Thursday, May 31, 2012

My Favorite Reads Giveaway Hop

Hosted by I Am A Reader, Not A Writer & Rachelle's Writing Spot June 1st - 6th

It is so hard to choose my favorite reads! I could choose one from each week sometimes when I am reading a lot of books. Looking over this past year and the books I have read there is one that stands out significantly and that I actually read in June 2011.
 You can read my review here   One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp

One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp is one of those books I revisit often as she is truly gifted in making me think and ponder! I bought several copies of this book and have given them out over the past year. I have one remaining to giveaway and what better place than in the My favorite Reads hop!
To make it fair for all there is only 1 entry on the Rafflecopter. You don't have to be a social media groupie or anything to win! Simple name and email in the rafflecopter. If you would like to leave a comment in this post that would be grand! Maybe let me know some of your favorite reads this year!

Since I am mailing I am opening this up to USA and my Canada friends!
Ends June 6th at midnight

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Whewww, we have a bunch of winners! All have been sent an email and have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be drawn!

Clandestino Banana Bars- Meredith M confirmed
Endangered Species- Megan H 

Berenstain Bear Books- Shauna B confirmed
Here's Lily- Jennifer M confirmed
Konvine Shoes- Samantha D confirmed
Two Fat Guys- Julie L
Toe Juice & Peace Love Mom winner - Brittany H confirmed

Uncommon Goods Beach Sounds Portable System

Beach Sounds Portable Speaker

The Beach Sounds Portable Sound System allows you to listen to music while you relax out on the deck or the beach. You won't have to worry about getting water or sand in the electronics as they are all internally placed in the Speaker unit. The foam rubber and velcro strap inside keep your ipod or walkman from being jostled around. Easy to close latch allows you to keep your ipod safe and sound.

The Retro style is so rockin! Love how it looks like an old time radio. It does have a built in AM/FM tuner as well in case you need to listen to the weather as the dark clouds approach. Makes a fantastic gift for Teens!  As soon as we got ours to try out, my 4 year old laid claim!

Made in China. Takes 4 double A batteries and lasts a long time on the battery life. I loved the flexibility of having a speaker to use my ipod with outdoors. I typically have to listen to it alone with the headphones as I didn't have any unit to plug it in to make it more public for the rest of the family. In the short time we have had this unit it has probably been utilized by each member of the family!

Be sure to pick up an Ipad Case for your ipad when you aren't using your speaker!

Uncommon Goods has unique gifts for birthdays! I enjoy purchasing things that will surprise the receiver, something out of the normal variety. Uncommon Goods has nice quality gifts for all ages, some practical, others quite beautiful, and still others are just plain funny! 

I am excited that Uncommon Goods is sponsoring Summer Birthday Bash in July! They are offering a $50 GC during the event that begins July 9th. Be sure to stop back in for the Blog Hop!
While you are waiting check out Uncommon Goods online and see all of the unique and fun products they have for your early shopping. Great items for Dad for Father's Day!

Facebook for updates on new items and great stories on some of the artists.

I received this product in exchange for an honest review

Enstroms Almond Toffee Review & Giveaway

Our all-natural, World Famous Almond Toffee is crafted from a perfect blend…fresh California almonds, sweet cream butter and pure cane sugar, covered in a generous layer of rich chocolate and sprinkled with crushed almonds.

I love toffee! I will seek out candy bars that have toffee in them, or ice cream with toffee bits. I have never found toffee with just big almonds in it before! Each bite you are able to taste the yummy almond in side. It is crunchy but not teeth breaking crunchy! The light coating of chocolate adds just a hint of sweet to the toffee making it hard to stop at just one piece!  

Wholesome ingredients without a bunch of preservatives! 
 almonds, butter, sugar,milk chocolate (sugar, cocoa butter, milk, chocolate liquor, soy lecithin, vanilla), salt
Enstroms is famous for it's toffee but carries other top quality confections as well. Does your Father love treats like this? Fantastic Father's Day idea. Not too sweet and sugary like some candy is. A great treat for all!
Visit Enstroms today and get your order in for Dad!

 Visit Enstroms Candies on Facebook

Contest open to USA only, Ends June 11 at midnight. 
Follow the Rafflecopter for Entries

I received product in exchange for an honest review. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Hello Kitty Picnic for Nintendo 3DS coming this Holiday


Majesco Entertainment Brings Global Icon Hello Kitty® to Nintendo 3DS™ in Hello Kitty Picnic with Sanrio® Friends Coming Holiday 2012
Find Hidden Goodies, Solve Puzzles, and Unlock Treasures on a Picnic Adventure with Hello Kitty and Friends 

EDISON, N.J., – May 30, 2012Majesco Entertainment (NASDAQ: COOL), an innovative provider of video games for the mass market, and development partner Chaotic Moon, today announced that the pop icon Hello Kitty will make her Nintendo 3DS™ debut in Hello Kitty Picnic with Sanrio Friends.  Filled with loads of fun activities and super cute collectibles, Hello Kitty Picnic with Sanrio Friends is set to launch in North America this holiday season.  
Hello Kitty Picnic with Sanrio Friends invites players to join Hello Kitty and Sanrio friends as they prepare for a picnic adventure. Play 10 mini-games including Hidden Object, Spot the Difference, and Picnic Blanket Checkers to collect goodies for the party.  Explore and decorate whimsical environments including Hello Kitty’s bedroom, kitchen and more.  Along the way earn apples to receive special outfits and accessories for Hello Kitty.  Interact directly with Hello Kitty using the 3DS touch screen and listen as the game guides you along.  Invite your friends to join the fun in a variety of multiplayer modes as you play with your favorite Sanrio characters including My Melody®, Keroppi®, Chococat®, Badtz-Maru®, Little Twin Stars®, and many more!
Developed by Chaotic Moon, Hello Kitty Picnic with Sanrio Friends for Nintendo 3DS™ is expected to launch this holiday. For additional information about Majesco’s line of products, please visit:
About Majesco Entertainment Company
Majesco Entertainment Company is a provider of video games for the mass market.  Building on more than 20 years of operating history, the company is focused on developing and publishing a wide range of casual and family oriented video games on all leading console and handheld platforms as well as online, social networks and mobile devices.  Product highlights include Zumba® Fitness, Cooking MamaTM, and Alvin and the Chipmunks.  The company's shares are traded on the Nasdaq Stock Market under the symbol: COOL.   Majesco is headquartered in Edison, NJ with offices in San Francisco, CA, Brockhampton, UK, and a social games development studio in Foxboro, MA.  More info can be found online at or on Twitter at
About Chaotic Moon Studios
Chaotic Moon Studios is comprised of the most talented thinkers, designers, coders, and developers in the mobile media industry today. With over 400 years of combined experience, our team has practiced their craft alongside some of the most innovative companies in the world, including both Apple and IBM. They are award winners, Open Source thought leaders, iPhoneDevCamp founders, and even doctors. Between them they hold over a dozen patents and have been interviewed or written for magazines the likes of Wired, ComputerWorld, and Business Week. As the world’s most proven mobile application studio, they provide everything from initial brainstorming and strategy, to custom development and publishing, to managing an entire mobile presence in any application marketplace. For more on Chaotic Moon, check out
About Sanrio
Sanrio, best known for global icon Hello Kitty and home to many endearing characters including Chococat, My Melody, and Keroppi, is a worldwide lifestyle brand founded on the “small gift, big smile®” philosophy -- that a small gift can bring happiness and friendship to people of all ages.  For over 50 years, this philosophy has served as the inspiration for the broad spectrum of unique Sanrio products and experiences. Today, more than 50,000 Sanrio-branded items are available in over 70 countries and upwards of 12,000 U.S. locations including department, specialty, national chain stores and over 100 Sanrio boutiques. For more information, please visit and

Summer Fit: Exercises for the Brain and body while away from school

 Summer Fit

 I have never seen a workbook like this that incorporates reading, writing, math, fitness, nutrition and values all together for an entire summer. Typically you can find workbooks for the brain refresher courses, but never have I found one for the exercise nutrition component!

Each day the student has approx 30 minutes of work to stimulate their mind and body. Fun exercises for strength building, aerobics, and sports exercises and interspersed throughout the week. The intro to the book gives you explanations of the various exercises and stretches. They are geared toward children with names like Moon Touches and Fly in the Ointment. A great way for parents to get some stretching in with the children to model having an active lifestyle.

I felt that the work was appropriate for the grade level, just giving a basic review of the grade that the student has just graduated from. Not overwhelming with pages of book work, just a front and back page for each day. You do know they will not want to sit for hours and do bookwork, and  Summer Fit knows this too! I loved how day 5 has a person in history or from today who exhibits a value to be learned, and discusses how that person showed that value. There is a list of picture books to go along with the study on values as well. Incorporate a field trip to the library to pick up a couple of them!

The books go well together in that the different grades still share the same value each week, and the exercises are similar so that several grades of students can do them together.For a large family like mine, that really is a time saver.

The hard part is going to keep the kids from doing too many days at one time as I think they are really going to enjoy this summer review!

Pop over to AMAZON and order your copy today!! They have books for up to 4th grade.
Check out their Fun Facebook Page 

Media Guests has has provided me with a complimentary copy of this book.

Elijah and King Ahab I Can Read!

Elijah And King Ahab
Zonderkidz I Can Read  Level 1

Story by Crystal Bowman
Pictures by Valerie Sokolova

Simple sentences for eager new readers to learn about God.
 Elijah knows that God is the One Almighty God. King Ahab thinks Baal is better. What happens when Elijah challenges Ahab to a contest to prove who is right?

The bible text may be a little difficult yet for the beginning reader, now he/she can still get the importance of the bible story in an easy to read format. 
I don't know too many beginner readers who will figure out the words Elijah, Mount Carmel and Baal, but once you share those with the child they will memorize them. I did see a few other words that may be just a little too advanced. I sometimes wish these I Can Read style words used easier words for the kids. 

I love that Zonderkidz is taking an interest in the early reader books and providing a series of them for the kids to read about things that matter!
I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. 

Cheribundi Review & Giveaway

Cheribundi Tart Cherry Juice

Tart Cherries

The Montmorency cherries we use are all grown in the USA (Michigan and New York, to be exact). They taste better and have more powerful phytonutrients than other superfruits. That includes the trendy pomegranate, the imported acai berry, or grapes and blueberries. Rich with nutrients, tart cherries can help you recover from exercise and sleep better, in general, live life to the fullest because you feel better. Instead of eating 50 cherries a day, you can get the same benefits by drinking cheribundi™.

All natural, not from concentrate!

This juice is WONDERFUL! I have never been one to enjoy eating tart cherries and would be hard pressed to eat 50 in a sitting, but the juice tastes so refreshing and great! 

The bottles are 8 oz per container, just enough to give you a bit of energy in an easy amount to drink.  Great size to grab for on the go to get your cherry goodness in easily.
America's Superfruit!

The Tru Cherry gives you 2 servings of fruit packed in 8 ounces. My children loved it as well. If you struggle with having your kids drink juice that isn't heavy with corn syrup, sugars and artificial junk then this Cheribundi selection is perfect for them!

I found that I can get Cheribundi at my local Whole Foods Store and they have a retail shop finder on their website at

You can enter to win a sampler pack of Cheribundi thanks to the sponsor! We absolutely loved this juice!

Use Rafflecopter for Entries. USA Only. Ends June 11 at midnight.

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Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Genuine European Portraits Review

 “That is STUNNING”, the first words out of my mouth as we unwrapped Shiloh’s portrait from Genuine European Portraits. I just stood there, mouth agape in amazement of the beauty of it!
 As soon as I saw Shiloh’s print it brought to mind a portrait of my Great Grandmother in her youth. It is a drawn, treasured heirloom that still graces the wall of my Grandparents home today.

 This is the photo that I sent to Genuine European Portraits of my 7 year old.

  The artists are able to take a simple photo and transform it into a treasured heirloom.

There is something unique about a hand drawn portrait of a loved one versus the photos of today; A softer touch, a capturing of a person that only an artist can detect and draw.
It is a nice clean sketch that jumps off the page at its realistic qualities, almost as if looking through a window rather than at a portrait. 

Our only daughter among 5 brothers, Shiloh was the perfect choice for our review portrait. Daddy’s little girl, a beautiful gift for her Father this Father’s Day. 

The artist captures each detail so wonderfully from eye lashes to softening her hair!

Signed by the artist and you can look them up on the website to learn more about their art and career. Each piece comes with a bio of the artist as well. Each is a gifted artist that takes the time and diligence to create your heirloom portrait.

The great change with new technology is the model doesn’t have to sit for hours on end while the portrait is drawn? Can you imagine your little ones being able to sit still?? Not mine! The artist can work from a couple photographs and create a portrait that looks as if your child did indeed sit for hours on end! 

This is a perfect gift not only for Father’s Day as that approaches, but for

*Anniversary:  have your favorite wedding photo captured in drawing, or a wedding anniversary
*Grandparents:  honor them with a photo of their young family as a memory, or a recent one of your family.
* Pet owner; what about your daughter’s favorite horse, or son’s long loved dog
*Graduation; drawing of the student as a child or in cap in gown
*Loved one passing: keep their memory alive with a beautifully captured heirloom
*Birth; forever hold that precious infant in sight
 The list of ideas is endless! The quality is superb and breath taking!

I can visualize a wall in my home lined with a portrait of each of my children, a moment captured in time to pass on to the future generations. 

Genuine European Portraits is sponsoring the Super Dad Blog Event June 2-10

Be sure to stop by then for your chance to win a 16 x 19 Framed Portrait! 
Can't wait? (I wouldn't be able to !!) Visit Portraits.Org and get your portrait ordered today! 
If you order a portrait and are drawn the as the winner, Genuine European Portraits will refund your payment!

Visit Genuine European Portraits at their Facebook page and let them know what you think of their artistry!

I received a portrait from Genuine European Portraits in exchange for an honest review. All opinion expressed herein are solely my own and not influenced by the company in any way. 

Crayon Rocks Review & Giveaway

All natural Soy Rock Crayons with Mineral Pigment

Barbara Lee of Crayon Rocks has been an educator of young children for 23 years.  She invented Crayon Rocks to encourage a good tripod grip on the crayon for better handwriting skills down the road. Not only helping with fine motor skills but easily being able to add color to the creations that the young ones make. 

I love that Crayon Rocks are made of soy wax from our USA farmers!
The crayons come in a great variety of colors, each small for the young ones to hold in the tripod fashion. Vibrant colors without the waxyness that many crayons have. Easy to layer colors for additional effects!

They come in 16 or 8 count pouches. You can order your Crayon Rocks Here
 Enter the Rafflecopter now to get a 16 count and an 8 count pouch of Crayon Rocks!

  USA only, Ends June 9 at midnight.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Letter from a Martyred Christian by HL Hussmann

Letters from a Martyred Christian
H.L. Hussmann

In A.D. 67 Aulus Aurelius was convicted of treason against the Emperor by being a member of the 'cult of Christus". Unwilling to renounce his faith in the creator God, Aulus watched as first his daughter then his wife were killed by the Roman soldiers for their faith. He too was martyred into the arms of Christ. Once in Heaven Aulus watches those on earth and writes letters from Heaven to the modern day church in hopes of encouraging their faith. 

The world we live in is nor our home, just a brief stop on our way to eternity. Aulus describes how minuscule we truly are in the realm of Gods creation. Only that done for Christ will last and only those who accept him will walk the streets of Heaven.

Fictional of course as Aulus describes Heaven and all he sees there. The wisdom though that comes biblically is real. Aulus brings a new perspective on your life on earth as temporal, rejoicing in what he sees and learns in Heaven. He encourages your paradigm change to focus on the biblical, the truth, the eternal rather than just what is fleeting before your eyes.  

You can use this book as daily thoughts, devotions, snippets of reading as it is broken down into 14 letters. To fully reflect I don't feel it is meant to be read straight through, but letter by letter with time in-between for pondering, prayer and reflection.

You can read more about H.L. Hussmann's ministry at

I received a copy of this book from Book Crash in exchange for an honest review.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Nate Rocks the Boat by Karen Pokras Toz

10 year old Nathan is just an ordinary 4th grade boy, with a hugely extraordinary imagination! In book 2 of Nate Rocks, Nathan is headed to overnight summer camp. Dad is having to teach at a school for the summer and Mom has to keep an eye on Grandma so Nathan and sister Abby get to spend their summer in the great outdoors. Nathan doesn't think too highly of this idea until his alter ego, Nate Rock kicks it into high gear. As Nathan doodles, Nate Rocks transforms things around him to solve the toughest problems people find. All in Nathan's mind of course, but for us reading the book, adding fantastic tales to the already busy summer!
Nate Rock pops up in the story at various times as Nathan wonders why he is called to help solve the problems and asks "Why me?"  Each time the answer is "Why because you are Nate Rocks of course!"

Summer Camp full of kickball, hiking, canoeing, ghost stories, new friends, sport, scavenger hunts, crafts, theater and more seems like it would be a fun read with just those elements. Add in Nate Rocks and his creative mind and the book is even more hilarious!

Fantastic read for Elementary students who struggle to find 'interesting', 'funny' books. By using Nathan's imaginary counter part Nate Rocks, the reader is taken on adventures that ordinary 10 year olds aren't involved in. Quick paced and easy to read I think that this book will definitely Rock your Readers boat!

I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review. You can check out her website at
She has a Nate Rocks Facebook Page as well

Purchase your copy at AMAZON

Sound It Found It Review & Giveaway

Sound It Found It!
A new "two in one" game where you have to guess the object based on sounds along with a hidden object board game. 8 scene boards for mixing and matching. You can easily use one board for a group of smaller children, combine all 8 to make it harder for the older kids. We played with all 5 of the kids, a mix of age and it was a bit at an unfair advantage to the older ones. They loved the sound making though! I was able to hear them laugh and roll on the floor when they figured out some of the sounds that each other was attempting to make. Dad is a great sound maker and I am convinced he would Love this game!

If a game can be used with my age span from 4 to 17, I count that as a Winner!! Great game, great fun, great laughs!

M age 13 "It was fun trying to think of different sounds for the pictures.  It is a good game for lots of different age groups". 
C age 10 "It isn't as easy for little kids because they can't make the sounds. It was fun making the sounds but the older kids found the things first".
S age 7 " it was fun because you could find a lot of cool things and make cool noises."

Want a chance to play Sound It Found It with your kids? Use the Rafflecopter below for entries. USA only. Ends June 10 at midnight. 

I received a game in exchange for an honest review.You can visit Wowopolis online to purchase yours!

a Rafflecopter giveaway