Saturday, December 6, 2014

Sing, Sing a Song Saturday

Sing, Sing a Song Saturday is all about me discovering something that is different. I don't want to post things that you and I have more than likely heard before. I want to find something different. It could be from another country, someone singing from the streets of NY, and more.

I know I was such a slacker last week, and skipped learning about a newish band, singer, musician. I have plenty on the list, but was busy. I'm busy this week to. I'm going to try and get this knocked out. Let's be honest...I'll be busy until the holidays are over with. 

One of my friends posted a jazz song that I fell in love with right away. I've always liked jazz, but don't listen to it all the time. 

Kate Davis is the voice in the band Postmodern Jukebox. Let me tell you Kate Davis is wonderful! She is not the soul singer of the band. Scott Bradlee is the leader in the band. Scott educates his audience about 20th-century song styles; he’s commenting on the elasticity of the pop form; he’s confounding cultural context; he’s uniting generations; he’s breaking the rules. He’s manifesting postmodernist ideas in his approach to production and business as well as music. But as far as the fans are concerned, it’s just fun (and sometimes funny). Bradlee himself will tell you, simply, “I reimagine a song in another style because I want to hear it that way.” Scott gets new singers all the time to fit the song.

By the looks of it they have their own TV show. I don't have cable, so I've never heard of it. 


Kate Davis - Upright Bass

Cristina Gatti - Love Me Harder - Cover

Robyn Adele Anderson - Girls Just Want to Have Fun - Cover

Robyn Adele Anderson - Hark! the Herald Angels Sing

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Friday, December 5, 2014

What to Do With Money Gifts?

I don't really like gift cards. Mainly because some companies have them reduce in value if they aren't used right away. 

My oldest nephew is at the age where he just wants expensive gifts, or money. 

One year I put $25 inside balloons. He had to pop the balloons to get his money.

My other sister - not his mom - gave him a money lei.

This year I begged asked my lovely husband to make a fighter jet. I tried a few steps and decided, "I can't get this to work."

He did. The tutorial is here.

Start a new Holiday Tradition that will quickly be your child's favorite! Santa is ready to send a beautiful package fully personalized just for your special loved ones.

Simply select the package you would like and watch your child's absolute JOY when he or she receives a letter straight from the North Pole that talks all about them personally - what they want for Christmas and what they have done to be good. Watch your child's eyes light up when they see their names on the Nice List!

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Disclaimer: I'm writing this in connection to USFamilyGuide. I will get a sample package from I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. 

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Random Tid Bits

  1. Every year my husband has a lady at work that hands him a stocking to decorate. It's funny because it's mostly guys that work there. They don't usually want to decorate something like that. One year I decorated for him. The next year it never got done. This year she handed him a whole apron to decorate.

  2. I have to say that I love his humor on this. I'm sure she was looking for something cute. It says, "For big o' bowels of beef and ham, how will I sleep tonight?"

  3. We had an insurance guy - Denis over, and Mica cracked me up. He kept saying, "When is Dentist going to get here?" I had to tell Denis when he got to our house.

  4. I got a Shutterfly book of our vacation earlier this week. I kept adding more and more pages. Then it was hard to eliminate. The book was 50% off, but I spent $50. That means my book would have been $100. I need to learn how to simplify. LOL will look good.

  5. This upcoming weekend will be my cookie making weekend. My sister's, mom are getting together the following week for a decorating bash. I'll make them, and freeze them to keep them fresh.  

  6. A tradition that I started is making a gingerbread something every year. Last year I got a village somewhere on clearance. I figured we aren't eating it anyhow. I don't need to worry about expiration dates. The boys love doing them. I add to them, so they don't look like the one on the box. Do you ever make a gingerbread house?

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Brita Update

We have the Elf on the Shelf for the first time this year. 

I didn't know how much the boys would get into it, but they really have. Isaak writes her letters every day. If anything Brita coming around has upped Isaak's writing skills.

Brita and Leonard had a marshmallow fight, and got 2 cups of joe ready for the morning.

Daddy rolled his eyes at me when I got Brita. When he saw how into Brita Isaak was, he to got into placing her around the house. 

First Dad placed Brita on the ceiling fan helping Leonardo up.

Then Dad had Brita and Leonardo getting into the cereal box. Cute butt shot!

Then I took over, and had Brita get into my makeup. Doesn't she look pretty?

She wrote an apology letter saying over and over again, "I am sorry. I will not get into your Mom's makeup again."

I had Brita sleeping all cuddled up in Isaak's room the next night. Mica got super jealous that day.

The next night she hid candy canes on Mica's drawers.

She got into Isaak underwear drawer, and decided to decorate the tree with them. At least they were clean.

I'm not struggling for ideas just yet. So far I'm kind of glad we got this Elf on the Shelf.

Never in a Million Years Did I Think I'd Win Something This Big!

When I thought about it I entered Fat Brain Toys - $300 Shopping Spree.

They give away a shopping spree every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

I got an email 2 nights ago saying that I won. Just to make sure I checked their FB page to see if my name was on there. It was. It was one of those things where I forced myself to do a double take to see if I was really the winner.

Of course it was too late to call them to figure out what I do with the code exactly. I wanted to make sure it wasn't a 1 time entry before I used it.

Here I am. We have declared that I would be the one that would be the dad character in A Christmas Story - because I like winning things like the Dad liked winning the leg lamp. My husband rolls his eyes just like the Mom rolls her eyes in the film. Mica is Ralphie because he obsesses about Legos just like Ralphie obsesses about his Red Ryder BB Gun. Isaak is Randy because he's a Momma's boy, a player of attention, and the baby of the family. Thank God Isaak eats better than Randy!

My mind is on A Christmas Story because we're going to see it tonight at The Rose Theater.

Back to my winnings. I swore my husband would kill me for winning this. Not really, but he had just told me the day before, "You better not review any more toys."

When I told him I won, I was all giggly, like a small school girl that had just been asked to a dance for the first time. He thought I drank alcohol. For the record I was not drunk. I didn't even have a sip of alcohol in me.

The code didn't expire until 2023 - something crazy like that. I knew if I didn't use it, the code would get lost. I have Christmas presents bought and wrapped. I'm quick like that.

I decided I'd buy 1 thing for all the nephew's and my son's birthdays for the most part.

Here's what I got:

I got Mica, Isaak, Cousin Evan and Elijah each a Boogie Board LCD Writing Tablet with a protective sleeve. All that added up fast! I was going to get my oldest nephew one to, but he didn't think he'd use it, which is fine.

I may give Mica and Isaak theirs for Christmas. The others are waiting for birthdays.

I got Edison a Tobbles Neo, which has won a lot of awards. They bobble around on their own, and stack up to.

Then I got Mica a Lego Castle set for a future present. He'll like love it.

They have special needs toys, but I was already at my max of spending. Emerson is a little hard to get things for. He has special needs that go beyond autism or downs syndrome. I've already gotten Emerson tactile bean bags for birthday. 

My sister-in-law told me not to buy for her son anymore last year. So...I'm not.
I had a cyber deal, so I got $25 off my order - if I paid anything over $100. Then I had the $300 GC. I ended up spending $3.35. Squeal! 

Thank you Fat Brain Toys!
Disclaimer: I won this GC to Fat Brain Toys. I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. 

Bulu Box Promotion

I do like healthy monthly box subscriptions. I was just introduced to Bulu Box.

The perfect partner in the pursuit of a healthier you, Bulu Box is like having a personal trainer and a nutritionist as a best friend. 

This is actually something that my sister's and I thought about getting my Dad for Christmas. It's a great way to try out a lot of different healthy snacks for a good price. If you go and buy all these things in the store it will be over the cost to get a Bulu Box.

Each month, a box of healthy discoveries is shipped right to your door for just $10! 

  • You learn about that month's 4-5 premium samples, try each one and see what fits into your individual healthy lifestyle. 
Disclaimer: I'm writing this in connection to USFamilyGuide. I will get a sample of Bulu Box. I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. 

The Apel's The Apel's The Apel's The Apel's The Apel'sThe Apel's

Little Emerson

I know some of my readers asked how my nephew Emerson is doing. 

He had surgeries on Monday. The boy must have known he was in for something big. He kept nervously biting his cheek. :( He had a fat lip before he was sedated.

The Ears Nose Throat Doctor took out 1/2 his tonsils, and his adenoids for the 2nd time. I didn't even know adenoids can grow back. I guess it's common for them to grow back, and his did. The doctor only removed 1/2 his tonsil because his other 1/2 looked so different. His anatomy isn't like others, so one has to be on the careful side with him.

Since he was sedated he had a CT scan to look at the other 1/2 of his tonsils. For now they are leaving them alone.

He then had surgery with his eye doctor. Older adults often times have to get a surgery to pin their eyelids up. It's a pretty routine surgery. The first scare was that Emerson is allergic to silicone; they use silicone to do this particular surgery. If he didn't get his eyelids pinned up they'd slowly start to droop more and more. After time he wouldn't be able to see at all. Emerson got one of his eyes pinned up in the spring. It was a success. The only trouble they had was him keeping his hands away from his healing eye. They can only do one eye at a time. So along with everything else he had his other eye pinned up.

The boy also had a hearing test. His hearing is the same as it was. It's good it wasn't worse. He just got done with an ear infection. He already wears a hearing aid.

Emerson stayed in the PICU because of all the things that were done to him. The doctors were thinking he'd be there possibly for a week. That was hard because my sister is still breastfeeding my youngest nephew Edison. Back and forth they went. Someone had to stay with Emerson 100% of the time. That's understandable. That's what my sister wanted anyhow. Luckily Mr. Emerson was doing so well the doctors kicked him out of the hospital on Wednesday. He's at home recovering. Let's hope he leaves his eye alone for the most part.

I'd post a picture, but I haven't seen him. I know he's all smiley now, but since his eye was just pinned up he doesn't look like himself. When people get eye work done I think of the movie Clockwork Orange. Not a pretty picture in my mind. His eye will get better over time. I'm sure the noises that come out of his mouth sound horse from his other surgeries. He'll be able to breathe better. All good news I suppose.

Holiday Gift Guide

This will be on ongoing gift guide. I'll post it at the top when it's more complete.
I'm trying to think of gifts that are not typical gifts this year. I know kids have so many toys. Don't get me wrong we love toys, but I want to feature things that aren't all toys.
For the adults on a healthy kick:

Get them a monthly subscription to: Bulu Box. They have healthy samples in each box. *$10 a Month

For kids and adults that have skin problems, and babies that are cutting teeth:

Get them a Baltic Amber Necklace at Hazelaid. *$17.95

These are fun for babies as well - Doodle Pants. I got my nephew Edison a pair of these with a plain red t-shirt at Walmart. *$24 (I got Edison's on sale)

For the hot chocolate and cookie lover:

 Get them a mug with a spot for a cookie, or 2 at Uncommon Goods. *$18

For a new mom and baby:

Try Teething Bling. There's all different colors and designs to choose from. It's jewelery that's safe for babies to chew on.  *Around $19

Tweens and teens are often times hard to buy for. Here's a perfect gift for them:

A Whatever Clock at Uncommon Goods. *$22

They'd also love the nerdy toys at Think Geek. Even adult nerds would love their stuff! The thing to the right is an air gun.

You can also find a tutorial online to fold origami money. We did a jet plane for my oldest nephew.

Some guys are hard to shop for in my opinion.

The Dad in our house likes sports, but doesn't like to wear sports gear. My Dad AKA Grandpa doesn't like sports at all. He's a gardener type. What do you get people that don't want typical guy things? 

I like Duluth Trading Company for clothing. They have pants that don't ride up, which is apparently a problem for men. There's an extra bend fabric for their crotch area. 

Lowes is great for tools. 

Camping gear at any local surplus store, or scheels will do. 

If all else fails get them pistachios.

For the Kids. My kids eat, drink and sleep Legos. Besides sets I got them:

A Lego Switch Plate for their rooms. *$16.94 (I got them on sale)

 I also got them just a big green square because they didn't have one. *$10

My boys are into bow ties, so I bought some here. *19 for 3 They will be present toppers. You could do the same thing with hair things for girls.

Kids will have fun with these Chalkboard Placemats, while you make dinner. *34 for 4
Any kid or adult, any age would love a Boogie Board - LCD Writer at Fat Brain Toys. *$35 
  Kids that believe in Santa would love getting a package from

Get 15% off any purchase - Use promo code: FG15 
 If all else fails and you don't know what to get people, get them a membership to something in their area like a community playhouse, a zoo, science center, a museum, a forest, or garden center.
We've done this for my parents, and in the past they enjoyed this.


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