icRKphJXQm-ezth8lntKydifkDg The Loose Screw: July 2013

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Wordless Wednesday~Popping Bubble Wrap is Hard Work!

Click on the button to see more Wordless Wednesday posts, and link up your own!
Wordless Wednesday on Only Passionate Curiosity

Starting 8/1:Purex 31 Days of Fun Sweepstakes!!


Can you believe August is here??  I can't-July flew right by.  Good news, though, is that Purex is having an AWESOME Sweepstakes all month with $10, 000 in prizes! Someone wins every day, and these are nice prizes!  To participate you have to Like Purex on Facebook.  On the Facebook page you can check out the calendar full of prizes.

In the coming days I will have a link for you for the sweepstakes, and a giveaway for an Amazon gift card! So go check out what an exciting month of prizes awaits us, and check back soon to enter!

Update: Here is the link to enter the sweepstakes: http://insiders.purex.com/31DaysofFun?id=300

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Try a New Recipe Tuesday~Plain Janie (Juice Recipe)

I just reviewed a book called The Juice Lady's Big Book of Juices & Green Smoothies by Cherie Calbom.  You can read my review here.  This is an awesome book with more than 400 recipes for juicing and smoothies.  This recipe is a very simple one that even my ten-year-old can make (with Mom watching) and likes! I have also added carrots to it without him complaining too much! Then try adding new veggies and fruits each time.

Plain Janie
1 apple
1 cup strawberries with caps

Cut produce to fit your juicer's feed tube.  Juice all ingredients and stir.  Serve chilled. Serves one. 

Check out more  recipes at this week's link-up 

Book Review~The Juice Lady's Big Book of Juices and Green Smoothies

I bought a juicer about a year ago, and, to be honest, it rarely got used.  That has all changed now-I had the opportunity to review The Juice Lady's Big Book of Juices & Green Smoothies by Cherie Calbom.  The author is a clinical nutritionist who dealt with numerous illnesses in the past.  There are more than 400 recipes in this book!

I was excited to learn some good juicing and smoothie recipes, but I quickly realized this book is much more than just recipes.  The first chapter is titled All About Juicing, and  is full of the basics  of juicing, and lots of information on the nutritional components of juicing.  I learned a lot from this chapter.  The recipes are then broken down into chapters like 'Old Favorites' and 'Green Juice Recipes', to name just a few.  This makes it easy to get to the type of recipe you want.

I think my favorite part of the book is the chapter titled 'Juice Remedies and Rejuvinators'.  This chapter has recipes to help with all different ailments/problems such as 'Allergy Remedy' and 'Hypertention Helper'.  What a help to be able to grab this book and find a natural remedy to your problem. 

At the back of the book are Appendixes with shopping and resource  guides to help you.  Cherie Calbom is the author of other books relating to diet and food/juicing.  You can visit her website at www.cheriecalbom.com

Here is a picture of my juicer, ready to go, and the first juice recipe I made, Plain Janie. Yummy!

Disclaimer: I received this book free from Bookteria/Charisma House in exchange for my honest review. 

Book Review~Adoring Addie

Adoring Addie, by author Leslie Gould, is the second book in The Courtships of Lancaster County series.   I did read the first book,  Courting Cate, and loved it-so I had pretty high expectations of Adoring Addie.  Once again, the author did a wonderful job with this story and I enjoyed it as much as the first!

From the Back Cover: The Cramers and Mosiers have been angry with each other for as long as anyone can remember.  Things had cooled to a simmer...until Addie Cramer and Jonathan Mosier fell head over heels for each other.  Now old tensions are renewed, and Addie's parents insist she marry stolid and uninspiring Phillip Eicher. 

Distraught at a future apart, the two decide their best hope is to reconcile the two families...but that means digging into the past to see what tore them apart.  Will their love be enough to keep them together or will long-held secrets ruin their chance at happiness?

Adoring Addie is full of drama and secrets, family issues and love.  It is similar to Romeo and Juliet, and is hard to put down once you start reading it.  My favorite character was Addie, she wants to do right by her family but also wants to follow her heart.  I definitely recommend reading Adoring Addie!

I was given a copy of this book free from Bethany House Publishers in exchange for my honest review.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

ACTS Summer Challenge and Giveaway!!


The past few months, I've written a few posts about the ACTS Summer Challenge to Serve.  You can read more about it here.  How is your summer going?  Have you had opportunities to serve with your kids?  We have found that if you are looking for opportunities, you will find them!  My son has helped an elderly neighbor all summer, doing odd jobs and helping her.  He feels so good when he helps her, and he's learning valuable lessons.  I'm very proud of him!

For moms with kids in school, the most hectic months of the year are usually September and May. The end of the school year involves parties, playoffs, and final projects. The beginning of the year has moms and kids feeling overloaded with shopping trips, sign-ups, and new schedules.
Establishing healthy, positive routines is a tough job. Too often, music lessons, sports practices, and after-school clubs can overshadow the routines that build family and healthy habits—both physically and spiritually. 

One of the great new Adventures in Odyssey products released this year is 90 Devotions for Kids, aimed at kids 8 to 12.  This soft-cover book draws you in with illustrations, puzzles, and kid-friendly applications. It also includes a daily Bible verse, daily challenges, words of encouragement from different AIO characters, and more. Even if your kids aren’t already Adventures in Odyssey fans, they’ll enjoy these daily devotionals, and get to know the Odyssey crew along the way. 
This devotional, and the edition coming this fall (90 Devotions for Kids: Life Changing Values from the Book of Matthew) are great tools to help your kids put a regular pause in their day for Bible reading, prayer, and thoughts about God. If you start now—by the first day of school, you’ll already have a spiritual component scheduled into your kids’ routine. After that, everything else will hopefully just fall into line!

Download a Sample of 90 Devotions for Kids here.

Tyndale has generously offered one The Loose Screw reader their own copy of 90 Devotions for Kids!  Enter below:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Wordless Wednesday~Mermaid Alyssa

Molly Crew Review~Couponing Made Simple

The Molly Crew is part of the Schoolhouse Review Crew, and focuses more on books and products for the home.  As part of the Molly Crew, I was given the opportunity to review the book Couponing Made Simple, written by Christi The Coupon Coach.  I love saving money and using coupons, so I was excited to read this book!

First, let me share my experience with couponing. My Mom used coupons when I was little, so when I got married that's what I did.  The difference is my Mom just used coupons-she didn't check what was the better deal, or what was on sale that week.  Therefore, she didn't have big savings from coupons. For years I've matched coupons with the weekly ads.  Then about five or so years ago, I discovered stacking coupons and what a huge savings that can be.  I'm not an extreme couponer, but I consistently get at least 35%-65% off our shopping receipts (but sometimes much more!).  Lately, with lots of craziness in our household, I've not been as diligent as I should be and our finances reflect that.  Reading Christi's book was just the boost I needed to get going again!

Christi wrote this book to help real families save real money.  This isn't going to make you an extreme couponer like on the TV show.  Think about it- if a family of four that spends $700 per month on food saves 60%, that is over $5000 per year saved!  Even 30% savings would save them approximately $2500 per year-that's a lot of money!

In Couponing Made Simple, the author goes through her system step-by-step. She also covers many other topics, such as where to find your coupons, couponing ethics, and lots of helpful tips.  There are many black and white pictures in the book, which are helpful.  Her two main rules are: Buy on Sale and Stack Coupons!

As an experienced couponer, I wasn't sure if I would learn anything new from Christi's book.  Well, I sure did!  Besides renewing my excitement over couponing, there were tips she gave that were new to me.  One of them was weighing pre-packaged items, such as bags of potatoes or apples, to get the most for your money.  What a great idea! A huge help is Christi's favorite online coupon sites on her website.  These sites will help you find the best deals!

My method of couponing is the binder method, and Christi uses the box/file system.  I've decided to try out her method, as sometimes the binder seems really cumbersome.  So far, the jury is still out on which system I like better.  I'm going to stick with Christi's method a little longer before I make my decision. 

This is a picture from my biggest savings to date: 99%!! The retail price on the products was $83.87, and I paid $0.99!!  We were stocked up on hair products for quite a while!

Couponing Made Simple is available for only $18.00 for paperback and just $4.99 for Kindle.  Visit http://christithecouponcoach.com to purchase and learn even more from Christi. Christi's wealth of knowledge is useful for brand-new couponers, experienced couponers, and everyone in between!

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Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Try a New Recipe Tuesday~Creamy Italian Crockpot Chicken

Creamy Italian Crock pot Chicken

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 envelope dry Italian dressing
1/4 cup water
1 8 oz. cream cheese
1 can cream of chicken soup

Put chicken in bottom of crock pot.  Sprinkle the Italian dressing packet over the top along with the water.  Cover and cook for 3-4 hours on high or 6-7 hours on low.  About 30 minutes before you eat, shred the chicken and add the cream of chicken soup and cream cheese.  Let it cook until hot and bubbly.  Serve over rice. 

*Instead of shredding, I made it into little bite-sized chunks. 

Children's Book Review~ Blueberry Bubble Gum

Blueberry Bubble Gum is a fun children's book that also teaches important lessons.  It was written by Mahamad Ali ELFakir.  This is a softcover book with many colorful illustrations.  It was a little over the reading level of my son, so I read it aloud to him.  He and I both enjoyed the story of  Max, who has had trouble telling the truth and following the rules.  My son's favorite part (of course) was when Max 'tooted' bubble gum and the bubble carried him to a magical land.  He laughed so hard through this part!

I recommend this book, it is fun to catch children's attention, and has important life lessons woven into the story. You can find out more about the author at www.elfabooks.com.  More information about the book is available at www.outskirtspress.com/BlueberryBubbleGum.

About the book:
Blueberry Bubble Gum by Mahamad Ali ElFakir
ISBN: 978-0-578-10974-9
Publisher: Outskirts Press
Date of publish: June 2013
Pages: 43
S.R.P.: $11.95

*Disclosure: I received this book free in exchange for my honest review.  All opinions are my own.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Join Purex Insiders!

Are you a blogger who likes to do product reviews and giveaways?  I've been part of a great group, Purex Insiders, for several years now, and have nothing but great things to tell you about them!!!  As an Insider, you get to try new products (often before they are on the shelves), give your feedback, host giveaways sponsored by Purex and/or the brands they work with, receive exclusive offers, interact with the big brands, and connect with other bloggers.

Along with getting to try great products for free and increasing traffic to my blog through giveaways, I've met some awesome people through this program.  Everyone is so friendly and helpful!

Does Purex Insiders sound like it might be a good fit for you?  Well, they are accepting applications now!  Here is the website to apply: www.purexinsiders.com.  Let me know if you become a member!

Review~Bible Stories Painting Book 2

When I was young, I loved those Paint with Water books my Mom used to get me.  Usually they were fairy tale themes.  My Mom loved that it wasn't messy, which I can sure understand as a Mom myself now. 

I was happy to review Bible Stories Paining Book 2, published by Candle Books, an imprint of Lion Hudson publishers.  The text is by Juliet  David and the illustrations by Simon Abbott.  The book has sixteen scenes to paint from the Bible, with a simple line of text explaining the picture.  There are paint palettes behind the front and back covers of the book, which are sturdy and full of colors.  All you have to do is dip your own paintbrush in water (we used little Dixie cups), and paint away!

This is what one of the paint palettes looked like before we used it. I was interested how it would stand up to use each time, and was pleasantly surprised.  Here is a picture of it after use:

There is obviously still a lot of color left!  Chad (10) enjoyed painting.  Here is one of his masterpieces:

For some reason, he likes leaving the people unpainted.  I was surprised when I discovered that the pictures are printed on both sides, so I was sure that the paint would leak through.  But it didn't!  The paper is thick and we didn't get any moisture leak through to the other side. 

Bible Stories Painting Book 2 is a great craft/activity during these hot summer months.  Chad liked using it, and it was minimal mess for Mom too!  The only thing that I can see some people might prefer is having only one-sided pictures so the child could hang the picture up on the fridge, etc. without wasting the picture on the other side.  All-in-all, this is a fun, quality product that kids (and parents!) will enjoy!

You can purchase Bible Stories Painting Book 2 for only $7.99 at Kregel Publications.  While you are there at the website, check out Bible Stories Painting Book 1 and all the other kids and adult products available.

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

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

~Wordless Wednesday~

Isn't this a cool photo?  Daughter Alyssa is in the Dominican Republic on a dance tour.

Wordless Wednesday on Only Passionate Curiosity

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

If You Were Me and Lived In...South Korea-An Introduction to Learning About Other Cultures is the second book I have reviewed in the If You Were Me series by Carole P. Roman.  These are colorful, fun books that teach children about life in other countries. 

After enjoying If You Were Me and Lived in...France, my ten-year-old son and I were happy to read about another country.  In this book about South Korea, the children from South Korea show where they live, teach about money, food, school, and more.  There is a pronunciation guide at the back of this twenty-four page softcover book.  The illustrations are well done, and the larger letters make it easier for early readers to read the book on their own.

We thoroughly enjoyed both books we have read in the series, and look forward to reading more!

To learn more about author Carole P. Roman and purchase If You Were Me and Lived In...South Korea, visit her website.  You can also purchase it at Amazon.

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

Children's Book Review~If You Were Me and Lived In...France

If You Were Me And Lived In ...France-A Child's Introduction to Cultures Around the World is part of the If You Were Me series by Carole P. Roman.  This educational series is perfect for children from Pre-K to age eight to learn about the world around them. 

In this 22 page book, a boy and girl from France tell children about their lives-what they eat, where they live, and what they call different things.  They show where they live on a map, and there is a pronunciation guide on the last page.  The illustrations are full-page, bright and cheerful. 

My son (10) and I read If You Were Me And Lived In...France together, and although he is a bit older than the suggested age range, he was very interested in the information.  It stimulated more questions from him about France too.  I think this is a great series to have for children. 

Learn more about Author Carole P. Roman and her books at her website.  If You Were Me And Lived In...France is available for purchase on her website and on Amazon. 

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

Friday, July 12, 2013

Book Review~That Summer by Jo Huddleston

That Summer, by Joe Huddleston, is Book 1 of the Caney Creek Series.  The story takes place in Tennessee around the time of the Great Depression, and spans from the late 1920s to 1950.  Jim Callaway lives with his family on their farm, and times are bleak for them.  His father abuses him, and Jim decides at 17 years old to run away to the city.

That Summer follows Jim as he learns to survive on his own, falls in love, and falls away from his faith and God.  Jim has to learn many difficult lessons along the way to finding his way back to what he knows is right.

I thoroughly enjoyed That Summer.  Ms. Huddleston did a wonderful job of developing characters that I really felt a connection with.  The storyline flowed well, and it kept my attention throughout the book.  I look forward to reading the second and third books in the series, due out later in 2013. 

For more information on the author, visit her website.  You can also find Jo Huddleston on Facebook. 

Purchase That Summer at Amazon.
ISBN-10: 1939219035 | ISBN- 13: 978-1939219039 | List Price: $14.99 Softcover, $4.99 Kindle |Format: Soft cover and Kindle | Page Count: 220

I received a free copy of this book to review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the FTC Regulations. I am part of The CWA Review Crew.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Wordless Wednesday~Catching up on his Reading

Linking up with Only Passionate Curiosity~

Wordless Wednesday on Only Passionate Curiosity

Book Review~Brood X

Brood X, by Michael Phillip Cash, is completely different from what I usually read (think Amish Fiction).  This is a suspenseful thriller and I absolutely loved it!

Summary (from the author): "Seth is laid off from work.  His wife Lara just found out they are expecting a baby this summer.  Seth plans on documenting the entire pregnancy with his brand new digital camcorder.  During an evening home watching television, the news reports that a swarm of cicada (Brood Ten) are expected to overwhelm the entire Northeast.  Brood Ten is vicious and ready to invade.  During a sweltering summer night, Brood Ten emerges and wreaks havoc with the electric grid, phone and cell service, Wi-Fi food and water supply.  Civilization as they know it is gone.  Seth and Lara are thrown back to the stone age in their own home with trillions of cicada trying to deposit their eggs and breed.  Will Seth grow up and take responsibility for his family?  Or will the devastating bugs destroy humanity?"

Brood X was a page-turner that I could not put down from the beginning.  I was drawn in to the story immediately.  The characters were well-developed and easy to relate to.  Just the thought of being pregnant, with delivery soon, and this invasion happening just gave me chills.  The story line kept my attention throughout the book and the ending was just as great!  I recommend this book and will definitely read more from this author!

For more information or to purchase Brood X go to www.michaelphillipcash.com or Amazon. 

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

Monday, July 8, 2013

Book Review~Neglected but Undefeated by Jonathan Burkett

Neglected But Undefeated, a true story by Jonathan Anthony Burkett, follows a young boy from Jamaica as he grows up in the USA.  A happy, carefree little boy when he left his grandparent's care in Jamaica, his life quickly became one of horrible abuse and neglect.  As he grew, this boy was abused in so many ways.  This story follows him as he grows up, how he fights for his life, and how  he tries to find love and acceptance. 

Before I agreed to read Neglected But Undefeated, I was warned that it would be a difficult book to read, due to its content.  Having cared for children who had been abused, and adopting one myself, I was interested in the author's story.  Let me tell you, the warnings were warranted.  Besides all the abuse, which is heartbreaking, there are swear words and sexual content.  This is the REAL story of the author's life, nothing is sugar-coated.  Mr. Burkett did a great job writing his story, and even though it was hard to read(have tissues ready), it was also hard to put down.  Neglected But Undefeated is definitely an inspirational story that shows God's faithfulness. 

Jonathan Burkett is a talented author, with several other books he has authored.  At the end of the book, he shares his quotes and poetry, which are amazing.  Visit the author at his website, www.jonathanburkett.com.  You can also find him on Facebook at www.facebook.com/neglectedbutundefeated .  Purchase Neglected But Undefeated at Amazon.

ISBN-10: 0985297077 | ISBN- 13: 978-0985297077 | List Price: $15.99 Softcover, $3.99 Kindle |Format: Softcover and Kindle | Page Count: 294

 I received a free copy of this Ebook to review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the FTC Regulations. I am part of The CWA Review Crew.

Monday, July 1, 2013

Product Review~Kroger Frozen Yogurt Smoothie Bars

Kroger has a new line of low fat and low sugar frozen treats.  I was happy to try the Triple Berry Yogurt Smoothie Bars. The flavor was natural tasting, and the bars were soft and creamy.  The Yogurt Smoothie Bars are available in Triple Berry or Strawberry Banana. There are also ice cream sandwiches, fruit bars, and ice cream bars available in the line.  The Kroger brand is available at several stores-here in Utah, it is Smiths. 

This past week has been record breaking heat, and Kroger Yogurt Smoothie Bars were a wonderful relief!  Thanks to BzzAgent for the free sample!

Children's Book Review~The Christian Alphabet Book

The Christian Alphabet Book: Teaching  Children about Jesus, Prayer and the Bible (ISBN 9780985792800) is a wonderful book by artist Tracy Sands.  From the back cover: "The Christian Alphabet Book by Tracy Sands is a unique, visual, and enjoyable way to learn the basics of Christianity. “Love”, the dove from above, guides you from A to Z with special Biblical lessons of love for all ages." 

This beautiful hardcover book with glossy pages won the Christian Small Publishers Book of the Year.  I could definitely understand why upon reviewing The Christian Alphabet Book.  Each letter is beautifully illustrated with multiple drawings within each letter.  For each letter, there is a scripture associated with the letter, an activity, a lesson, and a prayer.  At the back of the book is a section with explanations of the symbols of each letter. There are close to 100 Christian symbols throughout the book!

Our entire family was impressed with The Christian Alphabet Book-in fact, I think the adults liked it the most!  This would make a wonderful gift for a child or family in your life.  It is available for purchase at Amazon.  I highly suggest you go to the website, www.thechristianalphabet.com for more information.  There are also accompanying songs for download, and beautiful personalized artwork for purchase using this alphabet.  Like The Christian Alphabet on Facebook to receive free shipping on your first store order!

Disclosure of Material: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookCrash.com book review program, which requires an honest, though not necessarily positive, review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s CFR Title 16, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”