Thursday, September 18, 2014

Unity #abcblogging

Unity - this is a hard one.  I've seen so many families drift away because they didn't share the same beliefs.  It happens in churches too.  I think we are all a bit selfish to believe that everyone will live exactly the way we do.  To think the way we do.  To react the way we do. Our flesh tells us to do what feels good to us and what we want but that isn't what the bible says. 

There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death. - Proverbs 14:12

Maybe our thoughts are:

how could they still be doing that 


how could she say that

but we forget that Jesus has brought us to our current state of maturity.  Perhaps when you were 20 you still said some of those same things.  Maybe your still doing something that a more mature Saint in Christ thinks you should have learned by now. Perhaps you always say the wrong thing - put your foot in your mouth?

What does the bible say about unity?

 Finally, [be ye] all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, [be] pitiful, [be] courteous - 1 Peter 3:8

When we show that compassion and courtesy we are showing love.  By having these traits we will naturally flow to being all of one mind.

Which leads me to another verse:

 Fulfil ye my joy, that ye be likeminded, having the same love, [being] of one accord, of one mind. - Philippians 2:2

As you can see we are to strive to be likeminded and having the same love.  I believe that is talking about working towards unity in Jesus.

This post is part of #abcblogging with  Click on the picture below to see what other bloggers are saying about the letter U.

Ben and Me

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

My Student Logbook #REVIEW

My Student Logbook Review
I was recently sent a review product from My Student Logbook .  I really didn't have high expectations.  The product looked simple - and it is.  However that is what makes it so amazing.  It is not time consuming to implement.  I didn't expect this little book to be life changing for our homeschool
... but it was!

What I received:

My Student Logbook  in the Freedom Print - Undated -  $15.00

My Student Logbook Review
They also offer a dated version and a printable version. 

Recommended Age:  2nd grade +

What is it?

It is a spiral bound soft backed student planning book.  You have a spot to write the courses your child is taking and there is a spot to mark off what they've completed.

Setting up your student planner is a little different than other planners we have used.  You take a sheet physically out of the book and sort of fold it over and tape it onto the check-off pages.  Then it creates a pocket or folder for you to keep adding weekly check off pages.

This video really explains it best:

As you can see it is easy to set up.

How we used this product:

Last year I took a long time to lesson plan.  I took each book and wrote out a daily schedule for my kid's to check off.  It worked - but it was a lot of work.  This year for my oldest (9th grade) we started out the year by using My Student Logbook.  All I had to do is create the list of courses and attach.  Poof I was done!

How I set his book up is by putting his independent work at the top of the page and work he needs Mom's help with at the bottom.  He dates each school day at the top.  Then he brings me the book and I highlight the days work I want him to accomplish.  During the day he marks off what he has accomplished.

He likes checking the boxes off - it gives him a sense of accomplishment.  I like that each morning I can see what we've accomplished the day before and easily add to the schedule.  Because each week checkoff sheet has 7 slots - I can get a real glance of what subjects need more work.

For us we just check off in most of the subjects but it would be easy to write in a grade (say for math) or time (if you are in a state where you need to keep track of hours for credits.)  For gym I have him writing in the time for physical activity just so we can get an idea of how much time he spends each week.  

My Thoughts:

I loved this product!  It was so easy to set up and I didn't have to do a ton of scheduling or planning.  In fact it was such an easy and wonderful tool for me that I went ahead and ordered my middle son (7th grade) his own! I'm so pleased to have found a product that makes my life easier. 

There isn't really anything I would change.  My only suggestion is perhaps some additional cover choices.  Particularly more mature themes that boys wouldn't mind.  We lucked out with the Freedom cover and Vintage Map as our choices.  However there really isn't any other choices that would appeal to my boys.  They might have even been happy with just solid color choices.  I only mention it because I'm sure when we purchase them next year they will want a new choice.  (Yeah I'm already thinking ahead!)

Click to read Crew Reviews

Crew Disclaimer

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

The 7 Minute Life™ Daily Planner #REVIEW

7 Minute Life Daily Planner Review
For the past few weeks I've been reviewing a new planner from The 7 Minute Life.  This is a physical soft covered spiral bound planner.

What I received:

The 7 Minute Life™ Daily Planner  - $24.95

This planner is more than a just a planner.  It is designed to help you figure out your goals (short and long term) and how to achieve them with their formula.

In the front of the Planner you have sections for:

  • Introduction - which describes how to use the planner and each section
  • Prioritize - where you discover your priorities
  • Discovering you purpose - think mission statement for your life
  • A section for 90 day goals - personal, financial, life
  • A place to list unfinished work  & home tasks
  • at glance calendars 
  • and so much more!! 

The Daily Progress Report includes the following sections:

  • Daily Contacts
  • What I will do...5 before 11
  • "7 Minute Life" Connections
  • Unfinished Tasks
  • What I Spent
  • Appointments
  • Thank You Notes
  • Voice Mail
  • A Blank lined section
  • A small section that you can mark food, water, exercise, sleep

7 Minute Life Daily Planner Review

This product is designed for Moms (or Dads.)

How I used the planner:

I should start out by saying I'm not a fan of any planner.  I like the way they look and the idea of them but that is basically where I drop out of the picture.  I've bought many over the years and have yet to really use one consistently.  Now for this review - I signed up to use the product for about six weeks - so I was committed to spend some time with it. 

The first portion is more of a workbook to find out what matters to you and teach you how your going to achieve it.  I don't enjoy those type of reflection exercises.  Maybe I'm too in-tuned with what I want in life or maybe it felt to therapy- ish to me. While I didn't enjoy it I did see the merit in the activities and worked through them.  My life-theme of faith and family shone brightly as my passions and goals.  This wasn't a surprise to me.

Then I moved onto the planner part.  The actual pages break down in to ten categories.  I struggled with this because it felt more like it was designed for a corporate world rather than a stay at home mommy blogger.  I decided to break down the sections into things that fit my life.  I diligently filled out my 5 before 11 -  they tend to be the same thing everyday - bible, prayer, dishes, laundry, exercise.  I pretty much used the other spaces willy-nilly.  One might be prayer request (I changed spots several times) another became things I had to mail.  Important phone calls (like making a doctor appointment) went on the page and silly things like wash blue pants for church.  I did have satisfaction at night when I would re-review the list and was able to check off any last minute things.

I kept the planner by my bed and wrote in it each night.  Some days I would add things to the next few days.  This was helpful if I had an appointment or some task that had to be done on a certain day.  I only used the planner for planning Monday through Friday.  I felt that it was too much to plan out Saturday and Sunday with our schedules so it didn't make sense for me to fill those days out.

My Thoughts:

I really enjoyed the hourly schedule and the 5 before 11. The hourly schedule was nice to have an 'at-a-glance' view of my appointments for any given day.  While I don't have tons of appointments I do have doctors, car repairs, and lessons for the kids weekly.  I easily added them to the upcoming pages so that was done when I flipped to the page.

The 5 before 11 helped me with my overall productivity even if it tended to be the same tasks everyday.  There is something satisfying  about seeing your tasks done and checking them off.  I really did like that part.

Since I used the rest of the pages in a haphazard / eclectic manner I had fun with the planner.  I tend to be more artistic and this helped me with not being rigid in where I placed things.  I think the goal setting in the beginning of the planner was a nice project to help prioritize my life.  I wasn't surprised that faith and family were the two biggest priorities for me.

Click to read Crew Reviews

Crew Disclaimer

Monday, September 15, 2014


I had the opportunity to review Shelley Shepard Gray's newest book in the Return to Sugarcreek series, Joyful. USA Today raved: "A sweet, straightforward story about how love can be tested by family, faith, and personal insecurity. Enjoyable and heartwarming."

Click the banner for a chance to win books 1-3 in Shelley's Return to Sugarcreek series! 
Winner announced on Shelley's blog on 9/30.


My Thoughts:

I loved the character of Elizabeth! She was sweet and determined!  The characters were introduced early on in the book so the mystery was how would they find their way back to one another.  I loved the storyline of hiring Elizabeth to work for the family.  It was evident that she would get under Randall's skin the moment she came to their home!  I thought that they characters in this book were well-thought out and enjoyable to read.  I loved how they all had such strong bonds with family and how that transferred to their responsibilities as caretakers to their relatives. 

 You can purchase Joyful at your local book retailer or online at stores like Amazon.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Precisio Slant Tip Tweezers by Crave Naturals #REVIEW

I recently had the opportunity to test out Precisio Slant Tip Tweezers by Crave Naturals.  I personally use tweezers in my weekly arsenal for touch ups between visits to my eyebrow lady.  I'm very specific in my expectations.  They need to have a tight grip and pull out the intended hair.

I was completely pleased with this product.  They gripped great and worked perfect.  These tweezers are solid in build and will last a long time.


Perfect Tweezer Guaranteed
Precisio slanted tip tweezers are a must have for your makeup bag. Designed with a precise slanted tip, you will be able to get so close to the root of hairs so there is less pain in hair removal and no more ingrown hairs. Hair removal will be simple and pain free.
Each tweezer is hand filed and perfectly aligned to give you the professional results you are looking for. Guaranteed to stay sharp for life, Precisio tweezers do not require resharpening, nor replacement.

Comfort and Ease of Use
Designed for comfort and easy handling, the tweezers have a matte finish so that there is no slippage and you can focus on each hair that requires removing. Grabs all the short and fine hairs on the first try leaving you with brow perfection

 You can purchase your Precisio Slant Tip Tweezers on amazon or at

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Weekly Recap

It has been a busy week in our household but not so much with blogging.  I'm okay with that.  I have set my priority to be all about homeschooling this year and our days are LONG as we work hard to have an excellent year.

We started speech therapy with our youngest this week.  He made some progress with his first session.  His therapist is a nice lady who seemed to find him hysterical (just like us.)  She called him an 'old soul'.  We are looking forward to his sounds catching up with his huge vocabulary.

Okay so just a few things going on this week but here they are:

Mally TSV from QVC #REVIEW


Priority Chef - Dual Julienne and Vegetable Peeler Review #prioritychef


Testimony #abcblogging


Doc McStuffins School of Medicine DVD #REVIEW




Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Testimony #abcblogging

Testimony as in my testimony has been on my mind.  This past Saturday I went to my Uncle Jim's memorial service.  He had passed in June but the funeral was in Florida - this one was in NJ where he was from.

So many people people were touched by my Uncle.  He gave all that he could to help people.  As a police officer he would buy meals and even sometimes give them a place to sleep.  He didn't do this because he was a super good person.  He did this because he knew Jesus and wanted to share that love with others. His testimony during his life helped so many men become more.  As each man stood up and told their story and who they were today from my Uncle's example - I was truly touched!

I felt so convicted sitting in that church.  I thought - am I doing enough in my community?  Am I raising my kids to love others.  Do I teach them not to judge the appearances of a drunk or drug addict?  I know one thing for sure I want to be more like my Uncle. 
What an amazing legacy he left behind in his community!

This is the verse read at his funeral - and it told my Uncle's heart:

Matthew 25:35-40 (KJV)

For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in:
Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me.
Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink?
When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee?
Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee?
And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.

This post is part of blogging through the alphabet with  Click on the image below to see what everyone else is saying about the letter T!  
Ben and Me

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Priority Chef - Dual Julienne and Vegetable Peeler Review #prioritychef

I'm a kitchen gadget guru!  I love to try new ones and see if they are going to make my life easier.  I was given  Priority Chef's Dual Julienne and Vegetable Peeler to test out for review and I was pleasantly surprised.  It has two sides one that is your traditional peeler and the other that can do julienne.  The traditional peeler is a nice but the julienne is something I really enjoyed!  I love being about to cut carrots for macaroni salad or making hasbrown potatoes!  It is a nifty little gadget!


The Priority Chef dual julienne and vegetable peeler has ultra sharp blades and can peel vegetables quicker than ever.

One side of the kitchen tool has a vegetable peeler that can peel in both directions.

The other side has a julienne tool that create julienned vegetables in seconds.

The tool is made of stainless steel and is dishwasher safe, although we do recommend washing by hand.

I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Mally TSV from QVC #REVIEW

You all know by now that I love makeup.  I have quite the collection if I'm being honest.  One of my major weaknesses is watching QVC and getting caught up in the sales pitch on there.  A lot of the times the product really is THAT good - like Philosophy's Amazing Grace or Purity - which are two of my most favorite products that I tried because of QVC.

Well, a couple of weeks ago I started watching Mally on QVC.  She is so much fun on there.  She had  a TSV and I took the plunge and bought it.

Here is what it contained: 

  • 0.35-oz Poreless Perfection Fluid Foundation in Fair - available in other colors
  • 0.40-oz Perfect Prep Under Eye Brightener in Lighterfoundation come with Lighter choice; Rich foundation comes with Deeper choice
  • 0.13-oz Nourishing Lipstick in French Kiss, a natural rosy pink shade
  • 0.06-oz Shadow Stick in Copper Rose, a shimmering rose shade
  • 0.04-oz Evercolor Starlight Waterproof Eyeliner with Pro-Blender Brush in Black Navy
  • 0.39-fl oz Volumizing Mascara in Black
  • Sharpener
  • Foundation brush

Here are my thoughts:

The foundation is a light coverage.  I've used it for over a week and I'm still not sure what I think.  My skin doesn't look dry or cakey but it isn't really covering the freckles like I'd like.  I don't hate it but I don't love it so I won't rebuy.

Under eye brightener - this  has a cult following and I just don't get it.  It looks like mustard and did nothing for my under eye circles.  At least it isn't drying.  I'll save it because they give you SO much in the jar that maybe if I have a big bruise or something it will help.

Nourishing lipstick- just okay in my opinion.  It is moisterizing but has a funny smell.  It also is a color wash so not much pigment there.

Shadow Stick - UGH - hated this product.  It goes on funky - and took forever to dry.  I felt it drying on my lids.  I probably will never wear this again.  It did last all day and after it dried it felt nicer on but I did not like how it took 30+ minutes to dry rather than 30 seconds like they said on air.

Evercolor waterproof eyeliner - it wasn't waterproof but it did last.  Navy/black was an awesome color and I actually like this product.  The only thing that baffles me is the brush on the end?  It is useless.

Volumizing Mascara - OH YES!! I LOVE this mascara!  It lasts all day and then some!  It lengthens and looks amazing.  I think I found my holy grail of mascara.  It is why I'm keeping this kit!  It is a wet formula and I really just LOVE IT!

sharpener - junky addition.  I would have rather had a travel mirror but hey it was something to add.

So those are my overall thoughts.  I didn't hate everything enough to send it back but I only loved and want to repurchase the mascara.  I think I'll skip Mally products in the future because they are clearly mostly misses for me.

It is still for sale for almost the same price I paid at QVC - you can purchase your own there.

This was not a sponsored post.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Weekly Recap

This was our first week of school.  Fun times figuring out school schedules and trying to get into all our new curriculum.  Some things flowed beautifully and some things will have to be tweeked this coming week.  Now onto the recap:

UNi 100% Organic Pure Moroccan Argan Oil #REVIEW #argan


S is for School #abcblogging

Heirloom Audio Productions: Under Drake's Flag #REVIEW


Adovia Moisturizer #REVIEW #moisturizer






Friday, September 5, 2014

Adovia Moisturizer #REVIEW #moisturizer

I recently had the opportunity to sample Adovia's Moisturizing Day Cream.  This product comes in a nice glass jar and is good for all skin types.  It absorbs quickly and leaves skin moisturized but not greasy.  This makes it a good product for normal - oily skin.  I don't think it would be the best choice for dry skin because it absorbs pretty fast.  It has a faint floral smell that you will notice - I found that part to be just okay.  I'm not big on scented lotions on my face.

Overall the product did a decent job at hydration and my makeup applied nicely over top.  I found my skin to feel moisturized all day which was very pleasant for me. 

Product description:
  • - Moisturize and protect your skin with Adovia's quick absorbing and non-greasy, daytime moisturizer.

    - Quenches your skin's thirst with natural, deep hydration that lasts all day giving you a more radiant complexion.


    - Contains an active complex of Dead Sea Minerals for natural moisture balance.

    - It continues working throughout the day by improving your skin's ability to regain it's natural moisture and better retain it's moisture levels. People will wonder why your skin has than new, natural "glow".

You can purchase your own Adovia Moisturizer at Amazon. 

I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

Heirloom Audio Productions: Under Drake's Flag #REVIEW

Analytical Grammar Review
I have to say I was totally excited to receive Under Drake's Flag for review.  I love doing read-alouds with my bigger boys but sometimes I'm just not up to reading for two hours straight.  I had thought about audio books but typically they are dry.  Not the case with Heirloom Audio Productions!

What is it?

This audio delight is adapted from the book Under Drake's Flag by G.A. Henty.

For this review we received Under Drake's Flag physical audio CDs with study guide & prayer inside, as well as a digital Study Guide Download.

Products & Pricing:

Under Drake's Flag comes in 2 options:

(2)  Physical Audio CDs  + bonuses - $29.95


Digital Download  + bonuses - $20.00

There are many additional bonus  products that come with both purchase options:

You can see the complete bundles here. 

Age Recommendation:

This product would be perfect for 6 - adult. 

How we used the product:

I was planning on listening to the CDs during a four hour road trip but that plan didn't quite work out.  (It would have been perfect!)  So instead I did what we typically do when I read aloud to the big kids.  We piled on my bed.  I put the CDs in the Blu-Ray player I have and they worked perfectly.  We ended up listening straight through with a few bathroom breaks.  (I did some crocheting while listening which was awesome because typically I'm the one reading out loud.)

After listening to the cds I  read about G.A. Henty from the guide included with the CDs and we talked a bit about character.  I felt like this was an excellent topic with the great character of several people in the production.  Particularly Ned and Sir Francis Drake.

While we did not use the PDF Download study guide (a bonus product) - I have printed it out for further exploration.   It is a great way to make a simple story into a whole unit study because it includes vocabulary and questions to ask.  There is also a bible study that focuses on character - I plan to use soon in our morning bible time.  I am also going to have the kids memorize Sir Francis Drake's Prayer:

Disturb us, Lord, when We are too well pleased with ourselves,
When our dreams have come true
Because we have dreamed too little,
When we arrived safely
Because we sailed too close to the shore.

This is just the first part but it is so powerful!  Amazing how something that a man wrote in 1577 is so relevant for today!

My Thoughts:

I really enjoyed this production.  It was high quality.  There was a wonderful cast of voices to bring the story alive.  I loved the music and sound effects.  Within minutest of listening I was transported to the sea.  This story had plenty of action - enough to entertain  12 and 14 year old boys.  There were shipwrecks, battles, even a prison scene.  I honestly hope that Heirloom Audio Productions adds additional titles to their line up.

For me the experience was even more delightful.  We are big on read-alouds in our home.  I believe it is so important to read classic and good stories to your children even when they are capable of reading on their own.  It stirs the brain to imagination, it helps build vocabulary and it is quality time spent together.  I honestly think our read aloud time is some of the best homeschooling time we've spent together.

So I've been a bit envious of my big children because they get the luxury of sitting back and hearing Mom read the story.  I hope to convince my husband to read a few books to us in the future.  However, I think having the experience with Under Drake's Flag was a close event.  I was able to have some one else narrate the story to me.  While it was much more than a simple narration - with all the wonderful character voices, sound effects and music - it was still a similar concept.  It was a nice change from me being the one reading all the time.  

Under Drake's Flag Reviews

You can also connect with Under Drake's Flag on Facebook

Crew Disclaimer

Thursday, September 4, 2014

S is for School #abcblogging

I know your thinking how am I going to make school a biblical thing?  Well first I will share our homeschooling thoughts.  We believe God called us to homeschooling 2 years ago.  Financially we could no longer afford our private Christian School.  The public school in our area was not an option.

God put it all into place - helpful friends with great knowledge of homeschooling.  Friends who homeschooled so we would have some people to mingle with (moms and kids!) The money to buy curriculum and my husband being laid off so we could spend time together (which was MUCH needed.)

That first year had so many ups and a few downs.  Same with our second and I imagine every year will be the same.

Do I think homeschooling is for everyone?  NO!  However I do think that following God's will in this area is for EVERYONE! So what does that mean?  School your kids - home, public, private- how God leads you. 

I'll leave you with two things - a picture of our first day and my favorite verses for homeschooling.

And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.
And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart:
And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.

- Deuteronomy 6:5-7King James Version (KJV)



 This post is part of 's abcblogging.  Click on the link below to see what other's are saying about the letter S.

Ben and Me

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

UNi 100% Organic Pure Moroccan Argan Oil #REVIEW #argan

I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.
I have to say I've been intrigued by Argan Oil for some time.  It is in all the fashion magazines and mentioned on many beauty blogs and YouTube videos.   I was curious but cautious because it can be pricey to get good quality Argan Oil.  So when UNi offered to send me some for review I jumped.

I used this product three ways:  

First I put it in my hair after washing and just let it dry naturally.  This left my hair okay but I found that it didn't do that much for me overall.

The second way was using it as a finishing oil.  This was not recommended by the company but I had read online that many use it that way.  It did alright for my ends - I did not apply to root area.

The third way was the best and what is recommended.  I applied to wet hair and let dry naturally or blow-dry.  (That part didn't matter but the next step did.)  Then I used a hot tool to either straighten or curl my hair.  This was the key that made the product work well.  I found that it wasn't my favorite for curling my hair but when I straightened - WOWSERS!  Smooth, silky hair emerged!  So from now on when I straighten this will be my go to product.  The reason I didn't like it for curls as much is just that it left my hair a little too soft to hold the curl all day.

One major tip is only use a tiny bit.  You will be tempted to use a lot - I know I was.  However you need just a few drops to see dramatic results. 

I really enjoyed this product from UNi - the oil has a beautiful nutty smell and really worked well. 

Additional information from the manufacturer: 

UNi Argan Oil is 100% pure organic made from Moroccan Argan Trees. This naturally light scented oil helps protect, hydrate, and restore elasticity to all hair types. Large concentration of fatty acids and antioxidants help restore the appearance of dull skin, hair, body, scalp and hands. Reduces and removes frizzy and damaged hair. Excellent for cuticles - helps prevent cracking and peeling of nails. Can treat all skin types as well.

Our fast absorbing light weight oil is smooth, and NON greasy compared to other brands.
Highest quality of oil production, it is cold pressed and unroasted. Comes rich in Vitamin E (Tocopherols) and Omega 6 (Linolenic Acids).
NO strong odors. Our 100% organic Argan oil has a light nutty smell and is fragrance free.
USDA and ECOCERT certification means high purity and authentic.
Can be used on sensitive and non-sensitive skin to reduce age spots and boost skin tones.
Manufactured in the Kingdom of Morocco and Packaged in the USA.
UNi Argan Oil comes in a beautiful smooth dark glass bottle with easy access dropper.
UNi Argan Oil are manufactured and bottled throughout the year to ensure freshness and quality. Manufactured date is printed on every bottle with a shelf-life of 36 months.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Weekly Recap

Well, I'm a few days late but like they say ~ better late than never!  I'm sure you are all busy this Labor Day.  I'm doing some last minute school preparations.  Mostly laminating for our Morning Board.  I've been working on it for a few weeks and I will be ECSTATIC to complete this project! It feels like I've been working on it forever.  I'm going to put up some pictures when I'm finished to share the project with you all. 

Here is the recap:

Studies in World History Vol. 1 7th Grade Curriculum #REVIEW #MASTERBOOKS


Rest #abcblogging


Home to Chicory Lane #REVIEW plus $200 B&B Weekend Getaway Giveaway & 9/9 Facebook Party with Deborah Raney!


As They Grow Up:



Octonauts: Deep Sea Mission on DVD! 



Friday, August 29, 2014

Home to Chicory Lane #REVIEW plus $200 B&B Weekend Getaway Giveaway & 9/9 Facebook Party with Deborah Raney!

This book explores a new marriage and the trials that come with that.  Lead character Landyn is a newlywed of about six months when she realizes things are not how she thought they would be.  I love how this book has really introduced us to a whole family - which will seamlessly  lead to a whole series.  The family is unique, loveable and very real with their life and emotions.  The Inn which was a former family home lends to interesting characters popping up.  This book featured strong women who desired to follow God and learn to be submissive.  I appreciated their struggles with that and how they found their way to follow God and not lose themselves.  I'm personally looking forward to seeing this series expand!

You can purchase your copy of Home To Chicory Lane at your local book retailer and online at stores like Amazon


The first book in Deborah Raney's new Chicory Inn series, Home to Chicory Lane, introduces us to Audrey Whitman, a mother who has launched all her children into life and now looks forward to fulfilling some of her own dreams during her empty-nest years. However, not all of her children are ready to stay out of the nest quite yet.

Deborah is celebrating the release of her new series with a $200 B&B Weekend Getaway and a Facebook author chat party.

  One winner will receive:
  • A B&B Weekend Getaway (via a $200 Visa cash card)
  • Home to Chicory Lane by Deborah Raney
Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on September 9th. Winner will be announced at the Home to Chicory Lane Author Chat Party on 9/9. Deborah will be hosting a heartfelt book chat, giving away prizes, and answering questions from readers. She will also share an exclusive sneak peek at the next book in the Chicory Inn series!

So grab your copy of Home to Chicory Lane and join Deborah on the evening of September 9th for a chance to connect and make some new friends. (If you haven't read the book, don't let that stop you from coming!)

Don't miss a moment of the fun; RSVP todayTell your friends via FACEBOOK or TWITTER and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 9th!

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Rest #abcblogging

Labor Day is fast approaching.  A day of rest for most of the working class people.  In New Jersey it is the last day of summer because almost all schools start from Tuesday - Thursday that week.  A day of rest is important.  In fact The Bible tells us God rested on the 7th day!  In our hectic, crazy, never-stopping, filling each moment, making it count - lives - we need to observe some rest time.

For me I plan on kicking up my feet this weekend and reading a few books.  I plan on not thinking about homeschooling, blogging or cleaning - AT ALL!  I'm going to just enjoy my family and our time off together.  I know that come Tuesday it will all be crazy again!

How are you resting?

Matthew 11:28-30 - Come unto me, all [ye] that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

Genesis 2:2 -  And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made.

This post is part of 's blogging through the alphabet. Click on the image below to see what others are saying for the letter "R".

Ben and Me

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Studies in World History Vol. 1 7th Grade Curriculum #REVIEW #MASTERBOOKS

This month's review from Masterbooks is exciting.  It is a complete history curriculum for 7th grade.  While we are not actually schooling in August (in NJ our public schools go back in September) my middle son and I took some time to over view the books.

What we received:

Studies in World History Vol. 1 - Teacher Guide

- this book includes:

  • Answer keys
  • Daily Calendar
  • Daily Worksheets
  • Weekly Exams

Studies in World History Vol. 1 - Student book

This book includes 34 chapters with weekly reading lessons and discussion questions.  

My Thoughts:

I love the length of time this book covers.  You start with the Flood and end with Christopher Columbus.  It would be great for a child who hasn't spent a lot of time studying World History and needs to get a course in one year.  The readings are easy and informative.  Each page has fantastic pictures (which I think set this curriculum apart!)  The worksheets mostly writing exercises.  We did them orally for the few lessons we read just to save time.  Overall I was really impressed!


Creation Through the age of Discovery (6000 BC to AD 1500)
  • Chronologically based, but focused more on skill development
  • Meant to be a 20 to 30 minute experience every day
  • World history is combined with social studies in a one-year course.
The Jr. High School student will see history come to life no matter what their pace or ability. Developed by Dr. James Stobaugh, the courses grow in difficulty with each year, preparing students for high school work. This is a comprehensive examination of history, geography, economics, and government systems. This educational set equips students to learn from a starting point of God's creation of the world and move forward with a solid biblically-based worldview.
Volume I Covers - The Fertile Crescent, Egypt, India, China, Japan, Greece, Christian history, and more.

Studies in World History Vol 1 is available at Be sure to stop there to see  additional information about this curriculum.  

Don't miss the Moms of Masterbooks Facebook party on Tuesday, August 26, 2014 at 7pm CST.  We will discuss the book and there will be an awesome giveaway!  

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Weekly Recap

Boy did this summer fly by!  I always feel like when my birthday comes around (August 18th) summer is basically over.  This summer really didn't feel like summer which is sad but it happens sometimes.  At least there is always next year!

Anyways onto the bloggy recap:

Kabuki Brush #awesome #kabukibrushsimplyessentials

- This brush has become a favorite that I reach for daily for powder & buffing!



Happy Kids Songs #REVIEW

- These songs are designed to boost self-esteem, character and general happiness!


Odyssey Adventure Club iPad Mini Giveaway!


Q is for Quality #abcblogging

Quilts of Love ~ A GRAND DESIGN #bookreview PLUS Kindle HDX Giveaway & “Fall into Fall” Facebook Party!

Toy Story of Terror on Blu-Ray! 


Box Car Children on DVD

Box Car Children on DVD





Friday, August 22, 2014

Quilts of Love ~ A GRAND DESIGN #bookreview PLUS Kindle HDX Giveaway & “Fall into Fall” Facebook Party!

I had the opportunity to read the  Quilts of Love book, A Grand Design by Amber Stockton. This book deals with struggling to let painful memories go and move into God's healing? Set on historic Mackinac Island.

My Thoughts:

There were so many parts of this book I loved!  The setting was fabulous!  I would love to visit Mackinac Island after reading this book.  Alyssa wasn't my favorite character at first. She was very insecure but with everyone else around her making up the slack - until she gets her confidence back - I found myself liking her more and more through out the book!  Scott was a fabulous romantic lead!  I was routing for him!  I hope we see her Grandmother pop up more in the series!  Lastly I loved the little bits and pieces of story about the quilt.  Sometimes books with a craft theme element overwhelm the reader with too many details but Stockton had a beautiful balance with this one!

This really is a cute summer romance read!  I thoroughly enjoyed it.     

About the book: 

A getaway on a charming island may be just what Alyssa needs---if only she can let go of her past.

When Alyssa Denham, a single career woman, wins a fun getaway for two on Mackinac Island where her grandmother lives, she gives her carefree best friend a call. Together, they tour the old shops and hidden treasures of the quaint island while helping Alyssa's grandmother piece together an heirloom quilt. Their quest gains them entrance into the homes of many longtime residents of the island, parts of the city that are otherwise off limits to tourists.

As the quilt's story takes shape, Alyssa gains amazing insight into her grandmother's life . . . and attracts the attention of the handsome Scott Whitman, an island resident in charge of hotel transportation. Will memories of her past keep Alyssa from letting go? Or will the quest to piece together the heirloom quilt restore Alyssa's fractured heart---and bring healing to her entire family?

Learn more about this book and the series at the Quilts of Love website.
About the Author: 

Amber Stockton is an award-winning author, a national speaker, and a direct-sales brand partner with Nerium International. She lives with her husband and fellow author, Stuart Vaughn Stockton, in Colorado. They have a daughter and a son, and an Aussie/retriever mix named Roxie. Three of her novels have won annual reader's choice awards.

Connect with Amber: website, Facebook, Twitter

Celebrate August’s release by entering to win a Kindle from Quilts of Love and RSVPing for the "Fall into Fall" Facebook auth chat party.

Quilts of Love Kindle HDX Giveaway, Amber Stockton, A Grand Design

  One winner will receive:
  • A Kindle HDX
  • A Grand Design by Amber Stockton
  • Hidden in the Stars by Robin Caroll
Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on September 16th. Winner will be announced at the "Fall into Fall" Facebook party with Amber Stockton and Robin Caroll. RSVP for an evening of book chat, quilting tips and tricks, prizes, and more!

RSVP today and spread the word—tell your friends about the giveaway via FACEBOOK or TWITTER and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 16th!

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Q is for Quality #abcblogging

Quality is a word on my mind so often.  We hear it when we think of children ~ quality time.  So how can we apply that to our Christian walk.  How about quality time in God's word?

The Bible says:

Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

~ 2 Timothy 2:15

It is so important to study God's word.  Spending quality time in His word really allows us to grow closer to Him.

How can we spend quality time?

It isn't just quantity

Reading your Bible isn't just putting time in.  Pray before you open God's word and ask God to open your eyes to something new.  Ask him to show you something.  Don't just check off your chapter for your reading list.  Be open to learning something.

Study a specific subject

I'll admit this is something I struggle with.  I have a hard time putting in extra work to study out a specific subject.  My husband LOVES doing his reading this way.  He has notes on his studies.  It is something I purpose to do.  Last year I took some time on the word LOVE.  

Talk about what you've read

So simple but you will see when you talk about your scripture reading you will gain insight from others.    We waste so many hours on idle chat surely we can spend some time telling our friend and family what excites us in The Word!

I hope this post was helpful to you.  How do you spend quality time in God's Word?  Be sure to check out the other posts on the letter Q at

Ben and Me