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Saturday, November 30, 2013

Celebrate Jesus Light of the World: An Advent Journey for Families Review and Giveaway!

Are you looking for an Advent guide for your family to begin using this Sunday for your journey into Advent? Look no further, friends, for I have the most wonderful resource to share with you today that is brought to us by Amy Blevins. Amy is a military wife and homeschooling moma of six children who blogs from California. You can find Amy at her websites, Bow of Bronze and Homeschool Encouragement. She has other wonderful resources that she has written in addition to what I am sharing about today, so please be sure to stop by either of her websites for more details about all she has to offer to homeschooling families. Now, let's take a look at this beautiful resource for celebrating Jesus this Advent season that is perfect for any family!

{This post contains affiliate links.}
Celebrate Jesus Light of the World: An Advent Journey for Families is an 81-page ebook that has everything you'll need to begin your Advent journey. Amy and her family have used all the ideas in this ebook at some point over the past 10 years as they have sought new ways of celebrating Jesus during Advent. As new ideas are thought of and used, they are added to this wonderful resource. I was given a copy of this beautiful ebook to review and I'm excited to share it with you today. My family will begin using the wonderful ideas inside this ebook tomorrow. This is first time we are taking an Advent journey with so much meaning as this one has tucked inside its pages. I'm really excited about starting this tradition in my home!

What's Included?
  • Instructions for beginning the Advent journey
  • Scriptures
  • Crafts and activities
  • Treats that are simple to make
  • Simple Christmas tradition suggestions you can add into your celebration of Advent
  • A master list that tells you exactly what you need on the date you need it
  • Daily Schedule
  • Family Christmas Recipes
  • Christmas copywork pages (24 pages total; available in KJV or ESV)

Daily Schedule
  • Scripture reading
  • Bible study preparation for mom and older teens
  • At the table together (Lighting of the candle, prayer, scripture reading and song)
  • Activity  (simple craft or easy recipe)

Amy has thought of everything and has been gracious enough to include it all - right down to her Family Christmas Recipes (a couple of the recipes are gluten-free)! Also included are some blank recipe cards to fill in with your own family's favorite Christmas recipes. See, I told you she thought of everything! What I really love about Celebrate Jesus Light of the World: An Advent Journey for Families is that it is not overwhelming at all, yet very meaningful as we place our focus on the anticipated return of Jesus while celebrating His birth.

My family and I are looking forward to using Celebrate Jesus Light of the World: An Advent Journey for Families beginning this Sunday, December 1. You can begin your own Advent journey as well using this lovely guide. Get your ebook today for only $4.99.

Do you and your family celebrate Advent? Please leave me a comment below if you are planning to use Amy's ebook this year. My first comment will receive a FREE copy of Celebrate Jesus so be sure to leave your email address where you want the ebook sent!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

In Loving Memory of My Daddy

"And now, dear brothers and sisters, we want you to know what will happen to the believers who have died so you will not grieve like people who have no hope. For since we believe that Jesus died and was raised to life again, we also believe that when Jesus returns, God will bring back with him the believers who have died." 1 Thessalonians 4:13-14

Today I'm filled with thoughts of my dear Daddy who went home to be with the Lord this time last year. He finished his race here in this temporary world and entered into sweet rest for eternity with our Heavenly Father on November 26, 2012. Not a day has gone by during this past year that I have not had thoughts of my Daddy. I am so thankful for all the memories I have of him that I can hold on to until I see him again! Knowing that he is no longer suffering and that there will be a glorious reunion in Heaven gives me comfort.

Daddy with the cake I made him on his 67th birthday.
My brothers and sisters and I were blessed to have such a wonderful Daddy. He was the first man I ever loved, the first hero I ever believed in, the first man I ever slow danced with (stepping on his feet which was considered okay for a little girl), and the list could go on and on. His deep voice still echoes in my mind calling me by the nickname he had given to me, Puddin. Daddy gave all his children nicknames. I hold mine dear to my heart because he made it specially for me.

I'm so thankful for the time I had with my Daddy. We were all by his side the moment he took his last breath in that hospital bed last November 26. My twin sister and I were standing right in front of him, his eyes locked on us, and these were the last words I was able to speak to him..."Daddy, it's okay, mount up on those eagle wings and fly to Jesus. You'll run and not grow weary, you'll walk and not faint." No sooner had I gotten the words out of my mouth then my dear, sweet Daddy took his last breath in this temporary world and took his first breath in Heaven. Typing these words brings tears that are flowing down my face as I think back to that day. Losing my Daddy was difficult, but I have the blessed hope of seeing him again in Heaven because of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ that gives eternal life for all who trust in Him.

Thanks for stopping by to let me share thoughts of my Daddy with you. If you're mourning the loss of a loved one during the holidays, then I invite you to leave me a comment so that I can pray for you. May God give you His grace to make it through the days ahead and His comfort during this time as only He can.

Remembering Daddy,
Laurie (aka Puddin)

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Meet Nicole Vaughn, Author of Devotions from the Torah

Later this week, I'll be sharing my review of Devotions from Genesis: It's Not Just Ancient History from the amazingly wonderful Devotions from the Torah series. I've been on a breathtaking journey through the book of Genesis as never before with new insights gleaned from the writings of Nicole Vaughn.

The Devotions from the Torah series includes:
  1. Devotions from Genesis: It's Not Just Ancient History and  
  2. Devotions from Exodus Part One: Learning to Live in Freedom

I'm pleased to bring to you today an interview with Nicole Vaughn who you can find blogging at Proven Path Ministries.

Meet Nicole Vaughn
Author Nicole Vaughn is the Children’s Ministry Director at Shiloh Baptist Church in Somerville, AL. She is the co-administrator of CrossRoads Christian Academy. She is the founder of Proven Path Ministries. She has also lead inductive Precept Upon Precept studies, has served as an advocate for her local crisis pregnancy center and has shared the testimony of Christ throughout her community and abroad. Nicole is a woman who is dedicated in her faith, devoted to her family, and driven to share the truth of God with others. She and her husband, Patrick, currently reside in Decatur, AL with their two youngest children.

What inspired you to write your first book? 
Honestly... it was the nudging of the Holy Spirit. I dropped keyboarding once in high school and again in college.. all I could do was one finger poke on a keyboard... I argued with God over this nudging for at least a year... informing Him that even if I could gather these thoughts in my head it would take me years to get them typed out!

Is there anything you find particularly challenging about writing a book?
My greatest fear is that I will inaccurately teach the Word of God. I have several trusted teachers and my Pastor who is fluent in Greek and Hebrew and has at least three doctorates in theology read every book before I submit it for the sole purpose of making sure that it is biblically sound.

Who is your favorite author?
I go through phases... my latest is Ted Dekker!

What books have influenced you most?
No book has ever influenced me as the Word of God... but as for man... C.S. Lewis' Mere Christianity and The Screwtape Letters, Ravi Zacharius' The Grand Weaver, Oswald Chambers' My Utmost For His Highest, Kay Arthur's Israel My Beloved   

What did you learn from writing your latest book?
That this series was God's will for me... and He would see it completed... in His time, in His way, not mine.

What other projects will you be working on in the near future?
I currently am writing an in depth, verse by verse, Bible Study on the book of Romans for Kids, as I am teaching through this book. It is simply written, no frills, and is designed to teach kids how to look at every verse and every word in that verse. Anyone can follow it for free on my blog... I haven't decided yet in what avenue I will publish it.  I also am a speaker... I love the opportunities that the Lord gives me to vocally share His Word with others. My hope is that the Lord will allow 2014 to continue with these opportunities as well.

I hope you have enjoyed getting to know a little better the woman behind Devotions from the Torah. Any Christian who is seeking a deeper devotional walk with the Lord will find all the devotionals in this series to be a wonderful way to begin that journey. You can get your copy of Devotions from Genesis: It's Not Just Ancient History and Devotions from Exodus Part One: Learning to Live in Freedom at Amazon.

Seeking More of My Savior,


Saturday, November 23, 2013

Meet Katie Hornor, Author of Putting on the Spirit

As I mentioned in an earlier post, I have been blessed to be part of the launch team for Putting on the Spirit: Ten-Minute Devotions for Busy Moms, a wonderful devotional by Katie Hornor. The expected release date for the ebook is December 9. Katie has even made a companion workbook to go along with her devotional!

I thought you would enjoy getting to know a little bit about the woman behind this devotional. It has been such a pleasure working with and getting to know Katie. She really cares about helping busy moms get into the Word of God. I tell you the truth...I have never experienced a 10-minute devotional that has fed my soul like Putting on the Spirit has. I'm looking forward to sharing with you my review of Putting on the Spirit: Ten-Minute Devotions for Busy Moms and the companion workbook in just a couple more weeks!

Meet Katie Hornor

Katie is a wife and homeschooling mother of four children. They have been missionaries in Mexico since 2007. You can find Katie blogging at Paradise Praises.

I'm excited to share with you now a recent interview with author Katie Hornor.

What inspired you to write your first book?
I have always loved to write. I was one of those kids who had a gazillion note pads and packs of stationery hoarded away growing up. I have filled countless notebooks and diaries with my thoughts, poems, short stories and writings. I even wrote a letter to President Reagan once (but never mailed it). I always dreamed of becoming a published author, but it wasn't until recently that the digital technology and self publishing options have to made that dream a real possibility. 

At the beginning of 2013 I set several goals for myself including one about a book: I wanted to do the research and preparation this year so that I could publish an ebook in 2014. Well, on March 30th, I actually published on Amazon "Loving You Long Distance", followed by "Divine Design" on May 7th. I am very humbled and grateful that the Lord is blessing me to accomplish this goal of an ebook early and with more than one! 

"Loving You Long Distance" came out right before Easter and is meant to be a help to those families like my own who find holidays painful because of the distance separating us from relatives. We try very hard to keep our family ties strong and we wanted to share those ideas with others who may be wondering how to do it. 

"Divine Design" is a short Bible study that I wrote based on a couple of devotional talks I did for a group of ladies last year. And "Putting on the Spirit" started out as a couple of thoughts in a few blog posts that grew into a full fledged month long Bible Study. I'm SO very excited that the Lord is also giving us the opportunity to have these Bible studies translated into Spanish as well! 

Is there anything you find particularly challenging about writing a book? 
So far the most challenging thing is the Bible studies is to keep a consistent voice and to keep it the same length for each days study. Sometimes there is just SO much... I'm so thankful for those of you who previewed "Putting on the Spirit" and gave such helpful feedback. 

What books have influenced you most? 
As an adult my favorite devotional book of all time is "Streams in the Desert" by Mrs. Charles E. Cowman. I hope to one day write a one-year devotional as meaningful and timeless as hers. 

Books that have influenced my personal life: Grace for the Good Girl by Emilie P. Freeman and Lies Women Believe and the Truth that Sets Them Free by Nancy Leigh DeMoss. 

Books that have influenced me as a wife: Created to be his helpmeet by Debi Pearl (disclaimer: I don't recommend this for everyone, but God used it greatly in our young marriage), Ribbing Him Rightly by Benneth Peters Jones, and The Busy Homeschool Mom's Guide to Romance by Heidi St. John.

Books that have impacted me as a mother: Don't Make me Count to Three by Ginger Plowman, Give Them Grace by Elyse Fitzpatrick, and Ish by Peter Reynolds (if you haven't read this picture book, you NEED to!)

What did you learn from writing your latest book? 
I'm learning to be patient, that good things take time. I'm also learning that often when God gives us things to share with others, it's because we (I) need the lesson more than anyone else. Be assured that if you write a book, you will be tested over your own content. :) 

What other projects will you be working on in the near future? 
Once Putting on the Spirit launches, I will be concentrating on getting it and Divine Design published in Spanish. I am also working on a Biblical discipleship reference book for parents in Spanish, and the second and third grade levels of our Lemonhass homeschool curriculum for Spanish speakers which is scheduled to release Summer 2014. And of course Paradise Praises blog, and the Educando en el Hogar Spanish blog and bi-weekly radio show are ongoing projects. 

With all of the duties that you juggle, when do you fit in the time to write a book?
The ideas usually come easily, it's fleshing them out that takes time. I am blessed to have a very supportive husband who encourages my writing and willingly critiques what I write. He is my biggest fan and my Hero. Most of my writing is done between the kids' bedtime and midnight :) but occasionally when a big project is needing some attention or approaching a due date, we will arrange a way for me to have a few hours of no-kid quiet or even a day to myself to concentrate on the project. 

Friends, I hope you have enjoyed getting to know Katie a little better. Remember that Putting on the Spirit: Ten-Minute Devotions for Busy Moms will be released on December 9 on Amazon.

Don't forget about the celebration GIVEAWAY of 13 books (including Putting on the Spirit: Ten Minute Devotions for Busy Moms) going on until December 8. You can enter to win here.

Until next time,

Friday, November 22, 2013

Christ in the Commandments Review

Christ in the Commandments: A Family Study of the 10 Commandments was recently given to me by Luke and Trisha Gilkerson at Intoxicated on Life to use in exchange for an honest review. Great options on how to use this study were provided, and I chose to use this study as our Bible curriculum for this month.

Teaching the 10 Commandments

More than anything, I desire that my son develop a love of the Word of God and a daily habit of studying the truths contained in the Bible. I am so thankful to have this curriculum in our home because it is a valuable tool that I can use to help me lead my son in a focused Bible study. We have really enjoyed using it! I will definitely be looking into using the other Bible curriculum resources from Luke and Trisha. Please feel free to leave me a comment if you have any recommendations of their resources. I am happy to be able to share this review with you today! 

What's Included

There are 30 lessons in Christ in the Commandments. Each lesson includes:
  • An opening thought to keep in mind as we go through the lesson
  • A Scripture reading (both Old Testament and New Testament) 
  • A thorough explanation that sheds light on the Scripture readings
  • Questions for your kids (guided answers supplied for parents)
  • A prayer (beautifully written) to close the lesson

Focused Learning

I love how each commandment is studied in a 2-part lesson. This enables us to take our time and really focus our attention on the commandments. So far, we have gone through Lesson 11 Summary of First Four Commandments. I'm using hand motions to help my son memorize the 10 Commandments along with this study (and I'm learning them right along with him!). Luke and Trisha provide another memory method in this study, as well a link to an Exodus 20 version of "Write Through the Bible" to use as a companion with this study.

Christ in the Commandments has been a wonderful addition to our homeschool! I highly recommend this study for any family - whether you homeschool or not. You can order your own copy of Christ in the Commandments today for $8.99 as a PDF download to begin using in your home with your children. This study is a wonderful tool for parents to use to fulfill our Deuteronomy 6:7 responsibilities...

And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, 
and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, 
and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, 
and when thou risest up. (KJV)

Walking in His Grace, 

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Putting on the Spirit Group Giveaway!

I have been blessed to be a part of the launch team for Putting on the Spirit: Ten-Minute Devotions for Busy Moms by author, Katie Hornor. Katie has proven with the writing of this book that it is possible, even with the busy schedules all moms have, to get into the Word of God in as few as ten minutes a day - and to learn and grow from it. I have thoroughly enjoyed using this devotional! It has opened my eyes to things I never realized about the Fruit of the Spirit. I'm writing another blog post of my experience that I'll be sharing with you in December that I hope will inspire you to get your own copy of this amazing book. The expected release date for Putting on the Spirit: Ten-Minute Devotions for Busy Moms is December 9.

In the meantime, you have an amazing opportunity today to enter in a giveaway of 13 books that would be great additions to any mom's bookshelf! Included in the line-up is a copy of Putting on the Spirit: Ten-Minute Devotions for Busy Moms. I'm so happy to be able to tell you about this wonderful giveaway! Be sure to enter today using the Rafflecopter at the end of this post. 

The Putting on the Spirit Launch Team is excited to help Katie celebrate the release of her new book with a special giveaway of  books that will encourage, equip, and inspire any mom.  One winner will win all of the books listed below (a $120 value), plus 3 more winners will win a digital copy of Putting on the Spirit.

We would like to thank the following friends for their generous sponsorship of this giveaway! Be sure to stop by their websites to say thank you!

Heidi St. John, The Busy Mom
Home School Adventure Co.
Great Waters Press
National Center for Biblical Parenting
Sally Clarkson
Raising Arrows

Here's what you can win --

Putting on the Spirit: Ten-Minute Devotions for Busy Moms eBook by Katie Hornor

Loving You Long Distance eBook by Katie Hornor

Divine Design eBook by Katie Hornor

Purposeful Planning eBook by Phyllis Sather

The Busy Homeschool Mom's Guide to Romance by Heidi St. John

Desperate: Hope for the Mom Who Needs to Breathe by Sally Clarkson and Sarah Mae

Raising Real Men by Hal & Melanie Young

My Beloved and My Friend (release date of Feb 2014) by Hal & Melanie Young

The Christian Parenting Handbook by Dr. Scott Turansky and Joanne Miller, RN

Philippians in 28 Weeks by Stacy Farrell

The Wise Woman Literary Analysis Journal Questions by Stacy Farrell

Streams in the Desert eBook by L.B.E. Cowman

The Homemaker's Guide to Creating the Perfect Schedule eBook by Amy Roberts

To enter the giveaway, use the Rafflecopter at the bottom of this post. One winner will be selected and announced by noon ET on December 13, 2013. U.S. residents age 18 and older only please. Other Terms and Conditions can be found in the Rafflecopter.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

In addition to this great giveaway, Katie is offering her book, Loving You Long Distance, free for Kindle for 5 days -- November 19-23. Be sure to click over and grab that one after you enter the giveaway!

What an amazing giveaway in celebration of the release of Putting on the Spirit: Ten-Minute Devotions for Busy Moms! I'm heading over to get my free copy of "Loving You Long Distance" while you enter in this amazing giveaway. Don't forget to go grab your free copy too!

Happy Reading,


Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Devotions from the Torah Group Giveaway!

I am excited to be a part of the launch team for an excellent devotional series, Devotions from the Torah which includes Devotions from Genesis and Devotions from Exodus Part One, from Nicole Halbrooks Vaughn. I'm currently using Devotions from Genesis during my personal morning devotions. Get ready to take a journey, with Nicole gently leading the way, through the book of Genesis like you've never experienced before! I can't wait to tell you all about my experience with Devotions from Genesis. That post is coming in December, but today I have a special giveaway to share with you!

The Devotions from the Torah Launch Team is excited to help Nicole celebrate the release of the first 2 books in this series -- Devotions from Genesis and Devotions from Exodus Part One -- with a special giveaway of incredible books, several of which will enhance your study of the Torah! This giveaway is a $160 value!

We would like to thank the following companies for their generous sponsorship of this giveaway! Be sure to stop by their websites to say thank you!

Home School Adventure Co.
Knowledge Quest
Great Waters Press

To enter the giveaway, use the Rafflecopter at the bottom of this post. One winner will be selected and announced by noon ET on December 5, 2013. U.S. residents age 18 and older only please. Other Terms and Conditions can be found in the Rafflecopter.

Here's what you could win!

Devotions from Genesis by Nicole Halbrooks Vaughn
See for yourself how Genesis, the book of beginnings, is not just ancient history and that the Word of God is still alive and timeless. Nicole Vaughn’s Devotions from Genesis will take you on a journey from the garden of Eden to the courts of Pharaoh in Egypt, allowing you to see your own hurts, struggles, and joys through the lives of patriarchs from Adam to Joseph. You will gain insight into your heart and more importantly, insight into the very heart of God. One day at a time, you will be reminded that you are not alone with these Devotions from Genesis.

Devotions from Exodus Part One by Nicole Halbrooks Vaughn
Devotions From Exodus Part One will take you from the bondage of the children of Israel to their freedom. The children of Israel were set free from their bondage in Egypt, and they had to learn how to live in this new freedom. As you study through these first twenty chapters of Exodus, you will see that after God delivered the children of Israel out of Egypt, he still had to get Egypt out of them. Our deliverance in Christ is no different. God delivers us from the world, but he still has to get the world out of us. We, like the Israelites, are learning to live in this freedom.

Philosophy Adventure: Pre-Socratics (digital download) by Stacy Farrell
Philosophy Adventure™ is designed to help students 6th-12th grade cultivate and defend a biblical worldview by teaching them how to write skillfully, think critically, and speak articulately as they explore the history of ideas.

Philippians in 28 Weeks (digital download) by Stacy Farrell
The Bible is banned in many countries. Countless believers have sacrificed their freedom—and many, their lives—to spread the message of God’s love and salvation contained within its pages. Are we exercising our freedom responsibly. Memorize the entire book of Philippians in 28 weeks!

A Child's Geography: Explore the Holy Land by Ann Voskamp
Iraq, Jordan, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and Turkey...your family probably hears or reads about these names frequently. In an increasingly complex world, it is vitally important that children learn to see the world through their Creator's eyes. As we explore the Holy Land you and your family will delight in incredible, mysterious landscapes, hidden wonders and beautiful peoples - all created in God's image.

A Cry from Egypt by Hope Auer
Have you ever wondered what life was like in ancient Egypt? As an Israelite? And a slave? Want your children to understand the Bible is history? Adventure, excitement, love, and faith come together when Jarah and her family find themselves at the culmination of four hundred years of history.

Purposeful Planning eBook by Phyllis Sather
Do you need a plan to keep your family moving in the direction the Lord is leading you? Perhaps you don’t know where the Lord is leading you. Phyllis takes you step-by-step through the process of planning a time together for your family to help determine the path the Lord is choosing for each area of your life. Her family has followed this format for over 12 years and has found that it provides the compass they’ve needed to plan and stay on course.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

These books sound amazing, right! All of them are definitely on my reading list. Have fun getting in on the celebration with the giveaway!


Saturday, November 16, 2013

Online TOS Magazine Review

I’m very excited to have been contacted by the Product Reviews Director of The Old Schoolhouse Magazine to do a product review of the free online version of The Old Schoolhouse Magazine (November/December Issue). This is exciting to me because it means I made it to the second phase in the application process of becoming a part of the Schoolhouse Review Crew at! As my thirteen year old son would say, this is “TO-TA-LLY… AWWEESSOOME!”  The following review is my honest opinion of the November/December issue of TOS Magazine, which you can find online at

There are several ways you can read the online issue of The Old Schoolhouse Magazine. I’ve used the online version of TOS Magazine in the following ways.  First, you can go to The Old Schoolhouse’s website at where you will find on their homepage a “Magazine” tab link that will give you several more link choices concerning this fabulous magazine which is available to read for FREE with their online version. I love that The Old Schoolhouse website has a link to all of the online issues of the past year, so if you happen to miss an issue or if you’re looking for a particular article that was an inspiration or contained important information that you need to go back to and reference, you can easily find the issue you need by using the “back issues” link on The Old Schoolhouse’s website. You’ll just need to remember the month of the issue that your particular article was found in. Second, you can go directly to the current month’s online issue at so that you can read the magazine from your computer. There is even an option to download the online issue as a PDF file from so that, if you’re like me and have stacks of issues of your favorite magazine because you can’t ever throw them away, you can use this convenient option instead to keep a PDF copy on your computer. Another benefit of the online TOS Magazine is it helps prevent all of the clutter of those stacked issues that I mentioned beforehand. For me, that is a big plus! Finally, you can read at your leisure with the convenient app download option for the iphone, Android, Kindle Fire and Nook HD located at which will enable you to read whenever and wherever you want to…while waiting in the dental office, while waiting to be called for your doctor’s appointment, or in the quiet still of the night after everyone has gone to bed. I have the Android app downloaded on my phone. I’ll admit I’ve even been found by my husband under the covers at night reading this issue because I had trouble falling asleep! Funny, I know.

The Old Schoolhouse Magazine is packed full with lots of goodies for its readers:
  • Inspiring articles from other homeschoolers such as “Having a Holiday Heart: Seven Reasons to Celebrate (Even if you don’t feel like it)” which speaks to how even though seasons of our life may change, God never will, and so He is worthy of being celebrated.
  • Informational articles such as “Collision Between Teachers Union and Research” that dispels some of the myths of homeschooling while showing the positives gained by homeschooling.
  • Money-saving offers such as free shipping codes and percentage off promo codes from curriculum providers.
  • Speaking of curriculum providers, TOS Magazine is packed full of them making it a valuable resource for any homeschooling parent in search of curriculum for their homeschool. I actually lost count, but each curriculum ad contained a direct link to the curriculum provider’s website. And as I mentioned before, TOS Magazine readers will get money-saving offers provided by some of the curriculum providers in their ads.
  • Field trip/family vacation ideas with special rates for homeschoolers. The November/December issue of TOS Magazine has offers from Christmas at Dolly Parton’s Dixie Stampede and Wilderness at the Smokies (Hotel and Waterpark Resort) just to name a couple!
  • Homeschool Conference and Convention ads to keep you posted on the upcoming events.
  • A last minute gift guide and a free ebook download is in the November/December issue of TOS Magazine to help get you ready for the holidays!
  • Tips and activities for your homeschool.
  • And much, much more!

In my honest opinion, the online version of the TOS Magazine has to be the best free homeschooling resource that’s out there for homeschooling families. As a homeschooling mom, the online version of TOS Magazine is a much needed and appreciated resource that speaks to my heart through the inspirational articles, gives me motivation as a homeschooler with all of the articles contained in its pages that are written by other homeschoolers who are on the same journey as I am, keeps me informed of current legal issues concerning educational policy, etc. and their potential effect on homeschoolers, and it is a trusted source I can go to when I’m in need of quality curriculum providers. So if you are a homeschooling mother/family, don’t miss out on all that is available to you in this free resource! Head on over to to read the November/December issue that is available now. Don’t forget about the download apps that are available too at or the list of back issues at

Happy reading!

Friday, November 15, 2013

How to Control Your Emotions Week 5 Blog Link-up Party

This week we close our book study of How to Control Your Emotions So They Don't Control You (a mom's guide to overcoming). We finish with Chapter 5 "What Happens When We Blow It" and the Appendix: Scriptures to Help Fight Off the Lies. Thank you so much for taking this journey with me!
In this chapter, we look again to David who is known as a man "after God's own heart" (Acts 13:22). David pursued God; and yes, he did blow it at times like we all do, but he didn't let those failures stop him from continuing to run hard after God. That's what we must continue to do as well during our times of failure in overcoming our emotions.


I've Blown It...Now What?

Yes, we all will have not-so-great moments of failing to overcome our emotions. We must not allow these times of failure to prevent us from continuing to run toward God's best for us and our emotions.

I know I must repent when I mess up and let my emotions take me over the edge. If it involves one of my children, my husband, other family member or a friend, I must go to that person and ask for their forgiveness. I must bow before God and ask for His forgiveness knowing that He will be faithful to forgive. I must continue to keep asking God to give me the victory over my emotions. I must hold on to the victories He does give me as a sweet taste of what can be in a heart that is running hard after His best.

Armed with Scripture!

I love the 25 Scripture verses that Brooke gives us in the Appendix: Scriptures to Help Fight Off the Lies. There is even a link included to the printable of these verses so we can print them and post them in a prominent place in our homes or even make multiple copies to carry in our Bibles or purses. These verses will be so beneficial to us as we learn how to process our emotions with the "Feel, Know, Do" method we are now armed with.

My Prayers Are With You!

Here's my something special I mentioned on Monday that I want to leave you with: it's the song "Overcomer" by Mandisa. Every time I have heard this song on the radio during these past five weeks, I have thought of each one of you who have taken this journey with me. I pray that God will give you all sweet victories as you surrender your emotions with the "Feel, Know, Do" method Brooke has shown us in How to Overcome Your Emotions So They Don't Control You (a mom's guide to overcoming). Turn it up loud and know that I'm rockin' out with you! lol

Be sure to share your thoughts on our final chapter by commenting below or by linking-up your blog post with the tool below the video.

We are Overcomers,

Monday, November 11, 2013

How to Control Your Emotions Week 5

WhooHooo!! We made it to the finish line! This week we are in Chapter 5 "What Happens When We Blow It?" of How to Control Your Emotions So They Don't Control You (a mom's guide to overcoming). We'll also be looking into the Appendix: Scriptures to Help Fight Off the Lies.

This week we'll end our book study just as we began it...with another example from David. And, Brooke will leave us with words of encouragement that we can hold on to in the battle, as well as a treasure of Scriptures that we can use to fight off the lies of our enemy, Satan.

I have something special I want to share with you all too when we end our time together on Friday with our Blog Link-up Party, so please be sure to meet me back here on Friday dear friends, as we share our thoughts and come to a close in our book study.

Overcoming Together,

Friday, November 8, 2013

How to Control Your Emotions Week 4 Blog Link-up Party

Chapter 4 of How to Control Your Emotions So They Don't Control You (a mom's guide to overcoming) really opened my eyes to the example of how Jesus handled the hard moments of life. The title of this chapter is "Sometimes, We Just Have to Walk Away". We all know how hard that is to do. Especially when we feel like we've been wronged and need to "stand our ground" because of our need to feel right. Thankfully, Brooke uncovers a beautiful truth from Matthew Chapter 14 that gives us another choice.


Discovering Another Choice

You know how you read something in the Bible over and over, and then you read it another time, and it's like the light bulb goes off over your head...yeah, that's what happened to me when I read Matthew Chapter 14 as I pieced together a series of difficult moments in Jesus' life. I discovered from His example another choice we all have.

Jesus' Example

Jesus withdrew from the crowds often. It was His time to invite God into His circumstances as He withdrew to pray about whatever was going on in His life that left Him with a choice to make about how He would respond. 

Matthew Chapter 13 ends with Jesus being rejected by the people of Nazareth...the people of His own hometown. In the very next chapter, while dealing with His rejection, Jesus gets the terrible news of the beheading of his cousin, John the Baptist. That's a lot to deal with! And here's the beautiful truth that I can hold on to in the hard moments of my life, when it seems like everything is going against me:

"Now when Jesus heard this, he withdrew from there in a boat to a desolate place by himself." (Matthew 14:13, emphasis mine)

I have another choice in how I respond to the difficult things of life. I can withdraw to a quiet place, bow my head in surrender to God, and invite Him into my circumstances. I can ask Him to help me respond to others with His grace moving through me. I can pour out my hurts and my confusion to Him, so He can pour His love and mercy into me. Then, I can give to others what the Holy Spirit of God has so graciously given to me.

It's a choice we all have to make. Will I get it right all the time? No, I will not. If I could get it right, there wouldn't be any need for the empowering presence of the Holy Spirit. But God knew I would need His help. The choice is mine to make. I pray that my choices would bring honor and glory to God.

Now it's your turn to link-up your blog post for this week's reading. Your thoughts matter to me, so please share in the comments below if you don't have a blog. If you do have a blog, use the link-up tool below to share your blog post about this week's chapter. 

Please join me here again on Monday for our last week in our book study. I can't believe how the time has flown by! Have a blessed weekend friends!

Armed with a New Choice,