Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Totally Awesome Jewelry - Learning Rainbow Loom

As you know my kids are Rainbow Loom crazy.  They are making them, selling them, teaching friends how to make them.  When my son has hockey, my daughter makes bracelets (in fact, she's making team bracelets now).  When my daughter has gymnastics, my son is busy whipping up some new fishtail bracelets for his friends.  It seems that wherever my kids are, the Rainbow Loom is there with them.

As I mentioned in my previous post, the Rainbow loom itself is amazing but the instructions that come with it are pretty pathetic.  We hop on YouTube every once in awhile to follow instructions for new patterns but it means we need to be connected.  That's why I was really excited when I was approached to test and review the book "Totally Awesome Rubber Band Jewelry" by Colleen Dorsey.  It is a new instructional book that teaches you how to make 13 different projects with your Rainbow Loom, Cra-Z-Loom or FunLoom.  It's more than just bracelets too.  Your kids (and you) will learn to make earrings, belts, necklaces and more.

Totally Awesome Rubber Band Jewelry - Great instruction book

The book arrived just as the kids were getting off the bus.  they both ran to the table to get started.  I went through the first new pattern with my son (age 7) because I wasn't sure if he'd be able to follow written instructions.  I left my daughter (age 8.5) to fend for herself because I was curious to see if the instructions were manageable without a parent's help.  Both were successful.

Totally Awesome Rubber Band Jewelry - Great instruction book

What I loved about this book:

  1. The photos and instructions were really clear.
  2. Every pattern included photos of the completed project as well as step by step photos.
  3. Every pattern also included a diagram of the elastics on the loom with numbered steps beside them.  
  4. The patterns progressed from easier to more difficult.
  5. Simple tips were included throughout that kind of gave you 'aha' moments.

Totally Awesome Rubber Band Jewelry - Great instruction book

One of my favourite features of "Totally Awesome Rubber Band Jewelry" was the way the patterns were laid out in the diagrams.  Each new pattern was depicted in 3 different colour combinations both in a photo of the final product and the diagrams showing the elastics on the loom.  This allowed the kids to really understand the basics of the pattern.  Once they'd done all three (or sometimes less) versions of the patterns shown, they felt comfortable switching it up and choosing colour patterns of their own.

Totally Awesome Rubber Band Jewelry by Collen Dorsey is available in paperback at toy and book stores starting tomorrow, October 31st.  It retails for $9.99 and is the perfect add-on for the Rainbow Loom when giving it as a gift.  If a child already has a loom, package it up with a few new bags of elastics for a wonderful birthday gift.  It would also make a great stocking stuffer and we know Christmas is really just around the corner.

Book Giveaway:

Great news! I've got 3 copies of "Totally Awesome Rubber Band Jewelry" by Collen Dorsey to give away! You can be one of the first to own it! Enter the rafflecopter contest below for your chance to win on of three Totally Awesome Rubber Band Jewelry books!

Please note: The giveaway is open to Canadian residents over the age of 18 only.

Good Luck and happy looming! Can't wait to see the totally awesome rubber band jewelry your kids make!

Friday, October 25, 2013

Judging a Book (or a mom) by the Cover

I think we've all done it, judged a book by its cover.  More often than that, we judge other moms.  Our judgements are often based on their look, their comportment, their mood, how they're handling their kids.  I, like the judges on this show, made an assumption about this mom based on her appearance and I am the first to admit that I was totally off-base and wrong for making a pre-judgement.  

It is always a good reminder to reserve judgement until you yourself have gotten to know a person.  I came across this picture today and it follows along the same lines.  It is another good reminder with Halloween just one week away.

Image Source: Rett Girl
Take time to get to know people, learn about them, their talents, their struggles and their dreams.  More often than not you'll be pleasantly surprised, informed and enlightened.  Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

I Find Shopping Rewarding

So my name says it all.  I'm the "on a dime" mama.  I love shopping but my husband will tell you, I often have trouble pulling the trigger when it comes to actually buying something.  Now I'm not saying that I am cheap or that I don't like nice things.  I'm just conscientious with my money; I like a good deal and knowing that I'm getting value for my money.  That is why I was so excited to learn that my CAA Membership gets me exclusive discounts at stores that I love, travel and attractions that we want to go to as a family.  Did you know that a CAA Membership is so much more than just roadside assistance?  Honestly, I had no idea.

With CAA's new CAA Rewards program there are over 164,000 retail outlets and services worldwide that offer special discounts, savings and rewards to CAA Members.  That means savings on items such as clothing, hotel rooms and entertainment simply by showing my CAA Membership card.  What a great benefit!  But it gets even better.

One of the easiest ways to use my CAA Membership to my full advantage is to visit the CAA eStore and shop from over 40 retailers. Every time I shop at one of them, I earn CAA Dollars. It really is as simple as 1-2-3.

  1. I visit the CAA eStore where I choose the retailer I want to shop at.
  2. I select Shop Now and sign in with my CAA Membership number. I am taken directly to that retailer's website and shop like I normally would.
  3. When I check out, my CAA Dollars are processed and added to my account within 90 days.

Many of the stores are stores I already shop at but now I am being rewarded for shopping at them.  So, as I buy things that I would normally buy anyway I earn CAA Dollars that can be used to buy movie tickets, renew my membership, purchase travel merchandise, insurance renewal premium or even book my next vacation.  Every CAA Dollar I earn equals $1.00 CAD.  It is that simple. Why wouldn't I do my shopping this way?

So now this has me thinking about Christmas.  My son wants a new hockey bag and my daughter wants a Roots hoodie.  They are old enough that I can't simply divert their attention and throw a gift in the bottom of the stroller as we shop together.  This means that I do A LOT of my holiday shopping online after they're in bed.  Now I can visit the CAA e-store and earn CAA Dollars as I buy the things on their lists.  We can then use the CAA Dollars for an upcoming family vacation we're planning.  It's like free money!!!  

Being a savvy shopper is simple with a CAA Membership. I've discovered a way to get the things we need, save money doing it and even save for a future vacation.  All that tied up with my CAA Membership.  What can I say?  Shopping is definitely rewarding!

This post was sponsored by CAA. All opinions are 100% mine.

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