About Me

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Mysteries, polka dots, California Rolls, TJ Maxx, cozy blankets, rainy days and getting the first spoonful of peanut butter out of the jar make me smile. Spiders, rude people, cold fingers and toes, baby leashes, people that don't wrap their packages before going to the Post Office, poison ivy and Math (pretty much all of it) make me want to scream. My perfect day would be spent with my wonderful husband and sweet girls- watching movies in our jammies! Of course, having the movie theater to ourselves would be great, too. Please pass the popcorn and M&M's.:) I am saved by the grace of God. He is my constant companion and hears my every prayer. What a blessing! I'd love to hear from you! Lori at toosillysisters@cox.net

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Letters from Heaven Book Review

Letters from Heaven is a unique creation by Calvin Miller.  The book is a compilation of letters written to people that were instrumental in his life.  C.S. Lewis, Johnny Cash and Farrah Fawcett are two familiar names, as well as many others.  There are quite a few people that are not commonly known but they are just as important.  Some of the letters mention regrets while others are full of praise, just like life.  Calvin Miller made me think about the people that are special to me.  There are so many!  My immediate family, of course, but then there are also the unsung heroes (to me) that inspired me, believed in me, and moved me through words and/or actions.  There are also apologies that need to be made.  I am considering writing letters to these people.  We never know when we will be called to heaven so now is the time to say things we need to say.

Letters to Heaven is not the best book I've ever read, but it truly made me stop and think.  I believe that's what the author had in mind.  He wants us to make the most of every day and to acknowledge those that are precious to us.  It's a book full of thoughts, emotions and love.  Read Letters from Heaven and be inspired.

*I was given a copy of Letters from Heaven from Worthy Publishers in exchange for my honest opinion.  No other compensation was received.*

Friday, April 27, 2012

God Helps Me Bible Book Review

My 9 year old daughter and I immediately fell in love with the God Helps Me Bible, by Juliet David.  As if the pictures weren't sweet enough, the Bible stories are precious- simply written and to the point.  Each story tells about a person that God helped.  I've included a sample (Esther) below for you to see and read:

There are 25 stories in the God Helps Me Bible.  Noah, Abraham, Daniel, Jonah, Paul, Zacchaeus and more are featured.  The pages are thick and durable and it also has a spiral binding.  Perfect for even the youngest children!  I wish that I had had this book when my girls were younger.  It's a lovely introduction to people in the Bible and a gentle way to show little ones how God helped others and can also help them.

*I was given a copy of God Helps Me Bible from Kregel in exchange for my honest opinion.  No other compensation was received.*

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

The Charlatan's Boy Book Review

The Charlatan's Boy
   The Charlatan's Boy, by Jonathan Rogers, has a cast of characters as colorful as a box of crayons!  Grady is a good hearted young orphan who longs to discover where he came from.  All he has ever known is a life traveling with Floyd, a self centered con-man, and Floyd refuses to give him a straight answer on the matter. Their story is quite unique and unlike any I have ever read before.  Grady watches people in earnest, ever searching for a place to fit in and, more importantly, the parents that he believes he has lost.  Along their journey you'll meet the Ugliest Boy in the World (and proud of it!), an 82 year old woman who looks like she is 20, Ten Finger Walter, the phrenologist (reads people's personalities through the bumps in their skull) and more.  
   The Charlatan's Boy is a wonderful combination of Robin Hood, Lord of the Rings and Huckleberry Finn.    Follow along with Grady and Floyd as they travel through the Corenwald frontier "educating" townspeople about the wild Feechie Folk.  Are they real?    Every day is a new adventure but you never know exactly who you can trust.  I enjoyed this book but felt that it began to drag a bit near the end.  I was anxious to see how it would end so perhaps I was just in a hurry to find out what would happen.  I do feel that it would be a great read aloud for the whole family!

*I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group in exchange for my honest review.* 

Sunday, April 22, 2012

God is an Artist

We were out in the county yesterday.
No cell phone signal, way out there, county.

And it was heavenly.

A precious young lady was turning 18 and we were invited to come and celebrate.

There were horses...

lots of great food...

chickies to hold...

and secret hiding places to discover.

(Still hoping the ticks did not discover the hiders.)



and fluffy critters.

The sun was golden on the trees

and I had to work fast to capture moments that were over all to quickly.

The family prayed.
They thanked God for their friends, family and most of all their birthday girl.

Here she is hugging her Mom.

I stood there praying silently and feeling blessed as I shared this day with my friends.

A comment was made about how God weaves us together like a tapestry.

God is an artist in every sense of the word.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

What will people think?

Siblings are our first friends.
Whether we like it or not.:)

Then, our world expands to include other people.
New friends.
It's easy, at first...

We must learn to trust, though.
We have to have faith that friends won't mislead us or hurt us.

But sometimes, we still get hurt.

My girls are oh so trusting, but then so am I.
We want to see the best in others and in return we want them to see the best in us.

Last night our home was filled with drama over a split second decision that turned out to be a big mistake.  Darn facebook.

It reminded me of a choice I made many years ago that involved a very close friend of mine.  A dear friend who was head over heels in love with her first boyfriend- ever.  She was making bad decisions that involved lying, alcohol and me.  Keep in mind that I was a very good girl and a good friend. Still am;)

My parents were out of town and I was having a friend spend the night with me.  Well, after work late one night (I worked at the movie theater) we pulled up to my house.  There, on the front lawn was my friend, Jane, and her boyfriend- both intoxicated.  Jane's parents had moved and she was supposed to be staying with a friend for a week.  Turns out she was staying with Troy, her boyfriend.  Wha??  I didn't know that part!

They were dropped off at my house by another friend.  Lucky me.  What was I supposed to do with them?  I couldn't leave them on the front lawn, so I let them stay the night.  I wasn't going to tell me parents but my other friend, Lee, told me that I really should.

So, I told them the next day.  It was not pretty.  It was pretty bad, in fact.  But to this day I don't know if I would have done anything different.  I do understand why my parents were upset, though.  What did the neighbors think?  

This is how I felt about the mistake last night.  What would my friends think?  It involved facebook!  

I still worry- a bit.  But, I know my daughter so well and I know that she regrets her decision.  She was not informed, was hasty and trusting and yet there was no way to rectify the situation.  I felt sick for her.  She could not stop crying and she is not a crier.

So, we move on.  Life is too short to worry about what people think.  Millions of people will make mistakes today and my news is already old news.:)

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

A is for Adam Book Review

My 9 year old daughter loves the book, A is for Adam!  The colorful illustrations are engaging and the rhyming words, used along with the alphabet, are just plain fun!  A is for Adam teaches the Bible beginning with Creation and ending with the New Heavens and New Earth.  It's a hardcover, spiral bound book, that stands by itself!

Each letter of the alphabet addresses a different word and section of the Bible.  For example, "F is for Fruit".  Then, the page after the picture (see below) discusses it in a bit more depth to reinforce what you are teaching.  It's a lot more than a large picture book!  It teaches your child WHAT THEY BELIEVE AND WHY THEY BELIEVE IT.  A is for Adam was a wonderful addition to our home school and would also be perfect for Sunday School classrooms.

I loved listening to my daughter walk around singing the rhymes she had memorized from this book!  

A is for Adam is written by Ken and Mally Ham and is available here for $16.99.

Take a peek inside the book below!

*Disclaimer- I was given a copy of A is for Adam by New Leaf Publishers in exchange for my honest opinion.  No other compensation was received.*

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Pumpkin Spice Muffins- 2 WW Points!

Still warm from the oven.
Can. Not. Stop. Stuffing. My. Mouth.

1 can of pumpkin
1 Spice Cake Mix
1 cup over water

Fill muffin tins.
20 minutes at 350.

Moist and yummy!
Thanks, Pinterest.;)
(Only 2 Weight Watchers points for the big ones!)

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Bright Ideas Press- Christian Kids Explore Chemistry- TOS Review

Bright Ideas Press offers a Christian based curriculum that is very user friendly- for both parents and children.  Hurrah!  My daughter and I were fortunate enough to review Christian Kids Explore Chemistry, which is designed for grades 4-8.  I am not a fan of Chemistry- nope.  But, Bright Ideas Press has designed their program to be a nice experience for all involved.  Vocabulary words are defined, a glossary is provided, and lesson plans are detailed but not overwhelming.  The lessons include memory work, review, reading, discussion, vocabulary, hands on activities, supplemental reading and coloring pages.  Perfect.

The 5 Units Covered Are:

-The Basics of Chemistry
-Atoms and Molecules
-The Nature of Chemistry
-States of Matter
-Organic Chemistry

I assigned the reading to my daughter and later we did the activities and discussion together.  Most of the items needed for the experiments were found in our kitchen or around the house.  I really liked not having to run around to find what we needed.  Although Chemistry is still not my favorite subject, I feel that my daughter and I are less intimidated with it now and that is a huge step in the right direction!  We will definitely be using Bright Ideas Press in the future and will also be finishing up this study of Chemistry. Bright Ideas Press offers many wonderful products including history (Mystery of History- one of my favorites!), science and geography.

Take a peek at the Table of Contents here.
Take a look at a sample page here.

You can purchase Christian Kids Explore Chemistry here for $39.95.

*Here is what other TOS members had to say about Bright Ideas Press.*
*Disclaimer: I was given a PDF copy of Christian Kids Explore Chemistry in exchange for my honest opinion. No other compensation was received.*

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Cabin in the Woods, Titanic and Katy Perry

Date Night last night.
Swedish Fish, Junior Mints, and a scary, fun time with my Sweetie.:)

Took my girls to see this.
(Titanic, not the top movie!)
Leo now ranks way up there with Justin Bieber (according to K) and M said, "I could see that again."
High praise, very high.

Not liking the agenda with Katy Perry's new movie.
In the preview she states that she was raised a Christian, but it's just "not her"??
I like her music (won't buy it, though) but dislike the message she is sending with this movie.

What movies do you recommend?
or not?

AIMS From Head to Toe- TOS review

I really enjoy teaching Science and was excited to be able to review AIMS (stands for Activities Integrating Math and Science) From Head to Toe curriculum.  This course covers the nervous, circulatory, respiratory, digestive, urinary, and musculoskeletal systems and how they work together to keep us alive.  It also explores the sensory organs and how they provide us information about our world.

Each activity includes Questions, Goals, Background Information, a Rubber Band Book (more on that in a minute), a Learning Activity (ex. experiment, game, etc.), observation sheets, lesson summaries, review questions, and more.  I loved how there was more than just dry reading.  The activities really reinforced the learning that was going on!  Rubber Band books are tiny books that you print out from the CD included with the textbook.  With the instructions provided you simply fold the pages into a book that your child can keep!  They Rubber Band books were great for answering questions and perfect for putting into my daughter's notebook for later review.

From Head to Toe had wonderful instructions, fun illustrations, creative activities and lots of clear, concise information.  In my opinion, it would be wonderful for large families to use, co-op classes, and well suited for classrooms.  I liked using it with my 8th grader but we were a bit limited on some of the activities as they were better suited for a larger group of students.  

Click here for a peek into From Head to Toe!

 From Head to Toe is created for grades 6-9 and includes a CD with printable student pages.  It sells  for $24.95.

Click here to see what other TOS members thought about AIMS.

*Disclaimer: I was given a copy of From Head to Toe from AIMS in exchange for my honest opinion.  No other compensation was received.*

Thursday, April 12, 2012

The Nancy Drew Huddle and Decoupaged Clipboards


The Nancy Drew Huddle.
Used by true detectives, only.
Reserved for trivia challenges.

The Bungalow Mystery.
Sunglasses optional.

Every detective needs an attractive clipboard.
Fabric applied with Modge Podge.
Nancy would approve.

Time to unload the dishwasher.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

The 5 Love Languages for Children book review and giveaway!

The winner is #11 Alicia!  Congratulations Alicia!  Please send me your information so I can get it mailed to you.:)

What does it take for you to feel really loved?  Is it coffee at Starbucks with a friend, a back rub from your husband, or perhaps a neighbor that drops by with freshly home baked cookies?  These are all wonderful and appreciated but what really fills your love tank and makes you feel appreciated?  Now think about your children.  Are you speaking their Love Language?  I discovered I was way off the mark with my sweeties, sad to say, and I want to make them feel loved in a way they understand.  I studied (devoured!) The 5 Love Languages for Children like I was preparing for a very, very important final exam.  Your child's emotional development, their behavior, their security, their feelings of love (or lack of) is of the utmost importance and you, as their parent, play a very important role in that.

Dr. Gary Chapman and Dr. Ross Campbell help you:

-Discover your child's love language
-Understand the link between successful learning and the love languages
-See how the love languages can help you discipline more effectively
-Build a foundation of unconditional love for your child

 I love gifts but, you know what, they are easy and don't require a lot of time.  I'm not knocking a lovely wrapped package, but after reading The 5 Love Languages of Children I have discovered that Quality Time is truly my Love Language.  I was looking for the easy way out (although many people's love language is Gifts) with my girls by giving gifts.  I love shopping and my girls do enjoy gifts, as we all do, but what they really want is more of me.  I am now working on providing Words of Affirmation (praise and encouragement) and Quality Time to my two most precious gifts- my girls.:)  I am beyond happy to say that we are all less stressed, less crabby, and feeling way more loved.  It's only been 2 days!  The 5 Love Languages of Children has blessed my whole family and I highly encourage you to read it.  Every newborn should come with a copy to take home from the hospital.:)

To be their best, children need to feel loved. But if you and your child speak different love languages, your affection might get lost in translation, affecting the child’s attitude, behavior, and development. Dr. Gary Chapman’s groundbreaking Five Love Languages series has helped millions of couples communicate love more clearly, and Dr. Ross Campbell M.D. has applied the innovative system to children as well. The 5 Love Languages of Children gives practical suggestions for learning how your children interpret love and creating a sense of security in which they can thrive.

The 5 Love Languages: http://www.5lovelanguages.com/

*Propellor has generously offered a copy of The 5 Love Languages for Children to one of my readers!  You absolutely must have this book in your personal library and I can't recommend it enough!*

Here is what you need to do to enter:

#1- Leave a comment on this post for 1 entry. (Separate comments for each entry, please.)
#2- Be a follower of my blog for 1 entry.
#3- Leave a comment telling me your Love Language for 1 entry.
#4- "Like" the 5 Love Languages on facebook and leave a comment telling me you did this for 1 entry. 

Good Luck!  Giveaway ends next Wednesday, April 18th.

Disclosure: I received The 5 Love Languages of Children 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.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Tractor Driving City Girls

Co-op classes are back in session.
My girls are taking Art, Sign Language, Acting and a class on the book, Farmer Boy.

Lunchtime is a definite favorite.

We traveled this weekend to see Grandpa.
It was his birthday.

Ruby drove part of the way.

Dinner was at 5 Guys.
The best part was the vinegar on the french fries.

Dessert was at Sylas and Maddy's.
Homemade Ice Cream.
Do you think anyone ever orders their Green Tea Ice Cream?

My sweet girl and I sat in the school chairs.
They were tiny.
I took a second too long to get out and got a bit panicky.
No wonder they were the only seats available.

The girls got to drive the tractor at Lucky Grandma's house!
Yep, that's her name.
My first cutie pie gave her that years ago.

The weather was just perfect.

It made someone want to jump...



But where is my other daughter?

Can you find her?

She was enjoying the lovely day while reading in a tree.
Can't think of anything finer.

It was easier than it looked!

Easter was full of family, flowers, and praise to the Lord for the gift of His Son.

Tractor Driving City Girls.

It all began years ago when my sweetie and I were dating.
He took a city girl and turned her country for the day.
It was fun.:)
Until I gave it a flat tire...

I keep thinking that I want a break.
But then I get bored and change my mind.:)