Tag Archives: learning

The Little Linebacker Blog Tour & #Giveaway

Book Blog Tour Image

Teaching kids that hard work pays off is probably one of the most important lessons we can teach them as they grow. So many adults that I know believe  things come easy and don’t require effort. As an entrepreneur I learned a long time ago there is no such thing as “overnight success.” Most people do not understand the years of work that go into becoming an “overnight success.” If kids learn this at an early age, it will serve them well throughout their life. They will not be the kind to give up at the first hurdle but instead find a way to get over each and every one on the way to reaching their dreams.

A book that can help kids understand this is The Little Linebacker. This book written by Maria Dismondy and Stephen Tulloch and illustrated by Heather Heyworth is a story of determination. The story is about a little boy who dreams of becoming a professional football player. This dream comes even before his first little league football practice. His mother is supportive and tells him to dream bigger dreams! He finds support through his life when he feels like giving up.

An elderly man he likes at the nursing home where his mom works provides some wise advice that you have to keep going even if you fail a few times. He helps Stephen practice his math skills when he gets a bad math test grade. Throughout the years, Stephen has defeats but someone is always there to help him summon his determination and keep going. He learns that when you don’t give up but keep pressing on, great things happen! This is a great book with a very valuable message. You can find this book on Amazon. You can download the Free Reader’s Guide HERE.

Take a look at the video trailer for the book below:

Enter now for your chance to win a copy:

Cardinal Rule Press is sponsoring a giveaway on Mommy Ramblings!  One lucky blog reader will win their own copy of The Littlest Linebacker! Thank you to Cardinal Rule Press for the review book and for sponsoring this fantastic giveaway on Mommy Ramblings!!!  Open to US residents.

The Littlest Linebacker – A Story of Determination Book Giveaway on Mommy Ramblings Rules:

Please enter the giveaway using the Rafflecopter widget below.  Good Luck!!!

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Filed under Blog Tour, Books, Family, kids, Life, Life Stages, Review

Amazon Original Series, Tumble Leaf-All New Episodes Available May 6th!

Many shows made for kids are downright annoying for parents to watch with them. Most of you can probably list at least a handful of shows that are almost as bad as listening to fingernails scraping across a chalkboard. It is refreshing when a children’s series actually fosters lifelong creative learning for kids. It is doubly impressive when it is also enjoyable for parents to view alongside their child. Unfortunately, there are not too many preschool children series that can achieve one of those things let alone both. However, the Amazon Original Series, Tumble Leaf  is one that rises to and meets that challenge. This series is back for Season 2 and available for Prime members. All new episodes of this multi-Emmy award-winning series premiers on Amazon Prime Video on Friday, May 6th.

tumble leaf

This preschool series features Fig, a curious and endearing blue fox and his best friend Stick, a friendly caterpillar who is always on the move. Together Fig and Stick set out on  exciting adventures  filled with nature and science. The episodes start with a colorful crab who pulls in a fish trap that is filled with “treasure” from the sea. In one of the episodes I recently previewed he pulls in a camera and after snapping a quick photo of himself he tosses it into the magical Finding Place.  A curious Fig hurries off to the Finding Place to discover what new treasure has been added. The new discovery is utilized to bring about science through play lessons that are filled with a healthy dose of imagination.

The delightful characters created by Drew Hodges features voices from  Christopher Downs as Fig, Brooke Wolloff as Maple, Zac McDowell as Hedge, Addie Zintel as Pine, and Alex Trugman as Ginkgo.

Tumble Leaf 2

The episodes are packed with fun and learning and my sons loved watching along with me. The characters and voices are not annoying as can be the case with some other kid’s series that will remain nameless. It is a series that gets kids all excited to see what new discovery will end up in The Finding Place at the beginning of each episode. As the episode unwinds that discovery will be weaved into the story line seamlessly and when it ends Fig will tell the kids to get out and play! That is such a great message and one that is necessary for all kids today.

This series won 5 Daytime Emmys including the Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Preschool Children’s Animated Program along with being the winner of the 2016 Parents Choice Award! Check out the Season 2 Trailer below!


Prime members can soon stream the second season of Tumble Leaf at no additional cost to their Prime membership with the Amazon Video app for TVs, connected devices and mobile devices, or online HERE . Prime members can also download the series for offline viewing on iOS, Android and Fire devices at no additional cost. In addition to SD and HD, the series is also available in 4K Ultra HD on compatible smart TVs from Samsung, LG and Sony. Customers who are not already Prime members can sign up for a free 30-day trial HERE! There are also brand new clips you can download or view HERE!

I hope you will check it out and let me know what you think in the comments. If you watched the 1st Season, let me know that too along with how you liked it.

This is a sponsored post, I was compensated by the company I am working with on this but as always my views and words are 100% my own.

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Filed under Education, Entertainment, Family, kids, Review

Kids Academy Apps Updated | Free Educational Apps + Printable Worksheets!

This blog has partnered with Mom Buzz Media to announce this exciting information!

Kids Academy Releases Preschool Education Center
for iOS and Android!

Looking for some great educational kids apps that your kids will like to play?  If so, I am excited to share with you this great Kids Academy App that makes it fun for kids to play and learn essential preschool skills.
Kids Academy – the team behind some of the top educational apps for kids with over 10 million downloads worldwide just released the long-awaited version of their flagship app – Preschool Education Center.
As the name suggests, Preschool Education Center is an all-in-one educational app for kids and toddlers. The app covers all aspects of early childhood education from the alphabet and reading to writing, building vocabulary and developing math skills. Based on the proven Montessori method the app offers a number of fun games that help master essential learning skills through play.

I have reviewed this app and it is perfect for preschool and kindergarten age kids. There is a  lot of great free material and in app purchases. Your kids can have fun with the free content alone. The learning games are Montessori based and kids will play games and activities that will help them learn to spell, write and form letters correctly and read! The music and fun let kids really enjoy themselves while learning. The learning level will go up as your child becomes more proficient at skills. Helpful hints are given if your child gets stuck on something. The curriculum was developed and reviews by a preschool education expert which makes this mom of 5 feel good.

Until now, Preschool Education Center has only been available on iTunes but today’s release makes it finally available for Android device on Google Play! This fun and free app is currently being featured in the Family section of the Android store in the USA, Australia and Canada.

Get the app free on Google Play!

For iOS devices:

Kids Academy have also updated the iOS version of the app: Preschool & Kindergarten Early Learning Games adding new games, books and educational cartoons and shows as well as printable worksheets.
– The update boasts a bunch of cute little monsters that will teach your kids about money and how to count it.
– Kids Academy TV now has a 24/7 Live Zoo channel offering web-cam views on real-life animals.

Grab your free copy of the update on the iTunes App Store!


Free Preschool & Kindergarten Worksheets for Kids

Kids Academy is also finding a way to expand beyond the screen and help master pen and pencil with free printable worksheets. You can get free preschool worksheets on a variety of subjects from alphabet to math (the library is being constantly updated).
Download, print out and get start practicing with good old pen and paper in seconds!

Head over to to the Kids Academy to get your FREE PRINTABLE WORKSHEETS and get your kids busy!


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Here’s A Great Way To Keep Kids Entertained & Learning New Skills Over The Summer.

This post was created in partnership with Mom Buzz Media Blogger Network.  All views & opinions expressed below are my own and are not influenced in anyway.

Kids Academy | Educational Apps for Children

School is coming to an end and many will be starting Kindergarten in the fall or preschool.  If you are looking for an educational app to keep the kids entertained during the summer as well as teach them fundamental skills, your search is over!  Kid Academy Apps for children have 2 great apps for learning and fun.

Preschool & Kindergarten Learning Kids Game Educational Books & Free Songs

This free app is perfect for little ones learning simple math skills,  There is a game where they will give them a problem and then the child helps a dog find which number in a maze is the trigh answer by dragging his bone to that numer.  They can connect the dots in the right number order to form objects and number tracing. There are in app purchases to expand this app and unlock additional features like subtraction math facts.

Download Preschool & Kindergarten Learning Kids Game 

Bugs, Shapes and Robots Face Paint for Toddlers

FREE for a limited time! (usually $2.99)

This free app is a great way to teach little ones in preschool and kindergarten fundamental skills. With the use of a firefly incentive, when the child traces the number correctly the fireflies go into a jar and then it goes to the next number. There is lots of other tracing games too and some need to be purchase to work. With the free version you only get so many numbers and then you can buy the app to get the rest of the features with the in app purchases.

Download Bugs, Shapes, and Robots

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Add This Book To Your Young Reader’s Summer Reading List-Book Giveaway

In New York we still have several weeks of school left.  I know that in the southern states some schools are letting the kids out for summer this Friday!  No better time to start thinking about some great summer reading books for kids. Reading keeps kids entertained, their reading skills sharp and fuels their imagination. I have a great book I want to tell you about that may be one you want to add to your child’s summer reading list. Fans of Polly Horvath or Roald Dahl will love this quirky story of a determined girl, and some extraordinary chickens.

Penguin Random House Logo


Unusual Chickens Book

by Kelly Jones; illustrated by Katie Kath

Sophie Brown and her family have inherited her dead uncle’s farm—a place vastly different from her familiar hometown of LA. Due to her family’s lack of funds, though, operating a fully functioning farm is out of the question. But what happens when the farm animals come to them? Sophie begins to see chickens—very unusual chickens—appearing on her land. She chronicles their activity and her challenges in a series of fun-to-read letters to her deceased relatives. But when a respected local farmer tries to steal them, Sophie must find a way to keep them (and their superpowers) safe. Readers will become immersed in the narrator’s honest and endearing tone. Young readers will root for Sophie and her chickens until the very last page. UNUSUAL CHICKENS is an original, clucky classic in the making.

chicken 2

About The Author:

KELLY JONES has been a librarian, a bookseller, and a teacher, and is currently a raiser of (much-loved but fairly ordinary) chickens. Now she has published her first middle-grade novel, UNUSUAL CHICKENS FOR THE EXCEPTIONAL POULTRY FARMER (On sale May 12, 2015 / Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers / $16.99). Written entirely in letters, to-do lists, and quizzes, with several black-and-white drawings, this is a quirky story of a determined, strong-willed girl with some very unusual super chickens.



Penguin Random House is sponsoring a giveaway on Mommy Ramblings!  One lucky blog reader will win their own copy of Unusual Chickens For The Exceptional Poultry Farmer. Thank you Penguin Random House for the review book  and for sponsoring this fantastic giveaway on Mommy Ramblings!!!  Open to US residents.

Unusual Chickens For The Exceptional Poultry Farmer Giveaway on Mommy Ramblings Rules:

Please enter the giveaway using the Rafflecopter widget below.  Good Luck!!!

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Filed under Books, Giveaway, kids

Kid’s Academy, Improved Free Learning Game Apps For Kids!!! #MomBuzz

kids academy logo

Preschool & Kindergarten Books, Songs & Early Reading Games App

This app has added a new feature. Classic children’s fairytale titles are now available like The Princess and the Pea, Puss and Boots and more. Now with the free version you get just a snippet of the books and then you can purchase a pass for all of them or for an individual book. The books are beautifully illustrated and they app brings the stories to life in an engaging way that kids just love to see and they can also follow along with the text.  This is such a fun App and kids love hearing and singing along with the familiar BINGO song. Kids can clap and sing along as they watch the letters appear in the cute farm scene with the adorable dog. There is an upgrade of the free version where kids can even record and play a karaoke session or just sing and clap along. There are mini games too that are fun like animal cards and kids can also make up and record their own stories. My little guy loves recording himself and playing it back.

kids academy story book illustrations.

Get Preschool & Kindergarten Books, Songs & Early Reading Games App on iTunes


Alphabet Tracing & Montessori App

This Alphabet Tracing and Math Puzzle Educational App is wonderful for teaching kids how to form letters and it is easy for them to trace the letters with their fingers.  A very hands on app that will encourage them to form letters the right way and get them writing.  Perfect for preschool and kindergarten age kids.  Children can trace upper case letters of the alphabet with in purchase apps for expanded tracing.  There are also fun mazes and rhyming games for kids and a purchase for an all access pass will give your child access to loads of great learning games.

Based on the Montessori learning method your child will develop and practice spelling, reading and writing skills while playing engaging games.  Kids will practice writing their letters and their handwriting skills too!  Kids love tracing dotted lines to learn how to form letters. The can form lower or upper case letters. There are fun mazes where they have to drag the dog’s bone to a word that rhymes with the word that the dog is thinking of  as well as simpler mazes where they lead the dog to his prize.  It is so cute and my little guy loves it!  Kids are rated with 1, 2 or 3 stars for their performance.

Get Alphabet Tracing & Montessori App on iTunes

kids academy

Preschool and Kindergarten Games App

They have updated this app and it is easy better it runs better and the graphics are more vibrant making them even more captivating to kids. The same games are there but the bright colors and clear graphics and animation make them even more fun. Great improvements on a stellar app. Kids will practice writing their letters and their handwriting skills with fun games and activities. Kids have a blast tracing dotted lines to learn how to form letters. I like that there are left and right hand modes, 2 levels of difficulty challenges kids.

Kids trace one letter with the dotted lines and then they try one that has no guiding lines right after. Before they are given the letter they hear the letter name and the picture of something that starts with that letter. You can choose to work on Upper or lower case letters. There are other games like the Alphabet and kids have so much interactive fun focused on a specific letter and learning vocabulary words that start with that letter along with fun graphics. Kids can trace numbers too and when they trace the number correctly they fill up a jar with fire flies. It is really fun and my little guy loves it! Kids are rated with 1, 2 or 3 stars for their performance. The free version can be upgraded to unlock more games and features.

Get Preschool and Kindergarten Games App on iTunes

Android users can also find Kids Academy Apps on Google Play!

Also be sure to visit Kids Academy on social media!

Facebook | Twitter | YouTube

This post was created in partnership with Mom Buzz Media and Kids Academy. All opinions expressed are my own.






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Glee Gum, Make Your Own Candy Kit, Review & Giveaway!!! #HolidayGiftGuide

In the past you may have read about how we made our own milk chocolate with kits from Glee Gum.  We decided to mix it up a bit this year and try a different kit.  We opted for the Make Your Own Chewing Gum Kit.  So recently we set out to test out our gum making skills.  The kit comes with all you need, even a disposable tray to melt the chicle gum base which resembles small beads or popcorn kernels.  The reason for the disposable tray is because the chicle gum base when melted is so incredibly sticky.


Chewing Gum Kit

Chewing Gum Kit 1

We used the microwave to melt the chicle gum base and when it was melted we added the corn syrup and tried to stir.

Chewing Gum Kit 2

Chewing Gum Kit 3

Chewing Gum Kit 4


I say tried to because the stickiness really makes you add some serious muscle to the mix.  after that you roll it in the confectioner’s sugar and then knead in one of the flavor packets.  After that you roll it and cut it into pieces.  The best part is last and you can taste your creation.

Chewing Gum Kit 5

Chweing Gum Kit 7




My kids thought it was fun and as a parent it was very educational like all their “make your own” kits.  For parents, educators and home school the website has a lesson plan with resources to expand on and more.  You can see more educational material HERE.  We have also added Glee Gum Make Your Own Candy Kits to our 2014 Holiday Gift Guide.

Glee Gum is sponsoring a giveaway on Mommy Ramblings and one lucky winner will win their choice of Make Your Own Candy Kit!  Thank you Glee Gum for the review kit and for sponsoring this sweet giveaway on Mommy Ramblings!!!  Open to US Residents.

Glee Gum, Make Your Own Candy Kit Giveaway on Mommy Ramblings Rules:

Please enter using the Rafflecopter widget below.  Good Luck!!!

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Filed under Baking, Christmas, DIY, Family, Family Fun, Giveaway, Kitchen, Main Page Post, Mommy Ramblings, Recipes, Review

Splash Math, Fun Learning Math Game Apps For Kids!!! #FreeMathApp #MomBuzz

Games that are fun and encourage learning are always welcome additions in our household.  Recently I downloaded some Splash Math Apps for my kids.  I downloaded the Pre-K to K and the version for Grades 1-5.  I recently posted the following 2 reviews of them on iTunes if you want to check them out.

Splash Math Pre-K:

This fun math app is great for kids in pre-k and kindergarten.  My son is in Kindergarten and loves math, his dad is a math professor so it is in his genes. The fun, friendly characters make the math games fun and kids learn and practice counting skills, addition, subtraction, compare numbers to determine which is greater than or less than, measuring, early geometry and more.  If a child completed all the levels in any given learning unit they win a prize.  If they get the wrong answer they are given helpful guidance to help steer them toward the right answer.  This is a great app for little ones that teaches early math skills they will need to build a strong foundation.  They get 20 questions daily for free.
iPad Screenshot 1
My son is in second grade and loves math and numbers.  It is in his genes as his father is a mathematics professor, lol.  Anyway this app downloads easy and is great for kids in 1st thru 5th grade.  It is aligned with common core curriculum my child’s school is using  and teaches multiplication, division, number sense, geometry, fractions and more.  There is an area for them to do their work and it offers 20 questions with the free version daily. This is a great app for kids to hone their math skills or learn some new ones.
Splash Math 1-5

Join the 8 million+ users!

Download Splash Math on iTunes!

Get SplashMath for Grades 1-5

Get SplashMath for Pre-K

Or check them out on Google Play!

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splash math learn math

$100 Amazon Gift Card Giveaway

Write a short review of any Splash Math app on the iTunes App Store. If you have already reviewed Splash Math app, simply update your review.

Send an email to giveaway@splashmath.com with your iTunes nickname and the app you reviewed.


This post was created in partnership with Mom Buzz Media and StudyPad Inc. All opinions expressed are my own.


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Easy Appliqued Holiday Shirts You Can Make For Thanksgiving & Christmas!!!

You may remember my tales of woe from learning to sew in my post where I showed how I finished an antique vanity as a sewing table.  Aside from an owl pillow I made in 6th grade Home-ec, my attempts at sewing were nothing to write home about.  However, I’m not a quitter, so I was ready to give it another go when I wanted to create some cute whimsical holiday shirts for my kids and family.

I bought some long sleeve cotton shirts and then visited the craft department for some fabrics.  The first shirt I was going to try to make was a turkey for Thanksgiving.  I planned to make the turkey body in brown flannel fabric so I bought a yard of that since I also planned to use it for the Christmas shirts, then I picked several other fabrics for feathers.  I also purchased some polka dot fabric for the antlers and solid red, yellow, black and green for various accents.  Armed with my array of fabrics and some notions like colorful buttons and embroidery thread, I was ready.

I drew my turkey template free hand onto some card stock and cut it out.  I thought I would do feet too but did not end up putting feet on the design.

Turkey shirt 1

I washed the shirts and all the fabrics prior to sewing anything.  After I ironed the fabric I cut the pattern shapes and laid them out how I wanted, then when my design was the way I liked, I secured the fabric pieces with a sewable heat bond.  After that it was off to the sewing machine where I sewed around the pieces with an applique stitch.  The first shirts were a bit laughable but my little ones thought they were great and with every shirt I got better.

Turkey shirt 3

Turkey Shirt 4

Turkey Shirt 5

Turkey Shirt 2

Turkey Shirt


For the Christmas shirts I did the same thing except I made a moose template which honestly ended up looking more like a reindeer but nevertheless is still cute.  I was in a rush because we were using them for a picture but would like to add bows on my daughter’s shirt and mine as well.  For all the boys I want to add a bow tie.

This is the light hold heat bond that is sewable, I just wanted to hold it in place so I did not need to use pins for sewing.  It worked well.

This is the light hold heat bond that is sewable, I just wanted to hold it in place so I did not need to use pins for sewing. It worked well.


Moose Shirt 1

Moose Shirt 4

Moose Shrit 2


Moose Shirt 5

Moose Shirt 6

Christmas Shirts


Applique shirts_edited-1

I made 9 shirts in all (2 turkey shirts and 7 Christmas shirts). It really gave me confidence to make friends with my sewing machine and if I could do this, anyone can.  I know they are far from perfect but they are made with love and to me that is what matters the most.  If you would like any more specifics please ask.


Filed under Christmas, Crafts, DIY, Family Fun, Fashion, Holiday, Main Page Post, Mommy Ramblings, Toddler

K5 Learning Online Reading and Math Program Review!!!


K5 Learning is an award-winning online reading and math program for kids in kindergarten to grade 5. Kids work at their own level and their own pace through a personalized program of over 3,000 online tutorials and activities.

Designed principally for after school study and summer study, K5 is also used by homeschoolers, special needs and gifted kids. K5 helps your children build good study habits and excel in school.

I recently tried this program out and it was easy to set up and customize for my kids. Before they begin they enter their name and grade level, then design a character that looks like them or anything they like. Next, your child is ready to start learning through fun games. The math facts for my 5-year-old was done integrated with a bowling theme and it was engaging and kept his interest. It is a program that both he and my 7-year-old look forward to playing not something that is a drag. It will save their progress, give reports and let children switch between math, spelling and math and reading lessons easily.

Parents will find it easy to monitor progress and identify areas where their children need more help or practice. There are 2 logins, one for parents and one for kids.  The kids are logged in to an easy to navigate dashboard and the parents have a dashboard that lets them view  reports on their child and get the details of how they are progressing.   To view a video of how the system works click HERE.  The software is designed so that children as young as 4 can use and navigate the lessons by themselves.

This program is great for both kids that attend school or are home schooled as well as pre-school age children. If you are looking for a reading and math enrichment program, you should check out K5. You can view sample lessons HERE. There is a 14 day free trial you can use to see for yourself how it works and how your child likes it. You can also download a free ebook, “How to Help Your Kids Succeed in School” filled with practical advice and specific activities by clicking HERE.  To set up the free trial click HERE to get started.  Let me know what you think.


Oh and you can get free printable worksheets by clicking HERE.

Online Reading & Math Program for K-5

I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

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