Parenting is hard work! I wish it came with a manual (It does – the Bible of course); I may be speaking for myself when I say this but I truly feel like I am constantly struggling to do more and be more for my children. Since I have four, all with very different needs and personalities too, I often feel torn – spread too thin maybe? – trying to be what each one of them needs me to be. Every day. Needless to say when I saw an email about the opportunity to review Dr. Todd Cartmell’s new book; 8 Simple Tools for Raising Great Kids, I was just so excited because I have felt more and more lately, the need to sharpen my skills when it comes to raising my kids. I mean they are great already but I just know we can do so much more!




I am the first person to admit that my interactions with my kids are not always what is best. I can be short with them; at times I do not show as such control and patience as I ought to. We have been studying the Book of James this year and since we began, I often hear in my ear, a soft and silent whisper, “let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath” and I know that this is something I need to be much more mindful of. I need to intentionally be slower to speak, slower to wrath and quicker to hear.  I will say this is not riddled with scripture; there are bits of Biblical wisdom within, but this is not a scripturally filled read. Just so you know.




I have to say I was so very pleased at how short and simple the chapters are in this book!  Because honestly, I only have moments to read here and there as of late. Tis a season of small ones and busy ones….They keep me moving. SO this was refreshing to see — a book written for those of us who are in the trenches and have little moments here and there to feed our mind and soul!


There are 8 tools and they are broken down within five chapters; at the end of each chapter there is a summary tip and some things to ponder. Homework? I have always enjoyed opportunities to reflect and go deeper 🙂


One example of a listening tip that I am regularly mulling over right now is this: “How does viewing all of your kids thoughts and feelings as diamonds impact your desire to listen and connect with them?”



Some of the tips are simple; all are powerful in their own way. There are listening tips, correcting tips, encouraging tips, talking tips – Every one of them leaves you with a bit different of a perspective on how we connect with our kids. And every one provides an additional tool for our parenting toolbox.


About the Author



Dr. Todd Cartmell is a popular speaker and child psychologist who received his doctorate in clinical psychology from Fuller Theological Seminary. His books include Project Dad (Spring 2011); Respectful Kids; Keep the Siblings, Lose the Rivalry; and The Parent Survival Guide. Dr. Cartmell conducts entertaining parenting workshops around the country and maintains a full-time clinical practice in Wheaton, Illinois. You can link to his website, with Q&A, a parenting blog, and workshop information, at





If you are looking for some tools for the trade yourself, consider taking the time to read this one! In fact right now if you use the code GREATKIDS16 you can get this book for 50% off. (valid from April 15th to May 15th for my readers only)  Just go to Moody Publishers to order and make sure to enter that code! 🙂  And for a limited time if you purchase the book you will also have access to the Hearts at Home “Essential Workshop Collection for Parents” for free. Just fill out the form on the 8 Simple Tools Website once your book has been purchased.




Not sure the book is for you? I beg to differ, but, to ease your mind, there are free assessments available on their website too. One to evaluate the effectiveness of your parenting methods is and show what your strengths are too. These are definitely things that are good to know. Let’s face it, if we want to raise really great kids, we have to be willing to go that extra mile.  Its definitely worth it!



Official Website –
Facebook –
Hashtags – #8SimpleTools #FlyBy
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.

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