“Better to write for yourself and have no public, than to write for the public and have no self." - Cyril Connolly

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Copy-Kids DVD Review and Giveaway

My first review and giveaway.  WooHoo!

I am excited about telling you about a great way to get your kids to eat more fruits and veggies.  I think I have the most finicky kids ever.  I have just about given up trying to get them to eat more veggies.  I have since found Copy-Kids - a DVD with young children modelling good eating habits.  The idea is simple but the concept speaks to kids' natural ability to mimic those around them.  To make it even better, the models looks just like them.

I watched this with my youngest child who is 2.  It is a good idea to have the foods you want to encourage in front of the kids.  We started with carrots and strawberries.  I have to admit that Tuck will occasionally eat a strawberry, but lately he won't touch them.  I was hoping to get him to eat more strawberries. 

The first thing I did was put out the bowls on the floor in front of the TV then I turned on the DVD and picked strawberries. There are 12 fruits and vegetables from which to choose, so the variety is great. Tucker grabbed the strawberries right away and began to munch along as soon as he saw the kids eat. 

The kids were cute, and even I began to be mesmerized at how easily these kids ate those foods. It was easy to tell the kids enjoyed the fruit that they were eating. After the strawberries, we tried the carrots.

I was a little nervous about the carrots, because Tucker does not eat them at all. Here was the true test. 
The first little girl was a little funny, and Tucker just watched the kids, but he didn't grab a carrot. He just laughed at the kids.  He liked watching the kids, but was not interested in the carrots. In fact, he took the bowl of carrots and dumped them onto the carpet. So I picked up the carrots and pointed to the tv screen to show him that it was something that he was supposed to eat. He took one and I thought yes! However, instead of eating them himself, he tried feeding them to me which showed me he at least understood the concept. 

When the DVD segment was finished (each one only lasts about five minutes) he wanted to watch it again so  we watched the carrot segment again hoping this time he would eat them. When the segment started,  I could hardly believe it Tucker actually picked up one of the carrots that he had been feeding me and begin to nibble on it!! It worked.  I got so excited! It wasn't because of my prodding, he simply wanted to join in on the fun the kids were having.

I wanted documentation, so I decided that I would take a picture. That was the wrong thing to do because he became more interested in looking at my camera phone at this point and stopped eating a carrot. After that he kinda lost interest and did not care to eat any more carrots. However, when the segment was over again he got really upset that we did not watch another. So I do think it is interesting how he wanted to keep watch the kids. 

I do think that I will continue to encourage these eating habits by watching Copy-Kids.  I may even try it with my older children. It is such a laid-back, stress-free approach to handling a situation that often causes parents much angst.

Copy-Kids is gracious enough to offer one lucky reader her (or his) very own copy of this DVD. If you need more convincing of how great this DVD is, be sure to check out these other reviews or check out the awards  Copy Kids has won.

Be sure to enter below!

*I am required to let you know that I received a copy of Copy-Kids DVD to review.  I was not required to provide a positive review. It just worked out that way. All opinions are my own, and I wrote what I wanted to write.*

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

A Much Needed Break

Contrary to what some people may believe, I don't really get that much of a break.

My life is pretty routine: 6:30AM wake up call, get the kids fed, dressed, and out the door (dear hubby drives them to school- he works there), eat something, maybe do a workout from Hulu, try to get in a little me time before Tucker wakes up.

Once Tucker wakes up it is trial and error in trying to figure out what the boy will eat because he won't talk. Then after I get him to eat a bowl of cereal, he spends every waking minute trying to get candy. He's sneaky, too.  He will get me distracted then he goes and finds a way to climb on top of the counter to reach the candy bowl. Moving it doesn't help, he just looks for it. And don't let him watch me throw it away, he has been known to knock over the trash can to dig one out to eat. You know the saying "one track mind"?  Well that it Tuck when it comes to candy. I must say NO a hundred times a day.

So Tuck is up and fed, now I get to do the dishes, wash about four loads of clothes (because my family changes clothes about three times a day except for the boys who stay half naked throughout the day), straighten the living room, clean the bathrooms, put up the four loads of clothes and I need to do all of this before 1:30. Somewhere in there in have to remember to eat and oh yeah, I have got to feed Tuck who still refuses to give up on his candy pursuit.

After 1:30, I then have to get ready to get the kids. Sometimes I have to drop off Tuck at the in-laws because Judson has gymnastics. Sometimes, DH gets to bring them home from school, too, but lately he goes to the gym. Other days Mel has piano, or soccer practice in the fall. On top of school activities, random subbing for teachers, room mom responsibilities, MOPS leadership responsibilities and actual MOPS meetings, going to church (usually one church on Sundays and another on Wednesday), we try to find time to eat together before bedtime.

This is also coupled with my older two children arguing and fussing and tattling and aggrevating and crying and whining and everything else 8 and 5 year-olds do.

So, when I had the chance to get away for a few days, I jumped at the chance. Now you have to understand, I cannot remember a time in the past two years that DH and I have been away together without the kids. He gets time away due to his band director duties, but I really can't think of a time when I haven't been at night with at least one of my children.

Proud to say I am in Savannah. I am getting to walk up and down the Spanish moss lined streets. 

I am sleeping in a bed that looks like this.

I am window shopping in every shop.

I am eating local cuisine.

And tonight when we came back to the hotel we had chocolates on our bed. (I ate one before I took the picture.)

This is such a needed break. I am enjoying every minute.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

2. 13 Websites to Kill Time

Sometimes after I have cleaned the kitchen, washed the clothes, put the kids to bed, checked Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and other blogs, I just want to veg-out in front of the computer and waste time.  I don't want to have to think or make a decision, I just want to giggle a little. I have found 13 websites that are truly utterly useless.  They have no function except to make the minutes go by a little faster.  I guess they are not useless at all then.

Disclaimer: As much as I wish everything was Rated-G, some images or user-submitted entries may not be kid-friendly.  Please use mommy discretion when viewing for the first time until you determine whether or not it is ok.

In no particular order:

1.  Unnecessary Quotes - I am bit of a grammar nerd, so this appealed to me.

2. The Longest List - A index of the longest whatever. I said you did haven't to think; I didn't say anything about not learning something.

3. Wordle - I happen to LOVE Wordle.  You can make the neatest little word clouds.

4. Snopes - I like to go here to debunk every scam, chain letter, spam message I get.  Ok, this one is VERY useful.

5. The Drama Button -  This is so silly yet, so fun.  Try it once, and you will bookmark it forever.

6. Do Nothing for 2 Minutes - The title is self-explanatory.  A good way to just relax and take a break.

7. Dear Blank Please Blank - Funny and endearing, sometimes gut-wrenching letters submitted by readers.

8. Attack of the Cute - Enough cuteness to make you go into Awww overdose and an Adorable coma.

9. Cake Wrecks - I bake three cakes a year, one for each of my children's birthday.  I understand the hard work that goes into baking these special cakes.  These are just too funny.

10. Awkward Family Photos - Just makes you feel better about yourself.  Can't wait to see my pic up there one day.

11. Grouchy Rabbit- One-liners that make you go HA, UMM and EWW.

12. Craft Fail- When you need to remind yourself that everyone else is NOT Martha Stewart.

13. Free Rice - OK, my last choice and you do, in fact, have to think. I like vocabulary and feel like I am helping people.

So, there you have it.  A few websites to help you wind down after a productive day.

Are there any you would add to the list??

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Stop it! My Brain Hurts

Here I am sitting in carpool, and I am so frustrated because I have so many ideas in my head I can't get them all out before I forget them. And some of them are really good ideas and topics. 

I don't know how fast a mind is supposed to run, but mine is going ninety-to-nothing. Blogging topics, craft ideas, (imaginary) business plans, not to mention designing woes for the MOPS newsletter I am supposed to be working on. This doesn't even include the things I am actually doing. Aren't we supposed to think about the things we are doing as we do them? I keep thinking about the things I want to do to my house like clean the table in the corner, sort the clutter, in my bedroom. I feel like I have To-Do lists on top of To-Do lists and the only thing I have accomplished is making a To-Do list.

Some can argue that it is just a matter of using my time wisely- an issue of organization. That may be true, but I would like to think that my awesome is just overflowing and hard to contain.

So I will try to get out as many ideas as I can and will focus on the ones that keep me up at night.

Sorry, I have to go now. I have some things I need to write down before I forget. 

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

1. 13 Random Things about Me

I thought I would try a new series.  In the spirit of 2013, I thought I would write about Thirteen 13s.  Thirteen lists about 13 "things."

The first "13" is 13 random things about me.

1. I love the smell of Vick's Vapor Rub, Turtle Wax and Lowe's.

2. I don't like The Cat in the Hat. It annoys the heck out of me. It is almost a requirement for English teachers to like it, but I don't. Other Dr. Seuss books don't bother me, just this one.

3. I love toe socks. I think they are very comfortable. I bought and wore a new pair for the birth of each of my three children.

4. I grind my teeth and talk in my sleep I have since I was a child. I have also been known to cry and to spit (yes, spit) during slumber. Gross, right?

5. I had two favorite dolls growing up and they were my very favorite dolls in the whole wide world.  One was just a plain doll, Missy, and the other was my Cabbage Patch Doll, Eleanor Nan. They are still at my parents' house.

6. When I was younger, I used to fantasize that Luke Perry somehow got lost on my dirt road and had to stop at my house for directions. What can I say:  I loved 90210, and Luke Perry was so much cuter than Jason Priestley.

7. My favorite snack, to this day, is a whole dill pickle dipped in mayonnaise eaten with BBQ corn chips. It sounds disgusting, but I LOVE it. And, No, I am not preggo.

8. I had the lead in the school play my junior year of high school. It was a silly little musical based on a cartoon called LuAnn. Everyone said I was made for the part because my life somehow tragically resembled the cartoon-it was about a girl who longed for the attention of a boy who didn't know she existed. Yup. That sounded about right.

9. About 7 months after I turned 18, my friend, Maria, and I drove to Valdosta and we both got a tattoo. It is a blue rose on my abdomen, so no one ever sees it.  My mom just found out about it this past summer, and I think that in-laws still don't know. It is the most rebellious thing I have ever done.
10. One of my "bucket list" items is to sing the National Anthem for a crowd somewhere. The only problem is I have a fear of singing solo. I can talk and act the fool (drama all the way) but singing- gives me the butterflies. Something fierce. Despite the fact that my voice isn't perfect.

11. One of my goals is to write a novel someday. I have several outlines and have even wrote a little, but I can't seem to work through it. 

12. I can't stand Mariah Carey. I don't like her voice, the way she looks, her songs. I am sure she is a nice person. I just don't have anything for her. It is entirely superficial

13. I picked my college (Mercer) because I heard about it from the best friend of my cousin. I had never heard of it until then, but I knew about Macon because we drove through it on the way to see my Grandma who lived in Roswell. I didn't even apply anywhere else. 

Any random things you would like to share with me??

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

2013: Word of the Year- Believe

A couple of years ago, I heard on K-LOVE the prospect of choosing one word on which to focus throughout the year instead of numerous resolutions that are forgotten and ignored.

In 2011, I chose the word Change. Believe me, we went through some changes. For some reason, I didn't pick one for 2012.  I guess that God wasn't finished with the changes yet, because we went through even more in 2012.

I have started thinking about my one word challenge for 2013. I have thought about Patience, and Strength, Faith but the one that keeps returning to my brain is Believe.

So this year I will focus on what I believe.

I BELIEVE in the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirt.

I BELIEVE that Jesus Christ died for my sins and loves me in spite of all my wrong doings.

I BELIEVE that I will NOT let doubt overwhelm my mind.

I BELIEVE that God will lead me through challenges.

I BELIEVE that through prayer and study, I will become a better wife and mother who glorifies God.

I BELIEVE that I am a wonderfully made person.

I BELIEVE that through His strength that I can better myself, mentally physically, spiritually and emotionally.

I BELIEVE that no matetr what the devil throws at me, I will make it through my valley.

I BELIEVE that I will make mistakes, but I will not let it define who I am.

I BELIEVE that God wants me to be a healthier version of myself. (Click here for details)

I BELIEVE that God will bless my family in more ways than I could ever imagine.

As I go through the year, I will focus on one thing and how it applies to every facet of my life this year, instead of five or six or more declarations that are bound to discourage and frustrate year.

One word challenges or not, have you thought about how 2013 will be different than 2012?