Whole Parenting Family

Two Book Reviews & a Journal Giveaway

whole parenting family

Oh hello lovelies! It’s me, again. I’ve been so underwater these past few weeks. I miss you! I feel like I’ve written a dozen blog posts in my head and then cannot get to my computer for uninterrupted time to actually share them with you.

Earlier this week I wrote about re-centering for the holidays and I’ve been working on that not-freaking-out part all week long. I hope you’re not eyeballing Thanksgiving with a hint of the freak-out in your stomach. Be like me: procrastinate!!

Actually, I’ll be sharing my Thanksgiving meal plan tomorrow for our weekly chat about meal planning: Week Eats!

And early next week I’ll have all my holiday gift options for the etsy shoppe ready & raring to go. So brace yourself for fabric overload.

But in the meanwhile, I’d like to gift you three things: Rebecca’s book, Cari’s book, and the Blessed is She devotional advent journal.



Rebecca’s book. Teaching in Your Tiara: a homeschooling book for the rest of us.

She blogs at Shoved to Them. 

I met Rebecca briefly at the Edel Gathering last summer. We chatted in the lobby. She was so down to earth and funny. HECK very funny. When I realized she was an author of a homeschooling guide, I was all can i read and review your book and give one away?? She was all: yes.

You see when we first started thinking about schooling options, as all first time parents do, I was probably pregnant with our first *5 years back, people* and desperate for the straight truth about it. How would it really go? Would I go insane? Would our kids be weird? What’s a typical day like? I went to the bookstore and bought a book published in 1997. Let’s just say it left a lot to be desired.

Rebecca addresses in a straight-forward, to the point fashion, all aspects of homeschooling life. Her anecdotes are hilarious and her advice actually applicable and helpful. My favorite chapters are about curriculum because there is a TON out there, and about homeschooling different ages.

SuperBoy is 4.5 and we do about an hour of structured preschool a day. This means either the baby is sleeping or crawling (yes–CRAWLING at 6 months) around under our feet, putting choke-able hazards into his mouth, and SweetPea at 2.5 is scribbling on and destroying any paper she can find. So that homeschooling different ages chapter? Yeah, that’s already coming in handy.

If you’re homeschooling or thinking about it, just go buy the book and let her answer all your questions as if you were having coffee together. Rebecca, high five & thank you for this gem!



Cari’s book: Pope Awesome and Other Stories: How I Found God, Had Kids, and Lived to Tell the Tale.

She blogs at Clan Donaldson.

I met Cari also at the Edel Gathering last summer. She was handing out name tag holders & saint medals. I thought, oh!! this is Cari! as I had read her blog and she provided such a fun insight into the life of a mom of older kiddos. Here I am semi-drowning with three and she makes more look feasible and survivable and dare I say: fun!?

Her book is a fun voyage through her conversion and her love story with her husband. If you like a good tale of back & forth & love & almost not love & then happy ending, you gotta grab this one. Her conversion is a slow unfurling in her heart, a real questioning of what the concept of a god means and how God was present in her life when she was least expecting it.

I especially enjoyed the parts about childbirth (haha! so great!) and how she came to being pro-life and open to more life. It’s a comforting thing to see how other Catholic moms have addressed the fears we all have about the more-than-two-kid paradigm.


Blessed is She.

You know about this online daily devotional ministry that I’m the executive editor of, right? I wrote about wanting Advent to be more for me this year yesterday. Jenna, our founder & genius behind it all, designed & printed beautiful journals (paper, ya’ll) for us to have to prep for Advent. All proceeds go towards keeping our ministry going. Click here to see it.


You, lucky winner, will take one copy of each book and this journal.

Raffle away!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Angela Miceli on November 21, 2014 at 7:42 am


  2. phoebe on November 21, 2014 at 8:07 am

    When I grow up, I want to be a writer like Rebecca and Cari.

  3. Kathy H on November 21, 2014 at 8:42 am

    Ooh such great books Nell! With our being just shy of 2 I am slowly starting to realize that she might need school some day…I’ve read a lot of great reviews of Rebecca’s book and would love to dig into the how-tos of homeschooling!

  4. Kim on November 21, 2014 at 9:01 am

    I have heard so much about Pope Awesome. What drew you to Catholicism vs Protestant churches or even Orthodox churches?

  5. Amanda on November 21, 2014 at 10:35 am

    I have both of these books on my kindle and have yet to get to them! Thanks for the encouragement 🙂

  6. Camilla on November 21, 2014 at 10:57 am

    Thank you for offering this great giveaway! I saw it through Cari’s Fb post. I dream of going to The Edel gathering next year at least! This year, I could still use all the inspiration and encouragement I can find, and these books will hit the spot! God bless! –Camilla

  7. bobbi @ revolution of love on November 21, 2014 at 11:01 am

    What a great giveaway! I am seeing potential Christmas gifts. 😉

    • bobbi @ revolution of love on November 21, 2014 at 11:04 am

      I forgot to post my question. What was the one thing that triggered your first look into the Catholic faith?

  8. Rhoda on November 21, 2014 at 12:00 pm

    How can Catholics witness their faith to non-Catholics without being “holier than thou” or too preachy?

  9. Helen on November 21, 2014 at 5:08 pm

    I would love to win all three books! Regardless, I’m pretty sure I’ll be purchasing ‘Teaching in Your Tiara’.

    A homeschooling question for Rebecca: how do you handle a situation when your children just don’t want to do their work? Force them? Give them a snack/play break? Leave it till the next day?

  10. Bethany on November 21, 2014 at 9:05 pm

    What is your favorite curriculum?

  11. Lisa Suit on November 22, 2014 at 11:21 am

    When you have multiple children to homeschool how do you find the time to tailor curriculum to each learning style and not just do one size fits all?

  12. Laura Mike on November 22, 2014 at 11:41 am

    I haven’t heard much of Cari’s conversion story, so I would just like to ask her about where she was coming from and what precipitated her conversion. I’d love to read here book. It’s on my Amazon wishlist!