Wednesday, October 31, 2012

HABA Pure Nature Doll Leafy Girl

Hi Neighbors!

Here is a great gift idea from HABA for that little sweetheart in your life.  The Pure Nature Doll Leafy Girl is designed for ages 6 months and up and the suggested retail is $17.99.  At 8 inches long she is a perfect size for little one's hands.  The little leaves gives them something to pull, lift, and play with.

The HABA Pure Nature Organic toys make a very sensible choice for gift giving.  You only want to give that little one the best choice available, by going with a soft, all natural toy.  These toys are produced in accordance with GOTS (Global Organic Textile Standards).  The GOTS are for the child's safety and for the environment.

HABA toys can be found at over 1,000 US specialty retail stores, specialty catalogs and of course online!  They have been recognized with both German and American rewards.  Be sure to visit their website for more information.

HABA and How They Started:

It was a risk to start a company in an empty factory building on April 26, 1938, in uncertain times and with limited capital resources. But Anton Engel and Eugen Habermaaß were willing to take this risk: they founded the Anton Engel company, a factory for polished wooden products in Bad Rodach, then going on to found a second company a few days later with Karl Wehrfritz: Wehrfritz & Co.
In 1940, Eugen Habermaaß assumed sole responsibility for the company after his equal partners pulled out. With vision, a strong will, and perseverance, he saw the companies safely though the Second World War and the subsequent occupation.
In 1955, Eugen Habermaaß passed away quite suddenly and unexpectedly at the age of 53. Though his wife Luise Habermaaß had been helping out at the firm for a number of years, her next step took a great deal of courage: the mother of four took the helm without any formal training in business or technology. Her sense of social responsibility towards the company’s employees back then is the main reason the company is still in existence today. Luise Habermaaß quickly demonstrated a fine sense of the demands of the market. With a great deal of determination and the support of her long-term employees, she fought to make her own personal economic miracle a success in the 50s. Luise Habermaaß, honorary citizen of the city of Bad Rodach, died in 2003 shortly before her 97th birthday.
The above is just a little bit of how HABA was started.  Visit their website to read more.

I would appreciate if my neighbors would "like" the HABA Facebook page.  Be sure to take a minute and follow them on Twitter

I am sure my neighbors will be satisfied with any toy they purchase from HABA.  And your child will be happy too! I will just share something with you here.  I did a sort of stress test by pulling on Leafy Girl's arms, legs, hair, etc. because I have purchased toys before that come apart at the seams.  Leafy Girl passed with flying colors.  Nothing came loose, and you did not hear any ripping sounds.  This doll is well made and I am already planning her new home!

Disclosure:I received no monetary compensation for this post.  I did receive the HABA Pure Nature Doll Leafy Girl for review purposes.  All quotes in red are taken from the sponsor's website or email.  All thoughts and opinions are mine.

Gooseberry Patch the Harvest Table

Hey Neighbors!

We are going to add a really nice cookbook from the Gooseberry Patch to our Gift Guide.  This book, The Harvest Table is filled with recipes for fall and winter.  We tried a few recipes out of the book.  One was the Cowpoke Cornbread!  We have really been in a baking mood since the weather has turned a little bit chilly.  Of course they have some great sounding soups and stews too!  The cornbread was GREAT

We also made the Frosted Pumpkin Cookies.  These were a hit!  We had a hard time saving any for the next day!  My children ate these up, literally!  Perfect for the holidays!

All of the recipes are easy to follow.  These are not recipes that sound so exotic that you will never use them.  These are everyday, great tasting recipes, you will want to use over again and again.

You can purchase the Gooseberry Patch Recipe books on the Gooseberry Patch website for $16.95.  They have many other cookbooks you might be interested in.  Start thinking gifts, my neighbors!  I know several friends who would enjoy one of these cookbooks!

About Gooseberry Patch:
   Back in 1984, we were next-door neighbors raising our families in the little town of Delaware, Ohio. Two moms with small children, we were looking for a way to do what we loved and stay home with the kids too. We had always shared a love of home cooking and making memories with family & friends and so, after many a conversation over the backyard fence, Gooseberry Patchwas born. 

We put together our first catalog at our kitchen tables, enlisting the help of our loved ones wherever we could. From that very first mailing, we found an immediate connection with many of our customers and it wasn’t long before we began receiving letters, photos and recipes from these new friends. In 1992, we put together our very first cookbook, compiled from hundreds of these recipes and, the rest, as they say, is history. 

Hard to believe it’s been over 25 years since those kitchen-table days! From that original littleGooseberry Patch family, we’ve grown to include an amazing group of creative folks who love cooking, decorating and creating as much as we do. Today, we’re best known for our homestyle, family-friendly cookbooks, now recognized as national bestsellers. 

One thing’s for sure, we couldn’t have done it without our friends all across the country. Each year, we’re honored to turn thousands of your recipes into our collectible cookbooks. Our hope is that each book captures the stories and heart of all of you who have shared with us. Whether you’ve been with us since the beginning or are just discovering us, welcome to the Gooseberry Patch 

One neighbor will receive a copy of Gooseberry Patch The Harvest Table.  Enter soon!

Disclosure:I received no monetary compensation for this post.  I did receive The Harvest Table for review purposes.  All quotes in red are taken from the sponsor's email or website.  All thoughts and opinions are mine.

OcuFresh Eye Wash

Hi Neighbors!

Anyone finding their eyes itching lately?  I have and so have some of my children.  Fall and spring really hit me.  Anyway, when OcuFresh offered to allow me to try some of their products, it was perfect timing.  Not to mention, I have been doing some fall cleaning and stirring up dust.

I received a tote bag with $50 worth of OcuFresh products inside.  The MiniDrops are going to be my favorite.  They are a Lubricant Eye Drop.  All of the drops I received are preservative free.  The MiniDrops come in small one use tubes.  I really like this feature.  This way you know you are using a sterile eye drop in your eye.

There was also the Eye-Cept Rewetting Drops.  These are also one use tubes for soft contact lens.  Now, no one in my family has contact lens, but these would be great when you experience dry eyes.

OcuFresh Eye Wash is for cleaning your eye of pollen, chlorine and other eye irritants.  You can use the provided cup or you can just use the tube and gently squeeze the eye wash into your eye.  We are doing some work in back, removing a portion of the roof and putting a new roof over the deck.  We just may need this product if sawdust or dirt gets in someone's eye as the work progresses.

The last item in my package was OcuSave.  This is an eye vitamin and mineral supplement.  You take 1-2 of the soft gels with food daily.  This contains essential antioxidants plus Goji Berry, Cassiae Cemem, Eyebright, Bioflavonoids, and Bilberry.

These products are great to have on hand in the medicine cabinet or in the glove box of your vehicle.  Be prepared for the unexpected!  I have even had friends ask me occasionally for eye drops and now I will have them available when needed.

From OcuFresh:
OcuFresh® is Preservative-free Eye Wash in Single-Use Vials. Preservatives are known to cause irritation and increase the risk of ocular allergies. OcuFresh® is preservative-free. It is safe for all ages and sensitivity levels.

Is one of my neighbors interested in receiving an OcuFresh package like mine?  You can if you win this giveaway!

Disclosure:I received no monetary compensation for this post.  I did receive samples of OcuFresh for review purposes.  All quotes in red are taken from the sponsor's email or website.  All thoughts and opinions are mine.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Toy State CAT Mining Set

Hey neighbors!

Here is one you will like if you have little boys!  This one will be part of our Gift Guide.  This is a Mining Theme playset from Toy State.  With a CAT dump truck and sound effects your little builder will have hours of pleasure playing with the truck and working rock crusher.  This set is designed for ages 3 and up.

I have a little boy in mind who I think will love this set.  Not sure if mom will enjoy the noise or not! :)  We will see!I am sure his eyes will light up when he sees the CAT dump truck.  The truck can drive in and out under the hill and then up and down the ramp.  The 3 buttons will allow construction sounds, worker's voices and real mining site sounds.

The set does require 2-AAA batteries that are not included.  All the other pieces easily snap together for assembly.

Toy State has several other toys I am sure you will want to check out.  Take a few minutes to browse their website!  You can purchase the CAT Mining Set for $9.99 on Amazon, or at Walmart, Target, Kmart and Toys R Us.

Do any of my neighbors know any little one who would love one of these CAT Mining Playsets as a gift?   One neighbor will receive a mining set of their own!

Monday, October 29, 2012

The Sugar Creek Gang Beloved Books

Hi neighbors!

As you all know we recently returned from our very long trip to Texas and New Mexico.  I have to share with you one little item that really helped my daughters handle the long hours in the vehicle.  It is the Sugar Creek Gang Vol. 1 on CDs from Beloved Books.  Not only did it help traveling, but they wanted to listen to them while going to sleep!  The set arrived right before we left on our trip.

Now, my older girls grew up listening to Sugar Creek stories on the radio, and of course they read all the books they could get their hands on.  Somehow though we just sort of lost track of the Sugar Creek Gang, except for a few books, until just recently when we were offered the opportunity to review them through the TOS Crew program.  I have to say I jumped at the chance to get these in my daughters' hands.  They were excited too!

Volume one contains six stories.  They do inform you, that these are not in the same order as the cassettes, so be sure you check the titles before ordering.  The stories on this set are:
1. The Swamp Robber
2. The Killer Bear
3. The Winter Rescue
4. The Lost Camper
5. Chicago Adventure
6. The Secret Hideout

After hearing these, I feel like we know Bill Collins, the 10 year old narrator and his best friend Poetry.  The rest of the crew is dragonfly, Big Jim, Little Jim and Circus.  Your children will easily be able to relate to these fun, God loving characters.  I love how they weave christianity into the stories so naturally.

You can purchase these sets from the Blessed Books website for $54.95.  There are 12 CDs in the set.  My daughters have listened to all of them now.  They are now starting over again!

Each story is filled with fun and adventure along with great Bible teaching.  I am so glad we have this set and I have a feeling we will be ordering more.  These would make a great gift idea.

Here is just a little bit about the Sugar Creek Gang.  They were written by Paul Hutchens, beginning in 1939.  Paul Ramseyer chose to dramatize the books for radio several years ago.  Now you and your family can enjoy the 36 book audio series on CD.  Over 100's of hours on 72 CDs.

If you just want to sample one story first, you can purchase the first story, The Swamp Robber for just $4.95  with free first class postage.  You can also order all 6 volumes for $279.70 and save $50.  Be sure to visit the Beloved Books website and look around!

Be sure to click on the banner below to see what other Crew members had to say.


Disclaimer:  As a member of the TOS Crew, I received this product, at no cost to me, in exchange for my honest review.  All opinions are mine.

Great Time at the Dallas Zoo

Hey neighbors!

If you have ever been in Dallas and have not visited their zoo, you are really missing out on a spectacular time.  We were able to visit the zoo while we were there and we truly enjoyed ourselves.  Some good advice here though, try to go on a weekday.  We went on a Monday and although other people were there we had no problems wandering the zoo and seeing the animals.  I spoke with a gentleman there and he said the weekend was packed.  I personally do not enjoy crowds, so I am glad we made the decision to go on Monday.  This is one large zoo!  Get prepared to go on a mini tour!

We started out by heading towards the wilds of Africa.  Before I begin with what I saw though I want to tell you that I was impressed by the cleanliness of the park and by the friendliness of the employees.  Yes, I know they are there to help, but I had at least two of them come over when they saw us and ask us some questions and share information with us.  One of them offered us a better view of the animals we were trying to see.  The other stood and actually had a 10-15 minute conversation with me about the zoo, what changes were being made, and she didn't make me feel like I was wasting her time.  She was on her break, but took time to answer some questions.  Nice!

One of the first little creatures we saw was this black and white   .  He looked so interesting as he was partaking of his breakfast.  Look at that long tail!

Another feature in the Dallas zoo is all the interesting statues they have all over.  They make for great family pictures.  I will be sharing them throughout this post as we come to them.  Here are the first ones we ran into.   My daughter wanted to pose for this one!

As you can tell we have entered the Wilds of Africa, Giants of the Savanna area.  This is where we saw the elephants, giraffes, zebras, lions and cheetahs.  My husband was fascinated with the wart hog!  I mentioned that an employee shared a bit with me about the zoo, this is one of the area she discussed.  They had enlarged the elephant area and she was telling me they had trackers on some of the elephants to monitor how far they walked.  She said previously they did not have as much room and would just pace or rock back and forth.  With the amount of room they have now, the elephants are doing almost as much walking as they do in the wilds.

Oh!  I almost forgot,we also saw the penguins and the Mandrill  on the way to the elephants.  They were just feeding the penguins, so they were very active!  It was fun to watch them diving in and out of the water.  They were so active.

Catch a glimpse of this  Mandrill .  Isn't he colorful!  We had fun watching him.  The males are the colorful ones and the females are plainer.

Next we saw the giraffes and zebras.  There were two zebras who were playing around with each other.  The employee there said that these two were always together.

You can buy food to feed the giraffes.  There is a feeding station and the giraffes will come right up to you.

After that we saw the big cats.  The cheetah and lions.  I personally enjoy cheetahs.

My husband thought the warthog was unique looking!

After visiting an aviary, right next to the crocodiles we continued on in the zoo.  We searched for the gorilla and could not find him.  There are several places where you can try the view, but apparently he was hiding.  We did manage to catch him later in the day. While strolling we managed to take a few family pictures.

One animal I definitely wanted to see was the Koala.  We finished this side of the zoo and headed to the other side.  One of the first things we saw were some beautiful flamingos.  Their coloring was so bright!

After visiting a few more animals we headed to the koala, kangaroo and kookaburra.

The last place we visited was the children's section.  They have a really, nice play area set up for your children to relax in.  There is a little area with little streams of water where they can walk through and cool off.  There are donkeys, sheep, goats, and even a few chickens.

Would we go again?  Yes, we definitely would.  The Dallas Zoo is well worth your visit!  If you live in or around the Dallas area or are passing through, try to add the Dallas Zoo to your schedule. Oh, before I forget, here is the gorilla!

There are several areas of the zoo that I did not include pictures of.  This would have been a huge post if I included all of them.  Thank you all for stopping by and enjoying part of our trip!  See you soon neighbors!

The Dallas Zoo is open from 9:00-4:00 pm daily.
Adults ages 12-64 are $12
Children ages 3-11 are $9
Seniors ages 65 and up are $9
Children 2 and under are free
Parking is $8 per vehicle
All prices are subject to change.

Be sure to stop by their website and read the history of the Dallas Zoo.  They actually began in 1888 when a man from Colorado offered to sell two deer and two mountain lions to the city of Dallas.  They were purchased for $60 and placed in pens in the City Park.  I find that very interesting.  You can read more on their site.

I want my neighbors to know, my entire family was impressed by the Dallas Zoo.  It is well worth your time and the price for entry.  So, plan a day to go and enjoy the Dallas Zoo with your family!

Disclosure:I received no monetary compensation for this post.  I did receive passes to the Dallas Zoo.  All quotes in red are taken from the sponsor's email or website.  All thoughts and opinions are mine.