Tuesday, July 22, 2014

The Wastewater Gardener Book Review & Giveaway! (Ends 7/29)

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book in order to facilitate this review. All opinions are my own and may differ from your own. This blog is not responsible for prize fulfillment.

The Wastewater Gardener brings a new idea to light when it comes to gardening. In an era of using clean water to water our gardens and fertilizer, Mark Nelson brings an interesting idea to the table. Using our own human waste to fertilize our gardens of fruit, vegetables, and flowers. All across the globe, this has been done with amazing results. But don't take my word for it. Watch this quick video below to learn more about his unique gardening ideas. Talk about self sustainability!

This might be an idea that freaks some people out. But in today's world, we have to take new ideas into consideration (extreme or not) if we want to sustain our planet for future generations.

About the author:
Mark Nelson, Ph.D., is an eco-system engineer and researcher, and one of the original “Biospherians.” He is Chairman and CEO, and a founding director, of the Institute of Ecotechnics, a U.S. and U.K. nonprofit organization consulting on several demonstration projects working in challenging biomes around the world. He is also Vice Chairman of Global Ecotechnics Corp. and consults on wastewater reuse and recycling using Wastewater Gardens®, subsurface-flow constructed wetlands.

Now for the giveaway!
One winner will receive an e-book or hard copy of Mark Nelson's newest book The Wastewater Gardener. By participating in this giveaway, you agree to this blog's giveaway terms and conditions.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Operation Smile: Changing Children's Lives

Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post written by me. All opinions are my own.

Did you know that every three minutes a child is born with a cleft palate? A good friend of mine had a child born with a cleft palate. After watching their journey, Operation Smile is a charity that is near and dear to my heart. Operation Smile is an international medical charity that provides children with lip and cleft palate surgery.

Opening in 1982, this charity has provided safe and quality surgical care to 220,000 children. Volunteers are trained medical professionals in some of the poorest and under served areas of the globe. Children who have cleft conditions face troubles eating, hearing, and breathing properly. Without Operation Smile, many of these children would struggle with these issues.

CampusBookRentals.com is a great company that my husband loves to use to get some of his college textbooks. One of the benefits of using CampusBookRentals.com is that with every textbook rental, they donate to Operation Smile. Saving money and donating to a great charity makes a great day in my book!

Feel free to read more about Operation Smile's latest work in the Philippines.

Learn more about Campus Book Rentals.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Block Island Organics Sunscreen

Disclaimer: I received a free product in order to facilitate this review. I was not compensated for this review. All opinions are my own and may differ from your own.

If you're looking for an all natural sunscreen to use your family this summer, Block Island Organics has a great line of mineral based non-toxic sunscreens for the entire family. We were given the chance to try out Block Island Organic Baby Sunscreen. I really love that their entire ingredient list is available on their website, where consumers can look up how they rate with the Skin Deep Database by EWG. There is protection available in SPF 15, 30, and 40.

Over the last four weeks, we've tried the sunscreen several times. While we've used Babyganics in the past, we found out that they aren't so forthcoming on what they put in all of their products. The Block Island sunscreen worked so well for the kids. It went on smoothly, not leaving a bunch of messy cream everywhere. It also haven't left any stains on clothes if we've accidentally gotten some on a shirt or pair of shorts.

We spent some time at the Schweibert Park in Rock Island, IL yesterday. While it wasn't very warm outside, I wanted to give the sunscreen a try in the water. Block Island Organics lived up to it's promise of being water resistant, which is always a plus. With four kids and our niece staying with us, I don't want to have to constantly keep re-applying the sunscreen when the kids want to have fun.

Block Island Organics not only offers a vast array of safe products, but is a trusted company. I absolutely love that they live up to their promise of "being green". So many companies have jumped on the all natural bandwagon, but fall short of the truth.

*Until July 27th, 2014, my readers can enter code "farrah" to receive a 20% discount code on their order. This cannot be combined with any other offer.*

Block Island Organics can be bought on their website. They offer free shipping on orders of $50 or more.You can follow them on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Glass in the trees.

I've had a lot of events that have triggered some new thought processes in life lately. Like most mothers, I feel like I spend so many of my days being task oriented. I feel like I'm so caught up in being mom that I'm not enjoying my children. The hours, days, weeks, months, and years are flying by. Do I really want to spend the rest of my children's young years spent on how long it took me to mop the floor? Absolutely not.

So I've decided that it's time to let my kids actually get to know their mom. I didn't get married and have a family to be this dictator. Just because I'm a mom doesn't mean I can't be me. I can still be the mom who wandered around Cornerstone with green hair. (Okay, maybe I won't dye my hair green again.) I can still be the mom who enjoys being a bookworm. I can still be the mom who drives around for no reason. I can be mom and be me.

I've lost a lot of time freaking out about every little detail, what milestones everyone is meeting, and whatnot. It's not worth it anymore. I knew my heart desired something different ten years ago, when I was only 17 years old. Now I have it. God put me on the most fulfulling path of my life...being a mommy.

When I was younger and became a mom, two people who were supposed to be supportive of me were all but that. They wanted me to fit into the little mold of what a mother is supposed to look like into modern society. One day, they literally cut all of my piercings out. How was that anyone's decision but my own? I don't want to teach my kids to fit into a little box. I want my kids to be morally sound, productive citizens of this world. But I also want them to love themselves. 

It's okay to be me! That homeschooling, barefoot, homebirthing,  country and rock and roll jamming, Jesus loving sort of mama...

"Glass in the Trees" by Dead Poetic

Monday, July 7, 2014

10monkeys Math World Review

Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post written by me for 10monkeys on behalf of Sverve.

If you don't follow my blog regularly, you may not know that my 7-year-old has some eye problems that require glasses and vision therapy. At the end of our last homeschool year, he needed some extra practice in math and reading. When I came across 10Monkeys Math World, I realized what a great program this could be as a supplement. This program is for children in K-3rd grade.

10Monkeys Math World starts out with number recognition and moves onto addition, subtraction, multiplication, and more. Kids are encouraged along the way with the chance to win virtual prizes. I also really like that the graphics are really big and pleasing to the eye. There's no extra animation to distract Matthew due to his eye problems. Other programs haven't been successful for him because of his eye tracking issues. I think this gives this program a one up over other web based learning programs.


If you have a child who needs some extra practice, be sure to check out this program! I'm so excited to let Matthew continue to try it out. I have to say that if anything were to be added, it would be nice for the program to read aloud to the kids. Matthew needs to be able to work independently sometimes. However, since he can't always see that well to read, I have to stay with him to read the questions to him.

Be sure to check out the 10Monkeys website. It's only $5.90 to register one child for a year. There are also apps available for iPhone/iPad and Android devices. There's options to sign up for the US,  UK, and Finland.

 Follow 10Monkeys on Facebook and Twitter.


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