Saturday, August 24, 2019

Lily Organics Rejuvenating Enzyme Mask [Review & Discount Code]


My thoughts:  I have never been a fan of masks for skin care. I figured, "Who wants to spread clay or dirt or charcoal all over their face and sit around for 20 minutes to an hour looking like a 'death mask'?" So I avoided them. Sure, I tried one or two - mint seemed to appeal, but not the chalky, clay that dried to brick like consistency.

So when I heard of the Lily Organic Rejuvenating Enzyme Mask that is NOT clay or chalk  or dirt based, I thought to myself, "Well, why not give it a try?"

This little jar of 1.66 fl. oz. is a powerful liquid that goes on so easily and it doesn't "harden" leaving you feeling like you are sitting around like a baking brick.

This mask is a honey based product and yes, it is a bit sticky. So get your hair pushed back and apply this liberally all over your face and under your chin. Then you sit around the prescribed 20 minutes or so letting this  magically do its work.

And work it does!

After using it twice, I found that my skin looked so fresh and clean. I don't know exactly what it does or what happens, but I liked it.

I intend to share this powerful mask with my grown daughters so they, too, can share the joy.

Product information: (From
Click Here To Buy
Discount Code: SKINCARE10

Created for use on all skin types, this unusual mask removes the build up of dead skin cells, stimulates new cell growth, balances combination skin and regenerates damaged skin.

  • Helps to diminish fine lines and skin discoloration.  
  • Heals skin over-exposed to the sun.  Exfoliates dead skin and stimulates new cell growth.
  • Honey is used as a humectant which draws needed moisture to the skin. 
  • Papaya and Pineapple contain proven protein digestive enzymes which dissolve dead skin cells, adding new luster and increasing the effectiveness of all other skin care products. 
  • The Mask is so gentle it can be applied around the eye area (be careful not to get into the eyes) and used several times a week.

Ingredients:  Honey, natural grain alcohol, carica papaya (papaya), ananas comosus (pineapple), symphytum officinale (comfrey*), equisetum spp. (horsetail*), mentha piperita (mint*), tocopherol (Vitamin E oil), ascorbic acid (Vitamin C), and citrus grandis (citrus seed extract) *USDA certified organic, 1.66 oz. Price: $28.00 - Made by Lily Organics Skin Care

You can order your own product and  offers a nice DISCOUNT  CODE - SKINCARE10 which nets you 10% discount. And as always, FREE SHIPPING in USA.

DISCLOSURE: I received a complimentary product to facilitate a review. Opinions are mine alone and are freely given. 

Friday, August 23, 2019

Argyle Sock Collection Made in the USA and great fun to wear

No matter one's age, you probably remember the argyle socks. Men wore them - usually mid calf length. School kids wore them as knee hi's. We wore them with "Bermuda shorts," skirts, and jeans.

They are classics. And they can be found by clicking here!

Now they are fun! Fun! Fun!

Check out the vast assortment of traditional "knee hi" argyle socks on the Chrissy Website. There are BOLD socks and then there are socks for the more staid personalities. You'll love to grab some for yourself and for gifting.

What about that cheerleading team? Get some in team colors!

Product information: The argyle pattern has been a styling favorite for many generations. The classic argyle pattern comes from a tartan in the Argyll region of western Scotland; a symbol of the family clan Campbell. Scottish Highlanders back in the 17th century wore this style of patterned socks, which were historically referred to as “tartan hose”. In the 1920s, argyle print became incredibly popular in the US and the UK, especially for golfers. When the pattern took off in popularity it became fashionable casual wear, a symbol of class and distinction. Since then it has continued to enjoy widespread popularity on and off the sports field. Some Olympic cycling and basketball teams still use an argyle patterned uniform, and it continues to be popular casual wear for both men and women.

Our range of argyle print knee-highs offers fun and modern versions of this traditional pattern. The Scottish inspired clusters of diamonds are an attractive and timeless look, especially for students and athletes. From classic to chic, you can choose from a tame pair of black and maroon knee highs to a daring black and neon pink combination. When you’re looking for a classic style, you just can’t go wrong with argyle.

These knee-highs make for an excellent gift and they come in Christmas colors, Red, White and Blue for the 4th of July or a romantic red for Valentine’s Day. Combine them with a short skirt and channel your inner “Braveheart” beauty.

You can find them at and right now there is a sale  going on that you won't want to miss.

Made in USA

And they are made in the USA....... 

DISCLOSURE: This is a sponsored promotion meaning I either received a product in exchange for or to facilitate a review or I was compensated monetarily for posting produdct content.

Thursday, August 22, 2019


ISBN: 9781535948210
My thoughts:  This is one of those simple, beautiful board books that are a joy to place in a baby gift and especially to hand to that little toddler or baby.

Beautifully executed in sturdy board with just a few pages. Each page spread is half of the rhyme with the second half on the following page spread. Each two-page spread has a pull down flap hiding a delightful critter and additional text (but not part of the rhyme).

The conclusion is special in that it directs the wee one's thoughts and thankfulness to God for His love of the child.

I highly recommend this book from the editorial staff of B&H Kids.

About the book: Thank You, God, for great and small animal friends!

Join these adorable animal pairs in a board book that’s meant for little hands to hold and explore. Each spread features a large animal and his little friend, who is hiding under the flap. A short thank-You prayer on each spread models simple thankfulness, and the text includes animal sounds to make the reading even more fun.

DISCLOSURE: I received a complimentary copy from B&H Kids to facilitate this review. Opinions are my own and are freely given.

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

The Missing Money by Okeoma Moronu Schreiner [Review & Giveaway]

My thoughts:  This is a cute book and very nicely illustrated in bold colors. Young Kai is excitable and frantic that his money has been eaten by the ATM machine.

Now I probably wouldn't have a very young child using an ATM machine, perhaps some do since this is a largely cashless society. Nevertheless, this is a cute story that teaches a bit about money transactions and banks.

Kai is fearful, frantic, and fraught with despair over losing his money. The encouraging lesson is taught that ATM machines, armoured trucks, and banks are safe places for one's money. And Kai's parents are really good educators to his excitable child.

This series clearly goes beyond prior teachings for young children of coins, dollars, counting, making change, making purchases with cash, etc. This is a new age of money transactions and the author clearly thinks that children should be adept.

I just love the characterization of the ATM Machine and the Armored Truck.

 From the back of the book the promise of two more books in this children's series of books is upcoming. Paper or Plastic a story about cash versus credit cards and Creeping Costs an exploration of the costs of entrepreneurship. We'll look forward to these.

About the book: The Missing Money is the first picture book in a new three-book series aimed at inspiring young children to learn basic financial terms in a fun and age-appropriate way. The book follows Kai, a young boy on his way to the bank to deposit his newly earned money. While at the bank, a big scary ATM machine eats all of his money! Kai struggles to understand where his money went and creates an elaborate plan to get it back.

Just before attempting to break his money out, his parents sit him down to explain this confusing turn of events and help put his mind at ease. He discovers new findings, such as how money goes from dollar bills to numbers on a banking app. Finances can be a difficult task to navigate, even as an adult, so these books are meant to aid young children through the puzzling world of money.

The series, all three of which are set to publish within the year, emphasizes the idea that you are never too young to learn about your fun and funny finances.
Begins August 22
Ends September 10 at 12:01 a.m. EDT
Open to USA addresses only.
a Rafflecopter giveaway DISCLOSURE: I was provided a complimentary copy to facilitate this review. Opinions are mine, alone and are freely given. Winner's copy is provided and shipped directly to the winner by publicist, publisher, or author.

Monday, August 19, 2019

Pavilion books for a better world: The Green Giant & It's Your World Now! [Review & Giveaway]

Frankly, I prefer to not have children's books used as a source of propaganda for any cause even if the cause is one in which I have an interest. The "green" movement is valid and we all need to be concerned about the effect of what we as individuals do that adversely affect this wonderful World in which we are blessed to reside.That being said, I still found The Green Giant and It's Your World Now! quite nice and acceptable even though they are essential kiddie propoganda for the green movement.

The Green Giant by Katie Cottle (Pavilion Children's; ISBN: 9781843654308; Hardcover $16.95; Ages 4-8; 32 pages) 

My thoughts: No, this is NOT the "Jolly Green Giant" from the mega-vegetable company. This is a giant plant "being" that engages the attention of a city girl visiting in the country.

As the Green Giant and city girl, Bea, get to know one another, Bea learns that there is not much that is green in the city. The  Green Giant persuades, or plants seeds of interest (definite pun intended), in Bea's mind so she plans to plant seeds and have her own plants in the city.

A cute story and it never hurts to encourage children to love to plant seeds or seedlings and have their own green spac/e or little gardens.

About the book: is a beautiful eco-tale that encourages us to put down our devices and save the planet - from the winner of the 2017 Batsford Prize and a rising star in the picture book world.

You've met the Iron Giant, the Big Friendly Giant and the Selfish Giant. Now meet the Green Giant!

A young girl, Bea, and her dog, Iris, are staying with her grandad in the country. Bea is bored, but Iris’s adventures lead them to the seemingly small and rusty old greenhouse next door.

Inside the greenhouse, Bea finds... a giant. A giant made entirely of plants and greenery. Bea is scared, but the giant reassures her and explains that he has escaped from the grey city.

Bea and the giant become friends, but can they do anything to make the grey city, and the world, a greener place?

About the author: Katie is an illustrator and print-maker living and working in Bristol, UK. Her work is often informed by the marks and colors created through traditional lithography. She also works digitally, using an iPad, and occasionally paints with gouache. The Green Giant is her first book.

It's Your World Now! (Pavilion Children's; ISBN: 9781843654315; Hardcover $16.95; Ages 4-8; 32 pages)

My thoughts: Rollicking rhyme is splayed across each of the pages taking the reader and young listener into the concept of who they are and what they can do or can choose to do. This isn't about specifics. It is about the child's being free to discover, try, do, accomplish, succeed, fail at whatever they wish to try.

There are 3 sections and each is a lesson to remember. It ends remembering that the child is loved intensely for just being themselves no matter what they achieve.

The illustrations are cheerful, colorful, and quite whimsical. Each page has a great deal of detail to stir thinking and conversations. A fun book to read and enjoy looking at.

I highly recommend this book.

About the book: Barry Falls' debut picture book is a brilliantly illustrated, funny and thought-provoking celebration of where you might go and what you might do in life that harks back to the Dr. Seuss era of children's books: .

“As for you my bouncing ball, well you can truly have it all. Yes, you can set the world alight, my child-so-small, your future's bright.”

A beautiful, lyrical and funny celebration of the world and the potential of every individual within it, with ;ots of things to spot on each page – cats, birds, flowers, cars, books, castles, rollercoasters and chocolate cake to name a few! Can you spot the ladybug on every page?

This is the perfect book to read to children to help them appreciate the wonderful things that exist in the world, and the wonderful things that they can do, as well as allowing them to understand some of the setbacks that may happen. And in the end, whatever happens, the child is reassured that their parents will always love them.

About the author: Barry Falls is an illustrator, living in Belfast, Northern Ireland. He graduated from Ulster University in 2005 and works for a range of clients in publishing, design and advertising. His clients include The New York Times, Orange, Unicef, NSPCC and The Guardian. He lectures in illustration at Ulster University.
Begins August 19
Ends September 18 at 12:01 a.m. EDT
Open to USA and CANADA and UK
a Rafflecopter giveaway DISCLOSURE: I received complimentary copies to facilitate this review. Opinions are mine, alone and are freely given. Winners copies are provided by and shipped responsibility of publisher or publicist.

Thursday, August 15, 2019

Back-to-school must have! Lip Balms from Good Earth Beauty Exclusives are sure pleasers [Review & Giveaway]

Lip Balms from Good Earth Beauty Exclusives. Featuring Bubble Gum, Pink Lemonade, and Strawberry - perfect for back-to-school!

Girls of all ages are headed off to school. Girls of all ages love a little lip care products. Girls of all ages love the delectable flavors that Good Earth Beauty has whipped up in its line of natural lip balms.

Hey Mom! What are you tucking away inside those backpacks? Inside that little pocket?

I highly recommend you explore the Good Earth Beauty Exclusives line of Lip Balms for your kid's backpack or purse or suitcase surprise.

Be sure you get several. They last a long time but she'll want to have one in her backpack, one in her purse, one on her desk - minimally!

Your check list.....

✔ Backpack
✔ Gym Bag
✔ Music bag
✔ Locker
✔ Home desk 

Look at these lovelies.

Good Earth Beauty Exclusives takes the care of your smile seriously and they make it fun.

The "littlest ones" to the oldest will absolutely love the Good Earth Beauty Exclusives Vegan Lip Balms and happily slather it on to protect those lovely smiles.

And you can't miss with these features.....

  • Vegan
  • Gluten free
  • All natural
  • Non Gmo
  • Paraben free

Today we're featuring 3 lovely new flavors in their plethora of lip care.....

💜Strawberry Margarita
💙Pink lemonade
💗Bubble Gum
Mild flavored and lightly scented and just simply packed with those oils and ingredients that soften and protect your smiles.


Vegan - natural -  soothing and moisturizing - helps heal chapped lips

Choose from fun, original scents - Candy Hearts, Bubble Gum, Coconut, Candy cane mint, chocolate mint, Pink Lemonade, vanilla mint, vanilla marshmallow, jelly beans, candy corn or pumpkin pie, Strawberry Margarita! Made by Good Earth Beauty Price $6.25 each Click here to find it

Ingredients: Meadowfoam oil, olive oil, avocado butter, candellia wax, vitamin E, natural flavor oil

You don't have to wait to see if you win the giveaway. You can order your own products and  offers a nice DISCOUNT  CODE - SUMMER10 which nets you 10% discount. And as always, FREE SHIPPING in USA.
Get several and put them in the kid's backpacks!

2 Winners - 3 Featured Lip Balms Each
Begins August 16
Ends September 20 at 12:01 a.m. EDT
Open to USA addresses only.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
DISCLOSURE: I received a complimentary product to facilitate a review. Opinions are mine alone and are freely given. Winner's prize is provided and shipped directly to the winner by Good Earth Beauty or its publicist.

Weird But True! USA: 300 Fascinating Facts About the Fifty States (Nat'l Geo Kids) [Review & Giveaway]

My thoughts:  This little book is a real jumble of quirky information. Just the sort of "facts" that middle school kids love. Odd stuff. Tickle the brain stuff that really doesn't have a whole lot of value in the scheme of things. But, still it's a fun book.

Kind of like a book of jokes in its value...... it occupies the mind, it fills time gaps when the readers are bored, it doesn't require organizational or mind bending energy. It is just a fun read. A fun bit of information. A simple good-to-have-on-hand type of book.

There is an alphabetized index at the back. Example: I'm from North Carolina and I wanted to see just what this little book has on our lovely state. I see that on pages 45, 56-57, and 168 there are some little known facts:

  • Page 45 - A mile long island recently formed off the coast of the Outer Banks. (This one really surprised me as I hadn't heard about this. I will research this tidbit a bit further.)
  • Pages 56-57 - The largest private home in America - The Biltmore Mansion. (I knew this and have actually visited.) 
  • Page 168 - Thousands of corn chip bags once washed ashore on North Carolina's Outer Banks. (I hadn't heard this and this is absolutely terrible! The Outer Banks are an absolutely beautiful Atlantic Coast treasure.)

So you can find information that pertains to a specific area of the United States, or simply read through the book garnering Weird But True information about the USA. Fun!

About the book: (National Geographic Kids Books, ages 8-12, $8.99)

Filled with wacky wonders, facts, stats, tidbits, and trivia about America's 50 states and territories, Weird But True! USA is great for avid and reluctant readers alike, ideally sized as a grab-and-go book to read in the back seat and also makes for a fun travel companion for the family road trip.

Did you know that there is a floating post office in Michigan? Or that a library book checked out by George Washington was returned to a New York City library 221 years late? Maybe you'd be amazed to discover that the ink used to print U.S. paper money is magnetic? Perhaps a visit to Oregon's Great Salt Lick contest will be added to the vacation plans, where visitors can view unique sculptures (ie blocks of salt licked by cows and sheep)  and see which work of art wins! 

Read about all kinds of bizarre people, places, events, and things that make their state — and our country — great.
Begins August 15
Ends September 15 at 12:01 a.m. EDT
Open to USA addresses only.
Open to USA addresses only.
a Rafflecopter giveaway DISCLOSURE: I received a complimentary copy to facilitate this review. Opinions are mine, alone and are freely given. Winner's prize is provided and shipped directly to the winner by publisher or publicist.

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

Fire Storm (Kaely Quinn Profiler #2) by Nancy Mehl

ISBN: 9780764231858
Bethany House
Paperback $15.99
My thoughts:  Having met FBI Profiler Kaely Quinn in Mind Games (#1 in Kaely Quinn FI Profiler series) created by author, Nancy Mehl, it was nice to read of her mental strategy to profile and work through the mind boggling atrocities that have befallen a small town in Nebraska.

Her own personal life and family connections are severely strained and convoluted; but faced with her mother's fight against cancer, she tries to overcome past hurts and disappointments to meet the needs of family.

Fire Storm while a good stand-alone read, would be better enjoyed and understood if the reader has first read book #1 in the series, Mind Games.

The author's talent for fleshing out her characters and balancing descriptions and dialogue allows for a thoroughly engaging suspense read. The realist development of emotionally or mentally flawed characters gives the reader a glimpse into the world of the criminal mind or the mind that evil has gained control.

This is good clean, Christian fiction that is not overly heavy with preaching or theology. Just good clean reading about believable individuals in a flawed world.

I highly recommend this series.

About the book: FBI Profiler Kaely Quinn visits Nebraska to care for her ailing mother. She cant help but notice suspicious connections among a series of local fires, so she calls on her partner, Noah Hunter, to help find the arsonist. Together they unwittingly embark on a twisted path to a mad man who is determined his last heinous act will be Kaelys death.

DISCLOSURE: I was provided a complimentary copy to facilitate a review. Opinions are mine alone and are freely given.

Saturday, August 10, 2019

Delightful picture books for ages 2-5: "Firefly Home" and "The Pawed Piper" [Review & Giveaway]

Firefly Home by Jane Clarke and illustrated by Britta Teckentrup, Hardcover ISBN: 9781536205879, Nosy Crow, Ages 2-5

My thoughts:  The colors used by the illustrator certainly depict the nights during which a Firefly emits its glow.

This little Firefly is lost from its home and is wandering all around, chasing lights of all sorts, to find its way back home and to its own kind.

A bit far fetched, but fun to read. Truly I don't know if Fireflies are drawn to lights other than the light of another Firefly. It seems a bit far fetched, but makes for a fun read.

Ultimately, little Firefly finds its way home.

I love the bright yellow against the blues and purples of the night skies the illustrator has drawn. The drawings are a bit whimsical, but fun and the Firefly has big, bulging "bug eyes."

A fun read.

About the book: There’s no place like home. But poor Florence Firefly is lost, and there are so many bright lights shining in the night sky that she doesn’t know which way to go. She’ll need some help to find her way back home. In this clever interactive picture book, readers can participate in Florence’s journey by encouraging her to fly faster, suggesting which direction to take, and making a wish.

The Pawed Piper by Michelle Robinson and illustrated by Chinlun Lee,  Hardcover ISBN: 9781536201659,  Candlewick Press, Ages 2-5

My thoughts:  This is such a sweet book about a caring child and kitties. I think this perfect for the home that has children and that adores kittens and cats. Beware, if you don't have a kitty and have a sweet child and if you bring this adorable book into your home, you may soon be on the receiving end of having a new kitty in your home.

This little girl plans to lure kitties into her home by various means and does so with the help of her granny's cat, Hector. In the end she discovers that all the lured cats belong to others and seeks to return them. But happily, she finds one has remained behind to be hers, forever.

Cute book.

About the book: Calling all kittens! A little girl longing for a pet of her own gets a bit more than she bargained for in this cat-filled celebration.

A small girl wants a cat of her very own: a furry fluffball to cuddle, just like the one in her book or her grandmother’s cat, Hector. So she lays a trail: balls of wool, saucers of milk, cardboard boxes, and anything else that could lure a feline friend. And who should arrive the next morning but somebody furry, warm, soft, and so very purry. It’s Hector, along with dozens of other cats. The girl is happy as can be, but when “LOST CAT” posters show up all over town, she realizes her plan might have worked a little too well. Will she have to give all the cats back? Will she ever get a cat of her own to love? Sweet and playful, Michelle Robinson’s tale of wish fulfillment will strike a chord with anyone who has ever yearned for a pet, while Chinlun Lee’s exuberantly illustrated felines will delight cat lovers of all ages.
2 Winners Receive Both Books
August 11-September 10 @ 12:01 a.m. EDT
Open to USA/CANADA addresses only.
NO P.O. Boxes, please.
(Canada winners must provide Phone Number)
a Rafflecopter giveaway
DISCLOSURE: I received complimentary copies of the books reviewed to facilitate a review. Opinions are mine, alone and are freely given. Winners' prize copies are provided and mailed directly to the winners by publisher or publicist.

Saturday, August 3, 2019

Shea Terra MONGONGO BANANA Lip Savior & SHEA NILOTIK East African Shea Butter Body Cream featured at Good Earth Beauty online natural beauty shop [Review & Giveaway USA]

Shea Nilotica East African Cold Pressed Virgin Shea Butter Certified Organic

I am very particular about what I use to soften or moisturize my skin - whether it is my face, my hands, my feet, or simply all-body moisturizers. First of all, I don't like "sticky" and secondly, I don't care for those that leave an oily residue that transfers onto whatever you touch.

So finding a heavy duty moisturizer can sometimes be trial and error and somewhat daunting.

Often the "body creams" are just too heavy to wear here in the Southern United States, especially during the summer. After all, you don't want to feel like you've been oiled and ready to fry in our heat.

So imagine my surprise upon discovering the Shea Terra Banana Body Cream to be heavy duty, rich, all-body moisturizer that WORKS and is NOT......
  • sticky
  • greasy
  • heavy (translates to "hot" here in South)
This is lovely stuff. Really buttery, smooth, good feeling, rich, and gently scented. I think most anyone would love this.

Product Information: (Find it here100% pure and natural, certified organic Rich in pro vitamin A and vitamin E. Skin healing and anti-aging properties. Creamy and easy to spread. Why pay too much for beauty creams and anti-aging products that don't work? If you're sick of the struggle, switch to Shea Terras nilotica shea butter to see amazing skin benefits. This East African shea butter is a totally raw, unrefined shea butter naturally full of pro vitamin A and vitamin E, which help heal and nourish your skin. Shea Nilotica East African Shea Butter is especially great for those softer skin areas, such as your cuticles and under your eyes. As with all our products, our natural shea butter is great for hair as well as skin, so get yours today! *Our products are made with natural and organic ingredients to treat your hair and skin well. However, keep in mind that results may vary!

Ingredients: Contains only: 100% pure, USDA Certified Organic Shea Nilotik’ Shea Butter

How to use (from SheaTerra): Use daily to maintain beautiful, soft skin.

  • Face: Massage small amounts of butter into facial skin and under eyes. No other cream or oil is needed. Shea Nilotica can be used as itself for daily facial care.
  • Body: Massage into areas such as arms, thighs, abdomen, etc. Not recommended for harder spots such as hands, knees, feet and elbows. For these areas we recommend Shea Gold or Shea Organic.


And then I have lips that just love to crack and peel. A real annoyance. And this happens all year long, no matter what the weather. They just crack and peel.

So I have found that certain lip balms made with natural (and hopefully, organic) ingredients really are helpful.

Shea Terra has a little jar of lovely lip balm. A slight "banana" taste or scent makes for a yummy experience. Just rub your fingertips across the top of the product and then apply to your lips.

This is a sure pleaser. The tight fitting, screw on lid helps maintain freshness.

Product information: (Find it here100% Natural. Take your lip treatment to the highest level. A balm might be a good cover-up, but a LIP SAVIOR saves them. One of the first parts of the body to become dehydrated are the lips. What ensues are painful cracks, unsightly, peeling skin, and unattractive, wrinkled lips. But never fear. Your LIP SAVIOR is here. Packed with a synergy of healing ingredients, our LIP SAVIORS helps nourish lips into health. Lips can be fuller, more supple and more beautiful with only a few uses. Scroll down to see our amazing ingredients and to read more.

Ingredients: Contains only: Nilotik’ shea butter, wild mongongo oil, Ugandan beeswax (from beekeeping project), cold pressed chamomile oil, cold pressed calendula oil, natural vitamin E, natural banana flavor, seabuckthorn oil, stevia.

You don't have to wait to see if you win the giveaway. You can order your own products and  offers a nice DISCOUNT  CODE - SKINCARE10 which nets you 10% discount. And .......  as always, FREE SHIPPING in USA.

Shea Terra Body Cream
Begins August 4
Ends September 3 at 12:01 a.m. EDT
Open to USA only
a Rafflecopter giveaway
DISCLOSURE: I received complimentary products to facilitate this review. Opinions are mine, alone and given only after I have personally used the products. Winner's prize is provided and shipped directly to the winner by or it's publicist.

Treasure the moments

A treasured picture of my recently deceased brother at one of my grandsons’ wedding. 

Treasure the moments. They are gone in but a twinkle. 

Friday, August 2, 2019

Little ones books about science: "Caterpillar to Butterfly" and "Caterpillar & Bean: A First Science Storybook" [Review & Giveaway]

The World around us is one great big universal science lab. Your kiddies should be introduced to the science of this world in all its beauty and glory. They should begin early to engage mentally, visually, and physically with the science of the World.

Let's start with caterpillars and let our kiddies have fun while learning.

Caterpillar to Butterfly: Fold Out and Find Out by Frances Barry (Novelty Book ISBN: 9780763642617)

My thoughts:  Candlewick Press' novelty board book brings very young children the world of the developing caterpillar and the plant world in which it grows and exists until it is finally freed to fly away as a lovely butterfly.

This shaped book has a sturdy cover and the pages inside unfurl into a "flower" taking the developing caterpillar from petal to petal on a journey populated with wonderful insects and flowers.

A fun, entertaining, educational book to enchant youngsters.

I recommend.

About the book: How does a caterpillar become a butterfly? Open out the petal-shaped pages, one by one, and watch a transformation unfold.

First there’s a tiny egg on a leaf, then a caterpillar hatching, just big enough to see. Look at the caterpillar munching away, growing and shedding layers of skin so it can grow some more. Follow as it spins a thread into a green and golden chrysalis, hanging in the sun. Are you ready to see a glorious transformation when all the page turns are done? Cleverly leading readers through each stage of the caterpillar’s life cycle, Caterpillar to Butterfly is sure to set curiosity into flight.

Caterpillar and Bean: A First Science Storybook by Martin Jenkins. illustrated by Hannah Tolson (ISBN: 9781536201703)

My thoughts: The simply told story of a bean seed and a caterpillar and the life cycle of each has bright, colorful illustrations to engage the child visually and mentally. The story also shows subtly how caterpillar and bean interact in nature. Simple illustrations portray the bean as it sprouts and grows bursting from the skin on the bean, pushing roots out, and developing leaves and the butterfly  through its various developmental stages from egg deposited on the leaf to butterfly emerging from the chrysalis.

What I found interesting, too, is that the author and artist convey the caterpillar's need for the bean plant. Also, the bean plant's ability to grow new leaves after the caterpillar eats lots of leaves.

The depiction of the life cycle of the two - insect and plant is very well done and quite educational for the young reader or listener.

I recommend.

About the book: Observe the ways plants and insects interact in a gentle introduction to growing for budding scientists.

What’s that wedged in a crack in the ground, small and hard and wrinkly and brown? A bean seed! Soon it develops roots and leaves. And what’s that on the leaf? An egg! The egg hatches a caterpillar, and the caterpillar eats the leaves, getting bigger and bigger until it forms a chrysalis. Meanwhile, the plant is growing, too: it develops flowers, then bean pods, as it reaches up toward the sun. Side by side, plant and insect grow . . . and grow . . . and grow throughout the year, until they come full circle. This fourth book in the First Science Storybook series uses simple, clear language and colorful illustrations to inspire very young readers as they learn about life cycles.

2 books for 2 winners
Begins Aug. 3
Ends August 31 at 12:01 a.m. EDT
Open to USA and CANADA addresses.
(Canada winners must provide phone #)
a Rafflecopter giveaway
DISCLOSURE: I was provided a complimentary copy of the reviewed books to facilitate a review. Opinions are mine alone, and are freely given. Winner's prize is provided and shipped directly to the winner by Candlewick.

Wednesday, July 31, 2019

The Auschwitz Escape by Joel C. Rosenberg

About the book:  terrible darkness has fallen upon Jacob Weisz's beloved Germany. The Nazi regime, under the leadership of Adolf Hitler, has surged to power and now hold Germany by the throat. All non-Aryans -- especially Jews like Jacob and his family -- are treated like dogs.

When tragedy strikes during one terrible night of violence, Jacob flees and joins rebel forces working to undermine the regime. But after a raid goes horribly wrong, Jacob finds himself in a living nightmare -- trapped in a crowded, stinking car on the train to the Auschwitz death camp.

As World War II rages and Hitler begins implementing his "final solution" to systematically and ruthlessly exterminate the Jewish people, Jacob must rely on his wits and a God he's not sure he believes in to somehow escape from Auschwitz and alert the world to the Nazi's atrocities before Fascism overtakes all of Europe. The fate of millions hangs in the balance.

My thoughts:  One should not pick this book up anticipating an entertaining read. No. This is heavy stuff. This is intense. This is harsh because the reality of this unfathomable period of darkness in the history of man is formidable.

But we should, and we must immerse our minds with this reality because if we do not learn from the wrongs and mistakes of history, then history will inevitably repeat itself. That must not be allowed to happen.

A work of fiction, The Auschwitz Escape carefully takes us through the horrors surrounding the lives of the peoples of Europe as Hitler's army and his political machine methodically executed his plan to exterminate the Jewish race. Along with them were others who sought to hide, protect, save the Jews. This included Christians, individually, and even whole villages.

Auschwitz was created for the sole purpose of extermination of people, primarily Jews. This is where Jacob, a Jew, and Luc, a Christian, are taken. Both men were members of the resistance. This is where they eventually and miraculously escaped Auschwitz.

Joel C. Rosenberg writes with heart, clarity, and authenticity. Don't miss this moving book.

Monday, July 29, 2019

Hemp Seed Moisturizing Serum from Life Essentials Skincare [Review & Giveaway]

Really nice facial serum at the right price, too.

My thoughts:  After using this light, slightly opaque liquid, my skin is ready to receive a moisturizer. I choose to use the serum morning and evening followed by my moisturizer of choice. Since many moisturizers for day use contain sun screen protection, I think it best to use a specific night time cream and a specific day time cream.

The use of this hemp seed serum offers benefits that natural products alone offer and that is a purity and sourcing that is closer to nature. The derivatives of hemp seeds that make up this formulation do not contain any of the dreaded products associated with  non-legal hemp products. This is a safe (at my age you really need safe) product.

I like the way my skin feels when using this Life Essentials Skincare Hemp Seed Moisturizing Serum. I apply serums with an upward sweeping and rotating method gently massaging my skin, temples, neck. Kind of an "at home spa treatment" that I pamper myself with.

This product is priced so most every pocketbook or budget can afford to care for their skin.

I recommend.

Product information (click here to find product on their website) OR click here to find it on Amazon)

This Hemp Seed Serum is made with harvested and cold pressed hemp seeds. As per state to state regulations, the serum does not include any THC or CBD.
Here are some wonderful benefits of Hemp Seed Oil: Hemp seed oil is perfect for most skin types as it can moisturize without clogging your pores. It can even help to balance out oily skin, hydrating it and regulating the skin’s oil production. Dryness can also cause your skin to overproduce oil, which in turn, can stimulate acne. Hemp oil can prevent dry skin without clogging pores. This helps reduce acne that’s caused by excess oil. 
Part of what makes hemp seed oil so beneficial to the skin is that it’s rich in omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids. Consuming these nutrients can help to treat skin conditions like atopic dermatitis. 
In addition to moisturizing and soothing the skin, hemp oil has anti-aging properties. Hemp oil can help reduce fine lines and wrinkles as well as prevent signs of aging from developing. The linoleic acid and oleic acids found in hemp oil can’t be produced by the body but can play a crucial role in skin health and anti-aging, so they’re important nutrients to add to the diet.

Begins July 30
August 29 at 12:01 a.m. EDT
Open to USA addresses only.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
DISCLOSURE: I received a complimentary product from Life Essentials Skincare to facilitate this review. My opinions are derived after personally using the product for over a week. Winner's prize is provided and shipped directly to the winner by Life Essentials Skincare.

Thursday, July 25, 2019

A beach book.... "Sea Glass Summer" and a bear writing his own story..... "Bear's Book" [Review & Giveaway USA/CANADA]

Bear’s Book by Claire Freedman and illustrated by Alison Friend - Templar Books, Hardcover ISBN: 9781536205718, Ages 3-7

My thoughts:  A lovely, gentle story of a kindly bear whose favorite book has come apart and he decides to write a new book. His own book. So he begins to meander through the beautiful forest in search of ideas for his story.

He encounters his forest friends, one by one. Each time there is some incident or action that takes place. Toward the end of the book, bear actually sits down to put together his ideas for his story.

The result is charming and is built around his own experiences and knowledge.

Beautifully soft illustrations that are just right for those youngsters to whom you would be reading it. And a grand encouragement for those budding authors who want to write their own story and publish their own book.

I recommend.

About the book: When Bear’s favorite book of stories falls apart, he is determined to write one of his own. He ventures into the forest for inspiration, but writing is harder than he thinks, and he soon discovers that he needs help from his friends. See how Bear transforms their day into a wonderful adventure in this story about creativity and friendship.

Sea Glass Summer by Michelle Houts & illustrated by Bagram Ibatoulline - Candlewick Press, Hardcover ISBN: 9780763684433, Ages 4-8

My thoughts:  Beautiful! The illustrations take me back to beloved children's books in the 30s, 40s, and 50s or are reminiscent of a type of Norman Rockwell art. Gentle. Moving. Beautiful. Realistic.

The story is sweet and is one of an easy going summer along the shore where the young boy spends his summer with his grandmother at her cottage by the sea.

As a boy does, he explores and he investigates, and he collects the stuff he finds. The boy finds glass. Beautiful pieces of broken glass that have been polished and imbued with a loveliness that the sea in its churning and tossing has imparted to the piece of glass.

But good things come to an end just as each summer does and the boy leaves. The boy grows up. And then.... well, the inference in the close of the story is lovely.

I recommend.

About the book: One summer, a boy named Thomas visits his grandmother at her seaside cottage. She gives him a magnifying glass that once belonged to his grandfather, and with it Thomas explores the beach, turning grains of sand into rocks and dark clamshells into swirling mazes of black, gray, and white. When his grandmother shows him a piece of sea glass, Thomas is transfixed. That night he dreams of an old shipyard and the breaking of a bottle. Could the very piece of sea glass on his nightstand have come from that bottle? For the rest of the summer, he searches for more sea glass and hopes to have dreams that will reveal more of the sea’s secrets. A stunning ode to stories and the seaside, this picture book invites readers to imagine the ocean of possibility that lives in every small or forgotten treasure.

1 Copy of Each Book to 2 Winners
Begins July 26
Ends August 25 at 12:01 a.m. EDT
Open to USA & CANADA addresses
NO P.O. Boxes 
(Canadian winners must provided a phone #)
a Rafflecopter giveaway
DISCLOSURE: I received copies of each book to facilitate this review. Opinions expressed are solely my own and are freely given. Winner's copies are provided and shipped directly to the winner by the publicist or publisher.

Monday, July 22, 2019

Wonder Seed Hemp Seed Oil Facial Scrub from Good Earth Beauty [Review & Giveaway]

It is considered by some that hemp seed oil products help heal skin conditions (eczema, psoriasis, rosacea, dry skin, acne and itchy, flakey scalp), and that they can also provide anti-aging benefits.

The great folks at Good Earth Beauty carry some of The Wonder Seed products in their great online store of natural, organic, and vegan products. I had the opportunity to use The Wonder Seed Hemp Seed Oil Facial Scrub.

My thoughts on the Wonder Seed  Hemp Seed Oil Facial Scrub: 

This product is.....

The Wonder Seed Facial Scrub - water Lotus - is a lovely product. Made from Virgin Hemp Seed Oil this product gently scrubs or exfoliates your skin while providing a nourishing cleaning. 

Recommended use is twice weekly and that is quite adequate. The tiny exfoliating "roughage" is just enough to adequately remove dead skins and environmental trash that loves to cling to your skin. I think the cleansing and exfoliating safe for even gentle skin. But you don't want to over do anything. So you won't want to use more than twice weekly. 

When using, be sure to avoid the eye area because any cleaning product and especially one with particles in it can be an irritant to the eyes. 

This facial scrub leaves the skin fresh and clean feeling. 

After using I highly recommend you apply your favorite moisturizer product. I think using the Wonder Seed Facial Scrub in the evening prior to bed is perfect.

I recommend.


Soothing and purifying, this hemp seed oil facial scrub works for all skin types to remove impurities, heal inflammation and hydrate the skin while cleansing. Balances your natural oil profile, for a clean, fresh look. Hemp seed oil is easily absorbed by the skin and is one of the world's richest sources of essential fatty acids (EFA's) which are at an optimal balance for human absorption. This scrub tingles as it cleanses and leaves your skin feeling clean without feeling tight or stripped. No matter what your skin needs, this nutritious scrub will please. 

Made by The Wonder Seed - Ingredients: Purified Water, Organic Water Lotus Blossom Extract, Virgin Organic Hemp Seed Oil, Organic Water Lotus Essential Oil, Organic Water Lotus Juice, Ginseng Infusion, Almond Extract, Meadowfoam Seed Oil, Soymilk Coagulase (Non-GMO), Coco Glucoside, Azulene Extract, Lithospermin Extract, Magnesium Cocoate (Coconut Oil), Pro-Vitamin B5, Glyceryl Cocoate (Coconut Oil), Willow Tree Extract, Potassium Sorbate (Plant Based), Organic Grapefruit Seed Extract, Jojoba Soften Particles, Azelaic Acid*(Azaleas Based), Alkyl Polyglycoside (Plant Based), Sugar Cane Extract, Vitamin Complex, Citric Acid, Mint Extract, Camphor Oil, Birch Bark Extract, Ascorbic Acid (Vit C), Flower Extracts, Dextrin, Sea Salt (*Concentration of Azelaic Acid of less than 0.5%)Price: $16.95

Chat With Vera's take on Hemp Seed Oil products.... 

Now before anyone says, "Oh! I can't believe Ms. Vera is promoting or using hemp products!" take a moment to read the actual facts and legitimacy of hemp oil production, use in cosmetics and other products, and its effect on folks.

It is declared safe and legal for consumers. It is not the addictive Cannabis that is associated with Marijuana. I think of using products with hemp seed oil as simply another type of essential oil based product. Use of a variety of essential oils in skin care, nutritional, aromatherapy, cosmetics, and soaps is well accepted. You can find information that clarifies the differences between the hemp and marijuana plants. Some generalized information is available at CBD Origin: Hemp vs Marijuana, but there are other sources of information as well.

Your opportunity to shop for it on GOOD EARTH BEAUTY where your USA order SHIPS FREE. And to sweeten the shopping trip, take 10% off using SUMMER10 discount code.
A tube of Facial Scrub
Begins July 23
Ends August 20 at 12:01 a.m. EDT
Open to USA addresses only.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
DISCLOSURE: I received a complimentary product to facilitate this review. Opinions are mine, alone and are freely given after I have personally used it. Winner's prize is provided and shipped by publicist or directly to the winner.

Friday, July 19, 2019

Empowered - How God Shaped 11 Women's Lives (And Can Shape Yours Too) by Catherine Parks

My thoughts:  This collection of short biographic sketches of 11 women who lived through the ages, including modern times, is quite well written with their young audience in mind.

The stories are interestingly written and will surely engage the heart and mind of the young girl. The goal of the book is to show how in the face of unfathomable situations that portend evil, destruction, harm, and emotional harm the individual can be strong and can take a stand for that which is right.

The Biblical Esther is, of course, included and she is representative of the Biblical woman of strength whose story is told. The two ten Boom sisters, Corrie and Betsie, who were strong during World War II in the horrors of German concentration camps are included. Some whose names I had never heard are in this group of 11 women but whose stories shine with strength and staying power.

I highly recommend this non-fiction book for all young girls to read. Age appropriateness: 8-14 years.

About the book:  Empowered takes the popular idea of what it means to be a strong girl and flips it on its head, using the stories of eleven faithful women to show that real power comes from our loving Father through His Son. In the pages of this book, girls will encounter women they may never have heard of. They will learn some of the character traits that go along with the Christian walk. But they will also encounter a God who is faithful to complete the work He has begun in them. They don't have to do the things these women have done to live a life of purpose; by making a direct connection to their daily lives, readers will have a bigger and a more personal view of their Father and His love for them.

DISCLOSURE: I received a complimentary copy from B&H Publishing Group's book review program. Opinions are mine, alone and are freely given.

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Bitter Pill by Richard L. Mabry, M.D. (novella)

My thoughts:  Typically Dr. Mabry's books are medical suspense with a light touch of romance. In Bitter Pill he veers from his normal story telling style and focuses primarily on the lives of individuals in church ministry. Yes, there is a medical connection that Dr. Mabry so aptly weaves into this short but complex story.

Each of the main characters - and there is a crowded stage in this short book, encounters soul-searching, heart rending personal life events that could easily be the main stay of a feature book. However, Mabry defly tells enough of their story and how they interact with the other characters that you feel as though you are a local citizen or member of the local church congregation.

A short 120 pages of intense reading will leave you feeling like cheering because issues are resolved, spirits are lifted, hearts are healed, and salvation or re-commitment takes place.

I heartily recommend.


“Brother” Bob Bannister is content with his life and his itinerant healing ministry, until one night he finds that the woman who walks off the stage under her own power isn’t one of his shills. At that point, doubts begin to intrude on his previously untroubled existence.

Dr. Abby Davis is tired of her family practice and at odds with God. Dealing with critically ill and dying patients has crushed her spirit to the point she’s ready to quit. But she soon realizes that there’s more to healing than ministering to the physical body.

Scott Anderson was the oldest graduate of his seminary class. Then again, most of them hadn’t turned away from a medical practice, hoping to atone for past mistakes (including his wife’s death) by ministering to men’s souls. Now he hopes he hasn’t made a colossal mistake in switching careers.

Each of these individuals becomes linked to the other, and each finds that God has a purpose for them—but, as it often does, the lesson comes with discomfort.

DISCLOSURE: I received a complimentary copy from the author to facilitate this review. Opinions expressed are mine, alone, and are freely given.

Monday, July 15, 2019

New series for ages 8-11 - "Awesome Achievers" by Alan Katz - Technology, Science [Giveaway]

From acclaimed author Alan Katz comes a new middle grade nonfiction series designed to make history fun and vibrant for reluctant readers.

Launches in early August from Running Press Kids, these paperbacks are sure to engage the interest of readers.

Awesome Achievers in Technology 

With Katz' signature humor and extras such as illustrations, imagined diary entries for a first-person perspective, comics, poems, and personal anecdotes like the time Katz met Dr. Heimlich himself, each title brings 12 lesser-known figures to life like you've never seen them before.

Everyone has heard the name Steve Jobs, but what about Nolan Bushnell--Jobs's boss before the invention of Apple, and the founder of the first major video game, Pong? Many of the most relevant figures in tech history have remained in the shadows, but not any longer! From Alan Katz's new Awesome Achievers series, Awesome Achievers in Technology gives kids a look behind the scenes at 12 lesser-known inventors whose contributions to tech are personally relevant to their lives today. Each figure is given a traditional biography but is also subject to Katz's unique brand of silliness, with humorous elements such as imagined poems, song lyrics, and diary entries by and about the not-so-famous figure accompanying each bio.

Awesome Achievers in Science & Strange Facts About Almost Famous History Makers

Everyone has heard the names Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin, but what about Michael Collins--the third brave Apollo 11 astronaut who didn't get to walk on the moon? Many of the most relevant figures in scientific history have remained in the shadows, but not any longer! From Alan Katz's new Awesome Achievers series, Awesome Achievers in Science gives kids a look behind the scenes at 12 lesser-known scientists whose contributions are personally relevant to their lives today. Each figure is given a traditional biography but is also subject to Katz's unique brand of silliness, with humorous elements such as imagined poems, song lyrics, and diary entries by or about the not-so-famous figure accompanying each bio.

Spot illustrations throughout add to the lighthearted and appreciative humor each figure receives. Reluctant readers and budding tech enthusiasts and scientists alike will delight in this imaginative and engaging new series of laugh out loud biographies.

About the Author: Alan Katz is the author of many highly acclaimed children’s books, including Take Me Out of the Bathtub and Other Silly Dilly Songs, Don’t Say That Word! OOPS!, Poems I Wrote When No One Was Looking, and The Day the Mustache Took Over and its sequel, The Day the Mustache Came Back. Alan is also a six-time Emmy-nominated writer for TV series including The Rosie O’Donnell Show, animated series Taz-Mania, Disney’s Raw Toonage and Goof Troop, the Grammy Awards and Tony Awards, and many network specials and game shows. he has also created comic books, trading card sets, web videos, TV commercials and hundreds of other special projects for kids and parents. He lives with his family in Fairfield County, Connecticut. Alan can also be found at

1 Set of 2 books to 1 winner
Begins July 16
Ends August 15
Open to USA/CANADA addresses.
a Rafflecopter giveaway DISCLOSURE: I received a copy of Awesome Achievers Technology to facilitate this book spotlight. Prize is provided and shipped directly to the winner by publisher or its publicist.