Good Reads in July

Thanks to a slightly different rhythm I’ve been able to find more time for good reads in July.

 

On My Nightstand in July

On My Nightstand in July

The Exodus Road by Laura Parker with Matt Parker was a book that I had requested from the library and when it arrived, I dove right in.  Matt and Laura Parker are the founders of The Exodus Road.  As I continue to look at anti trafficking organizations and seek direction for how I may be involved, it is very helpful be able to get to know the people, and I feel like I did that by reading The Exodus Road.

The Good News About Marriage by Shaunti Feldhahn.

Living with Less, An Expected Key to Happiness by Joshua Becker, this was an interesting short read and I hope that my kids pick it up off the coffee table before it is returned to the library :)

The Warden & the Wolf King by Andrew Peterson – The Wingfeather Saga has been a great series for our family.  This is the final book in the series and instead of it being at read aloud, each has read it alone.  I read the final few page with tears, even though spoilers had leaked out from the earlier readers.  My kids are quite unhappy with the ending of the series, which I find interesting.  Now that I’ve read it I am surprised they didn’t pick up on the meaning of some of the parts.  Maybe they do but they still don’t like it.  If you haven’t read the Wingfeather Saga by Andrew Peterson, and you like a good adventure with an epic battle between good and evil and more than a little humor woven in, you can get the story here!. The other titles in the series are:

On the Edge of the Dark Sea of Darkness;  North or Be Eaten;  The Monster in the Hollows; The Warden and the Wolf King.

I started Interrupted by Jen Hatmaker but didn’t get far before it was due back to the library.  It might make it back on my nightstand in the near future.

Walking Prey was a book that I read with sad interest, wanting to become more aware and equipped.   I was able to read the first few chapters but when the author started her personal story I ended up taking it back to the library.  Stories do need to be told, but the graphic descriptions in Walking Prey were very difficult and I did not want to risk having my daughters pick up the book and turn to the pages where my bookmark lay.   This was a very informative book, and I was able to glean some knowledge to apply to my own story.

So tell me about your good reads in July discoveries!

 

 

 

Compassion Correspondence in July

Compassion Correspondence in July was completed during the first week as the entire month has been FULL!

For Karen I continued printing the Spanish alphabet letters with corresponding coloring pages.  In July’s package are pages for the letters “J” through “Q”.  I also went ahead and printed the pages for letters “R” through “Z” to include in August’s package because the trips that are scheduled for members of our family go right up until a day before school starts.  I wanted to have a good start on August correspondence in case there isn’t a good time to get the printing all done.

This site also has many other printables, and I am looking at the Dental Hygiene pages for Dental Hygiene Month (October).

I have also printed “The Start of Man’s Sadness” and “Noah and the Great Flood” from Bible for Children for all of our sponsored children, but forgot to print any in Spanish.  I need to make a note on my calendar to remind me of that option.  Here is the letter that I included with “The Start of Man’s Sadness” booklets.

To  Carlos                         From Benjamin & Michelle Kelly 1179729

July 9, 2014

Dear Carlos

Hello Friend! I hope that you and your family are healthy and doing well.   Recently I found a website with stories from the Bible that I can print with pictures. Over the coming months I will send some of them so you can read them, and share with your friends.

The story I send today is the sad one, “The Start of Man’s Sadness”. It tells us where all the sadness in the world first began. But I cannot send that story without reminding you the good news that comes after sadness.

God sent His Son Jesus to the world to live with man and to show us how to live (John 3:16) Then Jesus died on a cross as the punishment for all of our sin, sin is what causes all sadness. He bore our sin so that each of us can be forgiven. When we believe that Jesus is our Savior from our sin, we receive forgiveness and the hope of life forever with Him.

Carlos I pray that you have put your trust in Jesus and accepted his forgiveness of your sins. If you have not, think about these things. Jesus is a good and kind Savior and He loves YOU! This is the Good News!

We are praying for you Carlos, and for your family.

Love,

 Benjamin & Michelle

At Michaels we found some small thin 16 month calendars that we purchased for the older kids we correspond with.  We also have a nice stack of sticker books that we are setting aside for birthdays and Christmas.

Compassion Correspondence in July

Sticker books from Michaels

Later in the month, using the online writing tool, we wrote letters about the ranch my kids work at during the summer.  Included are some of these pictures:

Rock Ledge Ranch entrance

Rock Ledge Ranch entrance

Orchard House, Rock Ledge Ranch

Orchard House, Rock Ledge Ranch

Please let share this post if it is helpful to you, and we love community.   Share in the comments what goodies you’ve been able to share with your sponsored children.

Dial Coconut Water Body Wash Giveaway

 

 

Coconut Water Bodywash

Dial Coconut Water Bodywash

NEW Dial® Coconut Water Refreshing Mango body wash brings hydration to your body washing experience in a tropical fun new scent.

It’s the end of July AND quickly approaching is Back to School time.  We’ve already printed out the dress code and school supply lists for the new part time school our kids will be attending this year.  School starts August 12 for 2 of our kids, a week later for another.  It makes me a little sad that summer is cut short in this way, but I am also thankful for a great school for our kids to further their education.

While the clothes and the supplies are most important to gather and have ready, so are a few other fun items.

We were sent a bottle of New Dial Coconut Water Refreshing Mango body wash this month and it is one of those fun items for the end of summer, start of school.  The scent of the body was is like a blast of gentle fragrance, if that makes sense.  Usually fragrance really bothers me, but I greatly enjoyed it.

Dial Coconut Body Wash Refreshing Mango

Dial Coconut Body Wash Refreshing Mango

My daughters were interested in trying it so I’ve put it in their bathroom and hope to pick up a couple of bottles the next time I’m at the store.

My husband did have one thing to say about the product.  He said the bottle is top heavy (I checked and it is) and it fell a couple of times while he was in the shower.   That may mean a cracked top and a leaky bottle.  We’ll see if our daughters can keep it from falling.

Anyway, lovely fragrance and a fun addition to the kids’ bathroom as they begin to think about all those first day impressions.  And we have the opportunity for you to try Dial’s Coconut Water refreshing Mango body wash as well!

We have 2 coupons for FREE product and will be giving them away, 1 coupon each to 2 winners.  So please comment and tell us something you remember from the end of summer or the first day of school to be entered.

Dial Coconut Water Body Wash

Dial Coconut Water Body Wash with Refreshing Mango

You can also share this post and/or  like us on facebook and leave me a comment on facebook for extra entries.  Please come back here and tell me in the comments what of those items you have done.

The Giveaway ENDS August 2 at 8 am.  Winners will be announced and contacted by email later that day.

Thank you!

Summer Volunteer Work

Our youngest 3 daughters’ summer volunteer work includes acting as historical interpreters at Rock Ledge Ranch.  The ranch has 4 historical sites, with junior docents working each site.

Summer Volunteer Uniforms, period appropriate clothing

Summer Volunteer Uniforms, period appropriate clothing

The ranch allows guests to visit the different time periods of our area and learn about the people who lived there, and what life was like at that time.  The historic buildings have been restored as close to their original state as possible.  The National Register of Historic Places added the ranch in 1979.

One benefit to my kids through their volunteering at the Ranch has been their deeper understanding of our local and state history.  Anything they now read about Colorado history, or even western US history, is greatly enhanced by their experience working at ranch.  They also apply what they learn outside the ranch to their conversations at the ranch.

It has been a rich experience and one our kids look forward to each January when they complete the application for the following summer.

Ticket Booth, TB Hut

Ticket Booth, TB Hut

If you are visiting the Colorado Front Range think about adding Rock Ledge Ranch to your plans.  Maybe you’ll get a tour led by some sweet junior docents and enjoy a peak into Colorado History.

Camping and Hobo Dinners

We haven’t done a lot of camping in recent years, and I haven’t made “hobo dinners” since my daughters were pretty young.  Early this summer the kids were after us to plan a “real” camping trip with Dad as last summer we girls got out and did some camping, but Dad was away working.  So a camping trip was one of the first items put on the summer calendar!

And as this post shows up on the blog we are at camp, in a beautiful tent site on the river.  Our hobo dinners are in the cooler all ready to be cooked for the next 2 dinners.

Two mornings while the kids were all at vacation bible school earlier in the month I set to work.

The veggies were prepped.

hobo dinners prep shredded veggies

Shredded Carrots & Cauliflower

chopped carrots

chopped carrots

Veggies all prepped

Veggies all prepped

The ingredients all measured and mixed together for Turkey Veggie Hobo Dinners, using this recipe

Pretty Eggs

Pretty Eggs

Turkey Veggie Hobo Dinner

Turkey Veggie Hobo Dinner

I tore out 8 pieces of foil that were about the size of a small rectangle cookie sheet.  I spooned the mixture onto the first sheet and began folding and shaping the packet.  Once I had the shape I wanted I rolled the foil on top.

folding hobo dinner

folding hobo dinner

Then I pressed and patted it all again to make a nice rectangle and folded the ends up somewhat like a present.

hobo dinner assembled!

hobo dinner assembled!

Finally, I wrapped the hobo dinner with another layer of foil.

Five packets fit nicely into the gallon freezer bag, so I ended up with 2 bags for the 8 servings.

hobo dinners ready for freezing

hobo dinners ready for freezing

Hobo Tacos is another set that I assembled.  We’ll eat them with tortilla chips and fresh veggies.

hobo tacos

hobo tacos

Keeping the hobo dinners in the gallon bags inside the cooler keeps everything nice, with no waterlogging our dinners and no contaminating the other items in the cooler.  The bags of dinners also help keep the cooler cold!

Do you make Hobo Dinners?  And what recipes do you fill them with?  I’d love to expand our hobo menu!