Santa Fish is Coming to Town

Can you believe that we are more than three-quarters through 2009?! I know I cannot believe how fast time has flown. I can tell you that we have 75 days until Christmas!


So if you are like me and wait until the VERY last minute to shop, or you finally get the nerve to rouse in the morning before 4am to fight all those lovely Black Friday shoppers, like I did last year. Well you are in luck!

I, Karie, aka Mrs. Fish, am compiling the ultimate gift guide for you! These lovely gifts will be oh so unique that your recipient will be swooning in joy over their one of a kind package. The range is from a total family gift, so one everyone in the family can enjoy, to individual gifts for the “hard to shop for” or “they have everything.”

Be ready! The gift giving begins HERE November 1st. What is even better than a guide of wonderful gifts, is the chance to WIN some of these AWESOME gifts! How is that for holiday shopping! You’re very own holiday concierge, right here, delivered by moi., Karie Herring, holidays, Christmas, gifts, giving

I am still compiling a FABULOUS month of gift giving ideas, reviews, and giveaways, because you can never have enough GREAT ideas for gifts. If you are not participating with The Five Fish Holiday Gift Guide YOU SHOULD BE! Share with us your products, we love to hear about them and give them a good whirl in our house. If you are PR, please use the linky above to submit all requests. I look forward to hearing, sharing, and giving you all a Jolly Good Holiday time!


I am a modest person by all means. I do not take compliments well, I have learned to smile very politely and show my gratitude but in the back of my mind I am running these questions:
  • What do they want?
  • Are they lying to get something?
  • Do I have shit in my teeth…dang it…forgot to floss
  • Are they saying this but behind my back saying something different?
Yeah I am a case what can I say. I am not modest with my kids…when people compliment about how beautiful and well behaved they are….I can almost feel my chest puff up in pride, my eyes sparkle, my skin flush and tighten. I KNOW I am a great mom.

So I have been told by some really wonderful bloggy women how I have a great blog….really??

I mean my purpose is to keep it real. I am a voice for PR (plus I get to try out cool stuff…um….tell me where there is an issue with that?), I am a voice for other women who go through the same stuff….so if you are wondering if a child can truly projectile vomit….the answer is yes, at a very HIGH rate of speed and velocity, viscosity is less than desirable and stench is AWFUL!! Invest in a shop vac now and some Holy Cow. Seriously…only thing I have ever used that will take the puke smell out of ANYTHING and EVERYTHING!! Okay, sorry, my tangent.

But really, I am here because I love to write. About me. My kids. As a woman. As a wife. As a Mom. As a consumer. As a student.

I really would LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE for someone to pick me for Type-A Mom Con or SITScation!! I know SITScation is totally sold out…but there is a chance right?! I really do not have luck…but I have a TRUCK load of faith. Not the “Jesus Loves Me” type of faith….just plain, good, old fashioned FAITH. The one where you wish upon a star, you still wish with pennies in a fountain, a shooting star, a blown out candle on your birthday.

So I am putting this out there that I am begging, pleading, asking for someone to send me to these FABULOUS conferences to learn. To spread the blogging word and seed when I come back. To learn all I can in the short amout of time available for both of these events. No I am not one of these big blogs…but really….what do you get from a big blog other than a “fluffed” up number in my opinion. My blog is small….but BIG in heart, soul and love. I know that my readers….are my friends!! They will come here and share woes, they know I follow and read them back….I am not fast…but I am the little engine that could with them. I also know that A LOT of my readers keep coming back!! They are not just a face in the follower list, they are my friends, my confidants, my sisters. We share more than a blog, we share our experiences, our lives, our “Oh good its not just me” moments that make life that much more tolerable and A-OK to operate.

Again, I am begging, pleading, and asking for the opportunity. I saw how BlogHer in my opinion was a JOKE!! I have YET to see a woman come back and tell me what she learned other than how “fabulous she looked” or “I was jipped on swag….asshats!” or “OMG I was so effed up….what happened.” To those I tell you….GROW UP!!! Sure, have a great time…but conduct yourself with some damn class, some pride, and maybe some self respect and not act like a teenage girl dropped off in the big city for a date for the first time off the farm. Sheesh!

I plan to treat these conferences as I have all other conferences I have had the awesome opportunity to attend in the past… with a side of pleasure. Sure have a great time….but learn. Learn more about blogging, networking, the whole web 2.0 thang as Kelby puts it.

Really, I am a guppy in the big sea of bloggers, but my voice in all aspects carries a lot farther than just this blog. So please, take a chance, send a sister to one of these great conferences…or heck one of the conferences coming up in 2010. I am your vessel, just help by putting the wind in my sails and I will show you how this girl can fly!

Bound to Please, Book Review

Books I think are the most wonderful creation to man kind. Books and stories to me are like a mini fantasy and or they tell a spectacular story of rich history. I love books because I choose the face of the characters, not some Hollywood director that will gross the crap out of me on admission for two hours plus popcorn. I get to choose what the scenery and backdrop would look like including the weather. I get to choose based on my knowledge and imagination.I recently received a book from Hatchette Book Group and the book is a romance novel. Now last contemporary romance type drama book I read was a Candance Bushnell book…..Four Blondes and before that…..I can not recall because of school.For the last three years, eight months, and some odd days I have been a text book addict in need of some rehab. Hatchette Book Group was my detox!! I love them for sending me this book because the romance novel I chose to read was just awesome.

Most romance novels have that stigma. You know…the one where Fabio graces the cover and just wreaks of soft porn gone bad. I mean worse than daytime soap opera love scenes with the bad 80’s music and the diffused lighting… know what I mean?

This romance novel had me from the get-go! I honestly, could NOT put the book down. I mean I had put the book down only because of the hubs and the Gnomes, but I seriously did not want to put it down. I was hooked! The book is truly HOT!! Lilli Feisty does a SUPERB job of finding that adjective to burn into your soul the meaning and feelings behind the scene in the chapters. She reaches into your inner being, the place every woman has been, but the thought and idea is taboo.

I have to say that Bound to Please was a real pleasure for me to read.

Here is an excerpt from the book:

Ruby Scott is a beautiful, quiet event planner who leads an oh-so-respectable life. Yet the things that go on in her secret fantasies are anything but. She has every intention of keeping her hidden desires under wraps-until she meets a gorgeous, hard-muscled man ten years her junior. Mark St. Crow is a gifted, up-and-coming musician who collects erotic art and loves to “play” women as much as his piano. After one night of uninhibited passion, Ruby realizes there’s no turning back. But as she surrenders to her deepest needs and lets Mark control every forbidden thrill, her passion for him builds. Can the wild, intoxicating nights they share lead to a love that will last forever?

Erotic, hot, sexy, devious, bold, flirtatious, steamy and fun.
I would say definitely a favorite romance novel for my night stand.
Seriously this book is not and I mean NOT your typical romance novel, but a whole lot of fun to read and makes you want more once you are done.

 *Five Fish always blog ethically and with transparency.

Go Go Pets Review & Giveaway

Some families enjoy the pleasure of adopting a new pet into the family. They are loved, petted, caressed, looked after, named, and then finally cleaned up after. The cleaning job is generally left to mom and dad… my household namely me. The most common request for pets that I have heard from mom’s and dad’s have been dogs, cats, fish, and hamsters.

The folks at Mom Select and Cepia Toy decided to choose Phoenix and the Phoenix-metro areas to invade and unveil “Go Go Pets.” Go Go Pets are great because they mimic real life pets without all the fuss and my home was one chosen to review their hamster pets and the “habitrails” that were included.

So my family is the proud owner of a hamster named Mr. Squiggles. I am quite happy to have adopted and received Mr. Squiggles for a few reasons:

  1. No mess. Hamsters are stinky, they live in cages, and they have all sorts of junk they make messes with. YUCK
  2. Hamsters are a rodent….I hunt rodents like the pests they are. This rodent, you would never know he was and is a rodent.
  3. The feeding, the cleaning, all the excelsior cedar for their cages, we don’t need any of that.
  4. I never have to worry about him dying and explaining to the kids why we put him in a shoe box….I just crack him open and pop in new AAA batteries.

When the box arrived and I opened to see all the different habitrails I was a bit overwhelmed and spent a good amount of time putting the pieces together. Not that there is a lot to them, just there were a number of habit areas for the little rodent. Plus having an antsy five year old doesn’t help when you are trying to put something together as fast as you can so they can begin playing. So here is what some of the “habitrails” looked like partially assembled:

Now with any toy and or new animal you have to find a place for them and they all have little quirks, ticks, and annoyances for some parents, here are mine:

  1. Immediately had to change the batteries. As with any new toy as the batteries installed are for demo use only and not full play so they die within an hour of hard play.
  2. The habitrail comes apart easily requiring an adult to continuously put the contraptions back together.
  3. Mr. Squiggles didn’t like the wheel. He would fall over sideways, again requiring someone to fix him or get him off the wheel altogether.
  4. The hamster is ALWAYS making noise. I don’t mind toys that make noise, but there should be some shut off timer that after some time and no response the thing shuts up!
  5. He likes to back up A LOT, so going forward around the habitrail was a task for Mr. Squiggles.

Now I am not saying anything bad about the toy itself, just that I have higher preferences as a parent and mom about some of the toys my kids play with. Overall though my oldest boy LOVES Mr. Squiggles and the Go Go Pets toy. My twins, they like it because they can play demolition team on the house and chase the little fur ball. My philosophy is if the kids like it and are happy with the toy with no complaints….I’m good as well.

Here is a good deal about Go Go Pets… get one too!! Yup, you get your very own hamster and a habitrail. No muss or fuss of a real hamster, but your kids get to enjoy all the endless hours and entertainment that the cute little rodent brings! He has a love setting where he purrs for you and talks and his Go Go setting where he is on the move! Want to win your own Go Go Pet and habitrail? Here is what you will get:

One Hamster – Chunk

One habitrail – Car & Garage

Now here are all the rules for playing and you must post a comment for each entry and the additional entries thereafter to increase your odds (1 comment = 1 entry, Rinse and Repeat). Let me also say…if you don’t follow the rules… loot…….no email, no loot, rules are made for a reason and to avoid spammers! So let the fun begin:

  1. Follow my blog and tell me you do so or have done so, make sure you leave a valid email addy. (Worth 1 entry)
  2. Subscribe to my blog in a feed, then come tell me you did so. (Worth 1 entry)
  3. Follow me on Twitter @KariewithaK come back and tell me so (Worth 2 entries)
  4. Tweet my giveaway on Twitter, come back and tell me you did, one per day please! (Worth 3 entries)
  5. Grab my button to your right, add it to your blog, come back and give me the link showing you did! (Worth 5 entries)
  6. Tell me why you would want one of these cute little fur balls for your kiddos, with your valid email addy. (Worth 2 entries)
  7. Blog about this giveaway with the Mom Select button below and my button, come back and give me the link. (Worth 6 entries!!)
Now if you do not provide a valid email address you will be excluded from the drawing. The giveaway ends on June 7th @ Midnight AZ Time. I will choose a winner from

Good luck and have fun!

If it’s too good to be true…..

Then the offer generally is and not legit. I have learned this lesson the hard way in my life. The good life comes with LOTS and LOTS of hard work, elbow grease, suffering sometimes, pain, but most of all blood, sweat, and tears of hard work. I know, as most other working folks do, the good life and good things in life come with that price.

However, in this economy people are willing to do anything, no matter how simple or how complex to make a living. Unfortunately too, there are some real shit bags that will take you for all you are worth. They strip you of your bank account first, and then the rest of your life is stripped because you cannot afford to maintain your life, and finally, you are stripped of your pride.

Folks, take heed in these hard economic times. Don’t be a victim to scammers, easy jobs that may require a little bit of hard work but not a lot in the grand scheme are scams. Anything and I mean ANYTHING that wants you to pay money up front is a bunch of HOGWASH!! I have worked in the car business, mortgages, sales, finance, and I have never asked anyone for money on something that they didn’t get the product and work hard to get it, first! Never give out your credit card number, bank account, nothing!! If you want to know where I am going with this, please go check out my sister Brittany’s blog where she talks about how our brother got scammed and he isn’t the only one, especially in this rough economy where jobs are scarce. Below is also the names of the websites of the scamming companies to watch for.

Leaving you with my favorite quote from
The Weatherman (2005) with Nicholas Cage and Michael Caine:
Nothing that has meaning is easy.