Archives for May 8, 2023

Mother’s Day Book Gift Suggestions

With Mother’s Day approaching, it’s a scramble to find just the right gift. For expecting mothers, it’s even harder to decipher what they need – or what they want. Pregnant mothers will find their dream memento in this update on a classic: The What to Expect Journal & Organizer (Workman Publishing; on sale April 11; $17.99). Now revised with 12 weeks of postpartum pages, The What to Expect Journal & Organizer is a must-have! When I was pregnant with my son (many years ago) I loved the original version but this updated version is even better!

For mothers who don’t want to miss a moment of their pregnancy, here comes a journal to bring along every step of the way. From that positive pregnancy test to those precious ultrasounds, first kick to first contraction to first cuddle—this journal can record it all. Updates include:

·         12 weeks of postpartum pages, encouraging parents to focus on self-care after birth

·         Broader prompts, inviting partners to join in on journaling

·         More room for notes, to reflect on memories during those precious months

·         A Flexibound cover, ready to toss in a bag and use on the go – and more!

Find out where to buy it here.

For years, Katie Clemons’s shared journals have created greater connections for kids and their parents and grandparents. Her journals for kids ages 8-12 – Between Mom and MeLove, Mom and MeBetween Dad and Me, and Love, Dad and Me – are the bestselling parent-child shared journals on the market. While many shared journals focus on lists or generic content, Katie takes a storytelling approach to prompts that appeal to adults and kids alike, and create real connection and bonding.

Now, Katie has created journals for a younger child (ages 5-8). My First Mom and Daughter Journal and My First Mom and Son Journal help moms and their little ones spend time together, create together, and understand each other (and have fun!). I just love the illustrations and that these are specifically made for younger children. The pages are thicker and they can even use markers! They can be found on

Fun to read!

Do you have a Mom who loves everything about the Modern British Royal Family? This is the perfect gift! It is full of fascinating facts and is so much fun to read! You can also find it on and it is available for under $20!

Inside you’ll find the royal scoop, including:

  • Details about the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II.
  • Drama decoded, from the Sussexes’ move to Montecito to the Cambridges’ path to the throne.
  • Facts about Princess Diana’s royal courtship Sartorial specifics (hello, revenge dress).
Once Upon a Rind in Hollywood by Rachel Riederman and Ulysses Press

Celebrate your favorite films with delicious cheese boards, creative charcuterie platters, and movie-themed snack recipes in this punny and tasty cookbook.

Introducing Once Upon a Rind in Hollywood: 50 Movie-Themed Cheese Platters and Snack Boards for Film Fanatics by editors of Ulysses Press, with food ideas and photographs by Rachel Riederman [ISBN: 9781646044092; $19.95. It actually has 50 different snack recipes! I was really impressed with the variety of different types of recipes. If you have a Mom who loves movies, this one is a must-buy! You can also find it on

Self Disclosure: I received free copies of the above books. Cover images were also provided.

Rubio’s Celebrates National Shrimp Day with $7.99 Shrimp Entrées May 10th

Photo Credit: Rubio’s Coastal Grill

Celebrate National Shrimp Day at Rubio’s on Wednesday, May 10, when all Rubio’s shrimp entrées are just $7.99 with a drink purchase for Rubio’s Rewards members. Simply log in to your Rewards account, place your order on or through the Rubio’s app, and apply the reward during checkout, or scan the offer QR code at the register.
Celebrating their 40th anniversary this year, all Rubio’s Coastal Grill locations are debuting refreshed store décor and packaging, and offering new dishes highlighting the company’s commitment to fresh, sustainable seafood and the flavors of Baja. For National Shrimp Day, enjoy any of your favorite shrimp dishes including the Baja Chimichurri Red Shrimp Bowl, Grilled Gourmet Shrimp Two Taco Plate and Classic Shrimp Burrito.
Rubio’s guests in California, Nevada and Arizona can earn free drinks, desserts, tacos and entrées by joining Rubio’s Rewards. Members can sign up online or through the Rubio’s App, and start earning points toward free food. For more information about Rubio’s Coastal Grill and to view the menu, visit Rubio’sFacebookInstagram and TikTok.

Credit: Rubio’s. Some form of compensation was received to post. Information and images were also provided.

6 Tips for Throwing a Fun Anime-Themed Party

Is your child an avid fan of anime and Japanese culture in general? Are they turning another year soon? If yes, then you might as well hold a birthday party based on their passion for Japanese animation! An anime-themed party is the perfect way to celebrate your young otaku’s birthday. Even if you are not  a fan yourself, this type of occasion is fun to organize. Here’s how you can plan an enjoyable anime party your child will surely love!

1. Get creative with the invitations

Let’s start with the design of your invitations. There’s a lot you can do to create fun anime-inspired invitations that will get everyone, from kids to adults, hyped for the party. One way is to print out comic-style invitations inspired from manga (Japanese comics) panels. If your child is a fan of certain anime, get inspiration from that show to craft the invites. For instance, if your child loves the anime One Piece, consider designing Wanted Posters that feature the anime version of your child along with details about the party.

2. Turn it into a cosplay event

Cosplaying is an intrinsic part of Japanese pop culture, so you might as well encourage the guests to arrive in their favorite personas. If the party is based on a specific anime, get everyone to dress up as their favorite characters in that show. This will allow for a colorful and fun-filled event which could also serve as a small anime convention at home. You can also hold a competition where you will reward the ones with the best costumes.

3. Prepare awesome food

Aside from preparing your guest list, you also need to decide what to serve your guests on the day of the party. Choosing what to prepare for refreshments and the main course will depend entirely on the theme and mood of the party. For instance, if your child loves Naruto, your menu may include authentic ramen prepared by a Japanese food store online. However, before finalizing your menu, you must consider the dieting requirements of each guest. If you have guests who are allergic to shrimp, offer them deep fried vegetables in place of tempura.

4. Choose and decorate your venue

Whether you are throwing the party at home or renting out an outdoor venue, it’s important to decorate the place so it reflects the theme of the occasion. Does your child enjoy the anime Spy x Family? The party could draw inspiration from European aesthetics between the 1920s to 1930s. If they are a fan of One Piece, you might as well throw a beach or poolside party to reflect the anime’s pirate motif. Decorating the venue might take too much time and money, but you can always get your child to help out and use whatever reusable materials you have at home to craft impressive decorations.

5. Introduce fun games

What’s a kid’s party if it lacks engaging games that everyone can take part in? Go beyond typical choices such as sack races and opt for games that align with your child’s favorite shows or comics. Consider more interactive and team-based games such as a One Piece-inspired treasure hunt or a Duck-Duck-Goose game where participants will try to figure out who is a titan-shifter from Attack on Titan. Just make sure that the games are age-appropriate, explain the rules clearly, and guide them on what to do. You can also go online and find anime-themed party games that will add excitement to the occasion.

6. Prepare party favors

You wouldn’t want your guests to leave empty-handed, so come up with creative party favor ideas they would want to take home. Package them in bright colors and custom boxes. Moreover, add toys and Pokemon or Digimon trading cards in addition to candy. Give out collectible figurines and character cards that your guests can proudly display at home. If you are feeling generous, you can include tickets to a major anime event or screening in select bags. Announce this to your guests so they will have an even more compelling reason to join in on the fun!

There’s a lot more you can do to organize an anime-themed party for your child. These tips should help you know where to start.

Celebrate Mother’s Day in Anaheim

 From delicious brunches to outdoor activities, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. Here are some of the events that are sure to make this Mother’s Day special:

Mommy + Me Tea at JW Marriott

  • Sunday, May 14th, from 11 am-2 pm
  • Mother’s Day tea party in the Serenity Garden, including special activities, crafts & photo memorabilia

Mother’s Day Buffet at Tangerine Room

  • Sunday, May 14, from 12-6 pm
  • Treat mom to a lovely Mother’s Day Buffet Brunch with live entertainment and a multitude of delicious offerings.

Mother’s Day Dinner at THE RANCH Restaurant

  • Sunday, May 14th, from 2-9 pm
  • Take Mom out to a luxurious dinner with a special Prix Fixe menu in honor of Mother’s Day

Other great choices:

Pali Wine Co. Packing District

  • Sunday, May 14th, from 1-8 pm
  • Celebrate Mom with a specially curated 4-pour wine flight paired with chocolate-covered strawberries

Paint & MOM-osas 

  • Sunday, May 14th, from 2-5 pm 
  • Tickets include a 2-hour paint session, supplies, photo op, two complimentary mimosas, charcuterie & refreshments

Makers Hive Mother’s Day Market

  • Saturday, May 13th, from 1-7 pm
  • Features arts and crafts for the kiddos, photo ops, and delicious food
  • This family-friendly event is completely free and promises good vibes and fun times!


Kitten Kollage, Pets of the Week for May 11, 2023

Aren’t they cute?

It’s kitten season, and Long Beach Animal Care Services admitted 16 cats and kittens in a single day last week. The community cat coordinator referred to it as a “kitten tsunami,” an apt description because the waves of felines flooding in are about as easy to surf as a tsunami would be. Our shelter now has as many cats as dogs, and good people need to take these furry creatures home—not just the babies but also the adults. Shelter hours are Wednesday through Sunday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., at 7700 E. Spring St. at the entrance to El Dorado Park (no parking fee for shelter visitors). You can email to speed the process for adopting or fostering kittens and cats.

(This rescue encouraged by the usual suspects.)

More Last-Minute Mother’s Day Gifts

The perfect Mother’s Day Gift Must Have for new Moms!

PETUNIA PICKLE BOTTOM – Diaper bags and accessories in a variety of colors, playful prints and clever details on products that celebrate the joy and adventure of parenthood.

Provisions 2 in 1 Backpack ($179.99) (New collection in Grey Matte launches 2/28) Designed to carry a breast pump, office gear or whatever you need for a family outing. The generously-sized insulated lower compartment is ideal for pump, parts, and coolers. Padded tech compartment for a laptop and trolley sleeve to attach to wheeled luggage. Available on

Most moms love chocolate! I know that I do!

(Photo Credit: Mariebelle Chocolate)

MarieBelle is the ultimate Mother’s Day gift to show your appreciation for any mother figure who holds a special place in your heart. 

The Mother’s Day Collection 2023 is now on sale in both boutiques and online. Love and appreciation are beautifully demonstrated with such delights as the 16-piece Mother’s Day Chocolate Ganache Box ($54). Artfully crafted ganaches are made with the finest quality of cacao and ingredients to ensure a truly indulgent experience. Decadent dark chocolate enrobes a selection of different ganache flavors that include lavender, rose petals, espresso, passion fruit, vanilla and other sweet sensations. Each piece showcases an exquisite, miniature story within its designs, making the exclusive Mother’s Day chocolates a stunning work of art. All is presented in a signature MarieBelle blue box with a decorative hot pink sleeve.

The Mother’s Day Love Purse ($35) is made from vegan leather emblazoned with a signature logo and beautifully accented with a short, silky scarf featuring favorite ganache designs. Eight gourmet chocolate hearts, each handmade with the decadent flavor of rich, creamy dark chocolate and flavored with the delicate floral notes of rose petals and contains a special love message for the mother figure in your life.

Mother’s Day Gift Set ($55) 7-piece Heart Box is presented in one of Maribel’s favorite hues, a lavish fuchsia accented with floral finishes.  Artisanal delights reveal exclusive Mother’s Day designs and delectable chocolate ganache that is paired with Dark Chocolate Rose Tea. Celebrated for its enchanting aroma and delicate floral notes it comes in a tea tin and includes a charming tea strainer to ensure that every cup served is a true work of art.

The 25-piece Mother’s Day Heart Ganache ($75) is a luxurious way tocelebrate the mother in your life. This splendid heart-shaped box holds mouthwatering chocolate ganache, each handmade in the Brooklyn factory using the finest quality cacao and all-natural ingredients. Presenting love-inspired designs that each tell a story, each chocolate ganache is expertly crafted with the utmost care.


The four-piece Velvet Ganache Brownies in Tote Box ($35 – only sold in store) is another delightful gift. The exquisite, handcrafted set of chocolate ganache brownies is a true masterpiece of culinary artistry. Irresistible texture elevates the overall taste to a whole new level of gourmet goodness. Exclusive to the Mother’s Day Chocolate Collection, the chocolate brownies come individually packed and presented in a limited-edition tote box, beautifully adorned with delicate floral designs, and accented with a MarieBelle’s twilly scarf. There is additionally a four-piece Brownie Tin ($21) that showcases the handcrafted chocolate ganache brownies topped with thick chocolate chunks for extra texture and richness. The four pieces of rich ganache brownies are presented in an elegant blue and gold MarieBelle tin.

Other wonderful options include the Two-Piece Cream Mother’s Day Totes – Set of 6 ($65); Cylinder Natural Chocolate Blueberry ($17); and a 50gr Bourbon Pecan Milk Chocolate Bar ($7).

I’ve tried their chocolate before and it is simply delicious!

Give the Gift of Clean Beauty, Health, and Sustainability this Mother’s Day with Dignity Coconuts!

 Dignity Coconuts’ Clean Beauty Kit would make a fantastic gift idea for Mom! Their Clean Beauty Kit is not only healthy and sustainable but also promotes clean beauty and supports a worthy cause. Their Clean Beauty Kit includes a Natural Fiber Body Brush and Body Oil, which are made with natural and organic ingredients that are safe, gentle, and effective for all skin types. The Natural Fiber Body Brush helps exfoliate dead skin cells, stimulate blood circulation, and improve lymphatic drainage, while the Body Oil helps moisturize, nourish, and protect the skin with its natural and nutrient-rich formula. You can purchase it here.

Self Disclosure: I received free samples to facilitate this holiday featured post. Images were also provided.