12/15/16

Book Review: Raising a Young Modern-Day Princess by Doreen Hanna & Karen Whiting


Raising a Young Modern-Day Princess
Growing the Fruit of the Spirit in Your Little Girl
By Doreen Hanna & Karen Whitling
ISBN: 978-1-58997-866-9
Religion/Christian Life/Family
Retails for $14.99

ABOUT:
This book is a resource book for parents on how to raise daughters according to biblical principles. 

IMPRESSION:

First impression, looking at the cover of this book I thought to myself, "What an adorable photo!" This could be any little girl on the cover. Could be one of my own. Or even yours. As parents we all initially see our little girls as princesses-- pink, dainty and frilly. At least before they're born that's what you imagine right away. You have all of these sincere hopes and dreams for their lives planned out. Sometimes life throws you some curve balls and your children surprise you along the way. Sometimes they turn out differently than you imagined! 

 In my home, I have 3 daughters and only one of them sees herself as an actual "princess". 
My youngest daughter lives in princess dresses and likes to feel pretty 24/7, while my middle child is the exact opposite and is a tomboy in every sense. My oldest is special needs so she doesn't particularly have a preference to how she is perceived by others, although to me as her mother, I've always seen her as a sweet little princess too.   Regardless of my daughter's outward appearances, all of them are true princesses of the King, meaning the Lord.  I know this because I see the pure and honest good in their hearts and the way I parent them with excessive nurturing is shaping them to be amazing people.  (Mom brag!) 

Anyways, this darling book is a one that encourages parents to pass on the value and true meaning of being a PRINCESS (aka Child of God) who the author describes as being:

Prayerful
Respectful
Inspired
Noble
Compassionate
Encourager
Self-controlled
Servant


From the beginning of your time together, we are teaching our children to abide by certain mannerisms, behaviors, and how to eventually become adults who make good choices. 

This book covers conversation topics that will help guide you, no matter where you on in your journey. A beautiful thing about this particular book is that I can open it at any time and find something useful in it. The reminders inside often speak directly to me and leave me feeling truly inspired. 







I recommend this book to all parents of little princesses. If the activities inside don't get you excited, then perhaps the Fruit of the Spirit verses will, because they're so uplifting and encouraging. You can always reference back to fun activities and toolboxes, and so can Dad! 


For more information on Raising a Young Modern-Day Princess By Doreen Hanna & Karen Whitling, please visit: 
https://www.amazon.com/Raising-Young-Modern-Day-Princess-Growing/dp/1589978668







*FTC DISCLAIMER: This book was provided to me through Tyndale House in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own.*


Book Review: Doodletopia Fairies By Christopher Hart

Doodletopia Fairies
Draw, Design, and Color Your Own Super-Magical and Beautiful Fairies
By: Christopher Hart
ISBN: 978-1607746959



ABOUT:

Learn to draw, design and color your own super-magical and beautiful fairies! 

IMPRESSION:

If you're at all interested in drawing cartoon figures but struggle with how to bring them to life, then Doodletopia Fairies is a book for you!  The author Christopher Hart shows you step-by-step with many tutorials and easy to follow instructions/directions on how you can achieve your own beautiful drawing. He shows you how to put personality into your work to essentially bring your art to life. I feel like this book is definitely for beginners and those with advanced experience in art might think this book is cheesey, but they would still probably agree that it's instructions were simple and great for learners of all ages.  I like that you can draw directly into the book and color inside of your own drawings or on the illustrations already made for you.  This book will entertain for hours!  



This book is also workbook style, but large and sturdy. The pages feel very high quality. 

Overall, I recommend this book.

 I plan on gifting it to my niece for Christmas and I know she'll love it! 


For more information about Doodletopia Fairies, please visit:









*FTC DISCLAIMER: Doodletopia Fairies was provided to me complimentary in exchange for my honest review through the BloggingForBooks program. All opinions are my own.*

Book Review: Devotions for Christmas Published by Zondervan

Devotions for Christmas
A Celebration to Bring You Joy and Peace

Published by Zondervan
ISBN: 978-0310356080 
Christian Books/Bibles/Spirituality/Devotionals/Christian Living


ABOUT:
A December 1st-31st daily devotional book. 

IMPRESSION: 

What a cute book! Upon opening the first cover, I could tell immediately that I'd  love this book and so would anybody else it was gifted to. It's a such a cheerful book! 
December is such a busy month for most of us that we often forget to take time to just sit and count our blessings. This daily devotional helps you do just that. It's perfect for reading right before you get out or get into bed each day. 

If you're looking for a devotional book to leave on your night stand, or carry around in your purse or bag, then this is perfect because of it's size. It's not too big, it's not too small. It's just right. It's also got a hard cover which makes the book feel really sturdy and solid.  The cover design is beautiful with it's golden snowflakes. The inside pages are really beautiful with gorgeous fonts and illustrations throughout. The daily devotions are all centered around the spirit of Christmas and allows you to read a small entry for each day and reflect.  You will not regret getting this book. 

Need a Christmas gift idea? 
Devotions for Christmas is definitely a must have!
You can check it out here: 
Retails for $9.99


If you get this book, let me know what you think of it! 




*FTC DISCLAIMER: This book was sent to me complimentary from the publisher Zondervan through BookLookBloggers in exchange for my unbiased and honest review. * 

11/2/16

J. Warner Wallace and Susie Wallace’s ‘Cold-Case Christianity for Kids’ Blog Tour and Giveaway


Wallace1


  Cold-Case Christianity For Kids
Investigate Jesus with A Real Detective
By: J. Warner Wallace, Susie Wallace & Rob Suggs
ISBN#:978-0-7814-1457-9
Juvenile Nonfiction/Religious/Christian
Retails for $9.99



ABOUT:

Around ages 8-12, children typically start questioning the authenticity of things on their own, especially those who are determined truth seekers. A real life cold-case homicide detective wants to help you and your children to investigate the claims of Christianity with a few investigative steps so we are more convinced.




IMPRESSION:


 Honestly I wasn't sure what to expect initially. The words "Cold-Case" in the book title almost makes  you feel slightly overwhelmed. Thankfully, I was pleasantly surprised once I opened to the first few pages.  First of all the style of writing is really comfortable (easy) to read and follow.  It flows. I even read it outloud because I liked the uniqueness of the book. 

Immediately you're placed into the story as a kid who is about to become a student police cadet alongside your two friends at the local police department for their new detective training academy.  Through your participation, you learn some valuable things that will help you become your own detective. 

The very first thing you learn in the academy is that to solve cases, you need to use your brain. 
In chapter 1 you learn about presupposition and how you cannot solve cases with your mind already made up. We have to remind our children to always be open minded. Through taking observations, making lists of evidence and explanations, we can start to see our children determine for themselves what is true and what is not. 

What I really liked was the fact that there are illustrations, and prompts on every single page that definitely helps to keep the reader and listener engaged. I never once felt bored when reading from this particular book and neither did my children when I read it to them. There was always a question or CSI Assignment that needed to be answered through paying attention and research. Homework if you will. Great way to get those Bibles out and research verses and asking related questions.  


Overall, what a great interactive guide for children and families. It makes researching truths a lot more fun! What I am taking from the investigating was that you have to teach a child to find their own truth in their beliefs, so they can teach others to believe in them too.  That I can do. 
I highly recommend. 






Parents, this is real! The time is now! Encourage your children to get involved! 
Be sure to check out ColdCaseChristianityforKids.com to uncover more activities and download your very own certificate of merit!








GIVEAWAY DETAILS: 


cold-case-christianity-400 

One grand prize winner will receive:
Enter today by clicking the icon below, but hurry! The giveaway ends on November 4. The winner will be announced November 7 on the Litfuse blog.

cold-case-christianity-enterbanner








*FTC Disclaimer: This book was provided to me complimentary from Litfuse Publicity Group in exchange for my participation in a blog tour. My opinions are non-biased and are my own.*

10/26/16

Book Review: One Small Donkey By Dandi Daley Mackall


One Small Donkey
By Dandi Daley Mackall
Illustrated by Marta Alvarez Miguens
ISBN: 978-0-7180-8247-5
Holidays & Celebrations
Retails for $8.99


ABOUT:

God has plans for all of us, even the little ones. 

IMPRESSION: 

As an adult, I found this particular book to be a fantastic and heartwarming children's book. The story is a rhyming short story that follows a little donkey on his journey to deliver Mary & Joseph to Bethlehem so Mary could give birth to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  What is important to note is that this story is told from the point of view of a donkey, who sees himself as small and slow. This donkey doesn't realize that his role in this story is great big although it seems small.  

I read this story to my daughters and they didn't quite follow or understand the flow of the writing style without me personally going further and explaining/reminding them what happened in the Bible through the story of how baby Jesus was born.  Only then did they truly understand the relevance of the smallest donkey, and how they too are significantly important. God has plans for everybody, even if they aren't very obvious or understood.   The overall lesson of this story was great and eventually understood by all. 

The illustrations were really cute and I hope to see more books featuring work from this illustrator in the future.  The art work on the covers and on every page were very consistent. 


This book would make a great stocking stuffer gift for little ones for Christmas or for families to read together around Christmas time.  This story is appropriate for children ages 4-8 but I think older children may enjoy it also. 


For more information on this book, please visit 

To purchase this book on Amazon:



*FTC DISCLAIMER: This book was provided to me complimentary, in exchange for my honest review. All opinions on this blog are my own and unbiased.* 



10/18/16

Book Review: Photographs from the Edge by Art Wolfe with Rob Sheppard

Photographs from the Edge
by Art Wolfe 
with Rob Sheppard

ISBN 978-1-60774-781-9
Retails for $32.00
Photography-Techniques


ABOUT:

A MASTER PHOTOGRAPHER'S INSIGHTS ON CAPTURING 
AN EXTRAORDINARY WORLD

"Legendary nature photographer Art Wolfe presents and intimate behind-the-scenes, chronological guide to the experiences, decisions, and methods that helped him capture images from some of the most exciting locations across the globe." 


IMPRESSION:

What a gorgeous book! 
This book is a first edition and contains 280 pages filled with some of the most stunning nature and travel photography you could ever imagine by the famed photographer Art Wolfe. There are photographs of many different indigenous cultures and wildlife on its pages. Right away you learn about Art and what equipment he prefers to shoot with and how his style has evolved over the years to help him find his niche. He's been a photographer for over 40 years and lets his photos tell stories. You will read some of his stories in this book. 

I really liked the format in which his work was presented. The photographer is very elaborate with keeping track of details. You will see a photo and he tells you when and where he took the photograph and the camera, the lense and the manual camera settings he used to achieve said photo.  He also does a bit of journalism by telling the story of each photograph, which I found to be unnecessary because the photos often speak for themselves, but I do like his style of work. 
Art Wofe is so talented and this book doesn't just exist to show off his work. He gives extremely useful, and  professional photo tips throughout the book too, such as making sure to use a wider aperture when you find yourself in low light situations, or using color as a form of unifying your viewer with your subject. 

 Overall, you will find that this book is very heavy and big, but despite it's size, is absolutely awesome.  It's perfect for a coffee tabletop book. You'll want to have others see it. If you know somebody who appreciates photography, this book would make a great gift for them. 

I give this book 5 stars. 







 

*FTC DISCLAIMER: This book was provided to me complimentary through Blogging for Books in exchange I am sharing my honest and unbiased opinion. 

9/13/16

Book Review: Precious Moments Happy Harvest by Jean Fischer


Precious Moments Happy Harvest
By Jean Fischer
ISBN: 978-0-7180-3241-8
Holidays & Celebrations/Christian/Juvenile Fiction
Retails for $9.99



ABOUT:

Joyful rhyming book full of poems and sweet prayers about God's autumn delights. 

IMPRESSION:


I will probably always be partial to Precious Moments books and bibles because when I was a child I got to meet Sam Butcher who created Precious Moments, during a visit to the Precious Moments Chapel in Carthage, MO. His artwork has touched my life so much.  
This book and anything Precious Moments is an extension of that! 

What a cute little book! This is a very short, but very sweet rhyming book for young children. It is beautifully illustrated as well and each poem has an illustration to match it.  The entire theme was Autumn and the book was very consistent throughout.  Every other page had a biblical verse included at the bottom that flowed with each poem as well. Very well thought out little book. I think this would be an easy book for young readers and definitely a great reference book. 

The book has 32 pages and it's definitely meant for ages 3+.  It's a board style book too so the cover and pages are very thick and smooth. 

 I loved this book and cannot wait to gift it to my children at Thanksgiving. 
This book would make a great gift for anybody who is also a fan of Precious Moments collections. 
A must have, for sure.  








*FTC Disclaimer: This book was provided to me from Book Look Bloggers in exchange for my review.* 


9/2/16

PRODUCT REVIEW: New York Biology 100% Pure & Natural Lavender Essential Oil




PRODUCT:

New York Biology
100% Pure & Natural
Lavender (Kashmir) Essential Oil
1fl oz (30 ml)




About the Product
  • 100% PURE, NATURAL, & AUTHENTIC Kashmir Lavender Essential Oil steam distilled without any fillers or additives.
  • OUR KASHMIR LAVENDER OIL contains Linalool 31%, Linalyl Acetate 34%. We proudly showcase the constituents & purity of our oil on the front of the bottle.
  • OUR KASHMIR LAVENDER OIL contains Linalool 31%, Linalyl Acetate 34%. We proudly showcase the constituents & purity of our oil on the front of the bottle.
  • HIGHEST QUALITY GRADE & PREMIUM QUALITY originating from India and Bottled in the USA
  • LAVENDER ESSENTIAL OIL is frequently used in various forms including aromatherapy oil, gels, infusion, lotion, and soaps. It induces calmness and relaxation. This makes it the most popular essential oil on the market.


IMPRESSION:

I wasn't exactly sure what to do with this Lavender (Kashmir) Essential Oil but I decided to make an educated guess and put it into my oil diffuser and then into my wax melter with some unscented wax, and I was right!  It works amazing at creating a peaceful and calming atmosphere in my home. 

 I have a 3 daughters and using this oil in their room seems to provide some therapeutic qualities for them. It seems to help them to all fall asleep faster and their quality of sleep has dramatically improved. The overall stress levels seem to be down too!  Especially when we're homeschooling! We like to have it in the air! 



I also put a drop of this oil on a few stuffed animals and on the inside of pillow cases.  
It has a great fragrance, although I will admit that it is pretty strong.  Sometimes with essential oils the fragrances are so strong that I immediately get a headache but not with this one. In fact, having this oil around has made my normal everyday headaches occur less often!  
The fragrance is long lasting too, which means it does not dissipate quickly. One drop seems to stay in the air for several hours. When I use several drops, it lasts all day and all night.  
Definitely a useful product. My family likes it. That's what matters the most!
Will continue using for aroma therapy.

For more information on this product:

#NewYorkBiology
#LavenderOil
#EssentialOil
#TopQuality




*FTC DISCLAIMER: This product was provided to me complimentary in exchange for my honest feedback after testing.*


8/23/16

Product Review: Swissvita Micrite 3D All Use Eye Serum



PRODUCT:
Swissvita Micrite 3D All Use Eye Cream
0.5 oz/15g 










About the Product
  • A YOUNGER-LOOKING YOU: Swissvita Micrite 3D All Use Eye Cream For Wrinkles contains ingredients that are backed by many scientific studies. This eye lift eye cream / serum contains the phytonutrient AC-11®, which is derived from a natural herb from the Amazon rainforest. This safe, all-natural and water-soluble ingredient has been discovered to aid the body's natural skin tissue repair and slow down the process of skin aging.
  • SAY GOODBYE TO DARK CIRCLES: Periorbital dark circles are common to people who lack sleep or are tired. Age and genetics also cause these unsightly shadows under your eyes. No matter, our uniquely formulated product is known to visibly reduce the appearance of dark circles. It brightens and targets signs of fatigue around eyes and diminishes puffiness.
  • ERASE EYE WRINKLES: Improve skin firmness and elasticity with our high performance eye cream / serum. Contains multiple active ingredients that nourish and heal discolored skin, fine lines and wrinkles. This natural skin tightener enhances your skin's biochemical properties, giving you an eye-lifting, youthful effect that makes your skin look younger and healthier.
  • SAFE TO USE: For your safety in mind, this product adheres to the strictest standards of consumer regulations. This 3D all-use eye cream for wrinkles / serum with AC-11® was delicately made with your utmost safety in mind as it is additive-free, alcohol-free, sulfate-free, fragrance-free and paraben-free. We took out the dangerous chemicals found in many other eye cream products, so you can confidently apply it to your skin.
  • INTELLIGENT PACKAGING: This product comes in an aluminum sealed package for your protection. Plastic containers are not used to ensure the quality of the product, prevent the risk of product contamination and to maintain the effectiveness of the active ingredients. The container is also tested to withstand high temperature. Easy to use. Just open the cap, squeeze a sufficient amount on your fingers and apply generously on desired areas.

IMPRESSION: 

For starters, I am used to trying varying brands and types of eye creams and anti-aging skin care products. This one was different from most because I am used to eye "gels" that come in a pump. 
This eye cream comes in a white squeezable tube. The eye cream comes out of the tube as more of a gel like serum than a cream. It's very thin but not at all watery. There is no creamy texture to it at all. It's totally gel-like.  The product comes out in a transparent golden color and has no fragrance at all.
My goal with this product was to brighten my under eyes where I am starting to see signs of aging in the outside corners of my eyes.   

I found that this Swissvita Eye Cream was really easy to use.  It was
not at all sticky, and it takes a few minutes to dry onto the skin. Does not absorb quickly at all. 

 After a week of use, I did not notice any significant change in my under eye circles. My eyes look pretty much the exact same throughout the entire time I tested this.  Perhaps with prolonged use I could see some results.  It feels good on the skin, and makes my skin shiney after each use, but that is all I can really say about the product.  I'd rate this product with a 3/5. It isn't terrible, but definitely not something I'd purchase on my own or use again in the future unless I had significant results!






As you can see, this is the actual size of the tube.  There is enough product for at least a month of daily use I would say. 





This is my bare eye area prior to testing the product out. 
(Apologies for the cell phone image whereas the rest are with my camera.)



This is what the serum looks like when apply it.  I chose to use 3 drops under each eye the first few uses, but later found that 2 was plenty.  I ended up using the excess all over my entire face. 



Hi. This is me with product in hand during one of my uses! 



This is my bare skin post 1 week of use. No significant or visible changes. 


Anyways if you're interested in trying this product out for yourself to see if you'd have amazing results, then check them out! 





*FTC Disclaimer: This product was sent to me complimentary in exchange for my review for testing purposes.* 

8/17/16

Product Review: Valentia Fresh Mist Calming Toner


PRODUCT:

Valentia Fresh Mist Calming Toner
Retails for $20.00
4.0 fl oz/ 120 ml

 Product Description:
This skin calming toner is the essential step after cleansing and before moisturizing in order to clean pores, balance facial pH, and rid skin of any remaining dirt or makeup. Nano Structured Water enriched with Magnesium, and Vitamin C in this toner dissolves away facial impurities and refreshes stressed out feeling skin. Witch Hazel and Tea Tree Oil keep skin clear of unsightly blemishes to minimize pores, for an all over clear complexion. This toning elixir is the perfect addition to freshen up any skin care routine.



IMPRESSION:

Who loves toners?  I love toners! I've been using a toner since I was a teenager (about 14 or 15) and discovered my mother's Sea Breeze toner and astringents in our bathroom and I'd sneak use of them. It's always helped calm my acne prone skin.  Anyways that was years ago.  Fast forward to now. I'm 28 and I still have acne, large pores and oily and hyperactive and sometimes sensitive skin! I also get embarrassed easy in social situations and the anxiety and stress cause me to have really red skin, which in turn breaks me out!  Booo! To combat this, I have to use a number of skincare products. Exfoliators, serums, toners, plumpers, moisturizers, face masks, sunscreens, and not to mention now that I'm getting older, I've been using a lot of anti-aging skin care products. It's amazing how many different types of products are out there just to better our skin!  But I like to products that are one step and easy to use.  Like this one! 

It's no secret that I've used Valentia products in the past and have sung praise to their product line, but sadly this latest product I got to test, the Fresh Mist Calming Toner honestly wasn't my favorite in their lineup.  Womp-Womp! 


I really want to give it a 5 stars, but I believe that would be disingenuous, so I'm going to be really honest here. I really liked the mist. The actual product itself really does have an actual calming effect on my often and easily irritated skin. I know that alone should mean it's the best product ever, butttttttt that's not enough for me!!  

Pros:

-Packaging was nice, and bottle came with a nice pump that doesn't clog or spray too much at once, which is really nice and much appreciated!
-It feels refreshing each time it is used on my face, and I feel like it takes the crazy shine away. 
-It makes my pores appear smaller. 
(Can I get a Hallelujah?) 
-It makes my skin feel tighter for some reason!
(Magic water in a bottle?!)
-Convenient and easy to use! 
-Can toss in your purse to use whenever!
-Mess-Free


-And the obvious pros:Vegan, Animal Cruelty Free, Made in the USA with Organic Ingredients using Sustainable Energy!  



All of those things are sure to win any consumer over however, I have to say.. I just simply cannot tolerate the fragrance. My nose isn't overly sensitive typically but this spray didn't smell very good to me. It wasn't pungent, just had a strong medicinal and alcohol fragrance that was very offensive to my nose!  A lot of Valentia's other products for some reason smelly highly of orange fragrance and I've always appreciated that quality. Perhaps I was let down by that expectation? Tea tree oil plus witch hazel definitely has to be what is responsible for the fragrance in this product though.  Blehh! 


Luckily the product absorbs into the skin fairly quick so the smell doesn't last too terribly long.  

Also, I had to use at least 2-3 sprays for my whole face/neck/decolette each time I used it, and it didn't make a dent in the amount of product in the bottle, so a little goes a long way! 

I would still recommend to others, because the fragrance was my only true dislike! And I cannot guarantee others will feel the same way. Some may love the fragrance and think I am crazy for not, but that's a matter of opinion!  Unfortunately, I refuse to rate something with 5 stars if something turns me off no matter what.  I rate this product 3/5 stars. 



Please do not let my review keep you from checking out this product and other great Valentia products!! 

For more information please visit:







*FTC Disclaimer: This product was sent to me complimentary in exchange for my honest and unbiased opinion.*