Archives for June 15, 2015

Hallmark’s Life is Good Collection is a Must-Buy for Father’s Day! Father's Day Giveaway!

unnamed   unnamed (2)    unnamed (3)

Can you believe that Father’s Day is this weekend? Have you went shopping for your husband or Dad yet? Hallmark’s Life is Good Collection has some really great choices! I received a a Father’s Day product pack from Hallmark’s Life is good.® collection which includes a picture frame, leather coozie, cast metal bottle opener and grill towel. I think Dad and my Hubby are going to love these! I won’t be able to see my Dad this Father’s Day but just sent him something from this collection. Shh! I can’t say which one. My son is also looking forward to giving his Dad (my hubby) a couple of these items. My favorite? The Picture Frame! It’s really cool, of course. I love the shadow box feel to it and it’s just perfect for your Dad or husband.

20150614_162218   20150614_162302

Find all these gift ideas (and many more) at Hallmark stores near you!


We have teamed up for a special Father’s Day Giveaway! One winner will win the ‘Coolest Dad Ever’ picture frame and ‘Father Mows Best’ bottle opener. Now, how cool is that?! Leave a comment below telling us one of your favorite things about your cool Dad or Husband. Deadline to enter is June 17th, 2015 at noon PST. One winner will randomly be selected via U.S. entries only, please. 

Self Disclosure: I received a product pack from Hallmark to facilitate this featured post. No other compensation was received. Top Photo Credit: Hallmark. Any other photos: SoCal City Kids.

Father’s Day Collection, Katrina’s 10th Anniversary fiction by Margaret McMullan Twenty-four Women Writers Remember Their Fathers Selected and Presented by Margaret McMullan With an Introduction by Phillip Lopate


“What is it about the relationship between fathers and daughters that provokes so much exquisite tenderness, satisfying communion, longing for more, idealization from both ends, followed often if not inevitably by disappointment, hurt, and the need to understand and forgive, or to finger the guilt of not understanding and loving enough?” writes Phillip Lopate, in his introduction to Every Father’s Daughter,a collection of 25 personal essays by women writers writing about their fathers. The editor, Margaret McMullan, is herself a distinguished novelist and educator. About half of these essays were written by invitation for this anthology; others were selected by Ms. McMullan and her associate, Philip Lopate, who provides an introduction. The contributors include many well-known writers—Alice Munro, Jayne Anne Phillips, Alexandra Styron, Ann Hood, Bobbie Ann Mason, Maxine Hong Kingston, among others—as well as writers less well-known but no less cogent, inventive, perceptive, lacerating, questioning, or loving of their fathers.

From the Foreword by Margaret McMullan

“After my father died, I couldn’t read or write, perhaps because, in the end, my father was unable to read or write. I didn’t know it then, but I was looking for a collection of intensely personal essays, written by great women writers telling me about their fathers and how they came to know their fathers, a collection which might help me make some kind of sense of my own very close relationship with my father. I wanted to know from women, replacement sisters, if they had similar relationships with their fathers as I had with mine. Or, if their relationships were altogether different, I wanted to know how exactly these relationships were different. I wanted to know if the fact that my father was southern had anything to do with anything. I suppose, more than anything, I just wanted to know that I wasn’t alone in my love, my loss, my loneliness. I wanted to read this anthology, but it did not exist. Writers write the book they want to read. Editors do the same. This book came out of a need, my own, personal, selfish need.

“Eventually, I contacted the authors I loved and admired—some of them friends, some of them friends of my father’s. I never wanted this to feel like an assignment, but I suppose it was. I simply asked these women to tell me about their fathers. They took it from there. For some authors, the idea of writing about a father just clicked, and they wrote their essays, often within days of the request. We all have stories about our fathers, even if it’s a bad story or a non-story, it’s a story. If you write, you will read these essays and feel the need to write your own.

“I kept my father’s tastes very much in mind during the difficult but joyful process of selecting essays for this book. This collection reflects my father, and, of course, other fathers as well. These essays are a sort of collage or mosaic of fatherhood and all the ways daughters communicate or don’t with their fathers. Of course, there’s a long list of wonderful women writers not included here—this anthology really should extend itself into another volume.”


Author’s website:,

About the Author:

Margaret McMullan is the author of six award-winning novels including Aftermath Lounge, In My Mother’s House, Sources of Light, How I Found the Strong, and When I Crossed No-Bob. Her stories and essays have appeared in The Chicago Tribune, Ploughshares, Southern Accents, TriQuarterly, Michigan Quarterly Review, and The Sun, among several other journals and anthologies. She has received an NEA Fellowship in literature and a Fulbright award to teach at the University of Pécs in Pécs, Hungary. She currently holds the Melvin M. Peterson Endowed Chair in Literature and Writing at the University of Evansville in Evansville, Indiana.

Self Disclosure: No compensation was received to post and I did not review. I participated in a Blog Book Tour.





Here Comes Trouble by Goo On My Shoe

HCT final print.indd

Led by a husband-and-wife team of conservatory-trained jazz musicians who lead double lives as successful lawyers, the beloved DC-area band Here Comes Trouble is thrilled to announce the June 9 national release of their debut kids’/family album,Goo On My Shoe, an eclectic collection of songs that celebrate the goofy and sweet things that are likely to pop up in everyone’s life.

Singer/songwriter Kelly Donohue, drummer Jon Babu, and their Here Comes Trouble bandmates are dedicated to preserving one of Kelly’s central songwriting messages:  never pass up a chance to embrace your inner silliness, whatever the occasion. Here Comes Trouble takes kids on musical adventures through bogs filled with procrastinating alligators, dessertless dinners, and soap-free bubble baths, with songs that are a delightfully mixed bag of pop, jazz, and hip hop, sprinkled with traces of rockabilly, samba and punk.  Influences include artists from many genres, including Medeski Martin & Wood, Jimi Hendrix, Shel Silverstein, and practically anything from the 1980s.

Says Kelly Donohue, “Goo On My Shoe holds a special place in my heart because it has given me an opportunity to be a strong role model for girls, showing them it’s okay to be yourself without worrying about fitting into a predictable pattern.  I want girls to know they can be strong, smart, unique, loud, and funny.  I can write a mean legal brief, but I’m also not afraid to snort when I laugh!”

Kelly Donohue and Jon Babu met in 1991, while both were enrolled in joint degree programs at Tufts University and New England Conservatory, where, as Jazz Performance majors, they worked and studied with such jazz greats as Ran Blake, Dominique Eade, and Bob Moses.  After college, Kelly focused on songwriting, arranging, and performing with her vocal quartet Onomatopoeia, while Jon performed and recorded with dozens of bands, toured Germany with a jazz trio, and made NYC headlines with the hip hop group Red Time.  Fast forward to law school for both Kelly and Jon, marriage, children, and very successful legal careers in the DC metro region.

Here Comes Trouble began in 2010, at a time when Kelly and Jon had come to the startling realization that their kids knew nothing of their parents’ musical backgrounds.  On a personal level, forming Here Comes Trouble was about Kelly and Jon rediscovering their passion for music and wanting to show their kids the importance of never giving up on a dream.  Soon after assembling a group of musician friends to round out the band, Here Comes Trouble was off and running.

Here Comes Trouble continues to find a welcome spot on the regional music scene, with performances at such local venues as Baltimore’s Port Discovery and festivals like Rockville Hometown Holidays and Frederick’s Summerfest.  Songs from Goo On My Shoe are already receiving radio airplay, two songs made the 2015 International Songwriting Competition semi-finals, and one song took third place at this year’s Mid-Atlantic Songwriting Contest.

Kelly Donohue and Jon Babu set the bar high at their day jobs, as well.  Kelly was recently made partner at the nationally acclaimed Washington, DC law firm Wilkinson Barker Knauer, where she practices media and trademark law, and Jon is a highly rated tax attorney at an accounting firm in Bethesda, MD.  They feel fortunate to have found employers who embrace their dual-track “Hannah Montana” lifestyles.
Here Comes Trouble2_photo credit Amy Chmara_Paperbird Photography

I received a copy of this CD and I love their unique sound and that there is a different range of music styles from jazz to pop. I highly recommend for young kids. I think that they will love the lyrics and personally I love the 80’s feel to it.

Visit Here Comes Trouble’s website HERE.

Here Comes Trouble on Facebook

Self Disclosure: I received a free CD to facilitate this post. No other compensation was received. Photos were provided for this feature.