Friday, April 29, 2011

Greek & Stuff, Latin's Not so Tough Vol 3


TOS Crew members received a variety of items to review from the company Greek 'N' Stuff: Latin and Greek curriculum for elementary ages, as well as Bible Studies.

My family was sent "Latin's Not so Tough" Volume 3, which was most appropriate for use with my Middlest (10 yrs old). For more on choosing the correct level, please check out the FAQ page provided on the Greek 'N' Stuff website. 
The package we received contained the following components:

Sample pages for this specific level can be found (Along with sample pages for many other Greek 'N' Stuff products) on this page.

The set up is a fairly basic "Spiral" workbook, starting with alphabet and vocabulary, then moving into some Latin grammar. There are  matching worksheets and crossword puzzles as well as simple Latin sentences to translate. Vocabulary flashcards can be found in the back of the book.


Here are my thoughts on this program:
  • Fairly simple format
  • Inexpensive
  • Some variation in exercises, to help alleviate tedium
  • Steady, solid repetition
  • Not for "Self-directed" learners~ there is not enough information included in the student manuals to make it an easy "Grab-and-go curriculum.
  • There are "Lesson helps" in the front of the entire text of the Answer Key. I found this set-up to be rather confusing, and would prefer to see those notes added to individual pages in the beginning of each "lesson section", in part so that *I* don't forget to skim through the appropriate portion before getting started with each lesson! ~ I found that while I read through the entire "Schedule" when preparing to start the course, I would forget that help could also be found there when involved in the "Practice" of the program).
This was not a fabulous "fit" for our family, in part because I have reached a stage where I expect my children to be more "Self-directed" in their education. Due to various circumstances (Let's call it "life" :) ), I let probably a month of "Instruction" slide by before I realized that this particular program had to be a little more "mom-intensive" than I expected (partially because I am NOT a Latin Scholar myself, and didn't catch that there were some things being "missed" right away). 
As a result, the white erasers came out, and we started over with everything but the Vocabulary. Really~ we started over with the vocabulary as well, but I didn't want to erase all of his work. I have found that one way to get my Middlest to willingly comply with things like vocabulary is to create "Electronic Flashcards" that he can use on his itouch. I input each "Lesson's-worth" of vocabulary into a googledoc and upload it to his itouch using the gFlash+ app. That way he can review and quiz himself in a format which he enjoys more than traditional flashcards.

If my son were a basic "Work-bookish" child, I would say that this would have been a good program for him, and my Eldest probably would have been as happy as a clam to use this when she was still "Elementary" age. What works for one, may not necessarily work for another! 

I hope that this review has been helpful to you, and that you can clearly tell whether "Latin's Not So Tough" is your cup of tea or not. For more reviews and information on how other TOS Crew members used this curriculum, as well as the Greek curriculum and Bible Studies, please visit the TOS Crew Blog

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this/these item(s)/service for free as part of the TOS Crew Review Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Boysterous Boy~ We have a winner! did my choosing for me~ 
So, Erinn~ Zap me an email with your contact info~ and congratulations!

Friday, April 22, 2011

See the Light Art Class DVD

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Now that you've read about my experiences with the special Holiday See the Light DVDs, it's time to tell you what we think of their regular DVD art class.  The TOS Crew was sent the first Volume in See the Light's 9 Volume DVD course. Each DVD includes 4 lessons, and the first three Volumes each have a "bonus" lesson, for a total of 39 lessons.

PhotobucketPat Knepley is a pleasant and encouraging instructor. She naturally integrates Biblical truth with art classes~ "Creativity comes from the Creator, " "Tool Kit for Life"  (Bible~ memorization). This is something that is hard to do without being "Preachy", but I think she accomplishes it fairly well.

This first set of lessons is very basic, so while my olders weren't as challenged, they did produce some good drawings. Photo on 2011-04-22 at 22.13Photo on 2011-04-22 at 23.53 #2
My 3 year old was very excited to be shown very specifically two correct ways to hold a pencil and get two very different results. The step-by-step instructions meant that while his "apples" weren't "perfect", he was able to accomplish something of which he was proud. :) (Notice the two different styles of shading on the colored in apple?)


PhotobucketWhen looking at the curriculum syllabus, it is fairly obvious that the lessons are progressive, which is why bundling the entire curriculum makes sense. Offering them individually would be a nice touch for those who have moved beyond the basics, but would appreciate the ability to target certain areas. However, at this point in time the company does not have that option available.

One thing my kids picked up on that could be considered a "con"... in the 4th lesson of Volume 1, which is to "Draw what you see", it is very obvious that the shoe being "drawn" by Pat Knepley has already been sketched out. They weren't very impressed with that, given the concept of the lesson, and were quick to point that out to me. hmmmm.... I think that could be discouraging for kids... "Oh yeah... she's got it sketched out already, easy for her to say". Not a "deal-breaker" for me, but worth mentioning.

One benefit to "See the Light" is that it is an actual class being taught by a real instructor. This is very different than the 2-dimensional step-by-step instructions and photos that are common to many "how to draw" books, which is the only other experience we've had. It's also a great option if taking live classes just isn't a possibility, whether due to personal circumstances or location.

Another benefit~ The majority of the supplies are fairly common, so the out-of pocket expenses  (Beyond the actual course) should be fairly minimal.  If you don't already have the basic drawing tool kit, you should be able to pick most of the items up fairly inexpensively at any number of craft stores. (Many of them offer weekly coupons with 40-50% off a regular priced item)
Basic drawing tool kit
#2 pencil
drawing pencil
charcoal pencil
black sharpie
colored pencils
pencil sharpener
crayons (24+)
eraser (White or kneaded)

Photo on 2011-04-23 at 01.52
Eldest's on pink paper
The bonus lesson DOES make use of chalk pastels, so if you don't have those, you'll want to think about picking some up.  My daughter appreciated the bonus lesson found on the first Volume, as it was demonstrating how to make a chalk drawing similar to the drawing presented during the "Artful Worship" segment on The Crossmaker DVD, which I reviewed earlier.

While the drawing was rather messy (Not her favorite thing), and she's a perfectionist (uh-oh), we both enjoyed doing the lesson.

Photo on 2011-04-23 at 01.45 #2
Mine on white paper
You can see in the top two pictures the trouble we ran into because we were using regular-sized construction paper. With most of the instruction we were able to correctly scale our drawings, but when it came time (At the end...) to draw the crosses, the method described didn't work well for our smaller-sized paper. See the smudges where we "kind of" erased the crosses and started over? Since I was playing with two drawings at the same time that Eldest was doing one (Different color paper backgrounds...I know... over-achiever....;)), I was able to catch that on the last picture, and there is not the same "Smudge" that marred the others.

The final analysis on drawing with chalk pastels is that it is hard, but fun! :) Excellent!

Photo on 2011-04-23 at 01.45
Mine on brown paper
Eldest mentions that using mom's OLD pastels wasn't very helpful when we were supposed to  be able to make thin sharp marks, and perhaps it would be worth it to use a new box!

I can't give a definitive opinion about the higher level DVDs, not having seen them, but based on the instruction in the first one, I am fairly confident that they will maintain the same standard. Here is a little "preview" snippet from Pat Knepley, that may give you a better understanding of the curriculum as a whole.

Now for a few more details:
  • Volume 1: The Basics (This is the one we received, which you can currently request from the Seethelight Website for free, OR you can watch the first three lessons online )
  • Volume 2: Shape and Space
  • Volume 3: Value and Color
  • Volume 4: Color Blending Techniques
  • Volume 5: Proportions for Composition
  • Volume 6: Texture and Form
  • Volume 7: Perspectives for the Landscape
  • Volume 8: Balance and Foreshortening
  • Volume 9: The Portrait
The Nitty Gritty~ 
9 Volumes  on DVD  $99.99 for the entire course ~ yours to keep and use throughout your homeschooling years
A Monthly subscription $10.00 that "unlocks" 4 new lessons, following the curriculum progression each month~ you have access to all lessons you've unlocked as long as your subscription is maintained
Age Range~ The site says "Kids of all ages"~ clearly, my 3 yo got something out of it, listening and watching and drawing along. Very good for a beginning artist of most any age, however, based on the teaching style, I would say that it is most appropriate for Elementary-aged students.

As always, I hope that this review has helped you determine where and how to best use your homeschool budget! To see what other TOS Crew members had to say, please visit the TOS Crew Blog, and scroll through the main post to get to the linky.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this/these item(s)/service for free as part of the TOS Crew Review Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

See the Light bundle winner~

Sorry that I didn't get this drawn last night, but here are the results from proving that being towards the end of the entries is just as good as being anywhere else, AND that truly is "random"
Congratulations, Penny! :)
I need your contact info to send on to the company~


Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Home-Ec 101(A how to manual with spunk)

In these days of life at the pace of a hummingbird, when mom no longer lives a few blocks away, and many people don't EVER talk over the fence with their neighbors(Disclaimer~ we LOVE our neighbors, and we even walk THROUGH the fence(there is a gate!) to visit with one family~ but generally, in the "Big cities" many people don't have any idea who walks down their sidewalk every day), where does one go for support or help when the new blouse your friend brought home from an Asian trip doesn't have readable tags?  You're sure that it's cotton, but how do you wash it?
How about old zippers that keep catching on your favorite zip sweater~ wonder if Mr. Rogers had any tricks up his sleeve? 

Mr. Rogers can't answer that question for us anymore, but for the past 4 years Heather Solos has been dishing out advice with cheeky flair on how to "Cook it, Wash it, Fix it, Clean it" on her blog~ Home-ec101 . She has now published many of her hints, tips and helps in the book you see pictured here.

I have been reading an electronic version of Home-Ec 101: Skills for Everyday Living, which was just released this month. (There is an ebook version available from Barnes And Noble, and a Kindle version at Amazon, as well as the more traditional paperback.

I am always looking for new ideas (Or old ideas conveyed in a "new" way) that might help me in my unending quest for even a slightly neater home. This book definitely has some gems that I will be trying out! 

The "Cheeky"comments that are interspersed are probably more often intended for an older audience than, say, my early teen. However, it does make reading about rather dull topics like laundry (Heather even addresses doing laundry at the laundromat!) a little more interesting to the mature reader. (If comments about hangovers offend you, and you can't just gloss over them, then this book probably won't be your cup of tea~ I have a pretty good "filter" in my head for things like that)

Common sense is handed out on just about every page, with very specific "How-to" instructions for things from how to properly hold a broom and sweep, to instructions for fixing a ragged button-hole. There are some very handy charts, including things like how long you can expect your major appliances to last (Uh-oh~ our washer is living an VERY borrowed time. Although I've often suspected as much, glancing at Heather's chart confirms it!)

I think that this would be a great gift for the young person just setting out on their own, or as part of a wedding shower gift~ sometimes common sense is hard to beat!

Looking forward to fixing, cleaning, washing, and cooking more efficiently and effectively. (Oh, yeah... there are a number of motivational jabs~ intended to rouse the slob disorganized from their stupor slumber... sometimes ya just need a good "kick in the pants" to get you moving in the right direction. :) 

I hope that this has been helpful~ now it's time to ponder which life skills need "brushing up"~
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this/these item(s)/service for free from the One2One Network. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

Monday, April 18, 2011

The Gift of Love/The Crossmaker (See the Light) DVD's

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I love it when something strikes a chord with my kids! I especially love it when what strikes a chord with them includes creating something beautiful for themselves or for others. Creating beauty makes this world a better place, don't you think?


I received 2 DVD's from Propeller and See the Light~ The "See the Light" Christmas Story and Easter Story DVD's and art lessons($14.99 each). I am graciously allowed to run a giveaway on my blog for this set, just in time for Easter! :) (It's going to be a quick one~ ending Tuesday, April 19th @ 11:59 pm)

Following are our thought on these two DVD's~ I have two very different impressions for separate parts of the DVD, so please don't stop reading with the first paragraph

THE EASTER STORY("The Crossmaker") and THE CHRISTMAS STORY ("See the Light"):
The stories are taken pretty much straight from the Bible. Having seen a chalk artist draw in real life, I have to admit that we were all a little disappointed in the presentation on the video. However, I would say that it was interesting if you have no comparison to seeing something similar done in person.  Given that there is much more than just the story presentation on these DVDs, that point didn't bother me too much.

"The Gift of Love" pans back and forth from pre-drawn chalk illustrations to video of chalk artist Gloria Kohlmann drawing a larger piece. Again~ if one hasn't seen a chalk artist working in person, one likely won't be disappointed~ but if one has, expectations may not be met with this bit.

"The Crossmaker" was a little "intense" for children, from my perspective. To give you an idea of where *I* am coming from, I am someone who has not seen, nor do  I plan to see "The Passion of the Christ" as THAT is too intense for ME... (No one wants me getting sick or having my blood pressure drop and fainting, which would be a likely scenario... I know myself too well). So, while I appreciate the adherance to scripture, the addition of audio/visual media to the story could be a little "much" for some folks. I am sure that there are also those that wouldn't be bothered more than they should be by the story of the Passion. Just wanted those who have the same tolerance level to be aware.

However, the "stories" only take up 10-15 minutes on each DVD. There are many other resources on the DVD's which make them attractive in our eyes.

THE BONUS FEATURES on each DVD include:
  • "Artful Worship": Gloria Kohlmann draws a large chalk picture scene with background worship music provided by "Breathing Room"
  • "The Plan of Salvation" with chalk drawn and water-color illustrations as children are walked through, well....  the plan of salvation, narrated by a number of children as well as a "Grandfatherly"narrator
  • "The Artist In Action" features commentary by the artist as she draws the main scene for each video.
To me, though, the "meat" of the DVD is in the ART LESSONS.
We previewed each one before we attempted them. Once we actually began, with most of the tools in hand (the See the Light program makes extensive use of "extreme" Crayola's ....), it was very helpful to have the remote handy to pause the DVD as everyone completed each section of the lesson.

I appreciate that Scripture is not only in the Christmas and Easter stories, but woven throughout each of the LESSONS as well.

The first lesson on both DVD's is an "Illumination" lesson (the words chosen were"Rejoice" for  "The Gift of Love" and "Glory" for "The Crossmaker"). My kids were fairly happy with how their first attempts turned out, but once I purchased the colored pencils that "pop", I made them try again. With a few grumbles and complaints they did as asked. Funny thing is... once they finished the lesson, they continued "illuminating"~ other words like Hosanna~ and I'll admit, I joined in with "Easter", and my son illuminated "Creation". He also illuminated his best friend's name, and brought it to his house right away. Did I mention I appreciate things that build enthusiasm for creating beauty? :)
Regular light
Creation Black Light
With Black Light(Using the Ilamp App on my itouch)

Chalk Art Lesson: "He Is Not Here" (I used this lesson as my "Easter Illumination" inspiration)
Watercolor Lesson:"Three Crosses on a Hill" Lesson

Colored Pencil Lesson: "Away in a Manger"
Chalk Art Lesson: "Portrait of Mary

All in all, if you have a budding artist, or wish to encourage creativity, these DVD's could be a good starting point. (note: keep an eye out for my TOS Review  for the "See the Light" Art Class DVD's later this week)

Now, on to the Giveaway~ GIVEAWAY now CLOSED
Because I hope that the winner can receive their DVD's before Easter, I am running this giveaway for only 2 days~ I will close entries at 11:59 pm, tomorrow night, Tuesday, April 19.

Entry methods~ Please leave only one comment for each method you use~ :)
  1. Follow me in GFC (Please comment if you already follow)
  2. "Like" See the Light's Facebook page
  3. "Like" my Acorns Facebook Page
  4. Leave a "Thoughtful" comment on any of my other posts, and come back here to tell me where you commented
  5. Write a Blog post about this Giveaway/review
  6. Post on Facebook about this giveaway/review
  7. Tweet this giveaway using hashtags #giveaway, #easter
  8. Editing to add one more ~ Leave a comment telling me how you heard about this giveaway(I'm interested in where my entries come from!) :)
Alrighty then, I think that should about do it! Looking forward to your comments and entries. :)

 “Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Friday, April 15, 2011

Five Minutes Friday~ Distance

Joining in on a "new to me" Meme~  5 minute Friday~ That's all.... just write for 5 minutes on a given theme (Gotta love "journal prompts" ;) ) (Disclaimer~ I spent about 10 minutes on my first "5 minutes Friday... oh well) :)
The theme this week is "On Distance", so here goes! :)

Distance~ I could go in so many directions on this~ Elementary things like "How far is it to the Moon from the Earth?" and more esoteric options like how far IS the East from the West? (Psalm 103:12)

However, today I think I will talk about "distance" as it pertains to my family. I am the youngest of 6 children~ we are 5th generation Montanans. However, at this point, no one but our parents live in Montana. We are separated by physical distance (from Hawaii to the East Coast, and points in-between), and sometimes, by virtue of that distance, possibly by emotional and/or spiritual distance as well.

I don't have "Daily contact" with anyone in my family beyond those that live with me. I think our "Small World" is too large in many ways. When we are physically distant from one another it is hard to take part in the day-to-day of life. This means that I often don't know when a family member is sick or feeling down.

HOWEVER, thanks to technology, that distance can be closed.

I am able to keep up with those in my family that use facebook on a daily or at least somewhat regular basis. That way I might have an idea if a niece or nephew is ill, or someone is struggling with something~ This gives me an opportunity to pray on their behalf.

Skype is very cool! We were able to have a REAL "Virtual" 80th birthday "party" for my father last weekend~ not everyone was able to make it, but we had enough to make it a special part of my dad's day, even if we weren't physically THERE.

In today's world~ "Distance" is something of a conondrum~ it is what you make it. You can be physically close and emotionally distant, or emotionally close and physically distant (Or any other of a myriad of combinations in-between)
I hope to be be "Distant" to the things that are not lovely and good and pure, and strive to be closer to those that matter~ God, family, and friends, no matter where they are found.


Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Rebecca St. James Giveaway~ WINNER!

Just wanted to let you all know that the winner for the Rebecca St. James CD has been chosen ~

Anonymous said... 5
Found out about this giveaway thru your link at MSM

I've sent an email, and hope to hear from her soon.

In the meantime, if you are interested in trying again, I have some other bloggy friends who are offering the same giveaway on their blogs~The dates listed are the dates their entries close~ check it out! :)


Monday, April 11, 2011

The Final Summit by Andy Andrews (Book Review)

Here is the latest offering by Andy Andrews~ a journey into the fantastic world of time-travel, with a twist. The Final Summit~ A gathering of "history-makers" from all time. Their quest~ to determine "The One Principle that will save humanity".

This book has the earmarks of so many things, wrapped into one package~ 
  • It could be a "Self-help" book written as prose,
  • An inspirational story with many nuggets of truth to lift one up and, well... INSPIRE them
  • A bit of a mystery~ and finally, one could possibly surmise,
  • A commentary on society
  • All of the above! 
Andy Andrews has once again written a thought-provoking novel, which had me thinking of people who would enjoy reading it. I  enjoyed reading "The Final Summit", and hope to go through it again more slowly, so that I can ponder some of those nuggets.   Reading this book also makes me want to read  his previous book "The Traveler's Gift", where David Ponder (The main character of "The Final Summit") is introduced.

A little constructive criticism~ I determined not to get caught up in a few of the details that were a little "odd" to me. I'm not convinced that angels have wings, or that everyone mentioned as a time-traveler (indicative of a saving knowledge of God) would have been in a position to have been present at that meeting~ except for the comment that "many last-minute decisions" may have been made. 

That being said, the inclusion of the "active characters" were all part of excellent and interesting story-telling, and the inclusion of others (only mentioned by name) were a reminder that I am not the judge of men's hearts.   

Finally, there was even a bit of history that I would say isn't "Common knowledge".  I won't spoil it for you~ check it out yourself! :) 

On my next reading through I may take advantage of the "reader's guide" at the back of the book which includes questions that could be great for journaling. The book also contains a link to a companion curriculum guide for teachers and book clubs. Nifty! :D 

The Final Summit can be purchased wherever Tommy Nelson books are sold (List price $19.99)


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this/these item(s)/service for free as part of the Booksneeze Review Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

Friday, April 8, 2011

Do you have a Boysterous Boy? (Review and Giveaway)

Well, I can answer that question with a resounding "Yes!"
Littlest is really getting in on the action now.  He is all boy and all boysterous! :D He is also all about role-playing with his big brother's Lego and Playmobil people, but quite honestly, they worry me a bit... he's still a  little "mouthy".  That's one reason we were excited to be chosen by MamaBuzz to review a product that is just right for him.

This fun package arrived from Manhattan Toy earlier this week~ the new Boysterous™Boys~ soft, pose-able action figures. They have magnetic feet and hands to help them "use" their accessories. I can think of all sorts of fun applications for that feature! :)  Boysterous™Boys are mostly intended for ages 3-8.... perfect! :D Here is what was in our box:

Shreddin' "Sean" the snowboarder (With metal snowboard) ($18.00)
Soccer Boy, Goalie "Gavin" with a soccer ball ($18.00)
and the fabulous "Extreme Sports Zone"($30.00)


When I was exploring Boysterous™  Boys before receiving my package, I didn't have a handle on their dimensions. What a nice surprise that they were about 2x the size I expected! (You can see their actual size in the bottom photos of this post, with Littlest, and you can check out this Manhattan Toy video)

While the Boysterous™  Boys are fun to play with on their own, the Extreme Sport Zone is a nifty accessory. It  can be unzipped and configured in a few ways~ as a playing field, a half-pipe, or a "hill", and when your little one is done playing, it can be zipped up and used to store the Boys and their Toys. (Big thumbs up from mom... I love toys that come with a ready-made "place".... so much easier to encourage putting them away.)  It even has a handle to make it a convenient "Traveling" toy. 
Here, you can see the playing field set up, with Sean joining Gavin on the field:

And close-ups of each of them

Here is one of Littlest's favorite set-ups~ the "Slope" for the snowboard. I am very impressed with how well the magnetic feet help "Sean" to remain standing on his board~ most excellent! He's ready to go shred the slopes!

I have to mention here that these action figures might be happy to play with just about anyone~ Eldest got in on the action with "Sean" and his snowboard. She brought out some old (still magnetic) Littlest Pet Shop animals~ they were happy to go for a ride with "Sean" on his board! :)

It's nice to have a boy to serve as audience or judge for the snowboard competitions!(See how supportive "Gavin" is as "Sean" gets ready to go)

My camera ran out of battery(need to get to the store!), or I would have taken more pictures, as Littlest also enjoys using the Sport's Park flipped inside out as a half-pipe ~ and Middlest joins in with his finger skateboards~ ;)
I think that these are very well made figures, ready for all sorts of action with those bendable, poseable bodies, and hands and feet that are able to actually "hold" their toys with magnetic force. All the while they are soft and "tote-able"~ perfect to become a "friend".  I also appreciate that they come in a variety of realistic skin tones~ No better way to stay "color-blind". :)

Littlest has already expressed a desire to have Half-pipe Pete and Slapshot Sam to add to his collection, in part because he looks up to the kids in the neighborhood who ride skateboards (including Middlest) and play hockey. That tells me that Boysterous™Boys "Connect" with him~ They are "Real" ~ I like that! We try to avoid the "Branded" super-hero and/or grotesque action figures that are so often found on many store shelves, so this is a nice alternative for our family.

Oh, and just for the record, the snowboarder has remained "Sean" in our home (due, perhaps to familiarity with Shawn White?), but "Gavin" has been renamed "Scotty"(?). However, throughout this blog post the names were NOT changed to protect the easily confused....(me?) ;)

Boysterous™ action figures are available now in a Specialty Store near you and online at

If you would like to have the opportunity to WIN a Boysterous™ Action Figure (Company's choice), please enter my give-away~ 
Entries will be open from April 8-25. Open to US residents(and potentially Canadians~ I will update when I have confirmation on this). Please make sure that I have a way to contact you~ Winner must reply to me with their shipping information by April 28.

Entry Methods:
  • Go visit Manhattan Toys and leave a comment telling me which Boysterous™Boy you like the best, and who you would give it to if you win.
For additional entries
  1. Follow me in GFC and leave a comment (indicate if you already follow)
  2. "Like" the Manhattan Toy Facebook Page   and leave a comment here (You can tell them I sent you)
  3. Follow Manhattan Toy on Twitter and leave a comment here
  4. Leave a comment telling me where you heard about this giveaway
  5. Post about my giveaway on facebook (leave me a link in the comments)
  6. Tweet about this giveaway(include Hashtags #manhattantoy and #giveaway), and leave a comment~
  7. Enter any of my other open giveaways (Will be changing throughout this timeframe, so check back!) and leave a comment here.
  8. Leave a "Thoughtful" comment on any of my other posts~ and then comment here~
Alrighty, then, I think that about wraps it up! I'm looking forward to announcing the winner, so please... go enter! :D  I think one of these Boysterous™ boys would make a very nice present for one of your favorite preschoolers. 

This is a MamaBuzz review. The product was provided by: Manhattan Toy for this review.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this/these item(s)/service for free. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Rebecca St. James CD "I Will Praise You" (Giveaway Closed)

Rebecca St. James 
My kids are big fans of Rebecca St. James. We have previously owned only one of her CD's, her sophomore release "Rebecca St. James" from 1994,  and it is a regularly played favorite in our home. My Eldest was particularly excited that we were to have the opportunity to review this newest album, released today, April 5 ~ "I Will Praise You".  This is Rebecca St. James' first studio release since 2005, and we are happy to hear her back in the music scene!(She's been busy acting and writing books)

Rebecca St. James

Keep reading for my review, and find out how you can enter to win a copy of the album for your very own! :)

Although we have only had the the album for a few days there are already songs that we are humming (Catchy hooks! Good songwriting!)  and planning to incorporate into our worship services. The entire album "Fixes our eyes on Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith" in an upbeat fashion.

There are songs that are "Driving" ~ They exude a sort of "overcoming" feel (Without *quite* becoming a wall of sound) that I have found to be very encouraging when dealing with various challenging situations. Very much a "pump you up" attitude, but not "Self-oriented" ~ the focus is very much on Faith in God and His help! (I Will Praise You, You Never Let Go)

Others exude an ethereal quality that points one to the Glory of Eternity (You Hold Me Now, In a Moment) and the Peace that Passes Understanding (You Make Everything Beautiful).

Many of the songs have scripture running through them (You Never Let Go, In A Moment, When the Stars Burn Down, You Still Amaze Me come specifically to mind), and there are nods to grand Christian standards (You Still Amaze Me, You Make Everything Beautiful). There are those that encapsulate the Good News of the Gospel (The Kindness of Our God, You Still Amaze Me). Others are straightforward Praise and Worship of God (Shine Your Glory Down, In a Moment, Almighty God, When the Stars Fall Down {Blessing and Honor}).

Rebecca St. James' music "Breathes" with dynamics, and transports one to a place of beauty and worship of the  Only One Almighty God.

  1. You can listen to Rebecca St. James explain some things about  the song "Shine Your Glory Down" below. This strikes a strong chord in me as we have chosen the name "City on a Hill Academy" for our homeschool. She manifests OUR desire to be lights in this world~ what a great role model for our daughters (And sons, too! ;) )

If you would like a taste of what "I Will Praise You" has to offer, you can hear the first three tracks of the album  at Rebecca's "Listening Party".

Giveaway now Closed~ Thank you for looking!~
You can visit these blogs to enter to win through April 20
Guiding Light Homeschool 
Our Village is a Little Different  

Canadian Ladybug Reviews

If you don't want to wait to see if you won, you can purchase the entire album (Downloads) on iTunes right now, for only $7.99~  or your own CD from Amazon I Will Praise You . Then you can give away the copy you win to someone who could use a little "light" and "glory" to shine in their lives!  (Just a thought... ;D) (This would also be a nice item to tuck into an Easter basket! :D )


 “Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”



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