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Monday, April 27, 2015

"Dead Wake: The Last Crossing of the Lusitania"

disclaimer:  I received the following book for free from Blogging For Books in exchange for my honest opinions.  All opinions remain my own.

"Dead Wake:  The Last Crossing of the Lusitania"



by Erik Larson

  So we all know of the tragedy of the Titanic, but did you ever hear of the Lusitania?  If the name sounds familiar then you probably remember hearing that it was a ship that had been torpedoed during World War I.  But did you know that it too was a passenger ship, one that was fully loaded with men, women, and children all on their way to England?  Well that is what Erik Larson sets out to tell us about in this book.

  Passengers knew of the danger of submarines before even setting out for the journey but many believed that a ship as big as the Lusitania would have nothing to fear.  Besides, they believed that once they reached the more dangerous waters that they would be being escorted with military ships from England to protect them.  Little did they know that there would be no such escort and that fate would bring them to the right place at the wrong time that fateful May day. 

  The English had acquired code books of the German's and had organized a group of specialists to work on deciphering them in a room called "Room 40".  The specialists had deciphered multiple messages regarding submarine activity in the general area that the Lusitania was headed but yet no escort was sent.  They had actually been deciphering messages from the submarine that would in a weeks time be the one who would sink the Lusitania with just one torpedo, the submarine known as U-20.

  Captain Turner had a couple delays at the beginning of his voyage that could have affected the outcome, along with some fog which if it had stayed for just a half hour longer may also have saved so many lives. 

  Learn about the folks who perished and those who were saved, find out how just one submarine torpedo took down this mighty ship, how will President Wilson respond to the disaster.  Find out all of this and more in "Dead Wake:  The Last Crossing of the Lusitania"

  Mommy in PA:  This was one of those reviews where I could have just typed and typed until my fingers fell off.  So much information, but in a very enjoyable format.  I never knew history could be so fun. 

  You can tell that Mr. Larson spent a lot of time researching personal artifacts, letters, books, etc. to get the feeling that you really know these passengers.  His way of writing really puts you on that deck with those folks the very second they see the torpedo coming through the water.  You can feel the fear they had while they are trying to decide whether to attempt to get on a life boat or wait it out to see if she will stay afloat.  You even feel their sadness when the survivors are searching for their loved ones in the make-shift morgues. 

  I was amazed by the fact that there were so many who didn't know how to even put on their life vests properly (what a terrible way to die), it was also shocking that there were so many people who were never claimed by their loved ones.  And the haunting part about others that were never found.

  It's sad to know that we learned so much about the Titanic disaster but so little about the Lusitania.  So many lives lost and in the case of the Lusitania there were ways it could have been avoided.
  This is the type of book that makes you want to go out and do some more research yourself.  He cites so many wonderful sources that he used to get his information, it is totally amazing the amount of research he did and all the places he had to go to do so. 

  There is just so much information in this book that I have no idea what to touch on next so I will just leave the reading to you, you will not be disappointed. 


Monday, April 13, 2015


disclaimer:  we received the products below for free in exchange for our honest opinions.  All opinions remain our own.

Nodorsil Microfiber Cleaning Cloth Multipack (12 towels in 6 varieties)

Product Manufacturer:  Stadler Form
Product Use: cleaning cloths
Product Features:  Guarantees 99% fewer germs, eco-friendly, silver ionic technology prevents odor and bacteria growth, machine washable, and reusable.  Safe around kids and pets.
Price:  $59.99 
Misc:  Can be washed 300+ times and still retain 90% of their antimicrobial properties.  Multipack contains 2 Antimicrobial Universal All Purpose Cloths, 2 Antimicrobial All Purpose Cloths with Activated Carbon, 1 Antimicrobial Floor Cloth with Scrubbing Stripes, 3 Antimicrobial Viscose Cloths, and 2 Microfiber Window Cloths. 
Find out More:
Here is what Mommy in GA and Mommy in PA thought of the various cleaning cloths:

Microfiber All Purpose Cloths with Strips

Mommy in GA: These are fantastic!!!  I used mine everywhere from the kitchen (all surfaces, especially great for stubborn messes in the fridge or on the floor!!) to the worries the bathroom has its very own! They work for dusting in a pinch too! Best part is you use them, wash the, repeat!!!!!

Mommy in PA:  I LOVE these ones!  I use them for anything and everything.  The strips really help make it easier to clean up stuck on dirt.  I've used these for cleaning my stovetop, dusting, washing windows, etc.  They are a great multi-purpose cleaning cloth.

Microfiber All Purpose Cloths with Activated Carbon

Mommy in GA: These work better for dusting lol! These would be great for any surface that is more likely to scratch :)

Mommy in PA:  These too were great!  I used these inside my house for dusting and outside for buffing the wax off of our truck.  It was great because they are super soft so you don't have to worry about them scratching anything and they clean up wonderfully.

Microfiber Sponge Cloths

Mommy in GA:  These I actually didn't use for cleaning I used these to collect water from my wet dishes as a drying towel.... not my best idea :(  Haha the brain was on delay that day.

Mommy in PA:  I just really don't care for the feel of these ones.  I don't know about all of you but I have a hard time cleaning with something if I can't stand the way it feels in my hand.

Antibacterial Viscose Cloths

Mommy in GA: These I only used in the kitchen and I also used one in my bathroom, great for countertops and door knobs :)

Mommy in PA:  These were ok for wiping down my countertops and the added antibacterial factor just made me feel better about using them instead of a regular cloth. 

Microfiber Window Cloths

Mommy in GA: I am not a fan of these ones they do have a strange feeling and also streaked the bathroom mirror.  They might be good for cleaning the outside windows??? Maybe I will try that the weather is starting to get nice here :)

Mommy in PA:  My husband tried these on our truck windows and he did not like them.  They didn't really do anything but smear the water around.  I personally just haven't used them for anything because they feel weird.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

"Duck Commander Devotions for Kids"

disclaimer:  I received the following book for free from Booklook Bloggers in exchange for my honest opinions.  All opinions remain my own.
"Duck Commander Devotions for Kids"

by Korie Robertson & Chrys Howard
illustrated by Holli Conger
  If you are looking for a fun, new way to get your kids involved religion then this book is right up your alley.
  Just read a page a day to your kiddos to instill values, encourage individuality, remind them that they are loved, etc.  Every day is a new lesson to be learned or reinforced. 
  Each page (devotion) includes a scripture, a prayer, a personal story about the Robertson family, and Duck Commander applications which encourage the children to use what they've learned that day.
  Mommy in PA:  This book is not only very useful but also very beautiful.  The first thing I noticed was the wonderful illustrations.  This in itself was enough to make me want to keep picking up the book : )
  I love how they incorporate their own life stories into the pages so that it is easier to explain to your kids what the scriptures mean.  Also it is way more exciting than how we typically try to teach our kids about the Bible.  The stories are also enough to keep even the adults interested.
  Also this book isn't just for younger kids either.  I found that a lot of the information in the pages pertained to my teenager as well.  I just read those sections aloud and waited for the glaring looks from across the : ) 
  I think that this book is best used by reading one page each day and focusing on one lesson at a time.  That gives the kids a whole day to incorporate what they've learned before moving on to something new. 

They even include a ribbon bookmark to keep track of where you are, how cool is that ?!?!
  This would be a great gift for any little "Duck Commander" fans out there : )

Monday, April 6, 2015

"Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb"

disclaimer:  I received the following items from Vocalpoint in exchange for my honest opinions.  All opinions remain my own.
"Night at the Museum:  Secret of the Tomb"
  Join the all familiar cast from the others along with a few new friends (a Neanderthal who believes that Larry is his father, a new security guard in London, and the pharaoh prince's parents) to save the magic that brings the museum to life. 
  In this movie we find out what makes the golden tablet so special and who is the one who actually discovered it in Egypt in the first place.  Will Larry and the characters from the museum figure things out in time before the museum goes to sleep forever?  You will just have to watch and see.
  Mommy in PA:  Vocalpoint not only sent us the movie to watch but also two bags of popcorn and the little popcorn baggies like they use at some theatres.  It was an awesome touch to make this one of the best movie nights ever. 
  They also included a link to print out some character props to use, I got to be Teddy, my son was Larry, and my daughter was Augustus.  We had a lot of fun dressing up : ) 
  We've been wanting to see this movie for awhile now but missed it when it was in the theatre.  We were hoping that it would be as good as the other two and believe us it totally was.  Laugh, oh my did we laugh : )  We especially like the new character (the Neanderthal who believes that Larry is his father) he was hilarious!!!
  If you haven't seen it already then you should really get out there and get a copy so that you too can have an awesome family movie night : )  #VPMovieNight

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

"This is What You Just Put in Your Mouth?"

disclaimer:  I received the following book for free from Blogging for Books in exchange for my honest opinions.  All opinions remain my own.
  "This is What You Just Put in Your Mouth?"
From Eggnog to Beef Jerky, the Surprising Secrets of What's Inside Everyday Products
By Patrick Di Justo
  Have you ever wondered what makes up all of those things that we eat everyday.  Well of course, we can look at the list of ingredients, but does that really tell you what is in there?  Not really.
  Patrick Di Justo was on a mission to find out exactly what makes up all of these everyday edible products including Red Bull, Slim Jim, Easy Cheese, coffee, etc.  Not only that but he also looks into what makes up these other everyday non-edible products like gasoline, play-doh, Tide Pods, Febreze, and Flu shots. 
  Mommy in PA:  I just want to start out saying that this publication really isn't as scary as I thought it would be.  I really don't think many of you would stop using most of these products based on just what the ingredients are : )  It is really just a very well researched book about things we just didn't realize are used on a daily basis to make things that we consume more colorful, flavorful, or help them keep a longer shelf life.
  I also learned things about products that I probably never would have taken the time to try to find myself.  Example, Easy Cheese really does have cheese in it LOL, there is fat in some fabric softeners, and play-doh comes in 43 colors (who knew?). 
  There are also a lot of interesting facts in the book about the ingredients themselves, information about the companies, information about the different things on the food labels and what they mean, etc. 
  All in all I really did like this book but it isn't one to sit and read cover to cover.  It's the type where you pick it up from time to time to read a section or two and then leave it sit for awhile.  A great coffee table appropriate with the coffee cup on the cover and all : )