Zac and Abby Sunderland’s Stories of Courage: A Review and Giveaway

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Do you remember, a few years ago, hearing the news story about the 16-year-old girl who had become lost at sea while trying to become the youngest person to solo circumnavigate the globe?

We watched and prayed with the rest of the world.

Abby Sunderland was found safe, but injured, and was rescued from the Indian Ocean, unable to continue her journey. Oh, and the record she was trying to beat? It was set by her brother, Zac.

Zac and Abby Sunderland's Stories of Courage - A Review and Giveaway

Last year, I had the privilege of getting to know Zac and Abby Sunderland’s mom, Marianne, online. She has an incredible blog full of fantastic resources for parents of dyslexic kids, since 6 of her 7 reading age, homeschooled kids are dyslexic.

When Marianne offered me the chance to review her children’s documentary DVDs, I was thrilled to agree. I thought they were something that would fascinate my kids – the story of two kids, about the age of my oldest, who had taken these incredible journeys on their own at such a young age.

I think my friend, Amy, perfectly summed up my thoughts about my kids watching these DVDs – kids need role models and the Sunderland kids exemplify the concept of doing the hard things.

Zac and Abby Sunderland

Zac’s story is told in Intrepid, Parts 1 and 2.

Intrepid: (adj.) : characterized by resolute fearlessness, fortitude, and endurance – Merriam-Webster.com

Intrepid is not only the name of Zac’s boat, but a very good description of the person himself. Zac set off alone, at the age of 16, to become the youngest person to solo circumnavigate the globe. He was at sea for over 13 months, stopping at various ports along the way and facing some amazing, and often frightening, challenges on his journey.

Part 2 starts off with the tale of his run-in with pirates. It’s funny because I had that DVD playing while I was in the kitchen alone washing dishes. Josh came wandering in and asked, “Can I watch this,” thinking it was some action movie I was watching. Then, Brian came in. Pretty soon, the kitchen was full of people standing around watching and waiting to see what happened.

Abby’s story is told in a single DVD, Wildeyes, winner of such awards as:

  • Director’s Choice for Best Documentary (San Diego Christian Film Festival)
  • Audience Choice Best Documentary (Big Bear International Film Festival)
  • Best First Time Director (Laurence, Abby’s Dad – Silent River Film Festival)

One of the things I liked best about Abby’s story is the fact that her dad wanted her to be a part of every aspect of preparing her boat for the journey. She was there for all the work that was done – watching, learning, and doing, so that she could handle whatever came up when she got out on the water on her own. Hands-on homeschooling at its finest.

Abby and Zac’s parents were often ridiculed for letting their children set off on such dangerous journey’s alone and at such young ages. Honestly, I couldn’t imagine it myself. I told Brianna, as we watched Abby’s story, that I couldn’t imagine letting my 17-year-old son fly to France to meet his 16-year-old sister and having the two of them wander around Paris together for a bit before boarding a plane back to the states. However, it becomes clear, as you watch the documentary videos, that both young people had been being prepared for such a journey from the time they were young children.

In one of the DVDs, Zac makes a point that I’ve mentioned before, which is, essentially, we don’t expect a lot from our teenagers. They go through this period of adolescence that used to be a time to prepare them for adulthood, but has now become just an extended childhood. Our teens need to be discovering and pursuing their passions so that they can become the men and women God has called them to be.

See, that’s another fact that quickly becomes clear as you watch any one of these three documentaries – this family loves God and He is a central part of their lives. Their faith and their values have clearly shaped their lives, their family, and their actions. They are boldly and unashamedly Christian.

If you’d like to be as encouraged and inspired by the Sunderland family as we’ve been, you’ve got a chance to enter to win the 3-DVD set, published by WorldWind Productions.Communacation-38

If you’d like to purchase the DVDs, you can receive 40% off using coupon code, HAPPY2013. And, if you purchase, then win, WorldWind Productions will refund your purchase price, so you don’t have to wait if you want to go ahead and take advantage of the discount.

Follow the directions on the RaffleCopter widget below to enter.  (RSS feed and email readers will need to visit the blog to enter.)

Rules: This giveaway is open to United States residents, ages 18 years and older only. Giveaway ends on Monday, February 4. The winner will be selected at random using Random.org via RaffleCopter.

The winner will notified via email and given 72 hours to respond. You must enter a valid email address to win. In the event that the winner cannot be contacted by email or does not respond within 72 hours, the prize will be forfeited and and alternate winner selected.

Click to read the complete rules. By entering this giveaway, you indicate that you have read and agreed to abide by these rules.

I received this product free for the purpose of reviewing it. I received no other compensation for this review. The opinions expressed in this review are my personal, honest opinions. Your experience may vary. Please read my full disclosure policy for more details.

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45 Comments

  1. The grandest thing I ever dreamed of doing was hiking the Pacific Coast Trail. No, I never did it and I still regret it. Listening to others’ priorities and worries instead of following my own dream has left an itch of disappointment for many years…..

  2. When I as young I dreamed of being an Olympic figure skater, that one never came true for me. lol!
    Thank you for the chance to win!

  3. The grandest thing I’ve ever dreamed of is traveling to the Holy Lands. I haven’t been there yet but still praying that it will happen some day.

  4. entry for the dvd’s: The grandest thing I dreamed of doing??? I’m not a big dreamer, I tend to live very pragmatically. I guess it would be when I found myself divorced with a 16 month old daughter, working a job that required nights and weekends. I decided to go to school to train for a job that would leave those open so I could spend time with my daughter. I became a paralegal and that allowed me the time I needed and the money to support us. It was hard work to get through school while working part time and supporting my daughter but I did it!

  5. Um, wow! I am inspired to start dreaming. I think my grandest dream right now would be to travel to Africa again (I have gone once, but would love to return) or another country…

  6. I always wanted to go to London. I came up with the lovely idea of running the Flora Marathon in London to raise funds for the Leukemia Society…a ploy to get a “free trip” to. I trained incredibly hard (it should have been more), my family said “no way you can do that”. The first thing I did after crossing the line and getting my medal was to call back to the States and say “I told you so.”

  7. I’ve dreamed of lots of things that sound grand–flying, climbing some ridiculously tall mountain, etc. I think the grandest dream I had was to be a mom, and looky here! I’m a mom. πŸ™‚ I know, sappy. Whatev.

  8. I think these DVD’s would be a great learning tool for my 13 year old son! I want my kids to live life like this!

    Thanks for the offer and I hope I win!

  9. I have always wanted to go to Europe on an extended vacation, stopping in Spain, France, Germany, Ireland, Great Britain, etc… When my girls graduate, I think for their gift they get to go with me. Lol that is in 10 years! Plenty of time to plan. These dvd’s look great!

  10. Oh, I used to dream of being a pilot in the military. Funny to think of that now. I don’t think I really ever told that to anyone. Nowadays, I’m dreaming of losing major weight and having all the laundry put away each night before I go to bed. I’m hoping to see those come to fruition this year!

  11. I was so inspired by the Sunderland family. I would love to win the dvds. My biggest dream was to be a Russian missionary back in my single days. No I never did it…and now I’m too old and “set-in-my-ways” to be adventurous like that. πŸ™‚

  12. The grandest thing I’ve ever dreamed of was to travel around the world and visit every continent. I’ve only done three so far :0), but I am hoping to get to the others in the future!

  13. My biggest “dream” as a child was to become a teacher and a mother. Not very grand, but it’s what I wanted! And I’m currently doing both of those things! : ) I went to college to become a teacher, taught in PS several years, and now I get to enjoy homeschooling my boys!

  14. whThe year I turned 25, I left my job to go to London, to work and travel around Europe for a year. Saw some AMAZING things! And did it all by myself!

  15. Like some of the other commenters I’m not a big dreamer. Right now though, my grand thing is to get rid of our debt! We’re working on it!

  16. I have always wanted to travel. I was able to do some through work but I gave it up to be a mother. I have no regrets – Now mom to 4 kiddos and feeling I’m just where the Lord wants me. (maybe I’ll travel again with hubby when the kids have families of their own! LOL)

  17. I love the idea of my kids seeing what they have potential to do. I think my kids are too focused on the here and now and don’t see the big picture. I’d love to share these with them.

  18. I remember them! I have always dreamed of just picking up and travelling all over the world. We aren’t doing it yet, but we are taking the steps to do so.

  19. The most adventurous thing i have ever thought of doing….um, i guess i am pretty boring. Really the riskiest thing I’ve ever done was to get pregnant again after having complications with my second child… Or maybe to be trying to have another baby after more complications with the twins… Guess i am just that dull πŸ™

  20. I’ve always wanted to be a teacher or a photographer. I never went to school to become a certified teacher, but yet I am a teacher….. to my Doodle Bug! LOL As for being a photographer? I am very slowly working on it!

  21. I always dreamed of living overseas and my family and I got the chance to live in Australia for a year, what a wonderful experience it was.
    The DVD’s sound fabulous, I know my kids would love them.

  22. The grandest thing I ever dreamed of – other than being a wife a Mama, right!? – was to spend a year in Uganda, East Africa teaching kids of a missionary group. I didn’t end up doing it because I got married. And I don’t regret the change, I believe God led me where I needed to go. But I still dream of getting my husband and kids over to Africa to at least experience it.

  23. These videos look fantastic, I’d love to win!

    I’ve had lots of ideas about brave things I’d like to do (ride a motorcycle, fly a plane, work on a cruise ship and travel, etc.), but haven’t. Instead, we’ve traveled as a family on road trips, I’ve had home births, including 1 unassisted (another dream of mine), and raising a family that’s out of the mainstream…that feels brave on most days.

  24. wanted to climb Mt Fuji, didn’t get a chance for we had to leave Okinawa, I follow her blog and love all the insights she gives, this is an awesome giveaway. My son would love watching the dvd’s

  25. I wanted to be either a paleontologist or a farmer (but with animals, not crops) when I was little. Then a veterinarian (worked at a clinic doing almost everything except actually performing surgeries, and receptionist. Although I did “sling puppies” after c-sections, and bag and monitor a Westminster Champion…both of which were VERY scary!) then I wanted to be a cop so I went through (and graduated) a P.O.S.T. Certified Police Academy. I then decided that I wanted to be a Mom, and eventually that is what happened!

  26. I recently found Marianne’s blog and love it. Such a help to myself as I am learning about dyslexia and how to homeschool through it with both of my children. My biggest dream is to go to Kenya to a children’s home that we have had the privilege of knowing the owner and Mama of through our old church.

  27. Oh, I can think of lots of grand things to do! One of them is to write and self-publish a novel. I haven’t finished it yet, but after many years of wishing and dreaming, I am now developing the storyline for my first novel. Also, thank you, Kris, for hosting this give-away. I would love to receive this DVD set, and I’m obviously in good company. πŸ™‚

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