Book Review - The Christian Parenting Handbook

~ Posted on Monday, April 29, 2013 at 7:22 AM ~

I have been cutting down my product reviews and giveaways drastically as I wanted to focus more on our kiddos and also getting some sort of rest as much as I can while I'm preparing for the arrival of our 3rd child in September this year. However, being passionate with books and what more, Christian parenting books, I just can't say no to reviewing this book!!! And I was glad I am able to review this book as it has been an eye opener and taught me a lot of things on how to parent more effectively the Christian and biblical ways. Read on for my review...

Title: The Christian Parenting Handbook
Author:  Dr. Scott Turansky & Joanne Miller R.N.

Publisher: Thomas Nelson (April 30, 2013)
ISBN-13/-10:  978-1400205196 / 1400205190
Paperback:  240 pages
Dimension:  8.4 x 5.4 x 0.8 inches

Description from the product page:
"This is a book of ideas. As parents, we need all the ideas we can find. Each child is unique, and the same tools don't work with every one. Furthermore, parenting ideas that had an impact last year may need some tweaking, because your child continues to develop and change. The suggestions in this book will help you be a better parent. But you need more than ideas. In the parenting field, ideas are a dime a dozen. Everyone has an opinion of what's best when it comes to parenting. You probably have more ideas now than you can use. What you want to know is how. I'm sure you'd take a cup of implementation over a bucket of ideas any day. Ideas are easy. Implementation is hard, because that's where things get complicated. 

Every child is unique, and every family has its own set of dynamics. Parents are eager to know how to take ideas and put them into practice. In this book we help you with that. But do even more than help you apply the changes. Each chapter in this book can contribute to your biblical philosophy of parenting. A philosophy is a way of thinking, a framework of ideas and theories. Our goal is to help you develop a biblical structure from which you'll be able to pick and choose from the advice and suggestions you'll receive in order to determine the best strategy for your home. 

By weaving together God's Word with practical applications, you'll begin to develop patterns that will make a tremendous difference in your life and the lives of your children. Paul warned in Colossians 2:8, "See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ." That warning is important for parents, because our world is full of ideas, and many of them are unhelpful, resting on tradition instead of godliness.

Instead, you can develop a parenting philosophy that's based on a solid theology of God and his plan for life. Some elements of a biblical philosophy of parenting will be the same for every parent. Relying on God's Word as the authority, passing faith from parents to children, and teaching kids to live lives that follow Christ are important in every home. But many elements of a biblical philosophy of parenting will differ from parent to parent. Some will emphasize a more relational approach, where others are more firm. Some children need more structure than others to move them forward. The formation of a unique, yet biblical approach to parenting provides parents with a way to think and act that's best for their family situation. 

The ideas represented in the chapters of this book will guide your thinking. You may choose to emphasize some more than others. Let the Holy Spirit guide you to develop your own unique approach. The common factor is reliance on God's Word for the development of your own philosophy of parenting. Furthermore, you'll make adjustments along the way as you grow in Christ. In fact, before you get too far into this book, we suggest you create a quick action list, a reminder of what you want to do as you read through the chapters. Alongside your to-do list, though, we hope you'll create a think list, identifying key principles and concepts you'll use to guide your thinking over time. Each item on these lists represents a piece of your strategy, a biblical way of thinking about parenting and working with children. Together they'll help you formulate your own biblical philosophy of parenting. 

In essence, you'll develop a mission statement and a vision for your home and for each of your kids. As you consider the principles in this book, you'll find yourself carving out a parenting style. You'll take your personality and allow it to be molded by a biblical framework and a grace-based, heart-based approach to parenting. 

In the end you'll find yourself growing faster than you had imagined in your ability to parent effectively. Bear in mind that a heart-based approach to parenting involves strategic thinking, planning, and implementation. An idea is only an idea until it takes wings and flies into your home. It's not enough to have a good idea. You'll want to plan for its implementation as well. That's why many of the chapters contain specific words you may use in your family. "

I'm a full-time mummy

This book comes with 50 biblically-based strategies for raising Godly children.I love how each tips are separated into its own chapters, and short and simple (few pages for each tip), fast enough to read and understand.

I bookmarked a lot of helpful tips in this book and even shared one of them in my Facebook page. I'm currently trying out some of the tips in the book with my 4 years old boy - especially how to react/respond when he is in a tantrum. So far, we are still working on perfecting the approach.

In page 146, "Be careful about disciplining only one child when two kids are fighting. Both are usually at fault in some way. Trying to figure out who started it rarely leads to peace. Victims are often instigators. Teach children how to respond to offenses, and when they make a mistake, teach them how to admit it and ask for forgiveness.", so yes, definitely agree with the statement here. Will definitely be trying the approach suggested in this chapter and see how it turns out after this.

In page 189, "Unfortunately, many parents encourage their children to defend themselves or blame others because of the way they approach the confrontation. When you enter a room and ask the question, “What happened here?” or “Who started it?” you’re encouraging kids to rationalize, justify, blame, or defend their actions. When you ask, “Who started it?” do you ever have a child say, “It was me.” No. Instead they tend to blame." Currently, whenever I found out one of my 2 kiddos crying, I tend to look at my older child and questioned him what went on (since he's the one who can answers me back as my 1.5 years old girl will just cry and looked back at me with her pityful face). So point taken for us to learn from this approach.

A lot of the tips touches on how we as parents should learn to control and manage our anger, definitely not lashing out in front of our kids and not using anger to punish or revenge.

In summary, this is a must have book for parents who are seriously looking for ways to raise their children according to God's way.

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Buy The Christian Parenting Handbook between April 29 and May 5 and get a package of free resources valued at more than $400. In addition, you can get The Christian Parenting Handbook Companion Guide (This is a workbook with audio clips that will help you apply the material in The Christian Parenting Handbook.) for free if you purchase 5 copies or more of the book. Simply make your purchase from Amazon, Barnes and Noble, BAM (Books A Million), CBD or Parable.

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I received no monetary compensation for this review, I was provided with a PDF copy of the book in order to facilitate my review. All opinions expressed in this post are my own. Please do your own research when purchasing products, as your opinions may differ from mine. And if you'd like to read my previous book reviews, you can do so by reading this post of mine called "My Book Reviews"

 I'm a full-time mummy

Smart Kids 2013

~ Posted on Wednesday, April 10, 2013 at 7:37 AM ~

Oh boy! Did you know that Malaysia’s biggest and longest running educational kids’ fair is back?!

Just for 3 days, parents and children get to attend this education fair and gather all information with regards to education, health related products and services, creative learning games and toys, basically everything you want to find out as a parent for yourself, your family and your children!

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"Smart Kids was founded based on the premise that parents needed to have a better avenue of choice in terms of education for their children. It was first conceptualized in year 2002 to provide a platform for parents and children to explore and discover together the latest educational products and services in a edu-fun way that is filled with exciting and innovative activities and programs.

Smart Kids’ mission statement is “to be the premier platform used by parents to introduce the joys of learning to their children, in a manner which utilizes the tools most readily accepted by individual children and tailored to an individual child’s most effective way of learning.” Smart Kids makes available a platform for holistic, whole child learning by gathering together various educational institutions, system providers and learning programmes in an environment conducive to fact finding and consultation."

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Did you know that one of Smart Kids’ core beliefs is that every child is smart in his or her own way and that their parents’ responsibility is to help them find ways and means beyond the usual, formal education system in which to bring out the best in their kids?

I am very pleased to find out about this as I do strongly believe in letting my child learn at their own pace, when they are ready and more receptive and yes, as a parent, I feel a deep sense of responsibilities to ensure that my children learns what it takes to not just survive the outside world, but to use their brain and logic thinking to chart their own path when they are grown up and ready to face the world.

As a stay-at-home-mother of 2 kiddos (and third one coming in September 2013!), I would personally watch out for educational related products. For those who are not aware, I'm currently teaching my 4 years old boy, nothing heavy yet and we don't have a curriculum to follow, although every weekdays we will have two half hour sessions of learning activities where I get my kiddos to learn how to write numbers, reading books together, coloring, play Lego, play dough and the rest of the day are pretty much playtime, eating, napping, bathing, a little iPad time (on story apps or games) and bonding with grandma and daddy.

I can't say for now how long I intend to teach my kiddos but I would totally be interested to find out more on the different methods of education (such as Montessori) and what are the extra fun and educational activities I can have my kiddos participate in as part of their playtime and also in improving their social skills.

I mean, looking at the list of companies and brands that are participating in this year's fair, I'm all giddy up and excited! I know my boy will be thrilled with Lego, I myself am happy to see this famous brand as one of the exhibitors during the fair and although I have personally never ever touched a single Lego brick before becoming a parent, I do believe now that it is really really useful and educational as well! We have personally witnessed the many Lego creations made by our 4 years old boy and see how it got our boy to be so creative at a tender young age. Amazing! And to think this is just one of the many many brands that will be participating in the education fair!

Now enough about me, we focus back to you and your loved ones! If you have not heard or attend this type of education fair and wondering how can it benefit you, oh well, think of how convenient it is to have all the information you wanted under one same place!

Anything you have been dying to find out, whether it is education program or methods or schools for your little ones, what sort of creative, fun and yet educational toys and games that you can get for your children, what are the latest products in health or finance related areas for yourself, your family and your children?

Imagine all the information all ready for you to go and find out! No need to crack your head to Google and compare the various websites and reviews and feedbacks when you can have a look yourself during the education fair itself. And don't forget the opportunities for you to ask the staff of the companies or brands face to face on the day itself if you are keen to know more!

I believe that if you attend the education fair with your family, you will be able to let your child explore and find out what interests them as well. Now parents, what better way to let your child discover their inner talents and passions while at the same time you get to find out more for yourself and your family and spend the day out as a family?

Of course, there are some contest and activities that your children can take part and have fun during the education fair as well and also some cool giveaways and lucky draws will be held during the education fair as well!

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Smart Kids 2013 will be held at Putra World Trade Centre, Kuala Lumpur on 19 to 21 April 2013.

A bit more information on the admission details:

* FREE entrance for kids (below 16 years old)
* RM5.00 admission (per adult / day)
* Log on to www.smartkids.com.my to pre-register before 14th April 2013 for Free Admission Pass (per adult)

What are you waiting for? You have less than 2 weeks to register!!

** Disclosure: This is a sponsored post. All thoughts, opinions and words are 100 % my own.
Please do your own research when purchasing products, as your opinions may differ from mine.

iPad App Review - The Trip Little Critter Reading Adventure

~ Posted on Thursday, March 28, 2013 at 8:16 AM ~

My 4 years old boy is a huge fan of Little Critter's books and of course the moment I saw the press release for this app, I have to have it! Can just imagine seeing my boy's excited face when he sees the newest addition to our Little Critters book app! Without further ado, here goes my feedback...

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* Title: The Trip Little Critter Reading Adventure
* Price: $3.99
* Category: Books
* Released: Mar 25, 2013
* Version: 1.0.1
* Size: 63.8 MB
* Language: English
* Seller: Baker & Taylor, Inc. © 2013 Mercer Mayer, Silver Dolphin Books, Dancing Penguins LLC, J.R. Sansevere
* Rated: 4+
* Requirements: Compatible with iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad. Requires iOS 4.3 or later. This app is optimized for iPhone 5.

Description from the product page:

"In this fun-filled, interactive reading adventure, young children are invited to learn along with Little Critter on his family’s road trip. Rich in learning activities, games, and exciting surprises, kids will be entertained as they discover a new adventure on every page. The Critters’ trip is full of amusing twists and turns—just like the actual road they’re following! Kids can help Little Critter choose the route the family will take and explore the countryside, the city, the beach and more: fix the car when it breaks down; move a horse stuck in the middle of the road; feed the seagulls; and even find time to grab a hot dog! All this while playing lots of games with Little Sister along the way to pass the time!"

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* It is engaging and interactive and I personally prefer the 'Reading Adventure' option instead of 'Just Read' option which you will missed quite a few animated surprises here and there when you just plainly read along the storybook!

* I like the idea of this story as I can easily use it to relate to my kiddos when we go for our family trip next time.

* Other than going through the adventure journey with Little Critter and his family in the road trip, there are also educational and fun games to be played throughout the story such as color matching, alphabet games, object sequencing and alphabets flashcards.


* There is also a mini problem-solving games where your child can find and keep objects in Little Critter's backpack which will come in handy when they got into problems along their road trip. This helps build up problem-solving skills in our little ones to determine and figure out which objects in the backpack best to be used to fix a problem.

* In summary, this is a fun-filled and educational app which is a must for Little Critters' fans! Definitely must have!

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You can purchase the "The Trip Little Critter Reading Adventure" app from the iTunes App Store.

I'm a full-time mummy

I received no monetary compensation for this review, I was provided with the promo code to redeem the application for free from iTunes Store in order to facilitate my review. All opinions expressed in this post are my own. Please do your own research when purchasing products, as your opinions may differ from mine. And if you'd like to read my previous iPad Apps reviews, you can do so by reading this post of mine called "My iPad App Reviews"