Review/ Giveaway “What’s in the Bible? Vol. 10 Jesus is the Good News!” DVD

I’m so excited to review (and host a Giveaway!) of the DVD “What’s in the Bible? Vol. 10 Jesus is the Good News!”  This is another Buck Denver DVD from VeggieTales creator Phil Vischer!

The whole “What’s in the Bible” DVD series was created to explain the Bible to kids.  This particular DVD (volume 10) has 2 25-minute episodes called God’s Perfect Timing (where kids learn about the 400 years between the Old and New Testaments and how Jesus arrives at the perfect time) and The Messiah Has Come! (where kids learn about Jesus’ life and ministry).  The whole run of the DVD is about 66 minutes long.

It begins with basic Christian beliefs and a review of what happened in the Old Testament, all taught by puppets!  Then, we learn what had to happen to make it easier for the news about Jesus to spread around the world–communication and transportation.  We learn about Alexander the Great and his conquests, and how he had spread the Greek language and culture into Europe and Asia. During the next 200 years, the Roman empire took over Alexander’s empire and they expanded even more.  And they built roads!

What was happening to the Jews during those 400 years between testaments? They were ruled by different empires.  We learn about Jewish History.  They broke into four groups: the Pharisees, the Saducess, the Zealots, and the Essenes.

Then we begin to learn about the New Testament, and what books are in it.  We get some great details (even some things I didn’t know!) about the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John.

I love Phil’s description of how we need to understand the Old and New Testaments together.  We don’t get the whole story if we don’t understand both.  The gospel is fully explained by him.  It might be a bit over young kids’ heads, but I love how he says it in various ways to try to make sure everyone understands sin, and Jesus’ redemptive power.

In the 2nd episode, we learn all about the life of Jesus! The birth of John the Baptist, Jesus’ birth, the geneology of Jesus, his baptism, miracles, death on the cross, resurrection, and ascension.


Check out the trailer here!

And now for the Giveaway of the DVD “What’s in the Bible? Vol. 10 Jesus is the Good News!”

a Rafflecopter 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 the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification. US & Canada only.

Winner will have 24 hours to respond to my email.  This post also contains affiliate links.

Giveaway of 3 Zondervan Books for Kids & 3 for Teens!

I have a wonderful giveaway today.  There are two sets of books–one for kids and one for teens.  Enter one giveaway or both!  These would be wonderful to give to your kids for Easter, or for any other occasion!

The Kids Set (for preschool-age 7) has

The Legend of the Easter Egg by Lori Walburg (illustrated by Richard Cowdrey) The Berenstain Bears Keep the Faith, by Mike Berenstain 101 Bible Stories from Creation to Revelation (illustrated by Dan Andreasen)   Zondervan books 007 In The Legend of the Easter Egg, we follow the story of a little boy whose sister has become very sick.  He goes to stay with friends while she gets better.  While there he learns about why Easter eggs remind us of Easter.  A chick breaks out of its egg, just like Christ broke out of the tomb. The boy understands about Jesus and His sacrifice and gives his life to Christ.    On Easter morning he runs to see his sister who is now better to tell her of his new faith in Jesus.  It’s a pretty, hardback book. Zondervan books 008   Book reviews- Daniel, Noah, Berenstain Bears Keep Faith, Veggie 018 In The Berenstain Bears Keep the Faith Brother and Sister Bear find out that their science-loving friend Ferdy Factual doesn’t believe God created the world.  It’s the first time Brother and Sister encounter someone who thinks that you can’t believe in or trust God if you are a scientist. Brother and Sister love science, too.  They love to learn about dinosaurs and fossils, to look at the stars with a telescope, and to look through a microscope at germs.  But when they are looking at the moon through a telescope with Ferdy, Sister mentions that God did a good job.  Ferdy tell them that not only does he not believe that God created everything, he doesn’t even believe in God.  He only believes in things he can see and test and prove. The bears talked to their parents about it.  Mama tells them that they have to have faith.  Now that’s a hard concept for young kids to understand!  So, the next day they go to visit Preacher Brown to see if he can expain it better.  They learn that faith comes from reading the Bible, feeling God’s love for us, and in seeing the beauty of God’s creation.  Preacher Brown also tells them that Daniel in the Bible had faith that God would save him from the lions.  Faith in God is trusting in his love.  Brother and Sister Bear decide at the end of the story that faith in God is important to them. I love how this book shows that you can be a “scientist” and have faith in God at the same time. Book reviews- Daniel, Noah, Berenstain Bears Keep Faith, Veggie 020 Book reviews- Daniel, Noah, Berenstain Bears Keep Faith, Veggie 019     Zondervan books 013 101 Bible Stories From Creation to Revelation is a Bible story book.  There are 3 things I really like about this book that make it unique from other Bible story books:  half of the stories are from the New Testament, the illustrations are more realistic (not cartoonish), and it has a higher reading level.  It is perfect for reading to children or for independent older readers to read to themselves.  Each facing page has one page of the story and one page of illustration.  Hardback book with 217 pages. Zondervan books 014 Zondervan books 015

The Teens Set has

All In Student Edition by Mark & Parker Batterson

Gods at War Student Edition by Kyle Idleman

and a choice of one of these Bibles:
Young Women of Faith Bible, NIV (Hardcover)

NIV Bible for Teens (Blue)

Zondervan books 011 All In Student Edition is an encouraging book for helping teens choose the right life–the God life.  I really enjoyed reading about different peoples’ experiences in the book.  You’ll find stories of Colonel Joshua Chamberlain (Civil War), Stanley Tam (United States Plastic Corporation), and Phil Vischer (Veggie Tales), among many others.  Inspire your teen with this book (paperback, 160 pages). Zondervan books 012 Zondervan books 009 Gods at War Student Edition explains to students how to recognize and fight against the modern-day idols we see in our society.  There are 3 specific idols that are highlighted: Pleasure, Power, and Love.  Anything that teens might put before God (entertainment, technology, pornography, drugs, materialism, etc.) is talked about in this book, and they learn how to serve Jesus instead.  Paperback, 203 pages.   Zondervan books 010 Zondervan books 016 This blue-covered NIV Bible for Teens is beautiful in charcoal and blue faux leather.  It’s less than an inch thick, has a ribbon marker, 8 pages of maps, and Christ’s words in read.  It’s in the new NIV translation Zondervan books 017 Zondervan books 018 Zondervan books 019 Zondervan books 020 Zondervan books 021 And a Bible for girls: The Young Women of Faith Bible.  In this hardback Bible, you’ll find the regular features (maps, concordance, and full NIV text) as well as a Weekly Bible Study and some commentary explaining difficult passages.  There are journal sections to learn about other girls’ experiences and to write about your own and specific verses to memorize. Zondervan books 022 Zondervan books 023 Zondervan books 024 Zondervan books 025

Enter one or both giveaways below on the Rafflecopter!  Winners will be chosen on Saturday April 5 and will have 24 hours to respond to my email. Two different winners will be chosen (can’t win both giveaways).

Congratulations to the winners:  Liz and Sara!

(Disclosure:  I received copies of all the above books in order to write these reviews.  This post also includes affiliate links.)


Giveaway of “ABC Say it With Me” and “For His Own Glory”

Would you like to win these the two DVDs “ABC Say it With Me” from Moore Family Films and “For His Own Glory” from Crowe’s Nest Media?  Go here to enter!

“ABC Say it With Me” is a wonderful DVD for preschoolers which has a short vignette and Bible verse to memorize for each of letter of the alphabet.

“For His Own Glory” teaches sign language to little ones.

Giveaway ends 3/6/14!

(This post contains affiliate links.)


Review of Adventure Bible Website and App & {Link Party}


About the Adventure Bible Website

The Adventure Bible Website,, is a fun, safe, and free website for kids ages 8-12 from the publishers of the Adventure Bible (Zondervan). The site provides several interactive games, activity sheets, Bible search and resources to help kids learn more about the Bible. Educators, including homeschool parents, can also register students and access over 700 teaching resources as well as have Bible game points tracked onto their teacher classroom page.  Check out the video on this page (or right below) which gives you a tour of the Adventure Bible website and explains all you get for the free registration!

Here are links to a few key areas:

 1. Online Bible Games  See below for descriptions of the 5 games.

2. Bible search. Kids can type in a verse and it comes up along with notes and features to click on for application and background info.

3. Printable activities including crosswords, word searches, devotionals, and Scripture flash cards

Descriptions of the Games:
Truthquest:   Truthquest is a trivia game.  There are many different categories and three difficulty levels to choose from.  The answers are multiple choice.


Books of the Bible:   In Books of the Bible, the kids slide the books into the correct Bible book order.  They are broken up into sections, about 5-10 books to order at a time.

Leopardy:   In Leopardy, kids answer questions in a game similar to Jeopardy, with different money levels and a chance to wager an amount for the final question.

Leapin’ Lemur:   Leapin’ Lemur is a game where the kids fill in letters for a Bible verse.  It’s similar to Wheel of Fortune.

X Marks the Spot:  X Marks the Spot is a map game.  Kids identify the correct area on the map and place a flag on it.




I found the games on Adventure Bible website a good way to increase Bible knowledge.  I’m glad there is a variety, such as learning Bible verses, learning about Bible geography, and memorizing the order of the books of the Bible, as well as lots of questions about different events and people of the Bible.  It’s also great that there are different levels of difficulty in a few of the games.

You don’t have to register as a teacher on the site in order to use it.  The kids can still play lots of great Bible-learning games without any type of registration. But homeschool parents (or others) who register on the site (free of charge) can also access hundreds of additional resources including maps, illustrations, fill-in-the-blank sheets, answer keys, timelines and more.  I downloaded a crossword puzzle, Bible reading plan, and a bulletin insert.  There is so much available!

Zondervan also just released a brand-new Adventure Bible app for iPad as well. This free app, available through the iTunes store, allows you to be able to access the games that are on the website via the iPad.  They are the same 5 games I described above.  I’m so glad to have a new app–and website–for my kids to learn about the Bible!

(Disclosure: In exchange for this honest review of the Adventure Bible website and app, Zondervan will send me a copy of the newly updated Adventure Bible.)

It’s time for our Link Party:

From House to Home!

Only 2 rules:

1. Link up family-friendly posts (exact post, not website) about making your house into a home: homemaking, parenting, homeschooling, marriage, loving God! Giveaways, too!

2. Link back to my site with the button below or a text link. Thanks! The code can be found at the top of the Link Party page. (If you don’t link back somewhere on your blog, your link might be deleted.)

I Choose Joy!


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See the wonderful blogs I’ve linked up to here.

(Disclosure:  This post may contain affiliate links.)

Review of 3 New Adventure Bible Titles

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I have three new titles from the Adventure Bible brand to share with you today.

First, the Adventure Bible Storybook, Deluxe Edition which includes a beautiful 285-page hardback book and a set of 2 CDs. The CDs contain the entire Bible storybook and enhance it wonderful readers who use special voices as well as music and sound effects. My younger kids LOVED listening to the CDs in the car! The stories are written simplistically, for ages 4-7, and include some extraneous information not found in Scripture which may be confusing. For example, telling us that Daniel in the lion’s den could hear the lions’ tails swishing back and forth. That would be my only complaint with these well-made resources.  I tend to prefer reading the Bible rather than storybooks to my kids, but I do feel this was a great way for younger ones to start learning about the wonderful people and history in the Bible.  I’m glad we have the CDs, too, because they can listen to them and follow along in the book on their own.  In addition to the story, you’ll also find “Adventure Discovery” which gives an interesting fact related to the story and “Words to Treasure,” a great verse  to memorize or meditate on!

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Next, is a great book called the Adventure Bible Handbook: A Wild Ride Through the Bible. I think this was my favorite of the three titles. It’s comic-book style, hardback, and 204 pages. Here’s the premise:

“When an archaeologist on an expedition in the Holy land disappears, his four children try to find him with the help of his assistant and an offbeat tour group run by two zany guides whose mission, it turns out, is to lead kids from all over the world on a life-changing quest for the truth. Soon the group is visiting ancient cities, exploring important geographical sites, and traveling back in time to experience biblical events firsthand–with the help of RSPs (Really Smart Phones). Along the way, the children look for clues to their father’s whereabouts and learn about ancient Bible times and witness important historical events, like the parting of the Red Sea, the building and filling of Noah’s ark, and the crucifixion of Jesus. As they continue searching and their father is not to be found, the kids are tempted to give up. But finishing this crazy tour may just be the key to finding their father–and learning what life is all about!”

Here’s what you’ll find in this great book:

  • A fun storyline of the kids with the tour guides traveling to different times and places throughout biblical history
  • Commentary from the adults as to what the events of the Bible mean for us today
  • The gospel is shared!
  • Photographs of certain things referred to in Scripture, such as the animals and architecture and things found from archaeological digs
  • Maps
  • Great art (such as Michelangel’s “The Entombment”)
  • The back has a Reading Guide to the Bible (tells you where to find things), The Apostle’s Creed–explained, Scripture index and Subject index for the book, and Image Guide

I really, really like this book!  It’s surprising to me because I typically don’t like the comic book style at all.  But I’m going to have my 7-year-old son read it and study it next year when he becomes a little better reader.  He’ll learn a lot!  I might also have my 11-year-old son use it for his Bible Study.  I love all the commentary that’s included.

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Finally, I reviewed the Adventure Bible Book of Devotions. In this paperback book you find 365 single-page devotions perfect for kids ages 8-12. Each day includes a Scripture, short story, and application questions. It’s an easy way for young kids to take responsibility for growing in their faith by reading it to themselves each day. Or it could be used by a parent in leading devotions with their kids.

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(Disclosure: I received the above books and CDs complimentary from the publisher in order to write this honest review. This post also contains affiliate links.)

Review/Giveaway of “God’s Love for You” Bible storybook by Stearns

I have a lot of Bible storybooks, and almost didn’t ask to review (and giveaway!) God’s Love for You by Rick and Renee Stearns.

There was something unique about this book, though, and here is what drew me to it (from the Thomas Nelson website):

“World Vision® CEO Richard Stearns and his wife, Reneé, present stories about children they’ve met through World Vision, what life is like in their corner of the world, and how God is working through their lives. Also features fun facts about each child’s home country.”

We’re studying world geography this year, and I love this feature!  So, after every few Bible stories, you’ll find a 2-page spread of a child’s story with special facts about the country he or she lives in!

And here’s another awesome feature: Proceeds of this book will be donated to World Vision!




*ages 4-9

*Contains favorite Bible stories and remarkable faith stories about children worldwide that share the themes of God’s love and faithfulness

*Kids will learn about God’s Word and discover that they can be a part of what He is doing in the world today

*Contains vibrant illustrations of Bible stories and beautiful photos from all over the world

*Beautifully illustrated by Martina Peluso in bright, whimsical displays. Carolyn Larsen, author of The Little Girl’s Bible Storybook, assisted writing the Bible stories.

*272 pages





See the Flipbook of the inside here.


And please enter the giveaway of this beautiful and meaningful book using the Rafflecopter app below.  The winner must be from the U.S. and reply to my email within 24 hours. Giveaway ends October 20.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

(Disclosure:  I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publishers in exchange for this honest review.  This post also contains affiliate links.)


Review of the Glipit Bible!

Are you looking for a unique gift? You found it with the glipit Bible! God’s Love is Perfect–that’s where they get the name. :)

It comes with 120 removable silicone pieces in 4 different colors (including some that glow in the dark).  Because they’re silicone, they are quiet, making it a good “toy” for keeping younger ones quiet during the sermon or your Bible lesson at home while they try to listen.  My kids had a ball with it!  It was my 9-year-old daughter who was chosen to keep it because she said she wanted to read it each morning when she wakes up.  She’s starting at Genesis and wants to read through the whole Bible!  The translation is the New Living Translation, so that will make it more readable for her age.

I’m thinking these would be great for a Christmas gift (and it’s 40% off at Walmart right now)!  What do you think?


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(Disclosure: I received a complimentary glipit Bible in order to do this honest review. All opinions are my own. Post also contains affiliate links.)

Review/Giveaway of “My ABC of God Loves Me”

ABC book giveaway 

Today I have a review and giveaway of My ABC of God Loves Me by Fiona Boon.  What a precious book this is!  It’s small enough for the littlest kids to hold, and even has a handle!  I really love the illustrations.  You can check out some of the pages here:  Flipbook

I love the story it tells as well.  Each page is a different letter of the alphabet, and explains about a different attribute of God: Amazing, Beautiful, Creator, Divine, etc.  It’s such a wonderful way to teach preschoolers about the greatness of our Lord!

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My ABC of God Loves Me

*ages 1-7

*A sweet book that will reinforce God’s love for children while learning the alphabet

*Padded board book with carrying handle makes this book durable and perfect to carry to church or on-the-go

*Brilliant, colorful art

And now, you can enter a giveaway to win a copy!  (Contest is for U.S. addresses only, winner will be chosen Monday 7/29/13 and must respond to my email within 24 hours.)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

(Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book from Thomas Nelson Publishers in order to write this honest review. Post also contains affiliate links.)

See the wonderful blogs I’ve linked up to here. Giveaway Day

From House to Home {Link Party}: 20+ Tips for Memorizing Scripture

20+ Tips for Memorizing Scripture


We are in the second week here of preparing for the Bible Bee.  This summer our family is memorizing two Scripture passages a week, 24 passages total.  I can testify to the fact that it does get harder to memorize as you get older!  But it’s still possible, and important to do it, so I’m memorizing Scripture along with my kids!

We met with some other Bible Bee participants last week (as well as my ladies Bible Study), and after interviewing them, I’ve come up with a list of 20 tips for memorizing Scripture!  I hope it blesses you as you strive to hide God’s Word in your heart!

1. Say the verse in rhythm/chant or put it to a song.

2.  Say the verse 100 times.

3.  Study and understand what the verse is talking about/ apply it to your life/ think about that while you are reciting it.

4.  Write it out in a journal or notebook.

5.  Write it out with only the first letter of each word.

6.  Write it on a white board and erase one word at a time, saying it again after each erased word, until it’s all erased.

7.  Give a reward on a review day.   For each verse they get correct they get 5 chips (candy, coins), and for each word they miss they give one up.

8.  Type out the verse.  The free computer program Scripture Typer is great for this!  (They have paid apps, too.)

9.  Use Quizlet, a free website where you can search for quizzes on your verse passages to understand and learn them better.

10.  In your Bible app, highlight the verse passages you’re memorizing and add them to “Favorites.”  Then, you can easily find them to review them.

11.  Print out the verse, cut out each word, scramble them up, and then put them back together.

12.  Walk around your house saying each part of the verse in a different area.  Then, you can associate the verse with where you were when you recite it.

13.  Act out the verse using different voices or accents for different phrases.

14.  Find patterns in the verse, such as alphabetical order to aid in memorizing it.

15.  ABC Say it With Me Bible Memory Verses:  A wonderful DVD for preschoolers made by Moore Family Films.  (If preschoolers can learn these verses, so can you!)

16.  Listen to it spoken aloud, available at and many Bible apps.

17.  Get an accountability partner and call or email them each week at a set time so you have a deadline to get the verses learned.

18.  Use a scripture memory box as described at Simply Charlotte Mason to have a continuous order for reviewing older verses.

19.  Play a matching game (match the verse with its address).

20.  Utilize Memverse, a free online website.

21.  Draw the verse.

If you have a favorite verse memorization tip that I didn’t list, please tell us in the comments!


And Now. . .

It’s time for our Link Up Party: From House to Home!

Only 2 rules:

1. Link up family-friendly posts (exact post, not website) about making your house into a home: homemaking, parenting, homeschooling, marriage, loving God!

2. Link back to my site with the button below or a text link. Thanks! The code can be found at the top of the Link Party page. (If you don’t link back, your link might be deleted.)

I Choose Joy!


See the wonderful blogs I’ve linked up to here.

(Disclosure: This post contains a link to a sponsor of I Choose Joy! : Moore Family Films.)

Review/Giveaway of “My Princess Bible Purse”


Yesterday morning it was only 8:55 a.m. but I had reached the end of my patience with my 2-year-old! And it only got worse as the day progressed. FINALLY, he was asleep (on my floor) by 10:30 p.m. and I could relax.

I used to think I was doing pretty well with the fruit of the Spirit–you know: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness, and self-control. And then I had kids! I am now continually challenged in even the “easiest” of these virtues. I pray continually for God’s strength to be who He wants me to be!

So, I absolutely love the book I’m reviewing today because it teaches about the fruit of the Spirit!  Be sure enter the giveaway at the end.



It’s called My Princess Bible Purse and is definitely a book for girls–pink and sparkly!  It has board-book strength for the covers, which velcros together at the top and has a handle, so it looks like a purse. The inside has regular pages and very cute illustrations.



Each of the 9 fruits of the Spirit has its own page and gives the young girls a description of what that fruit could look like in her life. For example, kindness means sharing toys and goodness means cleaning up your room.

I’m grateful for this book because reading it to the kids will keep the fruit of the Spirit constantly in my mind as well as I try to grow to be more like Christ.




Check out this link for a flip book of My Princess Bible Purse.


Now, enter to win a copy! (Click through to if you don’t see a place to enter here.) The winner (18+, U.S. only) will be chosen next Tuesday 5/28/13 and will has 24 hours to respond to my email.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

(Disclosure: Thomas Nelson provided a complimentary copy of this book so I could write this honest review.  Post contains affiliate links.)

It’s Time to Register for the Bible Bee!


My 3 oldest kids will be participating this year.  Doing the Sword Study (Bible study) is part of their school-work for summer.  I’ll also be doing the same study with our women’s group at church!  We have been blessed by the Bible Bee ever since it started 5 years ago.
Register now to receive materials by June 1st!


Registration is now open for The 2013 Bible Bee
If you live in my area, go to
If you live somewhere else, you can search to see which one is closest to you!Register at www.BibleBee.orgPlease use this referral code when you register: 2v848zH6
Using the referral code above helps the Lake County Bible Bee!
Fulfill your desire to grow your family in God’s truth…

  • Receive the equipping and encouragement to lead your own children in a deeper walk with Christ
  • Use quality materials to build life-long habits in Bible study, application and prayer
  • Share the growth with other local families at fun, monthly support activities
You can do this!
  • Memorize just two Bible passages each week as a family
  • Spend 20 minutes a day in age-leveled, synchronized Bible studies
  • Share what you’ve learned each week at a “Family Bonfire” with the help of weekly overviews, questions and activity ideas in the Parent Guidebook
Celebrate your family’s growth…




10 Reasons To FALL IN LOVE WITH JESUS: Reason #5 (Nancy Rue Guest Post)

Fall In Love With Jesus Blog Campaign

Feb 11-20
Reason #5:

Today I’m happy to have Nancy Rue here to talk to mothers of tween girls about falling in love with Jesus! **There’s a giveaway at the bottom of the post, so keep reading!


Hel-l-o-o-o Mothers of Mini-Women! Welcome to our fifth post on this Valentine’s Week Campaign – and thanks to Gena of I Choose Joy! for letting me join you all. Can’t tell you how much I appreciate ALL of you moms who are reading this. The eye-rolling and “Mo-om!” notwithstanding, you are still the most important influence in your tween daughter’s life. I hope you’ll share this with her:
For the mini-women:
Like most M-W’s, you’re probably way aware that the Valentine’s Day season is here, and you probably either love the cards, the candy, the frills – or you can’t wait for the thing to be over because it makes you so painfully aware of who DOESN’T like you! One being DOES like you. He loves you, in fact. He’s just waiting for YOU to fall in love with HIM. Why would you? In ten different posts, each one giving you a peek at a feature from the FaithGirlz Bible, we’re giving you a Reason To Fall In Love With JESUS. Here’s the fifth one.
Reason #5: Because Jesus knows exactly how you feel, all the time. Other people, especially moms and dads, may tell you they do, but sometimes they just don’t. No other person can really get into your heart and get right where you’re coming from ALL the time. Jesus can. You can count on it.
Nancy Rue

Oh_I_Get_It Reason #5

Thanks, Nancy!  Please share this with your daughters, Moms!
Interested in reading more from Nancy? Please be sure to connect with her in any of these places:
Blog for Tween Girls: “’Tween You & Me”
Blog for Teen Girls: “In Real Life”
Blog for the adults: “The Nudge”
Teen Facebook page:
Adult Facebook page:
YouTube: FaithGirlz Channel


Now for the contest!faithgirlz leather white flower  There will be 5 Leather-Bound NIV FaithGirlz Bibles (revised edition) given away to tweens and 2 to adults. Join in with the Rafflecopter app below. The contest is through Nancy Rue (not I Choose Joy!), but you can join it here!  There are A LOT of ways to for someone to enter. This is because we have girls and moms who don’t use Facebook and want to make it as equal an opportunity as possible. :)

(Click through to if you don’t see the giveaway app.)

 Moms, Let me know with a comment below if you shared this with your daughters!  –Gena


How do we do Circle Time?

A number of years ago I read about Kendra Fletcher’s views on Circle Time.  I thought, “This is what I want!”  But for years, no matter how hard I tried I could never get all of us organized in the morning to meet together as a family.  So, I finally accepted that we would just do it in the afternoon as soon as I put the baby/toddler (s) down for a nap.  And that HAS worked for years!

This year, we have quite a few things that we accomplish during our Circle Time.  We usually meet together (ages 4-11) for one to one and a half  hours.  There’s so much on our list, we can’t do it all everyday, but here’s what we choose from:


Read Scripture (reading through Mark right now)

Read Bible storybook or discipleship

Scripture Memory practice (memorizing Col. 3:23-24)

Poetry reading (one poem/day)

Practice for our public speaking class (they memorize a speech, story, or poem to recite each week)

Science (Exploring Creation with Zoology 2, Swimming Creatures from Apologia)

Worldview (Who Am I? from Apologia)


History (The Mystery of History, volume 2)

Historical Fiction (right now we’re reading Twice Freed by Patricia St. John)

Narration practice on one or more of the read-alouds, from the same day or the day before


It’s one of my favorite times of the day!


Linked toFavorite Resource This Week

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“Everyday Matters Bible for Women” review


I’m so happy today to be reviewing the Everyday Matters Bible for Women.  Typically I don’t like these kind of Bibles–lately I’ve been reading the Bible on my iPad. :)  But I love the Everyday Matters Bible!  What’s unique about it is that it has a focus on 24 spiritual disciplines–ones I’d certainly love to incorporate into my life.

I shared yesterday how I am in survival mode once again, as I adjust to life with a newborn.  As I was flipping through this Bible, I feel that the Lord led me to the first spiritual discipline he wants me to work on:  Sabbath and Rest.  At the back of the Bible, there is a list of each of the disciplines which tells you which Scriptures to read and where to find the special articles and devotions sprinkled throughout that relate to it.  Wow, they are excellent!

One of the best articles I’ve read so far is also very convicting for me.  It’s called “Addicted to Productivity” and is associated with Psalm 127:1-2.  Susan Arico writes that, “My completed to-do list feels so gratifying that it’s easy to find my worth in what I get done instead of in God.” Oh, boy, can I relate!  We need to refuse to “idolize our productivity.”

I am going to keep this new Bible on my nightstand and work on a different discipline every few months.  First:  Sabbath and Rest!

What I don’t like about this Bible:  no maps (all Bibles should have maps!) and it’s heavy.

What I do like (in addition to what I’ve said above):  It’s a new translation for me (NLT), has an attached ribbon bookmark, and the many articles are written by Christian authors whom I respect.  I know that using this special Bible will help me grow spiritually.

 You can find the Everyday Matters Bible for Women at Barnes and Noble,, or

I received a free copy of this book/Ebook/Product to review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the FTC Regulations. I am part of The CWA Review Crew.

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Book Review– 101 Bible Adventures


Today I’d like to share with you my book review on the book 101 Bible Adventures:  The Ultimate Quest for Truth written by Carolyn Larsen, illustrated by Rick Incrocci, and published by Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.  (Thank you to Tyndale for providing a copy for me to review.  All opinions are my own!)

This is basically the Bible, shortened, written in a devotional form for kids ages 8-teenagers.  Here is how it’s laid out:  One-hundred and one Bible accounts are included, a new one on every 2-page spread.


The most words written on those pages are the actual words from the Bible in the very easy-to-read paraphrase New Living Translation.  It’s really written in story form–no verses are listed throughout the reading, although it does list at the top the exact verses.  There is a short introduction before the Bible reading which gives some historical background and a short section after which guides the reader with questions and ways to apply the reading to one’s life.  There is also a Key Verse from every reading.  As I was looking through this book I thought of several really great ways that this particular Bible could be used.

1.  As a daily devotional reading for kids of all ages.  They could read (or be read to) one of the 101 adventures every day.  It would give them a wonderful overview of all the major accounts of the Bible and ways to apply God’s word to their life.

2.  To guide a father or mother in Family Worship.  Dad could read one “Adventure” to his family every morning or night.  The questions to ask his family are all included–a wonderful way to get some discussion going!  This would be especially good for a dad or family who is new to family worship and a little intimidated by it.

3.  For a new young believer who has never read the Bible before.  If you know a child or teenager who has just accepted Christ, this book would be perfect for getting them started reading the Bible daily.  It’s paperback and light–much less intimidating than a regular big Bible.  It’s written in a way to show that the accounts of the Bible are full of action, adventure, and excitement.  (There’s also a cute cartoon included with each adventure.) They will get a great overview of the Bible in the order that’s it’s written in.  Then they can read from a full Bible and know a bit more what to expect in it!

4.  To find some great verses to memorize!  See the Key Verse–there are 101 of them!

So, I would highly recommend 101 Bible Adventures:  The Ultimate Quest for Truth to anyone who might like to use it in one of the 4 ways listed above.

Here are some of the 101 Bible accounts included:     Creation, Abraham’s test, The Burning Bush, Ten Plagues of Egypt, Gideon, Samson, Ruth, Contest on Mount Carmel, Esther, Daniel in Lion’s Den, Jesus’ Baptism, Lazarus Lives, Death of Jesus, Resurrection, Holy Spirit comes, Singing in Jail, Final Battle, Our Home in Heaven.


Dinosaur Unit Study and Lapbook

Dinosaur Lapbook Ideas

In January we did a unit study and lapbook on dinosaurs (after my 5-year-old son has begged me for months!)

We read through an incredible book called Dinosaurs for Kids by Ken Ham.

We also like the DVD set Dinosaurs, Genesis & the Gospel by Ken Ham and Buddy Davis

If you want to learn about dinosaurs from a biblical perspective, get some of these Answers in Genesis materials!  Yes, God created dinosaurs on Days 5 and 6, along with the other animals.  Yes, the Bible talks about dinosaurs. And, yes, dinosaurs were on Noah’s ark!

The lapbook materials were found for free on HomeschoolShare.

Because I wanted to add a number of coloring pages, I did something a little different with these lapbooks.  I punched three holes in the pages and the folders and tied yarn to hold them in.  The ages of the kids who did these were 3, 5, 6, and 8.  Here are pictures of the lapbooks!










Reading the Bible daily

I love the Bible You Version app in my iPad. I’ve started a new Bible reading plan I wanted to recommend called 60 To Start.

Here is the description:

“A sixty day plan designed to help you start (or restart) your relationship with Jesus. You’ll do three things every day: Meet with Jesus in the gospels, read in the epistles how His followers lived out His message, and grow closer to Him through prayer.
We would like to thank Trinity New Life Church for providing this plan. For more information, please visit:”

I’ve set up a reminder on my iPad as well, just in case I forget! And another thing I love about the many reading plans they offer is the chance to “catch up” in case I get behind. It simply puts the new date on the next day’s reading!

However you choose to do it, please get into God’s Word in 2012, and allow Him to change your life this year!

Become a Woman of Influence at Home

Three years ago I led a session for a few women at my home about loving our husbands and children and homemaking, from Titus 2:3-5.  Below is the handout we used.  It was a really fun evening sharing with other women and encouraging each other in the struggles we all have in these areas.  If you have other websites or ideas to share, please leave a comment!

Become a Woman of Influence at Home

2 Timothy 3:16-17     All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.

Titus 2:3-5    Likewise, teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good.   Then they can train the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God.

Proverbs 31:10-31

10 A wife of noble character who can find?   She is worth far more than rubies.

11 Her husband has full confidence in her and lacks nothing of value.

12 She brings him good, not harm, all the days of her life.

13 She selects wool and flax and works with eager hands.

14 She is like the merchant ships, bringing her food from afar.

15 She gets up while it is still dark; she provides food for her family and portions for her servant girls.

16 She considers a field and buys it; out of her earnings she plants a vineyard.

17 She sets about her work vigorously; her arms are strong for her tasks.

18 She sees that her trading is profitable, and her lamp does not go out at night.

19 In her hand she holds the distaff and grasps the spindle with her fingers.

20 She opens her arms to the poor and extends her hands to the needy.

21 When it snows, she has no fear for her household; for all of them are clothed in scarlet.

22 She makes coverings for her bed; she is clothed in fine linen and purple.

23 Her husband is respected at the city gate, where he takes his seat among the eldersof the land.

24 She makes linen garments and sells them, and supplies the merchants with sashes.

25 She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come.

26 She speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue.

27 She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness.

28 Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her:

29 “Many women do noble things, but you surpass them all.”

30 Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the LORD isto be praised.

31 Give her the reward she has earned, and let her works bring her praise at the city gate.

I.      Authority of Scripture  2 Timothy 3:16-17

We believe that the best way to love our husbands and children and to be good homemakers is to follow God’s way in the Bible.

II.     What Do We Learn From the Proverbs 31 Woman?

She is a wife of noble character, her husband has full confidence in her, she brings him good and not harm, does all she can at home so that he is respected at the city gate. She is working at home:  works with eager hands/ vigorous and strong arms, gets up while it’s still dark, not lazy, understands finances, has earnings and uses her wages to help her family and not to get things for herself, she has many homemaking skills (selects wool and flax, provides food, plants a vineyard, holds distaff and grasps spindle, makes garments and sells them, makes coverings for her bed), takes care of herself (she’s strong) and her appearance (clothed nicely), helps the poor/ministers to others.  Her character: has strength and dignity, planned-up for the future, wise, teaches faithfully, not idle, fears the Lord.  She’ll be praised by her husband, her children, and at the city gate.

*This is a goal to work towards; it’s not something we’ll be able to obtain overnight!

III.    How to Love Your Husband

     A.     Genesis 2:18  The LORD God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.”   Great resource:  Created to be his Help Meet by Debi Pearl (  We are created to be our husband’s helper.  (By the way, I do not like all of the Pearl’s resources, and there are things I don’t like in this book as well.  But overall, it’s a great way for learning our role as our husband’s helper.)

     B.    Ways to be Your Husband’s Helper:

Have a merry heart; be thankful, joyful, and content; be playful, available, and fun.

Submit to his authority (Eph. 5:22-24  Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior.  Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.   Col. 3:18  Wives, submit to your husbands, as is fitting in the Lord.  1 Cor.11:3  Now I want you to realize that the head of every man is Christ, and the head of the woman is man, and the head of Christ is God.)

Understand him and adapt to that understanding

Serve him

Be feminine (long hair?, different clothes?—but modest. Don’t cause any other men to lust)

Respect him

Don’t do or say anything that will cause him to mistrust you; never say anything bad about him.

     C.     How can I Be My Husband’s Helper When He’s Such a Jerk?

From Created to be his Help Meet:

“Our obedience in the role of ‘help meet’ is not dependent on our husband’s obedience to God.”

“You have two choices.  You can doubt God and say, ‘I know God does not expect me to honor this mean man.’ Or, you can say, ‘God, I know your Word teaches me to be a woman who is there to help all my husbands’ desires and dreams.  Make me that woman.’  God made you to fulfill this eternal vision.  Until you embrace that divine plan for your life, your life will never make sense.  You will always be struggling.  When you can finally let go and believe God, life will become so simple that you won’t have to wonder what you should do.  You will know.  This eternal vision will change your mind, thus changing your actions, and, most importantly, it will change your reactions.  Ask God for the wisdom to become the very best help meet.”

     D.     Three Types of Men and Ways to Adapt to Your Husband’s Type:

Mr. Command Man

Mr. Visionary

Mr. Steady

**Find an excerpt of Chapter 8  here.

     E.      Work on Becoming Best Friends with Your Husband.

Another great book is Passionate Housewives Desperate for God by Jennie Chancey and Stacy McDonald.   Quote from pp. 114-15:

“Today’s wives are told they cannot expect their husbands to be their best friends or to meet all of their needs.  We are encouraged to seek out women friends who can share our woes, listen to our marital problems, and commiserate over the difficulties of bringing up children.  We’re supposed to schedule time to just “hang out,” spending money or dishing out the latest “news” over a cup of coffee.  Of course, there is a place for relationships between women, but these cannot be based upon gossip, family disloyalty, shared bitterness, or unwholesome intimacy.”

     F.      Assignments for Loving Your Husband

On p. 123 in Created to Be His Help Meet Debi Pearl lists a project for each day of the week, such as writing down three things that you can do that will be a help to your husband.

Another assignment can be found at Nancy Leigh DeMoss’s Revive Our Hearts website:  30-Day Husband Encouragement Challenge for Wives.  It’s also wonderful to pray for your husband for 31 days.  You can find some neat (free) prayer cards at Better Life Bags.

IV.   How to Love Your Children

     A.     The Best Way?  Love your husband/ their dad!  See above.

     B.    Teach Them About God

Deut. 6:5-7  Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.  These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts.  Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.

Eph. 6:4  Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.

How?  Don’t rely on church, Sunday School, Awana, BSF, etc.  You (and your husband, hopefully) should read through the Bible with them (try one chapter or a few verses each night before bed when they turn 1 year old), use a devotional guide (see church library for lots of ideas—I like Leading Little Ones to God by M. Schoolland), memorize verses together as a family (start at age 3 or 4), learn a hymn or praise song every week, pray for them aloud every night and teach them to pray, read books/ biographies to help the understand godly character, worship at church together as a family.  Also, read and study the Bible yourself and pray daily!

     C.      Discipline Your Children As God’s Word Says

Prov. 22:15  Folly is bound up in the heart of a child, but the rod of discipline will drive it far from him.

Prov. 13:24   He who spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is careful to discipline him.

Prov. 29:15   The rod and reproof give wisdom, but a child who gets his own way brings shame to his mother. (NASB)

Col. 3:20   Children, obey your parents in everything, for this pleases the Lord.

Heb. 12:11  No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.

Prov. 23:13  Do not withhold discipline from a child; if you punish him with the rod, he will not die.

Prov. 19:18   Discipline your son, for in that there is hope; do not be a willing party to his death.

Prov. 29:17   Discipline your son, and he will give you peace; he will bring delight to your soul.

Eph. 6:1, 4   Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right.  Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.

Along with the “rod” (some kind of negative discipline, will be different for different kids or parents, but is NEVER abusive), they need the “reproof”:  Use God’s Word to teach them why what they are doing is wrong.  Help them to examine their own hearts to discover their motives.  And have them practice doing it the right way.

Ginger Plowman’s resources (such as “Wise Words for Moms”) are wonderful!

     D.     Don’t Provoke Your Children to Anger

Eph. 6:4   Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.

Col. 3:21   Fathers, do not embitter your children, or they will become discouraged.

A great resource for this topic is Lou Priolo’s book The Heart of Anger.  Here are 25 different ways that parents can provoke their children to anger (see the book for further explanations):

Lack of marital harmony

Establishing and maintaining a child-centered home

Modeling sinful anger

Habitually disciplining while angry


Being inconsistent with discipline

Having double standards

Being legalistic

Not admitting you’re wrong and not asking for forgiveness

Constantly finding fault

Parents reversing God-given roles

Not listening to your child’s opinion or taking his “side of the story” seriously

Comparing them to others

Not making time “just to talk”

Not praising or encouraging your child

Failing to keep your promises

Chastening in front of others

Not allowing enough freedom

Allowing too much freedom

Mocking your child

Abusing them physically

Ridiculing or name-calling

Unrealistic expectations

Practicing favoritism

Child training with worldly methodologies inconsistent with God’s Word

     E.      Basics

*Have good schedules/ routines for eating and sleeping.  (I like Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child by Weisbluth, latest version.)

*Very little screen time (includes TV, video, video games, computer).

*Healthy food and eat together as a family

*Read aloud a lot!

*Protect them—be careful whom you leave them with.

*Provide lots of free imaginative play and outdoor play. (A great book is Susan Shaeffer MacCauley’s book For the Children’s Sake.)

 V.   Be a Worker at Home

Titus 2:4-5  Then they can train the younger women . . .to be busy at home (NIV), homemakers (NKJV), working at home (ESV), keepers at home (KJV), workers at home (NASB), keep a good house (Message), work in their homes (NLT).

     A.     We Must Become Content in This Role

1 Tim. 6:6-8   But godliness with contentment is great gain.  For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it.  But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that.

Phil. 4:11   I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances.

Heb. 13:5  Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said,  “Never will I leave you;  never will I forsake you.”

A great book to read on this subject is Passionate Housewives, Desperate for God by Chancy and MacDonald.  A quote from p. 47:

“Christian women must reject any distorted view of the modern housewife—whether it be the miserable household drudge; the fanatical, sock-matching wonder-woman; the child-centered, worn out soccer mom; or the deceptive, apron-wearing vixen.  When we consistently renew our minds by absorbing Scripture and by passionately embracing the sacred calling God has truly given us as women, we will refute the perverted image of the desperate housewife by believing His promises and showing the world there is something better for which we can truly be passionate!”

     B.      Meals

Plan ahead, make extra and freeze, use crock-pot (can put the stuff in the night before), plan out monthly or seasonal menus (“think once and write it down”—Kym Wright), have a pre-printed grocery list,, have a stocked pantry and fridge/freezer, organize a recipe binder or notebook of recipes you use (not hope to use).

     C.     Organizing

Simplify—throw or give away what you aren’t using.

Mail—try to touch each piece only once, have folders labeled to file away (e.g. Coupons, Read Later, File Later, Husband, Bills to Pay, Need to Answer, Fliers and Coupons that Expire This Week), have shredder/trash/recycle box nearby.

Bills—do as many automatic and/or online as possible, have certain days each month that you pay the others, have a chart of every bill and mark it off as you pay (so you won’t miss any).

Calendar—paper, online, pda.  Just use it!  This one is great: Click here to visit Motivated Moms.—free articles and downloads

     D.     Cleaning

Schedule it—choose one: once a week, one day upstairs and another day downstairs, a different room every day.  Use this wonderful calendar, which has the schedule all figured out for you:   Click here to visit Motivated Moms.

Learn how to clean—

Use safe cleaners—Like Shaklee, so your kids can hang around you or do it themselves.  Search internet for recipes to make your own.

Teach kids—to clean as soon as they are able

Get help—be creative (share with a friend, make some money so you can afford a maid, etc.)

      E.     Home Business

Make sure God, husband, and children come first.

Research well before investing.

Get your husband’s advice and approval.

     F.     Learning New Skills

Homestead Blessings DVDs, by the West Ladies.  I love these DVDs!

Set goals (e.g. learn one major skill every year, such as sewing or quilting, canning or baking your own bread, gardening, etc.).

Get with other women to learn; find a mentor.

     G.     Practicing Hospitality

1 Pet. 4:9  Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling.

Rom. 12:13   Share with God’s people who are in need.  Practice hospitality.

It’s ok to start small and simply.  Set a goal, such as inviting one single person or a family every two months.

Get the house ready, plan the meal, and just do it!

Good book—Karen Ehman’s A Life that Says Welcome:  Simple Ways to Open Your Heart and Home to Others.

     H.     Saving Money

Amy Dacyczyn’s Tightwad Gazette and Jonni McCoy Miserly Moms. (give away or get things for free)

Local Library (DVD’s are free!)

Internet has tons of free stuff

Food co-ops

Coupons—find a system to organize them.

Bulk stores like Sam’s and Costco, discount stores like Garden Fresh and Aldi

     I.     Don’t “leave home” by phone, email, Facebook, blogging, etc.

Schedule it in your day; set limits.

**To purchase any of the books listed above, check Barnes and Noble ( Logo - 88 x 31 )     You might find it used or on sale!

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