Tuesday, December 23, 2014

TOP FIVE OF 2014: MasterBooks

Time for a list of my top five.....and this is so hard to do. I don't think that I have ever had a publisher that has month after month sent me something that every member of my family absolutely loved. My children rush to meet the postman when they know it is time for a package from MasterBooks Publishers. I get excited when I see our yearly line up for review. So here it is.... 5. It's Not Greek To Me, Todd Friel - a fun interactive and quirky professor makes learning an ancient language interesting. http://abbiereviews.blogspot.com/2014/07/its-not-greek-to-me-todd-friel.html 4. Studies in World History - Yep, this made my list. A long time fan of Bob Jones home school curriculum I was skeptical that any other History curriculum could compare. Well, I will now be trading in the old for this outstanding curriculum! http://abbiereviews.blogspot.com/2014/08/studies-and-world-history.htm 3. Galapagos Islands - Beautifully stunning photography set this apart for me. I love excellent photography but these leap off the page. Words just can not express the beauty! http://abbiereviews.blogspot.com/2014/02/galapagos-islands-different-view.html 2. 44 Animals of the Bible - My kids still tote this book around the house. They pass it from child to child. Great for making the animals of the bible come alive! http://abbiereviews.blogspot.com/2014/12/44-animals-of-bible.html and finally....number ONE for this family for 2014..... 1. BUGS - This full color book is packed with information for ALL ages. http://abbiereviews.blogspot.com/2014/10/bugs-big-small-god-made-them-all-will.html We are looking forward to another wonderful year of books and fun with this publisher!!

44 Animals of the Bible

It is like Christmas everytime I open a package from New Leaf Publishing!! My kids try to beat each other to the door to grab the package so they can be the first to get the book. This one, like the Bug book, was a favorite of my boys. What surprised me more, though, was how captivating it was for my 1 and 3 year old and even held the attention of my 13 year old. More than once I found the book tucked under someone's math book as they were sneaking "reading" time when they were supposed to be working out math problems. Each of the animals (some ancient and extinct, some still alive) has a beautiful picture and great description of the animal and how it was used during biblical times. The importance of book like this for me is that it brings to life the Word of God. Makes things more understandable and real for my children. Now for the first time they can go to a book and see a colorful photo and full description of animals such as the asp when they run across the word in biblical text. This is a book that everyone needs. Thanks to the publisher for this wonderful review copy.

Wisdomantics Board Game

Are you looking for a FUN and interactive game that will increase bible knowledge for kids and adults alike? Look no further. This board game comes with 2 dvds loaded with multiple choice questions over the wisdom of Solomon. My kids, all 4 of the older ones, enjoyed trying to beat the other ones by choosing the correct answer quickest. Some of the questions were a little difficult for younger kids so we did allow use of the bible at times but this served as a bible drill, making them more familiar with their bibles. I really appreciate the thought put into the game and was glad to see something along these lines. We own to versions of bibles trivia as well as many other bible games but few touch on the wisdom of King Solomon. I think this game is one of those hidden treasures that helps to seal the Word of the Lord on the hearts of children and parents alike. I am so thankful that I received this for review. http://www.wisdomantics.com/ https://www.facebook.com/pages/Wisdomantics/701632026543413

Saturday, December 6, 2014

DVD: What's in the Bible? Jesus is The Good News!

I have got to say that this is one of my favorite dvd series for kids - I think I like it even better than the Veggie Tales series by the same person. Maybe because it is so literally dealing with the bible. My kids vary in ages 1 to 13 years and all of them enjoy sitting down to watch it. Phil Vischer has created a series that grabs the kids attention and passes on biblical truth in a fun interactive way. This is a bible based muppets or Sesame Street. Jesus is pointed at as the only way to salvation and thus the main thrust of the video is great. This is an excellent resource for personal use but is also easily adaptable to multiple curriculum in Children's Church, AWANA, and Sunday School situations. Children will love the characters and the interactive feel of the videos. You may even find as an adult that you learn a bit of bible trivia that you did not know before you watched the video. You may also find that it motivates your children to learn the books of the bible and seek out more information regarding the topics discussed. Thanks to the publisher and FlyBY Promotions for this review copy.

Your Life Still Counts, Tracie Miles

Mills has written a book that will touch every woman's heart. Each of us has been called to walk through hard times at one time or another. Tracie shares her own story in an honest, open way that draws the reader to the Lord of redemption. She shows that God's love and grace far out reaches the things that we have done, gone through or the pain we experience. I would highly recommend this book for anyone who has found themselves or is currently finding themselves in a place of hardship and pain. The personal stories and testimonies will uplift the down trodden, give hope to the hopeless and be a light in the valley of shadows and darkness. God is a God who works through the lives of his people to accomplish great things. He speaks to his children through his children - and this is a book that reflects this very personal love of God. Thanks to the publisher and FLYBY Promotions for this review copy.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Small Talk: Learning From Kids What Matters Most, Amy Julia Becker

This is one of those books that is just plain enjoyable to read. In fact it is one that you will probably picked up over and over again. I know that as a mom of six it was encouraging to read Becker's honest account of motherhood and the profound effect it has on a person. I barely finished this book when a friend saw it laying on my desk and picked it up. She only read the first page then asked if she could take it home. So it is already making its rounds among my friends. There is a set of books that I think should be put in a basket with diapers, teething tablets, teething beads, onsies and burp cloths and given as a baby shower gift...this is one of those books. Motherhood is not always easy, not always fun, and sometimes just downright overwhelming. But amidst late nights, snotty noses, poopy diapers, scraped knees and tantrums there are the cuddle down moments, the sweet sticky kisses and the smell of kids after they have played out doors. Truly as Becker shows, if you open your eyes to the wonder of motherhood through the eyes of your children you can not help but be blessed. This is a keeper - and a sharer - and a gifter. Thanks to the publisher for this review copy.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

52 Little Lessons from Les Miserables, Bob Welch

Victor Hugo's timeless classic is now a time less devotional. I remember the first time I picked up that huge unabridged monstrosity of a book. I remember turning it over in my hands thinking, "I will never be able to finish this; cliff notes here I come". That was as a Junior in High school and I read the book from front cover to back cover in a matter of days. I was hooked from the first page, drawn into a story about Jean Valjean that offered hope. Grace was so poured out in the actions of the priest that a life was changed for ever. Desperation turned to hope, darkness was parted by light, shame was replaced by the covering of forgiveness. My copy was dogged-eared, marked, high lighted and and I remember crying as I typed my reflective paper over the themes and symbolism of this book. Bob Welch has taken the spiritual lessons, the golden bits of truth tucked into this beloved classic and turned it into a daily devotional. As I read it of course I thought; "this is what I should have done with my dog-eared copy". For when I read the book the first, second, third and fourth time that is what it was like for a me a huge devotional. Only now I have Welch's much easier to handle smaller version of a great classic. Welch successfully took the poignant points of the book and organized them into a weekly devotional that is sure to bless anybody who picks it up. Thanks to the publisher for this free review copy.