Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Are You Smarterer Than You Think?

First of all let me assure you that I know Smarterer is not a real word in the dictionary. However it is the name of a website that is gaining popularity, and it does prove to test your knowledge.



So what exactly is Smarterer you want to know?

Smarterer is a platform designed to score individuals on their digital, social, and technical skills. You can show to the world your knowledge and prove to just about anyone how smart you really are on such subjects.

There are various tests including but not limited to:
 



*Facebook
*Twitter
*Google
*Photoshop
*JavaScript
*PowerPoint
*Excel
*Social Media
You can also create your own tests for others to take, and in turn you can take others tests they have created.
Now you may be thinking to yourself that this will be a piece of cake, but let me assure you the description doesn’t do it justice. It IS a challenge. You are only given a limited time to answer each question. Kind of like those minute tests they do in schools. But it is exciting, and you can compare scores with friends. I am so surprised at how much I actually DON’T know about a lot of the sites and programs I use on a regular basis. Some of them I would’ve previously considered myself a pro at. Smarterer proved me a tad wrong on this assumption. If you get an answer wrong it highlights in red, and the correct answer highlights green. This makes it easy to learn the right answer and so you will know better next time and learn what you didn't know before. I actually thought it was fun, and if you like to test your knowledge or are just curious to see how much you actually know about a site or program I urge you to give it a try. It’s pretty fun to try and beat the clock, and they give you badges you can show off to friends if you choose to. Show them how smarterer you really are, and invite them to test their knowledge as well. Then compare scores. What fun.
Here are a few of my scores, even though I'm a bit embarrassed to post them. I took some tests on the sites/programs I use frequently, and threw in a Twilight Saga test just for fun since I am fascinated with the series. Here's what I got:


There's a bit of everything on there, and you can even create your own tests, and test your friends knowledge! Interested? Try it out today:
CLICK HERE: http://smarterer.com/



Disclaimer: As a BzzAgent I had the opportunity to try out Smarterer for myself. Opinions expressed are solely my own.

Monday, December 26, 2011

We Wish You A Merry Christmas...

I must admit, when you are a child, Christmas is a magical time. However, as an adult it is a bit stressful! LOL
Still we had lots of fun, and enjoyed being with family. The best gift of all was seeing my boys faces as they lit up with excitement over every little thing.

Our Christmas Eve was a bit stressful. My four year old just would not go to sleep no matter how tired he was because he wanted to see Santa. He actually had Santa a gift, why shouldn't Santa get a gift he said, (a notebook and crayon to keep his naughty and nice list in) wrapped that he wanted to personally give to him, despite me telling him that Santa would only come when he was asleep so as not to reveal all his magical ways. Finally at around 3am he crashed and me and Daddy set to our task of wrapping some last minute things. What gets me about wrapping gifts on Christmas Eve is that every year me and the hubby say we are going to be ahead of the game. We say we will not only have our Christmas shopping done at least a week before Christmas but that we will have the gifts wrapped ahead of time as well. This...NEVER...happens. We are always scrambling on Christmas Eve trying to ready gifts, do last minute preps to the house, and get things prepared for the following morning.
So anyway after getting only a few hours of sleep we all got up and went to church. After all Jesus is who Christmas is about. It was a good sermon, and we sung Happy Birthday to our Christ. When we got back home our boys started opening their gifts. They got a few things for fun, a few things to wear, and a few educational things each. Then while they played and Christmas cartoons played on the TV we set about cooking. In the middle of cooking we played with the boys, spent time with family, and before we knew it everything was done and it was time to eat.
We had a crammed house this year so I have no pictures to take of a nicely set table. We had about 18 in our house and we just sat wherever we could find a place. The only table set was the kids table. haha
At the end of the day when all the wrapping paper had been bagged, and the boxes thrown away, dishes scraped and washed, baths taken, we were all worn out and every one of us promptly fell to sleep.
All in all it was a very good day. I loved being around family and friends since we don't all get to come together very often.

One funny thing on Christmas Eve that happened is this: We laid out the traditional milk and cookies for Santa. However my son decided that Santa didn't really need the cookies after all so he himself ate the cookies. He left Santa two potatoes to take and bake in replace of the cookies. He said after eating everyone else's cookies all night maybe Santa would like to make himself a baked potatoe when he got home! LOL   Kids say the craziest things!

How did you spend your Christmas? Did you have lots of fun? Did your children do anything funny?

Hope everyone had a Merry Christmas, and hope you all have a Happy New Year. Stay tuned for giveaways, some of which I will be launching this week!


Sincerely,
Tori

The Littlest Elf Review



Christopher e. Cricket isn’t like most crickets. He dreams of a place with bright lights, warmth, and festivities. Unlike his cricket friends Christopher admires the humans with their cozy houses and green lawns.
As winter approaches, his cricket friends urge him to start building his den.
Christopher refuses and declares he is going to stay out to see what winter is really all about. Sure that he will freeze they plead with him to reconsider, but he doesn’t relent.
Eventually with winter’s arrival comes snow, and Christopher finds himself colder than he could ever imagine. However a glimpse in a window shows him a beautiful Christmas tree, glowing lights, and carols that warm his heart. The humans sing of Christ and it fills his little heart with warmth. However the cold gets to him, and he falls into a deep sleep.
He awakens on the lap of none other than old St. Nick himself and sees the elves all around the room decorating the tree and frolicking about.
Filled with many questions about Christmas, Christ, and St. Nick he gets all the answers he could ever hope for and then some.
 
My Thoughts:
When I first found this book, judging from the cover, I took this to be a book about an elf. Not only because of the title, but the cover shows four elves decorating for Christmas. I felt this was misleading since the book is about a cricket, so somewhere on the cover should have depicted a cricket. However, that’s why we should never judge a book by it’s cover right? After reading the synopsis of the book we do learn it is indeed about a curious cricket.
I did enjoy the story plot itself, but the story did seem to skip around a lot. However, the story itself still held together well despite that. Even though it did skip around a bit I didn‘t feel lost. I would not recommend this book for young children under the age of seven since there are so little pictures to go along with the story. Out of 30 pages there are only like 6 pictures. The majority of the pages are just words which was a shame because the pictures were very well done. I think this book is better suited for children aged 8+ who are learning to read books by themselves. It would make an excellent starter book for new advanced readers.
The pictures were well drawn and very colorful. It would have been wonderful had there been more colorful pictures to enjoy with every page.
What I loved most about this book was that it combines Christ and St. Nick in a great way. Since both are a huge influence on children it was nice to finally see the two combined. Especially since it touches base on the true meaning of Christmas. Plus something a little extra that touched me is that big hearts can come in small packages. :)

If your interested in this book you can CHECK IT OUT HERE


Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of this book as a member of the Dorrance Publishing Book Review Team in exchange for my unbiased review. All opinions expressed are mine alone.


Product Details

  • Paperback: 30 pages
  • Publisher: Dorrance Publishing Co. Inc. (August 30, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1434912450
  • ISBN-13: 978-1434912459

Friday, December 23, 2011

The UGLee Pen Winner Is...


Check your email for my message. If you don't find it in your inbox don't forget to check your spam or trash folder. You have 48 hours to respond before I will have to choose another winner, however since it is the holidays I will wait until 8:00pm EST on Monday 12/26/2011 to hear from you. Congratulations on your win and I hope the UGLee Pen will benefit you as much as it has me. I hope you enjoy, and thank you for entering this giveaway!
~

*For those who didn't win this contest stay tuned to my blog for others. I have some great upcoming reviews and giveaways.
~
Happy Holidays to everyone, and thanks to all who entered!



Sincerely,
Tori

* I used the random number generator to choose the winner of this giveaway.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

The Lucky $50 Gift Card Winner Is:

First I would like to give thanks to the Chicago marketing firm Straight North for hosting this wonderful giveaway for my readers!
And without further ado it's time to announce the winner: (drumroll)

LESLIE!


I will be in contact with you shortly to get the necessary information needed. You will receive an electronic voucher within 2 business days redeemable for a $50 gift card of your choice through icardgiftcard.com. In the meantime you can browse through the options to get an idea of which giftcard you want. Happy Holidays!


*I used a random number generator at random.org to choose the winner of this giveaway.

Again you can follow Straight North on both FACEBOOK and TWITTER.

I thank all the participants who entered into into this wonderful giveaway. Happy Holidays to everyone! Hope you'll visit me again at Mommy's Musings soon. :)

Sincerely,
Tori

Monday, December 19, 2011

Cook'n Recipe Software Review


I have always filed my recipes two different ways:

*On index cards where they reside in my recipe box
*On my favorites tab in my browser under the recipe folder


Admittedly things tend to get a bit disorganized this way. It can be time consuming to flip through/search through for that right recipe. Particularly if I’m in a hurry. But now thanks to the Cook’n Recipe Organizer my life has changed! Cooking has become so much simpler!



It simplifies cooking, and there are so many luxuries that this software has for everyone whom loves cooking.
I love to browse the internet for new recipes to try when I have the time. And my favorite thing about Cook’n is that when I find that right recipe there’s a capture button that completely captures the recipe for you. From the ingredients to the directions it creates a new recipe card instantly for you to file away. You can even create your own cookbook and file your own recipes with ease!
If that isn’t fantastic enough it helps you with meal planning and will adjust the serving size of any recipe. You have a wonderful recipe that serves four, but you want to serve it for a party of twelve? Just type that in and Cook’n will automatically adjust the amount of ingredients.
You can also create a shopping list with ease! You can simply click a recipe and then click “List” and it will automatically compile your ingredients, amounts needed, and even estimate the cost for you.
As a busy mom Cook’n is a blessing to me. It makes meal planning and recipe organizing a breeze and frees up more of my time. I have been glued to the program, and while I am still learning the ropes there is a great intro video that take’s you through everything step by step. I can’t wait to use this software to make my Christmas dinner recipes easier to follow! Especially because we will be tripling our guest list this year!
There are so many wonderful time saving features and perks about this software. Here’s just a few:


*Cook'n features an embedded web browser with advanced recipe search capabilities so no more scouring through tons of search engine results for that perfect recipe
*You can capture internet recipes with one click and save them into your personal cookbooks providing quick and easy access later on.
*Users can scale and e-mail recipes
*You will also soon be able to sync recipes and shopping lists with mobile devices and to a Cloud service
*You can even publish recipes into family cookbooks!
*Plus new customers get a free cookbook with purchase (over 130 to choose from!)
Want to learn more about this great recipe software? Plus satisfaction is 200% guaranteed!

Plus here's a little Demo you can watch:





I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Maybelline Baby Lips Lip Balm & Lots Of Lashes Mascara Review

I have to admit that as a mom of two young boys I don’t much wear make-up anymore. Who has the time? It's all I can do to break in a couple of potty breaks throughout the day. I admire the other momma's I see out and about with their make-up carefully applied and wonder how in the world they do it! But I do still enjoy make-up, and as every woman does I like to feel pretty. Anymore though, when it comes to make-up, I like to keep it basic and simple. Something fast, easy to apply, and that will provide the desirable effect and last! My favorite make-up choices include:



*Eyeliner
*Eyeshadow
*Mascara
*Lip Balm/Gloss
My main issue with cosmetics is they often don’t last very long. After a few hours they wear off, and I don’t have time to excuse myself continuously to go re-apply, busy moms are on the go and chores are never ending. So I am always excited to try new products to make my life a little easier while still helping create “that look”.
And…lucky me….I got to try out these two new products!
 

Maybelline Great Lash-Lots Of Lashes


Maybelline Baby Lips Lip Balm w/SPF 20
 
They are from Maybelline, and they are both amazing!

The mascara lasts all day and then some! It did make me appear to have more lashes, which I loved, and I never once had to re-apply that day. It also didn’t make my lashes feel overly sticky like most mascara’s can sometimes do. My lashes didn’t feel weighed down in the least. The only issue I had with this mascara is that it boasts no clumps, but I did indeed experience clumps. Not very many mind you, mainly upon first application. After that it glided on smoothly. And the brush for this mascara is truly amazing. It’s sort of heart-shaped which surprisingly made a difference as far as the application process. The perks about having this type of brush is due to the various size bristles it allows you to reach ALL your lashes! Total perk huh? I was pretty impressed.
 
The Baby Lips Lip Balm was my favorite of the two. I received five of them in these scents: Peppermint, Quenched, Cherry Me, Fruit Punch, Pink Punch, Pink Kiss.

Now they don’t taste like their scents, it doesn’t really have a taste at all, which if you ask me is better because I’m not wanting to chew my lips off throughout the day.

The Baby Lips Balm made a difference to me after the first application. While it didn't last all day it was easy to reapply when needed. The tube fit nicely in my pants pocket, and it glides on easily. I found myself only using 2-3 applications a day which if you ask me isn’t bad. That's only like every 8 hours or so. It moisturized and re-hydrated my otherwise dry cracked lips! Particularly since it is winter! I always have trouble with my lips getting dry and chapped around this time of year. It has a lip renew formula with SPF 20, and it's clinically proven! Oh my dear heart be still. LOL

My own personal favorites were the peppermint and quenched. I’m not into lipstick colors such as peach or red and the other lip balms I received, when applied, did indeed apply to that color effect. This would be great for all you lipstick lovers out there who want the lip color perk, but also desire smooth, hydrated lips.

I would recommend giving each of these products a try as they are each affordable, can be found almost anywhere (Wal-Mart is usually cheapest on prices, and they sell these products there), and they each reach the desirable effect. In particular I recommend the Baby Lips Lip Balm. I have been recommending that left and right because I am THAT impressed with it. It really is my new favorite, and who knows maybe it will be yours too.
 
Sincerely,
Tori

Disclaimer: As a BzzAgent I have been provided with a complimentary product mentioned above for review purposes. All opinions expressed are HONEST and are mine alone.


~




***If you haven't already entered into my $50 dollar gift card giveaway you have only one day left to enter! Click Here for details and/or to ENTER GIVEAWAY***


Wednesday, December 14, 2011

$50 Gift Card Giveaway- brought to you by Chicago marketing firm- Straight North!

~THIS GIVEAWAY IS CLOSED-WINNER HAS BEEN CHOSEN & WILL BE ANNOUNCED~
The holidays always leave everyone a little strapped for cash. No matter if your money is going for gifts, a big Christmas dinner for the family, or bills in general it is never enough around the holidays. Now your in luck…
Straight North, a Chicago marketing company, is giving one lucky reader of Mommy’s Musings the chance at winning a $50.00 gift card!

The winner will be able to choose a gift card of their choice from icardgiftcard.com when you redeem the voucher. Here's a complete list of the gift cards you will be able to redeem for:

http://www.icardgiftcard.com/gift-cards/default.aspx

Straight North is a Chicago based company that helps businesses grow through internet marketing, websites, and branding.
They excel with middle market, growth-oriented B2B firms in need of a reliable partner that can support a full range of Internet marketing services. They manage programs that are local, national and global. They are also full service. Their teams include strategy, web design, web development, SEO, PPC, social media, email marketing, copywriting, and print design.
And best of all is they give back to the community in so many ways.
You can find them on Facebook and Twitter.
The rules for this giveaway are simple and easy:


*You MUST be 18 years of age or older
*Open to US residents only
*Follow Straight North on Twitter or “Like” on Facebook. Leave me a comment telling me which one you did. If you choose to do both this will give you an extra entry into the giveaway. Be sure to leave your name, email address, and face book name and/or twitter handle in your comment.

If you can't click on the above links for Straight North's social media pages you can copy and paste these links:
Twitter: https://twitter.com/#!/StraightNorth
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/StraightNorth
* I will be using a random number generator to allow everyone a fair chance at winning, and I will announce the winner on Tuesday December 20th, 2011 on Mommy‘s Musings. If you are chosen as the winner you will have 24 hours to respond before I will have to choose another winner. If chosen, when you receive your email from me, you will need to send me your contact information (e.g. Name, Address) so I can send the information to the company for you to collect your gift card. Winner will receive the gift card redemption code from Straight North within two days after contest closes.

*Again contest is open from today: 12/14/2011 - 12/19/2011 WINNERS WILL BE ANNOUNCED 12/20/2011 so entries after 12/19/2011 will not be counted.

NO PERSONAL INFORMATION WILL BE SHARED WITH ANYONE BESIDES MYSELF AND STRAIGHT NORTH
 
 
 
Disclosure: I received a $50 gift card from Straight North for hosting this giveaway.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Best Forgotten by: Paula Vince Book Review

Best Forgotten will NEVER be forgotten!
 
 
When a young man gets hit by a car and flung on the side of the road it’s a miracle he even survives. But upon awakening he remembers nothing, not even himself.
As he is rehabilitated to his family and loved ones he can’t help but to feel out of place, and most disturbing is the feeling that something is right on his heels.
His mother is highly un-approving of everything he does, he’s had nothing to do with his dad in the past, and his previous appearance baffles him. How could he like skulls, goth, and a band that calls themselves Satan’s Angels? As he begins to learn more about former self he begins to hate the person he was, and starts on the path of reinventing himself. As tidbits of memory comes back to him he can’t help but wonder if he would be better off without knowing his past. After all why would he want to become someone he now hates?
Even his so called girlfriend seems to be hiding something from him, and he can’t pry from her whatever it is.
As he learns more about himself he can’t help but wonder if everyone wouldn’t be better off if he never recovers from his amnesia. In particular he is afraid of what he may find out about himself if he does.

~

This book kept me fully intrigued and interested from the beginning to end. This book doesn’t at all lag, and the writing style flows very easily. I want to say it’s a relaxed read, but it will keep you on the edge of your seat with a turn of any event.
It has action, mystery, faith, romance, suspense, family issues, identity crisis, and thrill all woven together under one cover. I love how you only get tidbits here and there throughout the story and you will be amazed at how many different conclusions you will draw. I found myself thinking that I knew what was going to happen and then promptly finding myself in the wrong with another twist of events. It definitely kept me excited to turn the pages.
It touches base on troubled families and troubled youth, and shows how faith can change everything for the better. It doesn’t make you feel as if you are being preached to, but gives undemanding examples of faith that you can‘t help but to admire. It will draw you closer to God and make you second glance your own relationship with Him.
All of the characters are very well prepared, and almost every character will touch your heart in some way.
My favorite part of this is how thrilling of a read it is. It will keep you guessing, trust me on that. It is one of the most unpredictable books I have EVER read, and I LOVE that rarity.

I HIGHLY recommend this read to everyone!


To purchase this book or learn more about it CLICK HERE
See my STAR RATING on Goodreads by CLICK HERE



Disclosure of Material: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookCrash.com book review program, which requires an honest, though not necessarily positive, review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s CFR Title 16, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Updates and Upcoming

This is just going to be a short update, a multitude of things have been going on, and will be upcoming.
I apologize for my absence. I have been suffering from my second bout of mastitis and the medication they prescribed does not sit well with me. It highly upsets my stomach and makes me feel terrible to put it plainly. However breastfeeding doesn't give me many options so luckily I am almost finished with them. I am determined and I'm not going to give up. I breast fed my first baby the entire year and not once did I get mastitis nor did he get thrush. This time around I have developed mastitis twice in the last couple of months and my baby has thrush. It's all new to me so I have been reading up on all I can. I'm sure all you fellow breast feeding mama's know exactly what I'm talking about, or have heard of it.

We didn't get our tree up until late (even though, as you remember, I couldn't wait to decorate for Christmas). We have pretty much gotten all of our Christmas shopping done, and I am still working on some handmade gifts thanks to Pinterest. Every year we have sort of wasted money on toys for our son that he never even played with often before he lost interest. When he was two my husband bought him one of those air hog helicopters that are remote controlled and fly in the air. Let's be honest he was too young for that. It was more of a gift for daddy than baby. ha ha
As we speak he still can't fully work it all alone yet and he is four. So since this year we have two to buy for we are keeping things simple and being careful not to jump the gun on spoiling. It is hard because I love to see their little faces light up with excitement, but I think they will be just as pleased. I'm proud to say we have only bought what they can benefit from educationally and just a couple of toys each they can actually play with. Besides too often we forget the true meaning of Christmas.
 What about you? Do you like to keep it simple for your children or go all out?

Hopefully I won't be overwhelming my readers but I will be posting a lot of reviews and giveaways within the next couple of weeks. I do have some fantastic giveaways upcoming though so I hope you'll stay tuned and enter in. I like to keep my giveaways fairly simple and I don't do the whole rafflecopter thing at least not for awhile. I do host a fair giveaway and use a random number generator so all is fair. Hopefully you will all stay tuned as I don't want you to miss a thing.

Also in case you haven't checked out Mommy's Musings Facebook page I am all up for anyone who wants their blog button featured on this blogs sidebar. I love to support other blogs. Any who I must get off here and lay down, sour stomach again. Sorry this post is sort of all over the place and choppy. I can't wait to post more often and have tons to catch everyone up on. I will be posting personal posts between reviews/giveaways to keep everyone updated, and feel free to leave a comment, I'd love to hear how all of you are doing despite all the holiday rush and fuss.
Hope this time isn't too stressful, and hopefully you are all excited about the upcoming holidays!

Sincerely,
Tori

Saturday, December 10, 2011

A Deal For You!

I have a special treat for all my readers who enjoy Amish fiction.
Remember my book review of Cindy Woodsmall's book The Christmas Singing?
Here's a bit more about that book:




Here's a peek at the first chapter:

The Christmas Singing (Chapter 1 Excerpt)


If you like it, and trust me it is a FANTASTIC read, Waterbrook Multnomah is offering 30% off PLUS FREE SHIPPING on The Christmas Singing (and any other title) to the readers of Mommy's Musings. Just visit their website @ http://waterbrookmultnomah.com/
Readers need to use the promo code: CHRISTMAS11 at checkout. The coupon code expires on December 20th, 2011 so hurry on over and get started! Makes for a fantastic Christmas gift!


Happy Holidays!


Sincerely,
Tori

This Little Prayer of Mine Book Review



In a world as unpredictable as the one we live in today it is ever most important to make sure our children have a relationship with God.
I feel that this book helps us, as parents/guardians/grandparents, achieve that goal.
I love reading this book to my children, and I am going to be recommending it to our church as well.
The story is so simple, and yet so heartwarming. The lessons and examples are packed into such small phrases! I loved that the words just flow with little effort, and your children will immediately find themselves drawn in!
This book covers the majority of what children deal with in their young lives, such as: being afraid, sadness, mixed emotions and hard choices, being ornery/disobeying rules, feeling alone especially around peers, etc.
It also points out certain things to be thankful for in our everyday lives as well. It is a great portrayal of God’s love for us, and let’s children know that God is always there to talk to as well as his forgiveness. It encourages children to become closer to God, make the right choices, let them know they are loved no matter what, and show them that forgiveness is but a prayer away.
We were also pretty impressed with the illustrations. The pictures alone tell such a great story. The pictures not only follow the words, but they follow their own as well. They were very well done, and very colorful. We loved finding little hidden things on the pages. It’s the little details that children notice the most and this book is jam packed with them! It’s very exciting!
Whether your child is the type to get immersed in a story itself or the illustrations, this book meets both expectations.
Out of all the children’s prayer books I have read this one takes the cake!
I think this is a perfect book for children. A way to encourage daily prayers, and a way for them to stay close to God. I enjoy reading this to my sons and lately we have been reading it at least twice a day. We all really enjoy it. I would say the ages that would get the most out of this book would be ages 4 +. The book isn't very long and the it is well split up so you aren't overwhelmed with either more pictures or more words per page. It's a hardcover book with paper pages so it is durable. It's light and easy to hold. The illustrations are extremely detailed and there are all sorts of things to find in the background. The words are easy for children to understand and pass a good message through at the same time.
It truly is a magnificent read. Enjoyable for both parents and children! It would especially make a good Christmas gift to one lucky child!

To learn more about this book: CLICK HERE
or
See my star rating for this book on Goodreads: CLICK HERE
 
 
Disclaimer:
Waterbrook Multnomah Publishers has provided me with a complimentary copy of this book for review purposes. All opinions expressed are mine alone.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Cliques, Hicks, and Ugly Sticks (Confessions of April Grace) Book Review



April Grace Reilly finds herself smack dab in the middle of a terrible year. Old friends become new strangers as they all embark upon middle school. One of her best friends starts a clique called the Lotties, and April is not a part of them. The Lotties meanly run the school and pick on anyone in their path.
As if that wasn’t bad enough home life becomes the most strange and worrisome for April. On top of dealing with her overly dramatic sister Myra Sue and obnoxious live in guest Isabel St. James, April’s grandma finds herself in the midst of a love triangle. If that isn’t the icing on the cake for April her mother begins acting strangely, and April wants to get to the bottom of it. And instead of crying and whining to get her way, April brings you along on her journey as she stoically gets to the bottom of it all in her honest/humorous fashion.

~

This was truly a fun read. It is one of the most humorous novels I have read in a long time. I was constantly laughing out loud, and even found myself sharing funny quotes or sayings I came across with those around me. This book is in no way dull, and I was immersed in it from the beginning. There is always a new twist, mystery, or event happening at the turn of the page. Intrigue around every corner! It makes this book hard to put down.
What I really enjoyed about this book is that it touches point on so many different lessons and hardships that a tween will often find herself dealing with. From a new addition to the family, to dealing with difficult siblings, to dealing with mean girl cliques in school, hardships with faith, finding someone’s true person instead of judging them from the outer layers, and so much more!
The novel is set in the late 80s, but it doesn’t really make much of a difference as I believe all tweens will be able to connect with April Grace.
It would especially be a good read for a mother/daughter duo. I know I sure enjoyed it despite my age, and I am definitely going to be getting the third book to come out in the Confessions of April Grace series. The words flow so smoothly and easily, before I knew it the book was over. I was sad for it to end, but can’t wait to revisit April Grace and the other characters. Every character comes alive in this novel. There is no small character, even the ones that don’t appear often seem so alive! I highly recommend this series to any mother with a tween daughter, or even pick up a copy and read it for yourself. It will take you back to your middle school days. Another interesting perk is being older you can pick up on lots of other interesting details you probably wouldn’t have noticed had you been younger. I’m looking forward to book three for sure, and if you want more info on this book just check out the links below:

For more info on this book: Cliques, Hicks, and Ugly Sticks (Confessions of April Grace) CLICK HERE
Want to be friends with April Grace on FACEBOOK? CLICK HERE
For more info on the Confessions of April Grace series CLICK HERE

 
DISCLAIMER: I was provided this book for free through Thomas Nelson Publishers in exchange for my unbiased review. Opinions expressed are mine alone.

Friday, December 2, 2011

UGLee Pen Review and Giveaway!




As much as I use my computer on an almost daily basis, I just can’t function without my pens. I have always had a fascination with pens anyway and for as long back as I can remember it has always been my writing tool of choice. I remember being five years old pretending to write a journal with my mom’s blue ink pen.
These days I still keep a daily journal, I write “old fashioned” hand written letters, as well as grocery and to-do lists, post-it’s, and keep my very helpful and needed planner.
I do keep my appointments and such on the computer or on my cell phone, but sometimes it dies, doesn’t want to work, or something gets deleted. Thus I always keep a back-up planner which is what I really rely on. That said I keep faith in pens and paper. The only problem is that I use my hands A LOT, and over the years this has caused a bit of discomfort. Besides writing constantly by hand I crochet, sew, knit, cook, draw, paint, etc. And that said my hands tend to cramp up quite often. I find myself writing a couple pages as a journal entry and then my hand is cramping and uncomfortable. I still refuse to give up my pens, and I try to split up my writing time so I can still write without my hand stiffening up on me.

However, now I have truly been given hope and satisfaction! I have been lucky enough to try a truly relaxing pen! It is this:

 
When I received the opportunity to review The UGLee Pen I was a bit skeptical and yet curious. I knew that I just had to try this pen. I am very picky about my pens. I spend forever in the office supplies aisle checking out the different pens, and I am always disappointed with the grip that most pens are made with now. The grip is suppose to be for comfort, but to be honest it just makes my hand hurt worse or makes the pen more heavy. But that is luckily NOT the case with the UGLee Pen. I have truly found my pen of choice! This pen is light, and the grip not only makes the pen easier to hold, but provides comfort! Not just between the fingers either like most pens, this grip actually extends up the body of the pen! So the grip fits your whole hand. I let my husband try out this pen as well. He has to do paperwork on a daily basis at his place of employment. He has trouble with his fingers cramping, as he suffers from arthritis. He said he had no trouble at all while using the UGLee Pen and breezed right through all his paperwork. Usually he says he has to persevere through the pain and just shove on. He wants his very own set to keep at work.

Aside from the fact that it is comfortable to write with, the ink is smooth and glides easily. It writes with ease! That is a high point for me, as I’ve said I’m picky and my main preference for a pen is that it writes well without effort. All in all this is a fantastic, brilliant, innovative invention and I definitely recommend it to just anyone. To me this is THE ergonomic pen. Even if you don’t have arthritis or hand-issues it is still the most comfortable pen I’ve ever had the pleasure to experience. I think it would highly benefit those who have to do hand-written paperwork, college students would benefit greatly, high school students, even small children learning to write will love these pens! My four year old recently requested the use of mine to write a letter to Santa. You should've seen his face when he did. He said the pen was so soft and felt good in his hands! If a four year old likes this pen, you know it's good. You can't get any more honest than toddlers. lol. Plus with Christmas coming up this would make a great gift to anyone who loves writing, or uses pens often.

~
Here is a bit about the UGLee Pen:
The UGLee Pen is a revolutionary ergonomic pen that is designed, created and used by a real physician. This Doctor-inspired grip pen is redefining the way people view pens and writing.
The UGLee Pen is good for everyone who writes (even just a grocery list), and is especially helpful to people who experience pain and discomfort when writing, for example those with arthritis, carpal tunnel syndrome, etc.,. It's also the best writing utensil  for children who are learning to write and are developing fine motor skills, as well as helpful for special-needs children who find holding a pen or pencil properly difficult. And for high-school and college students who have to take copious notes, this pen helps keep hands and fingers from cramping.
~
 
And the best news of all is that is giving the readers of Mommy’s Musings your very own chance to win these wonderful pens! I urge you to enter, you won’t be disappointed! I will be running this contest from now until December 22nd, 2011 Thursday! Winners will be announced first thing Friday morning December 23rd, 2011. I will give the winner 48 hours to respond before choosing another. Here are the requirements for entering the giveaway:

1. LIKE UGLee Pen on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/UGLeePen)
2. And/Or  FOLLOW in Twitter @ugleepen (http://twitter.com/#!/ugleepen)
3. Tell me one thing you have learned about the UGLee Pen by going to the web site (http://www.ugleepen.com/)
4. Must be a U.S. resident
5. Make sure to leave me a comment on this page telling me you have done all the above/meet all the requirements, and don't forget to leave your email address so I can let you know if you've won!

*This giveaway is currently only open to U.S. residents only.


Disclaimer:
I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

The TRULY Awesome Chocolate Chip Cookie Review

Let me just say that as a mommy with a love for baking I don’t particularly like commercial made cookies, particularly chocolate chip. Mainly because they never have enough chocolate chips and they are sorta bland in taste.
So when I received these cookies in the mail I did not have high hopes for them. I do like a lot of Kroger brands though, but when it comes to baked goods I'm picky. Then I read this on the box:


    *Chocolate chips are the #1 ingredient
    *Made with REAL butter
    *NO added preservatives or artificial flavors
I immediately figured they would be bland. How could a cookie with all these features be any good in taste? I whipped them out of the box and gave them a try. I took the advice on the box and heated them up in the microwave and…oh…my…goodness! Did I just drool on you? Sorry.
They were so GOOD! Seriously they did taste like homemade! I couldn’t believe it and it still leaves me speechless. You can definitely taste the butter and the chocolate chips were plentiful! No scrimping on the chocolate chippy goodness here!



The best part was when my husband walked in and said: “Oh, you made cookies! They smell good” followed by him grabbing one. After tasting one he said: “I like that you used more chocolate chips this time. Is there enough to take some for my lunch tomorrow?” I just laughed out loud and then showed him the box.
Needless to say the cookies were devoured before I could even snap a picture. Between my husband, son, and I they didn’t stand a chance. An added tip if you try these, have a glass of milk handy to really enjoy. Mmmm!

They are definitely going to make a come back to our house. Even if their stay won’t be long.
Sincerely,
Tori

P.S. If you are curious to try these cookies I would love to give you a coupon for a dollar off. They retail for about $2.79. I only have two coupons so it is first come first serve. Just leave me your email address, and I will email you for further info on where you would like your coupon sent via snail mail. :)


Disclaimer:
As a BzzAgent I was provided the above mentioned product for free in hopes of spreading the word. All opinions expressed are HONEST and are mine alone.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Thankful for Thanksgiving

I will admit that as of now I have Christmas fever. I have been battling this for the last week and a half. I know others may be suffering from this as well. You, yourself may even be inflicted. See the symptoms below:

-The urge to decorate with lights and Christmas cheer
-The urge to throw up your Christmas tree
-The urge to start in on all the old holiday classic movies such as Frosty The Snowman, Rudolph, It's A Wonderful Life, National Lampoon's Christmas, etc.
-You may find yourself singing Christmas carols at random
...And other similar like symptoms.

If you suffer from the symptoms above I will be happy to announce the cure! FOCUS ON THANKSGIVING!

To me it seems like this year more than ever before Thanksgiving is becoming a forgotten holiday. Rather than focus on the thankfulness we should have we are all more focused on Black Friday and Christmas. As much as I love Christmas and am excited about it, not to mention eager to decorate, I won't let myself forget Thanksgiving. I don't want it to become a forgotten holiday. This year stores are actually going to open for Black Friday ON Thanksgiving night! I am kind of astounded at that. I do plan on getting into some of the Black Friday shopping, but not much. I am just going to be getting a few things that I can save tremendously on that I otherwise wouldn't be able to the rest of the year. It IS a good time to put up for Christmas and save money at the same time. We went last year and saved a total of $255.00 which is like half our rent. LOL
However this year I am not going to beat myself to make the deals. I want to enjoy Thanksgiving, and thanks to Pinterest a lot of our Christmas gifts to family will be handmade. Our family, as a whole, has grown so much over the years it has become next to impossible to buy for EVERYONE individually unless we spent about a grand which we just DO NOT have. I plan on sharing some of my handmade gifts on here as I get them done.
But for now I am leaving up my fall decorations, and looking forward to our feast and family gathering on Thursday. I just can't wait to enjoy in our time together, and me and the hubby are going to be cooking the Thanksgiving meal together. I will be making all the sides and he will be in charge of the ham. Our family members who are coming will be bringing desserts, and my mom is making a turkey. Hubby makes a really awesome ham, and even though I have watched him time and again I still haven't mastered it just yet. I have no shame in letting him make this, he enjoys it and so does everyone else.

There are also tons of Thanksgiving movies to enjoy during this holiday. Here's a few of my suggestions:






Our two family favorites are: A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving, and Planes, Trains & Automobiles.

 I will start decorating for Christmas probably Friday or Saturday of this week, until then I'm going to be Thankful for Thanksgiving and enjoy it. It only comes once a year.


Sincerely,
Tori

Here is a bit of background, (as copied from wikipedia), on Thanksgiving for those interested:

History

Thanksgiving in North America had originated from a mix of European and Native traditions.[1] Typically in Europe, festivals were held before and after the harvest cycles to give thanks for a good harvest, and to rejoice together after much hard work with the rest of the community.[1] At the time, Native Americans had also celebrated the end of a harvest season.[1] When Europeans first arrived to the Americas, they brought with them their own harvest festival traditions from Europe, celebrating their safe voyage, peace and good harvest.[1] Though the origins of the holiday in both Canada and the United States are similar, Americans do not typically celebrate the contributions made in Newfoundland, while Canadians do not celebrate the contributions made in Plymouth, Massachusetts.[2]



In the United States

The First Thanksgiving at Plymouth By Jennie A. Brownscombe (1914)
In the United States, the modern Thanksgiving holiday tradition traces its origins to a 1621 celebration at Plymouth in present-day Massachusetts. There is also evidence for an earlier harvest celebration on the continent by Spanish explorers in Florida during 1565, as well as thanksgiving feasts in the Virginia Colony. The initial thanksgiving observance at Virginia in 1619 was prompted by the colonists' leaders on the anniversary of the settlement.[7] The 1621 Plymouth feast and thanksgiving was prompted by a good harvest. In later years, the tradition was continued by civil leaders such as Governor Bradford who planned a thanksgiving celebration and fast in 1623.[8][9][10] While initially, the Plymouth colony did not have enough food to feed half of the 102 colonists, the Wampanoag Native Americans helped the Pilgrims by providing seeds and teaching them to fish. The practice of holding an annual harvest festival like this did not become a regular affair in New England until the late 1660s.[11]
According to historian Jeremy Bangs, director of the Leiden American Pilgrim Museum, the Pilgrims may have been influenced by watching the annual services of Thanksgiving for the relief of the siege of Leiden in 1574, while they were staying in Leiden.[12]

Contending origins

The claim of where the first Thanksgiving was held in the United States, and even the Americas has often been a subject of debate. Author and teacher Robyn Gioia and Michael Gannon, of the University of Florida, have argued that the earliest attested "Thanksgiving" celebration in what is now the United States was celebrated by the Spanish on September 8, 1565, in what is now Saint Augustine, Florida.[13][14]
Similarly, many historians point out that the first thanksgiving celebration in the United States was held in Virginia, and not in Plymouth. Thanksgiving services were routine in what was to become the Commonwealth of Virginia as early as 1607.[15] A day of Thanksgiving was codified in the founding charter of Berkeley Hundred in Charles City County, Virginia in 1619.[16]

Fixing the date of the holiday

The reason for the earlier Thanksgiving celebrations in Canada has often been attributed to the earlier onset of winter in the north, thus ending the harvest season earlier.[17] Thanksgiving in Canada did not have a fixed date until the late 19th century. Prior to Canadian confederation, many of the individual colonial governors of the Canadian provinces had declared their own days of Thanksgiving. The first official Canadian Thanksgiving occurred on April 15, 1872 when the nation was celebrating the Prince of Wales' recovery from a serious illness.[17] By the end of the 19th Century, Thanksgiving Day was normally celebrated on November 6. However, when World War I ended, the Armistice Day holiday were usually held during the same week. To prevent the two holidays from clashing with one another, in 1957 the Canadian Parliament proclaimed Thanksgiving to be observed on its present date on the second Monday of October.[5] Since 1971, when the American Uniform Monday Holiday Act took effect, the American observance of Columbus Day has coincided with the Canadian observance of Thanksgiving.
Thanksgiving in the United States, much like in Canada, was observed on various dates throughout history. The dates of Thanksgiving in the era of the Founding Fathers until the time of Lincoln had been decided by each state on various dates. The first Thanksgiving celebrated on the same date by all states was in 1863 by presidential proclamation. The final Thursday in November had become the customary date of Thanksgiving in most U.S. states by the beginning of the 20th century. And so, in an effort by President Abraham Lincoln (influenced by the campaigning of author Sarah Josepha Hale who wrote letters to politicans for around 40 years trying to make it an official holiday), to foster a sense of American unity between the Northern and Southern states, proclaimed the date to be the final Thursday in November.[15]
It was not until December 26, 1941, that the unified date changed to the fourth Thursday (and not always final) in November -this time by federal legislation. President Franklin D. Roosevelt, after two years earlier offering his own proclamation to move the date earlier, with the reason of giving the country an economic boost, agreed to sign a bill into law with Congress, making Thanksgiving a national holiday on the fourth (not final) Thursday in November.

For other facts about Thanksgiving around the world, in other countries, you can visit here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thanksgiving#Observance_around_the_world

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Restless In Carolina Book Review

After reading the summary of this novel I was quite eager to get my hands on it. It seemed like it would be a down to earth, tangible read and I wasn‘t disappointed. Let me give you a little rundown on the summary:

Bridget Pickwick Buchanan has been angry at God ever since her husband passed away. Unable to break herself from her widow’s weeds and move on with her life she decides to stay rooted in the past. She refuses to talk to God, and even goes so far as to refuse to say the words happily ever after when reading a story to her young niece. She views all admirers as “widow sniffers” and refuses to let a man within ten feet of her.
Her family becomes concerned and tries attempt after attempt to get her to move on with her life as the bitterness takes further hold of her, and she stays rooted in her past.
Being environmentally conscious, Bridget needs to secure a buyer for her families estate. One that won’t turn the property into something as terrible as an industrial park. She decides to approach J.C. Dirk who has many green property developments in the hopes that he will keep her families estate environmentally stable. Dare she even hope for a wildlife retreat? But is J.C. Dirk what he really claims to be? Or will Bridget find herself in the middle of a sore mistake, one that could leave her ruined, and crushed?
It started off a bit slow for me as I think some stuff was explained in too much detail. The book did get a bit off track at times, but not so much so that you would feel lost in the story. After the first few chapters I started getting really into it. By close to the middle of the book I was riveted in the entire story as well as the characters. This is actually the third book in the Carolina series by Tamara Leigh. I haven’t read the other two, and to be quite frank didn’t really even know there were two ahead of this one. This is a great stand alone book. You don’t have to read the other two novels to know what is going on. The book pretty much explains everything and I never felt at all lost. I do plan on reading the first two just for the simple fact that I enjoyed this book so much. I really felt comfortable with Bridget Pickwick Buchanan as she tries to guard her heart as well as keep her families best interests in check. She is a tough and yet kind soul whom isn‘t afraid at all to speak her mind. And I particularly identified with her animal loving tendencies and the need to be herself.

The story was comical at many points, particularly the ones where her niece and nephew were concerned, I couldn‘t help but to laugh at loud. I love that the fictitious characters in this novel relate so closely to actual people in the real world. Time and again we have had things happen in our lives that may have made us question God. Whether we are trying to find our way back to God, or just trying to increase our relationship with him Bridget is easily relatable for many of us. It’s easy to get swept up into the Pickwickians world, and I felt sad when my stay with them were over. You will find yourself feeling as if you are in the midst of the characters, and to me, that is truly a wonderful feeling. I urge you to PEEK INSIDE THIS BOOK HERE and read some of it for yourself. You can also check it out HERE

And if your on Goodreads you can read my review by clicking this link
 


Disclaimer:
Waterbrook Multnomah Publishers has provided me with a complimentary copy of this book for review purposes. All opinions expressed are mine alone.
 
 

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Ky The Butterfly Book Review



This book was awesome! I loved the limericks contained on each page, and my son was riveted the whole time! The pictures are colorful, and the story is easily engaging for small children.

I loved the plot and story line. Ky the caterpillar admires the butterflies he sees fluttering around him. He starts to wonder what he is, and a little butterfly exclaims that he too is a butterfly. Puzzled Ky tries all kinds of ways to become a butterfly, and tries to force the change. Ky tries all kinds of silly things to force the change, but nothing happens. Devastated that he isn’t turning into a butterfly he wraps himself in a cocoon and goes to sleep. Upon awakening he has beautiful silky wings and is so excited. He can’t believe he actually turned into a butterfly!

This is a great story about change, and I think it goes to show children that sometimes we just have to let things happen on their own. Everything happens in due time, and things do change.
This book fits toddler age - elementary aged children. The pictures are colorful, the limericks are engaging, and the story wonderful. Even though it is about butterflies this novel fits both boys and girls and would be a wonderful read for either. I think it would be a wonderful story to read during class story time as well. It’s easy to follow along with, my son and I were both reading along by the end of the book, and he begged me to read it again and again. So I definetely recommend it, and you can check it out at the following…
 
BUY IT HERE
 
Or even get a little peek inside HERE
 
 
Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of this book as a member of the Dorrance Publishing Book Review Team in exchange for my unbiased review. All opinions expressed are mine alone.

Friday, November 11, 2011

4th Birthday Parties

Wednesday has passed and gone, and with it my baby boy's birthday. He is now officially four years old. It makes me happy and yet sad at the same time. Time just flies by! While I love seeing him grow and learn and transform into the little boy he is, I also want to wrap him back up in a baby blanket and have him coo at me within the safety of my nestled arms. LOL

We were wanting to do a really big shindig for his birthday inviting friends, family, and his school friends. HOWEVER, last year for his birthday we did that and it didn't end in very good results. Needless to say a house full of three year old's running amok resulted in a broken vase, puke on the floor, and a toilet stopped up with hot wheels cars. Not to mention one kid actually pooped on our kitchen floor and his mother ended up slipping on it in her rush to try to whisk him to the restroom. It resulted in a sprained tailbone for her and a very messy outfit. The house was so packed with people the kids were getting overwhelmed, and due to one of his presents getting broken Lucas ended up crying in his room that he wanted everyone to go home. He didn't even eat a piece of cake last year.
After that huge debacle, we decided to keep things low key this year. He had a Transformers themed birthday party which he was over the moon about. We only invited family and his little cousins, and it went without a hitch. The only downfall was the place we ordered his birthday cake from got it wrong and there wasn't enough time to have it corrected. We let him pick out his own cake this year, and they didn't make the right one. It was still Transformers though so he still liked it. Next year though I will either go with a different bakery or I will make it myself. He ended up having a great time anyway, he ate two pieces of cake, and nothing got broken. By the end of the day he was so tired he went to bed wearing new transformers pajamas, holding some of his gifts, one including a stuffed horse we got him since he is fascinated by the Harry The Helpful Horse book from Nick Jr's. Little Bill. I would have loved to have invited fellow friends with children he could play with, but I just don't think he is ready for that yet. He does awesome in school, but that is a more stern, sit-down environment. He does awesome when we take him to a kids play area like Chuck-E-Cheese because he knows he can just cut loose, but when everyone is crammed in a tiny space and running amok he tends to shy away from everyone.
I do think he will adjust in his own time though, and as he gets older I think a bigger party would hold more fun for him. Right now though I am just gonna stick with low key parties. Every child is different after all.

I am curious to hear others views on the whole birthday party topic. What age do you think it acceptable to have a big party for your child? Or do you start out with big parties at a young age? How do your kids do? Has any of your children went through a shy phase?

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Heaven Is For Real Book Review



This was a very emotional book for me to read. I wasn't quite prepared for what lay between the pages, and I am very moved and uplifted by it all. Not only from Colton's description of Heaven, but of his families strength and faith through it all.

At only three years old Colton Burpo was repeatedly mis-diagnosed with a stomach flu. The family had trust in their local doctors and hoped for the best. In reality his appendix had burst and poison had set in his body. As Colton got sicker and sicker to the point where death was looming around him, his parents decided to get a second opinion. Doctors didn't have much hope for the young boy and hospital staff was instructed not to give the family any encouragement or hope.

During his surgery Colton claimed to have went to heaven. He could name exactly what each of his parents were doing during the time he was under, when there would be no way for him to have known their whereabouts nor activates.

Colton describes meeting "Pop" the great grandfather that died well before Colton was even born. He claims to have met his baby sister, whom his mother had lost in an unfortunate miscarriage. Colton was never told about the loss of an infant in his family, and was able to describe this sister in great detail.

If that isn't astounding enough Colton describes heaven, and Jesus. During the three minutes he was in heaven he did many things, met many people, and even describes sitting on Jesus’ lap while the angels sang to him.
                                                                                     ~

An astounding story of one boy's journey to heaven and back will have you riveted, emotional, and utterly without words. I know from having two young boys myself that there is no way for children of that age to know things that Colton describes about heaven, Jesus, and the events that took place. This is just not the stuff taught in any Sunday school class, and even having a pastor as a father a three year old would not be able to go into detail about the things Colton does. Colton even knows things that are to come and that happened in the past before he was even born. What really gripped me about this story is that, as humans ourselves, we often think that our prayers are unheard. We don't even realize that God DOES hear our prayers and He is always there for us and our loved ones. One thing that I loved also that many of us forget is that we don't HAVE to have fancy prayers, and we need to just let go of our pride sometimes. This book reminded me of one saying that I have heard my entire life, and something in which I continuously try to remind myself: "Sometimes we have to learn to Let Go and Let God". It's very hard for us to do because we always want to be able to control situations, but we just can't. And I think this novel can turn almost any skeptic into a believer. As I mentioned before it was a very emotional read for me, but at the same time it was just beautiful. The descriptions of Jesus, God, and Heaven. And the fact that during this harrowing time Jesus was with Colton, and when his parents couldn't hold and comfort him Jesus WAS! And their prayers were heard, a miracle happened, and God's love for them prevailed. I can't wait to share this novel with as many as I can. I think this is a book that should be read by all. I am so glad I had the privilege to read it, and I urge you to check it out as well. Happy Reading! :)


Check this book out HERE


DISCLAIMER: I was provided this book for free through Thomas Nelson Publishers in exchange for my unbiased review. Opinions expressed are mine alone.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

New Mom

New mom

Guest written by our friend Katie Callahan

We had our first baby last month and I am so thankful we got satellite internet from http://www.satellitestarinternet.com/hughes-net/new-york/ because I have no idea what I am doing. I get weekly email newsletters that include tips and summaries of what my child should be doing at each age. I always find myself wondering if our baby is “normal” because I have had no experience with babies until now. I was really excited when I found out I was pregnant and had so many dreams and ideas of what life with a newborn would be like. Little did I know that I would be so sleep deprived and worried about every little thing my baby did or did not do. My mom keeps telling me that no baby is “normal” and that every baby is different. The pediatrician tells me that as long as the baby is getting enough total sleep during the day and night and gaining weight that the baby is fine. I guess I just need to relax and trust that what I am doing is right.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

November's Arrival

It's officially November and with it comes excitement, and nostalgia. This month my oldest baby turns four! How the time has flown by! It seems like I had him just yesterday! I am a bit sad over this turning of age, but he is so excited for his birthday that I can't stay sad when I see that sparkling excitement light up his eyes. LOL

We are hosting Thanksgiving Dinner at our place this year for the family. I'm a bit anxious. It's been awhile since we have had a large holiday dinner at our house. Last year we had planned on it, but I was largely pregnant and uncomfortable so we all decided it would be best to do it at the sister in laws. However this year she is in the process of moving, out of town at that, so it would just work out better to do it here. I am nervous, but excited as I have a whole slew of recipes I can't wait to try out as well as make some of our traditional ones. :)

I'm excited about Black Friday. We contemplated not going this year because seriously it is the most hectic of times. It's worse than a department store on Christmas Eve if you ask me. BUT, it is the best time to get some great deals. I found a kid tough camera last year for my son, original fifty dollars-got it for twenty five. He still plays with that thing to this day, and he is getting better at picture taking. Plus I will admit that was one toy where money was well spent. It has faithfully upheld through all the slings and drops. It hasn't fazed it a bit. Plus it's a great time to buy for everyone's Christmas gifts. For the readers of the family I do plan on making some handmade fabric bookmarks as a little bonus.

I hope everyone had a safe and happy Halloween last night! In our neck of the woods it was very nippy and we didn't stay out as long as planned. It was getting much to cold for the kiddies, and since we are all still overcoming colds I didn't want everyone to get worse once the chill hit. There was a get together at my aunts house that was very fun and more than made up for the children's loss of trick or treating time. The family gathered and ate great food, passed out candy, and had a great time. Adults talking, kids playing. My son didn't seem that much interested in trick or treating anyway this year. He hates the majority of chocolate candy, and the only candy bar I've ever known him to eat is Kit Kat bars. He will also eat whoppers, but that's about as far as it goes. He was a very polite little man though and when he got the chocolate bars he said "Thank You, Happy Halloween", although when we were leaving each house I did catch him sneaking a peek in his bucket probably trying to estimate how much skittles/gum/twizzlers he had compared to chocolate bars. The littlest babe is eight months old today and he was just excited to have people ooh and ahh over how cute and adorable he was. LOL. I was a bit suprised at how many people this year did not pass out candy though.
However, all in all it was a very fun night.

I have some upcoming reviews to come soon, hope you'll stay tuned and check those out. One book I'm reading right now is just extremely emotional for me, and I can't believe how fast I am reading through it, it's hard to put down. Hope everyone had a safe and happy Halloween!

Also if any of you fellow bloggers are interested in me placing your button on my blog site just leave a comment with the link where I can go grab the button. I would be more than glad to post your button on my site for a couple of weeks, and maybe it will gain some more traffic. We bloggers have to help each other out after all. :)
Till next time!

Sincerely,
Tori
There was an error in this gadget

Search This Blog