Monday, March 30, 2015

Yarn Fanatic Party #30

This post contains affiliate links.
Welcome to the Yarn Fanatic Party!

A place to share your projects, see what others have made, support one another, and even enter a yarn related giveaway.


My own crochet and knitting projects will be taking a back seat to some sewing this week.  I had the brilliant (or perhaps insane?) idea that sewing matching mother and daughter Easter dresses would be fun this year.  At this point Catherine's dress is mostly finished.  I haven't even started mine yet! 

Did you see this Granny Square Skirt?  It's so fun!  I love that beaded cuff that she's wearing.  There was also a toddler skirt linked up last week.  I love how versatile crocheting is!


Make sure that you check out my Facebook page, I will be sharing more of the fabulous yarn-y projects from the Yarn Fanatic Party over there!  


Have you seen my Easy Scalloped Headband?  It's an oldie, but a goodie.  Also be sure to check out Alexandra's cute ribbed diaper covers


I'm very excited that Christine from Sweet Potato 3 Patterns is today's sponsor.  She has some really cute patterns.  I particularly love the Tulip Flower Hat, the Heart Tattoo Hat, the Tool Belt, the Classic Sweater Dress, and the  Diagonal Delights Baby Blanket.

You can find her patterns on Ravelry, on Etsy, or on Craftsy

Three winners will get 
three patterns of their choice!

Details and Important Information: Must be 18+ to enter.  US only.  Void where prohibited.  Winner must respond to my email within 48 hours or a new winner will be chosen.  Social media is not affiliated with this giveaway.  The sponsor is responsible for prize fulfillment. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Time to party!
What have you created with yarn?  It could be something you crocheted, knitted, or anything that used yarn.  It can be a new project or an old one.  (I would appreciate it though if it had not been linked up to a previous Yarn Fanatic Party.)  I can't wait to see what you've created!

The only rule is that everything you link to must be family friendly.

I would appreciate it very much if you:
  • Add my Yarn Fanatic Party button to your post or party page.
  • The Philosopher's Wife
  • Follow The Philosopher's Wife and Eye Love Knots.
  • Check out some of the other yarn goodies people have finished.
  • Leave comments here, there, and everywhere.  (Please, take a moment to visit at least one other blog and leave a comment.  I want this to be a supportive community of yarn lovers.  To help encourage this a new entry option has been added to the giveaway.)  
  • If you're not a blogger, but want to participate, feel free to upload a picture from Flicker!



An InLinkz Link-up


A note about affiliate links: 
You don't pay anything extra, but if you purchase something using one of my links I get a few pennies.  I greatly appreciate your support!

Step2 Igloo Wagon with Cooler (Ends 4/13) US


Welcome to the Step2 Igloo Wagon with Cooler Giveaway

 Hosted by Thrifty Nifty Mommy and Viva Veltoro 
Sponsored by Step2

The following is what our hostesses have to say

Spring is here and if your little ones are ready to get outside and play, we've got just the thing for you! Step2 has just released their NEW Igloo Wagon with Cooler and they've combined two great things into one - a wagon AND an Igloo cooler!



Here's some information about this COOL new product from Step2: The Igloo® Wagon with Cooler by Step2 is the perfect ride-on for long days trips for the little ones. It’s a 2-in-1 wagon and cooler that will keep your kiddos comfortable and your food nice and cool. This durable blue wagon provides youngsters with an enjoyable ride around the neighborhood, campground, zoo or amusement park. Your family can have a picnic in the park with all the snacks and refreshments the Igloo® Wagon with Cooler can hold! Made in USA of US and imported parts from China.
  • Functional 10” (25.4 cm) tall cooler bag with durable zipper lid comes with a convenient top hatch door to grab bottles or snacks
  • Cooler bag accommodates bottles of all types and comes with soft lift-out handles for easy removal and transport
  • Soft, removable cooler is easy to load and transport from the refrigerator to the cooler
  • Large 10” (25.4cm) diameter wheels for an enjoyable ride
  • Two convenient cup holders up front for parents
  • Comfortable handle folds underneath for storage or transport
  • Large, removable canopy provides shade
  • Recommended for ages 1.5 and up
  • Available exclusively at Sam's Club for $139.99.
Ruth from Viva Veltoro created an ultimate toddler tailgate experience with her Step2 Igloo Wagon with Cooler and Janessa from Thrifty Nifty Mommy recently took hers to the park for a picnic where her kids had fun enjoying the classic Dirt dessert - be sure to check out her recipe!

Since this innovative new wagon takes two great products and DOUBLES the fun, we're giving one lucky reader the chance to win TWO Step2 Igloo Wagons with Coolers - one for themselves and one for a friend!

Open to the Continental US only. Ends 4/13/15 at 11:59 PM EST. 
Enter using the Giveaway Tools form below. Good Luck!
Disclosure: This giveaway is sponsored by the Step2 Company. All images are courtesy of Step2. Viva Veltoro, Thrifty Nifty Mommy, and the participating blogs, including The Philosopher's Wife, are not responsible for prize fulfillment. One winner will be randomly selected using the Giveaway Tools random selector and notified via email. Once notified, the winner will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest or Google. Void where prohibited.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Buttons & Things Review

This is a sponsored post.

How do you proclaim your craftiness to the world?  (Besides being able to say, "Oh, I made it" when people ask you where you got that cute scarf, or skirt, or dress, or earrings, or whatever it is.)  Buttons & Things has you covered.

Crochet Buttons on Etsy
This Etsy shop, run by Pepper, has some of the cutest craft themed pins and magnets that I've seen.  (She also has some great stitch markers.)  I was so happy that she sent me the "Even More Knitting Buttons" and a few other pins.  As soon as I took them out of the packaging I loved them.  They are too awesome, how could I not?

Even More Knitting Buttons on Etsy
The magnets are nice and strong.  Which is perfect for my family, because my daughter also has the creative gene and the refrigerator is often covered in artwork!  I tried taking pictures of the magnets on my fridge in various forms of light, and at various times of day, but I simply couldn't get the magic formula quite right.  Despite the poor photo quality I think that you can see why this pirate magnet is one of my favorites.  It makes me giggle a little to myself each time I look at it!


The below four are pins.  I've loved this style of button pins since I first came across the American Girl Grin Pins.  (Anyone else remember those?  I'm dating myself here.  If you don't know what I'm talking about just search for them on Ebay.  I even found some on Amazon.)  Once Dominic is a little bit older, right now he needs pretty constant attention, I am going to make a project bag for while I'm out.  (I'm thinking something like the red purse I made with this pattern.)  I will proudly display these pins on the bag.  I can't wait!


These buttons would make a great gift for the crafter that you know.  Be sure to connect with Buttons & Things so that you can keep updated about shop news!  Go say "Hi!" on Facebook.

I'm also very excited to tell you that Pepper has given my readers their very own coupon code!  Make an order before April 9th and use the code PHILWIFE15 to take a $1 off!  

So, tell me, which button is your favorite?

Knitting Buttons on Etsy


This was a sponsored post.  I received some magnets and pins in exchange for my honest opinion.






Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Wordless Wednesday: A Wild Mom's Night Out

 photo WW325_zpsfhzuepls.jpg



Share your own family friendly Wordless Wednesday post.









 If you want a truly "wordless" post then stop, don't keep reading!  Otherwise, there's more . . .


Monday, March 23, 2015

Yarn Fanatic Party #29

This post contains affiliate links. 

I am so happy that it's Spring!  I love all of the seasons, but I am ready for pretty flowers and spending the afternoon at the park.  Last week I shared some pictures from a walk the kids and I took.  Alexandra, my Yarn Fanatic Party co-host, also shared some beautiful azaleas of her own.


Every week I enjoy seeing what others have been busy creating.  I am in love with this African Flower Blanket.  Isn't is pretty?


These colorful Kaleidoscope Mandalas are so beautiful!  Also, the free pattern doesn't look too intimidating!


In keeping with today's Spring Flower theme, I am going to give one lucky reader this Vintage Flower Collection ebook.  I do not personally own this book, but I love all the crocheted flowers on the cover!


Details and Important Information: Must be 18+ to enter.  US only.  Void where prohibited.  Winner must respond to my email within 48 hours or a new winner will be chosen.  Social media is not affiliated with this giveaway.  The Philosopher's Wife is responsible for prize fulfillment. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Time to party!
What have you created with yarn?  It could be something you crocheted, knitted, or anything that used yarn.  It can be a new project or an old one.  (I would appreciate it though if it had not been linked up to a previous Yarn Fanatic Party.)  I can't wait to see what you've created!

The only rule is that everything you link to must be family friendly.

I would appreciate it very much if you:
  • Add my Yarn Fanatic Party button to your post or party page.
  • The Philosopher's Wife
  • Follow The Philosopher's Wife and Eye Love Knots.
  • Check out some of the other yarn goodies people have finished.
  • Leave comments here, there, and everywhere.  (Please, take a moment to visit at least one other blog and leave a comment.  I want this to be a supportive community of yarn lovers.  To help encourage this a new entry option has been added to the giveaway.)  
  • If you're not a blogger, but want to participate, feel free to upload a picture from Flicker!








Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Wordless Wednesday: Spring is in the Air!








Share your own (family friendly) Wordless Wednesday!  
Thanks for visiting!
An InLinkz Link-up


Blue Stripes Knit Dress

This post contains affiliate links.  Thank you for your support!

Last week was Selfish Sewing Week.  I was hoping to sew last week and blog about it . . . but that didn't happen.  Today I am sharing the Blue Stripes Dress that I made a couple of weeks ago.


I used this New Look pattern.  Overall the pattern is pretty easy to follow.  The band that goes around the neck is too short.  Or at least, I did something wrong and just don't know what.  I also goofed a bit on the front.  I was supposed to have more darting and draping, but I think it's still alright.   (I also ditched the ties.)



I love the knit fabric!  It's from Girl Charlee when they had their awesome Black Friday sale (or was it Cyber Monday?).  It's the Navy Blue Tonal Stripe Cotton Jersey Knit Fabric.  It really is quite a deal, even at regular price.  (Especially because it's 66 inches wide!)



This dress was a stretch of my skills.  I've only worked with knits once before -- ages ago at a 4-H summer program.  And, just for fun, it's a striped fabric.  Badly cut strips can look ridiculous.  Also stripes that don't match up look sloppy.  I am so happy that my stripes (pretty much) match up!  I was also excited to discover that my sewing machine had a "honeycomb" stitch just for knits.



I have such a terrible time trying to photograph myself, so I had Catherine, age four, take these pictures. How do you think she did?  While it was a delightfully warm spring-like day it was quite windy while we were attempting our photo session.  



I have the sewing bug again!  I am going to attempt Mother and Daughter Easter dresses.  (Which I need to get started right away!)  We shall see what new skills those bring!


Thank you so much for visiting!  I'd love to have you follow me by email or Bloglovin'.


     




Monday, March 16, 2015

Yarn Fanatic Party #28

Welcome to the twenty-eighth Yarn Fanatic Party!


These bright and cheery granny squares by Lunamon Design caught my eye right away!  I really love the bright colors and the granny pattern.  (I'm actually taking a poll on what type of flower granny afghan I should make.  I'd really love your feedback.)


St. Patrick's Day is March 17th, so it's the perfect time to whip up a few of these cute little shamrocks by Midwestern Moms.


Alexandra, my Yarn Fanatic Party Co-Host, has a great post about changing colors in crochet.  For as much as I love crocheting with a variety of colors, I'm not always a huge fan of making the change.  Although, I have a current crochet graph project with lots and lots of color changes!  (More on that project on Wednesday.)


 Today's giveaway is sponsored by The Hook Hound.  Carlinda has many beautiful crochet patterns for sale in her shop.Personally, I love the owl patterns that she sells.  I'm super excited that one lucky winner will receive the crochet pattern for these It's a Hoot Owl Texting Gloves.  Aren't they adorable?  A second winner will be able to choose one pattern from the shop.  That's right -- TWO WINNERS!


Details and Important Information: Must be 18+ to enter.  US only.  Void where prohibited.  Winner must respond to my email within 48 hours or a new winner will be chosen.  Social media is not affiliated with this giveaway.  The Hook Hound is responsible for prize fulfillment. 

This giveaway is now over.  Make sure to check out the newest Yarn Fanatic Party for another great giveaway!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Time to party!
What have you created with yarn?  It could be something you crocheted, knitted, or anything that used yarn.  It can be a new project or an old one.  (I would appreciate it though if it had not been linked up to a previous Yarn Fanatic Party.)  I can't wait to see what you've created!

The only rule is that everything you link to must be family friendly.

I would appreciate it very much if you:
  • Add my Yarn Fanatic Party button to your post or party page.
  • The Philosopher's Wife
  • Follow The Philosopher's Wife and Eye Love Knots.
  • Check out some of the other yarn goodies people have finished.
  • Leave comments here, there, and everywhere.  (Please, take a moment to visit at least one other blog and leave a comment.  Personally I do a little happy dance every time I have a new comment -- and I bet that I'm not alone.  I try very hard to comment on everyone's posts . . . eventually.)  
  • If you're not a blogger, but want to participate, feel free to upload a picture from Flicker!



An InLinkz Link-up

Just an FYI: If you buy something from Amazon after clicking through one of my affiliate links I will receive a small commission. It doesn't cost you anything extra, but it does give me a few extra pennies. I really do greatly appreciate your support!


Monday, March 9, 2015

Yarn Fanatic Party #27

It's time for the twenty-seventh Yarn Fanatic Party!


I can't believe that Easter is already right around the corner!  (I am still planning on sewing matching dresses for Catherine and me, I better get started!)  This wreath by Navy Wifey Peters Aboard USS Crafty is too cute!


I also love this Larksfoot Afghan Pattern.  The pattern is unique, and Kate gives an easy to follow tutorial.


Today's giveaway is sponsored by Loops of Love.  Lisa specializes in crochet patterns.  Today she is generously giving away two patterns to two lucky readers!  Some of my favorite patterns of hers include the Elise Cowl, the Cora Couture Baby Bonnet, and the Karys Cloche.   


Details and Important Information: Must be 18+ to enter.  US only.  Void where prohibited.  Winner must respond to my email within 48 hours or a new winner will be chosen.  Social media is not affiliated with this giveaway.  Loops of Love is responsible for prize fulfillment. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Time to party!
What have you created with yarn?  It could be something you crocheted, knitted, or anything that used yarn.  It can be a new project or an old one.  (I would appreciate it though if it had not been linked up to a previous Yarn Fanatic Party.)  I can't wait to see what you've created!

The only rule is that everything you link to must be family friendly.

I would appreciate it very much if you:
  • Add my Yarn Fanatic Party button to your post or party page.
  • The Philosopher's Wife
  • Follow The Philosopher's Wife and Eye Love Knots.
  • Check out some of the other yarn goodies people have finished.
  • Leave comments here, there, and everywhere.  (Please, take a moment to visit at least one other blog and leave a comment.  Personally I do a little happy dance every time I have a new comment -- and I bet that I'm not alone.  I try very hard to comment on everyone's posts . . . eventually.)  
  • If you're not a blogger, but want to participate, feel free to upload a picture from Flicker!




Just an FYI: If you buy something from Amazon after clicking through one of my affiliate links I will receive a small commission. It doesn't cost you anything extra, but it does give me a few extra pennies. I really do greatly appreciate your support!



Simply7 Chips Giveaway (Ends 3/14) US


Sponsored by: Simply 7 
Hosted by: Everything Mommyhood 
Brought to you today by: The Philosopher's Wife

 About the sponsor: 

Simply 7 was created because they were tired of seeing products in grocery stores made with ingredients that us consumers couldn't even pronounce. They decided to create a company that makes sure that every ingredient in their products is not only natural, but is SIMPLE. They also wanted to show people that simple ingredients are actually exceptionally delicious.

They have 7 core standards as to which their products go by (hence the Simply7 name): 0 grams of transfat and no cholesterol No artificial colors and flavors No preservatives Gluten free ingredients All natural recipes Simple ingredients Simply delicious

  They have 3 different products available - Quinoa chips, hummus chips, and lentil chips. Quinoa Chips are simply delicious, light, crunchy snacks that have 8-9 grams of protein per serving. Quinoa Chips come in Sea Salt, Barbecue, Cheddar, & Sour Cream and Onion. Hummus Chips are creamy, authentic hummus flavor with 50% less fat than potato chips. Hummus Chips come in Sea Salt, Roasted Red Pepper, Spicy Chili Pepper, & Tomato Basil. Lentil chips are a natural lentil flavor with 40% less fat than potato chips. Lentil Chips come in Sea Salt, Creamy Dill, Jalapeno, & Bruschetta.

 February is Heart Month, and while it's the end of February, we wanted to finish it off with a great product! You can make great choices when you snack, like Simply7 Snacks! You can purchase Simply7 snacks on their website or at a store near you! While at their website, make sure you check out the Snack Squad and you could get a personalized bag just for you!

  Now for the giveaway! 
There will be THREE winners! 

1- $30 Visa Gift Card & a case of Simply7 Chips ($66 Value) 
2- $20 PayPal & a case of Simply7 Chips ($56 Value) 
3- Case of Simply7 Chips ($36 Value) 

Details and Fine Print: Open to US Residents, 18 and up only. One entry per household/IP Address. Void where prohibited. Winners will be chosen randomly via the Giveaway Tools entry form and will be emailed. Winners will have 48 hours to claim prize before a new winner(s) is chosen. Giveaway ends 3/14/15 at 11:59pm Eastern.
  Disclosure: Everything Mommyhood received a case and monetary compensation for the posting of this giveaway. The Philosopher's Wife was not compensated for this posting. All thoughts and opinions are those of our own and were not influenced in any way. Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google, and any other social media are not affiliated with this posting or giveaway. Everything Mommyhood is responsible for the $20 PayPal while Simply7 is responsible for the other prizes. This disclosure is done in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission 10 CFR, Part 255 Guides Concerning the use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising. If you have any questions about this event or would like to see your event hosted by Everything Mommyhood, please email EverythingMommyhood@gmail.com.

Friday, March 6, 2015

Cruise Cuisine Aboard Holland America's ms Noordam

This is a sponsored post on behalf of Holland America.  All opinions are my own. 

It's no secret that food is a big part of a cruise.  Upon entering our lovely stateroom aboard Holland America's ms Noordam we were greeted with an incredibly appetizing display of "yummyness".  Fresh fruit, shrimp, and chocolate were tantalizingly waiting for us on our table.  Catherine and Dominic waited, only somewhat patiently, for me to to take a couple of quick pictures.


All of the food was delicious. Like I said before in my Quick Review, this was my fifth cruise and I think it was the best food yet. We enjoyed food from the buffet, the main dinning room, poolside, in our room, at The Pinnacle Grill, and at Canaletto.  The service everywhere was impeccable, with notable increase at the more formal choices.


I wasn't sure if I would like having a set dinnertime, but I have been completely won over. Not only would I say that I didn't end up minding it, I might even say that I prefer it! The wait staff got to know our preferences after our first day!  (Holland America does have As You Wish® Dining, so you have the option of early seating, late seating, or open seating.  We had early seating -- which I recommend if you have little ones.)  The kids loved the dinning room.  Catherine loves going to restaurants, despite the fact that she's often too picky to order off the menu, and she simply adored getting dressed up to go to a restaurant every single night.  (To be honest, we don't eat out much so it really was exciting for her.)  Dominic also enjoyed the dining room.  They provided a highchair, which was waiting for us at our table every night.  (A bonus of the set dinnertime!)  One of my favorite dishes was a soup appetizer, the Butternut and Scallions soup.  Dominic and I had to ask for seconds!


Once again, I must rave about the service we received daily in the main dining room.  Our server, Doni S., went above and beyond. Catherine still plays with her origami animals that he made daily for her.  (They posed together for the below picture.) The maitre d', Robbien F., was always helpful and very attentive. Of course, I can't forget our second waiter, Febi, who was also fantastic.


 Of course, I can't talk about the cruise food without talking about the buffet!  They had a large variety of all of the buffet basics and everything was very good.  Catherine very much enjoyed the "Jamaican Jello" among the many other goodies.  In my humble opinion, while the buffet is good, the service, atmosphere, and food make dining in the main dining room (and the  restaurants with a fee) an obvious choice.


Thanks to Holland America we had the pleasure of dining at The Pinnacle Grill and at the Canaletto Restaurant.  

There is a $29 per person additional fee to eat at The Pinnacle, but it is more than worth it! It was one of the most delicious meals that I've ever had.  Possibly the most delicious.  


The menu (below) has a little something for everyone.  The sides are served family style, which means that they bring generous portions and place them in the center of the table.  This allows everyone to take as much or as little as they desire.  Our service was amazing.  We did bring the kids, but we made sure to have our reservations as early as possible.  Catherine enjoyed bread and an apple, which our lovely waitress procured especially for her.  My Filet Mignon was so tender that I was able to cut it with a fork while holding Dominic.  (He did have a highchair, but wanted out at one point.)
  

Because I was so busy enjoying good food and company I didn't remember to take a picture until dessert came.  I had this decadent Volcano chocolate cake, which I actually found myself unable to finish.  The pre-dessert chocolate truffles did me in.  


Canaletto, which is delicious Italian fare, has a $10 per person fee.  This seems quite reasonable to me.  The food and service, once again, was amazing.  The atmosphere isn't quite as formal as The Pinnacle, or honestly, the main dining room, as Canaletto is located in the buffet area.  It is separated, and much nicer than the surrounding area, but there is still the din of the masses.  Once again, everything was simply delicious.  The bruschetta that they served was especially amazing.  We enjoyed it so much that we've attempted to replicate it ourselves at home.  (My husband even made homemade ricotta cheese to go with ours!)

One last note, the hamburgers at the poolside grill were the best burgers that I've had on a cruise.  They are grilled to order, so that makes them even better!  

Bon appetit!

For more of our cruise related fun check out the following:

Disclaimer: I received a few amenities while on board in exchange for my honest opinions.