Quotes to Live By

If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.
(John Quincy Adams)

We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, therefore, is not an act but a habit. (Aristotle)

Every artist was first an amateur. (Ralph Waldo Emerson)

Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude. (Thomas Jefferson)

It takes ten years to build up a reputation, but only five minutes to ruin one. (Anonymous)

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Berenstain Bears and Bragging

A new addition to the bestselling Berenstain Bears' Living Lights series that teaches simple Christian truths to children.
In this newest Berenstain Bears Living Lights book, The Berenstain Bears and the Biggest Brag, Grizzly Gramps teaches Brother and Sister a valuable lesson about bragging and boasting. When he happens to overhear the cubs bickering about who can spot the most unusual cloud formations, Gramps puts a stop to the argument. He reminds them that being proud of a special talent from God is one thing, but bragging about a talent is foolish.
I thought this book was well written for children. It's easy to relate and easy to understand for kids. There are even questions for parents and children to discuss at the end of the book to tie in the Bible verse introduced on the cover of the book. 

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Every Girl's Fantasy

Every girl, whether young or old have dreamed about their wedding. Some Pinterest fanatics have their dream wedding boards with the inspiration they want to emulate for their wedding. Although every girl did not marry a doctor or a lawyer, we can still dream.

The Knot, the #1 resource for brides, compiled their all-time best wedding details (cakes, bouquets and centerpieces, vows, décor and more), planning advice, and ideas for celebrations big and small within this beautiful box set of four colorful mini books. Whether you’re looking for a breathtaking bouquet, an unforgettably original cake, or the perfect reading for your ceremony, these books offer hundreds of ways to make the day your own.

With more than 200 photographs and inspiration for:
Invitations * cakes * bridal bouquets in every hue * aisle and altar decorations * ceremony readings  * guidance for writing your own vows * escort cards * table settings * centerpieces * reception décor * toasts * favors * and more

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Trusting God through Change

Ever wonder whether you should or shouldn't do something? How about trying to explain choices to your children? How do you go about explaining change to children? Now you can! This book explains in a heartwarming way.

Whether we like it or not, growing up brings change. For many children, this conjures fears that are sometimes real and sometimes imagined. How can kids learn that even when they face new and unfamiliar situations, they don't have to be afraid?

Little Seed and Little Fox are facing changes and brand new circumstances-and they don't like it one bit! Through this unlikely friendship, children will discover that no matter how new or fearful their circumstances, God is always with them. The whimsical art by Natalia Moore will put a smile on kids' faces and put their minds at ease. Just as Little Seed and Little Fox learn to trust that the Farmer is good and kind, children will also learn to trust God.

Written by New York Times bestselling author Lysa TerKeurst, It Will Be Okay will help kids discover that the end, it really will be okay because we have a God who is good and kind and always with us.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

A Mom's Prayers

A mom's prayers to her child is a very special thing. Everyone in the world wishes their moms would pray for them too. A mere prayer is common, unless it is prayed by someone you love.

What's more special than praying for your son? That's what this book is all about. Each prayer is characterized under a special topic. Each child is delicate, but boys especially need a mother's guidance to grow up in the right way.

This book called: A Mother's Prayers to her Son reminds me of an article I read recently about a son who had been murdered at age 20. This mother wishes that she could have seen her son one last time. For all those people out there, please remember to prayer for your son just as this mother has prayed for her son.

To My Son,
I hope you know how much I love you so.
I might embarrass you from time to time
By giving lots of love and needless kisses,
But you need to know Mom loves you so.
Before you were born I didn't know
Just how much I would love you so,
But when I looked into your eyes for the first time,
I felt my heart grow and grow.
A Mother's love is hard to explain,
Not everyone will feel the same.
Now that you are getting older I felt the need to tell you
Just how much I love you so,
Time may pass day after day or year after year,
But the love I have for you grows
nearer and dearer to my heart each day and year.
To My Son, I hope you know just how much I love you so.

Remember that Christmas is around the corner, so please pray for those around you that you love!

Friday, December 5, 2014

Andi Under Pressure

When I got this book, I was excited. This is the second book in the series and I enjoy the main character named Andi. I think she is a believable character for both boys and girls because Andi is not all girly girly. She is what our generation would call a tomboy and her best friend is a boy. 
When I started reading the first chapter, I was a little lost. It seemed to jump in the middle of camp and in my mind, I was scrambling to remember who was who in the book. For all those families who have children, try to read the first book first. I'm drawing a blank as to the title of the first book, but I think it's called: Andi Unexpected or something along those lines. You can Google it if you want. Here is a real synopsis to what the book is really about:

Twelve-year-old Andora ‘Andi’ Boggs and her new best friend Colin Carter couldn’t be more excited to attend the prestigious science camp at the local university in Killdeer, Ohio. Unfortunately, Discovery Camp’s curriculum appears to include much more than just chemistry and biology. From day one, the university is plagued by a series of pranks—missing markers, loose crickets, and stolen scales. Campus security blames the mysterious janitor Polk, but even though Andi agrees he’s acting suspicious, she can’t believe the gentle old man would do anything illegal. Then one prank goes too far and their chemistry professor is injured by an explosion in the lab, upping the stakes of the investigation. Andi and Colin must unravel the secrets behind the chemistry department and Polk’s dark past before danger closes the camp for good.

I liked that the book really gives characters a real feel. Children from ages 7-11 will like that they know how the characters feel and if you have a vivid reader at home, they can probably imagine themselves in the plot of the book. That's how I felt when I read the book. 

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Crocheting for Grandbabies

Even though I'm not a grandma and not even close to being one, I really liked this book. This book had very cute designs and shows you how to make each little animal hat out of yarn. What I liked as I leafed through this book was that it even showed you how to start crocheting the hat and it teaches you what technique you need in order to make that design.

Even though I cannot make heads or tails with crocheting, I will still commend the effort the author did in writing this book. I just liked leafing through the pages and looking at all the cute things I could make, if I ever learned how to crochet.

Sized from newborn to 12 years old, the 19 projects in this book are designed to grow with kids and become their go-to favorite hats. All the hats and booties are both beginner-friendly and budget-friendly, using machine-washable acrylic yarn and time-tested knitting techniques for quick baby shower and children's gifts.

Even if you're new to knitting, Gramma Nancy's Animal Hats (and Booties, Too!) provides encouraging words of advice and plenty of clever shortcuts. With Gramma Nancy's tried-and-true patterns, you'll find just the inspiration you need for your own knit-with-love creations.

Knit up the cutest little animal hats and booties, including a pair of elephants, a cheeky monkey, and an adorable bunny hat with matching paws. These fun and fabulous animal hats will delight new parents, and they're a snap to knit.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Parenting with Grace Devotional

I don't know about you, but it seems that parents need more grace with their children more than ever. I have seen some super tantrums and some kids do not ever grow out of them, even when they get to college (my roommate). I would really like to meet some of those parents.

But in this generation, kids are in their entitlement attitudes, which some are brought up by their parents, but others are being influenced by the society who believe in materialism. When the iphone 6 came out, the mall was in chaos and havoc because of a new piece of technology. When the new kids movie comes out, everyone rushes to see it or gets the new video console.

Every child I have ever observed this year thinks that because they are important in their family, they are entitled to some rights. For example, a student introduced himself as the cafeteria worker's grandson. Apparently, he thought it was a big deal and that I should take a note of it. He uses that excuse a lot to get out of doing homework or classwork. I fixed that problem really quickly (recess detention).

But even a midst all these problems, parents still need a huge dose of grace because more and more parents are going to work. There are more working parents than stay at home mom and children are swept to the side for an added income to the family.

This devotional will come in handy for parents with school-aged children. The Once-A-Day Nurturing Great Kids Devotional helps you to bring God into your parenting by providing 365 daily devotionals written specifically for parents who are seeking to build a stronger relationship with their kids and put God first in their family. These devotionals will inspire you as a parent to embrace the role that God has given you, while also equipping you with the tools you need to be a strong Christian role model for your children.

Starting with a Square

I was excited to receive this book in the mail because I would finally learn how to knit granny squares. I have always wanted to learn. What I expected to find and what I actually received were two different things. I received a book that had lots of different designs and how to "make" the design using a foreign set of numbers/terminology I had not learned before.

Maybe because this book is for seasoned knitters? Anyways, the illustrations were pretty and I wish I could make anyone of these squares they pictured.

For those of whom are seasoned knitters, here is a synopsis of what the book entails: 

150 original block patterns, from simple textures to embossed pictorials, intricate lace to cables, colorwork, double knit, and more, all with Nicky’s signature wit, verve, and style.
More than ten exclusive project designs that will make you say “I can’t believe that is made out of blocks!”
Detailed guidance for creating exciting pieces out of block knitting, without using increases or decreases.
Exclusive cut-and-paste project design pages. Simply cut out the printed blocks and arrange them to help create your own masterpieces.

Blocks are quick to knit, portable pieces perfect for group and charity projects, and now not limited to just afghans! Knitting Block by Block gives you the tools to unlock a world of creative possibilities and confidently build your own design “blockbusters,” one block at a time.  

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Testing Food

Many people think that cooking is a mystery, but if you break it down, cooking is only a mixture of ingredients, made hot by heating in different ways. Maybe that is the mystery. What if I put the wrong amount or what if I put a wrong ingredient into the mixture?

I was talking to a friend and he told me that on Thanksgiving, he is responsible for eating. I think that's true for most family members. Eating is a very important responsibility, but I think cooking is a huge responsibility too. If the food isn't good, then the eating is hard. If the food is good, then the plates will be empty.

Either way, making food is a skill all in itself. That's why I requested this book. As a college student, ramen noodles is a staple in the menu. Everything stems from ramen noodles, pizza, or mac & cheese. This book takes 125 common foods and elevates it to a higher standard. No more are we eating ramen noodles. We are instead eating an Asian salad with ramen noodles.

See the difference? The author, Tyler Florence takes a common thing and makes it uncommon. The pictures and illustrations are in color, so you don't have to guess what the result would look like. Also, there are step by step directions along with a few pictures so you know what each step is supposed to look like when it is finished.

Have you ever wondered which cheese, exactly, will make the stretchiest, cheesiest mac and cheese? Or if you can make Hollandaise sauce without fear, a double boiler, or even a whisk? Or if, instead of having to choose between onion rings or French fries, you can make onion rings crusted with French fries? Tyler Florence has. These are the kinds of questions he obsesses over when he thinks about how to make cooking both easier and more exciting.

For years, while shuttling between his restaurants and TV shoots, Tyler's kept a notebook of ideas to push his own recipes out of their comfort zone. Now, for the first time in his career, he’s established a culinary lab where he can dive deep into the hows, whys, and why-nots of his cooking. He brings you Inside the Test Kitchen to see his experiments, the wins and the fails, and of course, the delicious, foolproof, and surprising recipes that come out of it.

Go from tricks to make basics brilliant—like saucing Double-Creamed Spinach with pureed spinach, or using boiling-hot brine to make a Super-Crisp Roast Chicken— to simpler ways to make the classics, like a nearly no-stir Time Saver Risotto and a Three-Minute Hollandaise, to pure reinvention, like Fronion Rings and almost-instant Modern Burger Buns.

Through these 120 recipes, Tyler invites you to question culinary sacred cows, push your skills to the next level, and make food more delicious than they would have thought possible.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Just Sayin'

If you read my previous blog post, I talked about a 90 day devotional for boys. Well, guess what? They have a version for girls and it's for girly girls. The girls that talk about nails, hair and makeup, this book is for them.

I can see my cousin who is in 6th grade doodle all over this book. She loves drawing and being artistic, so this book will probably fit her. This book is just like it's male counterpart: "Dare U to Open this Book". It's filled with fun devotionals aimed at girls in their preteen ages. The cover is also pink and all the devotional topics have something do with life from a girl's perspective.

Just Sayin’ isn’t your typical 90-day devo for girls. It’s an all-out open space for you to explore and learn more about yourself and your faith. Prompts get your mind thinking, ideas flowing, and help turn your thoughts and emotions into dynamic doodles and more!

Each of the short, single-page devos were designed for girls just like you, with relevant topic, quotes, Scripture, plus doodles, journal prompts, lists, puzzles, quizzes, fill-in-the-blank prayers, and unique activities that explore Bible truths and ways to apply them—everyday. Just Sayin’ challenges girls to follow Jesus every day. Best. Idea. Ever.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Dare U to Open This

As I looked through the pages, I was excited for the future. I plan to have more than one boy and I can see their excited faces already as they leaf through the pages. This is a great devotional for boys to get engaged with Bible truths and Bible verses that pertain to things boys are interested in.

Even though I'm not a guy, I felt excited just reading some parts of the devotional. Drawing and doodling about the Bible is a great way for families to get familiarized with the Bible.

Dare U 2 Open this Book is not your typical 90-day devotional for guys. It’s an all-out open space for you to explore and learn more about yourself and your faith. With prompts to get your mind thinking and your creative ideas flowing, turn your thoughts and emotions into dynamic doodles, fill in the prayer blanks, solve puzzles, and more.

Each of the short, single-page devotions includes a topic, quote, Scripture summary, plus doodles, journal prompts, lists, puzzles, quizzes, fill-in-the-blank prayers, and unique activities that explore Bible truths and ways to apply them—everyday. — Dare U 2 Open this Book challenges guys to follow Jesus. Best. Idea. Ever.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Being a Warrior

I thought this book was amazing in every way. And I thought this book was very practical and very inspirational. The author has a good grasp on the concept of taking command. Even though this book is geared more towards business leaders, I felt like education is sometimes also a business because it requires the same things as a business does.

My path in life is leading me towards a position that may be leadership in education. I felt as though Jake Wood wrote this book for me. I'm even quoting some passages of the book for my application into a PHD program. 

The ability to have clarity of mind and purpose when surrounded by chaos.    To operate at peak performance under risk. To be able to see clearly when others are blinded by fear, and act when others are paralyzed. To craft plans even with incomplete information, then execute those plans decisively –while still being nimble and adaptable enough to iterate as the terrain changes. To deliver in the clutch. To build teams with high impact, and then inspire those teams to follow you into the fire.

In this groundbreaking book on high-stakes leadership, Co-founder and CEO of Team Rubicon and former Marine Sniper Jake Wood, shows how to apply hard-learned lessons in leadership and teamwork from the battlefield and disaster zone to your professional life. 

While most of our jobs don’t involve leading a tour of Marines through an ambush, or rushing into a relief zone just decimated by a hurricane, in today's fast-paced, hyper-competitive business environment, we are ALL on the front lines. And in an entrepreneurially-minded world where technology is constantly reinventing how we work, global competition is fierce, and industries are being disrupted overnight, success requires a new kind of leadership. This book is about how to become the kind of leader who gets results when the stakes are at their highest—how to Take Command.  

Friday, October 17, 2014

The Best Year of Marriage

When this book came in the mail, I was a little surprised. It looked like a leather Bible. It was kind of funny actually. The way to a good marriage is talked about in the Bible, so maybe Jim and Jean Daly meant their book to look like a Bible. 

I think Jim Daly's name sounds really familiar. So I typed it into Google, and realized that Jim Daly is in charge of Focus of the Family show. That's why his name sounded so familiar. He's a really good speaker because I heard him speak once at Liberty University for convocation. 

I really liked the devotions in the book. Even if I still have some time before I get married, I like reading books that prepare me for future life or self-improvement. As a I was leafing through the pages, I got the feeling that most marriages fail because of the lack of communication between a couple or wrong expectations.

I have heard that you shouldn't marry to complete your second half. Your other half of the person should be filled by God and then your spouse should be added to that half. Different expectations will warrant some deep disappointment later, so it's best not to tack on high expectations. 

This 52-week devotional provides Christian couples an easy way to read Scripture, pray and discuss things to strengthen their relationship and marriage. 

 Presented in a relaxed and easy-to-use way and edited by Focus on the Family president Jim Daly and his wife, Jean, each devotional offers foundational, practical, and wise material from members of the Focus counselling staff.

The content is divided into 13 sections, with topics including getting to know each other better, listening, mastering money, building a Christ-centered home, going the distance, and more. Each section is introduced by the Dalys, and each of the 52 devotions is followed with discussion questions and activities.

Growing up Believing

I requested this book for my cousin as a Christmas present and I really think she'll like the format of the book. She is currently 13 years old and she's in 8th grade. She's at that pre-teen, early teen age and she is very impressionable. I think this book is really geared towards young girls because it guides girls through the Bible with practical life applications.

Many times, a devotional book will have a story and then a verse at the end. I like how at the end of each place, there is a "Girl Talk" section and a "God Talk" section. It feels more down to earth because the Girl Talk sections reach out to readers and uses that story/passage to relate to them.

Beauty of Believing combines the talents of Faithgirlz! authors Tasha K. Douglas, Mona Hodgson, Kristi Holl, Lois Walfred Johnson, Allia Zobel Nolan, and Nancy Rue, and their words of wisdom will help your faith bloom and flourish as you grow into the girl God wants you to be.

Featuring 365 days of wisdom from your favorite Faithgirlz! authors, as well as quotes and questions from real girls like you, this devotional offers pages of inspiration on everything from navigating friendships, to taming the tongue, to trusting God in everything, big and small. Growing up can be tough, but Jesus is guiding you every step of the way.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Giggles in the House

I loved this book. Every chapter taught me how to relax and have fun with kids with a different fruit of the spirit or attitude from the Bible. It taught me how to let go and wisely choose battles. The best part about this book is that it suggests activities to do with each of these attitudes that you can do to liven up your family environment.

I would def. want to try this book out when I settle down and start a family. It's good for hectic families and families who needs some down time and unstructured parts of the day. Instead of sitting in front of a screen, you and your family members can do things together.

Courtney DeFeo believes that instilling virtues in children starts with laughter, not lecture. That perspective propelled her to create this idea-packed book, in which she offers motivating reflections, real-life stories, and a sandbox full of inventive ways to help you turn your kids’ hearts toward God.

Each chapter focuses on one virtue that is key for developing your child’s character. Along with insights into how this virtue plays out in the nitty-gritty of life, Courtney includes a memory verse, activity ideas, and discussion questions to reinforce that virtue throughout the month. Here you’ll find a full year of ways to draw your children closer to God through delightful antics like Family Olympics, One Fancy Feast, and Light ’Em Up.

In This House, We Will Giggle shows you how to capture the hearts of your children through fun—so that they experience the goodness of Christ, the joy of following Him, and the difference they can make in the lives of others.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

A Christmas Story

When I heard that this book was by Max Lucado, I was excited to get this book or review. When I got it, I wasn't too happy about the illustrations. It seemed lacking and uninteresting.

The story line wasn't too bad, although I would change the biblical fact that Gabriel appeared to Mary in the morning and not at night. I don't know if I would actually read this book to my children because of that apparent typo from morning to night.

The book's synopsis follows the Bible from the Mary and Joseph to the birth of Jesus in Bethlehem. The vocabulary is the right age for preschool to elementary children. And it might make a good Christmas tradition to read the birth of the Jesus during the holiday, but I might need to read another version of a story.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Prayer for Children

This book was so cute. The illustrations are just for children. When I opened the book, the stickers attracted me. I also liked the cute CD that it came with. Parents can just pop the CD into the stereo in the car or this book can be turned into a family devotional for toddlers. 

I am really excited for my future children because they will be able to understand prayer so much better and the pictures are also very appropriate for younger children. Even the explanations are geared towards younger children. 

Train ’Em Up is an interactive, fun-filled, and affordable series that uses a train locomotive theme for teaching kids core Christian beliefs and principles. In Tell Me about Prayer, a friendly train conductor, Mr. Steve, teaches kids what prayer is all about, how we should talk to God, and why our conversations are so important to Him. 

Through bold graphics and interactive songs and stories, Train ’Em Up makes it easy for parents and teachers to explain biblical concepts like prayer in a way that helps with attention, memorization, and recall while building a solid faith foundation. Each book in the series includes a CD with sing-along songs and narrated stories with sound effects, plus a colorful sticker sheet!

Monday, September 29, 2014

The Legend of the Candy Cane

I loved the book the minute I opened up the box. It's a story fit for little ones. The pages are easy to flip for inexperienced hands and each page has short sentences for toddlers to understand. The illustrations are also nice and easy on the eyes.

With this in mind, it would make a great traditional read among young families. Parents can discuss the meaning of Christmas with their children and also use a candy cane to illustrate the gospel of Jesus Christ.

One dark November night a stranger rides into a small prairie town. Who is he? Why has he come? The townspeople wish he were a doctor, a dressmaker, or a trader. But the children have the greatest wish of all, a deep, quiet, secret wish. Then a young girl named Lucy befriends the newcomer. When he reveals his identity and shares with her the legend of the candy cane, she discovers fulfillment of her wishes and the answer to her town's dreams. Now will she share what she has learned? Warm, lavish illustrations by James Bernardin bring to life a timeless tale by Lori Walburg, a story that will help families celebrate the mystery and miracle of Christmas - for many Christmases to come.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

A Unique Way to Approach Interviews

I can remember my very first interview. It was as an intern at some company where they train you to sell products door to door. The PR person asked me to list three adjectives about myself. I said: reliable, dependable and responsible. Too late did I realize that those three words were synonyms to each other. When I said that, the guy smiled and I knew I didn't get the internship.

I wanted to review this book because I knew that it would help me become better at interviews.

This empowering guide from legendary career expert Richard N. Bolles reveals that interviews are really just conversations to determine if the work—and workplace—is a great fit for both parties.

For the first time, Bolles combines his decades of experience with the latest studies and job-market research to create an all-in-one guide for the whole interview process, from pre-interview research to elevator pitches, “tell me about yourself” questions, and salary negotiation. This slender handbook provides just the essentials: the three most important things you need to know about interviews, the five questions you must have answers for, and an ingenious summary of how to succeed. With this guide in hand, you’ll walk into interviews with confidence, armed with the means to impress—and hopefully land your dream job.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Bend your Brain

Want to train your brain to be better? Then this book is for you! Of course, speaking from a perspective of an educator, this is an important book. Students need to memorize so much information these days and every day, history is happening. How can they stretch their brain?

This first book from the team behind Marbles: The Brain Store, a chain devoted to building better brains, offers puzzles and brain teasers to help enhance memory, build problem-solving skills, and reduce stress.
Since Marbles started helping people play their way to a healthier brain, they've sold, solved, and been stumped by more than their fair share of puzzles. Along the way, they've learned which puzzles tie people in knots (not in a good way) and which ones make the neurons downright giddy. With the help of their in-house team of BrainCoaches and access to cutting-edge neuroscience, they've designed these puzzles to keep your mind flexible and fit.
 Arranged in five key brain categories—visual perception, word skills, critical thinking, coordination, and memory—Bend Your Brain offers a variety of puzzles ranging from mind-warming (easy) to mind-blowing (hard!):

·  Connecting the dots? More like working your spatial-orientation skills.
·  Identifying famous smiles? Flexing your visual memory.
·  Taking a closer look at your keyboard? Coding, storing, and retrieving.
·  Word-doku? Summoning cognitive abilities like appraisal, inference, impulse control, and evaluation.
·  Word scrambles? Tapping your brain’s association areas.

Your brain is your most important muscle, so let the brain-building begin!

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

A Devotional for Active Boys

Have a son who can't sit still during family devotions? Now they can! Featuring the one and only: Devotional for Active Boys!

Each devotional is geared towards how boys think! There are brain teasers, jokes and even exercise drills for busy boys. And if you have an active daughter, this book will also work.

The devotions help boys find how real people interacted with God and help them discover solutions to contemporary issues. Each devotion will help guide a young man in developing a lifetime habit of learning from the Bible. These themes include making good choices, discerning God's will, using good and uplifting language, avoiding temptation, choosing good friends and many more topics.

I got this book from: Tynadale

Letters from God

The book that came in the mail was so beautiful. When I opened the package, I was amazed at how pretty the illustrations were. I loved the letters from God part and my mom loved how the flaps could open.

This book is fit for any child who loves to get letters or love to look at pictures in a book. This book will create a special bond between God, child and parent as they go through each story.

he Love Letters from God will invite them to do just that! Accompanying each story in this unique children’s Bible is a very special and encouraging letter, each tucked away in its own lift-the-flap envelope, just for them. Written for children ages four to eight, the Love Letters from God includes eighteen of the most popular Bible stories—nine from the Old Testament and nine from the New Testament. Following each story the child will find his or her own letter from God. Children will love the excitement of opening the letters and parents will love how each letter elaborates on the Bible story being told. A very special Bible verse, entitled God’s Wonderful Words To You will accompany each story and letter. Much more than a mere memory verse, each carefully chosen promise will be God’s very own personal words of love, encouragement, and hope. This book will culminate in an invitation for the children to write their own RSVP to God.

I got this book from: Booklook Bloggers

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Thief of Glory

The inner struggles of both Jeremiah and Laura can be seen in this book. This book isn't just some sappy love story, but rather a story that the reader can see both sides and feel for the characters at the same time.

Sigmund Brouwer does a great job by putting readers into the plot and describing the scene as if he was there with the characters. It makes the story come to life from start to finish.

A boy coming of age in a time of war…
the love that inspires him to survive.

For ten year-old Jeremiah Prins, the life of privilege as the son of a school headmaster in the Dutch East Indies comes crashing to a halt in 1942 after the Japanese Imperialist invasion of the Southeast Pacific. Jeremiah takes on the responsibility of caring for his younger siblings when his father and older stepbrothers are separated from the rest of the family, and he is surprised by what life in the camp reveals about a woman he barely knows—his frail, troubled mother.

Amidst starvation, brutality, sacrifice and generosity, Jeremiah draws on all of his courage and cunning to fill in the gap for his mother. Life in the camps is made more tolerable as Jeremiah’s boyhood infatuation with his close friend Laura deepens into a friendship from which they both draw strength.

When the darkest sides of humanity threaten to overwhelm Jeremiah and Laura, they reach for God’s light and grace, shining through his people. Time and war will test their fortitude and the only thing that will bring them safely to the other side is the most enduring bond of all.

"I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review."

Monday, August 25, 2014

In Future Years

The Wonder Within You takes you on a journey that weaves scientific studies, dozens of interviews with mothers, and storytelling into a fascinating account of life inside the womb. An obstetrician loads each chapter with advice. A sonographer gives incredible 3 and 4-D snapshots (included in this special enhanced eBook) and stories from her 25 years of watching babies grow in utero. Each chapter includes week-by-week developmental information, findings from recent neonatal studies, and even nutritional advice all designed to nurture a healthy baby. The Wonder Within You also serves as a weekly journal for expectant mothers to chronicle her own baby's journey to life outside the womb. It's a keepsake baby book that begins before birth.

The Wonder Within You will help moms meet the real needs of the growing pre-born baby. Sonograms, dietary and medical advice, and stories from experienced moms are combined to encourage 40 weeks of prenatal parenting designed with a joy for the journey in mind.

When I read through the pages, week by week, I felt that with this book, I would be ready for pregnancy. This book prepares you on the correct diet and what to expect within each week. There is also a spot at the end of each week to write down your thoughts.

I think that if this book was given to all new moms at the start of their pregnancy, then they can rest assure that their baby will be well taken care of. 

Here are some links that I got from Tyndale to share with you!

11 Weeks

28 Weeks

32 Weeks

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Party Book for Pre-Teens Everywhere!

I was so excited to receive this book in the mail even if I was a decade over my pre-teen years. There were so many ideas of get-togethers, tea party ideas, and for sleepovers. There were many recipes and decoration ideas with hostess tips. I love that this book had colorful illustrations with easy to read instructions on each idea.

Whether you want to throw the best birthday bash or a luxurious spa party, this book has you covered. Packed full of fun and creative ideas, you won't run out of ideas. Plus, clever ideas throughout shows you how to turn every day into a special occasion!! 

I will probably gift this book to my cousin who is in her pre-teens or save it for my future kids. I recommend this book to any girl who just wants to have some fun with friends. 

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Fluent Forever

I was curious when I saw the title of this book and wondered how I can learn a language and stay fluent. I remember agonizing over the conjugation in Spanish and it was bad. I don't remember any of the high school Spanish I learned, except for the yo ( I ) form.

It was good that I picked up this book. It taught me what books to look for and how to study. Many books just teach you the material, but this book adds personal tips on how Gabriel Wyner, the author learned. 

The ultimate rapid language-learning guide! For those who’ve despaired of ever learning a foreign language, here, finally, is a book that will make the words stick. At thirty years old, Gabriel Wyner speaks six languages fluently.  He didn’t learn them in school -- who does? -- rather, he learned them in the past few years, working on his own and practicing on the subway, using simple techniques and free online resources. In Fluent Forever Wyner reveals what he’s discovered.  

The greatest challenge to learning a foreign language is the challenge of memory; there are just too many words and too many rules. For every new word we learn, we seem to forget two old ones, and as a result, fluency can seem out of reach. Fluent Forever tackles this challenge head-on. With empathy for the language-challenged and abundant humor, Wyner deconstructs the learning process, revealing how to build a foreign language in your mind from the ground up. 

Starting with pronunciation, you’ll learn how to rewire your ears and turn foreign sounds into familiar sounds. You'll retrain your tongue to produce those sounds accurately, using tricks from opera singers and actors. Next, you'll begin to tackle words, and connect sounds and spellings to imagery, rather than translations, which will enable you to think in a foreign language.  And with the help of sophisticated spaced-repetition techniques, you'll be able to memorize hundreds of words a month in minutes every day. Soon, you'll gain the ability to learn grammar and more difficult abstract words--without the tedious drills and exercises of language classes and grammar books. 

This is brain hacking at its most exciting, taking what we know about neuroscience and linguistics and using it to create the most efficient and enjoyable way to learn a foreign language in the spare minutes of your day.

I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review.

Friday, August 8, 2014


What made Mary so special that God chose her to give birth to Jesus? Why did the angels choose her out of all the people in the world? Find out when you read this book: Get to Know Mary.

Chosen by God, Mary was more than the mother of Jesus. She was a hero of the Bible. She said “Yes!” to God. Learn about Mary and her exciting place in history. Discover what it was like to grow up in Israel and be a part of Jesus’ life on earth. Mary - part of the Get to Know series - will teach you everything you need to know about this young woman whom God used to do great things!

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

The Blessings of Friendship

The book I just received in the mail brought me back to childhood. When I opened the book, I felt like the author wrote the book just for me. The illustrations were really nice. I was totally surprised by how much work the illustrator put in to make this book a wonder. 

The Blessings of Friendship, by Mary Engelbreit is a really good poetry treasury full of Bible verses and quotes that celebrate the joy of friendship. I look forward to integrating this poetry trove into my classroom because  children will learn from timeless sayings and poems what it means to be a friend - helping, encouraging, listening, sharing with, and loving one another. 

Colorful and whimsical illustrations bring these words to life, as children learn the value of friendship. Verses from the Bible give us instruction on putting others above ourselves, loving each other, and being kind to one another. This book will make you smile with each turn of the page, remembering old friends and new friends alike.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Beyond IQ

Have you ever taken those IQ tests and failed? Then you compared yourself to those around you and it made you miserable because your friends succeeded and you didn't? This book talks about how you can become much smarter than those IQ tests.

But surprisingly, science shows that mental abilities not captured in IQ tests can have the most impact in the real world—attributes like creativity, willpower, emotional intelligence, and intuition.

And yes—you can train those skills. In these pages, journalist Garth Sundem draws on interviews with psychology’s top experts and the latest research to show you how.

Beyond IQ is a new kind of braintraining guide, one packed with useful, engaging exercises scientifically shown to help you make the most of the brain you've got in the arena that matters most—life!"

BEYOND IQ is filled with simple pen-and-paper exercises that will help you:
--teach your mind to hear that "eureka" moment of insight
--improve your problem-solving skills
--use divergent thinking to boost your creativity
--retrain your intuition to become more trustworthy
--avoid the cognitive "blinkering" that too often comes with expertise
--expand your working memory
--practice your performance under pressure
--improve your pattern-recognition skills
--sharpen your emotional intelligence
--strengthen your willpower

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Who Built the Arky Arky?

Remember that old Bible song, Who Built the Arky Arky? It was such a fun song. It goes through all these wacky verses too. Well, this book comes from a whole new series. And a few days ago, I got the Jonah story. I love these stories. They rhyme and are so much fun. Read my other review to see the Jonah story too. 

Beds are ready. Food is stored. Noah hollers, “All aboard!” It’s bedtime on Noah’s ark, but the animals can’t sleep because of the storm. Two by two, they crowd into Noah’s bed, creating a sticky situation. 

Will Noah ever get them back to their own beds? 

Climb aboard the ark for this rollicking, yet ultimately restful bedtime story as Noah finds a way to make things calm and cozy, even in the midst of a storm.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Story about Jonah

"God told Jonah to obey, said, 'Go to Nineveh this day.' But, stubborn Jonah fled instead. Didn’t do just what God said." 

Jonah’s disobedience landed him inside a big fish! And there he had time to think and pray. Children will feel the waves and hear the splash as Jonah sinks “down and down and down” into the belly of the fish. 

This story serves as an excellent reminder of how important it is to listen to God.

From an educator's point of view, this book also teaches rhyming words. Parents can read a page and ask their children which two words rhyme. Children can also learn to "read" this book by remembering the rhymes, just like in the Dr. Seuss books. 

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Who Gets Promoted and Who Doesn't

Have you ever wondered why you didn't get promoted, but someone else who worked less than you got promoted over you?

Do your job, do it well, and you’ll be rewarded, right? 
Actually, probably not. 

According to career guru Donald Asher, advancement at work is less about skillsets and more about strategy. The revised and expanded edition of WHO GETS PROMOTED, WHO DOESN’T, AND WHY details exactly what puts one employee on the fast track to an exceptional career, while another stays on the treadmill to mediocrity.

Whether you’re new to the workforce, repairing a recession-damaged career, or feeling stagnant and overlooked at work, this book is your ticket to advancement. Learn:

∙ why timing is more important than talent
∙ how corporations actually make promotion decisions 
∙ how to avoid career mistakes you don’t even know you’re making 
∙ what women in the workforce particularly need to know 
∙ and the twelve proven strategies for promotion regardless of 
  your industry and experience  

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Apostle Paul

Have you ever wanted to learn more about the apostle Paul? How he turned from mass Christian murderer to a disciple of Jesus Christ? This book is from a series called, Get to Know. Anyone from any age can read this book, although it's geared more towards children. 

Apostle Paul - part of the Get to Know series - is a unique biography about Paul. Focusing on the life and character of this Biblical hero, using color photographs, maps, and other visual resources to tell the whole story, young biography fans will come to learn more about this man of the God, his writings, his impact on the early church, and the role he plays in history. Featuring a bibliography and scriptural references throughout, this is sure to become a favorite for young readers and for first book reports.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

King David

Have you ever wanted to know more about King David? Is David and Goliath one of your favorite Bible stories? This biography has it all. 

A shepherd and a king, David lived an adventurous life. He protected his family’s sheep from lions and bears. He fought a giant with just a sling and stone. He even spent years hiding from men who were trying to kill him. And eventually, David became a great king. But David was also a man of God. Learn more about this hero from the Bible and his exciting place in history. Discover what it was like to grow up in ancient Israel and then be a king of God’s people. King David - part of the Get to Know series - will teach you everything you need to know about an imperfect young man whom God used to do great things!

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Never Eat Alone

Have you ever sat by yourself in a conference or at a meeting? Ever wondered about those new people who instantly connect to other people on the first day? You can too!

The bestselling business classic on the power of relationships, updated with in-depth  advice for making connections in the digital world. 

Do you want to get ahead in life? Climb the ladder to personal success?

The secret, master networker Keith Ferrazzi claims, is in reaching out to other people. As Ferrazzi discovered in early life, what distinguishes highly successful people from everyone else is the way they use the power of relationships—so that everyone wins. 
In Never Eat Alone, Ferrazzi lays out the specific steps—and inner mindset—he uses to reach out to connect with the thousands of colleagues, friends, and associates on his contacts list, people he has helped and who have helped him. And in the time since Never Eat Alone was published in 2005, the rise of social media and new, collaborative management styles have only made Ferrazzi’s advice more essential for anyone hoping to get ahead in business.

The son of a small-town steelworker and a cleaning lady, Ferrazzi first used his remarkable ability to connect with others to pave the way to Yale, a Harvard M.B.A., and several top executive posts. Not yet out of his thirties, he developed a network of relationships that stretched from Washington’s corridors of power to Hollywood’s A-list, leading to him being named one of Crain’s 40 Under 40 and selected as a Global Leader for Tomorrow by the Davos World Economic Forum.

Ferrazzi’s form of connecting to the world around him is based on generosity, helping friends connect with other friends. Ferrazzi distinguishes genuine relationship-building from the crude, desperate glad-handing usually associated with “networking.” He then distills his system of reaching out to people into practical, proven principles. Among them:

Don’t keep score: It’s never simply about getting what you want. It’s about getting what you want and making sure that the people who are important to you get what they want, too.
“Ping” constantly: The ins and outs of reaching out to those in your circle of contacts all the time—not just when you need something.
Never Eat Alone: The dynamics of status are the same whether you’re working at a corporation or attending a social event—“invisibility” is a fate worse than failure. 
Become the “King of Content”: How to use social media sites like LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook to make meaningful connections, spark engagement, and curate a network of people who can help you with your interests and goals. 

In the course of this book, Ferrazzi outlines the timeless strategies shared by the world’s most connected individuals, from Winston Churchill to Bill Clinton, Vernon Jordan to the Dalai Lama.

Chock-full of specific advice on handling rejection, getting past gatekeepers, becoming a “conference commando,” and more, this new edition of Never Eat Alone will remain a classic alongside alongside How to Win Friends and Influence People for years to come.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Pursuing Justice

The ONLY way to find abundant life and happiness is to give your life away.
If God designed us to experience true happiness and abundant life, why do so many Christians feel dissatisfied and purposeless? We try to make our lives better by chasing our own dreams, but that only makes the problem worse. Instead, the path to a just life that’s satisfying and permeated with meaning leads us alongside the orphan, the widow, and the powerless. Using clear evangelical theology and compelling narratives drawn from two decades of global ministry and travel, Ken Wytsma, the founder of The Justice Conference, shows God’s unchanging love for all His children. On the way, the author calls us back to a proper understanding of biblical justice, a redeeming glimpse into the true meaning of righteousness and the remarkable connection between our own joy, the joy of others, and the wondrous Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Pursuing Justice shows that God isn’t primarily concerned with personal piety but about empowering His children to do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with their creator. The message is as hopeful as it is fresh: when you discover anew the meaning of the Gospel and give your life away, you will find it…and it will be the best life you can imagine.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Game Changer

Everyone is probably talking about Germany vs. USA in this round of the world cup. But what stood out to me more wasn't the goal that won, but the incredible sportsmanship being shown on both teams. 

It wasn't all about winning and ousting the other team like Uruguay did, when one of the team players bit someone. It was about working together and playing a game they love to play. That should be everyone's reason to play a game.

In Game Changer, readers see that record-setting quarterback for Michigan State University and draft pick of the NFL's Washington Redskins, Kirk Cousins pens an accessible and compelling collection of life principles for readers young and old. With engaging stories from his award-winning career, Cousins illustrates core biblical concepts while encouraging good choices, and, in the process, readers get an inside look at high-stakes football as well as the personal and highly motivating reflections of a much-respected athlete.

Now in softcover, Game Changer is a great pick for parents, coaches, athletes, camps, FCA groups, and family explorations. It is not a self-glorifying biography or a sterile collection of dos and don'ts, but rather a dispatch from a real Christian life-with all its ups and downs-lived under the bright lights of college and professional football.


  • Personal stories and struggles of a competitive Christian athlete
  • Truthful discussion of media hype and modern sports culture
  • Reflections on honesty, humility, hard work, and privilege

Captured on the High Seas

British warships battle with American privateers in this high sea adventure. Cousins Patrick and Beth have landed on the Royal Louis in the middle of the Revolutionary War. Cannonballs fly and swords slash. 

They’re captured! Now they face even more dangers. Will their new friend James Forten be sold by the British into the West Indies slave trade? Or will they all be sentenced to the overcrowded prison ship floating near shore where scores of prisoners die from filth and disease? 

Patrick and Beth help plan a daring escape as they witness firsthand the deeds of brave heroes who fought to make America the land of the free.

I can see myself personalizing this book as an adventure in my classroom, while learning appropriate vocabulary. This book would be a great intro to teaching the Revolutionary War with cannonballs and swords.

This would be a lot of fun. I'm glad I got to review this book for free from: Tyndale.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Snap Decision

Decisions, decisions, decisions! Our children are faced with them every day. To do or not to do...  Right vs. wrong...

How do we teach them to wade through all the choices that they are facing every day? How can teachers guide them through every day life?

WE CAN'T! So we let society guide them through it? WRONG!!!

We should surround our children with healthy material that can guide them in the right direction. That's where this book comes in handy.

From New York Times Bestselling author Nathan Whitaker, an action packed sports series for kids who love the excitement and energy of the game.

New York Times bestselling author Nathan Whitaker presents a compelling series of sports stories filled with great life-lessons and perfect for kids ages 9 to 12, young athletes, and fans of Tim Green and Mike Lupica. In Snap Decision, seventh grader Chase Clark has the opportunity to play on the varsity football team. But when his best friend is injured, telling the truth about what happened costs him their friendship. Then Chase is accused of cheating and suspended from the team himself. How can he find the faith to do what's right when everything goes wrong?

Acclaimed for his previous works, including New York Times best-sellers Quiet Strength with Tony Dungy and Through my Eyes with Tim Tebow, Whitaker captures the spirit of the game and the hearts of young readers, including reluctant readers. The relevant themes of dealing with friends, and crossing lines will appeal to boys and girls, and parents will appreciate the underlying themes of honesty and sportsmanship. Perfect for home or school libraries, kids and coaches, Snap Decision is an excellent addition to the juvenile sports genre.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

A Bible for Early Readers

There have been numerous amounts of Bibles since the translation to English many years ago. Since the last decade, consumers have seen Bibles for all different ages, including toddler rhyming Bibles that follow the important stories.

This new edition is the best one so far. I might be a little biased because I have taught reading to some of my students. A Bible for early readers is the best idea so far. The Bible won't be 'dumbed' down, just because the child is still a toddler, but rather the words are a little easier to read.

The Adventure Bible for Early Readers takes you on a fun, exciting journey through God’s Word. Along the way you’ll meet all types of people, see all sorts of places, and learn all kinds of things about the Bible. Most importantly, you’ll grow closer in your relationship with God. Here’s a quick tour through the features:
  • Life in Bible Times - Articles and illustrations describe what life was like in ancient days
  • People in Bible Times - Articles offer close-up looks at amazing people of the Bible
  • Let’s Live It! - Hands-on activities help you apply biblical truths to your life
  • Did You Know? - Interesting facts help you understand God's Word
  • Words to Treasure - Great verses to memorize
  • Twenty special pages - Games and other Bible fun, all with a jungle safari theme
  • Book introductions, a dictionary, and color maps
  • Includes the New International Reader’s Version (NIrV) that is perfect for children learning to read and explore the Bible for the first time on their own.

Monday, June 9, 2014

Super Stitches

Have you ever wanted to sew either by hand or a machine? Now you can! Introducing this great free book that I got from Blogging for books, you can become a super stitcher too! 

Does your sewing machine come with lots of fancy knobs and buttons that you've never thought to try? This essential guide to machine and hand stitches will teach you how to use any and every stitch for professional-looking seams, hems, gathers, darts, and more. 

Unlock your full sewing potential with 57 machine stitches, 18 hand stitches, and tips to choose the correct needles, threads, and sewing machine accessories, complete with detailed step-by-step tutorials and illustrations. 

This comprehensive stitch dictionary is a must-have companion for any sewer, whether you just bought your first sewing machine or your'e a seasoned expert looking to polish your skills. 

New Identity vs. New Heart

Seagrass Pier is the perfect place for Elin to hide from a killer, but an old love's ability to see her true heart could be her undoing.
When Elin Summerall contracted a virus that damaged her heart, she was lucky to get a transplant. At first it was an overwhelmingly good gift. But then she began to remember a murder she never witnessed—the murder of her heart's donor.
When she reveals what she knows to a disbelieving police officer, she's exposed as a witness and must flee for her life to a remote cottage on Hope Beach.
Fearing what might happen to her daughter and mother, she asks Marc Everton for help, though she hasn't seen him since the night her father died. She remembers that night with shame, and she never told Marc about their daughter.
Marc is less than convinced that Elin's "memories" are real. He is blindsided by the news about his daughter, but for her sake, he agrees to help. Then he begins to notice the small ways Elin is different. She now likes coffee, her musical tastes have changed, and she's ditched her jeans and sneakers for dresses and high heels.
As Elin tries to stay alive and bring the killer to justice, she begins to doubt her own identity. Did her new heart save her life only to cause her to lose herself? And if she's really changed, why does her new heart love Marc just as much as her old one did?
This story reminds me so much of a Korean Drama called: Summer Scent. In it, this girl gets a new heart transplant and meets this guy. The girl's new heart is from the guy's dead fiance. The guy realizes that everything about the girl resembles his fiance.
This book has some unique twists but it can be paralleled to the drama. I love reading books from this author, so it didn't matter too much that I've heard about this plot from a different angle before. 

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Bonding with Children

Ever wanted to bond with your kids over a common interest? This book will teach you how to involve your kids in sewing simple projects. It doesn't matter if you cannot sew or is a beginner. The book takes you through step by step instructions through each project. It also gives you a few templates at the back of the book.

Simple sewing techniques make craft time fun for kids and grown-ups alike, with ideas for vintage-inspired clothes, accessories, quirky home decor, cute toys, and sweet gifts designed by a mom.

Don't just sew for your kids. Involve them in these projects. Rubyellen Bratcher has invented 30 simple projects that encourage families to spend more time together through DIY activities. 

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

The Ticking Clock

Saving Amelie was a heartbreaking story about the Holocaust and the race against time as Amelie's mom raced to save her from her father and all of Hitler's men who frowned upon disorders in the bloodline. As readers find out, Amelie is born deaf and that shames her father into wanting to do away with such a mistake.

I won't go into too much detail about the book, but it had a gripping plot from page 1. I could not put down the book even though the characters were fictional. I felt the horror that Amelie, Rachel, and Kristine were going through.

As a teen, I was very fascinated by the Holocaust and the survivors of the time. I have read Anne Frank's Diary and other books that talked about the survivors. I have even interviewed a survivor from the Holocaust museum for a history project in high school.

Even though I know it was a terrible time for Jews, I just can't imagine going through all those things with family members going into hiding and living with fear and betrayal of friendships and relationships. We can be thankful that today no one has to go through it again.

Some of us probably still have the memories, but God is helping us move forward as time helps to numb the feelings. For those of those still struggling with emotions from certain obstacles in their life, please be patient to those around you.

You never know the battles someone has gone through, until you have lived a day in their shoes.

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Happily Ever After x 4

Every little girl's dream is a happily ever after with their true love. Every girl has dreamed of that sparkling white gown and dreamed of their prince charming.

In this collection of stories, each wedding had its own beginnings. Not every story starts with a princess and a prince. Here is a little preview of each story: 

Spitfire Sweetheart: Maizy Place is an unruly tomboy. When she causes an accident, injuring neighbor Rylan Carstens, she becomes his unlikely caregiver. Rylan has never noticed how pretty his infuriating neighbor is, and he never expected to fall in love. 

Love Letter to the Editor: Molly Everton is the outspoken daughter of the town newspaper's owner. When her father brings in an outsider to be editor, she tries to drive him out of town. But Jack Ludgrove is not intimidated. He's resolved to change Molly's mind about him as both an editor and as a man. 

A Cowboy for Katie: Katie Pearl is uninterested in men and love. But she needs help on her ranch and hires Treb Rayburn, a wandering cowboy looking to make a buck. Will Treb change Katie's mind?

Courting Trouble: Grace Davenport is either the unluckiest woman alive, or a killer. When her third husband is found dead, Grace is arrested. Attorney Brock Daniels isn't interested in the case until he meets Grace. Only a miracle will prove her innocence, but the joining of two lonely hearts may be their saving grace.