Disclosure: I was not financially compensated for this post. I received a sample of the product for review purposes. The opinions are my own, based on my personal experience with the product.

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I’ve been a big fan of The Lakeside Collection for years.  They have a wide selection of really neat items at great prices.  I look forward to receiving their catalogs in the mail, especially during the holidays.  I can find unique items for even the most hard to shop for person my list.  They even make it easy by offering examples of creative gift baskets you can put together in their article, Gift Basket Ideas: 5 Tips To Get You Started.  The article gives examples of fun ideas such as the Curious Cook and the Fascinating Fashionista gift baskets.  I was super excited to receive everything I needed to put together the Crazy for Camo gift bag.  This would be perfect for the outdoorsy couple on your list!

First I started with the Deer Duffel Bag.

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At 24″ x 12-1/2″ x 6-1/2″, this beautiful canvas bag makes the perfect container to hold all of the other goodies.

I received several items to fill the gift “basket”.

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These his and hers Highland Timber jackets are so soft and cozy!  I was impressed with the quality and both my hubby and I loved how comfortable they were.

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The men’s and women’s Northern Trail Moccasins are perfect for keeping your feet warm and toasty on those cold winter nights!

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The Mossy Oak mug set includes a travel mug and a coffee cup.  The mug is stainless steel and plastic with a sliding opening to prevent spills.  the coffee cup is ceramic and is dishwasher safe.

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Finally, the camouflage wine glasses are perfect for sipping wine around the campfire!

Assembling the gift basket is easy when you follow the instructions in The Lakeside Collection Gift Basket Collection article.  First, I filled the duffel bag with some of the empty boxes to help fill it out.

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Next, I rolled up the jackets and placed one on each side of the bag.  I then placed the men’s slippers behind the jackets and the women’s slippers in the front.

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I stuck the mug in between the two slippers in the front, the travel mug in front of the men’s slippers and a wine glass in front of each jacket.  A little tissue paper in the mug and each of the wine glasses, finished off the gift.  If you wanted to go all out, you could wrap the entire ensemble in cellophane and top it with a big bow, like they do in the article.

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It turned out really cute!  I had fun assembling it and I know it would be fun for the recipient to go through it and discover each individual gift.

The Lakeside Collection has everything you need to put together your own gift basket. From toys and electronic, to housewares and clothing, Lakeside Collection has it all!  It’s fun to get creative and pick out items that you know that special someone on your list will love and put them together in a unique way.

The Lakeside Collection has generously offered up everything I received to one lucky reader so they can create their own gift basket!  This is a value of over $110!

 

Belinda is a wife, mom, blogger, and Brand Ambassador. She has six children including 5 boys and 1 girl. Belinda enjoys reading, photography, crafts and DIY projects, and watching her boys play soccer. You may contact Belinda at mudpiesand tiaras at gmail dot com. Click here to meet Belinda

Disclosure: I was not financially compensated for this post. I received a sample of the product for review purposes. The opinions are my own, based on my personal experience with the product.

Almost all of our family lives in other states.  We also have a lot of friends that we left behind when we moved to Tennessee.  Because of this, we always send out photo cards at Christmas.  It’s a great way to share pictures of the kids with loved ones.  For the past couple of years, we have turned to CrinkledNose.com for our cards.  I absolutely love that they offer the option of making your cards magnetic!  It’s the perfect way to display photo cards.  The process is really easy.  I picked my template card, uploaded photos, typed in the text I wanted and I was done!

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This picture doesn’t do the cards justice.  The colors are great and the pictures are very clear.

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It look great on our fridge!  I love the idea of grandparents and aunts and uncles being able to easily display the card.  My in-laws were thrilled with it and still have the cards from the last 2 years proudly displayed on their fridge.

In addition to cards, CrinkledNose.com also offers photo calendars, note pads, and recipe cards (perfect for the cook on your list!).

And for you coffee lovers, they even have Personalized Coffee (micro roasted by award-winning O’Henry’s Coffee Roasting Company) ! What a unique gift!

As always, I am super pleased with my experience with CrinkledNose.com.  They make creating custom cards and gifts easy and fun.  Make sure to check them our for your holiday needs!

One lucky reader will win 25 magnetic cards (Excludes Children’s of Alabama card line) for themselves!

Belinda is a wife, mom, blogger, and Brand Ambassador. She has six children including 5 boys and 1 girl. Belinda enjoys reading, photography, crafts and DIY projects, and watching her boys play soccer. You may contact Belinda at mudpiesand tiaras at gmail dot com. Click here to meet Belinda

 

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Graphic credit: Family Christian

 

The above statistic literally makes me sick to my stomach.  I look at my sweet children and my hearts breaks for all the innocent lives that are devastated by human trafficking.  We recently had a speaker at church who told us about their experiences with survivors of this horrible practice.  She had seen girls as young as 7, taken from their families and sold into slavery.  I cannot fathom the fear these little girls experienced.  Take Viray’s story for example:

Viray’s mother sold her for the first time when she was nine years old. She was helpless to fight back when forced to perform domestic duties seldom required even of an adult, and then beaten when she could not meet the demands of her new family. She was helpless to fight back when the father first started to molest her, which then led to rape. Repeatedly. “It seemed like they bought me so that he would have something to use,” she recalls. Viray ran away, back to her mother for protection. But she was met by a new stepfather who continued the violent beatings. Then, he sold her again.

To be sold once is unthinkable. Twice is outrageous. Viray was sold and re-sold, used as a sex slave “many times.” Each time she tried to return to her mother–the one person in the world who should protect her–she was disappointed. Her mother would not protect her; perhaps she could not.

No child should ever have to face these things. I have a heart for children and stories like Viray’s infuriate me.  These innocent boys and girls are precious gifts and should be treated as such.

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graphic credit: Family Christian

Can you imagine? $90 for a human being?  It makes me sad and angry at the same time. Some people pay more than that for a pair of shoes!

 

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Graphic Credit: Family Christian

This is unacceptable.  It’s time we stand together to put a stop to this tragedy.  Thankfully, it is possible to make a difference.  Family Christian is partnering with Destiny Rescue to help those affected by human trafficking.  The goal is to help Destiny Rescue start their program in the Dominican Republic, a country that desperately needs their efforts.  Destiny Rescue has rescued, restored, protected and empowered hundreds of children enslaved around the world. Children like Viray. Here’s the rest of her story:

Distrust of others and self-hatred were just two of the many scars Viray tried unsuccessfully to hide. So, inviting her into a trusting relationship with her counselor was perhaps the first hurdle. With patience, understanding, and skill, over time Viray grew strong enough to be reintegrated into a family situation that her counselor and social worker determined to be safe and healthy: with her loving grandparents. Destiny Rescue social workers will continue follow-up for a period of time, until they are assured that Viray is making progress in her long journey of healing.

Are you ready to help fight Human Trafficking?  There are several ways to do so.  First, any time you shop with Family Christian stores between November 22-30, either in-store or online, all earnings from your purchases will go toward the Challenge. It’s the perfect time to do your Christmas shopping and know that you’re making a huge difference in the lives of others as well!  You can also make a donation to the cause by visiting The Challenge webpage.  You can donate any amount you’d like and every dollar counts.  $5 provides a warm blanket, $50 a safe bedroom and $100 helps rescue a child.

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Graphic credit: Family Christian

The goal is $150,000.  More than $32,000 has already been raised by Family Christian employees, vendors and friends.  It’s time we take a stand and fight the vicious cycle of human trafficking. Please shop and/or donate and spread the word!  Together we can make a difference!

 

 

Belinda is a wife, mom, blogger, and Brand Ambassador. She has six children including 5 boys and 1 girl. Belinda enjoys reading, photography, crafts and DIY projects, and watching her boys play soccer. You may contact Belinda at mudpiesand tiaras at gmail dot com. Click here to meet Belinda


Disclosure: I was not financially compensated for this post. I received a sample of the product from Family Christian for review purposes. The opinions are my own, based on my personal experience with the product.

 

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With 5 older brothers, Little Miss is one tough girl!  We have a print in her room with the Shakespeare quote,” though she be but little, she is mighty!”.  This fits my little girl perfectly!  I feel it’s really important for A to have strong, female role models.  Thankfully, the Bible is filled with them!  When I got the chance to review a copy of For Such a Time As This: Stories of Women From the Bible, Retold for Girls, I knew it would be a wonderful resource for my daughter.

In this great book, best-selling author Angie Smith retells 40 stories of biblical women.  The writing is really well done and easy for young readers to comprehend. I found myself really getting into each story as well!  They made me think more about the feelings and emotions of some of the great women from the Bible.  For instance, I’ll admit, I haven’t really thought too much about Noah’s wife.  But as I read the story to Little Miss, I started to realize just how strong Nosh’s wife had to be.  She trusted God and stuck beside her husband through terrible ridicule.

I LOVED the illustrations in the book!Breezy Brookshire’s beautiful drawings really helped to bring the stories to life.

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You can see the emotion on the characters’ faces in every drawing.

At the end of each story, there is a follow up page, divided into three sections.

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The first, titled “He”, reminds the reader of God’s goodness.  The second, titled “Me”, features a character building takeaway.  The last, titled “She” has a prayer that parents can pray for their daughter.  This may be my favorite part.  I found myself tearing up as I read them.  I pray for my kids all the time and this section offered a great reminder to pray daily for virtues such as courage, generosity, kindness, discernment, and most of all to trust in God. At the very bottom of the page, there’s a memory verse to go along with the story.

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I can honestly say, I am enjoying this book even more than I thought I would. I’m so excited to share it with A.  Even though she’s still too young to really understand the details of each story, she loves looking at the pictures.  I want her to be used to hearing the names of great women like, Rebekah, Sarah,Naomi, Ruth, and Mary.  All of the women in this book have important lessons for us and can help us teach our daughter virtues that will help her in her life.  She can be inspired by great character and learn from some of the bad choices shown by the women in the Bible.

Family Christian has offered a $25 Appreciation Certificate to one lucky reader so they can purchase this great book, or another item from their website.

 

Belinda is a wife, mom, blogger, and Brand Ambassador. She has six children including 5 boys and 1 girl. Belinda enjoys reading, photography, crafts and DIY projects, and watching her boys play soccer. You may contact Belinda at mudpiesand tiaras at gmail dot com. Click here to meet Belinda