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Posts Tagged ‘Holiday Gift Guide’

Mega Bloks Hello Kitty Splash N’ Swim Water Park


The Mega Bloks Hello Kitty Splash N’ Swim Water Park is a great building and play set! My six and 1/2 year old daughter loves building and adores Hello Kitty, so it’s really a total win! She’s taken so much to this brightly colored set that’s she’s eager to add more to her collection! I guess we know what will be on her Christmas list! Honestly, as a parent knowing my daughter is not huge into dolls but prefers creating and building am happy there’s sets such as this out there for her to play with!


The whole water park theme is really fun and adds some fabulous features making the play experience that much more exciting. There’s a water slide, diving board, fruit stand, chaise, a pool that you can add actual water to, and much more! There’s a sheet of stickers with transparent background that can be used to decorate the set as you please. My daughter enjoyed being able to add her own personal touches with the stickers. I like there’s three characters included so she and her friends can each have a different character to use when they are spending time playing together.


From start to finish it took about 45-60 minutes to construct the 401 pieces. I assisted my daughter in putting this set together and we had no trouble at all thanks to the generous sized guide. The guide is full of colored illustrations in how to put the set together simply. There’s handy highlighted areas to show exactly where things should be placed in the illustrations too. Overall building instructions were very straight forward and easy to understand. The blocks fit together tightly and the set hasn’t come apart during play. The durability is totally something to take into consideration when purchasing a building set for a child. Nothing is more frustrating than sets or creations just coming apart.613MWtfSA3L._SL1500_

My daughter has been building with blocks for quite some time. I’d say she’s a pro at it. She had a lot of patience when putting this set together. It’s a great bonding opportunity that I wanted to take advantage of so that’s why we did it together. I would say a builder without a lot of experience may want some help with this set or may become overwhelmed easily. There are lots of pieces but the challenge does make it fun and know some kids live for building! I would recommend this set!

Interested in Purchasing?  Mega Bloks Hello Kitty Splash N’ Swim Water Park can be purchased on right now for $29.99! It’s great deal for a character block set, in my opinion.

Disclosure: I was not financially compensated for this post. I received a sample of the product for review purposes. The opinions are my own or my immediate family members, based on our personal experience with the product.

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Peter Hollens Debut Album Review & Giveaway!


Peter Hollens is an musical artist I learned about after seeing him in a Lindsey Sterling video on Youtube a few months ago. When it was brought to my attention that he had an album coming out this month, I was pretty eager to get a hold of a copy!

Peter has some pretty amazing music videos which can be seen on his Youtube channel. He offers his voice up for renditions of a number of musical genres popular pieces. Whether you like folk, Broadway, pop, or music and game songs, I’m sure there’s something there to draw you in! He totally gets my vote for uniqueness as a one-man cappella vocalist in sharing his amazing voice and videos with the world!

There are thirteen songs on his album which make up a runtime of about an hour. The song variety are many. My favorites have to be Skyrim (Main Theme) which features Lindsey Stirling, Les Miserables Medley in which he is accompanied by his wife, Shenandoah, Ashland’s Song (a touching original), I see Fire, & Misty Mountains. Not that the other songs are any less enjoyable! Other artist that make an appearance on this album are Brian Wilson of the Beach Boy, Jackie Evancho, Avi Kaplan, and mentioned before Lindsey Stirling.

1. I See Fire
2. Skyrim (Main Theme) [feat. Lindsey Stirling]
3. I Won’t Give Up
4. Les Miserables Medley (feat. Evynne Hollens)
5. I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For (feat. Sabrina Carpenter)
6. Shenandoah
7. She Moved Through The Fair
8. Hallelujah (feat. Jackie Evancho)
9. Our Special Love (feat. Brian Wilson)
10. The Parting Glass
11. Black is the Color of My True Love’s Hair (feat. Avi Kaplan)
12. Ashland’s Song
13. Misty Mountains

I would highly recommend you checking out Peter Hollens Youtube channel to see his videos and hear some of the songs found on this album. My family is enjoying his album very much! I’m hoping to see perhaps a Holiday collection in the future. Until then, I’m keeping this one on repeat through my week.

Want the album? You can purchase Peter Hollens debut album on iTunesLoudr | Amazon Mp3 | Amazon CD | Barnes & Noble

 Get Connected with Peter Hollens: Facebook  | Twitter|Google + |Instagram| Youtube

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Disclosure: I was not financially compensated for this post. I received a sample of the product for review purposes. The opinions are my own or my immediate family members, based on our personal experience with the product.

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My Little Pony Equestria Girls: Rainbow Rocks


My Little Pony: Equestria Girls: Rainbow Rocks is releasing to DVD tomorrow! Fans of the My Little Pony Friendship is Magic series are certainly going to be excited about this addition, I know we were! This movie is the sequel to My Little Pony: Equestria Girls and stands well enough alone but I would would recommend viewing the other first so as not miss out on any important details. I imagine fans would be a little confused in wondering how the ponies turned into teenagers and are residing at Canterlot High School. So please do see the other movie first to truly appreciate this one!

My Little Pony Equestria Girls: Rainbow Rocks Trailer:

The message of working together, being redeemed, forgiveness, and teamwork are very present and easy to grasp. The nemesis in the story are of a group of creatures that took the form of human girls that were banished from Equestria. They grew stronger in their dark magic by feeding off the negativity of others and were aimed to create as much as possible. After discovering this by Sunset Shimmer, Twilight Sparkle is called upon to find a solution to stop all chaos from happening! A battle of the band competition happens and the girls with their band the Rainbooms have to work together to stop the crisis befalling the whole school by The Dazzlings!product_detail_rainbowrocks

Movie runtime is 75 minutes and there’s a plenty of great bonus features! My 6 1/2 year old daughter said she really liked the story and that all the songs were great! I couldn’t agree more. All the characters we know and love provided us with their fun loving personalities and quirks! The story is about getting along and being a good friend. I really liked in how finding a solution provided a challenge but it all ended well with teamwork and endurance! I would recommend it to any My Little Pony fan!

Bonus Features:

  • Audio Commentary
  • 8 Prequel Shorts
  • 3 Sing-Alongs

Want it? My Little Pony Equestria Girls: Rainbow Rocks [Blu-ray/DVD/Digital]is  available for pre-order at,,, and, and will be in stores everywhere October 28. Depending on where you purchase the film different accessories or money saving offers such as a music CD, bracelets, etc.

For more information on My Little Pony Equestria Girls: Rainbow Rocks,visit

Disclosure: I was not financially compensated for this post. I received a sample of the product for review purposes. The opinions are my own or my immediate family members, based on our personal experience with the product.

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Unwrapping the Greatest Gift


If you are looking for a new tradition during the month of December to embark upon with your whole family, chances are you’ll be interested in Unwrapping the Greatest Gift by Ann Voscamp. In this book, you’ll be learning about the people in Jesus’ family tree as well as encouraged to examine your own life in Him. I think this book is a great resource and reminder of why we truly celebrate the season.

As I opened the book, I was captivated by the beautiful illustrations! The images represent certain biblical things and the colors are vibrant being completely seasonally appropriate. The first few pages of the book feature an introduction to unwrapping the greatest gift, the instructions of compiling your own Jesse tree, and followed by the daily readings from the 1st of December and ending with the 25th of the month. There are free downloads of Voskamp’s cut paper ornaments you can add to your tree during the season per recommendation of following through this book. I plan on having these printed, laminating them, and hanging them on our tree with a piece of ribbon every year starting at this one!

The daily readings begin with a single scripture, a title for the day, a reading of scripture which is more than one or two verses taken from the Bible, the reading and how it applies to us, and an ending page with several thoughts to discuss as well as a family activity or two. I would say setting down at least half an hour if not more to read this book each day specified will suffice. I would also suggest looking over the book and readings before starting so as to prepare if following the activities pertaining to the daily reading with your family.

I feel strongly that this book can be used every Christmas season. The truths will apply to everyone at anytime in their lives and the questions though the same will reap different replies as the years go by. I would suggest if reading this book to children that ages 5 and up would be best suited. It’s written in a way that is easy to understand, I just question the attention span of a younger child. Though I would still read it with the family even if younger children are present. Chances are children will still love to participate in the suggested activity that applies to the reading. As good rule of thumb I feel it best to know that each of the daily readings is about 6 pages of those, two are the reading and the others feature full page color illustrations.

After browsing through and reading a few of the days myself already, I’m excited about sharing this book with my family. I really like the approach of seeing that in even Jesus’ family tree there weren’t perfect people and God still used them in a big way leading up to the birth of our Saviour! There are scripture readings taken from both the old and new testament of the Bible.

This book would make a wonderful gift for anyone wanting to embrace a new Christmas tradition this season. The book is 160 pages long and hardcover ensuring it will probably last for years to come. I haven’t really done any sort of advent countdown to the days of Christmas but am certainly eager to start by following the authors presentation of the Jesse Tree with my family.

Interested in Purchasing? Unwrapping the Greatest Gift: A Family Celebration of Christmascan be purchased on for $15.74 as of this posting.

Disclaimer: Tyndale House Provided me with a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

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Knockout Knits {Book Review}


Knockout Knits New Tricks for for Scarves, Hats, Jewelry, and Other Accessories by Laura Nelkin is a must have book for knitters no matter what their skill level.

Being fairly new to using needles, this book has been wonderful in growing my skills. Each project section starts out with something small and works its way up to something a little more elaborate like a shawl. This approach whether choosing to follow it or not is a great way to go to not be intimidated by a new stitch pattern or variation.

One of the things I love about the patterns in this book is that the author makes it personal. She shares her inspiration behind each of the different projects. Little touches like that can connect with knitters like myself in such a way and get you really excited about the project if aiming to start it.


All the skills and techniques needed to complete any project in this book is included! The full color illustrations and explanations I found to be extremely easy to follow. I really appreciate I don’t need to look elsewhere. This book truly does cover it all. There are cast ons, cast offs, notes on yarn & gauge, tips & tricks, and other resources.

fornido2_web.3648There are 23 patterns total. All patterns are fashion accessories meaning there’s no blankets, pillows, or whatever else. Instead you’ll find are lace shawls, knitted bracelets, all sorts of hat styles, mitts, cowl, shawlettes, boot toppers, scarves, and a few other things. If you are aiming to start knitting with beads there are many patterns and excellent explanations for just that. All but one of the patterns is meant for ladies. That’s right there’s a hat just for guys thrown in there so we can justify our knitting obsession and a need for more yarn by knitting that special guy in our life something.


I opted to knit myself a pair of boot toppers from the pattern in this book and I was extremely happy with the results! I adjusted the pattern a bit to suit my boots and measurements with ease. Results equal extremely satisfied. These boot toppers knit up fast and used a minimal amount of yarn.

I totally learned something new as in wrapping stitches and cross-overs and didn’t feel intimidated in the least bit. That’s right, no frustration, no throwing the pattern book against the wall, and certainly not the fainest notion to knit the same old thing!


There are many projects that only requires a skein or two of yarn meaning you won’t break the bank. Chances are you’ve already got a skein or two laying around just waiting for a special project too. I’m quite eager to start knitting up a few more of these patterns soon.

Overall, I found the patterns in this book to be quite functional as well as fashionable. There’s a lot of patterns out there but I usually opt to spend time working on those that I can incorporate into my wardrobe on a daily basis with a few extras for special occasions. With most books I only have a few favorite patterns but with this book I love them all!

I highly recommend Knockout Knits to any and every knitter. It was like learning new skills from a dear friend and this new friend takes knits to a new level by adding pizzazz and a little sparkle. I honestly am all for sparkles.

All the patterns in the book are on Ravelry for you to favorite, add to library, and queue up.

Interested in Purchasing? 

Knockout Knits: New Tricks for Scarves, Hats, Jewelry, and Other Accessories can be purchased in e-book or paperback copy from $11.99-$15.00. An excellent pattern book choice for knitters during the Holiday season!

Disclosure: I received this book for free from Blogging for Books for this review.  The opinions are my own or my immediate family members, based on our personal experience of the title.

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Yuletide Ice Cube Fair {Book Review}


I admit, it’s certainly fun to get swept into all the activities and gift giving and receiving but as long as we don’t forget the true meaning of the season. The Veggie tale book Yuletide Ice Cube Fair reminds us of the greatest gift of all. It’s not what appears to be the best, biggest or brightest but in fact the greatest gift is Christ Jesus who gives us life eternally.

My nearly four year old son and six year old daughter are getting older and getting excited for the Holidays and I certainly want to make sure they are reminded often of why we truly celebrate. I prefer to have books such as this one around to read to them and have them read on their own as a reminder. They really like the Veggie Tales so this book is must have for us.

In this story, the town is having a Ice Cube Carving Contest. In this contest they are instructed to carve what Christmas means to each of them. Each turn of the page kept my kids captivated. The story is written in rhyme and that kept the story flowing quite well.

My children liked seeing the different sculptures that were created by each of the Veggie characters. None of the sculptures were bad things such as Christmas feasts, trees, and the like. My kids piped up that they enjoyed many of those things themselves. Though only one sculpture truly captured why we celebrate the season!

In how the story ended, it’s a truly humbling reminder that the greatest gift came into the world in way that wasn’t elaborate in the worlds eyes. This book can be a wonderful conversation starter about sharing the love of Christ the greatest gift of all and living with a servants heart not just during the season but everyday!

This book is 24 pages long and it’s soft cover format and size of 8×8 makes it easy to bring along when out and about. I’m sure we’ll be bringing this book out every Christmas season!

Interested in Purchasing? Yuletide Ice Cube Fair (Big Idea Books / VeggieTales) can be purchased on for $3.00 as of this posting.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggersbook review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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