Oct 01

Mystery on the Beach! What is this? ~ Wordless Wednesday ~ Link-up

My mom came to visit at the beginning of the summer and I copied all the pictures from her camera before she left (she takes a lot of pictures). Somewhere on the beach (I'm assuming because there were beach pictures before and after this one) here in Southern California she took this. No idea what it is or where it was or how much of a close-up this is, but it is interesting, so I had to share.

Link to your WW post on the Linky below!
Don't just leave a link and run, its rude. Leave a comment as well!

Sep 30

Dear Mom of a New Tubie

Dear Mom of a New Tubie,

I feel how scared you are. So many questions running through your mind. Take a deep breath. Just breathe.

Tubie

I know there have been a lot of new words and abbreviations thrown out there lately… NG, NJ, G-tube, GJ, peg tube, and more. It all seems so overwhelming. There are new things to worry about: granulation tissue, cellulitis, blockages, and more, but that’s not for you to worry about too much right now. Take it one day at a time.

You wonder how you will learn this new way of feeding your child. It seems so cold and unattached. You wonder how you will learn the pump with all the buttons, and how you will be able to clean around the hole in your child’s stomach or put the tube back through the nose if it gets pulled it out. It all seems so foreign and scary.

I promise you, it gets better. Soon feeding your child this way will seem like second nature. You will be able to figure out the pump in your sleep, get to know that feeding tube site better than your child’s doctor and know how to put a tube back through the nose faster than anyone else.

As a mom to a new tubie, you will get lots of questions and perhaps lots of looks when you are out and about. People will have no idea that it’s a feeding tube or they will mistake it for some other type of medical equipment. Use this time to educate others. Educate them on your child’s diagnosis if you have one, or on life with a feeding tube. Use it to your advantage. Walk proudly mama, you have nothing to be ashamed of. You are doing the best for your child and that makes you a great mom!

I know you wonder how long your child will have this tube. Will it be for years? Will it be forever? You will not know how long most likely, but that’s okay. You and your child will work hard to get through this together and someday you will look back and be glad. Glad for what it taught you, and glad for how it helped your child grow and succeed.

As a mom all you want is for your child to grow and thrive, and they will. This tube does not mean the end of life as you know it, it means a better quality of life for your child. Because now they can start to grow and thrive even if it is a different way than most.

Your child will be fine. They will learn to live with that tube and learn to get around with it. They will learn what it means faster than you expect and also realize that they don’t have to let it stop them from being who they are and doing what they want to do.

Dear Mom to a new tubie: you’re doing a fine job. Keep up the good work, and take it one day at a time.

The post Dear Mom of a New Tubie appeared first on Singing through the Rain.

Sep 30

The Skinny on the Dove AWARDS 2014!!!!

Dove awards-2

I have exciting news I am eager to share!  Recently, I began blogging for Family Christian bookstore.  As one of the bloggers on their team, I was selected to attend The Dove Awards!  What are The Dove Awards?

THE HISTORY

The Dove Awards, which is Christian music’s most prominent award ceremony that recognizes and honors the best and brightest in Christian and Gospel music, began in 1969, at the Peabody Hotel in Memphis, Tennessee.  The first design of the award was credited to Les Beasley.  The first awards show recognized artists in 11 different categories.  Bill Gaither, one of the most respected artists in the Gospel music industry, won the Songwriter of the Year.  James Blackwood won Male Vocalist of the Year and Vestal Goodman was honored as Female Vocalist of the Year.  The first Song of the Year was “Jesus Is Coming Soon” by R.E. Winsett.  In 1971, The Dove Awards show was moved to Nashville, Tennessee.  Over the years the awards show has moved venues or has been cancelled for various reasons, but in 2013 The Dove Awards show returned to Nashville.

In 1998, controversy ensued over the criteria of Gospel music lyrics due to popular songs by Amy Grant and Sixpence None The Richer.  The Gospel Music Association (GMA) was forced to set rules and applied definitions to what could constitute as Christian or Gospel music.  The rules can be found HERE:

  • Substantially based upon historically orthodox Christian truth contained in or derived from the Holy Bible;
  • An expression of worship of God or praise for His works; and /or
  • Testimony of relationship with God through Christ; and/or
  • Obviously prompted and informed by a Christian world view

The Dove Awards are Christian music’s most prestigious awards ceremony!  They honor the biggest and the best in the Christian and Gospel music industry.  A large variety of categories are recognized, but, unfortunately, only the mainstream popular interests are televised.  If you are curious of past winners, check out THIS post.

In 2013, Toby Mac (one of my family’s favorite artists) was quoted saying this about the Dove awards:

We enter each session the same way.” he said. “We tell God we’d be honored if he would bring something through us, as we sit down to write, that will turn us toward him.

My Thoughts:

Music has always held a special place in my life.  I began playing the piano at the age of four and added saxophone to my repertoire in 6th grade.  I played in the band for many years and attended University of Tennessee Honors Band several years in a row in High-School.  I sang in church, helped begin a teenage girl Christian group called “The Twelve-Pole Valley Girls” with my friends.  We sang together for many years, until we all graduated and moved on to other pursuits.  Singing praises to our Heavenly Father is a gift I will always cherish.  Listening to Christian and Gospel music is always something that has helped me to relate to God even more.  We all have a testimony of how we were saved.  I have heard many testimonies about music leading the lost to Christ through the lyrics reminding us of what Christ did for us.  To God be the glory!

It is an honor to attend The Dove Awards with Family Christian Bookstores; but it is a bigger honor to be a blogger for such a wonderful, Christian business.  I am excited to spend time with the other bloggers who are attending, including my friend Ginger.  Ginger and I met on an online forum about 10 years ago and became Facebook friends.  Later, we started our blogs at approximately the same time and have remained friends! I can’t believe I am finally getting to meet her in person!

THE 2014 Nominees!!!

Song of the Year

Contemporary Christian Performance of the Year

Southern Gospel Performance of the Year

Gospel Performance of the Year

Artist of the Year

New Artist of the Year

Rap & Hip Hop Song of the Year

Rock Song of the Year

Rock/Contemporary Song of the Year

Pop/Contemporary Song of the Year

Inspirational Song of the Year

Southern Gospel Song of the Year

Bluegrass Song of the Year

Country Song of the Year

Contemporary Gospel/Urban Song of the Year

Traditional Gospel Song of the Year

Worship Song of the Year

Pop/Contemporary Album of the Year

Inspirational Album of the Year

Southern Gospel Album of the Year

Bluegrass Album of the Year

Country Album of the Year

Traditional Gospel Album of the Year

Children’s Album of the Year

Special Event Album of the Year

Christmas Album of the Year

Worship Album of the Year

****edited links to here*****

Inspirational Film of the Year

God’s Not Dead

Grace Unplugged

Heaven Is For Real

Son of God

When Calls The Heart

Here are some links for more information on the DOVE awards:

Ticket purchase link - bit.ly/DoveTickets

Dove Awards Socials
Facebook – Facebook.com/DoveAwards
Twitter – @GMADoveAwards
Instagram – @gospelmusicassoc
YouTube - Youtube.com/gmadoveawards
Hashtag - ‪#‎DoveAwards‬
Pinterest - www.pinterest.com/doveawards/

Mark your calendars, set your alarms, program your recorders, or just tune in to Christian Broadcast Network and watch the DOVE awards October 7th, 2014!!!  Who knows?  Maybe you will see me?  Make sure you subscribe to the blog, like my blog Facebook page, and follow me on twitter where I will be posting live from the DOVE AWARDS! I will be posting blogs afterwards of what I wore and, of course, who I saw! :) Thank  you Family Christian Bookstore for this amazing opportunity!

In Christ,

Laura

The post The Skinny on the Dove AWARDS 2014!!!! appeared first on Raising Soldiers 4 Christ.

Sep 29

Blog to Book: Read my story on Kindle! Mrs. Marine’s Journal

I am so excited and happy to announce that my Blog has become a book and is now available on Kindle.

I have come across many blogs over the years that I would love to be able to read the underlying story of the people in the blog from the beginning. However, I can only sit and read on a computer screen for so long.

I began writing this blog in April 2007. I wanted to convert my blog to a book for those who would like to read my story (blog) from the beginning, just the story without the other blog hopping posts, etc. that come in-between. Also, recent posts are now available to subscribe to on Kindle as well! 

Sep 29

Vaccines are morally unethical and against God’s Commandments.

In the Bible- it says either you are for God or against God.

If you are not with God, you are against Him.

What are vaccines?


They are a blend of animal DNA, mutated virus, neuro-toxins, and unidentified plasma's that are directly injected into the bloodstream of a baby.

They are only given in hopes that the baby is free from disease.


No one is free from disease.

Disease can be a good thing because of the buildup of immunity that we receives from being exposed to a "natural disease"

We cannot pretend to "play god" and try to get away with it.

Who made man?

Who made disease?


We cannot escape disease-- but we can help our bodies recover from disease by eating WHOLE foods and practicing good hygiene.


So if you are for vaccines-- you are not informed about what they do and what they don't do.
Read more here about what they can and cannot do...


If you are for vaccines, and you believe in the myth of herd immunity-- then I suggest you read this post about why Herd immunity is a myth and its never existed for vaccines.

When did it become acceptable to try to use peer pressure and bullying tactics  when it comes to who gets a vaccine?

Read more about that here


Read what a Dr has to say about Herd Immunity. 



So what exactly does the bible say about keeping our bodies healthy-- and that if we are exposed to disease-- what are we supposed to do about it?


Read more Here.


Colossians 2:8 - Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.

1 Timothy Chapter 6



1 Corinthians 3:16 - Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and [that] the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?



Sep 29

Tiny Swag, FabKids Edition, September

Hello! Sorry the blog has been a little quiet. I actually think I’m getting carpel tunnel syndrome (?) so I’m trying to stay off of the computer and my phone as much as possible, hoping that the break will make my hands get better on their own. I’m also stretching my fingers and stuff, but any suggestions for sore hands would be much appreciated.

ANYWAY, that is not the point of this post. Despite my almost social media break, I did take some time last week to snap some photos of The Munchkin in his latest FabKids outfit. (“Cargo School Days Outfit” if you want to get specific.)

mommy-panda-blog-fabkids-plaid-shirt-brown-cargos1

I tried to get some pics before he left for school, because last time I put him in this outfit, with plans to take pictures after school, he *ahem* didn’t make it home in the same pants… potty training fun. (Is that too real for a client-related post? Sorry?) He was NOT interested in pictures though. I thought these two came out almost ok, but he was too busy looking for the bus to be a good photography subject.

Sidebar: Do your kids sometimes pick a stuffed animal to hang out with them while they wait for the bus? The Munchkin does. Usually it’s either Toodee or Muno from Yo Gabba Gabba, but this particular day, it was a minion from Despicable Me.

mommy-panda-blog-fabkids-plaid-shirt-brown-cargos3

When he got home, I did a little happy dance that he was in the same pants, and immediately moved him to a cement wall to #rockthatwall, ha. I gave him some poses, and he mostly played along. He nailed the pose on the left, and that pic on the right is his version of me resting with my elbow on the wall, and my hand supporting my head. Ha…almost buddy, almost. We’ll work on it.

If you’re in the market for a plaid shirt that features bright cheery primary colors, I’d suggest this one because it is SO SOFT. Like, crazy soft. I love it. The Munchkin doesn’t usually like the unbuttoned shirt look (buttons should be BUTTONED, after all…) but I think this shirt can pretty much do what it wants, ha. The softness is that powerful. Or something.

mommy-panda-blog-fabkids-plaid-shirt-brown-cargos2

I instantly regretted having him pose with the top of the wall. The nerves! All the fears! But cute!

Outfit Details:
Plaid shirt & Cargo shorts – c/o FabKids
Monster shirt – Kohl’s
Shoes – Adidas
Beanie – Handmade (not by me though)
Backpack – Army Kiddo freebie, ha!

Heads up: I got this outfit for free in exchange for writing this post, but all opinions and photos are my own. This post also contains affiliate links.

Sep 29

The Family Toolbox {GIVEAWAY!!!}

I am so excited to share with you an opportunity! Recently I became a  part of the Family Toolbox Blogger Team! I am currently using the program with my family. I will be sharing a review with you soon of the whole program. However, what can tell you so far about this wonderful resource is YOU WILL LOVE it! I really wish this was something I had before now, but I am so excited to see the changes that it brings for our family. You will be too!

The Family Toolbox is a DVD/video-driven program that brings parents and teens together for constructive dialogue around significant issues of discipleship. Conversation is sparked by engaging video clips. Sixteen Life Success Principles are communicated through eight lessons that give parents and teens biblically based, practical topics for discussion. The format grabs teens and gets them interacting.

The Family Toolbox has 8 lessons. Each one has a 1-2 minute scene of a family living life and experiencing common challenges in their relationships. A discussion guide prompts dialogue between parents and teens and a 10-minute teaching session for parents featuring Dr. Scott Turansky and Joanne Miller, RN, BSN gives practical tools to use right away.
Family Toolbox Giveaway

I am excited to be joining with the National Center for Biblical Parenting (NCBP) to bring you a wonderful giveaway to celebrate the release of the Family Toolbox.

The giveaway includes a $50 Amazon Gift Card + a bundle of biblical parenting resources from NCBP, including:

The Christian Parenting Handbook and Companion Guide

The Christian Parenting Handbook contains nuggets of parenting wisdom condensed into 50 short chapters, each one biblical, practical, and relevant for parents of children ages 2-18. Learn appropriate ways to correct, instruct, and set limits. Glean wisdom for dealing with emotions, conflict, and developing closeness in your family… and much more. These 50 strategies provide you with hands-on tools for parenting children of any age.

The Companion Guide is a workbook of 50 lessons along with 50 audio tips to take you through The Christian Parenting Handbook step by step.

Cultivating Responsibility: Parenting Wisdom for Ages 9-12 Years

The later elementary age years are among the greatest times to build responsibility in children. Heart transformation takes place when parents use other tools than behavior modification. Sometimes though, bad attitudes, disrespect, and a lack of cooperation can muddy the waters. You’ll want to learn from the experts how best to navigate these years. Your children are making significant developmental leaps in their cognitive, social, emotional and spiritual growth. Understanding how best to help children through these years is essential.

Family Heart Moments

The Family Heart Moments book is a treasure. Over 70 inspirational true stories from parents who are eager to connect with their children’s hearts. The heart is a special place in the life of a child. You don’t want to miss it. This book will give you practical ideas for touching your kids in the deepest place.

Family Time Activity for Teens

Teenagers are in an exciting time of life. They’re learning a lot about themselves and the world, and they need lots of spiritual guidance. The activities and applications in this book are designed specifically for teens. The object lessons and games are captivating and the biblical lessons are timeless. Walking Billboards, Fear Factor, and Gender Differences, are just a few of the titles. Nineteen lessons are included, all unique and powerful. Make Family Time a regular part of your family’s spiritual growth.

Learning About Sex: Love, Sex, and God

In a natural, conversational style, this book answers tough questions that help teens separate sex and love facts from myths. Straight facts on dating, marriage, sex, and sexually transmitted diseases are presented here.

Say Goodbye to Whining, Complaining and Bad Attitudes, in You and Your Kids

It affects the way people think, the way they act, and the way they treat others around them. Honor motivates parents to treat children differently. It gives children more constructive ways to interact with their parents. It helps siblings develop tolerance and patience. Honor builds incredibly strong bonds that, in turn, benefit all members of the family. This book shows you in practical ways and shows how honor can transform your family.

To enter, use the Rafflecopter below. This giveaway is open internationally to those age 18 and older.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Also, please join us for The Family Toolbox Facebook Party on Thursday, October 16, 8-10PM ET where there will be even more great prizes, an opportunity to ask your parenting questions, and lots of fun and fellowship! The winner of this giveaway will be announced at the Facebook party!

RSVP for the Party here: https://www.facebook.com/events/876232019055940/

Family Toolbox Facebook Party

 

In Christ,

Laura

The post The Family Toolbox {GIVEAWAY!!!} appeared first on Raising Soldiers 4 Christ.

Sep 29

Modest Monday: The Porn Industry Wants Your Child!!!

Downloading porn

A few weeks ago, I wrote about porn and the struggles within our marriage because of that addiction. You can read those posts HERE and HERE.  Those posts received a lot of response from readers.  This week, I am providing more information, resources and encouragement for others who may be going through the same struggles.

When does the porn addiction begin?

In a study compiled by Proven Men Ministries with Barna group HERE, statistics show shocking numbers of Christian men who are addicted to porn.  When the term “porn addiction” is stated, our minds immediately think of men.  Surprisingly, the study shows that women also have this struggle.  So why do they seek pornography?

Recently, Focus on the Family posted an article concerning kids and pornography.  This is a subject many parents don’t think about, unless you’re a parent of a teen, then it’s a subject you probably don’t want to think about.  You can read the full article HERE.  The article states that prior to technology, kids typically between the ages of 11-13 viewed porn by way of Playboy and Hustler magazines.  Since the age of the internet, those same 11-13 year olds (possibly younger) no longer have to “borrow” a magazine.  We live in a sex-crazed world where almost anything we desire can be accessed by a click of the mouse.  Hardcore porn is everywhere on the internet.  It’s possible that you’re thinking to yourself that you don’t have to worry about porn in your house or desecrating your husband’s, wife’s or children’s mind.  I encourage you to check out this study.

In an article found HERE states the following:

Sexually explicit images and erotic art have had a place in almost every culture, so observing a sexual image is not necessarily harmful. But it’s all about context. Pornographic images are often reflections of sex that have nothing to do with real life and young people lack the context to know that. The very fact that such a private act is being shared with the world obliterates the concept of intimacy, and intimacy is an important aspect of sexual health and safety.

As I read these words, my heart sank.  Through my own personal experiences, I know too well the effect porn has on a marriage. I know the cost.  I look at my three boys and I don’t want their wives to go through what I did.  So what do I do?

But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people. 2 Timothy 3:1-5

So how can we as parents teach and train our kids?  How can we intervene to keep our precious babies from falling into the porn trap?  Covenant Eyes has a wonderful article HERE.  Here are some of the tips provided:

Parental Controls

Building Blocks to Moral Purity

The goal is to develop control in seven areas of life that will build moral purity into the lifestyle. Look up the verses for each “control” and evaluate what you have done in the past in this area, what you are doing at the present, and what you should do in the future. Be very specific. Self-control is a fruit of the Holy Spirit, and each of these seven controls will help you build the necessary character to develop moral purity as a lifestyle.

  1. Thought Control:  Proverbs 23:7; Romans 12:2; Philippians 4:8; 2 Corinthians 10:5
  2. Eye Control:  Job 31:1; Psalm 101:3; Proverbs 4:23, 25; Matthew 6:22,23
  3. Body Control: 1 Thessalonians 4:4; 1 Timothy 4:7-8; Romans 6:12
  4. Companion Control: 1 Corinthians 15:33; 5:9-11; Proverbs 13:20-21; 22:24-25; 27:17
  5. Circumstance Control:  Romans 13:14; 1 Thessalonians 5:22; 2 Timothy 2:22
  6. Influence Control:  1 Thessalonians 4:6-7; Proverbs 27:17; Romans 16:17-18
  7. Focus Control:  2 Corinthians 5:9; 1 Corinthians 10:31; Philippians 2:3-4; Matthew 20:25-28

What if your child is looking at porn?  There is a free guide which can be found HERE on Covenant Eyes website.  Also, take the opportunity to peruse the Covenant Eyes website.  The site is full of great resources.  Here is a link to many of their article for and about children.

I have a feeling I am going to receive at least one comment suggesting that the simple solution is to just not allow kids to have access to computers, smart devices, etc.  I guess that is one solution, and while I somewhat agree, I also disagree with that. All three of my boys have iPads and Kindles and my oldest has a laptop.  We are a homeschool family and these devices come in quite handy for reading, science, art, history, geography, and the list goes on.  However, we also put strict limitations on the use of these devices.  My oldest is not allowed to have his laptop in his room.  The Kindles and the iPads are password protected.  The boys must come to me or Daddy to unlock them.  We also put parental controls on these devices so nothing can be downloaded without permission.  When the devices are not in use, they are put away.  We also set time limits for a variety of reasons. My kids also are not allowed access to electronics unless devotions, schoolwork, and Bible study is completed for the day.  The only time we allow exceptions are during long road trips.

So what else can you do?

Ask Your Mother

In an article found on Family Share HERE, it lists steps you can take as a parent. They include:

  • All computers in your house, including laptops, should have an Internet filter installed which blocks websites that carry pornography. Make sure kids know what to do if a pornographic image accidentally pops up. Teach them to how to do an emergency screen crash and then immediately talk to a parent. As a parent, be prepared to “debrief” the event.
  • TV shows, video and computer games and other recreation should be monitored.
  • Children’s cell phones should be gathered up at night to be recharged by a parent, rather than kept in the child’s bedroom.
  • Know how to check which Internet sites have been accessed on the computers in your house. If your child has a cell phone, check on texts, photos, and Internet access.
  • Know the answers about why pornography use is so damaging so that your discussions with your children go beyond, “Pornography is bad, don’t look at it!”
  • You can start a discussion about pornography by talking about something you’ve read, a question you have, or something as straightforward as, “I remember the first time I saw pornography,” then tell your story and ask your child to tell you about their exposure.
  • Have regular discussions with your children and teens about their experiences with pornography. One family started having a monthly “Warrior’s Counsel” where children (and parents) talked about things such as bullying, bad language, pornography exposure, and vicious gossip to which they have been exposed. The family brainstormed on why these things were harmful and how to avoid or prevent such things, in the future.

Most important in all of this is to teach your kids the scripture.  Help them to memorize and learn to hide the Word in their heart. My kids learn memory verses each week.  By memorizing scripture, our children learn to pull those truths as a reminder when faced with decisions.  However, scripture memory alone is not all we should be doing. We should also be teaching our kids what those verses mean and how to apply them to their life.  I will be sharing more about this in another post, so stay tuned.

What precautions do you currently have in place?  What ideas have you came up with to ensure your kids do not fall into the porn trap?  Please share in the comments below.

Now for what I wore….

JM-1

JM-2

JM-3

JM-5

JM-6

Headband: Lilla Rose

Dress: Jade Mackenzie. I LOVE this dress! It is SO comfortable and modest! I love the neckline too.

Boots: Bear Claw: Bought at the Exchange on sale.

In Christ,

Laura

The post Modest Monday: The Porn Industry Wants Your Child!!! appeared first on Raising Soldiers 4 Christ.

Sep 26

Almost Famous

 
 
  I don't get to write about Shayne too much because, well...she's a teenager and I'm trying hard to respect her privacy(what's that?). But I wanted to jot a few things down so she never forgets how fantastic her Junior year started off and how absolutely awesome she is!!!
 
On the second week of school she made it on Wildcatdrama's Instagram/Facebook page with her first impromptu dialogue-They had to pull an object out of a bag-Shayne obviously pulled flamingo glasses, which apparently inspired her to say, "My dad is Steve Jobs, and I made your shoes. Deal with it." -Which of course had the class rolling on the floor in Theatre Arts II.  Shayne's mood after school usually depends on how well she has performed in class that day. Unfortunately, she did not get a role in this fall's production of Arsenic and Old Lace(only seniors were casted)- That was NOT a fun afternoon.....
 
 
When I walked into her room after she left for her first day of school, I found this taped to her closet door-
 
My mom would have died and gone to heaven to have a daughter like this with GOALS! Baha ha!

The #100 is from her Auxiliary tryouts last spring- Yep, a week long audition and she MADE it! (Over 200 girls tried out, and only 80 made it, and Shayne was one of them!). Unfortunately, the auxiliary coach was not very flexible and Shayne had to choose between auxiliary or drama and Shayne decided to go with drama(which I was SUPER happy about:).  
 
This morning she handed me a copy of the school newspaper, Paw Prints. My girl has officially been published! Shayne is taking Journalism this year and she was suppose to interview new students and decided to go off on her own idea and write about embarrassing moments instead because of what happen to her on the first day of school last year! I love it!!!
 
 
 
She is everything I wanted to be in high school and so, so, much more! It's just so much fun vicariously living through her!!! Here's to an AWESOME Junior year!

Sep 25

Seeing past a Disability is a Lesson on Humanity: Third Grade Memories.


Before I had my children, the world of special needs was something of my own childhood. I grew up around those who needed a little extra love and attention. Back in those days, the special needs children were often in separate classrooms. Occasionally we would have children who had Downs or physical handicaps in our classrooms. In my third grade, my best friend was a boy who had Spina Bifida, who had later died due to other things happening inside his small body. It was knowing him, without seeing the very obvious thing that made him different, that allowed me to see a person beyond the stated or pronounced issue they were having in life.

With that sense, it made me realize, when my own children were diagnosed, wouldn't it be wonderful if people could see past that one distinctive factor. Even though, there have been a lot of advancements in medical science, it still seems that the ignorance of long before, still reigns. 

I  have written a lot about the daily struggles both myself and my children have navigating around in this world, that seems to be, some days, a sea of assholes. But every time I encounter someone that can't quite figure my children out, I think back to looking in on those classrooms that were filled with children, who just wanted to play and have friends. And I think, it really hasn't changed all that much. Sure we are starting to see more and more special needs children within the classroom, but its the attitudes that haven't changed. Policies have. But not the way of thinking. We still have teachers that don't respect the uniqueness of their students and the adults out there that still try to take advantage of those who they think are weak.Bullies that are born from the  way of thinking birthed by those who are around them. Its those attitudes that get passed down, that bother me. 

I take the experiences I had growing up as something to teach my own children. I want them to see people with an open mind. I don't want them to think that just because someone is different from them, that they need to excluded from society. I want them to be able to stick up for someone who maybe can't. As they have a sibling that can't verbalize. Just as I was the voice for that friend, I want them to have that. 

After we got the diagnosis of our third child, I remember all those years of looking inside those special classrooms, thinking to myself, why can't they come out and play with us. I see my son, who is very happy where he is, in one of those classrooms. I hope that the day will come that he will be able to be with his peers. I know in my heart that it will come. 

I hang on to those memories of a person that taught me so much. At the time, I didn't think much of it as I was a child. But looking back I just see a person who was willing to be my friend and I his. Looking  at school pictures, he was always at the end, in his wheelchair and megawatt smile. I remember at his funeral, his mother thanked me for being such a good friend. To this day, I was just happy to have had him in my life. To me, there wasn't any labels or diagnosis. If a person was a good person, that was all the mattered, to me.

It is sad to me that even back then, disabilities were what made a person, no one saw past that.The refusal to educate, segregates those who just yearn to be part of this society, which is no better than those attitudes of old of wanting to put these children away or separated.  To this day, as we fight for acceptance and simple compassion, those same attitudes are still there.. Just a different translation of it. 

I hope that one day, everyone will be on the same page, speaking the same language when it comes to accepting our children. Being kind and compassionate. Looking back, me just being a friend to someone that was different, meant more to me than anything else, as he taught me more about being a good human being than I think he realized.And that is the lesson many people still need to learn.  

Billy, I hope that you know just what kind of lesson you taught me way back then about how to be a compassionate person. I hope that my children can teach someone out there the same valuable lesson you taught me many many moons ago. .You are always remembered fondly.

Sep 25

Fussball



Soooooooooooooooo close, but no cigar!!!!!




  The Fussball season has started!!! I missed sign ups on post, so we had to go through the YMCA this year, which I will never do again! It's terribly unorganized and the coach is very undependable... Whatever! James loves it and that's all that matters! I was very tempted to throw Eli on the team this year and just see what happens, but I chickened out! MAYBE in the spring I will try it... Ha!

Sep 24

Alpha Omega Publications LifePac Science {Review}

Alpha Omega Publications Science

When deciding what curriculum to use for the kids, I try to take into account what their interests and learning styles.  Fore example, my oldest craves science…LOL!  When deciding a science curriculum for him, I have to make sure he is receiving enough to peek his interests.  If he had his way, we would do nothing but science books and science projects.  Well, with having three boys, all different levels, I just don’t have the time to do science projects as much as he would like.  So there I sat. What to do?

A few weeks before starting our school year, I was asked to be on the Alpha & Omega review team.  As a member of the review team, Alpha Omega Publications allowed me to pick the curriculum that I wanted to try.  I poured over the many options presented to me.  I was like a little girl in the candy store!  LOL!  I have used products from Alpha Omega to supplement my curriculum in the past, so I knew I could trust them as a company.  In fact, one of our favorite Math curriculum in the early years is HORIZONS® Math.  All of my boys have learned their basic math skills using this amazing product!  During my research, I kept going back to LifePac 5th grade science!  I really liked what I was reading!

Some of the advantages to LifePac Science is that it is compiled of several workbooks or units. This allows the child to finish one and get a feel of satisfaction before starting another one.  They are also very easy for a child to work independently, which gives the child who need/wants extra work to work at his/her own pace.  This also frees up mom’s time to help her other children, prepare lesson plans, grade papers, or whatever mom needs to do.  I, personally, like being involved in anything the kids are learning.  I don’t just hand it to him and say “go to town,” even though he is 10 and can do it alone.  I read over his lessons and we talk about them.

AOP Science

(Ignore the homeschool clutter on my table. Busy homeschool day that day:))

I also like how this program is laid out.  Initially, I thought the units were small.  However, it is a complete Science program for the entire school year. It has projects and lists of items needed for the projects, it has vocabulary, lessons, and also questions to make sure the child understand what they have read.

Because of LifePac I am able to continue teaching the science I had planned this year for all three boys, plus give my oldest one of his desires—extra science!!!!

AOP Science-2

Thank you so much to Alpha Omega Publications for the chance to review this amazing product!  I am truly blessed!  I also want to add that Alpha & Omega are proud supporters of the US Military, retired and Active Duty. They offer a 30% discount for Veterans and Active Duty! It is available for both Active and retired military. For more information you can go here:https://www.aophomeschooling.com/military

If you want more information on Alpha & Omega or LifePac, here are some links for you:

Lifepac:https://www.aophomeschooling.com/lifepac_overview

Horizons:https://www.aophomeschooling.com/horizons_overview

In Christ,

Laura

The post Alpha Omega Publications LifePac Science {Review} appeared first on Raising Soldiers 4 Christ.

Sep 23

Train Expo










Can you tell I finally got a new camera??????? YAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sep 22

Modest Monday: Female Heroes of the Faith {Fanny Crosby}

Franny Crosby-1

I would like to introduce a new monthly series, if you will, on “Heroes of Faith.”  Ladies, we all need Titus 2 mentors to guide us throughout our walks with Christ.  It is also nice to refer back to stories of trial and triumph from ladies who have gone before us, ladies who have made their marks in history for the advancement of the Gospel of Christ.  We refer to these stories to bring us some type of comfort in knowing that we also can succeed in our passion of the Word.  Please understand that I am not equating these ladies to Christ.  Obviously, our ultimate hero is Jesus Christ, the Son of Man who laid down His life so our sins would be forgiven.   Regardless of what another person has done or is currently doing, our desire should always be to live more Christ-like.   However, I hope to inspire you, much like these ladies have inspired me, to get motivated and produce a yearning to further the advancement of God’s Word.  These ladies that I will be introducing were the hands and feet of Jesus.  These ladies removed themselves from their comfort zones and performed the tasks that the Lord has called all of us to do – Go and Proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ!

So why is Fanny Crosby so important?

She was born Frances Jane van Alystne.  She was an amazing composer, missionary worker, poet, and lyricist.  Fanny has an amazing story!  She was born in 1820 and at only 6 weeks old, she lost her eyesight because of an eye infection that was treated with mustard seeds.  Within that same year, she also lost her father.  In order to provide for the family, Fanny’s mother worked as a housekeeper for a rich family.  As common then as it is now, Fanny was looked after by her grandmother, Eunice.

Grandma Eunice helped Fanny to “see” the world around her.  She would describe to her granddaughter the sights around her in as vivid detail as possible.  Grandma Eunice taught Fanny about flowers, trees, birds, sunrise, sunset, and everything else within sight.  Her grandmother also taught her how to remember what things were by how they felt.  By learning how things felt, Fanny was also able to learn how to identify which leaf came from which type of tree!  Imagine not having the technology we are blessed with (or cursed with..lol) today.  Imagine not being able to “google” what type of trees you have in the woods around your area.  Imagine closing your eyes and feeling the texture of leaves to determine what type of tree it is.  Honestly, I can’t imagine doing that.  But for Fanny, this was required.  She didn’t look at her blindness as a disability.  Instead, she viewed her blindness as a blessing!  Fanny had an amazing mind and it kept her grandmother busy filling it.

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Fanny’s grandmother was a devout Christian and taught Fanny much of the Bible.  In fact, by the time Fanny was 12 she had memorized all of Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John!!!  WOW!!!!  Doesn’t reading about Fanny inspire you? If a little girl with the inability to see and study the Bible on her own can hide so much of God’s Word in her heart by memorizing scripture, what can we ladies do?

Fanny is quoted as saying, “The Bible verses were like friends that cheered me up whenever I felt sad about not going to school.”  Fanny desperately wanted to attend school.  She wanted to learn.  She prayed for God to show her a way that somehow, someday she would be able to attend school and learn.

Fanny’s prayers were answered at age 14.  Her mother told Franny about an article in the paper stating there was a school for the blind in New York City!  Fanny was so excited that God had answered her prayers!  Although Fanny was very excited to go to school, it meant she would have to leave her mother and grandmother.

Fanny was terrible at math.  However, she excelled with her words, which was evident by a poem she had written at only 8 years old.  Fanny began really working on her poems and improving her vocabulary.  Over the years, her poems continued to improve.  Soon, she was writing poems for Presidents and Governors and would recite them when they came to visit the school!

Fanny’s family was thrilled with the school, but was more excited that Fanny was able to get an education! After Fanny graduated from school, she was offered a job to teach there.  She poured her heart and soul into her teaching job!  While teaching, Fanny continued to write poetry and songs.  It wasn’t long before Preachers and Presidents wanted her songs!! Fanny loved being able to sing and travel and, most of all, to tell people about Jesus!

In Fanny’s lifetime, she wrote more than 8,000 songs!!  She was one of the most prolific hymnists of all time.  Many of her songs are in hymnals and song books today!  Millions of people continue to be blessed by the music and work of Fanny Crosby.  Some of Fanny’s most famous songs are “Blessed Assurance,” “Pass me not,” “O Gentle Savior,” “Jesus is Tenderly Calling You Home,” “Praise Him, Praise Him,” “Rescue the Perishing,” and “To God Be The Glory.”  You can read more about her HERE. Also, check out my post on Eight Women Who Refused to Give Up.

So what did I wear? This was the outfit I put together for the Youth Rally at church.  I hope you enjoy it. :)

Franny Crosby-3

Without the jacket

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Franny Crosby-5

This outfit was SO comfortable!

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With the jacket. I adore a jean jacket in the fall! :)

Franny Crosby-8

You cannot see it well but I had my hair twisted to the side with a Lilla Rose clip.

Dress: Old Navy. I bought TALL in this dress so that it would come to my knees. :)

Tights: I dunno. Probably Fred Myer from last year

Boots: Bear Claw bought at the Exchange during their boot sale last year.

Jean Jacket: Old Navy bought on clearance! 30% off plus 10% military discount.

Have a blessed week!

In Christ,

Laura

The post Modest Monday: Female Heroes of the Faith {Fanny Crosby} appeared first on Raising Soldiers 4 Christ.

Sep 19

Help Melanie Fight Cancer

Hello fellow Warrior Moms and Dads...








I am writing to you tonight so that you can help.

A funding website has agreed to match donations of each blogger sharing the fundraising news-- so I am doing my part in order to help raise funds for a dear autism mom named Melanie.


A little bit about why I think Melanie is soooo coool!


She is an autism mom-- there is a bond.
we both fight to recover our sons.
She is a born again Christian-- having the same faith we connect.
She has experiences the same issues that we have at our local church. she knows
it's not easy to have a child with autism in church.

She lives each day to the fullest.


She is fighting cancer for the 3rd time and she needs prayers.

Please if you don't do anything at all--prayer is the best!
 The power of prayer can heal her.

Please Pray for her and her family.

She is married and has a boy with autism who is around my sons age.


Having autism alone is enough for any mother to have stress over, and she has cancer on top of it.


Please help by giving to her fundraiser to help pay for expenses.


This is the website to donate for her family.  

Thanks so much for helping another mom in need!
 God bless you All!






Sep 19

SEE the Signs










Recent truths have come to light-- finally after 13 years.

Its truth that has long been waiting to be revealed by Honest now individuals. It has weighed heavy on this scientists.
He breaks because he doesnt want to lie anymore.

Who wants to keep lying?

No one does.

Except those that want to keep the truth ( the greater truth) hidden

There are more lies to be uncovered- I guarantee it!


Why is the CDC not mentioning that they have committed fraud to the american public-- to African Americans?

Why have they not come forward and publicly admitted it?


Because they don't want the truth to be known.
They are downplaying the scandal.

They don't want attention.


Think vaccines don't cause autism?

Why is the CDC not talking about the recent news?

They should be publicly defending themselves over this-- yet they are not...


lack of action speaks louder than the words that aren't said...


I can tell you vaccines do cause autism.

The only ones that say otherwise-- work for and have special interests with Pharma.




Sep 18

Believe in Heroes: Supporting Wounded Warriors Through Grocery Shopping

I’m excited to be sharing with you about a wonderful organization called Believe in Heroes. Believe in Heroes is an organization that has helped raise more than $16 million for the Wounded Warrior Project which in turn has helped serve more than 40,000 wounded service members.

Believe in Heroes

The Wounded Warrior Project helps wounded service members and their families that are faced with many physical challenges as well as those with PTSD. This project is so important to me as a military spouse and as a united states citizen. I feel that no matter who we are, we should help those who have given so much for our country. Even just a little can go a long way.

You might remember awhile back that I posted about my friend, Jacqueline whose husband is a wounded warrior. She started an organization to help children of wounded warriors and just reading about her and her little family every day via Facebook makes me so thankful and so blessed. You can read more about her and husband who is a wounded warrior in my post: The General’s Kids: Helping the Children of Wounded Warriors.

Now, you can do YOUR part! You can help wounded warriors via the Believe in Heroes organization by simply grocery shopping. That’s right, you heard me. Grocery shopping.

 Each participating brand and retailer in the Believe in Heroes campaign is helping further the Wounded Warrior Project mission – to honor and empower Wounded Warriors.”

Get $25.00 in coupon savings while shopping for and buying brands that care. Download the coupons here: http://goo.gl/a5tgXR. You can get more information on how and where to save and shop on the site. Coupons are available until November 30th, 2014 or while supplies last.

You can also support the Wounded Warrior Project by purchasing Believe in Heroes merchandise in stores or through their online store. There are plenty of ways you can help support these wonderful men and women! Please share and spread the word. Do your part and you can make a difference too!

Believe in Heroes


$25. in coupon savings & supporting wounded warriors. Who could ask for more? #BelieveinHeroes
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Do your part: support Wounded Warriors through grocery shopping. #BelieveinHeroes
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I’m participating in the 2014 Believe in Heroes® blogger campaign and received compensation as part of the program. 

The post Believe in Heroes: Supporting Wounded Warriors Through Grocery Shopping appeared first on Singing through the Rain.

Sep 18

What We’re Currently up To: Week 44

This past week, we’ve been…

mommy-panda-blog-currently-junction-city-foggy-morning

John has been calling a couple times a day, which is nice. He downloaded Magic Jack on his phone, and uses that to call, and we usually video chat while waiting for The Munchkin’s bus. I can’t imagine how families of deployed soldiers got by before technology. Snail mail is not enough.

I have been loving quiet mornings and snuggles with The Munchkin before we have to get up for the day. He has still been sneaking into my bed most nights. Sometimes in the middle of the night, (boo) but sometimes around 7am, which is ideal. Then, we get to just hang out for about half and hour and cuddle before we roll out of bed and wander into the kitchen. Morning people, we are not, but I like to think these cuddle sessions help with the transition into the day.

I feel like I should add that I have NOT been loving the fact that my jogging stroller broke on Saturday. We were walking around the Apple Days Festival and the handle just snapped off when I was turning the boys around. I mean, I knew it was an old stroller, but come on! I’ve been scouring craigslist for a reasonably priced replacement, but nadda. I’m hoping to find one at the post-wide yard sale on the 27th.

mommy-panda-blog-currently-fort-riley-apple-days-sweeper

The boys have been eating a lot of pizza, I feel like. They had it as a treat/snack after The Munchkin was really good at the doctor yesterday, and for dinner on Tuesday, and on Sunday they had it for dinner at Sam’s Club… I know I bought a pie from Papa Murphy’s last week, but I honestly can’t remember which day. My memory is fried lately. I’m glad I haven’t been eating it all of those days, but seriously, I need to ease off on saying “yes” to pizza all the time. Geez.

The Munchkin had fun riding “The Sweeper” at the Apple Days Festival. He did a pretty good job of waiting in the looong line for it, and then was a CHAMP when it came to actually playing in the game and getting smacked around by the sweeper thing. People in line behind me remarked at how resilient he was, and he had a blast. The Bean wanted to go in there too, which I knew was a bad idea, but he insisted. The guys running it let him in, and I told him to stay in the corner. He mostly did, but the sweeper came really (really!) close to his face at one point, and he started to cry. I think he thought it was a bouncy house, but it totally was not. I went in and got him, and we went to a bouncy house when The Munchkin was done. Good times.

mommy-panda-blog-currently-fort-riley-apple-days-egg-rolls

I’ve been wishing that people would walk/run/dance/etc with me and my Panda Pacers. You don’t have to give any money to join in, if you don’t want to. I don’t know if I made that clear in my post. Of course, it is a fundraiser, so raising money is the name of the game, but if you’re strapped for cash, just join in and send a couple tweets or something. That helps too.

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Pictures: Early foggy Saturday morning | The “Sweeper” at Apple Days | Egg rolls & rice at Apple Days
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Sep 18

Our Fun at The Color Run

the-color-run-manhattan-ks-1

On Saturday, the boys and I participated in The Color Run in Manhattan. I hemmed and hawed about going, but finally bit the bullet and bought the ticket the night before. I thought $45 seemed a little steep for a 5k, but it ended up being totally worth it.

the-color-run-manhattan-ks-2

The boys were confused as to why we had to wake up early, but they were pretty good about it, and ate their breakfast without issue. I was pretty bummed though, because it was SO COLD OUT. It was 39 degrees when we got to the race. Ridiculous. I managed to find a light cream blanket in our linen closet, and draped it over the boys in the jogger.

I made them their own runners’ bibs, because The Munchkin wanted his own for the 4th of July Kid’s Fun Run, and I was unprepared. Lesson learned! Once I signed in, I copied my bib number onto their bibs with a Sharpie, and pinned it on him. The Bean kept saying “cold, cold, cold, cold” when I took him out from under the blanket to pin his on, so I pinned it to the blanket instead, haha.

We got there late; right as the race was starting, and I highly recommend it. No lines for sign in, minimal people around to make you feel rushed while you do silly things like pin homemade runners’ bibs on your kids… the only draw backs were the parking (far away) and that we were at the back of the line. Truthfully, we probably could have just joined in the line where-ever, but life lessons here people. Life lessons. You wait your turn and don’t cut people in line. Thems the rules.

While we were waiting, we saw some dude dressed up as a unicorn, and The Munchkin was So. Excited. It was pretty funny.

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I honestly didn’t think I would run the whole thing, since I knew The Munchkin would want to do it with me, but I barely ran at all. The Munchkin ran for about the first quarter mile or so, and then walked. The whole rest of the way. Haha we had fun though. I don’t think he really understood why it was a “color run” at first, so when we got to the first color station, and a lady sprayed him with a teeny bit of yellow, he was shocked and confused. Then, I told him it was ok, got some on myself, and a big grin spread across his face.

As we walked to the next color station, we guessed which color we’d get sprayed with. He said red, and I guessed blue. I was right. He had run going through the powder, but then was SO SAD. I couldn’t figure it out. I thought he was sad because it wasn’t red. I was half right. As we walked, I wracked my brain to try and think of the reason he might be so suddenly sad. Then, I had an idea. “OH! You know that wasn’t the last color, right?” He looked up at me with a surprised look. I told him there were at least two more, and he started jumping up and down; practically skipping down the road, saying “YAY! More colors!” The next color was pink, but for some reason, he decided it was red, so I ran with it, since I didn’t want him to be sad about the color again. He had SO MUCH FUN in the pink red ah, pink, and ran back and forth through it. I actually got freaked out at that point, because I lost him in the crowd. I found him, obviously, but I made sure to keep a better eye on him at the next color station.

If you’re wondering how The Bean felt about the color, he did ok with it. He was a little weirded out at first by a stranger tossing random handfuls of colored powder on him, but once I smiled at him, said “yay” and clapped a bit, he got on board with the whole thing. Luckily, people kept it pretty light for him, and most of it got on the blanket, but the pink people put it right on top of his head. I held my breath at that one, but he was ok with it. Whew.

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We were third to last to finish, and got to the main after party area just in time for the last two color throws. The Munchkin found the unicorn guy again, and we picked up some trash and got a bumper sticker. Good times! These are the faces they made when I said that there was “no more colors”. I’m not sure how we got all the way into the van before they realized it was over, but … We can’t wait to do another one! I think today was the first day since Saturday that The Munchkin hasn’t asked if we’re doing “more colors” today, ha.

Sep 16

Were Moving Again!

Didn't we just move not that long ago? (The pic has nothing to do with the post but isn't she cute!)

Yes, we PCSed here to California in January, but don't worry, we are not PCSing again already. We are currently living in base housing and have decided to buy a house!!!! We are moving off base to another area, which will unfortunately mean the kids will be changing schools again, which I hate and I feel guilty about it. However I know it will be better in the long run!

The schools in the district we are moving to are MUCH better than the school they are at right now on base. Also, Sissy is in 6 grade and after we move she will be going to a Middle School which I feel will be really good for her and give her a little more since of independence and maturity!

So, that means right now, for the next month-ish (however much longer before we move) is the very last time my children will both be at the same school ever again!! Kinda crazy!

The base Elementary School they are both currently at goes up to 8th grade which I think is a little weird. I was in Elementary to 6th grade then Middle School was 7th and 8th. I like the idea of Middle School starting at 6th instead, but I couldn't imagine having Sissy stay as the current school through 8th grade then going to High School. She does currently have the same schedule setup of 7 different periods/classes throughout the day like Middle School which is good, but I think the older kids (6th, 7th, 8th) need that separation from Elementary of Middle School as a stepping stone to prepare them for High School.

I don't yet know when we are moving, it takes time, and lots of paperwork, to buy a house. I am hoping we move around the end of the month or the beginning of next! I really want to be unpacked and have time to decorate for Halloween!!!!

Sep 16

Treasury of Bible Stories {Review AND GIVEAWAY!}

Treasury of Bible Stories one sheet

The shelves inside Christian book stores are filled with Bible Story books. These books can sometimes be found inside mega-chain book stores, discount book stores, yard sales, swap-meets, pawn shops, libraries and the list goes on.  You’ve seen one, you’ve seen them all, right?  What could be so special about this one?

Here is what Amazon says:

Magnificent Tales are rhyming Bible stories with clever art and clear lessons that the whole family will enjoy. The stories and illustrations are so engaging that you won’t grow tired of reading and rereading a Magnificent Tale night after night! From “The Salty Tale of Noah and the Ark” to “The Lasting Story of the Last Supper,” the rhyming tales in this book remind us that God loves his people—in the Bible and today!

My thoughts:

I have a lot of Children’s Bible story books. When I was asked to review this Bible Story book, I thought to myself, “What is so special about this particular one that makes it different than the rest I already own?” When I received the book, I was immediately drawn to the cover illustration.  Stating that it is beautiful just doesn’t seem to give it justice.  However, my excitement pales in comparison with that of my 5 year old.  He LOVES to read stories about Jesus. As we paged through the book, we were both mesmerized by the beautifully detailed pictures throughout this book.  I’m sure we’ve all seen pictures of Jesus sitting on a large stone speaking to children, or something similar to this.  Many of us relate this depiction as Jesus loves the little children.  The pictures found in “Magnificent Tales” consumed my 5 year old and he was able to easily relate to the stories.  All three of my boys were captivated by the pictures.  In fact, my middle son said, “Mommy the pictures are really nice!” Although he is 10 and doesn’t need a Children’s Bible Story book to comprehend the Bible Stories, he loves reading aloud with us!

The age range suggested for this book is 4-8. The stories are written especially for young readers; however, as previously mentioned, my 10 year old also enjoyed it.  The fascinating stories are presented in the same order they are found in the Bible. The fact that the stories rhyme makes them that much more interesting for children.  Also, what easier way to memorize than by rhyming?

The ONLY thing I could pick on if I was going to pick on anything is it didn’t cover the book of Revelation. Then again, the majority of Children’s Bible Story books do not either. However, this doesn’t affect me using the book nor or how great the book is for my family. I think my boys, especially my youngest, will enjoy this book for years to come.  All my boys are already reading well, but this is a good book to work on reading speed with them! I give this a 5/5!

You can get a copy by clicking below:


Also, here is your chance to enter to win a copy yourself!!!


In Christ,

Laura

The post Treasury of Bible Stories {Review AND GIVEAWAY!} appeared first on Raising Soldiers 4 Christ.

Sep 15

The Hero within…

Normally when we think about Heroes, we tend to think about those who don a cape and have special, unique powers that make them immortal or the ability do things at an extraordinary level. They tend to be those who have fan base or a following of sorts. They are the characters that young children dream of being, wearing their costumes, pretending to save those toys from an evil entity from their imagination. When I think about heroes, its everyday people.

A far cry from your Supermen and your X-Men, but the everyday Joe who makes a difference in their life, as well as the lives of others. It doesn't take superhuman strength or a gazillion gadgets. Nor does it take a radio active spider, to prove to society that you are hero. It takes compassion and kindness. Courage, and internal strength. Heroes are those people who without a second thought, try and make a positive difference in the world. They are the ones that come from their own personal struggles to raise above it and come out of it ok.

They are the mothers and fathers, that go to ends of the earth to make sure that their children are taken care of. The single parents that are working two to three jobs just to make sure there is food in their children's bellies. They are the parents that get devastating news concerning their child, but yet put a brave face on, so their child doesn't worry. They are the parents that have had to prematurely bury their children when they have departed to soon from this earth.

They are the people that swear to protect and up hold the law, still with honor and dignity. They are your members of the military, that bravely enlisted to protect the freedoms you have today. They are the family members that are left behind during deployments. The child that waves the American Flag so proudly while they watch their parent go.  They are the mothers, fathers, wives, husbands and children that sit in front of a grave stone watching a 21 gun salute.

They are the person who doesn't see the disability that has labelled them. They are people who fight for acceptance. The people who take what is given to them and who make it work.

They are the fighters and dreamers who try to make this world a better place. They are the figures that personify just what equality and peace is. They are the Dr.Martin Luther King Jr's, The Ghandi's, the Dali Lama's of this world. They are the people who never gave up. The Rosa Parks', The Nelson Mandelas and the Harvey Milk's of this world.

Heroes are everywhere. They are the people that hold the door open for you. They are the people,who when they see you struggle  are there to help you back on your feet. They are the good Samaritans that help in an accident or who help you calm your nerves. They are the people,who pay it forward. They are the people who don't care where you come from or who you are but are willing to respect you as human being.

So when we look at heroes, very rarely do we look at the person staring back at us in the mirror. Most of us don't think we are the all that special, but in reality, we just might be a hero to someone and just don't know it. Within ourselves there is a hero that is either waiting to emerge or they are part of who we are.










Sep 15

Jonah and the Great Big Fish

I am always on the lookout for kid’s books that my kids will love. My son loves to be read to, and I am hoping my daughter will too when she gets a bit older. I was given the opportunity to read and review Jonah and the Great Big Fish by Rhonda Gowler Greene and my son is really enjoying it!

Jonah and the Great Big Fish

My Review of Jonah and the Great Big Fish

4 stars

I love that this book is so big, bright, and colorful. My son enjoyed looking at the pages and I enjoyed looking too. The book is in rhyme which is cute, and my son seems to prefer books like that as well. I liked that it kept with the biblical account of the story and that for the most part it was easy to read.

One of the things I didn’t care for was the way it rhymed. It seemed to have missing words. For example:

“God told Jonah to obey,

said, ‘Go to Nineveh this day.”

Seems to me it would be easier to add the “He” to the second line and I find myself reading it that way sometimes. I also was sad that the book ended with Jonah saying he would go to Nineveh, but that it didn’t complete the story. I think it would have been a great book to have it a little longer and to finish the story of what happened in Nineveh.

All-in-all it was a great book. It says for ages 3-7 and I thought that covered a good age group. I definitely plan on keeping it around for both my kids and maybe buy the companion stories by Rhonda Gowler Greene too!

Other Biblical Stories by Rhonda Gowler Greene:

1. Jonah and the Great Big Fish

Jonah and the Great Big Fish

2. Noah and the Mighty Ark

Noah and the Mighty Ark

3. One Lost Sheep

one lost sheep

The post Jonah and the Great Big Fish appeared first on Singing through the Rain.

Sep 15

Modest Monday: Ultimate Modesty Booklist and What I wore :)

Vintage book with clear pages isolated on white

It is no secret that reading and modesty are two passions in my life.  Other than my faith in Christ and my family, what better joy can be found outside of modesty books? LOL. So, I thought I would share with you some of my favorites.

1. The Secret Keeper:

We live in the age of low-rise jeans, belly button rings, and backless shirts. Many girls and young women today could not even define the word modesty, let alone tell you how to live it out. Teen girls often ask:

Why can’t I wear what everyone else is wearing? My parents are hung up on their old sense of fashion. Times have changed, why can’t I? Isn’t is really the guy’s problem if he is tempted?

In a fresh and trusted voice, Dannah Gresh has a new message for them: modesty itself is a delicate yet formidable power. In Secret Keeper, she teaches that modesty not only issues a challenge for one man to romantically earn your virtue, but it also expresses your love for and obedience to God.

Includes The “Truth or Bare” Fashion Tests and Fashion Challenges that will resonate with a teen girl

2. The Secret Keeper Devotional: 35-Day Experience with the Delicate Power of Modesty:

Secret Keeper Devos journal is a great follow-up study to the Secret Keeper book. It invites teenage girls to interact with biblical texts on modesty and God’s view of true beauty. With blank pages for the reader’s responses, this 30-day devotional will challenge girls to view themselves as masterpieces created by God. Includes 20 perforated cards with text on both sides.

3. A Return to Modesty: Discovering the Lost Art of Virtue:

Updated with a new introduction, this fifteenth anniversary edition of A Return to Modesty reignites Wendy Shalit’s controversial claim that we have lost our respect for an essential virtue: modesty.

When A Return to Modesty was first published in 1999, its argument launched a worldwide discussion about the possibility of innocence and romantic idealism. Wendy Shalit was the first to systematically critique the “hook-up” scene and outline the harms of making sexuality so public.

Today, with social media increasingly blurring the line between public and private life, and with child exploitation on the rise, the concept of modesty is more relevant than ever. Updated with a new preface that addresses the unique problems facing society now, A Return to Modesty shows why “the lost virtue” of modesty is not a hang-up that we should set out to cure, but rather a wonderful instinct to be celebrated.

A Return to Modesty is a deeply personal account as well as a fascinating intellectual exploration into everything from seventeenth-century manners to the 1948 tune “Baby, It’s Cold Outside.” Beholden neither to social conservatives nor to feminists, Shalit reminds us that modesty is not prudery, but a natural instinct—and one that may be able to save us from ourselves.

4. Modest: Men and Women Clothed in the Gospel:

Modesty is about freedom, not rules. Does that seem off? What we mean is that what you say or do or wear is not really the point, not ultimately. In a sense, we don’t even care what you choose. But we care a lot about why you make the choices you do regarding clothing or speech or behavior. Because what really matters here is your heart. The point of this book is that true modesty does not come from following a list of rules. It flows naturally from a solid grasp of the gospel. That means modesty doesn’t need to look the same from one person to another. It’s about your motivations, not your wardrobe.

5. Christian Modesty and The Public Undressing of America:

In the Church today, there are few cows quite as sacred as the right of modern Christians to dress however they please. But in this groundbreaking work, Jeff Pollard challenges us to embrace God’s standard and to understand the historical roots of the rise of nudity and immodesty in modern culture. His perspective is thoughtful and balanced. Most importantly, he accomplishes what few authors on this subject have achieved: a treatise that avoids both license and legalism. A courageous booklet.

6. The Look: Does God really Care What I wear?

Nancy Leigh DeMoss challenges Christians to ask themselves tough questions: Who decides what I will wear, and why? What message does my clothing communicate? And, how can I reflect the glory of God in my wardrobe?
Biblical, practical and motivating, “The Look” challenges women (young or older), parents, and teens to discover the Truth about clothing and modesty, and to make choices based on God’s eternal perspective.

7. Dressing With Dignity:

In this ground-breaking book, Colleen Hammond challenges today’s fashions and provides you the information you need to protect yourself and your loved ones from the onslaught of tasteless, immodest clothing. Colleen Hammond shares real-life examples of how women can accentuate the grace and beauty of their femininity, and she shows that modest definitely does not mean frumpy !! DRESSING WITH DIGNITY covers it all . . . The history and forces behind the changes in fashion. How to talk to teenagers about the privilege of femininity so they will want to dress with dignity. How to awaken chivalry in men and be treated with respect. How to regain and teach the lost charm of interior and exterior femininity! How to dress in an attractive, dignified, classy manner! Specific documents about manners of dress from the Magisterium, the Popes and the Saints. Comprehensive guidelines for choosing tasteful attire. Resources on where to find beautiful, modest clothing. And much, much more!

8. Your Clothes Say it For You:

From the title you will notice that this book deals with a very controversial subject. Women don’t really like to be told what to wear. However, some women do earnestly desire to please God. They would do what God wants them to do about their appearance. God does have a standard for your appearance. For those women who are ready to find out what it is, this book was written.

9. Feminine Appeal:

You hold in your hands a guide to spiritual maturity and an opportunity to embrace God’s plan for you as a woman, a wife, a mentor, and a mother. In this book of instruction for women of all ages, Carolyn Mahaney explores seven virtues from Titus 2 that have transformed her life and the lives of countless other women. Learn how to live with true feminine appeal and become a woman who lives for God and helps others to do the same.

10. True Beauty:

Whether it’s age-defying makeup or the latest diet fad, our culture continually tells women that beauty consists of flawless skin and a supermodel figure.

In True Beauty, Carolyn Mahaney and her daughter Nicole Whitacre direct us to the truth of God’s Word, where we encounter an entirely different—and refreshingly liberating—standard of beauty.

Offering a path to freedom from the false idols that society, the Devil, and our sinful hearts so often create, this encouraging book will help you exchange the temporary glamour of pop culture for the unfading beauty of godliness.

Includes a discussion guide.

11. The Beauty of Modesty:Cultivating Virtue in the face of a Vulgar Culture:

A look at our cultural preferences today of showing as much skin as possible transposed against the choice to be modest and the values of the choice.

12. Christian Modesty:

Another quality eBook from Chapel Library. God’s Word has much to say about the way we dress. This book examines relevant portions of Scripture and investigates a little fashion history in order to present the Biblical doctrine of modesty. This important and controversial subject often falls into the realm of subjective experience and speculation. An examination of fashion authorities and historians of modern culture also reveals that the fashion industry, which believes that sexual attraction equals beauty, has been hard at work convincing society to undress in public. Because of its unbiblical worldview, the fashion industry persistently justifies the exposure and the sensualizing of the human body, a trend that many undiscerning Christians have unfortunately adopted. Christian Modesty is an urgent call to the churches of Jesus Christ to study this matter carefully and to practice a modesty that brings glory to our Holy Redeemer and gives a powerful testimony of purity within our decadent society.

13. Modesty:

For much of modern American culture, modesty is just a quaint idea carried over from our Puritan and Victorian past that can be easily discarded without significant cultural and spiritual consequences. In this small but significant work on modesty, Steve Pixler argues that this idea is terribly wrong, and that immodesty has a profound spiritual, psychological and physical impact on personal, familial and social well-being. Though most works on modesty tend to address the subject from the standpoint of detailed standards of dress and behavior, this book approaches modesty more from the standpoint of a “philosophy of modesty” that attempts to show the reason why standards of modesty are so fundamentally important. Though no attempt is made to answer every pressing question in the essential discussion on modesty, hopefully, at least, these few chapters can help get the conversation started.

14. Modesty: A Deeper Understanding:

This booklet conveys the Biblical basis for Modesty among Christian people. In a day of immodesty, lust, fornication and adultery, this message will give the answer to why God demands modesty for his people. Most books on the subject tell you the what of modesty, but this booklet tells you the why. Chapters such as: THE BIBLE DISCOURAGES INTIMATE RELATIONS DURING TIMES OF PRAYER AND SANCTIFICATION, will bring a whole new meaning to the term modesty. You will not read anything like this book available today. Well worth this small price! Every Christian, especially the women, need to read this book.

15. Set Apart Femininity:

Leslie Ludy, author of Authentic Beauty and the bestselling When God Writes Your Love Story, reveals how a young woman’s pursuit of acceptance and sameness directly counters her true purpose—to be set apart by her love for God and God’s love for her.

This empowering message filled with inspiring stories, personal illustrations, and a foundation of God’s Word to awaken young women to sacred femininity and a life infused with meaning. Each chapter encourages readers to release worldly standards and set their sights on a more worthy pursuit as they:

surrender to God’s love and wholeness
embrace the real blueprint for beauty
enjoy spectacular purpose
captivate the masculine heart
cultivate spiritual strength
This journey will spark a desire in every woman to leave the fairy tale of the masses behind and walk toward the unique beauty, love, and dreams God has for her.

I hope you enjoyed the book list and found something you want to read. 

Here is what I wore to worship.  I might have read a book or two while wearing this outfit..lol.

Modesty Booklist-1

Modesty Books-6

Modesty Books-5

Modesty Books-2

Modesty Books-7

This dress is so comfortable and the best news is I found it on sale!

Dress: Christopher & Banks! I found it on sale for get this—$8.00!!!!

Sweater: Bought last year on clearance at Christopher & Banks

Shoes: Bought at Macy’s on clearance and combined with another coupon!!! YAY! I love them!!!

The post Modest Monday: Ultimate Modesty Booklist and What I wore :) appeared first on Raising Soldiers 4 Christ.

Sep 14

The IEP Advocate!

Here is a great resource for information about IEPs! Sign up for Pam’s newsletter to stay in the know! http://www.theiepadvocate.com/ In advocacy, Mike

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