Cauliflower Tabouli with Minnesota Farmers Market Cookbook

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 During the cold winter months it might seem improbable, but summer is bound to come again.  Minnesota residents  live a bulk of the year in the midst of snowy skies and freezing temperatures.  The sunny summer months can be short and intense.  Those that live in mild California might have access to a farmers market year around.  This concept of fresh, local vegetables and fruits year round is not a reality here.  Our local produce availability has a short, but plentiful time span. We are inspired to "live it up".  To help Minnesota resident make the … [Read more...]

Five Spooky & Fun Books for Halloween

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  My little fellas and I love to snuggle together during this cozy time of year.  The cold weather is just starting and winter is on the horizon, our house is set with spooky lights and everything has an air of mystery.  There are few things better in this world than being cuddled up safe with your kids enjoying good books.  For those of you on the search for some new Halloween titles check out the list below featuring a selection for a wide range of ages.   A little fiend who’s too good for his own good befriends an angel who is too naughty—and together they concoct a … [Read more...]

Cooking with the Kids via Chop Chop- Cooking Real Food with Your Family

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I've mentioned this before, but my littlest guy loves to cook.  If he sees a bowl with ingredients on the kitchen counter, he immediately pushes a chair over to stand on and then takes on his roll as mini chef.  Since he was very little there has been no stopping him from helping in the kitchen.  There has been a learning curve along the way, for a long time he failed to understand that at some point mom actually needed to take the ingredients away to cook or bake. Now, at almost four years old, we've hit our stride.  He can help, patiently wait for the next step, and understand that at … [Read more...]

The Wig in the Window Book Review (#WigInTheWindow)

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I received this book for review purposes, all opinions are my own. I am highly pleased that my oldest son, age 8, has developed a love of reading.  When he was just born I started sharing the reading experience with him.  It would actually be surprising if he didn't like books.  But as a mom it is delightful to see him grow and expand as a reader.  These days he mostly reads by himself.  He no longer curls up in my lap for a quick picture book- he's way too big!   But during this busy school season we found a way to continue our reading and bonding experience.  While my son … [Read more...]

Lisa Loeb’s Songs for Movin’ and Shakin’ Book & CD Review & a Giveaway (3 winners!)

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For those of us who are of Generation X (I guess I just dated myself, huh?), Lisa Loeb is synonymous with her 1994 hit, "Stay".  For the record, I own the Reality Bites soundtrack and I've watched that film more than I would care to admit.  It was a great move, at the time, when Ethan Hawke and Winona Ryder were the thing, but I digress. Lisa Loeb has been busy since then, releasing numerous albums and also starting a family.  Throughout that time her iconic glasses and distinct voice have a remained a part of our collective experience.  And now she has release a new book/CD that celebrates … [Read more...]

FOOD: Vegetarian Home Cooking by Mary McCartney Book Review

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Food: Vegetarian Home Cooking is mostly dedicated to vegetarian home cooking, but don't let that description derail you from this lovely cookbook.  My family is definitely not vegetarians.  Meat is an essential aspect of most of our meals.  But having a vegetarian based cookbook, especially one that is well written, is essential for any home. For me the most important aspect of a cookbook is the pictures.  If it doesn't have compelling, eye-catching photos I'm not usually included to use the cookbook or make any recipes.  I'm a highly visual person, but I imagine I am not alone in this … [Read more...]

New Children’s Books- Nighty-Night, Sleep Tight & The Big Bad Wolf Goes on Vacation & a Giveaway

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While we are a family who loves a good movie, what might not be so apart on The Mama Report is that we are a family that loves books.   In fact, all of us "read" books everyday.  I put "read" in quotation marks, because of course my five and three year old don't exactly read.  It is amazing what you can learn from books without even being able to understand the words.   My boys will sit for long periods of time engrossed in analyzing the pictures.  Yes- they are wild, loud, and crazy boys, but I revel in the fact that they love books just like their ol' ma. We recently received a selection … [Read more...]

New Picture Book- BECAUSE I’M YOUR DAD from Ahmet Zappa

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We are big fans of picture books in our home and this new release from Ahmet Zappa (son of musician Frank Zappa) looks like a touching, cute, and fun book.  I can't wait to check it out! Because I'm Your Dad is a tribute to Zappa’s happy childhood and a promise to his daughter, Halo, for a one-of-a-kind relationship. Watch the musical trailer for Because I’m Your Dad on Entertainment Weekly.  Here is the official scoop- In Ahmet Zappa’s first picture book for children, Because I’m Your Dad, a dad like no other promises to give his kid a childhood like no other. Whimsical monster … [Read more...]

The Bible: The Epic Mini Series (4-DVD Set), CD, & Novel Giveaway

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If you love The Bible:  The Epic Mini Series that is currently on The History Channel you are going to love these products that are currently available. The Bible: The Epic Miniseries (4-DVD Set) Retail Value: $59.99 DVD and Blu-Ray Release Date: April 2 Product Description: Courtesy of Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment & Motive Entertainment, get swept up into the adventure, drama and wonder of the Bible with this 10-hour miniseries from Roma Downey (Touched by an Angel) and her husband, producer Mark Burnett (Survivor). Breathtaking in scope and … [Read more...]

New Spectrum Readers Nonfiction Book Series from Carson-Dellosa

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Carson-Dellosa Publishing has recently released a new series of non-fiction books.  Spectrum Readers includes 24 fact-based books to inspire your kids to learn about the world around them.  I had the opportunity to sample three of these visually awesome books and they were an immediate hit with my boys.  My five year old son is especially fond of science based books.  I refer to him as my little scientist in the making and these books are a great way for him to sample many topics. That being said, as you can tell my other two boys were also delighted with their book.  I can see that my … [Read more...]

Love is in the Air…..Love Themed Books for Kids

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If you are looking to add a few love inspired books to your children's snugly reading time, here are a number of great options via Candlewick Press.  With a wide selection suitable for different ages groups, check out these titles.   Huggy Kissy By Leslie Patricelli   $6.99  1 yr - 3 yrs  When you’re an adorable bald baby, your family finds lots of ways to show you how much they love you: Mommy lifts you uppy, Daddy kisses you on the tummy, and everyone wants to snuggle. What’s not to love? With comedy and warmth, Leslie Patricelli offers a universal tribute to love and … [Read more...]

Return on Relationship by Ted Rubin & Kathryn Rose- A Must Read for Any Business

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If you own a business or even serve on a board at your local preschool- you'll want to read the new book "Return on Relationship".   Co-authors Ted Rubin and Kathryn Rose showcase how the old method of doing business is being updated via social media.  Yes, as always relationships are important.  How you interact with people is essential to your success, but integrating social media into this process is also pivotal. Many companies are reluctant to embrace social media for various reasons.  But social media is a reality.  By taking the age old method of building relationships face-to-face, … [Read more...]

A Gift for Years to Come with Personal Creations

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I love giving worthwhile gifts.  The kind of gift that is useful and functional.  Everybody has stuff.  Items that take up space in our homes, but don't necessarily serve any purpose.  Giving gifts that serve a practical purpose is smart.  Well, I might be biased, but I think functional gifts are brilliant:) One of my gifts of choice this season?  A personalized bookcase from Personal Creations.   This type of canvas bookcase is perfect for displaying your children's books.  I do not have my bookcase stacked with books, and obviously many more could fit on its shelves.  However there is a … [Read more...]

The Smart Bunch Animated Educational Digital Book Review

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Children are by nature curious about the world around them.   I should know, I have three little fellas who are constantly riddling me with a wide selection of questions.  The simple things that grown-ups understand and probably don't even think about are new and exciting to little children.   My two year old is constantly asking me, "What was that noise?".  His world is a series of sounds that need to be deciphered. Soon I will be carting my children off to school again, but my husband and I believe that learning at home is vital.  We like to have a multitude of ways that they can learn … [Read more...]

Buddig Be a Reader Virtual Book Drive & a $50 Amazon G.C. Giveaway

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What would you do in a world without books? For children living in poverty, a world without books is an unfortunate reality. There is only 1 book for every 300 children in these low-income neighborhoods. With the help of Buddig Lunchmeats, Reading Is Fundamental (RIF) is giving new books to underserved kids.  You can help this worthy cause just by “liking” RIF’s Facebook page. During the month of August, Buddig will make a $2.50 donation matching up to $5,000 to support RIF literacy programs. This summer, Buddig is also sponsoring a Be A Reader Virtual Book Drive to raise funds to … [Read more...]