Friday, September 28, 2012

Fun Family Christmas Presents - A Picture Wall Clock

With Christmas in just a few short months, it's time to start thinking about what to buy those special people in our lives.  Do you run into the problem of not knowing what to buy people for Christmas gifts? I certainly do - it makes it more difficult when most of the people we buy for go out and buy what they want/need. We have started to do a lot of photo's as gifts (personalized calendar, canvas prints, mugs etc) and I came across a neat idea - it is a photo frame wall clock.

Size: 35.5x35.5x4.8cm

You can personalize it with 12 photos of family, friends, pets or vacation photos.....whatever you think they may like.  Need more ideas? Check out paramount zone for more Christmas presents 2012 for the family

**This post was sponsored and I received compensation for it; all opinions belong to Tales of Mommyhood and your opinion/experience may vary**

my sons wild imagination triggered memories of my youth

Mr. J, my oldest, has a wild imagination. The latest with this is his obsession with bad guys. He isn't scared of them, but any noise he hears he thinks that it was a bad guy.....the last time this happened, he wanted to go on a hunt for the bad guys (normally he makes his little brother, Mr. K tag along, but this time he was napping so I was his "helper").

While we were on the hunt for the bad guys, a memory was triggered. I think I was 11 or 12, my brother 2 years older. Our parents were out, and we were alone. This wasn't the first time, but on this particular night my brother decided that he was going to scare the wits out of me.....I heard a little noise, and asked if he heard it too...he said he did, and that we should go investigate  - but first, we needed a knife. Into the kitchen he went (with me practically hanging onto his shirt) to get a sharp knife. First, we go to the basement - nothing there....then we go upstairs - his room, my room and lastly my parents bedroom.

He quietly and slowly gets on the bed, holding the knife and tells me to lift up the bedskirt....for some reason, my tween mind didn't twig that IF there had been someone hiding under the bed, they would have gotten me as soon as I lifted the ALSO didn't twig that my parents had a waterbed - therefore there COULDN"T be anyone hiding under the bed......and third, my brother had led me on a complete wild goose chase, playing into my fears......

I was livid with him for a long time, but now, 20 years later I can laugh at how naive I was.....this is just one of the many times that my brother tortured me .... how about you - any sibling stories to share?

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Hamburger Soup

I am a big soup lover – especially homemade soups. When I was a teenager, a family friend made some Hamburger Soup for us after my father died, and it was delicious. Since she had included the recipe with it, it quickly became a regular fall/winter meal for my mom and I (my brother wasn’t such a big fan).  Now that we have entered the crisp fall days, I got the recipe from my mother again – and here it is!

I am not sure of the original source, and I have seen MANY hamburger soup recipes floating around that are very similar – and I have even tried a few, but this is my fav.

1.5 lbs of ground beef, cooked and fat rinsed off
1 small onion, chopped fine
28 oz can of tomatoes (I used crushed)
2 cups of water
3 cans of beef consommé
1 can of tomato soup
1 large carrot, chopped fine
3 celery stalks, chopped fine
1 bay leaf
Sprinkle of parsley
½ tsp thyme
Pepper to taste
3 tbsp barley

In a stock pot (or slow cooker if you like) combine all ingredients; let simmer on stove for a few hours (vegetables should be tender) and serve. Not only will you have a hearty meal, but your house will smell amazing too!

I am a dipper, so I always like to serve soup with a slice of thick bread or a bun to dip with….delicious!

For more great soup recipes, check out my Soup Round Up

Monday, September 24, 2012

Tired Drivers

This post brought to you by InsuranceHunter. All opinions are 100% mine.


As a parent, I have had many sleepless nights. When you have a newborn that is up all night, it is really difficult to keep going - but that's just what you keep on going. Even if that means driving a vehicle when really, you are so absolutely exhausted that you shouldn't be behind the wheel.


I just finished reading an article from Insurance Hunter (check them out for auto insurance quotes!)with the results of the Insurance Hunter’s safety survey:  The Neglected Driver Survey, an online study of 1,003 Ontario parents with children under the age of 12 who take family road trips, was hosted on the Angus Reid Forum on behalf of 


The results showed that 30% of men had nodded off behind the wheel, compared to only 14% of women. (I was really surprised that there was such a large gap in the difference between men and women - and that the mens number is so high). The survey also found that young parents are more likely to drive while tired than older parents.

The study also revealed that while mom and dad share most of the household duties, the majority of time Dad is still behind the wheel; apparently 72% of men are behind the wheel during long family road trips. (I always wondered why my grandpa did most of the driving, my mom didn't drive so it needed to be my dad, and in our house - if we go out as a family I am generally the driver because my hubby's vehicle doesn't have a car seat for our youngest son - and since we are taking my vehicle, I drive)


I would encourage you to read through the findings and see the statistics for yourself - and please, leave me a comment telling me if you have ever driven when you were so tired that you should have taken a break.




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Separation anxiety in toddlers

As a SAHM, I felt it was important for Julien to attend nursery school. I wanted him to be around other kids his age, and get a feel for what it was like with me not around.

I was quite certain that we would have issues at drop-off because he showed signs of separation anxiety - just when I left a room. Even if he knew I was going to the kitchen for a drink, he would scream and cry if I didn't bring him with me.  Nursery school drop-off proved no different.

The first morning, they had to pry him off of me - while he screamed and cried.  I told him I loved him, gave him a kiss, waved good bye and walked out the door. Yes, it was difficult to leave him like that, but I was given tips ahead of time that prepared me for that morning - and I am going to pass those on to you.

- don't sneak out without saying goodbye (as hard as it is, they need to KNOW you are leaving)
- tell them when you will be back (I always said after storytime, as that is when the parents came to p/u) but you could say after nap, snack etc...give them something in the routine that they can associate your arrival with)
- make it QUICK (the longer you linger, the longer they will be upset - tell them you love them, quick kiss, goodbye and LEAVE)
- DON'T come back in again, or it will prolong the process or start it over
- TRUST that you have made the right choice in daycare provider, and that they will be able to handle it
- if your worried- CALL the provider and ask how things went
- MAJORITY of children, calm down almost immediately after their parent leaves....
- you could give them a picture to keep in their pocket, so that they can look at it if they miss you too much
- don't be afraid to tell them that you will be missing them also, and that you will be thinking about them during the day
- remember, it may not resolve itself immediately (Julien cried at drop-off for 1.5 yrs) but the most important thing is that they are happy when you pick them up. If they don't want to leave, then you can bet they love the place.

Do you have any tips? did your child have issues at drop-off?

Sunday, September 23, 2012

honouring deceased loved ones at your wedding

I always knew that my wedding day would be emotional - in more than just the regular way. My father died when I was a teenager, and I knew that I would have a lot of trouble with him not being with me as I walked down the aisle, or having a father/daughter dance.  Even now, 17 years later, I often go to the washroom during the father/daughter dance at weddings - because it really brings his loss upfront in my mind.

When thinking about my wedding, it was always very important to me that my dad be included in our day, even though he couldn't be with me. At the same time, I didn't want to turn our happy, joyous wedding into a somber occasion either.  Below, I have written the ways we chose to include him - in hopes that it may help other couple come up with ideas.

When we were planning our wedding, I had no idea how I was going to walk down the aisle; I didn't want to walk alone, but I didn't want my mom to walk me either. It didn't seem right that my brother do the whole thing, so I decided that I would walk the first half alone - and my brother was waiting for me in the middle - this was my symbol for my dad handing me to him, and then he "gave me away".

At the entrance to our reception, we had a table with the guest book and a small album of pictures of us - and then there was a picture of my father with a poem I wrote and a memory candle. Apparently, this was VERY emotional for most of my family/friends as they read it - but it was something that I NEEDED to have there.

In terms of the parent dances, my original plan was to just skip them altogether; then I thought that maybe I would just dance with my mom....then I had an idea - I would dance with my mom and my brother. I didn't tell her that however; she knew that we would have a dance together - and after 40 seconds or so I signaled to my brother that it was time - and he came over and joined us. The only people that knew this was happening were my brother, hubby, myself and my cousin/MOH.  Most of my family got very emotional when they witnessed our dance - and my hubby's family commented on just how close the 3 of us are.

Lastly, this was not my inclusion, but my mom and brother.....growing up, my father always gave my mom and I 11 roses; not 12, because we were the most beautiful (equaling the 12th rose). As a teenager, I heard a song on the radio called "A Dozen Red Roses" by Joan Kennedy...... the song is about a bride on her wedding day, who receives a dozen red roses and a card - the card is written by her dad - he wrote it before he died and gave it to her mom for their daughters wedding day.

My mom knew how much this song affected me, and I was pretty sure that there would be a flower delivery that day - but I didn't know when....I thought maybe while I was getting ready, but that didn't happen. Then I thought maybe at the church (but REALLY hoped that wasn't the case because I don't think I could have made it down the aisle if they did it then...) but it happened after dinner. After the speeches were done, I was getting ready to go get a drink and in walked my mom and brother, with a bouquet of 11 roses......just for me.  It was EXTREMELY emotional for the 3 of us, but I was so glad to get them. Even though my father didn't send them for me - I KNOW in my heart that he would have given me 11 red roses on my wedding day had he been alive --- and so did my mom.

And there you have it - a rundown of how I included my dad in our wedding.

Fall Cash Giveaway

I am super excited to be joining up with a great group of Canadian bloggers to offer you a fantastic prize. Enter the Rafflecopter form below to win $120 CASH USD via paypal.
Thank you to our hosts Tales of a Ranting Ginger and This Lil' Piglet Good luck everyone!

Friday, September 21, 2012

fall = pumpkin recipes!

In recent years, I discovered a love of all things pumpkin. I love pumpkin spice latte's from Starbucks; pumpkin loaf/muffins and I even discovered a great idea for using pumpkin puree and a cake mix.

I found this recipe for pumpkin loaf from an online friend - I am not sure of the original source - and I am not trying to take credit for the recipe. The only thing I will take credit for, is that instead of a loaf I made muffins (find them easier to eat)

1 cup canned pumpkin puree
1/2 cup veg oil
*1 1/3 cup sugar
2 eggs
1-1/2 cup plus 1 TBS of flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
*1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground nutmeg
1 tsp ground cloves
Brown sugar (optional - for sprinkling on top)

**I cut the sugar down to 1 cup and omit salt**

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare muffin pan with either paper liners or grease the cups.

In a large bowl, mix pumpkin puree, oil, sugar, and eggs. In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves with a wire whisk. Stir into pumpkin mixture until well blended.

Spoon into prepared muffin cups and sprinkle with brown sugar

Bake for approximately 25 minutes (baking time will vary based on oven - the top of the muffin should spring back slightly when pressed gently)
As for the yummy cake recipe - it is super easy. Take a tin of pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling) and add it to a dry yellow or chocolate cake mix. Mix it until there are no dry spots left and bake as per directions on box.Again, no idea where I heard this, it was not my original idea.

It's a great way to add some fibre into the cake - definitely NOT a healthy recipe, but probably slightly better than the original version.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

How I Met Your Mother - Season 7 Blu-ray and DVD

My hubby and I only started watching How I Met Your Mother last year - we started watching the re-runs and are now late into Season 6 - I am very happy to hear that Season 7 will be released on Blu-ray and DVD October 2. Keep reading for some tips for first time parents

Lily and Marshall’s Guide for First-Time Parents

In How I Met Your Mother’s seventh season, first time parents, Lily and Marshall have to adjust to the rigors of parenthood and find out, like many before, just how hard it is. So fresh from family naptime, here are the topfive Eriksen family tips for first-time moms and dads.

GET HELP. You’ll probably hear family and friends say things like “if you need help…” and “anytime you need a sitter…” Take them up on it! Also, it’s healthy to socialize. Do not feel guilty for it.
THEY DO SLEEP. But they usually mix up nights and days during the first several weeks. What’s more, most babies do not sleep through the night until they are about four months old. Remember that too much sleep during the day will keep nighttime visitor Mr. Sandman away. And sleep when the baby sleeps!
PLAN AHEAD. Meal time, bath time, bedtime, play time, naptime… You’ll be doing yourself a huge service by trying to plan ahead and making sure you have everything you need from the start of whatever the activity is.
BEWARE OF OVERSTIMULATION. Mommy, daddy, grandparents and friends may have gone a little overboard, buying baby presents so be cautious about giving too much to the baby too soon. Over stimulated babies don’t sleep and overtired babies cry. A lot.
DON’T FREAK OUT. You’re going to make mistakes but that’s never going to change so the best thing you can do for yourselves and your baby is accept this and keep going.

it's getting cold outside

Now that we are only a few days away from Fall officially starting, it is beginning to get cold inside the house.  We, however, like to save money (and the house from being dry with the furnace on) so we try and wait as long as possible before putting our heat on.

Our goal is generally to make it until mid-late October, however I think the latest we have ever gotten is Thanksgiving weekend.  To help combat the chilliness of the house, a few things that we do:

- keep blinds/curtains OPEN - let in that sun!
- keep the beds made (helps to keep the mattress/sheets from getting too cold)
- have a nice cup of hot chocolate in the evening after dinner
- dress appropriately for the temperature (socks, pants, long sleeved shirts and sweaters)
- use a blanket - or cuddle up with the one you love!

These tips may not work for everyone, but it helps get us into October without needing the furnace running!

What do you do to keep warm?

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

stupid, dumb....words I hate

I really, really dislike when my kids use words like stupid and dumb. I will admit, that I use them - but I don't use them directed towards people (not that it is much better, and I would love to stop using them, but it's difficult - kind of like trying not to swear, when it has been part of your vocabulary for 20+ years).

What I hate so much about these words, is that people direct them towards other people. At 5, Julien is still experimenting and doesn't really understand the meaning behind them. He has no idea what kind of an impact hearing "you are stupid" or "that's a dumb idea" can have on someone.

I try and explain to him that it can REALLY  REALLY hurt someones feelings when they hear those words, but so far it is just going in one ear and out the other - I am not ready to give up on it just yet though.

What about you - are they acceptable words in your house?

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Wordless Wednesday

hubby brought home my fav. cupcakes for me just before my birthday!

Apple Picking at Mountain Orchard

When Kyle was a newborn, I was looking for something to do that would keep Julien busy for an hour or 2, and be relatively easy to do with a baby.  It was the fall, and a friend invited us apple picking. It seemed like a great idea, something I hadn't done since I was a kid.

One of my favorite memories is going apple picking with my parents.  We actually went to this same orchard (which I didn't know until my return on the first trip with the boys). I don't eat the skin on apples (makes me gag) and my mom had brought a knife with her to peel my apples - because there is nothing like eating an apple freshly picked from the tree.

Off we went to Mountain Orchards - and our 2 oldest boys had a blast, while Kyle and her baby slept peacefully while snuggled close to us in wraps/carriers. Thus, created our tradition. Every September, the 2 families go apple picking at Mountain orchards.

In addition to the orchard, they have a hay jump, corn mazes and a few other child friendly activities - best part? It is all FREE! The only thing you pay for is what you buy! If you pick apples, they have 2 bag sizes to choose from; once you get to the "store" you have your pick of the most delicious apple cider donuts (one of the reasons I am willing to drive 35 minutes to get their!), apple cider, apple jellies and apple pies!

This year, there was a new addition as our friends had their 3rd child in the spring! The 4 older kids had an absolute blast, and we got to enjoy watching them climbing the ladders to pick the apples - they have grown so much since our first trip 2 years ago!

We haven't done the corn maze yet - I think we will wait until next year and judge to see if the kids would like it or not!

Do you go apple picking? Is there a specific orchard you go to?

Monday, September 17, 2012

proud mama

Julien is an intense child. Everything he feels, whether it be happy or sad, is to the extreme most times. He has a fear of swimming - it took a lot last summer to get him INTO a pool, and that was with a life jacket AND holding onto me or his God-mother.

This year, we had a little more success - he managed to swim with just a life jacket and noodle. I was so happy to see him enjoying the water.  I signed him up for swimming lessons, and last friday was his first one. He mentioned that he didn't think he would like it, and thought it was best if we stayed home.  I told him that we had to go to the pool, but that if he got there and was not able to get in the water, that was fine. He could sit on the side and watch.

When the instructor came over, he followed her and the 3 other children into the pool. He walked all the way over where she wanted them to be, and he did pretty much everything she asked of them (the only thing he wouldn't do was let her "shower" him with water) - he blew bubbles, attempted a back float, jumped into her arms and went down the kiddy slide.

The pride I felt was amazing....watching this little boy of mine overcome his fears, and take a chance with the water was one of the biggest accomplishments for me to watch as a mother.  He had so much fun, that when class was over, he couldn't stop talking about next week. He told his gramz on the phone, and I saw the huge smile on his face - and she said the excitement came through in his voice.

I am just so proud of my little man.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

guest posting at One Sleepy Mom

Hello everyone

Today, I am guest posting over at One Sleepy Mom - head on over there and check out my post about one of my favorite tv shows - Days of Our Lives!

Friday, September 14, 2012

chewing my gummies

For the last 3 months, I have been a Shes Connected Brand Ambassador for Adult Essentials. Adult Essentials gummy vitamins make taking vitamins easy to swallow.  Instead of large pills that get stuck in my throat, I am able to get my daily dose by chewing great tasting gummy vitamins!  They even have a line for children, Iron Kids!

Since taking the vitamins, I am amazed at the differences I have noticed. I mentioned in my last post that I stopped shedding as much hair as I used to - which is great in itself. But what I didn't mention is how much better I feel. I find that I am getting a more restful sleep at night (most nights, can't count the ones that my kids have me up) and I have much more energy. But most of all, I have more patience with my children - and that is what has me most excited about this product.

After only a week or so taking the vitamins, I found my energy level picked up, and I wasn't as cranky with the kids anymore. It was such a welcome surprise - and I am sure my kids are happy with the outcome also! To be able to enjoy our time together without me being hard on them for no reason, is amazing - and makes the days go by much easier (although there are still days where the kids don't want to listen and we have issues, maybe they should make something for kids to take that will change that LOL)

Disclosure - I am participating in the Adult Essentials Blogger Outreach program by ShesConnected. I received a supply of vitamins and compensation in exchange for my participation in this campaign. The opinions on this blog are my own.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Are you green?

When I was young, I was all about saving the environment. My mom loves to remind me that I followed around a man that was spraying for weeds - telling him how bad it was for the environment and blah blah blah...I think I was 9 at the time.

As I got older, I started to care less - not that I didn't care, but it just wasn't something I felt the need to worry about - typical teenager I guess.

In the last few years (mostly since having kids) I have started to think about the impact we have - from the chemicals we use in our homes to the output of garbage and recycling.
I started using a combination of cloth diapers and disposables when Kyle was 9mths old; I have switched over to Norwex products for cleaning, and my latest is using the green bin program in our city.

The green bin program was brought in a few years ago. It wasn't mandatory, and my hubby had zero interest in using it.  I was kind of indifferent to it, but recently decided to give it a try (it might have just happened to coincide with garbage pick-up being changed to bi-weekly).

Last week was the first time I used the green bin - I cleaned out my fridge/freezer and the bin was full.  This week, I used it and it is again full, and I am happy to report that we have slightly less than 1 full bag of garbage.

Do you use green cleaning products? do you use cloth diapers? composting? how are you helping lessen your impact on the environment?

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

The Dark Knight - Halloween 2012

Julien (5 yrs old) is a pretty typical boy; he is completely obsessed with super hero's, and right now the Dark Knight tops that obsession.

For 2012 Halloween, Julien decided that this year he wants to be Batman. When we were perusing the website, he saw one for the Dark Knight and started bouncing around, super excited - that was the costume he wanted. I made sure to have him look at all of the options available, but he had his mind set - and wouldn't budge.

I placed the order, and we waited. Shipping was quick and when the costume arrived - he was so happy and couldn't wait to get it opened and try it on. Included with the costume is the jumpsuit with attached boot tops, cape, belt and mask.   I was slightly worried about the mask, but I tried it on myself and there is no vision obstruction.  The sizing is perfect for Julien, and the cape velcros around the neck,  goes just to the floor; I wish the velcro was slightly larger, but it still works just fine.

Don't forget to connect with the SuperCenter for Costumes on Facebook.

And now, a picture of my Dark Knight:

** The costume above was provided free of charge in exchange for review on Tales of Mommyhood; the opinion stated belongs to Tales of Mommyhood and your opinion/experience may vary**

Friday, September 7, 2012

shopping for dresses

Coast Collection - House of Fraser
I am not one that really likes to shop - probably shocking to hear a woman say she doesn't like to shop, but it's just not me. I like to walk into a store, take a quick glance and if nothing catches my eye, I am gone. That is one of the reasons I love the internet so much. I can find great styles and ideas without having to go to a mall. Heck, I can even order it online and try it on in the privacy of my own home - much better than having to wait for a fitting room - then having to LEAVE the room to go find a mirror - and the lighting is often horrendous to.

I have 2 weddings coming up in the next few months - the first is a theme wedding, and I will be wearing a purple tent dress (my mom found it for me, all I had to do was try it on - awesome!) for the 2nd wedding, it is in December. While I could wear something from my closet, it's always nice to have something new - and most of my "wedding" outfits are meant for the warmer months, so on the hunt I go.

I found a few dresses at House of Fraser that I like - they are from the Coast Collection:

Since the wedding is in December, I think this Royale Jersey dress would be great with the long sleeves;  the cinched waist is something that appeals to me also (great for hiding my post-baby body!)

BUT - then there is this one too, and they are completely different styles

With this one, I am really drawn to the pleats on the wrist and the bottom hem.....the long sleeves also make it great for a winter wedding....

Decisions, decisions......which do you like best?

Thursday, September 6, 2012

when things are quiet

Really, I should know by now that when my boys are together and it is quiet, that they are getting into trouble. However, I must have forgotten this the other day.....

I was sorting through Juliens school stuff from last year (I had planned on getting that done at the beginning of July, but it didn't happen) and Julien was playing in his room. I heard Kyle go upstairs, and they were giggling...then I heard his door close and didn't think much of it......

A few minutes go by, and I realize that it has been quiet.....then I heard running water........when I made it upstairs, I realized the bathroom door was closed......I slowly opened the door, and was met by a naked Kyle sitting on the counter, Julien standing in a 1/2 inch of water - the stopper was in the sink, it was overflowing and the taps were still running.  It took 3 towels to sop up all the water that was on the floor - I was sure it would have been coming through the ceiling, but fortunately it didn't happen......

Lesson learned (for about the 10th time) that when they are quiet together, trouble will follow.

Guest post: Ronald McDonald House®

The following is a guest post by my friend Randa - read on to find out more about her and the experience she had with  Ronald McDonald House® .  We are fortunate that we live close to our local Children's Hospital, so we didn't need the services of   Ronald McDonald House®  - however, there are many families that DO need to use the wonderful facilities.

This isn't your typical gust post. I'm calling for help and support. My name is Randa and I'm raising money for the Ronald McDonald House® Central Alberta.
My husband and I called the House home back in March when I had my son six weeks and a day early. If it wasn't for the house I would have further physically and mentally drained. I wouldn't have been able to be with him, in the NICU, sixteen to eighteen hours a day; and I'm certain that we wouldn't have been able to come home as soon as a month after his birth. 
The day he was discharged, at RMH for dinner and Bingo!
A lot of people associate the Ronald McDonald House® with the McDonald's restaurants. The House is not owned or operated by McDonald's.  They do contribute approximately 10% each year to the annual budget. The House is actually ran by amazing staff and volunteers, 24 hours a day. Volunteers are everywhere. They clean, check you in, come in and bake some amazing treats. There are also volunteer groups that will come in and do delicious dinners. I cannot forget about the people who come in and volunteer their time hosting scrap-booking and card-making classes, Rooster the dog, hosting yoga classes and much MUCH more. 
To keep costs down at The House the guests are to clean up after themselves, do their laundry and when it is time to check it they wash their linens, tidy, and sweep and mop their room. I liked this, it kept me in a routine. Similar to one I would have at home (just not as much). 

The House has a special room called the Magic Room and when there is a special day: discharged, birthday, last cancer treatment, etc the child is taken up to pick out a surprise. I was in awe with this room. I mean, look at it - wow.
After staying at the House for month, I witnesses all the hard work and love that it takes to run the Ronald McDonald House® Central Alberta, but I am also aware that it takes money. 
That is why throughout the months of September and October I am fundraising with Steeped Tea & Accessories for the House and I need all the help I can get. Here's how you can get invloved:

Purchase a Fundraising Pack
For $20 ($23 outside of Alberta, unless you get a friend or order two or more) you receive the following of choice:

This campaign ends on October 31. Unless I have a large order at the end of September, I will submit the order then and the customer will receive product within the first two weeks of November. If I receive an order from out of the Red Deer/Drumheller/Camrose/Edmonton area, I will submit the order that week.


Help Me Campaign:
I will send you an order form and you can take it to your work, to your friends or go door to door with the kids while on your walk. Get their information, what pack they want, how many and if they are paying by cash or cheque. You will then e-mail the info, send the money VIA EMT or PayPal.

Buy From My Shop
During the month of October 50% of my sales will be donated to the House. You can shop at OR if you order this month, just leave RMH in the comments and I will put 50% aside.

Thank you everyone for their support. To contact me about any of this and to order a fundraising pack here is my information:
Randa Derkson

Or you can always find out more at my blog, The Bewitchin' Kitchen.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

back to school with Campus Book Rentals

Back to school can be an expensive time of year. Not only are you purchasing school supplies (such as back packs, notebooks, lunchbags and clothing) but if your a college or university student you have your tuition payment and your textbooks too.

I remember being shocked at the price of my books when I was in college - some were getting precariously close to the $100.00 mark. Why not save some of your money by checking out Campus Book Rentals. They didn't exist back when I was in college, but since 2007 they have been offering a rental service for texbooks. That's right - you pay a low rental fee (saving 40-90% of the book price) and it allows you to keep it for the duration you need with the applicable rental cost. Here is an example of a textbook that retails for $136 - but you save 90% by renting it with Campus Book Rentals.

How does it work? You search the website for the books you need, place your order and then wait for them to arrive. You can write or highlight as necessary (however, others will be renting afterwards so please keep in mind and don't destroy the book).  When you are finished, you can return it OR pay the difference between your rental and the purchase price if it is something you feel you need to hang on to.

Another great thing about Campus Book Rentals? They donate a portion from each book rental to Operation Smile. Operation Smile helps to bring surgerys to those born with a cleft lip, cleft palates or other facial deformity.

Campus Book Rentals also purchases books - if you have old textbooks your looking to get rid of, check them out to see if you can make some extra money for them!

**this is a sponsored post; Tales of Mommyhood was compensated for this - your opinions/experience may vary**

first day of school

Yesterday was the first day of school around here.....and marked juliens first day of SK.  He was so excited to be heading back to see his teachers and his friends!

I think the smile in this picture says it all

Monday, September 3, 2012

Marlow and the Monster - book review

Are your kids afraid of monsters? were you afraid of monsters as a child? I was - my closet door had to be closed, and my light on until I was in my early teens. Even as an adult, I need to have my closet door closed, and my feet have to be under the blanket - silly, yes, I know.

Mom to 3, Sharon Cramer is the author/illustrator of Marlow and the Monster. The book is about a little boy with a monster in his room, and of course his parents don't believe him. The monster is very colourful (the rest of the book is illustrated in black/white) and more of a pest than scary; he is kind of silly looking.

My 5 year old was a little apprehensive about the book based on the title, but after we started reading it he realized that it wasn't scary at all...and he LOVED that the monster was full of colour.  If you have a little one that is worried about monsters under the bed or in the closet, I suggest you grab a copy of the book and have a read through it with them!

**The above mentioned item was received free of charge in exchange for the review; the opinion stated belongs to Tales of Mommyhood and your opinion may vary**