Friday, May 15, 2015

Book Review :: Princess Joy, Princess Grace, and Princess Charity Sticker & Activity Books - inspired by Jeanna Young and Jacqueline Johnson, pictures by Omar Aranda

The Princess Parables Sticker & Activity Books each contain 16 full-color pages with a variety of activities and 50 reusable stickers that any 4-8 year old girl is sure to enjoy. 

The activity books also have a small story that run through them about each princess. (There are five princesses in The Princess Parables series. They are: Faith, Joy, Grace, Hope, and Charity.)


The activities in the Princess Parables Sticker & Activity Books are simple and a range of levels - some may be a bit too difficult for a 4-year old to do on her own, some may be too easy for an 8-year old to hold her interest, but altogether there is a good range. Here are some of the types of activities included:
  • Finish the picture with stickers
  • Finish a drawing
  • Color the picture
  • Word Search
  • Decode the message
  • Count the items
  • Find items in a picture
  • Compare two pictures to find the differences
At under $4 retail, the Princess Parables Sticker & Activity Books are a great value and would be a fun gift for a little girl in your life. 
FTC Declaration: The publisher has provided me with a complimentary copy of this book or advanced reading copy. This does not change the fact that I will give my honest opinion in my reviews.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

WINNER :: Growing In Unity

Thanks to all who stopped by and commented throughout my week as the Growing In Unity gal...and a very special thanks to each of you who are followers of this blog.
and
Congratulations!

Please send me an e-mail with your US mailing address so I can get your information to Unity Stamp Company. (You will each receive 25 random stamps.)
{You can find my e-mail address in my blog header or on my Blogger profile.}

Friday, May 1, 2015

Growing In Unity - Day 5

Well, I am the scheduled GIU (Growing In Unity) gal this week, but things took a little turn as I gave birth to my newest baby boy Monday (he surprised us a couple weeks earlier than expected). I hadn't completed a fifth project yet, so unfortunately there isn't anything for Friday's post. I assume you will forgive me under the circumstances. ;o)

Please also be patient with me picking a winner...things with me are moving much more slowly these days.

All of my posts (Monday through Thursday) can be found here at: inkblotsbytrd.blogspot.com

Thank you for visiting!

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Growing In Unity :: Day 4 - Dream Card

Welcome to the 4th day of my week as the Growing In Unity gal!

I am so thankful for each of you that have stopped by so far to check out and comment on each of my projects using Unity Stamp Company stamps. Be sure to comment on all five of my Growing In Unity posts this week if you want a chance to win some free stamps!

If you are new here or aren't already a follower: I'd love to have you follow my blog!
If you are one of my regular readers: Thanks for coming back! I love having you!
If you are on Facebook, please "like" Ink Blots by TRD.


For today's card, I used Unity's Solar Elem stamp:
I wanted to create a simple card with the focus on this cute stamp image. I kept a very calm color palette, which worked well with the "dream" wood veneer piece I used for the sentiment.


Thanks for stopping by today - and don't forget to leave a comment so you can enter to win!

From the comments that are left on each of my posts this week I will be randomly choosing TWO winners who will each receive 25 random stamps from Unity Stamp Company - to be sent to a domestic address only, please.
Supplies: 
Stamps: Unity Stamp Company (Solar Elem); 
Cardstock: Discount Cardstock (Brilliant White 130#);
Patterned Paper: Studio Calico (Wanderlust - 6x6);
Ink: Ranger (Archival - Jet Black);
Colored Pencils: Prang (20 - Tan, 17 - Gray, 8 - Light Green);

Wood Veneer: Studio Calico (#331100); Chic Tags (Sequins);
Tools: Fiskars (Trimmer, Scissors); Scor-Pal (Scoring Board);

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Growing In Unity :: Day 3 - Stamped Canvas Gardening Bag (& Gift Tag)

Welcome to the 3rd day of my week as the Growing In Unity gal!

I am so thankful for each of you that have stopped by so far to check out and comment on each of my projects using Unity Stamp Company stamps. Be sure to comment on all five of my Growing In Unity posts this week if you want a chance to win some free stamps!

If you are new here or aren't already a follower: I'd love to have you follow my blog!
If you are one of my regular readers: Thanks for coming back! I love having you!
If you are on Facebook, please "like" Ink Blots by TRD.


Today I am taking a break from sharing paper-crafted projects using Unity stamps to share this canvas gardening bag with you.

I started with a blank canvas riggers bag, taped off the area I wanted to keep clean, and then started spraying with a variety of mists:
After the misted area was completely dry, I stamped the bag with the flowers from the Hello Birdie and Pray Continually stamp kits:
I then added in some stamped dots (from Hello Birdie) and the word "grow" using the Liz Hicks Alpha kit.
In addition to the bag, I wanted to create a simple, coordinating gift tag to go along with it:
It was fun working on canvas and I hope my sister-in-law (who received the bag and tag) will enjoy using her new gardening bag.


Thanks for stopping by today - and don't forget to leave a comment so you can enter to win!

From the comments that are left on each of my posts this week I will be randomly choosing TWO winners who will each receive 25 random stamps from Unity Stamp Company - to be sent to a domestic address only, please.
Supplies: 
Stamps: Unity Stamp Company (Hello Birdie, Pray Continually, Liz Hicks Alpha); 
Canvas Bag: Harbor Freight;
Mists: Studio Calico (Mister Huey's);
Chipboard Tag: Cost Plus World Market;
Ink: Ranger (Archival - Jet Black);
Colored Pencils: Prang;

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Growing In Unity :: Day 2 - Congratulations Card

Welcome to the 2nd day of my week as the Growing In Unity gal!

I am so thankful for each of you that have stopped by so far to check out and comment on my first project using Unity Stamp Company stamps. Be sure to comment on all five of my Growing In Unity posts this week if you want a chance to win some free stamps!

If you are new here or aren't already a follower: I'd love to have you follow my blog!
If you are one of my regular readers: Thanks for coming back! I love having you!
If you are on Facebook, please "like" Ink Blots by TRD.


Today I have a very simple card to share with you. It is nothing more than white cardstock, black ink, and ribbon (and Unity stamps, of course!)...but I love how it turned out:
I used the beautiful floral image from Gladness Touch Your Life (by Joslyn Nielson) and the "congratulations" from the Blossoming Thoughts & Wishes sentiment kit (by Lisa Arana). I ended up stamping the floral image 5 times (on a variety of angles). I had considered coloring in the flowers, but I love the look of this in black and white (with a little pop of color).


Thanks for stopping by today - and don't forget to leave a comment so you can enter to win!

From the comments that are left on each of my posts this week I will be randomly choosing TWO winners who will each receive 25 random stamps from Unity Stamp Company - to be sent to a domestic address only, please.
Supplies: 
Stamps: Unity Stamp Company (Blossoming Thoughts & Wishes, Gladness Touch Your Life); 
Cardstock: Discount Cardstock (Brilliant White 80#, Brilliant White 130#);
Ink: Ranger (Archival - Jet Black);
Ribbon: May Arts;
Tools: Fiskars (Trimmer, Scissors); Scor-Pal (Scoring Board);

Monday, April 27, 2015

Growing In Unity :: Day 1 - Your Light Shines Card

Welcome to the 1st day of my week as the Growing In Unity gal!

Stay tuned each day this week as I show you something I've created using stamps from Unity Stamp Company...and be sure to comment on each of my Growing In Unity posts this week because Unity Stamp Company is allowing me to give away some free stamps!

If you are new here or aren't already a follower: I'd love to have you follow my blog!
If you are one of my regular readers: Thanks for coming back! I love having you!
If you are on Facebook, please "like" Ink Blots by TRD.


It's no secret that I love all things to do with mason jars (except canning...I haven't done that before...ha!). As soon as I saw this cute stamp (Your Light Shines by Joslyn Nielson) I knew I wanted to stamp with it.
(And...bonus...the sentiment stamp happens to have the words to a song I love - Hillsong's "From The Inside Out".)
I created this simple card sketch to go along with the stamp and sentiment and just added a hint of coloring on the stars. I love how it turned out, and with this design it is easy to create 3 cards at the same time...so I have extras!


Thanks for stopping by today - and don't forget to leave a comment so you can enter to win!

From the comments that are left on each of my posts this week I will be randomly choosing TWO winners who will each receive 25 random stamps from Unity Stamp Company - to be sent to a domestic address only, please.
Supplies: 
Stamps: Unity Stamp Company (Your Light Shines); 
Cardstock: Discount Cardstock (Brilliant White 130#);
Patterned Paper: Studio Calico (Brighton Pier - 6x6);
Ink: Ranger (Archival - Jet Black);

Colored Pencils: Prang (20 - Tan);
Dies: Spellbinders (Standard Circles Large);
Tools: Fiskars (Trimmer, Scissors); Scor-Pal (Scoring Board);

Friday, April 24, 2015

Baby Shower in a Box - Pop Up Banner

Living at a distance from friends and loved ones can present a problem when you want to send a cute gift. Recently I gathered up gifts from members of our church family to send to a family who had moved away. I wanted to make this feel a little bit like a baby shower (as much as can be done in a box)...and baby showers need decorations, right?

I created this banner that would pop up when the flaps of the cardboard box were lifted:
It came together rather easily - just a few shipping tags, some washi tape, Unity alpha stamps, and it is all strung up with The Twinery's twine, of course.
I thought this was a fun addition for a gift sent from afar. 

Please share with me - what do you do to make long-distance gifts special?

PS - I am next week's Growing In Unity gal! Please be sure to stop by each day next week to see what I've created - and comment to win some Unity stamps!
Supplies: 
Stamps: Unity Stamp Company (Liz Hicks Alpha); 
Tags: (13 Point Cardstock Shipping Tags - Manila: 4 3/4" x 2 3/8")
Washi Tape: My Mind's Eye (Decorative Tape - Blue & Yellow);
Ink: Memento (Bahama Blue);
Twine: The Twinery (Marigold);
Tools: Fiskars (Scissors);

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Book Reviews :: Noah's Voyage and Brave Queen Esther

There are several books in the I Can Read! / Adventure Bible series, and Noah's Voyage and Brave Queen Esther are two of the newest releases. Our family does not own the Adventure Bible, NIV or the Adventure Bible for Early Readers, so I cannot compare these books to those (to see if the content is duplicated). We do, however, own both the Adventure Bible for Toddlers and the Adventure Bible Storybook, and I can tell you that the wording and illustrations are not duplicated across these three editions. The books in the I Can Read! / Adventure Bible series are worded with simpler phrasing and shorter sentences than you will find in the Adventure Bible Storybook.

Noah's Voyage is a re-telling of the story of the flood/Noah's Ark. The original story can be found in the Bible in the book of Genesis. The re-telling of this story is done well, is easy to understand, and is accompanied by big, colorful illustrations.

At the end of Noah's Voyage is a page containing "People in Bible Times" (which has an illustration of Noah and a dove accompanied by Genesis 6:18) and "Did You Know?" (which gives details about the size of the ark and what it was made of).


Brave Queen Esther is a re-telling of the story of Esther (also known as Hadassah). The original story can be found in the Bible in the book of Esther. The re-telling of this story is done well, is easy to understand, and is accompanied by big, colorful illustrations.
At the end of Brave Queen Esther is a page containing "People of the Bible" (which has illustrations of Esther and Mordecai accompanied by Esther 4:14) and "Did You Know?" (which gives details about the festival of Purim).


The I Can Read! / Adventure Bible series are categorized as reading level 2 ("Reading with Help") and the stories do not feel "choppy" like you might find in some learn-to-read books. With a retail price under $4 per book, I find these books to be a great value.
FTC Declaration: The publisher has provided me with a complimentary copy of this book or advanced reading copy. This does not change the fact that I will give my honest opinion in my reviews.

Friday, April 17, 2015

Book Review :: Go Ahead & Like It by Jacqueline Suskin

I must say that I was surprised when I received Go Ahead & Like It, because with descriptions like "an invitation to write lists of things you like" and "a how-to guide, writing prompt, model for self-discovery, and beautiful inspiration for daily gratitude" I was expecting Go Ahead & Like It to be more of a journal-style book of prompts with plenty of room for writing. That is not the case.

The style of Go Ahead & Like It is intriguing, and the pages are almost like looking at the author's scrapbook or gratitude journal (which is a bit strange, in my opinion). The theme behind the idea of Go Ahead & Like It is not new - we know that being thankful for "small" things and looking at the positives in life are important. With that being said, besides the newness of the artistic style of the book, I didn't find Go Ahead & Like It to have anything "new" to add to my life. I already know how to make lists.

I must say that I did NOT "like it" that there was a list with the f-word in it...it seemed so out of place an inappropriate for a book that should be about positive things.

Unfortunately, Go Ahead & Like It will only be useful to me as maybe an art journal (where I cover the pages with paint and my own drawings/photos/lists). I just am not impressed.
FTC Declaration: The publisher has provided me with a complimentary copy of this book or advanced reading copy through the Blogging for Books book review bloggers program. This does not change the fact that I will give my honest opinion in my reviews.