Wednesday, August 24, 2016

a book for birthdays!


Happy Birthday to You!

Aug 23, 2016
by Michelle Medlock Adams and Sandra Rodriguez

My 17m old son loves reading this book because of the Happy Birthday tune that it plays.

My 9year old daughter likes reading it to hiim because of the colorful and celebratory pictures.

I love the idea that it teaches young children important lessons about birthday parties, such a welcoming guests, honoring them, taking turns during games, making wishes before blowing out candles, being grateful for presents, and saying cheerful goodbyes. It;s not an educational book per se, but the illustrations and words give parents a natural opportunity to teach these lessons. I also love that the book closes with the mention of prayer and celebrating your child for who he is.  And there is a photo pocket that will hold a picture of the birthday boy or girl.  Finally, the reader can push the song button to hear the traditional birthday song played on the piano with flair, before joyful voices proclaim, "Happy Birthday!"

I would  recommend this book for children ages 4 and under.

I received this book as a gift from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Choosing to be Grateful!

With an increasingly self-focused and selfish culture, it's important to practice gratitude and encourage others to be grateful for the many gifts God has given us.

Tyndale Publishers has just produced a tool to inspire gratitude: Gratitude: A Prayer and Praise Coloring Journal.  



It's filled with prayers, scriptures, quotes, reflection questions that are certain to inspire thoughtfulness and gratitude.  The art is lovely and eye-catching with plenty of space to doodle, draw, write and color.

Here are a few samples of the art and the reflection questions.





I would recommend this book to Christian readers age 12+.  It would be a great book for mothers and daughters to go through at the same time.

I received this book as a gift from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

Friday, August 19, 2016

What should I feed this little munchkin?


If you have ever had questions about feeding a baby or toddler, then I have a book that you need to read!  Since we are raising child #4, you can bet that I've asked my share of questions such as:  Is he eating enough? How much milk does he need each day? How can I get my picky eater to make better choices? Which foods should I avoid? Do you think he could be allergic?

The Pediatrician's Guide to Feeding Babies and Toddlers by Anthony Porto, MD, and Dina DiMaggio, MD. is a wonderful resource for parents!  The subtitle says it all:  "Practical Answers To Your Questions on Nutrition, Starting Solids, Allergies, Picky Eating, and More"

The book is divided into these categories:
chapter for each developmental stage: 0 to 3 months, 4 to 6 months, 7 to 8 months, 9 to 12 months, the toddlers years, each stage contains milestones, nutritional guidelines, growth patterns, medical concerns, and healthy recipes.
common medical conditions and resources
nutrition tables
growth monitoring
allergy tips
helpful websites
index

It's probably not a book that you will sit down to read cover to cover in a week.  It's more of a resource that you will use as your baby/toddler progresses from one stage to another.  You'll pick it up to read before the baby is born, as he starts eating solids, as he turns 1, as he starts to potty train...  Or when you are facing a struggle related to eating, such as allergies, vomiting, growth patterns constipation..  It's a book that you will find yourself reviewing again and again, searching for answers to the nagging questions that swirl around in our heads about the thriving of our little munchkins.

This is a fantastic resource that I would recommend to every caregiver.  I received this book as a gift from the publisher in exchange for my honest review, and it is a book that I will recommend often.  I'm even going to share my copy with my pediatrician!

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

great book for young children!



This is an adorable hardback book for babies, toddlers and young children with bright cheerful pictures and a wonderful messages that every child needs to hear. 

The author talks about how God made each of us uniquely with a plan in mind.  He made our bodies just the way they are.  He knew what would make each of us smile.  He gave each of us a propensity for brightening others’ days through silliness, gentleness, kindness and love. He made our minds, thoughts, and dreams . He gave us each unique gifts and talents to fit his plans for us. 

She closes with one of my favorite scriptures:  “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you. Plans to give you hope and a future.”  Jeremiah 29:11 NIV.

I would recommend this book for any family with a young child or children.  And I would encourage you to read it to children often!


I was delighted to review this book from  Worthy Kids ideals.  I received the book as a gift in exchange for my honest review.

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Christian Fiction by Mike Dellosso

Kill Devil (Jed Patrick)
I just read Kill Devil by Mike Delosso, a new fiction author for me.  This was the 2nd book in his Jed Patrick series, but I was able to read it as a stand alone book without reading book #1.

It was a good suspense and adventure novel that reminded me of the Bourne books/movies.  But it also has messages of faith woven throughout the book, primarily in conversations/reflections with Patrick's young daughter.  The reminders of God's presence and comfort through trials is a message we all need to hear!  But there are also disturbing scenes of psychological torture and hearing voices.  I enjoyed most of the book, but could have done without some of the more disturbing elements.

From the publisher: "Jed Patrick is convinced he’s doing all it takes to keep his family safe―new names, new location, new identity. But just when he thinks he finally has his life back, trained men claiming to be CIA agents break in and threaten his wife and daughter, proving once and for all his family will never truly be safe until he eliminates the agency dead set on hunting him down. Not knowing if Karen and Lilly are better off by his side or in hiding, Jed is determined to protect them while finding a way to use the classified information that he possesses to dismantle the Centralia Project. But he soon learns that eliminating Centralia may require compromising his own values. As danger escalates, Jed isn’t sure whether there’s anyone or anything he can trust―including his own senses."

I would recommend this book to male and female readers age 15 or older.

I received this book as a gift from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

Delilah - a fictional account by Angela Hunt



This is another book that's hard to put down.  It's a fictional account of the biblical narrative of Samson and Delilah.  Told from the perspective of both main characters, the reader gets to peek into the culture and life of Bible times.

From the publisher:  "Life is not easy in Philistia, especially not for a woman and child alone. When beautiful, wounded Delilah finds herself begging for food to survive, she resolves that she will find a way to defeat all the men who have taken advantage of her. She will overcome the roadblocks life has set before her, and she will find riches and victory for herself. When she meets a legendary man called Samson, she senses that in him lies the means for her victory. By winning, seducing, and betraying the hero of the Hebrews, she will attain a position of national prominence. After all, she is beautiful, she is charming, and she is smart. No man, not even a supernaturally gifted strongman, can best her in a war of wits."

Hunt is a very good author.  Her storylines are interesting and easy to follow.  Themes throughout the book remind the reader of God's providence, God's protection, God's faithfulness, God's calling for our lives, God's forgiveness, and God's presence.

I would recommend this book to readers over age 16, because there are some graphic scenes and some sexual innuendos. There is also sexual and physical abuse.

This book was given to me by the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

Tuesday, July 05, 2016

medical fiction novel

The Lethal Harvest
By William Cutrer and Sandra Glahn 

Another page turner, this medical fiction novel tells the story of an embryologist, his colleagues and his family a they wrestle with:
The balance between work and family
The meaning of real love
The quest for cures to diseases
The power struggle over who controls human life
The ethical debate over embryotic and stem cell research

From the publisher: "In order to save the president's life, a brilliant embryologist— the president's nephew made a "devil's bargain" with a secret group of federal agents. But Tim Sullivan's illegal genetic manipulations of human embryos place everyone he knows at risk. Before he can finish his work, a freakish accident kills him and leaves only troubling questions behind.  Now his partner, Ben McKay, and Tim's widow, Marnie, must uncover the hidden truth about Tim’s research before more lives are swept away. In the process, they’re forced to face their feelings for each other and the dark secrets in their own pasts. This story of love, loss, and danger crosses international borders from Mexico to the former Soviet Union in order to answer one searing question: if Tim's research is completed, what form will the strange and dangerous harvest take?  Ambition, jealousy, and the ultimate meaning of love move this riveting story through the dark labyrinth that may lie buried under breakthroughs in genetic research and cloning."

The book is clean, easy to read, and it keeps your attention.  I would recommend it to any reader age 15+.

I received this book as a gift from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

Friday, June 24, 2016

Shopping for Tall Men

My eldest son has reached 6'5, so I'm struggling with shopping.  I asked tall friends for advice, so I thought I'd share the websites they suggested, and see if readers have more ideas!

Old navy
LL Bean
Amazon
Lands End
Dillard's big and tall
Macy's , big and tall - Levi's
American Eagle
GAP
eastbay.com 
deluth trading company
Kohls
JCp.com. The non wrinkle flat front khakis are 34 x 38 online only and they even have some hem to let out if you need more. 
BUCKLE is great for jeans because they can also order but have several 37.5 lengths in store. Give them a shot for jeans. I know they are expensive but they fit wonderfully. 

SALDLY athletic pants are the hardest - Adidas tall have the longest inseam. Nike's tall ones are a JOKE 

for shoes: www.oddball.com

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Potty Training Tips

Potty Training Essentials - items to have on hand for successful potty training www.thirtyhandmadedays.com
I've forgotten all about potty training, since my big kids are ages 9, 11, and 14.  But with the baby at 15 months, it won't be too long 'til we pull out the potty chair. I saw simple mom's post on potty training, so I thought I would share:  http://www.thirtyhandmadedays.com/2016/06/favorite-potty-training-tips-printables/

Monday, June 20, 2016

A Flight of Arrows by Lori Benton


I just read Lori Benton's new book, a flight of arrows. It is the second book and a sequel about the intertwined names of two cultures, Native Americans and English colonists  in 1757 on a brink of the Revolutionary War.
Its a well written book with fascinating insights to the two cultures, and intimate look inside the minds of soldiers. But honestly, I had to push myself through the book. It was a little slow, and didn't hold my attention as well as I thought it would.

The characters are well developed and the plot is very unique. She describes the settings so well, so it's easy to picture the landscapes.  Elements of faith in forgiveness are woven throughout the book, but Christianity is not pushed in any way.

From the publisher:  Twenty years past, in 1757, a young Redcoat, Reginald Aubrey stole a newborn boy—the lighter-skinned of Oneida twins— during the devastating fall of Fort William Henry and raised him as his own. No one connected to Reginald escaped unscathed from this crime. Not his adopted daughter Anna. Not Stone Thrower, the Native American father determined to get his son back. Not Two Hawks, William’s twin brother separated since birth, living in the shadow of his absence and hoping to build a future with Anna. Nor Lydia, who longs for Reginald to be free from his self-imposed emotional prison and embrace God’s forgiveness— and her love.  Now William, whose identity has been shattered after discovering the truth of his birth, hides in the ranks of an increasingly aggressive British army. The Redcoats prepare to attack frontier New York and the Continentals, aided by Oneida warriors including Two Hawks, rally to defend it. As the Revolutionary War penetrates the Mohawk Valley, two families separated by culture, united by love and faith, must find a way to reclaim the son marching toward them in the ranks of their enemies. 

The book is appropriate for a readers over age 12. There is also a readers guide for those who want to read the book together and discuss the book.

I received this book as a gift from the publisher in exchange for my honest review

Dee Henderson's new novel - Traces of Guilt

Product Details

Dee Henderson's newest novel, Traces of Guilt, is one that I could not put down this week. It is an Evie Blackwell cold case mystery.

I loved to get into know the Thane family and their friends through the various mysteries in this book. The characters are delightful, easy to relate to, and real. The relationships are deep and rich. The mysteries are intriguing and creative, though also heavy and sad. Henderson's writing style is so easy to read, & I always sink into the lives of her characters.

From the publisher:  Evie Blackwell loves her life as an Illinois State Police detective . . . mostly. She's very skilled at investigations and has steadily moved up through the ranks. She would like to find Mr. Right, but she has a hard time imagining how marriage could work, considering the demands of her job. Gabriel Thane is a lifetime resident of Carin County and now its sheriff, a job he loves. Gabe is committed to upholding the law and cares deeply for the residents he's sworn to protect. He too would like to find a lifetime companion, a marriage like his parents have. When Evie arrives in Carin, Illinois, it's to help launch a new task force dedicated to reexamining unsolved crimes across the state. Spearheading this trial run, Evie will work with the sheriff's department on a couple of its most troubling missing-persons cases. As she reexamines old evidence to pull out a few tenuous new leads, she unearths a surprising connection . . . possibly to a third cold case. Evie's determined to solve the cases before she leaves Carin County, and Sheriff Thane, along with his family, will be key to those answers.

It's a very clean book that I would recommend to any reader over age 14. I received this book as I gift from the publisher and exchange for my honest review.

Friday, May 20, 2016

Like Never Before by Melissa Tagg

Like Never Before by Melissa Tagg is a cute and clever book. It's an easy read that I did not want to put down each night. Believable and relatable characters with real life struggles.  It's book two of the Walker series, but I didn't feel behind, and I haven't read the first book.

The themes include life-work balance (who can't relate to that?!), love, Faith, forgiveness, loyalty new starts, family, and life purpose. So many great themes! If readers take the story to Heart, they will have an opportunity for self-reflection that might lead to shifting priorities and paths. It would be a great read for a book club, because there are so many great discussion points woven throughout the book.

I wasn't surprised to hear that the book was named by Publishers Weekly to their spring 2016 "Religion and Spirituality" Top 10 list

I would recommend this book to any female reader age 16 plus, though readers 18 + may find the story easier to relate to.

I received this book as a gift from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.