Thursday, May 26, 2016

A Sure Foundation

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Sunya Publishing: Sunya -The Magic and Wonder of Math and Science Multiplying & Dividing Review ~ TOS Crew

Math and Science {Sunya Publishing Review}
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Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Bearing Witness Giveaway

"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.”
I was so excited to receive Bearing Witness to review, and even more excited that they have provided a second copy as a giveaway for one of you! More than once I have thanked my God that I was born here in this country when I was....can anyone say Amen!? It doesn't take much searching to find countless stories of persecution in the Name of Jesus Christ. As you look through those stories and read about the people these stories are about, it can be overwhelming to say the least. Although God's Word tells us not to be surprised when persecution comes, it seems we always are! 
Bearing Witness is a compilation of stories ranging from the stoning of Stephen in the first-century Jerusalem to Nigerian Christians persecuted by Boko Haram in 2015.,These stirring accounts will inspire greater faithfulness to the way of Jesus, reminding believers what costly discipleship looks like in any age. There are dangers to following Christ. Psalm 119:86 says, "All your commands are trustworthy; help me, for I am being persecuted without cause."  
Bearing Witness brings about three dozen accounts from around the world of Christians who gave witness to their faith in the face of intense persecution, even at the cost of their own lives. Here is a quote from page one of the Introduction, it reads: "The stories of costly discipleship recounted in this new collection - spanning the centuries from the early Christian church to the Radical Reformation to the contemporary global church - offer a fresh reminder that the decision to follow Christ can sometimes come at a price. Those of us involved with the Bearing Witness Stories Project think that these stories need to be told and retold, for each generation, especially in light of the fact that for many in the global church today persecution is still a lived reality."
Back Cover
Just as Paul wrote in Colossians 4:18 "...Remember my chains," we need to remember those who suffer for cause of Christ. We can't turn a blind eye to those who are persecuted and killed because of their relationship with Christ, and we cannot whitewash the history books in hopes of forgetting the tragedies of the past. When we do that we minimize the sacrifice made by our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ.
It is my hope that you will pick up a copy today. This is a good read, and I am confident that you will find it not only historically stimulating,but something that will move you emotionally. So click here and order your copy.
 Enter here for a chance to win a free copy today! Giveaway ends May 30th.

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Monday, May 23, 2016

God Pursues a Love Relationship by Bob Brown

I met Bob & Linda Brown over 22 years ago, and I feel so blessed that even though time has passed and we no longer live near each other...Facebook has allowed us to keep in touch. 
I enjoy reading his posts and love it when I am able to have him on my blog to share some of his insight!

Allow your hearts and minds to be open to hear what he has to say. Please enjoy the read!

Jeremiah 30

I have to say a word this morning to those who are church folks because they have always been church folks, and that’s just what decent people do. I have to say a word to those of us who have hung around religion all of our lives, but we have a dirty little secret. And that is that we’ve never let God get close to us. We’ve never permitted God to penetrate through the thicket of our defenses and get up close and personal with us. We are hiding from God. We are hiding behind the walls of respectability and conventional goodness, we are even hiding in the church.

It is possible to put on a good front, but not be in fellowship with God. You don’t pray. You just depend on looking good. You don’t read God’s word and ask what it says to your life. You just depend on your camouflage. You don’t witness in a positive way to others. You just hide in the church and think you have them fooled them all. But there was one you have not fooled. And He will pursue you, chase you, and if you will let him finally He will catch you. And when he does it will be an indescribable love.

Do you know that you can keep all the rules and still be out of fellowship with God? Do you know that you can be on the rolls of the church and sitting in the pews, and still be hiding from the living God? Are you aware that we can put on the mask of looking good, that we can pose as pious and proper, and still be out of touch with the heart of God? We try to avoid that intense, personal, real, face-to-face encounter with the living God. And that’s hiding. That’s hiding. That’s camouflage.

You see, if we don’t pray, we’re not in touch with God. We’re just putting on a mask. If we don’t study His word, we’re not putting ourselves in His path. We’re just holding Him at arm’s length. And, most of all, if we’re not putting ourselves on the line in some kind of ministry, if we’re not willing to risk ourselves out on the front lines, then I suggest that we’re trying to look good rather than to be good. And it’s camouflage. It’s just blowing smoke.
But I have good news. God is pursuing us, too. God is pursuing not only the blatantly sinful and the rebellious, God is also pursuing those with hidden sins and secret faults. God pursues a love relationship, even with those who would hide from Him under the cloak of respectability. God does not want mere names on church rolls. God wants fellowship with us. That is what He pursues, and He does not give up.

It’s time to quit running, and it’s time to come out of hiding. It’s time to quit running from God and it’s time to set aside the camouflage. We don’t have to run any more. He is going to pursue us. Wouldn’t it be easier and so much more satisfying just to let Him catch us? We cannot hide any longer. Just maintaining self-control is not going to get us anywhere. He is going to find us, wherever we go. Wouldn’t it be easier and so much more satisfying just to open up to His love?

I hope you enjoyed the article.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Memoria Press: Book of Astronomy Set Review ~ TOS Crew

Logic, Greek Myths and Astronomy Memoria Press Review
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Memoria Press is one of my absolute favorite vendors so I was thrilled that my daughter had the opportunity to help me review the Book of Astronomy Set. She was pretty thrilled as well since she has been interested in Astronomy for a couple years, and so this opportunity was exciting for both of us!
The astronomy program covers stars, constellations, the motion of the earth, seasonal zodiacs, as well as the sky as seen throughout the seasons. Although all homeschool families are not necessarily Christian families, we I love finding curriculum that incorporates the Word of God. Deuteronomy11:18-20 makes it clear what is expected of us as parents. "Fix these words of mine in your hearts and minds; tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Teach them to your children, talking about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates." Not only does the program begin with several verses, your children will have the opportunity to copy several verses from the Bible regarding stars as they complete their work. I love that there is curriculum that will help you teach your children that the Bible is good for practical application for everyday life.
Logic, Greek Myths and Astronomy Memoria Press ReviewI received the Book of Astronomy Teacher Guide and the Student Book for the review, and shortly after receiving it...we dug right in. Astronomy starts with memorizing the 15 brightest stars in the sky. They break it down and you can learn five each week. My daughter learned the Summer-Fall Triangle first, after that students are introduced to a constellation and its brightest star. For each constellation, information is given along with the star pattern, which the students connect, in order to see the shapes our ancient ancestors saw in the night sky.

As you go through this study you will that that constellations named for Greek heroes or Gods have a reference to D'Aulaire's Greek Myths. The additional reference helped my daughter make the connection between the two, and that will make the information stick with her  longer!

My daughter used the curriculum several times a day and had a great time working through the student book. I think her favorite part was tracing out the constellation, only second to realizing the correlation between the names of the constellations and Greek mythology!  LOL! She said, "It sure makes you look at the stars differently!"

I recommend this curriculum highly. Not only is Memoria Press a wonderful company, but I am confident that your child will enjoy it as well. Although this curriculum was designed with third graders in mind, my daughter is quite a bit older and it worked very well for her. Check it out for yourself, then order your own set today!

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Logic, Greek Myths and Astronomy Memoria Press Review


Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Institute for Excellence in Writing: Linguistic Development through Poetry Memorization Review ~ TOS Crew

Linguistic Development through Poetry Memorization  IEW Review
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We were so excited to have the opportunity to review for the Institute for Excellence in Writing (IEW). Personally, I have heard so many wonderful things, that I jumped at the chance for my girls to try out Linguistic Development through Poetry Memorization...and what a wonderful product this is!

What I Received:
    Linguistic Development through Poetry Memorization  IEW Review
  • Teacher's Manual
  • Leather CD Wallet
    • CD 1 - Level 1: Poems
    • CD 2 - Level 2: Poems
    • CD 3 - Level 3: Poems
    • CD 4 - Level 4: Poems
    • CD 5 - Level 5: Speeches
    • DVD - Nurturing Competent Communicators
  • Student e-book - This e-book provides a copy of each poem for the students to use as a visual aid to help with their memorization of it.
  • Seven Workshops - downloadable MP3 format
    • Nurturing Competent Communicators
    • Mastery Learning, Ability Development, and Individualized Education
    • Ten Thousand and Then Begins Understanding
    • On Listening
    • On Speaking
    • On Reading
    • On Writing
  • Student Pages - Physical Copy
IEW is so gracious! They allowed us to receive a physical copy of the Student Pages for the review even though the set is normally sold for $65 and includes a pdf version instead. Rest assured, they do allow you to photocopy the Student Pages...which is wonderful news! Just know that if you feel the need for a physical copy of the Student Pages, it is sold separately for $19.00.

About the Product:

Speaking as a girl who fell in love with poems after reading her very first nursery rhyme, I couldn't wait to dig into this product...and just to ease your mind this is not nursery rhymes! Ha ha!  As your children begin to memorize poetry you will see their vocabulary grow. I have always encouraged my children to expand their word selection through a variety of methods, but I have to say ...this is probably the most fun way yet! Instead of spending hours writing out notecards with vocabulary words and their definitions, this program will build language skills and vocab at the same time!

This program makes it easy by providing everything you need to be successful. The book has ninety-six poems and speeches. There are also poems and speeches that are recorded onto CD's for which makes it much easier for both myself and my girls to memorize each poem. It also makes it super easy to take it on the go. To be honest, one of the major benefits to homeschooling was that I was able to travel with my husband more freely (as he travels often for work) and take the girls along with me. Also included in the book are memory charts, instructions, completion certificates and my all time favorite....poet biographies.

How We Used the Product:

Although we took the CD's on the go and kept them in the car to memorize while we were out and about, I did find it necessary to also have the girls spend some time each day with no outside distractions. They were able to easily incorporate some simple memorization practices into their normal daily schedule, and have positive results. They enjoyed reading and memorizing poems written by people like: William Shakespeare, Walt Whitman, Alfred Lord Tennyson, Robert Frost, William Blake, and many more!

My Bottom Line:

This is an amazingly wonderful program. I would recommend this to any homeschool family! Whether you get the set with the pdf Student Pages, or opt to purchase a physical copy of the Student Pages...I have no doubt that you will love it just the same!

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Linguistic Development through Poetry Memorization  IEW Review

Sunday, May 15, 2016

ESV Family Devotional Bible Giveaway!

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I was so happy to receive the ESV FAMILY DEVOTIONAL BIBLE to review. Not only is it a beautifully colorful hardbound Bible, but it is a great addition to any family devotion time. This hardbound Bible includes 130 different devotional readings. Each one is placed in the Bible text where the story is found, but written in such a manner that is easier for children to understand. Upon opening my copy of The ESV FAMILY DEVOTIONAL BIBLE, it was not hard to recognize the beauty of each illustration that accompanied the devotional readings.

As a mom of three girls, I can honestly say that I could not have navigated myself through twenty-two years of parenting without the wisdom I found in the Bible. The Bible is God's Word to us. In it you will find the story describing the creation and fall of humanity, and also the manner in which God made a way for us to spend eternity with Him in heaven! God is always truthful  and good, and His written Word is infallible and useful in our everyday life.
As you can see in the picture, each story begins with a beautiful painting that corresponds to the story. This one references the: Jeremiah 1:1-19,23:5-6, 31:31-37 text. There are also some other features included with each
  • Questions for the Family-which is great for encouraging conversation about the story during Family Devotion time. This way the entire family can get involved and discuss the story to gain insight on how it applies to our lives today.
  • The Key Verse-identifies an important verse contained in the related text and highlights it for the purpose of driving a point home. (Personally, I love it for the purpose of finding memory verses for my kiddos)
At the end of the Bible you will find an index of each devotion  and what page you can find it on, and several maps that you can use for understanding the geography of where each story takes place.

The maps included are:
  • The Lands of the Patriarchs
  • The Exodus from Egypt
  • The Lands Assigned to the Tribes of Israel
  • The Kingdom of Saul, David, and Solomon
  • The Divided Kingdom of Israel and Judah
  • The City of Jerusalem
  • The Land of Israel during the New Testament
  • Places Paul Visited
I am so excited to give a copy away to one of you. I know that you will appreciate it as much as I have! This Bible is great for your child to read alone, or for you to use with your family together, and God's Word always produces fruit in our lives and in the lives of our loved ones.

Click below and enter to win!!

Here are the winner guidelines and Disclosure statement:

"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.”

Saturday, May 7, 2016

The Comparison Trap - My Emotional Struggle as a Homeschool Mom

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I am a mom of only three girls. My oldest successfully graduated from the public high school several years ago…..we are not country dwellers, and I don’t grind my own flour….yet I am a homeschooling mom.  HOW CAN THAT BE??  LOL!

Have any of you fallen victim to this type of comparison trap. I knew that I wanted to homeschool my younger two children, but I felt like I couldn’t relate to other homeschool families.  First of all, my oldest daughter had graduated from the public school system. What would people think of me for that one? Should I tell them or just keep it to myself? Next, I only had three children. Isn’t that frowned upon in homeschool circles? Is there a minimum child rule or something? (I know you think I’m joking…but I really struggled with that) I would look around at the families blessed with five or more kids and think that they had some kind of magic trick that I did not. I thought for sure their homeschool efforts would somehow reap a better harvest than mine. Lastly, I am a city dweller! I know right!? I rarely grow any food for myself, and I have never ground my own wheat into flour!  I mean, I know families that live in the country and grow all their own food and homeschool all their children, I felt that surely they must be doing it all right and I am simply fumbling around wandering, aimless, and clueless…..

Some of you might think I am just being silly, but I really had a struggle. I spent too much time looking around comparing myself to everyone around me. I had a real problem! You see, I had to come to terms with the fact that none of those things really mattered. I didn’t need to have seven children to somehow qualify to be a homeschool parent. God blessed me with three, and no more. That fact wasn’t going to change. But think about how irrational that thinking is…..I know I am not the only one. Sometimes we get so caught up in comparing ourselves to everyone else, and we forget to simply be ourselves. Am I the only mom that would look at the homesteading homeschooling families and think, “How much better of a homeschool mom I would be if…..”

Why do we always wish for what we don’t have? Why do we try to complicate our lives in the name of “perfection?” What leads me to be discontented with who God made me to be and what He has placed in my life to tend?  I know that discontentment does not come from God. He has gifted me with certain things and asked me to be faithful to tend, nurture, develop, and grow those gifts to the best of my ability. He has also gifted some of you with other things and asked you to do the same. It is so important for us to be mindful that God knows what He’s doing. Instead of comparing ourselves, and getting envious, or frustrated…..we should count our blessings.  I am so glad to have the opportunity to homeschool my two girls. What an absolute blessing to watch them grow and develop into young women right before my eyes. I am so glad that I have found the peace that comes from resting in my Savior and learning to take everything one day at a time, thankful for the many blessings that He has given me. Realize that God doesn’t make mistakes. He crafted and designed you and your family on purpose! Don’t fall in the comparison trap!

Thank you for reading!

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

The Pencil Grip, Inc.: Kwik Stix 12pk Review ~ TOS Crew

Kwik Stix The Pencil Grip, Inc. Review
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Thank you for supporting my blog and homeschool!
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When I got the opportunity to review Kwik Stix 12pk. from The Pencil Grip, Inc. I knew that it would be a huge hit! I have the great privilege of watching my best friend's kiddos every Friday and I figured the 3 year old, "L" would have so much fun with these paints, and I was absolutely right!! She generally arrives shortly after 6am and it is not uncommon for her to want to paint as soon as her mom heads off to work!! Here is a picture of her creating a masterpiece in the wee hours of the morning!! LOL!

Don't let this picture fool you...we all took our turns painting with these amazing Kwik Stix and found it difficult to put them down! Until now, I have never before seen anything quite like these wonderful Stix of creativity!! Basically, what you have here is tempera paint without the mess! Yes, you heard right..tempera paint with NO MESS!!!! I know it seems hard to believe, but I tell you the truth. Now your sweet kiddos can paint whenever they want without the dreaded paint brush/water cup mess that used to happen each time. The fact that these dry within 90 seconds is another major bonus as well. Now there is nothing stopping your little artists from creating masterpieces galore! Your walls will soon be full of beautiful pictures all because of Kwik Stix!
Kwik Stix The Pencil Grip, Inc. ReviewI absolutely loved this product and keep thinking this is a perfect gift for kids' birthday gifts, classrooms (at home and church), and for grandparents to keep on hand for when their grandkids come over. They are the size of a glue stick, but instead of glue it is tempera paint! The colors are very vivid which "L" really loved! The brighter and more vivid, the better for her! Now your kiddos can create all sorts of artwork quick and easy...with no clean up! There isn't much better than that!

I also love the fact that they are reasonably priced. Click here and you can purchase your own 12pk for $11.99 today! My plan is to pick up a few packs of these and take them to the classes at my church. I know they will make good use of them, and will appreciate the ease of use for any age class!

Kwik Stix The Pencil Grip, Inc. Review

Take some time to check out this wonderful product on their social media sites. You can like their page and follow their products. I know that I will be making this a staple in my house!

Pinterest:   :
Twitter @ThePencilGrip

You can also click on the graphic below to read more Kwik Stix reviews. You will also find a craft idea sent from The Pencil Grip, Inc.. It is a great Mother's Day craft idea, and it came just in time!! I know your kiddos will love working on this project for Sunday!

Kwik Stix The Pencil Grip, Inc. Review

Personalized Mother’s Day
Balloons and Cards


How To:  
 Personalizing Balloons

Using an inflated balloon and Kwik Stix no-mess tempera paints. They dry in 90 seconds. Write your personalized message. Use phrases, names and draw pictures. 
Wait 90 seconds for the balloon to dry.
*      After it has dried, decorate the back of the balloon with the same design or something different.
                                                   Add A Card
*      Pair your balloons with a hand painted card.
*      The easiest way to make a card is to fold a piece of 8 ½” x 11” paper and decorate it. You can match the card to the balloons for an original gift for mom! Which every mom absolutely loves!!

Kwik Stix are available on in a variety of colors. These balloons were made using a combination of assorted, neon and metalix colors.

Here’s what you’ll need:   
* Kwik Stix
* White Mylar inflated balloons/ White Construction Paper
Time: 15 – 30 minutes
The total time to do this complete craft will depend on how many balloons you make and the intricacy of the design.
Tips for a Successful Project:
  • Press lightly on the Kwik Stix when painting. It will give you more paint and richer color in one application. Depending on the material of the balloon, you may need to apply multiple coats. But remember, the trick is not to press hard.
  • Allow each side of the balloon to dry before continuing to paint.
  •  Don’t write too far over to the edge. Keep your words centered so they are easily read after the balloon is inflated.
  •  You can also paint on  uninflated balloons and inflate them later. This is great for party prep or a special group occasion. The paint will not spot or look any less colorful when the balloons are inflated.
And that’s all there is to it!
Happy Mother’s Day

Kwik Stix The Pencil Grip, Inc. Review

Scripture Writing for May

I believe it is safe to say that the enemy of our soul tries to keep us fearful and anxious as a distraction. If we are so caught up in worry and fear, we don't take new territory for the kingdom of God.
Take these scriptures and write them out each day. Allow the power of the Word of God to wash over your heart, mind and soul as you place all your anxiety and fears on the Lord!

Today is only Day can totally catch up!!

I found this at