Monday, November 28, 2011

Making a Christmas List?

And just like that, Thanksgiving is over and the frenzied season of (Christmas) shopping begins. On our local news, a lady who had camped outside Best Buy since Monday (for Black Friday shopping), said that camping out for several days was "the only way" she could get her family presents for Christmas since she had lost her job. I grew up in all simplicity of gift-giving -- whatever you could afford which suited the person gifted was wonderful. So all the focus on Christmas lists and having certain presents under the tree is extreme for me. If someone asks me what I want, I'll say something, which probably I'll forget to use in a few months, but most presents that are given without my insights seem to be treasured more because I know they were thinking of me when they bought it.

For some people in my extended family, I'll probably have to buy something for them off their list. But we'll try to throw a little creativity in and see what happens!

Photo Credit: Image: Kittisak /

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Tokii Review


Remember seeing commercials with the family sitting around the dinner table, and instead of talking directly to each other, they're all texting each other on their phones? Or maybe you know friends like mine who will be in the same house, and even the same room, but on their own computers or phones, chatting and posting each other on Facebook?!?  The digital world presents lots of opportunities but also presents relational challenges.

Tokii is a free online resource that uses technology to bring fun and closeness to relationships. Tokii's goal is to provide couples with tools to playfully and easily grow their relationships, using simple Discovery Games and questions, not discussions or clinical diagnoses.They have all sorts of categories, from love to spirituality. And know that Tokii takes privacy and security very seriously.

Originally I sat down alone to check Tokii out. My husband wandered over, and we tried out the Spirituality section.
It was a simple way of tapping into each other's minds and provided opportunities to talk more about different ideas!

Tokii is new and innovative. Sign up to connect and rediscover each other!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Thankful Thanksgiving

I was teaching my weekly class of 4, 5, and 6-year olds. As we were sitting around the tables eating our snacks, one 4-year-old boy was talking about Thanksgiving and said, "God made Thanksgiving." In reply, his classmate matter-of-factly said, "I thought the Pilgrims made Thanksgiving!" It just made me smile! These boys were looking back to the beginnings of Thanksgiving and not to the hectic rush of entertaining or even mad shopping preparations. It made me appreciate and desire the simplicity the holiday warrants. Probably at the first Thanksgiving there was a feast, but I'm sure they weren't concerned about straining family relations, proper table settings, or menu planning -- it was a feast celebrating survival and partnership.

We have so much beyond survival to be grateful for, and I'm choosing to recognize the simple blessings!
Happy Thanksgiving to you & yours!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Wordless Wednesday -- Will she hit it?!?

Win $5,000 For Your School!

Team up with everyone you know for a chance to win $5,000 for your favorite grade school or high school. Register and watch the trailer for "Game of Your Life" -- it's a video gaming drama about a promising young video game designer who has to make a choice that will affect his future and the lives of everyone around him. Then ask all your friends, family, teachers, fellow parents and PTO members – everyone you know – to watch it so they can vote for your school once a day, too. Because if any one of the people you tell wins, your school wins $5,000. 

*NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Legal residents of the 50 United States (D.C.) 18 or older as of the last day of the month prior to the date of entry. Ends 12/2/11. To enter and for Official Rules, including odds, and prize description, visit Void where prohibited.

Monday, November 21, 2011

In a Fog...Again

Every now and then, I feel my head is enveloped in this scene, surrounded by fog, which disorients me. I'm the kind of girl who loves the sunshine, and when things aren't as I perceive sunny, it can really affect my entire outlook.

I know this is the season of giving, thankfulness, and compassion, and while I am personally attending to those attributes, I'm missing a certain and deliberate dive into the "holiday season." We've experienced major changes with my husband's job loss, and for a person who really does function best on routine, this has been great and not-so-great for me -- this blog began because I needed to find a sense of order and belonging when I entered motherhood, and I'm searching for that order again.

So I'm trying (one again) to be deliberate and disciplined. In an earlier post about my struggles with cleaning the bathrooms, a friend suggested a regular cleaning day. So I've been rather faithful in cleaning the bathrooms on Tuesday. And as I think about my desire for order and routine, I'm trying to keep making steps in the right direction. I've decided that I need to be awake before my toddler wakes up, and this morning, I woke to the sound of my alarm, laid in bed for several minutes as I thought about getting up, heard her waking up, and then we were both off and running as a good pace!

Thank goodness I don't have to host Thanksgiving! If you still have much preparation to do, check out the $5 Dinner Mom's Holiday Entertainment Guide -- she has a number of recipes and tips to keep the fog away!

Photo Credit: Image: dan /

Monday, November 14, 2011

Only $.99 for Nov. 15! $5 Dinner Mom's Holiday Entertaining Guide

Get YOUR Copy of Erin's Holiday Entertaining Guide

I'm not quite the holiday entertainer I'd like to be, but the $5 Dinner Mom makes it much more simple for people like me! Just to let you know, today she's offering her holiday entertaining guide for $.99 with code GOBBLE! The main goal of this guide is to make the upcoming season as stress-free and fun as possible. In the same fashion as her cookbooks and blog, she addresses the proper budget, items that are necessary and some that aren't, making the most of coupons and grocery store finds, delicious recipes for left-overs, and (my favorite) "the perfect plan to have everything cooked using only one oven!" Included are 30 recipes, from sides to desserts, like this Cranberry and Celery Stuffing -- even for Stove-Toppers like myself, I can handle this recipe! And for $.99, you won't be disappointed! Review and Giveaway

I was contacted about reviewing, and I was so pleasantly surprised with the quality of their products! Trying to cut the extra costs applied to retail optometrists, allows you to purchase the same quality prescription glasses or sunglasses.

For the review, I ordered the Katie frame as sunglasses, which also came with a hard-shell case, lens cleaning cloth, and frame screwdriver tool.
This is the first pair of glasses or sunglasses I've ordered online, and I'm extremely satisfied with the process and with the end product. offers a variety of frames for all members of the family, with a printable PDF of the actual size of the frame so you could see how it would fit your face. After I chose my frame, I chose whether I wanted single vision lenses, bi-focal lenses, reading lenses, or progressive lenses; next, I inputted my prescription and and PD -- I had to use their online help to figure it out, which was basically the spacing between pupils!

The sunglasses I received are perfect for my face. I do not have much of a nasal bridge, and these frames sit wonderfully on my face, unlike most of the sunglasses I've bought at retail stores. These are one of the best pairs of glasses I've had, up there with the other pair of sunglasses that were purchased at an optical store about 15 years ago!

Use code DTMIM for 10% off your order.

WIN IT! is offering a giveaway!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Book Review: One Father's Heart: How Christ Restored a Wounded Heart

I received One Father's Heart: How Christ Restored a Wounded Heart by Richard H. Ehrman.
A cathartic collection of memoirs, Ehrman recalled how his lack of true love for his two daughters drove them to drug addiction. With actions directly perpetuating their drug abuse because of a lack of courage to confront them all with the truth, his family crumbled. But the very end of the book brought out the boldness of trying to make things right and Ehrman's journey to know the grace of Jesus Christ.

One Father's Heart: How Christ Restored a Wounded Heart was brutally honest and sincere. Reading about the lack of love and support really tore my heart, and many times I was in disbelief at the actions of one who called himself a father. While the stories were compelling, there came a point where I just wanted them to stop because it almost became too much for me to bear. I am relieved to know he is on his journey of healing, and many have been helped because of his family's struggles.

Ehrman's style is simple to read and understand. Some times the chapter breaks also created breaks in the continuity though.

After reading it, I'm again reminded of the important role that parents play in the lives of their children, and I cannot, for any amount of time, neglect to love and teach my children. But before that even happens, I need to know the truth for myself before I can present truth to anyone else.

I'm sure One Father's Heart: How Christ Restored a Wounded Heart has also been instrumental in Ehrman's healing processes. This would be such an encouraging read for fathers, especially ones who have realized they have enabled their children to develop harmful habits, because they'd know their story wasn't yet finished. But I was intrigued to review this book because I wanted to know Ehrman's personal story, to hear the other viewpoint of a father who drove his children to be drug addicts -- I'm not sure that I was ready for the grim realities he shared.

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Deep River Books (July 15, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1935265687
  • ISBN-13: 978-1935265689

"To read more reviews like this one, go to Tell Us The Truth Reviews!"

**I received a free copy of this book from Bring It On! Communications for review purposes. I was not compensated in any way for this review. All opinions are my own.**

Monday, November 7, 2011

Time To Vote!

"Public service, my son, must always be done by somebody. . . If wise men decline it,
others will not; if honest men refust it, others will not." John Adams

Actually it will be in the morning that I'm heading to the polls! Personally I try to make the most of my right to vote because I chose where to keep my citizenship. I believe that I need to do my part in helping this country, and some times the results do not pan out to my desired outcome. But I will do my part.

And tomorrow, there will be a few businesses who will throw in a few perks for being good citizens too! So after I vote, I'm heading here:

Any other patriotic businesses offering specials tomorrow?!?

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Hope You've Set Your Clocks Back!

Every year, I get excited about my "extra" hour, but every year, I seem to squander that time away! This year, I seem to be on track to get an extra hour of sleep, but I realize that the people who came up with Daylight Savings did not have young children. Last year, my little one was not informed of the time change, and it took her several days to readjust her schedule. So I might not be getting an extra hour of sleep tonight!

Photo Credit:Image: healingdream /

Flock-Lined Yellow Latex Gloves Magid® Comfort Flex® 620 Review

Most of you know of my aversion to cleaning bathrooms, and part of it is getting my hands dirty! I received the
Flock-Lined Yellow Latex Gloves Magid® Comfort Flex® 620 for review and found them to be durable gloves. They are thicker than the average disposable gloves, thus less prone to the early ditch in the trash, as many of my previous cleaning gloves found their timely end. It is a flock-lined latex glove with embossed finish for grip and is a great help for cleaning, for those who do not have a latex allergy.

****This is not a paid post. The opinions are solely my own and may vary from others. Thank you to Magid Glove & Safety who supplied the products for the review!****

Thursday, November 3, 2011

'Tis the Season

For the month of November, everyone's more grateful. There's more of a focus on being thankful. Today, as part of our church's season of compassion, and because it's basically the last day to donate items, we went shopping for the collection of Thanksgiving baskets to be given away to needing families. I always scope out the store match-ups, but I'm so excited that one of our local stores started their sales on Thanksgiving items; paired up with the sales promotions and a few coupons, we were able to save 50% off retail!

I saw other deals for various toys or educational items, which could be donated to Operation Christmas Child, sending shoeboxes with small gifts to children in other countries. Thriftiness shouldn't cause us to become selfish but recognize that even more can be shared!

Photo Credit:Image: ningmilo /