The Kindness Elves Christmas Tradition + Giveaway

{This post contains affiliate links.}

“Sprinkle Kindness wherever you go”  ~The Kindness Elves

Tis the Season! and the kids have been busy coming up with their wish lists for Christmas.  On their lists are the typical “wants” like a Nintendo Switch and L.O.L Surprise Dolls, “needs” like clothes and good books, and things like “something for my brother” or “something for my sister,” that warms our hearts & puts a smile on our faces.

As our family prepares for the Christmas Season, we have decided to come up with a new tradition…A Kindness List, with the purpose of teaching the kids to focus not only on themselves but on other people as well.  To help inspire us along the way, we will be using The Kindness Elves!

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The Kindness Elves was started in 2013 by Mom Anna of The Imagination Tree.  The elves encourage kids to carry out acts of kindness to friends, family, neighbors…just about anyone!  Earlier this year, I bought the Kindness Elves Set and Storybook (because story time is a favorite around here).  I still can’t get over how cute the little elves are and with many options to choose from, you can be sure to find the right ones.  Isn’t their elf house adorable?  It has a working mail box for sending and receiving Elf Mail.

Just recently, we received the Kindness Elves Accessories Pack, that includes 50 wonderful Acts of Kindness cards, a Little Book of Big Kindnesses memory book, postcards, stickers and a bottle of magic sprinkles.  This is such a fun tool to have and I cannot wait to get started with these.  You can also find a Family Bundle Pack and a Classroom Bundle Pack on the Kindness Elves website.

I’m looking forward to sharing our Kindness List with you in the weeks to come.  To get things started, this is our first act of kindness this month.  Rebekah decided to draw a thank you picture for our school crossing guard and we gave it to him this morning.  He was so sweet and said, “I’m going to keep this forever.”  🙂

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Who would like a Kindness Elves set of their own?  We have just the opportunity for you!

GIVEAWAY TIME!!! – I’m teaming up with Anna at The Imagination Tree to give one lucky reader a Kindness Elves set.  To enter, leave a comment telling me what your favorite Christmas tradition is, what tradition you hope to start or ideas you would write on a Kindness List.  For extra entries, tweet about this giveaway or share about it on Facebook, and let me know in the comments section.  Giveaway ends on Sunday, December 3rd, 2017 at 11pm PST.

The giveaway is now closed and the winner is….

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Chosen by Random Name Picker

Start your own Holiday Traditions with the Kindness Elves this year!

 

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{Giveaway} God’s Big Plans for Me Storybook Bible

Thanks to FlyBy Promotions and Zondervan, you have the opportunity to win a copy of Rick’s Warren’s “God’s Big Plans for Me Storybook Bible.”
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God’s Big Plans for Me Storybook Bible illustrates the 40 foundational principles written in the #1 New York Times bestseller The Purpose Driven Life by Pastor Rick Warren. With child-friendly language, engaging illustrations, and a chronological approach, Pastor Warren introduces each Bible story with a theme that aligns with one of his foundational principles. He wraps up the stories with a closing thought targeted to early readers. The colorful illustrations and narrative tone bring these beloved Bible stories to life for readers young and old. God’s Big Plans for Me Storybook Bible has foil decoration on the cover.

You can also download free bible memory verses used in this storybook bible.  They can be found here.

This is a good storybook bible for older preschool and elementary aged kids.  The illustrations are vibrant and the stories are just long enough to keep their attention.  I appreciate that the three closing thoughts & question at the end of each chapter provide the opportunity to have reflective conversations with my children.

GIVEAWAY – I have a chance for you to win a copy of GOD’s BIG PLANS FOR ME STORYBOOK BIBLE.  To enter, just leave a comment…What is your favorite story or verse from the bible?  For extra entries, tweet about this giveaway or share about it on Facebook, and let me know in the comments section.  Giveaway ends on Monday, November 20, 2017 at 11pm PST. (This giveaway is open to US residents only.)

The Giveaway is now closed.  The winner is Tiffany!

 

“Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255:  “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”):  Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway.  Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation.  I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post. Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway.  If you have won a prize from our sponsor Propeller /FlyBy Promotions in the last 30 days on the same blog, you are not eligible to win.  Or if you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again.  Winner is subject to eligibility verification.

{Giveaway} The Afters – Live on Forever CD

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I am loving this new album, Live on Forever, from The Afters.  Already familiar with some of their songs from Christian radio, I was excited to receive their latest album from FlyBy Promotions to review.  The more I listen to the music & lyrics, the more meaningful they become as I reflect on my own life and how the Lord has been my strength & hope.

The Afters – Live on Forever Bio:

It’s easy to assume stories of trial and triumph are just for the Bible or the history books. But miracles still happen, even when adversity hits hardest. Just ask Josh Havens, guitarist and lead vocalist of The Afters. He relates how the band’s latest effort, Live on Forever, began during a season of tragedy.

Just as the band regrouped to record, Havens witnessed the wife of a close friend contract cancer. Drummer Jordan Mohilowski (who produced the new album) had a brief health scare, and a close companion in his church—part of the worship team—was hit and killed by an impaired driver. She was a young woman, Havens says, who had unlimited potential.

But Live on Forever–the band’s fifth with the Fair Trade label-still took shape as a celebration of faithfulness, protection and promise—one that shimmers with strong rhythms, undeniable energy and compelling pop hooks. The album finds Havens in strong, soaring voice as he invites listeners to find shelter and strength in God. “If any theme has emerged, it would be ‘inspiration and motivation,’” Havens says.

Havens himself felt a deep need to hold on after another loss struck: The band’s longtime soundman, Anthony Martinez, saw his newborn daughter die in infancy.

Ask Havens to pick out a song that sums up the spirit of the album, and he chooses “Battles.” “It was the last song we wrote and the fastest we wrote,” he says. “We don’t typically write songs fast; we’ll change lyrics and melodies and craft our songs carefully. But ‘Battles’ poured out, the music and lyrics, in one day. It’s about standing up against fear and knowing God is always with us,” Havens explains. “It’s one of the takeaways we hope people get: ‘Don’t give up to fear.

Havens shares how, half a world away from his home in Phoenix, he caught a small glimpse of heaven’s reassurance. The place: downtown Amsterdam. The occasion: a dinner between shows with band members and spouses—including soundman Martinez and his wife. For their baby daughter, the Martinez couple had chosen an unusual moniker with an unusual spelling: Pieper. Against all odds, it also happened to be exactly how the intimate restaurant they dined at spelled its name. Still, no one was prepared for what happened at the end of the meal. “We were talking about baby Pieper, and as we got up to leave, we noticed that the only thing on the walls—the only thing—was a framed document, an award for hospitality. And the date on the award—the only date in the place—was Pieper’s birthday. Her mother just started bawling.” Havens sums up the reassurance all took home that night: “We thought, ‘This is where God’s angels fly: right in the middle of the loss.’ God gives us little glimpses to show us he’s here.”

“We worked on this record for almost two years and over those two years, it was a real season of loss,” Havens recalls. “But in the end, Live on Forever is about moving us to trust God, to stand up against fear. It’s an ‘ante up’ record, an anthem for people’s lives: ‘God you are with me in all this. I’m not alone.’”

GIVEAWAY – I have a chance for you to win a copy of The Afters – Live on Forever CD.  To enter, just leave a comment…perhaps a favorite verse or favorite song.  For extra entries, tweet about this giveaway or share about it on Facebook, and let me know in the comments section.  Giveaway ends on Monday, October 3, 2016 at 11pm PST. (Giveaway open to US and Canada residents only.)

Get connected with The Afters – Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

To purchase “Live on Forever” –   iTunes | Google Play | Amazon | Spotify

“Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255:  “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”):  Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway.  Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation.  I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.

Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway.  If you have won a prize from our sponsor Propeller /FlyBy Promotions in the last 30 days, you are not eligible to win.  Or if you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again.  Winner is subject to eligibility verification.

{Giveaway} Under the Sea (Children’s) Bible

When I was in high school, I wanted to be a marine biologist when I grew up.  Can anyone else relate?  I love marine life, especially mammals like dolphins and orca whales.  During our honeymoon, my husband even surprised me with a “swim with the dolphins” experience in Hawaii.  It was amazing!  Visiting aquariums is also one of my favorite activities and I never get tired of them.  I really, really like (LOVE) this one…

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Monterey Bay Aquarium

I also love reading the bible.  So imagine my excitement when Zondervan came out with the The Under the Sea Holy Bible, in the New International Reader’s Version (NIrV).  

About The Under The Sea Holy Bible – It is a perfect gift for children ages 6 to 10. Themes of underwater fun and sparkling fish grace the interior of this wonderful children’s Bible. The outside is covered in foil and sparkle. The interior has color inserts featuring whimsical underwater scenes with themes of God’s care and love for each of us and all of creation.

The NIrV is a great edition for young children, because it contains words that are easier to read and understand.  Sometimes shorter words and shorter sentences are used as well.  Eye-catching, colorful inserts are scattered throughout this bible, with lessons on prayer, love, the Ten Commandments and other themes.  I also appreciate that the Under the Sea bible is in hardcover. 🙂

To Learn More: http://www.zondervan.com/under-the-sea-holy-bible-nirv

Purchase the Under the Sea Bible at these retailers:

Barnes & Noble | Walmart | Family Christian Stores

***The giveaway is closed.  The winner of The Under the Sea Bible is Cynthia!  Congratulations!***

GIVEAWAY – I am giving away a copy of The Under the Sea Holy Bible to one lucky reader!  To enter, leave a comment. Do you have a favorite bible story or do you have a favorite under the sea animal?  For extra entries, tweet about this giveaway or share about it on Facebook, and let me know in the comments section.  Giveaway ends on Tuesday, April 12th at 11pm PST. (Giveaway open to US and Canada residents only.)

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Monterey Bay Aquarium

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{Giveaway} Nathalie Grant’s Glimmer Girls Series

“Glimmer is a light that is never extinguished. And sometimes it may glimmer a little bit brighter and sometimes it may glimmer a little bit dimmer, but it never goes out.” ~Nathalie Grant

Website | Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | YouTube 

Partnering with Faithgirlz, contemporary Christian singer-songwriter Nathalie Grant, has written two books for young girls, ages 9-12.  They are part of a two-book fiction series called Glimmer Girls.  My little girl is turning five in July and though she may be too young for this series right now, I’m always on the lookout for good books to share with other people.  When Rebekah is a little older, I look forward to reading these books with her and I know this will happen soon enough!

Nathalie Grant says, “We all have a light on the inside and depending on the day, sometimes it’s bright and sometimes it’s dim.  That is the message I wanted girls to get from this book.  You don’t always have to be shining bright, some days are going to be more difficult than others, but Jesus has put a light in you that will never go out.”   That is definitely the kind of message that I want my kids  and others to learn.  It’s the kind of message that is speaking to my heart while I type this.  =)

Thanks to Flyby Promotions, I am giving away two Glimmer Girls books to one of my readers. But first, let’s see what Nathalie Grant has to say about her books.

 

About Glimmer Girls:

In this new Glimmer Girls series, readers meet 10-year-old twins Mia and Maddie and their sidekick little sister, LuLu, as they embark on international adventure and mischief thanks to their famous mom who travels all over the world singing beautiful songs and a slightly wacky and sometimes negligent nanny named Miss Twist.

LONDON ART CHASE
In London Art Chase, the first title in the new Faithgirlz Glimmer Girls series, readers meet 10-year-old twins Mia and Maddie and their adorable little sister, LuLu. All the girls are smart, sassy, and unique in their own way, each with a special little something that adds to great family adventures. There is pure excitement in the family as the group heads to London for the first time to watch mom, famous singer Gloria Glimmer, perform. But on a day trip to the National Gallery, Maddie witnesses what she believes to be an art theft and takes her sisters and their beloved and wacky nanny Miss Julia, on a wild and crazy adventure as they follow the supposed thief to his lair. Will the Glimmer Girls save the day? And will Maddie find what makes her shine?

A DOLPHIN WISH
Join twins Mia and Maddie and their sidekick little sister, LuLu, as they travel the country finding adventure, mystery, and sometimes mischief along the way. Together with their famous mother, singer Gloria Glimmer, and their slightly wacky nanny Miss Twist, the sisters learn lessons about being good friends, telling the truth, and a whole lot more. In A Dolphin Wish a three-night stop in the city of San Diego seems like it might be just the break the girls need—lovely weather and great sights to see. That is until they hear animal handlers at “Watery World” talking about the trouble they’ve been having keeping the animals in their habitats. Mia and her sisters cannot resist a challenge and they talk Miss Twist into another visit to the educational amusement park to search for clues as to what or who is helping the animals escape.

The giveaway is now closed.  

Congratulations to lmdevine!  You are the winner of the Glimmer Girl giveaway!

GIVEAWAY – I am giving away a copy of London Art Chase and A Dolphin Wish to one lucky reader!  To enter, leave a comment. What is your favorite book/series for young children? For extra entries, tweet about this giveaway or share about it on Facebook, and let me know in the comments section.  Giveaway ends on Wednesday, March 30th at 11pm PST. (Giveaway open to US and Canada residents only.)

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{Giveaway} Captive Dvd

Here it is…my first giveaway of 2016!  A dvd copy of the movie, Captive.

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DVD Release Date: January 5, 2016

Runtime: 96 minutes

Rating: PG-13 (for mature thematic elements involving violence and substance abuse)

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About the movie:

Based on a miraculous story about the power of faith,  Captive is an “amazing, inspiring” drama about the spiritual collision of two lost souls, Brian Nichols (Golden Globe Nominee David Oyelowo), on the run from police and desperate to make contact with his newborn son, takes recently widowed mother Ashley Smith (Kate Mara) hostage in her own apartment.  Fearing for her life and desperately hoping to see her daughter again,  she turns to Rick Warren’s The Purpose Driven Life for guidance.  Ashley and her captor face a crossroads where they discover hope and light in the midst of despair in the moving film that Dick Rolfe, CEO, Dove Foundation hailed as “powerful.”

There are over 30 minutes of bonus content on this DVD including Journey Through Darkness: Filming Captive and Faith and  The Purpose Driven Life.  Also included with this DVD is a Digital HD copy that can be instantly streamed and downloaded.

From the depths of desperation and helplessness, comes freedom and purpose.

I first heard about this story through K-LOVE radio, so I  was already familiar with the ending prior to watching the movie.  What I didn’t realize or perhaps had forgotten, was the role that Rick Warren’s book, The Purpose Driven Life, played in these two lives.  During her captivity, Ashely Smith read a chapter from the book to Brian Nichols.  My husband and I liked the movie, but we both thought these particular scenes with the book could’ve gone a little deeper.  The movie does ignite my desire to read The Purpose Driven Life again.

I thought the acting from the entire cast was excellent.  Captive also does a good job showing the events that lead up to the hostage situation, with suspenseful scenes and heart-warming conversations between Ashley and her young daughter.  You get a really good sense of where these two main characters are coming from.

Watch the trailer from Captive:

GIVEAWAY – I am giving away a dvd copy of Captive to one lucky reader! To enter, leave a comment. For extra entries, tweet about this giveaway or share about it on Facebook, and let me know in the comments section.  Giveaway ends on Monday, February 1st at 11pm PST. (Giveaway open to US and Canada residents only.)


“Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”): Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway. Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation. I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.

Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway.  If you have won a prize from our sponsor Propeller / FlyBy Promotions in the last 30 days, you are not eligible to win.  Or if you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification.”

gMovies Review & Giveaway! {free 2 week trial & 6 month membership}

After we decided to cancel our satellite service provider in early 2012, we began to watch many more television programs and movies online.  It’s amazing how many shows you can watch online the next day or through on-demand Internet streaming media providers, like Netflix and Amazon Prime.  It’s so convenient, as long as you have a device to watch it on and available wifi.

I am always looking for wholesome, family/kid friendly programs for my family to watch. Then I found out about gMovies from Flyby Promotions and it was just what my family and I needed.  If you haven’t heard of gMovies yet, let me introduce it to you.

gMovies offers instant access to almost 300 faith friendly feature films of every genre, in addition to animated stories, television series and biblical documentaries. Always available on your computer or mobile device, gMovies also includes the bible-based animated series “Pahappahooey Island;” teen drama “Much Ado About Middle School” starring Bill Cobbs, Lee Meriwether and Amanda Waters; and the “Left Behind” drama series starring Kirk Cameron and based on the New York Times bestselling books by Tim LaHaye and Jerry B. Jenkins.

Screen Shot 2015-02-19 at 1.31.19 PMThe website is easy to navigate and you can search for movies alphabetically, by category or most watched.  I am a fan of Candace Cameron-Bure, so the first movie I watched was “Finding Normal,” and I thought it was pretty good with some hilarious scenes.Screen Shot 2015-04-19 at 9.41.23 PM

They have a good selection of kid shows too.  My kids love watching “Hoop Dogz.”Screen Shot 2015-04-19 at 9.42.35 PM

gMovies is operated by UP, America’s favorite television channel for uplifting music and family entertainment, so rest assured that you are being offered the very best in faith conscious entertainment. The Parents Television Council™ has twice awarded its Entertainment Seal of Approval™ to UP for being “an authentic family-friendly cable network.” UP is the only television network to be so honored.

Join over 2 million people who are already enjoying gMovies on a monthly basis!
·  Instant access to over 300 hundreds Christian movies and TV shows with new titles added monthly
·  The whole family can enjoy a variety of entertainment including Adventure, Animation, Comedy, Drama, Documentaries, Thrillers and more
·  Stream from iPad, Android, or your PC
·  Only $4.99/month
·  No contract; cancel anytime
·  Powered by UP, American’s favorite TV network for uplifting entertainment

Thanks to gMovies, they are giving all of my readers a Two-Week Free Trial!  So, if you would like to check gMovies out, here’s a wonderful opportunity.
1)To begin your two-week free trial, click here.
2) enter code: FREETRIAL89
FYI: The video player on the gMovies website is Adobe Flash Player based. You will just want to ensure that the web browser you are using to access is able to run the latest version of Adobe Flash Player. Also, to maintain the highest quality stream, please ensure your internet download speed is at least 3.0 Mbps.

GIVEAWAY – I am also giving away a FREE 6 month subscription to one lucky reader!  To enter, comment below with your favorite family friendly or faith friendly show/movie.  Giveaway ends on Sunday, April 26th at 11pm EST.

Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”): Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway. Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation. I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.

Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway. If you have won a prize from our sponsor Propeller / FlyBy Promotions in the last 30 days, you are not eligible to win. If you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification.”