Tag Archive | giveaway

Sacred Ground/Sticky Floors Book Review and Giveaway

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About the Book

How Less Than Perfect Parents Can Raise (Kind of) Great Kids Sacred Ground, Sticky Floors by Jami Amerine
Eugene, OR – If one of your finest motherhood moments involves sitting in the back of a police cruiser with powdered doughnut on your face, being held for questioning for possession of narcotics, meet Jami Amerine, your new BFF.

Affectionally called the Lucille Ball of the Internet, Amerine, a mother of six  has often found herself in moments of motherhood mayhem like the police cruiser incident. It was in one of those moments when a text from a friend began to change her perspective on mothering. It took her eyes off the
mess and she began to focus on the sacred in each moment. “I’m sure the words ‘sacred ground’ conjure up some images for you and, most likely, they aren’t visions of where you are standing right now,” says Amerine. “If, like me, you’ve stepped on a Lego while barefoot, it can be difficult to wrap your
mind around the divine qualities of the path beneath your feet. But the place where you stand now, the place where you care for and lead those you love, is sacred ground.”

Amerine believes the essence of
parenting is less a laundry list of “how-to’s” or “three guarantees to raise perfect, God-fearing children,” and more a step by step trusting of a God who calls us daughters. Maybe you’re the mom, like Amerine, who sent her child to military school or watched a child walk away from the faith you worked so hard to instill. Or, maybe you’ve somehow bought into the parenting lie that it’s your fault when your kids make poor choices, do things you’ve never dreamed of, or choose to live with values far from your own.
In Sacred Ground, Sticky Floors, Amerine takes mothers of all ages inside the joyful chaos of motherhood, sharing
her adventures and mishaps and encouraging moms to let go of “perfect” parenting and find rest in the perfect
Parent.

While Amerine relates to women who feel they’ve messed up as a mom—believing they’ve failed their children,
their spouse, and their God—she offers hope and shares what she has discovered:
• The biggest parenting lie we often believe
• Why we need to seek the Bible and the wisdom of spiritual giants
• Why we can’t make our kids love Jesus
• How to rest in our identity as daughters of a perfect Father
• Why our belief in Jesus is the thermostat for our home
• How we need to let Jesus be Jesus for our children
“The sacred ground of my home, where my children will learn about Jesus Christ, where He dwells with us has
sticky floors,” says Amerine. “In my journey as mother, I have given up my dignity, my last French fry, and my
whole heart. I now believe this journey we’re on is not about being a perfect parent. It is about being parented by a
perfect Father. It is about uncovering and trusting that perfect Parent so you can parent with your messes and
flaws and be present for little human beings in want.”

Meet the Author

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Jami Amerine posts about Jesus, parenting, marriage, and the general chaos of life. She holds a master’s degree in Education, Counseling, and Human Development.

She’s been featured on numerous occasions on foreverymom.com and several other syndicated sites
including Scary Mommy and Mamalode.

She’s also been featured on Fox News, Today Parenting, and Huffington Post.

Jami loves her husband and kids, is afraid of flying, addicted to Jesus, Facebook, blogging, and babies. She loves to travel and hang at her parents’ lake house outside of Houston. Her dad is her #1 fan. She has run the gamut in
trying to raise perfect humans and is proud to say… she failed. They are imperfectly wonderful! She is a Christian who tends to get snarky and is anti-Jesus fish bumper stickers because she is a lousy driver.

Jami and her husband, Justin, have six kids, are active in foster care advocacy and reform, and live in Texas.  Learn more about Jami at www.sacredgroundstickyfloors.com

Author’s Interview

1. Jami, you and your husband, Justin, have six children ranging from young adult to preschooler. Tell us a bit about your family.

Justin and I have been married for 26 years.  His cousin introduced us.  We have 4 biological children. Maggie is 23, she is married and runs an embroidery shop from her home. John is 20, he is our Marine. Luke, who wrote the afterword to my new book, just turned 19, he lives with us and works and studies yoga.  And then Sophie is 16, she is a junior in high school.  Then, we started all over with foster care and adoption.  We met Sam for the first time when he was 10 days old.  He is now six and in kindergarten.  Charlie, was three months old when we first met him.  He is now 4.  We have had some short-term foster placements and one very long one.  The long-term foster placement was with us for two years, she has been gone a year now.  We relocated to the North Houston area a year ago.  We are 5 minutes from my parents and sister.  My brother and his family live about 10 miles away.  We are very close to my family, not just in proximity.

2. You interact with women daily through your blog and ministry, particularly moms. What do you think are some of the biggest issues that moms are facing?

Well, there are health and marital struggles, as always.  But I think one of the biggest struggles Christian moms face is the truth of who they are in Christ.  We are daughters.  Our motherhood did not negate our birthright as daughters.   When our kids are failing, it is easy to let that burden define us.  I have come to a place in my walk where I recognize that my kids are wholly a part of me and wholly apart from me.  There are so many things I want for my children, protecting their innocence seems like the biggest hill to climb in this day and age.  But, I really believe God and what He says about me and my children.  We are righteous because of He who died.  When I parent or correct them from this place, the world seems a lot less hopeless.  

3. If you spend any time on Facebook or other social media, motherhood is often painted as this exhausting life that requires hiding in the bathroom and drinking copious amounts of wine just to make it through. It may get a laugh but why do you think our culture has this view of motherhood? Our culture may think it is funny, but I am a good mom.  The majority of my readers are good moms.  And you know what, I really like my kids.  They make me laugh.  I enjoy their company.  I am tired, sometimes I need a medicinal fix, but I am proud to say, I love my babies.  I want younger women to know that.  This is a great gig. 

4. You write that of all the lies you believed in the earlier years of parenting, the greatest was believing that your hard work could bring you peace. Can you explain more?  I really believed in what I call an if/then Jesus.  If I am perfect, then my kids won’t struggle.  And I worked tirelessly to be everything.  When they or I stumbled, I tucked tail and waited for the wrath.  Wrath that was resolved on Calvary.  Good things happen and bad things happen.  God remains.  I love this about Him.  

5. How do we let go of the hold we often have on our kids and let God parent us?  Believe Him.  Not just believe He exists, BELIEVE what He says about you.  You are His.  They are His.  We are their brothers and sisters in Christ.  He is just good.  We are totally in His care.  And so are they.  It takes practice… but this is my battle cry.  

6. What encouragement can you offer moms who are exhausted from trying to be the perfect parent?  You are perfected.  He chose you, specifically for these humans, who He knows and loves even more than you can fathom.  You do what you are best at, let Him fill in the gaps.  Pray without ceasing, and believe.  And never be afraid to ask, HELP MY UNBELIEF.  I know for a fact, He is totally cool with that request. 

May your floors be sticky and your calling ordained.  Jami

Book Review

I enjoyed reading Sacred Ground Sticky Floors (How Less-Than-Perfect Parents Can Raise Kind of Great Kids.  Jami shares her ups and downs of parenting and is totally relatable. I appreciate her transparency in being a mother. I recommend your read her latest book. In fact…

Giveaway

Now it’s your turn to read Sacred Ground Sticky Floors 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 how you train up your child(ren). Your name will then be placed in a drawing.

On November 12, 2018, we will randomly select a winner. The winner must supply his/her mailing address to us no later than November 19, 2018.

One Free copy will then be shipped directly to the winner’s address provided. The winner must reside in the continental United States of America.

Blessings,  Rebecca

 

Extreme Makeover

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Have you ever watched ABC’s Extreme Home Makeover with Ty Pennington? I did and loved it! Well, this week my company did something similar. Our goal is to remodel one of our hotels. A crew of 43 contractors traveled from Southern California to remodel 20 rooms, 3 floors in 1 week. Amazing, eh?

Sunday, some of our employees and volunteers teamed up with the crew to kick off demolition by removing items from the rooms. Check out this video from our https://www.facebook.com/plugins/video.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Fmounthermon%2Fvideos%2F10155410624388120%2F&show_text=0&width=400“>Facebook page. It was very exciting!

This event reminds me of how sometimes God conducts makeovers on us. It’s been my experience that He prunes our attitudes, beliefs, behaviors, etc. so that we bear much fruit.

He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit,

while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes

so that it will be even more fruitful.

-John 15:2

How about you…Have you ever been a part of an extreme makeover before? I would love to hear about it. Please feel free to share with us.

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Giveaway!

Would you like to win a free $50 Amazon card to purchase books, etc.? Please leave a comment below by 5:00pm PST on May 8, 2017 and your name will be placed in a drawing. Winner to be announced on May 8, 2017.

Congratulations Claire…You are our giveaway winner! Please send me your address and I will mail your $50 Amazon gift card to you.

Q&A With Dan Seaborn, Book Review & Giveaway

I don’t know about you, but I always enjoy reading books on parenting to hone my own motherly skills. This week, I would like to share with you a Q&A with Dan Seaborn, his new book Parenting with Grace and Truth review and a giveaway. Please welcome Dan!

Meet the Author

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Dan encourages individuals and families to lead Christ-centered homes. As a featured speaker at various churches and large-scale events such as Promise Keepers weekends, American Association of Christian Counselors (AACC) conferences, and university assemblies, Dan has earned recognition as a powerful and passionate communicator. In addition, he has authored twelve books, has established himself as a media personality on national radio and regional television, and holds a master’s degree in Christian ministries. Dan is the founder of Winning At Home, Inc., and serves as the Director for the Marriage & Family Division of the AACC.

About the Book

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Helicopter or free-range? Phone or no phone? Sleepovers or no sleepovers? Public, private, or homeschool? Tough love or grace?

Regardless of the decision you’re making, everyone (and their mother) has an opinion. But, while parenting may not come with step-by-step answers, it doesn’t mean we’re without a guide.  Former pastor, author, and speaker Dan Seaborn believes Jesus is the ultimate example of a parent and that by applying His example of grace and truth, we will find hope and a future for ourselves and our children. In his upcoming book, Parenting with Grace and Truth, Dan takes parents into the Bible to help them understand Jesus’ character, explains how He models grace and truth, and teaches them how to apply Jesus’ example to their parenting.

 If you ares just starting out on your journey as parents or have been parents for decades, this resource may be of interest to you.   

My Review

Page 60 grabbed my attention when Dan wrote about how to handle growing pains, because I am a mom of a teen boy and teen girl. In his book, I agree with his point that our parenting skills play a key role in their lives. For instance, setting boundaries. Dan’s book is very timely in our family as we’ve been discussing important dating boundaries.

Q&A with Dan Seaborn

Parenting with Grace and Truth

  1. Dan, tell us a bit about your own family and why you chose to write Parenting with Grace and Truth.

Jane and I have been married for 35 years. We live in West Michigan. We have four children. Our oldest son, Alan, and his wife, Annaliese, live in West Michigan as well. Alan works with me at Winning At Home. Our son, Josh, and his wife, Amy, live in Camden, NJ where Josh is a pastor at an inner city church. They are expecting their first child in February. Our daughter, Crissy, and her husband, Jonathan, live in West Michigan. They have our two grandchildren, Jackson and Naya. Our youngest daughter, Anna, lives at home and works with the youth at our local Boys and Girls Club.

I wrote this book for parents because I encountered a time of parenting in my life that I never anticipated. Even though I worked with teens for many years I had never personally experienced the challenges of raising a child who is rebelling. In this book, I took the approach of understanding what it takes to balance grace with truth. I want to be a forgiving parenting but I don’t want to move into being an enabling parent. Balancing these two things is very difficult. I try to address that topic in this book.

  1. Why do you think parents today struggle with the facts (truth) and the manner in which we enforce these facts (grace)?

Our society struggles with knowing what truth really is. In fact, absolute truth seems to be almost nonexistent. As a parent, this is why it is foundational for us to base our views of truth on the Bible and apply those principles to family life. The danger is that enforcing these truths turns into legalism and it is obvious why we don’t want to be a legalistic family. That is the whole purpose of this book, to strike that balance.

  1. What happens if we parent with all-truth or, in reverse, all-grace?

If we parent with all truth, as stated before, we run the risk of being legalistic. Legalism focuses more on traditions than truth. Many people parent based on what their parents said and did versus what the Bible says. The ramifications will result in dysfunctional families and possibly wayward children. If you go to all grace, then your children don’t have boundaries and you run the risk of creating rebellion at the other end of the spectrum. The key with both of these is that no child fits into any perfect mold. One child might require more truth and the other might require more grace. Parenting is a balancing act.

  1. What is the Jesus Style of parenting?

Obviously Jesus did not parent in the traditional sense here on earth, but what he brought to the table was a new way of dealing with the law which is the truth. Previous to his arrival the scribes and Pharisees made the letter of the law most important. Jesus made the application of the law more important. Giving us hope because no one can follow the law perfectly. Jesus was the grace giver.

  1. What are some small steps we can take, today, to begin parenting like Jesus, especially if this is new to us?

There are many simples steps you can take. A couple obvious ones are to ask people who know you well if there are any flaws they see in the way you parent. Be open to constructive criticism. I would also encourage you to pray and ask Jesus for guidance on how to be a better parent. Part of that is admitting you need help. The way you react to these small steps probably indicates the type of parent you are. If the idea of seeking constructive criticism makes you defensive, this is a red flag. Be open to growing as a person and receive instruction from people around you.

Giveaway!

Now it’s your turn to read Parenting with Grace and Truth 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 how you parenting with grace and truth. Your name will then be placed in a drawing by January 30, 2017.

On January 31, 2017 we will randomly select a winner. The winner must supply his/her mailing address in the continental United States to us no later than February 5, 2017. One Free copy will then be shipped directly to the winner’s address provided.

Disclaimer: No compensation was received for this book review; just passing along a good read.

Rice & Rocks Blog Tour

This week, I’m part of a blog tour featuring a new children’s book called Rice & Rocks by Sandra L. Richards. I did not receive compensation for their book. Just passing on a good read.

Blessings, Rebecca

BeachBoundBooks is pleased to be coordinating a Blog Tour for the charming children’s book written by Sandra L. Richards and illustrated by Megan Kayleigh Sullivan, Rice & Rocks. The tour will run from August 23 – September 13, 2016.

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About the Book

Rice & Rocks by Sandra L Richards

Title: Rice & Rocksl | Author: Sandra L. Richards | Illustrator: Megan Kayleigh Sullivan Publisher: Wise Ink Creative Publishing | Publication Date: August 23, 2016 Genre: Children’s Picture Book | Number of Pages: 32

Book Description:
Tradition takes flight in Rice & Rocks, a picture book celebrating culture and diversity.
Giovanni’s friends are coming over for Sunday dinner, and his grandmother is serving rice and beans. Giovanni is embarrassed he does not like ‘rice and rocks’ and worries his friends will think the traditional Jamaican dish is weird. But his favorite Auntie comes to the rescue. She and Giovanni’s pet parrot, Jasper, take usin a magical journey across the globe, visiting places where people eat rice and rocks. This exciting story celebrates the varied traditions of every culture while also highlighting the delicious similarities that bring us all together.
Take a look inside the book…

About the Author: Sandra L. Richards

Sandra L Richards

Sandra L. Richards is the debut picture book author of Rice & Rocks. With Rice & Rocks, Sandra brings a unique contribution to the world of children’s books. An American-born daughter of Jamaican immigrant parents, she hopes the book will serve as an educational resource for families seeking to teach their children the value of their heritage and the importance of cultural diversity.
Learn more about Sandra at www.sandralrichards.com.

About the Illustrator: Megan Kayleigh Sullivan

Megan Sullivan

Megan Kayleigh Sullivan graduated from Rhode Island School of Design in 2012 with a degree in Illustration. She is currently working as a freelance illustrator and storyboard artist, and aspires towards a career in the film and animation industry as a concept artist, character designer, or visual development artist (or d., all of the above). She enjoys traveling, writing, telling stories, and hula-hooping.
Visit her at www.357meg.com.

Blog Tour Giveaway

Prize: One winner will receive a $25 Amazon gift card or $25 PayPal cash prize, winner’s choice

Giveaway ends: September 13, 11:59 pm, 2016

Open to: Internationally

How to enter: Please enter by visiting BeachBound Books.

Terms and Conditions: NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW. A winner will be randomly drawn through the Rafflecopter widget and will be contacted by email within 48 hours after the giveaway ends. The winner will then have 72 hours to respond. If the winner does not respond within 72 hours, a new draw will take place for a new winner. Odds of winning will vary depending on the number of eligible entries received. This contest is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook. This giveaway is sponsored by the author, Sandra L. Richards and is hosted and managed by Stacie from BeachBoundBooks. If you have any additional questions feel free to send an email to stacie@BeachBoundBooks.com.

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Guest Blog by Dan & Jacquelyn Anderson and Giveaway

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The 10 Myths of Teen Dating

When Dan approached me to share his new book co-authored with his daughter, Jacquelyn, I was thrilled! If you have children entering the dating arena, it is a must read! Once I started reading, I found it hard to put it down as the words echoed in my mind with my own children. I have a fourteen-year-old son who’s entering his Freshman year of high school and an eleven-year-old daughter who’s entering her second year of middle school. The 10 Myths of Teen Dating helped me as a parent navigate this pivotal point in their live. I did not receive compensation for sharing their book. Just passing on a good read.

His daughter, Jacquelyn Anderson, has had a great deal of experience listening to girls’ relationship challenges and concerns from the time she was a teenager and now as a high school English teacher in the Pacific Northwest.

Raised by two fellow high school teachers, Jacquelyn can attest to how difficult the teenage years can be regarding dating and relationships and how important it is for parents and their daughters to have open communicatioWhathring this critical time. That’s why she has partnered with her father, Daniel Anderson, to co-author The 10 Myths of Teen Dating: Truths Your Daughter Needs to Know to Date Smart, Avoid Disaster and Protect Her Future, to be published by David C. Cook in September 2016. As a daughter of a father who freely admits to making a lot of mistakes during her formative teenage, dating years, Jacquelyn offers key insights at key moments giving parents an inside track into the minds of their daughters, their confusing culture, and how they, as parents, can help their teens guard their hearts and date smart—with their futures in mind.
“Change minds, change hearts, and change lives.” For all of his adult life, Daniel Anderson has been dedicated to this ideal. Whether as a veteran teacher in the public schools, coach, youth pastor, mentor, or father, he has lived out this philosophy. With a relentless drive for excellence, Daniel has been a college All-American basketball player, top producing realtor, and inspiring educator for 23 years.

As a young teacher Daniel was troubled by how his students approached dating and relationships and began to teach them myths about dating. He is bringing that same passion and commitment to help parents teach their daughters about dating, with his first book, The 10 Myths of Teen Dating: Truths Your Daughter Needs to Know to Date Smart, Avoid Disaster and Protect Her Future, to be published by David C. Cook in September 2016 and co-authored with his daughter Jacquelyn.

When he is not trying to change lives, Daniel can be found rooting for the Portland Trailblazers, continuing to raise his three grown children, being a committed husband of 27 years, and following Christ’s calling at Bridgetown Church in Portland, Oregon.

Please help me welcome Dan and Jacquelyn! Blessings, Rebecca pt1 (1).JPG

A Father and Daughter’s Insight Into Teen Dating: How to Know if Your Daughter is in a Secret Relationship? Jacquelyn recently went to visit a friend stationed in Okinawa to hang out with her 3 year old for a couple weeks. His name is Ethan and he is a tiny spitfire. A few days into the visit, Ethan was running around the dining room table in an attempt to avoid putting on his clothes for school. Her friend pulled the classic mom-reverse-psychology and announced “Okay, fine, no school for you today.” Faster than lighting, Ethan was in his shirt and running toward the car. Sometimes when we tell your children “no”, they have a desire to do the opposite. This is uniquely true when it comes to dating. From our own father-daughter experience, saying a hard “no” to dating just made Jacquelyn’s dating life go underground. She was definitely not alone amongst her friends in getting involved in secret relationships. Here are 5 possible signs that your daughter is in a secret relationship:

She is insanely protective of her cell phone Yes, they are usually attached at the hip to this thing, but if it seems more than usual it could mean that she is protecting her communication with a certain someone. Cell phones are the lifeline for anyone in a relationship, especially one that is a secret. Privacy is very important to your teenage daughter, so this is a tough issue to tackle. But both my daughter and I believe a phone that is password protected is an invitation to secrecy for your daughter.

She is vague about the details of her plans Girls are communicators and planners by nature. If she doesn’t have concrete information for you about where she is going, what she is doing, and with who this might be a sign that she is hiding something from you. You should ask many questions about her plans. This is no guarantee she will be honest with you, but at least you will have a few details that you can verify.

She is acting differently although nothing has appeared to change While mood swings are common for teenagers, be cautious of a drastic change in attitude or even your daughter’s appearance. If she used to ride horses and wear pink, but she suddenly comes home and wants to buy an all-black wardrobe, this could mean that she is being influenced by an outside source. The all-consuming rush of hormones that comes with a boyfriend can cause your daughter to lose sight of some of the things that were once important to her.

She wants to spend more time than before at a specific location If your daughter is lactose-intolerant, but suddenly wants to get ice cream daily after school, this could be a sign that she is hiding something from you. If she suddenly wants to go to youth group two hours early, but never has before, there might just be a certain someone there that she wants to spend time with. Changes in routine should be acknowledged, particularly if there is no other obvious catalyst for the change.

She experiences a change in friend groups or loses friends she once had before Out of all the possible signs, this one is the most alarming. As your daughter dives into a secret relationship, she will need to clear out some serious time in her schedule to plan to see her boyfriend. This could mean putting friends that once were close to her on the back burner in favor of her secret boyfriend, his friends, or both. We talk a great deal in our book about the need to communicate and teach your daughter about dating rather that just forbidding her from dating. But, if your family agreement involves not dating then it may be wise to consider the possibility that your daughter could be in a secret relationship. Daniel and Jacquelyn Anderson are a father-daughter author team whose first book The Ten Myths of Teen Dating: Truths Your Daughter Needs to Know to Date Smart, Avoid Disaster, and Protect Her Future is now available on pre-sale at Amazon.com.

Now it’s your turn to read 10 Myths of Dating as we are giving away one complimentary copy. Simply comment below oonhow you’ve taugh your child(ren) about dating? Your name will then be placed in our drawing.

On August 29, 2016, we will randomly select a winner. The winner must live in the continental US and supply his/her mailing address to us no later than September 5, 2016. One Free copy of each will then be shipped directly to the winner’s address provided.

Wedding Anniversary

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This week we will celebrate 15 years of marriage. We met at 32, married at 35, had our son at 36 and our daughter at 39. Hmmm, that makes me a midlife Mom.

Time with my best friend has gone by way too fast. I can’t believe our son is entering Freshman year of high school and our daughter is entering 7th grade in the Fall. I still remember cuddling my babies.

pixWhen I tell folks that Randy and I have been together for 17 1/2 years, some ask, “How do you stay together or how do you make it work?” The answer is unequivocally our faith in God keeps our relationship pressing through life’s ups and downs. Our core belief helps us invest in the three C’s of our relationship.

  1. Caring – Both of us genuinely care for each other which promotes healthy love, respect and trust. – 1 Corinthians 13:4-7
  2. Communication – We talk to each other about anything and everything which promotes a healthy friendship. – Luke 24:14
  3. Commitment – We’re both in it for the long haul, because we know God has a plan and a purpose for each one of us. – Jeremiah 29:11

As a way of celebrating our anniversary, I’m giving away select children’s ebooks now through June 7-9, 2016. Simply click on my name below and it will link you to Amazon. Enjoy!

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Rebecca Krusee

How long have you been married and what are your secrets to success?

 

A Buss From Lafayette Blog Tour

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BeachBoundbooks is pleased to be coordinating a Blog Tour for the middle grade/young adult novel A Buss From Lafayette by Dorothea Jensen from April 11 – May 2, 2016.

About the Book
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Title: A Buss From Lafayette
Author: Dorothea Jensen
Genre: Middle Grade/Young Adult Historical Fiction
Recommended Ages: 10-17
Number of Pages: 266
Publisher: BQB Publishing
Publication Date: April 22, 2016
Synopsis: Fourteen-year-old Clara Hargraves lives on a farm in Hopkinton, a small New Hampshire town, during the early 19th century. She has a couple of big problems. First of all, she has a stepmother, Priscilla, who used to be her spinster schoolteacher aunt. Clara resents that her late mother’s older sister has not only married her father but is about to have a baby. To make matters worse, “Prissy Priscilla” keeps trying to make the rambunctious, clever, and witty Clara act like a proper young lady. Secondly, Clara has red hair, making her a target for teasing by a handsome older boy, Dickon Weeks, and by her pretty seventeen-year-old Dread Cousin Hetty. Clara, however, has a secret plan he hopes will change this. During the last week of June, 1825, Clara’s town is abuzz because the famous General Lafayette is about to visit their state during his farewell tour of America. In those eventful seven days, Clara learns a lot about her family, Hetty, Dickon, herself, and about Lafayette. She comes to understand the huge and vital role the young French aristocrat played in America’s Revolutionary War and to see that her problems might not be quite so terrible after all.
About the Author
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Dorothea Jensen, born in Boston, Massachusetts, grew up in Chillicothe, Illinois. She majored in English literature at Carleton College. After teaching high-school English and serving as a Peace Corps volunteer in Brazil, she earned a master s degree in education at the University of New Mexico. In 1989, Harcourt Brace Jovanovich published Dorothea s novel for young readers about the American Revolution, The Riddle of Penncroft Farm. In addition to other honors, it was named an International Reading Association Teacher s Choices Selection and is read in classrooms throughout the U.S. A Buss from Lafayette is set in the small New Hampshire town where Dorothea lives. Two things inspired her to write this story. First, was learning that Lafayette passed right by her house during his 1824-5 Triumphal Tour. Another was meeting a woman whose ancestor received a kiss from Lafayette. That buss, passed down through generations, eventually came to Dorothea. This sparked her interest in Lafayette s contributions to our struggle for independence. Dorothea also enjoys writing rhyming verse.She has written a series of award-winning illustrated modern Christmas stories in verse featuring Santa’s Izzy Elves.

For more information about Dorothea and her books, please visit  http://www.dorotheajensen.com/
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Review
A Buss from Lafayette is a delightful historical fiction. I thoroughly enjoyed going back in time and reliving a bit old-fashioned American history. Dorothea’s story has a nice balance of history, suspense, scandal, twists, scenery, and memorable characters. I recommend her book for all ages as it is a good read.
Blog Tour Giveaway
Prize: One winner will receive a $25 Amazon gift card or $25 PayPal cash prize,
winner’s choice
Giveaway ends: May 2, 11:59 pm, 2016
Open to: Internationally
How to enter: Please enter using the Rafflecopter widget below.
Terms and Conditions:
NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. VOID WHERE
PROHIBITED BY LAW. A winner will be randomly drawn through
the Rafflecopter widget on Beach Bound Books Promotions site and will be contacted by email within 48 hours after the giveaway ends. The winner will then have 72 hours to respond. If the winner does not respond within 72 hours, a new draw will take place for a new winner. Odds of winning will varydepending on the number of eligible entries received. This contest is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook. This giveaway is sponsored by the author, Dorothea Jensen and is
hosted and managed by Stacie from BeachBoundBooks. If you have any additional
questions– feel free to send and email to stacie@BeachBoundBooks.com.
Disclaimer: No compensation was received for this book tour. Just passing along a good read.
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Better Together Book Review & Giveaway

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Jill Savage is an author and international speaker who helps moms be the best they can be. As the Founder and CEO of Hearts at Home, Jill has led thousands of moms to keep their priorities straight and their heart in tune with God. A mother of five, Jill is passionate about strengthening families. Jill and her leadership team at Hearts at Home bring encouragement to over 10,000 moms a year with their annual conferences. She is the author of 10 books, including her upcoming release Better Together(Moody), No More Perfect Kids, No More Perfect Moms, Living With Less So Your Family Has More, Real Moms…Real Jesus, and co-authored a book I recently reviewed with Dr. Todd  Cartmell called 8 Simple Tools to Raising Great Kids.

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Her latest book, Better Together, explores the notion that women are not designed to mother alone. We are designed to mother in relationship with other women who understand what a mom’s life is like. We’re also designed to mother in relationship with the God who created us. This book encourages every mother to find her mothering community, a place where she can both give and receive support in the many forms moms need. Beyond encouraging moms to be in community, Better Together teaches how to build a tribe and what to do together once you have one, such as learn together, help together, care together, share together, pray together, forgive together, and encourage together.

I love Jill’s new book! It made me reflect on my own relationships and how I can build them up and make them stronger. I especially love the fact her daughter, Anne McClane, co-wrote the book! Better Together is sprinkled with sound biblical advice from creating to cultivating friendships. My favorite chapter is Variety Is The Spice of Life where you can  assess your personality traits to help you better understand your mothering and friendships. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

Blessings, Rebecca

Disclaimer: No compensation was received for this book review. Just passing along a good read.

Giveaway!

Now it’s your turn to read Better Together as we’re giving away one FREE copy of each. We’d love to hear from other Moms or Dads are building healthy friendships. Simply tell us about one way you connect with others. Your name will then be placed in our drawing.

On May 2, 2016, we will randomly select a winner. The winner must live in the continental US and supply his/her mailing address to us no later than May 9, 2016. One Free copy of each will then be shipped directly to the winner’s address (Continental US only) provided.

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Guest Blog by Marilee Woodfield/Book Review

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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

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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.

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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

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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.

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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.