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Why This Frugal Mom Wants a Kiwi Crate Subscription

I received a free kit for the purpose of giving my honest opinion; a positive review was not required. I was compensated for my time.

Reasons to Buy a Kiwi Crate Subscription

I first heard about Kiwi Crate craft boxes a couple of years ago. I am a cheap frugal personal and was skeptical that the craft kits were worth the subscription price. Were they filled with the same supplies that I could find at Dollar Tree? I was excited for the opportunity to do a review because it would give me the chance to check it out. 

Some background info on me:

I’ve mentioned before that I am not a super-crafty mom. I really enjoy doing crafts with my kids, but the prep work, and the controlled chaos, can stress me out.

This is what my process usually looks like:

  1. Get on Pinterest to look for kid’s craft ideas.
  2. Spend wayyyyyy too much time PINNING ALL THE THINGS!
  3. Make a list of supplies needed.
  4. Search for digital 40% coupon for craft store.
  5. Get to the store and realize I left the list at home. Try to remember what it said.
  6. Get home to find I forgot that one absolutely necessary item.
  7. Go back to the store. On the bright side, I get to use another coupon!
  8. Get on Pinterest AGAIN because I didn’t print out the instructions the first time. 
  9. Hunt down the vinyl tablecloth so we don’t ruin the table.
  10. Pre-cut anything the 5 yr old can’t do alone.
  11. Make strong coffee. Breathe into a paper bag, if needed.

Opening the Kiwi Crate

I wasn’t sure what we would discover when we opened our box. My girls flipped the lid and were thrilled to find a Wonders of Water Kit. I’m not sure I can convey with just words how impressed I am with the contents. (Come on over. We’ll chat. I’ll use my hands.)

I assumed it would contain some adorable craft projects, but I wasn’t expecting all of the extras.

Things I Didn’t Expect Out of Our Kiwi Crate:

~ It contains Every Single Thing needed for the activities, except a penny and water. And I mean everything … scissors, markers, paint, spray bottle, clay, even a little plastic cup. There is also a big paper Mess Mat to protect the table. 

Kiwi Box

~ These are high quality products. You know that cheap-o art set that goes on sale every Black Friday for $2.99? That’s not what is in this box. Even the spray bottle was nice & durable!

Coloring

~A Kiwi Crate is not just for crafts. This part puts a smile on a homeschooling momma’s face. There were several water-themed science experiments that we did while we were waiting for the crafts to dry. Wasn’t expecting science experiments!

Sea Creatures

~ Every part of the kit is used. The inside of the box has a scene that can be colored. On the back of the green cardboard cover page are cute little characters to color, cut out, and stand up in front of the box scene.

boats

My girls had a great time working on their crafts. We received a kit for two kids, but I think there is plenty in one kit to share if you need to. A single Wonders of Water kit has four sea creatures and three boat sails to decorate. The experiments can be done by a whole group of kids.

I went from wondering why anyone would pay for a craft kit TO telling everyone who can afford it to get a Kiwi Crate subscription. Sometimes frugal living means carefully choosing to use extra funds on a quality product that brings joy to your family instead of wasting money on cheap junk. 

The Kiwi Crate Subscription Nitty-Gritty

A monthly subscription (meaning billed monthly) is $19.95 with free shipping. You can purchase a 6 or 12 month subscription at a discount. A sibling add-on is $9.95 a month. 

A new themed box arrives on your doorstep each month. You can also purchase single crates without a subscription, but you will pay for shipping.

Are We There Yet? readers can use code BTS25 to save 25% off your 1st month subscription to Kiwi Crate. New subscribers also receive free shipping PLUS a bonus welcome kit.

Be sure to keep up with new Kiwi Crate products through one of these:

Facebook
Twitter
Pinterest
YouTube
Instagram
Google Plus

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Skrafty Homeschool Minecraft Classes Review & Giveaway

I received free classes in exchange for my honest review. No other compensation was given.

SKrafty Reviews and Giveaways

Welcome!

It’s back to school time, and for homeschool families – that means gathering curriculum, planning and finding new ways to inspire kids in their studies. SKrafty Homeschool Minecraft is the perfect way to add the fun and inspiration you need.

This fall, the class line up is spectacular! If you need homeschool math, science, bible, history, language arts or more . . . you are in for a treat. Using some of your favorite homeschool curriculum companies (including Apologia Science, Mystery of History, and A+ Interactive Math) you’ll learn to incorporate Minecraft projects into your family homeschool.

SKrafty Classes

See all the new classes SKrafty has to offer HERE

Find out more about the fully monitored SKrafty Minecraft server where it is safe for your family and children - and get whitelisted for FREE right HERE.

SKrafty is specially designed and the rules are constructed to encourage good sportsmanship – with no griefing allowed, no bad language or ugly talk, and no sharing of outside links to protect your children. See a full list of rules HERE.

What other parents are saying about SKrafty Homeschool Minecraft:

“Since starting Skrafty my son has blossomed. His typing has gotten a lot better. School work is not a chore any more I just give him the list of what needs to be done and he does it. He finds the lessons entertaining and engaging and he loves the activities that go along with them. We are all very grateful for Skrafty.” ~ Cheryl J.

“My son enjoys playing on Skrafty with other kids and I love that it is a safe, moderated Minecraft server! While playing on Skrafty he has learned creative building, developed critical thinking skills, made friends, and learned to be a team player. The classes have been fun and the reading program has encouraged him to read more than ever. Skrafty has been such a blessing to our family!” ~Julie B.

Special needs learning:

“Skrafty has been a huge blessing to our family! My son with dyslexia is not only learning but enjoying learning!!!! His reading and writing have developed more with Skrafty than any other program we have used. The classes are engaging because they are so hands on and truly turn learning into an adventure. I so highly recommend Skrafty!” ~ Caroline D.

 What we learned:

My 11 yr. old son is a Minecraft fanatic. He watches the how-to videos, reads the ebooks, and plays online with friends whenever he gets a chance. We strictly limit play time during the school year, so you can imagine how excited he was when he discovered that he could take a Skrafty class and it could be added to his homeschool portfolio. We chose the Anatomy for Kids class to complement our Exploring Creation with Anatomy and Physiology course. Each week has a lesson, videos, and an assigned structure be built in Minecraft. It is a self-paced class, so the work could be done whenever it was convenient for us. I printed out the diagram for my son to use as a guide. 

This is his labeled skeleton:

minecraft skeleton

The Skrafty Minecraft Server is such a blessing for our family! All players are whitelisted before being allowed on the server. What that means is that the admins check to see if a person as ever been banned on another server before allowing him to join. The chat feature screens out coarse language. There are so many inappropriate sites out there, and I love not having to monitor my kids’ game time. There is also a helpful Facebook group for the server.

 Affordable:

Extremely affordable classes (between $6.99 – $32.00) make it easy to add creativity and excitement into your education at home. Sign up HERE for live classes or self-paced classes and begin your journey into the world of homeschool Minecraft with SKrafty.

Giveaway Companies – Multiple Winners!

SKrafty Giveaways

 

Check out all the wonderful companies and prizes you can win for your family homeschool:

3 SKrafty Fall Classes - Value up to $32 each

Mystery of History Volume 1,2, or 3 & Super Supplemental – Value $150

A+ Interactive Math - Family Package for 3 Students – Value $450

Adventures In ChildRearing - Wildlife Adventures bundle- Value $27.99

We Choose Virtues - Homeschool Kit – Value $98.99

Sidetracked Sarah - Crockpot Freezer Meals 3 pack – Value $8.97

Moore Family Films - ABC Say it With Me – Value $15.99

Not Consumed - Back to School 4 Pack – Value $12.50

Teach Them Diligently – Family Pass to 1 Convention – Value $65

Homeschool Adventure Co. – Philippians in 28 Weeks – Value $18.95

Media Angels - Homeschool Moms Rescue Set – Value $9.99

A Journey Through Learning - Math Lapbook - Value$15.00

Dave Ramsey – Financial Peace Jr. – Value $24.95

 

Enter with 1 entry or enter with them all:

 ->->> CLICK HERE TO ENTER THE RAFFLECOPTER GIVEAWAY <<-<-

Do you have a Minecraft fan? Sign up for a Fall Skrafty class today!

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{Review} Tales of the Wovlen: The Dragon’s Son

tales of the wovlen

While movies like The Lord of the Rings are at the top of my list, I usually stay away from fantasy novels. I’ve started to read a few over the years, but rarely finished because the names were impossible to pronounce, the “good guys” were too dark, and the fantasy worlds were so over-the-top that I couldn’t engage with the story.

I pretty much ignored Tales of the Wovlen: The Dragon’s Son when I heard about it. I had given up on fantasy books, remember? But something kept pulling me back to this one. My curiosity got the best of me when the book’s editor commented on how good it was (and she’s not one to say it if it’s not true).

First, a little intro:

“After the brutal massacre in his village, a broken, grieving boy chooses to live with a golden dragon in the wild rather than go to the mountains to be with his own people. If only he had known then what that simple choice meant… Thirteen years later, Keegan, no longer a boy, learns that his younger sister survived the massacre and so sets off to be reunited with her. When Keegan accidentally interrupts a plot against a princess, what should have been a fairly simple trip turns into a complicated struggle for survival. A mysterious elder appears, full of wit and riddle. Mythical monsters shed their fictional skin and hungrily pursue Keegan and his dragon. Haunting nightmares begin to tear at his mind. As he continues on his quest to be reunited with his sister, Keegan is only just beginning to understand what it means to be The Dragons Son.”

I have one main requirement for a fiction book if an author wants me to finish it- I must be able to create the story in my mind as I read. Kathryn Fogleman certainly delivered in this area! Her attention to detail allowed me to imagine the scenery and the action with ease. The characters are intriguing as well.

I am not a fan of blood, gore, and creepy things. Knowing the author is a Tolkien fan, I went in hesitantly. Please no uruk-hai, oh PLEASE. While there are plenty of sword fights, battle wounds, and mythical creatures, I was relieved to find that none of it is overly graphic. I  have no problem letting my 11 year old read this book.

There were a couple of sections where the characters’ relationships weren’t as well-developed and I was left with questions. I don’t know if this is the result of being a first-time author, or if maybe it will all be tied together in the next book. Either way, it wasn’t enough to detract from the overall story.

Tales of the Wovlen: The Dragon’s Son is one of those books that, upon reaching the end, had me saying, “No, it can’t be over already!”. I truly look forward to the next book!!

Wovlen

You can purchase a paperback version for $13.10, or snag the Kindle version for only $3.00! Better grab it now in case it goes up!!

{This post contains affiliate links.}

wovlen disclaimer


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{Review} My Christmas Wish List Devotional Prayer Journal for Kids

Girl writing a Christmas letter for Santa

Are you looking for a simple way to focus your child’s mind on what really matters this holiday season? I am so tickled about My Christmas Wish List, a devotional prayer journal created by Heather of Upside Down Homeschooling. The colors, the graphics, the layout … it makes me happy just to look at it!

The 15-day journal is divided into five sections: Obedience, Love, Joy, Charity, and Peace. Each day has scripture to read, a prayer prompt, and a fun activity that involves encouraging or serving others. The daily assignments follow a WISH acronym:
Write
Investigate
Share
Hear

There are extra activities at the end that include copywork, coloring pages and a nativity set to cut out. I consider this journal a gem because most of the devotionals I’ve found for younger ones are either very generic (same type of activity each day just with a different picture & verse), or too complicated for this easily-overwhelmed momma.

my christmas wish sample

My Christmas Wish is on sale for only $2.99 (regularly $7.99)! Such a small price for the opportunity to point your child to Christ all December long.

As a BONUS,  purchases made in November will come with 2 FREE holiday webinars: 9 Stress Busters for the Holidays and The Wonder of God’s Love for Christmas

Are you looking for meaningful Thanksgiving activities? You might also be interested in My Book of Thanks, Heather’s Gratitude Journal for Kids. It is on sale for only $1.99 and comes in a younger & older version.

~*~ Purchase My Christmas Wish Before the Price Goes Up ~*~

As a member of the My Christmas Wish launch team, I received a free copy for the purpose of giving my honest review. I only share products that I think my readers will enjoy and find useful. Thank you for any purchase made through my affiliate link. <3


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Maintain Your Weight Through the Holidays with Calorease {Review}

calorease review

October is the start of birthday season in our house – four kids in six weeks. That adds up to lots of decadent cake and dining out. Then comes Thanksgiving with the dressing and the pies. And Christmas? It gets a whole month of delicousness! It is hard to ring in the new year without a couple of extra pounds.

I was recently introduced to Calorease, a dietary supplement to help manage your weight. I am not about to pop a scary pill to lose weight, so I did a little research before agreeing to a Moms Meet review. The active ingredient in Calorease is FBCx. It is a naturally sourced soluble fiber derived from grain, with no genetically modified components. It is stimulant free and gluten free. Calorease does not contain lactose, yeast, wheat, sugar, salt, egg, soy, dairy, artificial colors, sweeteners or preservatives.

calorease-product

Calorease works by binding dietary fat and flushing it out of the body. Taking two tablets with three healthy meals a day makes it possible to lose up to a dress size in a month.

I decided to do a little 3-week experiment and see just how well this product works. For the first two weeks, I took the tablets only when eating foods high in fat. This included birthday meals and an amazing triple brownie cake. For the third week, I took the tablets with one or two meals every day. I made no other changes to my routine (because obviously I would have lost weight had I switched from an occasional walk on the beach to power walking several miles a day!). I must say I was shocked to lose almost three pounds!

I realize that weight lost without any real effort is weight that will eventually show back up, but it is so encouraging to see that scale move! I am excited about trying out Calorease while eating healthy and adding in more exercise. I will definitely continue this supplement through the holiday season and want to leave those extra pounds in 2013!

A 90-count package of Caloraese is $29.99, but I have a coupon for you!!

Use the code 4MOMS and buy it for only $14.99, a 50% discount!

(Calorease is also sold at GNC, but the coupon code is only for the Calorease website)

Follow Calorease on Facebook to get updates on the latest offers!

Your turn: Do you have any tips for maintaining your weight during the holidays?

Would you like to see a follow-up review on this product?

I received this product for free from the sponsor of the Moms Meet program, May Media Group LLC, who received it directly from the manufacturer. As a Moms Meet blogger, I agreed to use this product  and post my opinion on my blog. My opinions do not necessarily reflect the opinions of May Media Group LLC. or the manufacturer of the product.