Sunday, September 28, 2014

Christmas At Rose Hill Farm Book Review & iPad Bundle Giveaway & sign up to host a Book Club Brunch!

Yes, I have another book to tell you about and they have two of my favorite things in common, Christmas and the Amish!  Suzanne Woods Fisher's book, Christmas at Rose Hill Farm was a delight to read. 

The author does a fantastic job of explaining the past while keeping you in the present.  I loved reading all the rich detail of life.  I found this book to be engaging, delightful, and an easy read.  I personally loved all the information about roses and how that ultimately buds an old and new romance.  If you enjoy reading about the Amish and a good romance, Suzanne Woods Fisher will not disappoint.

You can purchase a copy of this book here!  Read more about this book, author and enter the giveaway below (quickly though, it ends soon).

About the Book:
Bess Riehl is preparing Rose Hill Farm for her Christmas wedding, but her groom isn't who she thought it would be. Billy Lapp is far away from his Amish roots working as a rose rustler for Penn State and wants nothing to do with Stoney Ridge, his family, or Bess. And that suits Bess just fine. Why should she think twice about a man who left without a word, without any explanation? It's time she moved on with her life, and that meant saying yes to Amos Lapp, Billy's cousin and best friend. But as Bess and Amos's wedding day draws near, her emotions tangle into a tight knot. She loves Amos. Yet she can't forget Billy.

When a "lost" rose is discovered at Rose Hill Farm, Billy is sent to track down its origins. Get in, identify the rose, and get out. That's his plan. The only catch is that he's having a hard time narrowing down the identity of the lost rose, and he can't get those tropical blue eyes of Bess Riehl out of his mind.

As the history of the lost rose is pieced together, it reminds Bess and Billy---and Amos, too---that Christmas truly is the season of miracles.

"Filled with heart-twisting moments amid the sweet anticipation of love, this story will charm readers into the holiday spirit."

About the Author:
Suzanne Woods Fisher is the bestselling author of the Inn at Eagle Hill series, Lancaster County Secrets series, and the Stoney Ridge Seasons series, as well an nonfiction books about the Amish, including Amish Peace.  She is a also the coauthor of a new Amish children's series, The Adventures of Lily Lapp.  Her interest in the Anabaptist cultures can be directly traced to her grandfather, who was raised in the Old Order German Baptist Brethren Church in Franklin County, Pennsylvania.  Suzanne is a Carol Award winner and a Christy Award finalist.  She is a columnist for the Christian Post and Cooking & Such magazines.  She lives in California.

Join best-selling, award-winning author Suzanne Woods Fisher for an Amish Christmas to remember. Filled with heart-twisting moments amid the sweet anticipation of love, Christmas at Rose Hill Farm will charm readers into the holiday spirit.

Suzanne is hosting a "Christmas Rose" iPad bundle giveaway and a nation-wide Christmas at Rose Hill Farm Book Club Brunch in November. Enter the giveaway below and sign up to host a brunch HERE.
TWO grand prize winners will receive:
  • An iPad
  • A Rose-patterned iPad case
  • A Rose-patterned phone case (for any model phone)
  • A Christmas wreath
  • A set of Christmas hand-towels
  • Christmas at Rose Hill Farm by Suzanne Woods Fisher
Five second place winners will receive:
  • Christmas at Rose Hill Farm by Suzanne Woods Fisher
Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on September 28th. All winners will be announced September 29th at Suzanne's blog.

rosehill-brunchbuttonHost a Christmas at Rose Hill Farm Book Club Brunch! This fall Suzanne is inviting book clubs across the nation to throw a Christmas at Rose Hill Farm Book Club Brunch. Sign up here between now and September 29. If you’re selected as one of the 50 hosts, you’ll receive a copy of the book plus two other Revell titles (give them away as party prizes or door prizes or keep them for yourself), a complete party kit, and a discount code to purchase copies of Christmas at Rose Hill Farm for your book club at a discount. Suzanne is also encouraging each book club brunch to collect non-perishable items for their local community shelter. She will be making a donation to her favorite charity (helping abused women and children) for every brunch that meets their goal. Click here for more details and to SIGN UP!

Don't miss a moment of the fun; enter today and be sure to visit Suzanne's blog on the 29th to see if you won one of the great prizes! (Or better yet, subscribe to her blog and have the winner announcement delivered to your inbox!)

Disclosure:  Thanks so much to Litfuse Publicity Group for allowing me to be a part of this tour and providing me with this book to facilitate my review.  All opinions expressed are my own.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Myrtle Beach and Crown Reef Resort

Crown Reef Resort at Myrtle Beach

We are back from our amazing vacation to Myrtle Beach.  I actually won this trip through the Purex Insiders program, so exciting!!  We were able to drive through six states (Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia and South Carolina) and see all the capitols.  This was so much fun because we are studying American History and the U.S. States and Capitols so it fit perfectly as a homeschool trip and family vacation.  We stayed at the Crown Reef Resort which was literally right next to the beach itself.

Check out this amazing gift basket that was waiting for us in our room, loved all the fresh fruit.

We were on the 4th floor in the second tower and our view was simply amazing.  Our room, one of their "Oceanfront Queen Deluxe Suite"  had ample room for our family of 8.  We loved having the Murphy bed because during the day we pulled it up and it gave us that much more floor space, plus we were able to easily put 6 chairs around the table in the living room, squeeze in a couple more at the corners, and had a perfectly acceptable dining option for meals or snacks in the room.

Looking straight out our balcony

The view sideways from our balcony

Looking straight down, the older kids are swimming in the pool with some new found friends.

Not only does Crown Reef resort have several swimming pools and hot tubs but they have a sprinkler, water-fun area complete with three slides and a large lazy river.

Another pool, semi-indoor (covered)

 Here you can see the two big slides - the red one uses a tube and the blue one you just slide down yourself.  I really enjoyed the blue one!

Of course, the main attraction for us was the beach!  We spent a lot of time at the beach.  The kids and I had never been to the Atlantic Ocean state side, and this was baby F's first ever beach trip.

Our kids love to jump and surf in the waves

 Look, a Baby F castle!!

I've got lots more pictures included below.  For now, let me show you just a couple more things we enjoyed at Crown Reef Resort.  One evening, we had dinner at the resort restaurant, Loco Gecko.  The food was great and the service was excellent.  My kids loved that we got to keep the cups as souvenirs. 

 Getting ready to order

Right next to the restaurant is the Town Center Dining and Fun Zone.  It has an arcade, ice cream station, and there is a smaller grab and go style restaurant that is open for breakfast and snacks.  We all enjoyed Swirl Ice Cream one afternoon and the kids enjoyed playing games.

Town Center Dining and Fun Zone - Arcade

And our room had a kitchenette, microwave, full sized refrigerator, oven and stove-top - along with basic dishes, pots, pans and utensils provided.  Right down the road on 14th street you can get groceries from Food Lion.  This allowed us to cook several meals in our room and make homemade brownies one night - felt like home at the beach!  If you are heading to Myrtle Beach anytime soon I would definitely recommend the Crown Reef.  It is worth checking out!

Enjoy these photos!!

Running in the water

 Happy, Happy, Happy


 We borrowed this awesome tent from my friend.

And we had fun in the sand!

 Where's D?


 Baby F and I

We built a fun sand turtle complete with babies and a nest.  We came back in the evening and watched the tide wash them away.

 Close up of the nest

 A coming down a slide

B coming down the tube slide

E and Daddy in the lazy river.

 C having fun in the lazy river

The silly submarine

Lots of opportunities to get wet

You can probably see that we had an amazing trip.  I am so thankful to have had the opportunity to experience this and include my family.  We would definitely go back if given the chance.  Crown Reef was excellent.

We really appreciated that they had a laundry facility.  We were at the pools and beach multiple times a day and I found myself doing laundry every night.  Purex No Sort was definitely my friend.  

Disclosure:  Thanks so much to Purex and Crown Reef for this amazing trip!  I am so honored to have won and blessed that we were able to enjoy this trip as a family.  All opinions expressed are 100% my own.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Kids Academy App Review: Kids Puzzles Preschool Math Games

I love this app in that it allows children to learn in a fun and engaging way at their own pace.  Preschool basics such as number tracing and number recognition are presented in a fun environment with great graphics and engaging music.  My kids are learning correct number formation in writing.  My children love that they get to collect fireflies in a jar as they master their fine motor skills.  This app is designed for children to be able to play on their own but I have really enjoyed watching the kids learn.  I also appreciate that there is a parent area which allows management of children’s profiles and the ability to track success.  This is definitely a fun app for preschoolers!

 E collecting fireflies while making the number 2.

Check out the full App and download it here.  Please let me know what you think too.

Disclosure:  Thanks so much to Sverve and Kids Academy for selecting me to participate in this campaign.  Compensation was provided.  All opinions expressed are 100% my own.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Homeschool Day 2014, Dolphin Tale 2 Release, and Dolphin Tale 2 Curriculum Review & Giveaway

Did you know that today, September 12th is Homeschool Day 2014?  Well, it is!  And it is also the release day for Dolphin Tale 2, which if you have been reading my blog you know that my family is super pumped about this movie.

 Watching one of the curriculum videos

I was given the amazing opportunity to try out the Dolphin Tale 2 Curriculum!  Not only is Dolphin Tale 2 and inspiring story but it provides a great opportunity to learn about dolphins and the oceans in which they live.  This curriculum includes lessons, activities and experiments.  This curriculum is divided into five major lessons:  Dolphin Anatomy and Physical Science, A Day in the Life of Dolphins, Dolphins in the Ocean, Aquarium Life and Dolphins and Us.  There is also a Classical Conversations at-home curriculum paired with this that is amazing!  We started our homeschool for the year a few weeks ago and I am using both Sonlight and Classical Conversations materials for our school this year.  I cannot say enough good things about the Dolphin Tale 2 curriculum.  There are short videos that are engaging and great at bringing the material home.  There are coloring pages for little ones and more complex problems for older children.  I love the "wholeness" that the curriculum provides combining science, art, math and more!

In promo pack

In promo pack

Ready for a giveaway?  One of you will win a Dolphin Tale promo pack (shirt and sunglasses).  Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Check out more about this movie here and watch the trailer below!

Disclosure:  Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway.  Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation.  I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.  Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway.  If you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again.  Winner is subject to eligibility verification.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Our Fit Made Fun Party

Disclosure:  I received free products in order to host the LeapFrog and CLIF Kid sponsored MommyParty.  The opinions expressed here are my own.

 Our Froggy ready to party!

I was so excited that we were chosen to host a Fit Made Fun MommyParty featuring LeapFrog and CLIF Kid!  LeapFrog and CLIF Kid are two amazing brands and they have teamed up to get kids active and healthy.

Our party pack

Check out our amazing party kit above that included two LeapBands and lots of delicious CLIF Kid Zbars (Peanut Butter Chocolate, Chocolate Chip and Chocolate Mint flavors).

C using our LeapBand

In case you are wondering, LeapBands are wearable activity trackers that encourage kids to get active with customizable virtual pet pals.  These bands track kids' movement and suggests fun active challenges - the more they move, the more points they earn to unlock virtual rewards for their pets and get to new levels.  My kids have been loving their band.

Hundreds of children and parents joined together on September 6, 2014 in Santa Monica, California for multiple Guinness World Records record attempts, thus the Fit Made Fun Day!

 D and E with the LeapBand

 The kids playing follow the leader outside.

 The kids pretending to swim.

 Grass Angels

 And of course, yummy CLIF snacks.

We had such a great time with friends.  My kids enjoy being outside and being active so this was the perfect opportunity for them to do just that.  A big thanks to CLIF Kid, LeapFrog and MommyParties.

Disclosure:  I received free products in order to host the LeapFrog and CLIF Kid sponsored MommyParty.  The opinions expressed here are my own.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Boogie Back to School Giveaway Featuring Boogie Wipes and Boogie Board

Well, it's that time of year.  Most people all over the nation are making their way back to school.  And the Moms Who Boogie Saline Ambassador team would like to help you boogie your way there!  Whether your kids are in public school, private school or even homeschool this giveaway is for you.

My family loves Boogie Wipes as they are made with natural saline to dissolve mucus (aka boogies) caused by colds, allergies or anything else really!  They are extra soft, alcohol/phthalate/paraben free and come in a variety of scents including great grape, fresh scent, magic menthol and simply unscented.  Boogie Wipes have become a staple in our home.

What's up for grabs?  One winner will receive a prize basket from Boogie Wipes and their very own Boogie Board eWriter.  Just enter the giveaway below and good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway