Friday, December 2, 2016

This week...

You know, when I was a mother of babies and toddlers I used to say silly things like, "We'll never be so busy as _________ seems to be (usually a parent of a high schooler)" Well, here I am and yes, I am eating my words.

I have a pretty awesome life, so blessed by God in so many ways.

But we're busy. BUSY. B---U---S---Y

Busy with what, you say? Well, here are a few snippets from the week... butchering turkeys (ick), picking child up from community college class, taking kids to youth group, taking kids to and from piano lessons, taking kids to and from violin lessons, grocery shopping, working on robot with kids, making mittens and driftwood trees for craft sale this weekend, OH YEAH--HOMESCHOOLING, of course :), taking son to and from guitar lessons, taking daughter to orthodontist appointment, freezing turkey, canning turkey, canning turkey stock, making turkey soup, Christmas shopping (online, b/c I don't like shopping in stores haha), and much, so much, more!

I thank God for where he has put me and for the strength and hope that comes from Him. My daughter used this verse this week in an assignment for one of her classes and it really speaks to me: 1 Peter 5:7, "Cast all your anxiety on Him because he cares for you." YES!!!! Just what I need, thank you Lord for caring for me and taking my anxieties.

Well, got to get ready for that craft fair! I'll leave you with a "before" pic of those turkeys which will provide a LOT of meals for us this winter!

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Lip Balm? My favorite...

Lip balm might be just a small thing, but let me tell you about my absolutely favorite lip balm!! Not only is it MY favorite, but my entire family loves it.

This lipbalm, by Naturemaiden (here's the website: is absolutely delightful. It feels great on the lips, not waxy or heavy at all...and tastes delicious too (haha, but it really does!!)

Concerned about ingredients? From the website, the lip balm is made of coconut oil, beeswax, stevia, flavoring and food grade colors.

She also makes soaps, body sprays, natural pine cone fire starters, and soy candles.

What a great idea for yourself or for gift-giving! Zip right over to her website and make some purchases! I have ALWAYS been happy with naturemaiden products. Check them out! Buy some!

This was a totally unsolicited post :) I just love her products and wanted to share about them with you all!

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Fatal Frost by Nancy Mehl

Fatal Frost, book one in the Defenders of Justice series by Nancy Mehl, is a book which combines traitors and heros.

Mercy Brennan, a US Marshal, has just lost her father and now is in trouble (as in, her life may be threatened). Her co-workers and friends want to protect her without her knowing, so they set up a fake mission for her ... however there are traitors in the office who are working to eliminate her. She, a co-worker, and a policeman friend set out to supposedly help another guy, but then they fall into treacherous circumstances.

There are many groups involved in this story, the US Marshal service, the police, a drug cartel, and local gangs. There is loyalty and betrayal. Courage, fear, and everything in-between. Even a little nearly heart-warming moment of hope, which is smashed.

I don't want to tell much more of the plot, because, quite frankly, there is not too much of a plot and if I divulge more I may give the whole story away. I did think that the evil plans of the drug cartel were very well thought out and scarily possible.

Did I like this book? It was okay. It wasn't really my taste in books. To me the plot was kind of limited and the character development occurred at spurts. I appreciated the Christianity added into the storyline. The author seemed very well-versed in police/marshal procedures. Just not my favorite.

I received this book from the publisher for the purpose of this review. I was not required to write a positive review.

Friday, November 4, 2016

Women in Science by Rachel Ignotofsky

50 Fearless Pioneers Who Changed the World -- this subtitle would grab most people's attention, doesn't it yours? And it's a book about WOMEN! :) Women in Science! My favorite!!

This book, Women in Science, written and illustrated by Rachel Ignotofsky is a very pretty book, well, pretty doesn't quite catch the feel, attractive, eye-catching, enjoyable to look at!

Each set of facing pages is a different woman scientist. The author has illustrated each scientist with a stylized drawing of the scientist with a collage of pictures and phrases describing her on the left side. The right side of each set of pages gives a mini biography of each scientist, with little illustrations/high points framing the text.

It's a fun book to read! The little snippets of information are fairly thorough of high points of each one's story, and they are in a layout that is easy to read without getting bogged down in too many statistics. These scientists run the range of time from 350 AD to scientists who are still living today! Their fields of specialty run a wide range, including such titles as botanist, astronomer, microbiologist, meterologist, chemist/xray crystallographer, inventor/film actress, cytogeneticist, behaviorist, geologist, paleontologist, and many more.

This is a great book for any girls to read (or for you to read to/with young girls!) It's inspiring and eye-opening for both boys and girls. I also think it would be a fun book for a college student or for a female scientist (or pretty much anyone!)

I enjoyed this book as did my daughters. I would definitely recommend this book -- it would also make a great gift!

I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review.

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

It's that time of year... craft sale time!

Being a stay-at-home, homeschooling mom, I don't have tons of opportunities to make money. Every year about this time I start getting ready for my one big opportunity :) -- craft fairs (well, maybe not that BIG, but a little extra income this time of year is good!) My product is felted wool mittens lined with fleece. During the summer I look for wool sweaters at yard sales/rummage sales/etc. and then shrink them ("felt them") right away in the washer/dryer with my regular wash. I pop them into a box in the basement, always with grand ambitions to start on the mittens in the summer (yeah, right!) Despite my grand intentions here I am again, a few weeks from the first craft sale, with a lot of mittens to make!

Here's some of the progress thus far:

Homeschooling 2 high schoolers and one jr. higher...leaves me not much time for extra stuff like this :) I am at 11:00 p.m. cutting out mittens :) Yes indeed, it's that time of year! :)

This is my 6th year doing this. I started making these mittens as a response to a **mistake** of washing/drying a cute wool sweater--I didn't want to get rid of it so I looked for ideas of what to do with it...and love them!!

So--how are they made? I take shrunken wool sweaters and I buy fleece at the fabric store when it's on crazy sales (I used to recycle fleece, but find that I like the new fleece better to work with and I think it feels better). I found a pattern online made of 3 pieces (I think maybe this was my first pattern (THIS) ) The difference is that I add a cuff which I cut off of the wrist or waist of the sweaters.

It's a pretty easy project, but they do well at craft fairs! I guess I'd better get sewing!

(((Here's the other idea I used last year, not sure if I'll make them again this year, but I DO like them! :) )))

Saturday, October 8, 2016

From This Day Forward by Lauraine Snelling

I was so excited to read this book, the fourth in the series "Song of Blessing" by Lauraine Snelling. This book (#4) is entitled From This Day Forward. I have read and reviewed the previous books in this series, To Everything a Season (here), A Harvest of Hope (here) and Streams of Mercy (here) and have enjoyed them all! The stories are nice, engaging, and tell of a place you might want to live in a bygone era in Blessing, North Dakota.

SO -- did the book live up to the anticipation? I'm so sorry to say no, it did not. :/ Sorry Mrs Snelling, I really loved your earlier books in this series :/ but this one just... a little blah.

This book follows one of the nurses from the hospital, Deborah, and her longing to marry her childhood sweetheart, Toby (who doesn't seem to mirror her interest). She is frustrated, the women give advice, Toby ignores, another man comes, she is interested, and I'm going to leave it there :) I want to leave something for you to find out about without me telling you!

Since this is the fourth book in the series, it heavily depends on the stories and characters from the earlier books. SO much so that I would recommend reading the first three before this one if you want to understand what's going on.

I really didn't love this book. It was a nice story, but not really interesting enough to make me want to read it...I did like it, but I wasn't trying to find times to read it, I just had it with me at different times that I was waiting for the kids or something. The story was really bland, almost not a story at all. The ending was good, but I just didn't feel this book was up to par for this author or this series.

I would recommend this book maybe if you have read the other three...but I didn't love it.

I received a copy of this book from the publisher for the purpose of this review. I was not required to write a positive review.

Sunday, September 25, 2016

A Love Transformed by Tracie Peterson

Looking for a light, entertaining read? You might want to pick up a copy of A Love Transformed by Tracie Peterson. This book is a romance in a historic setting. The main character, Clara, has recently lost her husband to a shooting. She is confronted with her brother-in-law's telling her that she is not wealthy, as she thought, but that her husband has squandered all their wealth away. In the face of uncertainty at home and the unpleasant presence of her overbearing, pushy mother, Clara flees with her two children to the place where she felt safe and loved as a child, her aunt and uncle's ranch out west.

The story unfolds and the reader learns of the circumstances of Clara's marriage, to a man she did not ever love and was not loved by. We learn of her childhood sweetheart to whom she was engaged before her mother swept her away. Hmmmm... wonder what is coming? :)

Yes, the story does not disappoint. She meets up with her now-jaded ex-fiancee who has lived a ... rough... life and now feels soiled and unworthy. Their love is... (not going to tell you any more!!)

Okay, yes, it's a predictable story, kind of fluffy (do you know what I mean by that? basically just kind of disengage your mind as you read and just read for enjoyment). It's entertaining. A nice clean romance. Not compelling...I didn't stay up to midnight reading :) but a nice easy story.

I would recommend this book. It's not a favorite or anything, but a good clean easy read!

I received this book from the publisher for the purpose of this review. I was not required to write a positive review.