Back to School Review: Part I – by Cara Potapshyn Meyers

It’s that time again! We’re heading back to school soon! Here are some items that will make the transition for both you and your child an easier one!


The NO CRUNCHES way to flat abs;

Mix & match 7 dynamic segments in a value-priced collection

Available Now!

Now that the kids are getting ready to make their way back to school, busy Mom’s will  reap the soul-nourishing benefits of yoga while sculpting a long, lean torso and a strong, supple back with this value-priced collection. A strong core means so much more than flat abs. A healthy core helps you stand taller, look leaner, and feel more energetic. Led by the inspirational Shiva Rea—called a “powerhouse yoga teacher” by the New York Times—these practices will energize, motivate and leave exercisers feeling more centered and alive.  Filmed at White Sands National Park and Kauai’s Limahuli Garden, this gorgeously shot DVD features seven mix-and-match yoga practices from the internationally renowned yoga instructor, plus the customizable Yoga Matrix. Select segments from three complete programs for a customized practice each time, focusing on the core, upper body, and lower body. Creative and highly effective, Core Yoga is an inspiring way to reshape your body and ignite your inner fire. 

As an avid yoga enthusiast, I am always on the lookout for more creative or interesting yoga DVDs to keep myself motivated. Core Yoga did not disappoint! The first time around, I decided to follow moves and segments that I was more familiar with. I got a great workout and felt empowered to go further by trying out some of the other segments. I loved the poses that helped strengthen my “core.” I had a fitness evaluation recently and one of my specific “problem areas” was a weak “core.” That is what drew me to this DVD. Not only was I able to practice a form of exercise that I love, but I was able to work on my “core” which everyone needs to be strong and stable. If you love yoga, as I do, you will definitely appreciate getting a great yoga workout, a strong “core” and a little extra “Mom Time” for yourself!

The DVD includes all three of Shiva’s critically acclaimed Creative Core DVDs: Creative Core Abs, Creative Core + Lower Body, and Creative Core + Upper Body.

Price: $16.99      Available now!        

Approx. 90 min. (7-mix-and-match programs)



with Coach Nicole

Designed to deliver fast results in less time by offering the utmost in customization and variety for people of any fitness level. Customizable plans combine cardio and strength training to burn more fat in less time. The DVD features a clickable, user-friendly, 28-day calendar that includes different combinations of workouts to help prevent exercise boredom.

More than 200,000 people have participated in “Coach Nicole’s” online boot camps on SparkPeople, which boasts over 7 million monthly unique visitors and 11 million members. Coach Nicole was also recently named Life Fitness and ACE’s top Personal Trainer to Watch and Fan Favorite. The 28-Day Boot Camp DVD has four workout segments and several bonus features, including recipes, tips to burn more fat, seated abs exercises, and much more.

Beloved by SparkPeople members and YouTube viewers alike for her encouraging, positive, and down-to-earth persona, coupled with her toned, real-person physique and clear cueing, Coach Nicole is known for fostering comfort and taking the intimidation out of exercising. In this DVD, she leads four fat-blasting, calorie-torching workouts that feature a variety of high-energy cardio intervals mixed with full-body strengthening exercises for maximum results. A standout for its versatility, the DVD allows you to follow the ever-changing 28-day ‘clickable’ workout calendar, or pick from 12-, 20-, and 30-minute workout segments to customize your own workout every day. Three intensity levels in each segment allow you to get started regardless of your fitness level and increase the challenge in a safe, progressive way. So get ready to trim extra inches, build lean muscle, and best of all, gain strength and confidence!

Although a “Boot Camp” DVD sounded a little apprehensive to me, after climbing rock walls on my son’s birthday party, I figured this DVD could certainly be manageable. And it was! I loved the “clickable” workout calendar and found the timed workout segments very convenient to fit into my daily schedule. Don’t be put off by a DVD with the name “Boot Camp” in it! It is great for any fitness level and sure to give you an energy boost just before the kids come home from school!

Bonus features: Select recipes from The SparkPeople Cookbook, tips to burn more fat, seated abs exercises to do at your desk, and access to FREE meal plans and SparkPeople’s online boot camp club.

Approx. 84 minutes Price: $16.99

Equipment needed: light hand weights and a mat


Grab a Scab






Moms, you know the drill. You buy your kids new school clothes and less than a month, week, maybe even a day later, they are ripped or worn. Now there is an easy solution to holes in the knees; Grab A Scab!

Scabs are permanent stick-on fabric patches that can be used to patch clothes or personalize clothing, backpacks, notebooks, water bottles and more. They are so easy to use – just peel and stick (no iron or sewing machine needed!)  And Scabs are durable; they won’t fray and they are machine-washable. 

My son and I tried a Scab on a worn (“loved”) part of his stuffed animal. We cut a coordinating Scab to fit the worn spot and now my son’s favorite stuffed animal can be “loved” even longer! Even when we wash him!

Not only will Scabs give your kids clothes a facelift- they can also be used to spread an important message to end bullying.  Grab A Scab features an “Anti-Bully Scab” and “Ellen Scab” which reads “Be Cool, Be Kind, Don’t Judge. For every purchase of the Ellen Scab, $1 will be donated to The Trevor Project, a non-profit organization focused on suicide prevention and creating inclusive environments for kids at home and at school. For more information, visit:

 Funky Monkey Snacks

If you want to complement your child’s increased fruit intake with fresh fruit like raspberries, blueberries, and strawberries, all of which have antioxidants and vitamin C, try freeze-dried Funky Monkey Snacks. These lunch box size snacks are a good fruit alternative—crunchy, bite-sized 100% real fruit snacks that are nutritionally equivalent to their fresh fruit counterparts and made with bananas, pineapples, apples, papaya, raisins, and açai. 

Funky Monkey Snacks are all-natural, real fruit, made using a proprietary freeze-drying process that creates “Fruit That Crunches!®” while retaining fruit’s natural goodness. Funky Monkey Snacks are 100% fruit with no added sugar, colors, flavors or preservatives. Each 1 oz. bag contains three servings of fruit, providing a delicious and nutritious snack choice that helps support healthy living. One 110-calorie packet retails at $1.99 for a 1-ounce bag.

For more information, visit


Note: Thanks to the above companies for providing sample products.  Cara Potapshyn Meyers and assume no liability relative to products reviewed in this blog.

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  1. One Response to “Back to School Review: Part I – by Cara Potapshyn Meyers”

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