Monday, December 30, 2013

Blessings (A Flatten Me book review)

This review is WAY over due.  It has been a silly month for me. Sickness after sickness. I am finally feeling well and ready to review again!

Flatten Me has done it again!  You might remember the other book reviews I have done for them, Multicolored Kid and ABC & 123.    This time, the book is a much different style.  I picked the other two before for their artsy look. It was very cut & paste looking, if that makes sense.  I knew the coloring and style was something that V would love, and she does!

This time Flatten Me approached me about doing a review for "Blessings" Of course I said yes, even before I looked at it online.  Their books are amazing.  They told me the style was much different from the other two, so I actually didn't look at it until it came in!  Here it is!


As the cover says, it is written by New York Times Best Selling Author Robyn Spizman.  The pictures are GORGEOUS.  This book is VERY fantasy looking.  


Now, bear with me here and follow me.  Remember the Trapper Keepers of the 80's with the FABULOUS covers? The pictures remind me of them.  THIS IS A GOOD THING. They are bright and colorful and VERY well drawn.


The story line in this one is exactly what you would expect from the title.  It is all about blessings and what you wish for them.  On their site it says the book is good for ages 0-6.  I would say this is true for a boy.  A lot of the pictures are very fantasy looking.  I can't picture Aidan and Nate getting into it.  For a girl though, I think this can go older than the suggested age of 6. I know when I was little I would have loved looking at this.  Especially once I could read it on my own!
 

This book comes with two options: Hardback (what I have) $34.95 and paperback for $29.95 and is just able to be personalized with the name.  

It takes about a week and a half for production.  Not bad at all for a personalized book!  Follow these links below to keep up with them and check out all the other awesome items they offer!

I received this book in compensation for my review.  Even though, all opinions are my own.

Friday, December 27, 2013

Belated Merry Christmas!

I have been sick, sick, sick, since Christmas morning. I couldn't let another minute go by without sharing at least one picture!  Enjoy!


Thursday, December 26, 2013

Organic Matcha- Green Tea Powder by KissMe Organics Review

Disclosure: I got this product as part of an advertorial.

 
I love tea.  I love hot tea. I love iced tea. I recently found a box of mango tea in the back of my cabinet. I loved that. One type of tea that I never really got into was green tea. I have had green tea gum, that was good.  But plain green tea was never my thing.

Through Tomoson I had the opportunity to review some Organic Matcha-Green Tea Powder.  I thought I would give it a shot.  I mean, free is free, what would it hurt?  So I applied and got approved!

A few bits of info for you: (supplied by the company)

  • Macha provides 4 to 6 hours of steady energy (it is both a stimulant and relaxant)
  • Metabolism boosting:  Consuming matcha green tea can increase thermogenesis (the body's own rate of burning calories) from a normal 8%-10% of daily energy expenditure, to between 35% and 43% of daily energy expediture 
  • Scientists have discovered that Matcha Green Tea helps protect the skin from harmful UVrays, while improving blood flow and oxygen levels lifting the overall quality of the skin.
  • Antioxidant rich137x The antioxidants of brewed green tea
That is all fine and dandy, but how does it taste, you ask.  Surprisingly good!  This product is good for baking, making lattes, and smoothies.  I decided to go the latte route. First thing I noticed when I opened it was that it was VERY green and a very fine powder.  Watch out when you open it!


Macha-Green Tea Latte:
Ingredients:
1 teaspoon green tea powder
1/3 cup warm-hot, but not boiling,water
8 oz warm, but not boiling, milk or milk substitute
OPTIONAL: 1 teaspoon sugar or sugar substitute (I did not use it)
OPTIONAL: milk for frothing

Directions:

  1. Whisk green tea powder and water in a small bowl until dissolved and the top starts to foam.
  2. Add sweetener, if using.
  3. Add warm milk to the top of the cup. 
  4. For a frothier drink use a milk frother first or mix in blender.


It ended up being a weird pale green color, but was rather tasty!  I am a green tea convert!

For more recipes head over to this page below and check out their recipe booklet full of tons of recipes to try!



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, December 18, 2013

All aboard the Santa Train!

THIS IS A VERY PHOTO HEAVY POST.  YOU ARE WARNED.  lol

This past weekend we had the AMAZING opportunity to ride the Santa Train up at the NC Transportation Museum.   To say I was excited is an understatement.  When I took V to the Day out with Thomas at the same location, she LOVED it.  I was bummed that the boys didn't get to go.  Luckily this time it was on a weekend!

Saturday morning Eric and I packed up the kids and didn't tell them where we were going.  Somehow V guessed it.  I have ABSOLUTELY no clue how. We didn't talk about it around them.

We threw the kiddos in the car and off we went!  

We showed up at the station 30 minutes before our departure time, which was suggested, and got our tickets. They had warm apple cider, which Nate declared tasted like strawberry pie.  This is odd since he has never HAD strawberry pie.  He tried a new thing though! EXCITING!

We grabbed our tickets, went to the bathroom, and waited.
 And waited....
The ladies inside told us that the train was about 15 minutes late.  We were the first ride of the day.  Not sure what happened there.  It was a bit cold and started to rain a bit. Luckily there was an overhang.  We could have hung out in the building, but the kids were too excited.

I thought I was being smart. I hung out at the far left of the platform.  It looked like where they would pick you up. I was TOTALLY wrong.  If you go, plan on hanging out to the RIGHT of the platform. 

We got on the train and there were PLENTY of seats.  Eric went to one car to peek around and it was totally empty.  He got some neat pictures!
When you get on the train sit on the LEFT.  Santa shows up on that side.  You don't want to miss that!


Santa starts out in the first train car to the right.  We were in the second so we had a while for the kids to ride and enjoy themselves.

The kids were taking selfies with the camera. They enjoyed seeing themselves in the screen.

THERE HE IS!!!!!

V was taking pictures of Santa with my phone.


Santa chatting with Nate. Nate informed Santa that he wants EVERYTHING for Christmas.

 Hi-FIVES all around!


Then the kids got oranges from elves.  Oranges from elves you ask?  Weird, right?  ALL THE KIDS ON THE TRAIN WERE ECSTATIC.  5 minutes later most parents already tore into them and the kids were devouring them. We waited. Sticky oranges on a train didn't sound fun.

 Off the train we went.
 CRAFT AND TATTOO TIME!

Aidan is apparently too cool for tattoos & crafts now.  He checked out the exhibits and pretended to sleep on a bench.
After craft time we hoofed it to the round-a-bout and checked out the trains.  They have one you can climb in.  The kiddos LOVED it.

 POSE TIME!
 I forced Eric to pose too.
 We hopped on the FREE trolley for a ride back to the parking lot!
 HE SMILES!
 We posed in gingerbread men.
 Nate photobombed.
 I wasn't quite ready to leave yet, so we walked over to this neat bridge that went to another parking lot.
 I tried to force the kids to pose....yeah...we know how that goes.

How ADORABLE is her outfit? Seriously.

 Yes....these stairs scared me.
There you have it!  An amazingly fun day for not a lot of cash! I am TOTALLY going again next year! 

Head on over to the NC Transportation page and check out the other holiday happenings!

I was given tickets in exchange for the review.  All opinions and pictures are my own.  PLease don't steal them.  Stealing isn't nice.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

I am not a giftcard giver.

At Christmas time I LOVE finding the perfect gift.  One thing that drives me bonkers is when you say "What do you want for Christmas?  Any ideas?" and you get this reply "A giftcard."  All my dad EVER wants is a giftcard to Lowe's.  I guess that is what happens when you get older.  You don't need stuff. Well, at least that is what he says.

So I sucked it up and bought him one.  I mean, it IS what he said he wanted. I think what kills me about it, is on Christmas he gets a card.  Where is the fun in that?  

BEHOLD!!!!  I figured out how to wrap giftcards for home improvement stores and it is AWESOME.

First, gather the supplies. You need:
giftcard
quart size paint can    ($2.97)
paint can key (If you ever painted a room in your life, I assume you have 50 of these)
Stuff to throw in the can (small enough to fit in the can)
twine or ribbon
rubber mallet or hammer to close the can (I used the mallet so I wouldn't ding up the can)

Grab all your stuff and throw it in. The guy at Lowe's asked if I was finding everything ok. I said I had no clue what I was looking for and told him what I was doing.  He thought it sounded pretty cool.  He suggested picture hangers.  He said everyone is always hanging up pictures.  That might have just been suggested since he was standing there though.  

Either way.  I got a thing of picture hangers and nails.  Shove it all inside.


Grab your can and place it on the floor and put the lid on.  Hit the edges of the lid until fully closed.

Tie some ribbon, or some twine, to the paint key.  BAM.  Finished wrapping.  Added bonus, whomever you give this to now HAS to physically open it.  This is much better than a duct taped box!

What do you think?  Cute, huh?

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Ride the Rails with Santa Claus!



Celebrate a Railroad Christmas at the N.C. Transportation Museum!

At the N.C.Transportation Museum, you can ride the rails with Santa and his elves as they hand out oranges and candy canes – a Southern Railway tradition!  Or take an evening ride to the Roundhouse for our Cookies & Cocoa event, which includes a visit with ol’ Saint Nick to tell him your fondest Christmas wishes and some holiday treats!

Santa Train- December 14-15th & 21-22nd.
Cookies & Cocoa with Santa- December 14, 20 & 21st.

Space is limited, so get your tickets today!

I am heading out Saturday!  Hope to see you then!

Saturday, December 7, 2013

V has a birthday gift for YOU!

V's birthday is today and she had an AMAZING day.  Post to follow later about that.

When I was planning for V's party I wanted to do something cool for you readers.  I searched around and found an awesome company.  TutuFabulous.  Tutufabulous is part of SuperFly Kids.  They have capes (which you can personalize), stuffed animals, belts, bracelets,outer wear, tutus, and more!

If there is anything V loves, it is tutus.  I found this one and KNEW she had to have it.


This one is the Tie Dye Punch Princess. I quickly ordered it and the shipping was super fast. I got it in the mail and it looked just as amazing in person.  V had to try it on.


She danced, she twirled, she had a GRAND time.  What I LOVE about this tutu is two things.  First, there is a draw string waist.    With it being a draw string it fits kids roughly aged 1- 10. It was super easy to have her step in it and cinch it up.  Since it is a thin elastic inside it  doesn't bunch horribly.

The second thing I am in LOVE with is the satin skirt underneath.    I really dislike seeing kid butt.  It is one thing if the kiddo is twirling and diaper pops out.  It is another thing if it is just blatantly out there.  When we are out and about I try to be a bit modest in her attire.  With this tutu it is a FULL SKIRT.  You don't have to wear anything under it if you don't want to.  GENIUS!
I mentioned V had a gift for you, right?  Today V in collabortaion with Tutufablous of course, would like to give one lucky reader a tutu of THEIR CHOICE.

They have some ADORABLE tutu's.  My favorites on the site are the "Girls Costume Tutu Skirt"Those are the ones with the little satin skirts underneath.  They also have some with the satin on top that form "petals".   

So enter down below for your choice to win a tutu of your choice!!  Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, December 6, 2013

Holiday Specs Giveaway...TAKE TWO!

Are you bummed you didn't win the awesome Holiday Specs giveaway that just ended?  Don't fret my pet!  You have ANOTHER chance to win the same prize!!!  Head over HERE to remind yourself of the awesome sauce that is Holiday Specs and enter to win below!

Open to the US AND Canada!!!

  a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

FlattenMe: Multicolored Kid Book Review

Do you guys remember when I reviewed the adorable book from FlattenMe ABC& 123?  If not, that is cool.  You can check it out HERE.

FlattenMe is a company that makes books, water bottles, and even clothing with your picture in it, name included, or both!  These make awesome gifts for children with names that are "unusual" like my kiddos.  They aren't odd names,but you can't find anything with their names already printed on them.

FlattenMe just came out with a new book and asked me to review it and of course I said yes! Their printing and shipping speed is phenomenal.   It amazes me how fast they are about to produce a personalized item.  RIGHT now as I am typing this (2:16pm on 12/4/2013) if I was to buy the book I am about to review the website tells me that the estimated delivery date is December 13th. NINE DAYS.  You know what that means?  There is still time for holiday shopping. 

After you place your order, you can track EVERYTHING they do.  They keep your order up to date letting you know if it is in production or being shipped.  I like to stalk things. This makes me happy.

Anywho...the book. This time I had the pleasure reviewing "Multicolored Kid" .  


Just like the last book, the colors in this are amazing!  They really pop out.

Multicolored Kid is all about feelings and what makes kids unique and fabulous.  Each feature or trait has a different color and they go through many of these.


They have the happy feelings like yellow. 


What I think is really awesome though is that they address "not so good" feelings too.  Lots of times everything is fluffy clouds and shiny rainbows in books. This book has that, but they also address red: anger, and grey.  Grey is when you are having just a blah, funky, grumpy mood day.  I really think it is important to acknowledge these things.


My absolute FAVORITE picture has to be the picture at the very end of the book. I could tell you what it is, but I think it is definitely a wonderful surprise and I am going to make you wonder.

So,if you want to check it out for yourself head on over to their website and order one today! Multicolored Kid starts at $29.95 for a paperback and $34.95 for hardcover.  Shipping is additional of course.  Shipping for this book is a flat fee of $3.99.


 I received this book in compensation for my review.  Even though, all opinions are my own.