The NIrV Adventure Bible

Before all my King James friends freak out, we do still use it! This is not a wandering around to find a Bible version I liked better, it was a simple product review.

I wasn’t sure about the reading level. If it had been lower, it would’ve been simple enough to be a “telling” of Bible stories instead of an entire translation. But the reading level was higher than I anticipated.

I LOVE the layout and extra sections in this Bible! It has a section called “What Is God Like?” In this section, it has common questions that children might ask, and then gives Scripture references to answer them. So great for kids!

If we used the NIV, I would be thrilled with this for my children.

I was given a free copy by the publisher, in exchange for an honest review.

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Moment Maker by Carlos Whittaker

I was so intrigued by the title and description of this book. I’m always looking for ways to make life special for my family. I love being intentional about showing love to my husband and kiddos. And while this book certainly held some great ideas, I was disappointed.

First off all, I’ll start with the positives: It is hilarious!! The author has a great way with words, and I laughed out loud numerous times. The entertainment value was a score! Also, there were many moments in the book that started out as accidents, but God taught a lesson through them. And I loved that!

But for the negative, I was annoyed and lost interest for a few weeks, when in the early chapters, the author described a time when he met a cross-dresser and then met her, along with her friends at a bar later. A moment was made, sure. The person felt like someone cared. However, I think you can care about someone without going “where they go.” Also, in later chapters, he bough a round of drinks at a bar for some soldiers who were returning home. Again, GREAT to care about someone, but there are other ways to show that besides participating in things the Bible clearly calls out as sin.

All in all, I’m glad I read it, but I wouldn’t necessarily recommend it to anyone.

I was provided a free copy by the publisher, in exchange for an honest review.

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The Biggest Reason for Christian Education

When I was in college, I had a Homeschooling Seminar for a semester. It was so fun and interesting as we compared do’s and don’ts, all the different curricula, pros and cons, etc. I had NO idea there were so many types of textbooks, unit studies, self-teaching, online, and video programs. The possibilities are endless. At that time, my professor said, “The problem with secular schools is that they leave God out.” At that time, I jotted it down, nodding my head, but not fully understanding.

Fast-forward to a few weeks ago. 

I know a young lady who is 12 and just started home school for the first time. She had been in public school up until now, so I wanted to know how she was doing with it all. So, I asked her how it was going, and her answer was a light-bulb moment for me.

She said, “I love it. It’s just God, God, God everywhere!” She paired this awesome statement with a brush of her hand over her head, as if she were painting an invisible rainbow.She was smiling, and had a twinkle in her eyes. She was glad.

Light-bulb! “The problem is that they leave God out!”

Most people think we home schoolers are trying to hide our children from everything, that we are simply trying to keep our children from being offered cigarrettes or drugs. That we want to keep them from negative peer pressure. That we don’t want them to be bullied.

But although, I’ve known it in my heart all along, I’m just now able to grasp that actual words of what Mrs. Kiser said all those years ago. 

Home schooling, or Christian education is not about what we don’t want our children to learn. It’s about what we do want our children to learn.IMG_20140812_104518

Keeping our children away from all those things mentioned above are definitely a factor. But when that child  grows into an adult, those things will definitely be present in life! But a firm foundation in God, as children, will keep them strong as adults.

You see, everything begins with God. History – God created the world, and you can see God’s hand all throughout history. All throughout the settling of our nation, the wars, you can see God’s hand in it. History has often been referred to as “His story”, and that’s exactly what it is.

God is a God of order, and you can see that in Math and Music.

Science supports Biblical Creation. 

EVERYTHING begins with God! 

Giving my children this firm foundation will help them be strong. Some may say that you can’t shelter them from the world because they have no idea how to act when they reach adulthood. But in our home, their Daddy is a pastor, and people call us or knock on our door almost every week because they are in trouble. These are life lessons for our children, and we try to make them teachable moments when they know that sin is in the world, and it causes trouble for people. They can understand what is going on without being forced into the middle of it every day, all day, without their parents’ guidance.

Let me say, I know there are some awesome public school teachers who are doing a tremendous job to make a difference! But a lot of them have told me they are glad we are home schooling our kids!

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Love Comes Home by Ann Gabhart

Love Comes Home is a sweet continuing story of the Merritt sisters. I did not read the first in this series, but I read the second and loved it. I really liked this one as well, but it didn’t seem to have as much content on its own, as the other did. It seemed to not quite get somewhere.

Although that was the case, I still enjoyed the continuing story. The war is now over. Victoria’s Sammy did not come home, and Victoria has to learn how to live all over again, raising their precious daughter. Evangeline is as fussy as ever. And when Mike comes home, she seems even more discontented than before, even though she has everything a beautiful preacher’s wife could ever want.

Then there’s Kate and Jay. As Jay returns, Kate is eager to start a family and get on with their lives.

Lorena is growing up, not the little girl she used to be. Can she find her birth family? The sisters worry it cannot be a happy ending.

The family portrayed by these books are made up of caring, simple, and refreshing characters. They are the family everyone wishes they could belong to. Join in and take a trip to Rosey Corner.

 I was provided a free copy by the publisher, in exchange for an honest review

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Death Takes a Ride by Lorena McCourtney

The second I’ve read by this author, this book was not disappointing. It’s a cute, action-packed who-dunn-it that I loved!

Cate arrives at H&B Restorations to give a friend a ride, but an unbelievable crime takes place, sucking Cate into investigating. Although her uncle’s private investigating business doesn’t “do murders,” that seems to be what Cate can’t stay away from.

Along the murder mystery, there is Mitch’s business that is for sale. Can he be planning to move out of town when the business sells? Can there be a future for Mitch and Cate?

I was surprised by the ending of this one, and you will be too!

I was provided a free copy by the publisher, in exchange for an honest review.

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Blind Trust by Sandra Orchard

Kate Adams cannot seem to stay out of trouble no matter where she goes. Ever since Daisy’s death, she has seemed to have a nose for investigating… and she’s usually right!

Detective Tom Parker gets called into a suspected counterfeit situation and who does he find? Kate of course! How did she end up with this money? Her neighbor gave it to her, of course.

But the plot quickly takes off and much more than counterfeit bills begins to worry Tom, as an anonymous note shows up on his car warning, or threatening Kate.

Also, Kate can’t stay away from hoping her Dad was innocent all those years ago. Can the two cases be connected?

This was a great book!

I received the book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.


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A Place in His Heart by Rebecca DeMarino


A Place in His Heart was an intriguing book. Mary is a young lady who is grown up, and ready to marry. But her father wants her to marry a young man she grew up with; one whom she just can’t love. Barnabas is a young widower who needs a wife for his children. He is a good man who will respect Mary and love her. But is there room in his heart? His beloved Anne was so perfect for him in every way. With Barnabas’ new “Puritan” thinking, Mary’s father just isn’t sure they are a good match. And on their wedding day, talk of making a new life in the New World is overheard. Can it be true?

Is Mary ready to start anew in a place she has never seen? They do, in fact make the voyage to the Americas, and life becomes incredibly difficult. Work from sun up to sun down is the norm, and Mary works hard to make a house a home for her little family. Even though Barnabas respects her greatly and takes precious care of her, she just feels like she can’t get into his heart, no matter how hard she tries.

I loved this book for its historical value. I was glued to the pages, imagining what life was like for those first settlers in New England. I look forward to the next in this series!

For a giveaway of this book and other prizes, click here. :)

I received the book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

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Finding Spiritual Whitespace by Bonnie Gray


This was a different kind of book than I expected. I think it can be described as a self-help/Christian life book, mingled with a little bit of memoir. Bonnie Gray takes the reader through her experience with PTSD, triggered by memories of her painful childhood. As she began to write this book, all the memories were dredged up, causing her to seek therapy to free her soul to be who she is now, someone who is loved by God, and accepted by God. As is.

As the author suffered through insomnia and severe panic attacks, she began to discover Jesus calling her soul to rest. It took a long time to work through the trauma, but she found that to get closer to Jesus, she needed to “do” less, and rest more.

This was very well-written. However, I felt I couldn’t relate to too many of the subjects covered. I just haven’t had too much trauma in my life. I know this could be a great help to someone with a rough past – broken home, drugs, divorce, deaths.

I received the book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

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While Love Stirs by Lorna Seilstad

This is the second novel in the Gregory Sisters Series by Lorna Seilstad. After reading the first, I was excited to et the second in the series.

Charlotte has just finished cooking school and returns home to put her skills to good use. After her sister gives birth to her first child, Charlotte is appalled at the food the nurses are serving! She starts out on a crusade to make sure the hospital understands how bad their food choices are, and how better food could speed patients’ recovery time. She quickly meets up with the handsome Dr. Joel Brooks, who simply refuses to listen to Charlotte.

Meanwhile, Charlotte accepts a job in which she is able to teach others how to cook on a “new-fangled” gas stove. A young man accompanies her on her tours to sing at her lectures, helping to broaden the number of spectators. He becomes very fond of Charlotte, but does she return his feelings?

After a family emergency, Charlotte finds herself back home more, where the stubborn doctor seems to always be around every corner. Can they stop fighting long enough to plan a hospital fundraiser? Will she be able to convince him of her grand ideas? Meanwhile, something else is stirring…

This was a great book, and I look forward to the next in the series!

I received the book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

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One More Last Chance by Cathleen Armstrong

Sarah Cooley, after time in the big city and a failed relationship, comes back home to start fresh as a school teacher. Last Chance doesn’t every seem to change. It’s a quiet little town where news travels faster than lightning, and every neighbor is your friend.

Chris has just taken over the diner in town. Being an “outsider” has its challenges, but Chris is determined to add something new to the menu, if the town can take it!

When Sarah gets back, she and Chris seem to hit it off. But after being with her former fiancé for so long, she just can’t bear to open up and be hurt again.

Meanwhile, Chris’ irresponsible sister leaves her young daughter on his doorstep and Chris has to get used to juggling the diner with temporary parenting. Or is it temporary? Sarah helps out with his niece, bringing the two closer together.

One More Last Chance is a sweet story of coming home, adapting to change, and trusting God for your future. It was a good book!

I received the book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

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