Tuesday, August 26, 2014

The Value in Reading Aloud to Your Kids

Reading aloud. We do it often. We do it for fun. We even use the funny voices that give the characters life (WIP!). I remember loving it as a teen when my older cousin would read to me before bed when we had our sleepovers and thinking how I was fine not to be too old for that. Of course, she'd read to me from adult/YA novels, totally age-appropriate;-)

And in the last three years of discovering the beauty in audiobooks, I've listened to and "read" many, many, many books while in the car or cleaning around the house that I might not ordinarily have had time to sit and read. The kids love them too- to give us all a break from time to time, the kids and I will listen to an audiobook at bedtime instead. 

Since leading a troop of Girl Scout Brownies, I've tried to incorporate at least one-two books at each meeting for some relaxing downtime. It's amazing how they love it, no matter their age, no matter the book. 

Here's a great short post from Among Lovely Things on the value of reading aloud to kids, and check out the podcast info here as well. 

Another Reading aloud post I found and love!

Happy Reading!

Thursday, August 14, 2014

School Library Journal's Top 100 Children's Novels

Here's a link to School Library Journal's Top 100 Children's Novels; I found this list via our library's website and thought it was pretty awesome. Whenever I see lists like this, I always have visions about having deep, intellectual book discussions with my Ladies. If only there were time to read them all!

As with anything, take the good and leave the bad, and of course I encourage all parents to carefully screen what their children are reading/watching/hearing/playing, etc. to be sure it's appropriate for them and is in line with your family's values.

Happy Reading!

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Eid Pretties: Nail Pen Review & Giveaway!

We received a free pack of Hot Designs Glitz & Glam Nail Art Pens to review just in time for our Eid preparation- you know, hair, nails, henna, the goods!

We love, love, love colors and art, so naturally the girls and I were super-excited to try this. I've never done anything interesting in the way of nail deco so this was my excuse to live a little and leave Vanilla behind for a bit.

The little one wouldn't keep still after the job
was done for an "After" pic
The pens are a great idea and if they could figure out how to make the polish non-clumping when you paint it on so that it doesn't go on in globs, they'd have a winner. I shook the pens plenty to avoid user error, but we still had to go back to our tried and true nail polish stash for our base and background coats because it just didn't go on as smoothly as I'd hoped. The good thing is, I was able to use the pen feature for the designing and drawing pretty easily.

Also, after a trip to the beach, an amusement park, two pool sessions, showers, baths and all the living in-between the polish and designs are still going strong, a very pleasant surprise.

A tip: You'll notice in the pics that as of motherhood, I really don't have the luxury to care so much anymore about painting inside the lines. As a single 20-something I was oh-so-careful, cleaning up oopsies with surgical precision and with just as many tools. Goodbye to that, because for once, cutting corners and trial and error has rewarded me! I found that once all the polish dries thoroughly- and this is with any polish- and you give your hands a good washing, all the excess that's not on your nails comes right off, leaving behind a near-perfect job. You're welcome:-)

Another Tip: We listened to some Merciful Servant lectures on YouTube while we prepped, because we figured, why not beautify our imaan, too?

I'm giving away one FREE pack of Nail Art Pens for you to try at home. Entry details are below. 

Even better…Hot Designs is giving fans the chance to win the ultimate beach package including a $250 Target gift card by entering at GetHotLooks.com/contest. Just submit a selfie of your summer style using the hashtag #WinHotLooks and at-tag @GetHotLooks on Twitter, Tumblr, Pinterest, or @Get_Hot_Looks on Instagram.

Eid Mubarak!

**My opinions are always, always my own**