Thursday, November 19, 2020

CrossTimber Name Gifts

Disclaimer: I received a FREE copy of this product through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way.

 Several years ago, I reviewed a company named CrossTimber that makes beautiful name meaning gifts. When I was given the opportunity to review their products again, I was very excited. CrossTimber makes lots of different products, including name plaques, coffee mugs, music boxes, bookmarks, and more. For this review, I received five name meaning bookmarks (but I purchased four extras) and a set of Amazing Name Print Activity Sheets. The bookmarks are going to be gifts for my children and husband this holiday season.

Ordering from CrossTimber is really easy and the shipping is pretty fast, considering these are custom-made items! The hardest part is picking out your design - there are so many beautiful images to choose from! You can also choose what to put on the bookmark - presidential quotes, famous author quotes, Bible verses, character qualities, or even a custom message. I chose to put Bible verses on my bookmarks. 

The bookmarks are 6.5 inches by 2 inches, laminated in full color. The quality is excellent! You can choose to have corner designs or a ribbon added to the bookmark for a small fee. The bookmarks are $3.99 each, and you can add name cards, greeting cards, and more in matching designs.

I'm going to show you each bookmark that I received so you can see the variety of designs and the beautiful name meanings of my family. 


Who is Like God? One of Exaltation and Praise.

The heavens shall praise they wonders, O Yahweh. For who in the heavens can be compared unto Yahweh? He is more awesome than all who surround Him.
Psalm 89:5-8


Uplifted: One who is Delivered of God

But those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint.
Isaiah 40:32


God's Unmerited Forgiveness; Symbol of Redemption and Love

So as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with mercies, kindness, humility, gentleness, patience, forgiveness. And over all of these virtues, put on love.
Colossians 3:12


From the Forest: One who is Respected and Courageous

And at midnight Paul and Silas prayed, and sang praises unto God: and the prisoners heard them.
Acts 16:25


Of the Giants, Title of Honor: Leader Among Men, Humble Before God

By humility and the fear of the Lord are riches, and honor, and life.
Proverbs 22:4


Whom God Makes Strong: God Will Strengthen

For who is God, save the Lord? and who is a rock, save our God? God is my strength and power: and He maketh my way perfect.
2 Samuel 22:32


God is my Judge, One of Good Spiritual Discernment: Revealer of Truth

Daniel answered the king: The secret which the king has demanded cannot be shown by the wise men, the astrologers, the magicians, the soothsayers...But there is a God in heaven that revealeth secrets.
Daniel 2:27


Famous in Counsel: One Who is Divinely Perceptive

If any man thirst, let him come unto me and drink. He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath sail, out of his belly shall flower rivers of living water.
John 7:37-38


Pearl, Precious Before God: One of Mighty Victory

A book of remembrance was written before Him for those who feared the Lord and thought upon His name. "And they shall be mine in that day when I make up my jewels and I will spare them like they were my own son."
Malachi 3:16

I absolutely love these bookmarks, and I am so excited to give them to my husband, children, and grandbaby this holiday season! The quality is excellent, the colors are vibrant, and the meanings of the name are beautiful. Normally, the meaning of my name is simply, "A Pearl", but CrossTimber has made it so beautiful by adding "Precious Before God: One of Mighty Victory." My husband's name meaning is also very accurate - he is very perceptive and has a godly discernment that I admire.  I love the scripture they added to each bookmark, and the images I chose went well with each of the bookmarks. These make the perfect personal gift, especially for someone who has everything already or is a difficult person to shop for. Who wouldn't love a personalized gift with their name meaning?

We also received an Amazing Name Activity Set. This is a set of more than 25 activity pages of crossword puzzles, word searches, handwriting practice, and coloring pages featuring your child's name. I only received one set, so I chose to use our last name, Russell, and divide them up between my children. This set is only $6 for the physical copy mailed to you, or $3 for the digital copy sent to your email address. They also have a 10 sets for $40 (physical) and 10 sets for $20 (digital) bundle. 

I am very impressed with CrossTimber's name meaning gifts. They have such a variety of items and personalization options. The customer service is great, the quality is terrific,  and the shipping was fast! See what other reviewers thought about CrossTimber by clicking the banner below.

Name Cards, Bookcards, Activity Sheets & Plaque Personalised Gifts {CrossTimber Reviews}

Monday, November 16, 2020

Julie Naturally Bible Studies

Disclaimer: I received a FREE copy of this product through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way.

I love Bible studies, so when I was offered the chance to review two Bible studies from Julie Naturally, I was ecstatic. I received the digital copies of Faith Journeys Bible Study Series: Philippians and Faith Journeys Bible Study Series: Romans Bundle.

The Romans Bible study is about eight weeks long, covering around two chapters of Romans a week. Each day only has three to five questions pertaining to the scripture reading which makes this very doable for busy moms! There is a fun coloring page at the end of each week's lesson to appeal to your creative nature. She has also included beautiful scripture memory cards that you can print out and hang around your house to help your memorize God's Word. The Romans study includes access to eight short videos that will enhance your Bible study. These videos are pretty short and easy to watch. This entire bundle is only $14.99!

The Philippians study is a shorter study at four weeks long and covers one chapter of Philippians each week. There are four printable memory verse cards with this study and coloring pages at the end of each week's study. This study is only $8.49!

I decided to work through the Philippians study first. I really love the format of this Bible study. The daily readings are very manageable and the questions are thought-provoking and rooted in scripture. She explains the context very well and shows how it applies to our lives. The questions really have you examining your life, especially as a Christian, and motivate you to live a life pleasing to God. The lesson on growing weary while doing good works really resonated with me. It's easy to lose sight of why you're serving and ministering sometimes, but this study helped me to see that growing weary is normal, but I need to press though that and continue working for the kingdom of God.  

{memory cards to cut apart}

{coloring pages each week}

{days 1 and 2 }

If you're looking for a women's Bible study that you can complete in 20 minutes a day, look no further! These are really great studies that are scripturally sound. Click the banner below to see what other reviewers thought about these studies from Julie Naturally.


Tuesday, November 3, 2020

Disclaimer: I received a FREE copy of this product through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way.

Teaching math has never been my favorite thing to do, especially in the upper grades! We've tried many different math curricula, both online and physical textbooks. We have finally decided on the math that works best for our family, but I was pretty excited to have the opportunity to review I'm always open to new ways of teaching and supplemental programs. 

We received a one-year family subscription that includes access to Elementary, Intermediate, PreAlgebra, and Algebra I courses. The videos and worksheets are based on the Math Essentials Books, which I have used and reviewed before. The course is either $15.00 a month of $99.00 for the year.

I had my 7th grade daughter start in Basic Math, which is Elementary level. She is working on decimals in her math program, so she watched a few videos on the concepts she is learning. I printed out a few worksheets for her to complete for extra practice, and she took the quiz. 

I also had my 5th grade son work in the Basic Math level on multiplication and division. He is mastering both of those math concepts, and I knew extra practice would be good for him. He really enjoys taking the online quizzes, but could skip the printable worksheets. 

I was really impressed with the tutorial videos! The narrator explains the steps to each math topic so expertly and concisely. The videos are short enough to keep your child's attention, but long enough to be effective. They aren't flashy or loud, which is great for kids who get easily distracted. They're quick and easy to watch.

The worksheets are also from the Math Essentials books, which I really like. They, too, aren't flashy or colorful, with just the right amount of math problems on each one. I love the layout of these worksheets and the fact that it doesn't use all of my ink to print them!

The program also has a Teacher/Parent Dashboard and Student Interface. Your students will have their own log-in information. They can go to their Student Console to view their course progress and badges they have earned. They can earn badges for completing and scoring well on quizzes. The Teacher Dashboard allows you to view your students, your account information, and course reports. is a wonderful math resource for homeschoolers and public schoolers alike! My oldest son is in 10th grade at our public school, and I may have him use the Algebra portion as review and practice. This could be a stand-alone math curriculum or a supplement to your current math program. Click the banner below to see what other reviewers thought of!

Math & Algebra Family Subscription { Reviews}

Tuesday, October 20, 2020

The Tender Toddler School

 I have started writing a toddler school curriculum for Zeke, and I wanted to share it here for free! First, let me share a little bit about what the curriculum is.

I don't think toddlers need schoolwork, but I do think they need special focused time with Mom. The Tender Toddler School centers around a book a week. The books are very toddler-appropriate, mostly board books and some of Zeke's favorites. I have an activity listed for four days, and then there are four more extra ideas you can use. You can either use one for the fifth day, add one or two to the other days, replace an activity with another one, or skip them altogether! 

The activities build fine motor skills and hand strength, teach sorting and classifying, teach colors, shapes, and numbers, work on gross motor skills, and more. I use the ideas for Zeke's Tot Trays, which you can read more about here. There are detailed instructions for each activity as well as a list of supplies. Most things are found easily in your home. I also have additional book suggestions for each week.

You are welcome to use this curriculum for free. I would love to have a weekly Toddler School link up, so if you're interested in that leave me a comment and let me know! I also have many toddler school activities and more printables in my Etsy shop - link is in the side bar.

Click HERE to get the first month's curriculum!

Click HERE to get the first month's printables!

Wednesday, October 14, 2020

Musik at Home

Disclaimer: I received a FREE copy of this product through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way.

 The past month, Zeke and I have been singing and dancing with Musik at Home. Musik at Home is an early childhood music program for children ages 7 down to babies. We received 3 months of Musik at Home Membership, which gave me access to over 400 musical activities, games, stories and more! 

Musik at Home is designed for the parent to use alongside the child, but it is an open-and-go program. You will need a few props for your child: a set of rhythm sticks (we used wooden dowels), a shaker (rice or beans in a container), and a scarf (you could also use a cloth napkin). 

You can choose from so many different videos! There are lots of different categories so you can find the one you want for your child. Some of the categories are Finger Independence, Dancing, Instruments, Songs for Special Days, Scarves, and Rhythm Sticks. They also have categories for multiple age spans, like Babies and Toddlers, Ages 1-5, Ages 4-7, and Mixed Ages. The categories make it super simple to decide which videos you want to use.

Zeke and I tried the Babies and Toddlers videos first, since he is almost 2. However these videos were too babyish for him I selected the 1-5 category and those were much more age and skill appropriate for him. 

Zeke doesn't get much (if any) screen time, so I was hesitant to try this with him. However, he did enjoy watching it in 5 minute increments and joining in some of the movements and motions. He wasn't really into the songs, but he really liked the rhythm sticks! He had fun pretending to play the drums and xylophone. 

The videos are well done and the lady singing has a beautiful singing voice. Zeke loves music and singing, and we do lots of it already. Watching the videos made the music a little less natural for us. I had a hard time singing along, which is a big part of the program. I also do not like Zeke having screen time since he isn't even 2 yet, so this is not something I would use with him regularly.

However there are several things I will continue to use with him, including the rhythm sticks and some of the movements and motions modeled in the videos. This would be a fun addition to a preschool or kindergarten's homeschool day. If you don't already sing with your baby or toddler, this would be a great introduction! 

See what the other reviewers thought about Musik at Home by clicking the banner below.

Musik at Home Membership {Musik at Home Reviews}

Tuesday, September 29, 2020

My Teaching Library

{Disclaimer:  I received a FREE copy of this product through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review.  I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way.}

My Teaching Library is a website offering thousands (yes, thousands!) of educational resources to download. You can purchase either an annual or lifetime Download Club Subscription Plan, which is the most cost-effective option, or purchase individual resources, which is better if you only need a few of the products. The Download Club gives you unlimited downloads.

The resources are organized by grade and by subject, which makes it really easy to find what you're looking for. There is a "Miscellaneous" category, where you'll find things like seasonal and holiday-themed products. You can also find several articles to read giving tips on educational resources.

(You can see the different categories above. There are sub-categories for each one as well.)

I have used quite a few resources from My Teaching Library the past month. Some of my favorites were the CVC Word Family resources. I am teaching a Kindergarten relative this year, and I'm using some of these printables to teach him how to read. We have used the -at and -ad word families so far. There are tons of activities in each "bundle", including cut and glue worksheets, word sliders, flashcards, games, and more. He really enjoys the activities, which making learning to read fun.

There are tons of resources for learning to read, including sight word bundles, flashcards, mini-books, and phonics books for your child to read.

My kids and I also used the "Foliage Creations" art activity as part of our autumn nature study. We went outside and gathered different sized and colored leaves and glued them to paper in the shape of animals and insects. This was a fun project with lots of colorful examples to show the kids!

I really enjoyed the seasonal activities, like the Pumpkin Poetry and Pumpkin Science. We will be doing both of these in October! The Pumpkin Poetry includes writing acrostic, diamante, haiku, limerick, monorhyme, cinquain, minute, tanka, and shape poems! My kids love reading and writing poetry, and they are going to really enjoy this.

There are book units of books for all ages, including Dr. Suess's Ten Apples Up On Top (perfect for an autumn apple study) and Number the Stars by Lois Lowry (my favorite childhood novel). I have several downloaded for future use with my kids.

We have also downloaded several poster sets including the Solar System and Nouns. There are interactive notebooks for many different subjects, shape books, writing lessons, entire textbooks to download, including one of Marine Science, math games and worksheets, foreign languages, and electives such as home economics. There are so many different resources I cannot possible name them all here. 

When you download a resource, it goes into your account's Download Library. You get an email notification that it is ready to download. This keeps all of your downloads in one central location, making it super easy to glance at what you have and download whatever you need at the time. I like this feature, because I could download several different resources and they were sent right to my Download Library, ready for me when I was ready for them! This helped me not get sidetracked or frustrated trying to download one thing at a time before looking for something else.

If you're looking for a place that has literally thousands of resources from birth to 12th grade, check out My Teaching Library!  It makes planning the fun seasonal activities so easy! See what other reviewers thought about this amazing resource by clicking the banner below.

My Teaching Library Download Club {My Teaching Library}

Saturday, September 26, 2020

Homeschool Highlights Link Up!

This week we had another busy week, but I am actually posting this on time! Yay for me!

We did our cottage school Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday. It's a lot of fun, but it's also exhausting! I do like having a dedicated place to do our work, and my mom or my mother in law comes and watches Zeke in the back room (which we have set up like a playroom). It's nice to do school without so many (sweet) interruptions a few days a week. 

Thursday and Friday we do school at home, just language arts, math, and handwriting for the boys. Mercie has every subject to do those days. 

We also started using Rooted Childhood for our "Morning Time". That's in quotes because it's not usually in the morning, except on Thursdays and Fridays. We made autumn wreaths this week and read some fun fall poetry. We are going to make Zeke some spiced play-dough this afternoon or tomorrow. I love Rooted Childhood because there is literally something for everyone in it! We can do simple things like making animal felt masks for Zeke to embroidery with the older kids, from simple songs to poetry, and lots of fun seasonal stories.

Mercie had an orthodontist appointment Wednesday afternoon. We live in the boonies, so we have to drive nearly an hour to her orthodontist (an an hour and a half to Mikaela's OB/GYN and hospital). The girls and I took Zeke and the boys stayed at my mother in laws. We stopped and ate Huddle House for lunch (Zeke loves waffles!) and ran into the dollar tree for some fall flowers and leaves for our autumn wreaths. I actually picked up the wreath forms there, too!

Mikaela and I teach at TeamKID at our church on Wednesdays (I'm actually the director, as well), so we rushed home through flooded roads and pouring rain to grab our lesson books and supplies and rushed back to church. 

Zeke had several fun Tot Trays this week! Here are a few:

We also took pictures (before all of the rain!) on our driveway. We really have a beautiful place where we live.

The boys and Mercie got haircuts today - Rod's aunt makes house calls for us! Mikaela has a doctor's appointment and ultrasound next Friday. We are super excited to get another glimpse at Daniel! 

How was your week?

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