icRKphJXQm-ezth8lntKydifkDg The Loose Screw: November 2013

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Wordless Wednesday~My Little Indian

Save $10 on The Reading Game~Give the Gift of Early Literacy Campaign

A while back I had the opportunity to review a great reading game called The Reading Game.  We had a great experience with this product, you can read my review here .  Since my review of the game, it has won four awards and there is now and new and improved 2nd edition!

"Give the Gift of Early Literacy" is a campaign in partnership with the charity First Book.  This will help provide donations of the game for children in need.  Of course we want all kids to learn to read!

Here is the information on how to order your game at $10 off or donate as little as a $1:

Get an award winning Learn to Read Game or DONATE  a Learn To Read Game to a Child In Need via First Book through this Indiegogo.com Crowd Funding Campaign. As little as $1 will help a child in need served by First Book. Please Share!http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/give-the-gift-of-early-literacy

You can get a pre-release copy of the game for only $25 (that's $10 off retail) only through this campaign. http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/give-the-gift-of-early-literacy If you are a school, you can order a case of 9 games at the wholesale retailer rate of only $111.84!

The campaign runs only until December 4th. To order, choose the "Get a Game" Perk  at the bottom of the right hand side of the page, in the "Select a Perk" column from our campaign page. 

Monday, November 25, 2013

Purex and Isotoner Sweepstakes!


ISOTONER smarTouch gloves keep your hands warm while using your touch screen devices. Keep them bright and clean all winter long with Purex liquid detergent and WIN! Enter now and you could win an iPad mini and a $500 Isotoner shopping spree!  Hurry, this sweepstakes ends Monday, December 2nd. 

Friday, November 22, 2013

Children's Book Review~If You Were Me and Lived in... Norway

If You Were Me and Lived In... Norway is another book in Carole P. Roman's children's series exploring other cultures.  I've already reviewed two other books in the series, on France and South Korea. 

This series is a great way to introduce children age Pre-K to age eight (and older) to other cultures.  In fact, I have learned quite a bit reading them as well!  Did you know Norway is known as "The Land of the Midnight Sun"?

In If You Were Me and Lived in... Norway, your children will learn about the capital city, food, landscape, names for different things, and more.  The illustrations are really cute and the print is large for early readers.  At the back of the book is a pronunciation guide for all the new words you have  learned. 

To learn more about If You Were Me and Lived In...Norway, visit the authors website at www.caroleproman.com.  You can also purchase the book at her website, and it is available at Amazon in paperback or Kindle. 

*Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

DVD Review and Giveaway~Coming Home for Christmas

With Christmas just around the corner, I was excited to be able to review a new Christmas movie!  Norman Rockwell and Nasser Entertainment present Coming Home for Christmas, a heartwarming movie about family and forgiveness directed by Vanessa Parise. 

Sisters Kate and Melanie had been close their entire lives, and had a wonderful bond with their parents-until Melanie's wedding day.  An argument that day began several years of no contact between the sisters.  Their separation, as well as leaving the nest, contributed to the breakdown of their parent's marriage.  When their parents decide to separate, Kate and Melanie come together to devise a plan to get their parents-and family-back together. 

The beautiful family home that they grew up in but lost a few years ago would be the perfect place to reunite everyone, but the problem is that someone else (a handsome young ex-Marine) owns it now.  Will they be able to get their parents back together and save their family?

My daughter Alyssa (18) and I watched this movie together.  What a perfect mother-daughter movie to watch!  We both enjoy Made-for-TV movies, and Coming Home For Christmas is along those lines.  We enjoyed the actors and the storyline, though it was a bit predictable.  This is a great family movie, but I don't think really little ones would be able to sit through it. 

Coming Home for Christmas will definitely be put in with our yearly Christmas DVDs to watch! Click here to watch a trailer.  If you'd like to purchase your own copy (with a limited edition Norman Rockwell print included!), you can purchase it at Walmart.com.  A soundtrack is also available-the songs were great! 


I have one copy of Coming Home For Christmas to give to a Loose Screw reader.  Enter using the Rafflecopter form below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Book Review~Annie's Christmas Wish

Annie's Christmas Wish, by Barbara Cameron, is the story of Annie, who lives in the Old Order Amish community of Paradise Pennsylvania.  Annie's mother died when she was young, and she and her siblings have been raised by their father and step-mother.  Jenny, Annie's stepmother, used to lead an 'Englisch' life as a writer in New York City.  Annie also loves to write, and has dreamed of visiting this exciting city. 

Annie is thrilled when the family is invited to New York so her step-mother can receive an award.  Her friend Aaron goes along with the family, concerned that Annie will want to stay in New York.  Annie isn't sure herself if she will fall in love with the Big City and want to live a life like her step-mother did. 

Annie's Christmas Wish is part of the Quilts of Lancaster County series by Barbara Cameron.  I read this book without reading any of the others, and I think it did well as a stand-alone story.  I did enjoy this sweet romance, and would like to read more of the books in this series. 

Disclosure: I received this book free in exchange for my honest review.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Book Review and Author Giveaway~To Know You

To Know You, by Shannon Ethridge and Kathryn Mackel is a captivating story close to my heart.  Julia Whittaker's son Dillon is fighting for his life-he needs a liver transplant-and she is desperate to save her son.  They have not found a match, and in desperation, Julia reaches out to her daughters.  These are the daughters she has not seen since the days they were each born, the days that she gave them up for adoption.  As you might imagine, just being contacted by and meeting your birth mother for the first time is enough to turn your life upside-down, but then to be asked to give part of your liver to a brother you didn't know existed? Wow. 

I was reading To Know You every spare minute I had-I couldn't put it down.  It is a very well written book, with many twists and turns to keep your attention.  But I also had a personal interest, because I was adopted and when my son had uncontrolled seizures I set out to find my birth family to find out medical information that might help.  What an emotional roller coaster!  Although I didn't find out any helpful medical information, several meaningful relationships began. 

You can purchase your own copy of To Know You at Amazon.  Learn more about the authors at their websites:

Shannon Ethridge is celebrating the release of  To Know You (co-written by Kathryn Mackel), by giving away a $100 gift certificate to Lisa Leonard Designs and a personal coaching session, as well as throwing a Facebook Author Chat Party!

One winner will receive:
Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on November 19th. Winner will be announced at the "To Know You" Facebook Author Chat Party on the 19th. Connect with Shannon and friends for an encouraging evening of fun chat, book club discussion, giveaways, and a chance to win a PERSONAL COACHING SESSION WITH SHANNON!

So grab your copy of To Know You and join Shannon on the evening of November 19th for a chance to connect and make some new friends. (If you haven't read the book, don't let that stop you from coming!)
Don't miss a moment of the fun; RSVP today by clicking JOIN at the event page. Spread the word — tell your friends about the giveaway and party via FACEBOOK or TWITTER or Pinterest and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on 11/19!
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a copy of this book free from Litfuse Publicity. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

Friday, November 15, 2013

Book Review~The Dawn of Christmas

I love reading Christmas stories this time of year.  Add in my love of Amish fiction, and I knew The Dawn of Christmas by Cindy Woodsmall would be a winner!  Cindy Woodsmall is one of my favorite Amish authors, and I actually had the pleasure to meet her a few years ago.  She is a master at crafting stories that pull you in and make you feel like you know the characters. 

The Dawn of Christmas takes place in Apple Ridge, Pennsylvania.  Sadie is part of an Old Order Amish family, and after having her heart broken by her fiancĂ©, she leaves home to take mission trips to Peru.  This is very unusual for an Amish family to allow a young, unmarried Amish woman to be so independent, and after some time her family insists she return home.  They want her to marry and begin a family.  Sadie has no interest in opening her heart again.

Once home, Sadie meets Levi, a young Amish man who also has a heart closed to finding romance.  Together they concoct a plan to keep their families at bay, but as time goes on things change. 

The Dawn of Christmas is another book by Cindy Woodsmall that I loved reading.  I enjoyed that I recognized some of the characters from other books she has written.  This is a perfect heartwarming story of faith and trust for the Christmas Season. 

Disclosure: I received this book free from Waterbrook Multnomah's Blogging for Books program in exchange for my honest review.

Book Review~The Rapist's Wife

I must admit, when I heard the title of this book and saw the cover, I was hesitant.  This is quite a stretch from my usual Amish fiction. Heavy stuff.  But I like to try different things, so I agreed to review The Rapist's Wife by JoDana Bright Taylor.  And I'm so glad I did!

Inspired by true events, The Rapist's Wife is the story of a family living the American Dream.  Then one day, the police show up at the door to arrest Anna Hawthorne's husband for rape.  Their world crumbles around them.  They are shocked at who betrays them. As the family deals with this shocking revelation, there is a domino affect as their family falls apart and more accusations are made. 

The Rapist's Wife caught my attention immediately, and I read it late into the night.  It was hard to put down!  The concept of the life you've lived for decades, the person you thought you knew better than anyone, being a lie is just terrifying and fascinating.  The book kept my attention and I read it quickly.  This is the kind of story that makes you ponder what you would do in a similar situation.  I thought the author did a great job, and would like to read more by her. 

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

New Sweepstakes~Like Purex and Win More Time for Mom!

Through November 19th, you can win a Kindle Fire AND a year's supply of Purex laundry detergent!  2nd place winners will receive a Kindle e-reader.  Click here and Like Purex, then fill out the entry form to win.  Good luck!

Book Review~Just One More Thing Before You Leave Home

The book Just One More Thing Before You Leave Home, by David and Bernice Gudgel, is very relevant to my stage of life now.  My oldest is 22 and attempting to survive on his own, but it hasn't been easy.  My 18-year-old is still at home with no immediate plans to leave, but I know the day is coming.  When my oldest was getting ready to move out, I started panicking: Have I taught him everything he needs to know out in the hard, cruel world?  I know a lot of life's lessons are learned by trial and error, but there is an awful lot we parents need to teach our children as well. 

David and Bernice Gudgel have made our job as parents a little bit easier by writing the book Just One More Thing Before You Leave Home.  It is full of practical, biblically-based information to help young adults as they prepare to leave home. There are lots of personal stories in the book that are interesting.  This book is good for both parents and teens/young adults to read. 

Just One More Thing is divided up into ten sections, each with three topics. There are thirty topics covered, such as Convictions, Roommates, Love,  and Your Car.  Some topics are deep, and some are not.  But all are necessary and helpful.  I was reminded of several things I'd like to talk with my 18-year-old about, and I am going to ask her to read this book.

You can learn more about the book and authors, as well as purchase your own copy of Just One More Thing Before You Leave Home at the Gudgel's website.  

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a copy of this book free from Litfuse Publicity. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

Monday, November 11, 2013

Children's Book Review & Author Giveaway~Catie's Secret

Catie's Secret is a fun and educational children's book by Laura Allen Nonemaker.  This is the second book in the God's Secret Garden Adventure Series.  The story follows bunnies Herbie and Bella as they spend their day in God's Secret Garden.  They come across caterpillar Catie, and make some not very nice comments about her appearance.  What they didn't know was that Catie was about to make a big change-read the story to find out what happens! 
I thought Catie's Secret was a great book for children.  The illustrations are adorable-bright colors and on every page.  The type is big for early readers, and I liked that the book teaches children to not judge by first appearances.  At the back of the book is a Story Challenge and Butterfly Facts.  A free audio book download comes with Catie's Secret, with instructions at the end of the book.
 Below is a picture of my grandson/product tester Daniel (and his friend Froggy), who was fascinated by Catie's Secret.  He now knows how caterpillars become butterflies, and is very happy to tell you all about it (Whether you want to know or not)!
Click here to learn more about the God's Secret Garden Series and author Laura Allen Nonemaker.  If you'd like to purchase your own copy of Catie's Secret, it is available for purchase at Tate Publishing.

Catie’s Secret is the second book in Laura Allen Nonemaker’s children’s series, God’s Secret Garden Adventures. Laura is celebrating Catie's Secret with a Kindle Fire Kid Pack giveaway!

  One winner will receive:
  • A Kindle Fire
  • Butterfly Pavilion Hatching Kit
  • Butterfly Pattern Carryall Bag
  • Butterfly Suncatcher Kit
  • Benny's Angel T-Shirt (small)
  • Catie's Secret and Benny's Angel with free E-Live audio downloads by Laura Nonemaker
Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on November 23rd. Winner will be announced November 25th at Laura's blog.

Don't miss a moment of the fun; enter today and be sure to stop by Laura's blog on the 25th to see if you won.


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a copy of this book free from Litfuse Publicity. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Purex Sweepstakes: Moms, Win a Day Off!

Purex knows we Moms work hard.  They are giving one lucky Mom a Day Off ($1000 value)! They’ll have a maid service clean your house and do the laundry while you’re off getting a mani-pedi, hire a baby sitter to watch the kids, and have dinner delivered so you don’t have to cook! Click here to enter, or nominate a deserving Mom you know.  Sweepstakes runs through November 14, 2013. Good luck!

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Book Review~The Path to Piney Meadows


About the Book

The Path to Piney Meadows
By Gail Sattler

Will a new way of life solve problems or just create new ones?    Fed up with life in a large city, Chad Allen quits his job on Christmas Eve and drives until he’s stranded in the remote Mennonite town of Piney Meadows. He accepts a job there on a whim, but the longer he stays, the more he likes these good people and their strong faith. Most of all, he grows fond of Anna, the girl next door, and the more he gets to know her, the more he falls in love with her.    The only problem is that Anna is not happy in Piney Meadows. Even as Chad wants to settle in, Anna wants to move out. She longs to move to Minneapolis and find a new life. Reluctantly, Chad agrees to help Anna prepare for life in a large city, even as she’s helping him adjust to life in Piney Meadows.    But when a personal crisis shakes Chad to his core, he’s not sure where to turn. He’d been let down by everyone he knew, even God. Now that the situation has reared its ugly head again, can his relationship with Anna survive? Or will he have to let her go, too?     

Click here to read the first chapter of The Path to Piney Meadows.

To learn more about the author, go to her website-www.gailsattler.com.

What I Thought

I loved this book!  The Path to Piney Meadows was like a breath of fresh air!  I read a lot of Amish fiction, and reading a Mennonite story was a fun change.  Life in Piney Meadows was like stepping back in time, and I was hooked immediately.  I could not put this book down-the author did a wonderful job keeping the story moving and having interesting, well developed characters.  I look forward to reading more of Gail Sattler's books!

*Disclosure: I received this book from Abingdon Press free in exchange for  my honest review.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Children's Book Review and Giveaway~Can't Wait Willow!

Can't-Wait Willow! is an adorable new children's book, written by Christy Ziglar and illustrated by Luanne Marten.  This book is part of the Shine Bright Kids series published by Ideals Publications.  The Shine Bright Kids Series helps parents instill good values in their children, focusing on making good choices.  The website is full of valuable resources for parents. 

Can't-Wait Willow! is the story of a little girl named Willow who is very excited about the circus coming to town. She had saved money for the circus, and couldn't wait to watch the show and eat cotton candy!  On the way to the circus, Willow is faced with enticing distractions, and arrives at the circus without enough money.  She is given a second chance to attend the next day, and must make the right choices this time to get the reward. 

Can't-Wait Willow! is a sturdy hardback book with a dust jacket.  Both the hard cover and dust jacket are bright, shiny and colorful, and the dust jacket has glitter as well.  The illustrations are cute and eye-catching throughout the book. 

Here is my grandson Daniel, my official product tester!  He was immediately attracted to the bright pictures in the book, and loved the story.  I appreciate companies like Ideal Publications and authors like Christy Ziglar putting out material that is making an impact on even my two-year-old grandson!  Since he requests Can't-Wait Willow! to be read to him frequently, I know the messages of patience, making the right choices, and delayed gratification are sinking in to his little mind. 
Author Christy Ziglar is the niece of the legendary motivator and positive speaker Zig Ziglar.  You can learn more about her here.
Here are some helpful links:
Find Can't-Wait Willow! at Barnes & Noble and other fine retailers, as well as http://www.idealsbooks.com
      Pinterest:  https://www.Pinterest.com/ShineBrightKids
      Sign up for newsletterhttp://shinebrightkids.com/contact
I have one copy of Can't-Wait Willow! to give away!  Enter using the Rafflecopter form below:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

"Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."