‘My Daughter’s Legacy’ Blog Tour, Author Chat Party, and Giveaway

Meet two women in different eras but both with unfailing conviction in Mindy Starns Clark and Leslie Gould’s new book, My Daughter’s Legacy. Therese Jennings cannot abide the thought of owning slaves. But when trouble befalls her family, can she reconcile her obligations with her beliefs? Nicole Talbot’s life is back on track after years of substance abuse. But when facts she uncovers cast doubt on her family’s legacy, she must risk all that she’s gained-her fresh start, her family’s trust, and her growing relationship with a new man-to unlock the secrets of the past. 

Celebrate the release of Mindy and Leslie’s new book by entering to win the $75 Visa Cash Card Giveaway (details below) and by attending their author chat party on August 1!

 

One grand prize winner will receive:

  • One copy of My Daughter’s Legacy
  • One $75 Visa Cash Card

Enter today by clicking the icon below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on August 1. The winner will be announced at the My Daughter’s Legacy Facebook party. RSVP for a chance to connect with Mindy, Leslie, and other readers, as well as for a chance to win other prizes!

RSVP today and spread the word-tell your friends about the giveaway via social media and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 1st!

Tanika Fitzgerald’s ‘Miscarried Joy’ Prize Pack Giveaway

Are you in a season of waiting—waiting for an answer from God, waiting for a change? Be encouraged by Tanika Fitzgerald’s new book, Miscarried Joy. Tanika transparently shares her deeply personal and disappointing experiences of losing her babies due to miscarriage. There were times when she felt God was the cause of her pain. Miscarried Joy has something for anyone who needs help pushing through incredible pain to conquer discouragement, walk in faith and birth their purpose. God’s delay in your life could be a set up for your greatest calling to be fulfilled.

Conquer discouragement with the help of Miscarried Joy and enter to win Tanika’s Hope Fulfilled Prize Pack.

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One grand prize winner will receive:

Enter today by clicking the icon below, but hurry! The giveaway ends on December 18. The winner will be announced December 19 on the Miscarried Joy blog.

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LogicRoots Games Reviews: Ocean Raiders & Say Cheese

Disclosure Pic

Math has never been my favorite subject to teach.  It’s okay, but numbers and hard facts just aren’t my favorite things.  That’s why I was excited to be given the chance to review two math games from LogicRoots.

 The first is called Say Cheese.  It’s a multiplication game that stems from a short story you read from the direction booklet.  After that, you distribute cloth bags and the game chips. 

LogicRoots Review: Math Games @ A Nest in the Rocks

Following the rules, you take turns spinning the spinner and following the directions with your chips until someone has none left.  With each turn, your task is to determine whether the number on your chip is a multiple of the number on the spinner.  With some large numbers on the chips, this can be a bit of a challenge.

My Big Helper was totally up for that.  She enjoyed seeing how fast she could determine whether the chips had multiples and usually knew super fast.  She liked using big numbers from the spinners and was in it to win it.  My Little Man, on the other hand, while he played doesn’t love multiplication.  He enjoyed the game but it wasn’t his favorite.

The directions were a bit complicated to figure out.  Several times we’d continue play and then have to refer back to the directions to clear something up.  Several times we still weren’t sure what we were supposed to do and so just made up our own rules.  Part of this, I think, is because English was apparently not the native language of the people who wrote the directions.  Also, they often gave examples of the rules instead of just explaining them.  Since it is a simple kids’ game, however, this wasn’t a major problem. 

All in all, the game was fun.  The pieces were colorful and kid-friendly, and it definitely challenged the players to know their math facts.  The storyline was cute and the rules are simple.  This is definitely a fun, educational game – and best of all, it would be easy to create variations that could extend the usefulness of the game.

Pros:

  • Colorful pieces
  • Strong math ties
  • Simple rules
  • Variations would be easy to create
  • Not your traditional math game – asks students to work backwards for find answers
  • Costs under $20

Cons:

  • Instructions are somewhat unclear and include a few grammatical errors
  • It may take some time for students to get accustomed to identifying factors instead of solving mathematical equations

The second game we played is called Ocean Raiders.  This game is about addition and includes a variation for subtraction.  This game has a board and strongly resembles Chutes and Ladders.  The board contains 49 spaces in a non-linear order and has tornadoes that move a player randomly around the board.  Essentially, you roll the die and then add that number to the number of the space on which your token stands.  Because the board spaces are scattered randomly around the board, the student can’t simply count the proper number of spaces but must add the two numbers together in order to move ahead.

LogicRoots Review

My Little Man loved this game.  He had fun zooming his token around the board and especially loved rolling the die, which isn’t a cube.  It’s unusual shape makes it even more fun to roll.  I appreciate the variations that are included in the rule book.  My son knows his addition facts well, and so we completed the game in far faster time than the directions estimated, but it was still fun.

Pros:

  • Educational
  • Colorful, fun materials
  • Sturdy construction
  • Easy to understand
  • Simple rules
  • Several people can play at once
  • Costs less than $20

Cons:

  • Could be fun for a limited time only
  • This same basic game could be played using other game boards, like Uncle Wiggly or Chutes and Ladders

These games would make great gifts!  If you have kids learning their addition or multiplication facts, these games would make great additions to their educational tools.

I received a free copy of these games by LogicRoots.  All opinions expressed are my own.

Death in the Shadows by Paul McCusker | Book-Set Giveaway

Can Father Gilbert, who traded in his detective’s badge for an Anglican priest’s collar, champion the truth in time to stop more people from dying? Find out in Death in the Shadows, Paul McCusker’s new book releasing November 27. Pre-order a copy of Death in the Shadows and check the mystery-lover off of your Christmas list.

Join Paul in anticipation of Death in the Shadows by entering to win two books in the A Father Gilbert Mystery series (The Body Under the Bridge and Death in the Shadows)! Five winners will be chosen to receive the two-book sets. Click the image below to enter to win.

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About the Book

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When Father Gilbert became Anglican priest, he never expected he would be pulled into a different kind of mystery—the mystery of the spiritual world.

Attending a conference in a seaside town, he has yet another supernatural encounter, this time with a murdered girl who worked at a local massage parlor. Details of the murder lead Father Gilbert to approach the police with clues in common with other cases, bringing him into contact with a detective from his days with Scotland Yard.

Meanwhile, a local monastery has been vandalized, with grotesque images and profane graffiti defacing the altar and walls. The head of the monastery accuses the local sex-trade industry of retaliating against his outspoken stand against it. Then, one of the brothers at the monastery is found dead in the local red-light district. All evidence points to his having been a regular at a massage parlor—the same one where the murdered girl had worked. (Kregel, November 2016)

Learn more and purchase a copy here.

About the Author

Paul McCusker is creative director at Focus on the Family. He has sold more than a million books and twenty million audio dramas. His name is also heard daily on radio stations all over the world, and by at least two million listeners every weekend through the Adventures in Odyssey series. Learn more about him on his website and connect with him via Facebook.

Remembering Mrs. Aumiller

In the fall of 1986 I entered Mrs. Aumiller’s class.

I started a new school that fall, and I was worried about it – a new school, a much longer bus ride with a change of buses midway, and few people that I knew in my class. 

It didn’t take long to know that it was going to be a great school year, though.

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Mrs. Aumiller had short white hair and talked kindly, even through she often threatened to hang us up by our big toes and give us 40 lashes with a wet noodle.  The gleam in her eye always let us know she was kidding, but we never wanted to find out what she would do if we did misbehave.  We gathered for reading groups in a semi-circle of chairs at the front of the room and got new crayons each semester.  We did our work with fat blue pencils that didn’t have an eraser and recited poems from our English book in unison.  Six-year-old me loved When Daddy Fell Into the Pond.

If we finished our work early, she would take a black marker and draw a maze of wide lines on a piece of white construction paper, then instruct us to color it without letting two spaces of the same color touch.

At Christmas she wrapped her desk in that wide paper that looked like bricks and taught us how to make Christmas ornaments out of construction paper and glitter.  At Easter time we made big eggs and decorated them with lots of colors.

She started each day with a moment of silence, a throwback to the days when teachers began the day with prayer, and then the Pledge of Allegiance.

It was in her class that I met the people who became my best friends.

It was from her that I decided there was more to the teaching profession than dominating the giant chalkboards and controlling the box of chalk.

It was from Mrs. Aumiller that I first saw that school could be fun and teachers kind.

Mrs. Aumiller’s ideas were the first that I secretly hid away to use for that future day when I would have a classroom of my own.

A few years later I changed schools again, but Mrs. Aumiller kept track of me.  I’m not sure how it all happened, but we stayed in touch, and she – along with my also-amazing second-grade teacher – came to my wedding.  They both have faithfully sent Christmas cards to my family each winter for years now. 

My Christmas card list got a little shorter this week, though, when Mrs. Aumiller passed away.  She’s been sick for years now, and while I’m happy to know that she’s not suffering any more, it’s hard to know that she’s gone. 

She was an incredible teacher, and she taught more than 37 years’ worth of kids.

I’m so blessed for having been one of them.

 

Hearts for Home Blog Hop – May 26, 2016

We’ve had a big week full of outdoor plans – and been attacked by allergies, too!  When not actively enjoying our outside time, we’re hiding from pollen and trying to keep symptoms under control.  That’s why I’m super happy to have all of the wonderfully creative ideas from the Hearts at Home Blog Hop so close at hand!

Blog Hop

A Nest in the Rocks is now one of the co-hosts for the weekly Hearts for Home Blog link-up, which means that every Thursday you’ll find lots of great tips, recipes, and other family-friendly ideas listed throughout this post. If you’re a blogger, we’d love to have you link up your posts and join us. You can find information about the other co-hosts of this hop here.

The most clicked post from last week was Homeschooling Multiple Ages? Simplicity Is the Key to Success.

Some of my favorite posts from last week were:

A Simple Way to Track Grades and Create Transcript 

My Favorite Homemade Lemonade Recipe 

Simple Nacho Potato Casserole | Fluster Buster 

If your post is listed above, please grab one of our ‘Featured Blogger’ buttons! Congratulations, and thanks for writing such inspiring posts.


Celebrate Becky Wade’s Newest Release!

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A female bodyguard plus her star NFL client plus danger equals a great recipe for romance! Her One and Only, book four in Becky Wade’s Porter Family novels, releases May 3. To celebrate, Becky is hosting an author chat party on her Facebook page on May 5 at 5 PM PDT/8 PM EDT. Join Becky for an evening of book chat with other bookworms and prizes.

Plus a portion of all pre-sales and sales the release week of Her One and Only will be donated to the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund. For more details on how to purchase a copy, click here.

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About the Book

After ten years in the NFL, super star Gray Fowler is accustomed to obsessive fans. But when Gray starts receiving death threats from a stalker, his team hires an executive protection agency to guard him until the culprit is caught. Dealing with bodyguards 24/7 is a headache, especially when one of them is a young, beautiful woman. How can a female half his size possibly protect him better than he can protect himself?

Dru Porter is a former Marine, an expert markswoman, and a black belt–none of which saved her from disaster on her last assignment. In order to rebuild her tarnished reputation, she’s determined to find Gray’s stalker and, since relationships between agents and clients are forbidden, avoid a romantic attachment between herself and the rugged football player with the mysterious past.

Yet every secret that leads Dru closer to the stalker also draws her closer to Gray. As the danger escalates, they’ll survive only if they can learn to trust their lives — and their hearts — to one another.

Learn more and purchase a copy.

Hearts for Home Blog Hop – April 27, 2016

The weather’s getting hotter, strawberries are ready, and summer’s nearly here!  Our focus is changing – we’re nearing the end of our regular school year and are looking forward to our summer schedule.  How about you?

A Nest in the Rocks is now one of the co-hosts for the weekly Hearts for Home Blog link-up, which means that every Thursday you’ll find lots of great tips, recipes, and other family-friendly ideas listed throughout this post. If you’re a blogger, we’d love to have you link up your posts and join us. You can find information about the other co-hosts of this hop here.

The most clicked post from last week was When Art & Nature Journals Collide – A Nest in the Rocks.

Some of my favorite posts from last week were:

25 DIY Lavender Essential Oil Projects

Oreo Cookie Desserts

DIY Essential Oil Detangler

If your post is listed above, please grab one of our ‘Featured Blogger’ buttons! Congratulations, and thanks for writing such inspiring posts.


How to Host Your Own ‘Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library’ Party

Disclosure Pic

My Big Helper has been talking about this month’s Chris Grabenstein book club event for weeks.  She’s been counting down the days, then the hours, all while bouncing off the walls and carrying her invitation around with her endlessly.

How to Lemoncello's Library

We love this

 

She immediately began planning how we could turn our house into the Alexandriaville Public Library and begged to have an escape game similar the one that Mr. Lemoncello hosted.

Chris Grabenstein

So we got to work.  I designed labels for Lemonberry Fizz and created a recipe for the drink that Mr. Lemoncello loves to guzzle.  I also built the Wonder Dome, decorated the house, and filled in many other book details.

Chris Grabenstein

I printed out an anagram game that we could use for a Super Dooper Challenge and planted clues around the house.  One of these bonus clues became the prize for the challenge.

Chris Grabenstein

Of course, we had to eat, too.  Since the main characters attended a fancy gala to celebrate the library’s opening at the beginning of the book, I opted to serve a ‘fancy’ dinner.  I made two kinds of fondue and served it with sautéed chicken, steamed veggies, and bread cubes on a color-coordinated table.  The girls drank their icy water out of glass goblets and giggled every time they stuck out their pinky fingers.

Chris Grabenstein

Dessert had to be fondue, too, since it’s such a fun way to eat – although there are several dessert options in the book.  My Big Helper loved the fruit platters and chocolate fondue; judging from the amount of chocolate on the other faces I saw, they liked it, too.

Chris Grabenstein

Throughout the course of the event, we played as many Lemoncello games as I could create.  I made Indoor-Outdoor Scavenger Hunt cards, and the kids raced around the neighborhood to collect their items first.  I created a label for Mr. Lemoncello’s Anagrams, and the girls raced to see who could make the most words with alphabet cookies.  They also played our version of Hurry to the Top of the Heap with Lemoncello trivia.

Eventually, late that night, one team pieced together enough clues to escape the house – and they did so with lots of whooping and hollering and running around in the dark.

Their prize was to choose their parts in the next-day’s commercial.  I gave them the task of creating a commercial to ‘sell’ Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library to other kids.

Click here to view a rough copy of their commercial.

I’ve had myriads of technical difficulties in trying to share this.  Their commercial plays well on my computer – I had to video that in order to show it to you.  I apologize for the issues that remain.

Of course, we ended the party with a birthday cake, and since My Big Helper’s big day is close, we sang to her.

I spent hours designing the games, creating labels, and putting the details of the party together – so I’m happy to share them with you.

 

You can find everything you need to print your own 68-page Lemoncello party pack here.

Happy escaping!

What are your kids reading now?

Shared at:

Top-Notch Tuesday

A Little R & R

What to Read Wednesday

Booknificent Thursday

The Book Nook

This Is How We Roll Thursday Party

Menu Plan Monday – February 20, 2016

 

We’re having a slow-evening week, and I’m excited to have more evenings at home!  I’m looking forward to doing more cooking that we’ve had happening lately amid all the craziness.  Do you prefer to be out and about or at home with your family?

So with that, I’ll probably be turning some of these leftovers into new dishes for the freezer and using others to eat for lunches.

What do you have going on this week?

Breakfast:

Cinnamon Almond Granola @ A Nest in the Rocks

Dinner:

I’m going to give these Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies a try this week, too.

What are you eating this week?

For more Menu Plan Monday, visit OrgJunkie.