Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Mary, Did You Know?

This is the BEST rendition of "Mary Did You Know" that you will ever hear. I've heard a lot of hype recently about different groups singing this incredible song, but I'm of the opinion that this solo is the best. 

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

More FREE Apps For Kids!! #MomBuzz


This is a simple, yet very fun, read-along app for children. The free version offers two storybooks for your little ones to read along with (just purchase the full version for a whole lot more books!), and the graphics are very eye-catching. Sure to keep kids’ attention! There are also songs that they can sing along with, which every child will love!

Get Preschool & Kindergarten Books, Songs & Early Reading Games App on iTunes


This is easily one of the best apps I’ve seen for children. It’s fun and will definitely keep them busy, yet it’s educational too. Just using the free version, kids will learn how to write uppercase alphabet, rhyming words, and work their way through simple mazes. Many more activities are available when you purchase the full version, but even the free version is enough to keep them busy learning!

Get Alphabet Tracing & Montessori App on iTunes

Android users can also find Kids Academy on Google Play!

Also be sure to visit Kids Academy on social media!

Facebook | Twitter | YouTube

This post was created in partnership with Mom Buzz Media and Kids Academy. All opinions expressed are my own.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Free Apps Make Math Fun!! #FreeMathApp

Hey everybody! I wanted to share a couple really fun FREE apps for your children to use that will help them to enjoy math! It's called Splash Math, and there are apps available for Preschool and Kindergarten levels, as well as 1-5 grade. Here are my thoughts on the Kindergarten and Preschool app: This app is the perfect way to start your child on their journey with math. Instead of letting your youngster “hate” math like so many others, this will teach them to have fun with numbers! Basics such as counting, greater/lesser numbers, addition and subtraction and more are taught. It’s fun because children earn rewards (animals for their jungle) and then get to interact with the animals.

Join the 8 million+ users! Download Splash Math on iTunes! Get SplashMath for Grades 1-5 Get SplashMath for Pre-K

Or check them out on Google Play!

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The 1-5 grade is also great; math is often the most hated subject in school, so it's nice to find an app that will encourage children to not only learn, but enjoy, math. This app is fun and appealing for kids, and brings them from 1st grade all the way to 5th grade math. I like that it sends weekly updates through email on your child's progress.

$100 Amazon Gift Card Giveaway 
Write a short review of any Splash Math app on the iTunes App Store. If you have already reviewed Splash Math app, simply update your review. Send an email to giveaway@splashmath.com with your iTunes nickname and the app you reviewed.

This post was created in partnership with Mom Buzz Media and StudyPad Inc. All opinions expressed are my own.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

No More Fear Of Dentist Visits With The Wand!!

How many of you enjoy going to the dentist? Yeah, most people don't. It's just not an enjoyable trip normally! However, there's a new dentistry tool in town that just might change your opinion.

I first learned about The Wand last month through a press announcement. Basically, The Wand is a computer-assisted anesthesia system. In more simple terms, it makes your shots pretty much pain free! While researching The Wand, I learned that it's not really the needle that causes pain during injections; it's the pressure from the flow of anesthesia as it goes in. The Wand solves that problem by making the pressure a steady, consistent flow that is perfect for the tissue where it's being injected. Not too fast or strong, but just right so you don't even feel it!

I was able to set up an appointment with Dr. Paul Obrock of Cornerstone Dental Health in Quincy, IL to "try out" The Wand during a filling. When I arrived at Cornerstone Dental Health, I was pleased with the pleasant, almost family appearance of the clinic. My last dentist visits were at a clinic that's actually located in a hospital, and for myself at least, and I imagine a lot of other people, that's somewhat off-putting. 

Dr. Obrock was very helpful in explaining how The Wand works, what the difference is between normal injections and The Wand, and answering my questions about the process. The Wand looks almost like a pen, with a small, thin "cable" attached that the anesthesia flows through. Definitely much less "threatening" than the typical syringe!

I have to say I've never really been afraid of the dentist or even the shots. Not that it doesn't hurt, and yes, I'm always a little nervous, but honestly the shots just don't bother me; I have a pretty high pain tolerance level. However, after feeling The Wand, I am definitely a fan! There is literally no pain. The Wand chimes out during the injection, allowing the dentist to know the speed with which to administer the anesthesia (by manipulating a foot pedal), and also when the cartridge is 1/4 emptied, 1/2, etc. Of course from there it's a standard procedure, but what a difference The Wand makes! 

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You can find a dentist in your area that uses The Wand simply by using the search box on The Wand website. I guarantee after one experience with The Wand, you will not want to go back to a standard injection ever again! Oh, and if you're in the Quincy, IL area, I highly recommend Dr. Obrock and Cornerstone Dental Health

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Saving Money For The Holidays With CampusBookRentals!

This time of year, saving money is always a very important topic on people's minds. Shopping for holiday gifts means trying to save money in other areas. Including, as it may be, in the area of college textbooks.

My youngest brother just started attending a local college this past semester. He's going in for criminal justice, and wants to get a career in law enforcement. One of the biggest shocks for him was the cost of his books. He was shocked that little-almost pamphlet style-books could be so expensive, not to mention the large textbooks!

That's when my chance came to "save the day", and tell him about CampusBookRentals.com! CampusBookRentals allows students to save money by renting the necessary textbooks, and save a whole lot of money in doing so. Average savings on renting vs. buying a book from a bookstore is 40-90%! Plus, you don't end up with a shelf full of textbooks that you have to try and find a new home for. Just a few pf the perks of renting from CampusBookRentals besides the big savings? You get free shipping both ways, you can highlight in the books, rental periods are flexible based on your needs, and with each book rented, a donation is made to Operation Smile. (For more information about Operation Smile, please visit their website.)

Now, CampusBookRentals has come up with yet another way for students to save on their costs. Actually, it's more like a way to make some extra money! Introducing RentBack, a site where you can rent out the textbooks you're finished with to other students! You don't have to pay shipping (RentBack covers the shipping costs) and they even take care of sending the books out. So it's no hassle for you, but you're making some extra money to use for other college needs, or maybe some holiday gifts!!

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

New Epi Slim Grooming Tool For The Holidays!!

I'm sure most women are familiar with-or have at least heard of-Emjoi, the creator of many great epilators as well as the Micro-Pedi. This holiday season they've released a handy new tool, the Epi Slim+ e18

I received an Epi Slim+ for review, and the first thing I noticed is the size. Very compact and lightweight, so you can slip it in your purse, keep one in the car, or  pack in your carry-on luggage. It's battery powered, so there's no need to find an outlet somewhere; you can pull out your Epi Slim any time, anywhere! I love that the Epi Slim+ removes hair as short as 0.3mm. You don't have to wait and let your unwanted hair grow to half an inch, like many epilators I've seen advertised; 0.3mm is super short! This gives you soft, smooth skin for up to 6 weeks, which I also really like. I hate that shaving your legs is a chore that needs done weekly to keep them smooth-with the Epi Slim, it lasts much longer!

With a retail price of only $34.95 this holiday season, the Epi Slim+ e18 is a great gift idea for any woman. In fact, in the midst of all your holiday shopping and preparation, why not just treat yourself?!

"The compact Epi Slim+ features 18 of the same patented 3-disc tweezers that have long made Emjoi products the go-to choice for removing unwanted hair (as short as 0.3mm) from the root from any part of the body (including the most sensitive areas—face, bikini line, underarms, etc.) quickly, with minimum discomfort and for up to six weeks at a time. With eRase glide technology, its disc opening at an optimal 14mm and operating at 540 strokes per second, these tweezers remove the majority of hair at the first pass to keep the possibility of skin irritation to an absolute minimum. Meanwhile skin glide technology lifts up and removes hair by gliding the tweezers over the skin with less irritation."

Check out the Epi Slim+ and all of Emjoi's other great grooming products online!

Monday, November 3, 2014

Great Gifts For Kids From Brilliant Sky Toys!! #Giveaway #Christmas

Hey, who's starting to stress out about holiday shopping already? Trying to find a gift that's unique yet fun can be difficult, no matter who you're shopping for. That's why I'm excited to share this great company with you all-Brilliant Sky Toys and Books! Brilliant Sky is a specialty toy store chain, with 17 locations across the US. For the past 5 years, Brilliant Sky has chosen 10 of their favorite toys, books and games that are top-sellers, and put together a list of these, dubbed the Brilliance Awards. I was able to check out a few of the items from the 2014 Brilliance Awards, and I can easily see why they're favorites!

I received the LoopDeLoom, Paint Your Own Porcelain Bowls, and Doodle Quest for review. The LoopDeLoom was actually a gift for M on her birthday last week, and she is thrilled with it! Many of these crafting/knitting/crocheting type gifts get tossed to the side because they're too hard, or too intricate for the children to use. Not so the LoopDeLoom; M has been using it every day for the past few days, and has plans to make some holiday gifts for the family with it!

The Paint Your Own Porcelain Bowls is a set that comes with 3 bowls, paint and paintbrush. One afternoon the girls and I cleared the table, covered it with newspaper, and had some fun painting. As you can see from the pictures below, I am the least artistic of the bunch! It was fun however, and after letting the bowls dry for 24 hours we baked them to "set" the paint. Very fun, and lets the girls be creative and get away from the technology for a bit.

My bowl-inside

My bowl-outside (TKD belt colors)

Youngest M's bowl

Older M's bowl
Doodle Quest is a unique game that actually helps with memory/focus! Study the picture that is laid out, then try and complete the quest on your own transparent sheet. It's a fun game that will get the children-and adults playing with them-hooked! Quests range from finding your way through a maze, to drawing circles to protect the scuba divers from sharks, to completing the other half of a seahorse. 

As you can see, Brilliant Sky has some real winners in their Brilliance Awards this year! This will make your holiday shopping fun and easy; simply check out the list of products, and pick from there!

One of our readers will receive their choice of 1 of the items in the Brilliance Awards press release!!

Monday, October 27, 2014

Give A Gift Of Meaning This Holiday Season! #Giveaway

While grocery shopping a few weeks ago, I noticed a woman's t-shirt that read "Christmas is the season of giving...so give me, give me, give me!" Now, I know the shirt was meant to be funny, but it struck me the wrong way. How many children, teenagers, and even adults, saw that shirt, and didn't even realize how selfish that was?! Christmas is supposed to be the season of giving-to others. To others who maybe don't have all the resources and luxuries we have, maybe not even the necessities like we have. That's why I'm so thrilled to be working with this company for the 3rd year in a row-a company that knows the meaning of giving, and allows others the opportunity to be a part of making a difference.

World Vision inspires you to get more creative-and giving-this holiday season, with their 2014 Gift Catalog. You can browse the catalog, find a gift you like, and purchase it. While getting a very unique and special gift for someone on your list, you will also be helping a child, family or community that doesn't have all the benefits we have here in America. 

I received the Prosperity Cinnamon Box for review from World Vision, and it is the most delightful gift! If you have a baker on your list this year, this is something they will love. The box is carved from cinnamon bark, and tucked inside is 3 ounces of the most delicious, fragrant cinnamon I've ever tasted/smelled! I'm serious; I could smell the cinnamon before the package was even opened. I've used the cinnamon in multiple recipes in the past couple weeks, and the results were beyond satisfying-they were scrumptious! Here are a couple photos of some of these recipes; chocolate chip cookies (yes, cinnamon adds a delicious warmth to chocolate chip cookies) and cinnamon raising biscuits.

So, instead of having the attitude of "What will I get for Christmas?" this year, why not encourage the attitude of giving in your entire family? Take a look at the World Vision 2014 Gift Catalog together, and see how you can help a child or family while doing your Christmas shopping!

One of my readers will receive a Prosperity Cinnamon Box!!

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Free Educational Apps For Children!!

Hey all, just thought I'd share a few educational apps for kids that are absolutely FREE! Because who doesn't love free educational fun?!

First up, Bingo ABCs Alphabet Phonics Song. Your children will love singing along with this app! It's interactional, and they're learning songs, letters and even sounds animals make without realizing it's educational! Very fun, and will definitely keep them busy on road trips! :)

Next is the Preschool and Kindergarten Learning Games App.
I really thought the maze feature was a great part of this app. Children will learn coordination (moving the bone through the maze) even while they're learning about words that rhyme. The limited access version for free gets them started, but for a full learning experience, you're better off buying the full access.

Lastly is the ABCs Alphabet Phonics Montessori Learn To Read App for Toddlers.
I love finding educational apps for the kids that they actually enjoy using, and this is a good one! Little ones will learn numbers and the alphabet, sounds the letters make, and how to draw the numbers, all while having fun!

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Highlights From #NQC2014 Part 1

There's just no way to put into words the entire week of NQC. It's impossible. So much is going on, and so much happens throughout the week that you really can not keep a log of it all! So, I decided to just do a few posts and share personal highlights from the week.

To start off, this was the first year we attended a chapel service at NQC. In fact, we attended two! Chapel service is held at the Music Road Inn and Convention Center, and it's pretty early in the morning when you consider what time you actually went to bed the night before! We were able to make it on Tuesday morning and Thursday morning, with Greater Vision and the Hoppers, respectively. These are smaller and more informal concert settings, so it's a little special. And when you make the effort to get up early, catch a trolley and get to the convention center, you make sure you're in the spirit to receive a blessing from the service!

One of the other highlights early in the week for me was on Wednesday evening, getting to see the Perry's. Now, I've seen this group many times in the past, but in January of 2013, Tracy Stuffle (bass singer and husband of alto Libbi Stuffle) suffered a stroke. Recovery has been long and hard, so it was incredible to see this group-including Tracy-up on main stage at NQC! And the best part was seeing and hearing Tracy sing! 

The Perrys

Tribute Quartet, one of our favorites!

Thursday held another first for us; the Singing News Fan Awards. For the past few years these have been held at Dollywood, and prior to that, were always towards the weekend of NQC, and we always left midweek. Needless to say, we were excited about this! This year the presenters were all siblings-brother/sister, brothers and sisters. For example, Chris and Suzanne Taylor, Michael and Ronnie Booth, Madison and Morgan Easter...you get the idea. The award ceremony started out with a surprise-a choir of 12, getting everyone excited and ready to go! Yes, M caught Riley Clark (Tribute) and David Sutton and Clayton Inman (Triumphant) for pictures beforehand. It's not everyday you see these guys in robes!

Part of the choir
All the 2014 fan award winners were well-deserving, but I have to give a special shout-out to our favorites-our good friends of Triumphant Quartet! They received the Favorite Traditional Quartet Award, as well as Favorite Bass Singer (Eric Bennett)! This is something like the 6th year running they've received these awards, and I am thrilled that others recognize the talent of Triumphant Quartet! I'll share a list of all the winners below the pictures.

Eric Bennett accepting his award for Favorite Bass
Michael Booth (of the Booth Brothers), who won Favorite Tenor
David Sutton of Triumphant, as the guys receive the Favorite Quartet award

  • And the winner for Favorite Musician is Kim Collingsworth
  • And the winner for Favorite Young Artist is Amber Thompson
  • And the winner for Favorite Soloist is Ivan Parker
  • And the winner for Favorite Small Market Radio DJ is John Whisnant
  • And the winner for Favorite Medium Market Radio DJ is Lottie Squires
  • And the winner for Favorite Large Market Radio DJ is Daniel Britt
  • And the winner for Favorite New Soloist is Joseph Habedank
  • And the winner for Favorite New Traditional Quartet is Canton Junction
  • And the winner for Favorite Male Singer is Ronnie Booth
  • And the winner for Favorite Southern Gospel Band is The Kingdom Heirs Band
  • And the winner for Favorite Lead Singer is Ronnie Booth
  • And the winner for Favorite Tenor Singer is Michael Booth
  • And the winner for Favorite Non-Performing Songwriter is Dianne Wilkinson
  • And the winner for Favorite Baritone Singer is Jim Brady
  • And the winner for Favorite New Trio is The Hyssongs
  • And the winner for Favorite Bass Singer is Eric Bennett
  • And the winner for Favorite New Mixed Group is The Mylon Hayes Family
  • And the winner for Favorite Soprano Singer is Kim Hopper
  • And the winner for Favorite Mixed Group is The Collingsworth Family
  • And the winner for Favorite Trio is The Booth Brothers
  • And the winner for Favorite Alto Singer is Libbi Stuffle
  • And the winner for Favorite Female Singer is Kim Hopper
  • And the winner for Favorite Songwriter is Rodney Griffin
  • And the winner for Favorite Traditional Quartet is Triumphant Quartet
  • And the winner for Favorite Album is For All He's Done- Greater Vision
  • And the winner for Favorite Song is Preacher Tell Me Like It Is- Greater Vision
  • And the winner for Favorite Artist is The Booth Brothers

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Shake The Crave and Lose Weight!

It seems that most people in the US nowadays are looking to lose weight. Whether it's just a few pounds, or someone wanting a completely new shape and size, losing weight has become one of the biggest "fads" in our country. It's important to not just run out and but whatever promises to help you drop those pounds. Instead, take time to research and make sure you're getting a trustworthy product-like those from Trusted Health Products! That's right, the makers of Beautiful Skin Care also have a line of products for weight loss!

I received 2 samples of Shake The Crave; one chocolate, and one vanilla. Obviously this isn't enough to make a noticeable difference in weight, but I was able to try both flavors so I could let you all know how it tastes. Because no matter how healthy or good something might be, it's hard to stick with it if the flavor is off!

I am a chocolate fan, so I ended up trying that first. You actually use blender and combine the powder with 8 ounces of milk. This can be anything from skim to whole, almond, coconut...basically whatever milk base you'd like. Blend on low for 30 seconds, then high for 5 seconds. Let intreats for 60seconds, blend again for 5, and rest again for 60 seconds. Then you're ready to go!

The chocolate Shake the Crave shakes have a very rich, full chocolate flavor. The shake is very smooth, and I imagine it would be easy to down one of these twice a day as recommended! Especially when you can trade out with vanilla, which also has a very real flavor. Not the fake,"diet" tasting kind, but a nice, bright vanilla flavor. 

Benefits and Features of Shake the Crave:

  • Thick and creamy – tastes like an old-fashioned, hand-dipped milk shake from a small-town creamery.
  • Experience a “new normal” in the way you feel.
  • Feel more satisfied and full longer.
  • Boost energy levels and feeling of well-being.
  • Great to drink at breakfast or lunchtime, as a healthy snack or quick meal on the go.
  • 100% pure ingredients.
  • One bottle has 15 delicious servings – about one week’s supply at two shakes per day.
  • Contains no artificial sweeteners, flavors, colors, preservatives, or isolated/synthetic vitamins.
  • No gluten, soy, egg, GMOs, high fructose corn syrup, MSG, fillers or binders.
  • Available exclusively from Trusted Health Products.
  • Good source of protein.
  • Good source of calcium.
  • Low fat – only 0.5 grams.
  • Low sodium
  • 120 Calories

You can learn more or purchase Shake The Crave online today!