Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Decorating for Christmas 2015

We went "live" this year! Our tree is from Mountain Boy Trees a family company who has been in the Christmas Tree business for over 40 years in North Carolina.. 

The kids had a great time helping to decorate. We went with clear lights, blue & silver balls (shatterproof of course due to the cats), and other special ornaments we've had throughout the years. 

We water our tree daily and Mountain Boy Trees says the key to having a live tree until Valentine's is plenty of water and re-cut the bottom!

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Healthy Girls, Energy Balance, and the Girl Scouts #HealthyHabits

Let's get our Health on Girls!!!

Summer is here, that means getting outside, being active and having fun! I have some great tips for this summer for all girls thanks to the Girl Scouts and The Together Counts Program on how to incorporate healthy habits along with healthy lifestyles this Summer! 

Thanks to the Mom It Forward Blogger Net-work I bring you this post. This post is compensated by the Together Counts/Girl Scouts of the Nation’s Capital for my participation in this campaign. All opinions are solely my own.

The Girl Scouts have teamed up with the Together Counts Program to promote Energy Balance.

In partnership with the Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation, the Girl Scouts developed three "healthy habits" booklets to easily incorporate energy balance into meetings, outings, events and adventures. The free booklets help guide girls as they learn to lead active, healthy lifestyles.

Download these Healthy Habits Program & Booklets  (Daisy, Brownie, and Junior booklets)  for free:  Through the use of these free resources for Daisies, Brownies, and Juniors, Girl Scout volunteers and families can guide girls in fun, easy ways to achieve "energy balance."

  • Between Earth & Sky Healthy Habits - girls learn about the many plants, trees, and animals that flourish in nature, and also build important leadership skills.
  • WOW! Wonders of Water with Healthy Habits - girls discover the many forms and paths that water takes and how to protect it. They also learn how to engage in teamwork, speak effectively to convey a message, and inspire others
  • Get Moving! with Healthy Habits - girls learn how to use their energy to protect Earth’s energy and build important leadership skills. Tips for Creating your Energy Balance this Summer:
Nature is a perfect place to start! Nature has so much to offer for fit and fab fun! Your local park typically has playgrounds, walking tracks, nature trails, fishing, camping, paddle boating, and outdoor sports. The Pool - In our area we have splash pads, community pools, member based pools and even a water-park nearby! Swimming and water sports are great ways to keep cool in the hot summer days all while keeping active! Don't forget the sunscreen!

Outdoor Sports/Games: Soccer, volleyball, tennis, the list goes on and on and many programs are available every summer in your area. Getting kids active with sports is a great way to incorporate energy balance. Get creative with outdoor games. Pitch up a volleyball net, badminton, shoot some hoops. Some games my family like to play are simple and fun like Four Square. Four Square just takes chalk, a lightweight bouncy ball, and 4 people. Its a fast paced game that keeps you moving!

Farm Fresh Fruits & Veggies - Our kids love checking out our local farmers market and farms in the area. Most of the farms carry a wide variety of in-season vegetables and fruit, dairy farms have milk and ice cream, and most allow tours for free! Its a good way to get the kids involved in making healthy food choices and helps to support local farmers. This would be an easy way to teach variety of good food choices by incorporating new foods that are good for your energy balance. #HealthyHabits

My daughter Laney Doll joined the Girl Scouts last Fall as a Daisy. The Girl Scouts is a great program for girls, their mission gives girls the opportunity to grow, explore, and have fun. They are very active in their missions with camping, crafts, outdoor activities, volunteering their time to help out others, and empowering girls of today. Its more than just selling cookies and earning badges, girls build confidence, stay active, and learn a lot of valuable lessons in the scouts!

Health and fitness have been part of Girl Scouting since girls ran foot races back in 1912! Camping has always been what everyone thinks about when you hear anyone mention the Girl Scouts.

The Girl Scouts' leadership program is girl-led. Girl scouts have great guidance from caring adult mentors. Mom's! you can volunteer! They have training courses online and in classroom settings available. If Girl Scouts is something that you are interested in click here to find your areas local council.

About the Together Counts Program: 

The Together Counts program is nationwide and provided by the Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation to inspire active and healthy living via physical activity and nutrition, a fundamental underpinning of efforts to reduce obesity. The principle behind the program is called Energy Balance, which just means balancing the calories we consume with the calories we expend. 

Energy In: The Calories you get from eating and drinking.

Energy Out: The Calories you burn from physical activities. 

About the Girl Scouts of the Nation:
The Girl Scout Council of the Nation's Capital is a nonprofit membership organization serving over 90,000 members grades K-12. Girl Scouting helps girls to develop their full individual potential; relate to others with increasing understanding, skill, and respect; develop values to guide their actions and to provide the foundation for sound decision-making; and contribute to the improvement of society through their abilities, leadership skills, and cooperation with others. 

Links of Interest to keep in the loop with Girl Scouts of the Nation & Together Counts:

  • Girl Scouts of the Nation’s Capital Twitter: On Twitter, GSNC shares council information including awards, resources, highlights from council events and volunteering opportunities.
  • Girl Scouts of the Nation’s Capital Facebook: Similar to Twitter, the GSNC Facebook page shares photo albums of troop activities, news from around the region, and partner content from Together Counts.
  • Together Counts Website –The website is consumer friendly—aimed at parents and educators and provides resources, tips, recipes and more.
  • Together Counts Blog – The Together Counts blog is the main source of all consumer-friendly news including HWCF campaigns, announcements and content from HWCF partners around the topic of healthy eating habits and incorporating more physical activity.
  • Together Counts Twitter – On Twitter, Together Counts shares everything from digital assets (video, infographics) to industry or conference news related to food in addition to campaign and partner news.
  • Together Counts Pinterest – Together Counts’ resource for sharing recipe inspiration from across the network, family activity ideas and pins from partners that relate to family eating and activity including Girl Scouts, Healthy Dining Finders, etc.

We are partnering with Girl Scouts Nation’s Capital and Together Counts. The client’s partnership is with Girl Scouts Nation’s Capital, not Girl Scouts of the USA.  Together Counts is a program by the “Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation” .

Monday, May 18, 2015

Gretchen Carlson's "Getting Real" - Plus a $25GC Giveaway #bookreview #giveaway #familychristian

Releasing June 16th of 2015

Gretchen Carlson's "Getting Real" is an inspirational story about Gretchen's childhood and life. You may remember her as the national news reporter and Miss America Pageant winner.

Did you know she was a violinist, a prodigy of her day? Her story goes through the trials and tribulations of being an  especially talented violinist struggling to become something more. To be just one of the kids, to fit in, to find her place in the world. 

My Review:

I loved reading  "Getting Real", many of the events in Gretchen's life are very easy to familiarize yourself with. The struggle between being soo good at something but yet wanting to run from it to be something else, its all part of growing up, finding out who we are. Then the challenges she faces as a Miss America Pageant winner and then on to be a popular Fox news anchor on her show "The Real Story". She strives to find herself, to find success, and to keep God at the center of her life even today with her family and her demanding career.

Gretchen's biography inspires the reader, her strong character as a child and even as an adult today gives hope to those of us who may feel like giving up. Before reading her memoir I never knew she had been a violinist as a child or that she even was a 1989 Miss America Pageant winner from Minnesota. I always knew her as the strong female news anchor on Fox news.

When your in the spotlight people can dig around in your past like many did to Gretchen and exploit the very things about you that you disliked but overcame. For example Gretchen had been overweight as a child, even called "Miss Piggy", but she overcame her body and went on to win the Miss America Pageant. She shows a strength like no other and I believe she is a great role model for young women of today. You have to strive for success no matter what and keep God at the center of your life, then you are able to shine a light through any darkness that may try to follow you.

Her story is a must read, an inspiration for all. Releasing early June!

Pre-order your copy today! 
 "Getting Real" by Gretchen Carlson at Family Christian

--Looking for the $25 Gift Certificate Giveaway to Family Christian?
ENDS 5/31/15, Midnight EST. --

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Bloggin' Mamas - Seat-belt Safety #KidsBuckleUp

This post is being shared on behalf of Bloggin' Mamas. #KidsBuckleUp $100 Amazon Giftcard Giveaway

 Blog­gin’ Mamas would like to sup­port the Ad Coun­cil and The U.S. Depart­ment of Transportation’s National High­way Traf­fic Safety Administration (NHTSA) with pro­mot­ing the Seat Belt Safety cam­paign, which asks par­ents of chil­dren ages 8–14 to make sure their kids are con­sis­tently and prop­erly wear­ing their seat belt every time they get in the car. Par­ent­ing a tween involves com­pro­mise. But here’s one rule that should not be up for debate – the car doesn’t move until every­one is wear­ing a seat belt. If you say it, and if par­ents buckle up them­selves, your tween will buckle up. And if they don’t, that’s a fight worth hav­ing. It might just save your tween’s life. Did you know that one child pas­sen­ger age 8 – 14 is injured every 8 min­utes in a car crash? From 2009 – 2013, 1,522 kids ages 8–14 died in car, SUV and van crashes. Of those who died, almost half were unbelted. As chil­dren get older they’re some­times less likely to buckle up. The per­cent­age of child pas­sen­gers who die while rid­ing unre­strained gen­er­ally increases with age and is most pro­nounced among 13 and 14-year-olds regard­less of seat­ing position.

 Check out this Battlefiled MiniVan Video:

Buckling-up is an important habit to instill in children at a young age. Parents can lead by example by wearing a seat belt themselves and by insisting on seat belt use for every passenger in their vehicle. Seat belts and safety seats, if used correctly, dramatically reduce the risk of fatality or injury to children. phone buckle ice cream buckle Resources -Visit www.safercar.gov/kidsbuckleup; for more info about buckling up! -Learn when to transition your child out of the booster seat to a seat belt and find out how it should properly fit. http://www.safercar.gov/parents/SeatBelts/Beyond-Booster-Seats.htm; -Parents are the #1 influence on children’s seat belt usage: http://www.safercar.gov/parents/SeatBelts/Number-One-Influence.htm;

The Giveaway

Prize(s): 1 win­ner will receive one (1) $100 Ama­zon Giftcard. Give­away Starts: 4/23/15 at 12:01am EST Give­away Ends: 5/7/15 at 11:59pm EST Eli­gi­ble: United States Res­i­dents ages 18+.

Enter via rafflecopter below!

a Rafflecopter giveaway Disclosure: I was not compensated for this post. All opinions expressed are my own. If you have any questions or would like to run your own giveaway with Bloggin' Mamas, please email info@blogginmamas.com 

Friday, April 24, 2015

Re-grow your Own Romaine: Window-sill Romaine Lettuce #gardening #regrowingvegetables #windowsillgardening

(click the image to see full size)

Did you know you can re-grow your own Romaine lettuce in your home!? All you need
is the stub of a romaine stalk, a plastic cup or little pot, about a 1/2 inch of water, and a window-sill to start!

Cut the core from your lettuce head, about 2 inches from the bottom. Place in a cup, pot, glass bowl, anything that the stalk will easily stand straight in. You can use toothpicks at the bottom to help keep your stalk steady, I didn't need to do that though. Add water about 1/2 inch. I would pour out the water daily and refresh with new water, be sure to spritz the leaves too, check the growth of the romaine leaves to make sure none are drying out, if any are dried out remove, the rest will still grow!

After about 7 days you can place your romaine with the leaves above the soil in a planter box outside or in your garden or wherever you may choose to grow your Romaine! It takes a few weeks to grow a full head of Romaine. Remember to keep watering your Romaine at least the first week, hydration is vital so your leaves don't dry out!

You can simply grow your own romaine for your salad all by saving those stubs! Great project to get the kids involved with. They will get a kick out of watching it grow daily. My daughter is excited to try our Romaine with ham and ranch dressing. We make romaine lettuce wraps for lunch and school lunches. The tasty little wraps also make a great snack and appetizer!


#gardening #regrowingvegetables #windowsillgardening #romaine

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Behold the King of Glory: A Narrative of the Life, Death, and Resurrection of Jesus Christ Nancy Guthrie, Russ Ramsey #BookReview

Behold the King of Glory

The life, death, and resurrection of Jesus stand at the heart of the Christian faith. For many, however, the story is so familiar that it no longer instills a profound sense of awe and wonder. In this carefully researched retelling of the gospel story, pastor Russ Ramsey seeks to reinvigorate readers' appreciation for Jesus Christ by helping believers and nonbelievers alike encounter the truth about Jesus's life, work, and message in a fresh and compelling way.

Designed to be read at any time of the year, Behold the King of Glory follows the ministry of Jesus in one continuous narrative, culminating in his dramatic arrest, execution, and resurrection. Creatively written yet rooted in the Bible, this resource will reawaken readers' appreciation for Jesus Christ, the King of Glory.

My Review:

Ever wondered what is was like when Jesus lived? Do you want to follow along His journey? Russ Ramsey takes you there with "Behold the King of Glory". 40 Chapters that really help the reader understand and feel Jesus' life and times. This can be used as a type of devotional but it doesn't read as a devotional, a great historical retelling to read anytime and for the future it can also be used for Lent.

This book is for everyone, non-believing and believers of Christ. Its historical and moving. You will want to continue on the journey.



Thank you to Family Christian for the opportunity to review "Behold the King of Glory". 

Friday, March 13, 2015

Bunny's First Spring - Sally Lloyd-Jones #BookReview #ChildrensBooks

Spring hasn't sprung quite yet we are still finishing up a cold winter here in Eastern North Carolina! The children are ready for Spring, warmer temperatures, flowers to bloom, and of course with Spring comes Easter and Spring Break! I had the opportunity thanks to Zondervan Kidz to review "Bunny's First Spring" which was a great book to teach my children about the changing seasons and what is to come! 

My Review:

Sally Lloyd-Jones' "Bunny's First Spring" is a children's book celebrating the Easter season and the rebirth of the Spring Season. In the story we follow a baby bunny born in the Spring who goes on to learn about the seasons changing and what comes with the change of the seasons.

The bunny enjoys spring but starts to  be frightened and worried about the Earth dying as the seasons change. The story in a way is like the rebirth of Christ with His Death came life. With Winter and the hibernating sleep the bunny goes into with his family he learns that life can be resurrected from death upon awakening in the new Spring.

Love the illustrations by David McPhail. You will be delighted at the beautiful pictures illustrated in this book. Also at the end of book she included this quote (paraphrased) from
 Martin Luther:

"God has written the promise of new life
not just in books alone,
but in every leaf in springtime."

Bunny's First Spring would be quite the treat if your looking for books about Spring
and with Easter coming up this would be a great addition to your children's Easter Basket!

I would recommend for children ages 4-8, be sure to answer any questions your children may have after reading this book. Its a good opportunity to teach your children about the seasons changing and that with death that new life is reborn especially in nature!

About the Author: Sally Lloyd-Jones:
Sally Lloyd-Jones is a leading write of inspirational books for children. She is the author of three bestselling children's Bibles, including the Gold Book Award-winning Baby's First Bible and, most recently, the Moonbeam Award Winner and ALA notable, The Jesus Storybook Bible: Every Story Whispers His Name. She has written many picture books for children, including the critically acclaimed New York Times bestseller How to Be a Baby: By Me, the Big Sister. Sally was born and raised in Africa, was schooled in England, and now lives in New York City. She can be found at www.sallylloyd-jones.com

You can find "Bunny's First Spring" at
Zondervan and Amazon!

Thanks to Zonderkidz for the opportunity to review this book in exchange for my honest review.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Silicone Heat Resistant Grilling/BBQ Kitchen Gloves #Aylsiliconeglove #Tomoson #Review


When it comes to baking, grilling, or handling anything in the kitchen that is hot I simply love to use my AYL Silicone Baking gloves. No more worries about burning my finger tips or even my whole hand with these. They are heat resistant up to 425 degrees Fahrenheit and the no slip finger design makes handling hot objects safely.

We have used ours for taking dishes our of the oven and even pizza was easy to take out wearing these! Pizza is the one thing I almost always get burned trying to take out! My fiance has used these when grilling as well as when he's baking a cerakote coating of paint to one of his titanium gun parts.

Cleaning these up is a breeze, they are waterproof, dirt, oil, grease wash right on off! I can definitely see myself using these if  I have to remove a large roast or pulled pork butt from the oven with my hands! I would recommend even wearing these when cutting a large cut of meat to prevent burning your fingers!

Short little description directly from the seller:

 AYL Silicone Heat Resistant Grilling BBQ Gloves Set: #1 Best Value - Perfect For Use As Cooking Gloves, Baking, Smoking, Or Potholder - For Use on Hot Food in High Temperature In The Kitchen, Use As Grilling Gloves, Oven Gloves, Or Even Camping! Protect Your Hands And Avoid Accidents With Insulated Waterproof Five Fingered Grip, Far More Protection And Easier to Use Than Oven Mittens!

If you are looking for the perfect pair of oven mitts that are versatile for the kitchen, for the grill, or for using when handling all things hot (up to 425 degrees), I highly recommend purchasing a pair of these Silicone Kitchen Gloves for your household. These would also make great gifts for your special guy or gal!

Where can you buy a pair or two? Amazon.com has you covered!


Disclaimer: Thanks to Tomoson.com and AYL I was able to review this wonderful set of Silicon  Heat Resistant Grilling/BBQ Kitchen Gloves in exchange for my honest review. All thoughts, opinions, and rating are my own. .

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Max Lucado - Treasury of Bedtime Prayers - #Fcblogger #BeforeAmen

Bedtime is a peaceful time for winding your little ones down and off to sleep. What better way to end your day by reading a bedtime story to send your children off to sleep.

Max Lucado's Treasury of Bedtime Prayers is a beautiful padded hardcover book with 160 pages of prayers, poems, and verses. The prayers are written in a rhyming type fashion which makes them catchy and easy to memorize. Lisa Alderson completes the collection with her beautiful art illustrations throughout the book which is soothing to they eyes.

The introduction letter in the beginning of the book by Max Lucado and his wife Denalyn Lucado go over the importance of teaching prayer to children.

Here are the contents in the book:

Good Morning, God
God, You Are Great!
My Family and Friends
In My Play and Through My Day
My Mealtime Prayers
God Takes Care of Me
Teach Me, God
Prayers for Special Days
Thank You, God!
Good Night, God

My daughter and son simply loved this treasury of prayers and we read them anytime (not just at bedtime). If you are looking into introducing your children to the act of prayer this book makes teaching the power of prayer with children easy. With introductory stories and 20 all new prayers by the Lucado's that are for today's young reader this is sure to be your new bedtime/anytime classic for years to come!

This book would be a great gift for anytime but Easter is coming up and this would make a great gift to include in your Easter baskets! Find Max Lucado's "Treasury of Bedtime Prayers" at Family Christian for only $13.99 (sale ongoing) clicking here

*Disclosure - Thanks to Family Christian for the opportunity to review, the review is my own honest opinion. Prayer images from Max Lucado's Pinterest Board

Saturday, February 21, 2015

ECU Women's Basketball #ECUWomensBasketball #Girlscouts

The family had fun at the Women's ECU Basketball game last Saturday. They were invited thanks to the girls being in the Girl Scouts.

My daughter Laney (the lil girl in the middle) learned a dance from the ECU Dancers and was able to perform at the half time show with over 100 Girl scouts from around our area!

I unfortunately missed this event but a local news photographer snapped this great shot of them and I had to share! Yay for ECU Women's Basketball winning the game against South Florida! 65-64

You can read the winning article here.

Thanks to the Daily Reflector for taking this picture!

The Advocate - Randy Singer #BookReview #Giveaway

Follow what law and legal representation was like in biblical times with Randy Singer's Christian historical fiction Advocate: He Defied an Empire & Inspired a Faith. At the trial of Christ, Theophilus, brilliant young "assessore" raised in the Roman aristocracy, stands behind Pontius Pilate and whispers, "Offer to release Barabbas."

 The strategy backfires, and Theophilus never forgets the sight of an innocent man unjustly suffering the worst of all possible deaths--Roman crucifixion. Three decades later, Theophilus has proven himself in the legal ranks of the Roman Empire. He has survived the insane rule of Caligula and has weathered the cruel tyrant's quest to control the woman he loves. He has endured the mindless violence of the gladiator games and the backstabbing intrigue of the treason trials.

 Now he must face another evil Caesar, defending the man Paul in Nero's deranged court. Can Theophilus mount a defense that will keep another innocent man from execution? The advocate's first trial altered the course of history. His last will change the fate of an empire.

My Review:
 If you like Historical fiction novels, you will be delighted with "The Advocate". The story is rich in history, taking Randy Singer over five years to write, because the historical research that went into writing this novel was very accurate and precise. This is the first novel I've read by Randy Singer and I was new to stories with a legal perspective.

Extremely descriptive in Roman history we follow the fictional character Theophilus, as a teen, all the way to maturity, to his witnessing of Jesus' crucifixion, and his battle as an Advocate for Paul to prevent his future execution.

The story will make you appreciate your freedom to believe in your own faith. Faith in God was persecuted by the Romans back in these times leading  many innocents to torture and crucifixion.  

The tortures in this book are quite explicit in nature, true to the times of crucifixion. If you are one to get queasy prepare yourself for reading these. There was nothing pretty about the crucifixions, it was ultimate torture and that is how people were prosecuted during those times. 

If your looking for a historical legal thriller rich in history "The Advocate" is your book. I highly recommend reading this story.

About the Author:

Randy Singer is a critically acclaimed, award-winning author and veteran trial attorney. His first novel, Directed Verdict, won the Christy award for the best Christian suspense novel. Recently, Randy was a finalist with John Grisham and Michael Connelly for the inaugural Harper Lee Prize for Legal Fiction sponsored by the University of Alabama School of Law and the ABA Journal. In addition to his law practice and writing, Randy serves as teaching pastor for Trinity Church in Virginia Beach, Virginia. He also teaches classes in advocacy and civil litigation at Regent Law School and, through his church, is involved with ministry opportunities in India. He and his wife, Rhonda, live in Virginia Beach. They have two grown children.

Visit his website at http://www.randysinger.net.

You can find "The Advocate" at Family Christian, Amazon, and other popular stores that carry books.

Would you like to win a copy of "The Advocate" for yourself? Giveaway ends 2/28/15 

Enter below! Be sure to leave a valid e-mail address in your comment (s) below. I give the winner 48 hours to reply to my e-mail before choosing another. 

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Family Christian. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”  **Book cover image from the Family Christian website. 

Sunday, February 8, 2015

DynaPro Exercise Ball Review/Givaway - 2/16 #Giveaway #Review

This is a Guest Post Review written by Everything Home Life
DynaPro Exercise Ball Review FB Image

DISCLAIMER: I received this product in exchange for my honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own. As I'm entering my third trimester of my pregnancy journey, I can't stress enough how important it is to stay healthy and to be physically active. This pregnancy, I've struggled since my first trimester with Symphysis Pubis Dysfunction (SPD). Most have never heard of this and some may experience it late in their third trimester. I've been going through extensive physical therapy as well as chiropractic treatment since I was 7 weeks pregnant to strengthen my core and pelvic muscles. Among the many exercises I do daily, having an exercise ball has helped a lot. In this review, I will outline the following points:
  • Choosing the right exercise ball and alternative uses
  • Product overview of the DynaPro Direct Exercise Ball
  • Advantages, disadvantages & my personal experience with this product
The right size exercise ball depends on your height. The shorter you are, the smaller the ball diameter size. Generally an exercise ball is the right fit for you if you can sit on the ball with your feet flat on the ground and have your pelvis, shoulders, and ears in a vertical line (not leaning in any direction). There are so many exercises and benefits to using an exercise ball while pregnant. These are fantastic for strengthening your core and pelvic muscles to get you ready for labor and delivery. Not only are these exercise balls great for prenatal daily use, but they're also used in yoga, pilates, and home gyms as well as an aid in pregnancy labor and delivery. DynaPro Direct Exercise Ball Product Overview
  • Made from durable, professional grade PVC Construction
  • Anti-Burst Capacity of up to 2000 lbs
  • Beginner to Expert skill levels
  • Perfect for Physical Therapy, Yoga, Pilates & more
  • Comes in two attractive colors: Pink & Silver
  • Comes with pump and two plugs
Exercise Ball Inflation Image Advantages, Disadvantages & my personal experience with DynaPro Exercise Ball When I got my DynaPro exercise ball I was initially disappointed with the packaging. The package itself was beat up and the contents were falling out. Obviously not the greatest first impression. However, once I put together everything and pumped up the exercise ball, I was very pleased. DynaPro Exercise Ball Packaging Image

 I love the way this ball feels grippy as its made with a durable, professional grade PVC so I'm not afraid of it slipping from underneath me whether I'm on hardwood flooring or carpet. I liked the fact that this ball came with its own pump and an extra plug making it convenient for me as I did not have a pump and would have to go purchase one. This exercise ball comes in one size, which means it was a little big for me as I'm barely 5'2. Although this didn't stop me from being able to do all the exercises I needed, plus my husband could use it as well. This product comes with instructions on how to blow up the ball with the given pump but there are no other instructions or other information about this particular exercise ball. Overall, I had a great experience with the DynaPro exercise ball and would recommend it to anyone looking for a durable, professional, multi-use exercise ball.

Now for the Giveaway!!

DynaPro Giveaway FB Image

ONE lucky winner will receive a DynaPro Direct Exercise Ball
Open to U.S only
Must be 18+ to Enter
Giveaway will end on 2/17 12:00AM EST and Winner will be notified via e-mail

Disclaimer: This giveaway is not endorsed, affiliated or associated with any social media networks. Winner will be randomly selected by Giveaway Tool Winner Selection. Winner's name, email address & shipping information will be sent to sponsor for prize fulfillment. Sponsor is solely responsible for shipment of the prize. Everything Home Life and any other blogs promoting this giveaway is not responsible for prize fulfillment.

If you have any questions concerning this giveaway, please contact Everything Home Life directly @ EverythingHomeLife (at) gmail (dot) com.

Monday, February 2, 2015

Thunder: A Novel (Stone Braide Chronicles) Book 1 - Book Review/Giveaway #bookreview

In post-apocalyptic America, Selah Chavez is crouched in long grass on a shore littered with the rusted metal remnants of a once-great city. It is the day before her eighteenth Born Remembrance, and she is hunting, though many people refuse to eat animal flesh, tainted by radiation during the Time of Sorrows. What Selah's really after are Landers, mysterious people from a land across the big water who survive the delirium-inducing passage in small boats that occasionally crash against the shoreline. She knows she should leave the capture to the men, but Landers bring a good price from the Company and are especially prized if they keep the markings they arrive with.

Everything falls to pieces when the Lander Selah catches is stolen by her brothers--and Selah wakes up the next morning to find the Lander's distinctive mark has suddenly appeared on her own flesh. Once the hunter, Selah is now one of the hunted, and she knows only one person who can help her--Bohdi Locke, the Lander her brothers hope to sell.

With evocative descriptions of a strange new world that combines elements of scientific advances, political intrigue, and wilderness survival, Bonnie S. Calhoun weaves a captivating tale of a world more like our own than we may want to admit.

My Review:

This is the first novel in an all new series by Bonnie S. Calhoun. "Thunder: is considered a dystopian novel. What does dystopia mean?  Here's what I found from Wikipedia on the subject:
A  dystopia (from the Greek δυσ- and τόπος, alternatively, cacotopia, kakotopia, or anti-utopia) is a community or society that is in some important way undesirable or frightening. It is literally translated as "not-good place", an antonym of utopia.

Think more end of the world, the end of time and a story unraveling from a tragedy. This type of literature may not be for everyone but it did perk my interest and I'm here to tell you my thoughts on this novel!

When first reading you learn a lot about the main characters Selah and Bodhi. You will enjoy following them along their journey in this book, its a hard one to put down! Has the feel of a lot of the Young Adult fiction that is out now, think Hunger Games and Divergent. We are 150 years after the "Time of Sorrows" on the East Coast in the United States. The earth was attacked by nuclear war which resulted in major weather implications of catastrophic measures (volcanoes/tsunamis). 

Selah is almost an adult and will have to find her mission in life, is it to be married to one she does not wish to be with or set forth on another mission? When she discovers a "Lander" named Bodhi everything changes, her life is thrown into chaos upon her discovery and her journey begins. You will be enthralled by Thunder and craving for more as do I! I can't wait for the next book in the series, I'm hoping for all of my unanswered questions to be revealed. Who are the Landers? We will hopefully find out much more in the 2nd Stone Braid Chronicles Book "Lightning", later on Fall of 2015! You can purchase this great new book at Family Christian.


  • About the Author:

    Bonnie S. Calhoun teaches workshops on Facebook, Twitter, HTML, and social media at writers conferences. In her everyday life she is a seamstress and clothing designer. Bonnie and her husband live in a log home in upstate New York with a dog and two cats who think she's wait staff. Thunder is her first YA novel. Learn more at www.bonniescalhoun.com.

    Watch the Book Trailer:


    I received this book free as a member of the Family Christian Blogger program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

    Thursday, January 15, 2015

    Daily Skin Care - Organic Vitamin C Serum - #Review

    When it comes to daily skin care, I always make sure to use natural and organic products such as Organic Vitamin C 20% Serum Formula. It only takes a few drops of this wonderful serum to apply for a refreshed and smoother complexion. After you have applied be sure to use a moisturizer and re-apply at night as well. 

    My skin is softer, it helps to decrease fine line wrinkles, and I even have a glow after using this product. I highly recommend that you use Organic Vitamin C 20% Serum Formula in your skincare routine if you'd like to have natural and glowing results!

    Here are some facts on this product: 

    • Contains the perfect ratio of Vitamin C (20%) - a critical component in collagen production, for skin that's softer, smoother and more youthful looking. (More is not necessarily better.)
    • Uses the power of Hyaluronic Acid, which holds up to 1,000 times its weight in water, enabling your skin to stay hydrated and fresh looking.
    • A unique blend of organic and natural anti-aging ingredients designed to rejuvenate skin while aiding with redness, acne scars and sun spots.
    • Works beautifully on all skin types and is designed especially for women over 30 years old.
    • Diminishes the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, giving a more youthful glow.

    **I was able to test/review this product  for my honest opinions as I have shared with you above. I personally test out all products before conducting a written review! Reviews are what helps you and me in purchasing quality products!**

    Wednesday, January 7, 2015

    Girls Scout Friendship Dolls - #Review

    As a young girl I always dreamed of becoming a Girl Scout. The friendships, working together, earning badges, the great outdoors, all of those things were soo exciting to me as a young girl.

    Unfortunately I never got to join the Girl Scouts but I decided if I ever had a daughter of my own I would give her that opportunity to join if she chose to!

    My Princess accepted and she is a Daisy in the Girl Scouts and she LOVES it! She is very proud to be a part of a great troop and has made many friendships with all of the girls. The Girl Scouts is a very fun experience and it helps to build character, courage, and confidence!

    The Girl Scouts has been around for over 100 years and is empowering girls everywhere to make a difference by joining The Girl Scouts!

    I had the opportunity to review one of the three all NEW Girl Scouts Friendship Dolls!
    I personally chose to review Carina (pictured above) because remarkably my daughter's middle name is Carina and I knew she'd get a kick out of a doll that had her middle name!

    Carina is a soft plush doll wearing a stylish purple outfit and of course the Girl Scout Juniors sash. Included with the doll are Girl Scout stickers that feature badges/achievements that your girl can place on her sash just like the real Girl Scouts with their badges! The back of the box features a few of Carina's interests and even her favorite Girl Scout cookies! If your girl is in the scouts or thinking about joining, the Girl Scout Friendship Dolls make a great gift!

    You can find Carina and the two other dolls Chloe and Carly at the official Girl Scouts Online StoreThey typically go for $19.99 but if you order now they are selling them for only $16.99 while supplies last!

    ALSO: The colorful, collectible new trio of Girl Scouts Friendship Dolls is now available at WalMart stores nationwide and online at Girlscoutshop.com, Walmart.com and YOTTOY.com

     Girl Scouting builds girls of courage, confidence, and character who make the world a better place! Just read the Girl Scout Promise and Law below:

    Keep in the loop about the Girl Scout Friendship dolls!

    Girl Scouts of the USA on Facebook &

    I am Girl Scouts

    Credits: Girl Scout Promise/Law from here:
     (you can download free for your troop as well CLICK HERE!)

    Monday, January 5, 2015

    The Best is Yet to Come - Blog Hop #Giveaway

    Enter my giveaway for a $20 GC to Amazon.com!!!! Be sure to follow the blog hop and enter in
    all the awesome giveaways! Good Luck!

    (Giveaway Form here)

    Welcome & thank you for joining us for the first annual "The Best is Yet to Come" Blog hop!
    Your Hosts Are
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    Below you will find over 30 bloggers. Each blogger on the list below has a minimum value of $15 but most giveaways exceed that limit! Be sure to "hop" along to each blog and enter to win some amazing prizes! There is no limit to how many prizes you can win! Please don't forget sharing is caring! Let your friends in on the fun!
    Thank you for stopping by and Good luck!
    LEGAL STUFF: The Best is Yet to Come Giveaway bloggers are not responsible for sponsors/bloggers that do not fulfill their prizes or for any product failure or harm caused thereby. Must be 18 years of age or older to enter.  Void where prohibited by law. Read Instructions carefully because rules vary from contest to contest. Make sure to provide a correct email address so we can reach you if you win. You have 24-48 hours to respond once contacted. In most cases, shipping of prizes is the responsibility of the sponsors who will be sending prizes to you directly. Your prize should arrive within 30 days, let us know if it doesn’t and we will TRY TO HELP OUT! The writer of this giveaway may have received a sample for this review and links may be affiliate links. Purchases made after clicking affiliate links help to support this blog and is appreciated. Compensation, if provided, is used for the purpose of promoting this event only. Opinions expressed are the blog’s own. This Giveaway is not affiliated with, associated with or promoted by Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, or any other social media company. Happy Entering!