A Mothers Day to Remember

Mothers Day is on May 10, and it’s coming up ladies and gentlemen! With less than two weeks away, you still have time to plan for that very important date. And a note to all the dads out there – this year your child will not be bringing home a Mothers Day craft from school. It’s up to you to figure something out with your children 🙂

But never fear! I’ve listed some cool, crafty, and heartwarming ideas you can do this Mothers Day. Remember that moms (or any mother figures you have) just really want to know you care about them and appreciate them. I know that’s what I think 🙂 When you think about it, any kind of gift will suffice as long as you consider what your mom really wants or needs. Gifting something from your heart is more important than any fancy jewelry or chocolate. Of course, if your mom really loves jewelry or chocolate then that’s the obvious choice. 

There are tons of ideas you can do for Mother Day this year. Don’t let the “shelter at home” deter you from thinking up something creative that only your mom will understand. Aside from the usual drawings and cards that your kids can make, below I’ve suggested other simple yet thoughtful gifts you can give this year.

MOTHERS DAY GIFT IDEAS:

– Subscription Boxes. These curated and special gift boxes have been around for awhile now so there are plenty of companies to choose from. We want to be able to give mom a subscription box that is meaningful and good for the planet. Some great subscription box companies include:

  • Causebox (https://causebox.com/) – this women-owned charity driven subscription brand promises that each product within their gift boxes gives back to specifically chosen charities. They support small businesses and their products are ethically and sustainably made. You can choose either quarterly or yearly subscriptions and their intro boxes are usually filled with at least 4-5 full size and well-received products. 

  • Love With Food (https://lovewithfood.com/) – this fun subscription box service curates healthier options than other food subscription services. With famous healthier brands such as Tillamook, Popchips, Late July, and MadeGood, there’s no doubt mom will find something that she likes in these boxes. There’s even a gluten-friendly box which is something that other conventional brands don’t offer.

  • Target Beauty Boxes (https://www.target.com/b/target-beauty-box/-/N-9nty6?lnk=snav_rd_beauty_box) – this sample sized beauty box is perfect for anyone who wants to try out a new brand or product. Moms will love this beauty box because the curated products are also sold at Target. That’s a win-win, right? And, you can also include a Target gift card inside the box so mom can buy something that she might like from the samples. Beauty boxes include a “clean” box filled with ingredients that are healthier for mom and for the planet.

– Aromatherapy. Giving a gift of aromatherapy will help your mom relax during these stressful times. Especially if she’s homeschooling your kids and participating in these distance learning that most schools are offering. Aromatherapy includes natural essential oils, diffusers, and candles. Aromatherapy is a therapeutic treatment meant to either relax or reduce stress and fatigue. The best form of aromatherapy is essential oils. Essential oils are derived from the form of the plants so be sure to pick up brands that use only plants and nothing else. A great way of using essential oils is with a diffuser. Diffusers are best when they are heated as they slowly release the scent into the air, thus causing therapeutic effects. You can find diffusers online at Amazon, Bed Bath & Beyond, Target, and any other stores that carry home goods.

– Chore Coupons. Okay, I don’t know any mom who wouldn’t appreciate a chore list coupon. Chore list coupons are lists that your kids can come up with to help around the house. Chores depend on age and ability, but should include something that can help alleviate mom from some of her own chores. For example, you can include washing dishes, sweeping the yard, cooking, or folding laundry. These are all simple and time-saving chores for mom. Include a small booklet of chores that your child can write on and have mom choose the specific chore from the booklet and tear out the “coupon”. 

– Classes. Is your mom interested in learning a new skill or lesson? Perhaps she’s always wanted to learn how to knit or speak a different language. Give your mom lessons that you think she’d be interested in. This will help her get out of the house and learn something that can bring her joy. Find classes at local colleges or community centers. You can sign up months ahead so there are spaces available. 

– Books. Most people can agree that books are truly the best gift. Whether it’s an e-book or a traditional paper book, books can bring countless hours of joy and escape for moms. Pick out some books from her favorite authors or help her find some new authors and genres. Great books can be found at Barnes and Noble and Amazon, or if you an support a local bookstore in your area, try buying from them. 

– Plants. Home grown flowers, fruit, and vegetables are the best way to ensure the food you grow are controlled by you. Give your mom easy to grow plants such as lavender, sunflower, and daisies. Popular and fast growing vegetables and herbs include mint, cilantro, tomatoes, cucumbers, and for a truly refreshing and unique herb try lemon balm. This delicious and fragrant herb smells like minty lemons – just as the name implies. You can find most plants at big warehouse stores such as Home Depot and Lowe’s as well as online nurseries such as Proven Winners (https://www.provenwinners.com/), American Meadows (https://www.americanmeadows.com/), and Armstrong Gardens (https://www.armstronggarden.com/). Plants can last for many years and if you take care of them, they will provide lasting enjoyment throughout the years.

– Personalized Photo Books. Have you ever tried a personalized photo book? You know, the ones where you upload all of the photos on a photo site and then choose the theme and text. They are incredibly fun and you might need some help from dad for this one. Shutterfly (https://www.shutterfly.com/) is a very popular photo site and there are tons of various themes and ideas to create photo books. In fact, while you’re on the site, you can also try any other photo gifts for mom. What mom wouldn’t love a keepsake photo gift?

So, this Mothers Day, try and think up fun and different ways you can show mom just how much you love and appreciate her. It could be anything simple or as fancy as you want to make it.

HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY!

 

Disclaimer: The product(s)were sent to the author for review by the manufacturer/PR. All reviews on “Happymomblogger” remain unbiased and unpaid and are the sole decision of the author. The opinions of these product(s) were not influenced in any way, shape, or form. As always, please read the ingredients carefully when trying new products.

Please read the labels and ingredients carefully and follow all manufacturer’s instructions (if any). The products selected for the giveaway were generously donated by the companies/PR to help readers learn more about their products. The winner’s choice in using/consuming these products are entirely up to the winner and will not hold the author and her family liable nor the companies/PR liable. These products are made with non-toxic ingredients but always be safe with what you use and consume.

http://www.topmommyblogs.com/blogs/in.php?id=storm

 

 

 

 

Cascading Petals Book Tour and Review

Life as a teenager isn’t always what you see in the movies. Designer clothes, luxury cars, and European vacations are all depicted in movies as something every teenager seem to have. But there are also dark sides to every teenager. When pressure from family and friends get in the way of growing into healthy and happy adults, the facade that most teens wear falls away to reveal troubles that they tried so hard to hide.

In Cascading Petals, we are immediately taken into the life of the young heroine, Jewel Hart. Eighteen-year-old Jewel is beautiful, smart, and talented, with a heart of gold and a smile that lights up the world. But overshadowing this brilliant girl is a lifetime of bullying and being ignored by her classmates and school administrative. Written in the voice of Jewel along with other central characters, we glimpse into the not so fabulous life as a teen. With the rise of bullying and threats all around her, will Jewel overcome her pain and doubts as she tries to survive her last year in high school?

Along the way, Jewel meets the new boy in town, Kaiden, who is handsome, intelligent, and self assured. He immediately takes a liking to Jewel, seeing the true “jewel” that she is although she tries to hide it from him. The blossoming of their friendship and eventual love is beautiful to read and was very well written by the author. I felt their strengths for each other as well as their pain in trying to fit into a world where you could easily be treated as a nobody. But Jewel and Kaiden’s support for each other as well as from their families made this story really shine.

Cascading Petals is a story that hits you straight to the heart. My own heart broke towards the end of this story, feeling the pain that these main characters felt and hoping they will eventually triumph through. Cascading Petals isn’t just a book about teenagers going through a hard time in high school or in life. It’s a story that tells of hardship and sadness beginning at a very young age for both Jewel, Kaiden, Amy, and Lexi. While Jewel, Kaiden, and Amy had the love and support of their families, no one can truly know another’s pain, of the fear and angst that lives in those who have been bullied or harmed in any way their entire lives.

There is a lot of be said and learned from reading a book such as Cascading Petals. It’s a good reminder to treat others with respect and to stand up for yourself. Life is usually not fair and we have all been dealt some misgivings here and there. But it’s how we pick ourselves up after the fall and shine brighter than others that help us overcome the bad dealings in life. Teenagers and even pre-teens get a sense that they can do anything in their world, that they can say whatever they want and act however they want. But little do they know that the big world out there can be so much crueler if they don’t open their eyes to their own actions and behavior. Every choice we make has a consequence – be it good or bad. And with young adults, it can be excruciatingly hard for them to know what’s truly right and wrong. Heck, even most adults have trouble with that sometimes.

Each and every one of us have been teased, bullied, or made fun of one way or another. It’s an unfortunate side effect of being human. It’s important to remember that we all have shortcomings and pitfalls. No one is perfect nor should we even try to be perfect. And in the end, does it really matter that you aren’t the prettiest girl in school or the jockiest jock? Does it matter if you have a better car or have designer clothes while the person next to you barely lives within their means? It doesn’t make us better or worse. It should just make us feel compassion and help others understand that life has more meaning than what’s on the surface. I truly hope you read Cascading Petals as it can be a good “wake up call” for all of us.

Synopsis:

Despite the years of bullying in school, Jewel Hart has remained sweet and kind. She has it all—a great life, a great family, and beauty—but she has never been able to obtain the one thing she wants—to belong.

When Jewel meets Kaiden Carter, a good-looking, charming new student at York Mills High, things start to look up. On the surface, he is perfect, but Jewel can’t shake the feeling that everything is not as it seems.

When the devastation of the rising suicides in her school hits too close to home and drives Jewel into a deep despair, she clings to Kaiden’s strength to find her way back. Through the pain and fear surrounding her, she finds hope and the will to go on. But just as she picks herself up, tragedy strikes again, threatening to steal her last glimmer of hope. How will she go on? Can she ever find her place in the world?

Xpresso Book Tours and the author is giving everyone a chance to win a Kindle Fire HD 32g and a signed copy of Cascading Petals here:  https://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/d04251232436/.

You can also purchase Cascading Petals at these retailers:

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/CascadingPetals-Jane-C-Brady-ebook/dp/B077YMMLPN

B&N: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/cascadingpetals-jane-c-brady/1127226558?ean=9781775067634

iBooks: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/cascadingpetals/id1296049260?mt=11

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/ca/en/ebook/cascadingpetals

And for more info about Cascading Petals Book Tour: http://xpressobooktours.com/2018/02/15/tour-sign-up-cascading-petals-by-jane-c-brady/

Author’s Bio – Jane C. Brady:

AUTHOR BIO:

Jane lives life to the full because she doesn’t want to wake up twenty years from now regretting all the things she didn’t do. She’s an avid traveler who also loves throwing elaborate dinner parties where she wows her guests with gourmet meals. Jane has a passion for writing, interior design, history, movies, board games, and fitness. In her quest  for an exciting life, however, she now draws the line at zip-lining, which she experienced in Costa Rica. Never again!

Jane comes from a family of six sisters and lived in a Tennessee plantation house for several years while growing up. She now lives in Western Canada but dreams of owning a vacation home in South Carolina. She lives with her husband (her high school sweetheart), two teenagers, and two dogs. When she grows up, she’d like to be her brilliant sixteen-year-old daughter (minus the mood swings).

Author links:

https://authorjanecbrady.com/

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/17233695.Jane_C_Brady

https://www.facebook.com/authorjanecbrady/

https://twitter.com/authorjanecbrad

Thank you to Xpresso Book Tours and Jane Brady for the ARC!

Disclaimer: The product(s)were sent to the author for review by the manufacturer/PR. All reviews on “Happymomblogger” remain unbiased and unpaid and are the sole decision of the author. The opinions of these product(s) were not influenced in any way, shape, or form. As always, please read the ingredients carefully when trying new products.

Please read the labels and ingredients carefully and follow all manufacturer’s instructions (if any). The products selected for the giveaway were generously donated by the companies/PR to help readers learn more about their products. The winner’s choice in using/consuming these products are entirely up to the winner and will not hold the author and her family liable nor the companies/PR liable. These products are made with non-toxic ingredients but always be safe with what you use and consume.

http://www.topmommyblogs.com/blogs/in.php?id=storm

 

 

 

Prelude for a Lord – A BookLook Book Review

BOOKLOOK BLOGGER PRELUDE

My love for reading started at a fairly young age, most likely around the time I first learned how to read. I read everything from books to magazines to newspapers to comic books. There really was no limit to what I would read nor did I set a standard on what to read. As I’m trying to teach my son the joys and benefits of reading, I too have picked up several books to read at once. Although it’s probably not a very sensible practice as intertwining stories can happen, I’ve decided to dedicate my sole reading time to Prelude for a Lord as a book blogger for the BookLook Bloggers program.

One of my favorite genres is historical romance. I love learning about anything from a different era especially during the Regency period where everything seemed so elegant and extravagant. What a life it must have been to wear lavish gowns and attend glorious social events. Thus, when I chose Prelude for a Lord, I expected just that. Allow me to start off with saying that this book has a beautiful and elegant cover which was what drew my attention in the first place. I think a cover really draws the initial attraction and helps establish the essence of the actual story.

Aside from the charming cover, Prelude for a Lord, written by Camille Elliot is a tale of love, compassion, and triumph. I felt sad for the Heroine, Alethea at times because of the situations she was put in but she felt like a true hero, a bit naive even at 28 years old, and sometimes self-deprecating.

Although it read a bit differently than the other Regency romance books I’ve read in the past, the story still felt like you were thrust into the lavish and sometimes cruel world of Regency, England. The writing was engaging but felt a bit modern at times and I don’t know if that was the style of the author or not, but overall for those who have never read a Regency-period novel, you’ll still find the story delightful. There were many characters in the book so a lot of names to keep track of, but usually in these Regency romance books you’ll find many supporting characters – and some are great while others need not be in there.

I did like the Hero, Lord Bay Dommick as he was quite misunderstood and had a bit of an edge to him. He is a professional violinist and daunted by love. Although he wasn’t as romantic as I had hoped he would be, he was still sweet to Alethea at times. Reading their interactions together is like stepping back in time into their world.

Overall I did enjoy the story and although there was supposed to be bit of a mystery going on, it would have been nice if the author delved more into the workings of a violin and gave more explicit details about the instrument. I don’t know a lot about violins and whenever I read a story that focuses on a specific topic, it would help to have more detailed descriptions of it.

Prelude for a Lord is a gentle read and great for virgin Regency romance novels. Although it’s listed as a Christian romance, there weren’t really anything in the book to sway you otherwise. There were a few mentions of the Bible but not enough where those who are opposed to any kind of religion might find it offensive. Perhaps because it is also a “clean” book without a lot of explicit details on the romance, it is a good book for those who don’t want to read erotica or anything trashy.

Zondervan’s summary of the book, Prelude for a Lord:

An awkward young woman. A haunted young man. A forbidden instrument. Can the love of music bring them together . . . or will it tear them apart? Bath, England—1810 At twenty-eight, Alethea Sutherton is past her prime for courtship; but social mores have never been her fortĂ©. She might be a lady, but she is first and foremost a musician. In Regency England, however, the violin is considered an inappropriate instrument for a lady. Ostracized by society for her passion, Alethea practices in secret and waits for her chance to flee to the Continent, where she can play without scandal. But when a thief’s interest in her violin endangers her and her family, Alethea is determined to discover the enigmatic origins of her instrument . . . with the help of the dark, brooding Lord Dommick. Scarred by war, Dommick finds solace only in playing his violin. He is persuaded to help Alethea, and discovers an entirely new yearning in his soul. Alethea finds her reluctant heart drawn to Dommick in the sweetest of duets . . . just as the thief’s desperation builds to a tragic crescendo . . .

 

 

Editor’s Disclosure: I received an Advanced Reader’s Copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. The opinions made on this book are entirely my own and has not been influenced in any way. I have not received monetary compensation for reviewing this book other than receiving a copy of it.

I may reveal spoilers from time to time but I will always preface it so you can skip that part or read them for the sheer fun of it.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers 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