Friday, February 28, 2014

Cover Reveal: Ring Around the Rosie by Julie Coulter Bellon

One of my favorite authors (let's be real, I have several favorites) is letting me do a cover reveal for her book!  Woohoo!  It looks like an amazing book and if you go to her website, you can read the first chapter!
Doesn't it look fantastic?

It's a full length novel, the last in the Hostage Negotiation Team series.  It will be released in May 2014. 
Here's the whole series and I can say that I have LOVED all of the other ones, so I have no doubt that I will love this one too!  I can't wait to read it!

Author bio:
Julie is married with eight children and ten published books. She loves to travel and her favorite cities are probably Athens, Paris, Ottawa, and London. She would love to visit Hawaii, Australia, Ireland, and Scotland someday. She loves to read, write, teach, watch Castle, Hawaii Five-O, and eat Canadian chocolate. Not necessarily in that order.  You can find out more about Julie and all her projects at

May can't come soon enough!  I hope I get to read her book while I'm in labor!  That would definitely take my mind off of the pain.  Right?

Sunday, February 23, 2014

The sickness continues

I went in to work on Monday and everyone agreed that I needed to stay home, so I prepped and stayed home on Tuesday.  I know my family loved having me home!  I actually had energy, so I got a ton of laundry done and the boys' room clean!  Then my husband sent me out to do errands, which didn't turn out that great with multiple cough attacks.  I mostly cough when I go outside.
I went back to work the next day and as long as I keep cool and don't go outside, I do fine.  Not that it's an option.  My kiddos are getting used to my coughing.  Hopefully it won't last for a long time!  I feel fine, other than the random coughing, so I'm not complaining!
I got almost everything I need to make cloth diapers!  I can't wait!  I'm super excited to see how many I can make!  I even bought the stuff to make inserts!  I've been watching clearance and I have Samuel's little swing/bouncer and a pack n play (with the newborn sleeper and changing pad).  Now we just need sheets, more clothes, a car seat, a car that will fit all of us when he comes and the diapers made and we'll be ready!
Yesterday we reorganized the laundry room (well I did), and now everyone has their own basket!  It's oh-so-very-exciting!  While I was working on that, Josh was removing keys from the laptop, so if I misspell, it's due to the force I have to exert on the e and g!
My kids are growing like crazy!  My mom sent clothes for Josh, Ben, and Kira, and they were so excited!  Josh especially loves his new tricycle that she sent!  Cecilia loves it too!  Leah will even play on it!  We have had some very nice days lately, and the kids love playing outside as Scott works on getting the soil ready for his garden!  It's supposed to be cold again this next week though we have enjoyed the glimpse of Spring!

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Valentine's Day

We had beautiful snow that we were all thrilled to see melt!  It's been very nice outside for a few days!  I love seeing the sun again!  The kiddos were excited to play outside!  We worked very hard to prepare for Valentine's Day!  Ben made a shark valentine box (with a lot of help) and Kira made a locker Valentine box.  I just had to make 39 Valentines for my students plus some bows for Emma's teacher and my girls.  They turned out well though!  Phew!
It was a full moon plus Friday, so Valentine's Day was CRAZY!!!  I made eggs and bacon for my family for breakfast and then after Ben and Kira got on the bus, we all went to my school for the Parent Breakfast.  The kiddos loved the doughnuts and they got 2!  My Kindergartners were beyond excited, so we read a lot of books in order to keep the day going well!  I still did some of the same lesson activities, and then party!  My morning party went easier than my afternoon, since I have help in the morning!  By the time I was done, I was exhausted!  I felt like I had done a 5k with no rest!  I'm starting to come down with a cough too.  I only had to work a little after school, and usually I work a lot longer on Friday afternoons!  I got so many sweet Valentines from my students!  I got 2 roses, a fake rose bouquet with balloon and candy in a heart vase, 2 chocolate heart boxes, one chocolate rose, another silk rose, a cute little stuffy, a felt wallet that says I'm the best teacher, plus lots of little Valentines and candy!  My awesome husband had the kids pick out balloons for me, so I had 7 balloons in the corner of my class too!  He also got me some beautiful tulips and yellow mini roses!  I love flowers!  After dinner (Arby's), each kiddo got to pick a balloon, so they were very excited!  The girls loved their heart bows too!
Yesterday my cough was a little worse, but after praying super hard was able to get a ton done to get our house a little cleaner!  I love the smell of lemon when cleaning!
We're back in the waiting game for a house that's perfect for us.  Here's hoping we'll be able to get one before this little man joins our family.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Fallen Angel by Lisa Swinton book review

Fallen Angel
Antonio does not believe in love at first sight until he sees her fall into a street in Milan and get hit by a motorcycle. Compelled to know if she can return his affection, he becomes Renatta’s hospital volunteer only to learn that the accident erased her memory. Together they must discover her past, present and future. In the way of happily ever after stand her opera career, tyrannical mother, and fiancĂ©.  Antonio must win Renatta’s heart before she bends to the will of her mother and marries Marcello.  Failure means a lifetime of loneliness, for love at first sight never happens twice.  

My Thoughts

I loved the characters in this story!  Antonio is the perfect male lead with his instant love for his angel and how he becomes a volunteer just to be close to her!  He is such a sweetheart that I found it difficult to think that anyone wouldn't like him!  Then Renatta and her sister Chiara have a great bond that I loved to read about!  What a great set of sisters!  I could have done without the Marcello lake scene, and the drinking, but I've never been to Italy, so I don't know what it's like there.  Either way, I'm looking forward to the next book!

You can buy it here on Amazon!   

About the Author
Lisa Swinton caught the romance bug early by way of fairy tales and hasn’t been able to cure it since. Instead, she feeds her addiction with romance novels and films. In between being a doctor’s wife and mother of two, she occasionally puts her B.A. in Musical Theater to good use via community theater, church choir and teaching the art of singing. In her elusive spare time she enjoys researching her family tree and baking (especially with chocolate). She loves to travel, Jane Austen, and all things Italian. In her next life, she plans to be a professional organizer

Social Media Links:
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I was provided this book for review purposes and was not paid for my opinions!  They are my very own and can't be bought!

Monday, February 10, 2014

Cover Reveal-Sweet Confections by Danyelle Ferguson

One of my best friends has an amazing book coming out, and I get to show you the cover!

Isn't it beautiful?

Book Blurb:

According to Rachel Marconi chocolate heals all wounds. That and throwing darts at pictures of her ex-boyfriend. Burned by yet another bad relationship, Rachel decides to reprioritize her life, putting her dream to compete on a  Food Network Challenge on the top of her list and dating at the bottom crossed out in red sharpie.

But what's a girl to do when a certain sexy guy keeps asking her out?

Cue in Graydon Green, a former pro hockey player turned restaurant owner. After a lot of persistent and humorous teasing, he finally convinces Rachel to commit to a date. Just when things begin to warm up, threatening notes directed at Rachel arrive. When her bakery is vandalized, Graydon's protective streak goes on red alert. Is it her obsessive ex-boyfriend stalking her? Or maybe a challenger trying to sabotage the competition?

Either way, Rachel is definitely going to need more chocolate - perhaps drizzled over ice cream and devil's food cake.

About the Author

Danyelle Ferguson is a thirty-something mom with the heart of a college student obsessed with chocolate and yearning for the thrill of romance. In her day job, she does a juggling act trying to cram in her writing deadlines between the never-ending laundry pile and constant calls for mom. You can find out more about Danyelle via the web:



Twitter: @DanyelleTweets


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Sunday, February 9, 2014

Snow days

It's been a very full week!  We had school on Monday and then Tuesday the ice and snow came in!  We still had school, but school was early released at 1:30.  Due to the fact that I'm a Kindergartner teacher (and my Principal is amazing) I was able to leave at noon and go get my two older kiddos from school.  They were pretty surprised!  The roads were terrible at that point, so I was glad to get us all safely home!
We had a snow day on Wednesday, which was great for getting a ton of laundry done!  I got to spend time with my kiddos too!  Josh loves it when I'm home all day!
Then on Thursday was my super long day, due to Parent Teacher Conferences!  I got there at 7:15 in the morning and left at 8:45 at night!  Only half of the parents showed up (the roads are still terrible), and I didn't blame them!  It was snowing again too!  I went home on lunch, so Scott would have the car.  He tried to drive, but got stuck at the stop sign, so I got to drive instead.  Poor guy!  He tried so hard to push the van up that hill!  Our kiddos were super impressed with how strong their dad is!  He is pretty strong!  He was able to get something done before he dropped the kids off with me while he had an echo cardiogram and sonogram on his heart.  Sadly, I had 2 parents show up then.  So, I had all six kids plus 2 parents in there.  Craziness!  I had my kids spread out over the class, so that they weren't fighting (which worked great)!  I was able to get through the Conferences with little problem!  Those two were the only ones that showed up during the time I had my kids.  Phew!  I got a lot done in between conferences and had finished my lesson plans, made tons of copies, and reorganized part of my class!  My centers are much better now!  Since Scott teaches Spanish and sometimes English on Thursday night, I had to wait for him to come get me afterward.  I didn't mind having the extra time to rearrange kids' spots!
I only had one conference on Friday, plus Emma's Conference.  The first grade teacher told me how well she's doing in her class for that first hour!  Emma was able to solve something that the other kids couldn't!  Woohoo!  Emma was very proud of herself that day!  After conferences, we had a Just Dance workout in the gym.  It was awesome!  We all got our workout before we had shower treats for the other pregnant teacher at school!  She is so sweet, and I'm glad to have her to talk with about pregnancy things!  Then I got to go grocery shopping all by myself!  It was great!  I love half days, because my kids are so excited to see me early!  We went and signed the new contract for the house, but now need to get financing, which is more difficult!
On Saturday we got cleaning done and I got stuff up for sale.  We sold Ben's bells (that are just in the way now that he quit band)!  The lady that bought them was super excited, so was I!  Since the place we're trying to buy is super small, so we're going to have to downsize as much as possible!  The bedrooms are tiny!  I'm going to have to buy another set of bunk beds for the girls' room.  And a futon for Ben, so it can be a seating area when he's not sleeping.  His room will be part of the dining room (that is right next to the Living Room).  Either way, we'll see how things go.  Apparently it's hard to get a manufactured home mortgage.  So, either we go through a different lender or we find a different house.  Stink.  It could all turn out fantastic though!
The kids and I all went to church on the slick roads, but made it fine.  It's so pretty with everything covered in ice! The kids loved the scenery!  Kira especially likes the willow trees!  Scott had a sore throat this morning.  So, he had stayed home.  Nursery was a little crazy today, but we have some seriously cute kids in there!
I'm incredibly excited for you to see a couple of posts that are coming this week, since two of my friends have books either out or coming out!  I feel very blessed to have such amazing friends!
Now on to the picture dump!
 Scott and I on a particularly great hair day!
 My belly two (three?) weeks ago!
 With my lil' man
 The craziness before flu shots.  Those poor kiddos cried and cried!
 Reading scriptures together
 Her amazing block tower!
 Josh with his Elder look-a-like (and Dad)
 Josh loves things with wheels!
 Super Teacher on the 100th Day of School
 The house we're trying to get out on a 5 acre lot.
 They love the breakfast bar!
 They all fit in the Master shower (that I thought was tiny).
 Me and my snugglebug
 This was my belly last week!
 He wanted more blueberries!
 My kiddos when they finally earned their 100th CTR buck!  They could finally watch tv!
 Sweet sleeper
And wide awake!

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Here's hoping we're buying a house

Yesterday was devoted to looking at houses.  We had a group of 5 houses that we've researched and looked at all the pros and cons on and were ready to see!  We saw 3 of them, because the other two were already contracted on.  They were our favorite too.  The first house was the cheapest and right across from an Elementary School!  But, it felt like a mobile home on a foundation, and I really didn't like it.  I knew I'd have to fix a ton!  Then we saw one in the next town and it was way more expensive and the kids couldn't stand the smell (it was super cluttered too)!  There was a cat and dogs there.  Then we went to the next one and the people were home.  One was hanging out on her bed watching tv, the two boys were shirtless (which made all of us girls uncomfortable), and the backyard was tiny.  Nope.  So, we went home and I decided to search again, just to see if something new popped up, and it DID!!!  Somehow we haven't seen this house on the market, and it's perfect!  It's in our price range, has 3 bedrooms, 2 baths, a storm shelter, a two car garage with huge space (like a whole workshop), a well, 5.2 acres, and is still "in town."  Down 2 dirt roads.  There's a little community back there with tons of land.  We got out of our van and the kids all went running in (it was freezing cold)!  They loved it!  They all are super excited about the huge yard!  They know their dad's plan and they're excited to help him!  I'm excited to have the space to add on, since we'll need to in the next few years!  We're going to work with the 3 rooms for now though!  Scott said I could have the back part of the garage for my craft/art/photography stuff (not my future camera though, or any paint).  He's already figuring out how he can get people to come out and mark where all the lines are that he can't hit when he starts to dig his Walipini.  He was all over getting this house and so were Ben and Kira:  "Let's buy this house!"  Kira kept asking our realtor:  "Can you save this house for us?"  By the time we had seen enough, and the kids got their coats off the coat hanger, it was getting dark and we went over to the realtor's office to put our bid in.  We're really hoping we get it!  I'm sure I'll post on here again if we do!  Then I'll put pictures on too!
In other news, we have the fever that goes around.  Cecilia had it for a day the week before last, then Leah had it on Friday.  Cecilia has it again today.  Poor kiddo!  She does fine while she's medicated, but as soon as it wears off...  So, Josh and I are going to hang out at home with her today and miss church.  We'll be watching church movies though!