MAC Grants for Teachers, a Giveaway for Everyone

Here we are, about halfway to Fall Break. Yes, the East Coast is still learning when the bus comes and how to get to class, but here in Indiana, we are well into the groove. Last week I learned about an fantastic opportunity offered to educators here in Central Indiana and today I’m excited to share that with you.

PLUS, there’s a giveaway that involves school supplies.


MAC grants with URLMcDonald’s of Central Indiana is happy to announce that they are accepting applications for the 15th annual MAC (Make Activities Count) Grants program. This program is open to 6th, 7th, and 8th grade teachers in Central Indiana, and awards of up to $500 will be made.

Isn’t that kind of cool? Do you remember middle school? I know so many people who’ve blocked it out. I’ve always thought that teachers of this age group are a special kind of angel. I know that living with a middle school student can be challenging (or so I’ve heard). I can’t quite imagine spending my days with 25-30 of the them. But the teachers that I’ve met who teach middle school LOVE teaching middle school, and I’m so grateful for that.

This program allows teachers to think outside of the box (and budget constraints) and offer their students something they may not be able to experience otherwise.

For more information, please visit for additional information and an online application.


To help spread the word, McDonald’s of Central Indiana is facilitating a giveaway- one lucky reader will win a McDonald’s branded backpack, filled with some McDonald’s goodies, food coupons…and a $25 Target gift card.

To enter, leave a comment telling me something not-awful about your middle school experience. For additional entries, leave a separate comment for each time you share this post. Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and Google Plus sharing is encouraged, so that teachers can learn about this opportunity. Feel free to share on each platform up to once a day! Just be sure you leave a comment each time you do.

A winner will be chosen Sunday evening around 9pm, and the winner will have 24 hours to respond. Thanks for helping to spread the word!

Disclosure: I’m getting a prize backpack too, but all opinions about this program are my own.

Want to increase your chances to win? Check out other local #McDsIndyMoms and their giveaways!

Indy Home School

a Latte with Ott, A


Earth Fare Offers Local Goodness and Better Shopping (a review) and {A GIVEAWAY}

Updated: This giveaway is now closed. Thanks for playing- the winner has been notified and confirmed! Oh the grocery store. We all have to go there, all of the time, and it can be….it can be so exhausting, so overwhelming, so expensive, and so mentally draining that drinks are in order by the time you’re done. And then, just when you’ve recovered making all of those decisions, your six year old announces that you’re out of “his” cereal, and your nine year old laments that the yogurt is gone again (as the six year old licks that last of said yogurt off his own lips). And so it’s back to the store you go.

Earlier this week I had the opportunity to tour a different kind of grocery store- Earth Fare. We’ve had them here on the north side of town for a couple of years, and now there’s a location for south siders in Greenwood. As I toured the store, staff was busy getting everything for the July 16th grand opening. Amanda walked me through the store, section by section, and I was impressed with everything that I saw.

Earh Fare has some store rules, which make shopping easier and if you’re a label reader, a whole lot faster. The food rule are as follows:

  • NO high-fructose corn syrup
  • NO artificial fats or trans-fats,
  • NO bleached or bromated flour
  • NO artificial preservatives
  • NO artificial sweeteners
  • NO artificial flavors
  • NO artificial colors

And for fresh meat and dairy products? NO antibiotics and NO synthetic growth hormones.

Case in point? Check out this candy- it tastes just like it’s supposed to, only with all natural ingredients.

EarthFare Rainbow Drops


Earth Fare also focuses on fresh and local produce, and sources a lot of its stock from as close as 100 miles away. It’s good to know that so much of Indiana is represented in the store, and that food producers right here benefit from Earth Fare’s business model.

Take a look and see all of the goodness they are ready to serve up to you and your family:

The bulk dispensers dispense not only granolas, but also things like peanut butter (top).


There are a lot of items available for purchase, including nuts, granola, all natural candy, and nut butters. Customers are welcome to bring their own containers or use the ones provided in each area. 



The wellness area includes all kinds of over the counter remedies, skin care, and vitamins. There are products for children, as well as natural makeup options. 



Earth Fare specializes in carrying local products. Local is defined as being sourced from within a 100 mile radius of each store. This shelf offered a selection of local honey, granola, preserves and more. 

See the different shelving? The wood accent denotes Gluten Free items across the store.



Gluten free shoppers will appreciate the signage, as well as the wood shelving to denote the location of Gluten Free items throughout the store.

I could go on and on (there’s a deli! and a cheese center! and fresh meat! and a smoothie bar! and Kids Eat Free on Thursday nights!), but Earth Fare is one of those stores you have to see to believe. Just go and check it out- you’ll be happy you did. 


The folks at EarthFare really want you- yes, YOU (well, one of you), to experience Earth Fare for yourself, I’m giving away one $50 gift card to any Earth Fare location to one lucky reader. All you have to do to enter is leave a comment, telling me how Earth Fare’s Food Rule will make your shopping trip easier- maybe you’re a label reader, maybe you’ve got food allergies or sensitivities, or maybe you’ve committed to eating more locally sourced food. Whatever it is, you can tell me!!

For additional entries, you can share on social media (twitter, Facebook, Google+) however you like, and come back here and leave an additional comment for each share that you make, you may make one share per network per day of the giveaway. For each social share, be sure to link back to this post.

This giveaway will be open until Tuesday, July 22, 2014 at 9pm. Winner will be notified by email, and have 24 hours to respond. After that, a new winner will be chosen. Good luck!


Thanks, EarthFare, for the tour and for my giftcard, so that I can have some fun shopping too! 


You’re Not the Boss of Me: A Storytelling Arts Giveaway


I love story tellers. I have a vivid memory of a storyteller visiting my third grade class and telling us  the story “Caps for Sale”. To this day, that story is one of my favorites, and it think it has to do with how the story was delivered.

Families across central Indiana will get to experience a night of storytelling on April 11, 2014 at the Indiana History Center. Story teller Bill Harley will engage audiences of all ages in this special presentation. Wondering if your family would enjoy the performance? See how they like this video:

{The Giveaway}
I am excited to be giving away a family four pack to this special evening. To enter, leave a comment telling me your favorite children’s story.

For extra entries, share on social media. Be sure to link back to this post, and leave a separate comment for each one of your shares. This giveaway will be open through Monday, April 7, 2014 at 9pm. The winner will have 24 hours to respond to the email, if there is no response, a new winner will be chosen.

Good Luck and Thank You for Reading!

Tickets are $5 for children ages 5-12, $10 for adults **Children age 5 – 12 can show their Indianapolis Library card at the door to receive free admission.** Reserve your free seats and purchase tickets by calling 317-232-1882 or purchase online.

Disclosure: Thanks to Storytelling Arts of Indiana for providing my family tickets to this April 11th performance.