Archives for October 2013

Dystopian Giveaway Hop featuring Enhanced by Courtney Farrell

Disclosure: Just so you know, this post contains my affiliate link! The opinions shared here are 100% mine.
Enter to win the Enhanced novel by Courtney Farrell-- Dystopian Giveaway at Welcome to the Dystopian Giveaway Hop hosted by My Shelf Confessions and I Am A Reader Not A Writer.  This giveaway hop features Dystopian-themed novels that you just have to read.   I’ve enjoyed reading Dystopian novels and the way they portray the future world.  Frightening as it may seem, the dystopian novels are often quite realistic.


One such novel I recently reviewed really caught me by surprise.  Enhanced by Courtney Farrell brings us to a world where humans are bred for perfection. [Read more…]

Ditch The Disposables Giveaway Hop featuring Natulo

Enter to win a Natulo prize pack at -- Ditch the Disposables

Welcome to the Ditch the Disposables Giveaway Hop, hosted by So Easy Being Green.

This giveaway hop is dedicated to all the wonderful, reusable products available. A fabulous group of bloggers have come together to offer you some great giveaways of reusable products so you can… ditch the disposables! Be sure to hop around to all the blogs involved on the linky below and don’t miss the Ultimate Green Family Grand Prize worth $320!  So Easy Being Green, the Blogging Mamas Network, and the Ditch the Disposables participating bloggers are not responsible for sponsors who do not fulfill prize obligations.

I was drawn to Natulo’s site because it has so many eco-friendly options for moms. [Read more…]

Stashing stuff in my cosmetic bag

Disclosure: This sponsored post contains affiliate links. The opinions shared here are 100% mine.

Stashing stuff in my cosmetic bag is a thing of the past for me. I have always kept every little item until it’s gone. I’ve decided to pare down what I keep on the counter because my makeup bag overfloweth. That’s not including the items I carry in my purse or stash in my desk. When I think about it, there are only a few things I actually use on a regular basis. As painful as it felt, I decided to weed out the dried-out mascaras and 1990’s eyeliners. What’s the purpose of keeping those things when I don’t ever use them? Here’s what made the cut.

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Gentle and natural skincare

Gentle and natural are two factors I look for when trying to find a facial cleanser. My skin has some serious sensitivities and I never know what’s going to set it off. I remember the first time my mom bought me a bar of “face soap” when I was an acne-ridden teen. My eyes swelled shut and I was red as a tomato. Such a pleasant experience for a self-conscious teenager. When I was a newlywed, a friend convinced me to have a makeover done with her at the Clinique counter. It was fun until later that afternoon when again, my eyes swelled shut and my skin was all red. My husband went with me to return the cleansers and makeup I had purchased. It hadn’t even been taken out of the bag yet. At first the saleswoman tried to tell me that they don’t take makeup back, but I lifted my sunglasses and she saw my swollen eyelids. No questions asked after that; she gave me a full refund. These incidents have left me feeling quite wary of anything that touches my face. You know the instructions that tell you to do a little test spot first? It’s necessary for me!!

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On My Bookshelf: The Bargain by Stephanie L. Reed

Disclosure: I received a copy of this book to review. This post contains my affiliate link. The opinions shared here are 100% mine.

I know what you’re thinking….Here it is, another Amish novel.  It’s true, sometimes they are as predictable as the Kardashian/Jenner split.  The Bargain by Stephanie L. Reed has that potential.  The main character Betsie is not a predictable kind of girl, though. This book is like a teenage girl, moody and full of uncertainty. There’s a fair amount of tears involved in The Bargain, too. I really didn’t know how to take it at first, because the setting isn’t in an Amish community the way that the typical Amish novel starts. Instead, author Stephanie Reed puts her main character right in the thick of a dysfunctional 70’s family.  I loved seeing the pink-tile bathroom through Betsie’s eyes.  The 70’s lingo was a bit overdone but from Betsie’s point of view it must have seemed like another language indeed.   There were enough comical moments in the book to offset the drama that threatened to pull me under.   [Read more…]

Singing along with Our God Comes from Antioch

Disclosure: I received this CD to review. This post contains affiliate links.
The opinions shared here are 100% mine.

My husband recently told me that he’s going to start memorizing the Bible.  I’m not sure what put that bug in his ear but it’s a noble goal.  Hiding the scripture in my  heart is something I’ve tried to do since my early teens.  When I was a Bible Bowl player (think quiz bowl competitions with Bible questions) I memorized several books of the Bible.  I also loved to memorize verses put to music.  We sang lots of worship songs at church camp and in Vespers during college.  While I’ve slacked off big time in my Bible reading in the past few years (sorry, God!) those verses come back to me on a regular basis.   I find myself singing old church camp songs in the car.  When I received the Our God Comes CD from Antioch, it was just a breath of fresh air.  Having worship songs right in my car makes that morning drive a time of worship.  The songs are uplifting and bright, easy to sing along with, and very catchy. [Read more…]

On My eBookshelf: Very Superstitious: Myths, Legends and Tales of Superstition

Disclosure: I received this ebook to review. This post contains my affiliate link.  The opinions shared here are 100% mine. is one of the stops on the Very Superstitious Tour!

It’s the time to be telling ghost stories. If you’re looking for some good spooky stories to read, check out Very Superstitious: Myths, Legends and Tales of Superstition (Charity Anthology Dark Tales Collection).  This compilation of short stories is perfect for a Friday evening spent huddled under a blanket with a flashlight to give you some sense of peace. The stories in this collection aren’t all scary. In fact, some of them are just brainteasers. Normally short stories don’t appeal to me because I don’t feel like I get to know the characters very well. In this case, however, the stories are very well-rounded so that I felt like I had enough information to enjoy the plot of each tale.

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On My Bookshelf: Praying for Your Addicted Loved One by Sharron Cosby

Disclosure: I received a copy of this book to review. The opinions shared here are 100% mine. This post contains my affiliate link.

 The book tour for Praying for Your Addicted Loved One came at a perfect time in my life.  My dad, who is an alcoholic drug addict, resurfaced after almost 20 years of being gone.  Honestly, we didn’t even know if he was still alive because we hadn’t heard anything about him for nearly 18 years.  During that 18 years a lot has happened in my life.  I’ve graduated from college, gotten married, had two children, and suffer from a serious disease.  There’s enough on my plate at this point.  When the drama with my dad started back up again, I wanted to hide under a rock.   From the limited conversations we’ve had with him since he announced his return to the real world, it’s apparent that things haven’t changed much in his lifestyle over the 18 years he’s been gone.  My father still blames his children for his need to disappear, since he was in danger of being imprisoned for neglect and drug abuse.  Who does that?!  Who blames a 33 year old child for being expected to be fed and clothed when he was 14 years old?!    We’re glad to know that he’s okay and well enough to make contact.  Still, the old wounds are there even though the scars still hurt. [Read more…]

Give your child a headstart on language development

Disclosure:  I received a product sample to review. The opinions shared here are 100% mine.

You’ve probably seen children in a store or on television who speak a foreign language.  It’s fascinating to me that these small babies can  fluently speak two, three, even four languages at such young ages, while I struggle to retain the little bit of Spanish I once knew.  It’s a well-documented fact that children have a unique window of opportunity for language development.  If there is a special child in your life, why not consider giving the gift of language to that child?  There are many ways to offer such a gift.  I have tried learning Japanese through books and on tape.  It’s just not the same, possibly because my old brain is starting to harden up.  My children, however, soak up the information like a sponge.  A few months ago we reviewed the Little Pim Japanese videos and my children still remember many of the words they learned on those videos.  In fact, when my coworkers rode with me in the van on the way to lunch one day, they teased me by getting in the back seat like they were my kids.  So I reciprocated by turning on the Little Pim Japanese videos.  They actually watched the videos and mimicked some of the words.  Now, if that isn’t testimony to these videos, I don’t know what is!  [Read more…]

I wonder how many just added the new Macbook to their Santa letter

Disclosure: This post contains my affiliate link. The opinions shared here are 100% mine.

My students are always a great resource when I need to know what new devices are being released. A couple of years ago when I wanted to get my daughter an iPod Touch, my students told me which one would be the best for her needs. Today they were talking about Macbooks. When I got home and found out that Apple introduced new models to the public today, I wondered how many of my students added the new Macbook to their Santa letter.

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