Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Crypto Mind Benders–Classic Jokes

02302Crypto Mind Benders: Classic Jokes
Published at The Critical Thinking Co

About the product

Grades: 3-12+   Subject: Mathematics

Develops algebraic thinking and teaches basic programming operations.

Crypto Mind Benders® develop mathematical reasoning and critical thinking skills that are vital to achieving academic and lifelong success. They are great for introducing students to encryption, algebraic thinking, and basic computer programming operations.

Crypto Mind Benders® compel students to break a secret code so they can identify a hidden joke or quotation. To break the code, students must apply logic and mathematical reasoning to 3 sets of clues. The challenge is getting all the information out of each clue! Once students break the code, they can solve the cryptogram by substituting the numbers with their corresponding code letters. The Quotations book familiarizes students with classic quotations from famous thinkers such as Albert Einstein, Voltaire, Socrates, and more! The Jokes edition familiarizes students with classic, good-humored, jokes that both kids and adults enjoy.

Crypto Mind Benders® develop several of the deductive thinking skills taught in the award-winning Mind Benders® series without the use of word problems. This feature makes these thinking-rich activities easier to use with non-English speakers. The classic quotes and jokes also help ELL/ESL learners further understand the English language and culture. Perfect for school, home, and travel, they are popular as brain jump-start, extra credit, sponge, or reward activities. The exercises are also great for adult cognitive maintenance.

Our Thoughts

I was a bit curious about this product and was looking forward to have it in my hands.   When I got it, I almost panicked because I thought it was way over my own head… so I thought it would be difficult for my oldest to go through it as well.   So I decided to try a couple of these exercises myself before I put it in his hands.

After I sat at a quiet place and started going through the algebraic problems, I was able to identify the corresponding numbers for the letters.    The goal is to identify the numbers for each letter and then go through the secret code and decorticate it to discover the joke hidden behind it.   Going through this process of basic algebraic operations was fun and reminded me that soon my son will start Algebra.  What a great way to introduce him to these mathematical operations than with a secret code to break.

What I particularly like about the Critical Thinking products is that you will always have the answer guide in the book and that the content is reproducible for your own family.     I particularly favor reproducible products for our homeschool.  With four kids at various ages, knowing that I can make copies means a lot for us and our budget!

So after I have gone through a couple of problems and smiled at the jokes, I decided that Alexandre should try them as well.   He was able to do them and resolve the cryptogram at the bottom of the page.   For the first one, I had to explain to him how it worked.   He completed it within about 10 minutes.  He decided to do the second one right away and experience a problem at one point as he had not solved the first section properly.  He had to go back and rethink about it to find the proper solution.  

We both looked the following pages and found that the exercises were getting more difficult as you advance in the book.    It is a good way of stretching our thinking skills and to develop and ability of resolving algebraic problems.    Are you curious to see what the pages look like?  Here’s an example taken from the preview on the Critical Thinking page.

2-29-2012 7-20-52 AM

In conclusion, I highly recommend this product because it will help your student to develop a algebraic thinking approach.   Not only is it good for student but I am also recommending it for adults who want to keep their mind sharpen with critical thinking skills.    The jokes are clean and will bring a smile to younger and older generation.    Make it a competition in your house – see who will break the code the fastest… Will it be you, the adult, or your child?    Wouldn’t it be a fun way to spend time together and develop the competitive skills in everyone?

Available for purchase directly from The Critical Thinking Co for the price of 10.99$ for the paperback edition and the ebook edition.  You could also probably find it at many homeschooling online stores as well like Rainbow Resources.

Also available is the Crypto Mind Benders: Famous Quotations.

Disclaimer: Thanks to The Critical Thinking Co. for sending me the above mentioned product for review purposes. I was not monetarily compensated for this review. Please note that the review was not influenced by the Sponsor in any way. All opinions expressed here are only my own.

God, Girls, and Getting Connected

It is time for a FIRST Wild Card Tour book review! If you wish to join the FIRST blog alliance, just click the button. We are a group of reviewers who tour Christian books. A Wild Card post includes a brief bio of the author and a full chapter from each book toured. The reason it is called a FIRST Wild Card Tour is that you never know if the book will be fiction, non~fiction, for young, or for old...or for somewhere in between! Enjoy your free peek into the book!

You never know when I might play a wild card on you!

Today's Wild Card author is:

and the book:

Harvest House Publishers (February 1, 2012)

***Special thanks to Karri James of Harvest House Publishers for sending me a review copy.***


Robin Marsh is an Emmy nominated and national award-winning journalist. She anchors the weekday morning newscast at KWTV-News9, the CBS affiliate in Oklahoma City. Robin uses her influence from television as a way to share with women and girls about the love of Jesus at retreats for women, students, and churches. She was honored as a “Woman of Distinction” by Girl Scouts of the USA.

Visit the author's website.

Lauren Nelson was crowned Miss America 2007. She received the prestigious TOYA award (Ten Outstanding Young Americans) by the United States Junior Chamber Organization in 2008. Lauren serves many charities including Children's Miracle Network. She is a co-anchor at KWTV-News9, the CBS affiliate in Oklahoma City. Lauren loves teaching Bible studies and leading worship with her husband.

Visit the author's website.


Miss America 2007, Lauren Nelson, and award-winning TV news anchor Robin Marsh share a passion to encourage teen girls. In this relevant, engaging devotional they show the cell phone generation of girls why accepting God’s call is the best decision they’ll ever make.

Each devotion includes a question in teen lingo, God’s “text response” from Scripture, insightful reflections, and a daily spiritual app to help girls relate biblical wisdom to everyday needs as they explore:
  • how to deal with the drama of other girls
  • decisions about boys and sexual purity
  • do’s and don’ts of social media
  • the fun of living out a bold faith
  • their identity and uniqueness in Christ

A cleverly presented, timely look at God’s help for the needs young women face today. Perfect for individual faith growth and as group discussion and study material.

Product Details:
List Price: $11.99

Paperback: 176 pages
Publisher: Harvest House Publishers (February 1, 2012)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0736945210
ISBN-13: 978-0736945219



Finding Friends

Becca: “Why is Paige hanging out with that group of girls? All they do is trash talk other girls—even the ones who are their friends.”

God’s Text: “Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of such things God’s wrath comes on those who are disobedient. Therefore do not be partners with them” (Ephesians 5:6-7).

Getting Connected

Face it, girl. In today’s culture there’s a lot of pressure to find the perfect guy, have the perfect friends, and look like a celebrity at a photo shoot. It’s easy to get a skewed vision about what is good and what is not so good. So how do you respond when someone warns you about the friends you’ve surrounded yourself with? Do you cover your ears?
It’s natural to want to believe the best about people, but God’s Word reminds you to consistently be on guard in the area of relationships. If someone raises a red flag, even if it’s your mom, pray and ask the Lord to help you determine if the relationship will help you grow in your spiritual journey or pull you down. Loving someone and being nice to others is always a good thing, but the people you choose as close friends and as a boyfriend will affect your future.

Today’s App: Do you have a gut feeling that suggests you need to be cautious in a particular friendship? Do your friends make you a better person? Don’t risk being involved in bad relationships. Be satisfied and secure in the relationship you have with your heavenly Father, and ask Him to give you the strength needed to make the right choices.

My Thoughts 

Today is filled with apps and iPod.   Electronic devices are thriving in the hands of teenagers.    But how is their spiritual life?   The authors behind this little book has decided to convert the devotions into spiritual apps for teen girls.   It is a very creative way of adapting to the electronic age of the 21st century.

The devotions are broken up into four sections based on the acronym G-I-R-L.

G => God where the teen will look at questions like “Who is God?”, “Why is it important for me to connect with Him?”, “How can I rely on Him?”.

I => Identity where your girl will discover how God sees her compare to how the world sees her.

R => Relationships where she will learn how to have meaningful, godly relationships and how to respect authority figures.

L => Life is where she will learn to deal with decisions made as well as words said.

Each devotion starts with a question as well as a Scripture reference.   Then the teen has to read the devotion before getting into a reflection section called the Today’s app.    This section will ask questions and encourage your daughter to search around and deep within her.    There is also a suggestion of action sometimes.   

Part of me wishes that there would be a prayer at the end of each little devotions.    I think it would make this book a little more complete.   This book contains 138 devotions for your teen to go through.    Personally I would prefer a book that contains devotions for the complete year but I guess that the teen can always pick up another small devotion book for the rest of the year.

God, Girls, and Getting Connected is available at your favorite bookstore, even

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

The Big Aircraft Carrier

Big Aircraft Carrier_REVThe Big Aircraft Carrier
Produced by Little Mammoth Media

About the DVD

See the USS Nimitz in Action!

Watch supersonic fighter jets take off and land! Follow Navy pilots on a mission!

Discover how a carrier works. Visit the control tower, bridge, kitchens, hangar deck and more!

Experience what it's like to live on board a floating city of almost 6000 people!

Our Thoughts

The least I can say is that we were all impressed by the amount of work involved in an aircraft carrier.    Honestly I never really stop and thought about how life would be on an aircraft carrier.   Each individual on board has an important job to do to make sure that the planes are ready to fly.   

This DVD introduced us to the life aboard an aircraft carrier and all the details that need to be in place for such an adventure.    Whether you are a pilot or a simple technician the jobs aboard the ship are critical to maintain, direct, fly the planes as well as simply taking care of the people living there for an extended period of time.

We thought it was impressive to see the planes folding their wings so that they don’t take as much space.   And the planning to make sure that there is enough food on board is impressive.   We learned that more than 6000 people lived on board and that you can find anything and everything on the aircraft carrier from a dentist to their own television set.    

Taking a tour of this ship was very interesting – even though it was through the lens of a camera.   It helps us to realize how important each job is and the sacrifice that some people go through to perform their jobs (like leaving their family for a long period of time).  

If you have a child interested in the life in the military and want to know how an aircraft carrier functions, this DVD will definitively open up a whole world for him/her.

The Big Aircraft Carrier DVD is available for purchase directly from Little Mammoth Media for the price of 14.95$ for the DVD or 4.99$ for the immediate download version.

Disclaimer: I received the product for review purposes. I was not monetarily compensated for this review. Please note that the review was not influenced by the Sponsor in any way. All opinions expressed here are only my own.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Happy 8th Birthday Dominic!

8 years ago, my son Dominic came into our lives.   He was 10 days late… and ended up being delivered via c-section since I already one.    He is a delight and loves all kind of animals – small or big.   Well almost all kinds…. check the video to see why I am saying this!

Love you buddy.

I pray that God be with you every day of your life.   May you continue to follow him daily and learn to listen to him.



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One Thousand Gifts–Week 38


381. Family Day in Ontario last Monday (Feb 20th)

382. Playing Scene It! Disney Edition with the whole family

383. Playing Blokus with my oldest

384. A surprise from another homeschool family who came sledding with us after swimming though my kids didn’t have their snow pants.

385. SNOW STORM!   Now we can sled next week as it won’t be as icy.

386. Making a cake for my son – though it was a bit last minute.

387. Receiving new products to review.

388. Finding a place where I can get grain to mill to make flour- now I just have to go buy some…

389. Pizza

390. The flexibility of homeschooling our children.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Creative Slow-Cooker Meals

It is time for a FIRST Wild Card Tour book review! If you wish to join the FIRST blog alliance, just click the button. We are a group of reviewers who tour Christian books. A Wild Card post includes a brief bio of the author and a full chapter from each book toured. The reason it is called a FIRST Wild Card Tour is that you never know if the book will be fiction, non~fiction, for young, or for old...or for somewhere in between! Enjoy your free peek into the book!

You never know when I might play a wild card on you!

Today's Wild Card author is:

and the book:

Harvest House Publishers; Spi edition (February 1, 2012)

***Special thanks to Karri James, Marketing Assistant, Harvest House Publishers for sending me a review copy.***


Cheryl Moeller is a seasoned mother and a standup comic. She is also a syndicated columnist with her own blog ( and contributes monthly to several online parent websites. Cheryl has coauthored two books on marriage with her husband and has written for and Marriage Partnership. Cheryl does comedy for parenting classes, MOPS groups, wedding or baby showers, church retreats, women’s conferences, and those in line at the grocery store.

Visit the author's website.


From the celebrated coauthor of The Marriage Miracle comes a new kind of cookbook and a new attitude toward planning meals. With an eye toward the whole menu, not just part of it, columnist Cheryl Moeller teaches cooks to use two crockpots to easily create healthy, homemade dinners.

Don’t worry about your dinner being reduced to a mushy stew. Each of the more than 200 recipes has been taste-tested at Cheryl’s table. Join the Moeller family as you dig into:
  • Harvest-time Halibut Chowder
  • Salmon and Gingered Carrots
  • Mediterranean Rice Pilaf
  • Indian Chicken Curry
  • Apricot-Pistachio Bread
  • Shrimp Creole
  • Rhubarb Crisp

... and many more! Perfect for the frazzled mom who never has enough time in the day, Creative Slow-Cooker Meals gives readers more time around the table with delicious, healthy, frugal, and easy meals!
Product Details:
List Price: $14.99
Spiral-bound: 272 pages
Publisher: Harvest House Publishers; Spi edition (February 1, 2012)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0736944915
ISBN-13: 978-0736944915


AND NOW...THE FIFTH CHAPTER (click on pages to enlarge):


My Thoughts 

For a family of six, this book is a blessing in disguise.   Why?  Simply because it contains recipes that will help you to manage the kitchen as well as continue homeschooling.

The recipes included in this cookbook cover a variety of meals;

  • Breakfast
  • Cooking fresh with local products
  • Recipes from around the world
  • When you need to eat fast
  • Simple meals
  • Bulk cooking
  • Get-togethers
  • Vegetarian
  • Dairy free
  • Gluten-free

A big disappointment for me is not having the nutritional information for each recipe.   Also I like to see a picture with a recipe and this book contains no picture whatsoever (not even some example every now and then!).  What can I say… I am a visual person and like to see what the meal look like before I consider it for my family.   Finally, you need to have two crock-pots to do each suggestion of this book (unless you just want to do one recipe).   Each two pages suggestions sort of go hand in hand so to cook both you definitively need two crock-pots.  

Though I must admit that there are recipes that sounds interesting – especially the ones from different part of the world.   As I am writing this I am starring at the Baked mangoes recipe and to be honest I find it mouth watering.  Something to try for sure when the fruits are in season…   For each suggestion you will also find some suggestions related to one of the recipes.   

If you have a big family and/or busy schedule, slow-cooking is definitively a blessing.   

Creative Slow-Cooker Meals is available at your favourite bookstore, even

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Clever Dragons Registration process is impressive

2-23-2012 6-33-26 AM

Recently I received the opportunity of becoming a Always Clever Blogger member for Always Icecream and Clever Dragons.

My daughter is too young to access Always Icecream but my three boys are perfect for the ages to which Clever Dragons target.

Though we haven’t tried it yet….  (I set up the account this morning!)   I must blog about the membership process.

I have reviewed other online sites in the past and I had mixed feelings about them because of the chat feature.   I was questioning the fact that technically anyone can access the site and start chatting with your child.   After all predators can lie about their age right?

Well during the process of registration with Clever Dragons, I immediately saw that there is the possibility to include or remove the community feature.   What is the community feature you might wonder?   Simply said it is a feature that includes friends, games and video commenting and additional fun-oriented and age-appropriate games and videos.    And yes – there is communication included in there.  Though it says that all communication and contributions are monitored and reviewed before they are published (which is a huge thing for me!), I have decided that for the time being, I will remove this feature from the account.    However, let me tell you that you can re-instate it anytime you want.

The learning games are for grade-level – having only one account for the three boys I have decided to select the K to 8th levels.   Having the possibility to select the range is fabulous if you ask me!       The games included in this online gaming world will cover multiples subjects – Language Arts, math Quizzes, Advanced Math, Science, Geography & History, Music & Arts, Computer Skills, Foreign Languages, Religious Education (Christian) and Life Skills.   You have the possibility to remove/allow access to any subject.  

As a parent, you also have the possibility of receiving weekly updates on new activities that your child does.    And you can also reward your child for doing homework or choses – or just to surprise him.

So far I am quite impressed with Clever Dragons and I had not even entered the world yet…   

As like any other online games sites, Clever Dragons come with a price.    If you opted for a monthly subscription, you will pay 99 cents for the 1st month and 5.95$ for following months.    A two months membership will be 11.90$, an annual membership will be 47.40$ and a life time membership will be 119$.   But the best part is definitively that there isn’t advertising included in this online gaming site (and that it is educational as well!).

Recently an online friend of mine has posted on facebook that she was coding a geography game on Canada for the site.    Now I look forward to see what she has done!  *grin*   Being Canadian, I am pleased to see that Clever Dragons (and it’s sister site Always Icecream) has Canadian content.   Hope they will continue to do so in the future…

In the meantime, I will write occasionally about our experience with Clever Dragons and on new features that might come up.    So far I am impressed and can’t wait to show this to the boys!

Disclaimer: I have received a lifetime membership to Clever Dragons as a member of the Always Clever Blogging team. I was not monetarily compensated for this review. Please note that the review was not influenced by the Sponsor in any way. All opinions expressed here are only my own.

The Beautiful Wife

The Beautiful Wife
By Sandy Ralya
Published at Kregel Publications

About the books

9780825442209The Book

There was a time when author Sandy Ralya’s marriage was in trouble. She needed help but she was afraid to ask for it. At the time, she didn’t know that hundreds of other wives were struggling with the same issues she was. Though Sandy eventually sought guidance from godly mentors and Christian counselors, other women remain silent. Many churches lack ministries and resources to reach out and help these women.

Sandy Ralya founded Beautiful Womanhood in 2003 to provide the same nurturing and mentoring that changed her life and her marriage and began to speak to hundreds of women each year. Hearing the stories of women like herself, Sandy realized the need for resources based on practical teaching, sound research, and real-life experiences. The Beautiful Wife uses these inspiring stories along with biblical principles to guide and encourage any wife looking for God’s best in her marriage. The Beautiful Wife answers serious questions women have about their roles as wives. Discussing everything from romance and money to beauty, communication, and sex, Sandy challenges women to open up and share their journeys so that together they can see God’s plan for their marriages. “It is my passion to help women discover God’s heart for their marriage, just as other women helped me,” writes Sandy. “When women share with each other the details of their journeys with God as wives, it’s a beautiful thing indeed.”

The Prayer Journal9780825442223

Beautiful Womanhood is a nonprofit Christian ministry whose mission is to strengthen marriages by equipping marriage mentors, encouraging women in their role as wives, and helping women build loving, godly, and supportive relationships with other wives. Since 2003, women have been coming together through Beautiful Womanhood small groups, where they gain insight from Sandy Ralya’s teaching, personal guidance from a marriage mentor, and support from a loving community of women in order to realize God’s plan for them. In each small group, a marriage mentor meets with small group members and leads the group through a discussion of the book.

Each member of a Beautiful Womanhood small group is encouraged to journal their thoughts through their study. The Beautiful Wife Prayer Journal offers Bible verses, prayer suggestions, and dedicated space for journaling that small group members are encouraged to read and use between group sessions.

Beautiful Womanhood Seminars Churches or community groups are invited to host a seminar or retreat led by author and speaker, Sandy Ralya. Specifically and individually designed to each church’s needs, the seminar can train incoming mentors, excite new mentees, offer breakout sessions to discuss specific issues, and encourage the development of small group communities for wives. For more information, visit

9780825442216The Mentor Guide

Beautiful Womanhood is a nonprofit Christian ministry whose mission is to strengthen marriages by equipping marriage mentors, encouraging women in their role as wives, and helping women build loving, godly, and supportive relationships with other wives. Since 2003, women have been coming together through Beautiful Womanhood small groups, where they gain insight from Sandy Ralya’s teaching, personal guidance from a marriage mentor, and support from a loving community of women in order to realize God’s plan for them. In each small group, a marriage mentor meets with small group members and leads the group through a discussion of the book.

The Beautiful Wife Mentor’s Guide offers:
-instructions on how to implement Beautiful Womanhood small groups
-guidance on becoming a confident marriage mentor
-hostess tips to simplify hospitality for God’s glory
-chapter summaries to highlight main discussion topics
-discussion icebreakers and cues to keep the conversation focused and lively
-directions on how to incorporate free resources found on

Beautiful Womanhood Seminars Churches or community groups are invited to host a seminar or retreat led by author and speaker, Sandy Ralya. Specifically and individually designed to each church’s needs, the seminar can train incoming mentors, excite new mentees, offer breakout sessions to discuss specific issues, and encourage the development of small group communities for wives. For more information, visit

Who is Sandy Ralya?

Sandy Ralya is the founder and director of Beautiful Womanhood and speaks to hundreds of women each year at MOPS groups, women’s retreats, and church leadership conferences across the country and in Canada. Sandy and her husband, Tom, have been married since 1980 and have three grown children and and growing number of grandchildren. Sandy bases her ministry near Grand Rapids, Michigan.

My Thoughts

I had the opportunity to review the three books as part of this blog tour.    I first receive and pre-release galley for each one of them and recently I have received the books in the mail.    Let me tell you that I really like the picture on the cover of the books.  It’s simple and represent purity to me.   

The Book

This book will bring you on a journey to become the wife God intended you to be.   With topics like self-care, romance, sex, communication,money, beauty and so on, there is always something we can learn on how to become a wonderful wife for our husbands.   

One of the chapters that touched me particularly was the one about being genuine.   It got me thinking about the fact that I might be wearing a mask which hides the true me behind.    When thinking about this particular chapter, I think that many of us wear masks – whether in our private life, with friends, or with strangers.   True that with a spouse chance are that we might not be as hidden as in other situation but still there might be a possibility that a mask is used.   

Going through this book (and using the prayer journal) will definitively help you to focus on Christ and improve your marriage.    I am looking forward to discover what will happen in my own marriage when I finish this little book.   Before I prefer this material for a possible bible study, I want to complete it myself.     Each chapter finishes with some reflective questions that will help you to process what you have just read and reflect on yourself, your husband and your marriage.    You will also find some First Steps suggestions on how you can apply what you have read in your life. 

At the end of the book, the author is suggesting you how you can bless other women in your environment as well as other resources you can decide to explore to grow in your role as a wife. 

The Prayer Journal

The prayer journal is definitively the perfect companion for the book.   This marvelous tool will help you jolt down your journey while reading The Beautiful Wife book.  Each chapter of this journal corresponds with the chapters of the book and includes prayers for you, your husband and your marriage.  You will be asked to respond to the questions included, pray  the Scriptures fashioned on your own situation , records your prayer request as you journey in this adventure of becoming the beautiful wife of your husband.   This journal can be used if you are reading alone or if you are part of a small group going through the Beautiful Wife book.   You don’t have to use the journal if you are part of a group but I find that the journal will help you to prepare yourself for the discussion period.   I’m the kind of person who loves to prepare herself completely before going to a Bible Study.    At the beginning of the prayer journal, you are also asked to discover God’s attributes while going through the alphabet and list Scripture verses attached to this attribute.   I think it is a marvelous way to discover who God is and how wonderful He is.

At the beginning of each chapter you will have a prayer that you are requested to pray every day of the week as you journey toward becoming a beautiful wife.   Each day you can journal any thoughts that the Holy Spirit is telling you as you reflect on the words.    I think it is a powerful way of becoming more like God and less centered on yourself. 

My only negative comment that I would like to make is that I find that the space planned for the answers is a bit small for people who writes bigger – like me…  *grin*    I will have to make an effort to write smaller and be concise in my journaling with this particular book.

The Mentor Guide

The Mentor Guide is the perfect resource for building a marriage mentoring ministry in your church or community.   In this little book you will find everything to support you in mentoring other wives.   This book contains instructions on how to implement a small group, guidance on how to become a confident marriage mentor, tips on simplify your hospitality as well as week-by-week leader’s materials.    Prayers, discussion points as well as optional activities are included in this little book.

The book is specifically written for mentors and will guide you to become a great one.   For each chapter there is a section called Before You Meet which will give you a prayer to pray, an introduction on the chapter as well as ideas on how to prepare the meeting before hand.    You will also find a While You Meet section which will help you to recap what has been covered so far, which points need to be emphasize, share Scripture that you find have been meaningful during the week for you, your husband and your marriage, as well as an optional activity that will help the women to continue to pursue a great marriage.  For example, one of the optional activities suggested is to offer a mini spa treatment like a hot paraffin was for the hands.   Having one such machine at home, I would have no problem whatsoever to prepare for this in advance…

Inside this little book you will also find some mentor stories in the mentor instructions chapter.   I find it nice to read such stories and learn from others at the same time.    This particular chapter will provide insights on how to lead and control the discussion.   

If you are thinking of starting a small group and lead it to go through the Beautiful Wife book, I would strongly suggest that you get the Mentor’s Guide as well.   I know that I am pleased to have this book in my hands as I am considering the possibility of offering this small group opportunity for the women in our church.


In conclusion, I think that this resource will be a tremendous blessing for many women everywhere – no matter if you are a newly wed or married for 20 something years.   I find that there is always place for improvement and having a book like The Beautiful Wife can only help you – even if only one chapter speak to you it is worth it.  A strong marriage requires constant work in it and this book is a wonderful tool to help you strengthen it.

The Beautiful Wife books are available at your favorite bookstore, even



Celebrate with Sandy by entering her Kindle Touch Giveaway and coming to her "Beautiful Womanhood" Facebook Party {3/8}!

One beautiful winner will receive:
  • A Brand new Kindle Touch with Wi-Fi
  • The Beautiful Wife By Sandy Ralya
  • The Beautiful Wife Prayer Journal and Mentor's Guide

Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends 3/7/12.

Winner will be announced at Sandy's "Beautiful Womanhood" Facebook Party on 3/8.

Sandy will be hosting an evening of chat, laughter and encouragement - bring your friends! She'll also be giving away some GREAT prizes: gift certificates, books, prayer journals and a live chat with Sandy for your Bible study or small group!

So grab your copy of The Beautiful Wife and join Sandy and friends on the evening of March 8th for an evening of fun.

Enter via E-mail Enter via FacebookEnter via Twitter

Don't miss a moment of the fun. RSVP today and tell your friends via FACEBOOK or TWITTER and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on March 8th!


Disclaimer: Thanks to Kregel and Litfuse for sending me the products for review purpose. I was not monetarily compensated for this review. Please note that the review was not influenced by the Sponsor in any way. All opinions expressed here are only my own.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Year’s supply of your EGGO favourites

I received a special email from Kellog’s Canada yesterday.   Probably other Canadians did as well…  *grin* 

I thought I should share this special contest with my readers.


BEYBLADE Metal Masters


2-19-2012 9-39-31 AM

This coming Saturday, February 25th, you could participate to the Beyblade Metal Masters at a ToysRUs near you.     And each store’s Champion will win an awesome Beyblade Prize Pack (retail value of 92$) and will be entered into a draw for a chance to win 1 of 3 pairs of VIP Golden Tickets to attend the BEYBLADE World Championships on March 25th, 2012 in Toronto (Value 1500$).

Participants must be 8-13 years of age and must be register by their parent or legal guardian with exception of residents of Quebec where participants may only be age 13 as of February 25th, 2012 to compete.  In store pre-registration required since there is only 32 spots available per location!  So if you want to participate you better hurry this week because registration begun February 10th at your local ToysRUS store.

Wondering which ToysRUs are participating to this amazing event?    You can see the list of the store by clicking here.   In Ottawa, the St Laurent and the Merivale store will be participating to this event.  Rules and regulations can be read by clicking on the golden ticket.

To celebrate the upcoming event, Hasbro has sent me some of their Beyblade products to review


BeyBlade  Metal Master Performance Top Battle Top assortment and BeyBlade Metal Masters Beystadium

“Turn up” the excitement with these awesome stadiums. Set your own Beyblade tops (sold separately) against each other in head-to-head combat or compete with a friend to determine the ultimate champion. When the high-speed top-spinning action begins, there’s no telling how it will end!

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Beyblade: Metal Fusion Battle Top Faceoff Assortment

Two top battle set based on the Metal Fusion TV series. Includes two 5-piece tops plus two launchers, ripcords and assembly tools. Also includes a code to battle online at


Beyblade Metal MAsters Tornado Top Assortment

These TORNADO Tops are not for the faint of heart. Designed for angled attacks, they have a narrow defense tip for more endurance. Their specialty: moving out of BEYSTADIUM penalty pockets! (BEYSTADIUMS each sold separately.) Use the RIPCORD LAUNCHER to send these tops into your kind of battle! Each one-piece top comes with RIPCORD LAUNCHER and instructions. Each sold separately. Styles may vary.


Beyblade Metal Masters Battle Gear Assortment 

Assortment of launchers and grips to enhance the battle experience and provide a competitive edge. All items feature in the Metal Masters TV series and include a collector poster.




Beyblade Extreme Top System Half-Pipe Battle Set

Get ready to LET IT RIP! This awesome set has everything you need to start battling the included PEGASUS JUMPER and KERBECS BLADE BLAST tops! Unleash these two for a HALF-PIPE BEYSTADIUM battle and watch your PEGASUS JUMPER top leap up for a surprise attack – then see your KERBECS BLADE BLAST top release his hidden wings and strike back! The set even includes 24 tournament grids to chart your battles.

HALF-PIPE BEYSTADIUM comes with 2 BEYBLADE STEALTH BATTLERS Tops, 2 RIPCORD LAUNCHERS, 24 Tournament Grids, Official Rule Book and 2 Collector Cards.



BeyBlade Metal Masters Triple Battle Set

This complete TRIPLE BATTLE SET has everything you need to start battling it out with the best! With a BEYSTADIUM arena to fight in and exclusive battle tops and launchers, you can start your dueling practice as soon as you’re set up. Customize the BEYSTADIUM with three battle cores: the Zip Core forces straight-line movement, the Chaos Core brings chaos to the tops’ movement, and the Deflector Core brings craziness because it affects right-spin and left-spin tops differently! With the tournament grids and official rule book, you’re ready to do battle with all comers! Set up your exclusive GALAXY PEGASUS and METEO L-DRAGO tops for a launching, spinning attack that will leave you victorious – or ready to fight again!

TRIPLE BATTLE SET comes with 2 exclusive METAL MASTERS tops, 3 battle cores, 2 RIPCORD LAUNCHERS, 24 tournament grids, 2 collector cards and official rule book.   W105R2F GALAXY PEGASUS Attack     LW105LF METEO L-DRAGO Attack


Beyblade Extreme Top Systems Stealth Battlers

STEALTH BATTLERS tops create explosive battle action with a secret attack feature that deploys when they collide with another top!   Includes STEALTH BATTLERS top, RIPCORD LAUNCHER™* and instructions.   Each sold separately. Styles may vary.


My Thoughts

I first discovered the Beyblade over a year ago.    Apparently, my husband saw something fun and challenging in this particular toy and thought it would be fun for the boys to have one.    Honestly I didn’t see the point in competing with tops.    Oh I had a top when I was younger but it was an individual game….   So I decided to dig and checked the history behind these popular tops.

Beyblade is a high-performance spinning top that was originally developed back in 2000.  The toys has been inspired by a tradition spinning top from Japan – the Beigoma.  The Beyblade toy was introduce in the market with the broadcast of the Beyblade anime television series

Hasbro has seen the potential of the tops and has made it fun, innovative and adaptable since 2002.   Each type of top performs differently.  The tops can attack, defense, stamina and balance.    So collecting them make sense as you can customize them.    The best way to find how your tops are performing and created the ultimate top is the experiment and see how you can enhance them by switching parts.  Beyblades may have pictures on them that symbolizes a creature – a Bit-Beast – which indicates what the top do or look like.   The Beyblade Metal Fusion ones have symbols that represent one of the 99 known constellations in space.    The 4D series Beyblades are named after planets and constellations.   The more I am learning about them, the more I see the interest they are creating in young and older people – boys or girls.

There is a whole strategy behind these competitions.   What kind of top does the opponent have, and what will be the best way to defeat it?  Do you need an attack top or one with stamina?  Is a defense top your best option, or a top with balance?    Just thinking of all these questions make my head spin…    It is also good to familiarize yourself with the different types of stadiums so you can determine which top will work best with it.    I am not kidding.     And while you are competing, you can try to determine which top you are battling so you can choose the best top and strategy to win. 

I  guess I have underestimate the popularity of the Beyblade at first.   For starter, I didn’t know there were such a thing as a World Championship.   I must admit that that I am impressed with the new Beyblade stealth Battlers which can deploy and destroy the opponent.   These tops hide a secret attack feature that will surprise your opponent.    Pretty ingenious.   The other day I went to the store to check out the display just for fun and I was taken by surprise to see the popularity of the tops.    Various companies have their own top collection now but I think the Beyblade are the most versatile and the most well known out there.      Hasbro has a complete series of tops, launchers, arenas as well as a Beylocker to store the tops in it.    I am suspecting that the boys will get more into this as they discover the whole competition behind it.   They also have a website where you can battle online at and have video games for the Nintendo DS

Unfortunately, this week-end we won’t be able to attend the Ultimate Experience at our local ToysRUs.   I was hoping that I could attend and write about my thoughts on the competition.     But, my second son, Dominic, has a birthday celebration as he turns eight on Monday.    It is a bit disappointing as I would have like for the oldest boys to see what was behind a competition.    I guess there is always next year….    In the meantime they will be able to practice and experiment to discover more strategies and techniques to create the best top for competition.

Beyblade… Let it rip!

You can also follow Beyblade on facebook at

Beyblade products can be purchase at your favorite toy store.  


Disclaimer: Thanks to Hasbro Canada for sending me the above mentioned products for review purposes and for the giveaway . I was not monetarily compensated for this review. Please note that the review was not influenced by the Sponsor in any way. All opinions expressed here are only my own.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Winner of the Hasbro Giveaway

This afternoon I went on and proceeded to select the winner of the Hasbro Giveaway.

And the winner is……

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Congratulations to Nicole_JM!

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Thanks to everyone who participated and hopefully we will have another fun giveaway in the months to come!

One Thousand Gifts–Week 37


371. A sweet valentine with my family

372. My little girl going to her first girly birthday party

373. Seeing how much she enjoys painting

374. Seeing her transforming herself into the Wasp (Avengers character) with her butterfly wings and pretending that she is part of the Avengers with her 6 years old brother.

375. Finding a place where I can purchase grains to mill my own flour with the product I have received last week.

376. Getting my order from Rainbow Resources – Editor in Chief here we come.

377. Seeing my oldest get excited when we received the DVD to learn Access 2010 – did I mentioned he is only 10 years old?

378. Receiving the Easy Grammar Teacher Book for grade 6 to review.

379. Bring sunshine peeking through the windows during the day – MELT that snow…!

380. Looking forward to not having boots when I go outside.