Tuesday, October 16, 2018

St. Bartholomew's Eve--The Latest Henty Adventure

We really enjoyed our last audio theater production by Heirloom Audio, so I was quite excited to review their latest release, St. Bartholomew's Eve.

Once again, a talented cast has been assembled to bring to life this time in history.  Brian Blessed, known from Star Wars, Tarzan and King Lear reprises his role as G.A. Henty, the narrator in the story.  Other cast members include Elizabeth Counsell from the Chronicles of Narnia, David Shaw-Parker from The Muppet Christmas Carol, Brian Deacon from Bonhoeffer and The Jesus Film, Andy Harrison from the Secret Garden, and Hugo Docking from Oliver Twist.

Set in the 1500's, St. Bartholomew's Eve tells the story of the Huguenots of France, Christians who were persecuted by the Catholics who felt the Huguenots were heretics and a threat to their religion and throne and must therefore be stopped at all costs.

The story follows sixteen year old Philip Fletcher as he journey's from England to join the fight in France for religious freedom.  The listener is quickly swept into this fast paced and heartwarming story.  My favorite part in the story occurred at the end of the first disc, when the Huguenots are realizing that there cause is hopeless and even though they may have had a small victory, they cannot feasibly continue to defend their stronghold.  As they are coming to terms with their situation and discussing their bleak options, the voice of Argento, a brave young boy who desires to join the fight despite his youth, begins to sing the hymn, "A Mighty Fortress is our God."  Soon, all have joined in and you can feel the faith and emotions that must have been running through those who were present.  It was such a beautiful part of the story.

We listened to the story while driving to and from our weekly co-op and I found myself wishing that we were listening to it as home because there were so many awesome quotes about the importance of defending and living your faith and I wanted to be able to pause it and write them all down!

It opened so many avenues of conversation between my older girls and I on how it related to our day now.  We discussed the importance of defending our faith and also of defending our right to worship how we choose and why it is necessary to afford others those same liberties even if we disagree on basic tenets of faith.  We spoke of areas around the world where religious freedom still does not exist and how truly blessed we are to live in a country where we are free to worship as we choose. 

While we liked and enjoyed Wulf the Saxon, I absolutely loved St. Bartholomew's Eve.  The kids also really enjoyed this one.  We can't wait to listen to it again!  With the holiday's coming up and long car trips on the horizon, this is definitely a must have for the play list.

Be sure to click on over and read the reviews of other Crew members as well.

Friday, October 12, 2018

CashCrunch Careers--What do YOU Want to Be? {Review}

What do you want to be when you grow up?  Isn't that the age old question?  One some of us may still be asking, but definitely one that begins to weigh on the mind during the last high school years.

After all, who wants to waste precious time and money "wandering in the desert" so to speak?  Isn't it better when a destination or direction is in place?  This is exactly what CashCrunch Careers by CashCrunch Games aims to do.  To help guide individuals, whether just starting out in life or looking for a new direction, toward those careers which best fit an individuals personality and character traits.

Unlike most career assessments, which determine what career would fit you best based on skills or interests, CashCrunch Career bases their assessments on an individuals personality and character traits and then presents career fields for which those traits would be needed or valued.

I had my two oldest girls, Raena (15) and Allie (13) take the assessment through CashCrunch Careers.

They began by answering questions they felt best described them.  It took maybe fifteen to twenty minutes.

After completing the assessment they were given a breakdown of their career attributes, motivators and de-motivators, and a list of jobs they might excel in and their career work styles.

With the exception of the matching jobs, I felt the information it provided was beneficial into helping one choose a career that would best fit their natural personality and character strengths.  The motivators and work style sections were perhaps the most beneficial in determining if a certain career would fit you.  My girls, however, felt it was a bit unreliable since they both got all the same career suggestions despite having very different personalities.

I understand that even within certain job categories there are varying jobs that would require different strengths and would lend themselves to one personality over another, but such a detailed breakdown within the jobs section was not given.  In addition, all the careers were management based.  It feels as though no thought was given towards blue collar or artistic jobs that an individual may be good at given their specific personality.  While one of the big differences with CashCrunch Careers is that it bases its results on personality, I feel it would have had more accurate, or at least realistic, results if it had included at least a skills or interest assessment as well.  Not everyone wants a job in management and most individuals who do, still have to work their way up through entry level positions, so having some of those options shown would have been helpful.

They did show when you clicked on a job listed the projected need for that job and you could also click through to see what colleges offered degrees that would allow you to pursue that field.  There were short videos that explained the job that could be watched as well.

Overall, I would say that it gives you some more information that would help you to pursue a direction, but it isn't necessarily enough on it's own. I feel like if you have a career in mind, then you could use this to filter whether or not it would be a good fit based off your motivators and de-motivators and work styles, but not so much to find a career path in the first place.

Others from the Crew also took the assessment, click here to read about their experiences.