Reviews, giveaways and memes - Jumpin Beans

15.11.14

Round-Up of Kid CD's --- Makes Great Stocking Stuffers! #MakingMyList

FTC Compliant Review Policy:
The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are NOT influenced by monetary compensation.
Just in case you are trying to figure out a couple stocking stuffer ideas...  Or maybe you are looking for a couple of gift ideas for a teacher in your life.. Why not make a cute gift basket for the teacher, but include a cd for them to use to get excitement in the classroom???  Here is a list of some that have recently been released!  

Brady Rymer (who also plays with the Laurie Berkner Band and From Good Homes) makes music with a “rock and roll heart” (New York Times). Just Say Hi will be his seventh album for families, crowd-funded by Brady's legions of fans.

Every track on Just Say Hi! is an expansive and life-affirming musical experience, fueled by the joyful “Lil’ Wall of Sound.” Brady and The Little Band That Could play exuberantly with accordions, mandolin, acoustic guitar, keyboards, bass, drums, the occasional saxophone, and their friendly voices singing in harmony.
The musical richness of Just Say Hi! is supported by the members of the band, which includes Odetta's musical director and players from Bruce Springsteen’s Seeger Sessions rhythm section among them. Guest vocalists include Elizabeth Mitchell, Laurie Berkner and members of Recess Monkey.

Mister G will release a new album of English language original songs called The Bossy E on Tuesday, June 24th. The new songs on The Bossy E share Mister G's love of reading, learning, and unplugged creativity.
Mister G is a Parents’ Choice Gold Award-winning artist whose music has been dubbed “irresistible” by People magazine, and “a top choice for libraries” by School Library Journal.Spanning genres from surf rock and bluegrass, to funk and world music, the 10 original songs on The Bossy E are a celebration of language, learning and creativity.  Guest artists on The Bossy E include Charles Neville (Neville Brothers), Massamba Diop (Baaba Maal) and Rani Arbo.

Mister G's mom, Karen Gundersheimer, is a children's book author. She's been calling him "Mister G" since he was a wee lad of 5. Mister G recently sat down with his mom to talk about reading and creativity; the interviews with her and a performance with Massamba Diop are on Mister G's YouTube channel.

Recorded by GRAMMY-winning producer Dean Jones, Key Wilde & Mr Clarke’s fourth family music album reflects an ongoing interest in animals. “I've been obsessed with them all my life,” muses Key Wilde, a musician-illustrator-art director whose wry animal images have appeared in magazines, newspapers and album covers. Wilde designed and illustrated a “Wildlife Wonders!” exhibit for the Central Park Conservancy. He also designs and illustrates media for TheWoodlands Wildlife Refuge in New Jersey. “The Bear Song,” which introduces all eight species of bears, was created for an international conference at The Woodlands last fall. An animated video of the song is getting thousands of spins.

Eric Herman, a nationally touring, award-winning family music artist and YouTube music video star, releases his first comedy album for kids ages 8 to 99.
Trout Fishing in America’s Ezra Idlet and Keith Grimwood, plus the Children’s Poet Laureate Kenn Nesbitt and award-winning touring music educator Roger Day are among the guest actors in this riotous radio theater style adventure.
A wide-ranging cast of voices, music and sound effects enhance these stories and songs from the XYZPDQ Satellite Radio Network. There’s a great variety of programming on the network, including the galaxy-traversing adventure story of Jupiter Jackson. “Hairy Scary” calls the play-by-plays for the hair-raising “Monster League Baseball” game between the Transylvania Blue Jays and the Chicago Smelly Sox.
Herman lampoons game shows with “The Math Game” and explores time travel on the NPR homage, “Monday Science,” which features children's entertainers John Hadfield and Rick Huddle. The airy Egyptian tale of Tutanophtun makes “Archaeology Hour” a gas. In between the featured tracks, on-location weather reports (Mad-Lib style), PSAs and a series of wacky advertisements are all part of the XYZPDQ programming. 


Sweet vocals, catchy melodies and heartfelt lyrics are the hallmarks of Willey’s style. The album opens with an invitation to celebrate the moment with “My Favorite Day.” “Gotta Lotta Happy” and other songs invite heart-opening gratitude for the joy of life, and the title track and others offer a path toward relaxation through words and yoga. A remix of “Colors” features new rhythms and the rousing voices of 75 kindergarten children recorded at a recent live performance at Donegan Elementary School in Bethlehem, PA.
On How To Be a Cloudmelody, lyrics and activity blend seamlessly together. Willey’s bright and easy instructions on the bonus tracks are simply suggestions ; children, parents and teachers may explore other movements to go along with each song, as Willey remarks in the liner notes. At a time when schools are dropping both music and physical fitness from the curriculum, songs like these can provided much-needed moments of movement and tranquility during the busy day.
“Kids need to move their bodies; it’s how they learn best,” notes Kira, who is also the mother of three children. “And music is a great way to get them moving. Tell a child to do something, and you may encounter resistance--but start singing, or use a catchy melody, and kids are suddenly engaged and having fun!”

Trip Down Memory Lane (Music Edition) #MidnightSpecial #Motown25 #MakingMyList

FTC Compliant Review Policy:
The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are NOT influenced by monetary compensation.

I might be dating myself here, but I was recently sent an email with a couple of great DVD sets that are sure to be on Christmas lists for those in your family.  I was not familiar with many of them, but Marc seemed to know all of them as soon as I mentioned them and he was quickly headed down memory lane.   I thought it would be great to share with you some of these so that you might know what to buy that person that is hard to buy for this year!   



A "must-have" for fans of '70s music and '70s pop culture,  THE MIDNIGHT SPECIAL COLLECTOR'S EDITION is priced to add to every music lover's home entertainment collection  at $99.95, and features eight discs of 130 incredible live performances from the era's greatest stars (carefully selected from 423 complete shows), one disc of comedy performances and two discs of specially-produced, exclusive bonus programming, including interviews with Peter Frampton, Alice Cooper, Loggins & Messina, Eddie Money, George Benson, Charlie Daniels, Todd Rundgren, Helen Reddy, Neil Sedaka, creator Burt Sugarman and many more; as well as 12 featurettes, including "The History of The Midnight Special," "Wolfman at Midnight," "Star-Studded Stage Fashion," "No Safety Net: Live on TV," "I Am Woman: Helen Reddy as Host," "Benson & Frampton Talk Shop," "The Making of The MidnightSpecial"  "The Legacy of The Midnight Special", a Burt Sugarman featurette and more.  Additionally, the collector's set includes a 32-page, full-color booklet with an intro from Burt Sugarman, artist photos, liner notes and more.

With nearly 10 hours of live performances, THE COLLECTOR'S EDITION features a roster of "who's who" in '70s music, including: Aerosmith/ "Dream On", Alice Cooper/ Medley: "Eighteen/Only Women/Billion Dollar Babies", Electric Light Orchestra/ "Evil Woman", Fleetwood Mac/ "Over My Head", Heart/ "Crazy on You", Jim Croce/ "Bad, Bad Leroy Brown", John Denver/ "Take Me Home, Country Roads", KC and the Sunshine Band/ "That's the Way (I Like It)", Peter Frampton/ "Show Me the Way", REO Speedwagon/ "Keep on Loving You", The Doobie Brothers/ "Listen to the Music", Tom Petty and  the Heartbreakers/ "American Girl" and many, many more!


Motown 25 was taped before a live audience and showcased virtually every Motown artist from the company's inception, including Michael Jackson, Marvin Gaye, Smokey Robinson, Stevie Wonder, Diana Ross, The Supremes, The Jackson 5, The Miracles, The Temptations, Four Tops and many others.  The show also featured many guests outside the Motown Records sphere who had been influenced by Motown artists, including Linda Ronstadt, who performed a memorable duet with Smokey Robinson, Billy Dee Williams, Jose Feliciano and British new wave star Adam Ant, who was riding a wave of popularity from MTV exposure.  As an added highlight, the historic evening was hosted by Richard Pryor, who was arguably the hottest comedian in the world at the time. A seminal event in pop culture history, this concert event would establish the gold standard for all future televised concert events and go on to provide the backstory for the Tony®-nominated Broadway play, Motown The Musical.  Now, StarVista Entertainment/Time Life will make this once-in-a-lifetime concert available to music lovers in a deluxe 6-DVD collector's set ($79.95), which will be available exclusively online.  

The release features an extended version of the show, with over 20 additional minutes not seen on the original broadcast, as well as brand-new 5.1 surround sound revealing the music at its fullest potential.  The 6-DVD set also includes nine newly-produced featurettes and additional bonus programming including: "Signed, Sealed, Delivered - The Making of Motown 25", which tells the behind-the-scenes story of the making of the program, and offers new insights into the rise of Motown and its roster of super stars, rare footage of Marvin Gaye ad-libbing at the piano prior to a soulful version of "What's Going On", Stevie Wonder rehearsal footage, a 2-Part Motown 25 Performers Roundtable featuring Smokey Robinson and Duke Fakir (Four Tops), Otis Williams (The Temptations) and Executive Producer Suzanne de Passe, taped at the location of the original concert, the Pasadena Civic Auditorium and over 25 exclusive interviews with performers and crew, including Claudette Robinson (The Miracles), Martha Reeves (Martha & the Vandellas), Smokey Robinson, Nelson George, Gloria Jones, Adam Ant, Ashford and Simpson, Buz Kohan (Head Writer), David Goldberg (Executive in Charge of Production), Mickey Stevenson (Former Head of A&R/Songwriter), Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis (Songwriters/Producers) and many more.  Also included in the deluxe collector's box are an exclusive 48-page collector's booklet packed with information about the show and artists, production materials and never-before-scene photos from the production, essays on Motown performers, a copy of the original Motown 25 program and more!

It's Bo Time - @Bojangles1977 #giftcard #giveaway

FTC Compliant Review Policy:
The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are NOT influenced by monetary compensation.

I know I can't be the only one that enjoys the convenience and ease of pulling through a drive -thru and grabbing dinner from time to time.  If I am the only one, I am shocked.. but I am going to guess I am not alone.  I was recently contacted to check out Bojangles and I was pretty excited.  We love trying new places and I have driven by Bojangles on numerous occasions... but the thing about it was that no one ever talks about it, so I guessed it wasn't that good.  You know? If people would talk about it, I would want to check it out!  Once I was invited to check it out, I was all about it.  Why turn down an opportunity to learn of something new?
I told Marc I was getting dinner and then "BO Time" was on.
Oh yeah, I guess I should also note that it was a football Saturday and I knew good and well I was NOT going to be in the kitchen cooking when everyone else was enjoying all of the games on, so that was another great excuse!  
I went to our local Bojangles, remember I said I had driven by it before?  Yeah, it is RIGHT DOWN THE STREET.  I asked everyone what they wanted as their side items and we had a hard time choosing...   (Side note, for you not familiar with Southern Slang...   It is not called "sides" on the menu, it is called "fixins")   They offer items such as cole slaw and mac-n-cheese, but they also offer green beans and dirty rice, with others as well.   Since it was football Saturday, we went with the carb overload!   
                                                           12 PIECE SUPER TAILGATE 
Twelve pieces of  world-famous chicken made with a special blend of seasonings and fried to perfection, served with your choice of three picnic fixin’s, six made-from-scratch buttermilk biscuits and a half gallon of Legendary Iced Tea™.
First of all, let me touch on the "fixins" - they were delicious and we each had our favorites.  The dirty rice was very tasty.  Flavorful, but not so much to make it not enjoyable.  I got the fries to make sure Broxton was able to enjoy snacking through the game, but he was just as happy eating everything else, so next time I will probably get the cole slaw or beans.  (We had mac-n-cheese, dirty rice and fries.)  All were delicious and we were happy with our dinner.  The biscuits were great and since they gave us 6, I was able to enjoy one the next day for breakfast too!  The chicken had a great crunch to the batter to make it tasty and not soggy, but it wasn't crunchy enough to make someone that is not a fan not able to enjoy it.  The meal traveled well from their home and I was happy at how the chicken was.   I do hate that we have never tried them before and now that we know how great it is, I want to go back and try their breakfast biscuits at some point!  

 I think they did a great job in packaging / advertising for their "Bo Time" The box was a great way to carry it all around and the bright yellow and red packaging makes it easily distinguished at your tailgate event.  The only problem I see?  Someone might spot it and want to join up with you.. but if you love meeting new friends, it is great!  Not only is this perfect for any tailgating at the game, or at home... it would be perfect to pick up a thing of chicken to take to your next family reunion. (Fried chicken is always a bit hit at any of our family functions.. we are from the south after-all!)

Now, 3 lucky winners are each going to win a $5 Bojangles gift card to check out something off their menu! Make sure to enter on the rafflecopter form!  

a Rafflecopter giveaway

14.11.14

Movie Night - How to Train Your Dragon 2 #DragonsInsiders #HTTYD2

FTC Compliant Review Policy:
The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are NOT influenced by monetary compensation.

The other night we were lucky enough to have a movie night at home.  We were recently sent a box of goodies for the newest movie, How to Train Your Dragon 2 and Broxton was pretty excited.  He has a habit of talking too much in class (he gets it honest) so we kept having to put movie night off... But he came home with a note saying he had a great day, so what better way to reward him?  He was excited and we got to see a new movie!  
Our bag of treats to get excited about the latest movie!  
HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON 2, the next chapter to the Academy Award® nominated film released in 2010, is “sensational…an instant animated classic,” proclaims Access Hollywood. A hit with audiences and critics alike, the film received an outstanding audience reaction with a coveted “A” CinemaScore® and certified 92% fresh on RottenTomatoes.com. Variety’s Peter Debruge declares the film is “Braver than ‘Brave,’ more fun than ‘Frozen’…Dragon delivers.” It’s a must-own title for the whole family!

Fans will get even more excitement, adventure and, of course, more dragons when DreamWorks Animation releases DRAGONS: DAWN OF THE DRAGON RACERS, an all-new animated adventure featuring the original voice cast. A hunt for lost sheep soon turns into a high-flying sprint in the all-new epic adventure as Hiccup and friends battle to become the first Dragon Racing Champion of Berk! DRAGONS: DAWN OF THE DRAGON RACERS will be available exclusively on the Blu-ray™ combo pack, DVD double pack and Digital HD.

We really enjoyed the movie, although I will say I was not expecting the sad part!  (What is it about kids movies being sad these days?!)  It was a great movie, with lots of feel good moments to enjoy.  Though, don't say I didn't warn you about the sad parts!  Broxton enjoyed it just as much as I did and I noticed he did not move at all once the movie started.   The edge of your seat dragon riding excitement is sure to be a hit for "kids" of all ages!  
To get you guys all excited about the movie, here are a couple coloring sheets to enjoy! 




11.11.14

5 Minute Minnie Tales @DisneyReads #MakingMyList

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The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are NOT influenced by monetary compensation.
If you are looking for a great book to have around for bedtime (really any time, but I was thinking bed time for the title)  you really need to check out 5 Minute Minnie Tales,  This book is a hard covered (padded) book that includes several great short stories featuring our lovable Minnie Mouse!  I say it is a great bedtime book, because in our house "1 story" before bed turns into "JUST ONE MORE" and this would be a great way to help.  Let them pick 2 stories and that is 10 minutes of reading!  Great to get a couple stories in, but know that it won't last all night long.  

I love that although this is "MINNIE" tales, it really covers all of the gang, so it is a great book for all Disney fans!  Yes, Minnie is the main character, but she shares each story with the rest of her friends that we all love.  In reading all of these, I think my favorite one was Minnie's Hiccup Trick!  Let me know which is your favorite! 


The Chapters include:
Minnie's Scavenger Hunt
Minnie's Summer Day
The Missing Daffodils
Minnie and the Pet Show
Minnie's Hiccup Trick
A Surprise for Pluto
Scaredy-Cat Sleepover
A Nice Day for a Sail
The Bravest Dog
Minnie and the Dude Ranch
A Perfect Picnic
Minnie's Missing Recipe

With reading time (aka bonding) seeming to be a thing of the past in most families, this is a great way to get a little one on one time before bed and allow for a bedtime tradition of snuggles and reading!  If we all encourage reading when they are younger, it will (hopefully) help them love it when they are older!  

10.11.14

Hey Y'all - #PaulaDeen #Giveaway

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The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are NOT influenced by monetary compensation. 

If you follow me on Instagram, you might have seen a few photos from a pretty cool luncheon I was able to attend today.  None other than Paula Deen herself was there!  She was just as sweet as the tea I drink and just as friendly as I would expect being that we are from the same hometown!  (Yes, I did have to tell her that!  Hometown pride!)  
We were able to watch as she made what appears to be a super easy meal.  ( I will let you know once I attempt to make it!)   It was a chicken and sausage jambalaya using Springer Mountain Chicken!   I was one of those not familiar with this chicken, but after tasting it, I will be looking for it at the store.
While Paula was there cooking (and chatting, LOVE the chatting.. it was like we were all old friends just chit chatting away!)  we were able to learn more about her new Paula Deen Network.  It is her website that has a little of this, some of that and a whole lot of love.  I plan on checking it out, just for the cute video's and also to try out some of her recipes!
She has everything from one pot meals to meals with 5 or less ingredients.  Recipes that seem easy enough for a non-chef such as myself to attempt without feeling overwhelmed!  

Now, the best part of this?
I get to giveaway 2 tickets to her PAULA DEEN LIVE SHOW in Atlanta THIS Sunday (November 16th)

I am going to make this super easy, since it is a fast turnaround.
Just leave me a comment telling me who you would take with you if you win.
Please leave at least a 2 sentence comment and your email address so I can contact you if you are the winner.
Contest will end Wednesday Evening at 11:30 pm.

The Curse of the Princess Ivy @DisneyReads

FTC Compliant Review Policy:
The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are NOT influenced by monetary compensation. 

Sofia the First is a popular princess around Broxton's school these days.  When I go to volunteer, I see lots of fans and even this past Halloween, I was able to see friends have their kids dress as Sofia!  That being said, I thought it was great to get to read another Sofia the First book!  This one is The Curse of Princess Ivy and I was excited to learn who Princess Ivy was, since that was a new to me name!
In this book, we learn that Sofia was given the Amulet of Avalor when she became a Princess.  The thing about it was that it allowed her to talk to animals, but it was a secret... Until Amber over hears her one day and decides that she wants to try it out, even if it means STEALING it!   You will have to read the book to see what happens (and to meet Princess Ivy) but it will let you see how Sofia forgives Amber so that they can work together to take care of their Kingdom and overpower Princess Ivy!
Make sure you grab this book for the young reader in your life!  I think that kids will read MORE if they are able to read something that interests them. If you have a Sofia fan, why not gift them this book for the holidays?  Remember, when you purchase this one, your purchase includes a Disney e-book!  

9.11.14

What if Santa's Suit was Purple, Not Red? @dksimoneau #MakingMyList

FTC Compliant Review Policy:
The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are NOT influenced by monetary compensation.


Last year, I started the new tradition of doing a book countdown with Broxton.  I mix it up with new books and old books, as well as books that are "Christmas" theme and then other books as well.  This year, we have a new book to add to our collection.  We were sent the book, Santa's Zany, Wack, Just Not Right Night Before Christmas and as soon as he spotted the book he asked for me to read it to him.   


Santa's Zany,Wacky, Just Not Right Night Before Christmas is a great book!  It was cute, since it shows Santa having to go and do his own laundry!  It was funny... The power is out and he has to do his laundry before he goes to deliver the gifts... The only problem is that he can't see and he makes the mistake of using PURPLE PAINT instead of Laundry Soap!  That is the start of the problem.  Everything ends up going crazy!  The elves are tall, the tree's are planted upside down... that is just SOME of the crazy things that happen that night! Talk about Zany and Wacky!  Read the book and see if you catch yourself giggling like we did!  Just make sure to check out all of the illustrations too, they are so cute and really show just how " not right" the night before Christmas was!!!!  

Harvest Snaps

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The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are NOT influenced by monetary compensation.
Image - Harvest Snaps

If you are a fan of trying different snacks, you need to add the Snapea Crisps and Lentil Snaps. They really take snacking to a whole new level and they offer a great (and healthy) alternative to snacking.  I know we always reach for chips...  The flavors and the crunchy of it all... well, now we reach for these!   I personally do not care for the Lentil Snaps.  I love the flavors of Onion Thyme and Tomato Basil, but the Lentils just don't grab me... Offer up the Snapea Crisps and I will love them all day long!  I can even get the boys to eat them!  My favorites? Wasabi Ranch and Caesar!
I have sent these in for lunch side items... but have also sent them in for the teachers!
The great thing is that they offer several flavors, so you could stock up on these for the holidays to keep on hand for any guests that might be over and want a snack.  They would also make a great different option if you are hosting any get parties and want to offer snacks! Finally, for those of you with loved ones not close to home, why not make a cute care package to send them to let them know you are thinking of them as the holidays approach?
(Just in time for the holidays they have released additional holiday flavors, make sure you check them out!)        

From their website: 
Good-for-you and great taste can be hard to come by these days, but for us they’re like two peas in a pod. Inside every bag of Harvest Snaps we combine taste, quality and simplicity. Sprinkle that with the passion we have for fresh, natural ingredients, and you get one "snaptastic" snack.
When it comes to "what’s inside" Harvest Snaps, it all starts with the clean flavors and essential nutrients Mother Nature intended. Our Snapea Crisps are made with all-natural peas – 70%* to be exact – while our Lentil Snaps come packed with 65% authentic lentils and their powerful combination of nutrients.
With each handful (yes we said handful) your body will soak up Vitamin B, calcium, iron, folate, potassium and dietary fiber. Finish that off with a high level of protein and fiber and you’re sure to feel satisfied without feeling sluggish. Not to mention, these snappy little snacks are gluten-free**!
Of course, you can’t have good ingredients without good partners, and you can bet the farm that we did our research before we planted the first seed. We recently made the decision to source Canola/ Sunflower/ Safflower oil for the entire Harvest Snaps range of products. Our commitment to transparency and providing healthier-for-you options drives our innovative process.
Our non-GMO crops are grown and harvested in rich North American soils. Our farmers are just as passionate about raising crops as we are about delivering our product to you.
*Pea and Lentil content may vary slightly by flavor.
**Harvest Snaps are made in a facility that also manufactures products containing wheat, milk, soy, shrimp and fish.
 
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