Friday, January 30, 2015
I was recently given the opportunity to try InkJoy pens. In a house with 11 people pens are sometimes hard to find. I admit as soon as the kids saw these they started arguing over who was going to get them. They were all disappointed when I announced these were mine and I wasn't sharing. Yes, I am greedy.
I was happy with how easy the were to grip and the ink came out smoothly with no clumps. I have noticed with colored pens they sometimes leave blotches, but not with InkJoy. They were almost like using a gel pen they were so smooth to use.
I used the different colors to color code our monthly school calender. I assigned each child a color and just outlined the squares. It worked out great. I also color coded a chore chart so each child knew what to do when.
I was very impressed by these and would recommend them to just about anyone. They would be really helpful for people who need to color code their busy schedules like most megafamilies.
I received this product free in exchange for a review. All opinions are my own.
When David was a baby I couldn't wait for him to speak his first word. It was duck, by the way. I thought it would be forever before he crawled and walked, but those times passed quickly. Soon he was off to school on the big kids bus, and in a blink of an eye he was in junior high. Now as he is about to turn 17 I realize in one short year he'll be an adult. Scary as it is he can get a tattoo or anything pierced he wants without my permission. I pray he doesn't, but still he could. With his upcoming birthday I was reminded how much I looked forward to all those milestones when he was little. I just had to write them in his little baby book I just knew he'd always cherish. Now I wish I could turn back time and make those milestones come just a little slower.
When he was a little boy we'd joke about all the little girls he liked. He didn't really like them, but it bugged him when we teased him about them. Now he really does like a girl, in fact he says he loves her. LOVE!!!!! How can my sweet little prince be in love? Just yesterday I was tying his shoes and he said he was going to marry me!
He's planning his future now. Apparently he was mistaken when he was 5 and wanted to be a proskateing firefighter. Now he wants to be some sort of computer designer. When he was a baby most of the people I knew didn't even have a computer. I am proud of him for having it all figured out, but dang it it's too soon! Slow down!
I want this next year to last at least three more. I'm not ready to let go yet. Yes I know I still have lots of kids at home, but when David moves on it will leave a big empty hole in our home I'm not ready for. In the past year he has matured so much and was suddenly taller than me and his father. It was hard to turn a blind eye to the fact time was slipping away from us.
Mother's this is just a reminder to hold out for the milestones. Don't rush them because all too soon you'll be putting your baby behind the wheel of a car or shopping for a suit for homecoming. When they say kids grow in a blink of an eye they aren't joking. It seems like forever until the day comes you see them as adults and then you realize how fast it really was.
Thursday, January 29, 2015
These are the #1 bestselling chalkboard labels for good reason. They are easy to use and there are literally thousands of things you can do with them. I decided to use them to make little signs for my nieces baby shower coming up. The little signs will be put into picture frames and set up at different stations. I was so impressed by how they turned out.
The liquid chalk marker was easy to start up. Three steps to get it working. It didn't run and was as smooth as a regular marker to use. The ink is bright white and really does look like chalk.
The labels come in 8 different designs so you can match them or mix and match for a different look. They are all a good size for labeling drawers, jars, cans, etc. I couldn't have been more impressed by the ease of use and the final product.
I would recommend this product for anyone who is into organization, needs to organize, or crafters. It's also great for doing little extras at parties!
I received this item free in return for a review. All opinions are my own.
You can find these here.
Some other ideas:
Now this is music from my youth! I was pleasantly surprised when I saw the songs on this record that were remade. It took me right back to being 15 and hearing some of them for the first time and now I get to share them with my baby!
Who knew that songs by Dr Dre, Coolio, and other great rappers could be made into gentle lullaby? I guess if anyone could do it right it was Jammy Jams. This is now the second record they blew me away with. I may or may not have put on my headphones and listened to this while I was getting some work done around the house. Hey, adults can like it too! It's relaxing and really brings new life to some older songs.
Jammy Jams have a talented team that can take songs no one would ever think of as lullaby's and turn them into something any mother would love for her children. I am so impressed by this brand and would recommend it to just about anyone with children. It's also good for adults who need some nice relaxing music. Another hit in my book!
I received this product free in exchange for a review. All opinions are my own.
Wednesday, January 28, 2015
This has become a common saying in my house. It always seems my kids do something funny or picture worthy when I don't have my camera so I yell WAIT! let me take a picture. Usually this involves someone hanging off something (they may or may not be crying in fear at the time) as I run to get my camera. I always wondered why my own mother didn't have pictures on me with my foot stuck in the crib bars, or my head stuck in a chair. I mean come on it's like she helped me right away or something. Did she not care enough about everyone else s amusement with my antics? Monets like these could have been missed. Gone forever:
Then there is the ever popular injury and sickness photos. I am so guilty of plastering these pictures on facebook. My kids clumsiness forever chronicled on the internet. Yes, one day when they look back and ask where'd I get this scar I can say look under 2012 in my facebook and you'll see. Here are some of my better ones, we'll call them staph stitches, and stupidity:
Then there are the pictures I post that I want to share my absolute joy with the world:
So I think I may just keep a camera around my neck from now on, just to make sure no one falls off anything or bleeds to death while they wait for me to grab my camera. Hey man, facebook wants to know!!!!!
A richly woven fantasy novel about the battle between the sexes and the struggle over ideology, power, and religion.
…..take a moment and imagine foot prints on the sand, the foam on the beach washes back and forth leaving a thin imprint that divides between thought and action. If killing awakens a flutter of butterflies in your gut, would you commit the crime?
On an island where women rule, Daniel starts a revolution. During the night of his grandmother's death, Daniel decides to run with his emotions. From that moment on, he ventures out from the city of his birth and meets the characters that will fashion his future; a warrior, a deserter, a man and a woman.
I am usually not a fan of fantasy novels, but this is a well written story with a plot that keeps the reader turning the pages. It hits on the readers every emotion and pulls them in as part of the story.
The characters are easy to bond with. All of them are well developed and bring something to the tale. The author beautiful depicts his imaginary world and brings it all alive in a way that makes it very believable. The descriptions are rich without being overdone. This is just an overall good read.
I would recommend this book to readers age 12-99. It is a very long book, but doesn't get boring.
I received a copy of this book free in exchange for a review. My opinions are my own.
Tuesday, January 27, 2015
I've never had too much of an issue with my kids phone usage and I guess I never really paid much attention to how much time they spent on them, until recently. My daughter is dating (scary I know) and I noticed that every time he boy friend is over she not only is on her phone, but his as well and visa versa. They play games, facebook, and do all the other things teens do on their phones. I would say they maybe spend ten minutes all together with actual conversation. What's with that? When I was dating her father we would spend hours together (phone-less) and then we would talk for at least another hour on the phone at night. When I say talk I mean with actual words!
The other thing I notice is when teen girls spend the night they do the same thing. 5 girls, one room, all of them on their phones. What's the point? That would have been like me spending the night at my friends house and talking to someone else on the phone all night...RUDE! We would stay up late, watch tv, steal parents beer, and play games. Okay, so I'm glad no one's stealing my beer, but still.
PUT DOWN THE PHONE!!!!
I often wonder if these kids who claim to be BFF's (Best friends forever) can even tell me the color of their friends eyes without looking at a profile picture on facebook (Because yes, they take pictures of just their eyes. I don't get it, but it's better than boobs).
Sometimes I think the only time Sara uses her voice is to yell at me. I love to talk. I talk way to much about anything I think of. I sometimes think I have ADHD. How did I raise kids with no communication skills outside of pushing buttons on a phone or keyboard?
Parents we need to start a revolution against this travesty against speech. I'm thinking of putting a box by my front door to have all phones deposited in upon arrival. How do you think that would go over? I bet Sara would find her voice real quick in protest. Or maybe that's the answer a vocal communication class in school that teaches things like: Hello, how are you. What's your sign. Do you want to hang out? ETC ETC.
Who's with me? Do you have any ideas to teach kids to uses their voises instead of fingers and to learn to speak to one another?
When Terry Treetops dad built him a tree house Terry was so excited, but he was lonely too. He needed friends to play with in the tree house. He goes on an adventure to find new friends and finds out finding them isn't so easy. In the end his heroism gets him exactly what he was searching for!
Tali Carmi once again did a wonderful job with this book. It's easy to read and captures ones imagination and keeps them reading. I love that there is a lesson in all her books and kids walk away smiling. The illustrations are great and follow along with the story.
Terry is such a lovable character and he is brought to life in this story. It's hard not wishing you were one of his friends. The animals depicted in the story are cute and tie in nicely. This is an all together well done book.
I would recommend this story for children between 4-8 years old. It is easy to read and follow along with.
I was given a free copy of this book to review. All opinions are my own.
Monday, January 26, 2015
It's no secret I am becoming a huge fan of Tali Carmi and for good reason, she is an amazing children's book author. Her books are simple enough for young children to read and enjoy, but well written enough that adults love them too. I could handle reading one of these books ten times in a night when my kids beg for me to read it just one more time.
In this adventure Abigail finds herself once again visiting her grandparents where she is given the magic bike that can take her to cool places around the world for adventures. This time she is going to the North Pole.
In the North Pole Abigail meets a new friend, Siku. He teaches her all about igloos and life in the north pole. While he's teaching her to ice fish a baby polar bear finds itself in trouble. Can Abigail and Siku save him?
This book shows children once again that kids can be heroes too, It teaches them so much about life in the north pole and the animals there. The illustrations were wonderful and drew the reader into the story deeper.
I would recommend this book for kids 4-8 and think it's easy enough to read for beginner readers.
I received this book free in return for a review. My opinions are my own.
Bash's dog Lucy coaches his team and does a really good job of it. Bash sometimes gets jealous when he has to share her though. When another team comes asking to borrow her it's the last thing Bash wants to do, but his heart wins over his jealousy.
Having a daughter that is visually impaired this book really hit home with me. I was touched on so many levels. It was nice to see a children's book that discussed service dogs, their jobs, and how they help children.
The characters in the book were well developed and came to life. The dialog was simple for children to read and follow. I can't say enough about the illustrations they were simply perfect and went along with the story. This book was just all together well written and good. I can't wait to see more in this series.
I really think the messages in this story will hit home with children. I also like all the positive messages in the story, acceptance, over coming obstacles, friendship, and jealousy. It's not easy to be a good children's book author, but Lisa and Michael Cohn have it down pat!
I received a copy of this book free in return for a review. All opinions are my own.
The new book, successfully funded by the Kickstarter, is “Bash and Lucy Fetch Jealousy.” It follows “Bash and Lucy Fetch Confidence,” a Mom’s Choice Silver Award winner and finalist, USA Best Book Awards. The Cohns, a mother and son pair wrote the first book in 2013 to overcome grief over the sudden death of their golden retriever, Lucy.
“This series, illustrated by the talented Heather Nichols, really helps Michael keep the memory of our dog, Lucy, alive in his heart,” said Lisa Cohn. “Michael, who loves helping write these books, rose to the challenge of integrating Tristen and his dog into the new ‘Bash and Lucy.’ He came up with the jealousy theme and created the entire plot line.”
The Cohns visit school children in Portland and via Skype, sharing their story and encouraging children to read and write. They also do “KidLit Chats with Michael,” during which book lover Michael discusses books with young children. Here’s an example: http://youtu.be/_D5PooWyPvc
In addition to Tristen and his service dog, featured in the book is Kickstarter backer Sniff Dog Hotel, which hosted a Dec. 7 book release party and fundraiser for the Oregon Humane Society (OHS). The Cohns raised $350 for OHS at the book release party, about the same amount they raised last year at their first release party. Another backer was the natural pet products company “I and love and you.”
“For us, this project is about giving back—through our OHS fundraisers, to dogs who give so much to us-- and the companies and students who have been so enthusiastic about our books,” Lisa added.
In “Bash and Lucy Fetch Jealousy,” Lucy helps coach Bash’s soccer team by kissing the kids and making them laugh, and even leads the team to the championships. But Bash is overcome with jealousy when Tristen (who has mild autism and epilepsy), says he wants Lucy to coach his Special Olympics team.
Said Doose, “My child, Tristen, who is intelligently challenged, was inspired to read by this book.”
Said Kirk Mango, National Champion, Hall of Famer, & author of “Becoming a True Champion” in an Amazon review, “In ‘Bash and Lucy Fetch Jealousy,’ authors Lisa and Michael Cohn take kids on a wonderful ride through a life lesson on jealousy, sharing, and compassion for others.”
Said Jessica Johnson in an Amazon review, “My kids and I love this book. It really shows all of the emotions that a person can go through, in the end it is a great conversation starter. The kids and I, talk about jealousy and what to do when we feel that way. They love that a little boy, younger then them, writes these books. It has really made them see that they can do anything in life that they want to. It is well written and thoughtful.”
For more information visit www.BashAndLucy.com.
Friday, January 23, 2015
Looking for the perfect home office pen? I've found it! The Minzos 4 in 1 turbopen has everything you need in one easy to hold pen.
First things first. When your pesky cat jumps up on your desk you can use the presentation pointer (laser pointer) to get them off your desk and out of your way easily. My cat took off like a bat out of hell when she saw that little red spot.
Kids come in claiming to have a sore throat? Use the handy led light to check it out. Once you see they are fine it's off to school they go. Wait they forgot to get you to sign a permission slip that's due today! No hunting for a pen just turn over the pen, lift the stylus cap off and you're all set to sign away.
The stylus works great on my phone and tablet. It was easy to use and hit exactly what I wanted it to, rather than everything around what I want. I was most pleased with this feature!
Seriously though, everything worked as promised and would be great for anything from a teacher to the president of a company. It is convenient to have everything all in one portable easy to use pen. The price is great too. This is definitely something to keep in mind for Father's day, especially for that hard to shop for guy. I can even see my husband being able to use this at his workbench in the basement.
You can buy it on Amazon here.
I was given this product free in return for a review. All opinions are my own.
Thursday, January 22, 2015
This is a book much different than what I usually read and review. It has the reader working with one of the women they choose. I picked Hannah who I have always admired, plus her section has the message I need right now in my life. Other biblical woman the reader can choose from is: Eve, Sarah, Hagar, Esther, Rachel, Leah, Tamar, and Naomi. Each has different qualities and leads the reader on a different journey.
Each of the biblical women take you on four journeys that are suppose to help you heal and grow. My first journey with Hannah really opened my heart and had me thinking. I remembered a time when I did just what they journey was asking me to do and then I was inclined to do it again. That journey was to let out all the sadness in my heart in prayer. The second journey is also in prayer and letting the praying woman in me rise! oh and did she ever rise! I won't get into details about all the journeys as I don't want to ruin it for anyone.
I am honestly changed by this book. I was blown away by how deeply it touched my soul and brought me closer not only to Hannah, but to God. I will be turning to this book from time to time when I need some of the encouragement it offers. I'm sure at some point I will have traveled the journey of each of these women in depth.
I would recommend this book to any Christian woman. It will help you heal, grow, and connect with God and the women in the Bible. This is a very well written book that had a lot of love and thought put into it and that flows from every page.
I was given a copy of this book to review. All opinions are my own.
Sometimes when my babies do something I'm like why don't they have a spot for this in the baby book? The first time baby puked on you would fit in perfect between first smile and first tooth. I guess the authors don't want to take away from the mushy mush milestones that everyone posts about on facebook. If I was to write a baby book though I'd call it the good, the bad, and the nasty! All us mothers know babies leak from everywhere and at some point you're getting it on you, so why not record it so one day your child knows what you went through! So here is the top 10 list of things I'd include in my baby book:
1. The first time baby played in their own poop
2. The first time baby peed on me
3. The first time poop oozed out of the side of the diaper on me
4. The first time baby bounced their head off a hard surface
5. First time baby bit your nipple hard enough to make you cry
6. First time baby dumps their food over their own head
7. First time baby tries to gouge out your eyes with their baby claws
8. First time baby clears a room with diaper
9. First smile that was actually gas
10. The first time you had to clean up a diaper explosion that required the throwing out of clothes (yours or babys)
My list may differ from others and there are about 100 more things I can add. If you were writing a real baby book what would you add?
Wednesday, January 21, 2015
What would you do if you had to keep repeating the worst day of your life over and over? Misty finds out when she makes a wish in a fountain accidentally awakening a nasty gargoyle. Now she has to convince her best friend Stanley they are repeating the same day and find a way to fix it!
I was so incredibly impressed by this story. Most preteen books are not even close to the quality of this one. It was original and fresh. I was intrigued from start to finish. Oh, and that finish! I even laughed at Misty's misfortune and then felt bad for doing so.
Misty and Stanley are great characters who make each other better. They compliment one another and make the story move along smoothly. I love the use of the gargoyle wishing well to make the magic happen and how his thoughts are thrown in from time to time for effect. Every character in the story is authentic and appealing. From the parents to Mrs. Herverty at the pool. Each character brings something to the story and leaves a piece of themselves in the readers memory.
The scenes are well written without being overdone and paint the picture of this horrible day over and over. The end is a rich blend of storytelling and magic which leaves the reader not only impressed, but filled with wonderment. I love the two lives twist at the end. This author has so much talent and I have no doubt will be a big name one day.
I would recommend this book to any
I received a copy of this book free for review. All opinions are my own.
About the author
Lady Jenniviere was like any other girl, until one day while tending her rose garden she came upon a bird with a broken wing. Speaking quietly to reassure the frightened bird, Lady Jenniviere wrapped him in the folds of her gown and carried the little bird inside where, using tape and popsicle sticks, she was able to set the broken wing. For the next month Lady Jenniviere and the little bird spent hours together in the garden. The little bird appeared calm and content so long as Lady Jenniviere was speaking. In an effort to reassure the bird, Lady Jenniviere told him stories. Some days she would read a favorite book. Other days she repeated nursery rhymes. Finally the time came when Lady Jenniviere ran out of stories to tell. She looked at the little bird and said, "Well, I am all out of stories. I wish I knew more, but I don't."
To her amazement the bird said, "You have been kind to me. Mending my wing, tending to me while I healed and telling me every story you knew. I will repay all you have done. I know where there is a magic ink well. If you retrieve the ink well, you will never run out of stories again." Once she retrieved the magic ink well, her feathered friend gave her a tail feather. He instructed Lady Jenniviere to use it as a quill. The moment she dipped the feather into the magic ink, it sprang to life. To her amazement the quill began writing its story on the blank pages lying on her antique desk. Lady Jenniviere loved the story and thanked the bird for his gift before he flew back to the forest on two healthy wings.
Soon, other birds heard of Lady Jenniviere's magic ink and brought her their tail feathers. Every quill revealed a different story--some scary, some happy and some just plain strange. Eventually, Lady Jenniviere had enough stories to begin sharing them with her friends. Books were bound and soon people everywhere were reading the tales the birds' feathers contained.
When Lady Jenniviere isn't visited by feathered friends, she spends her time with her family. She's married to her college sweetheart, Lord Mark of Tanglewood. They live in Texas and share their lives with three dogs and a talking parrot aptly named Story. In their spare time, Lord Mark and Lady Jenniviere enjoy traveling, philosophizing, remodeling their castle and meeting fans of Lady Jenniviere's Quill. Lady Jenniviere often visits her mother, Queen Debi of Hollytree. They are the best of friends and adore their time together.