Thursday, July 24, 2014

Book Review: The Berenstain Bears- God Shows the Way

Now in a convenient 3 stories in one collection, young readers will learn from the Berenstain Bears just how important it is to serve and love one another. Written in level one of the I Can Read standards, this bind-up of stories from the Berenstain Bears Living Lights I Can Read series is sure to please young, emergent readers as well as parents and grandparents looking for good quality reading that will help practice early reading skills as well as teach lessons about serving and caring for others. Included in this collection are the following titles: Faith Gets Us Through, Have No Fear, God Is Near, and Piggy Bank Blessings. 

Faith Get's Us Through: The Bear Scouts are ready to earn their Cave Adventure Merit Badges.  How will Scout master Papa Bear help the cubs.  
This first book in the series had me laughing at Papa bear as he shows his confidence but after many hurdles finally gets out of the cave.  My children enjoyed the laughs through this story but it also was great to teach about faith and trust.   

Have no Fear, God is Near:  Sister Bear has overcome many fears like bugs, big dogs and storms.   But even with the reminder that God is always watching over her, there are some things that still scare the young cub. Will sister remember to trust in God when something spooky startles her?  
I enjoyed this story because many kids still have a fear even when they know and understand that God is near them.   My daughter is 6 and is very afraid of anyone in a costume when you can't see the person's face.   Going to parades and amusement parks has turned into uncontrollable shaking and crying from her.   She has had this fear for as long as I can remember.   It is very strange because she never had a bad or scary experience in her past.   In fact we have never ever done Santa or Easter bunny pictures.   We have always avoided them and always kept our focus on the true meaning for the holiday.  I like this story because it shows sister bear overcoming the fear!   

The last one is Piggy Bank Blessings:  Mama Bear thinks it is time to teach the cubs about saving money for something special.   Even the Bible says each one of us should put aside some of our earnings!   But will the bugs listen to Mama and Scripture, or will they spend their money on things they do not need? 
This story is great in teaching saving but I wish it would have touched more on our tithe to the Lord.   

Overall these books are fantastic and I love that they are the "I can Read" easy readers.   My daughter is still learning to read and these books are a great encourager to her.  This book was just released in June so go pick it up today





Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Summer 2014- Ice Cream Tour #6- Nelson's Ice Cream in Minnesota


This is already #6 in our Ice Cream tour!  Yes this is Nelson's Ice Cream and there are only two locations for this family run business, Stillwater Minnesota and St. Paul Minnesota.  

If you are looking for old fashion ice cream and a huge portion then this is the place to go!   Nelson's offers over 40 flavors of ice cream and the amount you get huge and the price is fantastic! 
We all ordered the kid size and none of us finished the monster portion size.   








So since my ice cream was overflowing the cup I put half of it in a bowl.   I finished all of the monster cookie flavor but became to full to eat the butter brickle flavor.  I loved the monster cookie ice cream a lot, probably because it had a lot of peanut butter and I have become a peanut butter addict!  My kids shared the ice cream flavor which actually has real gum in it.  

I am so thrilled to recommend you all to plan a trip to Minnesota and go here for some great ice cream!  :)  Truly this child size was only $3.50... and most people can split it! :) 


Nelson's also has a food challenge and since my husband was not on our road trip we are planning a time to go back so he can tackle the "Lumberjack" challenge.  What exactly is the challenge?  5 softball size scoops of ice cream any flavor with three toppings!  If you can finish the huge portion you get your picture on the "wall of fame!"  So yes you better believe my husband is very excited for this challenge.    

First Things First- GIVEAWAY



Keep reading because you can enter to win 2 boxes of Moonpies and 2 t-shirts! 

About First Things First

First Things First (FTF) is an award winning not-for-profit organization dedicated to strengthening families in Chattanooga, Tennessee.
FTF is a resource that collaborates with and is supported by a broad cross-section of community organizations, groups and individuals.
FTF accomplishes it mission through meaningful media messaging and skill building classes.
Did you know:
• 24 million children are growing up in homes without their biological fathers.
• Only 30% of divorces are due to infidelity, addiction or abuse, 70% of divorces are due to couples feeling disconnected.
• Couples who manage to devote time specifically to one another at least once a week are markedly more likely to enjoy high-quality relationships and lower divorce rates, compared to couples who do not devote as much couple time to one another.
• Fathers provide unique benefits to their daughters through their active and positive presence from the time of birth all the way through adulthood.

Before entering lets take a look at the Families First Videos!  I loved this video on how dad's play with their kids.  I absolutely agree that mom's and dad's do play differently with their children.   I am the more protector play nice where dad is more of a rough housing be wild at moments kind of dad.   I love all the neat things this dad did with cardboard!  :)  They definitely  made some loving memories with each other. 

  
There are several other great videos to watch and pick your favorite one or find one that sounds like you or your family.   I also enjoyed the Daddy/Daughter one.   My husband takes my daughter out for dates and it is always very precious to both of them.   He really treats her like the princess she is and I believe it will help my daughter find a man one day who will love and respect her as much as her daddy does.   


So what video is your favorite?   Take a second to enter the giveaway below to win moon pies and t-shirts.   

Each household is only eligible to win One (1) First Things First Moon Pie Prize Pack via blog reviews and giveaways. Only one entrant per mailing address per giveaway. If you have won the same prize on another blog, you will not be eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification. 
Praises of a Wife and Mommy is not responsible for prize shipment! 
 The prize will be sent via FedEx or USPS. No P.O. Boxes please. Please note that the assets included within this message were delivered to you to promote First Things First. Any actions (including contest and competitions) that you complete with the provided assets are your liability, and should comply with both local and international laws. Also, please remember to disclose that you are working with First Things First, or that First Things First supplied these materials to you if required by local law.

Wausau Chalk Fest 2014

 Another great year of seeing artists in action in Wausau Wisconsin.  

Even with a rained out Saturday these artists still created many masterpieces in less time than prior years.   

I wish I could have taken a picture of every single one but I didn't have the time with two kids and it would take a long time for this page to load for all you fans to read.   

I thought I would have seen more Frozen scenes but there were only a couple.  




The black and white ones always have been a favorite of mine!   The detail in facial expressions always capture my heart.   


Still more to be done on this one but the colors are fantastic!   

I am a huge Eric Carle fan so this piece left me wanting to go read some of his books.  :)

 This is a past youth student I had in youth group and this is her piece this year.   I think she did a fantastic job!  :)   Such a talented young lady! 

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Playing and Polito's in Wausau Wisconsin


Well my little boy is growing up so fast and showing a big interest in cars and racing.   He was so full of joy riding around the house in this little four wheeler.   I think we might need to buy one!   :)   Wonder if I can find one at a garage sale or better yet get one to review.  :)  My daughter was also a little speedster and enjoyed this a lot! 



I can't go to Wausau Wisconsin without going to Polito's Pizza!   The slices are huge and my favorite is the spinach and feta but I will admit that I felt bloated after eating one piece.   My body is not used to eating all that grease! 

The kids had a slice of the pepperoni and neither of them could finish their slice...should have made them split a piece!  They also have a few other neat pizza toppings that makes them stick out compared to other pizza chains.   They  have steak and fry, mac n cheese, tomato basil, chicken bacon ranch, and many more!   




Saturday, July 19, 2014

Book Review: Jonah and the Great Big Fish


Description:
“God told Jonah to obey, said, ‘Go to Nineveh this day.’ But, stubborn Jonah fled instead. Didn’t do just what God said.” Jonah’s disobedience landed him inside a big fish! And there he had time to think and pray. Children will feel the waves and hear the splash as Jonah sinks “down and down and down” into the belly of the fish. This story serves as an excellent reminder of how important it is to listen to God.

Author Bio:
Rhonda Gowler Greene 
Rhonda Gowler Greene is the author of over twenty picture books. Her books have received honors such as School Library Journal Best Book, Children’s Book Council Showcase Book, Bank Street College Best Book, and starred reviews. A former elementary school teacher, with a master’s in educational media, Rhonda is a frequent speaker at schools, libraries, and conferences. She lives with her husband, Gary, in a house overflowing with books in West Bloomfield, Michigan. They have four grown children. For more information, visit her on the web at—www.rhondagowlergreene.com
My Review:
Jonah has always been one of my favorite bible stories.  I mean who wouldn't be in awe of a man who lived in the belly of a big fish for 3 days.   I imagine it would have been frightening and miserable.   Beyond that part of the story I love going to deeper and talking not only about Jonah obeying God's calling but also Jonah's heart after God spares Ninevah.   This children's story does not go into those details but it does cover the basic lesson of the importance of listening to God.   How easy it is for us to be going along our day ignoring the Holy Spirit asking us to slow down and do something for HIM.  This book is a great reminder to teach our children the importance of following God's calling and direction even when it seems too hard or difficult.   

The pictures are illustrated by Margaret Spengler and they are fantastic.   They are vibrant and show excellent emotions through the character faces.   My kids enjoyed this story and they are excited to share this book in Children's Church.  






 
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