For the love of all things Boho and Shabby Chic!

dc3dc4dc2

Beautiful, Authentic, and totally Boho Chic!  These three words describe the element of Blair Bailey Design and their beautiful creations.   This shop can be found on Etsy and offers a variety of dream catchers, flower crowns, and stationary all with a southern/bohemian flare.  Blair Christianson is the artist and mastermind behind these lovely creations and more!  Each piece is handmade and not one is like the other.   With each intricately woven thread, Blair creates these beautiful dream catchers.  They can be customized to match your home decor and are also perfect for a country wedding.  As for me I am a Southern Chick with a love for urban country decor and I absolutely  love the tranquility that the dream catcher adds to my family room.

dream

The chicness does not stop there!  Blair also creates beautiful flower crowns that are fit for a shabby chic princess!  Wear a flower crown on a beautiful summer’s day with a sundress; dressed down with a pair of jeans, a lace top, and a pair of boots; or wear one on your wedding day!  I can’t begin to tell you how perfectly, perfect the rose crown is for a wedding!  Blair’s flower crowns will add  a  feminine, dainty, romantic touch that will make you feel absolutely beautiful just the way you are!

A Star for Jesus- a book review

What a precious book written for the lil ears in the family.  In A Star for Jesus, the author Crystal Bowman retells the Christmas story and how the bright shining star led the wise men to the newborn King, Jesus. Using rhythmic lyrics it is sure to delight the smallest readers.  This board book is intricately shaped like a star making it easy for lil hands to hold.   A Star for Jesus is a great first read  about the birth of Jesus, our Emmanuel.

star for jesus

I received a complimentary copy of this book from booklook bloggers and the review is of my own honest opinion.

Tips:

lavender342x524

Lavender is an oil I use quite a bit. I use Lavender at night. I rub a couple of drops on the bottom of my kids feet and they fall asleep quicker and have a more restful night.

Here is a lil more info on Lavender Essential oil:

Lavender has been cherished for its unmistakable aroma and therapeutic properties for thousands of years.

Widely used for its calming and relaxing qualities
Soothes occasional skin irritations
Helps sooth irritated skin
Eases muscle tension in the head and neck

You can purchase this oil as a single oil or in a pack. My favorite is the physicians pack. It has everything you need in your first aid kit!

 

The Legend of the Candy Cane- a book review

The candy cane is more than just a sweet, minty treat we enjoy at Christmas.  There is great symbolism that reminds us of God’s sacrificial love.  The story of the candy cane is retold by Lori Walburg in her latest board book entitled, “The Legend of the Candy Cane.”   It all begins in a candy shop in a small town.  When Lucy extends a helping hand to the new stranger in town, she discovers the hidden truth of her favorite Christmas candy.  Make this a traditional reading  and share the secret and miracle of Christmas this holiday season and for many Christmases to come!

candycane3

Share the Legend of the Candy Cane this Christmas.  Print out this tag and attach to candy canes with a red and white ribbon.  Pass them out to everyone you meet.

This is a perfect activity to do in Sunday School or at home with your children.

candycane1

I found the tag on one of my google searches.  I do not know where it originated from.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from booklook bloggers and the review is of my own honest opinion.

Reliving the 60’s

This post is a lil different.  I would like to share with you a creative perspective on the 1960’s.  I wrote this paper for my “hippie” class.  I absolutely loved this class thanks to my super awesome professor.

 

 

 

My name is Tara Anderson; I am the Chief Archaeologist on this excavation of the Old America.  My team and I are particularly interested in unraveling the hidden stories of the 1960’s.  The 60’s were a time of change and political stances.  We had just come out of WWII and our country leaders were looking for political empowerment, while our people were looking for peace and equality.  Although peace was the focus, our country had to reach some milestones first.  During this time we lost great leaders but won the battle on desegregation and a new outlook among American people.  With this new sense of freedom for all Americans came great expression through art, music, clothing, and food.  It is during this era that America became more defined and this is why my team and I are so interested in knowing the stories of way back when.

Before we head back to the 1960’s, we should start with today.  We are living in the year 2325.  America has changed drastically over the last 300 years and we are forced to live at the mercy of our socialistic government. We are gathering evidence of history that can take us back to a better time, when America was booming.  Perhaps the stories can guide us to make a better tomorrow.  Our excavation has been set up around the memorials in Washington D.C.  During our dig we discovered a space mission spaceship tin metal lunch box buried deep underground near the Lincoln Memorial.  Although the metal box was in weathered condition it had preserved a story that would be told through the artifacts it contained.  As we opened the latch we discovered a letter that was dated August 28, 1963. It was on this day that Martin Luther King, Jr delivered his “I have a dream speech,” in front of nearly 250,000 citizens that had joined the protest for racial equality right there on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial.  The letter was written by Betty Jackson, she was one of the protestors and followed King, Jr to hear his powerful words.  She writes, “What an emotional day!  There were so many people in the crowd; too many to count and when King spoke there was not a bit of chatter in the crowd.  He spoke for all of us today.  It was as though God spoke through him and the angels were rejoicing.  Finally we would be heard and our future would change.  King’s dream is our dream and our future.”  The letter goes on and on to describe the momentum in the air during the March on Washington.  She concludes her letter addressing her dream to walk hand in hand with her white boyfriend without being shamed or arrested for not following the color law.  Martin Luther King, Jr was a powerful speaker.  This speech was one of many that he shared with the public as he led the Civil Rights Movement for people of color.  He was a peaceful man and believed that the American dream could be reached through nonviolent protests.  “He advised the crowds that “we must be sure that our struggle is conducted on the highest level of dignity and discipline” and reminded them not to “drink the poisonous wine of hate,” but to use the “way of nonviolence” when taking “direct action” against oppression.” (Stanford online, 2014)  King was shot and died on April 4, 1968 in Tennessee.  We remember Martin Luther as a man that stood up against the crowd and lived his life serving people.  (Stanford online, 2014)  If it weren’t for his peaceful efforts, diversity in America would not be alive today.

 

After reading the letter we find a peace sign necklace, a ticket for Woodstock 1969, a joint,  and a white banner that reads “Peace, Love, Music-Freedom Fest” in psychedelic colors.  Woodstock took place on a dairy farm in Bethel, NY and was three days of peace and music.  This revolutionary music concert took place during what we call the “hippie era.”  Over 400,000 peace loving hippies came to watch 32 bands perform over the three day music fest and it was rain or shine.  This era was all about expression and inner beauty.  The style was relaxed and yet fashionable. Hippie’s wore peace signs, bright colors, long hair, and bell bottoms.  It was also a time in which women fought against restriction and burned their bra’s to allow their bodies to be free.  It was a time of sex, drugs, and rock and roll.  The lineup included Jimi Hendrix, The Doors, Led Zeppelin, and Chicago to name a few.  Truly an inspirational time.  The only way to survive the experience was to remember that your neighbor was your friend.  (Time, 2012)  All in all there were two fatalities that weekend and two live births within the crowd.

From the tin box we pulled a picture of John Fitzgerald Kennedy.  He was America’s 35th president. JFK was also the youngest president and of Irish decent.  In 1961, during his inaugural speech he promised to get America going again.  His words, “Ask not what your country can do for you–ask what you can do for your country,” still ring true in an honorable president.   (Kennedy, 1961) Kennedy shared Martin Luther’s vision in the cause of equal rights.  He brought forth a sense of American idealism to developing nations.  Kennedy sought peace in America.  In fact his involvement in world affairs was in providing aid, but not boots on the ground.  Our involvement in the Vietnam War was slim during his short term.   He was assassinated in 1963 a few days after approving a coup that would have overthrown Diem a communistic world leader.  (White House online, 2014)

The next piece of history we discovered was a newspaper article during the US involvement in the Vietnam War.  There was much controversy revolving our involvement in the war. Lyndon Johnson pushed for more American militia on the ground.  It was not our war, we went over to Vietnam to help keep the people from falling in to communism.  Unfortunately, we were fighting a war that was not to be won and our men died for nothing.  It wasn’t until 1975 that our troops were called home and the war was over as far as America was concerned.  This was a very sad and tragic time.  When our troops came home the feeling of loss was overwhelming and Americans were very cold to our soldiers.  They were viewed as baby killers and not heroes.

Finally, we look closer at the tin box that protected so many pieces of American history for so many years.  During the 60’s America was trying to beat the clock and send the first man to the moon.  We had already lost the first man in space to the Russians and we surely weren’t going to give up the moon.  It was JFK that put his faith into the NASA program and truly believed we could be the first to explore the moon.  A few years later, in 1969 this dream became a reality and two American men walked the moon for three hours and placed an American Flag on the moon to show we conquered it first.  We dominated the space exploration program and also made a political statement.  It was Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin who walked the moon and collected rock and soil samples to be studied further.  America watched in awe as the walk was aired on national television when Armstrong said those now famous words, “this is one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.”  This came a few years after JFK’s 1961 speech that led the American people to believe that this event was a realistic goal, not a dream.

Looking back now we can see that 1960’s were a time of great change and evolving for the American people.  With great leaders came great responsibility and a world of wealth for the people.  Dreams became a reality, equality and peace filled the country, and all was good.  This was a great time in history that should always be remembered.  By studying the ways of the past, specifically the 60’s we can make a better tomorrow.  Much like King, Jr and Kennedy two of the greatest leaders we are aspired to know it takes only one voice to move mountains.  We will continue to study our findings of this great era and the passion of America.

 

 

 

 

 

References:

King Jr, M. (1963, January 1). I have a dream. Retrieved September 26, 2014, from http://www.archives.gov/press/exhibits/dream-speech.pdf

 

Martin Luther King, Jr and the Global Freedom Struggle. (n.d.). Retrieved September 27, 2014, from http://mlk-kpp01.stanford.edu/index.php/encyclopedia/encyclopedia/enc_i_have_a_dream_28_august_1963/

 

Assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. (n.d.). Retrieved September 26, 2014, from http://mlk-kpp01.stanford.edu/index.php/encyclopedia/encyclopedia/enc_kings_assassination_4_april_1968/

 

Lisa Law: Organizing Woodstock. (n.d.). Retrieved September 30, 2014, from http://americanhistory.si.edu/lisalaw/7.htm

 

Vietnam War Records. (n.d.). Retrieved September 30, 2014, from http://www.archives.gov/research/military/vietnam-war/

 

John F. Kennedy. (n.d.). Retrieved September 30, 2014, from http://www.whitehouse.gov/about/presidents/johnfkennedy

 

Dunbar, B. (2008, February 1). The First Person on the Moon. Retrieved September 30, 2014, from http://www.nasa.gov/audience/forstudents/k-4/stories/first-person-on-moon.html

 

Love Letters from God: a book review

Love Letters from God is a delightful book written by Glenys Nellist for children ages 4-8.  With the turn of each beautifully illustrated page your child will learn a familiar bible story and God’s special word.  Love Letters from God takes you from the very beginning with Adam and Eve to the Resurrection.   Be reminded of God’s promises.  My children enjoyed guessing the Bible story by finding clues in the images drawn by Sophie Allsopp.  This book also includes a flap feature with a letter written from God at the end of each Bible story.   Love Letters from God is a beautiful book to read any time and teaches your child of God’s love and how they are never alone.  Call out to the Lord and he will hear you no matter where you are.

book

I received a complimentary copy of this book from booklook bloggers and the review is of my own honest opinion.

Conrad and the Cowgirl Next Door- A book review

This is such an adorable story, and even more so when read aloud with a cute country accent.  The story line is  cute and funny.  I chuckled through the whole story.  The illustrations are lively and my son was excited to see Conrad dressed a lot like Woody from Toy Story.  Imogene is the cowgirl next door and she knows all the rules for being a cowboy.  Conrad is not to fond of her and Uncle Clint gives him some sound advice, “be nice to your enemies it messes with their heads.” Ain’t this the truth?!  And with this I am reminded of the words of Luke 6:31, ” treat others the way you want to be treated.”  This story is very encouraging and teaches children how rewarding it is to be kind to others, even when it isn’t easy.  If all else fails refer to the Mega Ultimate Extreme First Aid Kit.

cnn

I received a complimentary copy of this book from booklook bloggers and the review is of my own honest opinion.

A terrible case of aquaphobia with a happy ending…

 

Have I ever told you that my son N was terrified of water??? WAS is the operative word. It was extreme, like to the point that I couldnt get a car wash without him crying and screaming in the back seat. Going to Sea World was no walk in the park either. And forget going in the pool. N would never get close enough, he was safe, secure, and quite content sitting on the sidelines watching his sister and cousins play in the pool. It was just his norm for the past three years. I am not sure why he developed this fear, but it was real. Many would advise me to just throw him in or force him in the water and eventually he would just stop crying and start swimming. I knew as his mother that line of action would cause even more damage to N. This fear of water is actually called aquaphobia. Aquaphobia is basically defined as a persistent and abnormal fear of water. 18% of Americans suffer from aquaphobia. This extreme phobia can actually interfere with one’s daily life, making it difficult to complete simple tasks, as I explained above.

I waited til I thought the time was right and I made the decision to sign N up for swim classes. I explained to him that it was for his own safety that he learn how to swim and he would need to be brave. I prayed about this for a long time and then one day N came home with a sign up sheet from his daycare for Summer Time Swim Lessons. This was it! So I filled out the informational form, was extremely honest about N’s fear, but wasn’t quite sure if they understood just how petrified my lil boy was of the water on paper. I felt like I was the only mother that was dealing with this odd behavior. I mean, my daughter just naturally took to water and swam like a fish.

Then I got the call…Kim from SwimKids USA assured me that I was making the right decision and that by the end of the summer N would be swimming on his own. I still was not 100% comfortable with the idea but I knew he had to learn. If anything he would learn the basics and if he ever fell in the water he would know how to get out. So we signed up for weekend classes. Kim advised that I not speak to N about the classes to avoid any anxiety he may feel. So we didn’t talk about classes much. I told him about it and I got, “mom you don’t love me.” I told him it was because I loved him so much that I wanted him to learn how to swim. So he could be safe.

After that conversation it was never brought up again. It was tugging in my heart, those words…”mom you don’t love me.” I was hurt and it was then that I knew just how deep his fear was.

On day  N had anxiety from the time we got up. He cried all the way to swim class. When we arrived Mr. Jose (his swim teacher) was very welcoming and tried to talk to N. My lil N wouldn’t even look at him. When it came time to get in the water N screamed and cried. He clung tight to me and begged me not to make him go in the water. Mr. Jose helped to calm him down and assertively asked N to sit on the ledge. N was terrified but knew he had no choice. Over the next couple of classes N would ask what they were doing and cry. He would ask Mr. Jose to hold him tight and would come up with every excuse possible to get out of the water. “Mr. Jose I heard thunder, I saw lightning, I have to go to the bathroom.” He would look back at me with tears in his eyes as to say, “mom come save me.” When it came time to dig his hands and kick his feet  and swim to the wall, all while Mr. Jose was holding him tight he would scream, “Im sinking!” He was oh so scared, but pushing himself to complete the tasks he was asked to do. I hid my tears behind my sunglasses. I cheered when he completed each task and made it back to the wall…his new safe haven. All the while Mr. Jose was very patient, calm, and reassuring. By week three Noah was feeling more confident and looked forward to swim class. My tears cried are now tears of joy and great pride. N is excited when he arrives to class and cant wait to jump in! Our July 4th holiday was extra special because it was his first time playing in the water with his sister and cousins. It was amazing! This weekend N told me he wants to be a gold winner in the olympics one day. He said, “wouldn’t that be great mom? Thanks to Mr. Jose I love the water.” I am so amazed at the transformation. And it isn’t just my son, but all the children in his class have come so far with their confidence and skill. I highly recommend classes with Mr. Jose at SwimKids USA. I can totally see my son swimming freely like a lil fish by the end of the summer.  And who knows…maybe he will be an Olympic gold medalist one day!

swim2

swim

If your child has a fear it is best to listen to them and hear them out. Sometimes all they need is a lil reassurance and some love.

 

For more information on SwimKids USA please follow this link to visit their Facebook page.

14 Days of Love Giveaway

 

Image

Launches tonight at midnight!

February 1st:  Enter to win a prize pack from Cloud 9 Parties by Lisa T

 Petals of Passion Romance Kit includes everything you need for the perfect night of romance.  This kit includes 100 unscented rose petals, 2 battery operated color-changing candles, a soft coated multi-speed waterproof vibrator, a sampler of strawberry warming lube and a sampler of tight lips tightening cream!

This romance kit is perfect for married couples and is guaranteed to spice up a romantic evening in together.

Link to enter:

http://tinyurl.com/ohuy6vn

petals