Sunday, January 15, 2017

12 Angry Jurors - Stage boys!

My "theater kids" had their latest play..."12 Angry Jurors" with their community theater group.  It's a remake of the old movie "12 Angry Men".

They were AMAZING!!  I am so impressed with them. This was a dramatic show, and they pulled it off with class.  I love the confidence that theater has given them.  Their director is an amazing woman who truly pulls out the best in them.

The cast... a great group of young people!

Monday, January 9, 2017

Another Girls' Weekend

We finally got a chance to get away for our "long overdue" Mother/daughter weekend.  First stop, Starbucks - of course!

I love to take my daughters away - for a one-on-one, special weekend when it's time for "the talk".  I highly recommend - Passport to Purity Weekend Retreat Kit. (not a review... I just love how this resource gives you everything you need - including audios, a journal, the activity directions... it makes it very easy!)

We didn't go far away...just to Boerne (about 40 minutes away).  We stayed in an adorable cabin!

 We  ate a ton of great food!  Including going to the most expensive place in town, and ordering a side of mac-n-cheese and a cup of soup :-)

We shopped for antiques!  We decided to look for the perfect tea cup and saucer for each of the girls in our family...we are planning to surprise them. (blog post coming soon...)

I got her a grown up NIV study Bible and case to commerate our time together.  Plus, we found a beautiful (and inexpensive) ring while shopping.

We went for a stroll along the creek.  The weather was perfect!

This is such a sweet time.  Our conversations will always be a favorite memory!

Thursday, January 5, 2017

The Beginner's Bible from Zonderkidz: A TOS Homeschool Crew Review

The Beginner's Bible {Zonderkidz}
The Beginner's Bible {Zonderkidz}

The Beginner's Bible  from Zonderkidz

This is a Bentz Test Laboratory family favorite!  The freshly updated classic - The Beginner's Bible  from Zonderkidz.

This Children's Bible, designed for ages 4-8,  was first published in 1989 and has sold over 25 million copies!  This was our first Bible for all my children...we wore the cover off - literally.

Now, 8 testers later (the oldest "original model" is now in college...) my youngest tester is getting a bright and beautiful copy of her own Beginner's Bible!

This Bible features stories from the Old and New Testament that you and your child can read together.  It is also perfect for your new readers to practice their skills.  48 stories from the Old Testament and 46 stories from the New Testament give your child a big picture of God's great story. It's one of the first independent books my kids get to read on their own, and I love hearing them read the Bible to me. 

The illustrations are vibrant!  The pages are printed on high quality, glossy paper.  This new edition is designed to last.  Check out some of these pictures!

The Beginner's Bible {Zonderkidz}The Beginner's Bible {Zonderkidz}
The Beginner's Bible {Zonderkidz}The Beginner's Bible {Zonderkidz}

A dictionary is included in the back, and is a great way to start your early learner on looking up words.

But, that's not all!   You can find these goodies to go with your Beginner's Bible online - Resources for Children like videos and games. Plus,  coloring pages, dot to dots, word puzzles, search and find, mazes and drawing.

They also a huge variety of resources for us Parents & Teachers to bring the bible to life like sticker sheets, printable place mats, trivia cards, reading suggestions and even snack suggestions to go with your story!

And now, you can take it on the go too with their FREE App.

Sometimes things do get better with age :-)   The Beginner's Bible is one treasure you will want to have.

This is a great little video to tell you about their 25 years... Thanks ZonderKids!

Find  Zonderkidz on Social Media: 


#HSReview,#TheBeginnersBible,#FaithBuilding,#Bible,#Zondervan, #kidzbible, #childrensbible, #nonfiction, #bookstagram, #reading, #books, #childrensliterature, #bookshelf

See what other members of the Crew thought here
The Beginner's Bible {Zonderkidz}

Crew Disclaimer

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!

Since I always blog about the kids, I thought you might like to see the reason I have something to blog about.... 

Wishing you a very blessed 2017!

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Christmas Stollen - a family tradition!

Merry Christmas Friends!

The Bentz Bunch is full of food traditions...  I have one to share with you.  We have this each year with our Christmas morning Fruit Soup and Christmas Stollen. (can you tell we're Germans?)

German Stollen

1 package of active dry yeast or 1 cake compressed yeast
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup butter or margarine
1 cup milk, scalded
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
4-3/4 to 5 cups sifted enriched flour
1 egg
1 cup raisins
1/2 cup currants
1/4 cup chopped mixed candied fruits
2 tablespoons grated orange peel
1 tablespoon grated lemon peel
1/4 cup chopped blanched almonds
Soften active yeast in 1/4 cup warm water or compressed yeast in 1/4 cup of lukewarm water.

 Melt butter in hot milk; add sugar, salt and cardamom; cool to lukewarm. Stir in 2 cups flour. Add egg and beat well. Stir in softened yeast, fruits, peels, and nuts. Add remaining flour to make soft dough. Turn out on lightly floured surface.

Cover and let rest 10 minutes. Knead 5 to 8 minutes or till smooth and satiny. Place in lightly greased bowl, turning once to grease surface. 

Cover; let rise in warm place till double, about 1 1/2 hours. Punch down; turn out on lightly floured surface and divide in 3 equal parts. Cover; let rest 10 minutes.

Roll each part into a 12X7 inch rectangle. without stretching dough, fold long side over to within 1 inch of opposite side to make typical stollen shape; seal edges. 

Place on greased baking sheets. Cover, let rise till almost double, about 30-45 minutes.

Bake in moderate oven (375) 20 to 25 minutes, or till golden brown.

While warm, brush with butter; sift confectioners' sugar over; or glaze as below.
 Makes 3 loaves. 

To glaze stollen use about 2 cups sifted confectioners' sugar, add 1/4 cup hot water and 1 teaspoon butter. (I put almond flavoring in my glaze)

It looks like a lot of work...but it's so worth it!!  Family traditions are our way of saying - "I love you" - Merry Christmas!

Friday, December 16, 2016


For Art History - we were studying Christian symbols.  I remembered my mother-in-law making Crismons for a Church Christmas tree.  They were beautiful, and it's the perfect time of year, so we had to make our own version!

Crismons are white and gold ornaments that are symbols of Christ. We had a fun time with the variety of symobls - from greek letters to butterflies, everyone contains a message of Jesus.

To make ours - I used good old Pinterest to find some patterns.

Then, I got the stiff  white felt sheets from Hobby Lobby and traced an outline.

Final step - turn them loose with gold accents like glitter, paint and ribbon. (I get coffee at this point, as to not have a heart attack about the glitter...)

We had so much fun making them, we had way too many for a wreath, so we strung them on a gold cord under our Nativity scene.  I love how they turned out in our garland!

The Whole World Needs Jesus: A Review for YOU!

The Whole World Needs Jesus

This is a beautiful book that I can NOT wait to share with you!  It is designed for ages 4-8, but all my children have enjoyed it.

This delightfully illustrated book is written by Ann Dunagan, with illustrations by Caela Rose Dunagan (her daughter).  I am a huge fan of this family!

 If you want to learn more about their ministry - visit  They have been inspiring and equipping families to embrace God's call to the world. They offer resources, books and training to help you raise a "mission minded family."

This read aloud book is for the entire family.  The rhyming text tells the story of God's love for the whole world.  It encourages us to embrace our differences and hear God's call to GO.  The book makes the perfect encouragement for children to see people's differences - like where we live, or what we eat as something we can celebrate and embrace.  I love how this book introduces even young children to the BIG picture of God's Great Commission.

My heart's desire is for my children to have the heart of God.  This is one of those books that helps build that vision in your children from an early age.

This is would make a great Christmas gift both for you and a favorite missionary you may know.  

Excellent resource you don't want to miss!  Let me leave you with my favorite Dunagan quote:

"You can only export what you grow at home"

I was given a complimentary copy in exchange for my honest review.  All comments are my own.