Sunday, July 26, 2015

Pizza Ranch's Living Hope CD review and giveaway

About Pizza Ranch:

Adrie Groeneweg had a dream that started in Hull, IA, in 1981, when he was just 19 years old.  It was simple.  Why does everyone have to drive out of town to get a pizza?  With just six specialty and single topping pizza recipes developed by Adrie's mother, Lorraine, Pizza Ranch was born.  Pizza Ranch's vision and mission is to glorify God by positively impacting the world and to give every guest a legendary experience.  They have 190+ locations across 13 states including Iowa, Minnesota, South Dakota, North Dakota, Wisconsin, Michigan, Nebraska, Illinois, Kansas, Missouri, Montana, Wyoming, and Colorado. 
About Living Hope CD:

On June 2, 2015, Pizza Ranch released a CD called Living Hope containing twelve songs from many of their favorite Christian artists.  Most of the songs are brand-new and written exclusively for this CD around the theme of Hope.  Artists include Colton Dixon, Francesca Batistelli, Ellie Holcomb, Sidewalk Prophets, Kevin Max, Bart Millard, Passion Band featuring Kristian Stanfill, Michael W. Smith, and Mark Schultz.  

The CD will be available to purchase for $5 plus tax exclusively in Pizza Ranch restaurants or for download at through August 31.  

From Adrie Groeneweg, President & CEO of Pizza Ranch, Inc.:  "This album has a very special meaning for Pizza Ranch.  Although Pizza Ranch is not in the music business, many things have been happening, conversations have been taking place and doors have been opening for this album.  Through these events, I believe it was obvious that God has been behind this for His specific purpose and putting it on our hearts to collectively create this project.  As such, we call this our miracle album, Living Hope."

Sharing from my heart:

I've been to a Pizza Ranch in Atlantic, Iowa several years ago when we were visiting my husbands family.  His cousin and I like to go to town and have a little girl time of lunch and shopping.  I don't remember that much about the restaurant except that they had a buffet and they were playing Christian music.  
Now for more info on the CD, you know I love Christian music and Living Hope is no exception.  There are various artists on the CD but some well known ones are Michael W Smith, Francesca Battistelli and 10 or so other artists.  Those are two of my favorite Christian artists so I was thrilled when their songs came on!  For only $5 you can't go wrong with this CD or you can enter to win on the Rafflecopter link below.


Twitter:  @PizzaRanch @PRServes

YouTube Channel (features images and videos of the artists talking about the story behind each song):

Press Release with additional information about the Living Hope CD project:

"Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”): Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway. Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation. I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.
 Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway. If you have won a prize from our sponsor Propeller / FlyBy Promotions in the last 30 days, you are not eligible to win. If you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification.”

Thanks for reading, 

Friday, July 24, 2015

Passport to Purity Getaway Kit-review

 About the getaway kit:

(1) Tour Guide for the parent, (1) Travel Journal for the preteen including 25 follow-up devotions, and (8) CDs containing 5 sessions, scripture memory songs and down loadable MP3s:  Session 1: Beginning the Journey - Challenges, Traps, and Choices; Session 2: Running With The Herd - Friendships and Peer Pressure; Session 3: Ready For An Upgrade? - Changes in Him, Changes in Her; Session 4: Destination: Lé Pure - Setting Boundaries; Session 5: Crossing The Date Line - Seeing Dating Differently 

Your child begins the journey into adolescence in a world of sexting, bullying, online stalking and moral defiance.  Innocence is under attack, and you cannot win the battle with a single awkward talk or a strict set of rules.  The primary defense for your child is a strong relationship with you and with God.  FamilyLife developed Passport2Purity (P2P) to assist you in building heart-to-heart communication with your preteen while laying a foundation of purity that will prepare him or her for the turbulent years ahead.  Through the shared listening experience, object lessons and guided conversations of a P2P weekend getaway, you can set your son or daughter on a journey of moral integrity - and strengthen the bond between you.  It is designed to be used by a mother and daughter or a father and son when the child is a preteen.  It is suggested that the materials be completed over a weekend away from home, as the child may be more open to discussing the topics away from his or her normal environment.  If this isn't possible, the material can be completed over a period of four or five weeks.

Passport2Purity from FamilyLife® on Vimeo.
Learn about the traps your preteen will soon face as a teenager and how Passport2Purity will help you to guide your teen through those difficult years.

Sharing from my heart:

Makenzie and I had a great time on our mommy daughter getaway.  We just finished having a bunch of company in from Houston and then our friends from St. Louis came and stayed with us for Korea camp so we were pretty worn out.  I decided to see if my hubby could get us a room at the Hard Rock Hotel because it's only 5 miles away, has great rooms, several restaurants and a wonderful swimming pool.

We headed over and decided to have some dinner at the Route 66 diner and then take a dip in the pool.  Afterward, we headed upstairs to our room and got comfy in our PJ's and started off by praying that God would open doors and knock down any boundaries that might arise. Makenzie is a little old for this since the target age is pre-teen.  She actually just turned 15 last month, we've kept open communication with children about anything they want to talk about and of course things they don't want to discuss like sex.  I felt like this would be a great bonding opportunity for us (we're actually very close) but more as a young lady and mom, not the little girl/mom relationship.  We had so much fun!  I encourage you to do all the projects, even though she's 15 she still enjoyed them and she almost beat me on the puzzle!

There's no way I can cover everything we heard on the CD's, talked about from the projects and shared from our hearts with each other and much of it is too personal to share with anyone, BUT I do highly encourage you to buy this kit and take the time to connect with your pre-teen/teen.  If you can't get away then just do a spa night at home.  Pop some popcorn, get out some nail polish and start listening to the CD's and working on the projects together. Wonderful bonging time that will be a memory for both of you.

Now, that we've finished I feel so much closer to her and like we've developed and an even closer bond.  I hope to have many more girl getaways with her for the rest of our lives.  These precious moments will last forever in my heart and mind.  Now, Kevin and Kylan are thinking about doing the same thing and using the Passport to Purity Getaway Kit for a guys night away.

Notice the play doh, that's one of the projects and they include a detailed checklist so you don't forget anything on your special weekend!

Our project bags

This was the Too Close for Too Long project

Spending a little time together and you still rub off on each other

Spending a lot of time together and becoming exclusive and you can risk destroying each other. This was a great example!

S O C I A L • C O R N E R

Twitter: @FamilyLifeToday @DennisRainey @BarbaraRainey 

Thanks for reading,

Monday, July 13, 2015

Texas Farm Girl: Reap What You Sow- book review

About the book:

AMAZON BEST SELLER and endorsed by The Dove Foundation as family Approved! Released January 6, 2015! Texas Farm Girl learns from her PawPaw what Reap What You Sow means when she makes a big mistake on the farm planting corn. The lesson learned from Texas Farm Girl, Reap What You Sow can be applied to all of us so that we can overcome adversity and Shine Like a Lone Star Pearl. Book comes autographed by the Author!

My Thoughts:
This book could very well be called Oklahoma Farm Girl or Iowa Farm Girl because it reminds me of living in Oklahoma and also of heading up to Iowa to see my husbands family.  Most of the Iowa family are all farmers so this book really resonates with me.  I love how she talks about goofing off and messing up and then working hard and it pays off. That's a life lesson that many people aren't learning today and I think it's sad.  Most of the time we learn such a huge lesson when we make a mistake and if we're wise then we use it to grow and become a better person.  This would be a wonderful book for a young girl (ages 5 and up) just learning how to navigate life's curves it's beautifully written and the illustrations are colorful and are sure to hold your child's attention for many years.  This is definitely a book with a purpose.

About the Author:

A life-long resident of the Texas Panhandle, Rebecca Crownover grew up in Sunray, Texas, a small farming community. Her grandfather was a farmer and through junior high and high school years, she worked on the farm driving tractors and irrigating crops through row water irrigation.
Rebecca left her farm roots to attend Texas Tech University to obtain a business degree in order to pursue a corporate career as a technology consultant, traveling around the world. She ultimately found herself back in her farm roots by marrying a farmer and living the adventurous life of a farmer once again.
Tragedy struck in 2009 when her husband passed away from a head injury incurred in an ATV accident leaving behind herself and their 2 ½ year old daughter. Searching for guidance, Rebecca attempted to find a book that could help her daughter understand the loss of her dad. When she was unable to find a book written at her daughter's level of understanding, she decided to write her own children's book. The result was My Daddy Is In Heaven With Jesus.
My Daddy Is In Heaven With Jesus became an award winning book that helped many children around the world find comfort in a time of loss. It continues to be a life inspiring book for children and adults that have lost a parent today.
Moving on from the hardest experience of her life and giving back through tragedy through her first book, Rebecca found yet another way to impact children through her life experiences. Being the entrepreneur that she is, she launched a brand and children’s book series, Texas Farm Girl. Texas Farm Girl’s purpose is to educate, entertain, and inspire children through farming. She has produced children’s books, apparel and even partnered with country rock artist and songwriter, Billy Dawson (childhood friend) to produce Texas Farm Girl's very own song and country music video.
From Texas to Los Angeles, Rebecca has been featured in national media outlets. She has been featured in Progressive Farmer Magazine, Successful Farming Magazine, Texas Farm Bureau’s national marketing outlets in agriculture, and a number of radio and local TV shows. She was also on William Shatner’s Moving America Forward TV program where she was interviewed by Doug Llewelyn (always remembered from his People's Court days) and given the prestigious "Moving America Forward" Award, by Retired Rear Admiral Kevin F. Delaney. This award is given to innovative entrepreneurs that have distinguished themselves in their industry and, as a result, are "Moving America Forward".
Rebecca continues to be a business partner with her in-laws in their family farm. Her commitment to agriculture and educating those around her about agriculture is a passion. As a single mom and only parent, Rebecca has found her life to be a true blessing. Tragedy in her life has only spawned a deeper appreciation for it. Life is so precious and if she can be an inspiration of strength to others through her experiences, then her life purpose is being fulfilled.
Want to book Rebecca for an event? See an example list of events below, but certainly not limited. Programs can be tailored to the specific audience. Contact her through the contact page if you would like to have her out for your next event! 
Texas Farm Girl info:




Google Play

Amazon MP3

Click here to purchase the book

Thanks for reading,
Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”): Many thanks to PR By the Book

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

The Old Fashioned Way book and devotional review and giveaway

Remember my review of the movie Old Fashioned?  Here's a link to refresh your memory Old Fashioned Movie Well, today I'm sharing the book and devotional with you and offering a giveaway of all 3!

Here's a synopsis of this 40 day devotional

 Contrary to popular opinion, being “old fashioned” doesn’t mean you’re dull or unromantic. In fact, a true old-fashioned relationship can be more exciting and romantic than anything you’ve ever experienced! So what does it mean to do things The Old Fashioned Way? Sure, it means opening doors, holding out chairs, and taking things slow. But a true old-fashioned romance goes much deeper than that. Inspired by the motion picture Old Fashioned, this book will show you how to reclaim the lost art of romance by introducing you to romantic love as God intended it―for all of us. Regardless of your past experiences, where you’ve been, or where you are now, you can find and create a love that will last a lifetime.

As you work your way through this 40-day journey of inspiring readings and questions for reflection, you’ll discover all the unique and amazing benefits of doing things the old-fashioned way and be well on your way to creating a love story for the ages.

My opinion:

I really enjoyed reading the devotional.  I'm married and have young teens so a lot of the devotions didn't really apply to me because they were about dating and romance (ok I guess everyone can use some romance).  I think this will make a great devotional for my children as they are coming up on the dating or courting ages.  One of the things that I personally enjoyed were the "conversation starters" at the back of the book.  My hubby and I went through all of them and think they'll be great for when our own children think they've found the one.


Ginger Kolbaba is on a journey to embrace joy in every moment. She doesn't always succeed (she's a recovering cynic, after all), but she loves to learn from the adventure of the pursuit. She loves a good laugh, a ready smile, a dog's smooch, great food (vegetarian, thanks), growing faith, and remembering that love is all-powerful. She also claims one of her greatest gifts is ranting (good-naturedly, of course).

An accomplished author, Ginger has written, ghostwritten, collaborated, or contributed to more than 20 books, including her upcoming The Old Fashioned Way, set to release in January 2015. 

Ginger also teaches and speaks across the country. She's appeared on national venues such as HLN's Nancy Grace, as well as Family Life Radio and Moody Radio's Midday Connection. A former professional editor of several award-winning national magazines, including Today's Christian Woman and Marriage Partnership, she continues editing for both individuals and major publishing houses. 

When she isn't chained to her computer, Ginger enjoys spending time with her husband motorcycling through the countryside, visiting Yellowstone National Park, walking her Doberman, reading good books, and contemplating the deep meaning of life--as well as trying to figure out how to get her husband to give her a donkey or a duck for Christmas. She believes one of her greatest accomplishments would be dusting off her piano and treadmill and using them both--at least once this year.

Visit her at

 Old Fashioned-a novelization of the motion picture

Former frat boy Clay Walsh has given up his reckless lifestyle and settled down to run an antique shop in a small Midwestern college town. Determined to put his partying ways behind him, Clay has become notorious for his lofty and outdated theories on love and romance. But when Amber Hewson, a free-spirited woman with a gypsy soul, rents the apartment above his shop, Clay can’t help being attracted to her spontaneous and passionate embrace of life.

New to the area, Amber finds herself surprisingly drawn to Clay and his noble ideas, but her own fears and deep wounds are difficult to overcome. Can they move beyond their differences and their pasts to attempt an “old-fashioned” courtship?

My opinion:
I liked the novel a lot and thought it went exactly with the movie.  That doesn't seem to happen that often so I was very impressed.


Rene Gutteridge is the author of eighteen novels, including Escapement, Possession, Listen, Never the Bride (2011 Carol Award Winner), The Boo Series, The Storm Series, The Occupational Hazards Series and My Life as a Doormat, a Women of Faith selection for 2006. She has a degree in Mass Communications with an emphasis in screenwriting and twenty years of experience writing, directing and publishing comedy sketches. She writes in both comedy and suspense genres. Her upcoming releases from Tyndale House Publishers: Heart of the Country, Misery Loves Company and Old Fashioned. From B&H Publishers: Greetings from the Flipside co-written with Cheryl McKay.

Thanks for reading,
Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”): Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway. Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation. I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.
Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway.  If you have won a prize from our sponsor Propeller / FlyBy Promotions in the last 30 days, you are not eligible to win.  Or if you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification.”

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Father's Day gift re-creation

Back in June of 2008 the kids and I came up with the idea to make a fun gift for their dad.  We dressed Makenzie up as weekend dad, which is a golfer.

and we dressed Kylan up as weekday dad, which is a UPS delivery man.  If you decide to do this for the man in your life please send me pics, we'd LOVE to see them!

It's so fun to look back and see how gigantic those clothes were on the kids.  Kylan was still only 6 years old and Makenzie had just turned 8 the day before.  Fun times!

Fast forward 7 years and Makenzie just turned 15 on Friday 

and Kylan is 13 years old and he looks like he could possibly be a UPS driver!

Here are the finished projects and a link to the 2008 Father's Day post



Thanks for reading,

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Old Fashioned-the movie

Old Fashioned DVD
Old Fashioned comes out on DVD today!

My opinion:

My family and I watched this movie together and it did seem to start out a little bit slow but the story built and built and came together nicely.  My husband and 2 young teenagers all said they enjoyed it and thought it was refreshing to see that sweet spin on courtship and romance.  
Too often, we see people hopping into bed on the first date and that's not the type of movie I feel good about showing on family night or actually any night!  There is a need out there for wholesome movies that the entire family can enjoy together and not have to say cover your ears due to all of the cursing or close your eyes because of the nudity.  This is THAT movie, everyone from grandma down to the youngest member of your family can watch this and get something from it.  I walked away from it hoping to instill in my son just how much of a gentleman Clay was.  Chivalry is NOT dead and is making a comeback.  I think men and women are searching for something different and this goes to show that not doing the so called "normal" dating can turn out to bring the greatest joy!

Find Old Fashioned on:



Google +



Clay is well-known for his outdated theories on romance and love. When he meets Amber, a free-spirited, spontaneous young woman, he gives up his rational theories, while Amber overcomes her emotional wounds to engage in an old-fashioned courtship.

  1. Critic reviews
    A faith-based drama that looks as lovely as an expensive greeting card, but moves as slowly as a somnolent turtle.
    Joe Leydon·Variety
    Old Fashioned works hard to live up to its title. But it works just as hard to be a really good (in _every_ sense of that word) romance.
    Adam R. Holz·Plugged In
    It must be pretty neat to make a movie that mostly consists of people telling you how chivalrous and morally right you are and how much everybody loves you.
    Ignatiy Vishnevetsky·A.V. Club

I don't have a giveaway for you this time but keep reading and watching because I will have one that includes this movie toward the end of the month.

Thanks for reading,

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Michael W Smith's video Sky Spills Over

As a youngster I used to listen to Amy Grant and Michael W. Smith all the time, they were some of my favorite christian music when I lived in Odessa, TX and Durango, CO.  Then, when our family moved to Tulsa, OK I had an opportunity to see them in concert together at the Maybee Center.  I was so excited, it was a double date with my best friend Lisa and our boyfriends. Fun concert and lots of great memories were made, I think I actually saw them both in concert many times separately too and guess what?  Michael W. Smith is still making great christian music today.  He released a new CD earlier this month called Sovereign.  Today, a brand new video was released called "When the Sky Spills Over" please check it out and tell me what you think about it.

"I’m really passionate about the song SKY SPILLS OVER.  It was fun creating it in the studio and I’ve been overwhelmed at the response it gets when we perform it live every night.  My son Ryan is a really talented filmmaker so I always enjoy working with him on a project.  But what made this project even more special was that 3 of my own grandkids were in the video.  This video was a lot of fun to make.  I hope people enjoy it!" 
~Michael W. Smith

Enter below to win your own CD of Sovereign!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thanks for reading,

"Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”): Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway. Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation. I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.
Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway.  If you have won a prize from our sponsor Propeller / FlyBy Promotions in the last 30 days, you are not eligible to win.  Or if you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification.”