Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Design & Drill Socket To Me

Educational Insights

This was a toy sent to me to test out. My kids are older than the age group here which is 4+. Although they are older they still had fun helping me out. This toy will be going to work  with me. I work with autistic preschoolers and help with ABA therapy. So this toy will get plenty of use and will be wonderful for fine motor skills that we teach everyday. It is also very easy  to use which will be helpful with my students .

 It is also very colorful big openings and no small parts. Like anything we purchase for our children of any ability we are always looking for function ,affordability and attractiveness to the child.. With its bright bold colors it is very attractive to any little eye.  When it came I was very excited to open it up and imagine all that i will be able to teach and help them learn through  play.      
I opened it up and was so happy to see four different shapes with a different number of holes. I know , it is strange to look at  the holes ,but I was in work mode and was thinking with some kids we will start with smaller amount of holes then go from there . Of course I will have some that will go by shape or color.I have a feeling the robot will be very popular. 
As you can see my son chose the robot . He was happy to show how it worked . He took the socket wrench and went to work . He said it was easy to work and worked just like the real tools he uses with dad. I did let my little neighbor boy try as well and he is 5 ( I am unable to use pictures however for privacy reasons)  He had fun as well and was able to use it just as easily as my older kids. On the the wrench is a little slide to make lefty loosie  or righty tighty. I was very happy with this toy and its ease for all abilities and I cant wait till school starts to really use it.

 I have so many ideas on lessons to teach  and they will never know they are learning and that's the best part. I would recommend the Design & Drill socket to me to anyone that has little kids or someone that needs a little work on fine motor skills. I will also be talking with my colleagues in special education and general education on this toy as we are always looking for new and inviting things to keep interest.  This also a great toy for parents. It is  just fun and easy and will give them a toy that they can do alone so you can do dishes or you can all work together.      

Blog Contributor:  Sarah S.

Disclosure: I received this product for review for free, however, I was not required to write a review and all opinions expressed are my own.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Pinterest Win or fail : Apple fritters Recipe!

                                                Country Apple fritter bread

Today is a summer day in August, even though it is Summer ,it was only 68 today.  Fall weather if you ask me , and my my children were bored. I was looking at Pinterest for dinner ideas and my son was sitting next to me. He asked me if he could cook and this is what he chose. What can I say the boy loves apple fritters over any other doughnut.
He did it all by himself, I  just helped with oven and making sure he was measuring right.   We used this recipe I got from Pinterest.
Country Apple Fritter Bread
Serves 8
Bread Loaf
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2/3 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 3/4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 apples, peeled and chopped (any kind), mixed with 2 tablespoons granulated sugar and 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup of powdered sugar
  • 1-3 tablespoons of milk or cream- (depending on thickness of glaze wanted)
  • 1
    Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Use a 9x5-inch loaf pan and spray with non-stick spray or line with foil and spray with non-stick spray to get out easily for slicing.
  • 2
    Mix brown sugar and cinnamon together in a bowl. Set aside.
  • 3
    In another medium-sized bowl, beat white sugar and butter together using an electric mixer until smooth and creamy.
  • 4
    Beat in eggs, 1 at a time, until blended in; add in vanilla extract.
  • 5
    Combine & whisk flour and baking powder together in another bowl and add into creamed butter mixture and stir until blended.
  • 6
    Mix milk into batter until smooth.
  • 7
    Pour half the batter into the prepared loaf pan; add half the apples and half the brown sugar/cinnamon mixture.
  • 8
    Lightly pat apple mixture into batter.
  • 9
    Pour the remaining batter over apple layer and top with remaining apples and brown sugar/cinnamon mixture.
  • 10
    Lightly pat apples into batter; swirl brown sugar mixture through apples using knife or spoon.
  • 11
    Bake in the preheated oven until a toothpick inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean, approximately 50-60 minutes.
  • 12
    To make glaze, mix powdered sugar and milk or cream together until well mixed.
  • 13
    Let cool for about 15 minutes before drizzling with glaze. 
  •                                                                 He got in oven and couldn't wait to eat it. this is only half i didnt take a pic with other layer on i forgot.
  • It does take awhile to bake so i had to make him go do something else. He does not have a lot of patients yet lol (what kid does?) So finally after 50 min the timer beeps and I have him do the toothpick test  and we determined it actually needed another 10 minutes.  After those ten minutes  it was ready, So  on a plate it went and waited for the glaze.
  •  This is how ours turned out today. It looks good but  how does it taste? 
    We all give it 2 thumbs up, it really was so good. Guess what  I am having with my morning coffee tomorrow? Yep a slice if there is any left. I imagine I will be making these and freezing them for the Holiday especially our big Halloween party.   

    I would say this is a big WIN

Sarah S

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Homemade Water Bombs

                                                   Water bombs

I originally saw this idea on Pinterest but I don't remember exactly from which post that I actually did see them but I knew I wanted to try them . I was excited to be able to make something fun for a family reunion. 
We have lots of kids that come and we would be in and out of the water a lot.  I did play around with the directions a bit to figure out what worked and what did not. I went threw several different tie ideas. I used ribbon like original directions but those came apart so I ended up using stretchy jewelry string bought at Micheal's.   

 I started out by getting sponges at the Dollar Tree.  I used my scissors to cut sponge in 4 strips (mine weren't very even).  I then put my string on bottom and stacked 4 pieces on top of string.  Next  I stacked 4 more pieces on top of those. Then I tied them very tight. It was actually  very easy to do . 


 They were a hit at the party we soaked them in water and threw them at each other. The kids  and adults a like want me to make more for next party. We all had a blast and I hope you do to. If you make these I would love to see them and hear how it went.            

 Byline Blog Contributor: Sarah S.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Shark Steam Mop Review

How many of you have wood floors or even tile or laminate ?  We all have something and it always needs cleaned , doesn't it ?  I think I have a solution for you all,  it actually worked very well for my family and I will get a lot of great use out of it.  We have many wood floors in our house as well as tile and laminate . All my floors get dirty a lot  with kids around as I am sure many of you are quiet familiar with yourself. I always worry on what to clean my wood floors with in order to not damage them .  I received the Shark  Steam mop to try  out and to review.
I opened it up and it came the mop itself , washable cloth, and cleaner . It was pretty simple to put together I had some trouble figuring out the steam,just water and cleaner but that is pretty much user error on that one. After I figured it out with some help from the husband I did alright. 

 We were remodeling my daughters room so as you can imagine ,dust and dirt abound, of course there was plenty. So I did a good sweeping of the floor  and made sure my cleaner was in properly, since it was not the first time around . I ran the mop on clean and it looked nice but I wanted to know that all that dirt and dust was gone before I put her brand new rug down. So I ran the steam over the floor and it looked so nice and pretty and ready for new decor. 

 The mop it self has a very nice light up button display that will  tell you if  it is on steam or mop or both and how much to give,actually pretty easy if you read directions. I had that problem at first I didn't really read so I had to go back, read directions with and with  a little help from hubby  figured it out fairly quick.

Disclosure: I received this product for review for free, however, I was not required to write a review and all opinions expressed are my own.

Ninja Blender Review

Ninja Ultima Blender

         I received the Ninja blender to review and perfect timing too.


 My daughter is on a special diet and I wasn't sure how I would grind ,nuts,mix all ingredients ,and whip cream with out having a ton of dishes all the time. The ninja can do all that and much more and was even easy to take to school.  

At first I was pretty intimated with this system.The Ninja Blender came with the blender 2 cups and blades and a to go cup with lid .  We have been able to experiment so much with this machine . I can use it to crush ice and frozen fruit and make smoothies .  I can crush and grind almond,pecan,and macadamia nuts to make waffles,cookies,bread and muffins.     

This is a very powerful machine that is  fast, efficient and easy to use. My 9 year old could use it at her girl scout snack day to make things she could eat and wasn't left out .  I can also switch from big blender cup to individual cups . The cups  come with a blade lid that hooks to the large base .  When I take the cup blade off I can use the  lid with sipper on it and take my smoothie on the go. 

 It has been the perfect tool for my kitchen and I  use it everyday and was  also able to get rid of small appliances I only seldom use as the Ninja Blender can do it as well.I think I use this blender every other day and I have had no issue with it.

 You can can also put the parts in the dishwasher and it makes for a very easy cleanup.  I also use it once a month for hours at a time for freezer cooking and it runs  wonderfully. The one  thing I will be purchasing to use with this  is the food processor base for it 

. I also love that my daughter could use it so easily gave her a very important sense of Independence and not being so different from her friends . There are so many more recipes I now want to try and with the Ninja Blender I now  have the only tool I need . Now to just get more ingredients.

Sarah S

Disclosure: I received this product for review for free, however, I was not required to write a review and all opinions expressed are my own.