too early. When you do climb out of bed, you’ll be treated to a complimentary “A.M. Kitchen Skillet” breakfast at the hotel to complete your stay. Here are a few other luxuries:

  • Free Wi-Fi everywhere
  • Swiveling 42″ flat screen HDTV
  • Contemporary bathroom
  • Luxury skin and hair care
  • Mini-fridge

Click here to see more pics and read about what they have to offer.

The winning mama can choose which night she’d like to stay at the hotel (it doesn’t have to be on Valentine’s Day). Sound like something you’d like to win? We thought so!

NOTE FROM THE MAMAS: The Hyatt is offering some special Valentine’s packages in honor of the holiday of love this weekend! If you want to be sure and have a happy Valentine’s Day stay — along with some great perks thrown in to make it extra special — just give Mahdisen a call and she will hook you up! The main number is 479-633-8555

Thanks, Mahdi!

rp_kyya-300x199.jpgABOUT THE CHOCOLATE: And how about if we also include a Valentine’s Day basket of chocolate bars from an amazing Northwest Arkansas chocolate company? Kyya Chocolate is all hand made here in NWA and a portion of sales goes to orphans.

The owners are passionate about people — and chocolate!

The winner will receive a variety of their most popular bars, including 72.5% Midnight Hispanolia (with hints of burnt orange and dark cherry), 72.5% Ecuador (with hints of cherry), 50.3% Dark Uganda, 50.3% Uganda Sea Salt Almond, 33.3% Uganda Milk and 33.3% Uganda Milk Almond.

Click here to see some of the retail locations that now carry Kyya Chocolate.

revive medical spaABOUT REVIVE MEDICAL SPA: Revive Medical Spa offers a full range of medical, cosmetic, and therapeutic services, with the latest technology and knowledgeable clinicians and staff.

Located in Fayetteville, Revive serves the communities of Northwest Arkansas, Southwest Missouri, and Eastern Oklahoma. Revive’s massage therapists and estheticians personalize every relaxing service to each guest’s individual needs.


We’ve been there and the massages are AH-mazing. You will LOVE your massage.

HOW TO ENTER: To throw your name in the online hat to win tickets to win the package, click on the words “post a comment” below and tell us about a person you love. To help get you started: What’s special about them? Were they amazingly helpful during a hard time? Did they love you when you weren’t at your most lovable? What are their best characteristics?

You can also email your answer to us at giveaways@nwaMotherlode.com.

INCREASE YOUR ODDS OF WINNING: Help us spread the word about this giveaway by emailing your friends and family about the giveaway. We’ll give you an extra chance to win for every person you tell. Just be sure to put giveaways@nwaMotherlode.com on the CC line of your note so we can give you proper credit.

You can also earn an extra chance to win by signing up to receive the free email newsletter we send once a week.

Our newsletter subscribers get access to the good stuff, including exclusive giveaways (like this one), information about local events, local mom interviews, recipes and more. It’s delivered straight to your inbox so you don’t miss anything awesome. CLICK HERE to sign up. We won’t fill your inbox with info, no worries. We only send out newsletters when there’s something in it for you — and we know you’ll be interested in hearing about it.

BE SOCIAL: You can also earn extra chances to win by commenting on our Facebook page, following us on Twitter or following us on Pinterest. If you do any of those, just mention it in your comment or email so we can give you proper credit.

We’ll choose the winner on Friday, mamas! Good luck, lovely mamas! ♥

Mamma Mia Girls Night Out happens this Thursday!

If you want to be part of our fun Girls Night Out this Thursday, get your ticket today! We’re going to see Mamma Mia on stage at Walton Arts Center this Thursday, February 11, 2016. (We’re getting a group discount on the hog haustickets. Woo-hoo!) For details about the show, click HERE.

Also, meet us for a pre-show Happy Hour at Hog Haus Brewing Company, right across the street from Walton Arts Center. We’ll be upstairs in the private room between 5 p.m. and 6:45 p.m., and there will be appetizers, wine and lots of laughing. Then we’ll walk over to the theater and settle into our seats in time to see the curtain go up for the 7 p.m. show.

To get your ticket, call Rachel at 479-571-2719 to make arrangements. Be sure to tell her you’re with the nwaMotherlode group. Hope to see you there!

Mamma Mia GNO click for info

Mealtime Mama: Something sweet for Valentine’s Day


We’ve shared this Sunshine Cake recipe before, but it’s worth repeating in case you’d like to make something extra sweet for Valentine’s Day dessert.

It’s pretty and delicious!

{You are my} Sunshine Cake

vintage valentine's day card1 Yellow cake mix

3 eggs

1 can mandarin oranges (don’t drain)

1 large can crushed pineapple (don’t drain)

1 box instant vanilla pudding

1 container of whipped topping

Directions: Blend these ingredients together well: the yellow cake mix, three eggs and mandarin oranges, including the juice. I put my batter into two round pans to make a layer cake. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes (or until it springs when you press it). Let the cakes cool thoroughly. Thoroughly, mamas! If you don’t, you’ll end up with melty icing. Speaking of icing, you make it by hand mixing together the box of instant pudding (just the powder), the can of crushed pineapple with juice and a container of whipped topping.

This is an awesome treat, trust us!

Happy baking!

Devotion in Motion: When the week flies by

11 ¶ And do this, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep; for now our salvation is nearer than when we first believed.  ~  Romans 13:11  (NKJV)

By Bro. John L. Cash

Well, loyal readers, I hate to tell you this: I don’t have a column today. I apologize, but I just have not had time to write anything. And besides that, it’s been so crazy and “random” here, I just can’t think of anything to write.

Since I’m not writing a devotion this week, I thought I’d just give a day-by-day (and blow-by-blow) account of what’s been going on.

hourglassOn Sunday, I worked really hard, like all preachers do every Sunday. I didn’t have time to write anything.

On Monday, I went back to work at my day-job as a schoolteacher. I was really tired, like all preachers are on Mondays. My mental state was such that I didn’t feel like writing anything. So I didn’t.

On Tuesday, I really had intentions of writing something when I got home from work. We even got out of school early, because bad weather was on its way. However, when I got home, there was a storm, and the electricity went off.  I couldn’t write anything, because my laptop would work. After a couple of hours, the lights came on again. I don’t remember why I didn’t write something Tuesday night, but I must have gotten sidetracked.  Probably a bunch of other stuff happened. At any rate, I didn’t write anything.

On Wednesday, I was really, really tired again. That because I only got about 3 hours of sleep the night before, because the electricity went off in the middle of the night. Without power, my sleep apnea machine doesn’t work. Susan suggested that I go sleep in the guest bedroom. I kept waking myself up because I couldn’t breathe very well. I guess that’s why the doctor gave me a CPAP machine.

Anyway,  I got up at 4:30 on Wednesday morning. I took Mr. Dub, the-yellow-outdoor-cat to the vet on Wednesday morning to have him neutered. Then I went to school and worked all day. After school, I picked up Dub at the vet.  (He was in a very bad mood.) Then I got the church building ready for prayer meeting. I ate a snack, took a shower, and then went to the church to preach. After that, we had choir practice. When I got home it was late. So I didn’t write anything.

On Thursday morning, Susan and I went to St. Patrick’s Catholic School in Meridian, MS for Pastor Appreciation Day with a little girl from our congregation. It was a very nice morning. Then we drove 50 miles to our school jobs. At lunch, the Forest United Methodist Church brought me a sack lunch with a big cup of chili. (This is my first time to eat a Catholic doughnut and Methodist chili on the same day. I had hopes that some Presbyterians or Lutherans would bring me something for supper, but it didn’t happen.) At 3:15, my school day was over.

That afternoon, I ran some errands. Then I went home. (Mr. Dub was still in a bad mood.) That evening, I sat down to write my devotion, but then my mother called me from her assisted living apartment. She told me that she got the package of Ricola cough drops that I sent her from Amazon. We talked for about an hour. After that I sat down to write again. Then Seth, his fiancée Leanne, and Stephen Brown started playing Monopoly at the kitchen table. They were making a lot of noise. I was glad that my children were at home playing board games instead of in a dark alley stealing hubcaps or running an illegal methamphetamine lab. But I still couldn’t hear myself think. So, on Thursday, I still didn’t write anything.

Well, now it’s Friday morning, and my deadline is 2 PM. Again, I’m sorry I don’t have a column, but you see what kind of week I’ve had.  Somehow, I think you’ll understand; I’ll bet many (if not all) of your weeks are as interesting, varied, and as hectic as mine.

But it’s really OK with me when I look back on a good week that’s flown by so quickly.

When time goes slowly, I cherish the hours and savor my blessings. But when time goes by quickly, I can be happy for that, too. I rejoice that I’m another week closer to the time when we’ll dwell in the Kingdom of Heaven.

Time won’t be a problem then.

rp_john-l-cash-212x300.jpgDr. John L. Cash is the “Country Preacher Dad.” He was raised in Stuttgart, Arkansas, and has spent the last 30 years being a country preacher in the piney woods five miles south of the little town of Hickory, Mississippi. (On week days has a desk-job at a public school, where he used to teach Latin on closed-circuit-television.)  He and his lovely wife, Susan, live in the parsonage next door to the Antioch Christian Church (where Mr. Dub is walking like John Wayne, and is still in a bad mood.)  Their kids include Spencer (age 24), his wife Madeline (age 24), and Seth (age 21). You can send him a note at brotherjohn@ilovechurchcamp.com.