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Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Sol Republic Master Track Headphones Review

These days anyone with a smartphone has those ubiquitous in-ear headphones. Those don't work for everyone - and they don't cancel out all of the external noise to have complete sound immersion. But Sol Republic Master Track headphones are perfect for all listeners for that complete immersive sound experience.  

The Sol Republic Master Track Headphones are suitable for those who appreciate soft and loud music. The headphones completely surround the ears of the user with comfortable padding. Other headphones like these smash your ears, give you a headache and do not offer the total experience.  But these headphones surround you without any discomfort whatsoever. 

The actual headband is easily adjustable.  The entire gear is easily transportable. And what really matters is the listening experience. The sound is rich and the headphones cancel surrounding outside noise. 

The cord of the headphones also is equipped with volume buttons, as well as a multi-ability center button. Clicking the button a single time starts or stops music, and double clicking skips the current song playing. Triple clicking makes the playlist go backward. 

The Sol Republic Master Track X3 headphones are also customizable with your choice of 3 headbands.  For a complete sound experience with total comfort and style, check these out.

Full Disclosure: I was provided with a set of Sol Republic Master Track Headphones to review.  All opinions are 100% my own and I highly recommend these if you are in the market for a quality headphones.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

My Favorite Person Contest With BLURB Photo Albums

Did you know that Blurb might give you $2,500 to read about your favorite person? All you have to do is make a book about a loved one filled with all sorts of kind words, creativity and insight, and if selected, you could win the grand prize! For every book you make (there are seven different categories, so seven different chances to win) you will receive a 30% discount on the printed product. Go to Blurb to check out the details of the contest to see what the categories are and when the entries are due. The 30% discount on My Favorite books will be applied at checkout when you use the promo code: MYFAVORITE. (And, even if you don't enter, you can still get 30% off on all My Favorite books or save 15% on all printed orders through April 30th!)

Not sure what to write about? Take a look at what some of the people at Blurb say about their favorite people. 

Make a Book About Your Favorite Person and You Could Win $2,500 from Blurb
(This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links.)

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Nelle & Lizzy Jewelry the Perfect Gifts for Mother’s Day

The second Sunday of May is set aside to celebrate Mother’s Day here in the U.S.  But really, shouldn’t mothers be celebrated everyday of the year since they do so much for their families all-year-long?  How about designing the perfect sentimental gift for your mother or grandmother that she can wear all-year long?  Nelle & Lizzy is the perfect place to create unique and personalized bling that’s perfect for everyday, yet beautiful for a night on the town.

Nelle & Lizzy came about when friends Page and Martha tried to find a jeweler who could stamp the names of their children on simple silver rings.  They quickly discovered that a line of jewelry that expresses family love and motherhood didn’t exist.  So after years of research and design they developed a line of beautifully crafted and personalized silver rings.  They were so beautiful in fact that Oprah took notice and they soon became part of her “O list” of favorite things. 

Today Nelle & Lizzy’s line of jewelry has expanded since those silver rings.  Now they have a line of necklaces, bracelets, charms and even more rings that reaffirm and celebrate all of the wonderful women and girls in our lives. 

The toughest part once you check out their site is making a selection.  You can pick a foundation piece to start with such as a bracelet or necklace.  Then you add charms, gems and enhancements that customize your piece to perfection.  I have three daughters so I created a charm bracelet for myself that uniquely reminds me of my 3 peas in a pod.  I am thinking that when each of my girls has a family of her own I will create a piece for them using the charms from my bracelet as a foundation piece.

Nelle & Lizzy isn't just for moms.  My teenage daughter loves the monogram charms and rings.  Those seem to be a popular item with her friends.  The jewelry is subtle and yet beautifully crafted and can be worn every day.  Loads of Nelle & Lizzy celebrity fans include Oprah, Gayle King, Minnie Driverand Sheryl Crow.  That means there are smart people in their lives who know that personalized jewelry makes the perfect gift.  So be smart and check out Nelle & Lizzy for that perfect gift that they will appreciate all-year-long.

Disclosure: I was provided with the beautiful pieces that represent my family by Nelle & Lizzy.  All opinions are 100% my own.  I love and have since purchased other Nelle & Lizzy pieces to add to my beautiful collection.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Help Your Child Become a Better Writer: 3 Easy, Fun Prompts to Try!

Guest Post by Dallas Woodburn

I’ve been a writing teacher for the past eight years, working with a range of ages: kindergarten through senior citizens. I’ve led writing workshops for public schools, private schools, home-schooling groups, community centers, and more! I also taught undergraduate writing courses at Purdue University for three years.

When I talk to parents and teachers, two questions come up again and again:
1. How can we make writing FUN for kids and teenagers?
2. How can we help our kids become better writers?

The answers to these two questions are tied together: like anything, people become better writers with practice. The best way to help your child become a better writer is to encourage him or her to write, write, write! Well, how do you do that? By making writing a fun activity.

Here are three popular writing prompts I use often in my work with young writers. These all can be tweaked to a variety of ages; they all facilitate development of descriptive writing and increased vocabulary; and they have all been extremely well-received by young writers as “a whole lot of fun!”

Use Your Senses to Explore a Place
1. Think of a place that you know very well and is vivid in your mind. Natural places work well for this activity. Be as specific as possible: for example, if I want to write about the beach, I should think of a specific beach I’ve been to, like the Ventura State Beach, instead of generally thinking about “the beach.”
2. Set a timer for one minute. Try to write until the timer dings. Don’t worry about editing yourself. Don’t worry about being “perfect.” Just brainstorm! List all the things you SEE when you are at this place.
3. Do the same thing for the other four senses: HEAR, SMELL, TASTE, TOUCH.
4. Lastly, set the timer for one minute and freewrite about how you FEEL when you are at this place. Do you have any memories that are surfacing?
5. Read through your list of sensory details and emotions. Now, use these words to write a story or a poem about this place.

Adjective Alphabet
1. Write your first name at the top of a piece of paper.
2. Set a timer for one minute. For the first letter in your name, brainstorm all the adjectives you can think of that start with this letter.
3. Do the same for the rest of the letters in your name (you can skip duplicate letters.)
4. Now, for each adjective you’ve written down, try to come up with one or two synonyms. If you get stuck, break out the thesaurus!
5. Write a story or poem using adjectives from your brainstormed lists.

Character Clusters
1. In the middle of a piece of paper, write down an animal or person who could be a character in your story. Draw a circle around the word.
2. Around the circle, write down words that could describe this character. It’s okay if they contradict each other: for example, a cat might be sweet and cuddly, or it might be skittish, or it might be mean. Brainstorm all the possibilities you can think of.
3. Also write down facts you know about this character. Where does it live? What does it eat? What are its favorite things to do?
4. Do the same thing for two other characters.
5. Popular characters from previous students: bear, tiger, lion, pigeon, squirrel, snake, whale, deer, dog, cat, grandfather, grandmother, boy, girl
6. Now use your brainstormed characters to write a story.

The number-one best thing you can do to make writing fun and fulfilling for your kids? Be encouraging and excited about what they write! It doesn’t matter how silly or goofy their ideas are. What matters is that you are supporting them. Have them read their poems or stories aloud to you; cheer loudly at the end. Hang their work on the fridge. Make copies to give to friends and relatives. Ask them questions about their works-in-progress.

If kids enjoy writing, they will write more and become better writers. In practicing the art of writing, they are accessing their creativity, expanding their vocabulary, and gaining confidence in their own ideas and self-expression.

Happy writing!

BIO: Dallas Woodburn blogs about joyful, healthy, simplified living at Day-by-Day Masterpiece (http://daybydaymasterpiece.com) where she recently spearheaded a Year of Kindness Challenge. A Steinbeck Fellow in Creative Writing at San Jose State University, she is the author of two children’s books and editor of Dancing With The Pen: a collection of today’s best youth writing, available at http://dallaswoodburnpr.com/books. Dallas offers online guided mentorships and tutoring for young writers. Learn more at http://dallaswoodburnpr.com.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Mitsubishi Mirage Makes a Great First Car for Teens

Originally Posted on Yahoo:
What type of car makes a great first car for a teen or young adult?  If you don’t happen to have a beat up jalopy sitting in your driveway (or front yard) then it may make sense to consider purchasing a brand new vehicle that has a solid track record and doesn’t surprise you with sticker shock.  The Mitsubishi Mirage could just be that car.  See full article on Yahoo.

Disclaimer: I was provided with a Mitsubishi Mirage to test drive for a week.  All opinions are 100% my own, I was not compensated in any way for this review.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Epic Read! "Dorothy Must Die" Novel Bewitches Fans

Fans of the "Wizard of Oz" world will be thrilled to hear that Epic Reads has the first 12 chapters of the highly anticipated novel "Dorothy Must Die" available online today.  This amazing teaser will cast a spell on you and ready to order the whole download.

Author Danielle Page, who was a writer for 9 years for "The Guiding Light" found herself immersed and mesmerized as the creator of an Oz trilogy.  The prequel to "Dorothy Must Die" is "No Place Like Oz,"a short novella that sets the stage to Dorothy 'breaking bad' and hinting at her turn to the dark side.

In an interview with USA Today, Page shares her fascination with the Oz characters and having a wicked time bringing out their bad side.  Even Glinda takes a turn displaying her salty and not so sweet side.  And don't forget Dorothy's triple threat, the Scarecrow, Tin Man and Lion.  They all play up their bad sides as her henchmen in the land of Oz set about 80 years after she first landed in the Emerald City.

The book official releases on April Fools Day 2014, but don't be a fool by skipping this smart and good-turned-evil good read.

On a side note the CW channel is currently working on turning this book into a television series.  With the success of shows such as "Once Upon a Time" and "Sleepy Hallow" there is a huge appetite for seeing our heroes go from good to evil.  I think we all have Walter White to thank for that.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

2014 Disney On Ice Coming to SAP Center at San Jose February 19-23 & Oakland Oracle Arena Feb 26-March 2

Who's ready for Disney On Ice at the SAP Center at San Jose and the Oakland Oracle Arena?   For the first time ever, Disney On Ice presents ROCKIN’ EVER AFTER in San Jose from February 19-23, 2014.  Then they'll be performing February 26 to March 2 at the Oakland Oracle Arena.

Disney On Ice's ROCKIN’ EVER AFTER is bringing an all-star lineup of your favorite Disney characters to the ice in a sensational live production!  You will see characters and scenes from "Brave," "Tangled," "The Beauty and the Beast," "The Little Mermaid," and more!

For the first time ever, "Brave's" Merida will be introduced in this stellar production.  Don't wait - rush on over to get your tickets now.

WHERE is it playing?  
At the SAP Center at San Jose (formerly HP Pavilion) – 525 W. Santa Clara St, San Jose, CA 95113 

When:        Wednesday, February 19 – Sunday, February 23
Wednesday, February 19            7:30 PM
Thursday, February 20                7:30 PM
Friday, February 21                    10:30 AM & 7:30 PM
Saturday, February  22                11:00 AM, 3:00 PM & 7:00 PM
Sunday, February 23                   11:00 AM, 3:00 PM & 6:30 PM

Oracle Arena – 7000 Coliseum Way, Oakland, CA 94621 

WHEN:     Wednesday, February 26 – Sunday, March 2
Wednesday, February 26            7:30 PM
Thursday, February 27                7:30 PM
Friday, February 28                     10:30 AM & 7:30 PM
Saturday, March 1                       11:00 AM, 3:00 PM & 7:00 PM
Sunday, March 2                         11:00 AM, 3:00 PM & 6:30 PM

TICKETS Information:    
Ticket price levels are $20, $27, $50 (VIP) and $80 (Rinkside)
Opening Night tickets discounted priced at only $15 (not valid on premium seating
Tickets available for purchase online at Ticketmaster.com, by calling 800-745-3000 or at the venue Box Office.

*Tickets may be subject to service charges, facility and handling fees.