Just Add Watercolor Happy Thoughts #giveaway ends 2/28 Full Hearts Can’t Lose US

Disclosure: Thanks to Fox Chapel Publishing for sending me a free copy of this book. Post contains affiliate links; if you make a purchase, I may earn a commission. Opinions shared are mine.

Art has become such an accessible hobby!  With the rise in adult coloring books and similar products, it’s easy to pick up an artistic hobby.  Fox Chapel Publishing has several new craft books releasing in February.  Just Add Watercolor Happy Thoughts is perfect for spring projects! [Read more…]

Fun and Friendly Calligraphy for Kids: A Hands-On Guide to Creative Lettering US #giveaway ends 2/20

Disclosure: I received this book for review. Opinions shared are mine.

How many times in the past week did you need to handwrite something? Did you write a note to your child’s teacher, perhaps, or maybe jot a few items on a grocery list?   Technology is ever-changing, but the tradition of a written language — actual handwritten words — is one of the markers of civilization.  For our culture, though, handwriting is slowly becoming a lost art.


[Read more…]

Parragon Activities for when it’s cold outside US #Giveaway ends 2/25

Disclosure: I am a VIP Parragon blogger and received these books free of charge. Post contains affiliate links; if you make a purchase, I may earn commission. Opinions shared are mine.

The Farmer’s Almanac is bookmarked on my computer; I’m always checking to see when our next snowfall might arrive!  When it’s cold outside, though, we need to have some fun things inside to keep the kids occupied.  These Parragon activities and books are sure to engage the little ones in your life for at least a few minutes. These items make a sweet gift for a faraway friend or loved one, too.

[Read more…]

This Story Is for You by Greg Pizzoli – US #giveaway ends

Disclosure: I received a free copy of this book. Post contains affiliate links; if you make a purchase, I may earn commission. Opinions shared are mine.

When people ask me how I taught” my kids how to love books, the answer is simple.  I love the kids by reading with them….A LOT.  We make reading part of our lives, and they had choices about what we read.  My son prefers Star Wars audiobooks and my daughter devours young adult series books.  As younger children, they typically selected stories about friendship and love.  This Story Is for You by Greg Pizzoli (from Disney publishing, available April 2018) is a great example of a book that my kids would have wanted to read again and again. [Read more…]

Disney Tangled The Dreamer in Me Secret Journal #giveaway US ends 2/15

Disclosure: I am a Parragon VIP blogger and received a free copy of this book. Opinions shared are mine. 

Creativity is a muscle that must be exercised.  When you were little, did you love to express yourself through your writing and doodles?  I sure did!  The Disney Tangled Dreamer in Me secret journal from Parragon is the perfect platform for such fancy thoughts!  [Read more…]

Disney Princess Felt makes a great Valentine’s Day Gift

Disclosure: Thanks to Thunder Bay Press for sending me the Disney Princess Felt kit. Opinions shared are mine.

When my kids were younger, I looked for non-sugar gifts for holidays.  We didn’t eat much candy, so it usually went to waste at our house.  The kids got their sweets from goodie bags at school or when we visited friends.  Some of the best low-cost, sugar-free gifts I found were balloons, art supplies, and books.  The Disney Princess Felt includes the art supplies and the book instructions to make 10 of these little cuties!   [Read more…]

The Ambrose Deception by Emily Ecton – book review

Disclosure: I received this book free from the publisher. Opinions shared are mine.

Sharing books with kids is the very best part of my job as a language arts teacher!  I’m always on the lookout for books that middle grades students won’t be able to resist.  There are key features that I look for…and The Ambrose Deception has them!  [Read more…]

Snow Day Activities for the Kids

Disclosure: I received books for review. Post contains affiliate links; if you make a purchase, I may earn commission. Opinions shared are mine.

I’m always excited when we get that Snow Day phone call…it means sleeping in and enjoying the day with a good book. My kids usually play outside for a couple of hours, then they’re ready for something more.  Video games hold interest for a little while, but why not try something different?  These books offer creative ideas using ingredients and materials you might just have around the house.

Wood pallet art is everywhere these days, but it’s often found at a high price.  The book Wood Pallet Wonders gives tips and strategies for making your own decor using pallets.  The author provides details about the kind of pallets to use, how to break them down, and suggestions for projects.  Perfect for DIY fans and older teens, this book could help your kids turn a talent into an entrepreneurship!

Slime Sorcery sounds amazing already, doesn’t it?  When I taught science, we made “slime” every year in lab.  It was an inexpensive project that held the kids’ interest without fail.  This book is more like a science cookbook.  It’s a great, safe way to show kids how to experiment, pay attention to outcomes, and make predictions.  There are so many recipes in this book that you could make this a snow day tradition!   Keep in mind that some of the slime results can be messy, so I strongly urge you to make sure the kids keep the slime at home.  I’ve seen many frustrated teachers who found themselves battling the slime for students’ attention!

If snow days have you craving the sunny feel of summer, just pretend you’re a mermaid.  The book Be a Real-Life Mermaid has all the tips and tricks you need to make it happen!  It’s great for those who want to host a mermaid themed party, or even just to have beauty tips to make you look like one.  A happy bonus is that the book highlights the importance of keeping our oceans clean, so it might even spur your budding mermaid to be a part-time environmentalist.

One lucky Savings in Seconds reader will win these 3 books full of activities and ideas! The giveaway is open to US readers ages 18+. Void where prohibited by law. MamatheFox and all participating blogs are not held responsible for sponsors who fail to fulfill their prize obligations. Good luck!

Thanks to Ulysses Press for providing me with copies of these books.

Fun family day at @amctheatres #Jumanji

It was a pretty quiet winter break at the Savings in Seconds house.  I’m not on an official no-spend month, but we have tried to minimize post-Christmas spending. The kids received several new toys and gadgets so we didn’t need to go more and do more.  However, when the temperatures started dropping down, down, down….we got a little cagey.  So, to the movies we went!  All of us voted on Jumanji. The “old” version is a family favorite, so I was excited to see how this one compares. 
[Read more…]

Home Alone 2 Family Night at Ovation Brands restaurants

Disclosure: We will receive a Home Alone 2 prize package like this one, thanks to Ovation Brands. Opinions shared are mine.

Over winter break, our family went to Ryan’s buffet twice….and the kids have already wondered when we can go back.  My husband always looks forward to their fried chicken (last time, he said it was the BEST).  My son double-fists the pillow soft rolls slathered in honey butter. He and I fill up on popcorn shrimp, and I adore the restaurant’s fried okra.  My daughter looks for potato soup, and usually makes a soft taco.  We all love the dessert variety, and I taught my kids how to make the perfect tip on an ice cream cone.   Through January 25, head over to an Ovation Brands restaurant on Thursday nights for an extra-special Home Alone 2 promotion!  [Read more…]