Sunday, April 30, 2017

It's National Hairstylist Day

Alaina, on the left, does hair for both me and Rhonda

I'm not overly girly or dramatic when it comes to beauty.  I'm no good at knowing how to style my own hair and sometimes I don't even comb it.  If it takes more than fifteen minutes on a good day to do my hair, I'm out.  Ain't nobody got time for that.

I've been to many stylists and salons in the past.  Sometimes I'd get a good cut but it seemed that, most of the time, I just wasn't happy with the results.  I feel like some (not all) hairstylists just want to get you in and out so they can carry on with their next customer.  From personal experience, that's mostly with big hair chains and rarely with in-home or small business salons.

Not only is my bestie, well, my bestie but she's also my amazing hairstylist.  I've been going to her for nine months now and she's DaBombDotCom.  I haven't had a bad cut from her yet.  Alaina works from her home with a salon in her basement.  Even if we weren't good friends, I'd still go to her.  She gets me; she really gets me.
Alaina's in-home salon

Don't go in to Alaina's salon expecting to get in and out of there.  Be sure to allocate some time.  She is methodical and wants to make sure she's doing it right, so she takes her sweet time.  She's also a talker, so be prepared to chat.  I was in there just the other day to get my hair cut.  As it is, I haven't taken any selfies lately with the new 'do.  But I'm, once again, a pleased customer.

Sadly, all good things must come to an end.  Alaina is moving in just a couple of months.  And, it will no longer be a hop, skip and a jump for me to have her cut my hair.  I won't be able to see my bestie all the time and I don't know if I can't be bias now that I know how I like my hair done.

Sometimes my hairstylist even ties my shoes!

Do you have a favorite hairstylist?  If so, be sure to thank them for their hard work today.

Grandpa Hugs - Children's Book Review and Giveaway

I received book for review from Tommy Nelson.  The opinions within this post are of my own and I was not influenced in any way.  Please do your own research before purchasing products or using services.  Your opinions and results may differ.

Book Overview:

Grandmas are for kisses, and grandpas are for great big hugs! Grandpas are fun! They go on adventures, tell silly jokes, say funny things, and love to eat treats. This adorable board book celebrates how wonderful spending time with Grandpa can be.

My Review:

My maternal grandfather passed away just a few days after my 8th grade graduation.  Although I don't have any adult memories with him, I have very fond recollections from my younger years.  He was a strong, mighty man that invoked fear with his stocky build and gruff voice.  But he was a teddy bear at heart and showed me how much he loved me with his actions and words.

Grandpa Hugs is a book written for small children.  It is told in rhythmic form and is 20 pages of special things grandpas do for their grandchildren.  The adorable illustrations show grandfatherly animals such as monkeys, tigers, and elephants bonding with their grandchildren by reading, fishing, hugs, playing games, This book is darling and would be perfect as a way for a grandparent to read to their grandchildren and discuss the special bond they have.

Win It!

One person will win a Grandpa Hugs hardcover book.

*This is a Rafflecopter giveaway open to residents of the USA.*
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Edushape Look & Feel Baby Book - Review

I received product for review from Edushape.  The opinions within this post are of my own and I was not influenced in any way.  Please do your own research before purchasing products or using services.  Your opinions and results may differ.
Whether you are a first time parent, grandparent or a friend searching for the perfect
baby shower gift, Edushape is here to help. Edushape, a company that focuses on learning and fun, recently came out with the Look & Feel Baby Book.

This soft, easy-to-grasp book unfolds to bold black and white shapes on one side and smiling animals on the other. Each animal has a special feature for baby to explore- crinkles, ribbons, felt, strings, and squeakers. This product can be looked at as a book with pictures.  Or, it can be laid out straight so baby can see all the pictures on one side.  There are several short red strings so that this baby item can be attached to a baby's bed or car seat.

Morel Mushrooms: My Kind of Delicacy

Pre-cooked morel mushrooms

Here in the Midwest, picking mushrooms is a big deal this time of year.  So much so, that people are usually tight-lipped about where they can be found.  We are not a part of the elite and can rarely find them.  Knowing me, I could be stepping over a whole mess of them and not know it.  

My husband did go on one mushroom hunting trip this year.  He didn't find any.  But, he did come home with a plastic Easter egg with a dollar in it!  

People who have been lucky enough to find a bunch have been selling them for $35 a pound.  Grocery stores were selling them for close to $70 lb.  As much as I loooove morel mushrooms, I couldn't justify spending that much.  

My son happened to be fishing the other day when he found one lone shroom.  And, he happily brought it home to me.  One of the best gifts ever!  My husband fried it up and let me eat the whole thing....all by myself.

Then, the heavens parted!  My good friend invited us over to their house the other night and presented us with a big ole' heaping of mushrooms.  Jason prepared them in egg, flour, and cracker mixture then fried them up.  I had a full-on foodgasm.  

I'm drooling just looking at these bad boys.

Have you had any luck with morel mushrooms this year?
How do you like to prepare them?

Friday, April 28, 2017

My First Pedicure (But Not My Last!)

Many moons ago, when I was younger and had a credit card, I would get artificial nails with fancy designs at the salon.  Since then, I've not had a mani done and probably won't.  I don't like how my real nails get tore up in the process, and I have no doubt nail files were torture devices invented by the devil.
me with Felicia

Because I have the best Small Group gals ever, we got together last week for a mani/pedi session.  I only went for the pedicure.  Again, manicures aren't my thing.  

But now that I've had my first pedicure ever (at the age of 40 no less!) I have no doubt those will become a regular thing.  How did I not know about how glorious pedicures are before now?!
For one thing, it's like getting a massage and pedi all in one.  With the touch of a few buttons, the chair massaged my entire back.  If I hadn't of been with friends, I would've fell asleep in a New York minute.

I've got some fugly feet but wasn't afraid to show them.  The heavens parted when the pedicurist massaged, trimmed, and exfoliated.  I chose a dark green shimmery nail polish for color.

When it came to filing, I had a bit of a problem.  I had a hold of Felicia's arm till it almost went numb.  After the first foot, he had to give up on the second.  I swear, nail files will make me want to crawl a wall in no time flat.  They're pure evil, I tell ya.

I left that place feeling like I'd done been spoiled.  And I made the girls pinky swear me we'd do it again in three weeks.

This place even had the cutest little puppy.  Alaina, lover of all things animal, smothered it with love.

Have you ever had a pedicure?  If no, go get one NOW!  You'll thank me.

Blast Box - #BlastBoxChallenge Game Review and Giveaway

I received product for review.  The opinions within this post are of my own and I was not influenced in any way.  Please do your own research before purchasing products or using services.  Your opinions and results may differ.

 The creators of Wet Head have added to their collection of suspenseful fun with the introduction of Blast Box, a new exciting game with a Big Bang!

Blast Box is a fun family game, keeping kids and adults at the edge of their seat. Fill the box with balloons and use the spinner to determine how many pins to hammer into the box. If your pin pops a balloon, you are blasted out of the game.

I received the Blast Box game for review and knew it'd be right up our alley.  It's very simple and very suspenseful.  

Most of us cringe at the sound or thought of a balloon popping.  That's where the suspense comes in.  That, and not wanting to lose.

The Blast Box game includes a balloon inflator, 100 balloons, tie clips, plastic hammer, plastic pins, a spinner, and a plastic black box.

The game can be played with 2 to 4 players.  The first thing you need to do is inflate one balloon per player with the inflator.  The balloons are small, and the branded tie clips keep them from deflating.  Once you've done that, you place all the balloons under the black plastic Blast Box.  You then start the game.  Players take turns spinning the spinner to see what the indicated action will be.  For instance, if you land on a 2X spot, you will have to hammer in two plastic nails.  The spinner also includes a reverse and a skip space.

Each player will keep taking turns until there's only one balloon remaining.  The person with that last balloon is the winner.  Easy enough!  

The hammer and nails are made of plastic, and the nails do not have spiky ends.  So, there's no concern for spiking yourself or smashing a finger.  

Although I have not done so, you can download the free Blast Box app to record and share your game on social media.  The app also includes trivia questions and alternative game play.

Win It!

One person will win a Blast Box game.

*This is a Rafflecopter giveaway open to residents of the USA.*
a Rafflecopter giveaway

It's National Superhero Day

When you think of superheros, who comes to mind?  The Marvel or X-Men characters - Batman, Superman, Iron Man, Thor?  Or, do you consider a superhero to be someone who is ordinary but puts their life on the line?  I could use a superhero, to  save me from....a burning building, a one-eyed, one-horned monster, insanity, having to do dishes, or even piled up laundry.  My 23 yoa daughter is a big fan of Batman and her apartment looks like a teenage boy's dorm room with all the superhero collectibles and knicknacks.

To help young fans everywhere enjoy the SUPER day, check out the special PJ Masks Official Hero Celebration Kit, featuring downloadable PJ Masks party invites, decorations, character masks, activity sheets, and more.  Get in on all of the heroic fun with Catboy, Gekko and Owlette.
Who is your favorite superhero?
If  you could have a special superhero power, what would it be?