Guitar Lessons at Home

The following is a review of lessons from Guitar 360 Method (affiliate link) with the TOS Homeschool Review Crew.  

Krisz Simonfalvi is the experienced teacher and owner of Guitar 360 Method. He has been teaching my son Joseph guitar in a new way through online video lessons accessed by streaming. It has worked well for Joseph as he can work at his own pace even pausing and rewinding lessons to focus on specific steps. It’s enjoyable to watch him enjoy learning. 

We received access to the Semester One Bundle which includes the Absolute Beginner Course and two bonus songs as well as the Semester One Course. Our entire family can watch these guitar lessons. We pulled up the lessons on the iPhone while my son watched and played along at home. I love listening to him play, and it was great to see him trying new things each time he worked on these lessons. I can’t wait to hear him play the song he’s been practicing to share at church. 

We are a musicial family. I can not play an instrument, but all of our children do. Lessons can be expensive, but our investment in our children’s musical talents has absolutely been worth it. We have tried music school, lessons with musicians, so many different ways through the years; both of our daughters have even taught violin and piano students of their own in our house. I have researched the correlation between playing an instrument and focusing on school lessons. I’m a firm believer that music lessons are worth it. 

Joseph took a few screenshots for me during one of his recent online guitar lessons. He explained the setup to me. Each lesson includes a goal, demonstration, practice, and sometimes even quizzes. The plan is clear and understandable. His sister Emily is currently pursuing a music education degree. On our commute to college and our homeschool group one morning I listened to them discuss Solfege which is addressed in the Guitar 360 Semester I lessons. 

The Semester One course was the perfect starting point for Joseph who has played a little through the years but has never had formal lessons. It covers basic chord shapes in the first lesson. He was able to sit with his guitar and follow along following recommendations as he watched the video lessons. They are marked complete progressively, but students can go back and review new techniques or view any lesson. The Absolute Beginner course is just what you would expect from the name. Brand new guitar students (guitar for Christmas?) can start at the very beginning. 

Guitar 360 is offering a 20% off coupon to all of my readers! You will receive the discount at checkout when you enter the HOMESCHOOL20 coupon code. The regular price is $149. With the coupon code, these lessons are $119.20. 

If you enjoy giving experiences as gifts, a gift of guitar lessons from Guitar 360 method just might bless you, too when the student plays a song for you. 

Visit Guitar 360 Method on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, and be sure to tell them hi from Jennifer at A Glimpse of Our Life. 
Guitar Lessons with Krisz Simonfalvi {Guitar 360 Method Reviews}
Crew Disclaimer


Paint Your Own Starry Night

The following is a review of Master Kitz The Starry Night from Kidzaw.com with the TOS Homeschool Review Crew.  

My son and oldest daughter did these paintings together using the contents of Kidzaw’s The Starry Night kit.

For this review, we received their Van Gogh kit through Amazon. The kit arrived in a reusable tote box with a built in handle. It included complete instructions and supplies to make two paintings. Paper plates, paper towels, and water for cleaning up were the only mandatory required extras. Additional paint was a personal preference, and if they choose to do more, they will also need more paper. 

Pictured above, my son carefully  
applied his low-tack 
"Mesmerizing Stars" stickers 
to his paper before 
beginning to paint. 

Our Van Gogh inspired Master Kitz The Starry Night Kit included instructions and a bit of art history as well as the storage box with magnetic closure, blue, white, and black acrylic paints, chalk pastels (our box had white, blue, yellow, and marigold colors, original Van Gogh roller specially designed to replicate Van Gogh’s active stroke, Starry Night stencil, standard paint roller, two pieces of deluxe art paper, and one low tack “Mesmerizing Stars” sticker sheet with six star stickers. The acrylic and oil pastels are all labeled “child friendly.”

The non-consumable parts of the kit and the handy “tool box” have already been added to Grandmommie’s art loft to use with future projects. 

My daughter enjoyed using the 
patterned Van Gogh paint roller, 
pictured above.

With my return to work, our homeschool has changed yet again. My son does more of his schoolwork outside with my husband when they are both home. My daughter called this a messy painting activity. Thankfully my husband agreed that the kids could paint in his shop. He said they could get paint on his workbench instead of in our house. 

There were six star stickers included. My daughter pointed out that the number of steps required before removing stickers makes it difficult for two paintings to be completed simultaneously. She and her brother solved this by using 3 stars each. Additional stars can be painted on top of the picture, too, with different depth. This would have been a great point to incorporate an astronomy lesson. 

The main components including the stencil (pictured above in use) and the paint rollers and stencils can be used) over and over; paint and pastels would need to be replenished. 

My daughter added additional layers of color to her painting with a set of twelve pastels that she already had. My son found the supplies provided in the kit to be sufficient. 

Adding yellow to the stars was my son's next step.

My daughter's completed painting

I love how my kids were able to open this kit and complete this project together from start to finish in one evening. That they did it in my husband's workshop under our own starry night sky just added to the cool factor. What neat family time this provided as they laughed and created together. They had fun working side by side and ended up with two masterpieces which reflected their own styles as well as that of the inspiring artist. The kit provided us with meaningful fun, and my kids really enjoyed using it. 

Visit Kidzaw on Facebook and Twitter, and be sure to tell them hi from Jennifer at A Glimpse of Our Life. 

Master Kitz The Starry Night {Kidzaw.com Reviews}
Crew Disclaimer


Holy Roar CD

The following is a review of Holy Roar from Propeller Consulting, LLC. 

Chris Tomlin’s latest CD has been my worship soundtrack for my work commute. I’ve enjoyed singing along with the songs.  
“I count my blessings one by one
Your goodness in my life
How could I ask for more?”

In this season of thankfulness, my favorite song on the soundtrack is #5: Satisfied 

Buy Link:

HOLY ROAR: the freedom, the experience, the wonder of worship. It is seeing the church come together, hands lifted to God, pouring out our praise with an eternal song in our hearts. It’s every voice together, changing the way we worship.

Chris Tomlin is one of the most heralded singer-songwriters in the world who has amassed an impressive body of work. He has sold more than 8 million albums, 11.3 million digital tracks with 16 #1 singles. Chris is one of only four artists ever to receive the Sound Exchange Digital Radio Award for over 1 Billion digital radio streams, others include Justin Timberlake, Pitbull and Garth Brooks. 

The Grammy® winner’s list of music awards include an American Music Award, 3  Billboard Music Awards, 21 Dove Awards, a BMI Songwriter of the Year Award and more. Chris’ concert tours have sold-out venues in major cities including New York City’s Madison Square Garden, The Forum in Los Angeles, Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena and Red Rocks in Denver, among others. This spring, Chris marked another career milestone by launching his own imprint record label, Bowyer & Bow, in partnership with Capitol Christian Music Group.

“Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255:  “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”):  Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway.  Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation.  I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.
Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway.  If you have won a prize from our sponsor Propeller /FlyBy Promotions in the last 30 days on the same blog, you are not eligible to win.  Or if you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again.  Winner is subject to eligibility verification. 


Indivisible Movie

The following is a review of the movie Indivisible from Propeller Consulting, LLC. 

My family and I had the privilege of watching a screening of this movie. Based on a true story, it shares real life experiences. It is a war story of both a war away from home and the very close to home war on marriage. God’s plan for our life was beautiful, but this life is filled with difficulties. This movie shows strength through trials. It was not an easy movie to watch. But with the armor of God and the power of prayer to God as protection both in war and in marriage, Hope is displayed.

Releasing in theaters nationwide Oct 26th:

“Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255:  “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”):  Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway.  Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation.  I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post. 


St. Bartholomew’s Eve

The following is a review of St. Bartholomew’s Eve CD setfrom Heirloom Audio with the TOS Homeschool Review Crew.  

Another fabulous history story written by G.A. Henty years ago comes to life with talented actors and realistic sound effects in St. Bartholomew’s Eve. This, maybe more than any others of their audio dramatizations yet, is a graphic war story. When I researched this war, it was called a massacre. It tells of the Huguenots fighting for religious freedom long ago in France. 

Bill Heid of Heirloom Audio shared how Scripture tells us to remember and to teach our children to as well. These stories help us to learn about and remember foundations of our Christian heritage. Scripture is also shared in these stories which are presented from a Christian world view.

Brian Blessed returns once again to Heirloom Audio as the voice of G.A. Henty “Mr. George.” Henty’s historical stories were originally written to make history understandable to young boys, and that is continued in these dramatizations as they are presented as stories being told. Philip and Ned listen to the story, then the telling changes to action, and the listener is transported back in time. Mr. George admonishes the boys to take advantage of the privilege of attending church (after they were caught skipping the service) that others had died for. Indeed, these stories are shared so we all can remember the sacrifices made for our freedom. 

History repeats itself. The story of St. Bartholomew’s Eve tells of the French wars of religion for freedom of worship. Even their freedom to sing songs of worship was being limited. The words of the hymn A Mighty Fortress Is Our God are woven through this story, and the combined voices singing it are beautiful.

The Huguenots doors are painted singling them out before they were to be killed because of their religious beliefs. Their friends quickly knew that put them in danger and erased the marks. This is a story of sacrifices for the glory of God. The heroes in this tale reference Christ’s command to love our neighbors. 

“Whom shall we obey? 
The king of France or the King of Kings?”

Ultimately, that question, reworded with relevance to our own life, becomes one of the most important questions in our life: shall we obey the King of Kings or not? 

Our family enjoyed listening to this together. Instead of our living room, with surround sound and eyes closed, it was as if we became part of the story while listening. I love how the life changing truths are woven into these tales. I recommend these audio dramatizations to anyone who wants to learn history and enjoys listening to a good story. Visit their website for this and other adventures, and click the Heirloom Audio tag in this post to read my reviews of other Heirloom Audio adventures. 

Visit Heirloom Audio on FacebookTwitterPinterestGoogle+YouTube, and Instagram, and be sure to tell them hi from Jennifer at A Glimpse of Our Life.  

St. Bartholomew's Eve {Heirloom Audio Reviews}
Crew Disclaimer



Brinkman Adventures Season Six

The following is a review of Season 6, Underground Rising from Brinkman Adventures with the TOS Homeschool Review Crew.  

We recently received a download of the latest Brinkman Adventures. Season six differs from others we have enjoyed in the beginning as it covers historical rather than recent events. It is also much shorter than their previous CDs, now with 6 episodes totaling about 2.5 hours. 

My son and I incorporated this season of Brinkman audio adventures into our homeschool routine on our days we were actually at home this month. He hooked up his Bluetooth speaker to our computer, and we were able to easily listen in any room. With their sound effects and captivating time we listened as if we were there with them. 

I love the hope shared in these stories. The WWII episode referenced their motto as:  

“Do it all in the name of our savior.”

My middle child started college this semester. She is reaching for her dreams and completely enjoying the classes that pertain to her major. There have been times, though, that fear has creeped in. We have both searched for and shared many verses about not fearing. The second episode in this series is about fear. I love how their stories are so relatable to our life.  

My guys have a big interest in RC planes. In a story of a dream about a prison escape, mention of a drone captured all of our attention. 

In the middle of the audio dramas, when completely unexpected, ads are inserted guiding listeners to visit their website: brinkmanadventures.com. 

The narrators follow the dream allegory with an explanation about salvation. A fly and caterpillar are used as examples as the dad explains being born again in Twice Born Fly. 

Don’t you love when you can look back and clearly see how God worked in your life and answered prayers? The last story shares about hope. One of the main settings is Burma which was in a decades long civil war. The twisty path used to get one man helping with their mission there, when looked back on, clearly shows God’s direction in his preparations. 

Do you pray for your enemies? 
Love each other! Pray with courage! Never surrender! 
There are valuable life changing lessons in these stories. 

God equips the called. That truth from scripture is so evident in the Free Burma Rangers episodes. But also evident is real life heartbreak. They aren’t all happy stories, but I love how they reveal God’s truths in good and bad situations. 

Unlike before when their episodes continued chronologically from the previous seasons and are numbered accordingly, these episodes are not.  Like before, these audio dramatizations are based on true missionary stories of the Brinkman family and their friends. They share more about the real stories inspiring season six here on their website.  

Dutch Underground, Part1
Dutch Underground, Part 2
Twice Born Fly
I Wonder Why
Free Burma Rangers, Part 1
Free Burma Rangers, Part 2

They are offering my readers 10% off through the end of this month! Use code FALL10 through October 31st. 

Find them on Facebook, and be sure to tell them hi from Jennifer at A Glimpse of Our Life. 

Brinkman Adventures Season 6 Reviews
Crew Disclaimer


CashCrunch Carreers Review

The following is a review of CashCrunch Careers from CashCrunch Games with the TOS Homeschool Review Crew. 

Cash Crunch Careers

Do your children already know what they “want to do when they grow up?” My college freshman was already sure throughout her senior year just what her career plan should be, and she is working toward that dream now. Her sister is planning to start college in January. She’s had a plan for years but recently discovered her path. My son is in ninth grade and right now is not interested in algebra much less college. When asked about his future he has suggested LEGO designer and business owner, among other things. When given the opportunity to review CashCrunch Careers, I hoped it might give him direction based on his interests and strengths. 

Paul Vasey, the creator of CashCrunch, previously taught business studies in the UK for twelve years. He also currently teaches a finance course on Schoolhouseteachers.com. 

After logging in, my son completed the CashCrunch Careers questionnaire by choosing which of the two words provided best fit him, in his opinion. Definitions were provided when necessary. It interested me to see how he thought of himself in terms of their word options. Occasionally he shared more with me after making a selection. “Oh I’m creative!” 

Are you more knowledgeable or passionate? Accurate or kind hearted? Agreeable or organized? There are times both words fit and times neither one would necessarily be a top choice. 

Although the test results reflected my son’s word choices, it was not quite what I had expected. I thought it would 
suggest jobs based on both things that he indicated interest in as well as his strengths. Instead, the college and career profile created by CashCrunch Careers is based on a selection of words more like, in my opinion, a personality test. So the job recommendations are more representative of thoughts than skills, though the word “skills” is used repeatedly in their report.  

After completing the questionnaire, a report was created just for him which was immediately available and also accessible through the CashCrunch dashboard. Several videos are offered to help navigate the program and interpret results. The Careers report included recommendations based on his selections. There was an additional option to explore suggested careers by clicking on each one and reading more about them.  

Most of the top twenty jobs/job categories recommended for my son were managerial which I did find fitting with his personality. This year he is president of his 4H club, and leadership suits him well. When he read the suggested top twenty list, he said gaming manager or running his own Bed and Breakfast could be fun. 

CashCrunch Games offers other programs in addition to CashCrunch Careers including a money management game that has just been revised. 
This was a helpful tool in that it was thought provoking and provided a door to more discussion of future career options.

Visit CashCrunch Games on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest, and be sure to tell them hi from Jennifer at A Glimpse of Our Life. 

CashCrunch Careers {CashCrunch Games Reviews}
Crew Disclaimer 


In the Morning

Our morning routine has changed. 

The children have grown, only one remains in our homeschool. 

This semester my daughter started college; in January her sister will join her. I recently returned to work. As my home health schedule fills up, the Tuesday morning college commute will include me. For now, that is daddy daughter time. My husband, too, cherishes this season. 

Today I quickly passed them cups of fresh juice as they hurried out the door with slightly burnt Eggos. My husband told me there is a opossum under the back porch. Burnt food and opossum both remind me that there are things even close to home beyond my control. 

They drove off, three times today to return the cat that insisted on following my daughter down the long driveway and then one last time to run inside and retrieve a necessary device. I’m swinging on our front porch now. This early it’s cool enough to enjoy being outside. It is not cold, but I’m wrapped in the green blanket I’ve had since I was a freshman in college. The dogs both abandoned their impossible opossum watch and joined me on the front porch. 

The air is full of sounds and heavy with humidity. The grass is a vivid green. Unidentified fushia colored blooms are unfolding from a neglected flower pot on the corner of the porch. 

The verses I read this morning reminded me to be thankful. I am. So much. 

It’s time to go back in. The next two will be up and ready for juice soon. One more will head to work. My son will continue algebra. Our days are never the same, but this is my morning routine. 

It’s a beautiful day! 


Scripture and a Snapshot

Continue to find Scripture and a Snapshot with Kym at Just a Second

And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast. I Peter 5:10 

     When we went to my parent’s camp, the guys all worked on replacing boards on the pier. Without the repairs, it was no longer safe. There was a song we sang at church many years ago, maybe from a children’s musical. “He’s still working on me.” I’m so thankful my God continues to restore me. 

     Thank you for joining Scripture & A Snapshot. Leave a comment with a verse that God has placed on your heart this week, or leave a link to your own post sharing a Scripture and a snapshot. Take time to visit some of the other links, too.  

     This is my last week to co-host Scripture and a Snapshot. Reading your encouraging posts have blessed me for over five years. I hope you will continue to link weekly at its new home with Kym at Just a Second

Scripture and Snapshot 

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