Saturday, May 26, 2012

Are you smarter than a 4th grader?

Kylanism Alert: Kevin was teasing the kids and said sit down and don't say a word....he was kidding

Kenzie says "Meow, arf, arf"

Kylan pipes up "ain't"

Kevin "What? I said don't say a word"

Kylan "Mom always says ain't isn't a word!"

So that makes me wonder are you smarter than a 4th grader? Because I don't think we are!

When I asked him what he was doing he said, "I'm snorkeling of course!"

Thanks for reading,

Friday, May 25, 2012

Rainbow's End book review

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Barbour Books (May 1, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1616266864
  • ISBN-13: 978-1616266868

About the Book
Join a geocaching adventure in the spectacular Lake of the Ozarks wilderness, with Lyssa, the reluctant volunteer whose former nemesis is now her chief sponsor; Madison, a city girl paired with an outdoorsy guy who gets on her very last nerve; Hadley, who doesn't know enough about guys to realize she's met a womanizer; and cautious Reagan, who meets an equally cautious guy. Will they find the treasure they're looking for ... or something else entirely?

The Author's (there are 4 of them in this anthology)

Valerie Comer

Valerie Comer's life on a small farm in western Canada provides the seed for stories of contemporary inspirational romance. Like many of her characters, Valerie grows much of her own food and is active in the local foods movement as well as her church. She only hopes her imaginary friends enjoy their happily ever afters as much as she does hers, gardening and geocaching with her husband, adult kids, and adorable granddaughter.

Annalisa Daughety

Annalisa Daughety won first place in the Contemporary Romance category at the 2008 ACFW Genesis Awards. After graduating from Freed-Hardeman University, she spent time working as a park ranger for the National Park Service. This experience led her to write the Walk in the Park series--each book in the series is set in a different national park. Originally from McCrory, Arkansas, Annalisa now resides in Memphis, Tennessee. Read more at

Nicole O'Dell

Youth-culture expert, Nicole O'Dell, resides in Paxton, Illinois, with her husband and six children--the youngest of which are toddler triplets. She's the founder of Choose NOW Ministries (, dedicated to battling peer pressure and guiding teens through tough issues while helping parents encourage good decisions, and host of Choose NOW Radio: Parent Talk and Teen Talk (, where "It's all about choices!" On air, O'Dell covers peer pressure, dating, purity, drugs, alcohol, modesty, popularity, and anything else that comes up along the way. Nicole writes and speaks to preteens, teenagers, and parents about how to prepare for life's tough choices.
She's author of YA fiction, including the popular Scenarios for Girls interactive fiction, which offers readers alternate endings, allowing them to decide what the main character does, and the Diamond Estates Series based on her experiences as a resident at Teen Challenge as a teenager. Her non-fiction for teens includes Girl Talk, 2/1/12, which she wrote with her two daughters based on their popular advice column.
Nicole's desire to bridge the gap between parents and teens is evident in her parenting non-fiction like the Hot Buttons, series aimed at helping parents handle tough issues with their tweens and teens before they pop up in real life. Watch for Hot Buttons books on subjects like dating, Internet activity, sexuality, prejudice, friendships, politics, and many more.
For more information on Nicole O'Dell or her books, or to schedule Nicole for a speaking event or interview, visit Podcasts of Choose NOW Radio are available at

Cara C. Putman

Since the time I could read Nancy Drew, I have wanted to write mysteries. In 2005 I attended a book signing at my local Christian bookstore. The rest, as they say, is history. There I met Colleen Coble. With prompting from my husband, I shared my dream with Colleen. Since those infamous words, I've been writing books.
My fourteenth novel releases in May 2012, and I have also written one non-fiction title (the Complete Idiots Guide to Business Law).
In addition to writing, I am an attorney, lecturer at a Big Ten university, active in women's ministry, and all around crazy woman. Crazy about God, my husband and my kids. I graduated with honors from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (Go Huskers!) and George Mason Law School. You can learn more about my books at

My Opinion

Rainbow’s End is a collection of four stories that run at the same time, written by four different authors presenting a very captivating story. I loved each individual story and how each person found love and adventure at Lake of the Ozarks.  I love how each author wrote her own story but they all tied into one big story about a geocaching event.  If you would like to learn more about geocaching and/or Lake of the Ozarks then this would be a great book!

Lake of the Ozarks is such an exciting and captivating lake, my in-laws just happen to have a condo near Camdenton so I was very familiar with all of the areas mentioned in this fascinating compilation.  Another thing that I hold close to my heart is geocaching!  My family and I love to make a day of it and hit up as many geocaches as we can, the funny thing is that we've never looked for a cache at Lake of the Ozarks.  You better believe we will hit the trails next time we are in Missouri!

I give this book 4 and a half stars out of 5 for all of the adventure, mystery, romance and fun that this book captures!

Thanks for reading,

Thursday, May 24, 2012

The Wedding Dress book review

 About the book

Format: Paperback
Publication Date:April 03, 2012
Trim Size:5 1/2 X 8 3/8
List Price:$15.99 USD

Four brides. One Dress.
A tale of faith, redemption, and timeless love.
Charlotte owns a chic Birmingham bridal boutique. Dressing brides for their big day is her gift . . . and her passion. But with her own wedding day approaching, why can't she find the perfect dress…or feel certain she should marry Tim?
Then Charlotte discovers a vintage dress in a battered trunk at an estate sale. It looks brand-new-shimmering with pearls and satin, hand-stitched and  timeless in its design. But where did it come from? Who wore it? Who welded the lock shut and tucked the dog tags in that little sachet? Who left it in the basement for a ten-year-old girl? And what about the mysterious man in the purple vest who insists the dress had been "redeemed."
Charlotte's search for the gown's history-and its new bride-begins as a distraction from her sputtering love life. But it takes on a life of its own as she comes to know the women who have worn the dress. Emily from 1912. Mary Grace from 1939. Hillary from 1968. Each with her own story of promise, pain, and destiny. And each with something unique to share. For woven within the threads of the beautiful hundred-year-old gown is the truth about Charlotte's heritage, the power of courage and faith, and the timeless beauty of finding true love.

About the Author

Rachel Hauck is the bestselling author of Carol Award winner Sweet Caroline, and RITA Finalist Love Starts With Elle, and of the critically acclaimed fiction collaboration with multi-platinum country artist Sara Evans, The Songbird Novels.
She lives in sunny, though sometimes hurricane plagued, central Florida with her husband and their ornery pets.
Rachel earned a degree in Journalism form Ohio State University and is a huge Buckeyes football fan.
She is the past President of American Christian Fiction Writers and now sits on the board as an Advisor. Visit her web site at to reader her blog, and to follow her on Facebook and Twitter.

My Opinion
The Wedding Dress was an interesting story about a dress that gets passed around to several different women and it fits each of them perfectly without any alterations.  It kind of reminds me of The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants movie but with a wedding dress.  It was a sweet story but one that's been told before in a similar fashion and I give it 3 and half stars out of 5 for the humorous, fun and feisty characters!

Thanks for reading,

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Cowgirl Trail-book review

Cowgil Trail is part of a six-book series about four generations of the Morgan family living, fighting, and thriving amidst a turbulent Texas history spanning from 1845 to 1896.  Although a series, each book book can be read on its own.

About the book

In 1884 Maggie Porter returns to the Rocking P Ranch. The sanatorium was not able to save her mother and now her father's health is failing. When the cowboys walk off the job leaving no one to drive the cattle to market, head ranch hand, Alex Bright, cannot convince the men to stay. How could Alex let this happen?
Maggie is desperate to save the ranch and she turns to the town's women for help. The new cowgirls must herd, rope, and drive the cattle to market. With only two days left, outlaws charge the small band of cowgirls in an effort to start a stampede. The cattle begin to scatter. Will they lose everything? Where will their help come from?

About the Author

Susan Page Davis writes romantic suspense, historical romance, and mystery. She is a Maine native now living in Kentucky, and a member of the American Christian Fiction Writers. Visit her website at

My Opinion

I wasn't really sure about this book when I saw the cover, I know it's really cliche to say this but NEVER judge a book by its cover!  Then I started to read it and it grabbed my attention right away and I fell in love with Maggie Porter the main character.  This was a page turned and I would stay up late at night reading and promise myself just one more page and before I knew it I had finished the entire book!  What I didn't realize was that this book was part of a 6 book series, I'm thrilled about that and can NOT wait to read the rest of the series.  Obviously you do not have to read them in order and they can stand alone by themselves.  Susan Page Davis is a dynamic writer that captivates her readers and leaves them wanting more, I will definitely start reading more of her books in the near future.  I give Cowgirl Trail 5 out of 5 stars for the spunkiness that she gave Maggie and the other ladies in this powerful book with a little bit of Texas history thrown in.

Thanks for reading,

Monday, May 21, 2012

Forever Hilltop book review and enter to win a Kindle for you and a friend!

About the book:
The charming and often hilarious Forever Hilltop series follows the experiences of former city dweller Alex Armstrong as he settles into his new role as pastor of a Scandinavian community in rural North Dakota. Alex is sometimes baffled by his parishioners and their colorful ways, but he comes to appreciate their simple wisdom. One thing's for sure -- life in Hilltop Township is never dull! This new two-in-one format features An Unlikely Blessing along with its sequel, Surprising Grace.

In An Unlikely Blessing, Alex Armstrong is a former city dweller who has just accepted his first parish assignment to a small community in the wilds of North Dakota. In Hilltop Township, Pastor Alex becomes familiar with the residents and their odd traditions, from julebukking to King Oscar's fish balls. And then there's the excitement the single pastor creates among the unmarried women in the community! Alex soon discovers that his new church home has as much to teach him as he has to teach them.

In Surprising Grace, Alex Armstrong is settling into his new role as pastor of Hilltop Church, and he's even starting to understand the strange ways of the people who populate this barren stretch of North Dakota prairie. But he also finds that his flock needs help and counsel like he never imagined. In this cozy and entertaining read, Alex must choose between the woman he once loved -- and the home he's come to love.

About the Author:

Judy Baer was born and grew up on a farm on the prairies of North Dakota, experiencing many of the same things as her Hilltop characters. An only child, she spent most of her days with imaginary people-either those she read about or those she made up in her head.

Baer graduated from Concordia College with majors in English and education and a minor in religion. While at the time, she was simply studying what interested her, Baer later realized that she was educating herself for her future career as a Christian writer. She certainly put her education to use as she is the author of more than 75 books.

A certified professional life coach now certified in three coaching disciplines, Baer coaches primarily professional and aspiring writers. She is also a faculty advisor in the Department of Human Development at St. Mary's University in Minneapolis, MN. Baer has two daughters and three step children. She and her husband live in Minnesota.

She invites you to visit her at her web site for more information on her and her books.  

My Opinion:

In Forever Hilltop I fell in love with the preacher named Alex.  I smiled so much while reading this story that my husband and kids kept asking me what was going on now?  I told them they needed to read it for themselves and find out!  With this book you receive a double blessing of two books in one.  It reminds me so much of the great community that we live in and could actually be written about the friends that I know and love.  Judy Baer is a wonderfully imaginative, Christian writer and has a lovely flow to her words.  I give this book 5 out of 5 stars for it's freshness and feeling of community, it makes me feel like I'd be welcome and right at home in the setting of Hilltop Township.

Celebrate with Judy by entering to win a Kindle for you and a friend!

One lucky winner will receive:
  • Brand New KINDLE with Wi-Fi
  • Brand New KINDLE with Wi-Fi to Giveaway to a Friend!
  • Forever Hilltop by Judy K Baer for you and a one for a friend
Enter today by clicking one of the icons belowBut hurry, the giveaway ends on May 22nd. Winner will be announced 5/24/12 on Judy’s Blog.
Enter via E-mail Enter via Facebook Enter via TwitterDon’t miss a moment of the fun. Tell your friends via FACEBOOK or TWITTER and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 21st!
Thanks for reading,

My Stubborn Heart book review and Nook giveaway

About the book
A Sensational CBA Debut in Contemporary Romance!  This summer author Becky Wade makes her CBA debut with a fun -- and funny -- contemporary romance.  Amidst the light-hearted banter and laugh-out-loud moments is a compelling spiritual journey of one woman's choice to listen to God and wait on him.  Filled with humor and authentic romance, My Stubborn Heart is shaping up to be the hit of the summer.

Kate Donovan is burned out on work, worn down by her dating relationships, and in need of an adventure. When Kate's grandmother asks Kate to accompany her to Redbud, Pennsylvania, to restore the grand old house she grew up in, Kate jumps at the chance.

Yet, she discovers a different kind of project upon meeting the man hired to renovate the house.  Matt Jarreau is attractive and clearly wounded -- hiding from people, from God, and from his past.  Kate can't help but set her stubborn heart on bringing him out of the dark and back into the light... whether he likes it or not.

Win a Nook Simple Touch™ with GlowLight™ in Becky Wade's My Stubborn Heart Giveaway and RSVP for FB Party {5/24}! Celebrate with Becky by entering her My Stubborn Heart Giveaway and connecting with her during the Author Chat Party on 5/24!

One fortunate winner will receive:
  • A Brand New Nook Simple Touch™ with GlowLight™
  • A $25 Barnes & Noble Gift Certificate
  • A copy of My Stubborn Heart by Becky Wade
Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends at noon on May 24th. Winner will be announced at the "My Stubborn Heart" Author Chat Facebook Party on 5/24. Becky will be hosting an book chat, testing your trivia skills and giving away some great prizes!

So grab your copy of My Stubborn Heart and join Becky on the evening of the May 24th for a chance to meet Becky and make some new friends. (If you haven't read the book - don't let that stop you from coming!)

Enter via E-mail Enter via Facebook Enter via Twitter

Don't miss a moment of the fun. RSVP today and tell your friends via FACEBOOK or TWITTER and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 24th!

The Author

During her childhood in California, Becky frequently produced homemade plays starring her sisters, friends, and cousins. These plays almost always featured a heroine, a prince, and a love story with a happy ending. She's been a fan of all things romantic ever since.
Becky and her husband lived overseas in the Caribbean and Australia before settling in Dallas, Texas. It was during her years abroad that Becky's passion for reading turned into a passion for writing. She published three historical romances with Avon Books, then put her career on hold for several years to care for her kids, then recently returned to writing sheerly for the love of it. She felt led to move to the genre of contemporary Christian romance and couldn't be more thrilled with it.
These days Becky can be found failing but trying to keep up with her housework, sweating at the gym, carting her kids around town, playing tennis, hunched over her computer, eating chocolate, or collapsed on the sofa watching TV with her husband.

My Opinion
Dare I say that this was one of my favorite book of the year?  I've already read so many wonderful books this year but this was one that really struck a cord in my heart.  It's all about Kate, her faith in God and on a rare note we find the author also writes as the male character Matt and his struggles after losing his wife to cancer.  It's a different type of romance novel then I'm used to reading and I LOVED it.  I can't wait to see what Becky has in store for us in the future, she's a talented author and storyteller and I know we will see many more fantastic books from her in the future.  I give My Stubborn Heart 5 out of 5 stars because I didn't have one slow part in the whole book.  The author is knowledgeable about antiques, hockey, the Dallas area and the love of God and how He always knows what's best for us.

Thanks for reading,

Sunday, May 20, 2012

The Genesis Code DVD review and giveaway

About the Movie:

Kerry Wells (Kelsey Sanders), a college journalist and committed Christian with an effervescent personality, has been assigned to do a story on Blake Truman (Logan Bartholomew) the college’s newest and very popular hockey superstar. As a relationship between them begins to develop Kerry finds that Blake, who hides behind a tough and independent fa├žade, is actually struggling through a difficult personal crisis and that he bears the cross of a secret he has kept hidden for years. Blake rebuffs Kerry's suggestion that prayer might help ease his burden; he is convinced that modern science completely disproves the Bible, especially the opening verses of Genesis. Kerry — who is herself suddenly confronted with a challenge to her faith on another front — sets out to prove that science and Genesis are not in conflict and her quest leads to a startling revelation. Could it be that what science teaches us about creation and the Story as told in Genesis are both true!

My Opinion

My daughter Makenzie and I watched this movie together and we both enjoyed it.  I'm happy to say that another movie gets this mommy seal of approval for no foul language, no violence, no cussing and no sexual innuendos.  It's sad that moves these days just have to include sex, violence and cussing.  To me movies are so much more enjoyable without all of those things and they do NOT have to be added so why do they?  Enough of my ranging and raving and more about this movie.  It was a lot of fun to watch and learn from a scientific point of view how the earth was made in 6 days and how it can be explained scientifically.  It really got Makenzie to thinking about it and it's been a topic of conversation at the dinner table for the past week.  It was a great movie but did get a little slow in the middle but it picked back up at the end and it reminded me that God does hear our prayers and He answers them too! 

Now for the fun part!  One of my readers has a chance to win their own copy of The Genesis Code, please fill out the Rafflecopter form below!a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thanks for reading,

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Heritage History (TOS review)-Ancient Rome

Heritage History has assembled a thorough compilation of Historical books and arranged them into collections.  Each collection is arranged by theme, this provides students from 4th grade up to high school with a full history curriculum.   Since we have been studying Rome to the Reformation this year I requested the Ancient Rome CD and we found it to be a wonderful addition to our curriculum.

The Ancient Rome collection includes romantic stories for students of all abilities, from legends of early Roman heroes that fascinate youngsters to stories of political turmoil in the imperial era that provide food for thought to older students. Stories from Gothic, Carthaginian, and Byzantine history are also included.
Includes 45 books, 60+ maps, teaching aids, and a Study Guide
The first thing I did was pop the CD into my computer and see what came up.  I found a lot of useful information like outlines, maps, user guides, a weekly reading register, book selection guide and much much more. I just wished I would have had this for the entire year while studying Ancient Rome.

  I also found out that this can be downloaded onto a Kindle, iPad or any other type of reading device, SCORE!  Which would you prefer?  Carrying around 10 books or carrying a Kindle?  My husband appreciates that it frees up some shelf space (all the homeschoolers that I know have plenty of full bookshelves).

Each volume sells individually for $24.99
Their entire 5 volume set ,The World History Collection, is available for $99.99, a savings of $25 if bought individually.

Thanks for reading,

Friday, May 18, 2012

Jamberry Nails Review and Giveaway

Have you tried out the latest rage for your toe and fingernails?  They are those cool stick on nail shields that come in tons of fantastic colors, styles and patterns. I immediately thought they would be a fantastic product for a Girl's Night Out, a Spa Party or a Sleepover. I had the opportunity to do a review of their product and I am very excited to share it with all of you. In addition to that you will also be able to enter and win some of your own.  So what are Jamberry Nails?  They are the newest way to adorn you toe and finger nails!  A new concept that will allow you to say goodbye to nail polish! 

This new nail treatment can be applied in just 15 minutes at home.  With over 60 styles available these designer nail shields are made to last up to 2 weeks on fingers and 6 weeks on toes.  Unlike traditional nail polish they won’t chip or stain the nail and require no drying time. It’s so easy to achieve a look that was once reserved to the professionals.
Jamberry Nail Shields are a solid film covering that can be applied directly to the nail to achieve a look not found anywhere else.  This special material is both pressure and heat activated to create a water tight bond to your nail. The film is finished with a high gloss protective layer that prevents your nail shield from chipping or scuffing.

Heather Rae can get you fixed up and ready to go in almost no time at all and she can do it all online, over the phone, whatever suits you.  

To shop and purchase some nail shields click here.  My 11 year old daughter and I had a great time looking through all the catalog.  Her favorite was the pink and white zebra
and mine was the Burgundy Floral (although we had a hard time picking a favorite because we like so many of them). 

My daughter has a really good friend that plays basketball and this is what they did to her nails before a tournament.  Aren't they adorable! Click here for sports themes and more.

  For info, questions, samples and general inquiries click here

 I love that fact that they offer Autism Awareness, Breast Cancer and Pay It Forward nail shields and a portion of the $ goes to those charities.

Heather Rae has generously offered a giveaway for one lucky reader so fill out the Rafflecopter form below and enter to win a sheet of this fantastic new product!

a Rafflecopter giveaway Thanks for reading,

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Write Shop

There are so many subjects that I teach in each home school day and most of them we are pretty good at staying on track and making sure it gets finished on a daily basis.  Math, reading, grammar, spelling, science, history, and Bible are never forgotten but I have struggled finding a writing curriculum for my "special needs" child.  He doesn't like to write because he can't spell very well and he always ends up very frustrated and of course we have tears and drama until I started reviewing WriteShop Primary B.  It's PERFECT for him, not to childish since he's in 4th grade, but just the right amount difficulty mixed in with some fun and and at the same time he's actually learning to write!  He's excited about writing now and I"m so grateful to Write Shop for that.  Although the recommended grade level for this is book is 1st-2nd grade or reluctant 3rd graders I felt it was appropriate for his needs.  An added bonus is I've noticed that his spelling has improved since he's writing on a consistent basis.

Teachers guide is $29.95

The outside of the book looks pretty cutesy so I was thinking that it was going to be too young for my 10 year old but he actually enjoys each lesson and has not found the graphics to be to childish for him.  He really liked the week that he wrote about Hockey.

The Teacher's Guide

I'm enjoying the teacher's guide since it walks you through all of the writing prompts and has shaded areas that tell if you need any advance prep.  There is quite a bit of advance prep for the teacher but it's been stuff that only takes a couple of minutes for each day.  I've been tempted to skip a couple of them but went ahead and just did them and my son ended up loving them.  It pays to finish all of them, they really seem to reinforce what you are learning during that particular lesson.

The WriteShop is offering 15% off on any WriteShop Primary or Junior products in the Write Shop Store including their e-books.  Just use coupon code CREW15 at checkout. Offer valid through June 15, 2012.

Worksheet pack is $4.95

Thanks for reading,


My husband and I were supposed to go see OVERCOMER on opening night with some friends from church but my Father in Law was put in the h...