Wednesday, October 31, 2012

TheHighCalling.org Newsletter Review



TheHighCalling.org, is an online magazine and community founded on the belief that God cares about our daily work. This website is FULL of articles, interviews, devotionals, and inspirational stories—all specifically created to help you find God in your work, family, and culture. Our writers and bloggers tell engaging stories crafted to encourage you in the high calling of your daily work.


Honoring God in daily work is more than just evangelism. The work we do should be a testimony to our Creator. That is why it is so important to remember the high calling of our daily work.
This website also seems to be a safe place to ask difficult questions about work, leadership, culture, family, and faith. There are many other Christ followers who share different opinions, but who also could help you through a troubled time, or show you a different view.  So far, everyone seems to be very respectful in the comments section.
Here is what TheHighCalling.org posted on their about page:
Discover new Christian Resources.
Every day we publish new articles and Bible reflections to help you discover meaning and significance in your daily work. Browse our topic categories or run a search to find the content you need. Or register to receive notifications of new resources straight to your email inbox.
  • Daily Reflections—a short Bible study every day by scholar and theologian Mark D. Roberts. (Register and preview this resource in our sidebar.)
  • Weekly Calling—summary of best content from the previous week (Register and preview this resource in our sidebar.)
  • Quarterly Sermon Notes—each quarter, a new set of three outlines that can be adapted for sermons or bible classes.
Engage in conversation.
Feel free to leave comments on featured posts you find meaningful, relevant or timely. You can comment anonymously, or sign up here.
Become a member of the community.
If you're a blogger, you can add a badge to your site and add your feed to our site. You may also want to connect with us on Twitter and Facebook.
Get to know us better. 
Read and comment regularly. Browse featured posts in the High Calling network or skim headlines from more than 1,500 bloggers who are working with us to write about God’s calling in our daily work.
Further the conversation. 
As you find meaningful posts, share the links with your friends via email, Twitter, Facebook and other social media outlets. If you’re a blogger, include links to The High Calling or to network bloggers in your own posts, as you have opportunity. When you find good writing in our network, let us know by posting a link to good articles on our Facebook page.
TheHighCalling.org is a program of the Foundations for Laity Renewal, founded by the H. E. Butt Foundation.





My Take:

This is the first opportunity I have had to review this website.  I had never even heard of it before.  I receive newsletter from quite a few different sources and I tend to get overwhelmed by the amount of e-mail/newsletters I receive.  However, this one seems to be special.  I don't work outside of the home, but there are plenty of articles for me to read and apply it to my daily work whether it be wiping snotty noses, doing dishes, or making dinner for a friend in need.  Anyway you look at it, it is work and it is done to glorify God.

I found that the articles maybe didn't ALL apply to me...but there is nobody standing by telling me I have to read each one of them either.  Pick what you want to read and read it....you don't have to read all of the articles especially if it doesn't apply to you.  The other thing I like about the articles is they are short.  Short and Sweet I'll say!  I LOVE good articles....but I LOVE them even MORE when they don't take me over 5 minutes to read!  I am a busy person, though I love to be nurtured in Christ, I also don't want to lose interest because it is too long.  I absolutely loved the lengths of all of the articles!  Perfect!

So....give it a try!  Click the link above and have at it!  You won't be sorry that you did!

*I was asked to review the content of the newsletter by Handlebar.  The opinions in this post are all my own*

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Courageous Teens Book Review


I had the wonderful pleasure to review this book Living For God As Courageous Teens by Michael Catt and Amy Parker.  I absolutely loved the movie Courageous, so when I was asked to review this book, I thought what a great opportunity to read a book helping teens to be courageous!  Yes...I know I am no longer a teen, but I have a teen in my house and a tween...and two more coming up after them...so I felt that it would be a great book to read, get insight from, and then pass on to my teens, one by one.

The book actually has 4 sections.  Courageous Faith, Courageous Leadership, Courageous Priorities and Courageous Influence.  Each section begins with a "script" referring to the topic, and then the author explores the examples of people in the Bible who displayed great courage when playing it safe would have been easier.  To quote the Intro section of the book, "Each section begins with a segment of Joshua's story of courage and throughout we explore other leading examples of courage in the Bible.  Esther and Moses, Daniel and Jesus, each story challenges us to keep moving forward.  They cause us to examine our priorities and deal with anything that brings fear to our hearts.  They call us to have a faith that matches our mountains."

I am not a teen, and I NEED this book!  I was pretty excited getting started.
One of the best parts of the book was in the first chapter.  It reads, "Courage doesn't mean the absence of fear, but responding in spite of fear....Fear is the enemy of faith.....Courage will place you in a battle that fear would run from, but faith stands firm knowing that God is "your shield.""

LOVE THAT MESSAGE ABOVE!

In case you didn't realize it, but Michael Catt, the author was actually the executive producer of Courageous, Fireproof, and Facing the Giants....GREAT Christian movies with fabulous stories to tell. He is an incredible author and an equally incredible man of God.  His writing is not hard to follow, he is very clear and concise.  He tells us how it is and doesn't sugar coat...no beating around the bush with him!  

I would highly recommend this book to anyone with a teen to either read for yourself and/or give it to your teen.  Anyone can benefit from the truth in this book.

*I was given a copy of this book for reviewing purposes only.  I was not compensated monetarily and all of the opinions in this post are mine.*

Monday, October 29, 2012

Purix Plus Oxi Review!

Introducing Purex plus Oxi, a new stain-fighting liquid detergent from Purex!

Purex plus Oxi is the most powerful Purex detergent available.  In fact, it works against over 101 different stains!

The three stain-fighting enzymes in Purex plus Oxi each work against different typs of stains for the most Purex stain-fighting power you can get.

Purex plus Oxi, like all liquid Purex products, has been specially formulated to work in both high efficiency washers and traditional washing machines.

And because it's from Purex, you know it won't break the bank.  Purex plus Oxi leaves your clothes Bright, White and Clean and costs half the price of the leading brand!

A powerful combination of detergent and stain fighters:
-A hypoallergenic formula with a light, fresh scent
-Perfect for everyday laundry or heavily soiled loads
-Visit purex.com for additional product information

MY TAKE:

I didn't think it was possible to love Purex any more than I already do.  I reviewed for Purex a couple years ago, and ever since then I have never used anything else.  This Purex plus Oxi even sets the bar higher!!  I LOVE it.  It smells great, cleans great, and I have children with allergies to several things....it is sensitive enough to wash their clothes in!  It is a fantastic product!  I highly recommend it and I am absolutely sold on the Purex name.  I trust that brand more than any other!  Thanks Purex!


*Purex provided me with a sample of Purex plus Oxi so I could review them.  However, all of the opinions expressed here are my own."*

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Kelly Kits

I got the wonderful opportunity to review a little something called Kelly Kits.  It is a type of play activity for you and your kids!  Before I tell you about it, I want to make sure that you know that you can enter a contest with Kelly Kits through November 16th where there will be 10 annual memberships valued at $99.90 each given away!!  As a bonus, everyone who enters will get a promotional code for ONE FREE kit (one-time $2.49 shipping fee applies).  After you've read all about Kelly Kits, come back and enter HERE.  The winner will be drawn on November 19th and announced on their Facebook page.  If you win, you will also get an e-mail.  I will also be posting the winners here.

ABOUT KELLY KITS AND ITS FOUNDER:


My name is Kelly Hanson and I’m the “momprenuer” behind Kelly Kits. I am so excited to participate in this blogger event with US Family Guide. Thank you for the opportunity to reach your networks!

A little about me... I am from San Antonio, Texas where I live with my two amazing daughters Rhapsody age 6 and Violet age 4. I am a hard working single mom as well as a home schooling mom! Rhapsody will start 2nd grade studies in the fall and Violet will begin a Kinder curriculum.

Kelly Kits began about 4 1/2 years ago right before my second daughter Violet was born. A dear friend’s daughter was about to turn two and I was gift shopping. So I asked my friend what kind of gifts she was interested in. She said, “You know, we just have so many clothes and toys already, what I really need is something fun and creative I can do with my daughter.” My brain exploded at the word creative (cause it’s kinda my middle name) and I set to work on creating a box filled with age appropriate art play activities. Each activity was conveniently packaged in a ziplock baggie containing every possible ingredient and and instruction card. I knew my friend and her love of convenience products, so I wanted to make it as EASY as possible for her to grab a “baggie” and sit down at the table for some quality fun time.

Well, it was a little bit of a hit! The Kelly Kits idea was born. I know too many well intentioned, yet overwhelmed moms who pour through Pinterest, internet pages, and library books to find great projects to do at home with the kids who just get too busy to plan and gather all of those materials! I have done it for them! For me - and for you!

Kelly Kits is an all inclusive art play curriculum for children 2-102. Every art play activity focuses on a simple art techniques in painting, sculpting, drawing, print-making, and collage. I have also included enrichment ideas that add an educational layer to the art play experience making it especially engaging for older children. Our subscription features one kit a month with access to contests, our online community and instructional videos for only $9.99 - shipping and handling included!!!

The Kelly Kits philosophy values process over product. The time spent engaged in art play is far more valuable than any actual art that is created. These are not activities to keep the kids out of your hair. (That’s what technology is for!) I want to challenge parents to spend quality time their their children. Kelly Kits is as much about art play as it is creating bonding moments for parents and children thus helping to create stronger, healthier, happier families.

I’m also excited to share a change that is coming this October. The look of our packages will change just slightly accommodating more materials and we will include two masterpiece challenges aimed at older kids 6-12. This will increase Kelly Kits versatility! While we are excited to feature these fun and inspiring ideas, we also want to emphasize that kids need only to follow the rules (your rules, Mom, for creating art at home!) not the directions! If your children feel inspired to use the materials differently than what is suggested - we encourage it! We want a generation of creative minds - not just direction followers!!!!!

Thank you, again, for this great opportunity! 
Have a blast!
Kelly Hanson Kelly@kellykits.com

VIDEO
Here is a video about Kelly Kits:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZrgEQ2Y3rSw&feature=youtu.be



My son Major is 4.  He LOVES anything crafty.  This was a great opportunity as I am doing Pre-School with him here at home, to show him how to make his very own clay (play-do essentially).  It was SUPER easy...and Kelly had fantastic directions.  I couldn't have messed up if I tried.  First I watched the video on line, then I followed the directions and we got busy making our clay.  Major loved doing the measurements and making the clay "by himself".  Once it was cooled off, we enjoyed rolling our fingers through it.  It was a little greasier than play-do, but a lot softer and easier to shape.  My creations are the GREEN awareness ribbon and the cross.  Major decided to do something a little different and actually make a face for his pumpkin!






 I thought it was pretty creative and imaginative for a 4 year old!!!  All in all, we enjoyed our time with Kelly Kits.  Not only did we have fun, but there was so much learning involved for him, and teaching for me!  It was fabulous!  Thanks Kelly Kits!  Don't forget to go back to the top and go enter their drawing!!!!

(I received no compensation for this post, only the kit to try and to give my honest review of the product)

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Thursday, October 18, 2012

Voice in the Wind Book Review by Francine Rivers




This classic series has already inspired nearly 2 million readers, but both loyal fans and new readers will want this 20th anniversary edition of a Christian classic, which includes a foreword from the publisher, a letter from and Q & A with Francine Rivers, color map, an illustrated glossary, and discussion questions suitable for personal and group use.

The first book in the bestselling Mark of the Lion series, A Voice in the Wind brings readers back to the first century and introduces them to a character they will never forget—Hadassah. Torn by her love for a handsome aristocrat, this young slave girl clings to her faith in the living God for deliverance from the forces of decadent Rome.

MY TAKE:

After having read Francine Rivers' book Redeeming Love and claiming it to be my favorite book ever read, I knew I was in for a treat with this book!  I was SO excited to start reading it!  It didn't disappoint....what a great story teller Francine Rivers truly is.  

However, I did find this book much harder to start and continue than Redeeming Love.  About half way through it started getting much easier.  Whether or not it was because I started getting used to the language she uses, or it just simply got easier.  

I am an avid reader, but I think my trouble was with the words used in the first century, the spellings, the easily mispronounced words/names and the differing events taken place in that era that I knew little about prior to reading this book.  On the flip side, it was a wonderful way to get to know the first century and how it functioned.  Francine Rivers really seemed to have done her homework.  I was learning things that I had never known before, all while getting a fictional story to help me learn and retain these things.

All and all, it was a fabulous book, it was just written in a style that I am not used to, but it didn't deter me from continuing to read it.  I absolutely would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys Christian fiction and maybe wants to learn a little bit about the Roman Empire.



Saturday, October 13, 2012

Falling Into Fun with HP Deskjet 3052A

With back to school behind us and the holidays on the horizon, Fall is the perfect time to settle into your routine and complete some projects on your to-do list.  Luckily, HP and Walmart have your printing needs covered, from everyday tasks to seasonal projects!

I was given the AWESOME opportunity to review the HP Deskjet 3052A Wireless e-All-In-One Printer.  Mommy Parties supplied me with the printer, 2 HP XL Ink Cartridges (color and black) and Walmart Giftcards to share at my party!  I was SO excited to get a party going!  I am always up for a good party!  Any excuse to get together with friends!  :-)

Let me tell you a little bit about this printer.
The HP Deskjet 3052A Wireless e-All-In-One Printer is:
  • Wireless and ePrint capabilities from multiple computers and devices
  • Easily print many different media types
  • 2.0" mono LCD display


  • My personal thought on this printer is that it rocks!  I love that I can wirelessly print from anywhere at anytime!  I was at the park with my tablet.  I didn't want to forget to print something, so I printed from there!  Of course I had to wait to get home to GET the paper...but the fact that it was printed and I didn't have to worry about it was awesome!

    The print quality is great too!  I have owned a lot of different printers and printer brands in my life...and I would have to say that HP outdoes them all.  It prints nice and crisp and quickly.

    I had a printer party to show off the new printer.  I invited 10 women, but only 4 were able to come.  We had a great time though eating and showing off the new printer and its capabilities.



    After the demonstration, I was able to bless them with $10 gift cards to Walmart towards their own printer or printer ink!  Thanks to Mommy Parties for allowing this to happen!


    *I was given the printer, 2 ink cartridges and gift cards to give to my guests in exchange for my honest post.  Thanks to Mommy Parties, Mom Select, BSM Media.*

    Tuesday, October 2, 2012

    FREE MONTH OF ABC MOUSE.COM!!!!



    ABC Mouse offers a full online curriculum for preschool, pre-k, and kindergarten in the subjects of reading, math, science, social studies, art, and music. Children can start anywhere and move through the curriculum at their own pace! ABC Mouse has won numerous awards, including the Parent's Choice, Teacher's Choice, and Mom's Choice GOLD awards! Get your first month FREE!  CLICK HERE

    We LOVE ABCmouse.com at our house!  You will too!!!  It is a month free!!!  Give it a try!!!!!

    Monday, October 1, 2012

    Second Grade Writing Prompts for Seasons review



    My daughter LOVES to write.  She has such an active imagination!  But...sometimes she gets stuck.  With Second Grade Writing Prompts for Seasons, it helped her to think outside the box.  One of her favorite questions was,  "After a chilly day of leaf raking, what would be your ideal fall
    meal to warm you up? Would it be a soup or a stew? A baked lasagna or meatloaf? Explain your meal in great detail using all five senses to relay your experience."  She really went all out on her description.  To have power over what she would eat.....it gave her ALL sorts of ideas!!!  I enjoy these books as it really helps my kids to dig deeper into their writing.  It helps them to access the part of their brains that maybe they closed off once they left the school building!  I enjoy it because it helps them in writing, it helps them imaginatively and it keeps the house quiet for an extended period of time!  :-)

    Bryan Cohen has MANY other writing prompts books.  Quite a few to choose from!  Do a search on Amazon.com for all of his books.  You will be happy you did!

    *This review is my honest take on this book.  I was not compensated for anything.  I was only given the opportunity to view the book prior to making my review.*