Glimpse

Monday, September 15, 2014

Imagination & Pretend Play = Learning! ~ GIVEAWAY!

**Disclosure: The product/s mentioned have been given free of charge from the company or PR firm in exchange for being featured on Glimpse. The opinions expressed in this post are those of Glimpse and have not been influenced in any other way. Please see the full [Terms of use](http://glimpse-reviews.blogspot.com/p/terms-of-use.html).


When it comes to learning, it seems that we are often stuck on the idea that learning from books, worksheets, classes, etc. is the one of the best ways to teach and learn a variety of skills. Even I am guilty of this at times...have you ever tried teaching your kids manners by reading a manners book to them? ;) Although it may help a little bit, there is nothing like actually practicing those manners throughout the day - and something like this can even take the form of practicing during playtime. For example, a dress-up princess tea party is a great way to practice those manners! It may take a bit of extra creativity at times, but there are not many faster ways to get a child to learn a skill than through pretend play. As I've watched my children grow and learn, I've become a huge advocate for pretend play. It gets the imagination going, and allows for play that includes experimentation, role play and more. There are so many benefits to imagining and pretending that I try to always allow my children ample time to do these two things - and often it's amazing to see what they come up with!

As I mentioned, there are plenty of benefits to allowing your children the privilege of having time for pretend play. One of our favorite types of pretend play is Dress-Up. We've got a tickle trunk of fun Dress-up clothes that our kids love to pull out and put on! It's always fun to see a 'real' policeman wandering through our house. *wink* A few of them include:

Scholastic Monday ~ Fox & Squirrel Make a Friend

**Disclosure: The product/s mentioned have been given free of charge from the company or PR firm in exchange for being featured on Glimpse. The opinions expressed in this post are those of Glimpse and have not been influenced in any other way. Please see the full [Terms of use](http://glimpse-reviews.blogspot.com/p/terms-of-use.html).

Fox and Squirrel are some of the cutest little characters we have come across! They are the most unlikely of friends, but regardless of this fact, they are the best of friends! We recently the latest Fox and Squirrel book to our bookshelf. Fox and Squirrel Make a Friend by Ruth Ohi is a sweet tale of the two close-knit friends who have the opportunity to make a new friend! Will their be room for Yellow Bird?

As the story unravels, Yellow Bird and Squirrel spend some time playing high up in the treetops where, unfortunately, Fox can't reach. Fox tries to be a part of their games, but eventually begins to feel like Squirrel doesn't need him and his friendship anymore, so he heads off to a quiet spot on his own. Can Squirrel help Fox realize that there's room in their friendship for another friend?

As a parent, I really enjoyed the message that this book delivers. It's a cute and fun little story that uses the adorable characters of Fox, Squirrel and Yellow Bird to share some important lessons and messages of friendship, loyalty and acceptance. It's a great lesson for children to learn, and this Fox and Squirrel Make a Friend provides a simple and heart-warming and beautifully illustrated tale to teach children about friendship.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Add a Little "Culture" to your Meals! ~ GIVEAWAY!

**Disclosure: The product/s mentioned have been given free of charge from the company or PR firm in exchange for being featured on Glimpse. The opinions expressed in this post are those of Glimpse and have not been influenced in any other way. Please see the full [Terms of use](http://glimpse-reviews.blogspot.com/p/terms-of-use.html).

When it comes to food, I would probably be described as "adventurous!" Yes, I'm one of those types would will eat the more exotic and perhaps unheard of foods - especially if someone tells me that it is healthy and nutritious! I've tried all kinds of things, some of the more "exotic" ones include beef tongue, fish eggs, and canned snails! That said, I don't normally include these types of foods in our monthly meal plan. However, in the past few years I have discovered the amazing benefits of foods that contain live and active probiotic cultures. In fact, some foods have FAR higher probiotic counts than an actual probiotic capsule. One of our favorites has been kefir. Ever heard of that one? ;) I've often gotten a blank stare when I say that we had some kefir with our fruit for a snack, but I'm sure that at least some of you have heard of kefir and all it's amazing benefits, right? In case you haven't, kefir is a drinkable yogurt that can be served in a variety of delicious ways. It can come in some great flavors, or you can even make your own plain kefir right in your own home if you're feeling extra adventurous. Kefir is rich in some of the essentials that our bodies need: protein, calcium and probiotics!

We recently were able to try a new brand of Kefir that has recently been launched in grocery stores all across Canada. Lifeway Foods has a great line of delicious flavored kefir drinks. They include plain, strawberry, blueberry and peach. Lifeway's formula contains 12 live and active probiotic cultures. Because of this, Lifeway's drinkable yogurt will provide you with a higher probiotic count than most regular yogurts. The flavor of kefir may take a bit of getting used to for some people, but our family LOVES it. Myself and all of our children drink kefir regularly, and we thoroughly enjoy it. Just to give you an idea of what you'll be getting when you take that first sip of kefir, you'll likely find that it is a wonderful mixture of something that is smooth, tart and refreshing.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Amazing Apple from Avon! ~ GIVEAWAY!

**Disclosure: The product/s mentioned have been given free of charge from the company or PR firm in exchange for being featured on Glimpse. The opinions expressed in this post are those of Glimpse and have not been influenced in any other way. Please see the full [Terms of use](http://glimpse-reviews.blogspot.com/p/terms-of-use.html).

Avon's Naturals Kids products always seem to have something new and fun arriving! A few weeks ago we came home to a delightful (and very tasty smelling!) package from Avon Naturals Kids. Inside was a bag full of their Amazing Apple products which were all an instant hit in our home! With three five children, three of which are girls, there is always room for more hair brushes, stylin' Gel and Hand & Face Wipes. Yes, if I'm not doing one of my daughters' hair, there is a good chance that you'll find me wiping another child's face, helping someone was their hands or cleaning up a sticky mess somewhere. It's all a part of being a mom! :)

Our girls love to get their hair done and they love to try new hair styles. My oldest is always coming up with all kinds of funky hair-do's of her own that she'd like me to attempt on her hair! Some of them are pretty wild, and although I might not always follow her hair style wishes exactly, I am glad she's got the imagination to dream them up! One thing that helps keep girls hair in place is some high quality Stylin' Gel. Avon Naturals Kids has some great gel in their Amazing Apple line. Not only does it work well, but it smell just as delicious as a freshly baked apple pie or a box of fresh apples just picked from the tree. Yum! The gel was formulated with kids in mind, so it is a gentle formula that keeps hair in place, but also keeps your hair feeling soft - not hard and crusty like some gels and hair sprays would do.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Get rid of those paper flyers!! FLIPP~ GIVEWAY!!

We recently stopped getting the newspaper, and so far, haven't gotten any flyers either. Here in our city, flyers are included in the newspaper for those with a subscription, and are delivered separately for those who don't have one. When our subscription first started, we were getting flyers both ways. Man was that a lot of paper!! I only really look at flyers of stores I shop at regularly (in an attempt to curb spending of things I don't need!) so most of the flyers go right into the recycling.  What a waste of paper.

But I really like looking at the flyers. It's very handy to sit down with the grocery store flyers, for example, when making my grocery list. Of course, it annoys me to have this great collection of papers around me, and to find deals at several shops when I really only want to go one place and get it done!

I've tried looking at the flyers online, but you have to find each one and look at them separately, and then make a list and then and then and then... lots of reasons why THAT didn't work.

Someone suggested an app for my smartphone, so I tried that for a while too. But it wasn't easy to move around in, and I didn't like how the flyers were displayed. Scratch that idea too.  I was back to paper flyers. But they pile up so quickly!!!

Then I found out about Flipp.  It's a smartphone flyer app - with complete functionality for iPhone and almost all features for Android phones - that helps you find the flyers in your local area. When you set it up, you have to enter your location.  From there, it picks up all the stores who have a flyer published. I should say - many flyers. I can't promise it will find them all, but it was certainly more than I'd ever seen in paper delivered here!!

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Looking for unique stationery and giftware ~ Muffymade!!

So you want to send a note, or a card, or a cute little gift. But you don't want yours to look like everyone else's! Or you'd like cards that represent who you are and show your personality. Right down to your favourite colours. Or you need a custom design to suit your situation perfectly. But short of drawing everything yourself (and if you're as artistic as me, that's a challenge!), how do you go about this?


This fledgling design company, founded by Canadians Meredith Shaw and Nicole Clark, can provide you with customized stationery and giftware! Some of their graphics can be tweaked to your taste, but even more exciting is their ability to create something special just for you! Figures are simple, but recognizable details and preferences are included, making the end result definitely yours!

The muffymade website is still in development - while you're waiting, you can colour a fun graphic 'wallpaper!' But if you head over to their Pinterest page, you can see some of the fun stuff they've already created! Check out their Facebook page to see what others think of their designs!

Monday, September 8, 2014

Simple, Safe, Sustainable and SUPER! ~ GIVEAWAY!

**Disclosure: The product/s mentioned have been given free of charge from the company or PR firm in exchange for being featured on Glimpse. The opinions expressed in this post are those of Glimpse and have not been influenced in any other way. Please see the full [Terms of use](http://glimpse-reviews.blogspot.com/p/terms-of-use.html).

It often seem to me that toys these days have become rather complicated. You know, lots of buttons, gadgets, little tiny pieces, batteries, etc. Although toys like this do have their place, I tend to lean towards enjoying the more simple toys. Perhaps it's because I remember playing with toys such as these when I was young, or perhaps it's just because when I watch my kids play, they often will choose the simple things to play with (boxes, balls, wooden toys, etc.) instead of the ones with all the noises and buttons. There's beauty in the simplicity of some of the traditional toys that have been around for years and years and years...and yet they are still being enjoyed by children today!

I was really excited when I discovered a little factory located in Québec that creates some of the most adorable and fun wooden toys that I've seen in a long time! Atelier cheval de bois is the name of this unique Canadian company and their mission is to create toys that will nurture a child's imagination and to create unique toys that will be long lasting...even throughout future generations!

We've been having a lot of fun playing with our new school bus from Atelier cheval de bois. Not only is this a great time of year to practice driving a toy school bus but it would also make a fun toy for those younger children who are still at home and are missing their older siblings and watching them ride the bus every day as they head to school! This little wooden school bus comes with five of the cutest little wooden dolls/men (I just love their little hats! :) ) The roof of the school bus can easily be lifted off and placed back on so your children can easily get the dolls on and off the bus. The roof was simple enough for our 2 year old to easily take off and put back on without any difficulty. It's a great toy to encourage and build hand-eye coordination, motor skills and, of course, it gets your kids using their imaginations! I've found that the toys that our children tend to play with the most are the ones that allow them to be imaginative and creative...I think kids are wired to be imaginative and creative and toys such as the wooden toys from Atelier cheval de bois are just the kinds of "tools" that children need to inspire them!

Dolphin Tale 2 ~ The Countdown is On!

**Disclosure: I received compensation/products free of charge from the company or PR firm in exchange for being featured on Glimpse. The opinions expressed in this post are those of Glimpse and have not been influenced in any other way. Please see the full [Terms of use](http://glimpse-reviews.blogspot.com/p/terms-of-use.html).

Dolphins are one of the most love underwater animals in the world! They are friendly, super cute and amazingly smart! It's no wonder that the original Dolphin Tale movie touched peoples hearts and struck a chord with families across North America when it hit theaters in September of 2011. It was the story of the miraculous rescue of Winter, an Atlantic Bottlenose Dolphin who was rescued and nursed back to health at the Clearwater Marine Aquarium. It is wonderful story that inspired both young and old alike.

Now the countdown is on...for Dolphin Tale 2 which will be opening in theaters this coming Friday - September 12, 2014!! For those who loved the first movie, and those who are looking for a clean, inspiring and heart-touching movie, the anticipation is high, and we've only got 4 days until Dolphin Tale 2 is available for viewing! The movie continues along with the story of Winter, as well as a new addition at the Clearwater Marine Aquarium - a baby Dolphin named Hope who has her own special story of survival. This film reunites the entire main cast and is sure to be another inspiring movie with an inspiring message to share with all of it's viewers!

Be sure to check and see if Dolphin Tale 2 is playing in a theater near you this weekend! If you happen to go and watch it, let us know what you thought of the latest Dolphin Tale film...we'd love to hear your thoughts/opinions!

DK Discovery Day ~ Space Quest, Mission to Mars ~ GIVEAWAY!

**Disclosure: The product/s mentioned have been given free of charge from the company or PR firm in exchange for being featured on Glimpse. The opinions expressed in this post are those of Glimpse and have not been influenced in any other way. Please see the full [Terms of use](http://glimpse-reviews.blogspot.com/p/terms-of-use.html).


Space has been a hot topic in our home during the past year! Our 8 year old son has had (and still has!) a huge interest in space, spaceships, rockets, planets, etc. We've taken advantage of this season in his life and have done all kinds of fun studies on space and other activities related to outer space. Even I have learned a lot of things that I didn't know before! ;)

Since outer space and all that goes along with that topic are things that we are currently really enjoying learning about, I am always looking for new little ways to find and add some extra activities to our home that relate to outer space. One of our more recent additions is a great little reader (level 2, so perfect for ages 6-8 years old) from DK Canada titled Space Quest Mission to Mars. The instant our son laid eyes on this reader he was intrigued and sat down to read the whole thing. These readers actually have quite a lot of reading in them compared to other readers that are also labeled for similar ages, so it was great to be able to have a reader that took our son longer than a few minutes to read through!

Space Quest Mission to Mars tells the story of five astronauts and Coconut (a rabbit), who embarked on a long-term mission to explore the planets of the Solar System in the spacecraft Ramesses. There are all kinds of challenges including dust storms, solar flares and more that the group will be facing - will they be able to complete their mission?

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Deep Sea Mission! ~ GIVEAWAY!

**Disclosure: The product/s mentioned have been given free of charge from the company or PR firm in exchange for being featured on Glimpse. The opinions expressed in this post are those of Glimpse and have not been influenced in any other way. Please see the full [Terms of use](http://glimpse-reviews.blogspot.com/p/terms-of-use.html).

Who's ready for a little bit of fun? Adventure? Or even better - some underwater adventures? The Octonauts definitely fit this description, and this August they released another top-notch DVD! Octonauts: Deep Sea Mission is the perfect combination of fun, education and adventure. From beginning to end the DVD teaches kids about life in the ocean, or more specifically, in this DVD it teaches kids (and parents! *wink*) about what it's like in the deepest, darkest parts of the ocean - the midnight zone!

Our children are BIG fans of the Octonauts and were thrilled to bits when this DVD arrived in the mail. They were introduced to some deep sea creatures for the first time, including the Vampire Squid and the Gulper Eels. The underwater volcano and the darkness of this underwater world add just enough adventure & mystery to the DVD as well. A few of our children were a bit frightened by the last episode (where they hear a strange sound in the water...and discover that it is an ocean creature in need of help), but all ended well with the episode...guess it was just a bit too much suspense for a few of our sensitive little ones! Either way, personally, I thought the Octonauts DVD was great. It is a wonderful way for children and families to be able to explore the world's oceans without having to leave the comfort of your own home.

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