More Than Just “The Talk”: Becoming Your Kids’ Go-To Person About Sex by Jonathan McKee

After a couple months of silence I’m back with a highly recommended book for parents, youth ministers, or anyone helping kids through the craziness of life, hormones and relationships…

This is a great and needed book!! It was well written and easy to read — not due to the subject matter,More Than Just “The Talk” book cover but I guess you could say in spite of the subject matter. Jonathan McKee’s humor was just the right amount to lighten the mood of the reader (no defeatist attitude here!) while not making lessing the importance of such this issue. This book was both eye-opening and encouraging. He has a chapter specifically written towards helping our daughters and another for our sons. His “How Far?” chapter has a perfect example involving a toothbrush and a toilet!! (You’ll have to check that out!!) He also helps readers as parents and leaders who are guiding kids as they understand and stay away from issues like porn and masturbation. His “Tough Questions” chapter is a good resources to address specific questions he has heard from kids and parents.

Continuing conversations, asking questions, and building relationships are huge parts of “becoming your kids’ go-to person about sex”! His tips for keeping conversations open are…

  1. Don’t Overreact
  2. Don’t Make Sex “Naughty”
  3. Keep Your Eyes Open for Natural Springboards
  4. Ask, Listen…Repeat

My husband and I want to help our kids in the areas of purity. We want them to guard their hearts and their eyes as they grow and mature. We want them to look forward to experiencing God’ wonderful gift of sex in marriage!!

Resources like this book are welcomed tools for us as parents!

I received this book for free from Bethany House in exchange for my honest, unbiased opinion.

In This House We Will Giggle by Courtney DeFeo

Let me get to the point…LOVE the title, LOVE the subtitle “Making Virtues, Love & Laughter a DailyIn This House We Will Giggle book cover Part of Your Family Life”, AND LOVE the cover design for Courtney DeFeo’s book, In This House We Will Giggle!!!! 🙂 Therefore I was really excited to read this book. I DEFINITELY want more giggles in our home!

Through love and laughter, each of the chapters focus on teaching a different virtue. The virtues included are joy, love, forgiveness, faith, patience, perseverance, respect, responsibility, service, humility, gratitude, and generosity. DeFeo presents the option of focusing on one virtue each month of the year starting with Joy in January through Generosity in December. This is a great way to not feel overwhelmed but give your family time to really learn about, practice, and embrace each virtue. The chapters include a section called “catch phrase for_(the virtue)_, a memory verse for the month, a kid-friendly definition for the virtue, questions to discuss, a Bible story to read (from The Jesus Storybook Bible), activity ideas and more.

I started reading the book around the end of January, so I didn’t want to rush to start it in January. However, I loved how some of the virtues go very well with the holidays of a few of the months, such as Love in February, Gratitude in November and Generosity in December. Therefore I decided to start implementing the monthly virtue focus in order, but starting in February with the second chapter Love: Letting Concern for Others Guide Our Behavior. (We’ll go back to January at the end. Don’t want to miss Joy: When the Reality of Life Meets a Heart of Gladness!) The kids have totally jumped on board – doing chores for each other, writing notes, ….! It’s been a sweet family experience so far and we are just starting. 🙂

I’ll close my review with some good questions from the heart of In This House We Will Giggle by Courtney DeFeo…

“Our home, and the environment we create within our family, sets up the impression our kids will have of faith and God. Will they believe Jesus loves only well-behaved, model children, or will they know He loves them just as they are? Will they see the Christian life as a series of rules to be followed, or will they follow Jesus because they’ve learned from us what it means to love Him and find joy in being with Him?”’ -pg. 5

More Info

Author Bio

**I received this book from Blogging for Books for an honest review.

How to Control Your Emotions, So They Don’t Control You eBook Review AND Giveaway

How to Control Your Emotions, So They Don’t Control You (a mom’s guide to overcoming) by Brooke McGlothlin came out in September, so I’m a little How to Control Your Emotions So They Don’t Control You book coverlate  in helping launch this ebook. (Ooops! I overcommitted myself a bit and then had some health issues.) However, it’s definitely a book worth continuing to recommend! (Because my emotions WON’T control me. And by the grace of God, I will overcome!!)


Brooke starts strong. What is our focus?… “To be right or to love Jesus well? If the deepest longing of our heart is to get the upper hand, prove a point, or win the battle, the rest of this book probably won’t make much sense. But if gratitude for Jesus’ death on the cross bubbles up to overflowing, and our deepest desire is to love Jesus well in return, this book will be a roadmap of sorts to understanding and overcoming our emotions.”

She then covers some important truths (there are a few web links embedded to relevant posts on her blog)…

*Feel, Know, Do — The Heart of Submitting Our Emotions to God

*How to Overcome Lies with the Truth

*Where Do We Get the Power to Overcome?

*Sometime We Just Have to Walk Away

*What Happens When We Blow It?

At the end readers are given 25 scriptures to help us put what we’ve learned into action as we strive toward emotional wholeness. There is also a link for a nice looking printable of these verses. Print and keep handy!

How to Control Your Emotions, So They Don’t Control You is not a full length book at 43 pages, but it’s still powerfully packed with practical truth from God’s Word. It’s only $3.99 through her website or the book’s. At this time it’s only available as a PDF, but she’s tried to make it very readable for the Kindle.

I received an PDF version of this ebook as I participated in the launch team for this book. I had read Hope for the Weary Mom (which was coauthored with Stacey Thacker) and loved it – such truth and hope! so I was looking forward to checking at her new book, however I still reviewed this book as I would any other –with honesty and grace.



***I have been given the privilege of giving away an ebook of How to Control Your Emotions, So They Don’t Control You!!

What do you need to do? Well, I’m keeping it simple (like always)…

  1. Comment below about what interests you the most about this book? (Make sure to include a way to contact you, like email address.)

  2. Then share — Facebook, Twitter,… you choose, but don’t forget to comment again to let me know how you shared.***

The winner will be drawn by my kids Saturday (October 18) morning, so comment and share by Friday.

****And the winner is…. LaDonna! Congrats and enjoy the book!!****


Brooke McGlothlin's life verse

About the author: Brooke McGlothlin uses her ministry experience to reach women through writing and speaking, and leads them in a vibrant relationship with Christ, despite the surprises and challenges of life. She blogs at Surprised by Life. In 2010, Brooke co-founded Raising Boys Media. She’s also the co-creator of the Hope for the Weary Mom blog. She’s the author of the best-selling eBooks, Hope for the Weary Mom: Where God Meets You in Your MessWarrior Prayers: Praying the Word for Boys in the Areas They Need it Most, and creator of the 21 Days of Prayer for Sons challenge. Brooke currently resides in the mountains of Southwest Virginia with her husband—the man she’s had a crush on since the 3rd grade— and their two sons.

—from her blog’s About link

“Women Living Well” Book Review AND GIVEAWAY

I was excited to dive into Courtney Joseph’s new book — Women Living Well. And with a subtitle of “Finding Your Joy in God, Your Man, Your Kids, and Women Living Well book coverYour Home”, I suspect most Christ-following women will be interested in what is shared and how she shares. Not everything she does you will want to do, not every tip you will utilize…but you can tell that she has a heart for God and for helping us to grow – closer to God and our family. Also, it’s very encouraging to see the influence her mom was in her life growing up, because we as moms all desire to leave a legacy!

Women Living Well is split into four sections, which are mentioned in the subtitle. Here are just a few great quotes from each area…

**Our relationship with God: “I learned that I could not throw in the towel when the hike with God got tough. It was this duty of listening to God’s voice in His Word and prayer that maintained my daily life. Time with God was as crucial to me as breathing.”

**Our marriage: “Let go of your expectations, remain steadfastly faithful to your marriage vows, and remember that you married a sinner who needs grace–the same grace Christ gave us at the cross.”

**Our parenting: “I had to learn to strive for progress, not perfection, and to focus on the character traits that I wanted to see in my children rather than on the negative things they sometimes did.”… “Dear mamas, do not lose heart. Do not grow weary of doing good (Gal. 6:9). We are raising the next generation, and we can’t do it alone, We need to daily be on our knees in prayer, not just for our husband and children, but for ourselves!”

**Our homemaking: “God does not base your worthiness of His love on the cleanliness of your home. We stand before God justified by the blood of Jesus! But I want to encourage you, do not grow weary in your mundane tasks. Mundane tasks are the hidden treasure to creating a home that is a haven.”

Courtney Joseph shares some of her ups and downs, but always points us to God’s truth! She also reminds us (and I believe this is a VERY important element of this book) that all these areas of our lives will look different from each other’s because we are all individuals who are married to their own husband and raising unique kids in varying home situations. Her emphasis throughout is that God is our living well and filling up with Him daily and purposefully will transform our marriages, our parenting and our home management. What a clear and encouraging message she shares through out Women Living Well!! Read it with a highlighter and then make it personal — apply God’s truth shared in her practical tips, lots of very practical tips!

More about the author… “… After over a decade of leading women’s Bible studies, mentorships and workshops in her local church, she decided to move her ministry on-line at and WomenLivingWell.TV. Courtney’s desire is to see women living well through discipleship in God’s Word. … This led her to co-found the rapidly growing, on-line Bible study community at  There thousands of women globally, join together daily, to dig into their Bibles through on-line devotionals, videos, free Bible reading plans and tech-based accountability groups.” –from her “About Me” link on her website

Disclosure: I received this book free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group’s book review bloggers program, BookSneeze. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

I also received an ebook since I was a part of ithe launch team for this book. I was familiar with Courtney Joseph through her websites, especially Good Morning Girls and the Bible studies available there (my kids and I LOVED the last Christmas one!). I looked forward to getting an advanced glimpse at her new book, however I still reviewed this book as I would any other –with honesty and grace.



***Because of my involvement in the launch team, I have been given the privilege of giving away a signed copy of Women Living Well!!

What do you need to do? Well, I’m keeping it simple…

  1. Comment below — What interests you the most about this book? (Make sure to include a way to contact you, like email address.)

  2. Then share — Facebook, Twitter,… you choose.***

The winner will be drawn by my kiddos Saturday (October 5) morning, so comment and share by Friday.


****And the winner is…. Kelly! Congrats and enjoy the book!!****



The Passionate Mom: Dare to Parent in Today’s World by Susan Merrill

Have you ever really wanted to read a book but then didn’t quit feel confident in yourself to write a clear, positive, and thoughtful review? That’s me with Susan The Passionate Mom book coverMerrill’s The Passionate Mom!! I don’t want my lack of talent with words to cause any mom to dismiss this book. (What I’m simply saying is “Read this book!”)

However, if everyone looks at a few of those who have already written glowing reviews for this book…

*Shaunti Feldhahn (wife, mom, speaker and best-selling author of “For Women Only”),

*Tony & Lauren Dungy (parents of 9, author, retired NFL coach and National Spokesman for All Pro Dad),

*Jill Savage (wife, mom, author and founder & CEO of Hearts at Home),

*Dr. Dennis Rainey (husband, father, author and host of FamilyLife Today), and

*Denise Jonas (wife and also mother of Kevin, Joe, Nick and Frankie Jonas)…

(What they are also saying is “Read this book!”)

Wow! The influence of my words won’t be that big anyway!


But I figured that most moms also want to hear from “real” moms (no offense to those above, but I’m sure you know what I mean). 🙂 So, here are my thoughts:

I was draw to this book, first because I’m a mom and really feel the need for some God-centered wisdom for raising kids in today’s world. Secondly, I loved that she uses Nehemiah to apply to parenting, and I wanted to see how she did that! I read through the book pretty slowly because there was so much — generous encouragement, Merrill honestly sharing her struggles, practical help, biblical advice…. This is not a quick read, but a book that you work through and God also will use to work through you.

Susan Merrill shows us Nehemiah’s pattern… “He knew what he was called to do. He perceived the situation, he pondered every task, he was driven with passion to search for solutions, he prayed for direction, he patiently waited for opportunities, he methodically prepared to take action, he maintained his purpose, he developed the plan, and he persevered through problems (problem solving) to the end.” Individually she apply these ten Ps to “building the wall” for protection and “opening the gates” for provision around our children.


And if you didn’t get my point already, let’s try this one more time. Yes, I am trying to encourage you to Read This Book!! Enjoy! And God bless you and your family 🙂


Disclosure: I received this ebook free from the publisher through the BookSneeze book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review and the opinions I have expressed are my own.

No More Perfect Moms 31 Day Challenge – Day 27 through 31

(I forgot to finish posting this challenge…oops…)

Day 27

“There are no perfect moms…just imperfect ones partnering with a Perfect God.” –Jill Savage, NO MORE PERFECT MOMS


Challenge:  If you’ve never made the choice to partner with God and say “yes” to him, you can do that now by praying these words or something similar: God I want to know you. I’m tired of trying to live on my own strength. I can’t do this alone. I need you. Thank you for sending Jesus to this earth; I want him to be the leader of my life. Today I’m grabbing your hand that’s reaching out to me. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28


Day 28

“When we’re trying to root out the Perfection Infection from our life, we desperately need God’s strength. On our own, we don’t have what it takes to successfully move from pride to humility, fear to courage, insecurity to confidence, and judgment to grace.”  –Jill Savage


Challenge: Find a notebook to begin writing down all the times you ask for help and God answers. Look back often and thank Him for his care and provision for your needs.

If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him! Matthew 7:11


Day 29

“We confuse the role God plays in our life, when we depend on people to approve, define, or accept us. Only God gives us an unchangeable, perfect identity. We can embrace our perfect identity when we’re able to see ourselves through God’s eyes.” –Jill Savage


Challenge:  Daily remind yourself of God’s love for you. Find Bible verses that speak to you of God’s love, and memorize them. Let God’s love be the foundation of who you are so you can find your worth in Him.

For in the day of trouble he will keep me safe in his dwelling; he will hide me in the shelter of his tabernacle and set me high upon a rock. Psalm 27:5

Day 30

“The Bible is our instruction book for life. God longs for us to read the directions and follow them. He doesn’t promise that we’ll have a perfect life, but he does promise us that he’ll show us how to handle the imperfections of life with grace, hope, love, and integrity.”  -Jill Savage


Challenge:  Pick an area of struggle in your thought life. Then pick a Bible verse that speaks to the lies you believe (using an on-line concordance like can help you find a verse by searching the Bible by topic or word). Every time those negative thoughts pop up, battle back. Say your memory verse out loud. Replace the lies with truth.

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Philippians 4:8

Day 31

“I love the perspective one seasoned friend shared about the Perfection Infection: “The older I get, the closer I get to figuring out that there is no enviable life out there. I need to pay more attention to the blessings I have, and less to the myopic illusion that others are better, and better off, than I am.” –Jill Savage


Challenge: Think back over the past month. What is one key take-away you’d like to start implementing from this challenge? Will you continue on as you did before, or will you respond with change?

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. John 14:27


More for this challenge...

No More Perfect Moms 31 Day Challenge – Day 24 through 26

(I forgot to finish posting this challenge…oops…)

Day 24

“There are no perfect homemakers…just real moms, deciding what’s right for their family, and working to create a warm, nurturing home for those they love.” –Jill Savage, NO MORE PERFECT MOMS


Challenge: Take inventory of the traditions, meals, and activities that make your home warm and your family special. The next time you’re tempted to compare, stop and remember your list. Then give thanks for the ways God made your home and family unique.

We do not dare to classify or compare ourselves with some who commend themselves. When they measure themselves by themselves and compare themselves with themselves, they are not wise. 2 Corinthians 10:12


Day 25

“There are no perfect meals, but there are ways to streamline the meal-making process.” –Jill Savage


Challenge:  Do an inventory of your pantry.  See if you’re well stocked with throw-together ingredients that’ll save you on those days when things don’t go as planned.  Pasta, soup, tuna, and a brownie mix are real staples. A freezer with already browned ground beef, vegetables, chicken breasts, and a pizza or two is very helpful for busy families.

Better a dry crust with peace and quiet than a house full of feasting, with strife. Proverbs 17:1


Day 26

“Too often we talk ourselves right out of hospitality because we fear that our efforts won’t measure up.  Measure up to what?  That elusive “perfect picture” we have in our mind of what our house needs to look like, what kind of food we need to serve, or even how we want our kids to behave.”  –Jill Savage


Challenge:  Have you been considering hosting something at your home but have been putting it off? Take a few minutes and really plan it. When the day comes, keep it simple.  Cook something you’re comfortable with. Clean the main room that your guests will be in and the guest bathroom, and leave it at that. Then enjoy the moment with your guests.

Show hospitality to one another without grumbling. 1 Peter 4:9


More for this challenge...

No More Perfect Moms 31 Day Challenge – Day 21 through 23

(I forgot to finish posting this challenge…oops…)

Day 21

“There are no perfect homes…just imperfect, sometimes messy places where our family can gather and love on one another.” –Jill Savage

Challenge: The next time you catch yourself wishing for a house that was a little more perfect, stop and give thanks for the reasons your house is not perfect. Give thanks for the little fingers that made those smudges and the feet you have caught one too many times jumping on the sofa.  Someday those little fingers and feet will be adult-sized hands and feet. Give thanks for the special kind of crazy they bring to your house today.
Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thessalonians 5:18

Day 22

“Kids create clutter, and it’s time for us to understand that is part of the territory.  Sure, some moms have better organizational skills than others, but the truth is we all need a more accurate picture in our mind of what a “normal” home with kids will look like.” –Jill Savage

Challenge:   It’s important to have some sense of organization and cleanliness, but it should never be at the expense of your relationships.  Pay attention to how often urgent tasks pull you away from the important people in your home.  Make a decision today to let a task go in order to give your best to your family.
But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD. Joshua 24:15


Day 23

“Do you want a beautiful home? Sure, take care of the physical space you have…maintain it, clean it on occasion, and keep it organized enough to find what you need to find. More than anything, however, focus on the people living inside the home. When you get right down to it, it’s those flawed, yet precious family relationships that make our house truly beautiful.” –Jill Savage

Challenge:   The next time your child or teenager interrupts you with a request to talk, play, or read a book, stop what you’re doing and seize that moment to pour a little time into your child. Ask yourself, “Who needs me to focus on them today, and when will I take time to do that?
See that you do not look down on one of these little ones. Matthew 18:10



More for this challenge...

Desperate: Hope for the Mom Who Needs to Breathe by Sarah Mae and Sally Clarkson

Have you ever really, Really, REALLY liked a book that you thought “I might as well highlight the whole Desperate book coverbook!”? Well, that is me with Desperate! After just seeing the title, I knew I would read this book and am so glad I did. (I was even extra blessed to get to review it!) I’ve needed a book like this for several years and would highly recommend it to all moms!! We moms may be exhausted and desperate….“But you have a faithful God who loves you and whom I believe will bring you what you need to get through. There is no one answer for everyone, because the Lord works differently in each of our lives, but you need to know that He hasn’t forgotten you. He doesn’t forget His children, big or little.” (from Sarah)


Sally Clarkson, an older mom, became a mentor for Sarah Mae, a younger mom, and now they are joining forces to minister to other moms. At the beginning of each chapter they share a letter from Sarah and then Sally’s response to it. Next they each share very honestly and beautifully from their heart. And don’t worry; We are not given a new to-do-list, but instead understanding and encouragement…


“I came to realize over the years that the forming of their souls was a hard, long-distance race. In retrospect I can now see how it has become an essential part of my spiritual service of worship to God. He entrusted these precious souls into my hands. The work of motherhood was the way He wanted me to serve and love Him…In order to stay the course, we mothers must see the nurturing of our children as a spiritual call in order to have integrity in our own Christian lives.” (from Sally)


The book is divided into three sections — 1: The Dream Life…Altered, 2: Getting Real About Mama-hood, and 3: The Redeeming — with chapters breaking topics down. At the end of each chapter is “Your Turn” with verses, questions, suggested activity and even a video. Then at the end of the book is a question and answer with Sally Clarkson.


Now, go get a copy for you and a few more to share with your mommy friends!! 🙂


Disclosure: I received this ebook free from the publisher through the BookSneeze book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review and the opinions I have expressed are my own.