Posts Tagged ‘giveaway’

In the Dark with Franklin for Earth Hour (Giveaway)

Earth Hour is this Saturday and my kids are really excited. We spend so much time immersed in technology (iPads, computers, video game systems, TV) I think they’re actually look forward to a little quiet time. You never saw that coming did you. Actually, I think they’re looking forward to flashlights (checkout EverythingMom for this really fun rechargeable flashlight the kids will love). After making shadow puppets and telling stories we’ll be settling down to a few stories by flashlight.

If you plan on celebrating Earth Hour with little ones, why not enjoy some flashlight reading with Paulette BourgeoisFranklin in Franklin in the Dark. Twenty-five years ago, a little turtle named Franklin conquered his fear of the dark with the help of a night-light. Since the 1986 publication of Franklin in the Dark, Franklin has brightened story time for millions of children worldwide, selling over 60 million books in more than 30 languages.

To celebrate the 25th anniversary of the world’s most beloved turtle, Kids Can Press is marking the occasion with a special, larger-format edition of Franklin in the Dark that offers a fun behind-the-scenes peek at this Canadian classic, including an excerpt of the first manuscript and a selection of original sketches.


In celebration of 25 years of Franklin, I am giving away one (1) copy of the special 25th Anniversary Edition of Franklin in the Dark to one of me readers today (sorry, Canada only). To enter leave a comment below with one other Franklin book you’ve enjoyed (there are over 30 different titles).

For an extra entry tweet the following (be sure to leave a separate comment): Fingers crossed I win the 25th Anniversary Franklin in the Dark from @cbadov

Contest closes midnight March 24, 2011, after which I’ll randomly choose a name from those qualified entries.

For other great books for kids, read through my Write a Review Wednesday reviews. Enjoy your time in the dark this Saturday.

Flip Friday: Christmas Concerts and Wish Lists

I received my Flip Mino HD yesterday, just in time for my kids Christmas concert at school; what a perfect place to try it out. I had to charge my Flip before heading out and since my computer wasn’t turned on at the moment I thought I’d use my mophie USB dual charger or car charger, but neither seemed to work. So on went the computer. My mac’s USB was behind the screen so it was a little awkward to plug-in (I could use my USB buddy without a problem which helped).

At the concert I realized I didn’t look at the instructions on how to use my Flip Mino HD but it was pretty intuitive. All the buttons are on the back of the camera (except for the power button and the switch to pop out the USB). The placement works well as you’re holding the camera up in front of you and moving your thumb over the buttons. The record button is indented making it easy to find without really looking at the camera. You can zoom in a out easily, but the zoom is somewhat limited if you are shooting from a distance. Having the buttons back-lit really helped at the Christmas concert too (no squinting to try to make out where the buttons were) and I was able to record this:

You’ll have to excuse the shakiness. One thing I did discover that since the video screen is small it’s hard to detect hand movement when you’re holding the Flip Mino HD (and we were holding our hand up in front of us for a quite a bit). These small shaky movements seem to be exaggerated when viewing them in the editing software.

FlipShare (editing software)

A great feature of the Flip Mino HD is that it comes loaded with all the software you’ll need to edit and share your videos. The FlipShare software enabled me to trim my video clips by using a slider. Once all your clips are edited and saved to your computer, you can create a movie with either the one or multiple files. Just drop and drag them in the order you want your clips to appear, create a title and add credits, you can even include music and save. The FlipShare window has a status bar to let you know at what stage of saving your movie is at. If your movie has multiple clips, FlipShare automatically adds a dissolve treatment between each clip so the movie doesn’t seem jarring (though the smoothness of the dissolve is sometimes a little muddled on playback).

After filming distant activities, I tried a closer, one-on-one shot by recording my two daughter’s Santa wish lists (my son was at a Beaver’s Christmas party or else I’d have a clip of him also):

When I film I tend to talk and record a lot of material but I usually don’t keep most of it so editing is important. The FlipShare isn’t as easy to use as my iMovie software, but then again, my iMovie software didn’t seem that easy to use the first few times either. The FlipShare enabled me to take one clip and cut and save multiple mini clips and then put them all together into one movie.

Sharing on Youtube

One your movies are done, FlipShare gives you the option to upload right to your Youtube account (or other account) and like with making your movie, FlipShare will give you the status of how your upload is going. The only thing that’s missing with the upload is the option to add your video details (title, description, tags, categories). FlipShare adds information from Flip so if you want something different to appear you need to log into your account and update it. A minor inconvenience I guess.

Win a Flip Mino HD

As I mentioned in my original Flip post, pictures of kids are important but somethings are best on video. Capturing your child performing in their school concert (or goofing off as my son did) and the excitement when your child talks about what they want for Christmas, these things are best captured in video. Flip and Mom Central Canada want to give one of my readers their very own Flip Mino HD to record their own memories. To enter, visit my first post and comment as per that post’s instructions. After you’ve done, you can earn an bonus entry by commenting here, in this post, one thing you would record with your Flip Mino HD. And don’t forget, there’s one more Flip Friday (December 25) and therefore one more bonus entry to come.

Good luck. Let the flipping begin.

Flip for the Holidays

In our house Christmas is for the kids. Don’t get me wrong, my husband and I enjoy the holidays but I think we enjoy it so much more since having our own kids. There’s something about the excitement and surprise and wonderment that kids exude around the  holidays. And because they grow and change and mature, quickly, I want to capture as much of each stage as I can.

Pictures are great, they certainly show the changes kids go through and if caught at the right moment, they can show excitement and surprise and wonder. But somethings are best captured on video. There’s a whole other feeling and dimension to video.

The Flip Mino HD

In enters the Flip Mino HD. This compact, light-weight video camera weights 3.3 oz which is lighter and more compact than most cell phones. You can record up to 60 minutes of video at a resolution of 1280×720. The Flip Mino HD starts up quickly enabling you to capture impromptu video; you can start recording 3-seconds after the camera turns on. The Flip Mino HD has a built-in lithium ion rechargeable battery that can charged with the pop-out USB connection or a power adaptor (sold separately). The USB is tucked into the camera itself and only pops-out when you want to connect to your computer. This ensures the USB doesn’t get damaged as it’s tucked out of the way.

And after you’ve recorded your video, you can edit it and share it with others using the pre-loaded software on the Flip Mino HD. You can also view your video on your TV with the supplied AV cables. The simple control buttons are on the backside of the camera; all that’s required is a light touch over them (they’re flat on the camera versus buttons that stick out which adds to the slim look of the Flip Mino HD). The buttons are also backlit in case you happen to be shooting in a dark environment.

Win a Flip Mino HD

Who wouldn’t want a video camera to record those holiday memories, special moments and just everyday events, especially a camera that’s small and light enough to fit into your pocket. Well Flip ( @flipvideocanada) and Mom Central Canada ( @mc_canada) want to give you, one of you at least, your own Flip Mino HD video camera. To enter all you need to do is tell me who on your Christmas list you would give a Flip Mino HD to and why.  But be sure to tell me before December 31, 2009 because that’s when this contest closes (open to Canadian residents 18 years or older).

Bonus Entry: tweet the following and come back and post a comment letting me know you did (only counts as one bonus entry)

I’d flip to win a Flip from @mc_canada and @flipvideocanada #flip4holiday

Flip Fridays

I just received my Flip Mino HD and at first sight it seem great, certainly based on everything Flip says it can do. Now the real fun begins. Over the next few weeks I’ll be putting my Flip Mino HD video camera to the test and with the holidays and three kids I’ll have plenty of material to work with. I’ll be posting my thoughts and a clip or two on Flip Friday (December 18 and December 25) so be sure to come back and read my posts.

Another Bonus Entry

If reading about my thoughts on the Flip Mino HD isn’t enough incentive, you’ll have a chance for another bonus entry, on each Flip Friday post. Tomorrow is the first Flip Friday too. That’s four (4) possible entries for your own fabulous Flip Mino HD.

Good Luck. Let the flipping begin!

Update: picked Rebecca. Congratulations. Thanks for everyone who entered.