Monday, January 31, 2011

Dorrance Publishing Book Review *The Baby Giraffe*

I love to read and so does my 21 month old little girl. She loves to snuggle up on my lap and flip the pages as I read some of her favorite stories to her. I figured, with both our loves of reading combined I should sign up with the Dorrance Publishing Book Reviewers.

With my daughter in mind, I thought I would pick a book she might enjoy. She loves animals, and books about them, so I chose The Baby Giraffe published by Dorrance Publishing.They sent me a complimentary book, since I was part of the review team.

The Baby Giraffe
by Mikelle A. Bryant-Mataya Nothing is more special in life than family. Your mother and father, sisters and brothers, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins are all an important part of your life. Family is special not just for you and me but for all of God’s creatures, including giraffes! They also have each other to turn to and lean on for support and love, through good times and bad, just like our own families.
The Baby Giraffe tells the story of a youngster who doesn’t have a sibling and often feels very alone. Through prayer to God, Baby Giraffe’s parents decide to bring a new child into the home. Lovely stories of the wonderful relationship between Baby and Littlest Giraffe follow. Can you see yourself in the stories? Which character would you be?
Mikelle A. Bryant-Mataya created The Baby Giraffe in honor of her granddaughters, Natalia and Raquel; the book’s illustrations have been provided by Natalia and Raquel, making the entire project a family affair. Come share in these delightful tales, filled with the strength and love of God and family.
About the Author Mikelle A. Bryant-Mataya was inspired to create The Baby Giraffe stories by her granddaughters, Natalia and Raquel, and the honor and delight of watching them grow and change, day by day. A resident of Aurora, Colorado, and nursing assistant at a local nursing home and care center, Ms. Bryant-Mataya and her husband, Anthony Mataya, share a daughter, Christina, and a grandson, Shawn, as well as her two little giraffes, Natalia and Raquel. The Baby Giraffe is Ms. Bryant-Mataya’s first published work.
(2009, paperback, 90 pages)

My opinion of the book;
  I can honestly say, I skimmed the book details (which I posted above). I wasn't 100% what to expect of this book, but I figured it looked like a cute book.
  I received it in the mail and immediately opened it and read it with my daughter, excited to have a new book to read. (since every other book has been read hundreds of times!). It was, different.
The general idea of the book was a cute idea. A grandmother writing it, using the giraffes as "symbols" for her 2 granddaughters. I liked that it used God's love and miracles in it, since our faith is very important to us.
  The pictures were in black and white. She mentioned in the book you could color it in with your little one. Which is kind of a cute idea. Except, my daughter isn't big enough to know the difference between story books and coloring books. I don't want to teach her to color in her story books. Plus the pictures looked like they had been scanned and were blotchy and missing spaces. One part of the book, she let her granddaughters write the story and draw. Again, a cute idea, but as my husband stated, it was more of a hand-me-down, or a gift for a family member than a book you would buy to read.
   I don't want to discourage the author. I hope she continues to write books with her granddaughters in mind. If I had picked this book up on the shelf and Barnes and Nobles however, I would not have bought it. Only the cover picture really intrigued my daughter.
  Thanks for taking the time to read my review!!!!!!!

<3 Teresa

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

~JusBCuz Dezins Review and Giveaway~ **CLOSED**

Jusbcuz Dezins was awesome to send us something to review! Share the love and check out their page. They have some super cute HANDMADE items! MADE IN THE USA!

About Jusbcuz Dezins; Copied from website;

We are an online year round Gift & Country Crafts Store
We have been in business online now 4 years
All of our items are
Tole Painted
Country Crafts & Decoration
Made with Lots of Love & Care
in the USA
no assembly lines
no mass productions
Our wood items are all made
with Top quality wood
Then sealed for protection
We take a great deal of pride in our work
We know you will love our items as much as we love creating them
You can order personalized projects & color choices
on any of our items
We have to say our favorite is our
Penny Candy Cookie Jar Lids
They make a very cute Kitchen addition
as you can have a different lid for every month of the year

We draw and design all of our own projects
from cutsie to whimsy
and every thing in between
We hope you will take the time to look around
and enjoy your visit here
email us with any questions or suggestions
we love hearing from you

We have been Married for 36 years, raised our 5 Children
Jason, Kelly Dawn, Brett, Mallorie and Dusty
We have 23 grandkids
We have always been a resourceful family
using our God given talents to provide for our want and needs
We are from a small town in Utah, where we had a Gift Store
We taught Tole Painting classes
We had a Tole Painting/Instruction Book Published Called "Boo To You"
We Love to Dezin and create new projects
We hope you enjoy our store...
we have had our online store for 4 years
"Relax take your time...Stop by Often...
We always add new product
Shirley has been drawing a few of our new dezins
Ed has been busy with his silver jewelry
Check it out at
God Bless

They Have so much information abut them on their website, you feel like you know them! Shirley has been very kind contacting back and forth

They sent me a cute Welcome Spring Plaque! (I cant wait to hang it up when the warm weather comes!) It was even gift wrapped! It's an awesome, handmade in the USA, product.

Stained wood, then hand painted, Hangs from hemp. It is cut from 1/2" wood, then they hand paint the design. When they receive orders, they allow themselves 2 weeks to get orders cut and painted. However it has never taken them more than 3 days from the time they get in an order to the day they ship. EVERY ORDER COMES WITH A FREE GIFT.

  This cute mouse pad (I've been needing one!) was my "free" gift! *I put free in quotations because both gifts were provided free by Jusbcuz Dezins as a complimentary product for review. This was not a paid review.*

I started browsing their site for other cute designs, Jusbcuz Dezins. There are so many cute designs! I think I'm going to go make you look at their website yourself!! :-)

 I did find this one other gift (since valentines is coming soon!). It's actually a (glass) cookie jar lid. Check out their website for more valentines gifts.

Jusbcuz Dezins has offered to give away one Welcome Spring plaque to one of my fortunate readers!

Just use the form below to enter. Giveaway will be open until 2/2/11

*Sponsors are liable for all prizes sent and recieved. This was not a paid review*

Monday, January 24, 2011

~All About Baby Boutique Review and Giveaway~ **CLOSED**

All About Baby Boutique was kind enough to send me some disposable cloth diaper linings to try out! It's not a common knowledge item for the CDing community. So help me share the word by sharing this review!

About AllAbout Baby Boutique.  Copied from their website:

Hello!  My name is Priscilla.  I started investigating cloth diapers when my daughter was around 1 year after she became allergic to disposible diapers.  I began researching cloth diapers and was shocked to learn how simple and easy they are to use (not like the ones from when I was a baby).  Heck, I didn't even need pins to keep them closed!  With my husband's support, we began cloth diapering our daughter, Ansley.  

Since starting, I have learned a whole new way of being with my daughter - I began babywearing - which both she and I have found worth every penny!  I began searching out more natural baby products and have found it extremely rewarding.  I also began telling other moms that I know about what I was doing.  Without realizing it, I have become extremely passionate about taking a more natural approach to the products I use on my daughter.  Because of my passion, when the opportunity came up to purchase an existing cloth diaper business (Punkerdoops Diapers), I jumped at the chance!  Now, due with baby number two in 4 weeks!, I feel as if I have the best of all worlds and my goal for finding the best baby products and bring them to you remains my central focus.  If you have any questions or need any help, please contact me at  I am here to help! :)

About disposable cloth diaper rolls  Copied from website;

100 Sheets Per Package! These disposable diaper liners have a special dry-weave. They allow moisture to pass though the liner and into the diaper without permitting the wetness to seep back against your baby's skin. Your baby will feel drier and more comfortable. The disposable diaper liner holds the solid waste to prevent soiling the diaper. Disposable diaper liners do not increase the absorbency of the diaper and are not to be confused with a diaper doubler. Tiny Tush disposable diaper liners are 100% biodegradable and are completely safe to flush without harming the environment, toilets or septic system (according to manufacturer). 

There are 100 - 9"x 14" large sheets per package. You may want to cut these liners in half for newborn babies. 

*Caution liners may cause blockage in old or damaged drains. * Special dry-weave for comfort * Holds solids to prevent soiling the diaper * Biodegradable and safe to flush * 100 - 9" x 14" large sheets per package

My Experience;

I have tried similar disposable linings before with my C.D.s. They were in this HUGE roll and I had to cut and fold each one, they were not flushable, the fabric tore super easy...Basically it wasn't any fun. And more time consuming than it was worth. Also, considering they did not protect the diaper from soiling and  bunched up when they got wet, I did not think I would ever want to use them again. I'd just stick with scrubbing down my diapers by hand, soaking, and washing 2x per load.

THEN All About Baby Boutique sent me a roll to try out.

It's already better than the previous linings I had tried. It came in a small, roll I could hold (instead of the industrial roll I had to cut up previously). AND each sheet came already perforated, so no cutting involved. (Which, if you got little's, you know you don't always have time to cut them up before-hand, nor can you cut them up in the MIDDLE of a change!)

I used my hand for sizing so you get a general idea how big each sheet is.

You can see it here on my large AIO diaper. I had to fold the sides just a bit to fit inside the diaper. With my newborn, I had to fold it in half.

Now I just had to wait for the soiling. It didn't leave any rashes on my babies bums. It didn't bunch up when wet. Tick tock tick tock...Seemed my kiddos only soiled when we went out of the house in 'sposies. FINALLY a week later, my daughter soiled it, again, and again, and again. (She actually ended up with diarrhea *poor baby*). BUT it worked great! My daughter is 21 months, so pretty active. The sides got a little bit of soiling on them due to all her activity, but for my newborn, it all stayed put on the little cloth! It didn't leak through onto the diaper, nor did the fabric tear.

The BIG plus was, my husband hadn't finished hooking up the sprayer to our toilet for me to spray down our soiled diaper, so I could just plop it right into the toilet and flush it all away! No garbage mess, no scraping the diaper clean. It was amazing! I really love using these on my cloth diapers! They save allot of wear on the fabric.

All About Baby Boutique  is willing to giveaway one pack to one of my fans to try out for yourselves!!

Helpful links:
All About Baby Boutique Website
All About Baby Boutique on Facebook  
TNS Family Value[s] On Facebook
TNS Family Value[s] on Twitter

Fill out this form to enter to win your own pack of disposable linings! Open until Monday, 1/31/11

*All items provided were courtesy of AABB for me to review for free. I post an honest opinion. This review was in no way paid for by AABB. All About Baby Boutique is responsible for the distribution of giveaway prize.*

Monday, January 17, 2011

~Sweet Pea Organics Review and Giveaway~ **CLOSED**

Sweet Pea Organics sent us a fun sample pack to try out!

It came at a great time! I was just needing a new cooler bag for our trip to mom group that day since I couldn't find my other cooler. The t-shirt is a size 2 and looks cute! Plus I got 4 bags of snack goodies to try out!

The first thing we tried out was the teething biscuits. (Brown cookies in the front.) My daughter loved them! She's a super picky eater, so I'm sold on any health food she is willing to eat! I also wanted her to try them since I am allergic to sunflower seeds, I needed to see if she was too. And what better food to try than a homemade organic food! These are wheat and dairy free. She still asks me for more cookies! :-)

Teething Biscuits Ingredients:
Organic Oat Flour
Organic Sunflower Oil
Organic Oat Milk
Organic Agave Nectar
Organic Apple Sauce

The next thing we tried was the kid protein bars. (Pictured on the left of the cooler). Since I was not able to test out the kid protein bars myself (also allergic to nuts and do not have a child older than 2) I had a few adults try it out and a few older children of friends. The kids liked it! It is all raw ingredients. (Not cooked). They particularly liked the bites with fruit. The adults stated it was yummy if you got a bit of fruit and a little bitter with no fruit. One suggested to add an orange tang to the whole thing for a bit more flavor. But the kids gobbled their up. I gave the rest to some friends for their kids to try later.

Organic Quinoa
Organic Oats
Organic Dried Cranberries
Organic Beet Powder
Organic Almond Milk
Organic Sesame seeds
Organic Pecans
Organic Brown rice syrup

Then I thought it would be a good idea to try the toddler protein bars. My daughter is a "snacker" between every meal, and doesn't eat much so I thought the protein bars would be great for her to try! We also needed to test her allergy to nuts and it contains almond milk. But RIGHT before we could try them, a friend accidentally gave her some peanut butter snacks and we found out she has a slight allergy to peanuts (which is my strongest allergy). So I'm afraid we will have to try regular nuts in a few months to see if those give her a reaction too. Which, sweet pea does sell nut free toddler protein bars I think I might have her try instead! She needs some good healthy snacks. So, those we had some friends kids test, which all the kids thought they were yummy! The rest I gave away again for friends to try at home.

Toddler Protein Bars Ingredients:
Organic Quinoa
Organic Sunflower Oil
Organic Agave Nectar
Organic Beet Powder
Organic Rice Milk
1.4 Grams of Protein in Each Bar

"Sweet Pea Organics is based on the idea that a life well lived is one that is simple, balanced and pure. These simple baby & toddler recipes were designed to bring you the basic building blocks of life in a convenient and fun way. Of course they are made with the finest organic ingredients, but know that the most important ingredient in any recipe is the love with which it is prepared. Sweet Pea Organics, made from the freshest and nutrient-rich foods available, with an extra heap of love on top for good measure! Grace, Sweet Pea & Jujube"

They have also said they will give one lucky winner the same package I received, pictured above!

Useful links:
Sweet Pea Organics website
TNS Family Value[s] on Facebook
TNS Family Value[s] on Twiiter
Sweet Pea Organics on Facebook

Use the entry form below to enter! Open until Monday, 1/24/2011.

*All prizes are the responsibility of the sponsor to send.*

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

~Undergroud Daffodil Giveaway~ **CLOSED**

Underground Daffodil has been generous enough to allow us to give away $5 worth of store credit (or Daffodil Bucks!)

They make tons of cute products! Headbands, hair ties, baby leg warmers, hats, paper clips, invitations...etc!

Check them out on Facebook here Undergroud Daffodil
That is a link directly to their album of their products on Facebook.

Winner will be drawn on Monday afternoon, 1/17/2011.
TNS Family Value[s] on facebook.
TNS Family Value[s] on twitter
Underground Daffodil on Facebook

*All giveaway prizes are the responsibility of the Sponsor and prize winner for sending and receiving.*


Monday, January 10, 2011

Cutie Pie Crafts Giveaway **CLOSED**

Go to my facebook here;  TNS Family Value[s], follow directions for a chance to win a hairbow holder from Cutie Pie Crafts. Any color and letter. Sponsors are responsible for sending prizes.

Winner will be drawn on Wednesday from comments posted below the picture.

Have a great week! More giveaways coming soon!!!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Wildtree with Amanda ~Review and Giveaway~ **CLOSED**

Sorry about the pause in posts! Been a hectic few weeks with all the holidays!

Our latest review comes from Wildtree, with the independent representative Amanda. She was so kind as to let us review one of Wildtree's skillet meal seasoning mixes.

It's important to my family to eat as healthy as possible and avoid allot of unhealthy products. Wildtree is an awesome product for having NO preservatives, additives, MSGs, or food dyes. They mostly sell mixes, like seasonings, bread mixes, salsa...It's a fairly long list of products. You should check them out! I have an ad link for Amanda's Wildtree on the side of this post. If you want to browse the selection, click on that link.

We were able to try the Cheddar & Herb Skillet Meal seasoning packet.

I was a little disappointed that a natural company wasted SO much space and plastic to send a small package.

Cheddar and Herb Skillet meal

Each box comes with 2 packages of seasonings. Each packet serves 5 people.

First package made.

   We made the first meal at a friends house while we watched the football game. I did not season the meat myself to taste since the box did not specify to. I used penne noodles, which was recommended on the box (though you can use any kind you want). The general consensus between four adults was this meal was a little bland. Good, but lacking oomph in flavor. We added some parmesan cheese and it was pretty good.

A few days later we had a few more friends over to try the second package. I seasoned the meat myself this time with some oregano, basil, garlic powder, onion powder, salt and pepper while it was sauteing before continuing with the package directions. Unfortunately I did not get a picture of that meal before it was scarfed up. It still had a very light flavor, but it was good! I also used egg noodles instead of penne this time. FYI, you can choose between beef, chicken, or turkey for this particular skillet meal. I chose beef. You can also add spinach, broccoli, and onion if you choose. The second time around I added some spinach.

I will say this, it is a great meal to make quickly and have a simple flavor for the family. PLUS my 20 month old daughter, with whom I have been struggling to get to eat meat and noodles lately, as well as pretty much any food NOT yogurt, cheese, crackers, toast, cereal and fruit, gobbled it right up! It was a light flavor that she didn't spit it out, and a good enough flavor she FINALLY ate something good for her! We just might have to get some more of that, if that's what it takes to get her to eat real food!!!

There are a ton more Wildtree products I would LOVE to try, and some sauces I think my husband would love, like their beer bread mix. They even have a whole wheat beer bread mix!

Amanda is also being so kind as to let us to a giveaway of the same product (to US Resident only as products are sent direct from the company with no international mailing).

TO ENTER to win a box of Cheddar & Herb Skillet Meal fill out the form below.
Giveaway will end Monday (1/10/11) afternoon.

Helpful links;
 TNS Family Value[s] on Facebook 

Wildtree with Amanda on Facebook 

TNS Family Value[s] on Twitter 

*All reviews and giveaways are complimentary from sponsors and are not paid reviews. I post my honest opinions.*