“You’re Joking Me” ~ a kid joke book by a kid! (review)

**Congrats to Sue D, the GA winner!**

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I had the opportunity to check out a super-fun book that is just the thing you’re looking for, if you need a book to increase laughter and amusement among your kiddos this Christmas! The book is You’re Joking Me: Jokes for Kids by a Kid, by William Daniel. Clean, punny, entertaining–this book will make you smile and will bring mirth and merriment to your families. Keep reading for more about this book and its kid author–PLUS how you can enter to win your own copy & book swag!

About You’re Joking Me

Written by a kid for kids!

What happens when a pony sings?

He gets a little horse.”

Ha! That laugh is from the hilarious collection of more than 450 puns, riddles, one-liners, and knock-knock jokes that are sure to have kids (and their adults) laughing up a storm.

You’re Joking Me: Jokes for Kids by a Kid (Revell, Nov., 2022) by William Daniel, Blythe Daniel’s son, is the perfect stocking stuffer, birthday gift, or a fun book to keep in the car or around the dinner table. Its witty, clean humor that’s age-appropriate humor and doesn’t bring laughter with put-downs or sarcasm.

InYou’re Joking Me, William hopes to model what good humor for kids should look like. He has noticed that dark or inappropriate humor is flooding today’s communities and feels he can bring an alternative to put smiles on people’s faces. William also has a passion for encouraging other kids to start telling puns instead of sharing disrespectful humor at the expense of another person.

Some of his jokes have made it on television interviews, a Newsweek article, and a comedy club where William presented his jokes and met the mayor! You can see some of these below.

Want to hear another joke?

What happens when snowmen get nervous?

They get cold feet.”

About the author, William Daniel

Ready to get to know our joke star?

William Daniel is a middle schooler, a WWII enthusiast, and a competitive gymnast. He builds model airplanes and wants to be a pilot someday. He has an older sister, Maris, and a twin sister, Calyn, and is the younger by four minutes. As you can imagine, he enjoys making people laugh, which he does for family, friends, and at school. William lives in Colorado with his family and dog, Riley.

You can check out his article on Newsweek or see the video below of when Colorado Springs’ KOAA News 5 (NBC affiliate) came for the unboxing of You’re Joking Me and to interview William.

My thoughts about You’re Joking Me

It has been a very, very long time since I was in middle school. But I remember SO clearly thinking then, that joke books were the best thing ever!

Turns out, they still are! William Daniel’s wonderful book breathes life into the joke world with over 450 jokes (be they punny, knock-knock, one-liners, or riddles) with humor, clever insight, and joy.

Did you get a chance to read William’s article on Newsweek? (Just click on the highlighted link.) I love so much of what he says! William believes that this book is the result of seeds that were planted, watered, nurtured years ago, when he began to tell jokes years ago in 2nd grade. (He’s in 7th grade now.) I love that perspective! God really has given all of us–even when we are or were children–gifts and talents that are unique to us and His purposes for us. What a lovely encouragement. And we can see how God planted those seeds in William, and how he, his family, and God nurtured those in him over the years. He worked on his jokes, improved them, and now, here it is: his first book!

By writing a joke book for kids, I am encouraging other children and young people to start telling puns instead of sharing disrespectful humor that might be at the expense of someone else. That kind of humor upsets me; you might even be putting someone who has had a traumatic experience at risk by exposing them to rude comments or jokes about something they have been through. I am very pleased to help those who are getting harassed by others with this kind of humor.

William Daniel, Newsweek Magazine, “My Turn,” October 10, 2022

William’s jokes are clean. Funny. Clever, too! They are jokes that kids will love to read and tell themselves, to others. They are so fun! I recommend this book to you for your kiddos and your family. (You’ve still got time to get copies for Christmas stockings!) But before I tell you where you can get your own copy–and even how you can win one–let me tell you some of my favorites from You’re Joking Me. So fun–I smiled and even laughed. And you will too!

Some of my faves from You’re Joking Me

This is, again, SUCH a fun joke book. Check out the following–the proof is in the pudding!

Q: What is a potato’s favorite game?

A: Two truths and a fry.

Q: What did the pirate say to his doctor when he was asked what hurts?

A: “Eye, Matey.”

Q: What do you say when a bird comes flying at your face?

A: “Duck!”

And last. But definitely not least. My most favorite: fantastic wordplay on one of my most beloved movie tropes!

Q: What did God think when he needed somebody to build an ark?

A: I Noah guy.

You’re Joking Me, William Daniel

Watch William’s interview on Colorado Springs NBC affiliate, KOAA News 5

Enter to win You’re Joking Me plus more!

The BlogAbout Blogger Network has given me a copy of You’re Joking Me: Jokes for Kids by a Kid plus joke magnets from the book!

To enter, just click on the “Enter here!” link below. That will take you to a Giveaway Tools entry form, where you’ll be able to enter to win in a variety of ways. (You’ll even have a chance to earn extra giveaway entries by commenting with your own joke below!) Giveaway closes on January 2, 2022. US entrants only; must be 18 and older to win. (Kids, get your parents to enter for you!) Best wishes!

Enter here!

Where you can purchase You’re Joking Me

You’re Joking Me is available at lots of booksellers, including the ones listed below!

Amazon

Christianbook

Barnes & Noble

Enjoy! –Wren

Disclosure: I received a copy of this book from the author. All opinions expressed here are my own.

Enter to win a $10 Amazon GC in celebration of “The Garden,” a sweet new faith-based cartoon series for kids!! (ends 12/29/22)

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I’m so excited to tell you that there is a fun new addition to the world of faith-based, quality children’s entertainment. It’s called The Garden, created and written by Butch Hartman. I was given the opportunity to watch The Garden‘s brand-new Christmas episode, “The Greatest Gift,” and I believe that both parents and littles will love this!

About The Garden

Here’s a bit from the producer:

The Garden is a Christ-centered children’s cartoon series aimed at teaching your kids the Gospel in a way they can understand. It features LENNY THE LION and LUCY THE LAMB—two best friends who work inside a magical garden where ANYTHING can grow! Each story revolves around them having to accomplish their goals by learning a Bible story or an original song. “The Garden” will take your kids right along on these adventures, too!

The Garden can be streamed now on both Pure Flix and Yippee TV. And soon, a Garden App will be available! 40 episodes of The Garden are being made.

The purpose of The Garden is to entertain kiddos while also teaching them God’s Word. Episodes include original songs, Bible verses (as well as their addresses or locations in the Bible). Best friends Lenny and Lucy play, sing, work, and worship together–as well as listen to God’s voice and direction to resolve the challenge or issue in each episode.

The show’s creator/writer and actors

So–before I tell you about them, I have to tell you a bit about why I’m so excited about them. I spent a delightful number of years with my family as our child began to explore the amazing world of animation. And it IS amazing. I found that once I began to watch with our son, I started to notice repeated names in the writers, directors, and voice actors–overlapping in different series and even different networks. Just so you know, the people involved in The Garden have worked on incredible high-quality programs. Friends, these people are basically animation, writing, and voice acting royalty! (Now, of course, I have to tell you who they are!)

Butch Hartman is the creator and writer, who also worked on Nickelodeon’s The Fairly Odd-Parents, Danny Phantom, Bunsen is a Beast, and Tuff Puppy. The incredible voice cast includes James Arnold Taylor (Obi-Wan Kenobi in Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Leonardo in TMNT, Looney Tunes Cartoons, and more), Cristina Milizia (Poison Ivy in Batman, Jessica Cruz/Green Lantern, various voices in The Casagrandes and Monster High), and Brian Stivale (voice actor in an enormous number of video games, including Marvel Avengers Academy and Beats by Dre).

I love that these creative people came together to make something so colorful, fun, and faith-building!

My thoughts & impressions

The Garden‘s episode “The Greatest Gift” was fun, charming, and made me really focus on the reason we celebrate Christmas: because of Jesus’s birth, God’s greatest gift to all mankind. I found much to love, in this darling video. Lenny and Lucy are best friends (they’re a lion and a lamb–get it?). They joyfully make Christmas cookies together, and do a little tree decorating. Then, they get an assignment.

They’re to go decorate the concert hall for the upcoming Christmas event. And on the way, they have to pass the grumpiest, meanest person in town. Who scares them! But all that is the preparation for the cool things that God is going to do–through His people.

I don’t want to tell you any more, because I want you to have the joy of watching this, not knowing what is coming. But I do want to tell you some things I loved about “The Greatest Gift.”

  • The sweet, clear way that Scripture is woven into the dialogue and the show
  • Conversation with God (the Boss) is natural and normal for these characters
  • The music! There is a wonderful combination of original music, with styles including pop, jazz, and even, if I’m not mistaken, big band!
  • God’s very good purposes in what He asks Lucy and Lenny to do
  • The fun animation! Its style (though not its content) is very reminiscent to me of 2D cartoons I grew up with.

Here’s a fun video from Butch & Julieann Hartman

Here’s where you can purchase The Garden’s episode “The Greatest Gift” — and more!

You can purchase this sweet Christmas episode now–for only $1.99! With your purchase, you’ll receive a quality curriculum based on the episode! Just follow these instructions:

  • Go to this purchase link for “The Greatest Gift”
  • Click on “The Greatest Gift”
  • That will take you to a new page. Click on “Add to cart”
  • Purchase the episode
  • Download PDF
  • Open Christmas streaming page with password
  • Download free curriculum

And enjoy!

Now, you can enter to win a $10 Amazon gift card!

In celebration of The Garden and its new Christmas episode, The Greatest Gift, you can enter to win a $10 Amazon gift card! To enter, simply click on the link below that says “Enter here!” That will take you to a Giveaway Tools entry form, where you’ll be able to enter to win in a variety of ways. US entries only; must be 18 and older to win. Giveaway closes 12/29/22. Giveaway winners will received their gift card after the new year. Best wishes!

Enter here!

Enjoy! –Wren

Disclosure:

Many thanks to Garden Productions for providing a sample of the product for this review. Opinions are 100% my own.

Sarah Young’s new devo for kids: “Jesus Listens”

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Many of you might be familiar with Sarah Young’s “Jesus Calling” series of books and devotionals. They’re filled with words that God speaks over us (and we know that He would say those things, because they’re all from Scripture), in a daily format. What a comfort to hear those loving words, instructions, and wisdom! Now, Sarah has written a similar devotional book for children, except the idea is flipped around. It’s called Jesus Listens, and 365 daily prayers are composed for kids to read to Jesus. And because He is Jesus, readers can know that He does listen! I was thrilled to receive a copy of this, and I’m going to share my thoughts with you below. First, though, more about the book, AND an Instagram giveaway! (ends 11/8/22)

Here’s more from the publisher:

Book Name Jesus Listens: 365 Prayers for Kids

Author Sarah Young

Publisher Tommy Nelson

In this inspiring 365-day book of prayers, Sarah Young, author of Jesus Calling, helps children talk to God every day.

More about Jesus Listens

Jesus Listens, the bestselling 365-day prayer devotional from Sarah Young, is now available for children. This book invites your children (and you) into an ongoing conversation with God, growing a meaningful prayer life and closer relationship with Him.
In this inspiring 365-day book of prayers, Sarah Young, author of Jesus Calling, helps children talk to God every day. Kids will learn how to pray honest prayers and know that Jesus is always listening to them. This book will equip parents who want to

  • teach their kids how to pray and talk to God
  • reassure their children that God is always with them
  • help their kids to read Bible verses every day

Children will learn the daily practice of reading God’s Word and talking to Him. They will

  • know that they can talk to Jesus about anything and come to Him when they are afraid, anxious, or worried
  • learn how to thank and praise God and take Him their requests
  • develop the habit of prayer

This inspirational book for kids ages 8 to 12 makes a perfect gift for

  • Christmas
  • birthdays
  • graduation celebrations and back-to-school
  • baptisms, Sunday school awards, or first communions

Jesus Listens: 365 Prayers for Kids is a wonderful tool to help your children read Scripture and pray every day of the year.

Purchase Link #ad

How to enter the giveaway

Giveaway – (5) winners will receive a print copy of the book. This is an Instagram giveaway, so please follow the directions below for your chance to be one of those winners!

TO ENTER

First: ⇒ LIKE, SAVE, and SHARE this Jesus Listens Instagram post

Second: ⇒ FOLLOW me @jesuscalling @tommynelsonbooks @justreadtours

Third: ⇒ TAG a friend (up to 3x per post).

And then, ⇒ VISIT each hosted post of this tour for more entries. Schedule at @justreadtours. (US only. Void where prohibited by law or logistics. Instagram is not affiliated with nor responsible for this giveaway. Giveaway ends at 11:59 PM EST on November 8, 2022.)

What you’ll find in Jesus Listens

What an incredibly wonderful kids’ devotional!

First, let me tell you about the Jesus Listens format. The devotional contains 365 readings, dated for every day of the year (even February 29). Each devotional has a title and a corresponding verse, followed by a prayer that begins, “Dear Jesus.” Several paragraphs talk about the issues of life a child may experience (like the darkness of the world, personal struggles, realizing that Jesus is indeed with them at every moment). Sarah Young details these issues in the form of prayer but alongside them, proclaims what Scripture says about them, specifically–and ends with thanksgiving and gratefulness. The “Read On Your Own” segment includes four Bible verse addresses that children can look at that were touched upon in each devotional.

So how could a child use this? Since it’s written for ages 8-12, a child could read it alone, praying the words of the devotional aloud or silently. Then, the child can look up the Bible verses and read them. Of course at any time during this quiet time activity, more prayers or Bible verses could be included, since prayer is a back-and-forth activity between God and us! Jesus Listens could be used as a morning devotional or a nighttime one. And, it could also be used as a parent-child activity, with either one taking turns reading paragraphs or Bible verses. It would also be fantastic for homeschooling Bible time. And parents could also use it as a read-aloud devotional time as a family.

It is a wonderful way for children to:

  • learn how to pray
  • understand that prayer is a conversation
  • see that we can pray Scriptures to God
  • most of all, see that the Lord loves His children and wants a close & loving relationship with us all

Some of my favorite moments

I love Sarah’s writing style, where she combines the truths of Scripture in an intimate conversation with the God who made all of us and created us in all the humanness we are: our bodies, minds, emotions, and our will. Sometimes I think we forget that He made us and totally understands us! He delights in us, rejoices over us with gladness, quiets us with His love (Zephaniah 3:17). How amazing it is for children to really know that. Jesus Listens can make that happen for your children (and even for parents!).

Here are some of my favorite parts of the Jesus Listens devotional:

  • “You know about every single one of my troubles. You have collected all my tears in Your bottle. So please help me not to be afraid of tears–or the troubles that cause them. I know you can use even my problems for good. You’re teaching me to be comforted by the fact that You’re in control. And I’m learning to trust that You know exactly what You’re doing!” (from October 10)
  • “I’m so thankful that You are the God who sees me. You’re training me to look for you too. Help me remember that You are here with me and You’re working in every moment of my life.” (from April 10)
  • “I know You’ll be working on me and making me more like You. You are going to do new things in my life, and I can’t wait to see what they are! I don’t have to think about the past. I don’t have to worry about mistakes I have made or things I wish I had done or said. Today is a fresh start!” (from January 1)
  • And maybe my top fave:
    • “Please teach me to keep looking to You for help–not to myself or the world around me. You have this amazing ability to be with me both right now and in the future, showing me which way to go. When I close my eyes and listen, I can almost hear you whispering, “Follow Me.” (from January 2)

What a precious devotional Jesus Listens is! This book will bless your children and help them know that God is ALWAYS there, listening to and tenderly caring for them. And isn’t that what we all need to know?

Enjoy! –Wren

Disclosure: I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the author. All views expressed are only my honest opinion.

Timely (& free) kids’ coloring book from ANM: “A Home for Artyom”

*this is a sponsored post*

Recently, I had the opportunity to check out some wonderful family/kid products from ANM (Advancing Native Missions). This is from their ANM Kids on Mission division. Let me tell you more (and keep your eyes out for an awesome free family devotional in my next post)!

About ANM’s Kids on Mission Coloring Book

Like me, perhaps you and your loved ones have been praying for the people of Ukraine lately. Because the Ukrainians have been so deeply on my own heart and in my prayers, I was very excited to be able to tell you about this coloring book for kids that is based on a true story about a real person!

Created by ANM, the coloring book “A Home for Artyom” tells the true story of a child from Ukraine who gets to learn about Jesus, and the love that He has for everyone! Artyom is a boy who lives in an orphanage in Ukraine. When he is transferred to a new orphanage, he feels self-conscious and embarrassed because of the red bumps that break out on on his skin. He is lonely and ashamed of this, and he withdraws from the other kids.

One day, a man named Alex comes to the orphanage and tells the children about God’s love for them, and about God’s Son, Jesus. The children even learn that Jesus would never, ever leave them! Alex continued to come and share. But he also learned that when the kids turned 16, they would “age out” of the orphanage.

Before the coloring book is over, Artyom and the other kids will hear more about Jesus, visit families in their homes, attend summer camp and move to Light Houses (started by Alex) where they can learn more about Jesus, pursue higher education, and prepare for their own futures. Artyom will even join God’s family by believing in Jesus as his Savior! (Kids will even get to learn more about Artyom’s future!)

My thoughts about “A Home for Artyom”

I loved the story and pictures, which are told in language that even smaller kids will understand. The story focuses a lot on Artyom’s feelings and situation; but it also shows how one man, who’d experienced the loss of his parent, understood how kids without parents can feel. Because of that, Alex devoted his life and time to share the gospel with children in orphanages; and then, to provide a way for the aged-out teens to pursue education, adoption, and Jesus.

Although this coloring book/storybook is written for children, it has some significant truths in it about kids who live in orphanages. And how they, just like all of us, need to know that they are LOVED. It was a sweet and precious way to help our own children learn about kids in other nations; and a beautiful way that parents can engage with kids in coloring and then, to pray. It’s a gentle introduction as well to one way that missions can happen.

The coloring book is easy to print at home (although you could also print it at an office supply store). The front and back cover print in color and all the other pages are black & white coloring pages. After printing, I stapled ours with 3 staples on the left side (so that it could open like a book) and then covered the staples with washi tape. (You don’t have to do that; I just liked the way it looked and wanted the staples to be covered. Masking or painter’s tape could accomplish the same purpose.) Ours is colored with crayons, but kids could also use markers or colored pencils.

How to get your own free coloring book “A Home for Artyom”

To download your own free copy, click below on “Free Coloring Book.” That will take you to the Advancing Native Missions Catalog page. Scroll down until you see a red rectangle with the “A Home for Artyom” coloring book inside it. You’ll need to enter your email, then you’ll be able to download the coloring book.

Free Coloring Book

About ANM (Advancing Native Missions)

Since 1992, ANM has sent Christian workers to those who haven’t learned about Jesus, God, or the Bible. The key difference about ANM is that they equip these workers to go to unreached areas of their own nations! So rather than a missionary from a foreign country (like America, for example) going to share the gospel, these individuals get to hear the gospel from their own people. You can find out more about ANM at the ANM/About page.

Enjoy! –Wren

Disclosure: This was a sponsored post.

From the creator of VeggieTales: the “Minno Laugh & Grow Bible for Kids” – plus get 2 mos. of Minno Kids streaming service when you buy! (ends 4/30/22)

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My family has ALWAYS been a fan of VeggieTales! And now, FrontGate Media has introduced us to Phil Vischer’s newest creations: the Minno Laugh and Grow Bible for Kids and the Minno Kids streaming service. If you picture both of these as being awesome, hilarious, and amazing, you’d be right. And if you purchase this Bible for your kiddos (via the link below) by April 30, 2022, you’ll receive a free 2 months’ subscription to Minno Kids! Let me tell you more!

About the Minno Laugh and Grow Bible for Kids by Phil Vischer

I’ve had a lot of beloved Bibles for kids over the years. But I think Phil Vischer’s newest one is my favorite! It is a story Bible; in fact, it’s subtitled “The Gospel in 52 Five-Minute Bible Stories.” It’s written in classic Vischer style (subtle humor for kids that is simultaneously hilarious for adults) which also plainly sets out the truths of the Bible in clear, understandable language. The artwork is colorfully-drawn (and beautiful) cartoons.

Best of all, Vischer takes the Bible and, in 52 short yet pithy stories, tells kids the overall focus and content of God’s Word; from Genesis to Revelation. Each story ends with verses, conversation topics, and prayers for families. The stories include:

  • The Garden of Eden, creation, and the Fall–and Noah
  • Abraham, Sarah, Isaac, Jacob, and Joseph
  • Moses, the Children of Israel, their deliverance from Egypt and their 40-year wandering
  • Kings of Israel
  • Prophets of Israel
  • and then, of course, the Messiah! The annunciation, Jesus’ birth, and His temptation
  • the disciples and Jesus’ ministry, concluding in His crucifixion, death, and resurrection
  • Paul, the epistles, and even Revelation

There are also excellent infographics that cover the fruit of the Spirit, the generations from Adam to Jesus, the travels of the Israelites, important women of the Bible, and more. These are both fun and fascinating, and help even more to unlock for readers the scope and content of the Bible. It’s geared for ages 4-8, but I guarantee everyone in your family will love it!

About Minno Kids

We’re all rather used to streaming services these days, aren’t we? But I know that, with those streaming services, comes the very vivid understanding for parents that much content is not at all appropriate for children. Minno Kids is here to change all that! Virtually all the content is kid-friendly and either faith-encouraging or neutral in content, and organized for preschoolers, elementary kids, and tweens. On Minno Kids, you’ll find:

  • BibleMan, VeggieTales, the Buck Denver shows, and 3-2-1 Penguins!
  • Bethel Music’s “Come Alive” Dance Tutorials and eKidz Worship, plus lots of other kid-friendly worship
  • Minno Church at Home
  • “The Finders,” a sort of “The Librarians” kind of show for preteens
  • Bible stories and Devotionals
  • Specially-curated collections for Easter, Good Friday, and Palm Sunday
  • and more!

It is truly family-friendly and -focused. There is so much to love! Check out the service by clicking on this Go Minno link.

My thoughts and opinions about the Minno products

Fun fact: the word “Minno” comes from the Greek word which means “to abide.” Minno has connected that meaning to the Bible verse John 15:4, where Jesus says, “Abide in Me and I will abide in you.” So their products, the Minno Kids streaming service and the Minno Laugh and Grow Bible for Kids, are designed to help kids and family connect to God. Pretty awesome company goal, right?

So first, my thoughts on the Bible. This is a product I’d happily recommend to all my friends or family who are looking for an excellent and winsome story Bible. I love the Genesis-to-Revelation content and explanation. When I was a new (and quite young) Christian, I understood very little about the Bible. I knew Bible verses I’d memorized at camp. But I didn’t know that God’s love story for humans began at creation, unfolded through the Old and New Testaments, (predicting and introducing us to the Messiah, Jesus) and ended victoriously at Revelation. What an incredible resource for kids and family this is! It is fun (sometimes hilarious) to read. Yet it’s full of Bible truths and will teach children (or even parents!) the story of the entire Bible. It is truly wonderful.

And I also highly recommend Minno Kids. Prices are quite reasonable ($6.99 monthly, $69.99 annually). And, there is a ton of content (120 shows of great variety, plus 50+ episodes of VeggieTales) that’s continually being added to. Shows are downloadable or streamable, and can be watched on phones, tablets, and computers. And it also includes articles and podcasts for parents, as well as devotionals. I loved (of course) the VeggieTales content. I loved the variety of video content for kids. And, I was moved and blessed by the worship content, curated especially for kids! Perhaps that was especially meaningful after Covid restricted our opportunities to worship together in congregations. But how wonderful to remind everyone that worship can also occur at home.

Overall, the best things about the Minno Bible and Go Minno are the hope and joy they provide. Viewers and readers will feel and believe those themselves. God is a God of hope; and His plan for us is amazing and happening every day!

And, Minno has a special offer for you!

Through April 30, 2022, Minno is giving a free 2-month subscription to Minno Kids Streaming Service for anyone who purchases the Minno Laugh and Grow Bible for Kids through the link below. The Bible includes a coupon with a special code families can use to start this subscription.

Purchase Minno Laugh and Grow Bible for Kids here!

Enjoy! –Wren

Disclaimer: I received a copy of these products from the authors. All opinions are honest and my own.

Beautiful picture book: “Good Morning, Little One” ~ a review

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FrontGate Media sent me the most beautiful picture book, just in time for Easter! Artist Amy Kavelaris painted and wrote Good Morning, Little One to share God’s delight and love for children. It is absolutely gorgeous, and you will definitely want to get a copy of this for your family (or others that you love!). Let me show you some of this wonderful book.

About Good Morning, Little One

In Good Morning, Little One, Amy Kavelaris pairs her beautiful painted animals with Scripture and words to remind children (and adults!) that God is always watching over them, rejoicing over them, and loving them. Subtitled “New Mercies and Prayers to Carry You Through the Day,” this is the perfect book to help establish your child’s faith early on! The endpapers and paste-down of this hardback are a lovely green and have promises from Scripture written in flowing font, with flower around the edges. There’s also a spot for the giver of the book to inscribe it to the child.

The characters in this book are lambs, puppies and bunny rabbits. They’re embraced by their animal parents, who are greeting them with God’s blessings in the new day, and the parents’ trust and belief that God will carry their precious child all day long. There are gorgeous illustrations with those main characters, plus some birds and mice tucked around the corners. Promises of God’s incredible care and love are written on each pair of pages. And, there are some surprises on the pages as well; Amy Kavelaris has tucked the Bible verses that contain the promises in tiny font, so families can do a treasure hunt for them as well as look them up in their own Bibles.

The prose flows gently and pairs perfectly with the pages. On these pages, children are reminded that God protects them, picks them up when they get tired, and will always seek them and find them when they are lost.

On the facing page to the promise that God carries us, children are treated to a visual illustration of what that can look like, where a puppy is carried in a comfy basket (with a plaid cloth) by its fluffy dog parent. (Maybe they are golden retrievers!)

Again and again in this lovely book, readers are treated to the beauty of God’s care for us in its Bible verses and the darling animals which are so beautifully painted by Kavelaris. Children are also encouraged to dance and worship God, to call out to God in prayers, and to remember that God crafted every single part of them. I just loved the pages that remind readers that even if dark moments come, God’s love will still shine brightly on them. This is a message not only that children need to hear, but that parents and grandparents will be comforted by as they share them together.

This book is just such a joy! I love its charming animals and beautiful verses. (The author even included my most favorite flower, peonies!) Its message, that the God who made us loves us, cares for us each day, and is thrilled when we reach out for Him, is the perfect way parents can start each day with their children. This book would be the perfect addition to an Easter basket, or a gift for a new baby; really, it’s the perfect addition to any child’s library. Don’t miss it!

Where you can purchase Good Morning, Little One

You can purchase Good Morning, Little One by clicking on this link from Amazon, Walmart, Christianbook, Barnes & Noble and other booksellers. You can also download a charming, *free* Activity Guide to go with the book.

Enjoy! –Wren

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the author. All opinions are my own.

“Dachshund through the Snow” ~ Review & Giveaway (ends 12/14/21)

#sponsor #partner

I have an adorable children’s book to tell you about! FrontGate Media sent me Michelle Medlock Adams’ brand new picture book, Dachshund through the Snow. Just in time for holiday celebrations! Keep reading for more, and also for info on how you can win a copy for your family!

About the book

In Dachshund through the Snow, we meet Crosby. Crosby is a miniature dachshund. But he’s even smaller than most! He’s the teeniest, tiniest one in his village. Even so, he has been growing. And practicing. And he thinks that he’s finally ready for the Arctic Animal Olympics in Diggityville.

While Crosby would like to be appreciated for qualities other than his size, his fellow kid animals in town focus only on his smallness. They tease him. And they catcall him. Even laugh at him. When he arrives for the competition, and an accident derails his competition hopes, all he can do is run away. Or, actually, dig away. And one thing Crosby can do is dig. And he digs far and fast.

When the pup comes up for air, he has no idea where he is. But a surprising encounter with Santa, and helping Santa out with his own challenge, might help Crosby to understand that his value doesn’t rest on his size. But on something even more important!

My thoughts

I loved so many things about this wonderful picture book! Its illustrations are lively, colorful, and charming. Crosby’s tale of being judged and laughed at for something he couldn’t control–his size–will resonate with children today, in a world where bullying is sadly very common. And what Crosby learns as he helps Santa and the reindeer shows that the size of our hearts is really MUCH more important than how big or small we are.

While Dachshund through the Snow is a tale about saving Christmas that’s based on Santa, the reindeer, and celebrating with gifts, rather than the Christ Child and the Nativity, I believe it would be a fun addition to any child’s holiday book collection. Parents and kids can take the opportunity to talk about Crosby, about taunting and name-calling, and everyone’s inestimable value after reading. And, it provides a cheerful and fun book that would be great for reading alongside hot chocolate (with marshmallows, of course!) and family snuggles. Great book for kids from toddler/preschooler ages through mid-elementary!

And, you can enter to win a copy!

To enter, simply click on the pink link below that says “Enter here!” That will take you to a FrontGate Media page where you’ll be able to enter to win. Giveaway closes on 12/14/21. Winner will be contacted by FrontGate Media. Best wishes!

Enter here!

Where you can purchase Dachshund through the Snow

You can find this darling book at Amazon. Just click on the highlighted link below to go to the book’s purchase page.

Amazon

Enjoy! –Wren

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from FrontGate Media. All opinions are my own.

“The Wonder of Creation” ~ a fantastic new kids’ devotional (review & giveaway, ends 12/6/21)

#sponsor #partner

Momentum Influencer Network and HarperCollins Christian Publishing were kind enough to send me Louie Giglio’s fantastic new kids’ devotional book, The Wonder of Creation: 100 More Devotions About God and Science. It has been a delight to read; and I have a copy to share with one reader!

About The Wonder of Creation

Louie Giglio has written a number of books for children. This brand-new devotional shows kids God’s greatness, love, and creativity as they are illuminated in science. In The Wonder of Creation, Giglio tells kids about cool science in the earth, in space, in animals, and in people as he shares God’s Word and God’s care for us. Each of the 100 devotions includes a Bible verse, a reading about a little-known science fact, a prayer, a sidebar with more neat info, and vivid illustrations. Written especially for ages 6-10, each devotion is designed not only to captivate kids with science, but also with the God who designed and created everything.

And there is so much to find in this book! Giglio and his co-writer, Tama Fortner, do an excellent job of bringing interesting science facts to a child audience while including verses about the God who designed and created everything. Some of my own favorites included:

  • The octopuses’ garden in Monterey Bay
  • How geodes (LOVE them!) are made and where you can find the biggest one ever
  • NASA’s PUFFER robot, which was inspired by origami
  • Why a person has straight, wavy, or curly hair
  • Why the land on Jupiter’s moon Io could feel like a roller coaster
  • How ducks stay dry
  • And more!

Giglio doesn’t only include cool facts, however. He weaves the Word of God in with each one, and shows how God’s hand created all these amazing things in the physical world, whether it’s here on earth or in space. And how the mind of God thought of all of them. He also shows us how we can even get to know God better as we learn about what He has created.

Some of my favorite verses Giglio uses are:

  • How God’s mercies never end and are new every morning, despite our mistakes, imperfections, or sins (Lamentations 3:22-23)
  • How God chose us to be different than the world, via John 15:19, using the example of orange Bengal tigers and the rarer white Bengals
  • Proverbs 15:3-“The Lord’s eyes see everything that happens.”….even our hair follicles and how their shape makes our hair look a certain way!
  • The many zones of the sea and the specific things that go on in each of them…and remembering who made the sea (Psalm 95:5) and owns it

In addition, there is also a downloadable Parents’ Discussion Guide for The Wonder of Creation. It includes each devotion’s Bible verse plus 3 questions that the parent can ask their children after they read. They’re not “test” questions, but more open-ended questions that ask the child’s opinions about what’s described in each devotion, how they see Jesus or people responding, and even for fun ideas. It’s a great complement to the book and will bless both parents and kids with connection moments with each other and Scripture.

This book is written with such joy; and it was a joy for me to read! In my son’s younger years, we delighted in exploring science and seeing God’s hand in and behind it. That always gave us greater awe for the Lord and His incredible creativity…as well as giving us a love for creation (especially space! and the ocean!) that is still very much alive in us today. I delighted in reading The Wonder of Creation, and I joyfully recommend it to you! It would be a fantastic addition to any kid’s library.

This is a book that you could use in your bedtime routine with your kids; that they could read on their own; or that could be utilized in homeschools. It would also be a fun addition to morning devotional times. It’s just a fantastic devotions book, overall!

You can purchase The Wonder of Creation now!

The Wonder of Creation is available for purchase now! This would make a wonderful gift for your family or especially for your elementary school-aged child. Click though the Buy Link below to go right to the website where you can purchase your own copy.

BUY LINK

Also, when you click on the Buy Link above, you can download a free sample of this devotion, plus check out the book’s Free Resources which include Educator and Activity Guides.

You can enter to win your own copy!

Momentum Influencer Network and HarperCollins Christian Publishing have kindly provided a copy of The Wonder of Creation for me to give away to one FINCHNWREN reader! To enter, simply click on the pink link below that says “Enter here!” That will take you to a Giveaway Tools entry form where you’ll be able to enter to win in a variety of ways. Giveaway closes on 12/6/1; limited to U.S. entries only. One winner will be selected to win. Best wishes!

Enter here!

Enjoy! –Wren

Disclosure: Many thanks to HarperCollins Christian Publishing for providing this product/product information for review. Opinions are 100% my own. I did receive the product in exchange for this review and post.

New kids’ devotional: “Roar Like a Lion” (CLOSED)

*Congratulations to Kelly W., the winner of the book!*

#sponsor #partner

Hi everyone! I have a fantastic kids’ devotional giveaway for you today: Levi Lusko’s Roar Like a Lion. I received a copy of this book from Momentum Influencer Network; and they’re going to give away a copy to one reader as well!

About Roar Like a Lion

This devotional is written for kids aged 6-10 from a Christian perspective. Co-written by pastor Levi Lusko and Tama Fortner, it encourages kids to embrace courage, remain hopeful, build their own faith, and, as the book says so beautifully on the back cover, “Understand how you are a part of God’s great story.” There are 90 devotional readings contained in a 192-page hardcover book, sized just right for kid hands (6 1/2″ x 8 1/4″). It’s illustrated by Catherine Pearson.

Each devotional starts with a title. Then, the Bible verse is listed. Next, the authors share how the verse could apply to kid life (in situations with siblings, parents, peers, friends, the world at large, or in their own choices). The devotional ends with simple prayers. Also, there are sidebars on the right which tell an anecdote or story, or summarize events from the Bible which relate to what kids have just read. These are entitled “Get Ready to Roar!” or “Did You Know?”

What you’ll read inside

You’ll find thoughtful, gently and kindly-written words that are just right for kids to read to themselves. (Of course, this could also be read by kids and parents together, in the morning or just before bed.) The authors know what it’s like to be kids, and to face issues that they face, because (of course) they were kids once themselves! Levi Lusko also is the parent of several children. So armed with day-to-day life experience, years of pastoring, and the Bible, they offer clear explanations of Bible verses and how they really do apply to kids’ daily experiences.

The writing is warm and clearly written in a caring manner, so that kids and readers know the authors understand what it’s like to face a world and situations that are beyond kids’ experiences; and that the Bible have loving and helpful words to apply. Verses that kids will remember or can memorize.

And, I have to mention the artwork! As you saw above, the cover art is breathtaking. I thought of stained-glass windows, while my son thought of origami-type paper art. (I think we’re both right!) Inside the book, under each title, you’ll find art that illustrates each particular devotional. Those echo again the collage/paper feeling of the cover art. They’re cheerful and wonderful. I even was reminded of one of my own favorite illustrators of children’s books and her work, Lois Lenski. Kids and parents will love the art, which takes each topic and brings it to life vividly.

So what are some kid life challenges that readers will discover here? Here are some of the topics:

  • Even kids can be leaders
  • God loves us and speaks to us
  • School days that are tough
  • What to do when you don’t know how to proceed
  • Fears
  • How God sees us
  • And one of my own cherished phrases: “But God…”
  • and more!

I particularly loved how Lusko wove the story of Jesus and Jairus and the woman who touched Jesus’s robe so she could be healed, into an illustration of how we might feel when we are interrupted…and how Jesus dealt with the same thing. Or about our habits, and Jesus’s habits! Or, how seemingly impossible situations were worked out by our “But God…” God. Over and over, devotionals are presented that will help kids know that God loves them and holds them close, and is so ready to lead and guide them always.

I had many favorite passages in this book. But I wanted to show you one of my top faves:

God never will leave us. And He will NEVER break His promises.

That’s an exceptional word for all of us, whether we’re kids or adults!

And…some Roar Like a Lion freebies from the publisher!

This devotional is so wonderful. But sometimes, we as parents might not know how to approach spiritual discussions with our kiddos. Here are some free resources for you from the publisher; a “Parent Discussion Guide,” and a guide to “Four Rhythms to Setting the Pace in Your Home.” Both of these are free downloads that you can save and print from the links below.

1. Parent Discussion Guide

Teaching kids about the Bible can be hard. Taking concepts like heaven, and hope, and loss, and faith, and boiling them down into digestible bite sizes for kids is challenging!

This guide is built as a tool to accompany the book, and to help your family discuss Roar Like a Lion together. Each day you’ll find a few questions that will help you dig deeper into what your child is discovering.

My prayer is that Roar Like a Lion will ignite your child’s heart and imagination to know and love Jesus! And that is my prayer for you, too.

Download Parent Discussion Guide

2. Four Rhythms to Setting The Pace of Your Home.

Your calendar is chaotic, your days loud, and your seasons busy. I see you. I feel that.

Maybe you feel like the madness of life is clouding the calling on your home. Like you just can’t pinpoint the priorities. Maybe you’ve found yourself wondering…

  • Is “balance” even possible?
  • Is parenting ever not chaotic?
  • Will I always feel overbooked, under-rested, and too busy?

The truth is, there is a God-ordained rhythm that He wants us to set out our lives to. There is a built-in beat. There is a cadence. There is an ebb and flow to how He wants our lives to go.

Find the encouragement you need to set a sustainable pace in this free download.

Where to purchase Roar Like a Lion

Just click on the Buy Link below!

Buy Links

Best of all, I have a copy of Roar Like a Lion to give away!

One FINCHNWREN reader will receive a copy of Roar Like a Lion! To enter, simply click on the pink “Enter here!” link below. That will take you to a Giveaway Tools page where you’ll be able to enter in a variety of ways. US only. Giveaway closes on 9/29/21. Best wishes!

Enter here!

Enjoy! –Wren

Disclosure: Many thanks to Thomas Nelson for providing this product/product information for review. Opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation. I did receive the product in exchange for this review and post.

Win a Crayola Craft Pack in the Life’s a Beach Giveaway Hop (CLOSED)

**Congrats to Bryan V., the giveaway winner!**

Hi everyone!

It’s time for another fun craft giveaway! I’m joining with lots of fun bloggers in the “Life’s a Beach Giveaway Hop,” hosted by Blogger Talk Media. I’m giving away something fun for your kids to use to create, now that the school year is finally winding down!

The FINCHNWREN blog is giving away a Crayola Craft Pack! One winner will receive all these goodies:

  • Crayola Paint Your Own Artist Creation (includes a canvas imprinted with a hedgehog, paintbrush, and 4-pack of washable paints)
  • Two Creative Kids Super Blast Art sets (each includes 2 spray pens and two stencils; remember to use smocks and cover your painting surfaces, as paint may stain)
  • Crayola Marker & Paint Pad (8″ x 10″ size, 25 pages suitable for markers and paint)
  • Three 1-ounce packs of Crayola Model Magic (my favorite soft, squishy modeling material) in red, yellow, and blue
  • Two-pack of mini lined journals with colorful covers (Mom may want these!)

How to enter to win:

Simply click on the “Enter here!” link below. That will take you to a Giveaway Tools Entry Form, where you’ll be able to enter in a variety of ways. Giveaway closes on May 18, 2021. One winner will be selected to win. Best wishes!

Enter here!

And now, how to enter the Life’s a Beach Giveaway Hop!

You’ll definitely want to visit the linkup page for the Life’s a Beach Giveaway Hop, where you’ll find tons of cool blogs giving away neat prizes. Over 50 bloggers will be giving away a cool variety of prizes. To get there, just click on the blue InLinkz button below (the one with the frog on it). That will take you to the linkup page, where you’ll be able to enter to win!

Enjoy! –Wren