Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Whatever Wanda! (Shine Bright Kids) by Christy Ziglar & illustrated by Paige Billin-Frye [Review & Giveaway]

ISBN: 9780824956684
Hardcover $14.99
About the book: The third title in the Shine Bright Kids series, Whatever Wanda! teaches children the importance of having a good attitude.
Wanda is in serious need of an attitude adjustment! She doesn't want to accompany her family to the Rubber Duck Days Festival, and once there, she won't participate in any of the events or join in with her friends. Soon Wanda receives some helpful advice and learns that:

'Sometimes you have to believe something will be great before it actually is. Being positive is a choice that makes everything better, not to mention, a whole lot more fun!'

My thoughts: Willow and Marvin were the first two kids in the Shine Bright Kids stories learning lessons in life and behavior. Now we're meeting Wanda. Whatever Wanda has a poor attitude and graces everyone with her "whatever," uncooperative attitude.

When presented the opportunity to engage in a day of fun activities with her family and the whole community, she doesn't want to do so and makes her disgruntled attitude known. As the day progresses, she begins to realize that her friends, Willow and Marvin (remember they are Shine Bright Kids, too), are having so much fun.

Then Whatever Wander" yields to an attitude adjustment. Good job. Now she can have some fun with the others. A sweet, well-written story that teaches children valuable lessons. The illustrations are charming and give such pleasure to the reader (and listener). Love these Shine Bright Kids books.

About Shine Bright Kids: Choose Right. Shine Bright. The Shine Bright Kids series provides children and their families with the tools to teach the importance of making good choices. The series explores such topics as: using good judgment, taking responsibility, having a positive attitude, and demonstrating perseverance. Ages 4 to 8.
Begins April 22 & ENDS May 12 @ 12:01 a.m. EDT.
Open to USA addresses only.
DISCLOSURE: I was provided a complimentary copy by Ideals Publications, a division of Worthy Media Inc. to facilitate this review. Opinions expressed are mine. I was not compensated for this review.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Buried Secrets (Men of Valor Series) by Irene Hannon [Review & Family Christian Certificate Giveaway]

About the book: After seven years as a Chicago homicide detective, Lisa Grant has hit a wall. Ready for a kinder, gentler life, she takes a job as a small-town police chief. But the discovery of a human skeleton by a construction crew at the edge of town taxes the resources of her department. A call for assistance brings detective Mac McGregor, an ex-Navy SEAL, to her doorstep. As they work to solve the mystery behind the unmarked grave, danger begins to shadow them. Someone doesn't want this dead person telling any tales--and will stop at nothing to make certain a life-shattering secret stays buried.

My thoughts: As this story begins, a trio of young folks are involved in the stealth burial of another of their group. Circumstances surrounding the "why" they need to dispose of the body in secrecy are not revealed. That leaves the reader spinning reasons throughout the story. We are brought forward in time to the current day when the three are again brought tenaciously together because of their buried secret.

While this is one of the "Men of Valor" stories, it seems to me that the primary focus is on the female protagonist as she seeks to unravel the clues for the recently unearthed body.

Personalities and flawed characters are fleshed out by the author as Lisa Grant uses her formerly used skills honed by her position with the FBI in Chicago to solve this long time secret. As Lisa and "Man of Valor," Mac McGregor, team up to bring justice for the person so long buried. Draw together further by romantic feelings toward each other, they determine to table this interest until they are finished working the case.

As usual, Irene Hannon has written an exciting story where faith is the root of her characters' hearts. Find it HERE on
Begins April 21 & ENDS May 6 @ 12:01 a.m. EDT.
Open to USA addresses only.
NOTE: Family Christian is providing the $25 Family Christian Appreciation Certificate for one of Chat With Vera's readers.
Author, Irene Hannon is the bestselling author of more than forty-five novels, including That Certain Summer, One Perfect Spring, and the Heroes of Quantico, Guardians of Justice, and Private Justice series. Her books have been honored with two coveted RITA Awards from Romance Writers of America, a Carol Award, three HOLT Medallions, a Daphne du Maurier Award, two Reviewers' Choice Awards from RT Book Reviews magazine, a Retailers' Choice Award, a Booksellers' Best Award, and a National Readers' Choice Award. In addition, she is a two-time Christy Award finalist, and Booklist included one of her novels in its "Top 10 Inspirational Fiction" list for 2011. Learn more at

DISCLOSURE: I received a complimentary copy from the publisher, Revell a division of Baker Publishing Group, to facilitate this review. Opinions are my own. I was not compensated for this review.

Stanley the Farmer by William Bee [Review & Giveaway]

ISBN13: 9780857551115
Peachtree Publishers $14.95
Stanley has been seen here on Chat With Vera a couple of times already. Check him out .... Stanley's Garage and Stanley the Builder.

This sweet series of books will entertain and educate the young child. They are most likely suited for the little boy, but let's don't forget that girls love to learn about farms, garages, and building as well.

Let's take a look at what Stanley is up to now. He also has a special helper, Shamus. Little Woo helps a bit, too.

I like that Stanley's tools are all pictured in the front of the book so these pages can be used to help learn identification of tools. He has a very busy day preparing the field, spreading manure (phew!), and planting. At the end of the day, he does what Stanley always does.... bathes, eats, and goes to bed.

A delightful series and one I can recommend for your special young child.

Now for some special "Stanley Fun," Have your own event by clicking on this link, Stanley the Farmer Event, and find Stanley snacks to make, pages to color, things to match, etc.
Begins April 21 & ENDS May 5 @ 12:01 a.m. EDT. 
Open to USA addresses only.
(If you have already won this book in a different giveaway or contest, you may not receive a copy if chosen in this giveaway. The publisher can and will verify.)
a Rafflecopter giveaway 
About the author:  William Bee is an artist and commercial designer who has worked for renowned fashion houses, including Issay Miyake and Paul Smith. As well as writing children's books, he races a vintage sports car, is an international skier, and when at home tends his lawns and meadow. He lives in England.

DISCLOSURE: I received a complimentary copy from Peachtree Publishing in exchange for this review but no paid compensation. Opinions expressed are solely my own and I was not required to give a positive review.

Monday, April 20, 2015

New kid's products from Dial - Dial Baby Body & Hair Wash and Dial Kid's Foaming Hand Wash [Review & Giveaway]

Again, Dial Soap has given the consumer products to meet their daily needs and products on which Mom can depend. Today we're looking at the new Dial Baby Body & Hair Wash  and Dial Kid's Foaming Hand Wash.

First, let's get those kiddies ready for bath by preparing the tub with nice warm water. Get a favorite toy ready. And have wash cloth and towel handy. I was given the opportunity to review the Dial "0 to 2 year old, fragrance free, gentle formula" product. There are others geared specifically for your child who is older but for whom you still wish to have a children's, pediatric approved, and safe product.

Kiddies love bubbles and this lathers nicely but not too much. Doesn't burn or sting the eyes. Doesn't irritate sensitive skin.

Product Information (from Dial) - Developed with Pediatric Dermatologists, this tear-free formula is pH balanced and hypoallergenic, with no parabens or artificial dyes, for babies’ perfect skin. Gently removes environmental dirt for a head to toe clean! See more at: More about Dial Baby Body & Hair Wash

Now, your kiddie's hands need washing. Pull up the little step stool - snug to the counter. Have that wee one step on it. Now the fun begins!

They just LOVE, I mean LOVE, their own foaming soap! Let them depress the plunger. Usually one little "serving" will suffice. But you can afford to be liberal if it makes them happy. Now scrub a rub dub. Twist and turn. Bubble all around. Hands are clean. (The old adage is to get them really clean you wash them while singing Happy Birthday To You.) Rinse. Grab that favorite little hand towel. Rub-a-rub and get them dry.

Step down from the step stool. Put it back in place. Now we're clean. We're finished.

This works at home or Grandma's house. Little ones love their own Dial Kid's Foaming Hand Wash.

Product Information (from Dial) - Makes hand washing fun for all ages! Hypoallergenic, no artificial dyes, no parabens, pH balanced and gentle on kids’ skin! See more at: Dial Kid's Foaming Hand Wash

1 Winner will receive 2 Free Product Coupons 
Begins April 20 & ENDS May 5 @ 12:01 a.m. EDT
Open for USA addresses only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway DISCLOSURE: I was provided complimentary products to facilitate this review. Opinions are my own. No compensation was received for this review.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Two brand new products from Body Merry- Super 6 Serum Age Defense & Super C-22 Moisturizer

I was given the opportunity to review two brand new products from Body Merry that are "super" loaded with ingredients highly touted to provide natural skin care to fight the aging skin process.

I used these two products daily for the past few days. I really like that these products are made of natural and organic ingredients and that they are made in the USA in an FDA registered and GMP compliant facility. It is great that it is not tested on animals, too.

The Super 6 Anti Aging Defense Serum was applied first on cleansed face. In my opinion, using the recommended 4 drops barely spreads over the face, but that is the  maximum number of drops recommended. This serum is a reddish color in the bottle and after application, my face had a reddish tint. This discoloration did not last, though.

The directions for the Super 6 Serum state to apply a moisturizer after using the Super 6 Serum. I applied the Body Merry Super C-22 Moisturizer. At first I used two pumps of this moisturizer. It was too much. I found that one pump was adequate. I spread this over my face and neck using upward, sweeping motions. This moisturizer has a definite citrus fragrance that I found o.k.

I have not noticed any fantastic improvements in my skin during this trial period, nor have I seen any problems. I like that this product is suitable for men or women to use.

I recommend that anyone who desires the best for their skin apply a good moisturizer daily. Twice a day is even better. Preceding your moisturizer by using a quality serum further enhances the optimum performance of your moisturizer product.  Body Merry creates several good good products. The two new products - Super 6 Serum and Super C-22 Moisturizer might be just the right products for you.

Product information (provided by Body Merry)

Body Merry Super C-22 Moisturizer

Supercharged with 22% Vitamin C and 20% Hyaluronic Acid, this moisturizer pampers and revitalizes your skin by fighting the signs of aging and sun damage. Niacinamide helps to improve your skin tone and texture and CoQ10 amps up the antioxidant quotient, resulting in a nourishing formula that helps to diminish the appearance of wrinkles, fine lines and spots.

  • STRONG 22% VITAMIN C CONTENT: Super charged with 22% Vitamin C and 20% Hyaluronic Acid, this moisturizer pampers and revitalizes your skin by fighting the signs of aging and sun damage. Niacinamide helps to improve your skin tone and texture and CoQ10 amps up the antioxidant quotient, resulting in a nourishing formula that helps to diminish the appearance of wrinkles, fine lines and spots.
  • Natural and Organic Ingredients: The cream also contains Organic Aloe Vera, Organic Sunflower Oil, Palm Oil, Clementine Essential Oil, Shea Butter and Jojoba Oil, that all go a long way in improving and brightening your complexion.
  • Made without artificial fragrances and harsh chemicals, the lotion is suitable for all skin types and is designed for use by both men and women.

Body Merry Super 6 Serum Age Defense

High concentrations of Vitamin C and Hyaluronic Acid are combined with optimum levels of Retinol, Niacinamide, CoQ10 and Astaxanthin to form a gentle and effective potion to fight the signs of aging. This six-in-one formula not only helps to diminish the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines, but also leaves your skin plump, hydrated and nourished with an even and brighter looking complexion.
  • SIX-IN-ONE FORMULA: 22% Vitamin C and 20% Hyaluronic Acid combine with optimum levels of Retinol, Niacinamide, CoQ10 and Astaxanthin to form a gentle and nourishing potion to fight the signs of aging - SIX great ingredients that need no introduction in anti-aging skincare - all rolled into one potent formula.
  • NOT YOUR REGULAR SERUM: Unlike other vitamin C serums on the market that have only 5-20% Vitamin C, this serum has the power of 22% Vitamin C with 2.5% Retinol for maximum potency. If that wasn't enough, powerful natural and organic ingredients such as Organic Aloe, Witch Hazel, Wheat Germ Oil, Green Tea, Propolis and Organic Jojoba Oil are also added to the mix.
  • ANTI-AGING + BRIGHTER COMPLEXION: It helps to effectively address all your concerns, whether it is signs of aging (wrinkles, fine lines, age spots, etc), or uneven skin tone and texture (discoloration, acne or other marks, sun damage or hyperpigmentation).
DISCLOSURE: I was provided complimentary products to facilitate this review. Opinions expressed are solely my own. I was not compensated for this review.

Friday, April 17, 2015

The Ride by Kayla Davidson and illustrated by Kim Felts

About the book: Learning to ride a bicycle is a risky challenge for Olivia. She avoids this risk and even turns down ice cream, her favorite snack. What will encourage Olivia to overcome her fear and take a chance?

The Ride gives children hope and understanding. Regardless of the size of the task or regardless of the person's age, gaining strength and courage from the Lord is only a prayer away.

In this, her second book, Kayla Davidson creates a fun, playful way to teach children how to include God in their everyday lives.

Review: The Ride is a story of how a young girl overcomes her fear of riding her bike without her training wheels by relying of God. The encouragement of her supportive mother, the lure of a trip to the ice cream parlor, and the use of prayer help Olivia overcome her fear.

While the story is sweet and I always love a story where one’s trust in God is encouraged, I found the lovely art a bit off with the story. The child using the training wheels is pictured as a school age girl who appears older than one would expect a child to be who uses training wheels. But this is just my opinion.

The illustrations are lovely. The story is sweet. The lesson learned wonderful!  “I can do all things with Christ.”

DISCLOSURE: The author provided a complimentary copy in exchange for our review. No compensation was received and opinions are those of the reviewer.

Saturday, April 11, 2015

New laundry product - Liquid Purex® Crystals ScentSplash™ [Review & Giveaway]

Awhile back, Purex began marketing Purex Crystals in several fragrances for enhancing laundry. Who doesn’t love a good fragrance and freshness to our linens and clothes? The Purex Crystals were and are nice to add into the laundry mix. But now Purex has gone a step further – they now have a new bottle on the shelves in stores - Purex Crystals ScentSplash.

As a Purex Insider  I was given the opportunity to try a bottle of this in-wash fragrance booster and share what I thought with my Chat With Vera readers. Since receiving it, I’ve used it in several loads of laundry. I fill the cap to the “2” line and the result is that my laundry has a nice fresh fragrance after washing and drying the clothes.

I was provided the Lavender scented Purex Crystals ScentSplash, but there are two other fragrances: Fresh Spring Waters and Fresh Mountain Breeze. Each sounds wonderfully refreshing. Though lavender is a favorite of mine, I can't wait to try the other two!

Product Information (from Purex) - Infuse your clothes with the power of liquid freshness.

Purex® Crystals ScentSplash™ is the next evolution in laundry in-wash fragrance boosters. It contains refreshing scent beads that release bursts of fragrance with irresistible freshness that lasts! This new Liquid Crystals formula is convenient and versatile enough to be used directly in the washer or in-wash tray, and is safe for all wash fabrics.
1 winner, 2 Free Product Coupons 
Begins April 11 & ENDS April 21  @ 12:01 a.m. EDT
Open for USA addresses only.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
DISCLOSURE: I  received a complimentary product to facilitate this review. Opinions are mine. I was not compensated for this review.