Thursday, February 15, 2018

Little Critter Little Blessings Collection

Ok, as a mom I absolutely LOVE when we can receive these collections to review. It is an awesome deal to be able to get four full stories in one hardback book. Even better is when the books are completely God-centered. And these books are!

So the four books included in this collection are:

  • You Go First, 
  • Being Thankful, 
  • It's True!, and 
  • We All Need Forgiveness. 

Each one has a clear moral and lesson for readers to learn. In We All Need Forgiveness, Little Critter learns that he needs to be forgiving, however, he learns this the hard way after he has been unforgiving and unkind to his friends when they needed forgiveness THEN he becomes the friend who needs forgiveness and they all do no immediately give it. It is then that he realizes (with his Mom's help pointing to the Bible) that in order to receive forgiveness, he must also give forgiveness. And they mention God by name, eek! Even better!

And that is an awesome message for a book to provide to children. Because children can be irrational and selfish and even mean at times. But they have to learn early that just as they want to be forgiven when they make mistakes, they have to forgive when others make mistakes. 

{FYI: I received this book from the publisher in exchange for my HONEST opinion.}

Thursday, February 8, 2018

NIV Journal the Word Bible for Teens

This is what the Bible looks like. Absolutely stunning!

So, the first thing I noticed is just how beautiful this Bible is. It's gold leather with colourful flowers on the front. The font is black and pink (writing prompts). Its a single column journaling Bible with writing prompts. I look at those prompts more like thinking points because while it makes me reflect on the Scripture on that page, it also makes me want to cross-reference (unfortunately this Bible does not contain cross-references). I also like that it is made to lay flat, which is awesome for taking notes in it.  There is a short subject index in the back, but no concordance, dictionary, or maps.

I think this is good for devotion time when you want to just read and journal what you're reading. It's quite pretty and would make an awesome gift for any woman, young or older, she'll appreciate it. I wouldn't put too much emphasis on the "for teens" portion of the name of the Bible because it is literally just feminine and made to get you to think as you read. Anyone could appreciate it. 

My daughter (10 yr old) likes that it is pretty but she's more taken with a different journaling Bible that has illustrations in it, so she can colour in it.

All in all... This book gets two thumbs up!

{FYI: I received a copy of this Bible from the publisher in exchange for my HONEST opinion.}

Thursday, February 1, 2018

One Year Praying Through the Bible for your Kids

So when I first got this book, I was expecting it to be a one year bible with prompts for praying for our children. However, it is actually a dated devotional to assist parents in praying for their children every day. It starts with a passage of Scripture, then there's the actual devotional, and it ends with a pre-written prayer. 
Each day has a topic. For example, today is 2/1, the topic is What the Lord Hates. The August 22 (topic: Godly Parents) is an example of how that day's prayers won't always be exactly focused on the children but sometimes on the parents to help us with being better parents.

I think this is a great resource for parents. Especially those that are new to praying Scripture for their children. Also if you notice in the top corner there is the reading for the day if you are reading through your bible in a year. So that is a neat addition as well. It allows us to kill 2 birds with 1 stone.

The only drawback I see is that there is no colour inside the book. I think if the tops of the page where the date is was coloured, it would be a great enhancement to this book and really catch the eye.

(an excerpt of what a day looks like)

{FYI: I received this Bible from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.}

The Woman's Study Bible NIV

Sounds like I am reviewing the same bible again, right?
Well, I am and I am not. 

 (Left is NKJV and Right is NIV)

Technically the same book yet a different translation. I was really looking forward to doing this for the comparison. See this bible is the exact same as this one. Same publisher, same editors. Same nice sized concordance and index as well. Same maps in the back (could be a few more maps but I can always Google for more).

So I wanted to see if there would be any difference between two and what I've found is that the section headers are different. For example Genesis 1: (NIV) The fall (more simple) and (NKJV) The temptation and fall of man (more in-depth). 

 (Left is NKJV, Right is NIV. Also you can see that the footnotes are actually fairly generous.)

All of the charts are identical, the design is nearly identical except where one is pink the other is blue. I attribute that as well to one being mere hardback and the other cloth over board. Both are equally beautiful. Equal in size. They have identical footnotes, quotes, book introductions, and articles. Both are also red letter Bibles (Jesus' words are in red letters). 

{The preface to each bible is different as well, which can be expected.}

Another thing I looked for was translation manuscript differences. If you ever researched what was the difference in translations, it often comes down to the manuscript used and if the translation is word for word or thought for thought or paraphrase (i.e. the Message Bible translation). NKJV falls between being a word for word and a thought for thought translations whereas NIV falls as a true thought for thought translation.

In Mark 7:24, NKJV says Tyre and Sidon whereas NIV says merely Sidon with a footnote that early manuscripts say Tyre and Sidon. So I noticed that the editors of this Bible want to make sure that readers have access to what the manuscripts that they used but also to know that there may be some discrepancies.
Another difference in translations is Mark 7:6-7. 

 (Top is NIV, bottom is NKJV)

I think these are really nice study bibles. And a preference of translation I think is more of a personal choice than to say one is better than the other. Some people may feel one is better for them than the other. And the goal is to get into God's Word. Now granted I generally stay away from the paraphrase Bibles. We do have a couple NIrV Bibles since they are created with children in mind and make it easier for our littles to grasp the Word.

I do recommend this as a Woman's study Bible. As the quotes and articles are unparalleled and are often the encouragement we as women could use. Plus its absolutely beautiful. Who doesn't like a beautiful study Bible? The footnotes are fairly generous (although not as extensive as a Life Application Bible) and the font is readable, even without my glasses (much better than my Life Application Bible). 
I plan to use this one a bit more as I am more comfortable studying from the NIV than the NKJV and I could definitely use the encouragement that it offers.  There are many articles on marriage and family life. As a wife and mom, there's always room for improvement.

{FYI: I received this Bible from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.}

Friday, January 12, 2018


Unshakable is a new 365 day devotional from celebrated speaker and writer Christine Caine.
It is of decent size and hardcover.
The colors are rich and vibrant. They give me the feeling of being relaxed at the beach.
As can be seen above the devotional and it’s entire color scheme is of this teal and gold. Reminds me of the beach.

Each day starts off with a Bible verse before it selves into a short (no more than a couple paragraphs) devotional. It ends with a payer prompt of sorts. Nothing dramatically different from most other devotionals. The only difference is that you get small glimpses into different experiences of Caine’s. She tells short stories that relate to that day’s devotional.

Below is a few days excerpt, so you can get a feel for this devotional.

So my personal opinion is that you will be most interested if you are familiar with and already a fan of Christine Caine’s writing. I personally have not found anything extraordinary about this devotional thus far.

I’d give it ⭐️⭐️⭐️ Out of ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️.

It’s not a top devotional on my list of recommendations.

{FYI; I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest opinion.}

Monday, January 1, 2018

Creating a Vision Board

I see a vision board like a vision goal list. It lists the things I want to do, the things I entrust to God's capable hands. My expectations are that IF what I want to do is in God's will for me then it will happen and if it is not is God's will for me then that's perfectly fine as well. As my main goal is to be in the centre of God's will for my life, not my will or anyone else's but GOD's will. 

There are some negative connotations to the vision board and that often stems from 'The Secret' which follows the thinking that you can compel the universe to do what you want by simply visualizing it and that's not quite how it works. 

There are some things you need in order to create your vision board. First, think of the things in life you want to accomplish and entrust them to God's hand. Second, write them down (make the vision plain). Third, gather your supplies: poster board, magazines, markers, tape/glue/stapler. And lastly, create. You decide how you want to put everything up, do you have an organized way you want to put it up or perhaps you're adding as you go. There is no right or wrong way as long as it makes sense to you. Cut out photos and inspirational phrases that match your goals. Even add a prayer or two that you can pray over your goals and your tribe (your family/friends).

Check out mine below:

So this year I decided to do something I have not done in several years. Create a vision board and intentionally create goals (something I have not ever really done) for things I want to do in the future. It's nothing fancy or from Pinterest.

As you can see above, My vision board is not very large and has quite a few inspirational quotes and bible verses on it. But then there are the things I want to accomplish this year, such as ongoing on a cruise with my husband and children for our summer vacation this year. I also want to accomplish creating a stream of revenue for my family. One that is totally home-based so that after I have baby #5 this Spring I can be okay with staying home with him/her (we don't know the gender yet).

Also, you'll see my WORDs for this year: THRIVE, ENGAGE, and JOY. Most people usually stick to one word that they choose to emphasize in their life over the coming year. However, for me, I need these 3 words as they are very intentional and are related to one another. Apart of thriving and being engaged is to choose joy. I choose to be joyful in all things, no matter the circumstances and not to stress when I have a Savior who bears my burdens and offers me a lighter load of simply trusting Him.

100 Favorite Bible Verses for Children

This book operates like a devotional for children. These is a devotional and a scripture along with a cute illustration/drawing.

I like that it is like a starter into using devotionals. And for the parents who read a daily devotional (*waves hand*) this may be a nice addition to your library to get your kids involved in that daily reading time as well.

These are an example of what the two page devotional looks like. The first page is the actual devotional and the second page is the bible verse in a children friendly translation and a cute illustration. It's nothing too heavy yet enough to get them in God's Word and help them understand God's word and how it relates to their little lives.

{FYI: I received this book from the publisher in exchange for my HONEST opinion.}

Little Critter Little Blessings Collection

Ok, as a mom I absolutely LOVE when we can receive these collections to review. It is an awesome deal to be able to get four full stori...