Top 10 Reasons to Take Your Family on a Summer Road Trip

Top 10 Reasons to Take Your Family on a Summer Road Trip

Brad Mathias, author of the new parenting-themed book Road Trip to Redemption (Tyndale Momentum), has created a list of ten reasons why a road trip can improve not only your summer but your family.

SOURCE: Nashville PR

(NASHVILLE, Tennessee) — It’s no secret that families today are struggling. Daily pulled in a dozen different directions by jobs, schooling, and extracurricular activities, parents and kids often feel disconnected from each other, and the distance can produce devastating effects.

If you’re feeling this tension in your life, follow this top 10 list of reasons to take your family on a road trip this summer:

1) It’s time to unplug!
Leave the office behind. Power down your computer, and turn off that smartphone. Give this time to your spouse and kids, and allow old-fashioned conversations to occur.

2) Go somewhere you’ve never been!
We live in the greatest country in the world. Go explore, and don’t be afraid to pull off the road on a whim. It’s time for an adventure.

3) Face your fears, and try a new activity together!
New experiences can change past ones and help build trust and respect. Go horseback riding, river rafting, rock climbing, zip lining, etc.

4) Discover new cultures and savor new flavors!
Try regional foods and sample local culture. You just might find something new to enjoy.

5) Go outside!
Introduce your kids—and possibly yourself—to outdoor life. Go fishing or hiking, and camp out under the stars. The night sky might look a little different than it does in the city!

6) No schedules allowed!
This is a vacation! It’s time to leave calendars and deadlines behind. Don’t be afraid to venture off course and enjoy some freedom. Show your kids how to be spontaneous!

7) Let your kids make decisions!
This is their vacation too! Let them make some choices along the way. That horrible dining experience or weird roadside attraction just might give you an opportunity to laugh together.

8) Change your perspective!
Walk above the clouds on a mountaintop, or swim under a waterfall. Reconnect with your family while sharing incredible experiences.

9) Fall in love with your spouse all over again!
Book a separate hotel room from your kids for at least one night. Allow yourself some time to reconnect as a couple.

10) Life is short!
Your kids won’t be kids forever. Use this time to create memories that will last a lifetime.

Brad Mathias, author of the new book, Road Trip to Redemption (Tyndale Momentum, June 2013), thought everything in his family was fine, until he and his wife discovered a devastating secret. So they piled their family into the car and embarked on a wild, crazy, seven-thousand-mile, what-are-we-thinking trip across the country. As they drove, they realized how far apart they’d drifted, found unexpected blessings along the way—and journeyed together from pain and loss to recovery and redemption.

Road Trip to Redemption is available now wherever books are sold. For more information, visit tyndalemomentum.com.

Chemo Duck Partners with Nashville Shores for Duck Derby Family Event to Benefit Kids with Cancer

Chemo Duck Partners with Nashville Shores for Duck Derby Family Event to Benefit Kids with Cancer


chemo duck

SOURCE: Nashville Publicity

(NASHVILLE, Tennessee) — Gabe’s Chemo Duck Program is pleased to announced that Chemo Duck’s Duck Derby will take place at Nashville Shores (4001 Bell Road in Hermitage, TN) at 11:00am on Saturday, August 17th. Sponsored by Jackson National Life Insurance Company, the family-friendly event will benefit the Nashville-based non-profit.

For a donation of $5, supporters can purchase one of two thousand rubber ducks that will be dropped into Nashville Shores’ lazy river. A grand prize of $1,000 will be awarded to the donor whose rubber duck is the first to cross the finish line. Additionally, a donation of 24 Chemo Ducks will be made to the hospital of the winner’s choice. Winners do not need to be present to win, and all proceeds from the event will be used to place more Chemo Ducks into the hands of young cancer patients waiting for a duck of their own.

“We are honored to be hosting the Duck Derby at Nashville Shores,” says Chemo Duck creator Lu Sipos. “We are very excited about partnering with them to put on a worthwhile event that will be fun for the entire family!”

“We are proud to partner with Gabe’s Chemo Duck Program for this fun event,” said Daniel Strobel, Director of Marketing for Nashville Shores. “We hope we will be able to raise money and awareness for these children who are facing such a difficult journey ahead.”

Discount tickets (which include one duck for the Duck Derby) are available for $25 through Gabe’s Chemo Duck Program. To purchase a ticket, sponsor ducks or for more information, please visit www.ChemoDuck.org.

ABOUT GABE’S CHEMO DUCK PROGRAM
Gabe’s Chemo Duck Program is a program of the Nashville-based nonprofit organization, Gabe’s My Heart, which was established in 2004 to provide education and comfort to children living with cancer through medical play using therapeutic tools. The goal of the program is to enable hospital staff and parents to prepare children for chemotherapy treatment and eliminate the fear of the unknown. Chemo Duck is a stuffed yellow duck dressed in blue hospital scrubs with a bandana around its head, a chemotherapy port on its chest and an immobilizer on his arm. In a gentle, age-appropriate manner, children learn what to expect during cancer treatment and have a friend to share the experience. In turn, children can use Chemo Duck to help friends, siblings and classmates to understand and empathize with their experience.

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July 15, 2013 Journal Entry (Toys, Movies and Bug[Car]s, Oh my)

Our son Will is now 2 years and 9 months old. In recent months, his language development has accelerated considerably, which has been exciting for my wife and I to watch. He frequently surprises us with random movie quotes or repeating things we say… which brings no shortage of amusement to us.

This summer we’ve even taken him to the movie theater twice, too. His first movie experience was the re-release of Finding Nemo late last year, but even at 2 years old, he didn’t really seem to take in what was happening. But he did mostly stare at the gigantic screen the entire time.

In recent months, we were shocked to find that he absolutely LOVES Monsters, Inc. – the original. I expected it to terrify him, so I didn’t show it to him for quite a while, but when I showed him part of it, because it contained a scene that involved a toy he loves, he just loved the film. So we took him to see Monsters University which he seemed to really enjoy. (Our theater lets kids in free under 3! Woohoo! :) ) We sat off to the side in a section by ourselves and tried to keep him as quiet as possible. He couldn’t resist roaring along with the characters a few times though.

Then, recently I showed him Despicable Me, thinking “if he can handle Monsters and The Incredibles, this kid can handle the escapades of Gru and his minions.” Sure enough, because this kid is absolutely, positively infatuated with the moon, he loved Despicable Me — especially the scenes involving the moon and rockets. (I tell you, this kid is instinctively nerdy and in love with sci-fi). So we took him to see Despicable Me 2 last week, and he was already getting excited about the concept of ‘going to the movies.’ He clapped a couple times during the movie, although sitting for an hour and a half was a little daunting for him. As we left the theater, he saw a motion poster that displayed the preview for Planes and he excitedly pointed to the poster and exclaimed “Movie!! Movie!!” The apple does not fall too far from the tree.

Last night, we took him to a family party that took place partially outside in a beautifully landscaped backyard. He was playing a little with his second cousins, who were all older than him, and when the fireflies started coming out — and those and mosquitoes decided to interact with him — he looked upset and asked to go inside. While the other kids didn’t seem to mind the bugs much, it was pretty funny to me to hear my son speaking my thoughts on insects (although, granted, I was more outdoorsy as a little kid than I am now as an adult. I’ll take AC and a pad and pencil over a ball and 90 degree heat any day of the week).

The past week has been full of other new experiences, too – including Will’s first real toddler-age experiences with vomiting. He’s had a stomach bug (so it seems) and some struggle with congestion for days and we’ve had to start dealing with some surprise refunds on stuff he’s eaten lately. He’s also started just straight-up spitting out food that he decides he either doesn’t want or doesn’t like, which has even been happening with foods he normally DOES like. So that’s been curious. But there’s one thing that’s for sure – kids keep you on your toes! :)

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One of my favorite experiences with him lately, however, was taking him to my parents house to dig out some of my old toys. My dad and I went up into his garage attic and brought down boxes and boxes of my brother’s and my old 80s toys — Transformers, LEGOs, PlayDoh, The Real Ghostbusters, G.I. Joe. Will kept grabbing whatever looked cool to him and running into the other room to claim them as his own (I had to keep saying, “No Will! That’s Uncle Joe’s!” I mean, c’mon… the original Galvatron? I was tempted to grab it for myself!). For me, it was a trip down memory lane, and fun to see Will interact with things I spent many a happy hour playing with. I boxed up some of the best stuff and took it home with me for when he’s old enough, but Will claimed for himself my Real Ghostbusters Highway Haunter – a Volkswagen beetle that literally turns into a bug. It’s pretty cool and I can see why he loves it so much.

In fact, recently I’d snagged the Real Ghostbusters Ecto 1 car on eBay for him and it’s quickly become one of his favorite toys. It’s crazy, too, because the only association he has for things like Ecto 1 is that his dad loves it.

Again, it must be in the genes ;)

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Jaci Velasquez Offers Back-To-School Advice for Parents

Award-Winning Recording Artist Jaci Velasquez And Son Both Prepare For Back To School As First-Time Students

Jaci Velasquez parents

SOURCE: TKO Marketing

NASHVILLE, Tenn., (July 15, 2013) – Multi-tasking is the name of the game for Platinum-Selling Recording Artist Jaci Velasquez these days. While continuing to tour around the world, record new music, co-host her morning radio talk show, and being a devoted mother and wife, Jaci is now conquering back to school as she and her son ready themselves as first-time students for the upcoming school year. Jaci is enrolled in Liberty University’s online program while her oldest son Zealand is preparing for his kindergarten debut.

Jaci decided to answer back-to-school questions and offer some tips for moms with children headed off to school for the first time.

Why have you chosen to enroll at Liberty University and head back to school at this time in your life?

Now is the best time! From 15 to 25, I was touring like crazy! I bet if I would have tried to write an essay while on the road back then, it would have been written in the three local languages of the countries that I was visiting at that time. Now, I am more grounded and focused on the importance of education to me. You always have to be true to yourself, and for me, this is time to do it!

What kind of program is it (classroom or online)? Why did you choose this particular learning medium?

It’s an online program through Liberty. I am LOVING it right now because it is allowing me to learn without sacrificing time with my family. Pretty soon, Soren and Zealand will be the ones giving me flash card quizzes.  (You can’t do that in the classroom!)

What do you hope to accomplish?

Obtaining a degree and proving to myself that I can do anything I put my mind to.

Which makes you more anxious, you or your son Zealand starting school? Why?

BOTH! Zealand is my first child, which means he is growing up first. His first day of school is coming up next month, and I know I’m going to cry. I wish I could be there to walk with him through every part of it and protect him from all those unsettling stories that you hear on the news, but I know he has to experience it himself to grow into the man he will become. I also know that I’ll be the first one he sees when he gets back, so it’s all good :)

I am a little anxious about my own education because it seems like I’m living my life a little backwards than the average person since I’m embarking on a college education after building a career, getting married and while raising two little boys. The important part though, is that I’m doing it!

 

As a working mom going back to school, do you have any suggestions for finding life balance?

Everything in life is about balance-so I am approaching it like I do everything else: Set boundaries, time frames and break times. If you have a set schedule, you’re more likely to follow through.

 

Do you have any tips for getting children prepared for the big day?

Tips for parents:  Make sure your camera or iPhone is CHARGED when they are walking out the door and getting on the bus for the first time! Tips for children: Have fun, be nice, and tell mom and dad EVERYTHING!

 

What’s the best part about a new school year?

Gearing up for a new school year is always exciting! The best part about it? Shopping! My advice to students, no matter what grade they are about to embark upon, is this: Have fun shopping! That was always the most enjoyable part for me.  New pens, pencils, binders…multi colored folders and yearly calendars….fresh kicks and a new outfit or two. THAT is what got me pumped for a new year.

 

About Jaci Velasquez

Jaci Velasquez has three RIAA® certified Platinum® albums, three RIAA® certified Gold® albums, 16 number one singles, 6 singles in the top 10, 7 Dove Awards, has graced more than 50 magazine covers, appeared in ads for Pepsi, Doritos, Target, and is the co-host of the syndicated morning show, “The Family Friendly Morning Show with Doug and Jaci Velasquez” on Today’s Christian Music Radio Network with more than 1.5 million listeners. To learn more, visit https://www.facebook.com/JaciVelasquezOfficial.

 

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Yancy Continues Standard Publishing Partnership, Creating New Music and Videos for “Jungle Safari” Vacation Bible School Program

Yancy Continues Standard Publishing Partnership, Creating New Music and Videos for “Jungle Safari” Vacation Bible School Program

yancy

SOURCE: Nashville Publicity

(NASHVILLE, Tennessee) — Christian singer-songwriter and children’s worship expert Yancy has created all-new songs and music videos for Standard Publishing’s 2014 Vacation Bible School program. “Jungle Safari,” which also includes contributions from Beth Guckenberger and special needs expert Vangie Rodenbeck, is packed with fun and adventure, teaching kids that God is Creator, Provider, Protector, Savior and King.

“It’s my third year to write, produce and perform the music, and the music videos, for Standard Publishing’s Vacation Bible School curriculum,” says Yancy, who was tasked with keeping kids energized and engaged. “I’m honored to continue this partnership, making an incredible impact in young lives from coast to coast.”

Standard Publishing’s focus on value ensures that churches get everything they need to lead VBS in one simple kit without having to buy core pieces separately. In fact, this is the only VBS curriculum with reproducible music so that churches can put the music in their kids’ hands for free. For more information about “Jungle Safari,” visit www.vacationbibleschool.com.

For more than a decade, Yancy has released radio friendly pop/rock albums and multiple projects for kids and young adults. Her new adult-focused modern worship album, “Roots for the Journey” (Elevate Entertainment / Syntax Distribution), was released on May 21st to rave reviews. For more information, visit www.yancynotnancy.com.

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GO FISH REELS IN CHURCHES AND FAMILIES WITH DIVERSE NEW RELEASES

GO FISH REELS IN CHURCHES AND FAMILIES
WITH DIVERSE NEW RELEASES


go-fish-worship

NEWS SOURCE: Turning Point PR

NASHVILLE, Tenn.—Go Fish, a leading provider of children’s entertainment and ministry resources, expands its diverse line-up of popular products for churches and families with the June 18 launch of two new titles, the Go Fish Worship Resource Kit and Go Fish Kids Music DVD.

With the debut of “Volume 1” and “Christmas,” the Go Fish Worship Resource Kit features a selection of the group’s signature originals and other favorites, including “Praise Your Name,” “Jump (featuring DJ Pray-Z),” “Christmas with a Capital ‘C’” and “Joy To the World,” among others. With music videos, sheet music, split tracks, motion instructions, and a range of additional tools for leading children’s worship at churches, camps and other settings, the Go Fish Worship Resource Kit is designed to become a one-stop source for children’s ministry and music leaders.

Known for making “great music for kids that won’t drive parents bonkers,” Go Fish turns to the family with the release of their Kids Music DVD. Featuring such songs as “Gotta Move!” “My God” and “Fruit of the Spirit,” Kids Music is a collection of six all new Go Fish music videos for the entire family. Among other bonuses, the DVD includes an instructional video for jumping “Double Dutch” with the Go Fish guys.

“Our goal is to provide churches and parents with resources designed to model a high view of God, Scripture, and the Gospel to children,” explains Jamie Statema, president, Go Fish Resources. “Along with our curriculum, the new Go Fish Worship Resource Kit series will specifically address the needs of the church, while Kids Music will continue to serve families at home as well. Parents and children’s ministry workers are the ones making a difference in the lives of children and we are honored that our music can play a part in that.”

Since 2003, Go Fish has been one of the leading providers of family entertainment and children’s ministry resources. Among the group’s numerous successful recordings and DVDs are Party Like A Preschooler, Kickin’ It Old School and Christmas With A Capital ‘C.’ Go Fish concert appearances have drawn capacity crowds in churches, theatres and arenas across the country for more than a decade.

The group has also created such popular VBS curriculum as Backstage With The Bible, Kickin’ It Old School and Praise. Thousands of churches around the world have utilized Go Fish’s VBS programs, including their latest curriculum, Gotta Move! which released earlier this year and has become the group’s best-selling resource to date.

The Go Fish Worship Resource Kit’s “Volume 1” and “Christmas” (sold separately) as well as the Go Fish Kids Music DVD are available at www.gofishresources.com.

For further information on Go Fish, visit www.gofishguys.com

New From Alex and Stephen Kendrick-'The Love Dare for Parents' July 1

FROM THE CREATORS OF ‘FIREPROOF’ 

AND ‘THE LOVE DARE’ COMES 

‘THE LOVE DARE FOR PARENTS’

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SOURCE: Lovell/Fairchild Comm.

NASHVILLE – June 6, 2013 – From Stephen and Alex Kendrick—the writers/producer/director of FIREPROOF and the author’s of the No. 1 New York Times best-selling book it inspired, The Love Dare—comes a life-changing tool for building strong, godly families—The Love Dare for Parents.

The Love Dare for Parents offers a 40-day journey of daily ‘dares’ that challenge parents to know what Christ-like love looks like and to share it with their children,” Stephen Kendrick said.

Available for preorder now with deliveries beginning July 1, The Love Dare for Parents also includes free access to an online parenting evaluation tool to make the book even more impactful.

“We know that family life is busy,” Alex Kendrick said. “We purposefully made The Love Dare for Parents easy and enjoyable to read with biblical principles you can apply to your parenting from Day One.”

Each of the 40 days of The Love Dare for Parents begins with an encouraging promise from scripture then draws a biblical principle from it. Parents receive daily challenges to put the principles to work in the lives of their children. And, there is room for readers to make the book their own, with space to journal reflections about the material and about personal experiences, putting it into action. The Love Dare for Parents is helpful and encouraging to parents and children of all ages—whether a new parent looking to win the heart of their young child or an older parent hoping to win a heart back.

Alex and Stephen Kendrick, founders of Kendrick Brothers Productions, are the creative team behind some of the most popular faith-based films of recent times including FACING THE GIANTS, FIREPROOF and COURAGEOUS. And they are international best-selling authors of books inspired by their films. In FIREPROOF, a major character whose marriage is crumbling is challenged to take The Love Dare, 40 days of showing sacrificial love to his wife. The book The Love Dare was inspired by FIREPROOF and has spent 131 weeks on the New York Times Advice best-seller list and has sold nearly 6 million copies. On June 2, five years after its release, it is still earning accolades, as it received the Impact Book Award in the K-LOVE radio network’s first-ever fan-voted awards program. Alex Kendrick accepted the award at the famed Ryman Auditorium in Nashville

In the wake of The Love Dare’s positive impact on marriages, the No. 1 request the Kendricks received was for The Love Dare for Parents. With this book, they break new ground for building biblically-based families. The Love Dare for Parents helps moms and dads more fully enjoy and delight in their children and offers the perfect tool to, “Win the heart of your child.”

About B&H Publishing Group

As a division of LifeWay Christian Resources, B&H Publishing Group offers sought-after books, Bibles, church supplies and multimedia products. B&H is a major publisher of Christian living, fiction, youth, history, academic, reference and electronic products. The company’s stable of best-selling authors includes Beth Moore, Gary Chapman, Henry Blackaby, Candace Cameron Bure and Oliver North.

"DEAR FATHER, DEAR SON" FROM LARRY ELDER — JUST IN TIME FOR FATHER'S DAY

“DEAR FATHER, DEAR SON” FROM NATIONALLY  SYNDICATED RADIO TALK SHOW HOST LARRY ELDER OFFERS SPELLBINDING READ FOR FATHER’S DAY AND BEYOND

A STORY OF FATHER-SON HATRED –AND HEALING–AND HOW A REMARKABLE 8 HOUR CONVERSATION WOULD FOREVER TRANSFORM TWO LIVES.

 dear father dear son

SOURCE: MorningStar PR

WASHINGTON, DC –  June 2013 — “Stunning … a wonderful read … a page-turner … a handbook for life.” Those words of praise from another celebrated author scarcely convey just how powerfully mesmerizing is the latest book by New York Times best-selling author and nationally syndicated radio talk show host Larry Elder.

 

From WND Books, “Dear Father, Dear Son” is a personal memoir of Elder’s troubled – one might even say tortured – relationship with his father, and the astonishing outcome that develops when Elder, at long last, confronts him.

 

Says Elder: “A man’s relationship with his father – every boy, every man lucky enough to have a father in his life has to figure that out.  My own father?  I thought I knew him – even though he seldom talked about himself. And what I knew I hated – really, really hated. Cold, ill-tempered, thin-skinned, my father always seemed on the brink of erupting. Scared to death of him, I kept telling myself to find the courage to ‘stand up to him.’ When I was fifteen, I did.” After that, said Elder, “We did not speak to each other for ten years.”

 

“And then we did – for eight hours.”

The result can’t be described. It has to be experienced.

 

As reflected in the book’s subtitle – “Two Lives … Eight Hours – one extraordinary, all-day conversation between Elder and his long-estranged father utterly transformed their relationship. It is no exaggeration to say the book will likewise transform readers.

 

Indeed, calling it “stunning,” Burt Boyar, co-author of the bestselling autobiography on Sammy Davis, Jr., says of “Dear Father, Dear Son”: “Above all it is a wonderful read. I am tempted to call it a page-turner but in my case I hated to turn every page because that meant I was getting closer to the end and I did not want it to end. … The book is filled with emotion. It is, of course, a handbook for life. I guess it is that above all things. Any kid who reads it and follows the advice of how to live his life just has to come out well.”

 

“Dear Father, Dear Son” is the story of one man discovering a son he never really knew. And of the son finding a man, a friend, a father who had really been there all along.

 

From WND Books. “Dear Father, Dear Son” is available at bookstores nationwide, as well as online at book retailers including the WND Superstore at www.wndsuperstore.com

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

 

Larry Elder, a “firebrand libertarian” according to “Daily Variety,” has been the subject of profiles by both CBS’ “60 Minutes” and ABC’s “20/20.”  His previous best-selling books – “The 10 Things You Can’t Say in America,” “Showdown: Confronting Bias, Lies and the Special Interests That Divide America” and “What’s Race Got to Do with It? Why it’s Time to Stop the Stupidest Argument in America” – all have met with critical acclaim. Larry has hosted the longest-running afternoon drive time radio show in Los Angeles, beginning in March, 1994. “The Larry Elder Show,” a top-rated daily program from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. (PT) is heard on KABC 790. Larry sizzles on the airwaves with his thoughtful insight on the day’s most provocative issues, to the delight, consternation, and entertainment of his listeners. The “Sage” engages political and cultural leaders in meaningful debates over race, government, personal responsibility and education that have elevated the talk radio genre. A blend of fiscal conservative and social liberal—with attitude—Elder’s limited government/personal responsibility views have fueled controversy and made him one of the most in-demand radio personalities in the country.