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Review and Giveaway Ring the Bell

May 3rd, 2013
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

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Ring the Bell:

Ring The Bell shares the story of a slick, big city sports agent Rob Decker who seems to have it all. But on his latest mission to sign a high school baseball superstar, Rob becomes stranded in a small town where the simplicity of life—and the faith of the people—stand in stark contrast to his own fast-paced, win-at-all-costs mindset. Torn between these two worlds, will Rob have the courage to let faith transform his life? This heartwarming story of redemption is sure to entertain and inspire the whole family.

Ring the Bell is available on DVD for only $19.99

I know I have shared many times how much we appreciate being able to pop in a move that the whole family can watch without needing to fast-forward, cover ears or eyes, or wonder if something will go over their head or not. It’s not worth trying to enjoy a movie that is sub-standard morally. Ring the Bell delivers significant life lessons without any gore or inappropriate scenes or language. Everyone can watch this together.

We may have had a little soft spot for some of the main characters in this movie as their home was a type of group home for foster kids. Since we worked as dorm parents in a residential school for boys for nine years, personal memories flooded in as we watched the boys they worked with. We could easily relate to the challenges and victories that come in that line of “work.”They also speak a bit about mission work, another passion of mine, and I appreciated the clear presentation of the Gospel message more than once in the film.

As much as we loved aspects of this movie and some genuinely funny scenes peppered in here and there to break up the seriousness of the plot, there were some places that seemed to drag a bit. Some of the conversation seemed to go a little too long, even if they did have great points to make. There was also a fair bit of music that took up film time with segments of the singers actually singing. I enjoy good music and especially a good concert, but watching a concert as part of a movie seemed to slow the drama down too much. The music is great — Casting Crowns among others — but, I would have enjoyed it more as meaningful background music rather than the focal point of the shot.

Aside from the slow sections, this film has a great lesson, and the powerful tradition of the ringing of the bell every time . . . well, I don’t want to ruin that for you. See for yourself why that bell ringing is so important. It made me consider what we could do to have a similar tradition in our circle or home.

Now for the fun part, one of you can win your own copy of this heartwarming story to enjoy with your own family.  Just leave a comment below, and you are entered to win. For additional entries share about this giveaway elsewhere (blog, facebook, twitter, etc.) and come comment again letting me know where you shared. I’ll draw a winner on Tuesday May 14 in the evening.

Review and Giveaway: VeggieTales The Little House That Stood

March 16th, 2013
We have enjoyed talking to tomatoes and smiling with squash for as long as we’ve had kids. Our two year old has now reached the age of enjoying Larry’s silliness and Bob’s wisdom as well.
They continue to crank out enjoyable kid-friendly, God-honoring videos as the years go by. This time around VeggieTales has taken some well knows nursery rhymes and combined them with the truths of Scripture with a healthy ensemble of vegetables.
My kids enjoyed this twist that combined the parable of the wise man building his house on the rock with the three little pigs. The story line keeps moving, and even though they know both stories well, it didn’t seem overly predictable to them, until they had watched it over and over and over throughout the week. Even then, they asked for it again.
I always like to interact with my kids over their media interaction, and VeggieTales even helps with that. Check out their website for printable coloring pages and some discussion questions.  Help these great lessons sink in even further!
About The Little House That Stood
When the Three Little Pigs roll into Cabbageville looking to build some new houses, they meet one builder with a plan and two without a clue! Larry builds with hay, Mr. Lunt with bricks, but only Bob builds his houses on a firm foundation – following the wise plans from the Master Builder’s Handbook! Will the Little Piggies make the right choices when it comes to building their houses – and their lives – on solid ground? Find out in this parable that shows kids when they follow God’s blueprints, then can stand strong when the storms come!
Be sure to pick up your own copy maybe for someone special’s Easter basket!
If you would like your own copy of this movie, please leave a comment. I will choose a winner on Thursday evening March 21. You may leave extra comments for additional entries by sharing about this giveaway elsewhere (facebook, twitter, email, etc.)
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

Review and Giveaway: The 5 Money Personalities

January 8th, 2013

What: The 5 Money Personalities

Written by: Scott & Bethany Palmer
Available now!
Check out their homes on the web –

About The 5 Money Personalities
The hidden key to a healthy relationship is not just managing money but understanding how the other approaches money.

Every couple argues about money. It doesn’t matter if you’ve been married for 40 years or dating for 4 months, money touches every decision you make as a couple—from the $5 cup of coffee to the $50,000 car. And when the two of you don’t see eye-to-eye on how much to spend or how much to save, that’s when arguments turn into ugly toxic fights that leave both persons feeling hurt and angry. It’s why money has become the #1 cause of divorce in the U.S. Obviously, something needs to change. The reason this crisis has not been addressed is because it has never been identified, defined, or given a name. Scott and Bethany Palmer, aka “The Money Couple,” have identified and defined this problem and offer concrete solutions to fix it.

It’s not just about money management, and it’s definitely not just about overcoming debt. It is a whole new way of living that will change everything in your relationship. Tens of thousands have already been transformed. Are you ready?

My take:

- Easy read. I flew through this book. Easy to read, lots of real life illustrations, engaging, entertaining, and just plain old well written. Although not a flawless book, at least the reading of it was rather enjoyable.

- Unique perspective. Rather than getting hung up on the nitty gritty of money decisions, this book digs deeper into who you are when it comes to money and why that matters. Understanding who you are, and perhaps more importantly who your spouse is, in the money arena will add some enlightenment to the decisions you have made and the ones you have yet to make.

- Useful tool. While you could read it straight through, it really reads best in separate sessions. Great for a bedtime book for couples, or Saturday morning coffee book. Read a quick chapter together and talk about the action points at the end.

- Written by two spenders. I have to mention this because it stood out to both my husband and myself. My husband and I are one of those rare couples that find themselves in the same category — both savers, both security seekers (although to varying degrees). Reading a book by two self-proclaimed spenders I felt a bit misunderstood, and sometimes even mocked. I could’ve easily written the counter criticism for the spender, but that’s not the point, I don’t think, of recognizing money personalities. They still pour out lots of good advice, but if you read this book as a saver, know that you might feel a little defensive at times, and in my view that’s just fine. :)

- Some personalities overlooked? I also felt like there were some other significant areas of my money personality that didn’t get addressed. Stewardship, generosity, and faith might be hard to classify, but they are a huge part of my money decisions. I don’t know how they could be worked into their paradigm, but I did feel like there were some gaps in the 5 personalities they tried to boil things down to.

- Even more on the website. The website has more great tools for evaluating your money personality and how to come to greater agreement without arguing.

- Significance of dreams. This drew me in right from the beginning. They really nailed it in their discussion of dreams. We do often lose our dreams over time. I think that’s kind of what the movie “Up” hovered around. The Palmers want you to know you don’t need to lose your dreams. You can chase them and recapture them again, as a couple. This book is definitely just as much about a quality marriage relationship as it is about money.

- Practical tips. While a lot of the book is offering information, analysis, and perspective, it does get down to the practical before too long. Getting rid of financial infidelity, dumping, and having a money huddle are some of the practical areas that they offer very real life ideas on building or rebuilding your relationship.

This book offers great tips and perspective on overcoming money differences in your marriage relationship. None of us married our clone, so anyone can benefit from this book. As homeschoolers, living on one income, we at times feel the pinch a bit tighter than others might. I think this book can really help you come together on money issues even while retaining your unique money personality. A great read!

If you would like to enter into the giveaway to win a free copy of this book, please leave a comment on this post with an email so I can reach you if your name is drawn. You are welcome to a second entry as well by simply sharing about this giveaway somewhere else (facebook,  twitter, etc.) and returning here to leave a second comment.
The giveaway will wrap up on Tuesday night, January 15th in the evening.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Product review: Spanish for You!

May 14th, 2012

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I can’t tell you how many foreign language products I have used temporarily over the years. A workbook here, an old cassette tape there, a full program, an online resource. I’ve tried a lot! Some highly recommended, some just cheap alternatives.

The reason I have tried so many is because I really want to learn Spanish and teach my kids to speak Spanish, but I can’t do it on my own. Foreign language is not a skill you can pick up casually. I need to have a curriculum to help me in this area. So, when Debbie Annett approached me about her brand new curriculum, still in the works at the time, I could not resist.

She comes with years of experience in Spanish and teaching in the homeschool community in particular. She has created her curriculum with homeschoolers specifically in mind. I find this a huge benefit as you are not trying to tailor a program geared toward a traditional classroom or the business traveler (the two main targets of language programs, it seems). She made this for you to use at home with your children, or possibly in a co-op setting.

Product: Spanish for You!

Details: (excerpts from their site) Spanish for You! is a flexible, unique self-study curriculum for grades 3 through 8 that establishes the foundations for learning Spanish with just a short lesson each day. The set includes the Spanish for You! Estaciones Book (teaching the seasons — another set teaching fiestas should be out summer of 2012), 24-27 Week Lesson Guides for grades 3-8 (PDF), Self-Checking Worksheets for grades 3-8 (PDF), and Audio Download of entire book (MP3 format)

Cost: $65 for the whole set

Some of what we liked:
- The diversity of target ages. This is an all in one curriculum that someone with minimal Spanish knowledge could pick up and use with all of their school age kids. Even though the target range starts with 3rd grade, my 1st and 2nd graders were right in there picking up basic vocabulary as well. (I think 3rd grade is a good starting place, I just generally include all of my kids when teaching if possible).
- Abundance of materials. Worksheets, audio files, teacher’s guide, lesson plans, activity ideas, visuals, pronunciation guides, etc. This program is well fleshed out with lots of built in resources. The lessons include pictures in the book, audio files to hear the vocabulary properly pronounced, worksheets for individuals to do on their own, activities to do together, and ideas for review and further teaching.
- Lots of built in review. Without becoming redundant, the lessons review, reteach, and repeat the words the kids need to learn. They do not get bored since it is always presented in a new way and language study is such an interactive discipline that everyone stays involved and learning. The lessons are also on the shorter side so they won’t take up a lot of your day, but they will get the job done efficiently.
- The audio is at a great pace for learning. It is not rushed through. The words are clear and  easy to understand. I do like my kids to hear a more conversational (fast!) pace as they get more comfortable, but for beginners this is a non-intimidating step into the language. Anyone can learn these words with Mrs. Annett’s gentle teaching.
- Adaptable and reasonable time commitment. This program is a gentle introduction to Spanish for younger kids, and a more focused beginners’ course for older kids. While foreign language is better done frequently throughout each day (the lesson plans are mapped out for use 4 days each week), you could easily condense the lessons to 2 times each week, and then try to pepper it in throughout the day as well. You will find you are both quickly learning a new language.

Some considerations for potential buyers
- While the curriculum is for multiple grades, it teaches the grades differently. So, beyond the first few days, you would likely go through the material more quickly and to greater depth and mastery with older kids, so you wouldn’t actually teach the class the same way to a 3rd grader and an 8th grader. Just take that into consideration when determining how much time is needed to teach each lesson. Review could still be done together, and kids of different ages could study together, but the teaching times would most likely be separate, or at least branch off after starting together.
- Some of the audio, especially early on, seems to be a little light on the Spanish accent. I think especially of “calendario” and “martes” among others in the first lesson. Later lessons do not have this issue, but as students get used to pronouncing these foreign words, they might notice that some sounded a little American at first. This actually seems like another way to gently transition kids into the Spanish language.  You might want to be aware of it, and even point it out, but also be sure to encourage a stronger accent along with the audios as you and your students gain confidence in your new found language.
This curriculum is very user friendly and can be used by someone comfortable with Spanish or someone who really needs a solid Spanish teacher to rely on. You can do this! As a poster in my high school classroom said, “Stamp out foreign languages — learn one!” This program will start you on the road to doing just that.

Disclaimer: This product was given to me in exchange for my personal,  honest review.

Works for Me Wednesday — and everyday!

April 13th, 2012

This great little meme inspired me long before Pinterest came on the scene.

Before virtual bulletin boards, loads of amazing ideas enter the cyber world each week and inspired moms and families to find solutions to everyday problems.

The catchy name, Works for Me Wednesday rolled right off my tongue and became the place to be when it went live late each Tuesday night.

Now, they have compiled hundreds of the most amazing tips into one bursting at the seams e-book that is organized, consolidated and packed with links to last a lifetime — inspiring, time saving, maybe even life saving, tips.

The book includes sections for homeschooling, pets, meals, crafts, frugality, laundry, marriage, organization, travel, decor, and a total of 24 categories, with a total of 807 tips.

Each section begins with an adorable picture and an inspiring quote and is peppered with interviews with bloggers that made this book possible. The book comes in a PDF format which makes it oh so easy to flip through. Obviously, a book like this you want to be able to find what you need in a hurry. You won’t read it cover to cover (although it probably wouldn’t hurt you!) so the tips are arranged for easy finding.

E-book is the best format for this type of tool, because each tip is hotlinked to the site it came from that gives you the full description of the tip and how it worked for the person who entered it. Also, you get the benefit of any comments added onto the post as well. I am a big WFMW fan and to have the best of the best at my fingertips has brought me a treasure.

This great new resource is now available for purchase as well for just $8 Right now you can get a dollar off so it is only $7! Just use discount code  SAVE1

Head over to their page to buy your own stress-saving copy.

To find out more about the book:

Contest: Check out the contest on the website that continues through the month of April for a gift card for house cleaning ($150 value). Please submit your own tip to enter.
Twitter: @works4mebook

A portion of the proceeds also goes to help the Mercy House:

Mercy House is a non-profit ministry that empowers a maternity home in Kenya, Africa. The
home offers a safe refuge for pregnant girls living in extreme poverty. This organization began
and is supported almost entirely through social media avenues.

As a contributer and reviewer of this book I have been given a copy to enjoy and a copy to give away. One of you will get to enjoy this ebook for free! Please leave a comment at the end of this post with your contact info and you are entered to win your own pile of tips. You may earn additional entries by following the above links and following them on twitter and/or facebook. Just make sure you come back and leave another comment telling me you did so.I will choose a winner next Friday night, April 20th.

And, don’t forget to enter their contest for a free house cleaning!

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. These come to you free of charge, but enable me to earn a little commission if purchases are made through them. Just a simple way that you can help support the work I do here without paying a dime for it. :)

Review and Giveaway: The 5 Love Languages of Children

April 10th, 2012

The core of communication comes down to language. Spoken language, body language, and even our love language.

Dr. Gary Chapman shook the dust off marriage in his book about love languages, and then he did it all over again for parents. As this concept gains world-wide attention, I enjoyed this reminder to figure out and speak my kids’ languages.

  • Physical touch
  • Words of affirmation
  • Gifts
  • Quality time
  • Acts of service

Each child speaks one of these languages more clearly than the others, and Gary Chapman and Ross Campbell set out to help you discover which one. After a brief introductory chapter the book jumps into the languages in detail so you can understand exactly what is meant by each language and how they look at various ages and stages.

The rest of the chapters help you see how understanding those love languages can strengthen you parenting relationship. Helping you identify each child’s language, the authors show you how to discipline, walk through their academic experience, and manage their anger with each of these love languages in mind. They even include some special considerations for single parents homes and more. The resources and encouragement in this book go well beyond its covers.

To find out more:

The 5 Love Languages: http://www.5lovelanguages.com/
To be their best, children need to feel loved. But if you and your child speak different love languages, your affection might get lost in translation, affecting the child’s attitude, behavior, and development. Dr. Gary Chapman’s groundbreaking Five Love Languages series has helped millions of couples communicate love more clearly, and Dr. Ross Campbell M.D. has applied the innovative system to children as well. The 5 Love Languages of Children gives practical suggestions for learning how your children interpret love and creating a sense of security in which they can thrive.

While all kids need a bit of every language, I appreciate this helpful book in decoding my kids’ signals. I especially gleaned from the sections on teenagers as things look a whole lot different at that age, and I am still learning how to decipher it all. The years of experience from the authors are such a help to us muddling through it all for the first time.

This book’s track record speaks for itself, but I cannot agree more. This book is a must read for every parent at every stage of parenting. And, it should be reread now and then as well. I read the first edition years ago, but definitely needed to read this updated version to dig deeper into my current season of parenting. Great pep talk with the practical advice to really make a lasting difference.

Buy it, borrow it, and of course, leave a comment here to enter to win your own copy! Leave a comment on this post with an email address that I can reach you at in case you win. The contest will close a week from now, Tuesday night April 17th. You can once again earn a second entry by sharing about the giveaway elsewhere and leaving a second comment.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or

services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it

on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally

and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance

with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the

Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Review and Giveaway — A Perfect Pet Pal for Peyton

March 27th, 2012
A Perfect Pet for Peyton: A 5 Love Languages Discovery Book
The concept of love languages has restored countless marriages and helped many parents to connect with their children on a significantly deeper level. Learning to express love in a way it can be heard is a skill that cannot begin too soon.
Dr. Gary Chapman has joined up with Rick Osborne and Wilson Williams to craft a picture book to help children grasp this relationship-altering knowledge. As with the other 5 love languages materials, this book is top notch in appearance and in clear presentation of the material.
My kids always get excited about packages, but sometimes when they see it is “just another book” they head off their separate directions. Not so this time. As soon as my 8yo got it out of the package, her older sister and younger brother were begging me to take a break and read to them. With my toddler copying, “Book, book.” How could I refuse?
The story takes the reader through the birthday celebration of a set of twins, a boy and girl, who are excited about the day ahead when they would celebrate their birthday at Mr. Chapman’s Perfect Pet Pal Emporium. Throughout the day as they interact with the animals and their birthday party guests, you clearly see the various love languages exemplified in each character. An example of each love language comes to life as the children hug, compliment, help, give, and just enjoy each others company.  And, in the process they each find an animal that is a living example of their language as well.
My kids completely loved this book and I have read it countless times already. The colorful pictures, the animals on each page, the hidden insect in each picture, and even the conversation about love languages drew them in time and again. The book closes with some conversation starters to begin to help children to see their own love language and that of others as well.
This book offers a great way to draw your family together and is great for any age child. It is a longer picture book, so younger kids might enjoy it more split up over a few sittings. For my 6 and up kids we read it straight through each time.  The lesson fits for everyone and can be a great spark to encourage a greater demonstration of  love between siblings.

Learn more about the five love languages and Dr. Chapman here:

Of course, one fortunate reader will win a copy of this fantastic book. If you would like a chance to win this book leave a comment on this post. Be sure to leave your email address as well so I can get in touch with you if you win.

This time around you can enter three times total. First, a freebie for anyone. Second, leave a second comment sharing your love language and/or your child’s love language. Third, share about this giveaway somewhere (facebook, twitter, email, etc.) and come back to leave another comment as an entry.  I’ll plan to pick a winner on Monday evening April 2. Go get ‘em! :)

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or
services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it
on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally
and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance
with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the
Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Review and Giveaway: The Woodcarver

March 9th, 2012

Teenage conflict, a marriage that needs work, God blurring out of focus. These create the backdrop for a family ripe for renewal.

Nothing brings a family together like manual labor in stressful situations. Working side by side, the individuals in this fractured family begin to remember what they liked about each other and what they lost sight of in the pressures of everyday life.

Ernest Otto challenges Matthew to just ask himself one question before acting, “What would Jesus do?” And, Matthew finds that the answer sometimes surprises him, and his change of heart surprises everyone else in the process. He continues to learn from Ernest as his family is pieced back together along with the wood he had destroyed in an act of vandalism.

I appreciate that the film does not make it out that trusting God will make your life hunky-dorey. Otto lost his wife to cancer in the past, but did not lose his confidence in the power of prayer.  The story kept the attention of our whole family and had enough ups and downs and unexpected challenges to keep us on our toes.

The only disappointment to me was the ending. Poor Otto sitting by his wife’s grave crying over how much he misses her. I would have preferred him expressing his sorrow but remembering that he doesn’t mourn as those that have no hope. But, I guess they were just keeping it real.

Overall, a great film that might make you reconsider some of your own priorities and brush the dust of that well worn question, “What would Jesus do?”

The Woodcarver - DVD
The Woodcarver DVD
(releases Tuesday, March 13th)


About the Movie:
Matthew Stevenson is a troubled kid from a broken home. When he vandalizes the local church to get back at his parents, Matthew has to repair the damage to the church to avoid criminal charges. While working at the church, he meets Ernest (John Ratzenberger), an accomplished wood carver who created the intricate woodwork decoration that Matthew destroyed. Ernest has become something of a hermit, but reluctantly comes out of reclusion to help repair the church. Now Ernest and Matthew must work together to preserve the church’s beautiful antiquity, and along the way, they also manage to restore their faith in God and in life.

If you would like a chance to win a copy of this movie please leave a comment on this post. You can earn a second entry by sharing about this giveaway on facebook, twitter, etc. and leaving a second comment. The drawing will be open until Friday March 16th in the evening. Make sure to leave an email address that I can reach you at when you win!

“Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or
services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it
on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally
and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance
with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the
Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Review and Giveaway

February 28th, 2012

If you enjoy checking these reviews of “hot off the presses” items, this movie will sound a bit familiar.

When this first hit the screens we had the opportunity to give out tickets to the screening, but now we have the actual DVD to giveaway!

Same great story, just the in-home version. We absolutely love finding family friendly films that we can enjoy together and re-enjoy together, so I was thrilled to add this to our movie collection.

This story line appealed to each member of our family and stayed clean enough to earn a “G” rating. Love that!

The triumphant underdog is a story that simply doesn’t get old. Seeing people come together as a team despite the odds stacked against them is an inspiring conversation starter and an encouragement on a personal level as well. The Mighty Macs does that and will easily draw your family together to cheer on this team of determined athletes.

About the Movie:

It’s 1971. Cathy Rush is a woman ahead of her time … and she’s about to embark on an adventure for the ages. A new era is dawning in the country and in collegiate athletics, where a national champion will be crowned for the first time in women’s basketball.

In the lead up to this historical season, major universities are preparing their game plans to win that first title. Meanwhile a tiny all-women’s Catholic college in Philadelphia has a more modest goal: find a coach before the season begins. Providentially, Cathy Rush is about to find Immaculata College.

Recently married, Cathy is dealing with the aftermath of a truncated playing career. While cultural norms would have her staying at home, she’s willing to do the hard work necessary to help her new team reach their goals—or perhaps she’s just trying to achieve her unfulfilled dreams through them.

From the beginning, her challenges are as imposing as the big-school teams Immaculata will face on the court. Cathy learns there is no gymnasium on campus, she receives little support from the school’s Mother Superior, and the school is in dire financial straits. To top it off, she may not even have enough players to field a team!

While it appears the Macs don’t have a prayer, all hope is not lost. With the help of Sister Sunday—a spunky assistant coach—and the support of a booster club of elderly nuns, Coach Rush creates a new game plan that just might bring the team—and the school—together.

Will this pioneer buck cultural norms and spur her rag-tag team to unexpected heights? Or will her hard-driving ways create a wedge between the coach and everyone around her? One thing’s for certain: there’s never been anyone like Cathy Rush at Immaculata!

Of course, with the DVD you get some bonus features that were interesting as well including a clip from ESPN about the movie. I definitely would recommend this film for a family movie night soon.
If you would like to enter into the giveaway to win a free copy of this movie, please leave a comment on this post with an email so I can reach you if your name is drawn. You are welcome to a second entry as well by simply sharing about this giveaway somewhere else (facebook,  twitter, etc.) and returning here to leave a second comment.
The giveaway will wrap up on Sunday night, March 4th in the evening.
Giveaway closed. Winner is commenter #4 — Melissa
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or
services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it
on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally
and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance
with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the
Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Review and giveaway — Cooper and Me and the Military

February 10th, 2012
Many kids struggle with the separation of a parent or other family member due to active military duty. Monique and Alexa Peters brought Cooper and his friend Trooper to the rescue in wading through this difficult time.
The story helps open up conversation for kids who might be hurting and gives them some ideas to put their worries to work. The story is cute, but my favorite part comes after the story. The authors broaden the application to include dealing with any type of separation. Talking points can give you the springboard you need to encourage your child in this area. The end of the book also includes some questions to recap the story and the lessons taught through it.
Kids will also find a fill in the blank letter they can use to begin their own letter of thanks to service men or women along with a website to look for more information on encouraging our troops.
**Please note this copy for review DOES NOT have the FINAL cover, but the winner giveaway copy will.
Their summary of the book:

Meet Trooper, Cooper’s best friend, and learn how he was adopted by Gracie and Joe and their parents, who both serve in the military. Find out how this family stays close despite being separated.
A must-read during patriotic holidays and for anyone with friends and family in the military, this book helps children know, that even when loved ones aren’t with us, they still love us and think about us. This book, along with all the other books in the Cooper and  Me series, includes these interactive features:
• A Special Memory Creation
• Life Lesson
• Connections
• Learning Together
In addition to a fun adventure, each Cooper and Me story teaches an important Life Lesson and features interactive materials at the back of the book to drive the message home.  Included are activities that help children name and process their own feelings about what they’ve read.
Not just do I get to share a review of this helpful book, I also get to give a copy away to one of my readers. If you would like to enter to win a copy of this book, please leave a comment with this post. Make sure to leave an email that I can reach you at to let you know if you have won! The drawing will go through next Friday night, February 17. You can earn additional entries by sharing about this giveaway on facebook or other online networks and then come back and leave another comment saying you did so.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or
services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it
on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally
and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance
with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the
Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.
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