Monday, October 17, 2016

Globe-Trotting Cats! Enter to win the Children’s Picture Book: KeeKee's Big Adventures in Amsterdam, Netherlands and the ENTIRE KeeKee's Big Adventures Series!

It is an immense pleasure to share Book Number Four in the KeeKee Adventure Series: KeeKee's Big Adventures in Amsterdam, Netherlands.

The KeeKee "Big Adventures" series is a complete delight and I am honored to have reviewed each and every book in the series! Before I share KeeKee's latest book:KeeKee's Big Adventures in Amsterdam, Netherlands, let's take a trip with KeeKee and visit the other fabulous books in the series, shall we? C'mon!!

The first book I reviewed in the KeeKee Adventure Series was:

KeeKee's Big Adventures in Paris, France ,  followed by KeeKee's Big Adventures in Rome, Italy (I had the enormous honor of having one of my quotes on the back cover praising the Paris book!)

KeeKee’s Big Adventures in Paris, France, was a Silver Winner in The Bill Fisher Award for Best First Book (Children’s/Young Adult) category at IBPA’s 2014 Benjamin Franklin Awards. Visit for more information.
Covers courtesy of

I was super excited for the release of KeeKee's Big Adventures in Athens, Greece  for a number of reasons, an important one is I have always been fascinated by the Greek culture. The food,  music, climate, history, architecture and so much more. I minored in Philosophy in college and majored in Rhetoric, (I intensely studied Greek Rhetorical theory), so I might have been just a tad biased about this book!

There is a formula to each of the books in the KeeKee's Big Adventure series  that makes the series a wonderful learning tool for children and adults alike:

1) KeeKee makes new friends
2) KeeKee learns new words in the language of the places that she is visting--in the back of each book is a handy guide that shows the proper way to pronounce the words that are featured.
3) KeeKee eats YUMMY food
4) KeeKee visits super cool places! There is always a super-cool map of all of the places that were visited in each book

I am now thrilled to present to you the latest book in the KeeKee's Big Adventure Series:

From Author Shannon Jones: This great adventure begain on a KLM Airlines flight in 2006 moving to the wonderful city of Amsterdam with the real-life KeeKee. Amsterdam was our home for four years, and our travels across Europe led us on the path to launching KeeKee's Big Adventures. We dedicate this book to those inspirations.

FROM CAT CHAT WITH CAREN AND CODY: When I was a little one in about first grade, I was COMPLETELY obsessed with drawing windmills and tulips. Why? I have no clue, but a shrink would probably have a field day trying to figure that one out! Imagine my complete delight when opening KeeKee's Big Adventures in Amsterdam, Netherlands when the first things I saw were windmills and tulips! I felt myself returning to my childhood!

Adults will be drawn in to yet another KeeKee charmer, they will learn, along with their children things such as:

"Windmills are factories that turn wind into power" as explained by Jasper, a new friend that KeeKee made in the Netherlands.

Klompen means wooden shoes that are still worn today by gardeners, farmers, and road workers.

Fietsen means "bikes" there are more of them in Amsterdam than people! 

The Bloemenmarkt is the city's famous flower market. The stalls float in the canals!!

You will also learn that Kaas means cheese, thanks to Jasper taking KeeKee to the Kick & Faas Kaas shop.

"Did you know that Amsterdam has more canals than any other city in the world? The buildings along them are houses and shops." 

There is sooo much more that you will learn, but I don't want to ruin your journey by revealing the entire book! You have to see for yourself!

Well KeeKee, I want to thank you for yet another charming and educational journey!!! The illustrations are darling as always, and each book in the series is adorably written. It is a delight to read a book series that is not only entertaining, but is EDUCATIONAL to boot!!!

I can hardly wait to see where your travels take you next!

Author Shannon Jones discovered her passion for travel when she took her first international trip in the fifth grade. It opened her eyes and ears to the world. As a grownup, living in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, with her husband Paul and kitty KeeKee, the idea for KeeKee’s Big Adventures was born. After twenty years in the marketing field, Shannon is launched on her new adventures, following her passion for writing and excited to be helping kids in their quest for learning and discovery. She now lives in Alexandria, Virginia, with Paul, KeeKee, and little sister kitty Luna.

Illustrator Casey Uhelski  graduated with honors from the Savannah College of Art and Design with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in illustration. As a little girl, she loved books, doodling, and daydreaming. She’s never outgrown these early enthusiasms, and has happily gone on to pursue a career as a children’s book illustrator. She lives in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

Awards Won:

Foreword Review Indiefab Book Of the Year Finalist
Mom's Choice Award-Gold Recipient Medals
IBPA Benjamin Franklin Awards-Best First Book Silver Winner


Our generous friend KeeKee is offering:

THREE people will  in the GREAT prize (an autographed copy of the book)

ONE PERSON WILL WIN THE  ARTSY prize… which is a copy of the book + a “poster”

ONE PERSON WILL WIN THE  GRAND prize… which is a copy of all four books AND a poster

Because there will be multiple winners we are NOT using Rafflecopter this time around. If you would like to enter, simply leave a comment saying that you WISH TO BE ENTERED in the give-away. Easy-peasy! The give-away is open to everyone who is 18 and over. The give-away will end Sunday, October 23rd 2016 at 5pm EST. The winners will be chosen by and will be announced on or about October 26th, 2016. GOOD LUCK!!


All photos used in this review are courtesy of

Published by

In full disclosure: I was not compensated for this review/give-away. I was sent a copy of KeeKee's Big Adventures in Amsterdam, Netherlands in exchange for my always honest review. I am proud to be one of the original reviewers of the KeeKee's series!

Friday, October 7, 2016

Flashback Friday: Bobo the Hobo!!

Today's post is dedicated to the BEAUTIFUL Katie Isabella 

Click to visit her blog!!
Our post today is a result of Katie's recent blog post where she was discussing how her Mom doesn't like when she "grooms" her.........her Mom had the AUDACITY to say what is stated below  in Katie's words:

"She said I may put my toys in a bandana, attach it to a stick, and sling it over my shoulder and visit one of you to hone my skills."

This made me laugh because YEARS ago when my Bobo was doing whatever it was that he was doing that was driving me insane that day, I told him if he wasn't happy living with me, he could pack his kitty toys in a bandana and HIT THE ROAD! (Of COURSE I was NOT serious!), but.....I did the packing for him. Please excuse the horrible photo quality, this photo was taken in the 90s...I had to take a photo of a photo....the bandana and stick were truly in the original shot......this was taken waaay before the days of blogging. I just did some touching up now to try and make it a little bit better.

See Katie? You aren't the ONLY kitty with a mean Mama!!!!

PS: you can come and stay with us ANY DAY!!! I have told you before, I could ALWAYS use a good, in-home hairstylist!

We love you AND your "Evil Mama!!!"

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Thankful Thursday:Sunshine Blogger Award

Today Cody and I are  excited because we were  presented with  a fun and happy award from our friends over at Four-Legged Furballs. It's the Sunshine Blogger Award, "which is meant to shed light on those fellow bloggers whose positivity and creativity you admire." Thank you so much for nominating Dakota and I for the Sunshine Blogger Award! We have received this award before, but it was all the way back in 2011!!! We figured we HOPEFULLY have some new readers who have joined us since then, so it is an honor to participate! We are super grateful to have received this award! Thank you Four-Legged Furballs for including us!!

There are some rules to follow with this award, and these rules are:
1. Thank the person who nominated you and add a link to their blog. (See above. But also, thank you again to the adorable Four-Legged Furballs family and their sweet Mama!)
2. Answer the 11 questions sent by the person who nominated you.
3. Nominate 11 other bloggers, adding their links and asking them 11 new questions.
4. Notify the bloggers you have nominated.

Our friends over at Four-Legged Furballs came up with some great questions.

1. How many animals have you had in your lifetime thus far?
Eek. I haven't had NEARLY the number of pets that others have had. Let's see, when I was born, we had a Boxer named "Brandy" who lived with us til I was 7. She was the sweetest dog, but died quite young. She passed at age 7. From what my family had told me, she would "guard" my crib and get my parents if I was crying. I also had two turtles, some goldfish, a hamster, my first cat was my Angel Bobo, we shared our lives for 18 years. Then Cody, who I adopted 2 weeks after Bobo passed, then Dakota, my first dog as an adult, came that October.

2. Do you have a favorite blog topic, blog hop, or blogging day?
My favorite Blogging day is Wednesday when people participate in Wordless Wednesday. My favorite posts that day are the ones that ONLY use words in the title of the post. To me, those TRULY "wordless" posts beautifully convey the true meaning of the quote, "a picture is worth a thousand words." and what "Wordless Wednesday was originally intended to be.

3. What is your favorite book?
This one is pretty much impossible to answer. I have read soooooo many books that I have adored. Many are classics, many are cat and/or dog related. If you click book reviews , many of our favorite cat books are listed here, but not all! It is impossible to just choose one.

4. If you had to change your first name, what new name would you choose?
That is a great question! I have never thought of that before. I actually like my first name and am happy that my parents spelled it in such a unique way. Being a child of the 50s, at that time "Caren" with a "C" was virtually unheard of. I think it helped make me the creative person that I am. I like to think that I march to my own drummer, I have never been a "follower", and I don't always do what is the expected thing to do or the "norm."  I often wonder if I am that way because of my name.

5. Are you an early bird or a night owl? 
Both. I often stay up til 1 or 2 and get up at 6 am. It isn't healthy to do that, but I do. I find that I am my most alert in the morning. One thing I am NOT is an afternoon person. I am usually pretty dead at 3pm, then I perk back up from 5pm on.

6. What is your favorite holiday?
Thanksgiving. I love the time of year, I love what it represents and OF COURSE I LOVE THE FOOD!!!! All of my favorite foods are present on Thanksgiving!

7. What is your dream job?
Another tough one. I used to have a dream of being an Olympic Swimmer (I was a lifeguard all through college, and was on a swim team when I was young.) At one time I wanted to teach Early Childhood Education, specifically kindergarten. Now, believe it or not, probably doing what I am now doing, blogging and working part-time in the world of Pets. Pet people, as we all know, are special people. I LOVE that I am able to work from home. I worked for approximately 26 years outside of the home, where EVERY morning I had to get up at 5:15am, I had intense deadlines to meet as well as steep sales quotas, working from home is something I never thought I would ever be blessed to do. If I am lucky enough to still be able to make ends meet at home, it is something I would do as long as I possibly can. One day, I would love to discipline myself to write a humorous children's book involving cats and dogs. That would be fabulous.

8. How many siblings do you have?
one older sister and one younger brother, I suffer from "middle child syndrome."

9. What is your favorite candy?

10. What is your absolute least favorite food?
LIVER!!!! Have to add another Bleu Cheese.

11. What do you call it: pop or soda? (Or something else altogether?)
Pop...of course (hehehe)

Next up is nominating 11 other bloggers.
To quote the Four-Legged Furballs Mom: "All of the blogs we read in this blogging community give us inspiration. We know so many bloggers deserving of this award, as all of you are so positive and creative in your own ways. That's what makes this community so great!"  For that reason, and others, we always break the "rules" of these hops. I don't want to list other bloggers because inevitably I would unintentionally leave someone out who is deserving and I don't want to accidentally hurt anyone's feelings. If I follow your blog, it is a pretty safe assumption that I enjoy your blog. So, if any of you are inclined to complete the challenge using the same questions above, (because I am lazy), feel free!

Tuesday, October 4, 2016


To raise the status of animals in order to improve welfare standards around the globe. Building the celebration of World Animal Day unites the animal welfare movement, mobilising it into a global force to make the world a better place for all animals.  It's celebrated in different ways in every country, irrespective of nationality, religion, faith or political ideology.  Through increased awareness and education we can create a world where animals are always recognised as sentient beings and full regard is always paid to their welfare.

Sunday, October 2, 2016

It's Rosh Hashanah!!!


Rosh Hashanah is one of the holiest holidays in the Jewish religion. The two-day holiday begins at sundown and celebrates the Jewish New Year. During the celebration, Jewish people take the time to appreciate and accept God as their king.
The Jewish calendar, which runs on the lunar cycle, determines the date of the holiday each year. The celebration begins at sundown and the following day marks the first full day of the celebration. Jewish calendar dates end at nightfall, which means this year's Rosh Hashanah celebration will begin at sundown on Oct. 2 and end at nightfall on Oct. 4.
In Hebrew, "Rosh Hashanah" means “Head of the Year” and it's also known as the Jewish New Year. Rosh Hashanah celebrates the day that God completed the creation of the world and highlights the relationship between God and humanity.
While Conservative and Orthodox Jews observe the holiday over the course of two days, most Reform Jews celebrate Rosh Hashana for one day.
An important tradition during this holiday is Tashlich, which calls for Jews to go find a body of water, be it the ocean, river or stream, and cast away their sins. This is done symbolically by throwing bread into the water and the act allows people to reflect and correct themselves so they can focus on a new year.
At home, families gather for dinner prior to attending service the night of the holiday. They recite blessings over candles and wine. Families also indulge in challah bread or apples dipped in honey.
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