Month: October 2018

Prepare for the Holidays with Games that Blast, Shock and Test the Mind from YULU


Looking for the ultimate hands on, interactive game fun for this holiday season? Look no further than these three exciting games that will shock, blast and test your mind and creativity.

Prepare for the Holidays with Games that Blast, Shock and Test the Mind

Family game night is one of the most important nights of the week for our family. We are so busy with work, school and soccer, that these hours are important for us to unwind and reconnect over food and games (can life get any better?). We all know that the game makes the night, you need to find a game that will interest everyone (in our family that means two adults, a teenager and a child) and that is fast paced and exciting – no easy feat right?

Prepare for the Holidays with Games that Blast, Shock and Test the Mind

Pacemaker Extreme is a fast paced game for all ages. All players are forced to pay attention and think quick otherwise you risk facing a shock! You can play with a minimum of two people and up to eight. Each players places a finger on one of the red pieces (shown above) after setting the game mode. Players take turn following the pace of the game by pushing down on the red piece either once to continue in the same pattern or twice to reverse the order. If you are too slow, press out-of-order or don’t pay attention – you will face a shock (very minor buzz on your finger but it gave me a surprise the first time as I wasn’t expecting it). Our youngest tried to get around the shock part by covering his finger with his shirt – didn’t work!

Prepare for the Holidays with Games that Blast, Shock and Test the Mind

Looking for fun that tests your guessing ability under pressure? Cut the Wire is the game for you and your family!

This game actually became one of our favourite out of these three games and out of all of our other games we have at home. Cut the Wire is a game of luck as you work towards defusing the bomb. You need to accomplish this by cutting each wire to find the special wire that turns the bomb off without setting the whole thing off. We loved how it lit up if you accidentally cut the wrong wire and the special noise it made when you cut the wire that defused it (that was such an awesome feeling because you knew right then that you were the champion).

Prepare for the Holidays with Games that Blast, Shock and Test the Mind from YULU

Hackathon is one of the latest games in the Spy Code group of games from YULU. In this game your identity has been stolen by a group of villains and has been saved inside a super advanced console. You are in possession of the console and your Spy Code squad has instructions to hack and retrieve the secret information. However, only one person can see and work on the console at a time. You can only hear each other. You are forced to work together with lots of talking in order to decode the console in a set amount of time (two thumbs up for lots of communication). We loved the pressure, feeling like a spy (who doesn’t love this feeling) and loved that you have to work together to solve the secret information.

All three games will make for a perfect gift for the holidays or even just before the holiday season starts so that you can spend some downtime with the kids during the busyness of the season.

What do you look for in a family game?

Make sure you follow YULU on Twitter and Facebook to keep up to date with all the latest games and more.

Disclosure: I received the above mentioned games in order to facilitate this review. All opinions expressed are my own.

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Voting with a Porpoise Book Review

Voting with a Porpoise Book Review

2018 Parent and Teacher Choice Award winner, Voting With a Porpoise is a fun, timeless, and beautifully illustrated story that teaches children how elections and voting have the power to solve hard problems.

Voting with a Porpoise Book Review

About Voting with a Porpoise

A pod of dolphins (and their porpoise friend, Petey) is in trouble. Their reef no longer provides the food they need to survive. The pod can’t figure out what to do until Petey suggests they hold an election to decide.

2018 Parent and Teacher Choice Award winner, Voting With a Porpoise is a fun, timeless, and beautifully illustrated story that teaches children how elections and voting have the power to solve hard problems.

The authors created this book to help change the culture around elections and voting. To that end, 100 percent of the profits for Voting With a Porpoise  will be donated to 501(c)(3) non-partisan voting-related causes focused on getting more people of all backgrounds to the polls, such as Rock the Vote,, TurboVote, and others.

Our Thoughts

Educating ourselves around politics, voting and how this affects us and others is one of the most important things we can do. Teaching our children about these topics even more so.

Voting is the number one way that we as citizens can make a positive change in our country. Too many times, we hear groups of people upset about a decision made, policies and governments that are voted in but they themselves never went out and voted. People are unhappy but do not exercise their right to vote. So many times people feel powerless to make change but don’t exercise the number one way we can create change – voting.

Voting With a Porpoise is a fun, easy to understand book for children to learn and ask actions about the voting process. In this story, a group of dolphins and a porpoise find their home can no longer sustain them, the fish have all gone away. They know they need to do something but aren’t sure what to do. One dolphin wants to be the leader and make the decision but a smart dolphin stands up and says no, that is not the way this is done. Instead she suggests all members regardless of whether they are a dolphin or porpoise (because you know that same dolphin that wanted to make the decision for everyone wasn’t going to want someone different looking making a decision) gets to vote on the future of the group. The group must move through the democratic process in order to come to a final decision that will save them.

This is a sweet and to the point book that is great to get young minds (and some older ones) interested in voting and making a difference in their own home. We need to encourage and empower our youth to understand the process and that each vote and voice will make a difference.

You can find more about this book on the Books with a Porpoise website and purchase a copy on Amazon.

Rating: 5/5

About the Authors

RUSSELL GLASS is a serial technology entrepreneur and author, having founded or held senior positions at five venture-backed technology companies and writing The Big Data-Driven Business. He is currently the CEO of, a company providing instant behavioral health support whenever and wherever needed. He sold his last company, Bizo, to LinkedIn where he ran the Marketing Solutions products group.

Since leaving LinkedIn in 2017, Russ joined the board of Rock the Vote and has been focused on using his experience with technology, data science, and narrative/branding tactics to develop novel strategies to increase engagement and turnout among young voters.

SEAN CALLAHAN is a content marketer at LinkedIn. He has written several previous books including The Big Data-Driven Business, The Leprechaun Who Lost His Rainbow, and A Wild Father’s Day. A former reporter, his freelance journalism has appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, and Notre Dame Magazine. He lives with his wife and two daughters in Chicago. He’s also a voter.

Disclosure: I received the above mentioned book in order to facilitate this review. All opinions expressed are my own.

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One Day Ebook Sale: Alycat and the Friendship Friday

iRead Book Tours
Alycat and the Friendship Friday Sale Banner
Alycat and the Friendship Friday will be on sale for $1.99 today Saturday, Oct 27 only and the e-book free for Kindle Unlimited subscribers!

Book Description:

It’s finally Friday, and Alycat is excited to go on a field trip with her friends. But when she doesn’t have anyone to sit with on the bus, Alycat feels left out. Can she use her creativity and imagination to help everyone feel included?

Alycat and the Friendship Friday will teach readers that making new friends isn’t as scary as you might think.

Get your copy today:

Check out this original song from the newest Alycat book:

Get your 1.99¢ eBook on Oct.27th, 2018 – one day only.

Disclosure: I did not receive compensation for this post. All opinions expressed are my own.

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Bring the Jurassic Age to Life with Stikbot Dino Eggs and Mega Dinos

Fascination with the powerful and dangerous creatures from the Jurassic period will never go away. We are caught up in their power as children and the fascination with these creatures continues to develop as we grow into our teens and adulthood. We find them in movies, cartoon, books  and  even in popular toys.

Stikbot figures are super cool and easy to use for all ages figures that have suction cups on their hands and feet with bendable bodies. The bendable bodies and suction cups allow children (and adults) to create their own still scenes and live action, which can be brought to life using their free app. Bonus – you can even add in sound for even more creativity in the app. Children become the director and producer of  their own creative play.

Bring the Jurassic Age to Life with Stikbot Dinos

Stikbot has introduced a line of dinosaur figures to expand your child’s Stikbot collection – from dinosaur eggs to mega dinos to even a dino set that helps to really bring to life their action scene. Your child has the ability to gather a group of dinosaur friends (or maybe even enemies – the choice is theirs!) for hours of creative play.

Bring the Jurassic Age to Life with Stikbot Dinos

There are seven Stikbot Dino eggs to collect – from the Stikpterodactyl to Stikstegosarus to the terrifying Stikparasaurolophus. Your child will learn about these fantastic creatures – important physical features and when they roamed our planet, which helps prompt further learning either online or at the local library. Your child can create an epic battle or perhaps a peaceful gathering of the gentle giants. The possibilities are endless and creates hours of play and learning.

Bring the Jurassic Age to Life with Stikbot Dinos

Also part of the Stikbot Dino collection, are three mega dinos – the StikBrontosaurus (featured above), the StikCarnotaurus and the StikTRex. These dinosaurs are larger than their dino egg counterparts. They can be the protectors of their smaller friends or perhaps a great enemy?

We loved how easy it was to create either stills or action scenes. The figures are easy to put into place, the arms/legs are attached to the body with an elastic like string and the suction cups attached easily to both the previous Stikbot set we had and our table and hardwood floor. The StikBrontosaurus came with its own background (featured above) and we used that to create a backdrop for our son’s pictures. I liked how he was able to incorporate his other Stikbot figures into the scenes (he created his own version of the popular Jurassic movies). One of the best parts is that the Stikbot dinosaurs encouraged additional learning, my son wanted to learn more about the dinosaurs he was playing with. We pulled out his dinosaur books from his library and were able to incorporate educational facts into the play. A win win for any parent!

The Stikbot Dino characters can be seen in the Dino Planet series, check out the trailer below.

Stikbot Dino eggs and Mega Dinos can be purchased from Amazon and Walmart and will make a great addition to stockings and dinosaur themed Christmas gifts this holiday season.

What is your child’s favourite Jurassic dinosaur?

Make sure to follow the #Stikbot hashtag online to see what others are creating and follow Stikbot on Twitter and Facebook.

Disclosure: I received the above mentioned products in order to facilitate this review. All opinions expressed are my own.

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Christmas at the Chalet Book Review

St. Martin's Press

Christmas at the Chalet is a delicious love story about a bridal designer showing her new collection in the Alps during the magical week of Christmas where hijinx of the heart ensue.

Christmas at the Chalet Book Review

About Christmas at the Chalet

It’s the day after Christmas, and Felicity Grant is at a gorgeous ski chalet in St. Moritz for the biggest fashion show of her career. Felicity is a rising star on the bridal design scene, and this is her best collection yet. But when her boyfriend gives her a spa day instead of a diamond ring for Christmas, she has to face the possibility that she may never walk down the aisle in one of her own stunning designs.

And then there’s Nell, the top model headlining Felicity’s show. Nell is planning her dream wedding to her wonderful fiance with one catch: her divorced parents can’t stand each other and threaten to no-show if the other is there.

Add to that Felicity’s race against the clock to create a special gown for a prestigious bridal salon, and what both girls need is a Christmas miracle. What better place to find one than in the Swiss Alps with its dark forests and sparkling vistas?

But for Felicity it’s hard to recognize a miracle even when it’s right in front of her, and for Nell one miracle might not be enough to fix the past. Can dreams really come true or is that the stuff of Swiss fairy tales?

My Thoughts

Take a trip to the stunning St. Mortiz for a fashion show of a lifetime with some incredible characters that will make you laugh and hope that they can push past the stress of the perfect day.

Felicity is a kind, loving woman who has grown her wedding gown business literally from scratch. She gives her heart and soul to her work, she wants nothing more than to create a beautiful dress that suits a bride. She has also been in a relationship with her boyfriend for several years and she is extremely disappointed when Christmas is around the corner and he fails to propose again. She questions whether he truly loves her or is just comfortable with her and if he puts his career before her, her feelings and their future together. All of this occurs just before she heads off to St. Mortiz for her huge fashion show and you have to give her a lot of credit for being able to push through the hurt and disappointment in order to not let down her friends and business partners.

One of her models, Nell, is another star in this novel. She is engaged and ready to start her life with the man she loves. The only problem? Her bitter, divorced parents who can’t seem to get over their own selfish needs to put their daughter first. They refuse to attend the wedding together, they constantly say inappropriate comments about the other parent to Nell thus placing her in a very awkward position. As the novel progresses, we are witness to her parent’s past to get a glimpse of how they could have grown so far apart and so full of hate.

I really enjoyed this sweet novel. It was full of hope and humour – you keep rooting that our characters can make it through and find the love they deserve.

You can purchase a copy of this book on Amazon.

Rating: 4/5

About the Author

ANITA HUGHES is also the author of Christmas in London, Christmas in Paris, Emerald Coast, White Sand, Blue Sea, Santorini Sunsets, Island in the Sea, Rome in Love, French Coast, Lake Como, Market Street, and Monarch Beach. She attended UC Berkeley’s Masters in Creative Writing Program, and lives in Dana Point, California, where she is at work on her next novel.

Disclosure: I received a digital copy of this book in order to facilitate this review. All opinions expressed are my own.

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