Archive for Books

A REAL Bible for God’s Little Princesses {Tommy Mommy Review & Giveaway}


The other book that we received from Thomas Nelson this month was God’s Little Princess Holy Bible (NKJV). I’m glad to finally have a girly bible because, honestly, it increases the likelyhood of use :). I mean, who doesn’t want to be a princess?


Written by Sheila Walsh, the God’s Little Princess Bible includes over 200 prayers, devotions, and bible studies. They are divided into several different types:

  • Bible Jewels – truths in the bible
  • Regal Relationships – getting along with people AND God.
  • Kingdom Living – applying the bible to everyday life.
  • Kingdom Highlights – history tidbits
  • Wise Words – words of wisdom
  • Royal Heroes – biblical figures who made a difference
  • Noble Characters – a set of 13 feature length bible studies about different people in the bible.

As I mentioned before this an honest-to-goodness bible, so you have paper thin tissue pages and small print. The God’s Little Princess Bible is the NKJV so its a common, accepted and accurate translation. The page edges are printed pink with crowns and the cover has the GLP crown with inset “jewels” and glitter like the rest of the books in the series. And the crowning feature (we like puns at Casa Steed ;D), is the hardcover binding.

god's little princess holy bible inside feature

god’s little princess holy bible inside feature

There are a few minor things I didn’t like about this bible. While I like the pink theming in the extra features, they are really hard to read because the pages are so thin. Also, the illustrations used are from GiGi. I understand that the books are intended for ages 7-10 (the same age as Gigi’s demographic) but I think Gabby is a more visually appealing character. Totally personal preference :).

While I haven’t read all 200 of the extra features, I think they are really good. I’ve read about 1/2 of them from both the old & new testaments. As a homeschool mom, my daughter probably gets sick of ME trying to tell her things. I like the Kingdom Living & Royal Relationship features best and think that she may be more open to hearing such things from a different source. She’s a lot like me; needs to figure things out on her own :). Unlike some bibles with extra features, these are placed where they occur. Even though this leads to features alternately being clumped & placed sporadically throughout the bible, I think it’s better than having to flip around.

god's little princess holy bible inside bible study

god’s little princess holy bible inside bible study

We used the profile of Esther in the Noble Characters section after our Queen Esther tea party to go into a little more depth than the Brave Girls Bible Stories went into.

While this isn’t a Catholic Bible (I wish!), I didn’t see anything problematic about any of the extras I read. I am not, however, a Catholic theologian. Just a mom. And as a mom, I really like the God’s Little Princess Holy Bible. I like the translation, I like the extras. The few things I didn’t like were super minor.

Interested in getting a copy for your little princess? Use the widget below to enter. Please note that comment that answers the question is mandatory.


Good luck!

Jen S.

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Bible Bravery for Brave Little Girls {Tommy Mommy Review & Giveaway}


I am so excited to share two of the newest resources for girls from Thomas Nelson and its not just because I love pink ;). My first book to share this week is Brave Girls Bible Stories. This is a beautiful hardcover book with quality pages that will withstand frequent use. Good thing, too! My 4 year old claimed it as hers and reads it & talks about it constantly.

To bring each story to life, the book has 5 real girl guides (click link to read about them all!). Each has a distinct personality all her own. There is Hope, a down to earth farm girl, Glory, a girly girl whose parents just divorced, Honor, a brainy animal lover, Gracie, a girl who didn’t grow up with a faith background who found an awesome youth group & now sings at church, and Faith, a homeschooled girl who’s a bit of a perfectionist.

brave Girls bible stories - inside - review

The bible stories are all centered around a brave girl in the bible and each one is led by one of the guides. The header tells you where to find the story in your Bible and a bible verse related to the story (not necessarily from that book in the bible). The brave girl guide draws a parallel between a real life situation and the girl in the bible story to follow. Once the story is done, the guide returns to share more insights about the story and life. There is a short prayer at the end to ask God to make you more like whoever.

brave girls bible stories review inside

Brave Girls Bible Stories is aimed at girls ages 4-8. Sometimes, I think the guide commentary for the story is a little older than that age group, but kids are growing up quicker these days. I try to keep my littles, little. Nothing concerning, but I just had to explain some things, like beauty pageants.

Overall, this is an awesome book. My youngest adored it! My 6 year old would come while I read it aloud but didn’t read it on her own. I think the illustrations are gorgeous and learning about all the brave girls in the bible led to lots of talks on different ways to be brave. My youngest has even tried to BE more brave so yay! If you have young girls, I would totally recommend this book for them.

Interested in winning a copy of Brave Girls Bible Stories for a little girl YOU know?   Use the widget below to enter.  Please note that a comment answering the question is MANDATORY!


Good luck!

Jen S.

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Deceived {Book Review}

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. This post contains affiliate links; thanks for your support!

I read a LOT of books.  Sometimes for fun and sometimes for review.  Either way, I like to read suspense novels and Christian romance when I read fiction.   One of my absolute favorite suspense novelists is Irene Hannon.   If you’ve been reading a while, you’ve seen reviews of some of her other books — Fatal Judgement, Deadly Pursuit and Vanished.   I just finished reading her newest book in the Private Justice series, Deceived.

Oh. My. Goodness.  What a KILLER book, pardon the pun.   This is the third book in the Private Justice series and while I read the first one, I haven’t read the second and don’t feel like I missed anything.  While it shares characters, it’s totally an independent book.  Deceived is the story of a woman who loses both her husband and 4-year old son in a fishing accident.  She goes through her grief and moves to St. Louis.  A small boy catches her ear when she hears him use a phrase her son used to use in a crowded mall…poppysicle.  She looks up at him and yells her sons name.   She swore she saw some sort of recognition and her doubts about the “accident” make her crazy.

She visits a PI who cautiously agrees to take the case.  She hopes that it’s her son since his body was never found but is prepared to accept the dead end she assumes the PI will get to.  Except that he doesn’t.  Over the course of investigating the case, sparks fly.  And things get tense as a series of events lead them closer to discovering the truth.

What a good read!  I should have had this review up by the 8th, but for some reason I thought I had until yesterday.  I was torn between blasting through the book because I had a short deadline (some family stuff last week put me behind) and savoring it.  I chose to savor it and didn’t get it finished in time.   It was awesome.

I will admit, there were some things that would almost NEVER happen in real life unless it was an honest to God Miracle (capital M intended).  But it IS fiction, right, so who cares.  She did a fabulous job of weaving the story and tying the different elements and story lines together.  The motivation was masterfully unraveled and was totally enjoyable.  I liked the characters and really want to check out the middle one, which I missed.

If you like suspense novels, but can’t take normal mainstream fiction due to the level of gore and detail, you will LOVE Deceived or any novel by Irene Hannon.  She does a fabulous job of making suspense have umph without gore.  If you are looking for a new book to read, you should really check it out!


Jen S.

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A Charlotte Mason / Classical History Resource for Catholics – American Catholic Almanac {Book Review}

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This post contains affiliate links; thank you for your support!

Recently, I caught wind of a possible opportunity to review The American Catholic Almanac from a homeschooling point of view. Since it was sitting in my Amazon shopping cart, I jumped at the opportunity ;).

I have long been jealous of the Protestants having books of people spreading God’s message all over the globe. We have the saints, obviously, but few modern ones and few from North America. When I heard about The American Catholic Almanac, I was pretty excited. The subtitle of ACA is A Daily Reader of Patriots, Saints, Rogues, and Ordinary People Who Changed the United States. It is, and it’s fabulous!

My intent was to read the passages and then summarize them for my little ones during circle time. They are 6 & 4. It didn’t quite work out as I had hoped; there were quite a number of rogues :). I did share the reading for 10/9 (yep, I was reading ahead) about the nuns in New Orleans praying for the defeat of the British. We had been there and visited the church. Had I known it was that cool, I totally would have gone the extra few blocks to visit the old Ursuline Convent! I have a feeling that I will be making a wish list of places to visit as I read through it.

While my kids are not old enough for a lot of the stories in The American Catholic Alamanac, this would be a great resource for older students. Middle school and up, maybe? It would make a great Charlotte Mason resource because it has that short, engaging, living book feel to it. It could be used for classical history because all the events take place after the discovery of the New World.

You could also particularly interesting events to your timeline and look up locations on a map. I could see mobsters and other rogues being particularly appealing. In addition, it could also be a springboard for some church history, too. I know I tend to teach (and learn) catechesis and the bible, but church history has always slipped through my fingers. How are the Jesuits different from the Benedictines? Or the Poor Clares from the Ursuline Sisters? And why did Thomas Merton turn to Zen Buddism? What’s the rest of the story there?

Reading The American Catholic Almanac would be a great resource for Charlotte Mason or Classical homeschoolers. You could use it for history, church history, and geography. The stories are so interesting that they will whet the appetite for more if your children a love to learn. And if they don’t end up going past the days reading, they still know more than they did when they woke up. I would honestly recommend this to any Catholic homeschool family with older students. It’s a fascinating read!

Jen S.

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A Gift of Grace For Weary Moms – Finding God at the Kitchen Sink {Book Review}

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. This post contains affiliate links; thanks for your support.



Several months ago, I was approached by Moody Publishers about a new book by Maggie Paulus, Finding God at the Kitchen Sink: search for glory in the everyday grime. I hadn’t heard of her previously, so I visited her blog and poked around for a while. And I agreed.

Finding God at the Kitchen Sink is a beautiful gift quality book. The inside has glossy colored pages and photographs. It’s one of those books that is meant for a book aficionado. It smells good, feels luxurious and is pleasing to the eyes. And the content is meant to be a balm for the weary mother.

Inside are just shy of 200 pages of short, bite-sized essays about God and motherhood, children and mess, brokenness & bible verses. They are a little on the flowery side (think Ann Voskamp), but only 2-3 pages and all independent of each other. I have to admit, I personally need to be in the mood to read it. I’ve vacillated between enjoying it and scoffing at it. Yet today as I write this review, I find something contagious about Finding God at the Kitchen Sink. It’s even making my review more flowery than usual :).

It’s not a bad thing though. Anything that makes you step back and reflect cannot be bad. Paulus’s essays cover a myriad of topics from light to love to mistakes and the value of her daughter. Short and sweet and filled with God’s love.

While her style is not something I would frequently read on my own, it is a pleasant change given the right mood. The fact that its a beautiful book helps. I’m not just reading beauty; I’m holding it and seeing it and smelling it, too. It’s refreshing.

And the perfect gift for a mom who has just had a baby. I know just the recipient for my copy–it’s too good to keep to myself :). So if you know a mom who is a little down, in need of some encouragement, or who you just want to support in their vocation, Finding God at the Kitchen Sink would fit the bill nicely.

Jen S.

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