I'm just a mom, painting pictures with my words
Kids planting flowers in blooming garden

Backyards are beautiful and inviting places for kids to play and hang out with family and friends. However, many yards contain both hidden and obvious dangers — everything from rickety decks and unfenced pools to lawn equipment and poisonous plants. To make sure your backyard is a fun and safe sanctuary for your kids (and your pets, too), check out the following tips: Check the Playground Equipment Kids are drawn to tire swings, slides and swing sets like moths to a flame. To ensure no one gets hurt, check that your play sets are anchored into the ground, any ropes

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It’s not easy being a mom. I can’t say that I would know (being a guy and all), but by remembering the exhausted look on my mom’s face after many long days, I can tell how demanding it can be. Apart from the occasional glass of wine, there is another beverage that helps to save women from the exhausting work of momming: coffee. Many of you already know the stimulating effects of coffee (why else do we drink it?), but there are many other health-related reasons why you should be sipping down a steaming cup of joe. Here are 5

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  You only get one true love in life, or at least that’s what Mark Solomon believes. Losing the love of his life at a young age has motivated him to live a life filled with adventure. No mountain is too high, no ocean too deep for Mark to find a thrill. Back in Barefoot Bay to attend a high school reunion he’s prepared to deal with the bittersweet pangs of loss he will inevitably feel revisiting all the places he and his wife fell in love as teenagers. What he’s not expecting is to find a crying woman on

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The U.S. Department of Education estimates that about 4.7 percent of all public school students have a learning disability, and a substantial number of these student have Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). While the percentage is neither startling or large, the inclusion of just a single student with a learning disability (LD) into your classroom means that accommodations must be made to help that child succeed academically. But consideration for learning disabled students does not call for a complete overhaul of all your lesson plans. Teachers can adjust existing lessons plans to accommodate for their ADHD students. Use Different Mediums

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  7 Hot Tips to Keep Your Home Safe If we don’t take the necessary precautions, a number of accidents can take place in our homes. The following beneficial tips must be followed in order to avoid any potentially-dangerous event at home. 1.     Protection against Scalding Hot water is as capable of burning your skin as fire. Therefore, always set your hot-water heater to a maximum temperature of 120°F. This is especially necessary if you have kids at home. Also, it’s recommended to check the temperature of the bathtub before putting your child into it. 2.     Prevention of Falls One

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How Genetics Play a Role in Your Fitness

Exercise clothing, check. Running shoes, check. Sun glasses, check. Motivation and will power, check. While you may be equipped with the essential gear and proper motivation, sometimes that just isn’t enough. Here are some reasons why some people, even when putting their best foot forward, aren’t able to become physically fit. Genetic Variants We all know someone or even experienced firsthand the disheartening effects of weeks or even months of exercise, with no increase in strength or stamina. For some, this could be the result of cheating by not exercising enough or taking it a little too easy in the

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  Becoming a parent is one of the best experiences that life has to offer. Along with all of the joy and excitement comes a whole lot of responsibility, and it’s important to make sure that you’re prepared for any trials and hardships that might occur. Purchasing a life insurance policy is one of those things that deserves a fair amount of research and consideration as you plan for your family’s future. What is Life Insurance? Life insurance is financial protection that can cover major necessary expenses for your family such as shelter, food, health care, college tuition, resolve debt

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As parents, you want to do everything you can to make sure your kids are as healthy as possible. Fortunately, it’s not too difficult to encourage young kids to make great choices in what they eat and how often they get exercise. Here are some tips and ideas to get the whole family on the road to great health: Be a great role model Your kids are watching you at all times and taking mental notes on what you say, do, eat and more. If your children see you getting regular exercise and eating healthy foods — at least most

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I received an email a few weeks ago from Marissa at VIVAROSES offering me a free bouquet of roses in exchange for a review. There are a few things that I absolutely love, doing product reviews for startup companies, and flowers. (Third option would be food…just putting that out there!) After exchanging a few emails with Marissa I was impressed with the company, their story and their business plan. Marissa is married to James, and James wanted to send her roses when they were dating but was frustrated with the process. Not a man to give up easily, James tracked

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Finding the perfect babysitter who is readily available, trustworthy and competent can be anxiety-inducing for any parent. It can seem like a daunting task and one that sneaks up on many parents who find themselves needing a sitter at the last minute. The best thing to do is to look for a sitter and prepare your home well in advance of needing one. Here’s some tips to help you be prepared when the time comes that you need care, fast. Start with Personal Recommendations The most reliable way of finding a sitter is to talk to people you know. Neighbors,

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Helping your teen find a job

Summer vacation is coming up, and your teenager is already talking about getting a job. After spending the last few summers watching your kiddo sleep until noon, texting his or her friends for hours at a time and struggling to do the most basic chores, you could not be happier about your teen’s desire to work. In order to help your teenager find a great job that suits his or her personality and navigate the often-stressful hiring process, check out these tips and ideas: Help your teen identify good job opportunities In the world of teenage employment, some jobs are

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Work from home

Working from home can be difficult — you’re surrounded by the distractions of your everyday life, from paying bills to cleaning. You can use feng shui to create a productive and comfortable space to work in to maximize your output. Here are some tips to getting started with feng shui in your home to create your perfect working environment. Create Separation One important element of working from home is making sure that you have a completely separate space for doing work. If you are tempted to check your email in the bedroom, or do a little work while watching television

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We get it. Shopping for teens these days is tricky business. What’s even cool anymore? Whether you’re shopping for the perfect birthday present or just looking to surprise your teen, show your love with one of these teen-friendly gifts. We swear they’ll like at least one of them. On a Roll Teens with an affinity for extreme sports will appreciate a gift that appeals to their no-fear attitude, like a new skateboard. The retailer CCS makes it easy to purchase a new skate deck and all of the fixings that go along with the board. Plus, you can order online,

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I’m excited for spring this year, it has been a very long, very cold, very dreary winter! I’m always eager to see those first few flowers poke their heads up out of the ground, and this year that seems even more true than normal. So, when I received this guest post submission I knew that it was perfect for my website. Enjoy! I doubt I’m the only one who is over this dreary, cold weather. I’ve been stuck indoors, sickness has made its way through our house–multiple times at that, and I’m running seriously low on Vitamin D. But don’t

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Having worked from home for almost 13 years, I get asked all the time how I do it. There seem to be two camps of people, those who think working from home is their dream and a ticket to–well–not actually working, or those who know they don’t have what it takes to stay disciplined and get the job done. For my family, working from home means I get to have a productive career that contributes financially to my family and I’m still here for my children and my husband when I need to be. Working from home gives you more

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Barefoot with a Bad Boy Roxanne St. Claire

  True fans of Roxanne St. Claire don’t need a fancy book review to help them determine whether or not to read Barefoot with a Bad Boy, all they need to hear are two words. Those words are Gabe Rossi. Those of us who have eagerly soaked up every word written by the talented pen of Roxanne know that this is the book that readers have been waiting—no begging—for her to write. Writing a story for a fan favorite is not an unintimidating task. There’s a lot of trepidation in finally giving a man like Gabe his happily ever after.

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I have had a long time struggle with Valentine’s Day and the fact that the world, and the schools, seem to want us to include our kids in what was originally a romantic holiday. I get that really today it’s a pink and sparkly holiday and an excuse to eat chocolate–and I’m totally into any excuse to eat chocolate–but still part of me struggles with the school parties and sending out Valentine’s to that one kid in class whose last name you don’t even know. This year I think I’d like to try something different and just celebrate the fact

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Today is a very big day! Today I get to reveal the cover of Hiding In Plain Sight! I have had the honor and the privilege of posting numerous cover reveals for books that I loved over the years that I’ve been blogging, but this one is truly special. Today I get to share with you the cover for my very own book, written under a pen name. Hiding In Plain Sight will be available from Evernight Publishing on February 11th, I’ll update this post to include the links to purchase it when they’re available. In the mean time just feast your

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Family Roadtrip

The next time you’re heading out on a family vacation think about putting aside the ‘get there fast and get home even faster’ mentality we are all guilty of on occasion. This past summer my family and I took a road trip from St Louis to Orlando Florida. We traveled to Florida to attend my daughter’s national dance competition event, many of the other families opted to fly but for our family we decided to drive and make the most of the trip itself. In all honestly I can say that looking back on our trip the time in the

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50 ReasonsWhy I Can'tWorkout Today!

The reasons why I can’t go to the gym today are obvious, I mean look at this list! I can’t possibly even think about going to the gym today, I just can’t! (You should totally feel free to borrow one or more of these ideas…you know, if you need them). I can’t go to the gym today because.. 1. I’m tired 2. If I work out I’ll be tired later 3. I have too much to do 4. I am enjoying doing nothing 5. I want to take a nap 6. I accidentally took a nap 7. I didn’t eat

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Thirty years ago—yes, 3-0 years ago—I fell in love with the written word. I had always been a reader, I read everything and anything I could get my hands on from the back of cereal boxes to Dr. Seuss books. When I was 17 years old though that changed from love to obsession. I picked up a copy of a book by Kathleen E. Woodiwiss from my mother’s bookshelf. The book was tattered and torn, the cover was held on by aging Scotch tape and even with that repair the book looked as though it could fall apart at any

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Origami fortune teller in cupped hands concept for work life balance choices

Striking a work life balance is a difficult task. Chances are you’ve got plenty of work assignments you need to finish, coupled with plenty of household chores you need to take care of. With all of those responsibilities, it can be tough to find free time to just relax and feel better. If you find that you constantly feel swamped, these tips can help you find a better work-life balance: Schedule Free Time Book a babysitter and go out on a date with your loved one. Or spend time with your friends. No matter what you choose, some much-needed social

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I was thrilled last month to sign a contract with a publisher to publish my first romantic suspense novel under the pen name, Angela Evans. The reactions I have received from friends and family as I share my news has been varied, and yet still followed a predictable path.   I’ve compiled a list which inspired this post. Enjoy! I should write a book! This response has generally come from the people you would categorize as “least likely to ever write a book.” I’m not sure if writing and publishing a book sounds like easy money to them, or if

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Many women experience problems with sleeping in the early stages of motherhood. Sometimes this problem occurs even before the baby comes, but it’s certain that it gets much worse after childbirth. This is a serious issue as in some cases it may cause postpartum depression, anxiety and serious health problems. Fortunately there are some specific things that can be done in order to help first time moms deal with this issue properly. Sleeping Together Some women find it easier to cope with sleep deprivation by sleeping together with the baby. If the baby is still very small there’s an option

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Money: everybody wants more, especially your teen. However, financial responsibility isn’t always easy. Teens need advice and your knowledge when they deal with money. The first big financial decision many teens make is about their first car. Don’t let your son or daughter ruin his or her credit score and financial future by taking out rash loans with variable interest rates just to get his or her dream car. Here are some points you should share with your teens about money. For New Drivers When a teen gets his first car, it’s a huge life change. He suddenly has more

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