Women of God can never be like women of the world. The world has enough women who are tough; we need women who are tender. There are enough women who are coarse; we need women who are kind. There are enough women who are rude; we need women who are refined. We have enough women of fame and fortune; we need more women of faith. We have enough greed; we need more goodness. We have enough vanity; we need more virtue. We have enough popularity; we need more purity. ~ Margaret D. Nadald

Our Father also gifted us with the nature to nurture, keen sensitivity to the Spirit, selflessness, discernment, and heroic faith. No wonder our Father placed us at the heart of the family and thus at the center of the plan of salvation. We are the Lord's secret weapon. ~ Sheri Dew

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31 October 2011

TOS Review - Lots and Lots of Fire Safety Songs DVD and Fire Truck Book Combo

I recently had the chance to get my hands on a few products from Marshall Publishing. Apparently the company/products is big in the "As Seen on TV" world, but as we don't watch tv I hadn't ever heard of them before. Much to my surprise I ended up getting a copy of Lots and Lots of Fire Safety Songs DVD and Fire Truck Book Combo, and there was much rejoicing around the Jorgensen home!

While we don't let our children have much screen time with any sort of media, I'm pretty sure they'd watch this one over and over if we let them (don't think they haven't asked!)

The package that I received had a full color, 128 page, large book all about fire fighters.... my children saw this an immediately started flipping through it and did so consistently for the first week or two that we had these products. While they mostly just enjoyed the pictures (they're 20 months through 6), putting on the DVD was HUGE. They don't actually go around singing the songs from the film, which is odd because they normally pick up EVERYTHING and repeat it until we're all sick of hearing it, but after the first (and subsequent) viewing(s) I was instead caught up in conversations with my children over what you should do if a fire happened etc. I was pretty impressed. My 3 year old with no real pervious "fire education" that he can recall, was telling me all about 911, and staying low to the ground, and ALL of the children were telling me about proper procedures and how to stay safe.

I also liked that they filmed in a fire station and showed the different things that one would see on a trip to the fire house. Last year we had the opportunity to go on an outing with the other wives and children of our squadron and I thought it was wonderful! I hadn't before thought about how children would react to a firefighter coming through their home in an emergency.... they can actually look like big suited monsters instead of someone their to rescue you! Anyway, my children all put on the gear, got comfortable hearing the noises that the air tanks make, and saw what a firefighter coming to rescue them would look like. Watching this DVD sent all those thoughts rushing back into my children's heads "Mom, we've worn that stuff!" "Mom, we got to see a firefighter dressed up like that!" and I'm very grateful that they had reminders should anything ever happen. I really don't know what older children would think of this DVD/Book combo, but it certainly made the cut of things that will be moving with us in Jan!

Lots and Lots of Fire Safety Songs DVD and book combo is normally $49.90, but their web sale price is only $29.95..... unless of course you're reading a TOS Review and end up getting a special code that allows you to get an even bigger discount :-). Enter TOSF1 at the checkout to purchase both items for only $19.95!

Additionally, I was sent a DVD on George Washington Carver. I have to admit, this made me more giddy then firetrucks. I know, weird? Anyway! My children walked in and out of the room several times during this one, but my 5 year old daughter mostly stayed
put. I would say it's for an older group, but my children get the pleasure of having parents that like documentaries, so they've seen their fair share. Hey! There's always something that sticks with them, and if they're going to watch a show it might as well add to who they are as a person :-). So, while this one may not be an attention holder for most younger aged kids, I'm excited to use it again in the future as it's well done and includes a lot of information that I didn't even know!

I would definitely go and take a look at the Marshall Publishing website to see if any of their educational DVD's would be the much awaited resource/supplement that you've been looking for to shake things up in your family's studies!

To see what other crew members are saying about Lots and Lots of Fire Trucks, feel free to go here.

*As a member of the 2011 TOS Homeschool Crew I was provided a free copy of this product in exchange for my honest review of its content. I have not received any other compensation for the opinions stated here, and they were not promised a positive review.**

26 October 2011

TOS Review - Wits and Wagers

Wits and Wagers by Northstar Games is a trivia based game that is fun for the whole family. The recommended age for this game is 8 and older and in our opinion…. that’s pretty spot on. We still played with our children (6 and under) and they LOVED playing, but Nathan and I had to sway their answers a few times. We'll definitely be playing this one again though!

The box and all of the pieces are very well constructed, which is HUGE for us. We like a game that can last and this is certainly one…. And thus my love affair began. Inside you’ll find 6 small boards to write your answers on 6 quality black dry-erase pens, 10 meeples (5 large and 5 small people shaped tokens) 150 trivia cards (with 2 questions on each for a total of 300 questions), and a scoreboard. All of the boards are nice and thick and the cards with the trivia information are great quality, not flimsy at all.

The learning process for this game takes just minutes and the actual play time is about 20-30 minutes. For our family we split into teams and let the smaller children place the answer cards, meeples, and hand the trivia cards back and forth between mom and dad.

The actual game play starts when the youngest child gets a card from the box and reads the top question. Then everyone (or each team) writes their answer to the question on their answer board. I find this game a lot of fun and easy because all of the answers require only a number and then everyone lays out their cards in numerical order. From here you can place your meeple(s) on ANYONE'S card... which is awesome! If you think that someone else had a better answer then you can put your piece on their answer instead! Woohoo! (Nathan is often better at guestimating things so I kind of rely on him for that kind of stuff!) Whoever guesses closest to the correct number without going over gets points for that round.... large meeples are worth 2 points and small meeples are worth 1, so if you put all of your meeples on one card and that card was the closest then you'd have 3 point for that round. It is possible to split your meeples if you think two answers may be correct.

Do I have any criticisms of this game? Not really. It'll be a happy addition to our collection.... some of the cards make me laugh because our kids have NO CLUE what they're talking about. For instance? For children that have never had fruit loops or know what they look like it's pretty difficult to guess how many colors come in one box :-D. Yes, that's a parental issue *laugh* We explained to the kids on our team what they are and talked them through guessing, kind of funny! The other question that made me laugh was how many Disney Princesses there are. Yah, not really common knowledge around here, but still fun.

What I do really, really like is that there's a little blurb on the back of each card that gives a little extra trivia in addition to having the numerical answer to the question. I actually learned quite a bit and am excited to play again. Oh! The other thing that I thought was really nice is that when you open the box of trivia cards there's a little place holder card of sorts. You put that card to the back of the box and go through playing the game until all of the top questions of the cards have been read and then once you get to the place holder card you know to go through the deck again but reading the bottom question.... thus no duplicate questions for 300 questions worth of play! Clever, clever.

Wits and Wagers Family can be found online and from national retailers. I can see this being a fun family gift for Christmas.... we like to just hang out and spend the day together, Christmas is pretty low key, so having a new game around is always fun!

If you'd like to read what other crew members are saying about Wits and Wagers Family please feel free to check them out here.

*As a member of the 2011 TOS Homeschool Crew I was provided a free copy of this product in exchange for my honest review of its content. I have not received any other compensation for the opinions stated here, and they were not promised a positive review.**