December 30, 2012

Groovy Girls by Manhattan Toys

Every little girl needs a doll. This year we had the opportunity to give a very special Groovy Girls doll from Manhattan Toys to a very special little girl.
My boys had so much fun helping me wrap the doll. As you can see, she's very cute and just the right size for a toddler. I don't have a picture of the doll with her new mama (yet) but I have been told that she is very loved.
My favorite thing about this fun doll is that she is soft. This makes her much safer for toddlers, and whoever else is around while they are playing.
If you're looking for some great toys for your child make sure you stop in and see what Manhattan Toys has to offer. I promise you'll be please with their selection of high quality children's toys!

December 29, 2012

Why You Should Avoid HCG

There are lots of claims that HCG, a pregnancy hormone, works great for loosing weight. I'm here to tell you that if you really want to loose this is not the way to go. HCG diets do work, at first, because along with the hormone they have you reduce your daily calorie intake to a ridiculously low number. Of course when you starve yourself you are going to loose weight and the minute you quit doing so it is going to come right back. If you're going to try to loose weight in the new year, I know I am, make sure you do it in a healthy way so your body can feel the joy of your weight loss instead of eating itself to survive!

Proposal Turns Into Unity Candle Ceremony

red and orange candle bonfire for wedding proposal
The other day I had a friend share pictures of a wedding proposal they helped to set up. I had to laugh after looking it the finished result. It was beautiful but they had used red and orange candles to create a bonfire in the living room. This was great since the guy wanted to propose around the campfire (something its much to cold to do in Idaho right now) and between the candles, sleeping bags, and s'mores ingredients it certainly gave the room a camping feel. The funny part was that after they had everything set up the lit the candles and turned out the lights. The couple arrived home shortly and found all the candles melted together. It looked like a unity candle ceremony for sure! Thankfully they didn't burn down the house. And she said yes, so all's well that ends well right!

December 28, 2012

Tweet to Win A Honeymoon 12/28-1/3

Tweet to win a honeymoon

An Odd Cleaning Find: Disposable Wedding Cameras

disposable vintage wedding camera
The other day I was cleaning up and found two disposable wedding cameras that have been hanging around since our wedding almost five years ago. It's things like this that make me feel like a junk collector. The cameras should be fine, they were still in the package, and I know I've been hanging onto them so I can give them to friends who are getting married but do I ever remember to put them in the package? Nope. Do you ever find things like this when you're cleaning? What is the oddest thing you've found that you know you stashed and then forgot about? I'd love to hear your story!

December 27, 2012

Wedding Invitations: A Brother's Joke

This year for Christmas one of my brothers decided to play a great joke on another of my brothers and we all got a good laugh. My brother just younger than myself is a university student and has been dating a girl for a few months now. As a joke he decided to tell the next brother, he's on a mission and has been gone for about six months, that he gave a ring for Christmas and that they were shopping for wedding invitations. Of course the family at home was struggling not to laugh because we knew it wasn't true but brother 2 did a little freak out before we gave in and told him the truth. It was a super great joke and was just one moment in our twice yearly skype conversation with my brother. It's so fun to spend time with the family over the holidays! I can't wait to have another party!

Wedding Favors Bags + A New Item at Kerrific

We've finally gotten through Christmas and I'm starting to think about the new year. I'm super excited to announce that we have some awesome new items that will be appearing in our shop over the next few weeks. My stack of wedding favors bags to package one of the items in arrived today so I will be getting photos soon to get these items listed. It's going to be lots of fun! I am so excited that I'm done with school and will have more time to be crafty. My kids are already enjoying the results of my crafts after the treats they found in their stockings. Stay tuned for more info as we launch our new Kerrific Hairbow line at our Etsy shop and add some new diapers and training pants to our Hyena Cart store.

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December 22, 2012

My Goals for the New Year and Unsecured Business Loans

Now that I have graduated I have three big goals. First, to loose 30 lbs (the baby weight I'm still carrying around). Second, to stay on top of blogging (something about finals week put me way behind again). And third, to get my business up and running so E can work fewer hours (I'm wondering if an unsecuredbusiness loan might help with the initial expenses). I'm super excited to begin working on these goals. I wish I could start now but I'm still in the middle of Christmas projects that I have to get done (like my daughter's stocking). AHHH! I suppose I should get off the computer and get to work.

December 21, 2012

HCG Hormone, Pregnancy, and Your Diet

I've never been much for dieting but I am looking into making some weight loss goals in the new year. In fact, I happen to know that E has gotten me a bunch of tools to help me reach my goals for the holiday. I was doing a brief search today looking for companies to help me reach these goals and ran into an article that I found very interesting. The article was about the HCG Hormone, known to me as the pregnancy hormone, and was recently published about HCG as a weight loss treatment. Apparently this is not a proven weight loss treatment and is in face illegal. I guess I was confused at how someone could believe that a pregnancy hormone could help you loose weight, most pregnant women gain a lot of weight. Oh the things people believe.  

Find A Dental Practice for Sale

Laughing horse ready for the dentist
Buying a holiday gift for your spouse is always a challenge. The only thing E keeps telling me he wants this year is a visit to the dentist although I'm really not sure any normal person would wish for that. With all the money I will end up spending on dental work for my family over the next few years it would probably be worth it to find a dental practice for sale. Too bad I don't have the right degree to do dental work although I don't think I could stand looking in people's mouths all day. I suppose I shall just have to keep taking my boys to their wonderful dentist and then find one that E and I will enjoy too as we haven't found a new adult dentist since we moved. Any suggestions of a great local dentist would be wonderful!

December 20, 2012

Fairhaven Health Helps Again

I can't believe my baby is three months old! They grow so fast and I can never seem to keep up. My baby girl is growing faster than any of my boys did and part of that I owe to Fairhaven Health. With the boys I always had a hard time keeping my milk supply up and as much as I love nursing we have ended up supplementing with formula by the time the boys were about 4 months old. Fortunately this time I don't think that will be needed. Since I gave birth I have been taking Fairhaven's new Fenugreek and Cal-Mag Supplements. They are wonderful!
I have actually only been taking a quarter dose of the Fenugreek and I am still providing plenty of milk (plus the baby is sleeping through the night) and it is wonderful! I also really like the Cal-Mag mix. I was a little nervous at first because I was on a mag drip while I was pregnant with B and it was the most miserable week of my life (but that's another story). It did end up working well however and while I was taking it it certainly seemed like I had more energy.
If you're looking for some great fertility, pregnancy and nursing products make sure you check out Fairhaven health. They have great products and great customer support to help you find exactly what you need!

December 19, 2012

Keep Your Toys Safe

We all know that our kids are going to be super excited about all the new things they get for Christmas, or we hope they will be. If your kids are anything like mine they will want to take their toys with them everywhere they go to show them off. I used to tell my kids no but I don't have to do this anymore thanks to my childproof labels. These labels are great because they have a style for almost any object. Most of them are dishwasher and washer safe so you can even put them on things like sippy cups and clothes. It has been amazing the number of things that have been returned to me simply because they have our name on them. It's great and saves me a lot of time and stress looking for things my children have left behind. Kid labels really are the perfect gift because if you get them first you can label all your kids' new things as they are being unwrapped and they will be ready to go as soon as your kids are. Major stress savor, here I come!

Furniture For the New House

So we got a "new" couch last week. Actually, we got it from the local freecycle group and it's not perfect but at least it gives us someplace to sit. Some day I do want to get a nice set of matching furniture but for now I have a mismatched set of hand me down antiques. Not that this is a bad thing. In fact, I kinda like my antiques. They are a great size for me when compared to today's furniture choices. I love that my feet actually touch the floor when I sit in these chairs although sometimes it presents a problem when our larger friends come over. I suppose I'll have some major decisions to make when it comes time to buy my matching set. Hopefully I can find something that's small enough for me without being too little for everyone else.

Funny Face, I Love You!

December 18, 2012

Games for Christmas

I love getting my family games for Christmas. I love having new things we can do together and my boys really love games. This year we are getting some classics like Candy Land and Chutes and Ladders. We love sitting around on Christmas afternoon to play games together. It makes for great family time while we are home between semesters of school too. My problem is that after this year I will be out of new games that are age appropriate for my kids. Do you have any suggestions? We have all the classics so what are some fun games for preschool kids to play?

America The Last Best Hope by William J. Bennett

I've always loved history books, or at least most of them. America: The Last Best Hope by William J. Bennett was an interesting read about America's history between the Cold War and the present day. It covered some major changes including the fall of the Berlin Wall, the collapse of Communism, changes in culture, the war on terror, and the election of President Obama.
My Favorite part about this book was that it was uplifting. So much of what we read about today's society is very negative and I much prefer Bennett's viewpoint where the positive is the most important. Another reason this book appealed to me was because it covers things that happened in my lifetime. I have never been a very political person but reading these first person accounts of what was happening was very interesting even for me, the one that sits on the sidelines.
If you like history, or would like to learn more about how America has developed during your lifetime, than you should check out this book. You'll be amazed at the insight you will find and the things you will learn. Plus there are some great pictures of some major historical events. This is something you won't want to miss!

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers 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.”

The Gift That Keeps Giving - Diva Danger

If you are like me your mom is one of the hardest people to buy gifts for during the holidays. I mean she's your mom and she has everything right. This year I'm giving my mom a gift that keeps on giving. Diva Dangler's Earring of the Month Club is a great way to get something fun in the mail each month. Cost is just $9.95 a month and you will get a beautiful set of earrings in the mail. Plus when you join now you'll get an extra pair of earrings with your first month free. You'll love this high quality jewelry at a great price!
Free earrings when you join Diva Dangler's Earring of the Month Club
I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

December 17, 2012

Married Life Chicken Soup

Married Life Chicken Soup I don't know about you but for me sometimes married life is hard! Things are never what you expect them to be. No one is perfect. Yes, these are things we all know but sometimes it is hard to remember. Married Life by Chicken Soup is a great read when you need a little pick me up about married life. It is full of heartwarming stories that will have you laughing, crying, and experiencing every emotion in between. Its a read you won't want to miss!

Is Love A Fairy Tale? Aoede

Is Love a Fairy Tale Aoede
I found this collection quite interesting. It was almost like listening to a musical. Each track had some narration and some music but the Is Love A Fairy Tale? CD makes one continuous story. I would say that the story itself is good for pre-teens and would be especially appealing to girls. It talks about a young woman in search of love. She's not sure what it is or how to find it. She looks lots of places and meets lots of interesting creatures in the mystical land where she lives. In the end we learn that "love is whatever you want it to be" and is "the greatest thing of all".

MilkBands for Mom

With baby #1 I did a pretty good job of keeping track of what I was doing. I always nursed on the correct side and I could always tell people how long it had been since the baby had had his diaper changed. With baby #4 I've gotten a little less responsible. Ok, not really but things are a lot crazier and it sure seems like I'm looking my marbles.
One tool that has really helped me out with baby four is MIlkBands. This is a simple tool for nursing moms to help them keep track of what they are supposed to be doing. The bracelet is super easy to wear and all you have to do is change the time and flip it over when you are done feeding baby so that you know exactly where to start next time.
If you're still looking for a great gift for a new mom I highly suggest MilkBands Nursing Bracelet. She will thank you from the bottom of her heart.
milkbands nursing bracelet

Kerr Family Toy of the Week: Wedding Favor Bags

So I don't know about at your house but at our house it seems like the toy use goes in cycles. Every week they seem to have a new favorite toy that all the boys fight over. Lately it's been the bags. They've stolen every bag they can find and have filled them with everything under the sun. Today while cleaning the toy room I found grocery bags, makeup bags, wedding favor bags, shipping bags, and many more. In fact, I didn't even know we had this many bags in our house. I wonder how long it will take them to get their collection going again. Any guesses?

Sound of Sleep for Everyone

I've told you before about the Sound Sleep Therapy System. This noise machine has been a big asset at my house over the last six months. Recently we have been able to try the travel size of this product, the Sound Sleep Nomad. I love this one too!
The nomad has all the same features as the full sized version plus you can attach it to your MP3 player or computer to listen to your other devices as you travel. Recently we have been using the sound technology in D's room to help him sleep better through the coughing that is happening all too frequently at my house.
If you're looking for a great sleep aid that doubles as a speaker for everyday use you should be sure to check this one out. It's awesome!

December 15, 2012

Backpacks and the School Bus

I can't remember if I've mentioned this here yet but B started preschool this fall. I can't believe my oldest is ready for school. It seems like just yesterday he was a brand new baby and now here he is, all grown up and ready for backpacks and school buses. With the first of the year coming I've also started filling out kindergarten applications. Although I am sad to see him go and I know I will worry about him every day, I am so glad that he gets to take the next step and that he is growing to be a smart and happy child. So, here's my question. Any tips for a new mom sending her first to school? I'm already set with Mabel's Labels, a lunchbox and a backpack but what else am I forgetting? I would love any advice you have to give.

Show Your Kids You Love Them With TruKid

Winter Skin Essentials Set $19.99- 3 DAY SALE ONLY!!!Being a parent is the hardest job you will ever have. As a parent, I spend every second of every day worrying about my kids. In fact, sometimes I get concerned that I don't have a life of my own so I try to do something just for me and find that it is impossible and I spend more time stressing about the fact that I'm not thinking about my kids then I do actually enjoying the time for myself.
One of the many responsibilities in caring for your children is finding the correct products for them to use that will keep them safe. At my house TruKid has been a great place for me to find natural skincare for my kids that they can enjoy and that I know does not have any harmful chemicals that will hurt them. TruKid's has every product I need for bath time with my kids plus some others to help me and my kids live a healthy life. The best part for me is that these products work great for my kids and they work great for me too. I love knowing that we are keeping ourselves safe and helping the earth be healthy too. Thanks TruKid!

Technology Gifts

I'm always amazed as Christmas draws closer at how many of the good deals on gifts at the stores are on electronics items. Do people really give that much technology for Christmas? I know that with my family I make a point to buy things that don't need batteries. It makes my life simpler and keeps my house quite. I also know that toys without buttons are better for kids' imaginations which is just another good reason to keep electronic toys out of my house. Not that this means we don't have technology. E and I both have computers and the kids to get to play on them occasionally but other than that we have found that it is much more fun to sit and play Snack Attack than it is to all sit around with our computers and not talk to each other. What do you think? Do you ever consider not giving electronic gifts for the holidays? If you do, why? Let me know what you think!

Cleaning Carpets

Cats Cleaning Carpet
At our house it always seems like we need extra money. To help this E is always looking for odd jobs to do. Last spring he had the chance to go help a carpet cleaning company for a few days while they cleaned apartments at our school between semesters. He said this was a pretty boring job but can you imagine all the interesting things you might see if you worked as a Paris, France, Hollywood or even a New York carpet cleaner? Yes, I'm sure that many of the jobs would be dull, just like these university apartments but I bet every once in a while you would find an amazing home to clean.
On that note, I really need to be one of those dull houses and get the carpet cleaners in here. I mean, I do have nine resident carpet cleaners but I'm getting really sick of the cat's hairballs, the dog's sniffing, and yelling at the kids to quit eating off the floor. Yes, with all these crazy creatures to clean after I rarely having vacuumed floors is a luxury. I suppose I will have to put the carpet cleaning off another few months until it's warm outside and I can send everyone out for the day. Until then I'll just keep doing my best I suppose.

Bed & Breakfasts and Country Inns + One FREE Night

Bed & Breakfasts and County Inns + One FREE Night Certificate
For E and I there is nothing nicer, or more elusive, than a twenty-four hour period without children. Heck, we didn't even get twenty-four hours together when we got married, this time we blame work. Anyway, needless to say it is so nice to get away from the kids for a bit and have some time with each other.
This year for Christmas I'm going to help E out a little with the whole I-must-take-my-wife-on-vacation project by giving him a copy of Bed & Breakfasts and Country Inns. I've just looked at the book a little and I love it already. I'm a big B&B fan (I grew up visiting the one Grandma and Grandpa owned every summer) and would love to spend some time at one of the beautiful places in this book. My favorite thing is that this book has all the information you need to get started including locations, owners names, prices (yes real dollar amounts), the number of rooms and the types of meals available. Besides all that you can find a quick bit of historical information about each location and a sketch of most of the buildings. it is very interesting to look at.
Besides that this amazing book comes with a Buy One Get One Free certificate that is good for a free night at any of the locations listed. I can't wait to use our certificate to spend two nights out with my hubby. Hopefully he likes this idea as much as I do!

If you think this sounds like a great idea for you and your loved one make sure you enter to win a copy of this book (including the certificate) of your very own! I promise it's a gift you don't want to miss!
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The Gift of Christmas by Chicken Soup

There is nothing  I like better than curling up with my kids before bed in the big chair to read a story. Sometimes I let the kids pick the book but this week it has been my turn and we have been reading stories out of Chicken Soup's The Gift of Christmas . I love Chicken Soup books because they are so inspiring and they only take a minute to read. This collection has been perfect for us this holiday season because many of the stories are kid friendly too. If you're looking for some great inspiration in this time of trial check out Chicken Soup and let your heart be filled with love! Happy Holidays!

December 14, 2012

The Attitude Girl by Mila Bernadkin

The Attitude Girl by Mila Bernadkin The Attitude Girl is an interesting book written with you, a young woman, in mind. This is a story about Vicky, the girl with the attitude problem. In fact, Vicky reminds me very much of myself at her age. A teenager who is realistic about life and what it has to offer. Her friends don't agree with her. Her mother argues with her. And a dad who disappeared. Taking the time to explore life with Vicky as she adventures into adulthood is a great way for your teenage daughter to see life from above and maybe gain a perspective&nb sp;she missed in the past. Any teenage girl, and their parents, should check out this great read.

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A's Everyday Look

I don't know how many blogs you all read but I know when I read other blogs I have to wonder what these people look like on an average day. I know that one of my favorite things about blogging is that you don't get to see me on my worst days (I reserve those for E and the kids). Usually when I take pictures of me I like to make sure I look somewhat put together but today I'm going to make an exception. Today you get to see my everyday look.
These photos were taken at about eleven o-clock at night on the Wednesday of finals week (hence the sour face). I don't know about you but if I want a picture of me its almost always taken late at night because that's when E is home and the kids are not around to get into trouble while we're busy (not that my kids would ever do that). So, here I am featuring my favorite outfit including the most comfortable sweatshirt in the world from OASAP and my wonderful jeans from the second hand store.
I don't know about you but for me the most important thing of my day is being able to get ready quickly, that is before the house is torn apart by the little monsters that live in my house, and being comfortable. Comfortable for me has multiple meanings. I need to be warm (E always teases me about being cold blooded), and able to keep up with the kids (meaning that fashion isn't always number one). 
Well, now that you've seen the average me I hope you feel like you know me a little better. I'd love to hear about your favorite day and your favorite comfy fashions especially since I'm guessing we'll all be getting some time to sit around and be comfy after the holidays (we all know that until then is going to be crazy right). 
Have a great weekend!

Beach Wedding Favors Short Dresses I Think

beach wedding seashell favors
I've always wondered what it would be like to attend a wedding on a beach. Beach wedding favors would be awesome plus you could pick up the seashells if you'd rather. I love visiting the beaches with all their white sand. It's just beautiful! But then again, I can't imagine how uncomfortable it would be to have all that sand stuck in your wedding dress, unless you had a short dress. Has anyone ever had a beach wedding? What was your favorite part? If you're getting married at the beach sometime soon send me an invitation! I'd love to stop by and see what it's like.

December 13, 2012

Wondering About Wedding Garters

garter snake as a wedding garter
I always have to smile when I hear people talking about wedding garters. I know for most people these are a common item but when I think of garters I can't help but think of the other kind. We used to have these all around my parent's house, the neighbors had a big rock feature they would hide in, and I remember playing with them as a small child. I've always wondered what kind of excitement we could cause if the groom went for the garter and found something a little different than what he had planned on. Anyone want to try it?

December 12, 2012

Poor Diapers

The Jelly Bean Crisis by Jolene Stockman + $100 Paypal

The Jelly Bean Crisis by Jolene Stockman

A total meltdown. The whole school watching. Now Poppy’s an ex-straight-A with no Plan B.

When Poppy Johnson throws away a full scholarship to Columbia, she can only blame the jelly beans. The yucky green ones? Midnight cram sessions and Saturday’s spent studying. The delicious red? The family legacy: Columbia, and a future in finance. Except now it’s starting to look like Poppy’s jelly bean theory is wrong. School has been her life until, but maybe it’s time to start living now.

Poppy has thirty days to try a new life. No school, no studying. Just jumping into every possible world. Thirty days to find her passion, her path, and maybe even love.

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$100 Book Blast Giveaway
Ends 12/21/12

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December 10, 2012

Gracier by Milissa R. Bailey

Reading is one of my favorite pastimes. It has been so cold already this year and there is nothing I like better than curling up with my favorite blanket and a good book! If you're looking for a great book to keep you company this cold winter you should check out Gracier by Milissa R. Bailey.
It is a wonderful story about Jessica, a young veterinarian who returns to her home town after the towns longtime vet, her grandfather, unexpectedly passed away. Upon arriving home to the little town of Gracier, Iowa she finds the same quiet town she left behind with a few unexpected surprises. The biggest surprise comes when Jessica reads her grandfather's will and being forced to question her birthright and the truth about her mother's untimely death.
Between working to find the clues to these secrets her grandfather left behind and being thrown into a partnership with a man who chose wealth over her love life becomes more than Jessica can deal with.
You will love traveling with Jessica on this amazing journey to discover herself and the many other surprises she finds along the way. It is truly the perfect book for a cold winter day, or any other day for that matter. I promise this is one you won't want to miss!
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