Oh So Random

This weekend my daughter's classmate invited the entire grade to his house for an End Of School Year Splash. They live right on a lake and were told to bring sunblock, towels, a swimsuit, water shoes if they had them and a life vest if they had one. When we got there one of her besties was arriving at the same time which now that I have seen it should always happen. When friends arrive to a party together they don't feel uncomfortable when they first get there because they have each other. Mental note to set this up for my daughter for the next party.

My girl is in the middle, blue suit dragging her friend on a float

Goddess has matured so much over the past few years. It kills me sometimes.

She was having a blast
The kids had a blast. Even though it was a drop off, I hung out. I am not a drop of kind of parent unless I know you and really trust you. I can name three people like that right now where my kids would be dropped off without a second thought. Three is better than none.

The parents also set up a slip and slide. Which I hear was very cold.

She acted like she was about to go down but changed her mind last minute

Her friends are fearless

running through was apparently fine
Then before I knew it there was talk of  a boat ride.

Goddess without her glasses can see nothing. The squinting is not just from the sun
before I even had time to discuss, she was on the boat

And it was being lowered into the water
I watched them drive away and I thought...wait who is this guy? I don't really know him.
While the girls were gone I busied myself with watching the boys who were jumping from a 25 foot deck into the lake. UGH...

Even Goddess' friend took the plunge when she returned. Go FAITH!
It was a great day and while I was worried about my daughter who drove away in a boat with a bunch of other 5th grade girls and a stranger she informed me on her return she was having the best time.

Still going to hover but learning that my little girl is totally growing up and doesn't need me as much.


Blue Monday

My Lake Shadows

Thursday was the kids last day at school before summer break. Knowing my morning will be a little busier in the next few weeks I decided to head to the lake for some quiet and relaxation before getting them from school. It was glorious and there was one other person there. I just walked around and looked at the beautiful lake while taking some deep cleansing breaths.

Let Summer Fun begin now!

Shadow Shot

Come Home, Angus by Patrick Downs - Pre-Order Now

Come Home Angus by Patrick Downs with Illustrations by Boris Kilihov

Angus woke up mad and knew today was not his day. His dachshund, Clive, walked too slowly. His canary, Pennycake, was too loud. And to top it off, his breakfast pancakes were way too skinny.
Angus was in a bad mood, and he decided to run away. He walked two blocks, three blocks, five blocks, then suddenly everything seemed scary and dark. When his mother found Angus, he realized he was better off with her and at home.

The touching story by Patrick Downes and the bold illustrations by Boris Kulikov will comfort young children. It will show them that even when they are angry or frustrated or dealing with other emotions, everything is going to be all right.

The 411:

I loved this book because reminds me of the conversations I have with my kids now when they talk about how "BIG" they are and how they can be left alone or take care of themselves. "You live in a bubble that Mommy and Daddy allow  you to live in. You have no idea how hard things are out there and we want it that way. Stop rushing to grow up."  In this book Angus wakes in a bad mood and doesn't know why. He just knows everything is bothering him. The one person he could turn to is his mom even she isn't getting through to him.

Angus decides leaving the house is what he needs to do and does. Of course unbeknownst to him his loving mother follows and is there for the moment Angus realizes that he is going to be OK, Mommy is there and this too shall pass.


The graphics are great too! Big, angry Angus is all sketchy and looks upset. He feels massive with his anger. Everything else is drawn without all the lines but as he makes his way through the city Angus is small again and everything around him is drawn with all the lines.



To Pre-Order

Disclaimer: I received a complimentary product from Scholastic for my honest opinion. My reviews are 100% honest and true based on my personal opinion not on a company’s description or request. No monetary compensation was received.

Great Summer Activity Books Kids Will Love

My kids last day of school until September was yesterday. They are off today and for the weekend but Monday starts Mommy School.

Mommy School means worksheets, chores, reading and unplugged time! During school these days kids are plugged in as much as they are at home. I want to unplug this summer. I want them to spend time doing things that allow them to think, create and day dream. Some of those things include activity books and I have two that are great for kids.

Some kids love word search book while others get frustrated. I have one of each kid. My daughter loves them and my son loves them just as much but after searching for a word that he can't find, he gives up which is why he will be doing the Word Searches for Kids Ages 6-8.

 From Woo! Jr. Kids Activities comes a whole book of some of their all-time most popular online content - word searches for kids! This book includes 90 word search puzzles with excellent, educational vocabulary word lists suitable for ages 6, 7 and 8. It's a perfect first word search book! All words are 8 letters or less, and the puzzles are in large print for young eyes. With fun illustrations and the ability to photocopy pages for classroom, day care, or homeschool use, this book is sure to be an excellent resource to be used over and over again.

From Woo! Jr. Kids Activities comes a whole book of some of their all-time most popular online content - word searches for kids! This book includes nearly 150 word search puzzles with excellent, educational vocabulary word lists suitable for ages 9, 10, 11, 12 and up. With fun illustrations and the ability to photocopy pages for classroom, day care, or homeschool use, this book is sure to be an excellent resource to be used over and over again.

Follow Wendy on her webpage, Instagram, Facebook and Twitter

To Purchase:

Disclaimer: I received a complimentary product for my honest opinion. My star ratings are exact based on Amazon's star descriptions. My reviews are 100% honest and true based on my personal opinion not on a company’s description or request. No monetary compensation was received

Keeping Dust to a Minimum in Your Home

Removing dust from your home can require a lot of time, leaving less time for the things you actually want to do. However, there are several ways to keep dust at a minimum inside your home. With less dust inside a home, you do not need to mop the floors or vacuum carpets as frequently. You will not see a deep layer of dust on your home’s furniture or window sills. In addition, dust will not collect on draperies and upholstery to create a dirty environment that can lead to allergic reactions such as sneezing and coughing.

Maintain a Home’s Heating and Cooling Equipment

Make sure to change your home’s air conditioner or furnace filter at least once a month to help remove dust from the air. Instead of buying a basic air filter, opt to use a high-efficiency particulate air filter that captures the tiniest particles of pollen and household dust.

Have Your Home’s Air Ducts Cleaned by a Professional

There is a good chance that your home’s ductwork is lined with debris such as cobwebs and pet dander. Hire a professional technician to clean the debris from the air ducts with suctioning equipment to have a home that is cleaner on a daily basis.

Seal Holes and Crevices to Keep Dust from Entering

Dirt can enter your home through tiny crevices and holes that are located around windows and doorframes. Use foam insulation or liquid caulking to seal the openings where dust enters, and also, make sure to seal any holes and crevices that are outside a home.

Get Rid of the Clutter That Is Inside Your Home

If you have a lot of clutter inside a home, then the items will collect dust, leading to more housework. Begin by sorting through the clothing or other items that are inside a bedroom’s closet. Give away or sell unneeded items, and use plastic totes to store seasonal clothing and mementos.

Buy an Air Purifier for Your Home

Have a large air purification system attached to your home’s climate-control equipment if you own a home, or buy a portable air purifier for an apartment or rental house. The filter inside an air purifier will capture more dust inside your home, especially while you are cleaning.

Use the Best Cleaning Equipment and Cleansers

To keep the dust out of a home, invest in quality cleaning equipment and cleansers that will capture debris quickly. Buy a vacuum cleaner that has a high-efficiency particulate air filter along with finding new brooms, sponge mops and microfiber cloths. Remember to begin cleaning a room from the ceiling with a cloth to ensure that the dust that filters to the floor is removed while mopping and vacuuming.

Wash Everyone’s Bedding Once a Week

A lot of the dust that is inside a home is from the skin flakes that everyone sheds on sheets and blankets at night. The best way to keep this debris from falling on floors or filtering through the air to land on furniture is by washing the bedding each week.

Maintain a Clean Home Environment

To keep dust away from your home, maintain a sanitary environment by cleaning on a weekly basis, even if it’s just light cleaning or a maid service to help maintain things. Have a home’s carpets shampooed once a year, and take rugs outside to shake them out to get rid of dust and debris. Use a damp cloth to clean furniture and other objects that capture dust rather than a dry paper towel that pushes the debris onto the floor.

Hopefully these tips will help to cut down on allergies, head colds and save some cleaning time on a regular basis.

Bio -

This guest post contribution is courtesy of Maids by Trade, a Tucson cleaning service that also offers Marana house cleaning, and maid service for many other areas in and around Tucson.

Fashion Adult Coloring Book Vintage Series: The Masters of Fashion Illustration by Wendy Piersall

The Masters of Fashion Illustration recreates some of the most iconic fashion magazine cover illustrations as a gorgeous new coloring book for adults. The book features 5 of the most prolific fashion artists of the art deco and art nouveau periods: Helen Dryden, Erté, George Wolfe Plank, Frank Leyendecker, and George Barbier. These artists appeared on the covers of the most popular fashion magazines of all time; magazines still being published today. Take a trip to the golden age of fashion illustration, before photography permanently took its place. Hand-drawn and lovingly reproduced by best-selling coloring book artist Wendy Piersall, these 30 highly detailed illustrations are true to the original works while being adapted specifically to be an absolute joy to color.

The 411:

This book is perfect for anyone who gets joy out of coloring but also for those who enjoy fashion.  The artist Wendy Piersall takes the works of 5 major players in the world of fashion and creates stunningly detailed coloring pages for marker, colored pencils, gel pens or whatever you decide to use on these creations.

The detail is incredible. I love coloring and while I have not had a chance to sit down and color in this book it calls to me every single day. Summer vacation is only a week away and I will be spending some of mine coloring in this book.

Each page is a fully detailed replicas such as this one from Helen Dryden that created for Vogue.

On the back of each page is the author's name and the month an year they drew it.


Aren't they fun? I can't wait to color this with my favorite gel pens.

Wendy also has a few boxes in the first two pages of the book so you can try out your markers, pencils and pens to make sure they don't bleed through the pages however she does suggest placing a piece of paper in between the pages when coloring.

Follow Wendy on her webpage, Instagram, Facebook and Twitter

To Purchase:

Disclaimer: I received a complimentary product for my honest opinion. My star ratings are exact based on Amazon's star descriptions. My reviews are 100% honest and true based on my personal opinion not on a company’s description or request. No monetary compensation was received

5 Ways to Protect Your Family from Zika Virus this Summer

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – (June 16, 2016) – As many people learn about the Zika virus in the media, there is a lot of concern as to whether or not it will reach America. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), although most cases of it have been abroad, they report that cases among those traveling will likely continue to increase, and that the imported cases could result in the local spread of the virus throughout the country. In other words, it may have been an issue that was largely in parts of Africa, Asia Central America, South America, and the Caribbean Islands, but it is likely to become an issue this summer right here in America.
“There is good reason to believe that this summer we will have to contend with the Zika virus,” explained Manny Castro, co-founder of Zika Shield, a company that makes all natural mosquito repellent products. “The more people know about the virus and how to help protect their family, the better off they will be in helping to avoid it.”
Zika, according to the CDC, is a disease caused by the Zika virus, which is spread to people primarily through infected mosquitoes. The most common symptoms include fever, rash, joint pain, and red eyes. Additionally, the CDC reports that there is a scientific consensus that Zika virus can also cause microcephaly, Guillain-Barré syndrome, and other severe fetal brain defects. The best line of defense against getting Zika is to avoid being bitten by the mosquitoes that carry the virus. Here are 5 ways to protect your family from the Zika virus this summer:
  1. Avoid bites. It’s important to avoid mosquito bites in order to avoid the Zika virus. This means taking measures to avoid being in areas where there will be a lot of mosquitoes, so you may have to plan your summer activities accordingly. Know the types of environments mosquitoes are drawn to, so they can be avoided and you can plan your activities accordingly.
  2. Know Zika. It’s important to know about Zika in order to help avoid getting it. For example, the mosquitoes that spread Zika mostly bite during the day, rather than the summer pesky ones that people are often familiar with that come out at night. Also, those daytime mosquitoes that spread Zika also tend to spread dengue and chikungunya viruses.
  3. Mosquito control.Take measures to keep mosquitoes away from your home, both inside and outside. These measures include not allowing water to be held, such as in planters or toys, where mosquitoes often lay their eggs, ensuring that screens are in good working order on all windows, and avoiding leaving them propped open.
  4. Dress the part. If you will be going out during the day in an area where you may come in contact with mosquitoes, be sure to use mosquito repellent and dress wisely. Opt for wearing pants and a long sleeve shirt, so that less of your skin is exposed.
  5. Choose wisely. Not all mosquito repellents are created equal, especially when it comes to fighting off the Zika virus. Opt for a mosquito repellent that is all natural and contains oil of lemon eucalyptus, such as the Zika Shield repellents, so that you get the best coverage, reduce risks of bites, and protect yourself from toxic chemicals.
“Most people are used to the summer evening mosquitoes, but when it comes to the Zika virus we have to think differently,” added Castro. “Protecting your family from mosquito bites all day long is necessary this summer. It’s the best way to avoid becoming infected. We have helped make that protection simple and effective.”
Zika Shield offers the number one mosquito repellent that is made from all natural ingredients and is non-toxic. Offering both mosquito repellent bands and spray, the products contain oil of lemon eucalyptus, which is the only plant based ingredient recommended by the CDC as an effective way to help protect against mosquito bites. The repellent bands offer 72 hours of continuous protection from mosquitoes, while the spray offers six hours of protection each time it’s used. The all natural mosquito repellent bands and spray can be purchased online with free shipping. The company stands behind their product and offers a 100 percent money back guarantee. To learn more about Zika Shield, visit the site here: https://zikashield.com/.

About Zika Shield
Based in New York, Zika Shield was created by Manny Castro and Ryan Manfred. Their mission is to provide people with easy-to-use products that effectively repel mosquitoes to avoid the Zika virus and other insect carrying diseases. Their products, both repellent bands and spray, are all natural, plant-based. To learn more about Zika Shield, visit the site here: https://zikashield.com/.

# # #

How To Throw A Neighborhood Movie Night Inspired By Kung Fu Panda 3 #KFP3BlockParty


Characters From Shrek. Where Are They Now? #Shrek15Insiders #Swampathon!!

Don't forget to enter the Sherk 15th Anniversary 4 Movie Box Set by June 30th.

A lot has changed in the last 15 years, especially for Shrek and his crew. In support of this week's Blu-ray and DVD release of Shrek, the 15th Anniversary Edition, we wanted to pass along an official guide to what the beloved characters have been doing to pass the time. We hope you can share with your readers - they will be ogre-joyed to learn where these fan favorites are now! :)

15 years after their first appearance of SHREK and his crew of lovable misfits, audiences and fans are dying to know,


With three young Ogres running around the swamp, and his talky pal Donkey constantly popping up out of nowhere, Shrek was left no choice but to try to find inner harmony through yoga and meditation. He’s even tried to get friends to call him by the nickname the Green Swami of the Swamp, but let’s be honest, every now and then he still rages like the big old grumpy ogre that we all know and love.

Fiona spends her free time as an ambassador for healthy living in Far Far Away.  Not only does the Fierce Ogre Princess bring her martial arts training classes to local schools, she also has a community garden on the castle grounds that proudly features Ogre-ganic fruits and vegetables.  These are produce grown using swamp juice to keep the bugs away instead of pesticides.

Donkey has managed to visit his pal Shrek literally every single day since they became friends some 15 years ago.  This is quite an accomplishment when you take into consideration that he also puts on a weekly variety show at The Royal Opera Hall, teaches tap dancing classes to all the King’s horses, and has been Far Far Away’s reigning Waffle Eating Champion for 7 years straight!

The little wooden puppet is still pursuing his dream of becoming a “real” boy.  He was recently seen getting treatments from Dr. Knowall, Far Far Away’s resident plastic surgeon. With his freshly carved nose and maple syrup lip injections, Pinocchio is really turning heads…even though his still turns all the way around. 

This sweet little man has been busy as can be with his new line of cruelty free cookies. No faces, bodies, or personalities on these sweets, just inanimate confections with chewy gooey centers.  With new stores popping up on what seems like every other corner of Far Far Away, successful entrepreneur Gingy is rollin’ in the dough.
Get widget
Dear Readers: At this time all giveaways on Maria's Space are for the United States unless otherwise noted.