Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Blog Tour {Catching Jordan} Guest Post

Release Date: December 1, 2011
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Age Group: Young Adult
Pages: 288
Format: Paperback

Catching Jordan
What girl doesn't want to be surrounded by gorgeous jocks day in and day out? Jordan Woods isn't just surrounded by hot guys, though - she leads them as the captain and quarterback on her high school football team. They all see her as one of the guys, and that's just fine. As long as she gets her athletic scholarship to a powerhouse university. But now there's a new guy in town who threatens her starring position on the team... and has her suddenly wishing to be seen as more than just a teammate.
Guest Post

Untraditional Romance: Catching Jordan puts a great emphasis on the untraditional relationship and character roles Jordan possess in the book. What effects (if any) do these types of relationships have on kids and people today? Is it important for people to be exposed to them?

At the beginning of Catching Jordan, Jordan feels she can’t show romantic interest in boys or the guys on her team won’t take her seriously as the captain and quarterback. If you think about it, it’s a pretty ridiculous notion, and it’s all in Jordan’s mind. The guys on her team care that she’s an awesome football player. They don’t care what she does in her free time unless it interferes with her ability to run for a touchdown from ten yards out.

But in Jordan’s mind, the fear is palpable. It’s very real, and I think that many people have similar, yet different fears, depending on who they are.

For instance, how many people out there are gay, but are too scared to share their true nature with the world?

How many people are interested in dating a person of another race or color, but don’t want to admit it for fear of how other people will react?

In the book, Jordan is an extreme tomboy who starts to fall for the alternate quarterback (Ty) on her team. Some of the guys on the team aren’t happy about it for various reasons. But once Jordan makes up her mind that she likes Ty, the other guys sort of shrug and move on with life.

The same can’t always be said for people entering into a homosexual relationship for the first time. Some people will balk at this. It’s just how things are. But some people will shrug and move on with life. It’s all a matter of exposure.

I think if more and more people begin to explore different kinds of relationships with different kinds of people, I imagine – over time, people will get used it.

The more and more we expose teens, and people of all ages, to new experiences and relationships, people and ideals will evolve.

That’s what I hoped to get across with Catching Jordan. It’s okay to think and act outside the box – everything will be okay. And if it’s not, at least you tried and probably learned something and put yourself out there. That’s cool.

Jordan’s very different. How many girls do you meet who openly like all-you-can-eat buffets and football?

How are you different? Do you hide who you are for fear of how people will respond? How have you worked to move past your fears? Have you encouraged others to put their fears aside?

Thanks Miranda for stopping by Ashley Suzanne {the blog} today to share your thoughts on your newest published book Catching Jordan. This definitely sounds like a fun to read. I am one of those girls who actually enjoy all you can eat buffets and football. I mean, c’mon now, what girl doesn’t like to watch a bunch of hot, muscular guys fighting to catch the ball and score a touchdown? =]
Meet the Author
Buy the Book

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Giveaway Alert : InGenuity Sleep and Play

The Iowa Farmer's Wife is hosting this awesome giveaway, where she is giving away an InGenuity Sleep and Play. This giveaway ends on January 22, 2012. Hurry to get in your entries!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

{Review} Electric Bottle Warmer

Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature. Intuitively designed for easier feed preparation.

I always thought that a bottle warmer was a useless device that companies sold to try and make more money. I never used one before or understood why you couldn't just put it in the microwave, after all that was how I was taught. I learned my lesson one day while I was babysitting. I had a screaming baby and cold breast milk. I didn't like the thought of giving her the cold milk that had been in the refrigerator, because it could give her a headache and not soothe her, so I decided to put it in the microwave for a few minutes. Well I am sure you all can guess what happened next. Once I took it out, shook it up, and did the wrist test, it was too hot! So now I had to run it under cool water, while holding a hungry baby. After going through this incident it made me wish that I had a bottle warmer. 

closer to nature ® electric bottle warmer
NOW I DO!! No more hot milk, just lukewarm! When Tommee Tippee agreed to send me this lovely bottle warmer, I was thrilled, and a little skeptical. I never used one before or really knew where to start. I read through the instructions and followed them to a T. It took about 5 minutes for the milk to get warm right out of the refrigerator. It was not too hot or too cold, it was PERFECT! I couldn't get over the easiness of it. Not only did it get it warm and ready, but once it reaches it's desired temperature, you can then put the dial on either 1 or 2 and it will keep it warm until you need it. Say you get it ready and then realize you have to go change a diaper, well just turn it down to 2 and come back, and volia, it is still warm!

I know a few of the things that we all worry and stress about when buying a product that is unnecessary is whether or not it is easy to clean, if it is worth the money, and how will this help to make life easier on me. When it comes to purchasing this Tommee Tippee warmer, it will satisfy all of your worries and thoughts. 

Cleaning - Clean up is a breeze! All you do is unplug, wait to cool, dump water, and wipe with a damp cloth. Easy as can be! There is also a recipe {I call it that, but your not baking anything) that you can do that will help with sterilizing it.

Money - Honestly after using one of these warmer it is definitely worth my money. You don't have to worry about hot spots, or a bulb not working (because its electric). The retail value for this warmer is around $39.99 and it is worth every penny.

Easier - This warmer will make your life easier by not having to worry about feeding your baby cold food or worry about the nutrients being derived from the milk by nuking it in the microwave.


Never again worry if your baby's bottle or food is too hot or cold! The Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature Electric Bottle and Food Warmer features adjustable controls to heat milk and food to the right temperature with no hot spots, utilizing a steaming system that heats gently to preserve essential nutrients.


No more under- or overheating

Take the guesswork out of mealtime with the built-in thermostat that allows food to be heated to the correct temperature. The steam heating system warms milk and food gently and evenly.

Convenient for parents

The Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature Electric Bottle and Food Warmer is safe, easy to use and heats milk and food quickly. It also fits most bottles sized 5 to 11 oz., accommodating baby's growing appetite.

Take control

Parents can customize the heating temperature for different feeding needs with the adjustable control dial.

Safe for baby, safe for the environment

The Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature Electric Bottle and Food Warmer is BPA- and phthalate-free.

After reading through this review I hope that you will see that a bottle warmer is not entirely a waste of money and it does provide a good use!

Thanks to Tommee Tippee for sending me the above product in exchange for my honest opinion. In no way was this review compensated or was I endorse for writing it.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Waiting to Forget {Interview}


T.J. has always looked out for his little sister, Angela. When Momma used to go out and leave them home alone, he'd lock the door so they'd be safe, keep Angela entertained, and get out the cereal and milk for her. When Momma's boyfriend got angry at them, he'd try to protect Angela. Later, at their foster homes, T.J. was the only one who knew how to coax his little sister out of her bad moods. The only one who understood why she made origami paper cranes and threw them out the window.
But now T.J. is sitting in the waiting room at the hospital, wondering if Angela, unconscious after a fall, will ever wake up. Wondering, too, if he will ever feel at home with his and Angela's new parents—Marlene, who insists on calling him Timothy, and Dan, who seems to want a different son.
Going back and forth between Now and Then, weaving the uncertain present with the painful past, T.J.'s story unfolds, and with the unfolding comes a new understanding of how to move forward.




How would you describe Waiting to Forget?

Here’s my “elevator blurb,” or how I’d summarize the book to a stranger between floors (assume it’s a slow elevator):

Waiting to Forget,  for ages ten and older, begins and ends in a hospital, and in between, twelve-year-old T.J. waits to learn the fate of his little sister, who lies unconscious in the emergency room. While T.J. waits, he struggles with disturbing memories of their difficult other life, before they were adopted. When these past memories catch up with the present, T.J. realizes he must now make his own decision about how to face the future.

My own family was formed through birth and adoption, and most of our children joined the family when they were already school age. So, even though this book is fiction, it’s a story that’s very real to me.

Which of your characters do you feel you relate to the most and why?

I am going to give two answers  to this question because the word “relate” has several slightly different meanings.

1) If we use the following meaning from a dictionary “to have or establish a relationship” then I would say Celia, the mother who can’t cope. Although I am nothing like Celia, I feel as if I know her and have a relationship with her because I can understand her feelings. She’s overwhelmed and discouraged, especially after Ray leaves. Being a parent is not an easy job, and if Celia were a real person, she shouldn’t have kids. But there are many women in the world who have children without making a conscious choice. Those  mothers  need a strong support system in order to cope.

2) If we use the definition of “relate” that says “to respond especially favorably” to something or someone, then I’d have to say the one character I relate to the most is T.J. because he’s just T.J. I think readers of the book will understand what I mean.

Were you a reader in your teen years and if so, who was your favorite author?

Although my friends all had TVs, our family didn’t own one until I was in tenth grade. So, yes, I was definitely a reader!

I didn’t have just one favorite author. The ones who stand out in my memory from when I was a young teenager are: Mary O’ Hara (My Friend Flicka, Thunderhead), Marjorie K. Rawlings (The Yearling, The Sojourner), Rumer Godden, (The River, An Episode of Sparrows), John Updike (Pigeon Feathers - a collection of short stories), Betty Smith (A Tree Grows in Brooklyn), Harper Lee (To Kill a Mockingbird)

What one 2012 release are you most looking forward to reading this year?

No Name Baby by Nancy Bo Flood

Are you currently in the process of writing a sequel or newer book?

I’m not writing a sequel. I am working on several other books, including revisions on two novels plus writing another new novel for YA readers. I also hope to find publishers for a couple of picture books.

Thank you so much for asking such good questions. 


Thank you for stopping by Ashley Suzanne and for giving us the chance to know you and your book, Waiting to Forget!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Dreaming of Books Giveaway Hop {2012}

Welcome to the 2nd Annual Dreaming of Books Giveaway Hop.

This hop runs from January 13th to 18th.

Thanks to Martha from Reviews by Martha's Bookshelf and for Kathy at I am a Reader, Not a Writer. 


I will be giving away your choice of any book from the Book Depository up to $15. 

Mandatory: MUST be a GFC follower!

Leave one separate comment with you GFC name and which book you would get if you won.

+1 "like" Ashley Suzanne on Facebook {located on sidebar}

Leave another separate comment with your Facebook name.

Winner will be chosen at the end of the hop and will have 48 hours to respond. The prize will then be bought in February. This giveaway is open Internationally as long as the book depository ships to you. 

Saturday, January 7, 2012

{Review + Giveaway} Tommee Tippee = The Day Baby Was Born Web Application


The Day Baby Was Born is a web application created by Tommee Tippee that allows you to create a digital scrapbook for your pregnancy journey. The Day Baby Was Born automatically captures information about the day your child was born from news sites and data feeds you select, plus your Facebook Wall comments, to capture everything leading up to your baby's first day. The site does most of the work for busy new moms and, with just a little more input, can be further personalized with memories from pregnancy and delivery through guided storytelling and photos.

This application makes it easier for you to share the journey of your bundle through the process of pregnancy to the arrival of the little one. It also makes it easier for you to share it with those that are out of town and do not get to see to firsthand. The application is so easy to use, it starts at first with you signing in with your Facebook account and then you go from there. This is something that I hope to use with all of my future children. This would be great to keep and show them when they are older!


Now the moment you have been waiting for, the giveaway! Tommee Tippee has kindly donated a 3pk of 5 oz bottles for one lucky reader. US ONLY. Winner will be notified on January 23, 2012. Winner will have 48 hours to respond back before another winner is picked. Please fill out the rafflecopter below.

explora pink

{Review} Catching Fire

Catching Fire (The Hunger Games, #2)

Against all odds, Katniss Everdeen has won the annual Hunger Games with fellow district tribute Peeta Mellark. But it was a victory won by defiance of the Capitol and their harsh rules. Katniss and Peeta should be happy. After all, they have just won for themselves and their families a life of safety and plenty. But there are rumors of rebellion among the subjects, and Katniss and Peeta, to their horror, are the faces of that rebellion. The Capitol is angry. The Capitol wants revenge. Suzanne Collins continues the amazing story of Katniss Everdeen in Catching Fire, the second novel of the phenomenal Hunger Games trilogy.


After reading The Hunger Games, I was prepared that there was no way that the second book could live up to the first, but boy was I wrong. Catching Fire was 100% more intense than the first book, and I found my self gripping the edge of my seat while reading. I can not even begin to describe to you what this book meant to me or how good it was. It literally left me speechless. There is also not much I can say due to the fact that I will not give away any spoilers. Just be prepared to fall into more love and respect for the characters, you will hate the capitol more, and it will make you furious and then relieved all in one sentence.

This book has so many twist and turns that it leaves you craving more and never wanting it to end. I am a little scared to read the third book because then it will be over. Sorry that this review was a little short, but I didn’t want to give anything away.

{Review} The Hunger Games

The Hunger Games (The Hunger Games, #1)

In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, a shining Capitol surrounded by twelve outlying districts. The Capitol is harsh and cruel and keeps the districts in line by forcing them all to send one boy and one girl between the ages of twelve and eighteen to participate in the annual Hunger Games, a fight to the death on live TV.
Sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen, who lives alone with her mother and younger sister Primrose, regards it as a death sentence when she steps forward to take her sister's place in the Games. But Katniss has been close to dead before — and survival, for her, is second nature. Without really meaning to, she becomes a contender. But if she is to win, she will have to start making choices that will weigh survival against humanity and life against love.


Where to start? I started reading this book because my sister saw the preview for the movie, and then saw this book sitting on my bookshelf and she decided to pick it up. She read it, then my aunt read it, and I read it on my kindle. We continued to read the rest of the series, but I have yet made it to the third book.

With that being said, I must say that this was one of the best books that I have read in a long time. This was fresh, and the characters were so easy to fall in love with. Katniss, is by far my most favorite character ever. She was everything a heroine needs to be, sarcastic, funny, brave, and willing to put others before her self. Her love for her family was truly amazing. I was able to relate to her feelings about Prim, because my sister is the same age, and I would have done the same thing if I was in her situation. Peeta, ohh Peeta, I love me some Peeta. At first I was unsure how I felt about him, but by the time I finished the second book, I was in love with him! He is kind, creative, has an undying love for Katniss, and is unbelievable with his words. Gale. Gale is another story completely. He is strong, brave, and everything that is like Katniss. If Katniss could have a male twin, it would be Gale. Even though he is everything like her, I still believe that he is not the right one for her. He is everything she is, but nothing that she needs.

I loved that this book was fresh and how the story was told. It flowed so easily, and it was page turning. I was reading it one night while taking a bubble bath, and before I knew it my feet was all wrinkley due to being in the tub so long. Honestly, if you are going to read this book {and I highly think you should, trust me it will change your thinking and outlook} make sure to be careful where you read it at, because when you enter the games there is no coming back until the anthem blares.

One more final note – The cast that was picked for the movie, was a dead hit to the characters that I pictured. There was no way that I could have picked a better cast. The only ones that I did not picture like the ones chosen, was Haymitch, Effie, and Cinna. I am just glad that they did not pick Kirsten Stewart or Miley Cyrus as Katniss.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

{Review} BabyKAMP


babyKAMP features handmade baby items including stroller quilts, bibs, burp cloths, fabric blocks, custom pails, bean bags, onesies and more…

babyKAMP is a family owned and operated business and has been passed down to me from my aunt.  it is a very big and important part of our family.  we hope that you love it as much as we do.

babyKAMP started with custom orders nearly ten years ago. over these many years I have been fortunate to establish a rapport with my clients and they will often ask for a gift set with a price point and leave the rest to me.  since I feel like every gift I make comes from me personally…I create something I would personally be proud of giving & receiving.  it does help to have a starting point such as: color scheme, theme etc…please allow extra time to specially hand create your unique gift. any item I create may be recreated by me and offered on my site in the future. (this is where some of my best ideas come from)




Maria {the artist behind BabyKAMP} was so kind to make and send this little pail for a review on Ashley Suzanne. I asked if she could do something with purple tones and my name, well I think it is safe to say that she nailed it! I was so excited to get this package that I tore through the packaging {which was neat and intact}. While toting this little pail around outside {in the cold} trying to find a good spot for a picture, I couldn’t help but think that it would make a good pail to collect chicken eggs in. I guess that is just the country in me :] Once I came inside {out of the cold} I realized that it would be perfect for my fabric scraps. So I made a home for it next to my sewing machine.

Even though the name of the store is BABYkamp, it doesn’t mean that we can’t enjoy them too ;) Maria not only specializes in these pails, but she also creates anything from bean bags to hooded towels, to diaper pails, to gift sets. Any of these gifts would be great for a mom-to-be. Below is a BabyKAMP baby with their babykamp items.


Just like little Lillie above I will be sure to love my pail as much as she loves hers! So stop by BabyKAMP and she what all she has to offer for you and your lil one.


Find BabyKAMP

{Website} {Facebook} {Twitter} {Blog}


Would you like to participate in a review? Do you want your product feature on Ashley Suzanne for thousands to see? If so email me at ASHLEYSBOOKSHELF{@}GMAIL{.}COM

Monday, January 2, 2012

Blogger or Wordpress?

Which would you choose? Which is better?

Happy New Year! + Updates!

I just wanted to let you all know that I am sorry I haven’t been updating as often. Christmas to New Year is a really, REALLY busy time of the year for me. I plan to do a few posts about Christmas and New Years. Hopefully I will get to it soon. I just want to update you all and let you know a little on what is happening around here. Dad was able to get a loan, so that he can continue school full time. He is going with me to get our nursing degrees. We are hoping to get accepted into the nursing program Fall 2012, but right now we are finishing up our core. Dad is taking Anatomy 2 and First Aid/CPR, and I am taking Microbiology and First Aid/CPR. School starts January 9, and I am not sure how much I will be able to blog and such then, but I do promise to try. Below are a few things that are going on in the Causey household:

- Dad got a loan and quit his job so he can continue school full time.

- I went to my first New Year’s Eve party {more to come later}.

- I finished reading the Hunger Games, and I am currently reading Catching Fire {book 2}.

- I have received a couple of orders that will be filled this week {I plan to show pictures}.

- Dad and my cousin Lee went to a Georgia game today and that is why I don’t have my camera.

- I am re-covering a car seat {will show final pictures}.

- I cannot wait to receive my student loan in February!

I think that may be it. I do want to introduce this awesome site to you all – Make it and Love it – This is an awesome site ran by Ashley. She has some amazing tutorials! I got my idea to re-cover a car seat from her blog. She also does a re-cover of a highchair that seems cool. I just now need to find a highchair. Also another great blog that I love to read is – The Journey of Parenthood – Emily is the writer of this blog and she just had her second baby. She has a little boy named Kye and her little girl named Brittlyn, these children are absolutely adorable! I have been following her blog since before she was pregnant with Britt. I love the fact that Emily is not afraid to state her personal accounts, and to show the physical attributes of being pregnant. What a stomach looks like before and after baby. I love reading this blog because it reminds me first of why I want to become a L&D nurse and also what to expect on my future journey to parenthood.

Okay enough said today, I have to finish this car seat sometimes today and I need to get started sewing. I will stop by sometime and show the updates.

Also if any of you have any recipes, crafts, or anything else related that you would love to share then please email me at ashleysbookshelf at gmail dot com. I would love to feature you! Also if any of you know of any good blogs that focus on crafts, parenting, or tutorials in general then please send my way.

I will also be picking the winners from my overdue list of giveaways. I will not be able to ship out any prizes though until February, unless you want to help pay for shipping. I had one lady do that, and I shipped it the day after receiving her payment. Just email me and let me know.

One more thing and then I promise I will go. This blog, Ashley Suzanne, is slowly gravitating away from all things books. Its not that I won’t ever post any, but this is no longer going to be just a BOOK BLOG. It is just going to reflect me. I understand if it no longer suits your needs. I hate to lose any of you, but I want you to be satisfied. This is what I want to do and what I like most. I just wanted to give you a heads up so that you will know what to expect in the new year!

Thanks for sticking around and have an awesome new year!

- Ashley