Wednesday, March 12, 2014

I am Essentially SpOiled with Young Living Oils!

Let's be honest. Being a mom is hard! If your days are anything like mine you often AWAKEN with no EN-R-GEE, but you are determined to have the day you ENVISION, full of JOY and fun with your GENTLE BABY! But let's be FRANKENCENSEable. Our days are not always as ROSEy as we would like and THIEVES try to come in and try to CYPRESS your desire to LIVE WITH PASSION. If you only had and EXODUS from the PRESENT TIME! All you want is to PANAWAY to some PEACE AND CALMING! Well, friends, no more need to PINE for some DEEP RELIEF. The THYME to BREATHE AGAIN is now! DILL with your busy days with Young Living Oils. The StAGE is set for you to live with ABUNDANCE and be Essentially SpOILed.

Corny? Maybe. But the truth is that Young Living Essential Oils have truly been a blessing to our family. We have used our oils daily to boost our immune systems, treat minor ailments, to clean house, and more. If you have been thinking about giving them a try I would love to help you. This is a great time to go ahead and become a distributor! On top of the fantastic deal you get by purchasing the Premium Kit, I will be sending the next 5 people who use me as their sponsor a free copy of of The Quick Reference Guide for Using Essential Oils, plus you will now have access to the distributor discount on all of Young Living's Essential Oils!

 Have questions? Leave me a comment or email me at and I will answer any questions you have! Be sure to read about how I decided on Young Living Oils!

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Monday, March 10, 2014

Virtue Training Bible Giveaway!!!

"All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work." 2 Timothy 3:16-17

I believe that verse with all my heart. But sometimes I forget to dig out the verses that are going to be helpful for instruction to my children (and let's be honest, to myself as well!) I have plenty of books that offer topical studies. But is there anything better than just opening up the Bible and letting God's Word speak?

You may remember my blog post in 2012 about the Child Training Bible. I believed that tool to be a 'must have' in every parent's tool belt. And I still believe that! But I'm pleased to introduce you to the latest creation from Mindy... The Virtue Training Bible!

This system works exactly like the Child Training Bible, but has an entirely new set of verses to highlight. This time you will find 42 virtues with topics including Honesty, Humility, Kindness, Faithfulness, Endurance, and Purity. Each of the 42 virtues has a list of bible verses that you highlight in colors according to the charts provided. You'll then tab that page with the same color so that you can easily open the bible to that particular virtue. This is not only a time saver when you are looking for a specific topic, but it also allows you to address an issue quickly and directly from God's Word! As if that weren't enough, there are also prayers to go along with each virtue! So you can sit down and immediately cover a virtue from the Bible and then pray about it. Beautiful!

Much of the benefit (and fun!) is in the building of the training bible! I love it as much as my kids. I really enjoy pouring over the various scriptures and highlighting them. Like the CTB, you will need a Bible of your choice. The exact size of the VTB Charts is 8.75” by 5.75”. So you'll want to keep that in mind as you choose which Bible to use for the VTB. You'll also need highlighters and tabs. You can use colored pencils, twistable crayons, or the suggested Sharpie highlighters. I like to tackle this project one topic at a time and read the verses together with my sons as we highlight them. What a great bible study as we're preparing a fantastic tool to be used over and over!

You can find the card kit, Bibles, highlighters, and tabs here.

Want a chance to win your own Virtue Training Bible card kit? Mrs. Dunn is generously offering one card kit to be given away!! (bible, tabs and highlighters not included) Follow the rafflecopter instructions for a chance to win a VTB kit! ~Christa

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Wednesday, March 5, 2014

TruthQuest History Review

I was never a fan of history when I was in school. Ok, if I'm being honest, I was not much of a fan of school when I was in school. Perhaps that's why the Lord then put me in a position of teaching Kindergarteners for a year and then mentoring elementary students for another six years. And now, He has blessed me with homeschooling my own sons! (Which includes history...) We are in our tenth year of homeschooling and I LOVE it! And guess what, I LOVE history! Imagine that.

Because I have come to love history so very much, you will find my book shelves lined with fabulous read alouds from every era. I've had the opportunity to try several different approaches to teaching history. And at the end of the day, our family always comes back to hands-on activities and excellent literature.

TruthQuest History is just such an approach. In fact, it can be used almost any way you prefer! In our home, we use the Tapestry of Grace. But the information found in the TruthQuest books really helps us to dig just that much deeper and bring to life the people we're studying! The flexibility makes it an easy fit for many homes.

The guide begins with a few pages just for mom and dad. These pages are loaded with terrific advice, but it will never tell you one specific way to use this curriculum. It allows you, the parent, to decide the best way to learn in your own home... reminding you that you are in charge, not the curriculum. Sometimes we need just such a reminder. It suggests that you decide what fits your family. If you have younger children, it encourages the use of hands on activities with building blocks, paints, etc. If your child is older, they are encouraged to go deeper on a subject by doing more research. This makes it an easy fit for all ages!

After a lengthy table of contents you will find the 'read aloud' parts of TruthQuest. An older child could feel free to read these pages on his own and then discuss them together with his parents. If you are working with multiple ages you could read aloud to everyone at one time. These pages are not full of the dry, dull text that I so disliked in school. It is as if the author is sitting down with the reader and explaining history in an easy to digest style.

After the commentary, you will find a section titled "Dig In." This is where you can bring in books to read together or have children read independently. These books are all incredible "living" books. And the list is extensive! Not only is there a nice long list, but there are appropriate warnings listed beside the titles. This is a fabulous resource because, let's be honest, how many of us have the time to pre-read every book? They also provide approximate ages for each book so you'll know right away if the book is a fit for your family. Many of the books listed are available at your local library. But if you want to purchase them for your own library, you can easily do so online, in bookstores, or at local thrift stores as well! In addition to books, you'll also find audio and video options sprinkled throughout. If that weren't enough, they'll give you plenty of ideas for activities and art!

"Express Your Heart" is found throughout the "Dig In" sections. In this area you can get as creative as you like! You may use art, music, composition, poetry, story telling/writing, acting, or any other way your child learns best to really grab hold of the ideas taught. This helps us to reach out to our children in ways that they learn and recall information. So if you have a child with a creative bent, run with this section! If you don't, you are certainly never required to complete it.

"ThinkWrite" is a terrific part of the study that allows your student to really chew on the information given to them by thinking, and sometimes, writing. If your child isn't a writer, you could use this section to open up fantastic discussions.

They also recommend various books to be used as 'spines' through your study. You'll easily recognize many of the titles. Streams of Civilization, Story of the World, Greenleaf, and of course the Bible are among the titles in the Beginnings study. This makes it very easy for you to create a history curriculum and style that is your own, using your favorite resources. Or, none at all! You can simply read the study guide on its own and have plenty of information to enjoy together. If you already have a history curriculum that you love, you can easily add the reading from the TruthQuest study guide to deepen your history study time.

However, my favorite part of TruthQuest is the list of living books in the back of the study guide. If for no other reason, this alone is reason enough to own the TruthQuest series. TruthQuest says that they are not giving you books to read and then leading you through a structured curriculum of each book. But instead they are providing a lengthy list of rich history books that you can choose to use to learn history!

I am very impressed with the guide, the list of books, audios, and videos, and the price! You can purchase the book, the PDF or both at a very reasonable price! But how do you choose where to start? This link will be very valuable. There are plans of study for one to eight years as well as how to place multiple children. Tour their site and you'll find supplements that may be a great fit for your family. There are lapbook materials, notebooking pages, mini book ideas, and more!

Whether you use this as your core history curriculum, or as a supplement to the spine you are using now, I believe you will find great value in its pages. TruthQuest has outdone themselves and I'm so pleased to have found such a rich resource!

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Debt Countdown Just for fun

We have begun the kick butt phase of our get out of debt plan. This is what we owe until we can consider either selling or renting the house out (yes, we do plan on moving closer to my husband's job). I may amend it to just show all of the debt once I have a chance to look it up.

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