Archives For Children

#Birthday, #Party, #Book

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I have been on a party planning kick. With both my girls old enough to be a big help, I am enjoying throwing a party here and there! Still, I am apprehensive about party planning. I did not get that gene. I like to write, but three dimensional creations worry me. (And that’s putting it nicely).

So, I need all the help I can get to create a special yet not super pricey bash here and there. Enter, “Birthday in a Book: The Complete Party Planning Guide and Toolkit,” by Angie Morrissey.

Angie is one of those amazingly crafty, creative genius people, and through her book series, she is sharing her secrets as she walks the reader through the entire party planning process!

Princess Tea Party

I got to review her ebooks on the Princess Tea Party and Mad Scientist Party this Summer.

Mad Scientist Party

I was thrilled to see these because my niece is almost to the tea party age and my nephew is a mad scientist and should be very impressed with his Aunt Heathers ideas for his next party.

Angie says that “Each book has everything you need to create a themed, on budget, kids birthday party. You can pick and choose which parts of the party theme you want to do based on your time and resources.” And I agree from what I see.

Features of the book series include:

  • PRINTABLES included for invitations, party décor, costumes and more!
  • DIY step-by-step instructions for crafts so you can recreate the party or use the ideas for other celebrations or events. (I just used a few of her Princess Tea Party recipes and ideas during another party I had for my daughter.)
  • Tips and tricks and detailed illustrations that take the guesswork out of party planning.
  • Budget friendly style and philosophy.
  • Buy It directory so that the parties can easily be recreated.

There are 7 chapters in the Princess Tea Party Book, with around 62 pages of detailed directions. Truly detailed! Look at some of the beautiful things you can make:

Princess Tea Party

You’ll see ideas for everything from invitations to party games, from table décor to full menus with recipes.

I especially like the tablescapes, costumes, printables and full recipes. And, if you do not want to make something, she offers online links and suggestions on where to buy that item. Another unique part of her book is her “little Helper” sections, where Angie mentions ways the kids can help with their party, making it so much more meaningful to them!

The Mad Scientist Party is hilarious!

Mad Scientist Party


This book follows a similar format and has tons of fun experiments, like Egg in a Bottle, Slime, and Erupting Volcano the kids can do while dressed up in their lab coats. Need security badges? Angie’s got them. Cool.

There are more themes coming up! I’m waiting with excitement to see her Owl Sleepover Party (we are SO doing that).

  • Mad Scientist and Princess Tea Party – Available Everywhere eBooks Are Sold
  • Superhero and Owl Sleepover – August 2013
  • Over the Rainbow and Dinosaur Dig – September 2013
  • Camping and Under the Sea – October 2013

* Paperback books of the entire series will be available at all major bookstores and are scheduled for release in spring 2014.

Go check it out on Facebook and Twitter, and visit the Birthday in a Book website!
This was really fun and I bet you’ll enjoy taking a look. Plus, Angie even shares party photos, printables and sometimes giveaways on her site.


Christian Children's books, Faith, Children's Books

Well written Children’s Books

I just got an email about this and wanted to share~ we have some of these and they are very well written and discuss issues important to children with a Christian perspective. Things like, why does Dad not have a job to why should people have faith. Here are some:

Select Seasons of Faith picture books are just $5 each. That’s 50% off! Choose from the following titles for your little valentine:

  • The King’s Daughter
  • The Red Boat
  • The Prize Cake
  • Saying Farewell
  • Race with Midnight
  • Braving the Storm
  • Seventy Times Seven
  • You Can’t Come In

Sale ends February 14, 2013! Online:

Just a solid series of books. The illustrators vary, but they are usually cute. This would be a real heart gift! 

You may also want to look into their devotional magazine for kids, called Keys for Kids.

My daughter loves these. They do ask for a donation, but they also offer a free subscription (one per family).

*I am actually not an affiliate, I just like these:)

CBH Ministries

CBH Ministries

Kick off your holiday shopping at! The holiday gift guide features top selling craft kits.
For a limited time, get 20% off these kits and more.
I reviewed some of these products and I think they are very nice quality! Plus, everything a child needs to complete the craft is included, so if you are gifting this, you don’t have to worry about a child needing glue or other little items to finish their project.  Here is my review:
Simply use the promo code CYBER20 during checkout and receive 20 % off all Creativity for Kids’ products. 
Shop Now! This offer expires at midnight on November 26th, 2012.
*I am not receiving anything for posting this, I just love the product.
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Children and Love Languages

Heather —  March 27, 2012

Have you heard of love languages?

This basic idea is that people give and receive love and affection in various ways.  Sometimes, if the love language being used by one person is not understood or appreciated by the other, there is a lack of communication. The original Five Love Languages book helped couples learn to love each other even better.

Two new resources, The 5 Love Languages for Children and A Perfect Pet for Peyton, have just been released. One helps parents understand the love languages of their children and the second allows children to explore these concepts about love languages.

I got a copy of both of these books to review. I am reading through the adult one and meanwhile, my daughter and I have been having fun with the children’s book.

I actually find it easier to understand and remember the love languages using a kid’s book! The book’s concept is unique for kids and features a birthday adventure, almost a quest where kids learn about the five love languages.

Young readers can even take a quiz at the end to help determine their own love language. I like the colorful, fun illustrations and I appreciate that the book is a nice length at 64 pages and has a sturdy hardcover. This is a book children will want to read and reread again and again.

Buy or find out more, A Perfect Pet for Peyton:

Win a Copy!
Continue Reading…

In Read For The Heart, Whole Books For Wholehearted Families, Sarah Clarkson follows the delightful path her parents traveled as they shared their knowledge with books such as Educating the WholeHearted Child.

I still remember how my attitude towards how to teach my child changed after reading Educating the Wholehearted Child. (If you haven’t read that one, be sure to look for that—a new edition is due out soon)

Because I had enjoyed that book so much, I was very interested to get a look at this new book by their daughter, a homeschool graduate and lover of literature.

The book is above all a reference book, with a marvelous compilation of reading list recommendations. Clarkson includes reviews of hundreds of whole and living books for children 4-14. The books are categorized by age group and topics, such as:

  • Picture Books
  • The Golden Age Classics
  • Children’s Fiction
  • Fairy Tales and Fantasy
  • History and Biography
  • Spiritual Reading for Children
  • Poetry
  • Music, Art and Nature

However, the book is also much more than a reference book, as the author spends time exploring the reasons for and benefits of instilling a love of reading in your home, your homeschool.

Her enthusiasm is wonderful and I recognized so many books in her listings from my childhood. Many I had also shared with my children, but some I had forgotten, so I am so pleased to have these lists! The concept is simple, but having these listings actually makes my life easier and I love it.

Whether you have voracious or reluctant readers, this book can be an invaluable tool for your homeschool planning. You can find tips on how to engage the reluctant readers, and find new ideas for great books for book lovers. I can’t recommend it enough. You can see a sample chapter on the Apologia website, as well as the Table of Contents.

The book retails for $17 and can be purchased here.

See what my crewmates have to say about Apologia, Read From The Heart

I received Read For The Heart through the TOS Crew for review purposes. I have given my honest opinion.

circle c

Circle C Beginnings!

We adore the Circle C Beginnings Books around here! My youngest carries them around and has done many of the learning activities they have available to download on their website (for free:)

I recommend these for your young readers. Children have the excitement of having their own chapter books, but these books are not too long for little ones. Circle C Beginnings also introduces lots of adventures and new concepts and ideas about American History in a fun, family oriented way.

My child really identifies with Andi as a young girl in a large family-although there are plenty of boy characters as well–one of Andi’s best friends is a boy and she has lots of brothers, so, boys should enjoy these as well.

One of my favorite parts of the series has to be the illustrations! Gorgeous, pen and ink illustrations with lots of tiny details to engage the reader. You can see these and download coloring pages on the Andi and Taffy website.

A few other points: the books are paperback and quite inexpensive. You can totally use these as read-alouds with your children–you will not be bored–the storylines are great!

I have more to say about these, but I saw this morning in an email that Books 3 & 4 are now available, so I am copying that email asap below and hope you will check these out and enjoy with your kids!

“Books 3 and 4 of the Circle C Beginnings are now available!

Just in time for spring, Andi’s Fair Surprise and Andi’s Scary School Days are here. Get your own copies of the two newest books here:

* Best deal for the books! FREE coloring pages and learning activites for the Circle C Beginnings are available for download on the Andi and Taffy website: and from the Kregel website.

In addition, A Journey Through Learning has created lapbooks for each book. They’re full-color, with complete instructions for assembly. Tie in history and literature to make the books part of a unit study, if desired.

See sample lapbooks HERE
Follow the Circle C Adventures on Facebook

image773Do your kids long for stories full of excitement and intrigue? Do you? How about some well written tales of knights and quests, overflowing with the drama of the ultimate battle between good and evil?

I have totally found some great ones! My son and I recently reviewed books 5 and 6 from the Knights of Arrethtrae Series and we were really impressed. We both liked the cover art on the books, and after reading the back panels, I was in a hurry to read the stories.

The tales are written as an allegory–there is no confusion about the fact that the author, Chuck Black is a Christian and is writing these stories as his way to teach his own children (he has 6!) and to proclaim the good news of Jesus Christ.

In fact, Black says that he wrote his first book “to inspire his own children to read the Bible with renewed zeal”. I can see the Biblical influences in his works, but he also definitely has created fresh and new stories, complete with complex characters and settings. Themes of morality and virtue, ideas of loyalty and truth form the framework for the exciting plots.

Also, Black is a former f16 pilot and engineer. While I was reading, I appreciated that the battle scenes were very specific–they were described so meticulously and they seemed so logical…so tactical, real. And throughout the different quests the knights faced, these periods made sense to me, ie, they took a reasonable amount of time and effort to complete and while reading, you almost felt like you were going through the process as well. I’m thinking that Black is drawing upon his own life experiences for all this…and it really works!

Now, my readers know I am pretty cheap frugal, and I review often so I save money on things I like. Only occasionally will I run out and buy books and such…but we are getting these books! I plan to get some for Christmas. I actually am going to ask the author to recommend one for a friend of my son who is just entering the Navy as a pilot:) He may be 23, but I think he will enjoy this. They are that good.

Sir Quinlan and the Swords of Valor

Chuck Black

Two friends face the Dark Knight’s deadliest scheme, but only one knight has the courage to overcome.
Sir Quinlan leaves his boyhood friend to serve the Prince, fighting a battle darker and more intense than any he’s ever known. The mysterious Sir Baylor recruits him into the ranks of an elite unit of knights known as the Swords of Valor, but when tragedy strikes and everyone blames Quinlan, the Swords of Valor disband, ending a legacy of heroic deeds.
Can Quinlan reunite the Valor Knights in time to save the people from the Dark Knight’s evil plot to rule the Kingdom of Arrethtrae, or will the Valor Knights lose the most important battle of all?

See a sample of the book

Sir Rowan and the Camerian Conquest

Chuck BlackA knight left for dead. A country on the verge of ruin. And an evil lord rising to conquer.

The Dark Knight is rising to power, but Cameria and its greatest knight stand in the way. Unleashing a deadly plot from within to conquer Sir Rowan and his beloved Cameria, the evil dark lord is now free to conquer the rest of the kingdom. Rowan must realize his true identity and purpose as a Knight of the Prince, or risk losing his country – and himself – forever.

See a sample of the book

About the series and author:

Chuck Black first wrote Kingdom’s Edge to inspire his children to read the Bible with renewed zeal. This captivating expanded parable led him to write the Old Testament allegories, Kingdom’s Dawn and Kingdom’s Hope. Chuck added three more titles to the series, Kingdom’s Call, Kingdom’s Quest, and Kingdom’s Reign which were released in May of 2007. Chuck’s current works include The Knights of Arrethtrae series.

Chuck is a former F-16 fighter pilot and currently works as an engineer for a firm designing plastic consumer products. He has a degree in electrical and electronic engineering and served eight years in the United States Air Force. Chuck and his wife have six children.

You can purchase the books (and ebooks) on the Waterbrook Multnomah site.

You can find out more about the series and the author on the Perfect Praise website. You can also purchase books from all the series, autographed copies, audio books, and even posters on the site. While you are there, let your kids see the Kingdom Fun page. They have beautiful art for desktop wallpaper, coloring pages and more. It looks like they will soon have a Book Club, as well, which sounds like great fun.

Good news! I have a copy of Book 5 and Book 6 to give away!

For the mandatory entry, leave a comment, telling me what interests you most about this series and/or author.

For additional entries, you can:

I will choose a winner on 11/11. Giveaway is for USA and Canada only. Please remember to leave a way for me to contact you in your comments!

*You can also enter a giveaway to win the whole series on the MamaBuzz site!, one for 2 books on Homeschooling Hearts and Minds, and 3 books on Marine Corps Nomads!

This is a Mama Buzz review. The two books from the Knights of Arrethtrae were provided for my review. I have given my honest opinion.

Salem Press Review

Heather —  September 22, 2010
A closeup of the replica statue of Roman Emper...

Image via Wikipedia

Have you ever thought about how many books must have existed in our history that have been forgotten? I mean, we all know many classic books, and we take for granted that if a book “makes it” for several generations, it must be a classic.

And that makes sense–but what about some of the books that have disappeared in print? Based on numbers, it stands to reason that many books that fall out of print might, in fact, be useful, interesting. Maybe they have been forgotten because they were not stylish at some point based on current convention?

While I cannot answer the question of why some books fall out of print, I believe out of print books can contain exciting tales and excellent writing—as well as a peek into our history.

Anyway, I found it interesting that Salem Press is a publishing company that is based upon the idea of republishing children’s books of the 1800’s and early 1900’s. They say that they “strive to republish books that are wholesome, exciting, and well-written.”

This is a Christian company and the publisher, Daniel Mills, has a set of standards in place regarding which titles will be printed—and even these may be edited additionally to make sure the content is considered to be in line with Philippians 4:8:

“Whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things (Philippians 4:8).”

I liked what Mills had to say about the books he works with:

I believe that when we start with wholesome, exciting and well-written books and then carefully review the contents, we are left with some of the absolutely best books that are available today.”

I was given three books to review—two ebooks and one softcover. As my readers probably know, I still have a hard time reading on the computer! Ugh. I just do not care for it. I keep trying…but, yes, I went on to read the softcover one.

Overall, I was honestly surprised by how serious and well written it was—I am afraid that does not say much for what I have been reading! In spite of the subject matter, the book was not difficult to follow.

This book was entitled “Out of The Mouth of The Lion,” from the Church History Series by Emma Leslie. This historical fiction is appropriate for an older child (and up) and deals with the persecution of the early Christians, and gives many details about Rome under Emperor Marcus Aurelius and Asia Minor during 163-166 A.D.

I found the story fascinating. I did cringe a bit, reading about gladiators and the plights of the martyrs, but I really got drawn into the storyline and felt that the setting was well researched. I learned quite a bit about both the early church and some of the Roman customs of the day.

The introduction was helpful, where the publishers have added historical notes for the time period and the novel. Within the book, you can also find word definitions. You can read a synopsis of the story and a sample of the first chapter on the Salem Press site.

The two ebooks I got were:

Yussuf the Guide. An Adventure Title. This sounds like a good one for younger children. We plan to read this aloud after printing it out.

The Official Word: “This is the story of young Lawrence, an invalid, who convinces his guardians, Preston the Professor and Burne the Lawyer, to take him along on an archaeological expedition to Turkey. Yussuf their guide proves his worth time and time again as they face dangers from a murderous ship captain, poisonous snakes, sheer precipices, bands of robbers and more. Memorable characters, humor and adventure abound in this exciting story!”

The Martyr’s Victory. Now that I have read one book in the Emma Church History Series, I am excited to read this one.

The Official Word: “Another title in the Emma Leslie Church History Series, this time set in Danish England in the ninth century. It is a compelling look at the clash between Christianity and the religion of the savage Danes (Vikings) as seen through the story of a small band of courageous monks who choose to go live among their worst enemies in hopes of sharing the gospel with them.”

Currently, Salem Press offers about 27 such titles through their website, Most titles are available in soft or hard cover and many can also be downloaded immediately.

The website for Salem Press is easy to navigate and has lots of information about each book, as well as sample pdf’s of many of the books.

One of my favorite things about their website is that you can search for titles with criteria like time period and location or by age range. This helps me see what is available to match up with some of our history studies.

Go to Salem Press to find out more, and sign up for their quarterly newsletter and be entered for a chance to win a free book from Salem Ridge Press!

See what my crewmates have to say about Salem Press, here.

I received books from Salem Press for review Purposes. I have given my honest opinion.