Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Fantastic Place to Buy Your Favorite Books

Kobo Inc.

Recently we watched the movie "I am Number Four". My kids and me loved it. My 11 year old daughter found out that it was based on a book. Well, she has learned from reading The Hunger Games Trilogy icon and Twilight Saga icon that the book is always better than the movie.

Well, so happened as I was browsing around the internet, I came across this website called Kobo. It has over 2.5 Million eBooks including classics and bestsellers. PLUS over 1 Million FREE eBooks

--> Click here to see if your favorite book is thereicon

My girl was really excited to find this ebook-site because The Rise of Nine, which is the latest sequel to "I am Number Four" is available there. The book was just launched and she can't find it in the bookstores here. She really, really wants to read it.

The most enticing part is Kobo offers e-books. That means the books are downloaded straightaway. That means she can read it straightaway. Now can you understand her excitement?

Plus, I don't have an iPad or any kind of e-reader. However, Kobo has a program that allows us to read the books on our desktop. The price of the book? Not too bad. Even after converting it to Malaysian Ringgit, I believe it may be cheaper than the hardcopy. And there is an option to pay with my paypal. So, lots of advantages for us to buy from KOBO.

Click here to learn more about KOBOicon.

If you love to read books and can't find some of your favorites in your local bookstores or library, I suggest you check to see if KOBO has it.

Kobo Inc.

*Contains affiliate links. I love the website so much, I decided to be an affiliate.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Top five back-to-school organizing tips

(ARA) - The start of a new school year is like a fresh box of crayons - full of possibilities.

Ginny Bean, mother of three and publisher of Ginny's catalog, suggests families take advantage of this clean slate by establishing some new organizing routines.

Think ahead. Mornings are chaotic in most households with school-aged children. Consider handling as many daytime preparations as possible the night before. Lay out clothes. Pack lunches. Set out the breakfast dishes and cereal. Pack backpacks.

Bean suggests making systems kid-friendly, so young helpers can feel involved, and save mom some time in the process. "Carve out a spot on a lower shelf of the pantry for lunch boxes and lunch-making supplies. Then make children responsible for putting away their empty lunch boxes at the end of the school day, or even packing their own lunch."

Tackle school paperwork. Make a habit of sorting through children's backpacks with them the same day they come home. Allot time after school, when you arrive home from work, or after dinner, depending on your family's schedule. Use a tiered letter sorter or filing system with designated slots for each child's papers, and an "A.S.A.P." space for teachers' notes, permission slips and anything else that requires immediate attention.

For schoolwork and artwork you want to keep, try a two-step approach. First, purge unwanted items as soon as they come in the door. Collect the possible keepers in a storage bin or wheeled cart with color-coded drawers that allow for easy separation by child or project type. Go through stored items at regular intervals, perhaps once a month or once a quarter. Keep in mind, the more you accumulate, the easier it will be to pare down, as the best pieces will stand out from the crowd.

Designate a homework spot. Decide on the best spot in your home to set up homework central. Take into consideration how involved you need to be with homework and your child's style. Does he focus better with people around or in a private setting? Is he better suited to sit at a desk or curled up in a favorite chair with a laptop cart?

Once you have a place picked out, gather together handy homework tools and supplies into a nearby bin, drawer or cabinet. Stock up on age-appropriate supplies such as pens, pencils, erasers, paper, crayons, markers, a ruler, dictionary, calculator and a pencil sharpener.

Create a communication hub. Include the family calendar, a chalk or bulletin board for posting messages and reminders, a binder for key documents, colored markers, pens and pencils. If you're a visual person, consider color coding your calendar by assigning each family member a different color.

Remember not to forget. Use wall hooks and baskets or bins near the front door to corral the items you need to remember each day: backpacks, books, lunches, gym shoes, sports equipment and musical instruments.

To request a copy of Ginny's catalog, visit Ginnys.com or call 800-487-9024.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Quick Remedy For Pimple

My eldest girl is going to be a teenager soon. Just recently, she has started to get pimples on her face. Hormones doing their crazy stuff no doubt.

I went to the pharmacy to look for some tea tree oil. It was really expensive, so hubby decided to buy her a tube of acne cream with tea tree oil as one of its ingredients. The brand is called Tracia TEEN. Cost us RM7.90. My girl says it helped to get rid of some tiny pimples on her forehead.

However, a few days ago she got this one BIG pimple on her nose. She said the cream wasn't helping. She asked what else she could do. I remember reading about honey and how it has anti-bacterial properties. Some people have tried it before, so I told her to give it a go. She did. She said it helped and that day itself the pimple had become smaller.

So, if you have pimple problems or know someone struggling with it, try dabbing some honey on it.

(I would show you pictures of the pimple but my girl says "NO" and then grunted at me).


Monday, August 20, 2012

Creative and healthier after-school snack ideas

(ARA) - When school starts, kids' schedules fill up fast, and that means they need the right fuel to keep their growing bodies and minds satisfied. After a long day of learning, kids require a snack that will get them through homework, after-school sports and other activities until dinner is served. Before you reach for the default bag of chips, consider these healthier alternatives that are just as easy and convenient.

Creative, healthier after-school snack ideas that your kids will gobble up:

1. Refresh with frozen apple sauce
Apple sauce has been a snacking staple for years, but now you can add a little excitement to those prepackaged apple packs. Simply buy Tree Top apple sauce cups, made with 100 percent USA apples, and place them in the freezer for a tasty treat similar to sorbet, and a healthier alternative to most ice cream and frozen snacks. Kids can grab them on their own when they get home from school so mom and dad don't have to lift a finger. Stock up on Tree Top apple juice boxes, too, for a complementary, easy grab-and-go drink option.

2. Delight in dip
It's no secret kids love to dip, so make after-school snacking more interesting by providing dip along with fresh fruit, veggies and crackers. Instead of salad dressing, change things up by mixing a single serve apple sauce cup with two tablespoons of peanut butter for a healthier dip alternative. Watch as your little ones wolf down their carrots, celery, apples, pretzels and more. Parents love that this dip option has many nutritional benefits - the apple sauce in it is a good source of vitamin C and peanut butter is packed with protein.

3. Wrap it up
Keeping whole wheat tortillas on hand is a smart move for any parent because they are extremely versatile. When kids come home from school hungry, it's easy to take a tortilla and fill it with their favorite nutritious fillings. For example, spread with classic peanut butter and jelly, add some banana and honey, or fill with turkey and mozzarella for a satisfying snack that keeps kids focused through all their homework

4. Happily hydrated
Making sure your kids are hydrated is an important part of keeping them healthy and feeling great each day. When kids are busy at school and with after-school activities, they can become dehydrated quickly. Instead of sugary sodas, choose a more nutritious alternative like Tree Top reduced sugar 100 percent fruit juices. These tasty and refreshing drinks are made with hydrating coconut water and no artificial sweeteners and have 25 percent less sugar than regular 100 percent juices.

5. A smooth finish to the school day
Smoothies are a fun way for kids to get a ton of nutrients in one single drink. It's easy for parents to stock up on frozen fruit at the local grocery store. Then, when kids get home, they can choose what flavors they want and you can blend the fruit with low-fat milk, yogurt and ice for a cool and delicious drink. You might even sneak in a few veggies by adding a splash of vegetable juice, or a couple pre-steamed vegetables like carrots, kale or squash. The fruit flavors are so robust, your kids won't even notice the veggies.

Healthy after-school snacks don't have to be boring or bland. Try these ideas and you can feel good about what your kids eat - they may love them so much they'll be requesting them every day.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Save in style on the hottest supplies for the 2012 back-to-school season

(ARA) - When it's time to prepare for the start of a new school year, shopping for school supplies is at the top of any family's to-do list. Students want supplies that are fun and reflect their personality. Parents look for items that are reliable and budget-friendly. The good news is this year's top trends in school supplies offer all those qualities, making shopping enjoyable for the entire family.

Parents and students have many choices on where to shop for supplies. They should consider destinations that offer a wide assortment and good value. At Staples, for example, families will find many choices from essential products to the latest novelty items.

Here are some of the top school supplies for the new school year:

A locker with personality
A locker is one of the few spaces kids have to express their individuality through fun and fresh decorations. Add instant glitz and much-needed light with new locker chandeliers that illuminate with seven LED lights. Decorating locker walls is simple and easy with magnetic locker wallpaper in fashionable patterns and students can even go retro with shag rugs available in four bright colors designed to fit standard lockers.

Recycle and save
Students require binders each school year and some are not usable after a year of wear and tear. This year, Staples is offering an exciting new program that helps families save money and be friendly to the environment. For every binder students bring in to recycle, they will receive an instant $2 back on a new binder purchased in store.  

Flash drives with flash
Flash drives are an academic essential these days, allowing students to carry their work to and from school with a simple, compact tool. Flash drives are not only useful, but the designs can be a lot of fun too. This year, flash drives come in the shapes of students' favorite characters such as The Simpsons, Family Guy and Angry Birds or even sports cars designs featuring Lamborghini, Mini Cooper and Aston Martin.

Fun and functional core tools
Designs that blend fun and function rule the scene for back-to-school 2012, and Staples offers exclusive items that are affordable as well as unique. For examples, students can make school work sweeter with novelty-shaped apple and cupcake tape dispensers and mini memo books in colorful fruit shapes. Kids can even show off their wild side with stylish zebra and cheetah prints found on basic tools like staplers, clipboards and magnetic clips.

Score the discounts
Look for coupons and discount programs to help keep your family on budget. For example, you can save 15 percent throughout the season with the Staples Back-to-School Savings Pass. For $10, the pass is valid until Sept. 15 for use once a day on supplies such as pens, pencils, paper notebooks and backpacks.

Tuesday, August 07, 2012

BIG Sale On School Curriculum at CurrClick

CurrClick is having their Back to Homeschool Sale now until 24th August 2012. Discounts are up to 75%.

This is the time to save money buying fun and interesting educational materials for your children. I've already done some shopping and bought some stuff for my 5 year old son. I bought a few books from this publisher: Kid Brilliance

Here is one that I got.

Guess What! - Among The Flowers
On one page it shows a close up of a flower or insect. Ask your child to guess what it is. The next page shows the full picture and there is some information about that flower or insect. This is a fun science lesson and could lead to more discussion and exploration.

Another one I got was this.

The First Anti-Coloring Book
I happen to come across this book called Young at Art a few years ago. From it I learn the importance of letting little children scribble. It is important part of their development. If we force them to draw shapes too early or give them coloring books, we actually limit their imagination and self expression. So anyway, this Anticoloring book is by the same author of Young at Art (Susan Striker). Each page is an art activity that allows the child's imagination to soar. For example, one activity is for the child to draw and name a new species of fish that scientist just discovered.

Okay, why don't you go check out the Currclick sale yourself. You can search the materials by age, subject, product type or publisher.
CLICK HERE TO---> Enjoy the low prices now before the sale ends.

Monday, August 06, 2012

Sleep smarts: Sleep is an important part of back-to-school preparation

(ARA) - Does your list of school supplies include sleep? Studies say it should, especially for teens.

Only 8 percent of American teenagers are getting the required nine or more hours of sleep needed, according to the National Sleep Foundation. In fact, a recent study published in the "Journal of Adolescent Health" found that more than 60 percent of high school students get less than seven hours of sleep per night. The situation does not improve in college, either.  A 2010 study conducted at the University of St. Thomas in Minnesota revealed, not surprisingly, that 70 percent of college students get less than the 8 recommended hours of sleep.

While most people have, at times, battled sleep issues, poor sleep habits plague college campuses. Let's face it - most college kids do not place a premium on a good night's rest. In addition to sleep falling low on the priority list, most students are sleeping on cheap dorm mattresses and worn out pillows - which can affect sleep quality.

Perhaps reminding your student that there is a proven relationship between healthy sleep habits and academic success might help encourage healthier habits. In 2010, a University of Minnesota study found a significant positive correlation between the amount of sleep per night and GPA. Additionally, as the average number of days per week a student got less than five hours of sleep increased, GPA decreased.

Once a pattern of bad sleep has developed, is it possible for teens and college students to "reset" their internal clocks? Researchers at the American Academy of Sleep Medicine say it is. Suggest that your students try following these tips, a little bit at a time, over several weeks:

* Try your best to avoid caffeine, smoking, alcohol, heavy exercise and heavy snacking (pizza included) at least three hours before bedtime.

* Don't pull all-nighters or cram for exams late at night. Specifically schedule studying for when you're most alert so your performance won't be affected.

* Be as consistent as possible with your sleep habits, ideally aiming to go to bed at the same time each evening and get at least eight hours of sleep per night.

* Wake up at the same time every morning and head outside. Sunlight helps reset circadian rhythms, the body's internal biological process that rotates around a 24-hour schedule.

* Turn off your cell phone and laptop at night. Besides being a distraction, exposure to light can suppress the production of melatonin, a hormone that aids sleep.

* Make sure your bedroom is set up for sleep. If you are a light sleeper or your dorm is noisy, try wearing earplugs or noise-cancelling headphones. Keep the room cool and dark. Make your bed as comfortable as possible. Consider investing in a foam mattress pad and a quality pillow. For example, for around $100, you can purchase a mattress topper and a waterbase pillow, both of which greatly improve head, neck and back support while you sleep.

"While you most likely cannot control the amount of sleep your teens or college-aged kids receive, at least you can make sure that once they are in bed, the sleep they do get is of the best quality," explains Maurice Bard, founder and CEO of Mediflow Inc., a company that makes waterbase bed pillows. "One simple way to accomplish this is to make sure your teens are sleeping on the right pillow - one that adjusts to properly support their head and neck throughout the night."

Countless studies have shown that people who get the right amount of sleep are physically and emotionally healthier - which is of course is something we all want for our children. Getting better grades is just the icing on the cake.

Thursday, August 02, 2012

Crayon Art

Last Saturday I sat down with my kids to do some art work. Instead of me teaching them, I let my eldest daughter take the lead. She shared an art project she did at school.

Basically, you take some paper and cut out any shape you want. Then you take a crayon and color the sides of the shape. Next, you place the cut out paper onto your art block paper and smear the crayon with your finger.

Okay, I know I'm not very good at explaining this, so why don't I just show you. Watch the video.

I also found out that it works best if you use oil pastel crayons. Don't use wax crayons. You won't be able to rub anything off.

It was interesting how the 4 of us (my 3 kids and me) each did our crayon art differently. My eldest daughter decided she wanted to do a scenery. D1 was cutting out shapes of dragons and other creatures. D2 stuck to basic shapes and just randomly put them wherever on the page. Me, I did circles and tried to arrange them in a geometric manner. Well, here's how our art turned out. Hope this gives you an idea on your next art project.