icRKphJXQm-ezth8lntKydifkDg The Loose Screw: March 2016

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Product Review~Cujo Control Remote Dog Training Collar

We have two dogs living in our home, our Miniature Schnauzer Tulip and our daughter's Schnauzer/Maltese mix Java. They are both still young, but not puppies anymore. Of course when we got them, we had every intention of training them, and then life happened. So now we have two dogs with different behavior problems that need to be addressed.  Our issues are: excessive barking, jumping on people, and running away. So I was excited to have the opportunity to review one of the top rated training tools, Cujo Control Remote Dog Training Collar.

Included in the box I received is everything you see in the picture at the top-one collar/receiver, one wireless remote, two batteries, a test light, and contact points, plus a very detailed instruction booklet with training tips. There are three training tools to choose from - tone, vibrate, or shock.This collar is for any breed dog, from 10 to 200 pounds. It is waterproof, and has a range of up to 300 meters. You can train up to two dogs. There are 16 levels of stimulation and vibration, and individual buttons for tone, vibration, and stimulation.

Here are pictures of Java and Tulip wearing the collar. We have only tried it on Java so far, as Tulip is expecting a litter of puppies and we did not want to take any chances stressing her out.  Her training will begin in a few months. The collar appears to be comfortable on them. We have only tried vibration and tone on Java so far, and I'm amazed at how quickly Java is responding! The instruction book gives detailed instructions on how to train with the collar for different behavior problems, as well as teaching basic commands.

I previously looked into other training collars, and by far Cujo Control is the best. Compared to the other kits I looked at, the range is farther, there are many more levels of vibration/stimulation, and being able to customize it for two dogs is a plus. The remote display is bright and easy to read.

As we have already had some success with Java using our Cujo Control collar when it comes to him jumping on visitors, I'm looking forward to further training with him and training Tulip. You can purchase your own Cujo Control Remote Dog Training Collar at Amazon.

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

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Product Review and FLASH Giveaway~JGOB Makeup Sponge

Have you seen these makeup applicator sponges before?  I have in stores, and my daughter uses them and swears by them, but I just didn't see any need-I mean, I was doing fine applying my makeup with my fingers.  Well, let me tell you, I have discovered a GREAT tool for applying makeup!!

The JGOB Makeup Applicator Blending Sponge is a very soft, absorbent sponge. What's nice is it is just the right amount of absorbency. When I originally saw these sponges in the store, I thought it would absorb too much of my makeup. Apparently that is an issue with some brands, but not with JGOB.

Here is a picture of my new sponge in  my hand to give you an idea of its size. It is easy to grasp, and the shape works well to reach different areas to contour. After using, it is very easy to wash, squeeze the water out and use again next time.

Another great feature of the JGOB Makeup sponge is the travel case it comes in.  It is very sturdy and will be perfect to keep the sponge clean and intact during travel. I appreciate when companies think of things like this to make our lives a little easier!

I am enjoying using my JGOB sponge-it helps me to apply my makeup more evenly, and less mess on  my fingers!

You can purchase your own JGOB Makeup Applicator Sponge at Amazon.


One reader will win their own JGOB sponge! This is a flash giveaway, so I will draw the winner at random on 3/24 at 10 am MST. Winner must be a US resident. Just leave a comment below!

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

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Book Review~Amish Christmas at North Star

About the Book: 
One night four lives entered the world by the hands of an Amish midwife on the edge of North Star, Pennsylvania. Rebekah's Babies, as they are called, are now adults, and in four heartwarming novellas each person experiences a journey of discovery, the possibility of love, and the wonder of Christmas.

Guiding Star by Katie Ganshert: Curiosity gets the best of Englischer Chase Wellington when he investigates the twenty-five-year-old disappearance of an Amish baby. When he finds adventurous Ellie McAllister in Iowa, will his revelations upend her world?

Mourning Star by Amanda Flower: Eden Hoschstetler slips from her parents' shop to investigate the death of her friend Isaac. Who is guilty? Isaac's handsome great-nephew Jesse, and angry Englischer, or someone else?

In the Stars by Cindy Woodsmall: Heartbroken Kore Detweiler avoids North Star after Savilla Beiler rejects his love. But when he is unexpectedly called home, he and Savilla must join forces to keep a family together.

Star of Grace by Mindy Starns Clark and Emily Clark: Andy Danner left North Star to join a new Amish settlement in Mississippi. His little brother devises a scheme to bring Andy home for Christmas and unwittingly unleashes the power of forgiveness in a reclusive widower's life.

What I Thought: 
I have always enjoyed collections of novellas in one book.  These four Amish fiction stories are intertwined by the location-North Star, Pennsylvania, and the midwife Rebekah, who was the midwife attending each main characters birth. The things I enjoy about reading the collections is that they are all intertwined, but written by different authors, that they are relatively short-just about 100 pages each, and in this case, it is Christmas time! These four novellas in Amish Christmas at North Star: Four Stories of Love & Family were all fun to read and engaging, and I loved all four. I really couldn't pick one that stood out as my favorite over the others.  I do have to say that Cindy Woodsmall is one of my favorite authors (I even met her at a book signing!), so her novella In the Stars had a slight edge for me.  At the end of the collection, author Katie Ganshert wrote an epilogue, which I thought was a nice way to wrap up the book.

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

Book Review~Amish Sweethearts

About the Book:
Amish Sweethearts(ISBN 978-0-7642-1524-7) is the second book in author Leslie Gould's Neighbors of Lancaster County series.  It is published by Bethany House, and is 375 pages.

Description from the back cover:
For years Zane Beck and his Amish neighbor Lila Lehman were best of friends. But just as Zane gathered to courage to discover if their friendship could develop into something more, her controlling father arranged for her to be courted by their bishop's son. Zane, heartbroken and frustrated, joined the Army, running away from his shattered dreams. 

The passing of time and the distance between Zane and Lila haven't been enough to halt their-now completely hidden-feelings for each other. Any hope for their love grows even more impossible though as Zane's service takes a dangerous turn when he's deployed to Afghanistan. Being on the frontline, confronted with the hard choices of war, has him questioning everything, including whether he can continue to serve or not. But all choices have consequences, and with Lila preparing to marry another, will these one-time sweethearts ever find the life together that they both still long for?

What I Thought: 
Having read the first book in the Neighbors of Lancaster County series by Leslie Gould, I knew I was in for a treat. I have also read other books by the author, and always enjoy her writing. She is great at pulling the reader into the story and making you feel like you know the main characters personally.

In Amish Sweethearts, my heart broke for Lila, who has had so much responsibility on her shoulders taking care of her family since her mother died. Her father is gruff and not one to discuss feelings, and is determined to marry her off to a good Amish man. Lila and Zane have loved each other for years, but as Zane is not Amish they realize it is nearly impossible for them to have a future together.

When Lila enters into a courtship with Reuben and turns away from Zane, he enters the Army and is deployed to Afghanistan.  It was very interesting to have this element of war involved in the story as the Amish are pacifists. Along with other family drama with Lila's siblings and her ill grandmother, Lila's life is spinning out of control as she tries to deny her feelings for Zane.

I really enjoyed Amish Sweethearts-I spent several nights up too late because I didn't want to put it down! I look forward to the next book in the series.

Visit Bethany House for more information on Amish Sweethearts and to purchase your own copy.

*Disclosure: I received a copy of this book free from Bethany House in exchange for my honest review. All opinions expressed here are my own.

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Children's Book Review~Being A Captain is Hard Work!

Being a Captain is Hard Work is author Carole P. Roman's latest book in her Captain No Beard series. This adorable series for children has several titles already, and is illustrated by Bonnie Lemaire.

Book Description (from the back cover): Captain No Beard is determined to travel to Dew Rite Volcano. He won't listen when Mongo predicts a storm or Linus indicates they are headed in the wrong direction. He insists Polly cook in the galley even though the seas are getting rough. What's a crew to do with a stubborn, know-it-all captain? Will they convince the captain he is barreling headlong into danger, or will Captain No Beard jeopardize both his safety and the crew's with his single-minded determination to go where he wants?

What I Thought: My family has all of the books in the Captain No Beard series, and they are favorites. So, of course we were excited to receive Being A Captain is Hard Work! Once again, Carole P. Roman has produced a delightful story. There is always a moral to be learned, with lots of fun and some interesting facts as well! The characters are adorable, and the illustrations are colorful and whimsical. The amount and size of the words are perfect for younger early readers. In the back of Being A Captain is Hard Work is a Cloud Key, to teach kids about the different types of clouds. 

Being a Captain is Hard Work would make a wonderful gift for a child. You can learn more about the author's books and links to purchase them at her website, http://www.caroleproman.com/

*Disclosure: I received a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.  All opinions expressed here are my own.

Book Review~Parables

About the Book: "The Parables of Jesus are more than teaching tools. They are the secret keys to the mysteries of God's Kingdom. Many assume that Jesus told parables to make His teaching easy, accessible, and comfortable in order to reach the widest possible audience.

The reality is Jesus spoke in parables to unbelievers not to make the truth clear, but to hide it from them as judgement. The parables were symbols of our Lord's condemnation on those who had rejected His clear teaching."

Parables: The Mysteries of God's Kingdom Revealed Through The Stories Jesus Told by John MacArthur is broken down into the following chapters:

Introduction (Sloppy Thinking About the Parables, Why Parables, and Some Definitions and Details)
1. One Ominous Day in Galilee
2. A Lesson About Receiving the Word
3. A Lesson About the Cost of Discipleship
4. A Lesson About Justice and Grace
5. A Lesson About Neighborly Love
6. A Lesson About Justification by Faith
7. A Lesson About Faithfulness
8. A Lesson About Serpentine Wisdom
9. A Lesson About Heaven and Hell
10. A Lesson About Persistence in Prayer
Appendix (Storied Truth, Objective Meaning in Narrative, Stories as Effective Vehicles for Truth, The Wealth of Truth in Jesus' Parables, Stories and Propositions)
Scripture Index
About the Author

About the Author: 

John MacArthur is the pastor-teacher of Grace Community Church in Sun Valley, California, president of the Master's College and Seminary, and featured teacher with the Grace to You media ministry. In more than four decades of ministry, John has written dozens of bestselling books, including The MacArthur Study Bible, The Gospel According to Jesus, and Slave. He lives in Los Angeles.

What I Thought: 

I was excited to read this book because the parables have always interested me. I have always thought of them as short stories that help the reader understand a point.  I had never thought of parables the way the author explains, as hiding the truth from unbelievers. In Parables, author John MacArthur does an excellent job of breaking down and explaining each parable, and linking them to others. I would recommend this book to anyone looking to understand the parables more deeply, and I also think it would make an excellent gift.  There is also a workbook that you can purchase in addition to the book.You can find Parables at numerous online book stores, including Amazon. 

*Disclosure: I received a copy of this book from BookLook Bloggers in exchange for my honest review.  All opinions expressed here are my own.  

Sunday, March 13, 2016

Product Review and Giveaway~Renuzit Sensitive Scents

I love when my house smells good. There are so many nasty odors that can occur throughout the house, and it is difficult to stay on top of them. I love burning candles, but my husband thinks they are too strong and give him headaches. So I was thrilled to be able to try out Renuzit's new Sensitive Scents line.

Just above is a picture of what I received:
*Adjustable cone in Pure Water Blossom & Cucumber
* Trigger Spray in Pure White Pear & Lavender
* Universal Scented Oil in Pure Ocean Breeze

I was so excited to try these products out! I put the cone in my teenage boys' room, the Scented Oil in the boys' bathroom, and the Spray in the kitchen for use throughout the house. Anyone who has or has had teenage boys knows why I focused on their areas!

Renuzit Sensitive Scents are designed to perform without overpowering your senses. Each scent has been specially formulated and lab-tested to ensure effective, long-lasting, and pleasing scents without overpowering sensitive noses.

I've been using Renuzit Sensitive Scents for a few weeks now, and I'm impressed with the long-lasting scent.  Our home smells pleasant and fresh, and my sensitive-to-scents hubby has not had any problem at all. 

All three scents are fabulous, but my family has a definite favorite-Pure White Pear & Lavender. The spray bottle is missing all the time, because everyone keeps stealing it! I love spraying it everywhere, but my favorite way to use the spray is on the couch, throw pillows, and comforters. It is a sweet, fresh, subtle scent.

You can learn more about Renuzit Sensitive Scents at the Renuzit website.  Also, check them out on Facebook. 


I have two coupons to give to two lucky Loose Screw readers! The coupon is for one free Renuzit Sensitive Scents product, up to $5.00!!! Giveaway open to US residents only. I will email the winners within 24 hours of the contest ending.  Winners will have 48 hours to respond, or a new winner will be drawn.  

a Rafflecopter giveaway

*Disclosure: The Renuzit brand provided me with samples of Renuzit Sensitive Scents in exchange for a product review. However, all of the opinions expressed here are my own.  

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Book Review~Cold Shot by Dani Pettrey

About the Book: 
In college, Griffin McCray and his four best friends had their lives planned out. Griffin and Luke Gallagher would join the Baltimore PD. Declan Gray would head to the FBI, and Parker Mitchell would go on to graduate school as a crime scene analyst. But then Luke vanished before graduation and their world–and friendships–crumbled.
Now Griffin is a park ranger at Gettysburg, having left life as a SWAT-team sniper when a case went bad. The job is mostly quiet–until the day he captures two relic hunters uncovering skeletal remains near Little Round Top. Griffin just wants the case to go away, but charming forensic anthropologist Finley Scott determines that the body is modern–a young social justice lawyer missing since spring–and all evidence points to the work of an expert sniper.
When FBI agent Declan Gray takes over the case, past and present collide. Griffin soon realizes he’ll need to confront some of the darkest days of his life if he–and those he cares about–are going to escape a downward spiral of murder that crosses continents.

About the Author: 
 Dani Pettrey is a wife, home-schooling mom, and the acclaimed author of the brand new romantic suspense Chesapeake Valor series, as well as the well-loved Alaskan Courage series which includes her bestselling novels Submerged, Shattered, Stranded, Silenced, and Sabotaged. She feels blessed to write inspirational romantic suspense because it incorporates so many things she loves–the thrill of adventure, nail biting suspense, the deepening of her characters’ faith, and plenty of romance. She and her husband reside in Maryland, where they enjoy time with their daughters, son-in-law, and super-adorable grandson.

Connect with Dani Pettrey:

 What I Thought: 
Cold Shot is the first book in author Dani Pettrey's new series Chesapeake Valor. I read all five books in her Alaskan Courage series, and quickly discovered what a gift she has for weaving fantastic stories that keep you captivated from start to finish.

Cold Shot had the same impact on me as Dani Pettrey's last series.  I was immediately swept up into the story. It is full of suspense, inspiration, romance, and more. I love that the characters pray and lean on God to help them through situations. Dani just has such a gift at getting deep into the characters so I feel like I know them personally. Cold Shot held my attention until the last word, and now I have to try to be patient while waiting for book two in the Chesapeake Valor series! This is the kind of book that you can't put down, and forget about TV shows you usually watch, dishes, laundry, and anything else you should or could be doing!  In my world, that is the true test of a great book! (Don't worry, my youngest son and grandson were taken care of during the reading of this book!)

Would you like to read an excerpt of Cold Shot? Here you go:

Once you read the excerpt, you will want more! Here are links to purchase your own copy of Cold Shot: 

Thursday, March 3, 2016

Enter the Cold Shot Sweepstakes!

Enter the COLD SHOT Sweepstakes from Author Dani Pettrey

I am currently reading author Dani Pettrey's newest release, Cold Shot. It is a great story, and I'm excited to share it with you! Today I'm going to give you more information on the book, as well as how to enter the awesome sweepstakes going on through March 7th.  Be on the lookout for my review of Cold Shot March 6th, and hurry and enter the sweepstakes-there are some great prizes!

In COLD SHOT, the first book of author Dani Pettrey’s brand new Chesapeake Valor series, park ranger Griffin McCray and forensic anthropologist Finley Scott uncover buried remains near the Civil War battleground of Little Round Top. There’s only one problem: the bones aren’t Civil War-era.
Griffin just wants the case to go away, but when Finley discovers evidence pointing to the work of an expert sniper, the case connects them with FBI agent Declan Grey, and crime scene investigator Parker Mitchell, friends from a past Griffin’s tried to leave behind.
Soon the reunited friends realize they’ll need to confront the darkest days in their shared history if they–and those they care about–are going to escape a downward spiral of crime, danger, and murder.
To celebrate the launch of this exciting new series, Dani and Bethany House Publishers are pleased to present the COLD SHOT SWEEPSTAKES, and your chance to win one of three marvelous prizes, all closely connected to the story.
Timeframe & Notifications:
This giveaway starts February 16, 2016 and ends March 7, 2016 @ 11:59 pm (PST).
Entry is open to US residents only, age 18 and over. Winners will be selected Tuesday, March 8, 2016, and announced at DaniPettrey.com.

About the Prizes

GRAND PRIZE: Cold Shot Sweepstakes Grand Prize
In COLD SHOT, Griffin reunites with friends after they’ve drifted apart over the years. Do you have a friend you want to reconnect with? Here’s your chance to hit the road with them for a friend getaway!
Our Grand Prize winner will receive: A $250 gift certificate to BedandBreakfast.com, good for reservations at lodges across the Continental US, plus a $50 Darden restaurants gift card, and a Chesapeake Bay tote bag, to pack your road trip essentials.

Cold Shot Sweepstakes Second Prize
Finley has a lifelong love of travel and exploration, something captured in her cozy home decor, right down to her steamer trunk coffee table. This prize gives you a chance to have a steamer trunk just like Finley’s, and a coffee table book from the Chesapeake Bay to go with it.

Our Second Prize winner will receive: A $150 value cedar wood steamer trunk and vivid Maryland coffee table photo book.

Cold Shot Sweepstakes Third PrizeTHIRD PRIZE:
COLD SHOT is sure to leave you with a craving for the mouth-watering snacks Griffin, Finley, and the rest of the crew enjoy in the story. If you wish you could sample Chesapeake’s one-of-a-kind local fare too, this prize is for you.

Our Third Prize winner will receive: The beautifully lithographed, $50 value Taste of Maryland Tin, including the Chesapeake Bay Cookbook and famed local treats such as Old Bay Seasoning, Maple Syrup, Maryland crab soup mix, specialty dip, and Goetze’s Caramel Creams.

How to Enter:
Go to: http://www.danipettrey.com/cold-shot-sweepstakes/ and complete the entry box, anytime between February 16 – March 7, 2016.