What We’re Reading {August 2015}

Because we love to read around here and I really enjoy finding interesting books for the kids, I thought that I’d share a few of the books that each of them are reading (and liking) each month. Currently we’re not in the middle of any read alouds, but once the school year starts, we’ll be back into the swing of things and I’ll start including family books on the list too.



Prayers for our Children

With the school year just around the corner, the Graham Blanchard Mom Mentors are sharing some of the things we’re praying for our kiddos as they embark on new adventures.

Here’s what I’ve been praying for….

As three of my four kids head off to elementary school this month, my prayer for them remains the same as it has been all summer, that they would know how high and deep and wide God’s love is for them.

We desperately desire for them to fully know that when God created them, He made no mistakes.  We pray that they would know, deep in their bones, they are deeply loved by the God of the universe. We pray every day that through our actions, words, and attitudes, the kids would see the love of God shine through. We pray that our sometimes too-impatient attitudes and unthoughtful words would pale in the light of their knowledge of God’s great love for them.

I pray that they would know their identity and their worth as they interact with their peers, both good influences and bad influences. I pray that as they interact with teachers, the kids would know their identity and worthiness is not wrapped up in their ability to perform in the classroom.  And finally, I pray this understanding of how much they are loved will overflow out of their lives into the lives of those around them.

Check out some of the other moms are praying and maybe take a minute to share what you’re praying for your littles!



Review: The Adventures of Rooney: Hannah, The Belle of Prayer

One afternoon a few weeks ago, I called Aly and Ada over to my desk because I wanted to read a book to them.

They were a bit confused because book and desktop computer don’t really make sense to them, but they came over anyway. They were curious. These ebooks are mysterious things! :)

Bible Belles Cover

I sat them down on my lap and read them a book coming out soon called The Adventures of Rooney Cruz:  Hannah- The Belle of Prayer by Erin Weidemann. We meet Rooney, a kind, spunky, modern day 9 year old girl.


Review: The Beginner’s Bible All About Jesus Sticker and Activity Book

You all, I’m such a sucker for these things.

First, there was the Easter one… and then the Princess one (okay, so TWO of those). And now the All About Jesus Sticker and Activity Book (Zonderkidz). My kids just eat these up because they are fun and they love learning more about God through puzzles and coloring and drawing.

It’s no secret that we like the Beginner’s Bible around here. It’s our go-to Bible for kids 3 and under. The fact that this sticker book includes frames from that Bible, as well as the overall illustrative style makes this line of sticker books ALSO a favorite.


In this particular book, kids learn about Jesus’ life through doing the various activities. It includes one full spread page where kids can color a picture of Jesus and the children, learn about how much Jesus loved to spend time with children and also get to play a little find and seek game (can they find all twelve squirrels hidden in the picture)?

So, while kids aren’t digging into the Scriptures or anything like that, working through this book is a great way for parents and kids to have conversations.

  • Had you heard about the story where Jesus tells his disciples that he loves when the children come to hang out with him?
  • What does it mean for Jesus to say that big people need to become like children to enter God’s kingdom?
  • Do you feel loved by our church community? By our family?

All About Jesus is geared toward the preschool crowd for sure. The activities consist of a lot of coloring, basic counting, super easy mazes, and matching. It’s priced at $3.99 (actually, it’s $2.13 on Amazon right now…), making it a very affordable resource! (Did I mention it has a big ‘ol page of (reusable) STICKERS??!!!)


Thanks to Booklook Bloggers for providing a free book in exchange for an honest review. 

August 2015 Goals

Last month I started making monthly goals. I thought if I shared them on here I’d have a little more accountability to follow through. I think it worked!

A few of my highlights…

  • Since I fell embarrassingly behind on my Bible reading plan, I made a plan to get back on a plan and I had to do some SERIOUS reading (one day I read the whole book of Jeremiah- talk about depressing), but I’m alllllmost caught up!
  • Jake and I worked on cleaning the couch cushions. They aren’t perfect, far from it, but they do look better. I tried a couple things, but what finally worked well was good ‘ol fashioned carpet/upholstery cleaner. I was really looking forward to finding a more natural, non-chemical laden way, but it just didn’t happen.
  • We found a theme for Play Eat Grow– yaaay! I can’t reveal it yet, but SOON.
  • I finished our 10 Year anniversary of being a family scrapbook and it turned out great! It wasn’t as hard as I thought it was going to be, but I did definitely have to scan in some pictures because apparently we didn’t do digital cameras the first couple years of our marriage (how old am I?!). I also got an AMAZING deal on it (through Shutterfly) when I paired a deal of 50% off photobooks with some promo codes I had accumulated over the past 6 months.

On to my August goals!



Review: NIV Faithgirlz Bible

As I’ve written about before, I’m on the hunt for a full-size Bible for Aly.

I didn’t become a Christian until middle school/junior high, and I was all into my teen Bibles. They helped make the Bible more interesting to me because the sidenotes and extra articles helped me to see how the Scriptures were relevant to my real life.

I’m hoping to find something like that for elementary kids too.



July Loves

July has been good to us, other than the NONSTOP sibling fighting (except when they’re not, and when they’re not, they are so sweet to each other). We’re working through it day by day, hour by hour, minute by minute.

july loves

Our best day ever was a Sunday afternoon when we went to the pool and spent the whole afternoon just having fun. The kids were incredibly happy and there wasn’t fighting for over 3 hours. I think it was some sort of Malloy child world record.

Next summer we’re buying a pool pass.


What I Learned in July

what i learned in july

Over at Chatting at the Sky, Emily Freeman hosts a link-up party where we can share about the things we learned. I’ve been a quiet observer for the last few months, and decided to give it a try for July. I think it’s just another way to help me to reflect on how I’m growing and learning, as well as to take notice of the things going on around me. Sometimes I get so “in my zone” that I overlook a lot.


Review: Simply Tuesday: Small-Moment Living in a Fast-Moving World

When Ada was born, we gave her a middle name that is a bit unusual. She is only recently enjoying it.



We named her after Henri Nouwen, a man who, through his writings, has deeply influenced Jake and I’s spiritual journey. The first book we read by Nouwen was Compassion, which is about our call as Christ-followers to be compassionate (suffering with), instead of seeking to gain more power and more control over both our own lives as well as others.

Of course, it’s not enough to just talk the talk, but to also live it out in real life. In another of his books, In the Name of Jesus, he shared a little bit about how he lived out compassion when he moved from working in Ivy League schools to serving those in the L’Arche community, a community for people with intellectual disabilities. He spent the last 10 or so years of his life living and serving in this community.

It seems weird, doesn’t it? A brilliant man decides the next best thing was to live and serve those whom our society pretends doesn’t exist. How’s that for a smart career move?


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