Wednesday, February 25, 2015

St. Patrick's Day Advent Calendar + FREE Printables {Written by Emilee}

I absolutely love advent calendars and since I have the perfect display from Deseret Book's Zion Mercantile, I can use it for EVERY SINGLE holiday.
 
St. Patrick's Day is coming up so I thought I would get in the spirit of St. Patty and countdown till the 17th of March. So fun! Just don't tell my English husband. I am limited to the amount of green decorations I can put out. However, I celebrated the fabulous holiday growing up so I want to share it with my children. Plus, my dad served an LDS mission in Ireland so it is special to me.
 
So, I came up with some easy St. Patrick's Day printables. Now, if you don't have the fabulous advent calendar from Zion's Mercantile, don't worry. Use these printables on white paper bags or containers or whatever you have lying around the house. Another idea is to use a muffin tin. Insert candy or whatever fits into each hole, then attach the tags with tape to the top of each hole. 
 
I'm sure you could come up with something spectacular. After all, they are FREE to the public so take advantage.
 
Next, purchase some tiny toys, gold coins,  skittles, treasures, or gold Rollos. Put one in each bag or box. Take turns opening each box and countdown till March 17th. Then reward your children with an extra goody bag on St. Patrick's Day. In my case, I bought a game called Lucky Sight Words from Scholastic. But, I'm sure you could find something fun in Target's dollar section or any discount store. You could also come up with a scavenger hunt for them to find each prize. That way, if you have sneaky children like my son who thinks he can open every single box at a time...then they won't be able to do that. They will be tricked!!!
 

 
I also added some other fun tags just in case you want to go the extra mile.
 
 
And who doesn't love blank tags to put between the number tags.
 
 
Find all of four of the FREE printables {HERE}.
 
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Tuesday, February 24, 2015

NCircle Entertainment Brand NEW DVDS Review + Giveaway {Written by Emilee}

Are your kids feeling cooped up? NCircle Entertainment has the antidote!  They are offering one person on Sweetly Made (Just for you) a chance to win 4 Winter-Wonderful DVDs, valued at over $40!  This terrific prize pack will keep your little ones occupied for hours as they go on DVD adventures with favorite preschool friends The Wiggles, Pocoyo, Octonauts and Wibbly Pig. The Pocoyo DVD even includes bonus karaoke videos that will keep the kids humming all day long!
 
 
 The prize pack includes four brand new NCircle Entertainment DVDs. 
 
The DVDs are:
 
Octonauts: Pirate Adventures DVD
Pocoyo: Fiesta DVD (with bonus karaoke videos!)
Wibbly Pig: Playtime! DVD
The Wiggles: Wiggle House DVD
 

Octonauts: Pirate Adventures
 
Dive into adventure with your favorite underwater explorers, the Octonauts! On this pirate-y DVD, Kwazii swashbuckles with swordfish, goes on a treasure hunt with a pirate parrotfish, and in a special double-length adventure, journeys down the Amazon to find his long-lost grandfather! 
 
In my opinion:
 
I always look forward to watching this movie with my son because I know he loves it and I do too. This was the first movie we watched out of the four. We couldn't wait! I was going to give them as Valentine's Day gifts to my son but I couldn't wait a day or two. That is how much I love the Octonauts. I'm not even kidding. I love all of the adventures especially when they are brand new like the Pirate Adventures. They are so educational, even I'm learning about the different water creatures. Did you know there is an Amazon river dolphin? Well, I didn't. My son will re-watch each Octonaut episode over and over again and I don't mind one bit. I definitely recommend the Octonauts: Pirate Adventures.
 
 
Pocoyo: Fiesta
 
Sing and dance with Pocoyo and friends in Fiesta!  Enjoy this never before seen feature showcasing thirteen songs from all your favorites – Pocoyo, Pato, Elly and even the Martian Brothers!  These songs will have your little one dancing along the whole time!  It’s time for a Fiesta with Pocoyo!
Never before seen feature
Bonus karaoke videos
 
In my opinion:
 
Well, this was a different version of Pocoyo. This time your child gets to sing and dance with Pocoyo and his friends which can be quite entertaining. However, Eli's comment was, "This isn't a show." I think he wasn't used to a show full of songs. But, he did end up liking each song. Overall, I enjoyed listening to Pocoyo and his friends getting down with musical fun. My favorite song was Pato's song and Elly's birthday. I definitely recommend Pocoyo: Fiesta to anyone who loves to dance and have fun.
 
 
Wibbly Pig: Playtime!
 
Wibbly Pig is an animated preschool comedy series that takes the daily routine of a young child and finds humor and fun in every part of it.  From day to day activities like getting into bed, wrapping a present or climbing a tree, to fantasty play like meeting a giant or going to the moon, Wibbly turns the simplest tasks into a comedy routine! Wibbly loves to share adventures with his very best friend - you!
Bonus sing-along songs
 
In my opinion:
 
Wibbly is a very cute pig and Eli could not get enough of him. This was a newer movie we tried out so it was fun to see Eli's smiles and giggles as he watched Wibbly play and do day to day activities. He was adventurous and fun and I definitely recommend this movie to anyone who loves to get creative and go on an adventure.
 
 
The Wiggles: Wiggles House
 
Who's in The Wiggles' House? All your favorite friends, Emma, Lachy, Simon and Anthony, and twenty-five new songs! Join the fun of 'The Laughing Doctor,' taste the delights of 'Pappadum,' 'Do the Hawk' with Lee Hawkins, 'Have a Good Day (Kia Pai to Ra)' with New Zealand's Robert Rakete, and so much more. So open the door to a house full of fun as we raise the roof with Wiggle House!
Never before seen

Bonus Features:
Photo Gallery
"Michaud" Music Video
Ready, Steady, TV Series Episode - "Spring Has Come"
 
In my opinion:
 
Well, I'm not going to lie, I was afraid to watch The Wiggles. It didn't seem like the type of movie I normally would watch with my son. However, I found myself giggling because the four wiggles were always smiling and having a great time no matter what. This movie is full of 25 different songs...one after the next. I thought it would be more of a show but it was full of music.
 
My favorite part was watching Eli get into it. He got excited when he guessed the giraffe (spoiler alert) when Simon and Lachy were explaining an animal. He also didn't want it to end. I know my husband wasn't into this movie, but that doesn't matter because your children are bound to fall in love with each of the Wiggles as they sing and dance and make life fun. It wasn't my favorite of the four movies but children will love it!

The best part about NCircle Entertainment is that they would like to reward one fabulous Sweetly Made (Just for you) reader all 4 of the DVDs.

HOW TO ENTER THE GIVEAWAY?

a Rafflecopter giveaway
 
 
Disclaimer: I received one or more of the products or services for free in the hope that I would mention them on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.  
 
 
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The Eleventh Brother by Rachel K. Wilcox {Written by Tiffany}

Today, I wanted to share a book I recently read called,

The Eleventh Brother
by Rachel K. Wilcox


Monday, February 23, 2015

40th Birthday Book Basket & FREE Printables {Written by Emilee}

Happy 40th Birthday Tiffany!
 
Since I've learned how to create some adorable labels, file folders, tags, etc, Cassie and I decided to put together a fun "Book" themed basket for Tiffany's 40th birthday.
 
Here's the "HOW TO."
 
First: Plan ahead. Who is having a 40th birthday or one of the milestone birthdays? Or, who is having a birthday? You can put together a fun basket for anyone and they will love it.
 
Second: Who? What do they love the most? In our case, Tiffany loves to read and has been a wonderful attributer to writing reviews for Sweetly Made (Just for you).
 
Third: Gather sisters, sister n laws, mother, mother n law, etc to see if they want to pitch in some money. That way, you can add a bunch of fun things to the basket on a low budget cost for everyone. My mom created a Happy 40th birthday book from Shutterfly and everyone else contributed money (2 sister n laws, Cassie and I).
 
Fourth: Create the basket. So, this was too easy for us to put together and surprise her. We knew what we needed to get and we went to work.
 
Fifth: Create some cute tags on picmonkey.com. Most of the site is free so it is totally worth your time and effort. I use it all the time and have loved it. I only wish they had more fonts. Or, you could print out our FREE printables below. We make it easier for YOU!
 
We gathered the following items to place in her amazing basket:
 
1-Pens-"You're all "write" at 40!"
 
2-Gummy worms-"I am a box of bookworms to eat as you read today."
 
3-Why I don't hide my freckles anymore by Lanae Valentine and Lisa Tensmeyer Hansen- "You don't have to hide behind your age, you look amazing."
 
4-Hope journal-"There's hope...at least you're not as old as you will be next year."
 
5-Habits of Happiness by Wendy Ulrich-"Be happy, it's your birthday!"
 
6-Four books-"39+1 Hope it all adds up to a great day. {added gifts}"
 
7-Gift card-"Our gift to you is $40. Enjoy!"
 
8-Scarf-"40 & Fabulous!"
 
9-Shutterfly Book Titled "40 Years of Celebrations" by mom -"The more that you READ the more things that you will KNOW. The more that you LEARN, the more places you'll GO!"-Dr. Seuss
 
 
 
Here is the complete look of the basket. Fun eh? Don't you wish you received a fun basket or gave one to someone you love? It was more fun to give it to Tiffany than to receive it. I guess that is one of the reasons why my love language is Gifts. I love receiving and giving gifts.
 


 
All we had to do was print out the tags and tie them or attach with tape to the object. So easy!

 
There were actually two baskets...a colorful pink one and the gray one that held the pink box as well as the four additional books as {added gifts}.
 
And just because I love sharing my printables with you. Here are the FREE Printables. Go {HERE} and print. Thanks and have a wonderful day. Be sure to leave a comment to wish Tiffany a Happy Birthday! 
 
 
We also created some cute bookmarks to place in some of the books we gave Tiffany. Every sister/brother came up with a list of "10 reasons why we love you." There were four of us so Tiffany received 40 reasons why we all love her.
 

 
Overall, it was a fun way to show Tiffany that we love her and were thinking of her as she turned 40. You can also create your own baskets. Be creative and think outside the box. Good luck!
 
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Photography photos by Cassie Lytle

My sister, Cassie has some amazing photography skills. Recently, she took some photos of her daughter, Claire. If you didn't know this already, Cassie has joined Sweetly Made (Just for you) as a reviewer. She also posts a few DIY projects here and there. She has her own blog found {HERE} and has a small studio in her basement. Her prices are reasonable and she is quick and precise. I think she is remarkable so if you live in the Utah county area or SLC area, check her out.
 
 
I love her use of props. Here, Claire is wearing a hat and sitting in a small blue chair. The colors go so well together. Cassie has a great eye for color matching.


 
Don't you just want to die over this adorable picture? I love that Claire put on a jacket and is wearing lipstick. Her hair was probably done by her sister, Emma. Perfection!
 

 
Love the umbrella! Cassie has many props to choose from.

 
I love that she used a real flower to add detail to the photo.
 
 
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Wednesday, February 18, 2015

St. Patrick's Day Matching Game File Folder

This year, I've made it a goal to make a bunch of new file folders perfect for my four year old. Of course, this time my St. Patrick's Day Matching Game was much too easy. He is almost five and will start Kindergarten in the Fall.
 
However, this file folder is perfect for Preschool aged kids or younger. It is pretty easy to assemble and way cheap. The purpose of the folder is to see if your child can match the pieces to the opposite side.
 
I sell these file folders now in my Etsy store so be sure to check it out {HERE}. I would love to grow my business and earn additional money for our growing family. So...if you love file folders...check out the ones I've made.
 
 
Here is a view of the front of the file folder. After you purchase this folder, you print, assemble and laminate. Easy as 1.2.3!

 
Here is a look of the inside.

 
Too easy for my little guy.

If you would like a custom made file folder, please let me know and I'll see what I can do for you. Thanks in advance!
 
 
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Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Secrets of the Lost Caves -Book Two of the Potluck Yarn Trilogy by Cheryl Potter {Written by Emilee}

Since I read Book One of the Potluck Yarn Trilogy, I had the opportunity of reading Book Two
 
Secrets of the Lost Caves
by Cheryl Potter
 
 
About:
 
Continuing the adventure begun in The Broken Circle, Secrets of the Lost Caves starts just as the Circle of Twelve is complete, but it is soon broken again and the desperate race to find the Lost Caves and unlock the Secrets of the Crystal Caverns begins. Who will discover it first? The Dark Queen and her Kindred Spirit? The party of Six plus One with addled Lavender Mae as their guide? Or Aubergine, the Potluck Queen with the help of Second Sight Sierra and Trader turned Teal? We soon learn that Mamie Verde has not drifted peacefully to the Land of Dreams, but is reborn high above the lost city of old Tigeria, deep within the Northland Glacier to assume guardianship of the Ancients, twenty years too late. And in the war torn Middlelands, nothing is certain but the power of the Fire and Ice Shawl, the need to make the amethyst necklace whole and the necessity of possessing both halves of the Skell of House Crystal Keep. Follow the continuing adventures of the Fossick boys and knitting witches as they journey north to the windswept Out Crops to ally with Hed Clansmen and lift the curse of the Glacier Born in an attempt to reawaken the Magic of Men.
 
In my opinion:
 
If there is an advanced readers club, Secrets of the lost caves would fit its profile. It was deep, detailed and one can get lost in its pages. I loved how Cheryl Potter summed up Book 1 and included a list of characters as well as a map so one can follow along throughout the book. I tend to have a hard time when there are numerous characters so I was grateful for the explanations of each character.
 
This book had many adventures including the race to find the Lost Caves. Who will discover the caves first? Well, I was definitely surprised in the end and loved how complex and unpredictable it was. Cheryl is a brilliant writer and has a wild and impressive imagination. I definitely recommend this book to anyone who loves a well-plotted fantasy. It offers a great escape but you will need to read Book 1 of the Potluck Yarn Trilogy to really understand the story.
 
 Disclaimer: I received one or more of the products or services for free in the hope that I would mention them on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.
  
 
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