The Old Schoolhouse® Product & Curriculum Reviews

With so many products available we often need a little help in making our curriculum choices. The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine family understands because we are in the same boat! Do you need more information on a product before you buy? With over 5,500 products listed in 52 easy-to-use categories, much of the information you need to know is only a click away! Let our reviewer-families help yours.
Do you want to get the word out about your product or service to the homeschool community? Email Jenny Higgins and share a little about what you´d like showcased, and we can help with that!

The Beggar's Blessing Review by Karen Waide

Mark Hamby
Lamplighter Publishing
Lamplighter Ministries International
23 State St.
Mount Morris, NY 14510

We had the privilege of reviewing the children’s illustrated book titledThe Beggar’s Blessing, retold by Mark Hamby and illustrated by Deborah and Jennifer Hamby. This book is a part of the children’s collection from Lamplighter Publishing, a publishing company that publishes wholesome, character-building books.

We received a hardcover copy of The Beggar’s Blessing, which is available from Lamplighter Publishing for $20. It is recommended for children ages 4-7, though my eight-year-old and my ten-year-old really enjoyed the story as well. This book is 32 pages in length and is easily read in one sitting.

This book is said to be based on a true story that takes place in England in the 1800s in a quiet English village. A young lady (Katura) falls in love with a hand-carved doll clothed in a velvet green dress. She wants this doll more than anything else. She spends months saving up her shillings to purchase the doll.

Can you imagine her excitement when she finally had enough saved? Jumping for joy, she runs into the woodcarver’s shop and purchases her doll. As she is leaving the shop, she spies a beggar. Rather than turning away, she decides to speak with him and discovers that he is hungry. So hungry, in fact, that he felt like he was near death.

Katura is so moved by this that she returns her precious doll and gives this poor, hungry man ALL of her shillings. When she did this, he whispered in her ear, “. . . may the Almighty God some day make you a queen.”

Years later, Katura became England’s youngest queen . . . Queen Victoria.

This was a very moving story, one that had me near tears as I was reading. This little girl gave away her heart’s desire, something she had saved up for months to purchase, because she knew that someone needed that money a lot more than she needed a doll. It was also quite the revelation that this little girl grew up to really become a queen. The story is a wonderful illustration of putting others first. In fact, the Bible verse Matthew 25:40 is printed on the bottom of the last page of the story. The reminder that whatever we do to the “least of these” we have done to Jesus. As a final reminder of the importance of this teaching, Matthew 25:35-36 is printed on the final page of the book.

The book is full of gorgeous full-page illustrations. Most of the time the illustrations fill one side of the double-page spread, while the text is in large font in a white box on the facing page. I love that the first letter of each page is made in the style that reminds me of illuminated letters from medieval times.

This is definitely a book I recommend, one that will be cherished and read over and over, and will teach the importance of putting others first.

- Product review by Karen Waide, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, July 2017