Posts Tagged ‘friends’

A cat who thinks he’s a duck?  He must be Quackers!!

This quirky funny book is about standing out, fitting in, and building a life with room for all.

Quackers is a duck. Sure, he may have paws and whiskers. And his quacks might sound more like…well, meows, but he lives among ducks, everyone he knows is a duck, and he’s happy.
Then Quackers meets another duck who looks like him (& talks like him, too!)—but he calls himself a cat. So silly!

Quackers loves being among his new friends the cats, but he also misses his duck friends, and so he finds a way to combine the best of both worlds. Part cat, part duck, all Quackers!

Hardcover book. pages- 40. Ages 3-7

This is cute story that teaches on friendship and acceptance. The characters in this story (ducks & cats) are nice (no conflict). And the illustrations (soft colored pencil look) work with the story. Quackers is Liz Wong’s debut children’s book. Text didn’t hold the attention of my 2 year old reviewer. It’s a good story but confusing for a little one (a cat that is called a duck). Better suited for older children.

LIz Wong/Randon House Publishers provided this book to help facilitate the writing of an honest review. A positive review is not guaranteed, and all opinions are my own. No other compensation was received.

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Create a ‘doodle’ with a few rolls of the DOODLE DICE™. There’s a different doodle pictured on each card in the deck. When you build a doodle that matches one of the cards , you take that card. Block an opponent’s turn or take one of their cards away. Collect one card of each color and you win! It’s the fun challenging way for everyone in your family to a be a ‘doodle artist’! 


Win Doodle Dice™ by being the first to get a card of each color. A different doodle is pictured on each card. The orange cards contain easy doodles because it takes only one dice to match. The red card has doodle pictures that require two dice matches; the yellow cards, three; the green cards, four; the blue cards, five; and the purple cards, all six. We opted to just roll the dice with our hands because the shaker cup was very noisy. But younger players with small hands might find the cup easier to use (ages 6-adult). Cards contain the doodle word and card color in English, French, and Spanish. A nice game to incorporate into a foreign language class.



It was easy to learn (complete instructions here) and super fun. It’s recommended for 2-6 players; I played with 2 and also 4 players and didn’t notice any difference in game play (I lost both times). Win or loose, I highly recommend this unique dice and card game from Jax!

I received Doodle Dice™ from Jax to help facilitate the writing of an honest review. A positive review is not guaranteed, and all opinions are my own. No other compensation was received.

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Polygon is another fun strategy game from Jax. Play your polygon tiles to create a group of three numbers. The numbers determine the score and the player with the highest score at the end of the game wins!


I agree with the age recommendation (7-adult) for the game because chip placement is challenging. A first time “test-run” game is a good idea to learn the rules. Just match numbers and colors and work toward the highest score. This game uses addition and multiplication skills. A calculator is a good idea at the end of the game to add up all those points. 

The game can be played by 2,3, or 4 players. Or maybe play it as a single player to achieve your highest scoring game.

Polygon contains a folding game board, one die, 49 polygon tiles, and 50 score cards. As with all the Jax games that I’ve reviewed, everything is sturdy and attractive. And fun!



Take a look at the Jax website to see all the games they make. Every game has the instructions listed on the website to view before buying. View Polygon game instructions here.

I received Polygon from Jax to help facilitate the writing of an honest review. A positive review is not guaranteed, and all opinions are my own. No other compensation was received.

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Roll the dice, then take out the matching chip point total. But don’t get stuck with too many points left over, because the player with the lowest point total wins!! It’s FAST and it’s FUN!

My Review: 

This is my family’s favorite Jax game so far because it’s quick, easy and very entertaining!

This ready-to-play game can be stored in any kitchen drawer or living room end table. It’s small enough to fit in a suitcase pocket for a game on the road or in the air. I especially recommend the little game of Chips at a get-together because it can be played with any number of players (2 or more).  The directions aren’t complicated, it doesn’t require serious concentration, and it can be played anywhere there is a small surface for rolling the dice. The game doesn’t interfere with conversation – it compliments the conversation. It’s big fun coming from a little game in a bag. 


Also makes a good home school game for reinforcing early math skills since players need to think through all the possible addition combinations which might be used. 

Strategy Note: Eliminate the higher number chips first! 


I received The Game of Chips from Jax to help facilitate the writing of an honest review. A positive review is not guaranteed, and all opinions are my own. No other compensation was received.

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More Than A Bucket List. Making Your Dreams, Passions, and Faith A Realty.

Toni Birdsong


pages 288

More Than a Bucket List : Making Your Dreams, Passions, and Faith a Reality, Thomas Nelson

Book Description

Fun ideas of things to do, places to see, and ways to make a difference!

Everyone dreams about places to see, people to meet, and things to do in their lifetime. But too often we lose sight of those dreams and get buried in everyday busyness and demands. More Than a Bucket List will inspire you to seize and act on a range of dreams—anything from visiting the Holy Land, donating your time at a soup kitchen, learning to climb a tree, or helping a child learn to read. The book also includes ideas to make lasting memories as you marvel at a new sight, laugh like crazy with an old friend, or change a life.

The compilation of bucket list items is divided thematically and blended with Scripture and personal stories. Pages at the back allow you to write your own bucket list items. Are you ready to finish this life well and start checking off items from your bucket list?

Here is a book that is filled with a list of Christian-minded ideas for your bucket list. It’s a cute hardcover book (6″x 5″) with ideas of things to do and places to go. The “more” part of the title is the bits of inspiration that accompany some of the bucket list ideas. Unfortunately many ideas in the book are costly and I can’t imagine many being able to seriously consider them; however, there are some ideas mentioned that are financially reasonable or even completely free. Silly ideas. Serious ideas. Some ideas I wouldn’t consider as a good suggestion like the “break the rules once in a while” since some of these are not showing good Christian judgement and behavior. But many ideas are good. I’m adding to my bucket list “live 100 percent complaint-free” after I successfully accomplish this thirty day goal. (Colossians 3:12)

Some “my bucket list” pages in the back are provided as a place to record your personal plan of action.

Disclosure of Material Connection: This book was provided, by Booksneeze, in exchange for an honest opinion. No other compensation was received. 

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This month’s Jax game is

Inspiring stories within the Bible. Now children and adults can learn about the Old and New Testament as they play the fun game of SEQUENCE. Pictures representing Bible stories are displayed on each card and the game board  The cards also include a story title and scripture reference. Players match the picture on a card to the same picture on the board, then place their chip there. Five chips in a row wins the game! It’s the fun, challenging game of BIBLE SEQUENCE.

The game board looks like the bible where simple illustrations- both on the game board and on the playing cards- depict a biblical story. It’s recommended for players 6 through adult. Any younger player can simply match images and older players can benefit from the scripture verse(s) that is included on each game card. Do you know where the story of David and Goliath can be found in the bible? Do you know all the verses that mentions Jesus feeding thousands?

The game can be played by 2 or 3 individual players or 4 to 6 players if played in a team. The directions are super easy and the game is super fun. In addition to family time, it would be good as a Sunday school game or as a home school game; there are many different spins that you can put on this game to reinforce learning like saying the book reference out-loud or taking the time to look up the verse during the game.

Luck, strategy, and lots of opportunities to learn more about the bible’s stories.

Contents of the game include the folding game board, playing cards, playing chips and instructions. The complete directions can be viewed on the Jax website. As with the previous Jax game I reviewed, everything is quality made to last for many enjoyable game times.

I received the Bible Sequence game from Jax to help facilitate the writing of an honest review. A positive review is not guaranteed, and all opinions are my own. No other compensation was received.


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Share the Bounty. Finding God’s Grace Through the Spirit of Hospitality.

Benita Long


pages 208

Share the Bounty : Finding God's Grace through the Spirit of Hospitality, Benita Long

Book Description

When people come into your home, what do they see? Have you prepared for their visit? Are your gatherings imbued with the sweet spirit of charity? Whether you’re celebrating a joyous occasion with your dearest friends and family, welcoming overnight guests, or comforting someone in need, your home can be a sanctuary of Christian fellowship. Discover the scriptural basis for hospitality through this compilation of menus, each designed to complement life’s most important occasions with the people you cherish.

This is a very large size book  (12″x 9″). It includes menus and recipes, full page photographs, quotes, and bible verses. It could be a coffee table book in addition to a cookbook. And if I liked it, it could be a kind gift for a generous host/hostess. However I didn’t like this book and here are my reasons.

First, the photographs mostly depict scenes and table settings that are upscale and not what the average hostess would offer. This comes across cold and stuffy. Next, the writing style I find to be awkward. In an attempt to be eloquent perhaps, the vocabulary choices make the reading difficult when it could have been more relaxed and down to earth. And the biggest reason I don’t recommend this book is because of many of the quotes. Shockingly many are from secular people (Yoko Ono, Lionel Richie, Led Zeppelin, and others). There is a sprinkling of bible verses but this book is not completely scriptural or Christian guided.

(Additionally, I noticed what I believe is an error omission in the Potatoes Annette recipe. The directions say to peel and cook the potatoes but it never says to slice them before combining them with the other ingredients. I don’t think I’d mix 3 lbs. of whole potatoes into a casserole.)

Disclosure of Material Connection: This book was provided, by Booksneeze, in exchange for an honest opinion. No other compensation was received.


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Fall is here – officially starting tomorrow – and the cooler, shorter days make it the perfect time to play some indoor games. I am thrilled with the opportunity to review for Jax and to feature a Jax game each month along with a giveaway!

The assortment of Jax games is as varied as the fall foliage. September’s feature is Sequence States and Capitals.

Each card has the name of a capital with its location shown on the state. Players match the state’s shape and color on the card to the same state and shape and color on the board, then place a chip on that space. When you have five in a row it’s a SEQUENCE . Players of all ages will have fun learning the states and their capitals while enjoying the fun, challenging play of the SEQUENCE game.

We find that this game involves both luck and strategy. The strategy comes in making the most of the cards you have and in where you place your chips. Part luck, part strategy, all Fun! This is obviously a great educational game for kids but it is equally enjoyable played by adults. Do you know ALL your states and capitals? It’s recommended for ages 7-adult but I think some younger kids would be able to play with help. 

The game can be played by 2 players/teams or 3 players/teams. There are three colors of marker chips (green, purple, and orange) and the number of cards dealt to each player depends on how many play. The easy to understand directions gets the game quickly underway and it is a game that scores high on wanting to be played again.

above: game board shows two players; the purple player has a sequence

below: game board shows three players; the orange player completed a sequence

Contents of the game include the game board, playing cards, marker chips, and directions including a US map. The complete directions to the Sequence States and Capitals game can be viewed on the Jax website. The game board folds into the box for easy storage and all contents of the game are nicely made.So what do you think? I recommend it as an awesome gift, as a home school game, or for a fall evening get-together.


The winner is: Heather from Columbus, Ohio

Here are your random numbers:


Timestamp: 2012-10-01 10:46:04 UTC



Enter the Giveaway to Win the Sequence States and Capitals game

To Enter The Giveaway [2 ways to enter]

(1) Leave a comment telling me your state and capital.

(2) Subscribe to Notes From Dawn and leave a comment here telling me you’re a follower.

Pick the entries you would like to participate in and remember to leave a separate comment for each one so I can use to pick the winner! Please be sure to leave your email address. If I have no contact information, I can’t award you as winner. Contest ends September 30 @11:59 pm est. (available only to US residents) A winner will be selected at random using the integer generator from The winner must respond within 48 hours of notification to claim their prize. 

I received the Sequence States and Capitals game from Jax to help facilitate the writing of an honest review. A positive review is not guaranteed, and all opinions are my own. No other compensation was received.

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