Tag Archive | contest

Guest Blog by Marilee Woodfield/Book Review

5166X4THWlL__AA160_

I was asked to review my guest blogger Marilee Woodfield’s latest book The 12-Day Nativity. Its timing is impeccable since Christmas is just around the corner.

In it, she shares some great ideas, scriptures, and songs to celebrate the twelve days leading up to Christmas together as a family. She shares adorable graphics depicting the nativity scene. Included are fun cut-outs and journal pages to use with your children. Marilee winds down her book by summarizing international nativity traditions. This year, my family’s nativity tradition will look a little different  as a result of The 12 Day Nativity.

Disclaimer: No compensation was received for this book review; just passing on a Good Read.

Marilee Woodfield is an author, blogger, early childhood educator, and cake decorator. You can find her preschool music work at kids-and-music.blogspot.com her fantastical cake creations at frostedinsanity.com and her several teacher resource books as well as her latest book The 12-Day Nativity on amazon.com, and at her blog 12daynativity.com which is dedicated to “all things nativity”. She and her family live in Carrollton, Texas. You can follow her on Pinterest and/or Facebook. Please welcome Marilee!

Blessings, Rebecca

photo

The Family Nativity

Excerpted from the 12-Day Nativity: Christmas Activities for a Christ-Centered Home, (Cedar Fort Publishing, 2015)

As a child I remember my family having one nativity set that was displayed each year.  It was a simple white set made of plaster, and the stable was built out of scrap wood and leftover paneling from our 1970’s chic basement.  The set always sat perched on top of the piano, surrounded by twinkle lights covered with angel hair (a spun-glass product that is hair-like and white-translucent).  The figures were not heavy, and it was always a challenge to find a spot where they would stand up in between the lights and angel hair.  Over the years our family nativity grew in “character” as heads were broken off and re-glued, and delicate features became worn with use.  The shepherds and wise men were referred to as the “German shepherds” and “wise guys”.  My sister affectionately labeled the sheep as “cheats” before she could pronounce them otherwise.  I was more concerned about the naked baby Jesus, and exasperated my mother as every time she passed the nativity she would find a dirty old rag or handkerchief covering the baby Jesus.  When she finally discovered the responsible party, I explained that I thought the baby Jesus must be cold.

Somehow, the family’s nativity set ended up at the home of one of by brothers, and was saved from the Goodwill pile by my sister-in-law who knew I had begun collecting nativities.  It had come to them as a “white elephant” gift exchange between siblings a few years prior, and it had been abandoned on a basement storage shelf for a few years.  The stable is warped, and I have to re-set the nails every year.  The figures have been broken and re-glued many times, leaving one to wonder what horrific tale of carnage they would tell.  It is by no means the most beautiful nativity in our home, but it is one of my favorites.  First as a symbol of happy Christmases past, and also because it reminds me of my relationship with the Savior – broken and fixed many times over, warped, not pretty, but loved and beloved just the same.

naticity

Do you have a family nativity for your home?  If not, find a favorite and pick a special spot to display it.  If you have small children, you may want to consider a set that will withstand sticky hands and a few bumps and bruises. There are lots of ways to celebrate the Nativity this season, The 12 Day Nativity has lots of suggestions for getting you started with your family nativity.

Giveaway!

Now it’s your turn to read The 12 Day Nativity as we’re giving away a FREE copy. I’d love to hear from you on how you celebrate Christmas with your children. Simply share a family tradition with us by commenting below. Your name will then be placed in a random drawing.

On October 30, 2015, we will randomly select a winner. The winner must supply his/her mailing address to us no later than November 3, 2015. One Free copy will then be shipped directly to the winner’s address provided.

Bonding with Your Child through Boundaries

51EOOGZpuhL__SX322_BO1,204,203,200_

JUNE HUNT is Founder and CSO (Chief Servant Officer) of Hope for the Heart, a worldwide biblical counseling ministry started in 1986. The ministry provides biblical hope and practical help in 27 languages and over 60 countries. She also hosts the award-winning radio program Hope In The Night. . Her numerous books include Seeing Yourself Through God’s EyesHealing the Hurting Heart, and Bonding with Your Teen through Boundaries.

Combined, the broadcasts air on nearly 900 outlets worldwide. One of the world’s leading biblical counselors, June is also an accomplished musician, popular speaker and top-selling author dedicated to presenting God’s Truth for Today’s Problems.

1530422_562761690483014_1992356889_n

Review

As a mother of a tween and a teen, I was riveted by all the sound biblical/parental advice given in June Hunt and PeggySue Wells’ book Bonding with Your Child through Boundaries! I struggled to put it down. I am excited to share my thoughts on it as well as offer you a chance to win your own FREE copy of Hunt’s book at the end of this post!

The first part of their book is devoted to explaining what are healthy boundaries and their benefits. In the second half, Hunt and Wells discuss tough topics such as lying, anger, cheating, cliques, wardrobe, disrespectfulness, gossip, tattling, whining, homework hassles, peer pressure, substance abuse, stealing, tardiness, etc. Each issue is thoroughly reviewed with an example and prudent tips are given on how to handle each situation.

Each page spoke to me as a Mom, because I’ve faced and may face trials in our family. Hunt and teach us how to draw and maintain boundary lines in order to build strong relationships with our precious children. While reading the chapter on back talk, my daughter said something sassy and rolled her eyes at me as if on queue. I put my book down, and tried implementing their simple recipe for respectful communication…and it worked!. Now, I have the tool to maintain the behavior until it becomes part of her character.

One of my favorite chapters is about bullying. As a society, it’s become epidemic as evidenced on many talk shows, social media, news and self-defense classes offered. Hunt and Wells give practical advice on how to look for signs of bullying, and what to do if your child is being bullied or is a bully.

Like you, I want to raise my son and daughter with strong godly character. Using sound tools such Bonding with Your Child through Boundaries helped me to be a better parent. So, if you too are looking for practical tips with spiritual insight, I highly recommend Bonding with Your Child through Boundaries!

Disclaimer: No compensation was received for this book review; just passing on a Good Read.

Giveaway!

Now it’s your turn to read Bonding with Your Child through Boundaries as we’re giving away a FREE copy. I’d love to hear from other Moms and Dads seeking to raise their children with godly character. Simply comment below on what boundaries you set and how do you implement/maintain them? Your name will then be placed in a drawing.

On September 14, 2015, we will randomly select a winner. The winner must supply his/her mailing address to us no later than September 21. One Free copy will then be shipped directly to the winner’s address provided.

Giveaway

Amazon $50 Gift Card Giveaway!

Like to read? Giving away Amazon $50 Gift Card. Take a look through my children’s book on Amazon and leave a comment stating which one you like the best, or suggest a topic you or your child would like to read. A random winner will be chosen on April 30, 2015.

DRUM ROLL PLEASE! AND THE WINNER IS…MAMAMUSEME! Congratulations! Please e-mail me your mailing address, and I’ll ship it. Thanks everyone for entering!

th

A Time For Everything

A TIME FOR EVERYTHING

There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens. – Ecclesiastes 1:1

One of the things I love about Spring is everything comes alive. The sun peaks out of its winter blanket, the flowers bloom, newborns arrive and the outdoors brim with activities.

tulips

I muse watching my pre-school class frolic with insects. It’s especially fun teaching them about the miracle of metamorphosis where a caterpillar transforms into a beautiful butterfly. When we read Eric Carle’s book, “The Very Hungry Caterpillar,” they burst out with laughter after the hungry caterpillar eats too much and is bulging.

caterpillarmonarch

Spring also hosts Easter which makes me believe God can take dead things and make them alive again.

resurrection

I don’t know about you, but for me it’s often hard to look for the rainbow when you’re in a storm.

rainbow

As the season progresses, I’ve made a conscious effort to look for God’s hand at work in nature, my life and other’s lives.

I saw His work in nature during my husband and I’s recent visit to Rio Del Mar Beach to study the Bible. As I watched the waves crash, I remembered in His Word, God tells the ocean how far to go.  Amazing!

As we soaked up the sun, God blessed us with a pack of humpback whales that spy hopped and cleared their spouts as they passed by.

spy hopspout

Then, there is His work in my life. Lately, I believe the Lord is teaching me to be thankful in all situations. My son, Austin, read II Timothy to me a few days ago where Paul reminds us that if we have food and clothes, we ought to be content. Ouch! True confession – I have a restless heart that longs for more, and often must remind myself to be happy with what I have.

 pyramidclothes

Finally, there is His work in the lives of others as evidenced in the life of Bethany Hamilton whose story was portrayed in the movie, Soul Surfer. She was viciously attacked by a shark and lost her left arm as a result.

Fast forward ten years, she’s married, has a baby boy, continues to surf, and is filming a new movie. It’s awesome to see how God is working in her life!

Bethany-Hamilton

Today, as I think about the various seasons, I’m reminded that God has taken my highs and lows, and weaved them into a colorful tapestry called life. I pray He’ll continue to give me insight into His plan and purpose for me and my family. I eagerly await His beckon, “Come and taste that the Lord is good.”

Reflection: Ask God to remind you of a season in your life He’s brought you through. What did you learn as a result?

Prayer: God, please help me to embrace the seasons of life as they are a part of your plan.