Delightful display: Custom canvas print from Canvas Factory (review and giveaway)

Delightful display: Custom canvas print from Canvas Factory (review and giveaway)

I'm one of those grandmas who displays lots and lots of photos of my loved ones. All around my house. For this post, I began counting the number of pictures I have placed here and there. And stopped thirty six. With the remainder of the main level plus the family room to go, I've chosen to just guesstimate here. I'm guessing there are fifty or so scattered about. On walls, bookcases, mantels, and more.

I delight in seeing my sweeties, old and young, in pictures. But with that many pictures to adore—and dust—I clearly don't need anymore.

Yet an offer to review—and give away! (more on that below)—a custom canvas print from Canvas Factory…

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Grand giveaway: Grandparent journals and Logitech webcam make connecting with grandchildren simple

Grand giveaway: Grandparent journals and Logitech webcam make connecting with grandchildren simple

Win a perfect prize for connecting with grandchildren now... and later

Both of my grandmothers lived far away from me when I was a child. My maternal grandmother—the one the longest distance from me but closest to my heart—got in the habit as I got older of writing letters a few times a year, filling me in on the simple day-to-day of her senior years.

Gramma was always intentional in staying in touch with me, up until her arthritic hands could no longer write and my return letters—typed in large, bold-face font for easier reading—were no longer easy to read at all as her vision had failed. Had webcams been around prior to her passing, I'm pretty sure Gramma would have been keen on connecting via the high-tech wonder.

Those handwritten letters from my grandmother are among my most cherished possessions. I still have every one. And though I loved reading of her ordinary everyday doings, I now long for more. I wish she would have shared her family story, her personal longings, her dreams and wishes and deeper thoughts on the virtues and values she held close and hoped to instill in her progeny.

My desire for something tangible showcasing such sentiments from my grandma is what makes me so excited to share this giveaway.

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Empower dear ones with the Let's Be Well Diabetes Box™

Empower dear ones with the Let's Be Well Diabetes Box™

This post sponsored by AARP and the American Diabetes Association.

My husband isn't normal. I guess a more accurate descriptor would be that he's an anomaly. See, my husband has peripheral neuropathy—numbness, tingling, pain, and worse in his feet. It's a condition most commonly due to diabetes. Yet my husband does not have diabetes, not even pre-diabetes. According to literally decades of blood tests seeking a diabetes-PN connection, there is no connection.

There are, though, chronic—and oh-so stubborn—foot wounds my husband regularly contends with, similar to the foot wounds folks with diabetes often experience. It's a confounding state, to say the least.

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Positive, powerful pick-me-up: My thoughts on 'I've Been Thinking...' by Maria Shriver

Positive, powerful pick-me-up: My thoughts on 'I've Been Thinking...' by Maria Shriver

I've long been a fan of—and subscriber to—Maria Shriver's The Sunday Paper. In her weekly e-newsletter, Shriver shares empowering, encouraging, inspirational thoughts and information on people making a positive difference in our culture, our world.

Shriver opens each newsletter with an engaging personal message  titled "I've been thinking...," on a range of topics relevant to world events and concerns. She follows up with powerful articles and tidbits by and about various "Architects of Change," as she calls the passionate "changemakers moving humanity forward." 

The Sunday Paper never fails to open my eyes and heart to the positive possibilities in our world today despite the doom, gloom, negativity, and nastiness proliferating online and off.

So when I was offered the opportunity to review I've Been Thinking... Reflections, Prayers, and Meditations for a Meaningful Life, Shriver's most recent book, inspired by the messages she writes and shares in The Sunday Paper, I naturally responded, "Heck, yeah!"

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Peonies from CommercialSilk.com (review)

Peonies from CommercialSilk.com (review)

Based on the lovely, amazing, productive, and responsible women my daughters have become, I'd have to say I'm pretty good at growing girls.*

Based on the colorless condition of my yard year 'round, though, I'd have to admit I'm no good at all when it comes to growing gardens or flowery sorts of stuff.

Which stinks because I'd like to be one of those people who display colorful cut flowers throughout my home. Sure, I could regularly purchase bouquets from the florist, plop them in a vase, and add water, but that gets expensive. And the flowers die — even for folks who have a natural knack with flowers.

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Great games for GRAND kids: More from Goliath Games and Pressman Toy

Great games for GRAND kids: More from Goliath Games and Pressman Toy

Whether for birthdays, holidays, or any ol' days of ordinary sorts, games make great gifts for grandkids. Or for grandparents to keep on hand for playing with visiting kiddos.

Goliath Games and Pressman Toy — makers of the games featured in my rundown of games for holiday giving — recently sent me free for review two more options for getting the good times rolling with your favorite grands.

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Utter Nonsense: Family Edition a hilarious game for holiday gifting

Utter Nonsense: Family Edition a hilarious game for holiday gifting

My husband has a thing about accents. He's long goofed off with our girls by speaking in (egregiously incorrect) accents, from Spanish to French to Australian and so forth. He gets a ridiculous kick out of hearing Siri speak in different languages, and has his own Siri set to the Australian male voice.

So when I mentioned I'd been offered Utter nonsense! The Hilarious Accent Game free for review, he was all over that. "Oh, you gotta get it!" he announced (in what I think may have been an Australian accent with a Spanish lilt).

I requested the game, and as soon as it arrived I saw its potential for wacky fun with my loved ones.

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