The Bearded Iris

A Recalcitrant Wife and Mother Tells All

You are going to want one of these books for your kids

I get a lot of PR pitches to review and/or giveaway stuff on my blog. Most of them are pretty crappy pitches. Here’s a tip, if you’re pitching something to a blogger, take two frickin’ minutes and get to know the blogger first. For instance, even though I have a goatee on my avatar, if you address me as “Dear Sir,” I jump on that delete key faster than Honey Boo Boo on a dropped Cheese Ball.

Needless to say, due to the sheer volume and crapitude of most of these pitches, I rarely respond.

But I received one a while back that caught my eye.

It was from a couple in Ohio who makes children’s books.

“Dear Leslie,

The wife Susan & I created a kids’ book. It’s a custom photo book kinda like Where’s Waldo but uniquely made for each kid. We are looking to expand our media and found your dancing ad promo. Nice moves by the way…”

He knew my real name. (Nice.) He sounded like a decent hardworking midwestern guy with his whole “The wife & I” schtick. (I’m listening.) He complimented my dance moves. (Bonus points.)

And thus, an email conversation began.

His book is called Find Me If You Can!™  Tom offered to make a free one for Bucket Head, so I checked out his website and was immediately intrigued.

I decided to send him a photo of Bucket Head so I could see if I liked the quality of the book enough to want to do a review on my blog.

As cute as my Bucket Head is, the boy ain’t the most photogenic child I’ve ever pushed out of my baby maker.

Bucket Head ain't the most photogenic child I ever pushed out of my baby maker.

See what I mean? (Bless his heart. He gets it from his Mama.)

But I finally found one I thought would work and emailed it to Tom.

bucket head on his 5th birthday

About 10 days later I received my book.

I think it will be easier for you to see Bucket Head’s reaction to it than it would be for me to tell you about it, so here—have a look.

I wanted to keep the video short, so what you don’t see is the following:

  • Mini-Me (who is almost 10-years-old) took one look at this book and wanted a copy for herself with her own little face on each page.
  • My children stopped fighting for the first time all day while they worked together to find little Bucket Head’s photo on every page.
  • Bucket Head kept going back to the book for days after he received it.
  • Every time his friends come over, this book is the first thing he shows them: “Look! I’m in a book!”
my kids enjoying their new find me if you can book

Folks, I am telling you—you need one of these books for your kids or grandkids. This is THE coolest personalized gift we have ever received. (No offense Aunt Debbie, the kids love their monogrammed towels and all, but it’s hard to compete with seeing their face on every page of a Find Me If You Can! book.)

I’ve done all the research for you, so let me point out some of the book’s features based on questions I’ve already asked Tom and Sue.

1.) There is a spiral binding on the inside of this hardcover book because Tom and Sue have found that to be the sturdiest option, even though it costs them more to produce it that way.

2.) Yes, if you have multiple children, you can put siblings in the same book, but it will cost a little more due to the extra labor required. Plus, the more kids you put in the same book, the more crowded the magnifying glass on the title page will be.

title page of find me if you can

This is the title page in Bucket Head’s book.

3.) Based on the child’s age and ability, Tom and Sue can customize the number of random faces that appear on each page. They have done as few as 12 faces a page for children with learning disabilities. My book has ~120 faces per page and it was just the right level of difficulty for Bucket Head.

space page of find me if you can

4.) Don’t worry – your child’s face will not be used in other people’s books (unless you want that, and if so, you just have to sign a photo release form).

The books are $29.99 each and cost $4.95 to ship anywhere in the USA. For a limited time only (the next 7 days), Tom and Sue are offering my readers a special 10% discount ($3.00) on each book. Just go to to place your order and use the promo code BUCKETHEAD.

Tom and Sue have also generously offered to give away 5 of these books for FREE (with free shipping) to 5 of my fabulous readers! 

Want one?

Let’s do this.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I’ll announce the winners next Wednesday.

If you are a blogger and would like a free personalized book to review on your own blog, please email me at Iris <at> TheBeardedIris <dot> com and I’ll introduce you to Tom and Sue.

Yours truly,

PS – I’m creating a photo album on Facebook so we can post the worst photos of our kids. Please join me at The Bearded Iris page to share yours.

Disclaimer – I received a free book in order to personally experience it for this review. As always, all opinions are my own. 



  1. This is genius! My 2.5yr old would dig this!

  2. What a great giveaway. My four-year-old granddaughter would be ecstatic to find her cute face in a book!

  3. My boys would love this! and I would love to see them sit next to each other for 10 minutes without fighting!

  4. I love this idea! Definitely buying one for my son if I don’t win 😉

  5. My boys would love one of these. If I win, I’ll probably have to buy another one for my other son.

  6. Love it! I need one for my 5 year old.

  7. What a tremendous idea. My grandsons would love this.

  8. I must get one for Ally. Her other grandmother for her birthday had a Dora Birthday video with Ally’s face in it. That was a great gift, but I love this too! Thanks for the heads up!

  9. OMG – I would LOVE one of these books for my son. Even though he’s only 2.5, I know he would LOVE looking for his picture on each page…I’m also thinking Christmas presents…my nephew, goddaughter, godson, etc…

  10. Ooops, I didn’t follow directions!

    I would love this book for either of my children–a 7-year old daughter who loves to look at pictures and a 5-year old son who doesn’t ever get new books since he gets all of his sister’s hand-me-down books. So this would be a two-for for him: brand new AND about him!!!

    Thanks, Leslie!

  11. Tom & Sue Marzella

    October 7, 2012 at 8:09 am

    Dear Leslie,
    Thank you for the wonderful post and thank you to all of your readers who made such great comments. We can see all the hard work you put into your blog. A true pro you are.
    Tom & Sue

  12. Thanks for chance to win!

  13. I absolutely *love* this! It makes my mama heart *and* my teacher heart happy! #Win I want this for my kids. I don’t know which one yet? All of them? #Indecisive

  14. My daughter would absolutely love this!!!

  15. My two boys would be thrilled to get these for Christmas!

  16. My older son loves his books. I think he would go nuts for one where he gets to find his own face. Thanks!

  17. I’d love to win this for my daughter – it will definitely keep her entertained for hours!

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