Brand names and your back to school shopping budget


You guys already know about my love for office supplies.  The fact is, I’m kind of a snob when it comes to pens and paper.  Some store brands miss the mark in terms of quality and durability.  My desk usually contains familiar brand names that are sure to stand up to grading papers.  Here are a few ways you can stick to brand names without compromising your back to school budget.
(Disclosure: This post contains affiliate and referral links. I’ll earn a small commission if you purchase through the links. Opinions shared are mine.)  [Read more…]

The Questions Kids Ask! Mily Miss Questions DVD #giveaway ends 7/27 US

When my daughter was very young, she came into the living room when I was watching TV.  I rarely watch television by myself, so I guess it caught her by surprise.  She saw that I was watching the news and asked, “Are you pretending to be a daddy?”  HA!  In one of my favorite commercials, a dad sits with his daughter at a diner.  She asks one random question after another, until she finally stumps him with, “Where do babies come from?”  It makes me smile because that’s just how kids are.  They ask questions to help develop their understanding of the world.  NCircle Entertainment sent us a review copy of the new show Mily Miss Questions. Opinions shared are mine.  I watched it with the kids to see what Mily (pronounced “Milly”) would come up with!

[Read more…]

5 FREE Ways We Have Summer Fun #giveaway ends 7/26 US

Disclosure: I am an NCircle Entertainment blogger and receive DVDs for review. Opinions shared are mine. Hosts & participating hop bloggers of the Summer Fun Event are not responsible for sponsors or self-sponsoring bloggers that do not fulfill prize obligations.

Summer is my favorite season because I get to enjoy 10 weeks off with my kids!  After the first week, though, our togetherness starts to make me a little weary.  It’s challenging to find activities that are engaging for the kids yet won’t break the bank.  Here are some ways we find summer fun for free!  [Read more…]

The Magic of Motherhood by Ashlee Gadd #giveaway ends 7/23 US – from the author of @Coffee__Crumbs

Disclosure: I received this book from the Tommy Mommy program. Opinions shared are mine.
When I was pregnant, a friend of mine told me that pregnancy was the easiest part of motherhood. The hard part, she said, was raising a family. At that time, I couldn’t see past my fear of the pain of childbirth. Two kids, 13 years, and 60 pounds later, I completely understand what she meant!  Motherhood means that you google weird things like, “Does broccoli make your pee smell funny?” and “What does ringworm look like?”  Motherhood means that you stay up all night listening to your child breathe, wondering if it sounds tight or wet.  Motherhood means that your heart breaks every time someone else looks at your child with disdain or pity.  Why didn’t anyone tell me those things when I was pregnant?  I think that’s what my friend meant when she said the hard part was coming later.  [Read more…]

Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson

Ask any frugal person about books and they’ll usually suggest going to the library.  After all, free is always better than paying money, right?  In my case, I was paying the library to borrow books.  The universe conspired against me every time, ensuring my returns would be well past the due date. Considering we always tend to borrow a boatload of books at a time, the late fines really added up!  This summer, my kids have been going through books like crazy, so I decided to swallow my pride and pay my debts at the library.  Libraries.  Since we have cards at several!   Feeling like a new woman, of course I had to look at the shelves and came away with way too many titles (surprise, surprise.)  However, I’ve finally figured out how to renew online.  Game changer, people!   No more late fees!   (Heads up – Amazon affiliate link used in this post. Opinions shared are mine.)  One of the books I got was the 2011 book Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson.

[Read more…]

Touch-and-Feel Board Books from Silver Dolphin – Bright Books

Disclosure: I received these books to review. Post contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase through these links, I may earn a small commission. Opinions shared are mine.

When my children were small, we read books together on a daily basis. That special routine became the highlight of our evenings.  My husband and I fondly remember the texts we eventually memorized… even if my kids don’t remember, we do!  In the early days, the babies loved books like these Silver Dolphin Bright Books[Read more…]

Have an inspirational summer with SNUG Safe Sound

Disclosure: I received sample products; opinions shared are mine.  Post contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase through these links, I may earn a few pennies. Thank you!

When it comes to inspiration, my kids are at the top of my list.  They inspire me to be a better person, not just a better mom.   Protecting them is a top priority!  Though they don’t value it right now, I know their hearing is a precious gift.  It’s so critical that their little ears are kept safe and sound.  Thanks to SNUG Play+ headphones and Safe n Sound defenders, that precious sense of hearing will be preserved even throughout the loud-music days.  [Read more…]

STEAM activities – Nancy Drew Codes & Clues app #giveaway

Disclosure: I received a prize pack just like the one the giveaway winner will receive! Opinions shared are mine.

STEAM is one of the biggest buzzwords in education right now.  You might also see variations of this idea, such as STEM or STREAM.  This ideology  incorporates high-interest learning tasks with technology skills such as coding or investigating science concepts.  During the summer months, it can be a challenge to keep kids engaged in these activities.  Apps like Nancy Drew Codes & Clues are a good solution to the summer learning loss problem.

[Read more…]

Little Fun Club book box — great way to make reading a summer activity

Little Fun Club blog tour. A subscription box for children's books. Great for kids ages 0-12.

At a reading conference I attended last fall, one of the presenters shared that children can lose up to 3 months of learning over the summer months. The cure, so to speak?  Keep them reading!  You realize how big of a challenge that is, though.  One way to make reading fun over the summer is to tie it in with “fun” mail.  The Little Fun Club book box contains just what you need.

Disclosure: I received this box in exchange for a review. Opinions shared are mine. [Read more…]

High interest children’s books for summer from Silver Dolphin

Disclosure:  I received a book box from Silver Dolphin. Post contains affiliate links and if you purchase through these links, I may earn a small commission; opinions shared are mine.

Now that summer is on its way, it’s time to refresh the bookshelf with some new titles.  These children’s books from Silver Dolphin have interactive features that encourage readers to manipulate the pages to enjoy the reading experience.  The three Push, Pull, Turn books present transportation and career ideas.  This is a high-interest topic for many young children, so it will get a lot of use!  Fortunately, the pages are sturdy and thick, so you won’t mind when the kids read it over and over. [Read more…]

badge