Tuesday, April 28, 2020

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I Wish I Had Read as a Child


Hello friends!! It's Tuesday and that means Top Ten Tuesday time a weekly meme hosted by the Artsy Girl. This week the topic is Books I Wish I had Read as a Child.
I honestly had quite alot! I grew up in Puerto Rico and although I went to private school it wasn't like it was here where every school had a library. We didn't at all. The books I had access to were books my parents bought for us and those were mainly Puerto Rican Folklore or your traditional fairy tales.

We moved to the states when I was entering 6th grade. When I first encountered the school library I was in awe. I was even more deliriously happy and shocked when I encountered the public library! All those books at your disposal. I think that't why I am HUGE advocate for public libraries. Anyways you could not keep me away from it, I was getting books like crazy (and yes, I could read English... I went to a good private school and both my parents were English speakers). However I wish I would of read more of the classics. I mean I read quite a few of them but it wasn't until I was in middle school/high school. So if I had to do it over again I would pick these... I am so excited because since we are homeschoolers these will definitely end up in my kids reading lists so I will get to read along with them!


How about you? Any books you wish you had read as a child? Let me know in the comments below! 

Happy Reading!

Monday, April 27, 2020

A Call to Love by Mary Felkins




Call to Love
by Mary A. Felkins
Publisher: Prism Lux
Available on Kindle and Kindle Unlimited


Summary: Tracy Cassidy, a fiercely independent ED nurse, must choose between her dream job or staying in her hometown to help support her mother’s faltering ministry. Even if it means risking her heart in love with the kind of man she said she’d never marry. Why sign up to be Laurelton’s next cop widow?

Tom DeLaney, a hyper-vigilant cop and new hire from Texas, is wearied by years of failed rescue attempts to save his marriage to his ex. A free man, he moves to the foothills of North Carolina. Thing is, he hadn’t expected to fall for Tracy, his supervisor’s sister. But when his adolescent son is diagnosed with a chronic illness, he faces the risk of loving another woman with keep-out issues.

Fears related to the death of Tracy’s cop father and Tom’s inability to forgive the past threaten to sabotage any chance at love.

To trust again means surrender. Will they risk their hearts and answer the call?
 



My Review ~ ⭐⭐⭐

First of all I think for as debut author Mary Felkins did an excellent job. You can tell that she put her heart into the story and did a lot of research for it.

The story of Tracy and Tom was heartfelt and emotional. Tom and Tracy are both trying to overcome deep hurts and mistakes they have made in their past. They have both sworn off any romantic relationships and are both running away from the fact that God is trying to show them that they need to cry out and let go of those hurts to truly be able to embrace not only a relationship with Him but with each other. The other characters were relatable and lovable as well. I especially loved Tom's son Stephen relationship with his father and Tracy. The story has romance, action and even a bit of suspense. I even teared up a bit. Definitely a book I would recommend.

So why did I give it 3 stars? Like I said I really liked the story and Felkins did an excellent job for her debut novel but at times I felt like time jumped too quick and it confused me in some parts. There were some chapters that I had to go back to make sure I had not missed something because time had passed but I felt like it wasn't conveyed properly.

That being said I look forward to whenever she writes another story. I believe she will just continue getting better!

Some of my favorite quotes from this book:

"when love comes calling, a person's got to have the guts to answer."

"Whether times are good or bad, God has allowed them both. He never promises hurt won't find you."

"He makes a way through the pain, not around it. So let your soul embrace His plan."

I definitely recommend this book and I hope you enjoy it

FTC Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book. I was not required to write a positive review. These are my honest thoughts and opinions.I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. 

About the Author:Mary A. Felkins is an inspirational romance author, administrator for Seriously Write writer's blog, and contributor to an on-line Bible study magazine. In 2015, she was awarded a bronze medal winner for her scene submission to My Book Therapy's Frazier contest. Call to Love is her debut, inspirational romance novel.
She is a member of the American Christian Fiction Writers and My Book Therapy.
Raised in Houston, Texas (and forever a Lone Star girl), Mary and her husband Bruce moved to the foothills of North Carolina in 1997. They are blessed to parent four young adult children. She can be lured from her writer's cave if presented with a large, unopened bag of Peanut M&Ms or to watch an episode of Fixer Upper. A surprise appearance by her teen idol, Donny Osmond, would also do the trick, although she’d likely pass out.
If, upon introduction, she likes your first or last name, expect to see it show up in one of her novels.

To receive Mary’s weekly story-style devotions and quarterly book news via email, join other #Felkinsfans at www.maryfelkins.com

Friday, April 24, 2020

First Line Fridays - The Captured Bride


Happy Friday Friends!!


It's First Line Friday hosted by Hoarding Books . A fun way for all of us to share the first line of any book nearby! Today I am sharing the third book in the Daughters of the Mayflower series The Captured Bride by Michelle Griep. If you haven't read any of these books I highly recommend them especially if you like historical fiction. They are amazing and don't really have to read them in order (which I am typically a stickler for).


My First Line: 
"It ain't right, You ain't right."

You definitely should pick this book up! 

Your turn! Grab the book nearest you and post the first line in the comments below! 
💗 Happy Reading!

I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. 

Thursday, April 23, 2020

Our Homeschooling Schedule 2020

Hello Friends! I am writing this post because so many of my  crisis- schooling/distance learning mama friends keep asking me what my actual schedule is and honestly I don't really know the answer to that but I sat down and somewhat, kind of put some times together.

Like I mentioned before we do our whole school day in the morning. So I'll give you what it looked like today... it pretty much looks the same everyday especially nowadays when our days our stuck at home. I should remind you that we only do school four days a week Monday-Thursday and Fridays is typically our co-op day. When we don't have co-op we still do our Math. Math is not a subject we tend to skip! 


7:30ish - I wake up and do my morning routine, head downstairs, have a much needed cup of coffee (or two) and have my time with Jesus. 

8:20ish - I head back upstairs and get ready for the day. Get dressed, make my bed (yes, I make the bed everyday except Sundays!) and then get the kids out of their rooms since they are most of the time awake. The older ones are the ones that tend to sleep in a bit so I let them sleep and they eventually make their way down. 

9:00 - We are already downstairs and doing breakfast. Now mind you breakfast in our house is nothing fancy at all! Most days its cereal, yogurt, toast, fruit and waffles. While the kids are eating I bring our Morning Basket. I read them a chapter book and by the time I am finished with the chapter (s) they are starting to finish their food. We recite our Memory Verse for the month, sing our Hymn of the Month, do our devotionals and pray for our day. I read them a picture book or two and then we move on to Science. We are doing Zoology this year so I read them the passages and then we head to the classroom to get our notebooks. (Now mind you the little ones do sit through most of the morning routine but I do not make them. The only thing they have to sit for is devotionals everything else is optional. They tend to stick close by and come back for the picture book and surprisingly Science most of the time!) After Science we move right into History where I read as well and then we do a one page activity from their workbooks but we don't always do this. Sometimes I am just reading. (Did you notice a pattern? I am mostly reading the whole morning while they do some activities.. and sometimes they are sitting or coloring while I am reading)

** Next school term I will be adding Geography to this piece of our day so we will see how that goes. I think it will be a fun addition and they are already looking forward to it. 

10:30ish - 12:00 -We start our core subjects. Math, Language Arts and Reading. It is their choice what they start with. The Gentle Ninja always starts with Math because its his absolute favorite while the Jedi Master starts with Reading which is his favorite subject. It works out great because Jedi Master can pretty much at his age do his work independently so I teach the Math Lesson to the Gentle Ninja and get him going so I can work with the Cuddly Scientist and the Firecracker. Most of the time they are playing with play-doh, dinos, puzzles and such. At the moment there is a tent outside the door they have been playing in and it has been great. But I do pull them and work with them. Especially the Cuddly Scientist since we are focusing on his letters and numbers. 

12:00 - LUNCHTIME 
Typically by this time we are completely done in the school room. We work better in the area. I know some people do school all over their house. We have tried that but it just doesn't work for our kiddos. They don't focus very well and having our designated area keeps all the stuff in one area! 😄 If one of the kiddos is not done then they can finish after lunch. But this doesn't happen too often. If by a crazy chance we aren't done by 1:00pm then it doesn't get done at all and we leave it for the next day. 

The rest of the afternoon is for doing chores, cleaning house, playing outside, tablet time and TV. The boys have the Amazon Kids Fire Tablets (affiliate link) so they have a designated learning time they must accomplish before they get free time on them. I love that about them! 

So that's our day in a nutshell. We don't spend all day sitting or traditional schooling. It takes time to get to this. Trust me at the beginning of our homeschooling journey I treated it like school and I was so miserable and tired. Now its fun, easy, quick and they are still learning. Pre-COVID we spent our days heading to the park, going food shopping together (which they love... going to BJ's or Sams is like a field trip to them, especially when the snack ladies are out!), library, meeting friends, church, sports etc... so yes my children are very well socialized and as soon as you meet them you can tell because they aren't that quiet! 

I hope this helps someone out there and if you have any questions please don't hesitate to ask! I will answer to the best of my ability! 

Until next time! 



I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. 


Wednesday, April 22, 2020

At Love's Command by Karen Witemeyer

                                    At Love's Command
by Karen Witemeyer
Publisher: Bethany House
Hanger's Horsemen Series
Releasing June 2nd 2020


Summary: Ex-cavalry officer Matthew Hanger leads a band of mercenaries who defend the innocent, but when a rustler's bullet leaves one of them at death's door, they seek out help from Dr. Josephine Burkett. When Josephine's brother is abducted and she is caught in the crossfire, Matthew may have to sacrifice everything--even his team--to save her.

My Review: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

At Love's Command is Karen Witemeyer's newest series and it definitely starts out with a bang! From the very beginning we meet Matthew Hanger and his men. He is a Calvary Officer that has suffered loss not only in his younger life but also during war. He feels so ashamed and guilty from what he considers his past failures that he and his friends become mercenaries. They call themselves the Hanger's Horsemen. With one of his men being injured he meets the strong-willed Dr. Josephine Burkett. Instantly you know that he is going to fall in love with her. The banter and respect they have between each other made the story! Immediately you see that his men welcome her into the fold and have nothing but respect for her.

I wan't sure how this story would develop at the beginning especially when Matthew is set to leave the town of Purgatory Springs but then trouble arises for Dr. Josephine in the form of her brother Charlie and she needs the help of the Hanger's Horsemen. This is when all the action of the story takes place and where Karen Witemeyer truly sucks you in. There's definitely more than romance in this story. It is truly packed with action, so if Western Romances are your thing then you will love this. Not only is there action and romance but there is a clear Christian theme woven throughout. I love that both Matthew and Josie (as he calls her!! be still my heart!) both come to the same realization about letting God be fully in control of their lives.

These quotes definitely make you realize that this has been a struggle for them and its finally time to let go and let God.

" Knowledge inspired confidence. A lack of knowledge left her feeling powerless and afraid."

"Forfeiting control to an almighty God should be easier than giving in to a gang of outlaws, yet he struggled,,"

I'm looking forward to seeing the rest of this series unfold and see where the rest of the Horsemen end up and what their stories will be.

If you love western romances, Christian Fiction and clean reads then this is the book for you!


FTC Disclosure: I received a complementary copy of this book from Netgalley. I was not required to write a positive review. These are my honest thoughts and opinions

About the Author:
For those who love to smile as they read, bestselling author Karen Witemeyer offers warmhearted historical romance with a flair for humor, feisty heroines, and swoon-worthy Texas heroes. A transplant from California, Karen came to Texas for college, met a cowboy disguised as a computer nerd, married him, and never left the state that had become home.

Winner of the National Reader's Choice Award, HOLT Medallion, ACFW Carol Award, Inspirational Reader's Choice Award, and a finalist for both the RITA and Christy Awards, Karen is a firm believer in the power of happy endings. . . and ice cream. She also loves to reward her readers. Every month she gives away two inspirational historical novels to someone from her newsletter list and offers substantial bonus content on her website. To learn more about Karen and her books, or to join her subscriber list, please visit www.karenwitemeyer.com.

Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Book Names That Would Make Great Band Titles


Hello Friends! It's Tuesday and that means its another edition of Top Ten Tuesday a weekly meme hosted by the Artsy Girl. This week the topic is books that would make great band titles. Honestly I almost didn't participate in this one.

If you haven't figured it out by now my blog is mainly Christian fiction and from seeing all the other bloggers that do this challenge every week it seems like most of them don't blog about this particular genre that I love so much so I was kind of intimidated that I could not do this. (Not saying there aren't others that are like me that only focus on this genre but there are so many that participate that I never have the time to go through all the blogs listed!)

 But alas, I got out of my own way and decided to go for it. After all there are plenty of titles out there and I am sure I could make some of them work for a band title! So here are my picks... I am only doing titles so we aren't distracted by the photos since that may take some of the "band" vibe away from the title! 😊

1. The Betrayal by Beverly Lewis
2.  Scattered Petals by Amanda Cabot
3. Take Three by Karen Kingsbury
4. Paper Hearts by Courtney Walsh
5. Above the Fold by Rachel Scott McDaniel
6. Trails and Targets by Kelly Eileen Hake
7. Strands of Truth by Colleen Coble
8. Sagebrush Knights by Erica Vetsch
9. Code of Valor by Lynette Eason
10. The Covenant by Beverly Lewis

So what do you think? What are some book titles you think would make good band names? Tell me in the comments or leave me a link to your Top Ten Tuesday Post so I can check it out! 

💕 Happy Reading!

Friday, April 17, 2020

First Line Fridays ~ A Call to Love

Happy Friday Friends!

It's First Line Friday hosted by Hoarding Books! A fun way for all of us to share the first line of any book nearby! Today I am sharing Mary A. Felkins debut novel Call to Love.




My First Line:

If Plan A fails and pain persists, then and only then, a shout-out to God would be considered.

Definitely one of those books that you know the leading character is doing some soul searching and finding their way back to God.



Join me!! What is your first line?
Grab the book nearest you and post the first line you see in the comments below!



💓 Happy Reading!

Thursday, April 16, 2020

Bloglovin

Just signed up to Bloglovin so if you want to check out other blogs like mine give it a follow! That way its a one way stop to follow all the blogs you love!

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

A Gilded Lady by Elizabeth Camden

A Gilded Lady
by Elizabeth Camden
Publisher: Bethany House
Hope and Glory Series
Genre: Christian Historical Fiction

Summary: Secretary to the first lady of the United States, Caroline Delacroix is at the pinnacle of high society--but is hiding a terrible secret. Immediately suspicious of Caroline, but also attracted to her, secret service agent Nathaniel Trask must battle his growing love for her as the threat to the president rises and they face adventure, heartbreak, and danger.


My Review:⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

The Gilded Lady is the second book in the Hope and Glory series. I have not read the first book yet (insert gasp, as I hardly ever read books out of order) but I was super excited to receive a copy of this book. I actually did not feel like I was missing important information because I did not read the first one. So if you happen to pick this one up you should be okay. That being said I will be reading the first in the series before the third one comes out because that's just how I roll!

The Hope and Glory series follows siblings Gray, Luke and Caroline Delacroix. The Gilded Lady is mainly about Caroline but it does have her siblings as well and it definitely ends perfectly to introduce Luke's story which will be the last in the series.

This book is set in the time of President McKinley and the beginnings of the Secret Service revamping itself to provide more protection not only to the president but for his family. In this story Caroline Delacroix has matured into a no-nonsense, go-getter. She is the First Lady, Ida McKinley's secretary, right hand woman, confidant and friend. And this is very evident in all the responsibilities she holds in her job. You can tell that she is definitely more than just a secretary.
We meet straight laced, rule follower Nathaniel Trask who is the new head of the Secret Service. He has a tragic past that he carries with him and it is the main reason why he's so determined not to fail at anything he does. Being in close quarters at the White House he can't help but notice Caroline and fights his attraction to her to no avail. I loved the "slow burning" relationship they have going. Camden definitely lets you go through the ups and downs of it and it was lovely. It definitely gets you to be invested in their relationship and you feel as if you know them personally.

One of my favorite lines from their conversations (and there were a few) " ...I've learned a few things over the past month. Life is short. We can't know what it holds in store for us, but I won't ever take you for granted again." Gah!! Insert heart eyes!! This is so romantic and so true!!

While the whole romantic plot is going we also encounter Luke, Caroline's beloved twin brother who is in jail in Cuba for treason! What an awesome twist in the story. Loved how this brought some intrigue, mystery and suspense to the story. The way it develops and unfolds is great and I will not delve into it because you need to enjoy it like I did! But it was great! It also gives the perfect continuation for Luke's own story which will be in the next book! I for one cannot wait to learn more about him and see what happens!

I have found very few authors that write historical fiction that I absolutely love and Elizabeth Camden is always at the top of my list when it comes to this genre. You can tell that she does her research well and I appreciate that about her. If you enjoy historical fiction then this is definitely the book to pick up! I for one cannot wait until her next book!

This Gilded Lady will be released on June 2nd and can be pre-ordered on Amazon.

About the Author:

Elizabeth Camden is best known for her historical novels set in gilded age America featuring clever heroines and richly layered storylines. Before she was a writer, she was an academic librarian at some of the largest and smallest libraries in America, but her favorite is the continually growing library in her own home. Her novels have won the RITA and Christy Award, and she lives in Florida with her husband who graciously tolerates her intimidating stockpile of books.


Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Top Ten Tuesday: Ten Books I Have Read But Rarely Talk About



I am so excited for another edition of Top Ten Tuesday!! A weekly meme hosted by The Artsy Girl
This week the topic is Books I Have Read but Rarely Talk About and I must admit this was a tough one. I love books and as soon as I am done with a good one I want to share it with all my bookish friends. I must confess that I had to go to my Goodreads to find some that I read a while ago that haven't come up in conversation as much as others. 

So let me list them for you:

1. Someplace Familiar by Teresa Tysinger  (such a good debut novel for this author! I can't wait for the second one)

2. The Outlaw Takes a Bride by Susan Paige Davis

3. The Last Summer by Brandy Bruce

4. After the Rain by Brandy Bruce (read the Last Summer first this is the second part! Both of them are SO good!)

5. The Thirteenth Chance by Amy Matayo (all the feels on this one!)

6. Before the Season Ends by Linore Rose Burkhard 

7. Then There Was You by Kara Isaac (great book!!)

8. Oath of Honor by Lynette Eason (if you love the show Blue Bloods like I do then you will like this series!!)

9. At Blue Bonnet Lake by Amanda Cabot

10. The Chance by Karen Kingsbury

What about you? Do you have any books that you have read but haven't talked about much? Any Christian Fiction or Clean Read I should add to my list? Let me know in the comments!!

Happy Reading!



Monday, April 13, 2020

Blog Blitz + Giveaway for When Valleys Bloom Again

When Valleys Bloom Again JustRead Blog Blitz 
Welcome to the Blog Blitz & Giveaway for When Valleys Bloom Again by Pat Jeanne Davis, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!

ABOUT THE BOOK

When Valleys Bloom by Pat Jeanne Davis
Title: When Valleys Bloom Again

Author: Pat Jeanne Davis

Publisher: Elk Lake Publishing

Release Date: January 16, 2019

Genre: Historical Romance




As war approaches in 1939 Abby Stapleton’s safety is under threat. Her father, a British diplomat, insists she go back to America until the danger passes. Abby vows to return to her home in London—but where is home? With her family facing mortal danger so far away and feeling herself isolated, she finds it hard to pray or read the Bible. Did she leave God behind in war-torn London too? Then Abby becomes friendly with Jim, a gardener on her uncle’s estate.



Jim can’t get Abby out of his mind. Did she have a sweetheart in England? Was it foolish to think she’d consider him? He curses his poverty and the disgrace of his father’s desertion and drunkenness haunts him. Can he learn to believe in love for a lifetime and to hope for a happy marriage?

Abby couldn’t know the war would last a long time, nor that she would fall in love with Jim—soon to be drafted by the U.S. Army—or that she’d have to confront Henri, a rejected suitor, determined by his lies to ruin her reputation and destroy her faith in God’s providence. Will she discover the true meaning of home?



PURCHASE LINKS*: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Christianbook

 




ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Pat Jeanne Davis

Pat Jeanne Davis has a keen interest in 20th Century United States and British history, particularly the period of World War II. Her longtime interest in that era goes back to the real-life stories she heard about family members who served during the war. When Valleys Bloom Again is a debut inspirational romance set in WWII. She enjoys flower gardening, genealogy research and traveling with her British-born husband.  She writes from her home n Philadelphia, Pa. Pat has published essays, short stories and articles online and in print. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers.  She loves to hear from her readers. Visit her at https://www.patjeannedavis.com





CONNECT WITH PAT: Website | Facebook | Instagram

 






TOUR GIVEAWAY

(1) winner will receive a $15 Amazon gift card!

When Valleys Bloom Again JustRead Giveaway

Giveaway will begin at midnight April 13, 2020 and last through 11:59 PM EST on April 20, 2020. Winner will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize. US mailing addresses only. Void where prohibited by law or logistics.

Giveaway is subject to the policies found here.


 


Visit JustRead Tours for bonus giveaway entries!
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*NOTE: This post contains affiliate links.

Friday, April 10, 2020

First Line Fridays: Promise Me Always by Christine Lynxwiler

Happy Friday!!

 I love interacting with other bloggers and this is such a fun way to do so! First Line Fridays is hosted by Hoarding Books and participants share the first line from a nearby book.

Today I am sharing the next book in my very large, never ending TBR (To Be Read) pile Promise Me Always by Christine Lynxwiler. She is a new author to me and I have not even started the book at all. I placed it on my night stand so I could start it today but it has been such a busy day. Trying to run around doing the food shopping for the week and trying to catch up with laundry (ugh... that's another thing that is never ending!)


___________________________________________________
My First Line:

Today's my thirty-fifth birthday. And for the first time in my life I wish I were a man.

____________________________________________________

Oh my goodness just by reading that I can tell this book is going to have some comedic elements! I cannot wait to read it and tell you all about it!

Happy Reading!

What is your first line?
Open the book nearest to you and post the first line in the comments below...


Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I've Borrowed Because of Instagram


I enjoy doing book challenges or photography challenges so when I saw these Top Ten Tuesday Prompts I knew I had to partake! Not sure if I will do them every Tuesday but I am definitely going to give it a try!

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and The Bookish blog and is hosted by The Artsy Reader. This week's topic is Books I've Bought/Borrowed because... I chose to do Books I've Borrowed because of Instagram. On Instagram I follow lots of book lovers and a lot of them have the same love for Christian Fiction like I do! These were all new to me authors which now I absolutely love and stalk for their next book! Definitely great reads! I of course Most of these I read through the library (because libraries ROCK!) and some I borrowed through Kindle Unlimited!


Above the Fold by Rachel Scott McDaniel



Paper Hearts by Courtney Walsh


The Lady and The Lion Heart by Joanne Bischoff



Sweet on You by Becky Wade

Jane by the Book by Pepper Basham


The Doctor's Lady by Jody Hedlund


Save the Date by Jenny B. Jones


Have you read any of these gems? What is your favorite book that you have read because someone recommended it? Let me know in the comments!

Until next time,
Kelly-Ann




Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. 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.”



Monday, April 6, 2020

Hannah Currie's New Book Cover Reveal!!



I’m super excited for author Hannah Currie!! It’s her new book COVER REVEAL day!!! This cover is absolutely stunning! Heart of a Princess is the second book on the Daughters of Peverell Series! ⠀

Mark those calendars because this releases July 15, 2020!! Pre-Orders will be available closer to the release date!⠀



Here’s a little sneak peek on the story:⠀

To the watching world, Princess Alina has it all – maids to serve her, a kingdom to revere her, a prince to marry her, and a wardrobe filled with enough frills, flounces and shades of pink to rival a flower shop. But behind the smiles and designer clothes, Alina has a secret. She’s barely holding it together. ⠀

After a moment of panic almost ends in tragedy, Alina is sent to a refuge far from the palace to recuperate. Her family claim it’s for her own good but – faced with cows, knife-beaked ducks and far too many of her own insecurities – Alina is pretty sure it will kill her first. And Joha Samson, infuriating man that he is, will laugh as it does. ⠀

Only there’s more to Joha than she realizes, and more to herself too. When the time comes to make a stand, will she find the courage?⠀


Doesn’t it sound amazing?! I cannot wait to get my hands on it!!

You can follow more about her at
www.hannahcurrie.com




Friday, April 3, 2020

2019-2020 Homeschool Curriculum Picks


I know school is almost over for some but since you are just getting to know me a bit better I figured you would want to know what we use. We actually homeschool year round. We take breaks as we need them but my kids do great with structure and so does this mama! And like I mentioned before we typically only homeschool 4 days a week and then one day we go to co-op.

Before I begin I should also mention I DO NOT DO SCHOOL GRADES. I mean the kids know which grade they would technically be considered in public school for social purposes (when someone asks them or when they have to be put in a group at church or something similar) but in our house we call them levels because we are all working on what we are capable of doing. For here I will put what "grade" they would be just so you are aware.  Also for the sole purpose of this blog I will not mention our kids actual names just because I want to keep their lives private so they have nicknames that suit them!

Let's dig in!

Jedi Master - 5th Grade

He has always been my early reader and writer. He loves to read and as you can see by his nickname he is a HUGE Star Wars geek. I think he has learned most of his typing skills by searching more info about Star Wars!
We use Christian Light Education for his Core Subjects. We have been using that since the very beginning and it has been great for him. Its more workbook type material but he enjoys that.

Language Arts  ~ The program is superb and goes hand in hand with the reading program. The Language Arts contains grammar and spelling lists. They teach how to write a letter, abbreviations, cursive!! It's a great program that truly builds up every year.

Reading ~ We have loved all the stories in the readers. Mind you that this program is written by Menonites so it has been fun to see stories based on their lifestyle it definitely has been interesting for my kiddos to see how they live.
His grammar skills and Reading are superb and because of that, this is his last semester with Christian Light for these subjects. But we have loved every minute of this program and recommended to anyone looking for a solid Reading and Language Arts program. Its also very affordable.

Math - Oh boy.. so we use Christian Light Education for Math since the beginning of schooling and this year I had the craziest idea to switch Math to give them a break because CLE's (Christian Light Education) is very intensive but if you aren't Math savvy like me then it helps a lot because it walks you through the problems and helps you understand them. I swear I have learned more Math from teaching him than I did when I was in school. Anyways back to my epic fail.... I thought let's switch it up and give you something lighter so we went with Masterbooks (insert screaming, pulling hair mama). I am sure the Math program is great if you have started from the beginning with them but I didn't think so. It was way too light and not enough help for this non-mathy mama. So in the middle of the books we switched back to CLE and we are never changing again until we absolutely have to!

Handwriting ~ This term I did get him a cursive book because I wanted him to practice it some more and definitely do not want him to forget. We love this book by Queen Homeschool Supplies because it is a picture study along with the writing lessons.


The Gentle Ninja - 3rd Grade

My ADHD, Sensory kiddo that surprises me daily. It has been a slower pace with him especially in reading but he is starting to catch on he is so proud of himself! He absolutely LOVES MATH like his daddy. He however can't stay still to save his life but he loves pets and loving on his mama!

Reading ~ He is also doing CLE although he is working on Level 2 and so far its good but we know its definitely not a good fit for him. He loves the workbooks but he still has trouble reading long stories. He is still in the beginning stages of reading and ROCKING IT!!! He is finally confident in his ability and that makes this book nerd mama happy!! That being said we know we are switching to another program that will help him a lot more.

Language Arts ~ As much as I wanted to stick with CLE I knew it wasn't the path for him. Masterbooks Language Lessons for a Living Education is the right fit for him. The lessons are short and sweet perfect for this active boy.

Math - Well you already read my fiasco about that so we went back to CLE and we are so much happier. He thrives on Math and welcomes the challenge with open arms!

Handwriting ~ We have been practicing on his Printing so this is the book I chose for him and it has been working well. It also by Queen Homeschool Supplies. He loves the pictures especially since they are all about animals so doing picture walks with him are always fun. He always has something interesting to say about them.

The Cuddly Scientist ~ Kindergarten

This kiddo is my cuddle bear. He absolutely loves Science and anything to do with learning about animals. We don't push him too much when it comes to learning but we do a little bit of curriculum with him and he enjoys it.

He has started his journey with CLE's Kindergarten Program and so far that seems to be working great for him. He is learning his letters and numbers, simple addition and sounding out CVC words. Mainly he PLAYS!!! Because that's what this age group is meant to be doing! Learning through play! He works on puzzles, board games, play-doh, songs, stories, using his wild imagination and that is what I want him to do. Not be bombarded by a full days of work.

The Firecracker ~ Pre-K

Ah yes, my miracle baby girl. She was not only an unexpected surprise but she truly was a miracle! We are so thankful for her but she is definitely different from the boys. This little girl is pretty fearless and total girly girl. She just started getting interested in sitting down and doing "work" like her brothers so I got her one of those big Pre-K workbooks at BJ's Wholesale. She loves it. But again she PLAYS!! She loves to paint and play with Play-Doh. She already knows all her letters and most sounds all by watching Super Why!

Our Together Time

There are certain things we do together as group. Morning Time is a big part of our day. This is when we do our main chapter book, devotions, prayer, Memorization, Geography, Science and History. This time we do right after breakfast and it doesn't take us that long now that we have a routine in place. (It took us a few weeks and trial and error to get to where we are!) We started on the couch but that was too relaxed for my kids and they lacked focus especially the Gentle Ninja. So now we do our morning time at the dinner table and move on to our classroom for our core subjects. The Cuddly Scientist and the Firecracker definitely stick around for a bulk of it but by the time we get to Geography and History they are playing or coloring and that is totally fine. It isn't fully geared to them. We use Notgrass History which we absolutely love! We are almost done with Our Star Spangled Story. We are sad to see it be done because we have really enjoyed it. The extra activities include crafts, cooking or building something and that is really up my kiddos alley. They really enjoy being quizzed Jeopardy style on the Timeline book and there is literature that you can read along with the units and we chose to do that so although is not pictured here so far we have read and enjoyed: Benjamin West and his Cat Grimalkin, Farmer Boy, Toliver's Secret and Freedom Crossing just to name a few. I highly recommend this program if you want to do it with just one kiddo or multiple children.
For Science we are doing Masterbooks Zoology course this semester. I have mixed feelings on this. We all have loved the books. Its written with strong Christian perspective which we absolutely LOVE! The books are absolutely stunning and full of information. But at times it seems like its very wordy and the workbooks is a lot of busy work and not enough hands on for my kiddos. That being said I would do it all over again because they love animals and with this program you do two field trips to bring the learning to life. A Aquarium and Zoo field trip. We have not taken those yet but hopefully we will sometime this summer.

Next term we will be adding a few other things into our Morning Routine so I am excited about that and I sure I will write all about it when I do our next curriculum picks!

If you have any questions that I can answer don't hesitate to ask me! All opinions are mine and I don't receive any monies from any of these companies.

Until next time,
Kelly-Ann