Tag: MelandNikkiReview

Juan Has The Jitters

Juan Has The Jitters is a story about inclusion, diversity, and the power of math to help one boy with autism thrive among his peers.”


Juan claps his hands to get his Jitters out. They make his tummy swoosh and swirl. His Jitters happen when there are too many people, too much noise, or too many changes to his day, Juan doesn’t like surprises.

Tomorrow there is an athletic event planned at school, which makes Juan very nervous. But his teacher has the perfect solution: math – Juan’s favorite subject! Counting, sorting, and matching help Juan calm his Jitters. By making math part of the day’s athletic games, and by appointing Juan the official judge, his teacher can make sure that Juan will have fun and feel included. The class is calling it the Mathletic Games!


Juan has the Jitters is a great children’s book and one that we would recommend for all to read as it helps teach kids about neurodiversity, inclusion and how we are all unique. We loved how the teacher came up with a creative way to empower Juan and show his amazing talent that he can offer the class.

You can’t help but cheer with the whole class at the end as Juan does an amazing job. Juan claps along with his class and this time it wasn’t for the jitters but for the joy of clapping with his classmates. Simply beautiful and it tugged at our heartstrings.

For this #MelAndNikkiReview, we give it 10 claps out of 5! A must read and a story that will empower our young readers to be inclusive of all no matter of their super powers. 🙂

If you would like to purchase this amazing book, click here. The age recommendation would be four to eight years old. This book would make a great book for teachers as it nurtures on multiple domains of scholastic development.

About the Author

Aneta Cruz is a pre-K teacher and children’s book author. She holds a credential in early childhood special education, a BA in English literature, and an MFA in creative writing. When she’s not reading, writing, or eating Nutella by the spoonful, she teaches her class of preschoolers how to love books (and other things) as much as she does. She divides her time between the Czech Republic and Southern California, where she lives with her husband, two children, and Poe, the cutest ugly dog in the world.

About the Illustrator

Miki Yamamoto has been drawing since a very early age. Most of her childhood was spent in her room sketching, coloring, and painting to entertain herself. She studied illustration at Cal State University, Long Beach and has worked for Hallmark Cards, Disney, and Amscan Party. Miki has won numerous awards as a children’s book illustrator. She resides in Southern California with her wigglebutt Aussie, Bella.

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

-Momma Braga

*This book was provided in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are our own. We do not make commission on book sales.

Flying Painting The Zhou Brothers: A Story of Revolution and Art

“A Story of Revolution and Art is an epic story of two Chinese brothers who became art-world legends, illustrated with stunning paintings by the artists themselves.”


First there was one Zhou brother, and then there were two. They lived in a bookstore with their grandmother, Po Po, whose stories of paintings that flew through the air and landed on mountain cliffs inspired them to create their own art. Amid the turbulence of China’s Cultural Revolution in the 1970s, the Zhou Brothers began painting together on the same canvas. Today, ShanZuo and DaHuang Zhou are icons in the art world, renowned for working side by side on all their paintings and sculptures.


Flying Painting The Zhou Brothers: A Story of Revolution and Art is based on a true story and it gives us a glimpse of the lives of the Zhou brothers who changed the world of art.

In this extraordinary biography, author Amy Alznauer joins with the Zhou Brothers to tell the story of their unique and often difficult childhood and their pursuit of a wild, impossible dream. The lyrical writing blends elements of legend, while the brothers’ dramatic illustrations soar with vibrant colors and surreal imagery from ancient Chinese cliff paintings.

This children’s story is inspiring for young artists and dreamers of all kinds, this deeply felt collaboration explores how art can bring people together, as well as set them free. For this #MelAndNikkiReview, we give this story 5 stars out of 5.

If you would like to purchase a copy of this book, click here. The age recommendation for this book is five to nine years old.

About the Author

Amy Alznauer is the author of The Boy Who Dreamed of Infinity, illustrated by Daniel Miyares. She has a master’s degree in creative writing from the University of Pittsburgh. When she isn’t writing, she is teaching calculus and number theory classes at Northwestern University or spending time with her family in Chicago.

About the Illustrator

ShanZuo Zhou and DaHuang Zhou were born in China, where they started painting together on the same canvas. They left behind a promising art career in China when they moved to the United States, where they have flourished as fine artists creating work that is sold around the world, including a painting commissioned by President Obama and gifted to President Hu of China. They are the founders of the Zhou B Art Center in Chicago, where new artists work and show their art.

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

-Momma Braga

*This book was provided in exchange for an honest reviews. All opinions expressed are our own. We do not make commission on book sales.

Switch & Go Series Will Transform Playtime Fun

Switch & Go will ignite your child’s imagination as you transform the toys in the series. You can turn the Switch & Go that you pick into either a helicopter, bulldozer, racer or into other forms. It all depends on which one you pick but you will have a great time either way! A must have this holiday season.” – Momma Braga

Switch & Go™ Velociraptor Helicopter

Switch between a Velociraptor and a helicopter with an LCD screen that changes from dino eyes to a pilot. Enjoy awesome sound effects and cool phrases in both modes.

Race and roar into a supercool world where ferocious dinosaurs change into tough vehicles with the Switch & Go™ Velociraptor Helicopter! The swift, smart raptor inspires imaginative play with animated LCD eyes and dinosaur sound effects and phrases. Launch the rocket claw! Then switch up playtime by transforming the dino into a heroic helicopter with a few simple moves. Watch how the dino eyes on the LCD screen turn into a helicopter pilot and hear how the voice changes, too! Turn on the search light or spin the helicopter’s rotor blades for role-play action. Bring your Switch & Go™ world to life with 70+ responses and sound effects in both modes. Challenge the other Switch & Go dinos to a fearsome match-up. Who is most powerful? Strongest? Toughest? Smartest? Dinosaurs rule! Additional Switch & Go™ dinosaurs sold separately.
Intended for ages 4–8 years. Requires 2 AA batteries. Batteries included for demo purposes only. New batteries recommended for regular use.


Switch & Go™ Velociraptor Helicopter has transformed our playtime to loads of fun! It offers very cool features such as the LED button; talk button to hear the dino or pilot talk; sound effects to hear the cool sound effects; searchlight; launch activator; propeller activator and motion sensor. Yes lots of features to check out!

What got us most excited about was transforming it from a velociraptor to helicopter. It took Nikki just a minute to figure out how to change it all and she decided it would be best to demonstrate it in a video. Nikki also shares her rating in the video below. I think her rating hits a new record on the #MelAndNikkiReview.

You heard it directly from Nikki as she gives the Switch & Go Velociraptor Helicopter ten hundred out of 5! This is one of the coolest toys we have played with and we do recommend it for girls and boys. Let your imagination literally soar with this velociraptor and all the others in the series. The Switch & Go series is available exclusive at Mastermind Toys. To learn more, click here.
Until next time…Happy Parenting!
-Momma Braga
*Please note that this toy was provided in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are our own and we do not make commission off of toy sales.

Bring The Inner Star Out With The KidiZoom Creator Cam

“KidiZoom Creator Cam brought out the inner star in our little one as she embraced her own series called, Nikki Talk. It offered all the tools she needed to be creative and create her own videos in a safe environment. This product is on our hot and recommended list.” – Momma Braga

KidiZoom® Creator Cam

Be a kid creator with the KidiZoom® Creator Cam digital camera! Create awesome videos with this high-definition video camera kit. Use the included green screen and 20+ animated backgrounds to get chased by a T-Rex, go to outer space or make yourself disappear! Set up your shot with the tabletop tripod/selfie stick and built-in microphone, then use the easy on-screen editing and creativity tools to create trick shots and time-lapse video.

Intended for ages 5–10 years. Video can only be uploaded via included USB cable at parent’s discretion. Green screen required for some special effects. Camera has a microSD card slot to increase storage up to 32 GB (card not included). Requires 3.7-volt lithium ion battery, included. Recharge battery with included USB cable.


KidiZoom Creator Cam is the must have product of the year! The reasons are endless as we have been loving it since the moment it arrived in our home. Nikki shrieked in excitement and couldn’t wait to give the KidiZoom into action.

Here are Nikki’s highlights of why she loves the KidiZoom Creator Cam and why it will be the hottest product of the year.

Creative Videos

The options and backgrounds available to do the videos provides the landscape of creativity. Nikki loved creating her own videos and mixing them up for her series of “Nikki Talk.” Her favorites are the Award Show (she is always winning many awards), the dinosaur (she loves pretending to be outrunning one), and News Report (she loves keeping everyone informed on the Nikki latest).

As a parent I love this feature as it offers so much and to see my child create and grow is amazing. Each video Nikki creates is better than the next as she gets more creative with each one. Nikki has been comfortable sharing her videos online which is perfectly fine as we get to enjoy them together as a family. It provides us with great entertainment and created by our little one.

High Quality Photos

We love capturing photos and Nikki is not shy to smile for the camera. Now she has her very own with a selfie stick included to take all her special moments on her own time. Nikki loves selecting the different borders available for her photos. We must mention that she also enjoys taking unexpecting photos of us and then we laugh when we look back at them. It has given us the opportunity to create some fun memories together.


There are three built-in games that you can play which are Cake Master, River Cat and Bee Mission. Nikki’s favorite is Bee Mission and if she isn’t creating videos or snapping photos; then she will be playing Bee Mission and collecting as much honey as possible. How sweet! 😉

Easy to Operate

At first you may wonder how your child or you will navigate all the amazing features that the KidiZoom Creator Cam offers. However, no need to fear as they are easy to grasp and before you know it, your child will have everything memorized. Nikki now shows us every single feature and how to make everything work. It amazes me how quickly kids can pick everything up. All you need is set up the basics and watch them shine like the star that they are.

For this #MelAndNikkiReview, we give this product 10 million stars out of 5! “This is the best camera ever! It is so much fun and I love looking back to see what I created by myself. I get so proud that I can do something all on my own and be my own star.” – Nikki. Age 6.

If you would like to purchase this amazing camera for a star in your family, click here. You will need to do it quick as this item will be a hot one this holiday season.

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

-Momma Braga

*Please note that this product was provided in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are our own and we do not make commission off of product sales.

RockIt Twist The Portable Game System That Rocks!

“RockIt Twist is a portable game system that truly rocks! Bring a different twist to learning fun to a child with this great product by LeapFrog.” – Momma Braga

RockIt Twist™ Handheld Gaming System

Twist, turn, play and learn with the RockIt Twist™ rotatable, single-player game system with three profiles! Four sides of colorful, light-up controls include buttons, dials, a spinner, slider, switch and D-pad to provide a totally unique way to play exciting video games. During game play, one of the eight game controls will light up to indicate when each control is needed throughout a game. Nurture three adorable virtual RockIt Pets™ that hatch and grow from eggs. 12 preloaded games across five game play categories have three levels of difficulty that help kids learn skills including literacy, math, problem-solving and creativity all while having fun! Since there’s no need for Wi-Fi, kids can play anywhere. Listen to your own music with the built-in MP3 player. Volume controls and headphone jack are also included. Game packs (sold separately) include more games, plus a new RockIt Pets™ virtual pet and a RockIt Pets™ figure to match.

Great for ages four to eight years. Rechargeable batteries included.

Feature Highlights

There are so many amazing features of the RockIt Twist™ that your child will just adore. Here are some of the highlights.

Light-up game controls

Four sides of colorful light-up controls to turn and play include a switch, spinner, dials, buttons and D-pad that surround the screen for a unique play experience.

Learning Games

Explore literacy, math, problem solving, science, creativity and social-emotional skills through three levels of age-appropriate curriculum.

Virtual RockIt Pets™

Nurture, play and grow three virtual pets.

Soft Bumper

Protective bumper is designed to help protect against short drops.

MP3 Player

Add your own music via USB and play it using the built-in speaker with play it using the built-in speaker with volume control or plug headphones (sold separately) into the headphone jack.

Compact and Portable

Perfectly sized for kids’ hands and doesn’t require Wi-Fi so it’s great for on-the-go play.

Three Profiles

Includes two regular profiles and a guest profile. Both regular profiles can save their progress and grow their own pets. Amazing feature especially for siblings to share without the fuss. 😉

Themed Game Packs

Download more games, plus get a new RockIt Pet virtual pet and figure to match (each sold separately).


RockIt Twist™ is the perfect game system for your child. The features mentioned above are all fantastic and it teaches so much while having fun. It offers creativity, literacy, mathematics, problem solving and social emotional in game form.

Gaming with a twist is exactly what you can expect from this great product and it will be well received this holiday season. You can even add onto this game with other games which are sold separately.

For this #MelAndNikkiReview we give the RockIt Twist™ 10 twists out of 5!This will be a hot and must have this holiday season.

If you would like to purchase the RockIt Twist™click here.

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

-Momma Braga

*Please note that this product was provided in exchange of an honest review. All opinions expressed are our own and we do not make commission on sales.

In The Half Room Book Review

In The Half Room gives us a full beautiful story in halves. A great children’s story that opens up conversations on perspectives. Truly delightful.” – Momma Braga


The half room is full of half things. A half chair, a half cat, even half shoes – all just as nice as whole things. When half a knock comes on half a door, who in the world could it be?

With inventive flair, Caldecott Honoree Carson Ellis explores halves and wholes in an ingenious and thought-provoking picture book. Ink and gouache illustrations featuring wry detail and velvety textures conjure a dreamlike mood while leaving space for imagining. A celebration of the surreal and the serendipitous and the beauty of the two together, this brilliant picture book will have readers seeing halves with whole new eyes.


In The Half Room truly brought out the whole in halves. 😉 It was an intriguing story to read and got us talking about how we see things in our world. Two halves make a whole and that can be applied with relationships. This is why sometimes we say, “This is my better half.”

It was such a delightful read and the best part of this book for us was having Nikki read it to us on her own. It makes reading time that more fun for me and watching how proud she was to read it. Of course the concept of a half cat had her giggling especially when the other half started to interact with the other half. You will need to read the story to find out what we mean. 😉

For this #MelAndNikkiReview, we give this book 10 stars out of 5! An intriguing and delightful story that will have you opening the conversations on perceptions and how sometimes you need to look at things half full.

“This book was fun to read and I really liked the cat part. Two halves do make a whole and it can always be found.” – Nikki, Age 6

If you would like to purchase this book, please click here.

About the Author

Carson Ellis is the author-illustrator of the best-selling picture books Home and Du Iz Tak?,  a Caldecott Honor Book and E.B. White Read-Aloud Award winner. She has illustrated a number of books, including The Shortest Day by Susan Cooper. Carson Ellis lives in Portland Oregon, with her family.

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

-Momma Braga

*Please note that this book was provided in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are our own. We do not make commission on book sales.

A Polar Bear In The Snow

“A Polar Bear In The Snow will take you on an intriguing journey that will be a delightful read for children. Another amazing story by Mac Barnett!” – Momma Braga


A majestic polar bear heads out on a mysterious walk in a dazzling, playful collaboration from an exciting pair of picture-book creators.

Follow a magnificent polar bear through a fantastic world of snow and shockingly blue sea. Over the ice, through the water, past Arctic animals and even a human…where is he going? What does he want?

Acclaimed author Mac Barnett’s narration deftly balances suspense and emotion, as well as poignant, subtle themes, compelling us to follow the bear with each page turn. Artist Shawn Harris’s striking torn-paper illustrations layer white-on-white hues, with bolts of blue and an interplay of shadow and light, for a gorgeous view of a stark yet beautiful landscape.


A Polar Bear in the Snow takes us on a polar bear journey which is intriguing through words and illustrations. The perfect combination for a delightful reading time for children.

We absolutely adored this book and it is no surprise as Mac Barnett is one of our favorite authors. He does not disappoint in this beautiful polar bear tale.

Simple and thought-provoking, illuminating and intriguing, this engaging picture book will have readers pondering the answer to its final question long after the polar bear has continued on his way.

“My favorite part was when he passed the seals. First you think that is who he is visiting and then you find out he is just passing through. I love seals.” – Nikki, Age 6

For this #MelAndNikkiReview, we give it 10 polar bears out of 5! The perfect story to read while cuddling on family night with a nice cup of hot chocolate!

If you would like to purchase a copy of this book, click here.

About the Author

Mac Barnett is the author of several books for children, including Extra Yarn, illustrated by Jon Klassen, which won a Caldecott Honor and a Boston Globe – Horn Book Award; Sam and Dave Dig a Hole and The Wolf, the Duck, and the Mouse, both also illustrated by Jon Klassen; and President Taft Is Stuck in the Bath; illustrated by Chris Van Dusen. Mac Barnett lives in California.

About the Illustrator

Shawn Harris’s debut picture book, Her Right Foot, written by Dave Eggers, was named an Orbis Pictus Honor Book, an American Library Association Notable Children’s Book, and a Publishers Weekly Best Children’s Book of the Year. He began his illustration career in the early 2000s when he designed the album art for his band the Matches, for whom he continues to moonlight as a singer-songwriter. He lives near Mac.

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

-Momma Braga

*Please note that this book was provided in exchange of an honest review. All opinions expressed are our own. We also do not make commission off of book sales.

Julián At The Wedding

“Julián at the Wedding is a beautiful children’s story that reminds us that everything is easier with a good friend by our side.” – Momma Braga


Julián and his abuela are going to a wedding. Better yet, Julián is in the wedding. Weddings have flowers and kissing and dancing and cake. And this wedding also has a new friend named Marisol.

It’s not long before Julián and Marisol set off for some magic and mischief of their own, and when things take an unexpected turn, the pair learns that everything is easier with a good friend by your side.

Jessica Love returns with a joyful story of friendship and individuality in this radiant follow-up to Julián Is A Mermaid.


Julián at the Wedding is a beautiful children’s story that embraces uniqueness, friendship and love. We truly enjoyed reading this book and Nikki loved how kind Julián is with his new friend Marisol. We also enjoyed the joy everyone was having in celebrating love at a wedding.

We got a sneak peek at the author’s interview on her book and we loved her answer of what she hopes the reader gets out of her book.

“It’s also a story about making a friend by sharing a feeling of complicité, about connecting in a moment of vulnerability. It is a story about the power of dress-up, and it’s a celebration of nature, love, and of course, dancing. I suppose my hope for the book is a simple one: that it will make people happy.” – Jessica Love

For this #MelAndNikkiReview, we give it 5 stars out of 5! If you would like to purchase this book, click here.

About the Author

Jessica Love is an actor and the author-illustrator of Julián Is A Mermaid. She has a BA in studio art from the University of California, Santa Cruz, as well as a graduate degree from Juilliard. She has appeared in plays both on and off Broadway. Jessica Love lives in Brooklyn.

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

-Momma Braga

*Please note that this book was provided in exchange of an honest review. All opinions expressed are our own and we do not make commission on book sales.

Helping Heroes Fire Station

“Helping Heroes Fire Station brings out the inner heroes in your little one. This toy is amazing as it can transform from the fire station to fire truck, offering many hours of fun and learning.” – Momma Braga

Helping Heroes Fire Station

Calling all helpers! It’s time to jump into action with the Helping Heroes Fire Station. Firefighters Fiona and Frankie sleep, relax and work out in the multi-level fire station. Get ready for a rescue by checking the equipment and learning how to be a firefighter. When it’s time for action, drop Fiona or Frankie through the opening and into the mini rescue vehicle. Transform the fire station into a fire truck and head out to be a hero. There’s a kitten stuck in a tree – put up the extension ladder! Place firefighters Frankie and Fiona on the Talking Point location to hear sound effects, music and phrases about their roles as firefighters. Music & Sounds, Explore & Train and Rescue Mission play modes combine with three action buttons to create an imaginative and learning-packed play experience for little firefighters.

Intended for ages 1.5 – 4 years. Requires 2 AA batteries. Batteries included for demo purposes only. New batteries recommended for regular use.


Helping Heroes Fire Station is a transforming playset that changes from a multi-level fire station to a fire truck and comes with Fiona, Frankie, a rescue vehicle, helicopter and ladder. Place firefighters Frankie and Fiona on the Talking Point location to hear fun sounds, music and phrases about their roles as firefighters.

Press the Action Buttons to get training, hear sound effects and see colorful lights. Press the Water Hose to pretend to spray water to put out the fire. Loads of fun and learning await for your little one with this awesome playset!

For this #MelAndNikkiReview, we give the Helping Heroes Fire Station 10 fires out of 5! Nikki loves playing with this playset and loves all the special features such as the melodies and song lyrics.

As a parent, I love all the motor skill development that can be learned for little ones. There are also seems to be so many new things to explore within the playset itself. This definitely is a must have toy for little ones.

Bring a big smile to your little one this holiday season with this great toy. If you would like to purchase it, click here.

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

-Momma Braga

*Please note that this product was provided in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are our own and we do not make commission on toy sales.

Myla’s Sparkling Friends | Toy Review

“Myla’s Sparkling Friends Mia the Unicorn is the perfect gift for a child. Mia provides a colorful world of magic that a child can embrace in and use their creativity to have even more fun.” – Momma Braga

Myla’s Sparkling Friends Mia the Unicorn

Playtime is magical with Myla’s Sparkling Friends Mia the Unicorn! This beautiful unicorn toy talks, sings and lights up with a kaleidoscope of colors. Touch Mia’s magical necklace, then touch her horn, eyes and wings to change their color. Mia will respond with more than 100 fun, magical responses about her mood, feelings and lucky colors. Sing a colorful duet with Mia by touching her mouth. Squeeze Mia’s legs to flap her wings and trigger lights and playful responses. Brush her mane and tail using the included comb and add some extra flair with two hair clips for you to share. Collect all of Myla’s Sparkling Friends (each sold separately) for more colorful play!

Intended for ages 4+ years. Requires 2AAA batteries. Batteries included for demo purposes only. New batteries recommended for regular use.

Product Features

Myla’s Sparkling Friends Mia the Unicorn offers so much fun for children and here are some of our favorites.

Color Mia

Mia lights up in the colors you choose for her. Press Mia’s Charm Button to choose a color. Then, touch her eyes, horn and wings to add the selected color to them. Nikki’s favorite colors are red and pink on Mia but you really can’t go wrong with any of the colors. 🙂

Mia’s Mood

Mia expresses her mood through color. Press her Light-Up Horn Button to see how she feels. Then, touch her eyes or wings for some additional color commentary.

Color Fun

Mia likes to pick a lucky color for you. Press her Wing Sensor and she’ll select a lucky color and tell you how that color makes her feel.

Tell Mia Your Wishes

Mia wants you to share your wishes and dreams with her. Cover and hold one of Mia’s Eye Sensors and she’ll ask you to tell her your wishes. Keep her Eye Sensor covered as you tell her. Uncover her Eye Sensor and she’ll tell you how much she loves your wishes.

We absolutely love this feature and Nikki loves making wishes. The best part for Nikki is having Mia tell her how much she loves Nikki’s wishes. These wishes have become special to Nikki as she won’t share them so they will come true. 😉

Musical Mia

Mia loves to sing. Tap Mia’s Mouth Button, and she will sing, hum or even surprise you with a kiss! Careful, sometimes she even burps!

Nikki loves the kisses and the burps make Nikki giggle. We love the burps as it happens to the best of us and Mia does it in the most adorable way!

Flying Fun

Who wouldn’t want to fly?! Mia sure does love to fly and you can help her by flapping her wings by pressing her Leg Lever. She’ll make magical sounds and cheer as she pretends to zoom through the sky.

Cuddle and Care

Every unicorn needs love. Pet Mia’s Eye Sensors or Wing Sensor to take care of her and get some fun surprises. 😉


Myla’s Sparkling Friends Mia the Unicorn is the perfect addition for playtime. You can have hours of fun with all the great features and you can collect them all! Yes there are other friends to get and Nikki has her eyes on all of them!

Mia provides a colorful world of magic that a child can embrace in and use their creativity to have even more fun.

“It is fun and the best toy because it changes colors and sings to you. Mia is the perfect unicorn friend and you know how much I love unicorns mom!” – Nikki, Age 6

For this #MelAndNikkiReview, we give Mia the Unicorn 10 rainbows out of 5! According to Nikki our rating should actually be one hundred million so it clearly went off the charts! If you would like to purchase Mia the Unicorn from this collection, click here.

To see more of Myla’s Friends, click here.

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

-Momma Braga

*Please note that this product was provided in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are our own.