Wednesday, April 16, 2014

When I Grow Up I Want To the U.S. Army!, by Wigu Publishing

 Age Group: 6 and up

Paperback: 56 pages

Publisher: Wigu Publishing 

Language: English

Here is another great book to add to the series of When I Grow Up I Want To Be.... I really enjoy reading these books and so does my child. I love that they give her an idea of what is out there. There isn't a limit to what she can become and these books give her a chance to realize this very thing. 

We occasionally talk about what she wants to do when she becomes older, but I have to say, after she started reading this series, I think it really sparked something in her to take a broader look at what is out there and not settle for something typical. It never hurts to start thinking about what you want your life to be like, even though you are young. In this present time, I think it is becoming more and more imperative for one to start thinking about this sooner rather than later.

When I Grow Up I Want To Be... in the U.S. Army! is about a boy named Jake who has to do a school project and decides to do it on being a soldier. The book takes you on the journey of him learning what it all entails. 

Jake's father takes him to a local GI store, which is neat because we have one that I will be able to take my child to so she can see everything that he saw. This is where the book starts to give you background knowledge of what it's like to be a soldier. As Jake sees different things in the store, we learn right along with him what they are, like badges and their rankings, the different positions a soldier can hold (not just for fighting), types of soldiers and their equipment, and training. By the time Jake is ready to give his report, we have learned just as much as he has. There is also a glossary in the back to further explain some of the words that are in the story.

Like the other books in the series, they mix "cartoon" form with real life form. I believe the cartoon form pulls the children in and keeps them reading and the real life form helps them relate to life around them.

This book was really helpful because my child has a cousin that is thinking about joining the army and it gave her a better insight into what he was going to be going through. It would also benefit a child who has a parent in the army. It would also give them a better understanding and help answer any questions that they may have.

Like I stated in all the other reviews, these are awesome books and are very helpful in opening up a whole new learning world for young children.

I received this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Dads of Disability, by Gary Dietz

 Title: Dads of Disability

Publisher: Gary M. Dietz

Date: April 15, 2014

Paperback: 248 pages

Language: English

 A touching heartfelt book filled with stories and poems that will tug at your heart strings and make you realize how strong an individual is and just how wonderful all children can become.

The minute I picked this book up, I couldn't put it down. I remember receiving it in the mail and wondering if it was going to be as good as the description. I was wrong. It wasn't as good as the description, it was better.

The great thing about Dads of Disability is that most of it is from a father's perspective. Being a mother, I was able to go out there and find a plethora of books for moms with children, but there aren't too many out there for fathers. Even though this one is based on children with disabilities, it can still help fathers have an understanding of what other men feel like and are experiencing.

Just to give you an idea of what the stories are like, I have picked a couple of my favorite to share. My first one, ironically being the first one in the book, is about a first time father who had to be there for his son alone, due to the fact that his wife had major surgery. To hear a father's perspective on taking care of a newborn is amazing. The fact that he was the one who had to do the skin to skin contact and how much he loved it, showed a softer side that most people don't get to see in men.

Another story that set with me is about a father who was in the Marines. He had a "Man up" attitude toward his son who has a couple of disorders. He had to realize that his son had to be treated with a softer touch and not his typical "hard knocks" way of thinking. Reading how he had to get to this realization, was awe inspiring.

The third story that set with me is from a woman's perspective on how she assumed her husband felt or even knew how to take care of their children. They, their daughters, both have sensitivity issues and her husband would always tell her to leave them alone. Let them come to you. She always assumed he didn't know what he was talking about. She was the one who carried them. She had them. She knew how to take care of them. Come to find out, through it all, his advice was the best. He knew and understood their children better than she had assumed. Even though he is the man, doesn't mean that he doesn't have the same understanding, caring and nurturing feelings that a mother has.

Dads of Disability is a book that everyone can learn from. Whether you have a child with a disability or not, you will find this book to be a really great read.

This book was given to me by the author in exchange for my honest review.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

CHOP Split Easy Pill Cutter, by Sabi

Disclosure: I got this product as part of an advertorial.

CHOP: Created by Sabi




Twitter: @Sabi_brand

Do you have trouble swallowing large pills? I do. Technically, I can't swallow pills of any size. I have to break them all down into tiny pieces or I fear I will choke and die. I know, it is ridiculous, but it is how I feel.

Well, along comes the CHOP pill cutter. I knew they had pill cutters out there but never thought to use one. I figured I would just keep putting the pill in my mouth and crushing it between my teeth. Yes, it does leave an awful taste in my mouth, but in order to get it down, that is what I do.

The CHOP pill cutter is great. It isn't hard to use at all. You just put the pill in and push down on it. You don't even have to push hard to break the pill in half. It breaks it into two perfect halves that make it easy to take down. To be perfectly honest, it would have been nice to have had this when I was pregnant. Yes, teeth crushed those pills also.

 The size of the cutter is perfect. It is nice and small. You can easily fit it into your purse or pocket. And like I said before, it doesn't take a lot of pressure  to use it. The simplicity of it makes it worth getting. I really like it and think that anyone who has a young child that needs to swallow a pill or if you are like me and need help getting it down, the CHOP cutter would be very beneficial.

I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

When I Grow Up I Want To Be... a Firefighter, by Wigu Publishing

Age Group: 6 and up

Series: When I Grow Up I Want To Be...

Paperback: 60 pages

Publisher: Wigu Publishing (February 22, 2014)

Language: English


I am extremely excited about writing this review. When I told my daughter that I was receiving another When I Grow Up I Want To Be... book, she got really excited. She said, "Yeah, now I can decide what to be when I get older from reading these books." Then she proceeded to list all the different jobs that are out there. How exciting for a parent to hear their child joyously speak about different positions they can possibly hold. That is the great thing about this series, it will spark something in your child that will put a smile on your face.

When I Grow Up I Want To Be... a Firefighter is just as amazing as the other books in this series. This story is about a boy named Will who had the field trip of his dreams. When he first heard his class was going to visit a firehouse he grew very afraid. One of his biggest fears was of fire. How could he possibly enjoy this trip? Unbeknownst to him, he wound up learning a lot about firefighting, as did I while reading the book.

Just like the other books, this one has the cartoon character kids placed in real life pictorial scenes. It also has pictures of firefighters in action along with informational pages. I have to say, two informational pages that I think are the most amazing are the one that actually shows and labels a fire station and the one that shows and labels a firefighter's gear. Now, if you have a child that wants to be a firefighter or loves fire trucks, they are going to love the pages that not only show the different kinds of fire trucks, but also tells you what they are called. Another learning lesson for me. Most importantly are the pages that contain the home fire safety checklist and the one that shows you how to create your own home fire escape plan. It was written in such simplistic terms that my child was able to go around our house by herself and utilize these two important pages.

When I Grow Up I Want To Be... a Firefighter has given my daughter a better understanding of what it takes to be a firefighter. It not only shows her the "fun" part of the job, but also the seriousness of it also. I highly recommend not only this book, but this series for any parent who has a child learning about different jobs, active imagination, or one who just likes to learn.

I received this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Pirate Treasure: Traveling Trunk Adventure, by Benjamin Flinders

Title: Pirate Treasure

Series: Traveling Trunk Adventure (Book 1)

Publisher: Flinders Press (September 1, 2010)

Pages: 111

Age Range: 7 - 9 years

Grade Level: 2 - 4

Language: English

When you were a young child, did you have a strong imagination? I know I did. Or possibly you have a child that has one. One thing a lot of young children imagine is being a pirate. That is what two young boys in the book, Pirate Treasure: Traveling Trunk Adventure, by Benjamin Flinders get to experience in this amazing story.

Ethan and Dallin are two young brothers who share a room. They enjoy imagination and playing together. This is the reason why their parents got them bunk beds that look like branches growing out of a tree. And when Ethan, the older brother, would get out of bed (the top bunk) he would swing from a rope to get down. How cool would that be? I know my daughter would love that.

The journey in this book begins when Ethan and Dallin's father comes home from a business trip and brings them a treasure chest to put in their bedroom. When their younger sister knocks on the door to play, the decide to hide in the chest so she cannot find them. While in the chest, they hear funny noises that shouldn't come from a bedroom. Upon opening the chest, they realize they are no longer in their room, but on a ship, a pirate ship at that.

At first, the pirates don't take too kindly to Ethan and Dallin. First for being stowaways on the ship and secondly, for having a "magic" watch. They are told that they have to walk the plank because of this. Luckily, they talk their way out of it and get thrown in "jail" instead.

After going through different adventures on the ship, they wind up on shore with the captain at his house. They find out the treasure chest can take them to different places and times, but only when adults aren't around. Once they make it home, they realize this was the best gift their father has ever given them.

Pirates Treasure is the first book in the Traveling Trunk Series. The other books: The Lost City of Atlantis, Excalibur and California Gold Rush. At the end of each book, there is some sort of learning tool. At the back of Pirate Treasure is Dallin's Pirate Dictionary. The pages cover different pirate terms that you find in the book.

I think Pirate Treasure is a really cute book and if you have a child that likes adventures, this is a book for them to add to their shelf.

I was given this book in exchange for my honest review.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Plain Proposal, by Beth Wiseman

Paperback: 296 pages

Publisher: Thomas Nelson

Release Date: March 29, 2011

Language: English

This story, Plain Proposal, is about a young Amish girl who is going through some changes in her life to see where she really truly wants to be. Miriam is on her rumschpringe and is really enjoying it. The one thing she hasn't done is left her small little community. She loves it there and doesn't plan on leaving. One thing she does know for sure is that her heart belongs to a young Amish boy named, Saul. She has liked Saul for many many years. Even though he is shy and hardly ever speaks to her, she knows that he is the one for her. He is also known as the community "bad boy", but she doesn't let that faze her. Nor does she believe all the rumors going around about him saying he is not going to be baptized and will be leaving the community.

Saul has issues of his own that Miriam doesn't know about. He happens to care for her also, but tries to veer from her so that leaving will be easier for him. On top of that, his father has become an alcoholic, since his sister and mother were killed. He also is caught up with having to help or practically raise his two younger brothers. The one silver lining for him is that he has been offered a job in another city as an apprentice chef. Cooking is something he enjoys a lot and that job would be a dream come true.

Shelby is Miriam's cousin and is an English person (someone who isn't Amish) and has been sent to stay with Miriam and her family for a while. Shelby's parent's divorce has been hard on her and the fact that her boyfriend broke up with her left her getting into all sorts of trouble. What better place for one to go and stay and get one's life situated, an Amish community. At first she doesn't seem to like it much, but then realizes that there is a family unity that they have that she has been missing with hers. She also starts to enjoy the company of one of Saul's friends. Unfortunately, Shelby gets blamed by Miriam's mother for her daughter's new behavior. And for a slight minute, she thinks that maybe this place isn't for her.

Once Miriam and Saul realize that they do honestly care for each other and nothing can or will stand in their way. They do whatever possible to make it happen. Of course, once their parents are on board, they also help them out.

I really enjoyed reading Plain Proposal. Beth Wiseman does a really good job of writing and getting the reader involved in the story. At the beginning of the book, she has a list of Amish words and their English meanings and at the end of the book are a couple of Amish recipes. One could really immerse themselves in the Amish culture while reading the story. If you love Amish stories, I recommend this one for your bookshelf.

This book was given to me for my honest review.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

When I Grow Up I Want To Be... a Teacher! - Wigu Publishing

Age Range: 6 and up  
Series: When I Grow Up I Want To Be... 
Paperback: 60 pages 
Publisher: Wigu Publishing
About the book: Carlee always wanted to be a teacher when she grew up, until her mother is hired as a teacher at her school! Some of her friends are even in her mother's class. Carlee is worried. What will her friends say? Will her mother do something to embarrass her? Carlee vows never to become a teacher like her mother, but as she journeys through the first day of school with her own new teacher, Carlee makes some surprising discoveries.

My review: When I was younger, my mother taught at my school. Unlike Carlee, I actually loved her being there. But it does make me wonder what my daughter has thought about me going to her different classrooms and volunteering. Seeing how I am in the room she is in and not just on the campus. 
Off the bat, I can tell you my daughter absolutely loved this book. When she saw the book after I had pulled it out of the mailing envelope, she immediately said, "Wow, can I read that?" and sat down and started to read it. The illustrations on the cover with the young girl and her backpack, I believe is what drew my daughter's attention to the book. It made it relatable for her. The illustrations inside the book follow the same pattern where Carlee and her friends are in cartoon form and other things are real. Another thing that I felt made this book very interesting is that it has little sections of information on actual people. For instance, when Carlee's teacher is speaking about geography, there is a page about different travelers and all of their information, i.e. Marco Polo, Christopher Columbus, and Lewis and Clark. Each time Carlee learns about something new, the reader also is treated to learning something new with a page showing historical people and what made them famous. Whether the reader realizes it or not, they are taken on a learning journey with Carlee.

When I Grow Up I Want To Be... a Teacher! is part of a series of books that let children know that there are an endless number of things waiting for them to explore in their future. I believe that every family should have this series in their home so that their children can be able to understand that there are options out there and other kids (like the girl in the book) are going through the same thing as they are when trying to decide what their future holds. As I stated before, the book is exceptionally illustrated and wonderfully written.

This book was given to me for my honest review.