A Modern Day Fairy Tale: September 2015

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Girl Meets Change: A Book Review

Let's talk change.

I'm going to be honest, I'm not a fan. If I could have things my way, life would be consistent, always. All the time. Life would stay the same. I like comfort, I like knowing what's going to happen, I like predictability.


Unfortunately, God had other plans for my life, starting with sending a United States Marine into my life and changing my world forever. The military life is not one known for it's consistency. Just the opposite. In fact, I remember being told early on that the Marine Corps family motto was 'Semper Gumby- Always Flexible'. This was just the first of many changes throughout the years...

  • After marrying my husband, I moved across the country to California- away from my friends, my family, and the only life I'd known.
  • Shortly after we welcomed our son. A welcome change, of course, but a drastic one at that.
  • When my son was just 9 months old, my husband left on his 3rd deployment- our first as a married couple. This brought another big change, moving back to Indiana to be with family.
  • Then came the return and another cross country move, back to California.
  • Next up, an autism diagnosis- the start of a journey that would change our lives forever.
  • Another deployment? Why not! This one was a year long and with a kid in need of consistency, great resources and about to start school, this one kept us in California.
  • Not long after his return, our life changed again when my husband received orders for recruiting duty- another cross country move back to Indiana.
  • After 2 years in Indiana came perhaps one of the biggest changes- an unexpected exit from the military life and the difficult transition into life as a civilian family.
  • And most recently, rejoining the world of military families with an enlistment into the Indiana National Guard.
Like I said, since meeting my husband, life has been full of changes... deployments, moves, diagnoses... the only thing that has remained consistent is the inconsistency.


I wish I could say that after all these changes I have come to enjoy changes...but if I said that I'd be lying. I have gotten better at dealing with them of course, but I still struggle. Don't we all? 

If you struggle with dealing with the changes life throws your way, Girl Meets Change is an ideal read for you:


Whether chosen or unexpected, all change brings stress. Kristen Strong knows about change--especially the kind you didn't choose. Over the years, she's fought hard to learn an important truth: change is not something to be feared but something to be received as a blessing from a God who works through it, not in spite of it. 

In this hope-filled book, Kristen invites you to see all the ways you are loved and cared for in the midst of change. She walks alongside you as a friend, gently ushering you toward a new view of change, one that meets you at the crossroads of your own sense of anxiety and God's sense of purpose. With practical advice for coping in every part of life, she draws from her own experiences, the stories of others, and stories from Scripture to help you find contentment, purpose, and renewed strength.


Kristen Strong 
is a popular blogger at Chasing Blue Skies (chasingblueskies.net) and DaySpring's (in)courage, as well as a writer whose work has appeared in MOMSense and Family Fun magazines. She and her husband, David, have three children. Together this military family has zig-zagged across the country (and one ocean!) several times, and they currently live in Colorado Springs, Colorado.


I've been a fan of Kristen's blog- and (in)courage for years now, so I was excited to read this, and it did not disappoint. Change is never easy, but there is always good to be found in it. For those struggling with recent or upcoming changes, Girl Meets Change is fantastic.  It is beautifully written and helps to remind us all that change is not always easy, but that doesn't mean its bad- giving us practical wisdom to help us adjust to the inevitable transitions that will come our way.

You can purchase it now at your favorite book retailers.

Mommy Scene Healthy Family Giveaway

We are excited to partner with Mommy Scene and celebrate Fall and the launch of a new product — Sudsy Dough moldable soap on Kickstarter! What better way to celebrate than with a Healthy Family Giveaway featuring some great family-focused products! Be sure to check out the Sudsy Dough Kickstarter Campaign and all the other prizes below and enter to win!
Heathy Family Giveaway Prizes - Mommy Scene

Sudsy Dough

Prize: 2 tubs of Sudsy Dough moldable bath soap, 12 ounces each
Heathy Family Giveaway - Sudsy Dough - Mommy Scene
Now on Kickstarter! Sudsy Dough is a interactive bath toy that doubles as a moldable scented dough and a cleansing sensory soap! Sudsy Dough was created by a mom to make bath time fun for her own daughter. Kids can squeeze and squish Sudsy Dough in the bath, rub it on as a cleansing body wash, or take it outside the tub and make custom shapes that will dry into soaps. Each ball also has a surprise bath toy hidden inside! Sudsy Dough is offering some great rewards to thank their campaign supporters — all deliverable before Christmas for a great gift!

See the Sudsy Dough Kickstarter »

Piggy Paint Hug Life Gift Set

Prize: Hug Life Gift Set with 3 shades of non-toxic nail polish including Let's Flamingle, Wild Child, and Periwinkle Little Star
Piggy Paint is a natural, eco-friendly nail polish for kids. It's non-toxic, hypoallergenic formula makes it safe to use on all piggies. Piggy Paint dries to a hard, durable finish that can easily be removed with the eco-friendly, low odor Piggy Paint nail polish remover. Both are made in the USA!piggypaint.com
Heathy Family Giveaway - Piggy Paint - Mommy Scene

SOPHi Nai Polish

Prize: 2 shades of SOPHi natural nail polish for adults plus SOPHi's PRIME + SHINE + SEAL System for maximum durability
From the maker of Piggy Paint, the non-toxic nail polish for kids, SOPHi is a natural nail polish in SOPHisticated colors for adults. These polishes are virtually odorless, eco-friendly, hypoallergenic, and made in the USA. SOPHi is free of all harsh chemicals and does not cause nails to yellow or become brittle. sophinailpolish.com

Baby Comfy Care

Prize: Baby Comfy Deluxe Safety Nail Clipper
Heathy Family Giveaway - Baby Comfy Care - Mommy Scene
The patented single-blade design of Baby Comfy Nail won't cut baby's skin. Baby Comfy Nail Deluxe safety clippers have only one blade! The bottom flat plastic ledge pushes baby's skin back out of the way while the top blade cuts the nail... and only the nail. The unique ergonomic design and larger size makes it easier to hold and operate when you don't want to make a mistake. The design also protects from cutting too closely to the sensitive nail bed. babycomfycare.com

Leaf Therapeutic

Prize: Leaf Skin Therapy Lotion - 2 ounces

Heathy Family Giveaway - Leaf Therapy Lotion - Mommy Scene
Leaf Skin Therapy Lotion features a formula that is both hydrating and healing for damaged skin, without using toxic preservatives. Leaf Skin Therapy Lotion uses natural and safe (and expensive!) fermented radish root and goldenseal extract. It is safe enough to use on babies and, although this lotion was specially designed for people with eczema and other dry skin conditions, it works great on normal skin, too. Best of all, it has an extremely low toxicity rating on the Environmental Working Group website. If you are looking for an ultra-hydrating, hypoallergenic, unscented lotion, this is the lotion for you! leaftherapeutic.com

Little Standout

Prize: 100% Silicone Diamond Teething Toy
Heathy Family Giveaway - Little Standout - Mommy Scene
Add a little bling to your day with Little Standout's 100% silicone Diamond Teether! Made for tiny hands and achy gums, our silicone teethers are non-toxic and free of BPA, PVC, phthalates, lead, cadmium and all that other yucky stuff you don't want to see your baby putting into their mouth. They are dishwasher safe, making them super easy to clean and totally awesome! littlestandout.com

Young Living

Prize: One Bottle of OrthoEase massage oil, one Oola Book + samples from Young Living
Heathy Family Giveaway - Young Living - Mommy Scene
OrthoEase massage oil soothes and warms tired and stressed bodies, helping to combat the damaging effects of everyday activities. With a calming blend of oils, it will leave you feeling relaxed and refreshed. OrthoEase contains: coconut oil, wintergreen, peppermint, juniper, eucalyptus, lemongrass, marjoram, thyme, vetiver, sweet almond oil, and olive oil
The international bestselling book "Oola, Find Balance in an Unbalanced World. The 7 areas you need to balance and grow to live the life of your dreams" is written by Dave Braun and Troy Amdahl. This book inspired Young Living's Infused 7 Line.
As a Mom and wife, I strive to provide my family with a lifestyle of wellness and abundance. My life has changed since November 2014, using Young Living Essential Oils. I have less anxiety, more peace, more energy and an overall sense of well being. Not only do I apply and diffuse them every day, I cook and clean with them and save tons of money. Our body is our greatest asset. The healthier we are and better we feel, the more we can enjoy life, our families, friends and go after our dreams. Each day we get older and each day we are given a fresh new opportunity to age better, to have more joy, energy and focus and to truly experience "young living". Follow me for upcoming class updates and daily Oily Living.
Erika Miller
Independent Distributor
Young Living Essential Oils
#2108472
ylwebsite.com/ErikaMiller

Baby Buddy

Prize: Baby Buddy 360 Toothbrush (Step 1 & Step 2)
Heathy Family Giveaway - Baby Buddy - Mommy Scene
The Baby Buddy 360 degree toothbrush is truly innovative - it is the world's first 360 degree designed toothbrush. Developed in the Osaka University Dental Hospital of Japan, the 360 Toothbrush has unparalleled cleaning power thanks to over 10,000 micro fine bristles - 10 times more than the average toothbrush. Circular rings firmly hold bristles in place, while spacing washers between bristle layers make it more effective for removing plaque and keeping the brush clean. Works great for cleaning the tongue and for massaging gums. Take a 360 Toothbrush to work, out camping, or on the road, as it may be used effectively with water alone when you are on the go. Available as Step 1 for ages 4-24 month olds and as Step 2 for 2-12 year olds. Smile4BabyBuddy.com

Genesis 950

Prize: Gallon of Genesis 950 & spray bottle
Heathy Family Giveaway - Genesis 950 - Mommy Scene
Genesis 950 is a green, all purpose cleaner that makes cleaning your home safe. Genesis 950 is free of harsh chemicals and works as a concentrate with water to break the bonds of stains by making them water soluble. When a stain becomes water soluble, it can then be broken down and flushed from the surface. In doing so it removes the toughest stains and biggest messes. genesis950.com

Babycook Pro

Prize: Babycook Pro Original Baby Food Maker, prize color may vary - winner may be able to select preferred color if in stock
Heathy Family Giveaway - Babycook Pro - Mommy Scene
babycook pro is the original baby food maker on the market. It makes up to 4.7 cups of food in a sleek, patented countertop appliance that steam cooks, blends and reheats all-in-one, in 15 minutes or less. Refrigerate or freeze leftovers, then simply defrost and reheat right in babycook. Steam cooking locks in vitamins and nutrients, a multi-purpose mixing blade provides just the right texture, the timer has an audible alert to tell you when meals are ready, and all of this with total one-handed operation. This appliance is loaded with features that make any parent a "pro" in baby food preparation. beabausa.com

Sip & Spin

Prize: Sip & Spin Straw Cup
Heathy Family Giveaway - Sip & Spin - Mommy Scene
The Sip & Spin straw cup has a unique fun-factor - a pinwheel in the lid that spins as you sip. Playful artwork on the pinwheel disc coordinates with the cup art, creating an engaging drinking experience for your child. The racing trucks and soaring butterflies can encourage playing kids to take a water break, cheer up and rehydrate a sick child, or motivate a toddler to transition from a bottle or spouted sippy to a straw cup. As parents, we know what a pain it can be to clean kids' cups, so we made sure all the components come apart easily for cleaning and are dishwasher safe. The Sip & Spin straw cup is a cute gift and a fun way to keep kids hydrated... Hydration Motivation! nuspinkids.com

kidSTAT

Prize: kidSTAT First Aid Kit
Heathy Family Giveaway - kidSTAT - Mommy Scene
kidSTAT is targeted for active toddlers and kids. This kit is equipped with hospital-grade products to treat the most common childhood emergencies: aches+sprains, bites+burns, and cuts+scrapes. kidSTAT has easy-to-follow, first-aid instructions to reassure you when your child is in distress. Together with "red flags" warnings on when to seek medical attention, this comprehensive kit was designed by moms, who happen to be ER doctors, too.
kidSTAT contains:

91 items
Doctor-written, step-by-step instructions
Full-sized items, latex & BPA free
Hospital-grade products
Red flags to go to the ER
Emergency contact/Pediatric CPR card
threemommydoctors.com

Pacific Baby

Prize: Natural Feeding Starter Set - Green
Heathy Family Giveaway - Pacific Baby - Mommy Scene
Made from Natural Bamboo. Safe & Healthy. Machine Washable and Biodegradable. pacificbabyworld.com

Yummi Pouch

Prize: Yummi Pouch Brights Reusable Food Pouches
Heathy Family Giveaway - Yummi Pouch - Mommy Scene
Yummi Pouch Brights (Set of 4) combine style and convenience in an eco-friendly container you can fill with homemade smoothies and blended snacks! Easy to fill and clean through the top zipper opening and enjoyed by drinking from the side spout, Yummi Pouch reusable food pouches are great for kids taking healthy snacks on the go. Includes set of 4 assorted patterns. revelae.com

Enter to win these great prizes!

This contest is sponsored by Mommy Scene and is open to US entries. One winner will be chosen and displayed on the giveaway widget after the contest ends on Oct. 8th, 2015. Mommy Scene and participating blogs are not responsible for fulfilling brand-sponsored prizes. Prizes will be shipped directly from each brand.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Glory Days: Living Your Promised Land Life Now {A Book Review & Family Christian Giveaway} #FCBlogger

**Book received for review. All thoughts are my own.
It's no secret to most that I love Bibles. In fact, I collect them. I have several varieties with all different styles, all different translations, and all different purposes. I love the stories inside, I have my favorite verses and even my favorite books that I go back to time and time again.

But can I be honest for just a minute? There are many stories- especially those in the Old Testament- that I just don't get. Don't get me wrong, I can appreciate a great story when I read one but going beyond that? I'm just not the most educated on the subject. I don't always understand exactly what the significance of these stories are or how they apply to my life now.

Take the story of Joshua for instance. I know that this is an amazing battle story... but what can I learn from it? This is so far in the past, how is it relevant to my life and my relationship with God? This is just what Max Lucado looks at in his latest book, Glory Days.


Do you ever feel like you're stuck in a spiritual rut or that you're running on empty? The Israelites certainly did, but just as they did, you too can move from the wilderness to the Promised Land. In 
Glory Days, Max Lucado invites readers to leave the wilderness and discover a life defined by grace, refined by challenge, and aligned with a heavenly call. By studying the life of Joshua and the biblical book that bears his name, Lucado reveals God’s promises for every step and reminds readers that God still fights for them.

If you've not yet read anything by Max Lucado, you must change that immediately! I was first introduced to Max Lucado several months ago with his wonderful book on prayer, Before Amen. I immediately fell in love with his storytelling and couldn't wait to read more. I have since had the chance to read several more of his books- both for adults and children alike- and with each one I find myself becoming a bigger fan. He has a way of effortlessly weaving together personal stories, modern news stories and Bible stories in a way that makes it understandable to even the theology novice like myself. He doesn't just tell you the who and the what...he digs deeper into each story and show what this means for us now, today!


In Glory Days, he takes us through the book of Joshua and encourages us too to face our own Jericho--- the struggles or obstacles that are keeping us out in the wilderness and away from the glory days that God has promised. Again in that unique was that he weaves stories together, I found myself discovering this story all over again, and wanting to go back and reread it all now that I knew what I was missing. (And to make that even easier, there are questions to reflect on at the end of the book relating to each chapter and giving the Bible reference to study!)

If you're feeling like you too are stuck in the wilderness and need help making it past the wall, this book has a lot to offer. Or if you're just like me and looking for a way to dig a little deeper into this great Bible book, this is worth checking into too.

Glory Days is available to purchase now at Family Christian.

Find more great Christian reads and connect with Family Christian at the links below:
Follow on Twitter: https://twitter.com/FamilyChristian 
Follow on Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/familychristian/ 
Like on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/FamilyChristian?ref=bookmarks 
Follow on Tumblr: http://family-christian.tumblr.com 
Follow on Instagram: http://instagram.com/familychristian

And one very lucky reader is going to win a $10 Family Christian Appreciation Certificate. Enter using the Rafflecopter form below:


a Rafflecopter giveaway


Winner will be contacted via e-mail after giveaway ends, and will have 48 hours to respond before a new winner is chosen. One entry per household, winning entry will be verified. Odds of winning depend on valid entries received. A Modern Day Fairy Tale is not responsible for prize delivery

Monday, September 28, 2015

Fall Family Fun: Must Try Fall Activities!



I love fall! From the foods to the fashions... its one of my absolute favorite times of the year! But with cooler weather arriving, many of our fun family activities are drawing to a close... but that doesn't mean the family fun has to end! In fact, there are many great ways to enjoy the fall season as a family! Need some inspiration? Here you go:

  • Go apple picking. Find an orchard near you that allows you to pick your own apples!
  • Watch the leaves change. Visit a local park, or find a road to drive that gives you the greatest views of the changing fall trees!
  • Take family photos. The beautiful fall colors and cooler-but not cold- weather makes this a perfect time for family photos. (As an added bonus, photos make great holiday gifts too.)
  • Bake a pie. Apple and pumpkin are favorites here! 
  • Go to the pumpkin patch. Pumpkin patches aren't JUST for buying pumpkins. Many also feature fun corn mazes or hayrides too!
  • Carve a Pumpkin. If kids are too young for carving, consider painting instead.
  • Rake the leaves...and jump in them! Not only does it make the yard look cleaner, but the jumping in after is a blast...and a great photo opp too!
  • Make leaf prints. Use crayons and paper to make fun fall leaf prints!
  • Paint with Apple. Check out this fun post for more info.
  • Make caramel apples. These fun fall treats are as delicious as they are easy!
  • Go to the zoo. Not only do the crowds tend to be smaller in the early fall, but the weather is much more bearable than crazy summer heat too.
  • Bake pumpkin seeds. Leftover seeds from pumpkin carving can make a fun easy treat to make and eat as a family.
  • Have a bonfire. Many think of bonfires as a summer activity but I personally prefer them in the fall! For older kids, this can be a fun time to tell semi-scary ghost stories as Halloween draws near too!
  • Have a family game night. When the cool weather keeps you in, bring the fun in too with a fun family game night!
  • Collect acorns. Use for decor, or get creative with them!
  • Have a fall themed nature scavenger hunt. Collect various color leaves, acorns, sticks and more!
  • Make apple cider. Who doesn't love this fall drink!?
  • Make a bird feeder. Check out this fun post for just one example!
  • Make a scarecrow. We all have old clothes we no longer need, repurpose them into a fun fall scarecrow!! 
What are your must do fall family fun activities?

Friday, September 25, 2015

Kids in the Kitchen: Make a MyPlate Pizza {An Easy Gluten-Free Mexican Style Pizza Recipe} #MyPlatePizza

**A huge thank you to Fresh Baby for sponsoring today's post. All thoughts are 100% my own.



Last month, I shared this fun post with you with tips on how to get your children to eat well... and more importantly, to ENJOY eating well! One of my favorite tips from that post was allowing your children to help. From the meal planning to grocery shopping and even cooking, letting kids take part is truly the best way to make eating healthy fun.

But kids in the KITCHEN!? Where do you even begin? What kid-friendly meals are not just simple, but also taste great?

In our household, it's all about PIZZA!



Pizza might not be the first food that comes to mind when you say healthy eating, but when you create your own pizzas you have the chance to take this classic kid friendly 'junk food' and put your own healthy spin on it. All you need is a whole grain crust + sauce + healthy toppings and you'll have the perfect MyPlate Pizza!

So, what makes a MyPlate Pizza a great choice for cooking with kids?


  • It's super easy...and quick too! Making a homemade pizza truly can be as easy as four simple steps- crust, sauce, toppings, bake... Sure, you can make your own crust if you'd prefer, but there are still plenty of options for premade crusts too...perfect for the youngest chefs. It also is a super quick option, making it ideal for post soccer practice dinner!
  • It's delicious! Seriously, who doesn't love pizza!? It's an all around favorite in our household!
  • It's versatile! In my family, there are a lot of special dietary needs to account for. My son and husband can and will eat just about anything, but I am a vegetarian and my daughter is gluten free. Meal planning in our home can be a little bit of a headache! With pizza, we can customize to suit all of our needs- heavy on the meats for my boys, just veggies for myself and a gluten free crust for my daughter. There are so many options, we can create one of a kind recipes that everyone will love! (For more fun ideas on pizza options, check out this MyPlate Pizza tip sheet!)
  • It's fun! Cooking with kids should be fun, and pizza is just that. With so many options, kids can go crazy with their masterpieces!


We were so inspired by the great ideas in the MyPlate Pizza Tip Sheet, that we could not wait to create a unique pizza all of our own! We decided to give it a fun spin and mix another favorite style of food to create a delicious gluten-free Mexican pizza! Delicious! Check it out:

Easy Gluten-Free Mexican Style Pizza


  • Corn Tortillas
  • Refried Beans
  • Salsa 
  • Shredded Cheese
  • Toppings: Avocado, Lettuce, Tomato, Sour Cream (optional)

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Spread a thin layer of refried beans onto your tortilla. Top with second tortilla and add another thin later of beans. (This will make your pizza a bit thicker and easier to eat, but be sure not to overload with the beans!)
  3. Now, spread a layer of your favorite salsa over the beans.
  4. Top with cheese. (I like a colby jack or cheddar, but use whatever you prefer!)

  5. Bake for 15 minutes or until cheese is melted and pizza cooked through.
  6. Top with your favorite taco toppings, if desired!
  7. Eat and enjoy!

For more inspiration for your easy and healthy pizza recipes, check out these links below:

What would YOU put on your perfect MyPlate Pizza?

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Monsters Away Monster Spray {Essential Oil Recipe & Free Printable}

Do you have a little one that has nightmares? Worries about monsters in their closet or under the bed?

Nighttime can be a scary time for a little one (especially as Halloween draws near and scary sights are everywhere)! But it doesn't have to be, thanks to Monsters Away Monster Spray!



Not only does this super fun DIY Spray give your little one's a visual aid of you keeping the monsters away, but unlike some monster sprays that just contain water, this one actually features essential oils that are great for calming and helping your little ones rest easy! It's a win/win!

Want to make you own? Here's what you'll do:



Monsters Away Essential Oil Spray

Supplies


  • Small Spray Bottle
  • Water
  • Calming Oils of Choice

  1. First of all, choose your oils. There are many great varieties to choose from that are great for calming and/or confidence. You can use a premade blend such as Stress Away, Peace and Calming or Valor (Young Living), Serenity (DoTerra) or Nighty Night or Sweet Dreams (Plant Therapy KidSafe). These are all great blends with no guesswork required. I personally love creating my own blends. Oils like lavender, chamomile roman, vetiver, cedarwood, patchouli, clary sage and orange are all great for calming and anxiety. All oils work differently for everyone, so when you create your own blends you can play around to find what works best for you and your family.
  2. Now that you've chosen your oils, it's time to make your spray! Start by filling your spray bottle with water.
  3. Now, add several drops of oil to your liking. Shake well.
  4. Label your bottle. You can keep it simple with a permanent marker, make your own label, or print this free printable I created!

  5. Shake well before each use, and spray around your child's room where monsters tend to lurk.
What other tricks do you have for helping kids sleep well and worry less?

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Writers to Read: A Book Review & Giveaway

**Book received for review. All thoughts are my own.
I have always loved books... even at a very young age, I could be found with my nose in a book. While the other kids ran around outside, I could be found on the porch swing reading. On the bus or eating lunch was always done with a book in hand. Perhaps one of my most memorable birthday gifts was the set of classics like Black Beauty, The Secret Garden and 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea that my parents bought me in the second grade. Yes, I loved getting caught up in a great book and going on grand adventures through the characters I loved. In fact, one of the few times I was not reading was when I was writing my own stories.

As an adult, I still carry that love of reading with me. While motherhood doesn't allow me to spend nearly the time reading I used to, I still love getting caught up in a great book whenever I find the time. I'm always on the search for the next book on my to read list and for writers that will inspire me as a writer myself.

Does this sound like you too? Then Writers to Read might just be the book for you!


If books are among our friends, we ought to choose them wisely. But sometimes it's hard to know where to start. In W
riters to Read, Doug Wilson--someone who's spent a lifetime writing, reading, and teaching others to do the same--introduces us to nine of his favorite authors from the last 150 years, exploring their interesting lives, key works, enduring legacy. In doing so, Wilson opens our eyes to literary mentors who not only teach us what good writing looks like, but also help us become better readers in the process.

First and foremost, I must say that this book is quite a bit different than most of the books that I have shared in the past. It does speak about Christianity, of course, but is much more history, literature and biography than what I typically share. Simply put, this is not a book for the person who is not an avid reader.  If you're looking for a book to read on vacation, this is probably not it. If you're looking for an easy bedtime reading, this is probably not it. If you're looking for something quick, or something funny, this is probably not it. You'll likely find it a little boring even. But if you truly love books and want to learn more about the writers behind them and find new authors to read in the future, this book is definitely a must see. It truly is a book for those who love books! You will find yourself wanting to read more about the writers featured and wanting to head to the library to pick up their best works.

If you are a book lover and/or writer who is looking for that next book to fill your bookshelf, Writers to Read will be a great place to start! It is available to purchase now at Family Christian.

Find more great reads and connect with Family Christian at the links below:

Follow on Twitter: https://twitter.com/FamilyChristian 
Follow on Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/familychristian/ 
Like on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/FamilyChristian?ref=bookmarks 
Follow on Tumblr: http://family-christian.tumblr.com 
Follow on Instagram: http://instagram.com/familychristian

And one very lucky reader is going to have the chance to win a $10 Family Christian Appreciation Certificate! Enter using the Rafflecopter form below:

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Winner will be contacted via e-mail after giveaway ends, and will have 48 hours to respond before a new winner is chosen. One entry per household, winning entry will be verified. Odds of winning depend on valid entries received. A Modern Day Fairy Tale is not responsible for prize delivery

Cinderella Now Available On BluRay/DVD {A Review + Activity Sheets}

**I received a copy of this movie for review. All thoughts are 100% my own.

I have always loved Cinderella. Of all the Disney princesses, she has always been my favorite. As a matter of fact, it is that love of Cinderella that led to the blog name 'A Modern Day Fairy Tale'. You see, when my husband and I first became a couple, we were half a world away- him in Iraq and me in the US. When we met in person for the first time, he surprised me in his Dress Blues looking rather princely with a rose and a pair of glass slippers, whisking me off to the (Marine Corps) Ball. If it hadn't held a special place in my heart before then, it certainly does now!


So, when I first heard that there was a live action version coming from Disney!? Well, excited doesn't even begin to cover it! I could not WAIT to see it! I'm sure we all know the story of Cinderella by heart, but just in case:



Celebrate Disney’s “Cinderella,” a modern classic that shines with beauty, imagination…and magic! Despite being mistreated by her stepmother (Cate Blanchett) and stepsisters, a spirited Ella (Lily James) resolves to take charge of her fate. Add a royal ball, a Fairy Godmother (Helena Bonham-Carter) and a glass slipper, and suddenly – magic becomes reality!

Unfortunately, when the movie came to theater, I was unable to go at the time. What a bummer! But I did hear a lot about it. In fact, I was actually told be a few that it wasn't a 'kid movie'... and I had no idea what that meant, so I was curious to see for myself. And honestly, I'm still not sure! It's not a cartoon and it's not AS cutesy as the beloved classic, but it's still fun, still magic filled and still a Disney-fied version of the story (ahem, no toes are getting chopped off in this one!). Did my 2-year-old princess loving girl enjoy it? Yes! Would she enjoy the cartoon more? Maybe. My 8 year old on the other hand loved it.... especially when the carriage turned back into a pumpkin... much more dramatic in live action!  I personally LOVED it... it was a beautiful movie and I could see myself watching again and again!


Another great part of the BluRay/DVD? Frozen Fever!!!! If you have a Frozen fan in your home, be prepared... this special feature short is going to get more play than the movie itself! It certainly has in my house! My son and daughter have both watched it over and over again and cannot get enough! Between the great movie and the special features, this has been a GREAT addition to our Disney collection!

Cinderella is available NOW on Bluray & DVD.

Learn more and connect at the links below:


Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Cinderella
Twitter: https://twitter.com/CinderellaMovie
Tumblr: http://cinderellapastmidnight.tumblr.com
Instragram: 
https://instagram.com/disneycinderella

Cinderella We Heart It: http://weheartit.com/disneycinderella

And for more Cinderella fun, check out these fun activities:
Download Cinderella Majestic Games & Craft

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Introducing Premama Lactation for the #Breastfeeding Mom {Review & Giveaway} @drinkpremama #premama #cvs

**Product received for review. All thoughts are my own.



When we learn we are expecting, most of us try to do our absolute best to make sure we are getting everything we need to be at our healthiest for the baby we are carrying. We try to eat balanced meals, make healthier choices (while perhaps still indulging in some less than perfect cravings) and take prenatal vitamins religiously.

But what about after baby comes? We so often get so caught up taking care of our little ones that we forget to take the time to take care of US! At least, I do anyway! As a breastfeeding mom, I know that it is still great to take a prenatal vitamin, but honestly I had a tough time taking them even when pregnant. They were huge, hard to swallow and always left me feeling sick to my stomach. Towards the end of my last pregnancy, I discovered a fantastic prenatal vitamin mix drink called Premama! Rather than a big hard to swallow pill, I was able to mix it into whatever drink I was having. I got the vitamins I needed, without the hassle. It even helped to ease the morning sickness! Genius!

But what does that have to do with the breastfeeding mom?



I am super excited to let you know that the Premama line now includes a Lactation formula! This new product features Folic Acid, Vitamin D3 and Calcium to support breast milk nutrition and Fennel Seed, Fenugreek and Blessed Thistle to help boost milk production. Now, I have never personally struggled with milk production issues myself, but it is a complaint not uncommon to the breastfeeding mom. This product combines the nutritional benefits of a prenatal type vitamin while encouraging milk production too... like two products in one!



Most importantly, it's easy to use! Simply open the package, pour into your drink, stir and enjoy! The Lactation mix even features a tasty natural berry flavor! I personally like mixing in with a little orange juice... or even a delicious smoothie with fresh fruits for more nutritional goodness! And did I mention it's also gluten-free, non-GMO and vegetarian!? It truly is a great product that I can feel good about drinking, and know that I am giving my daughter the best of the best!







Premama Lactation and the entire Premama line of products (including two new prenatal vitamins- Essentials and Esentials + DHA) are available now at CVS stores nationwide!



Learn more about Premama and connect at the links below:

Instagram

Twitter

Facebook

Pinterest

To celebrate, one very lucky mama is going to win a box of (28 packets) for themselves! Enter using the Rafflecopter form below:

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Winner will be contacted via e-mail after giveaway ends, and will have 48 hours to respond before a new winner is chosen. One entry per household, winning entry will be verified. Odds of winning depend on valid entries received. A Modern Day Fairy Tale is not responsible for prize delivery

Let's Learn about the Lord's Prayer: A Book Review and Blog Tour

**Book received for review. All thoughts are my own.



Our Father, which art in heaven,

Hallowed be thy Name.
Thy Kingdom come.
Thy will be done in earth,
As it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
As we forgive them that trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation,
But deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom,
The power, and the glory,
For ever and ever.
Amen.

We all know these words, don't we? From a very young age, many of us have had this prayer- The Lord's Prayer- forever ingrained into our memories.

But what does it REALLY mean?

As an adult I now understand these words, but as a kid? I knew the words, but I didn't truly understand what they meant and how they applied to my life or my own prayers. How are we to use these model of prayer that Christ gave us all if we don't really get what it means? I believe it is important even for young kids- not just to memorize these words, but to live them. So, I was thrilled to discover that there was a new book that would teach them just that- Let's Learn about the Lord's Prayer!

In this first book of the HeartSmart series, preschoolers are invited on a playdate with Emma. Together they learn the Lord's Prayer and practice "teaching" it to Emma's favorite teddy bear. HeartSmart is a Scripture memory series designed to create opportunities for children to fill their heart with God's Word. HeartSmart combines key Scriptures with songs, giving parents a spiritual formation path for building a strong foundation of faith. The entire Lord's Prayer is included, along with a custom song (free download with access code).
 

This is such a fun story! Through repetition and song, it helps to teach kids this oh so important prayer. But it's not just memorization. It also takes a look at the words, and shows us what these mean to US, in a way that is easy for even young kids to understand!

While the lesson of the Lord's Prayer is this story is obviously great, I also love the other message given throughout... that Jesus is not just this big, distant figure for Emma, but that he is her very best friend. Really, is there anything great that we can teach our children?

If you are looking for another fun book to teach your little ones about Jesus, this one is a must see! It is available to purchase now. Learn more and see more reviews here

Monday, September 21, 2015

Be a Light & Wear Your Faith with the NEW Fall Jewelry from Family Christian #FCBlogger

A huge thank you to Family Christian for sponsoring today's post, all thoughts are my own.

In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven. - Matthew 5:16


I just adore this verse. It sums up perfectly how I want to live. I want to be that light that gives glory to God in all that I do... that includes the way I present myself to the world! So, how can I do that?

Today, I'm sharing my 3 simple ways:


Show God's Love Through Attitude and Actions.


First and foremost, the single most important thing that we can do as Christians to be a light in the world is to act like Christians. That doesn't mean we act as though we are better than others, or that we have to constantly be preaching the Word everywhere we go. Instead, we just have to have a positive attitude- we must be kind and loving to everyone, even those we don't always agree with. We must be slow to anger and quick to forgive. We must not judge or gossip. Of course, we are only human and we will all have our bad days, but we should try not to dwell in them. We should instead strive to show God's love and mercy in all that we do. Big or small.

Dress in a Way That Pleases God.

Don't worry, I'm not here to tell you you HAVE to wear skirts 24/7, can't cut your hair or wear a tank top... When it comes to modesty, there are a million different answers as to what should be considered modest and what should not... and you have to find that line for yourself. Personally, I prefer skirts for comfort, but wear them only 75% of the time. I wear thicker tank tops on occasions, but avoid spaghetti straps, halters or sleeveless clothes for the most part. Cleavage? Not for me. And if it's too short to allow me to get down on the floor and play with my kids? Not going to be appropriate. Again, your comfort levels may vary from my own and that's okay, but I encourage you to consider what your clothing portrays before choosing those pieces, and ask whether or not that is the image you want to portray as a light for Christ. (Candance Cameron Bure has some great thoughts on modesty in her book Dancing Through Life!)




Wear Your Faith.

The first two steps are a bit more subtle, but this one is all about displaying your faith proudly no matter where you go! Of course, there are many great t-shirts out there with great messages to shout to the world...but I'm not much for t-shirts myself. Instead, I love mixing my faith into my regular fall wardrobe with great accessories like jewelry! Perhaps the best thing about jewelry is that you can find styles to go with whatever your tastes are. There are simple pieces- elegant and delicate. But for me, I love BOLD! I love pieces that stand out and finish any outfit perfectly.

The new fall collection from Family Christian is perfect! Take a look:






I love that these pieces are beautiful, trendy and let me boldly display my faith, while keeping my own style! And for those that prefer a more subtle look, there are certainly options for you too! You can see it all and connect with Family Christian at the links below:

Follow on Twitter: https://twitter.com/FamilyChristian 
Follow on Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/familychristian/ 
Like on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/FamilyChristian?ref=bookmarks 
Follow on Tumblr: http://family-christian.tumblr.com 
Follow on Instagram: http://instagram.com/familychristian


Have you checked out the new fall jewelry from Family Christian? What are your favorite pieces? In what other ways can YOU wear your faith proudly?

Friday, September 18, 2015

Bible Journaling: A Deeper Look at Journaling Supplies

A few weeks ago, I shared a quick introduction to Bible Journaling- covering questions about what it is, what you need and how to get started. If you missed it, be sure to visit that post here.

Since beginning my Bible Journaling journey, I have fallen in love with it! It truly is such a great way to spend some time in the Word and grow closer to God through art and doodles. In my previous post, I touched briefly upon possible supplies you might find useful. Today, I'm expanding on that and sharing a more in depth look at Bible Journaling supply options to consider:

Colored Pencils

For the beginning Bible journaler, colored pencils are a great place to begin! First and foremost, they're inexpensive! They allow your to create beautiful drawings full of color without investing a ton of money up front. Personally, I think you'll fall in love and want to expand your collection, but regardless this is a great cost effective starting point!


Colored Pencils, Micron Pens, Gel Pens

Micron & Gel Pens

As much as I love using my colored pencils, I must admit I am a huge fan of bright, vibrant colors... so for me, pens were a must! Gel pens write smoothly and are available in a large variety of colors! They can get a little price-y, but were completely worth it for me.

Micron pens are also available in a variety of colors, as well as a variety of sizes. These are ideal for lettering and outlining- great color, with no bleed through. I've found even when using colored pencil, outlining with a micron pen gives a great pop to finish it off!

(I personally use and love this set from Family Christian.)


Acylic Paint, Micron Pen, Gel Pen

Acrylic Paints

I'll be honest...I was a little bit apprehensive about painting in my Bible! First and foremost, I'm not an artist and I was afraid I might mess something up! But after I got over that, I found acrylic paints to be one of my favorite mediums to use!! I love the vibrant colors that they gave me, and with the particular paint I use (Hand Made Modern, found at Target), I found I was still able to read through the paint too, and there was no bleed through!

I do suggest using a sheet of paper under your work, and if possible, testing on an index page in the back of your bible. Be sure not to get too much paint on your brush and allow to dry completely before closing to avoid sticking.

Acrylic Paint, Micron Pens


Watercolor Paints

I'll be honest, I have not personally used watercolor in my Bible, but it is a very common medium among Bible journalers. Like acrylic, it gives you gorgeous color without covering your words, but tend to offer softer colors. Some find that when using water colors, you may need prepare your page first with a primer to prevent bleed through while others find this unnecessary. Again, I suggest testing it out on a back page is possible, and be very mindful of using too much water! There are also watercolor markers and pencil that can work great as well.

Washi/Craft Tape

Warning: If you are Bible Journaling on a budget, do not use washi tapes! They are not always the cheapest options and once you start buying, you'll want them all! Still, this is a super fun way to bring in more color and design even for the non-crafty! Though I have not quite mastered the use of washi-tape in my journaling, I have seen some beautiful creations from others! Washi tape can be a great solution if you've had a page that bled through as well... it covers the bleed through and allows you to create something new!

Washi/Craft Tape, Micron Pen


Stickers/Rub-Ons/Various Scrapbooking Supplies

If you're already a scrapbooker, you may already have everything you need to create elaborate one of a kind creations in your Bible! For those of us who aren't great at drawing, this again can be a great solution. If you want your Bible to close easily, stick with simple stickers or rubs, but if that's not an issue you can go as elaborate as you wish! (I tend to lean more torward simple for myself, but again, I've seen some beautifully done pages using elaborate 3D stickers, ribbons and more!)

Rub On Images, Stencil, Acrylic Paint


Stamps/Ink

This is another one of those things that COULD have the potential to get price-y, but is another great option for the non-artists among us. Stamps allow for stunning pictures and designs, with little artistic ability required! Again, be mindful of bleed through with your inks.

Stencils

I love bold prints! But drawing them by hand? Not in my skill set! So, stencils are a great addition to my collection.You can use them with paint, pens, colored pencil...whatever your preferred medium!


Stencil, Acrylic Paint, Gel Pens, Rub Ons

Of course, these are just a few of the many great mediums you can use in your Bible Journaling! The possibilities are endless! Get creative, have fun, make it you!

Have you started your Bible Journaling adventure yet? What are your must have supplies? Which can you do without?