Sunday, October 30, 2011

His Country Girl Review

I can’t believe I never posted this! I swear I had the review typed up and it was waiting in my drafts. I somehow just ended up bypassing it in all the hubbub lately. I greatly apologize.
So here is my review on His Country Girl by Jillian Hart:



Taken from the back of the book:
To fulfill a sick boy's wish, rodeo star Tucker Granger surprises little Owen in the hospital. But no one is more surprised than single mother Sierra Baker. She figures the carefree champion for a different kind of man. One who doesn't spend hours talking "cowboy code" with a hospital-bound child. One who can't have her dreaming of a second chance at love. Somehow, Tucker ropes her heart and fills it with hope. Hope that this country girl and her son can lasso the roaming bronc rider into their family forever.
~
 
 My Thoughts:
I really enjoyed this book. It was so exciting! The passion between Sierra and Tucker is electric, almost as if you can feel it yourself. I can’t believe how inspiring it was, and how each character just seems so very alive. There is no small character in this book. Every character has a shining personality that just emanates off the pages. As a mother I can greatly relate to Sierra Baker, especially her unmatched love for her son Owen. My sons always come first to me, and just like Sierra I try to process how everything no matter how big or small will affect them. All the words are so visual and I think all in all it was a wonderful book! I think we could all learn a little something from this book about loss, love, faith, and perseverence. It also shows how we can't let past hurts faze our future. If we allow our past hurts to stand in the way, there will be no future. But if we follow God's path for us, even if we aren't sure of where it leads, we will end up exactly where we want/need to be.
This book is part of a series, but it does very well as a stand alone book. You also get a glimpse of another romance going on in the novel which is just as endearing. I would tell you who, as I would love to rave on and on about this book, but I would rather leave it up to you to find out! I definitely recommend this.



Disclaimer: I received this book for free, however all opinions expressed are mine alone.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Kids Toys...Ideas?

So Christmas is right around the corner. It's only about two months away! I have been racking my brain trying to figure out what to get the kids for Christmas! Admittedly every year we have overdone things a bit. We have splurged on toys that our son really wasn't all that interested in. And most of them didn't even really help him learn. He will be four in a couple of weeks. Time is going by so fast, and now more than ever he has been open to more learning.
This year we have two boys to buy for, and I don't want to make the same mistakes. I actually couldn't keep myself from cringing as I went through toys that my son no longer plays with and as the get rid of box kept getting fuller and fuller I knew this year needed to be different.
It would be nice to have some things to use during homeschooling also that doesn't really feel like work or a project for him. I have been checking around at various department stores and the bulk of what I see is toys and electronics. I really don't want to get him into too much of that right now. I prefer something more interactive and something we can do together. Particularly something that will help him learn. Any suggestions?
I have browsed a bit online and found some really awesome kids toys at great prices. I found these two really great toys that I may look into. You can tell me what you think if you'd like, I would love feedback. This one is a see and spell wooden puzzle. It shows a picture and the wooden letters fit right in. Personally I think this can greatly help with reading and spelling as well as recognition. It's certainly one of my top choices.
Toy #1:

Toy #2:
This is a wooden clock puzzle that helps with not only numbers, but shapes as well. I thought this was pretty awesome.
There are so many good options out there, and while I have nothing personally against electronics, I just would like more activity and more imagination than a video game of sorts can provide. I already know I will be giving him books because in our household we ALL love to read.
So without further ado, I'm off to browse some more. Thanks for reading and stopping by! Hope to see you again soon!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Magid Glove is Pure Magic!

When asked to review Flock-Lined Yellow Latex Gloves Magid® Comfort Flex® 620  I was actually pretty excited. The usage of latex gloves is high in my house. I for one am constantly cleaning, and with two boys and it being the fall season I am constantly disinfecting everything. Here's a few of my personal examples:


For one thing I have a dishwasher, but I basically use it as a drying rack. I prefer to hand scrub my dishes making sure I get everything cleaned thoroughly. One thing is I prefer to wash my dishes in pure hot water so it kills all the germs. I like to use latex gloves for this so I don’t burn my hands, but usually I still feel a lot of the burn and it makes it uncomfortable. My hands get all splotchy and I am using lotion constantly so my hands don't crack.

Another thing is I use a lot of bleach when cleaning in the bathroom. I clean my tub, toilet, and sinks with Clorox bleach. I have had a problem with a lot of my rubber gloves that when exposed to bleach the powder stuff inside will come off onto my hands and make it uncomfortable. And sometimes the case has even been that the gloves just aren’t sturdy enough to withstand the bleach/water combination I make to clean with. My hands get all red and splotchy.

With Flock-Lined Yellow Latex Gloves Magid® Comfort Flex® 620  I didn’t have any of those problems. They were spectacular! I used them when washing dishes and the water didn’t burn me at all. As a matter of fact I couldn’t even tell that I was indeed doing my dishes in scalding hot water. I had to test the water with my elbow to make sure the hot hadn’t run out on me. In the process I burned my elbow, but was so pleased at how well the gloves were holding up that I didn’t even notice. The grip is fantastic and there is nothing cumbersome about them at all. Absolutely no bulk and I have quite thin fingers and wrists.
Then I used them while cleaning and scrubbing the tub, toilet, sinks, etc., they were amazing! The powder didn’t come off in my hand and nothing ate away at the gloves! They withstood the bleach water, and they slid off as easy as they went on. I could grip my scrub brushes easily and didn’t drop them once as I usually do with other gloves.
They literally fit me like a glove, (no pun intended), and I had no trouble at all with any extra bulk you usually get with many other latex gloves.
I was so impressed with these gloves I told my husband all about them adding that they are chemical resistant gloves after all. He usually takes no interest in my cleaning products, but this time he did and wondered if he could use them at work. He works in a factory and has to clean up oil spills from the machines a lot of the time. I agreed, eager to share this new find with him. He was amazed. He said they didn’t slip off his hands, he had good grip, and he was able to keep the oil off his hands. He hates when oil imbeds itself in his fingernails and he spends forever scrubbing it out. While his work does provide gloves to use they don't really hold up well so they ARE allowed to bring in their own if they don't like what is provided. He didn’t have any problems with these latex Magid Comfort Flex Gloves! He is so excited he can’t wait to spread the word at his work. He said he got many comments on the gloves with others who were impressed.
We are both so impressed I think from now on this will be the only latex glove we use! I encourage you to check it out! The price is definitely affordable for those on a budget. You can get a dozen for $10.63 which is actually just about 0.89 cents a glove! You can get them here:


Here's a bit more about Flock-Lined Yellow Latex Gloves Magid® Comfort Flex® 620:

Description

Magid's Comfort Flex® 620 is a yellow latex glove, perfect for any household task. This style features an embossed finish, providing superior grip on wet or dry surfaces. The 620 is also fully liquid-proof, making it perfect when dealing with household chemicals, as well as certain mild abrasives. This glove comes with a flock lining that enables it to come on and off with ease. The Comfort Flex® 620 is a big step up from your average disposable, featuring .018 gauge thickness and 12" length. Caution: products containing natural rubber latex may cause allergic reactions in some individuals.
  • Flock-lined latex glove
  • Embossed finish for fantastic grip
  • Stands up well to everyday chemicals
  • Comes on and off with ease
  • .018" gauge thickness, 12" long




Disclaimer: I was given this product for free in the hopes that I would post a review on my blog. All opinions expressed are solely mine alone.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

The Christmas Singing Book Review



Heart broken from the break-up of her beloved Gideon, Mattie can’t figure out how she failed him so much to betray her. One minute her and Gideon are perfectly fine and happy, and the next he is cheating on her with Englischer girls. Catching him in the act and feeling as if her world crashed down around her she flees her hometown to get away from him and the pain inflicted. She moves to Ohio to live with her brother and his family. Only there does she start to blossom into the cake maker she dreamed to be, and opens her own shop called Mattie Cakes. There she finds Sol who is unlike Gideon in every way. Mattie takes comfort in the fact that Sol is reliable, and will never break her heart. She doesn’t care that there is no passion or gusto as there was in her relationship with Gideon as long as she doesn’t get hurt again.
One day Mattie’s shop burns to the ground and she is forced to return to her hometown. While there she finds herself constantly thrown together with none other than Gideon Beiler, her former flame and the man who betrayed her to no ends.
As they try to find ways to work around each other past hurts keep re-surfacing, and Mattie’s former passion for Gideon keeps trying to wiggle it’s way into her heart.
Gideon has been hiding a secret from Mattie about their break-up as well as the whole town. Having joined the Amish faith he can’t afford for anyone to find out what that secret is. It just may be his undoing.
 
This novel had me almost right away. I’m a huge Amish novel fanatic, and there is just something so intriguing about the Plain life. I greatly admire the Amish so I am drawn to novels as such. This was not only a wonderful portrayal of Plain life, but the characters are just so realistic you feel as if you are right inside the pages. There wasn’t one character big or small in this novel that felt unreal. Every character in a sense was a “big” character filled with such life and story. Mattie was so easy for me to identify with. She is so outspoken despite her Amish lifestyle. She is a fiery character that I’m sure every woman can identify with. I felt so many various emotions while reading this novel from compassion, regret, sadness, laughter, understanding, overflowing joy, admiration, etc. I do wish it would have given more background on Sol, even though he wasn’t technically a main character he was a big part of the novel. However it was still a beautifully done job. And it just goes to show that nobody’s life or relationship is perfect whether you be Englischer, Amish, etc. The romance in this book kept me on the edge of my seat, and the wonder at what would eventually happen. It also goes to prove that every relationship and every life has trials and tribulations that we all must overcome. And no matter what happens or what we think will happen what is meant to be will eventually be. A bonus is there are a couple of amazing cake recipes in the back that left me mouth watering, and anxious to try them out! Made from scratch cakes that require few ingredients and seem very simple indeed to make.


If you want more information about this book please visit the following:
http://waterbrookmultnomah.com/catalog.php?isbn=9780307446541
 
Disclaimer:
Waterbrook Multnomah Publishers has provided me with a complimentary copy of this book for review purposes. All opinions expressed are mine alone.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

How far should you go to help someone?

I was reading a blog post today which inspired this blog post. You can check it out HERE.
It got me thinking about how far we should go to help someone when approached. Let's say your pumping gas and a woman comes up to you saying she is broke down, way down the road, and wonders if you can give her a ride and some gas. And yet she has no gas can and she doesn't look like she has walked all that far, what do you do?

I try my best to help people in need, but I have had so many bad experiences while trying to help people that I am:
1) astounded at people these days
2) reluctant now in my efforts

I have learned to go off my own judgement and assess the person and situation as best I can. Here are a few examples of what I have been through:

Me and my husband, when I was pregnant with Lucas, were approached as my husband had gotten out of the car to check on our tire which he presumed was flat. A man, late fifties, came up to my husband and asked if we could please take his wife to the hospital as she was very ill and they couldn't afford an ambulance bill later down the road. I was so very reluctant, but the man actually had tears in his eyes! Being some years ago me and my husband didn't have cell phones at the time, but we said yes anyway feeling compassion for this man. We go to pick up his wife around the corner at a house, she comes out and can hardly walk. They get in the car, and we head to the hospital.
We had basically an old beater car back then, our dome light wouldn't go off inside the car, the inside was cramped, but it got us from point A to point B.
The woman started crying that they needed to stop by the ATM to pay the copay for her ER visit or they wouldn't see her. The ATM she had referred to was on the way so we said we'd stop there. Then the man started complaining about the light in the car giving him a headache. We told him it wouldn't go off when the car was on, and then he started shoving on the back of my seat saying he was so cramped. I told him I was up as far as I could go especially being pregnant. The man started voicing obscenities and continued shoving the seat. My husband got upset that he was shoving on my seat still and they started arguing. Then as my husband was getting ready pulling over and make him get out of the car his wife said: "Oops, I dropped my purse and can't see, I think the gun fell out" He started shuffling on the floorboard in the back seat. Me and my husband felt frozen. My heart was pounding, I wanted to cry I was so scared, my husband looked in the rear view mirror and the look on his face told me he had seen the gun. Then the woman suddenly said she was feeling much better and it must have just been heartburn, and they would just go to the bank and then by her son's and we could take them home. It was night and it seemed like NOBODY was out. Time almost felt as if it was standing still despite our moving. We were so afraid, when we made a stop one of them would always stay in the car and request we both stay in the car. I felt the best thing to do was do as they said and go along with it. I kept praying, and my husband later said he did as well. We weren't sure which one of them had the gun at this point, and while they didn't directly threaten us with it we took it as implied. The man kept complaining about the seat and the light and the woman pulls out a bottle of liquor and starts drinking. Finally they said they were going to stay at their sons house and he would give them a ride home later and thank the Lord they got out of the car both of them when we reached their sons house. Earlier we had went to the video store and rented some videos which we had forgotten were in the backseat. The videos weren't there, I didn't really expect them to be after the way everything happened. We did go to the police station and report everything immediately. It was later found out that in the past the man had committed armed robbery. I thank God that He looked over us that night. Truly our prayers were heard as we were unharmed. I have never and would never allow anyone else I don't know into my car ever again.

Another example is at our local ice cream parlor my husband was approached by a man begging for gas money. He said he just started a new job, his truck ran out of gas, could he have some money for gas so he could get home? My husband having been in this situation before himself obliged even though we didn't have much money left after getting the ice creams. The gas station was right next door and his truck was parked at the gas pump so we figured him to be legitimate. We gave him all we had left which was about eight dollars. After the man thanked us, he walked across the street to his truck. It was hot and muggy so we decided to get our ice creams to go and got in our car and left. The man was standing by his truck watching us. Then my son said he left his Muno (the gabba gabba cyclops) at the ice cream parlor so we went back to get it. When we turned around we observed the man get in his truck without paying or pumping gas and driving off. He had lied to us. This SAME man just last month approached me at a local grocery store with the same story and asking the same thing. I told him this: "You may not remember me, but you basically ripped us off a few months ago with this same story. We gave you all the money we had and then watched you get in your truck and just drive away. I think you should be reported to someone if you continue this" He was speechless and without a word turned around and jogged to his truck, the same vehicle. I hope that he quit trying to scam people.


So my question is, how do you know that someone is legitimate or not? After all these experiences I never leave without a cell phone, if someone requests gas I offer to pump it for them, or fill up a gas can. I try to use my own assessments and feelings towards a person. But NOBODY will EVER get in my car again unless I KNOW them. I believe that we should help others, but in today's sad world we MUST use caution. I know this can be really hard for fellow christians because the bible says we should help others, but I don't believe that God would want us to do this by putting ourselves in harm way. The world is such a sad place anymore that we have no choice but to use caution. We no longer live in a world where it's safe to leave doors unlocked and windows opened at night. A stranger is danger, and as we teach our children this so should we take our own advice. I am not saying don't help your fellow man, I am just saying proceed with caution and do not put yourself in danger.

The Mercy by Beverly Lewis REVIEW




I became immersed in this book from the first chapter. I favor Amish novels greatly anyway and this one was above my expectations for sure.
I haven’t read the other novels in the Rose trilogy, but I will definitely go back and read them now. I felt so swept up with the characters lives, and it was so hard for me to restrain myself from skipping ahead. There is always something going on and I just couldn’t wait to turn the page and read what was to happen next.

Rose Kauffman, a young Amish girl, finds herself in love with the Bishop’s foster son Nick Franco. However when a terrible accident involving Nick and his other foster brother, Christian, remains suspicious Nick bolts. All this turmoil leads to the silencing of his foster father the Bishop Aaron Petershiem. Rose finds herself distraught that Nick would leave the people to return to the world without trying to even help his foster father, but she accepts the facts and fights down her desire for him. As she yearns for a family of her own some day she begins looking for a respectable Amish man to court her. During her search, Nick returns and Rose is at a loss of her feelings. Should she remain loyal to her feelings for Nick or aim for the more respectable choice in a husband? Nick wants to prove himself to his family, and the church that he is the responsible Amish man they all had wanted him to be. Through the journey we find out if he is true to this, or if he turns out to be the rebel everyone thought him to be.

The novel also focuses on Hen, Rose’s older sister, and her struggle in her marriage. Having left the plain life behind to marry an “English” man, Hen finds herself missing her plain roots. She leaves her husband to return to her old lifestyle, taking their young daughter with her. Amid the separation, Hen’s husband Brandon, gets in a terrible accident that leaves him blind and fully dependent upon Hen’s care. She cares for him at her family’s Amish home. She prays for God to soften his heart, and save their marriage as well. But Brandon is adamant in his ways and wants nothing of the Amish lifestyle, nor does he want their daughter brought up that way. Can their marriage be saved through God’s will? Or will Brandon be left un-yielding and take their daughter, whom also loves the Plain life, with him?

I found this novel to be more than just a story of fiction, although in that regard it was exceptionally done. I was at the edge of my seat in anticipation of what would happen next. The message of God and faith in this novel was well portrayed through the characters, especially Rose as she holds steadfast to her vows made to God. Each character provides an excellent example of how, no matter what happens in life, God has a plan laid out for us. If we just but follow his path we will be most pleased with our outcomes. Even serving as a remembrance to us all that even through bad good will overcome. I can’t wait to read more novels by Beverly Lewis, and I fully plan on reading the other novels in the Rose trilogy as I am now hooked. This novel now has a new home on my favorites shelf, and I can’t wait to share it with all those whom I come across. I highly recommend it.




 
DISCLAIMER: I was provided this book for free through Bethany House Publishers in exchange for my unbiased review. Opinions expressed are mine alone.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Mommy's Seperation Anxiety

Well this week has been chaulk full of suprises, for one thing my baby boy started school on Wednesday. He only goes once a week just for speech therapy, and he only goes half day. Still this was a big deal for me. He wasn't sure about it at first and stuck right to me and hubby. He did not want to participate in anything. But then when the teacher started talking to him about story time, free play, and painting he just left us standing there and joined the others without a backward glance. We were urged to leave hurriedly to avoid any seperation anxiety and tears. We left with me having tears in my eyes... as the hours passed I kept wondering if he was crying for me or throwing a tantrum. I could even picture him at the classroom door calling "Mommy, I wanna go home!" and it was a very emotional day for me. Before I knew it, it was time to go back and pick him up. He came out with the other kids in a line and when he seen me, ran right to me. I asked him about his day and he told me all about it very enthusiastically. This from the little boy who cried a whole month when he started attending his sunday school classes. I asked the teacher about his day, and she told me proudly that he didn't cry at all. He was a bit hesitant around the other children and a bit shy. He refused snack time because of the stranger factor (which I was actually proud of even though we did have a talk that snack time at school is okay), and he didn't know about sitting down with the other children so he just kinda stood around the whole time. I was very proud when he showed me a worksheet which he scored 100% on. It was various pictures of different things, and you had to draw a line connecting one picture that sounded like the other such as bow/boat, eye/ice, bye/bike, etc.
I took him for a happy meal which he was very excited about as I don't do that often. He chose the chicken nuggets and apple dippers with orange hi-c. It was a treat for doing so well his first day as I mainly cook at home. It's funny to look back on his first day, even though Wednesday was only a few days ago, because I was clearly the one with the seperation anxiety. We will see if he does okay the following weeks as I'm sure it will take some time for him to get use to this new lifestyle change. Or maybe it will be just me again. LOL

What about any of you fellow mommy readers out there? Was it hard for you to let your toddler go to pre-k, or kindergarten, and if your children are homeschooled has it been hard to let them venture out and do new things. I know it's a part of growing up, but I am obviously not ready. I am clearly the one that needs to be pushed out of the comfort nest because apparently my children are all too ready to just jump out of it. haha. My littlest one even is starting to crawl and he is all over the place without a thought to me or where I am. Hah! But it's a part of life, and I must get use to it. It's only half a day one day a week. I suppose I will adjust as well, hopefully. LOL

Have a blessed day!

Sincerely,
Tori

A Treasury of Modern Mother Goose Rhymes

by Lillian Rose Jensen
 



Since I like to modernize the old fashioned myself, I couldn’t resist this book. It’s a compilation of mother goose rhymes except the author has the inexplicable talent of modernizing these old favorites.
The old woman that lived in the shoe now has maids and TVs, The little piggy’s that go to market get pizza’s, Old King Cole has a tv show. It is just amazing how these old time classics are turned modern.
They are all quirky and fun. I found myself smiling in spite of myself.
This book did not have any pictures, and normally that would be a big downfall for our family as my son just adores pictures to go along with the story. However, the poems were just so hilarious that as I read them we just laughed and laughed in spite of our previous picture reservations.
Not only is it a fun read for children, but as adults who have grown up with the timeless classics of mother goose you as well will enjoy these modern twists.
I have to say it is a job well done and I do highly recommend it. And even though there aren’t any pictures you can easily picture each poem in your mind and it is just riotous to say the very least.
Highly recommended, and a great something to read for afternoon story time to brighten up your day.
If you are interested in this book there are different versions of it, and both are inexpensive and totally worth it if you ask my opinion. You can get it in print, or ebook. Here is the site to visit:
 
Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of this book as a member of the Dorrance Publishing Book Review Team in exchange for my unbiased review. All opinions expressed are mine alone.
http://dorrance.stores.yahoo.net/treasofmodmo.html

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

I Shall Overcome!

Things have been so hectic lately I've only had time to post my book reviews. But then who as a sahm or mother isn't living in hectic city? LOL

I have been striving and determined to overcome these obstacles that keep getting flung in my path. With God's help and much patience on my end I shall overcome them!

First off we have all been battling colds. We are just now getting over them, and luckily because Lucas starts classes tomorrow! He will be going once a week for the rest of the school year and we will be continuing our home schooling here at home.

There are many obstacles presenting themselves to me today, but I'm determined to overcome all of them. Or at least go down trying and trying again.

While the boys and I were sick, my husband volunteered to go ahead and go get Lucas's school supplies. I was a bit leery of this I will admit. My husband is more frugal than I and as we all know schools are so particular when it comes to their supplies. Plus I just prefer to get everything the boys need as I am more "in the know" when it comes to them since I am with them all the time.
BUT being sick and unsure of when I would get better plus with the boys laying in bed sneezing and coughing, I agreed to let him go ahead and get everything.
It SEEMED like he got everything on the list that was needed so I didn't fret about it. Usually I pack everything away right away so it gets done and there's no worries later. BUT I let that dumb fall cold get the better of me and told my husband to set everything on the dresser and I would pack it up later. Well, as we started feeling better I was swamped catching up other household chores and didn't figure it was a big deal. (Again my mistake) and didn't get around to preparing his school stuff until this morning. THIS is where we hit a road block. The pack of Dixie cups is not a box of Dixie cups nor is it the amount needed, the wipes are scented and some children can't have the scented they need hypoallergenic, the pants are all two sizes too small (I found a $3.00) sticker on the tags so I figure hubster seen the sale and just went for it estimating the size. The snacks are not big enough for an entire class, etc. Needless to say right now we have one working car and the hubby has it at work. He won't get home until bedtime for the boys. SOOO...it's a lucky thing I live close to a store and it isn't freezing out because later we are taking a trip. haha.
I try to look at the amusing side of this. There's no sense in getting flustered because it won't help matters. Instead I'm looking at it this way:
  1. Only my husband (love him so much!) would guesstimate a size just because something is on sale
  2. I JUST realized that I have a movie that is three days overdue from the library which costs a dollar a day. hah! Only me...
  3. This late minute hectic-ness is what we all deserve for procrastinating until the last minute sick or not. After all moms don't get sick days what was I thinking. LOL


Hope everyone has a blessed day!

Sincerely,
~ Tori ~

Monday, October 10, 2011

The Love & Respect Experience



This is a husband-friendly devotional that wives truly love. As a wife myself I can attest to that fact. I greatly enjoyed this book! Me and my husband both have read it cover to cover and now we are working on the devotionals together.
Most devotionals are more from a feminine perspective and this often will make a husband shy away from it and be uninterested. This book focuses on both and is so equal! Not to mention my husband pointed out that the majority of the male population are not interested in reading something long and tedious if they can’t get into it. After all it isn’t a sports page or something as he said. Ha ha. But with this book each chapter is very short and to the point. Everything meshes well, and while there is discussion points it isn’t long discussions that lead to heated arguments and misunderstandings. It just flows very well and is very comforting for both partners. After the first couple of devotionals my husband was glued and he looks forward to going over it more together again.
One of the things this book points out is marriage is never perfect. As man and woman joining as one we are still different in every way from each other. This makes it hard to understand one another. We hear things differently, we see things differently, and we feel things differently. This novel puts it in such easy terms for anyone to understand and refers to this as “Pink” and “Blue“.
This book is based on the principle that if wives show their husbands respect he will show her love, and if a husband shows love to his wife, she will show him respect.
There are acronyms making it easy to follow along for husbands and wives that we can each work on to show one another the love and respect we need and deserve. At the end of each chapter is a prayer a place to take action. There is also a discussion for each chapter in the back of the book which is most helpful.
The three cycles it goes through: The Crazy Cycle, The Energizing Cycle, and the Rewarded Cycle are very insightful and it clearly breaks things down.
I recommend this book to any married couple! The best thing about it is that it not only helps husbands and wives connect and understand each other, but it puts God in the mix as he IS the biggest part of our marriage and lives. There are so many biblical passages throughout this book that pertain to the material, and it is very refreshing. Nothing was hard to understand and for me and my husband I have noticed that things have been so much better. We have never had a bad marriage, but we haven’t always understood each other and we have had our disagreements. Some things that don’t seem as important to him are important to me, and visa versa. This book is not a cure all for marriage nor does it claim to be, but in my personal opinion and from the experience of reading this book with my husband it will help understand and appreciate one another more.
Not to mention this book is just wonderfully put together. It reads comfortably, and it even feels comfortably. It has a leather texture and feels almost like a heavy blanket in your hand.
Highly recommendable and I know that me and my husband plan on going over this book together at least once a year and keeping the principles in mind and in practice daily. It's like being two brand new people together!

If you would like more information on this book, please feel free to CLICK HERE-->You won't regret it! :)



DISCLAIMER: I was provided this book for free through Thomas Nelson Publishers in exchange for my unbiased review. Opinions expressed are mine alone.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

A Heart For Freedom Review




Written by Chai Ling, one of the leaders of the Tiananmen Square massacre she tells all about the actual events of the massacre that we wouldn’t have learned otherwise. Partly current events and partly a memoir, this novel is sure to be eye opening and emotional.
We start by following her life as a young girl learning the disappointment and sadness she feels that she is not the boy her father always wanted. However she redeems herself in his eyes by working diligently and hard, making him proud of her. She gets out of her small town and goes to Beijing which has been a family dream long-standing. While there, she learned just how much the government did not hear the people of China as well as how mistreated and degraded the people were. She staged a protest in hopes of it leading to a better government that would connect and hear it’s people. However, this soon turned into a disaster as it erupted into a full fledged battle with tons of innocent lives lost.
Chai Ling became one of the most wanted women in China and fleeing, eventually found her way to America where she also struggling with various battles in her search for true freedom. Eventually she is led toward Jesus and that is the one and only place she finds true solace and comfort. In the novel we see true examples of how God often uses evil for good showing that good will ALWAYS triumph over evil when you have God by your side. She now leads the ministry No Girls Allowed which strives to bring freedom and comfort to the daughters of China as well as abolish China’s one child policy. Many of us don’t know but in China if you are unmarried, or under the age of twenty-five you are not allowed to bear a child. You have to have a permit to become pregnant and if you do not get approved for a permit and you get pregnant anyway you will be forced into an abortion. There is also the fact that in China, due to the one child policy, there is an issue with gendercide where boys are always chosen over girls. This leads to infanticide, child trafficking, abandoned babies, and women who commit suicide. It is truly heart-breaking and it warms my heart that Chai Ling has a ministry in help of these young Chinese women. If you want to learn more about her organization you can visit Chai Ling’s website here @ : http://www.allgirlsallowed.org/

MY THOUGHTS:
This novel really pulled my heartstrings. Imagine being forced into an abortion whether you want to or not. Imagine a government that never listens to what you have a say and living in a country where you have no voice. Some of the events in this novel really opened my eyes to real issues we also have going on in America. I must admit that our government does not always listen to what we have to say, but we have the freedom to stage a protest without having to worry about tanks coming towards us. We have the choice to have children and get married when we see fit, and best of all we have the choice to choose our religion and God is not banned here.
Toward the end of the novel when Chai Ling begins to go into depth about the one child policy was especially hard for me. I look at my own two children and I couldn’t imagine ever having to give them up. I was married when I had them, but they were both born with me under the age of twenty-five. If I would have been one of China’s women I would have been forced to abort them. China’s people are seriously suffering, particularly the women, and something that from now on I will make people aware of. I am going to recommend this book to anyone I come across. These are events and circumstances that many of us in America either aren’t aware of or we don’t really pay much heed to. Thanks to Chai Ling our eyes can be opened and we can help spread the word about these tragedy’s possibly one day preventing further ones. Hopefully one day this will all end in China and that country as well as ours can be bettered for it. If we need to be reminded of God’s miracles even through hardships and calamity’s this is the book to read. And our prayers do go heard by God’s ears whether we may believe it or not.
 
 
Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of the book for review purposes from Tyndale House. All opinions expressed are mine alone.
 

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Sticky Paws Raccoon Gets Caught Red-Handed REVIEW


Sticky Paws Raccoon Gets Caught RED-HANDED
By: Mycol Roy Wisenbaker, Sr.

Sticky Paws Raccoon Gets Caught RED-HANDED
By: Mycol Roy Wisenbaker, Sr.
This book is about a Raccoon named Sticky Paws who really wants some of Farmer John’s delicious red apples. Previously he took a trip to Farmer John’s with his good friend Rex the Fox where they were almost caught by Farmer John’s German Shepherd dog Shep. Sticky Paws remembers being knocked out of that free lunch, and starts wanting the apples even more. He decides the apples are just too delicious to not try and go back. He plans, waits, and creeps to the shed where the apples are kept. Miraculously he makes it past Shep without being detected. He can smell the good apple aroma, but he finds the shed locked tight!
Just when he thinks all hope is lost he notices a vent open at the top and realizes if he can just climb through the vent he will be inside to enjoy those wonderful apples.
After trying he finally gets inside. He falls right into the barrel of mouth watering apples, and rather than try and wash the apples he just can’t wait so he digs right in. He starts to eat and eat the apples, and before long the sun is up.
The door opens and looking at him and the eaten apples is non other than Farmer John and his dog Shep! Sticky Paws barrels out the door trying to get away and as he gets up he realizes not only is he much too full, but he feels sick to his stomach. Shep chases Sticky Paws inside a log where Sticky Paws throws up all the apples he ate. As he lays there moaning of an upset stomach he realizes that just being honest instead of stealing never would have gotten him into so much trouble, and he never would’ve gotten sick.
I think this was a great children’s book. The only thing I didn’t like about it is the pictures weren’t as colorful as the cover would lead you to believe. In fact all the pictures inside are in black and white. However they are well drawn, and they do have an endearing paw print border around them which helps makes it more festive. Other than that this a great children’s book which can help teach children morals. Particularly when it comes to taking what is not yours, and just being honest. My son will be four in a month and he liked the book. He found the escape of Sticky Paws quite entertaining and his laughter brought me to laughing as well. Not to mention my son learned an extra useful lesson from this book. When we buy fruit (especially apples), they go on a bowl on our table and I often find him reaching for one ready to take a bite. He loves apples, and I know it’s hard for him to resist. So when Sticky Paws gets sick and throws up he looked up at me and said: “That‘s why we always wash our apples before we eat them”. Ha Ha. So I am quite pleased and now I have a reference for the next time he tries to snag an apple without letting me wash it. I can just say: “Remember what happened to Sticky Paws the Raccoon?” LOL
If you would like to find out more about this book, or purchase it please visit:
 
 
 
Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of this book as a member of the Dorrance Publishing Book Review Team in exchange for my unbiased review. All opinions expressed are mine alone.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Ahhctober!

I'm sure you noticed the Ahh where O should be in the title. That is because I am relieved that it's October. I love the fall season. Admittedly with it comes a bit of nostalgia at this year's ending approach. It has went by much to fast for me. But that is life I suppose. I love the decorations, food, leaves changing color, etc. For those of you that read regularly you've heard me prattling on about the glory of fall in the last few posts, so I won't bore you further. ha ha

Of course there are SOME downfalls of the fall season, one being the FLU! I am scheduling our flu shots for this week, my husband's work gives them one free of charge. I dread getting the flu shots, they scare me every time. Especially since this is going to be Levi's first flu shot EVER, but what makes me go ahead with it every year is that when I was a new mommy and Lucas was just a couple of months old my husband got the flu, then I got the flu, then LUCAS got the flu. We all ran such high fevers, I was completely useless I had it so bad. I could hardly get out of bed, I was in and out of sleep, worried constantly about Lucas because at two months old there wasn't much he could safely have to help bring down the fever. So every year since then we have all made sure to get the flu shot. I battled with pneumonia a couple years back and I'm terrified once again to get that back, but I'm not going to get the immunization against that, mainly because I've been told you can't have that immunization while breastfeeding which I am and will be until March 2012. For those of you interested here is a FLU GUIDE that could really come in handy this season.

Anyway, during October I always brainstorm about gift ideas for the Christmas holiday. This year I will be making some homemade gifts as well as getting a few things during black friday. I can't wait to share the gift ideas I have as I make them. I will post step by step pictures in case you would like to make them too. I also have TONS of recipes to share coming up, and the good news is I FINALLY got some SD cards for my camera! Yay! LOL!

I have some great upcoming reviews, and a stack of books I can't wait to delve into this season. Are you reading, or planning to read anything your particularly excited about? Also if your a reader that writes book reviews please feel to leave me your blog URL if I'm not already following. I am always up for a good book and I love knowing what others thoughts on novels, it can be very insightful.

And I wanted to share something awesome I came across on TWITTER. I am eager to share it with all of you. It's from Parent's Magazine. There are 15 really great DIY Halloween crafts on here, and this one in particular looks SO awesome, and really interesting so this will be the one I share. I will be trying this one out myself, fun for the whole family!


Photo & Craft Credit: Crafts By Amanda

It seems really simple and easy to make and so fun! I was expecting it to be hard and complex when in reality all you need are these few items...
canning jars, acrylic craft paint, paintbrushes, a dish of water, black permanent marker, Krylon clear glaze spray, tea lights

Make it: Paint your canning jars with one layer of acrylic paint -- too many layers of paint will make the jars too dark. Once dry, draw some jack-o-lantern styled faces on the fronts of the jars with your black marker. Finally, paint the jar rims black, let them dry, and spray with the Krylon clear glaze to set. Pick your favorites to display on your front steps or windowsill and insert a tea light to illuminate.

You should definitely check out all the other great DIY Halloween Crafts they have featured!

So with all this in mind it is time for me to get back to chores. I will be posting a new recipe tomorrow, and hope you'll check back for it. I have been super busy lately with fall/Halloween decorations, and they are going to be tearing out all of our storage units throughout our apartments so I will be occupied clearing mine out. I am somewhat of a pack rat when it comes to my storage unit, but if I haven't used it in a year, or have forgotten I had it then I'm getting rid of it. My new frame of mind. Hard, but needs to be done. They are just material items after all, and maybe someone else can get more use out of them than I have what with them packed away in totes.

Hope everyone has a blessed day! Thanks for stopping by and hope you'll come back soon!

Sincerely,
Tori
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