Friday, September 30, 2016

Sugar Bowl Bakery - Review

I received products 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.


I was introduced to Sugar Bowl Bakery almost a year ago.  Sugar Bowl Bakery’s mission is to produce and market the highest quality baked goods and continue to develop a brand name that inspires trust and quality. Their products can be found at retailers nationwide. Unfortunately, they do not offer online ordering at this time. 

Made with 100% butter, Sugar Bowl Bakery’s Madeleines are petite and sweet (but not too sweet) French cake cookies. With a slightly sweet and buttery flavor profile housed in a delicately crunchy cookie, Sugar Bowl Bakery's Madeleines are a texture and flavor masterpiece sure to please. These treats are also free of trans-fat and preservatives, so the whole family can feel good about indulging a bit.

Todd taking some Madeleines for the road

The Madeleines are amazingly delicious, and they are the kind of cookie profile I like best. They have a soft inside with a semi-sweet buttery taste. The tops are grooved, and each cookie is uniform in shape and size. The cookies come in a clear tub with a re-sealable lid. I brought them along during a camping weekend, and they went over well.  Seems that everyone liked them, especially in the mornings with their coffee.

Sugar Bowl Bakery’s Organic Brownie Bites are indulgent, yet guilt-free, at only 90 calories per serving. These snacks are free of preservatives, trans-fat, cholesterol, and have no artificial flavors or colors. The brownies are packaged in a re-sealable container. These brownie bites are rich in chocolate flavor and one is enough to satisfy my sweet craving.  They are just the right size and taste fresh.  Whether you're entertaining guests or just craving something delicious to eat, Sugar Bowl Bakery has high-quality confections to satisfy.

It's National Chewing Gum Day

Buy a pack of your favorite chewing gum and get to blowing those bubbles.  It's National Chewing Gum Day!

Chewing gum (preferably sugarless) stimulates the production of saliva, which helps wash away food particles and bacteria.  It can also help relieve stress.

To be honest, it's rare that I chew gum.  I might pop in a piece once or twice a year.  When I do, I prefer fruity flavors.

How often do you chew gum?  What is your favorite brand or flavor of gum?

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Somebody Stop Me! - It's Another Hollar Haul

This post contains a referral link.  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.  Your opinions and results may differ.

This is stating the obvious, but I have a serious shopping addiction to Hollar. If it tells you anything, I've purchased from the company eight times since March, and just placed another order earlier tonight.  With the exception of just a few items, I've been pleased with most everything I've bought.

Hollar is your destination for the coolest gifts and goods starting at just $2. They have everything from dishware and giftware to toys and hair care accessories. Everything is 50-90% off the original price.

Hollar offers free shipping on all first-time orders and on orders over $25 after that for U.S. customers. As an added bonus, you will receive a $2 credit on your first order when you sign up at Hollar.  You'll also receive emails with discount codes and promotions.

Their inventory changes often so it's best to buy if you see something you like. Right now they have a nice selection of toys, home decor, Halloween essentials, and more.

Belli Birthday Bash - #HappyBirthdayBelliskincare

I received products in exchange for this post.  Please do your own research before purchasing products or using services.  Your opinions and results may differ.

Belli skincare products combine efficacy, luxury, and most importantly, ingredient safety for expectant mothers and new moms. Belli supports expectant and new mothers through changing times by providing soothing, balances skin car products that pamper and protect. Their collections - Belli Pregnancy, Belli Motherhood and Belli Baby – consider the specific needs of each stage.

Belli Skincare’s amazing fall event, the annual Belli Birthday Bash, is going on from 10/2 -10/15. Use code “BLI30” to receive 30% off everything sitewide and surprise daily discounts up to 50%. In addition, with purchase, Belli consumers are registered to win $1,200 worth of prizes!

Animal Legs - Children's Book Review and Giveaway

I received book for review from Arbordale Publishing.  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.

Can you smell with your feet? Do you dig your claws into a river’s muddy bank to climb up and bask in the sun? Animals’ legs are different from humans’ in so many ways! Find out why strong talons suit a raptor, or webbing is perfect for water dwellers as author Mary Holland continues her photographic Animal Anatomy and Adaptations series by exploring the ways insects, amphibians, reptiles and mammals make their way in the world.

My Review:

An explanatory book about animal legs and how they're used, Animal Legs informs readers about different creatures of the world.  With realistic photos, children will see toads, birds, insects and other creations.  As the book title explains, this narration details the various workings of animal legs.  For instance, kids will learn that the spines on praying mantises legs interlock when they grab an insect, making it almost impossible for escape.

The 'For Creative Minds' section in the back of the book further cultivates lessons with information on special feet, fun leg facts, and what feet can do.  It also has a matching game to match the foot to the animal.

Animal Legs is a Fall 2016 release from Arbordale Publishing.

Win It!

One person will win an Animal Legs children's book.

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

It's Also National VFW Day!

Sending a huge thank you to all of our Veterans of Foreign Wars on this National VFW day!  I truly respect and appreciate all who have served our great country.  The following are ways in which you can express your appreciation to our VFWs:

1.  Say thank you to a VFW
2.  Visit your local VFW and say thank you
3.  Drive to another city's VFW, park legally, go in and say thank you.

To recap:  Say thank you to our VFW's by saying thank you.

It's National Coffee Day

Whether you drink it black or add in sugar and creamer, it seems most people like coffee.  Today is the day to celebrate with a cup of joe.  

Here is a recipe for Mocha Espresso, courtesy of IMUSA:

Ingredients

Espresso ground coffee
1 packet Sugar free Chocolate powder
Cinnamon
1 cup Hazelnut coffee creamer

Fill your espresso-brewing cup ⅔ with espresso coffee and ⅓ with sugar free chocolate powder and gently mix. Prepare your espresso as directed. In the meantime heat up a cup of Hazelnut coffee creamer. (You can also try French vanilla) Once brewed, divide the coffee evenly between 2 cups and add creamer. Sprinkle a dash of cinnamon on each and serve. No sugar needed!

If you, instead, prefer to purchase your coffee at a shop rather than brew at home, here's a list of places that are offering coffee promotions today for National Coffee Day:

Dunkin' Donuts: The chain is celebrating National Coffee Day and its 66th anniversary. Visit a store near you and get a medium coffee for 66 cents.

Krispy Kreme: Visit a store near you for a free small coffee and Original Glazed Doughnut.

Starbucks: The chain will donate a coffee tree for every brewed cup of México Chiapas sold on National Coffee Day.

Peet's Coffee: Buy any food item at a store near you and get a free medium cup of drip coffee.

Cumberland Farms: Text "FREECOFFEE" to 64827 and you’ll get a mobile coupon good for a free hot or iced coffee which you can redeem at a store near you.

Wawa: Free cup of coffee in the size of your choice.

LaMar's Donuts: Free cup of coffee with the purchase of LaMar's 16-ounce collector's travel mug.

McDonalds': McDonald's will donate all McCafé coffee proceeds to Covenant House on National Coffee Day.

Stewart's Shops: Free cup of hot or iced coffee from 12 p.m. to closing.

Caribou Coffee: Free cup of medium brewed coffee with 1-pound bag of coffee purchase through Oct. 2.

Birch Coffee: Free cup of drip coffee from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m.

How do you like your coffee?  Black or added with sugar and creamer?

Power of Prayer Thursdays - Week 43

(photo source: Unsplash)

I believe in a God that hears my prayers and answers them. I've witnessed the miraculous gift of answered prayer. And, I want to pray for you. I've started weekly Power of Prayer post every Thursday. We are now on week 43. If you are needing prayer in an area of your life, please leave a comment and I'll commit to pray for your need or request. You can be as general or as specific as you like. Whether it be for healing, salvation, finances, emotions, or another area of life, I'd like to lift it up in prayer.

Monday, September 26, 2016

Beam n Read Lights - Review and Giveaway

I received products 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.


I have several flashlights throughout the house and they work just fine.  But sometimes it's hard to finagle some things while my hands are full carrying a flashlight.  Beam n Read Lights give me the opportunity to shine a light on things, and do it hands-free.
Beam n Read personal hands-free lights let user’s see better in situations where extra lighting is helpful.  Those times may include reading or needlework, walking in dim or dark places, when traveling, during power outages, and more.

My husband is an auto mechanic and has actually been using the Beam n Read LED 6 Hands-Free Task Light while working on cars.  Rather than have to hold a light with one hand and a tool with the other, Jason puts the Beam n Read light around his neck and turns it on.  This particular personal light model has a button that lets you determine if you want three or all six lights on.  

The Beam n Read ® LED 3 Hands-Free Travel & Reading Light is the same as the one with six LED lights, with the exception that it has three fewer bulbs.  I've been using it at night when I go outside to take the dog out, and I will definitely be using it during our next power outage.  

Beam n Read Lights include an elastic neck strap.  The LED lights are bright and span a lot of area.  There are red and orange plastic filters included that can be snapped on to soften and warm the light, and to help avoid night blindness.  The filters are somewhat hard to snap in place but work well when they finally snap on.  

Beam n Read Lights require 4 AA batteries for each unit, and they are not included.  There is no on/off switch.  Rather, the lights automatically turn on when the reflector hood is lifted.  When it's turned back down and flush with the base, the lights turn off.


An additional piece that can be purchased separately is the Beam n Read USB/AC Power Kit. It allows you to save batteries by plugging your Beam n Read LED Light into external power sources.  The kit includes an USB/AC power adapter, a 6 foot BnR-to-USB cable plus a 6 ft USB extension cable for total 12 feet.
Win It!

One person will win a Beam n Read LED 6 Hands-Free Task Light.

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

It's National Pancake Day


Get out the batter, butter and syrup - it's National Pancake Day!  Whether you make your own or head to the restaurant, be sure to eat a short stack today.

I'm not picky about what time of day I eat pancakes. Breakfast, lunch or supper - doesn't matter to me. I am, however, somewhat picky about how I eat my pancakes. I prefer mine to be somewhat thin, with golden crisp edges.

Up until the end of September, Denny's is offering free pancakes to kids.  Children ages 10 and under are invited to eat free pancakes with the purchase of one adult entree. The offer is valid from 4-10 pm at participating locations.
How do you prefer your pancakes?  What toppings do you usually put on them?

Saturday, September 24, 2016

After A While Crocodile: Alexa's Diary - Children's Book Review and Giveaway

I received book for review from Arbordale Publishing.  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.

Alexa and the other children at her escuela in Costa Rica have a special project: they are raising American Crocodiles. She names her croc Jefe, which means "boss," because he seems to be in charge of all the other babies. Alexa brings him chicken and frogs to eat, and writes about his progress in her diary. Soon, her little hatchling is as big as a loaf of bread. He has grown into a juvenile and it is time for Alexa to say goodbye and for Jefe to return to the wild.


My Review:

I find crocodiles to be fascinating.  The only time I've ever seen one is at a zoo, so I'm not sure that counts.  After A While Crocodile: Alexa's Diary is a fictional portrayel of a real program that allowed Costa Rican children to raise American crocodiles in their classroom.  The story tells of a girl named Alexa who helps raise a crocodile until it is able to be released into the wild.  When reading it, kids will learn foreign words and their definitions.  They will also learn statistics about crocodiles and caiman.  The pictures show both colored illustrations and real photos.  The book is interesting and educational.

The "For Creative Minds" section in the back of the book further educates with the differences between alligators, crocodiles, and caiman.  It also explains the differences between a child's teeth and a crocodile's teeth.  Furthermore, there's information on crocodile conservation and a story about Dr. Brady Barr, the only person that has ever captured all 24 species of croc in the wild.

After A While Crocodile: Alexa's Diary is a Fall 2016 release from Arbordale Publishing.
Win It!

One person will win After A While Crocodile: Alexa's Diary children's book.

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

It's National Hunting and Fishing Day

Where I come from, deer hunting is a big deal.  Some of the area schools even take a couple days off for "teacher improvement" during hunting season.  But it's really so the parents and students can hit the woods and bag some deer.

Personally, we are not hunters.  But the kids do enjoy the days off from school!

Jason and most of our kids like to fish.  I don't have much patience for it.  After about an hour, I'm done.
Do you enjoy the sport of  hunting or fishing? 

Four More September Winners

A few of my giveaways have ended and the winners have been randomly drawn.

The winner of The Swan Princess DVD giveaway is #24, Renee Walters.

The winner of the Entenmann's giveaway is #107, Jessica Naca.

The winner of the Infusium 23 giveaway is #22, janetfaye.

The winner of the Night Night Farm book giveaway is #24, April.

Congrats to the winners and thanks to all who entered.  Be sure to enter the currently active giveaways before it's too late.  There's no limit to how many you can enter or how many you can win.  All giveaways are listed at the top left hand side of the blog.

Dr. Jen’s 6 Simple Back-To-School Health Hacks for Mom & Kids

I received products in exchange for this post.  Please do your own research before purchasing products or using services.  Your opinions and results may differ.

"As a mother and pediatrician, I understand first-hand that back-to-school time is a roller coaster for families. The stress of change in schedules, classrooms, and social activities can really take a toll on physical health—not only with our kids but for us parents too. One of the most common problems I see in children is occasional tummy troubles. And as a mom, I know it’s equally important that we look out for our own health too, because if we feel like our best self, we can give 100% to our children during this busy time of year.” –– Dr. Jennifer Trachtenberg a.k.a “Dr. Jen,” nationally recognized pediatrician, author and mother.

Let’s face it, back-to-school also means back-to-BUSY. To help both parents and school-goers cope, Dr. Jen has teamed up with Culturelle® Probiotics to share a few small daily tips that can have a big impact on everyone’s overall well-being:

For Kids:

Creating a consistent time to take your child to the bathroom, like right after a meal, is a great way to get their bodies on a schedule that will aid regularity.

The stress of change that back-to-school brings can often cause occasional tummy issues. Try giving your child Culturelle® Kids Regularity Gentle-Go™ Formula daily. This new product was developed just for kids’ digestive systems to promote balance and regularity.*

Reach for the rainbow: Adding in brightly colored fruits and veggies for snacks will not only give your child the most nutrients, but also added fiber. Remember, it takes at least ten tries of a new food to incorporate it into a child’s usual diet.

For Parents:

Take a break to breathe. Slow breath in, hold for 5 seconds then breathe out for 5 seconds. Repeat for 1 minute to calm nerves and ease tension while waiting in the car to pick up your child from school or activities.

Stay hydrated! It’s tempting to opt for a caffeinated beverage over water, but even though you want a pick-me-up, those caffeinated beverages can dehydrate you and actually slow you down if you aren’t drinking enough water. Invest in a 32 oz. water bottle, and take it with you wherever you go! Make sure to refill it once a day to ensure you are getting 64 oz. of water each day.

Make an effort to be your healthiest YOU by taking a daily probiotic supplement like "Culturelle® Pro-Well™ 3-in-1 Complete Formula" , which combines the most clinically studied probiotic strain, Lactobacillus GG†† , with the power of Omega-3s. The Lactobacillus GG helps to safely and naturally restore the balance of good bacteria in your digestive tract to boost digestion and works in the body’s core to provide immune support.* While the Omega-3 fatty acids provide heart-healthy nutrients proven to help maintain cardiovascular function.*

* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
†† Based on the number of Lactobacillus GG clinical studies, as of May 2015.

COUPONS:

$5 off any Culturelle Kids coupon
$5 off Pro-Well™ 3-in-1 Complete Formula

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Every Day with God: 365 Daily Devos for Girls (A VeggieTales Book) - #FlyBy Review and Giveaway

I received book 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.

About the Book:

Every Day with God is the latest 365-day devotional (one for boys and another for girls) from VeggieTales. The updated content and art offer the perfect opportunity for parent and child to share time together each day. Each entry includes a Bible verse, short devotion, Thought of the Day, and prayer. The content will help children learn more about God and develop a daily practice to keep Him close in their lives. The book is perfect for bedtime reading, family devotion time, or as a fresh way to start each day!

My Review:

I think that devotionals are a great way to get in to the word of God.  They help us to decipher, allow us to reflect, and give us time to devote.  Most devotionals take a short time to read, yet the words leave a lasting impact.

Every Day with God: 365 Daily Devos for Girls is a devotional featuring VeggieTales characters.  It's a paperback book with a pink cover.  The first page in the book has a "To", "From", and "Date" section.  As you'd expect, there are a total of 365 devotionals.  For each day, there is a Bible verse and a Thought of the Day.  There's a summary of what the Bible verse means, and a short prayer to repeat.  Each page also shows the darling VeggieTales characters.  It's a book that encourages and uplifts.  I do wish there was a ribbon bookmark to keep track of which day you're on but, other than that, this is a great book that will help your child be closer to God and will help your girl better understand His unconditional love for her.

Win It!

One person will win choice of either:
Every Day with God: 365 Daily Devos for Girls (A VeggieTales Book) OR
Every Day with God: 365 Daily Devos for Boys (A VeggieTales Book).

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

"Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”): Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway. Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation. I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post. Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway. If you have won a prize from our sponsor Propeller / FlyBy Promotions in the last 30 days, you are not eligible to win. Or if you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification.”
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Jumbo Butterfly Coloring Poster - Review

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.
poster wrapped around the tube before opening

I jumped on the adult coloring bandwagon some time ago and have been on board ever since.  I've found that coloring calms me and is soothing.  I own more than my fair share of adult coloring books.  Now I've been put to the test with the Jumbo Butterfly Coloring Poster by Debbie Lynn

 Debbie Lynn, Inc. is a renowned stationery brand with a versatile line that includes long-lasting pens, colorful markers, trendy stationary, and sleek office supplies. The brand also carries arts and crafts supplies, and novelties.  
poster opened and spread out

The Jumbo Butterfly Coloring Poster by Debbie Lynn is, well, jumbo!  I've been working hard on getting the piece completely colored, but it's taking some time.  This is the biggest coloring project I've worked on, and it requires a large space to work in.  I'm really excited to see the final result.  I have plans to hang it up on my bedroom wall when finished.  

The artwork is very pretty and intricate.  I've been using permanent markers to color the poster.  Just to be on the safe side, I put a piece of cardboard under the area of the poster that I'm coloring on so the ink doesn't bleed through.  
example of another poster available by Debbie Lynn

The Jumbo Coloring Posters are available at Five Below.  Lucky for me, a Five Below store opened up in my town just a few months ago.  As the store name indicates, all merchandise is priced under $5.  And that, to me, is a great price for the jumbo coloring posters.  

I will post a final picture once I'm finished with my poster.  While you're waiting on me to do that, head out to your nearest Five Below and pick up a few jumbo coloring posters.  

Power of Prayer Thursdays - Week 42

(photo credit: Unsplash)

I believe in a God that hears my prayers and answers them. I've witnessed the miraculous gift of answered prayer. And, I want to pray for you. I've started weekly Power of Prayer post every Thursday. We are now on week 42. If you are needing prayer in an area of your life, please leave a comment and I'll commit to pray for your need or request. You can be as general or as specific as you like. Whether it be for healing, salvation, finances, emotions, or another area of life, I'd like to lift it up in prayer.

It's National White Chocolate Day

There's milk chocolate.  There's dark chocolate.  Then there's white chocolate. Today we celebrate the latter of the third.

To jubilate, here is a very simple Halloween-themed recipe I made a couple years ago.  They're yummy and look similar to skeleton bones:


Ingredients:

white chocolate almond bark
pretzel rods
marshmallows

Directions:

Put a marshmallow on each end of a pretzel rod. Melt the white chocolate almond bark, then cover the pretzels and marshmallows entirely. Let cool.

See, told ya it was easy!

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Wednesday Hodgepodge - My First

From one blog to another, I happened to come across From This Side of the Pond. Every Wednesday she posts a link-up of a series of questions. Sounded fun, so thought I'd join in with Wednesday Hodgepodge.



1. Thursday (September 22) is the first official day of autumn in this part of the world...how will you welcome the season? I know some of you have been celebrating way too early, but it's official now so permission granted. House Beautiful recently listed ten ways to make your home smell like fall (you can read the list here) What's a scent you love this time of year and how will you add it to your home?

Answer:  Autumn is my favorite time of year.  Bring it on!  The temps here are still somewhat high, so it doesn't feel like Fall yet.  I'm celebrating the new season by hosting an End of Summer Soiree this Saturday.  It's going to be a gathering of family and friends, with lots of food.

2. Apple pie or pumpkin pie? Apple cake or pumpkin bread? Warm apple cider or a pumpkin spice latte?

Answer:  It's a toss-up.  I really like both apple and pumpkin.  My mother's pumpkin pie was the absolute best, and I'll miss having any this year.

 3. Do you occasionally suffer from what's sometimes referred to as an afternoon slump? What helps ward it off before it hits and/or tell us what helps you shake it off once it's here?

Answer:  I get groggy around 8 pm every night and usually require an hour nap before going in to work.  It refreshes me, and I'm not near as grumpy.

 4. Ladies-how have your friendships with women inspired you or made you a better person? For the men here today- how have your friendships with men inspired you or made you a better person?

Answer:  It takes a lot for me to fully trust anyone, or to fully consider someone a friend.  I have a "trust wall" that takes some time to break down.  I have a great circle of gal pals in my Small Group that I've come to know and trust.  They've seen me in my most recent dark days, and they've stuck by me.  Guess that means they're keepers!

 5. Are you a people pleaser? If you said yes, do you think that's a good or bad thing? If you said no, do you wish you were more of a people pleaser?

Answer:  I enjoy pleasing people if I know and like them.  I'm very generous with my time and resources.  But, I don't go all out to make people like me.  If you don't realize how awesome I am, I'm not gonna die trying.  I can walk away from a friendship about as quick as I got into it, if that's what it comes down to.

 6. The seasons are a-changin'...share a favorite song relating in some way to change (not necessarily seasonal change, it could be change of any kind).

Answer:  Um, sorry.  I can't think of one right now.

7. What do you wish would never change?

Answer:  Believe it or not, nothing!  Change is inevitable.  Not much I can do with it but go with the flow and see where it leads me.

 8. Insert your own random thought here.

Answer:  All around a pig's arse is pork!
----------------------------
Are you excited about Fall?
Apple or Pumpkin:  What's your pick?
Are you a people pleaser?

Tuktuk: Tundra Tale - Children's Book Review and Giveaway

I received book for review from Arbordale Publishing.  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.

As the sun begins to set, arctic animals scurry to prepare for six months of darkness and cold. Tuktuk the collared lemming is almost ready for the long winter night – all he needs is warm fur to line his nest. When one furry kamik (boot) slips off an Inuit driver’s sled, Tuktuk is in luck! But as he drags it home, Putak the polar bear, Aput the arctic fox, and Masak the caribou eye this little lemming’s prize and want it for their own. Can Tuktuk outwit the other animals and convince them that one furry kamik is no good for anyone bigger than a lemming?

My Review:

While reading this book, even I was schooled on definitions and vocabulary.  For instance, I learned that there's such a thing as a collared lemming.  It's a rodent that turns completely white in winter.  Tuktuk: Tundra Tale stars a collared lemming named, appropriately, Tuktuk who happens upon a kamik.  (That's another word I also learned. A kamik is a waterproof boot.) A bear, a fox, and a caribou come across Tuktuk at different times and try to use the kamik themselves, for their body to keep warm.  In the end, it's learned that the kamik fits just right for Tuktuk.

The "For Creative Minds" section in the back of the book further educates readers with information on the Polar Seasons and Arctic Skies.  There's also Cold Animal Fun Facts and an Arctic Vocabulary.  Just a few definitions learned in the vocabulary include what Masak, frost boils, and a pingo are.  It's a cute book that will give kids an idea of life in the tundra.

Tuktuk: Tundra Tale is a Fall 2016 release from Arbordale Publishing.
 Win It!

One person will win a Tuktuk: Tundra Tale children's book.

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

It's National Pecan Cookie Day

Up until I started the "National Day" posts, I had no idea how many foods are celebrated.  Ice cream, cheeseburgers, chop suey....If it's edible, it's most likely got a day devoted to it.  Put on your apron and get out your rolling pin; Today marks the celebration of the Pecan Cookie.

Here's a recipe for Pecan Sandies that  I located from the Betty Crocker website some years ago.  They're pretty tasty, I must say.
Ingredients:

1 pouch (1 lb 1.5 oz) Betty Crocker® sugar cookie mix
1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
1 egg
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup finely chopped toasted pecans
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon maple flavor
1/4 cup sugar

Directions:

Heat oven to 375°F. In large bowl, stir all ingredients except 1/4 cup sugar until dough forms.

Roll dough into 1-inch balls; roll balls in 1/4 cup sugar. Place 2 inches apart on ungreased cookie sheet; press each with bottom of glass to flatten slightly.

Bake 9 to 11 minutes or until edges are light golden brown. Cool 1 minute; remove from cookie sheet to wire rack. Sprinkle with sparkling sugar.

Makes 3 dozen cookies

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Brush Buddies Light-Up Toothbrushes - Review and Giveaway


I received products 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 result may differ.

It's clear that Americans are not properly caring for their teeth. How can we fix this issue? By making brushing fun and easy! Brush Buddies knows how to do just that by being the world's leading provider of entertaining and educational oral care products. The company has developed a wide range of toothbrushes that appeal to consumers of all ages by making brushing fun and encouraging them to become better brushers.


Shopkins are all the rage right now, especially with young girls. The cute and colorful characters have popped up on all kinds of merchandise, including toothbrushes by Brush Buddies. If the Shopkins Light-Up Toothbrush doesn't get kids excited to brush their teeth, I'm not quite sure what will.  The colorful brush lights up when the button on the front is pushed. The blinking light stays on for exactly two minutes, the time recommended by dentists for a thorough brushing. The handle is shaped for a grasp that allows children to keep a hold of the toothbrush, and there's a suction cup on the end to keep the toothbrush standing upright.

If your child isn't really in to Shopkins, there's also the Kung Fu Panda Flash Toothbrush.  It does the same thing as the Shopkins toothbrush but features an image of Po, the fearless Panda.  Both toothbrushes come with battery included.



Win It!

One person will win a Kung Fu Panda Flash Toothbrush.

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

a Rafflecopter giveaway

It's National Cheeseburger Day

Cheeseburger and Broccoli from Hyvee Market Grille

I love me a good cheeseburger.  Nom nom.  I usually eat mine plain (with cheese only) but, once in a while, I like mayonnaise and onion on my burger.  

Today you can receive a free burger (up to $10 value) with the purchase of an adult entree at Ruby Tuesday.  In order to redeem the coupon, you must be signed up for the restaurant's SoConnected email club.

If burgers aren't your thing, you can always celebrate National Wife Appreciation Day.  It's today too! My husband is very good about showing his appreciation for me.  I appreciate that he appreciates me.

What toppings do you like on your burgers?  What ways does your significant other show their appreciation?

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Molton Brown Body Washes - Review

I received products 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.
I have a slightly abnormal obsession with bath and beauty products. I have no shortage of makeup, shampoo, lotion or body wash. I don't have specific brands that I purchase every time but I have a mental list of which ones I'll buy and which ones I'll never invest in again.  After trying Molton Brown Body Washes for the first time, I can say they're a brand I'd use again.

Molton Brown is a company based out of London that's known for their shower gels, hand washes, lotions, men's grooming products and luxurious bath and body gifts.  The company offers free standard shipping in the US (excluding Hawaii and Alaska).  Their shower gels and body washes sell for approximately $30.  That's a little higher than what I usually pay for something like that but I'd splurge once in a while for it.

The two scents of Molton Brown Body Washes I received, Pink Pepperpod and Black Peppercorn, are fragrances that I'd never heard of before.  Black Peppercorn has a more masculine smell, while Pink Pepperpod seems more feminine.  The Black Peppercorn is formulated with Madagascan Black Peppercorn Oil, and the Pink Pepperpod is formulated with, well, pink pepperpods.  It smells like ginger and pepper.  Overall, the scents are very appealing and I really like the lather. And my body felt nice and clean after use.
Have you ever purchased or used Molton Brown products?
What is your favorite fragrance for body wash?

Friday, September 16, 2016

IDO3D Vertical Five Pen Art Set with 3D Vertical Light - Review

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.

3D drawing pens have been introduced as the newest way to create remarkable artwork, especially for kids. RedwoodVentures has taken a step forward in the world of 3D drawing with IDO3D Vertical, making 3D drawing accessible for all families with sets starting at only $9.99. The IDO3D Vertical technology uses no heat or plastic filament. The pens are designed to use cool ink that reacts instantly to the built in LED light. The LED light solidifies the ink instantly allowing users to draw up, over and in 3D.

Because I'm a big kid at heart, I took the 3D set outside and made a couple of creations myself.  The kit includes an instruction booklet, an LED light, two plastic domes, a clear plastic square sheet, and a package of marker tips.  There are also five different colored pens - blue, red, orange, purple, and green.  The templates in the booklet includes ideas for beginner, intermediate and advanced projects.
Instructions are fairly easy to understand but I'm not so sure younger kids would get the hang of it.  The suggested age level for this 3D set is 8+ and I think that's appropriate.  

To create a 3D piece of art, you first need to twist on one of the marker tips on to the marker you want to use.  Then you need to slip the LED light on to the marker.  It doesn't stay securely in place, so you have to use your thumb to keep it on.  Then you turn the light on.  The batteries for the light are already included, so that's a plus.  It is important not to look directly in to the light.

As I mentioned before, the book includes project templates.  Once you've chosen the one you want to work with, you need to place the clear plastic sheet on top of that specific project.  Then you use the pen with light to trace the pieces.  My first creation was a pair of sunglasses.  It was easy enough to trace but required precision and a slow, steady hand.  To ensure that the material hardened as needed, I had to go over the pieces a couple of times with the LED light.  

My finished projects didn't come out perfectly, but it was fun enough to play with.