iPad Users-Check out the Ultimate Guide to Charlie and The Chocolate Factory enhanced digital ebook on iTunes!

 

Watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you because the greatest secrets are hidden in the most unlikely places.”
-Roald Dahl

The Ultimate Guide to Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Valarie Budayr & Roscoe Welply is a fabulous enhanced eBook for children created not only for idevices, but as a way to bring the wonder and joy of Willy Wonka to life.

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The 174 pages of this digital eBook is entertaining and educational and interactive animations, games, recipes, videos are fun for children and parents.  This interactive eBook walks us through the famous children’s story Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl, although this guide is not associated with Roald Dahl’s book.

The activities in the guide give us the opportunity to stop, think, make crafts, cook, laugh and learn.  This engaging guide allows us to “jump” inside the pages.  There are over 20 crafts and activities such as creating Gobstopper Gum and Chocolate Rivers, handmade Willy Wonka hats and many more.  The illustrations in the guide bring wonder and amazement through Willy Wonka’s world.

6-JIAB Charlie top hat spread

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From Audrey Press:

Inspired by the love of a good story, some imagination, a sense of adventure and a good dose of curiosity, children and the adults who care for them can take flight into one of our most beloved books, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. 

The Ultimate Guide presents several experiential activities in the areas of crafting, cooking, and game-playing as well as exploring many facets of candy production, and meeting the author himself, Roald Dahl. Each step and activity leads us further into the story to bring more and more of it to life, leaving a lasting impression of an adventure and journey shared.

Love this video trailer. Did you know the piano music in the background is actually being played by author Valarie Budayr who is a classically trained pianist!

Still not sure you “get” what this is all about and why “Charlie” is so special? Check this out:

OK..are you convinced this is something your family would love?

PERFECT. You are in luck too. The Ultimate Guide to Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is only $3.99 at iTunes!! Grab your copy HERE.

And while you’re at it, take a peek a Valarie’s vibrant and fun blog Jump Into A Book. This blog is dedicated to encouraging kids and families to pull books off shelves and stories off pages. LOVE this blog 🙂

**Franticmommy was not compensated in any way for this review.

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Children’s Book Reviewers Needed (Cost=ZERO)

Are you interested in receiving a FREE multicultural children’s book to review for Multicultural Children’s Book Day 2017? The MCCBD team has a new perk this year that will appeal to more than bloggers!

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In years past, MCCBD has asked for BLOGGERS to sign up to receive a free book in return for a review on their blog in honor of the January 27th online event. This year, they are thrilled to expand their invitation for a FREE diversity book to review, along with the optional book extension activity to blog posts, to anyone who is active on social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook and YouTube.

In a nutshell; you don’t have to be a blogger to review multicultural children’s books for the MCCBD 2017 holiday! You just need to have a love of diversity in children’s literature and be willing to share on your social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram or YouTube.

Just pick the social media platform that you are most comfortable on and post your review for everyone to read and enjoy there. When signing up to be one of our book reviewers simply indicate which platform(s) you plan to post your review on in the “blog URL” space on the below Google sign up form that can be found HERE.

How the Review Process Works: Information for our valued Reviewers During a Multicultural Children’s Book Day Event

Step One:Reviewers sign up via a Google Sign-up and review a multicultural children’s book for this event. If you will be posting your book review somewhere other than a blog, simply indicate which platform(s) you plan to post your review on in the “blog URL” space on the below Google sign up form.

Step Two: Reviewers are then “matched” by the MCCBD team with an author or publisher that will supply them with a free children’s book to review some time in November/December.

Step Three: Once matched, an email will go out sharing who you are matched with. Please respond in a timely fashion with the best mailing address to mail your free children’s book to. Authors and Publishers are responsible for getting reviewers their books so we want to give everyone plenty of time to receive and read their free book.

Step Four: Reviewers are then encouraged to share their thoughts on the book (a basic book review) in the form of a complete and descriptive post on their chosen platform Many Reviewers add a book extension activity that is fun and acts as a way to bring the story to life.

Step Five: Once the book review post is live (any time between January 1 and January 27th is good), Reviewers are invited to “link up” their blog post on the Linky that will be found on any of their CoHosts’ sites and also the MCCBD website. This linky will go live on January 27th..

Go HERE for Reviewer sign-up for 1/27/2017 (NOTE: They will not be shipping out any books for the 2017 online event until Dec of 2016!) Deadline for reviewer sign up is 12/31/17.

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Snowbirds should pack sunscreen and know the signs of skin cancer

**shared with permission from Essentia Health press release**

 summer skin care

Growing up in southern Minnesota the summer days of Raymond Kieffer’s youth were spent baling hay, trimming trees and as a roofer – all of them baking in the sun. “We didn’t use sunscreen back then,” explains Ray. This is why his wife of 44 years, Susan, was so vigilant to watch for signs of skin cancer on the fair skinned Irishman she fell in love with during dental school.

In 2009 Susan first noticed a mole in the middle of Ray’s lower back that she was concerned about. However it wasn’t until May of 2012 that they saw a dermatologist. Susan had been noting color changes and an irregular shape. Her persistence is what prompted the visit to a specialist who determined it was melanoma and they proceeded with treatment.

Ray’s journey in battling cancer over the past four years has included medical teams at Essentia, Mayo and Banner, located in Arizona during winters. What stands out to the couple is the ability of these organizations to coordinate his care seamlessly.

“Caring for our patients means offering them choices in treatment options and making it possible for them to experience all life has,” says Raymond’s Oncologist Dr. Aby Philip at the Cancer Center at Essentia Health-St. Joseph’s Medical Center.

Ray’s melanoma cancer has metastasized many times from small lumps in his hip and upper leg; that was removed by Essentia surgeon Dr. Ross Bengtson; to his stomach, pancreas, and spleen. Thanks to new treatment options including an immunotherapeutic drug called Nivolumab, used to control the cancer cell growth, the tumors Ray had are not visible anymore. But Ray knows his cancer battle is ongoing.

The Kieffer’s want their journey to be understood as a message of hope. “There are continuous advancements in medicine to treat both the cancer cells and the side effects. Working with a team who is aware of these advancements and provides options is key.”

“We can’t say that I am cancer free, but we don’t have fear like we used to either,” reflects Ray. “We have confidence in our care team, each other and our faith. We don’t look too far ahead, but instead look for the positive in each day.”

PHOTO CAPTION, Nisswa MN: Raymond Kieffer’s wife of 44 years, Susan, was vigilant to watch for signs of skin cancer on the fair skinned Irishman she fell in love with. She knew Ray’s youth was spent baling hay, trimming trees and as a roofer - all baking in the sun. Ray’s battle against melanoma cancer over the past four years has included medical teams across the country with care coordinated by his hometown doctors at Essentia Health.

PHOTO CAPTION, Nisswa MN: Raymond Kieffer’s wife of 44 years, Susan, was vigilant to watch for signs of skin cancer on the fair skinned Irishman she fell in love with. She knew Ray’s youth was spent baling hay, trimming trees and as a roofer – all baking in the sun. Ray’s battle against melanoma cancer over the past four years has included medical teams across the country with care coordinated by his hometown doctors at Essentia Health.

The Kieffer’s advice to others is to be vigilant with yearly checks by a dermatologist. Catching skin cancer early is important.

Learn more about the Cancer Center at Essentia Health-St. Joseph’s Medical Center at EssentiaHealth.org/BrainerdCancerCenter.

SIDEBAR

ABCDE’s of melanoma

Signs to look for and ask your primary care team about:

– Asymmetry

– Border (irregular or poorly defined)

– Color (variations in coloring throughout the mole, or shades of tan, brown, black, or even white, red, or blue)

– Diameter greater than six millimeters

– Evolving (a mole that looks different than the others or is changing in any way)

 

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Adapting Your Favorite Recipes for the Slow Cooker

crockpot cooking

“I wonder if I could cook that in the crockpot…”

Have you asked yourself this before? Many of us with slow cookers have eyeballed recipes and wondered if we could cook them in our crockpot. Often, you can. But before you just throw everything into the slow cooker and hope for the best, there are some general principles you should consider as you adapt your favorite recipes for the slow cooker.

Side note: My crockpot is my BFF. I can’t even begin to tell you how grateful  I am to be able to throw together our supper during my lunch break and have supper DONE and READY by the time 5:30 rolls around. Check out my Crockpot Magic Pinterest Board for all sort of yummy recipes and ideas.

 

 

The 411 on Crockpot Cooking

1. Temperature

In most slow cookers, “Low” is around 200 degrees F, and “High” is about 300. Cooking takes about twice as long on Low as it does on High.

If the recipe you want to convert calls for a quick baking time, then you can probably get away with a few hours on Low or one to two hours on High. If your recipe calls for long oven baking or stovetop simmering, then you can probably get away with 8-10 hours on Low (a standard cook temperature and time for roasts and red meats).

2. Liquid

Slow cookers produce very moist heat. This means your recipe will retain more moisture than it would if it were baked in the oven. So a good rule of thumb is to reduce the amount of liquid in your recipe by about half. However, if you’re cooking rice or some other grain, then you should use an amount of liquid that is just shy of the standard amount.

3. Oven versus Slow Cooker

Here is a handy guide for oven times converted to slow cooker times:

Oven: 20-30 minutes
Slow cooker: 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 hours on High; 4 to 6 hours on Low

Oven: 35-45 minutes
Slow cooker: 2 to 3 hours on High; 6 to 8 hours on Low

Oven: 50 minutes to 3 hours
Slow cooker: 4 to 5 hours on High; 8 to 18 hours on Low

4. Know What Holds Up

Roasts, brisket, and flat steak stand up well to long cooking, usually requiring 10 to 12 hours on Low or 6 to 8 on High. But vegetables don’t usually hold up so well, especially ones like snow peas and broccoli.

If you want to adapt a meat recipe that has vegetables in it, you can add them toward the end of cooking time. However, if you combine meat and chopped vegetables that are more dense, like chunked carrots and potatoes, then you can usually cook the whole dish for 8 to 10 hours on Low.

Poultry cooks more quickly than red meat, and fish cooks faster than both.

I also found this awesome batch of 20 Crock Pot Soup Ideas over at I Should Be Mopping The Floor. Check it out HERE.

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