Thursday, April 20, 2017

The Resurrection of Gavin Stone DVD

imageThe Resurrection of Gavin Stone

About the movie

The Resurrection of Gavin Stone is an inspirational comedy rated PG about faith and forgiveness. Gavin Stone, a washed-up former child star is forced to do community service at a local mega- church and pretends to be a Christian so he can land the part of Jesus in their annual Passion Play only to discover that the most important role of his life is far from Hollywood.

Our Thoughts

When my kids saw the image of the poster their first reaction was “Hey Mom, this is Ward!”    You have to know that we are listening to Marvel Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. to know who Ward is.  But yes the main actor that plays Gavin Stone in this movie is indeed Brett Dalton.

The movie start a bit differently that most movies out there.  It was a bit confusing at first but the story unfold itself before you as you watch it.   It is slow to start we have found but with time you can see that the actors are getting more comfortable with each other.  

Gavin Stone has hit rock bottom and he is required to do some community time at a church in his hometown.   At first he doesn’t want to but realizing that his only option would be to stay in prison he reluctantly agrees to the deal.  He will also have to stay with his father with whom he has cut the communication for such a long time.

While starting to do his hours at a church in town, he realizes that they are putting a play.  He expresses a desire to be part of it seeing that he has experience – going to the point that he will “fake” being a Christian.  However, what he has not realized is that slowly but surely he will realize that these people are authentic.  He will discover what it is to live as a Christian with his interactions of a variety of characters.  After meeting the lady in charge of the play, he expresses a desire to get to know her better.  At first she is hesitant in opening up to him but eventually a spark seems to melt her resistance.   However, when it is almost time for the play to be on stage, Gavin Stone received a phone call that will  change everything.  Will it be for the better or for the worse?   I won’t tell you because then I would give away the best part of the movie.

Watching this movie was relaxing.  My husband and I started to watch it on Good Friday when our boys were at a youth rally in town.   We enjoyed it and thought that our kids could also watch it.  So as I am writing this, my three boys and my girl are watchin the Resurrection of Gavin Stone together in the living room.  They laughed a few times so far too.    The movie is a faith-based movie so you will have references from the bible and the play is based on the life of Christ.   Seeing the play was also inspiring I find because it was a great way to visualize the life of Christ.  

The movie is rated PG and anyone in your family could watch it.  You can rest assure that there will be no sex, no nudity, no violence, and no profanity either.  

If you are looking for a family movie that will be inspirational, I think this movie should be one to consider.  However, do not expect bit production like the movies released in theaters that had an enormous budget.  Keep in mind that this movie was made with a budget of 2,000,000$ and was filmed in 20 days.  The movie is about 92 minutes long.

The Resurrection of Gavin Stone will be out in DVD soon so watch the DVD aisle at your favorite store.  You can also pre-order it on amazon.ca and amazon.com.

 

Disclaimer: The link to the movie has been provided courtesy of Mongrel Media and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc. 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, April 17, 2017

Oh, Yikes! History’s Grossest, Wackiest Moments

9780761136842Oh, Yikes! History Grossest, Wackiest Moments
By Joy Masoff
Published at Workman

About the book

Gross is back and viler than ever! From the author of Oh, Yuck! the perennial bestseller about science with over 610,000 copies in print, comes OH, YIKES!, an illustrated encyclopedia of history’s messiest, dumbest, grossest, wackiest, and weirdest moments.

If kids think pus and gas are fun, wait until they hear the lowdown on the real Dracula, samurai, gladiators, guillotines and vomitoriums, pirates, Vikings, witch trials, and the world’s poxiest plagues. Impeccably researched, deliciously wry, and subversively educational (check out the toilet-paper timeline), OH, YIKES! covers people, events, institutions, and really bad ideas, alphabetically from April Fool’s Day to zany Zoos. Here are the Aztecs, sacrificing 250,000 people a year for the gods—and for food. Fearsome Attila the Hun, scourge of the steppes whose spinning eyes terrified his friends and whose mastery of horses terrorized his enemies (how does someone so evil die? Nosebleed!). Saur, the 11th-century dog-king of Norway (and not too bad as kings go). Henry VIII and his marital problems, the story of the Abominable Snowman and the Loch Ness Monster, why sailors in the old days preferred eating in the dark (hint: you can’t see what’s crawling in your food), and the answer to the question, “How did knights in armor go to the bathroom?”

Topped off with hundreds of illustrations and photographs along with hands-on activities that bring the past to life, OH, YIKES! puts the juice in history in a way that makes it irresistible.

My Thoughts

We have reviewed OH, Ick! in the past and I was highly interested when I realized that this new title was all about history.

This book is different than other history book because it will highlight the worst inventions and events that has happened through the ages.  So as the title suggest it, it will be gross at times but so informative as well.

The various chapters or themes covered in the book are: Attila and the Huns, Aztec Antics, Beastly Babyhood, Burial Customs, Cave Dudes, Circus Clowning, Crafty Cats, Crazy Calendars, Creepy Columbus, Cruel Constructions, Cussin’ Cowboys, Dastardly Dentistry, Dog-Gone Dogs, Dreadful Dracula, Dumb Duels, Electric Shocks, Everyday Executions, Farfetched Fashions, Freaky Flyers, Ghastly Games, Gladiators, Guillotines, Heinous Hair, Horrible Henry the 8th, Humongous Hoaxes, Idiotic Inventions, Junky Jobs, Killer Kings, Knight Time, Lewis and Clark, Miserable Medicines, Moldy Money, Musty Mummies, Nutty Napoleon, Oozy Olympics, Outrageous Outlaws, Pirates, Plagues and Poxes, Prickly Presidents, Prisons and Punishments, Quirky Queens, Rip-Roarin’ Railroads, Salt Assault, Samurai and Shoguns, School Dazed, Sinking Ships, Smelly Shoes, Strange Sports, Stupid Superstitions, Tickin’ Time, Toilet Paper, Ugh! Underwear, Vicious Vikings, Wacky Warfare, Whales Tales, Wicked Witches, X-Files, Zany Zoos.

Since we studied Columbus a bit this year, I decided to select the section about him and his time period to tell you a bit about the kind of information you will find in the book.  The section about Columbus will present information about how the food was stored back in these days compared to our beloved refrigerator nowadays.   You will also read a bit about Christopher Columbus’ past when he was young and discover how he decided to become a navigator and explorer.  In all there are five pages covering the history of Columbus (or Cristobal Colon as we learned this year) and how he tried to find a way to obtain spices…

I find this book fun to read because it will present an aspect that is not often shown in other history books – the gross parts of living in different era of time.  It is a fun book to have in your personal library for all the disgusting information in it.  But it is not for the soft stomach person….   The information at times could be revolting but when you think about it…. it happened in history and people lived like that in the past.

Oh, Yikes! is available for purchase at your favorite bookstore, even on amazon.ca and amazon.com.

 

Disclaimer: Thanks to Thomas Allen for sending me the above mentioned books 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.

Rocket Science for the Rest of Us

e9898ceb74214eaf8756e9b411c79196Rocket Science for the Rest of US
Written by Ben Gilliland
Published at DK

About the book

Want to understand black holes, antimatter, physics, and space exploration? Looking for a common sense guide to quantum physics that you can actually understand? Rocket Science for the Rest of Us is the book you're looking for! Get a grip on even the most mysterious and complex sciences with Ben Gilliland's guide to dark matter, exo-planets, Planck time, earth sciences, and more.

You'll hear yourself saying, "I get it now!" again and again as you explore the fun graphics and clear explanations in Rocket Science for the Rest of Us. Whether you want to impress your friends with your knowledge of quantum physics, finally know what a black hole actually is, or just learn more about the universe that's all around us, Rocket Science for the Rest of Us breaks it all down so science and physics are easy to understand. You're not a rocket scientist? So what! That doesn't mean you can't understand it!

My Thoughts

This book is packed with information about space and more.   It contains fabulous pictures and information that will keep your kids interested in learning more about space.   This book is divided into four main sections:

  • Mysterious Universe: Bottom line you will learn more about the universe, how it expands, and discover more about our solar system.
  • To Boldly Go: Space exploration is covered here.
  • The Appliance of Science: learn more about science like dark matter, gravity, stars, and more.
  • Teeny Tiny, Supersmall Stuff: atoms, neutrons, and all the small science things you can learn about.

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Essentially it is a media reportage on the latest scientific discoveries and breakthroughs concerning space.   But the explanations are easy to understand and your kids will have a grasp about everything concerning space in no time with this book.  It is an excellent resource to have at home when you decide to expand your knowledge about space. 

Rocket Science for the Rest of Us is available for purchase at your favorite bookstore, even amazon.ca and amazon.com.

 

Disclaimer: Thanks to DK Canada for allowing me to promote these books. I was not monetarily compensated for this post . Please note that the post was not influenced by the Sponsor in any way. All opinions expressed here are only my own.

Words of Grace

Cover ArtWords of Grace
By Jacqui Grace and Dee Arrand
Published at Bethany House

About the book

Be Amazed by God's Grace!

Bring new joy to your time in God's Word by incorporating beauty and creativity. As a gentle tonic for the busyness and worries of your life, this travel-sized coloring book devotional will help you focus your attention and calm your hurried soul.

Each page spread includes Scripture, devotional thoughts, and images to color that are all designed to reconnect you with the God who knows your every need. Grab your colored pencils, crayons, or markers and set yourself free to create. But most importantly: relax, have fun, and be blessed by God's grace.

My Thoughts

When I received this book to review, my first impression was primary based on the size of it.   The book is not very large nor thick for that matter.  But there is a saying that says “do not judge a book by its cover” right?  So who was I to think that this book was less important than another devotional which has hundreds of page?   I proceeded to explore the book before passing any further judgment on it.

This is a devotional book that will also allow the reader to color the pages while you reflect on what you have just read. This book contains exactly twenty-eight devotions divided into four weeks based on specific themes.  The themes are the following:

  • Week 1: Knowing Who You Are
  • Week 2: Intimacy with God
  • Week 3: When Life Gets Tough
  • Week 4: Now This is Living!

Each week contain a devotion for each day.  Through these devotions, you will learn to discover who you are, how to live intimately with God, remember that you can rely on Him at all times, and spread you wings in the world.   You can spend more time reflecting on the teaching you have just read by coloring the opposite page.  Sometimes you will have a little drawing on the devotion’s page as well.  

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In conclusion, I think this little devotion book is fun for whoever likes to color as well.   I am saying this because recently as I was drawing in one of my books, someone looked at what I was doing and said “Oh you are one of those…”  I was surprised but when the person told me she really hate coloring then I could understand her comment better.  However, that small comment had other consequences on me like doubts and insecurity creeping slowly…. but in the end I decided to embrace my coloring because I find it is relaxing and it provides healing in my life.

Words of Grace is available for purchase at your favourite bookstore, even on amazon.ca and amazon.com.

 

Disclaimer: The book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc. 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.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

The Beautiful Word 365 Devotional

_225_350_Book.2211.coverThe Beautiful Word 365 Devotional – Bringing the Goodness of Scripture to Life in Your Heart
Published at Zondervan

About the devotional

He has made everything beautiful in its time.

Ecclesiastes 3:11

Your devotional time is precious as you draw near to the Lord and experience His love in your life. The Beautiful Word Devotional is the perfect companion to help you experience His goodness through His Word as beautifully lettered Scripture.

This devotional includes:

182 verses illustrated in full color Special places to write your own reflections Warm devotions for each day of the year Dive into 365 devotions to nurture your spirit and encourage your heart as God’s Word washes over you with its promises. With lovely devotions and inspiring images, The Beautiful Word Devotional will refresh your heart daily as you seek to enjoy God’s Word in a creative way.

My Thoughts

This beautiful devotional will uplift you every day of the year as you read it, ponder on the scripture and the words in the devotion as well as delight your eyes with beautiful art.   Every second page in the devotional possess a special illustration based on the scripture on its page.  The opposite page has some lines in it which allows you to journal a bit on what you have read or simply add your own drawings to the pages.

The devotions always start with a scripture followed by the devotion itself as well as a quick prayer in the end.   For example, for today’s devotion I had to read James 1: 3-4 which is about the testing of our faith producing perseverance.   The devotion that followed was about the reality that our spiritual growth is intimately linked to the trials and challenges that we might have experience in life.   Like it or not growth does not happens when we are going through “happy times”.    Finally, the devotion concludes when you read a simple prayer – quick and directly linked to the devotion.    Reading would take you maybe ten minutes or so but the words will impact you for the rest of the day.   Getting a reminder that growing in Christ happens mostly when we persevere in difficult circumstances was a great reminder for me as I go through some difficult emotions nowadays.

So far the devotions I have read touched me in ways I was not expecting it.   I am pleased to have this devotion in my hands so I can be blessed every single day.   

imageimage

However, there are a few things that I would like to highlights that could be disappointing for some.  The first thing that bothers me as a left handed writer is the pages in this devotion have a glossy feeling which means not any kind of pen would work for writing in margins on the right side.   Mind you the feeling of it makes the book very special.  However depending of the type of pen you use, there are more chances for a left=handed writer like me to smudge the notes when writing as the side of the left hand goes over the writing.   Consequently, I would suggest that you use a pen that is more permanent than a regular pen.  Second, I would have liked to have a ribbon inserted in the book so that you can keep track of the place where you are reading.  Granted the devotions possess the dates at the top of the page but the ribbon would make finding your spot more rapidly.   

Oh and case you are wondering – February 29th is also included in the devotional so technically there are 366 devotions in the book.   I must applaud this decision because I have seen many other devotionals in the past that simply skipped that day when the book mentioned 365 on the cover.   So kuddos for the publisher for thinking of putting February 29th because that way you can read that page every four year!

This devotional is fabulous in many ways and will be a blessing for the reader.   The illustrations are inspiring and add a touch of color in the pages.  The devotions are straightforward and to the point.  You will also find some space in a margin to jolt down notes to personalize your devotion time.   This book is a great devotional to give to someone you care for whether a family member or a friend.

The Beautiful Word 365 Devotional is available for purchase at your favorite bookstore, even on amazon.ca and amazon.com.

 

Disclaimer: Thanks to Thomas Nelson for sending me the above mentioned product in pdf format 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, April 10, 2017

Everything You Need to Ace…

Back in August last year, I had the opportunity to review three titles in the series Everything You Need to Ace.   I had received the English Language Arts, the World History and the Science titles.

My husband was so impressed with these books that he asked if there were other titles in the series.  “Yes – Math and American History.” , I answered.  “Try to get them as well.”

It is pretty rare that my husband will take the time to check out some books I receive to review so for him to suggest that I get the other two titles is pretty meaningful.

The BIG FAT NOTEBOOK™ series is built on a simple and irresistible conceit—borrowing the notes from the smartest kid in class.  Inside each of the title you will find every subject’s key concepts summarize in small chunks of information so that you can digest that your own rhythm.   And to make things a bit easier on everyone the critical ideas are highlighted in neon colors, the definitions are explained, doodles illustrates the tricky concepts and mnemonics helps to memorize.  Finally you will also find some quizzes at the end of each chapters to help you cement the information in your brain.

MathMath

Everything You Need to Ace Math . . . covers everything to get a student over any math hump: fractions, decimals, and how to multiply and divide them; ratios, proportions, and percentages; geometry; statistics and probability; expressions and equations; and the coordinate plane and functions.

The math book has been a great reference for us – especially in the pre-algebra lessons when my son forgets how to do a calculation like the Pythagorean theorem.

Math 2Math1Math3

American History

AHEverything You Need to Ace American History . . . covers Native Americans to the war in Iraq. There are units on Colonial America; the Revolutionary War and the founding of a new nation; Jefferson and the expansion west; the Civil War and Reconstruction; and all of the notable events of the 20th century—World Wars, the Depression, the Civil Rights movement, and much more.

I was hesitating about this specific title because we are Canadians.  But come to think of it, this book is a perfect summary to discover what happened during the history of America.   And since they are our closest neighbors why not learn a bit about them.  

AH1AH2

AH3AH4

My Thoughts

This series of book is amazing.  Each title is a great addition to your personal library whether you homeschool or not.   Right at the tips of your fingers you can get information about English Language Arts, Math, World History, American History, as well as Science.  

I would like to suggest some other titles to Workman for future publications: Geography and Canadian History.   I am sure that these two subjects would be popular as well.

I give my two thumbs-up for the titles in the Everything You Need to Ace series.  They are great resources to have at hand when you desire to verify some concepts, learn new facts or simply read for the fun.

Everything you Need to Ace books are available on amazon.ca and amazon.com.

   
  
  
  
  

 

Disclaimer: Thanks to Thomas Allen for sending me the above mentioned books 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.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Avery Wraparound Labels

We all know that Avery offers a variety of labels for any kind of use.   But in recent years, the company has developed very interesting ideas when it comes to labels.  Their recent product – the wraparound labels – will offer your customers something more by showcasing your brand.  Their water-resistant material and permanent adhesive make them perfect for branding water bottles. They're also ideal for use on products, packaging, marketing materials and more to make your brand or logo really stand out in the crowd.

When I first saw this item available on Amazon Vine Voices, I knew it would be perfect to identify the water bottles of the kids when they go to activities or camp.   Our problem is that we purchase these bottles at Costco and like it or not we are not the only ones to do so.   Recently while we were having lunch after our homeschool coop, a little boy came and almost grabbed my water bottle because he thought it was his…   Funny enough his bottle is identified but mine wasn’t but at his age I suppose you don’t check for a label on the bottle.   Now I have identified mine using these wraparound labels from Avery.

Avery offer  the Avrey Design & Print software online on their website to help you design your labels.   And it contains a ton of designs for the wraparound labels too!   I chose a fun looking design for my daughter’s bottle and mine.   It was easy to add names and images to personalize it as well as changing the colors on the design created by Avery.

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My first try to print ended up destroying the label page because it was already broken in.   But the second print was perfect.   And I was able to put the labels without issue on the bottles.
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Now I need to design some for the boys in order to identify their water bottlers.

These labels are very original and it will add some personality to the most common bottles purchased at Costco.  That way we are sure to find our bottles when participating to an activity where we know other families will use the same bottles.

The Avery Wraparound Labels (22845) are available at a store near you, even on amazon.ca and amazon.com.

 

Disclaimer: This product has been provided courtesy of Amazon.ca Vine Voices for review purpose. I was not monetarily compensated for this review. Please note that the review was not influenced by Amazon.ca or the Sponsor in any way. All opinions expressed here are only my own.

Saturday, April 1, 2017

Sennheiser HD1

From what I have heard the Sennheiser headphone is synonym of high quality.   This time around I have received their new in-ear wireless headphone – the HD1.  This headphone is designed to allow you to move freely while exercising or simply moving at home or at work.  Its design is very out of the ordinary since it has a neckband is made of leather and provide comfort – as a matter of fact you barely notice it.   Also when calls are coming in, it will vibrate in order to let you know about them.

IMG_8926  IMG_8927

The headphone possesses bluetooth technology as well as NFC One Touch Pairing which makes pairing it with your device very easy to do.    In a matter of seconds, my iPad was paired with the headphones and I was able to use them.

Now the first thing you will have to do obviously before using the headphone will be to charge them.  And note that the charging part is located at the end of one of the sides of the neckband.  But careful as I find this part a bit fragile.  I was expecting that this would take a few hours after realizing that once charged the battery will last for 10 hours.   But after checking the quick guide provided in the box, I learned that the charging time would be about 1.5 hour only.   By the way the quick guide is mostly images which illustrate how to use the headset but I can say that this guide is quite easy to understand.   However, if you desire to obtain instruction manuals and product support, you are encouraged to go directly the the Sennheiser website

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The neckband also has control buttons on one site which will allow you to power the headphones, play or pause the music, control the volume as well as a speech mic when answering your phone calls.   The Sennheiser Captune app is also available for more functions. 

I first used the headphones to watch an episode of a show on Netflix.  The quality of the sound was amazing.   Then I also tried it for listening music and it was once again perfect.   Now this kind of headphone will not kill the noise around you so if someone come to talk to you it will be pretty clear.     However, there is a distance limit in the range of the sound to reach you.  Let me explain.    I was listening to music and left my ipad on the half-wall which we have between the living room and the hall-way.   Every thing was fine when I was in the kitchen or dining room.  But at some point since I was preparing supper, I went in the garage (which is at the other end of the house) in order to get something in our freezer and the sound was breaking up.   I was there for less than a minute but I was able to realize that distance can be an issue.   So be aware of that…

The box contain: the HD1 in-ear wireless headset, an USB  charging cable (not plug though), an ear adapter set coming in XS, S, M, and L, as well as a carry case that is very stylish.

Technical Data

  • Frequency response: 15-22,000 Hz
  • Sounds pressure level: 112 dB (1Hz/ 0dBFS)
  • Total Harmonic Distortion: <0.5% *ikHz, 100dB)
  • Supported Codec: SBC, AAC, aptX
  • Battery Type: Lithium-ion polymer

If you are looking for a headphone that will allow you flexibility in movement as well as high quality sound, I think that the Sennheiser HD1 will be a great fit for you.   It is light, portable and will allow you to move freely without having the cord in the way.   You can even leave your phone on a desk while walking or exercising.   I am very satisfied with it and would recommend it to anyone.  It can make a great gift for a teenager as well.

The Sennheiser HD1IEBT Black Wireless in ear headphones is available at your favorite store, even on amazon.ca and amazon.com.

 

Disclaimer: This product has been provided courtesy of Amazon.ca Vine Voices for review purpose. I was not monetarily compensated for this review. Please note that the review was not influenced by Amazon.ca or the Sponsor in any way. All opinions expressed here are only my own.

Friday, March 31, 2017

Thule 9043 Helium Aero 3 Bike Carrier

IMG_8664I am not a stranger to the products from Thule.  While growing up we had a bike rack and a ski rack on my parents vehicle.   I know that Thule is synonym of quality and I was delighted when I saw that I could have the opportunity to review the Thule 9043 Helium Aero 3 Bike Carrier via Amazon Vine Voices.   We did not owned a bike carrier and since the kids desire to bring their bikes to the campground, we thought that this would be a great item to have.  Mind you this only allow us to bring 3 bicycles at a time – with 6 people in the family we will have to make two trips to bring all the bikes at the campground but that’s okay.

This particular bike carrier is very light compared to the ones my parents used to have.    I was able to move the box myself into the house when we received it.   It is made of ultra-light aluminium and it is easy to install or remove to use whenever you desire to do so.  I also took only one hand to remove the carrier from the box while I was testing the weight of it.

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The box contains the rack itself as well as all the pieces necessary to secure the bikes for long distance.  You will also find in the package an integrated locking cable and autoattach lock knob which will lock your bikes to the carrier and carrier to the vehicle.  A set of keys is also included.

The sleep aerodynamic design permits you to secure the bike at a safe distance from the ground as well as increase the distance between the bikes while travelling.   However, this bike carrier is NOT to be installed on a trailer or other towed vehicle. 

This specific design allow you to have 3 bikes on it.  Another design is also available which allows you to bring 2 bikes with you.

The Thule 9043 Helium Aero 3 Bike Carrier is available for purchase at your favorite store, even on amazon.ca and amazon.com.

 

Disclaimer: This product has been provided courtesy of Amazon.ca Vine Voices for review purpose. I was not monetarily compensated for this review. Please note that the review was not influenced by Amazon.ca or the Sponsor in any way. All opinions expressed here are only my own.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Brita Pacifica Water Filter Pitcher

I recently received a Brita Pacifica Water Filter Pitcher from Amazon Vine Voices to review.   We are no stranger of Brita products because we have possessed such a filter many years ago when we were newly married.   But since then we have now a water machine and we have dispoIMG_8905sed of the previous water filter.  So why did I selected this Brita Pacifica Water Filter Pitcher you may ask?   Well my answer can be resumed in one word:  CAMPING!

Though the campground where our RV is parked has one of the highest quality water we have ever seen (the owner used to work for the department taking care of the water in Ottawa), we find it is always nice to have some extra filtration.   This larger pitcher can contain 10 cups of water – which makes it perfect for a family of six dining outdoors.    The Brita filter can be inserted inside through the special section that can be removed if you desire to serve something other than water.   

Apparently the Brita filter can replace 300 standard 500 milliliters water bottles and it will reduce the taste of chlorine as well as the odour of zinc, copper, mercury, and cadmium.  

The filter itself it BPA free and has an easy fill lid.  The pitcher is easy to use and possess a comfort grip handle.  

Finally, there is a filter indicator on the top of the lid which allows you to track when it is time to change the filter.  

We have received the Brita Pacifica Berry colour but other colours are also available for this specific product.

We used the Brita Pacifica one evening while we were having supper as a family and it was nice that we didn’t have to go refill our normal pitcher of water once we were all served.  However, we really want to use this pitcher for the trailer and we have decided to wait until the campground opens on May 13th to bring it with us.   It will be well use this summer when we eat outdoors.

The Brita Pacifica pitcher is available for purchase at your favourite store, even on amazon.ca and amazon.com.

  

Disclaimer: This product has been provided courtesy of Amazon.ca Vine Voices for review purpose. I was not monetarily compensated for this review. Please note that the review was not influenced by Amazon.ca or the Sponsor in any way. All opinions expressed here are only my own.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Cherish

Cherish
By Gary Thomas
Published at Zondervan

About the book

“Most marriages survive by gritting teeth and holding on. But marriages can and will not only survive but thrive when husbands and wives learn to cherish one another.”

Those are the powerful words of bestselling author Gary Thomas in his newest book—Cherish. And in a world desperate for marriage redemption, it is needed now more than ever.

Thomas shows that although there are a countless number of marriages consisting of two people just going through the motions, there are real ways this pattern can be reversed: when husbands and wives learn to cherish one another in proven, loving, and everyday actions and words.

Through personal stories and real world examples, Thomas proves what husbands and wives can begin doing today to turn their marriage around—even a marriage marred by neglect and disrespect.

So how do you cherish your spouse? Thomas will show you how going out of your way to notice them, appreciate them, honor them, encourage them, and hold them close to your heart will bring hope, light, and life into your marriage.

My Thoughts

A couple of years ago, Gary Thomas can in town to speak about his other marriage book – The Sacred Marriage.   It was a great evening where we enjoyed getting encourage in our marriage.  So when I saw a new title from this writer, I knew it would be great.   And let me tell you I am not disappointed whatsoever.

The book speaks to both the wife and the husband on how to cherish the one with whom they are spending their life with.  What Sacred Marriage did to many marriage was essentially based on a New Testament verse.  This book is based on the Songs of Solomon….  Yes the one that many Christians would not want to read but which is packed with admiration from the two lovers.  

The book will encourage you to make extra effort in cherishing your spouse and to change your marriage in amazing ways.   It will stir your heart to give the best you have for your man or woman.   I would encourage couples to read it together and discuss it as well.   

If you have enjoyed The Sacred Marriage, you will definitively love Cherish.   The book is a must-have for a anyone who desire to bring their relationship to a new level.  

Cherish is available at your favourite bookstore, even amazon.ca and amazon.com.

 

 

Disclaimer: Thanks to Thomas Nelson for sending me the above mentioned product in pdf format 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.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Pixie Espresso Machine with Aeroccino

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I have been introduce to the Nespresso coffee when I had the opportunity to review Breville Nespresso Creatista Plus back in October.  So I will admit that I was not thinking of getting another Nepresso machine but when the Pixie Espresso Machine was available for review on Amazon Vine Voices, I was curious – could it be that small?   After talking with my husband about it, he thought it would be great for our RV since we are limited in space.    The box is a bit large but once you open it you can see that it is packed strategically.

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When I received the Pixie machine I knew we had made a great choice in selecting this machine to review.  The machine is very slim – only 4.33 inches wide which hardly use any space on a counter.   You cannot design a coffee machine more compact that this one! The size of it is perfect for small kitchen or an RV!   It is also very portable since it weighs only 8 lbs.   The coffee machine itself is composed of three main parts – the section that includes the capsule container, the drip tray and its grill, the coffee outlet itself, and the water tank.   Fill the tank with water, select one of the Nespresso coffee capsule, and voilà you are ready to make a delicious specialty coffee from the comfort of your home.  Two buttons are located on the top of the machine which allow you to select the capacities of the coffee you desire to make – espresso (40ml) or Lungo (110ml).     These two capacities can also be reprogrammed to custom volumes.    From the first cup of joe you will have with this machine you will be able to smell the beautiful aroma of the coffee capsule during the brewing process.  

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The container of water in the back of the machine will contain approximately 0.5 liters of liquid.  

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This specific machine is designed for domestic use only.  This means that if you are considering getting this machine for a business you should not purchase it – unless of course that you have a home business.

Another device is included in the box – the milk frother.   To froth milk you should use whole or low-fat milk that has been refrigerated.   Using it is quite simple – fill the milk frother up to one of the two “max” level, place the lid on the Aeroccino, and press the button to start.  You can either have a hot milk froth or a cold milk froth with it.   And let me tell you that this makes the best hot chocolate you would drink.   Absolutely divine!

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If you decide to purchase this coffee machine, you will also receive a Nespresso capsule tasting gift which will introduce you to marvellous flavours of coffee.   Nespresso capsules can only be purchased at the Nespresso website or at their stores located in malls throughout the country.

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Bottom line, this machine is perfect for small spaces like in our RV or in apartments where you do not have a lot of counter space or in your kitchen if you prefer to have only a small coffee machine (or you are the only one drinking coffee for that matter!).    The machine is the perfect size and do not weigh a ton.   It is easy to use and will provide delicious drinks with the Aeroccino.   You have everything in one box to make fabulous coffees and to simply relax without waiting in line to get your hands on  your drink.  

The Pixie Espresso Machine with Aeroccino is available for purchase at your favorite store, even on amazon.ca and amazon.com.

 

Disclaimer: This product has been provided courtesy of Amazon.ca Vine Voices for review purpose. I was not monetarily compensated for this review. Please note that the review was not influenced by Amazon.ca or the Sponsor in any way. All opinions expressed here are only my own.

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Reflections on when your husband is away for a period of time

This past six days, my husband flew in a warmer place in order to attend a conference.  The trip has been planned for a few months and we knew it was coming.   But it is unusual for him to leave on a business trip and well.... let's be honest here - we are not used to it because it is rare that he leaves for an extended period of time.  As a matter of fact, I can count the numbers of times we were separate on the fingers of one hand.

Okay.   So here I am, on the day he comes back, reflecting on what I have learned this past few days without him at home.

1) The weather will not be cooperating with you.  We had some days where it was extremely cold and two freezing rain warning.  One morning we woke up with ice all over the place - the street was almost a giant skating rink.

2) That sometimes when you feel discourage small blessings from above can happen.   My husband went to Chipotle on Sunday after attending church where he was and he just could decide what to take.  You see it was his first time ever to go there (I never went either but I told him about the restaurant).   Anyhow, he somewhat mentions that it is his first time and he got a surprise when it was time to pay...

3) Going shopping with boys is exhausting.   You literally have no time to enjoy yourself because when they are done, they're done and it is the incessant question of when we go back home.  Shopping trip was cut short rapidly. 

4) It is hard to steep alone when you are so used to have your husband next to you.   Yawn!   Oh I slept... but it is just not the same.   Made me realized that if anything happen to him it will be hard to adjust myself.

5) I wish I can visit that area one day.   I never went to Arizona and I hope that some day I will be able to go with him so he can show me the view from the mountain in person - not just photos.  


6) Sunsets are stunning - no matter where you go.


7) Cacti can make you think of underwater garden...

8) Trips like this can stir your marriage positively.  The saying is true: " Distance makes your hearth grow fonder."

Well - that's my tidbits of wisdom on business trips and family life.   I look forward to have my husband back today.   Tomorrow I declare PD day for us.   Dad is home and the kids will be excited.   No point of doing school. We will enjoy spending time with him and looked at his pictures. 


Tuesday, March 7, 2017

100 Women Who Made History

61PSQpGABvL100 Women Who Made History – Remarkable Women Who Shaped Our World
Published at DK Canada

About the book

There are many ladies in history who have left their mark. 100 Women Who Made History takes kids on a tour of the past and uncovers the stories of the women and girls who have shaped the modern world.

From super scientists like Marie Curie and Rosalind Franklin to clued-up creatives like Emily Dickinson and J.K. Rowling to leading ladies like Joan of Arc and Eleanor Roosevelt, profiles explore the lives of each woman in detail, and photography and quirky "bobble-head" illustrations present history in a new and fun way. Kids can put each woman's story into context with "what came before…" and "what came after…" panels showing the things that influenced and were influenced by each woman. Special features highlight contemporaneous women and women in similar fields to paint a more complete picture for young readers.

A wonderful inspiration for young girls and a great learning tool for all children, 100 Women Who Made History proves that this isn't just a man's world.

My Thoughts

I was delighted to realized that DK had published a book about 100 women who made history.   A couple of years ago, I have the privilege to review their book 100 People Who Made History and I was looking forward to discover this new title.   I was not disappointed.   The book contains great women who made a mark in history whether with creativity, science, leadership, entrepreneurship and more.   

Each woman will be presented in a one or two pages presentation and will highlights her accomplishments in life.  Some of the women in this book are well know like Joan of Arc, Sacagawea, or Rosa Parks.  However, there are names which are less familiar like Peggy Guggenheim, Althea Gibson, or Emmeline Pankhurst.    Still whether well known or not, these women have shaped history and could be interesting in discovering.

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When we received this book to review, it didn’t take long for my nine years old daughter to pick it up in order to read it.   As she read some of the women’s name in the book, she stumble onto Josephine Baker.   Turns out that we had just watched the episode in which she appeared in the television show Timeless.  The show is about time travel and cross the path of famous people through history.   Nevertheless, Jasmine was happy to see that Josephine was part of the book.   But what I particularly find interesting is that she had an interest in reading the journal of Anne Frank after reading the information on the young Jewish girl.   Mind you, I recognize that the journal present some historical information that could be disturbing for a young girl like my Jasmine.  Fortunately I also had a junior version of the journal.   I also told her that it was a difficult subject to read about and that I would understand if she puts it aside for a time.   She has started it and after a week she has put it aside.   I will encourage her to continue reading it as I think it is important for her to realize that life is not always easy.

This book is packed with interesting women at different time in history.   It is a great book to peruse when you desire to learn more about historical events or historical people.

100 Women Who Made History is available for purchase at your favorite bookstore, even on amazon.ca and amazon.com.

 

Disclaimer: Thanks to DK Canada for allowing me to promote these books. I was not monetarily compensated for this post . Please note that the post was not influenced by the Sponsor in any way. All opinions expressed here are only my own.

Between Heaven and the Real World My Story

imageBetween Heaven & the Real World My Story
Written by Steven Curtis Chapman with Ken Abraham
Published at Revell

About the book

Experience the moments that made Christian music history

For decades, Steven Curtis Chapman's music and message have brought hope and inspiration to millions. Now, for the first time, Steven openly shares the experiences that have shaped him, his faith, his family, and his music in a life that has included incredible highs and faith-shaking lows.

From childhood, music has been both a refuge and a release for Steven. With humor and humility, he offers a backstage look at his early days on the road and his wild ride to the top of the charts. Discover the stories behind some of his best-loved songs. Walk with him as he and his wife, Mary Beth, navigate the joys and trials of marriage and family. Cheer for his return to the stage after doubting he could ever sing again. And SEE God in the aftermath of the tragic death of their five-year-old daughter Maria.
Poignant, gut-wrenchingly honest, yet always hopeful, Steven offers no sugary solutions to life's toughest questions. Yet out of the brokenness, he continues to trust God to one day fix what is unfixable in the space between heaven and the real world.

My Thoughts

I find it is always nice to read an autobiography of an artist every once in a while.   Like it or not, we have a tendency as human beings to uplift them to a pedestal and to think that they have the best of lives.   Reading an autobiography you can be guaranteed that the artist in question was involved in the process of writing the book hence you can have a perspective of his/her life through his/her own eyes.   

So when I signed up to review the new autobiography of Steven Curtis Chapman, I knew I would have a peek in his past and discover more about his life at the same time.    I have received an Advanced Reading Copy so that I can peruse and discover the life of this artist whom we know in our house.  And let me tell you that you will not be disappointed when reading it.  The writing style is very intimate which will transport you almost in the living room of Steven where he will tell you his story.   Not only do you learn about his debut in music but you will also learn more about his parents, his wife and children, his rise to become the Christian artist that he is today and all the ups and downs of his life.

I found the book to be uplifting and particularly encouraging.   We have a son who is pretty good at music and at times he will write his own songs.   We want to encourage his interest in music for sure.    Reading about how Steven navigated the industry is an eye opener I find.   I will strongly suggest to my fifteen year old son to consider reading this book.  I seriously think it would be good for him to do so.

If you enjoy Steven Curtis Chapma’s music and would like to learn more about how he grew up, what he did while growing up, how he embarked on a journey to become an artist, I think this book will be a delight for you.   It is easy to read and the chapters will hook you from the beginning of the book.

Between Heaven & the Real World My Story is available at your favorite bookstore, even on amazon.ca and amazon.com.

 

It is also available for Kindle and Kindle App.

 

Disclaimer: The Advanced Reading Copy of this book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc. 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.

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Classic Brands U-Shape Gel Memory Foam Travel Neck Pillow

I recently received a travel neck pillow from Classic Brands to review.   I always wanted to have one of these so I can rest a bit when we are travelling to go to our RV.   My husband was hoping that we would get it before he leaves for his business trip.   Turns out we did receive it before his trip.  

I am no stranger to memory foam type of pillows because I have one to sleep on during the night.  I really like my memory foam pillow at night so I know what to expect for the travel neck pillow.   My husband, however, decided to try it out while sitting on the sofa and just couldn’t get used to it.  Right now it is a bit bulky I find but with time I know that the memory foam will settle itself perfectly around your neck.  It will take time and many uses though.  

I like the softness of it.   It also possess a gel section which provide some coolness around your head.   It was interesting to feel the coolness slowly coming to your skin.   

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As much as I like the idea of having a travel neck pillow I have a few things that are bugging me.   First of all, I was hoping that there would be a nicer cover around it.   Turns out that the cover is removable but it is white (easy to get dirty) and the material is not as thick as I would have expected.    The description of the product said that there would be a velour cover but this kind do not have velour surrounding the pillow.   Bummer number two is the fact that there is no elastic strap for easy transportation.  Again this was mentioned in the description of the product…   An elastic strap would make it easy to hold it or to slide on your suitcase when travelling by plane.

Again, it is a great product to have when travelling.  Keep in mind that it will take some time to shape the pillow to your own body but once it is done I am sure you will appreciate a soft pillow to put your head on.

The Classic Brands U-Shape Gel Memory Foam Travel Neck Pillow is available for purchase on amazon.ca and amazon.com.

 

Disclaimer: This product has been provided courtesy of Amazon.ca Vine Voices for review purpose. I was not monetarily compensated for this review. Please note that the review was not influenced by Amazon.ca or the Sponsor in any way. All opinions expressed here are only my own.