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Friday, March 25, 2011

Fireplace gas logs

Even though the weather is warming up there are still occasions that call for a little warmth and coziness. There are cool Spring nights when families can lounge on the back deck after a light dinner or the chilly mornings spent on the screened-in porch while sipping a cup of java.

image To experience that warmth all that is needed are some gas logs. Not sure where to get one? Over at Hansen Wholesale, the gas log experts are offering the lowest prices on all Gas Logs – they guarantee it! They sell Robert H. Peterson gas logs, which has been making the best gas logs in the United States for the past 60 years. My favorites are the Outdoor Gas Logs. I can picture sitting under the stars in a lush backyard on a cool night and feeling warmly comfortable because of a gas log or snuggled on a loveseat with my sweetheart while enjoying Vented Gas Logs, which are most realistic using a burner system that is designed to be installed in wood burning fireplaces and burned with the damper propped open. They burn natural gas and are only for use indoors.

It’s not too late to get your R. H. Peterson Real Fyre Gas Logs; right now there’s a special offer of $75 additional discount, no sales tax and free shipping. (No sales tax applies to all gas logs and the free shipping offer applies to complete gas log sets under 36” in the continental USA.) If you buy one today you can be on your way to warm and cozy in no time.

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Thursday, March 24, 2011

Let’s play hide & seek {book review}

In this house we are definitely a group of book lovers. I guess the love of books started with my mother. When I was a young girl I recall seeing my mother reading and when we would go out – regardless of where we were going – she encouraged me to take a book. Even as I got older it was a rare occasion to find me doing anything else but reading when I was riding in a car.

That’s why I’m not surprised that my four children love to read. Right now Amber, 19, doesn’t get as many chances to read for pleasure because she has enough reading to do as a Chemistry major. My 7-year-old son, Andre, has discovered the love of reading and it really hit him when he figured out he could read entire books alone. My daughters, 6-year-old Amareah and Anna who’s almost 4, love being read to by their siblings. Amareah is just beginning to read on her own and Anna is still pretending to read.

A little while ago we discovered a book that all of us like to read and experience: Hide!!! by Jeff Foxworthy, the bestselling author of Dirt on My Shirt. Hide is the story of a neighborhood hide-and-seek game that the readers join in on. The illustrations, which are by Steve Bjorkman, are vivid and beautiful. Along with the hide-and-seek story there are lists of what to find in each picture at the bottom of the page.

Amareah is our resident puzzle lover and normally does an excellent job with pictures that have hidden items in them. Once she got used to the illustrations finding the objects was almost a piece of cake for her. In fact, there were a couple of times that she found what was hidden quicker than I did.

Hide is  “guaranteed to charm readers of all ages” and it definitely lives up to that claim.

 

   

Disclosure: I  received Hide!!!  for the purpose of review. No other compensation was received. Any opinions expressed here are my own. For more information review my complete policy.

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Beautiful Murano glass

I am a sucker for pretty baubles. In every store I drool over the jewelry section and when surfing the net I stop and browse at every jewelry site. I’m amazed at how artistic jewelry makers and artists are, and just when I think I can’t find anything as gorgeous as the last thing I saw I come across something else.

I had that feeling when I came across Glass of Venice, which works directly with artisans from Murano, Italy. The items are handcrafted using glass-blowing techniques that made these glassmakers famous. Using Murano Glass, they make the items you would see in Italy. Now you don’t have to travel that far; these beauties are just a click away.

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It would be fabulous to own one of the murano glass necklaces because it’s like wearing a piece of art. Not only are the choices beautiful, but there are quite a few to choose from and they’re all reasonably priced.

This is a great site to shop on to find a Mother’s Day gift for that special woman in your life. In fact, I was thinking that I should buy myself a murano glass necklace and treat myself for Mother’s Day. These pieces aren’t necessarily my mother’s style so I’ll find something for her elsewhere, but I’m all over the site for a gift for me. What do you think: Do you like Murano glass necklaces?

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No bug is gonna beat me

I’m one of those people who doesn’t like the cold so – despite my best efforts – I complain a lot during the Winter months and vow that I won’t bellyache about the heat when Spring and Summer arrive. I was particularly disgruntled about this past Winter because it seemed colder than it had been in years past. Now, with only a few days into Spring, I’m trying my best not to start up about the sun beating down on my arms and legs as I drive. Or glaring in my eyes while I try to enjoy some time outside.

It’s actually the best time to spend outdoors (as long as your  allergy and sinus problems allow) because it’s been breezy and pleasant. What makes it a little less pleasant are the wasps that have decided to come out and play. I know they’re just doing their jobs by carrying pollen from one flower or plant to another, but can they leave me alone. Or, more specifically, my van, which is covered from bumper to bumper in yellow pollen.

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I captured this little guy sitting on my windshield while I waited in the carpool line at my kids’ school. He refused to move so I had to peek around him while I drove. When he finally went on his way I couldn’t stop thinking about him and I don’t know why. Bugs are my least favorite things of warm weather, but it’s been on my mind that each being has a purpose and I shouldn’t be fussing about it ‘cause it’s just doing the job it was given.

Instead of worrying about whether it’s too hot or too cold and sitting around complaining about the bugs, I need to start wrapping my brain around my writing goals. If the wasp can do his job then I better get on top of my purpose. I can’t let the wasp do better than me, can I?

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Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Mystery of the purple tub

I don’t know about other parents, but for me it seems like every time I think it’s safe to go back in the water my kids pull another trick out of their hats. I remember when my oldest was about 7 years old, she put black shoe polish all over the floor, rug and counter in our bathroom. It was only the two of us living in that townhouse and I know I didn’t do it.

Prior to us going out that evening I had cleaned the bathroom from top to bottom. When I returned home I walked into the bathroom and saw the black polish all over the yellow and white bathroom.

I yelled for Amber, who’s now 19, and asked her about the polish.

“I didn’t do that,” she said.

I asked her again. She – again! – said she didn’t do it. Mine you, I have a rule in my house: You get in more trouble if you lie.

“So, you’re trying to tell me that while we were out someone came in here, took the polish from under the sink, used it and rubbed it all over the place.”

“Yes…,” she nodded.

For an instance my mind pictured the maintenance man coming into the townhouse, going up to the bathroom and using the shoe polish. Ridiculous, I thought.

Needless to say she got in trouble. The evidence showed that Amber was the last one in the bathroom before we went out.

It’s with this in mind that I tell the tale of the purple bathtub.

Last night I bathed my youngest daughter before dinner and got her out of the bath quickly. While I was in there I didn’t see anything amidst in the tub. My son took his bath next. Now my son is very “picky” and if the tub had had purple stains in it – or anything for that matter – he would have told it right away.

Amber went into the bathroom to wash his hair and she said she didn’t see anything unusual. Andre got out of the tub/bathroom and my middle daughter went in. She took her bath and went to bed.

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I didn’t go into the bathroom until the next morning when I woke the children to get ready to school. The purple stains in the tub were the first thing I noticed. I asked Amareah (the middle daughter) first if she knew what it was and where it came from. Even though I quizzed all of the children, including the oldest, no one knew anything about the stains. (You can’t see them that well in the picture – just looks like a dirty tub – but the tub was perfect white before those stains. And we’ve cleaned it since discovering them.)

The evidence suggests that Amareah is the alleged culprit.

It wouldn’t be so bad if the stains would come out… it looks like I’m going to be scrubbing the tub with bleach infused cleaners for weeks to come.

So, do you have an idea of where the purple stains came from? I think I’ll put a spy camera in there to catch the next person who does something fishy and won’t admit it.

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