Mom Loves 2 Read: December 2013

Dec 30, 2013

6 Ways to Fancy Up Your Pies

def going to try these crust ideas - love the look and so easy!

6 Ways to Fancy Up Your Pies

Inspired by conversations on the  Food52 Hotline , we're sharing tips and tricks that make navigating all of our kitchens easier and more fun. Today: How to make fancy edges and fancy toppings -- and up your pie game this holiday season. My sincere love of pie has had me experimenting in the kitchen for years. I’ve eaten my share of last slices straight from the pie plate at midnight. And many, many pies later, I’ve discovered a few surprises. The truth is, there are tons...Read More


Sponsored post #PlateFullCoOp
Platefull Co-Op

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Celebrate the #Holidays with Pillsbury Crescent...

I love adding cinnamon, sugar & nuts in the middle - like cinn rolls

Celebrate the #Holidays with Pillsbury Crescent...

In my hectic busy life I have to cut corners whenever possible. Especially when it comes to baking and cooking. However, I still want to share those special treats with my family. I was excited to learn about  Chocolate-Filled Crescents  that I could make from Pillsbury Crescent rolls.  Ingredients   1 can (8 oz) Pillsbury® refrigerated crescent dinner rolls 1/2 cup mini-chocolate chips Powdered sugar, if desired   Steps Heat oven to 350°F. Separate dough into 8 triangles. Place tablespoon of chocolate chips on wide end of each triangle. Roll up, starting at shortest side of triangle, rolling to opposite point. Place on ungreased...Read More


Sponsored post #PlateFullCoOp
Platefull Co-Op

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Blogger Tutorial - How to create a blog button with grab code - simple step by step instructions for blogger blogs.



I have had a few blogger friends recently ask me how they can create a blog button.
I have previously posted a step by step guide and decided it was time to repost for those who would like to make their own "button with grab code."

Here is what I have found to be the easiest way to make a Blog Button and Grab My Button Code for it. This is for blogger.

#1) Choose a photo, picture or logo that you have created or someone has created for you that represents your website or blog.

#2) Upload that photo to a website like Photobucket.com


#3) Copy the "direct link" HTML code from the button on the website

#4) To put a "grab our button" on your blog:
 ~ copy the following html code.:

[div align="center"] [a href="http://YOURBLOGNAME.blogspot.com" target="_blank"][img alt="YOURBLOGNAME" src="http://YOURPICTURE.jpg"/][/a][/div] [div align="center"] [form][textarea rows="6" cols="20"][a href="http://YOURBLOG.blogspot.com" target="_blank"][img alt="YOURBLOGNAME" src="http://YOURPICTURE.jpg"/][/a][/textarea][/form][/div]

~ open your blogger account and choose "layout"
~ click on "add a gadget"
~ choose "html" and wait for the blank box to load
~ paste the code you copied here into the blank box
~ change all of the "["  for these "(" and  "]" into these ")"   (I had to change them so you could see the code here on the blog post)
~ change the areas in RED to your info ~ add YOUR blog URL, your blog's NAME, Your photo's html link (direct link code from photobucket or similar site)
~ now click SAVE

Your new button with code should look something like this:

Mom Loves 2 Read


Enjoy your new button!

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Dec 28, 2013

Mom Loves 2 Read Advertising Specials, Social Media Management & Virtual Assistant Services for 2014

Mom Loves 2 Read Offers New Advertising Specials, Social Media Marketing, and Virtual Assistant Services in the 2014 Year

Susan MomBlogger, owner/editor of Mom Loves 2 Read blog is now offering Discount Specials on Advertising and Social Media Marketing Packages to bring in the new year.

Mom Loves 2 Read is a personal review, giveaway and promotional blog devoted to helping people make informed decisions about books, products and brands that they may wish to purchase for themselves, their family or friends.

By posting personal opinions, recommendations, promotions and giveaways mixed with personal life experiences, Mom Loves 2 Read strives to make the lives of readers and followers a little easier. 

Susan has been

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Dec 23, 2013

XBOX ONE - Win 1 today on Mom Loves 2 Read! #Giveaway

Now that Christmas is over and the gift are all unwrapped, what do you do about those gifts that just didn't make it under the tree this year?  You go online and enter to WIN them of course -
My 12 year old son would LOVE to have an Xbox - it is one thing that I will not purchase for him, but told him he would have to save up his own money to buy - BUT if we were to WIN one -that would be even better - here is your chance (and mine too) to try to win the NEW Xbox One!  Check it out!


Hosted by:

Co-hosted by:

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Copy Kids help little ones eat fruits and veggies - Do as I see teaching tools - Review & GIVEAWAY

Disclosure: I got this product as part of an advertorial.  

What is Copy Kids?


A joy-filled video and an innovative tool for parents who want to get children to enjoy eating fruits and vegetables.


dvd1_chapters

It is broken into chapters. Each chapter is on a specific fruit or vegetable. You don't have to watch them all at once.

You do need to have the food available when your kids watch.

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Piczzle This - A Custom Photo Puzzle of my Kiddos - fun for all! Review and GIVEAWAY

Disclosure: I got this product as part of an advertorial.





Piczzle Picture Puzzle service is an online store that provides Custom Made Jigsaw Photo Puzzles.


They provide some of the best custom jigsaw puzzles I've personally found by allowing the customer to create a fun, dynamic and an interactive option to capture precious life’s moments through a photo puzzle game – for themselves and for the ones they love.

Piczzle's Cardboard Puzzles are made of quality materials and craftsmanship.  The print quality is amazing.

These Piczzle Picture Puzzles are

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Create your own style with the new fashions of Gold Toe Socks

Disclosure: I got this product as part of an advertorial.



If you try to think of a brand name of socks, chances are you would think of Gold Toe® brand socks.  They create socks that are made from durable quality materials and are made to last longer than most other brands.

Gold Toe® Socks are made with the finest yarns and reinforced for longer, more comfortable wear.  The toe seams are specially flattened for a smooth fit.  The heels are always well rounded for support and comfort.

Gold Toe® Socks have long been the smart choice because they fit better, feel better, and last longer.


My Review:

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Dec 20, 2013

Around the World for Christmas - Mix Educational Learning with Fun and Game Excitement - Review


Free Shipping! (USA)

Fun Games For Global Education

Curious about getting better connected to people of the world? Now you can! Around the World is a company that travels around the world and develops interactive products that bring the global experience to you. Their mission is to offer resources that get people of all ages better connected to the world around them. Their products meet the needs of many a diversified market, including classrooms, diversity and literacy programs, cafes, universities, museums, as well as businesses looking for other ways of understanding cultural diversity among their global markets.

Their fun games are about spreading global education and connecting people in this diverse world. The award-winning Around the World Board Game takes players on a travel adventure while

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The Great PJ Elf Chase - Review on Mom Loves 2 Read

There’s a Christmas Eve tradition in the Taylor household. While the boys take baths, Santa’s elves drop new pajamas outside their bathroom door. The PJ elves are sly and quick, but this year they’re in for a surprise—Ben and Jack are on a mission to catch one of them! The traps the brothers set sure look promising, but the unexpected can happen when you least expect it! 

The authors are sisters and former teachers who wrote this rhyming children’s picture book to bring one of their very own

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Dec 18, 2013

Swap a snack a week for a healthier alternative ~ Yoplait yogurts ~ #SwapOne

I was offered the chance to join a challenge along with other bloggers, parents and kids.  The challenge was to swap out one of my kiddos' snacks each week for 4 weeks with yoplait yogurts instead and see what their reaction was.

My oldest fought it at first, but when I purchased some of his favorite flavors he was more than happy to swap more than one snack a week for yoplait - he loves the boston cream pie, key lime pie and strawberry shortcake Yoplait Light flavors best.  He had no problem adding those to his approved snacks each week.

My girls both like yogurt, my 9 year old likes it better than my 5 year old though.  My 9 Year old would eat Yoplait yogurt every day if I would let her but I like to give her a selection of healthy snack choices and encourage variety - week 2 she had yogurt 3 out of 5 snack days!  She loves the strawberry, blueberry, strawberry shortcake and key lime pie flavors best.

Overall I'd say this was a very successful challenge for my kids!


Looking for a healthier choice for after school snacks or to add to their lunchbox meals?  Try swapping out yoplait yogurts and see what reaction you get!

Disclosure: I received free the item(s) mentioned in this post in exchange for my honest review. Regardless ~ All my reviews are my honest and personal opinion. 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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Merry Humbug Christmas by Sandra D Bricker


ABOUT THE BOOK

A Merry Humbug Christmas features two holiday romance novellas from hilarious and heartwarming author Sandra D. Bricker. -- the perfect gift to yourself or someone else at this most wonderfully stressful time of year.

In "Once Upon a Jingle Bell," A Bah! Humbug cruise to the Mexican Riviera is Joss Snow’s answer to this year’s quest to avoid the holidays completely; at least until she’s rebooked on a different kind of cruise altogether. Candy canes, holly wreaths, reindeer and ornaments seem to be stalking her on the 12 Days of Christmas holiday cruise extravaganza. An escape back to land is her only goal . . . until she

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Dec 16, 2013

Darling Diva Style at affordable prices with O' What A Bow Hairbows for every occasion! Review & Giveaway


I'd like to introduce you to my friend Kim over at O' What A Bow.  She is a stay at home mom to 2 adorable kiddos and started making hair bows for her daughter's collection.  Then she realized that she really enjoyed making them. You can find her hair bow designs on her Etsy Store - https://www.etsy.com/shop/Owhatabow   And on Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/OWhatABow

She is frequently adding new and amazing looking bows to her inventory.  She accepts special orders and ships 6 days a week. All her bows come with the option of an alligator clip or barrette.

Kim was kind enough to send me some of her fabulous bows for review and has even

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An Academic Planner to keep you organized with school, activities, homeschool, work and more

Disclosure: I got this product as part of an advertorial.
 
It’s Easy. Assignments, due dates and after-school activities can be seen at a glance.

It’s Functional. Homework and studying are easily scheduled during “available” times.

It Puts the Student in Control. Students can plan time for schoolwork around after-school activities OR without leaving things until the last minute.


My Review:
My 12 year old son used to have a hard time keeping track of his homework assignments.  For the past couple years, he has used an Academic Planner to keep his assignments organized so he knows what books and papers to bring home each day.  I liked the idea so much that I started using a planner for my blog reviews as well, but the one I have been using didn't really meet my needs.

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Dec 15, 2013

Hot Dots Jr Review & Giveaway ~ Playful Interactive Learning for Pre K through 3rd Grade Children

Disclosure: I got this product as part of an advertorial.

The new Hot Dots & Hot Dots Jr Let's Master sets are for grade levels Pre-K to Grade 3. Each grade specific 2 book set is chock-full of important skills that children need to master at each grade level in reading or math (each set is specific to either reading OR math). 

The sets all come with a Hot Dots interactive pen and there are 100 lessons on either math or reading and language art skills. Fifteen of the 100 lessons are challenge activities that prepare children for skills at the next grade level. 

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Dec 14, 2013

Like new styles? Making a statement wherever you go? Check out my Review of Corset Chick!

Disclosure: I got this product as part of an advertorial.


CorsetChick.com has more than just Corsets, they also have shoes, boots, lingerie and more.  But for this review, I was sent a corset to try.  I provided my measurements to the company (blushing in embarrassment now) and was sent a pretty green corset with black trim - so adorable I could not wait to try it on!  Unfortunately due to my tummy troubles, the Corset size appropriate for my measurements is too big - and since this is a Family Friendly blog and

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Dec 13, 2013

Win a Katazoom $50 Giftcode to purchase new Wall Decor for your home - Giveaway on Mom Loves 2 Read

Welcome to the Katazoom $50 eGift Card Giveaway

Sponsored by: Katazoom.com
Hosted by: BabyCostcutters.com

Want or need to spice up your living space?  Like to add some new decor, pictures, or accents?
Then check out this great giveaway for Katazoom wall decals.

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My Hikes for kids - keep those too long pant legs in style with cute fasteners in different styles. Holiday Gift Guide 2013

Disclosure: I got this product as part of an advertorial.
 

My Hikes Fasteners help kids and sometimes even moms "hike" up their pants.  They are lightweight and comfortable.  Kids love to wear them because they're cute, fun and they work.

They are for use in a variety of situations:
1) Size transitions: Previous size is embarrassingly short, but the next size starts out too long
2) Pants preservation: Kids are "walking off the hems" of that brand new pair of pants and driving mom crazy.
3) Capri style:  Kids can shorten pants to get a capri look or for practical reasons such as

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Save Big this Holiday Season with the 24 pc Professional Makeup Brush Set. #usfg

The Ellore Femme 24 Piece Professional Makeup Brush Set with Travel Case provides you with specific tools cover a wide range of areas! From eyes to lips to second foreheads and boast a luxurious blend of soft animal hair and synthetic bristles. The slim brushes stay neatly lined within a fold-up PVC case.

24 professional makeup brushes
Designed for foundation, blush, eye shadow, and more

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More Great events at Inspired Arts Academy - Final DROP night, New Classes and More!

UPDATES FROM INSPIRED ARTS ACADEMY!


JUMPSTART CLASSES, ADD ON’s- PERFECT CHRISTMAS GIFT!
Many of you have received an IAA class schedule this week wondering, what was that for? Well, as mentioned earlier, we have an open transfer period as well as add on time during the Holidays. THis gives your kids a chance to try something new in the arts. Many of you can add on class for $40 -$30 or less a month. Great add ons for elementary kids include:
  • Mondays- jazz/tap and gymnastics, singing and acting, sketching and behind the scenes, broadway and pop singing/piano
  • Tuesdays- ballet and gymnastics, folk rock/guitar and 2 and 3d architecture, mixed media and behind the scenes, and photography
  • THursdays- hip hop and gymnastics, hip hop boys and videography, pop singing/piano and hip hop, painting and behind the scenes.
Great add ons for

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Wantable Make Up Box Review - Get a taste of different styles each month - a gift that keeps giving

Disclosure: I got this product as part of an advertorial.

What will you receive with a Wantable.com monthly box?  A Full-sized premium makeup products, hand-picked to perfectly match your preferences.

Product in your box are chosen just for you based on the results of your style quiz. Colors and styles are chosen for your box of the month based on:

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Dec 12, 2013

Fun Girls Capris Leggings review with Discount Coupon Code - Review on Mom Loves 2 Read

Disclosure: I got this product as part of an advertorial.




Twirly Girl Capris leggings are made of very soft jersey material that stretches for comfort.  They are machine washable and made from 96% Polyester / 4% Spandex and are Made in the USA.

Girls can wear these cute capris leggings alone, or under a skirt or dress to keep warm or just to add a little style to their outfit. 

These Girls Capris Leggings are available in sizes

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Save 50% off Babo Botanical's with their Holiday Promotion - #usfg

SAVE 50% Off! Babo Botanicals's Special Holiday Promotion: 50% Off all products available at www.babobotanicals.com USE PROMOTION CODE : HOLIDAYBABO

Babo Botanicals offers a full range of natural and safe skin, hair and suncare products for newborns, babies, kids and the entire family! Babo products are made on a certified organic farm in upstate New York and are ultra-rich in vitamins A, C and D delivering maximum nutrients, protection and moisture to your child's hair and skin. Babo's mission is to provide the perfect balance between optimum results, natural ingredients and family fun.

ENTER PROMOTION CODE : HOLIDAYBABO at check out to benefit from this amazing offer:

Offer available from Dec 11th to Dec 18th. Coupon does not apply to VIP Gift Basket.


Disclosure: I am a US Family Guide Ambassador.  This promotional post is sponsored through US Family Guide Bloggers Program.  I will receive a free product for review after promoting for this sponsor. 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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Immortal Sleep - not quite what I was hoping for - Review on Mom Loves 2 Read

Disclosure: I got this product as part of an advertorial.

For this review I received a small Trial size package with 9 capsules inside, typically will last the average person 3-4 days.

About the Product:
Wake up refreshed and ready for the day! Be reminded of how great it feels to get an uninterrupted good night’s sleep. For people who have: difficulty falling asleep, poor quality sleep, irritability, agitation, fatigue, and lack of focus. This safe and effective, non habit forming formula has no side effects and no next day drowsiness.

 If you have trouble with sleep and want to avoid the side effects of other sleeping pills, taking Immortal Herbs’ specially developed herbal sleep formulation will help you to regain

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Wexy Lunch & Munch Bags ~ a great way to make snacks and lunch time fun for kids.

Disclosure: I got this product as part of an advertorial.

Inspired by kids and created by moms, WEXY snack bags are the perfect way to change the very image of "healthy" food for your kids. Motivated by their desire to restore natural childhood fun to snack time, Carie and Tracey created WEXY monsters with their own children driving their vision. They want to help our earth, too. That's why WEXY snack bags are as good to the globe (eco-friendly) as they are to your child's body. With their commitment to organic foods and practices, Tracey and Carie believe that sustaining our health means sustaining the earth as well. WEXY bags are biodegradable, BPA Free, disposable, recyclable, and reusable.

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New VA offers coming Jan 2014 on Mom Loves 2 Read

It's official - I successfully completed my training and I have the certificate and Seal to Prove it!
 

Have you ever considered becoming a Virtual Assistant?  Here is your chance - I just completed an online VA course through Divas Stamp of Approval Program.

My instructor

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Are YOU a winner? Check your email and check out this post - Congrats to all current winners here on Mom Loves 2 Read!


 photo b574b2a3-1650-4c03-8038-ea78497f7437_zps4b1d29c9.jpg


Winners of Recent Giveaways on Mom Loves 2 Read Are:

Julia Dweck's ebooks
Ann B
Kim B

 1 Girl Nation CD
DeAnna K

Coming Home for Christmas DVD
Michelle T

Laughing Giraffe Girls' Book Set
Rebecca P

Rock N Learn DVD
Cheryl C
Melissa H

Juppy Baby Walker Momentum
Jim W

Giving Thanks Flash Giveaway
Heather D
Amy H
Dina F
 
Medu Onyx Twist Bracelet
Ann B

Everbuying Toy for kids
Jennifer R

Children's Book Set
Teresa
Tina
Jennifer
Melinda
Dorothy
BirdieBee


CONGRATS TO ALL THE WINNERS!



Make sure to check your emails -  if you do not reply to claim your prize within 48 hours - I will have to choose a new winner!
Don't lose your prize!
Emails are sent from MomLoves2Read@itv-3.com
check your spam folders!

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The Magic Violin and other books by author Mayra Calvani ~ Book Tour on Mom Loves 2 Read

THE MAGIC VIOLIN
 

Eight-year old Melina wants to become a good violinist. When she loses confidence, her Rumanian teacher Andrea decides it’s time for a magic dose of self-esteem. A mysterious old woman in rags gives Melina some curious advice; a violinist Russian hamster, who happens to live under the old woman’s hat, offers her a virtuoso performance; a shooting star fills her with hope on Christmas Eve. Is Melina actually playing better, or has her violin become magic? Who is the old woman in the town square, and why does she wear the same emerald ring as her teacher Andrea?


FREDERICO, THE MOUSE VIOLINIST
 

Frederico is a tiny mouse with a big dream: he wants to become a violinist. Each day he watches as Stradivari makes his famous violins. Each night, he sneaks into the workshop to play. But the violins are too big! Then, unbeknown to Frederico, Stradivari sees him playing and begins carving a tiny device. Could it be a famous Strad especially for Frederico?


THE DOLL VIOLINIST
 

Five days before Christmas, Emma is captivated by a doll in a shop window. Each day, she sneaks out of the orphanage to check if it’s been sold, but the shop owner, Madame Dubois, sends her away. Will the magic of Christmas bring Emma, Madame Dubois, and the doll violinist together?
ABC’s Children’s Picture Book Finalist!
Honorable Mention Award in the 75th Annual Writers Digest Writing Competition!


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Dec 11, 2013

Best Green Food Storage Containers I have ever found - love these - Review on Mom Loves 2 Read

Disclosure: I got this product as part of an advertorial.




Introducing the world's most effective vacuum-sealed food container set, the Ozeri INSTAVAC Green Earth Food Storage Container Set. Completely BPA-Fee, the 8-Piece Nesting Set with Vacuum Seal and Locking Lids is designed to SAVE FOOD -- simply press down on the lid to remove excess air that spoils food; SAVE MONEY -- pays for itself and more by keeping food fresher longer; SAVE SPACE -- each container nests for convenient, efficient storage; SAVE TIME -- each container is microwave, dishwasher and freezer safe for long-lasting use. 

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#icaughtsanta and rudolph too - check out these super fun Holiday Photos and Enter the GIVEAWAY too.

Disclosure: I got this product as part of an advertorial.


Do you want Santa by the Christmas tree? Coming down the chimney? Eating milk and cookies? Sleeping on YOUR sofa? Stealing a kiss from Mommy? Anyone can bring back the wonder of Christmas and be a hero to children by catching Santa "in the act."


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Dec 10, 2013

Check out this amazing Gift Idea - Great for Couples, Kids, Friends and More - Customizable Coupon Books - Review & Giveaway - Holiday Gift Guide 2013

Disclosure: I got this product as part of an advertorial.
 
Dateviations!
Create a one-of-a-kind love coupon book.
You pick from over 100 cover options categorized by occasion.
Next, you choose the date options from over 500 original illustrations and customize the text to your liking. We print and ship your book to you.  We have date options for kids, parents, and couples.
And now, you can even add photos of your own faces to our illustrations (or use Datevitation's default cartoon faces)!
This is the perfect stocking stuffer for Christmas or romantic gift for Valentine's Day. 

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