Monday, June 24, 2013

Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows - review of sorts

*****Please note that if you have not read this book, I am not going to spoil it for you.  In fact, I am not going to tell you anything about this particular book.  You will have to read it to know why I say this and I would not want to take the adventure away from you.*****

When I first read Harry Potter...oh so many years ago...I found it boring and couldn't even finish the first book in the series.  Now, several years and two children later, I read the whole series.  If you have been following my blog, you know that I read the series out loud to my children and they L.O.V.E.D. every single book.  And yes, I did too!

A lot of great discussions were had as we finished each book and many lessons were learned about friendship, honesty, and trust. 

Nick, Sam and I are now watching the movies and find that reading the books first helps us know what is coming next.  Do the movies stay true to the books?  A few of the movies do.  We have not watched part 1 and 2 of The Deathly Hallows, but plan on doing that soon.

Are these books good for kids?  I think so.  But that is my opinion for my family. I do have to say that I was skeptical at first because of the whole witchcraft and wizardry theme, but the lessons that you take from each book can be applied to muggle daily life.    

I commend J.K. Rowling for her great imagination and telling a story that expands 7 books.  My children enjoyed being a part of Harry Potter's world so much that they have started reading the books themselves.  I am so glad that I own the complete series because I am sure it will be read over and over again by my children and of course, by me :)

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Week of Wildlife

This past week, we had the pleasure of observing the following wildlife in our yard:

Monday, June 10, 2013

Road Trip to Redemption - review

"Brad Mathias thought everything in his family was fine.  A busy, contented dad, he had noticed that his children weren't as close as they used to be - and his daughter Bethany, in particular, had become withdrawn and moody.  But he assumed she was "just being a teen"...until he and his wife learned the secret Bethany had been carrying, one that rocked their family to the core.
In a last-ditch attempt to reach their daughter and to reconnect as a family, Brad and his wife piled everyone into the car and embarked on a wild, crazy, seven-thousand-mile trip across the country.  As they drove, they realized how far apart they'd drifted, found unexpected blessings along the way - and journeyed together from pain and loss to recovery and healing." - (taken from the back cover of the book)

In the first part of the book 'Road Trip to Redemption', Brad Mathias introduces us to his family.  We learn about Brad, his wife Paige and their three children: Jessica, Bethany and Caleb. For me, it was a little slow moving but necessary to know each member of the Mathias family and why the 'Road Trip to Redemption' was the best idea that God placed in Brad and Paige's hearts. 

The second part of the book takes you, the reader, on a breathtaking, journey from Nashville, TN to Canada and interesting places in between. What an amazing story of strength and healing for the Mathias family. 

Tyndale House Publishers has provided me with a complimentary copy of this book for my opinion.

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

"The war against Voldemort is not going well; even Muggle governments are noticing.  Ron scans the obituary pages of the Daily Prophet, looking for familiar names. Dumbledore is absent from Hogwarts for long stretches of time, and the Order of Phoenix has already suffered losses.
And yet...
As in all wars, life goes on.  Sixth-year students learn to Apparate - and lose a few eyebrows in the process. The Weasley twins expand their business.  Teenagers flirt and fight and fall in love  Classes are never straightfoward, though Harry receives some extraordinary hel from the mysterious Half-Blood Prince.
So it's the home front that takes center stage in the multilayered sixth installment of the story of Harry Potter.  Here at Hogwarts, Harry will search for the full and complex story of the boy who became Lord Voldemort - and thereby find what may be his only vulnerability." (taken from the inside front jacket of the book)

Six books down and one more to go.  What can I say about this book that won't spoil it for you?  So many different angles and yet such a great page turner.  We do learn more about Voldemort as a young boy and we also got to see Dumbledore's thoughtfulness and caring toward his students. 

We now begin the final book of the Harry Potter series and look forward to finding out what happens to all of the characters that we both like and dislike.

It is so great to have these books in our home library so that we can enjoy them years to come.  Thank you again, Miss Nancy for your generous gift :)

Saturday, June 8, 2013

A New Neighbor

 A teeny little fawn


 Mama and her baby going into the shrubs/trees

Mama and baby taking a stroll and drink
We have been watching the doe all week.  She has been spotted in our back yard and in our front yard.  This morning we noticed the little fawn with her.  The pictures do not show the size of the fawn very well, but I can say that it is the smallest fawn I have ever seen.  We are thinking that it is probably a day or two old.
Welcome neighbors, stay as long as you like. :)

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Light To Others

"If you want to give light to others, you have to glow yourself" ~ President Thomas S. Monson