Wednesday, May 24, 2017

The Thoughts You Feed by Irene Weinberg Author of They Serve Bagels in Heaven Book Tour and Giveaway

DIY Mom is participating in the virtual book tour for the inspirational memoir "They Serve Bagels in Heaven" by Irene Weinberg. Irene wrote her very personal story after the tragic death of her husband, Saul. Irene has shared her author guest post with DIY Mom readers here:

“The Thoughts You Feed”

by Irene Weinberg

The thoughts you feed are the ones that grow.

What this brings to my mind is the time my husband died next to me in a horrific car accident.
We were driving on the NY State Thruway when our car suddenly went into a huge swerve.  “Saul!” I called out to my sleeping husband, waking him up. He saw what was happening and tried to pull the car out of the swerve, but instead, we started to flip the first of four times. 

When we finally stopped, we had slid into a ravine and were upside down. I looked over at what was now the shell of my husband and knew all through me that he was gone.  I felt the car being turned over and as the strong hands of an EMT began to pull me through the shattered window of my car, two amazing, disparate things happened to me:

An unemotional but authoritative male voice boomed into my head and told me to “be loving and kind to everyone.” A moment later, I said to myself, “I will get through this somehow, because I have to show my son that you can get hit by a grenade in life and somehow still survive.”

I certainly experienced my share of grief and despair during those dark days, but at the same time, the positive attitude I scripted for myself led me to two professionals: a wonderful, resourceful Life Transition Coach and a highly regarded spiritual healer.  And as the many drops of love I was receiving from friends and family began to collect in what I called my grief-filled bucket, that now overflowing bucket of love started lifting me from my despair. 

 At first, my positive attitude in spite of my tremendous tragedy was all about my son.  But as began to re-build my life and once again experienced JOY, it also became about me.


They Serve Bagels in Heaven: One couple’s story of love, eternity, and the cosmic importance of everyday life begins with the amazing messages Irene Weinberg received from heaven during the tragic car accident that took her husband Saul’s life. Irene resides in Northern New Jersey, where she oversees business interests. She is a mother, a stepmother and a grandmother. The author invites readers to connect with her on her website


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Saturday, May 13, 2017

Interview with Children’s Book Author Neil McFarlane

DIY Mom has had the pleasure of reading and reviewing several of children's book author Neil McFarlane's books over the years. Neil is truly a great guy...and he's pretty funny too. We invited Neil to drop by and chat about his newest book The Revolting Brains. He had plenty to say about the book, his writing and more! 

Tell us about The Revolting Brains:

It's a collection of seven read-aloud bedtime tales where the listening child is made to feel that he or she is the protagonist of each story (a follow-up to a previous collection called "A Month of Bedtime Stories"). The idea is that the reader describes to the child an adventure the child had earlier in the day but has forgotten about due to receiving a "bonk on the head" or similar amnesia-inducing event. The intention is to make the stories immersive and fun for both parent and child.

How long have you been writing?

I started uploading files to Amazon in 2014 but wanted to be a writer since about the age of 5.

Where do you get your story ideas?

For this series ("And off you went to the woods ...") I imagine what adventures I, as a child, would love to have had. For example: shrinking in size and living in an ant colony; driving a submarine; traveling to the center of the Earth; exploring a whale's insides, joining a pirate ship, etc.

What kinds of books do you enjoy reading?

I enjoy all sorts. I used to read fiction almost exclusively but I now tend to read more non-fiction. I'm currently reading "Brick Lane" by Monica Ali. The last few books I read include "The Blank Slate" by Stephen Pinker, "Tender is the Night" by F. Scott Fitzgerald, "How to Fail at Almost Everything and Still Win Big" by Scott Adams, and "The Heart of the Matter" by Graham Greene.

What would your readers be surprised to learn about you?

That I speak fluent Chinese (particularly if we re-define the word "fluent" to mean "not very good").

How can readers get in touch with you?

Readers can check out my Amazon Author Page. I also include a contact email in all of my books.

What are you currently working on?

"Animal Mix-up" (a book which is also a game); "Me Tawk Funny: Book Four", the final book in a series about a boy whose dog can talk; and a rhyming picture book about a dancing monkey which I'm going to attempt to illustrate myself.

What advice would you give new authors?

If you are really new, read books about the craft of writing. Seek, be open to, but not over-sensitive to, feedback. Read over what you've written (again and again) and assess it impartially. If you can't be honest with yourself, who can you be honest with? Also, writing is an increasingly saturated field. If you're not an overnight success (which you probably won't be), you'll need to enjoy writing because it's more than likely you'll be in it for the long run. Also: read good writers. If you don't know who's good, choose books, which are hailed as classics and try to work out what it is about them that makes them so hailed.

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Free Mother's Day Book Template Printable Download

Just in time for Mother's Day! is offering this sweet gift for kids to give Mom on her special day. "A Book About My Mom" can be downloaded directly from the website (link below). 

Readers can download the PDF file from the Twinkl website here. 

Monday, May 1, 2017

Neil McFarlane Releases Another Hilarious Collection of Children's Bedtime Stories - The Revolting Brains

Children's book author Neil McFarlane has just released a new bedtime stories collection. This one is called "The Revolting Brains" and if it's anything like his other books it'll be hilarious.


Treat your child to another week of Bedtime Stories!

Bite-sized read-aloud bedtime tales for parent and child.


1. Pathetic Sick Sniffy Pants
3. The Mango Mouse
2. How to Sledgehammer a Lollipop
4. Turvy Topsy Land
5. The ... Way of the Pizza!
6. The Case of the Missing Woods
7. The Revolting Brains

A follow-up to the highly praised A Month of Bedtime Stories, this collection contains a further seven tales in the series. Each story takes about ten minutes to read and places your child at the centre of each adventure with heavy doses of wacky humour which can be enjoyed by parent and child alike. 

Thursday, April 27, 2017

FREE Positive Affirmations for Mothers Printable Download

"Being a mother is hard work. There are no sick days or vacation days, and you have a small human being who is dependent on you for everything. Even as your kids grow, the problems that your children come to you with simply become more complex. As a mother, it's essential that you care for yourself so that you can care for your children. That's why Personal Creations created this illustrated collection of Positive Affirmations for Mothers, available for FREE download to print. 

Each affirmation or quote is designed to remind mom how great she's doing--no matter how tough her week has been. Print out these affirmations, glue them together, and place them on your desk for a constant reminder that you are more than enough!" 

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

FREE Luggage Tags Printable Vintage Ephemera for Journaling and Scrapbooking

Summer vacation is just around the corner so I'm sharing a wonderful old-timey luggage tag printable. This printable comes from The Graphics Fairy. I think these would make excellent accents on your vacation scrapbook pages! 

You can download the PDF directly from The Graphics Fairy here.

Friday, April 21, 2017

FREE Project Life Card Printables

Happy Friday! I have another FREE printable download for Project Life Card enthusiasts! 

Print these out on white cardstock, cut and use them in your Project Life albums, journals, day planners, whatever your heart desires. I like to use them as bookmarks. I punch holes at the top and add novelty yarns for tassels.  :)

Download Instructions:

Click on the photo to open in a new window. Save to your computer. Print from there.