Homeschool Mom’s Bible {NIV} Review

photo 1-1As moms we are used to meeting everyones needs and making sure that our families spiritual life is growing…as homeschool moms we are used to having over filled plates. Not only do we feel we are responsible for our children’s spiritual journey and their education and making sure that our children are socialized without being taking over by socialism! Then add in daily schooling, activities, church, ect… I cannot even begin to tell you how excited I was to get a copy of The Homeschool Mom’s Bible to review! It was in March when my husband and I were having the every important “without the kids” Barnes and Noble date! We were perusing the tiny Bible section and I came across The Homeschool Mom’s Bible. I flipped through it and feel in love…alas…we are home owners, parents, and have bills so the bible was not in our budget. So I prayed that somehow I would be able to get the bible. There was more than once when our budget had to go to repairs, shoes for the kids, you know…THEN I got an email…The Homeschool Mom’s Bible would be available to review then very next week!!!!! I was BEYOND thrilled…yes I cried! Ok, enough about that!

About the Homeschool Mom’s Bible

It comes in either NIV or KJV with 366 Days of  Devotions by Janet Tatman {a veteran homeschooling mother with more than 25 years of homeschooling experience}!

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Janet did an amazing job with the devotions, they are extremely encouraging almost like chatting with a “been there, done that” friend! They have been spot on every single day. I truly felt like the Lord spoke through Janet’s words to the depths of my heart weather I was happy, sad, overwhelmed or discouraged.  On the cover of the bible there is a little tag that says “Encouragement” and that is exactly what this bible doe, it encourages homeschool moms in their day-to-day life. I really recommend this Bible for all homeschooling women. I think it is very important that women/moms stay in the Word and this is perfect! If you {or someone you know} wants a bible that gives daily encouragement, you will not go wrong with the Homeschool Mom’s Bible.

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Please note that the Homeschool Mom’s Bible is NOT study Bible, so there are not footnotes and extras.

What the publisher is saying:

Heartfelt Inspiration to Revive, Encourage, and Strengthen the Homeschooling Mom

If you’re on an airplane, you’re instructed, in the event of a loss of cabin pressure, to put on your own oxygen mask before helping your child. The reason? If you don’t have a supply of oxygen, you won’t be able to help anyone else.

The same is true for the rest of life: you can’t give what you don’t have. And as a homeschooling mom, you pour yourself out every day for the sake of your children. Yet how do you fill yourself up? Where do you get your spiritual oxygen?
Now you can be filled and restored by the original Bible for homeschool moms—with a full year’s worth of encouraging daily devotions placed alongside the clear, accessible text of the NIV Bible. These heartfelt, practical readings written by Janet Tatman, a former homeschooling mom, cover topics such as finding strength to keep motivated, avoiding burnout, staying focused and committed, navigating the needs of toddlers while educating siblings, managing schedules, delegating tasks and chores, setting boundaries, and most importantly, maintaining proper soul care while juggling educational and household responsibilities.

The words of these devotions will breathe life into your soul so that you can successfully run the race.

I received a copy of the Homeschool Mom’s Bible from the publisher for free in exchange for my honest opinion. I was in no way persuaded to give a positive review.

SIGG

 

Virtue Clues {We Choose Virtues} Review and Giveaway!

IMG_1061I have told you before and I will tell you again and again… I LOVE We Choose Virtues AND so do my kiddos! {Earlier this year I did a WCV review on the Homeschool Kit!} Building character and having virtues is EXTREMELY important to our family. We Choose Virtues has created such and engaging way to teach them these very important virtues:

  • I am diligent
  • I am helpful
  • I am perseverant
  • I am gentle
  • I am content
  • I am attentive
  • I am honest
  • I am kind
  • I am self-controlled
  • I am patient
  • I am obedient
  • I am forgiving

Each of the virtues has a corresponding character to go with it! They all have super fun names thus creating a fun game of matching the character with the virtue! My kids love this game and walk around all day saying the names of the characters and their virtues. For example there is Piggy Bank Frank is Patient, Feather Heather is Forgiving, Hockey Stick in Honest, Oboe Joe is Obedient & Kettle Gretel is Kind…cute huh! WCV has a ton of different kits and items for Families, Homeschooler’s, Church, School Classroom, and Youth!!

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Today I’m super excited to be sharing the Virtue Clue cards with you! These handy-dandy little cards are the size of an average business card and come in clear little case that has a magnet strip on the back! They are perfect to toss in your purse for car trips or just in the car for a fun little game!

IMG_1069IMG_1068The magnet strip makes for easy access on your fridge or I like to keep our cards on our dry erase board {ours is a dry erase magnet board} perfect for easy review whenever you need an extra little “Virtue Boost” aka teachable moments 🙂 IMG_1060

Each Card has the corresponding character along with a fun little saying {my kiddos like to memorize it} on the front! Then the back of the card has a fun little challenge…my older son LOVES these challenges!

I’m totally in love with these little gems! They are the perfect size for kids to handle and have a perfect little lesson on them! I love my parenting cards and our flash cards but there is just something extra special about these little clue cards! IMG_1064I really want to get 2 more sets so each kiddo can have their own set! That way my older son can have his set on his night stand so that we can review before bed, and on rough days he can calm down and review on his own {he already does this with the one set that we have}

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I was already a HUGE We Choose Virtues fan but adding these cards to our Homeschool Kit made me love this program even more…if thats even possible!

So what do you think? Are you in love with WCV yet? You can by these Clue Cards and so much more on the WCV websiteOR….You could enter to win a set of the Virtue Clue Cards right here!! Yes that’s right! My good friend the awesomely wonderful Heather of WCV is offering one lucky winner there very own set of these fantastic little cards! Enter Below!

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BabyLegs Giveaway will run from Saturday September, 28  2013 –  Friday October 4 , 2013.

One winner will be randomly selected by Rafflecopter. The winner will be contacted October 5, 2013 via email.

SIGG

ReusaWool Dryer Balls Review and Giveaway!

willowstore_logoWhen you have kids it can sometimes seem like life is consumed by laundry! Sometimes I come into my laundry room and think ‘where the heck did all this come from’! Honestly I don’t mind doing laundry but what I hate is the over all time and energy it takes to wash and dry.

My friend Catherine over at Willowpads recently sent me an awesome three pack of their 100% Wool dryer balls in neutral {there are a ton of fun colored dryer balls too!} These dryer balls are fantastic! They are a perfect size {about the size of a tennis ball} not too big and not too small! As I mentioned I got a three pack but you can also get them individually. They couldn’t have come at a better time. We had just gotten back from a big end of summer camping trip….with no showers or washers….yeah, my laundry was unpleasant to say the least. We had to wash EVERYTHING, clothes, sleeping bags, blankets, beach towels, and even a few pairs of shoes. Thinking about the drying all blankets was enough to make you cringe…I guess will be an all day process…not so when you have dryer balls! ALL the laundry was washed, dried, and folded before lunch time! I didn’t time it {I wish I did} but I would guess that the blankets dried at least twice as fast with the dryer balls. In the past I would dryer on the longest time…hoping that I wouldn’t have to restart it a second time. Now I have a wonderfully perfect system for washing days with multiple loads {ha! Who am I kidding there are ALWAYS multiple loads} Washed load goes in dryer, both dryer and washer are started, by the time the washer is done so it the dryer! YAY! It’s pretty fantastic I have not idea how I got by with out my dryer balls, but I tell you what I don’t ever want to go back.

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What my dryer balls look life after about 20-30 full dyer cycles!

As with any new product I like to have a little check list of things that I personally think are important. Since I am fairly familiar with dryer balls and this wasn’t my first rodeo I knew EXACTLY what I wanted!

  • I wanted a set {3 or more}
  • NO CHEMICALS! Did you know that many commercial dryer liquids and sheets contain chemicals that destroy the fire-retardant qualities of children’s and adult’s clothing?!
  • I wanted the dryer ball to be about the size of a tennis ball
  • I want dryer ball that is going to last
  • I wanted a dryer ball that is tightly woven wool…you know something that isn’t going to fall apart after a few trips in the dryer!

YAY! ReusaWool Dryer Balls passed 100%! They even have the extra credit score of colored dryer balls {seriously how fun are these colors!}IMG_7835

A few things you might like to know about ReusaWool Dryer Balls:

  • Natural Wool Felted.
  • Reduces Drying Time.
  • Softens laundry naturally, without chemicals.
  • Handmade in the US.
  •  ReusaWool Dryer Balls are the natural solution for softening your clothes without chemicals. Made completely from wool, they help your clothes (and cloth diapers!) tumble dry softly, and reduce the drying time by up to half.
  • Great for all laundry. To use, simply toss 2-3 balls in your wet dryer and start. No need to remove them from the dryer, just reuse!
  • Approximately 9” circumference (about the size of a tennis ball).
  • Use 2-3 balls for fastest drying.
  • Won’t harm your clothes.
  • 100% Wool, some natural pilling may occur over time. Available in natural and colors. The colors are safe for any color laundry, the dye used is fiber reactive, and will not bleed onto your clothing.
  • Lasts for many years! No more dryer sheets!

All are wonderful but I think my favorite is the way dryer balls cut down my drying time…almost in half!

Buy ReusaWool Dryer Balls {$6.95 each or $19.95 for a 3 pack} or WIN a Neutral 3 pack! Click below to enter!

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BabyLegs Giveaway will run from Friday September, 27  2013 –  Friday October 3 , 2013.

One winner will be randomly selected by Rafflecopter. The winner will be contacted October 4, 2013 via email.

SIGG

The Homegrown Collective GREENBOX {Review}

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Since I started doing product reviews in late 2009 I have received a lot of really cool stuff. Honestly I never thought I would have that ‘one’ that was the my favorite….that was until my awesome friend Mitchell sent me a Homegrown Collective GREENBOX! Now I hands down have an all time FAVORITE! If you haven’t heard of Homegrown Collective you are truly missing out on something AMAZING! Do you want to live a more local, self-sustaining, and eco-conscious life style? Do you want all those things and more delivered to your front door? The Homegrown Collective GREENBOX is totally for you!

You might be asking your self: What is Homegrown Collective? What is a GREENBOX? Well let me show you my little grasshopper!

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“The Homegrown Collective is an invitation to be a part of the growing overall collective of people who are looking to shift their lifestyle to a more local, self-sustaining, and eco-conscious way of living. It is a new way to help you connect with the seasons and our goal is to provide you with tools to get the most out of the HOME that you have and help put you on the path to growing the HOME that you want.” {from the Homegrown Collective Website}

greenbox-homegrown-773735_630x210 copyWhat inspired Homegrown Collective?

“Having trouble finding my own trusted source that not only vetted green and sustainable vendors, artisans and small businesses but also made them accessible, we felt that the eco-friendly and sustainable consumer landscape was very disparate, confusing and a little bit intimidating for the “green-curious”. So, there is a void that we need to fill. We are providing a road map, some direction, products that people can trust and a community to go to for questions to be answered and stories to be shared. While solving some of these issues, we strive to provide a great experience that is useful, comfortable, educational and fun.” {from the Homegrown Collective Website}

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What’s a GREENBOX and how does it work?

Starting at $39 a month the GREENBOX is probably the coolest thing I have ever received! Each month members will receive an amazing box containing natural and organic things {each box varies by season} that will help you achieve the health life style and home you want.  My box was the August Box “Super-foods, Anti-oxidants & De-toxifiers” and let me tell you it was AMAZING! I hadn’t really formed an expectation before I got my box, but when it arrived I was floored by the awesome items and the quality items that filled the box!

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The August Box was chalked full of awesome super foods:

  • Green Tea
  • Pomegranates
  • Cacao
  • Alfalfa Seeds

It also had:

  • 100% Organic Lavendar buds
  • Magnesium Sulfate
  • Cypress Flaked Finishing Salt
  • 16oz. Ball Jar

“but why? what’s the point?” You might be asking your self! Well, wanna Detoxify your body? Combine the Magnesium Sulfate with the Lavender & Green Tea and you have an amazing Bath Bomb! How about combing the Alfalfa seeds and ball jar to grow your own sprouts? Well look at that…that’s a superfood!IMG_0976 I have to be honest my MOST FAVORITE part of this months GREENBOX was the “Wonder Cups” IMG_0972Seriously people…AMAZING! Pomegranates + Cacao topped with Cypress Flaked Finishing Salt it like magic deliciousness in a little cup!

GREENBOX takes the guess-work out of creating all kinds of cool, healthy and sustainable things! Don’t believe me? Check out the amazing “past boxes! If I could go back in time I would snatch up July “The Beauty of Coconut” –  January “Home Remedies and Cure Alls” –  and April “Olives and Herbs and Candles , OH MY!”

I want to give a SUPER HUGE shout out “thank you” to Mitchell of Homegrown Collective! Thank you so much…I’m hooked!

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Now it’s your turn to get your GREENBOX! Don’t forget to connect with The Homegrown Collective on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, PINTEREST and their BLOG!!

SIGG

Litter Free Lunch Kit Review!

IMG_1039Oh packing lunches…I think I just heard a collective UGH from all moms! Although we homeschool and are home most days at lunch time there are a few days a week when we must pack a lunch. We started our once a week homelink last year and quickly realized that there was NO way we were going to eat out every single Thursday. I started packing lunches for Elias and my husband {who usually takes Elias and works in the parents room and I stay at home for some good ‘ol twin and mama time – – We ALL go once or twice a month} Through out the year I heard quite often that although their lunches were tasty, the container had leaked and the food has gotten soggy or even dried out! UNACCEPTABLE! At the end of the 2012-2013 school year I told my self ‘next year will be different’

IMG_1043Let me introduce you the Litter Free Lunch Kit! This awesome lunch kit comes with four containers with lids 2 small, 1 medium and 1 large {the medium and the large are practically the same general size the difference is the Large is twice as deep as the medium} All four containers stack perfectly together. In addition to the containers there is a 15oz BpA-free bottle! The containers and the bottle all fit snugly in an awesome insulated lunch bag {there is a mesh pocket inside the lunch bag perfect for a spoon or fork and napkins or anything else you might need at lunch time!} IMG_1036

We I was given the opportunity to review and feature Litter Free Lunch Kits from Dan at New Wave I was pretty excited! I was even more excited when I got our LFLK in the mail! The quality is really good! I love the lunch back size and shape and how perfectly the containers and water bottle fit!

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This past week homelink started and Elias was SO excited to use his new lunch kit! He decided that he would like to carry his lunch bag in is backpack {from class to class!} We had lunch at a park that day! After three hours of being bounce and thrown around I was so surprise how the LFLK contained his lunch when he unzip his lunch bag NOTHING was out of place…not even the water bottle {which DID NOT leak!} This mama was pretty stoked! I super excited to get the twins their own LFLK! Elias received the Gray and Blue kit but there are three other colors/patterns 1

Are you hooked on LFLK’s now? Do you wanna know how to get your own?

Find a Local Retailer or Buy Online there are a number of retailers including amazon!

I really hope you will head out or online and grab up some Litter Free Lunch Kits! They defiantly have this mamas seal of approval!

SIGG

FUNBITES Review and Giveaway! {Bento for the Littles}

IMG_1016We love bento-ing so we are always looking new fun ways to make creative meals! My boys are really good eaters…but….my daughter Gabbi….PICKIEST. EATER. EVER! I mentioned it before but her body was unable to form enamel on her back teeth so when her molars came in they quickly rotted…and were very painful. Because of this I’m sure you can imagine, but she hated eating anytime that she had to chew. Once she had oral surgery at age 2 she had become so picky…there were a lot of tears shed. It has been an incredibly emotional. She is now learning to like food {Praise GOD!} but it is still a very uphill battle. Gabbi and the boys love cubed cheese, fruit, and veggies! …but oh my, I sometimes think it takes longer to cut then it does for them to eat it! I cannot even express my excitement when I came across FunBites, the idea of being able to transform basic food into fun and tiny shapes…yes please!! The wonderful Bobbie {the awesome mama behind FunBites} sent me a Square FunBites {there’s also hearts and triangles…I will be getting both those asap!}
Ok guys! Seriously this thing is AWESOME!!! I love it so much! I use it multiple times a day! And its SUPER easy to use! Check it out!
IMG_1018FunBites are BPA free! They can be either handwashed or thrown in the top rack of the dishwasher! YAY! Our dishwasher broke {BOOOOO} so we have been hand washing our FunBites and I can tell you it is really easy to get clean! I would recommend rinsing it or even washing it right after using it that way it’s all ready to go for next time!
FunBites is SUPER DUPER easy to use…as Easy as 1, 2, 3!

1 – Place FunBites cutter on top of food.  Remove popper top and set to the side.

2 – Grab cutter handles on both sides, press down firmly and rock 5-6 times to cut through the food.

3 – Lift the cutter up, insert popper top and pop out the bite-sized pieces!

Yep its just that easy! Even my kiddos love using it and since it isn’t sharp I’m ok with that! The twins can help make lunch, dinner and snacks now YAY!

I have tried FunBites on a TON of different things…
  • Apples
  • Bananas
  • Peaches
  • Melons
  • Cheese
  • Cucumber
  • Zucchini
  • Tomatoes
  • Avocado
  • Potatoes
  • Fresh Homemade Bread
  • Eggs {both hard-boiled and fried}
  • Sliced Lunch Meat {ham and turkey}
  • Banana Bread {the kids LOVE that}banana
  • Pancakes
  • Grilled Cheese
  • Nutella Sandwiches
  • PBJ Sandwiches
  • Turkey Sandwiches
  • Ham Sandwiches
  • Chicken Breast {boneless grilled and pan-fried}
  • Homemade Fried Chicken Breast
  • Turkey Breast
  • Salami
  • Grilled Steak {the kids LOVED it and it was so quick and easy!}

That’s all I can think of right now! I had zero issue with all of the above. The steak took a little extra time but thats to be expected! FunBites isn’t just for kids…you can make a yummy chicken salad in no time! I have loved it not only for the little but for my hubby and myself!

Buy It: On FunBites website and get 20% off your order when you enter the code: Bloom
Win It: One Lucky Reader Will Win A FunBites of their choice!! YAY!
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BabyLegs Giveaway will run from Sunday September, 22  2013 –  Sunday September 30, 2013.

One winner will be randomly selected by Rafflecopter. The winner will be contacted September 30, 2013 via email.

SIGG

Ballerina BabyLegs Review and Giveaway!

1185838_10151680715872099_458560116_nIf you know me or have hung around The Life in Bloom for any length of time then you know that I love love LOVE BabyLegs! We have been BIG fans of BabyLegs since we got our very pairs in the spring of 2009 {yes they are still regularly used!} My kiddos wear them ALL the time {winter, spring, summer & fall} & I cannot tell you how many times we have been out and another mom has stopped me to ask “what kind of socks are those” or “are those BabyLegs”…its pretty frequent! IMG_3846

Being a child of the 80’s I love leg warmers…that’s pretty much the only fashion of the 80’s that I feel was acceptable 😉 {hehe} Anyway…this year my little miss started ballet/tap class {seriously ADORABLE} and I knew she would be rockin some AWESOME leg warmers! My friend Lauren over at BabyLegs sent us some fantastic pairs! All are PERFECT for little miss in her class!Untitled-2The names from left to right:

Aren’t they adorable?For our first day of ballet/tap Gabbi selected her “ballerina” legwarmers {so fitting}! Oh and guess what? EVERY. SINGLE. other mom asked “what kind of legwarmers are those!” Now that we are coming back into the cold seasons {its already stinkin cold at night} I can guarantee that my purse with have at least 3 pairs of BabyLegs! The are perfect for the boys to wear on their arms with t-shirst and little miss to wear with dresses and skirts {and of course under jeans and pants for all three!}balletdanceBabyLegs have ALWAYS topped my “mama’s must have list!” It all started when we bought our first pair{s} for the twins. BabyLegs were a lifesaver on cold days and nights when they needed changes. The winter after they were born was COLD and we got tons of snow but…my babies were always warm and cozy! Since then we have had crawlers, potty training, soccer and now ballet…and…BabyLegs have been right there with us! Psst, BabyLegs can be used for other things too…my hubby can often be seen running in our neighborhood with a BabyLeg folded in half around his upper arm acting as a phone/mp3 player holder…why? We have had the “real” ones they make for runner and he NEVER uses them. With the BabyLeg, he told me its more protected. ALSO it is way more comfortable!

Here is a small list of why I love BabyLegs!
  • They make for easy outfitting. In the summer or the winter they are fantastic!
  • Fall in the Pacific Northwest has warm days and COLD evenings…I throw in some BabyLegs in my bag and we are totally covered! I the winter I love putting BabyLegs on all the kiddos under their pants or jeans…even with a short-sleeved shirt!
  • They are SERIOUSLY CUTE and very well made! Even after tons of washes they look great!
  • BabyLegs are cool! My older son loves to pick a different pair for each soccer game! I always have other parents asking me “Where did you get those cool socks?” they are always so surprised that they are BabyLegs!
  • PERFECT for Dance class! My little model will show you just how cute they are!

So you are totally in love right?!?! You can head over and order BabyLegs at their website  OR You can enter to win an AWESOME prize pack here! The fantastic Lauren at BabyLegs is offering one of YOU a great prize pack of two pairs of legwarmers and two pairs of socks {winner picks either boy or girl prize pack!!} AWESOME! Click Below to enter!

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BabyLegs Giveaway will run from Saturday September, 21  2013 –  Saturday September 27, 2013.

One winner will be randomly selected by Rafflecopter. The winner will be contacted September 28, 2013 via email. The winner will 48 hours to respond and claim their prize.

SIGG