Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Share Big Dreams With World Vision & Giveaway #GiftCatalog

Holidays usually mean gifts for the entire family. One thing that’s important to Fred and I is that we teach our kids to care about others. Having gone on mission trips and our kids knowing about them and that we’re trying to help others, they understand why we like working with organizations like World Vision.

Last year looking through the World Vision, Fred got soccer balls for a school. His kids love soccer so that was a fitting gift to send! This year with my daughter traveling to so many countries, I’d love to get a gift for her that would be meaningful to her trip. I know that for her, anything out of the World Vision catalog she would be happy with. My plan is to have her pick what she’d like us to give. There are truly so many to choose from it’s hard to know where to start. This is where it’s a good problem to have.
This year, as with other years, you can give a gift where it’s most needed, and in return, receive a free handcrafted gift. I love that you can receive something as a reminder of how you’ve helped someone in the world. As the Word says, “the least of these.” There’s a beautiful Guatamalen head band, Kenyan patchwork tote, Silver vines cuffs, and what we received, Hand-carved serving spoons.

The spoons are meaningful to me because I’ve been to Kenya and I have wonderful memories from my visit there. I also knew that having them in the kitchen will be a regular reminder that we’ve reached out to others. When you hold the spoons, there’s a great weight to them. You can also tell these are handmade because neither are the same.
I think many of us know, that we don’t always have to go outside of our country’s borders to help those in need. I’m thankful that World Vision has options to help children right here in the United States.
Handcrafted Collage
Now, I think it’s time you step outside of the same ol’, same ol’ of giving a gift card that is a pretty impersonal gift. Get creative this holiday season by giving your friends and loved ones delicious, poverty-fighting holiday gifts from the 2014 World Vision Gift Catalog. There are more than 250 items, ranging in price from $10 to $39,000, available online and in the print catalog to help improve quality of life for women, children and families in the U.S. and around the world. This year, give a gift that extends further than the wrapping paper. Your gift through World Vision has the ability to change a life!

You have the chance to win the spoon set that I received! Be sure to enter below, but even more give back this holiday season!
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Monday, October 27, 2014

It’s a Minted Holiday #HollyJollyHoliday

We know it’s coming to be that time of the year. It’s time to start thinking about the holidays. One of the most important things for me at Christmas is the personalization of cards. The cards that I personalize are what I send as a newsletter to all the people who are closest to us. I’ve done this for years and I want our close friends to keep up with us now more than ever since we’re so far away from them.

This year, I decided to go with a A Very Merry Christmas Holiday Booklette™ Card from Minted. What’s important to me in our card/newsletter is obviously the photos and what we share about our year. So, instead of writing out what we’ve done and trying to fit a bunch of photos on an 8x11 sheet of paper, I can share it in a beautiful collage with the Booklette.
Front of Card
My first step is talking to both of my girls and seeing what they want me to share from their past year. I filled it in with what I thought they’d want me to share, but I want it to be their words. Being with the boys I know what goes on in their day to day life. They’re the easy ones. Being so far away from my girls is tough. I don’t know the highlights of what’s going on, even though we all talk regularly. It’s different than when they were little, you know?
Baby inside card

Smooch inside card
Us inside card
The Booklette gives me the option of dedicating each page to the kids. The girls, because they’re doing so much more than I am or the boys are, got to fully enjoy a page. The boys and I shared a page. We lead boring lives. The GREAT part of making these booklets is the layout options. THAT’S what makes Minted stand out from the rest. You can choose to have writing on both sides, images on both sides, writing on either side, a separated list of writing, and the list literally goes on. And yes, I know there are two pictures in there twice, but I’ve fixed that before we send it out. Have no fear.

Not only do we love to share what’s going on in our lives, we like to exchange ornaments. I’ve given the kids ornaments every single year of their lives. They’re ornaments that are always meaningful to each of the kids and what their lives have been like the past year. So, in keeping with the spirit of things, I made ornaments as well! Woo hoo Have I mentioned my oldest daughter is already playing Christmas music?
Holiday OrnamentHoliday Ornament Back

How cute is that? They also come with strings to hand them from a tree. Just like the Booklettes, these are very easy to personalize and have lots of options! I just can’t get enough with all of the options of designs, colors, images, and wording! Yes, I could spend all day there, just like Pinterest!

Now, keep an eye out because come November, we’ll be giving away a gift certificate to giveaway with our Holly Jolly Gift Guide Giveaway! Head over to the site and start finding what you’d love to get if you win! And while you're getting ideas, visit Kay to find out what cake plate I'm in love with!

Have you created your holiday cards yet?

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Teaching My Son To Shave

My oldest son is 15 1/2 and he’ll be shaving sooner than later. This has actually been a topic of conversation for about a year now. When he was turning 14 he was showing signs of a mustache growing. It wasn’t much, as I’m sure is the case for most teen boys. Then last Christmas happened.
Both of my girls came out to spend Christmas with the family. While they were here, they tried convincing him to shave. He was having NO part of it. lol He has Robert Downy Jr. in his mind for what he’d like to look like, at least in regards to facial hair.
Facial hair
Spring forward to…spring and the boys stayed with Fred while I went on my work conference trip. My oldest daughter heard about it and begged me (not kidding, BEGGED me) to have him talk to Buddy about shaving. I’m not sure of the conversation, but he offered to show him how to shave. Needless to say, they haven’t talked about it again.

We went through the summer and I could see a change in him. He had more facial hair coming in, in random places. heh heh heh His cheeks would have one long hair here or there. His chin started growing some wild hairs, but none of it is full. I knew that he was starting to take what his sisters were suggesting to heart. He was considering shaving.

After school started next month he actually started talking more and more about shaving. I have no idea how to teach him to shave. I know that I’d probably like to start with an electric shaver. He can’t cut himself that way. He is also going through the acne stage and I think it would be really hard for him to shave with a manual shaver and have to miss the acne. He’ll grow out of this phase and then he can move to something manual. I think he can also get the shaving done a lot quicker with an electric shaver.
Random hair
I’m planning on getting him one for Christmas, but I’m going to have to do some research. I mean, what’s two more months when he’s waited this long already? So here are a few I’ve found. Have you had experience with any of them?

I’ve heard that foil shavers are a good kind to choose. Maybe this Remington. It’s a foil shaver and has a flexible head. I think those two things would make it a good choice.
Remington F5790 Pivot & Flex Men's Rechargeable Cord/Cordless Foil Shaver with LED Power Gauge
Philips Norelco PT730/46 Shaver 3500
Then there’s the wet/dry option. Do I get him something he can use in the shower? Might be a good option. He can kill two birds with one stone!
Braun 3Series 340S-4 Wet & Dry Shave
Panasonic ES-RF31-S 4 Blade Men's Electric Razor Wet/Dry with Flexible Pivoting Head
And yes, I’m looking at having manual shavers because they will be good to have as a back up and just to have on hand. I’m thinking a manual shaver would be similar to to something I’d use…on my legs? Making sure that it pivots and is good for sensitive skin. I know that Fred has the Gillette Fusion:
Gillette Fusion Proglide Manual Men's Razor With Flexball Handle Technology
BIC Flex4 Disposable Four Blade Shaver

So, do you have any tips on teaching my son to shave? Would you start with an electric or manual shaver?

Saturday, October 18, 2014

A Crucial Catch Day With The NFL #NFLPink

You might recall that back in March, I had to have two mammograms. My first one they saw something, but weren't sure what it was. The second time...ooooeeee mama, that bad boy hurt. What they saw on the first mammogram was to the very left of my left breast closer to my armpit. That meant they had to tweak my body in a way that didn't seem possible. But the tech got it and I just gritted my teeth.

Those few moments of pain were 100% worth it to find out that it was a cyst. It's been painful lately, so I have to make the choice of whether or not I want them to aspirate. It's not a health issue, just uncomfortable so there's no rush on my part.

Not all women receive the same results.

Have you been watching the NFL season like I have since August? You may have noticed all of the pink they're wearing! On October 25th, the NFL and American Cancer Society will team up for the first-ever A Crucial Catch Day in cities across the country to raise awareness about early detection and screenings.

If you visit the site, you can sign up to get a personal screening reminder and learn more about what the NFL and the American Cancer Society is doing to help provide breast cancer education and free or low-cost screenings within specific underserved communities.

Have you ever had a mammogram? Will you commit to having one done this year?

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Adventuring With GoPro

Best Buy Disclosure
Guess who isn’t the adventurer in the family…yea, this girl. Guess who is…my 2nd daughter. I look at the places she’s been and the crazy things she does and I just gulp. Where she got those guts from I’ll never know. lol
Ber On Rocks
Last year when she decided to go overseas for a year she was told she could only pack what she could fit into two backpacks. What I didn’t know when she left is that she went without a camera. Last month, we were finally able to Skype and out of the blue I asked her, “What is one thing you wish you would’ve taken with you?” she replied by saying, “A GoPro!” There was no hesitation.

I was rather upset. I had no idea she hadn’t gotten a camera. I’ve been seeing amazing photos with her in the 3 countries she’s been in so far, so it never crossed my mind that she wasn’t taking pictures with a camera. Turns out, one of the girls on her team brought a GoPro.

After we talked, I set out to talk with my family about getting one of the cameras for her and how we’d get it over to her in one of the countries she’d be in. Let’s just say we’re on a mission!
My daughter isn’t the only one who’s a GoPro enthusiast. My buddy, Bruce Sallan is the guy to watch when it comes to skiing. Check out one of his many videos:

You won’t EVER see me doing that! lol

I’m not sure which GoPro he has but here are some details about them:

·         GoPro HERO4 Black: the most advanced GoPro ever, featuring improved image quality and a 2x more powerful processor with 2x faster video frame rates1, HERO4 Black takes award‐winning GoPro performance to a whole new level.
·         GoPro HERO4 Silver: the first-ever GoPro to feature a built-in touch display. Controlling The camera, playing back footage and adjusting settings is ultra-convenient—just view, tap and swipe the screen. With 1080p60 and 720p120 video, and 12MP photos at a staggering 30 frames per second, HERO4 Silver combines powerful, pro-quality capture with the convenience of a touch display.
·         GoPro HERO: Featuring high‐quality 1080p30 and 720p60 video, and 5MP photos up to 5 fps, HERO captures the same immersive footage that’s made GoPro one of the best-selling cameras in the world.
12x more powerful processor with 2x faster video frame rates
Hero lifestyle 3_16
Best Buy is the home of the latest cameras and camcorders, including the full line of new GoPro cameras, plus a broad assortment of accessories. GoPro cameras make perfect holiday gifts for everyone, from kids and teens, to gadget gurus. GoPro’s new line of cameras allow you to beautifully and authentically capture and share the experiences that bring purpose, adventure, and joy to your life.
Learn more at www.bestbuy.com/GoPro or visit your local Best Buy to check out the latest cameras in person.

I have a feeling as my boys grow older and spend more time with Fred and his kids you’ll find them being more adventurous than they are right now. I have a feeling they’ll be doing the crazy roller coasters sooner than later! Can you imagine them grabbing a photo like this as they ride one?
Now, we do a lot of other things as a family like going to amusement parks and water parks. For now, I know we won’t be living an amazing life like my daughter is right now, but I want her to capture all of the moments she can with a GoPro!

If you could go adventuring with a GoPro, where would you head off to?

Sunday, October 5, 2014

The Art of Celebration ~ Rend Collective Review

General disclosure
We’re always on the go. Who isn’t these days? One of the ways we keep entertained is with the music we listen to. I guess it’s always been that way with us. Of course when the kids were little we listened to “their” music along with our Christian music. When I say music, I mean kid songs.

Then they grew up to be teenagers. Thank goodness! Then I was only subjected to kids music when they wanted to torture anyone driving near us. Oh, those were the good ol’ days. I have a feeling those days will be coming with my boys. One can hope.
Rend Collective CD
I loved when my girls started getting interested in music on their own. They wanted their own CDs and iPod downloads! Makes this music lovin’ mama’s heart happy. My boys are getting to that place now.

One of our newest, favorite bands is Rend Collective. When they come on the radio, we all start rocking out to it. In fact, I videotaped the boys playing their “car instruments” to one of their songs from 2012 on Instagram!

Driving in a car, listening to music, can be an experience when you do it with us…well, with me. I have this affect on people. I cause them to sing out loud, at the people we drive by, or even TO the people we drive by. I’d say it’s hereditary, because my oldest daughter started doing it after we took a couple of road trips to Chicago, but I’ve done it numerous times with my sister in law, too.
Rend Collective Art of Celebration
With Rend Collective’s The Art of Celebration, I have a feeling my boys will be joining the ranks of their sister and aunt! It’ll start with Burn Like a Star because we’re lucky to stay in our seats as we drive. It’s one of those songs where you want to pull over, get out of the car, turn the music up, and dance around!

Time for some car instruments with @rendcollective's My Lighthouse.

Some of the songs help me imagine what it would be like to be at a tent revival. There’s just something about their music. Songs All That I Am and Immeasurably More like make you want to clap your hands and stomp your feet. Others make you want just sway, raise your hands, and worship like Joy and More Than Conquerors.

Do you have a favorite song to jam out to as you drive?

Friday, October 3, 2014

Bloggers Wanted! Holly Jolly Gift Guide Giveaway Sign-Ups!

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Holly Jolly Gift Guide Giveaway SignUps!

The holidays are closing in FAST! Kay and I are partnering up for the Holly Jolly Gift Guide Giveaway. We are collecting all kinds of family friendly gifts to give away in one GIANT Giveaway, and we would like YOU to join us!

If you are a smaller or newer blog, and aren't sure what a Holiday Gift Guide is all about, or if you just don't have the time to develop your own gift guide, we would love to invite you to join us in the Holly Jolly Gift Guide Giveaway! We are going to offer every item we collect as one giant grand prize.

All you would be responsible for is a giveaway on your own site, of an item that would be a wonderful holiday gift, with an ARV of at least $25. Easy right? The Holly Jolly Gift Guide Giveaway will begin November 17, 2014 and end at midnight (12 a.m. CST) December 10, 2015. All the information you need is in the form below! Please come join us! You don't have to post on your blog, but any and all promotion will help get the word out, so you might want to consider it! Also, please promote it on your Facebook and Twitter if you aren't posting in your blog! If you are as excited as Kay and I are, and want to join us, go fill out the form and then go join the Facebook group, so you can find the button, rules, and other people participating! Then get busy pitching! Oh! Please Please PLEASE share the link to the form with anyone you think might be interested! We personally cannot wait to meet you!

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Wordless Wednesday–Hugging My Home

Last week I was really missing my home, my house. There’s always an underlying missing of my family and friends back in Minnesota. It’s something that will probably never go away. It became home to me.

Well, last week I was actually missing my house. It was a good house. We all had our own bedrooms. It was yellow, my favorite color for a house. There was a really large yard where all the kids would come lay. I was within 10 minutes of all of my friends, church, and the schools. I had my much loved perennial garden, veggie garden, and berries.

In the circle of trees there was a fire pit and we’d roast marshmallows. Sometimes I would just sit out there reading a book. My porch had an adirondack bench and I’d also spend time reading out there in the warm weather. I remember Doodle spending time in the summer reading to me out there.

Oh, and I had a garage. It’s so nice when the weather is yucky to have a garage to walk into instead of the weather outside. I miss that. Have I mentioned the house I’m currently living in would fit in my garage? Yea, it’s that small.

I loved all of the closets. The bathroom downstairs had two closets! The bathrooms had counters. Sigh…a bathroom counter sounds so fabulous right now. There’s a pedestal sink and a Sauder type cupboard in the bathroom. It’s also where we keep the cat litter box. In our Minnesota house, we had a cat litter room. lol

In missing all of that, I shared basically the same thing, in less words, on Facebook. My best friend saw what I shared and guess what she did? She drove out to my house and hugged it for me! THAT’S a BFF!

LP Hugging House

I just LOVE her!

I wonder what our renters thought. lol

What would your BFF do for you?

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

$500 Fabulous Fall Cash Giveaway

Can you believe it’s the beginning of October? So crazy, isn’t it?! Well, let’s get the month started off on a great note, a cash giveaway! That’s the way to kick it off!


Welcome to the $500 Fabulous Fall Cash Giveaway!

We have joined forces with a fantastic group of bloggers to bring you this great giveaway. One lucky person will win $500 cash.

Enter to win $500 cash via PayPal.

Complete the tasks below to earn entries into this giveaway.
Refer your friends using your unique link to earn even more chances to win.
Open Worldwide.
Ends at 11:59pm ET on October 14th, 2014.
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This giveaway was coordinated by Giveaway Promote.
If you love entering giveaways, visit Giveaway Promote to find the greatest giveaways listed in one place.

Creative Commons License
Woven by Words by Mimi B is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.