Saturday, September 29, 2012

Fall Cleaning

We have recently been fall cleaning and getting things done around the house. Any maintenance issues or little fixes that need done are being accomplished. It is amazing how much you find that needs done when you go looking:) Our house is not in bad shape or anything but the small things that we always think can wait add up until you have a whole long list. Things like fixing the bathroom fixtures, replacing light bulbs, getting rid of the caulk around the sink, etc. It was a lot of fun:) NOT! But we have had some fun visiting places and seeing some good friends this past month as well.

So, what have you all been up to? Anything fun? Hopefully I am not the only one who has been cleaning:) Would love to hear how all my blog readers have been and what you ladies have been doing. Leave a comment and let me know! I love to hear from my readers!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Mary Biblical Costume Review!

In our family the kids love playing dress up and wearing costumes. Whether they are having a play or just goofing around, the little girls especially like costumes. I was once again given the chance to review a costume from and boy did I have a hard time choosing one! They have so many interesting ones and they are all different. Whether you want an adult costume, a cartoon, even ones for the guys!

We finally decided on the Mary costume. This is a ladies costume so it is for the adults but my younger sister loved it! I wasn't sure which size to get but they are pretty easy to work with and needless to say, the size I chose fit. Check out the pictures below and I will let them speak for themselves.

So, as you can see, she really likes her costume. This would be great for a Church play or the person who likes the Biblical costumes. Dress is well made and has an attached cape and also comes with the white head veil. Looks really great when being modeled! I really like the bright colors and the draping. It looks superb if I may say so myself:) She looks really sweet in it and has been wearing it for several days at different times. She wants to wear it in an upcoming play we have planned so she will have a lot of fun with it.

Readers, if you are looking for a nice costume that is a good price, this is a SuperCenter for Costumes! Overall a great place. I do caution over some of the costumes are they are adult so do be careful of little eyes while you are browsing certain areas.

According to FTC Regulations, I received a costume for my review purposes. I did not receive any monetary compensation. All thoughts are 100% mine. 

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Taming the Wind Blog Tour with Contest!!


A young widow nursing the wounds of her past...
                                               A cowboy with demons of his own...
Though grateful for the blessing of her daughter, Carissa Lowe has accepted that widowhood is her lot in life. Bound by fear and mistrust, she feels incapable of opening her heart again. Tyler Atherton has never forgotten Carissa. When he discovers she's living with her sister on a nearby ranch, his life becomes intertwined with the lovely widow's. And Carissa's daughter, Gloria, seems determined to wrap herself around his little finger. But while Tyler longs to provide a home and future for Carissa, he is haunted by an obligation he feels unable to fulfill.Challenged by mounting hardships, can Carissa and Tyler preserve their fledgling love in a land as unforgiving and vibrant as the people who call it home? 

MY REVIEW-I have read the other book in this series by Tracie Peterson and I have to say, this is probably my least favorite. The first one just really held me throughout the pages and this second one didn't do near as much. Yes I still read it, mainly because I wanted to find out the ending of the story, but I just didn't feel the pull as I did with the first one. This can be read as a stand alone novel but better read after Touching the Sky.

There were several interesting parts and there is a lot of history packed into this novel. You feel like you are getting a history lesson while you are having fun:) Some things I had never really thought of as well as a good lesson on forgiving and forgetting. Gloria was a really sweet little girl and I liked Tyler a lot. Carissa I had a hard time getting to enjoy.

This is a great historical novel and one you will enjoy. I have put it on my shelf to re-read at a later time as maybe the reason I couldn't get into it was just everything going on. Please check out the Taming the Wind blog tour to see what others thought.


Celebrate with Tracie by entering to win a Kindle Fire!

 See what people are saying about Taming the Wind.

One winner will receive:
  • A Brand New Kindle Fire with Wi-Fi
  • Five copies of Live to Give by Austin Gutwein
Hurry, the giveaway ends on 9/25/12. Just click one of the icons below to enter. The winner will be announced at Tracie’s ”Taming the Wind” Author Chat Party on 9/26Connect with Tracie, get a sneak peek of her next book, try your hand at a trivia contest, and chat with readers just like yourself. There will also be gift certificates, books and a Book Club Prize Pack to be won (10 copies for your book club or small group)!

So grab your copy of Taming the Wind and join Tracie on the evening of the September 26th for a chance to connect with Tracie and make some new friends. (If you haven’t read the book – don’t let that stop you from coming!)

”Enter ”Enter”Enter

According to FTC Regulations, I received a copy of this book for my review purposes. I did not receive any monetary compensation. All thoughts are 100% mine.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Green Training

Just a real quick post before I get off for the night all but I wanted to post about this real quick. Ever heard of green training? Neither had I:) But this site looked pretty interesting and I was intrigued by some of the info I found, including solar  panel training, and thought others might want to take a look as well. Check it out!

If you clicked on one of the links, you might find training for a new job. Maybe even for a LEED Certification. This is the site with everything for green collar training. Great testimonials which is something I really look for with a company. Whether it is a product I am looking at purchasing or a website where you pay for training. So, if you want to get hers training, check it out. And no I am not talking his and hers:)

I have not used this site. All thoughts are 100% mine. 

Friday, September 21, 2012

With Every Letter by Sarah Sundin Review and Contest!

Lt. Mellie Blake is a nurse serving in the 802nd Medical Squadron, Air Evacuation, Transport. As part of a morale building program, she reluctantly enters into an anonymous correspondence with Lt. Tom MacGilliver, an officer in the 908th Engineer Aviation Battalion in North Africa. As their letters crisscross the Atlantic, Tom and Mellie develop a unique friendship despite not knowing the other's true identity. When both are transferred to Algeria, the two are poised to meet face to face for the first time.
Will they overcome their fears and reveal who they are, or will their future be held hostage to their past? And can they learn to trust God and embrace the gift of love he offers them?

MY REVIEW-I haven't read one book by Sarah Sundin I haven't enjoyed. There was one that had a minor part I didn't care for but overall her books are really interesting and well written. With Every Letter was no different!

This book centers around Mellie and Tom. Mellie is a nurse and Tom is an engineer. Their relationship starts with just writing anonymous letters to each other and then blossoms into something way more. There is some intrigue in this as you wonder how quickly Mellie is going to make friends and if she can keep her job. Tom is such a sweetheart who can't see that many people don't care about his past and that what his father did once was not who he really was.

There was a part in this book that really made me think. Another soldier is a foreigner and many of the other comrades pick on him because of this. It all comes to a head and Tom steps in. But what he tells them is what made me pay attention. This soldier picking on a fellow American wants to get rid of him. And Tom tells him that he wants a country then where no one is different. He then turns it around and points to Hitler and Germany. At that point the other man sees what he is actually doing and stops the fight. This really caught my attention and I loved how Sarah put this in here.

There were two statements I didn't think needed to be in here but they were something minor I can skip over. Overall an excellent book I have already loaned out and will re-read many times over. You have to understand I am not a big fan of WWII books and don't read many. But Sarah's books are all on my shelf! Keep em coming, Sarah!!

This is not sponsored by me and you can't enter on my blog. You have to follow directions below.
Celebrate with Sarah by entering to win a eReader (winner's choice of Kindle Fire or Nook Color)!

See what folks are saying about With Every Letter!

One fortunate winner will receive:

  • A Kindle Fire or Nook Color (winner’s choice)

  • Handmade With Every Letter First Aid Kit

  • With Every Letter by Sarah Sundin

Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on September 26th. Winner will be announced at the “With Every Letter” Author Chat Facebook Party on 9/27. Connect with Sarah, get a sneak peek of her next book, try your hand at a trivia contest, and chat with readers just like yourself. There will also be gift certificates, books and a Book Club Prize Pack to be won (10 copies for your book club or small group)!

So grab your copy of With Every Letter and join Sarah on the evening of the September 27th for a chance to connect with Sarah and make some new friends. (If you haven’t read the book – don’t let that stop you from coming!)

Enter via E-mail Enter via FacebookEnter via Twitter

Don't miss a moment of the RSVP today. Tell your friends via FACEBOOK or TWITTER and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 27th!

Available September 2012 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.
I received a copy of this book for my review purposes. I did not receive any monetary compensation. All thoughts are 100% mine.

Swagbucks and Amazon MP3 Credits!

How many of you are members of Swagbucks? If you haven't become a member, I would urge you to do so right away. Swagbucks is a place where you earn bucks and then you can redeem them for gift cards like Amazon, Best Buy, Starbucks, Paypal, etc. Or they have different items you can purchase with your bucks. I prefer getting the Amazon gift cards where I can purchase anything off Amazon! And right now, Swagbucks has a really neat deal when you redeem your bucks for an Amazon card. Check it out below and then sign up! Earning bucks is very easy through searching the internet, watching SBTV or completing tasks. Do however much you want to and get rewarded.

When you snag an Gift Card from Swagbucks during the month of September, you will be rewarded with a $1 promotional credit for Amazon MP3. With over 20 million songs, they're sure to have that new song you're dying to hear again or an oldie you don't already have in your collection. Start earning reward points today and snag your Gift Card and $1 Amazon MP3 promotional credit before Sept. 30th.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Back From Vacation

Well, as I am sure you all can tell, I am back from vacation in Louisville, KY. It was a super fun trip and I really enjoyed seeing the sights and getting to meet up with some good friends. With all the places we go for vacation and around the year, Louisville is one of my favorites. It is kind of laid back and there are tons of places to go. Lots of thrift stores to visit and I have a couple reviews coming up of restaurants I went to while I was there.

Another favorite is Chicago, IL. This is not far from where I live so it is kind of vacation and kind of not:) Chicago is a great place to go and they have a ton of places to visit and see! I enjoy just walking downtown and window shopping. Sooo many neat restaurants and little shops. Of course the kids love the American Girl store and the Hershey place. There are also several museums to go to and the kids enjoy many of them. But there are also plenty of areas for the adults to visit. Nowadays it is not a vacation when we go because we go there so often but it is still a nice place as it is close to home.

Where do you like to go for vacation? I would love to hear some ideas! Or if it is a fun place to visit, not even a vacation spot.

Golden Island Jerky Review and Giveaway!

Today I have a very different food product for you. Golden Island Gourmet Snacks sent me 6 packages of their jerky for review and giveaway. No I did not try the ones I will be giving away:) But I have three packs to send to one winner. Check out my review and then enter the giveaway through the Rafflecopter form.

I personally love jerky. I have had beef and venison but never pork. So I was in for a pleasant surprise when I saw the one. Check out the flavors I was sent! Mandarin Orange Beef Jerky, Chili Lime Beef Jerky, Hickory Black Pepper Beef Jerky, Korean Barbecue Pork Jerky, Grilled Barbecue Pork Jerky and Teriyaki Pork Jerky. Now I tried the Black Pepper, Grilled Barbecue and Terryaki. Most of the jerky I have tried before was teriyaki beef jerky. I am talking the stuff you buy at your local grocery store:) And I have had venison jerky that was homemade and very good! This was a new flavor for me and I couldn't believe the taste!

My favorite was the Hickory Black Pepper Beef Jerky. This has a slightly spicy bite from the pepper but I really liked it! I like my foods with a little kick and this one definitely has some kick. The flavor though is very fresh. There are no artificial ingredients so this has a very fresh flavor and taste.

The next one was the Teriyaki Pork Jerky. This one was okay. I normally have the teriyaki in beef so the pork was a little different but I still enjoyed it. It just has a very different taste with the pork instead of the beef. The other one I tasted was the Grilled Barbecue. This was also pork. I definitely prefer the beef and I like that it was kettle cooked. This gives a really unique texture to it.

So, if you like jerky, I would suggest trying this one out. They have a lot of different flavors and their deal right now is to buy 6 flavors, mix or match, and get free shipping. Check out the Golden Island Store online. But, if you want to have a chance at winning some jerky, enter the giveaway below! One reader will be the winner of the three bags of jerky shown below. This is the Korean Barbecue, Mandarin Orange and Chili Lime.

This giveaway is going to be fast because I don't want them to go bad. This will end 9/25. Winner will have 48 hours to respond or another winner will be chosen.

CFBA Tour for A Heartbeat Away by Harry Kraus

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
A Heartbeat Away
David C. Cook (September 1, 2012)
Harry Kraus


A Word from Harry:

I started writing my first novel during my last year of surgery training at UK. I was a chief resident, and started writing Stainless Steal Hearts in a call room at the Veteran's Administration Hospital in Lexington. It was a crazy time to write! I had a very demanding schedule, often spending days and nights in the hospital. I had two sons at that time, and I recognized the wisdom in my wife's urging: "Now doesn't seem the right time for this dream."

My experience as a writer is far from typical. Having received my formal training in biology and chemistry and medicine, my only preparation for a writing career was a love for reading. The longest thing I'd written before my first novel was a term paper in undergraduate school. My first novel was accepted by Crossway Books and published in 1994, and it wasn't until after I had FOUR published novels that I even opened a book of instruction about the craft of writing fiction. This is not what I recommend to others! Yes, I was successful, but I was bending the "rules" without knowing it. I had a natural talent for plotting, but I realize my initial success may have stunted my growth as a writer. I'd have made faster progress if I'd have gone to the fiction teachers sooner.

I have three sons: Joel, Evan, and Samuel. Look closely in all of my books and you'll see them there. My lovely wife, Kris, provides the basic composition for all those beautiful, athletic, dedicated women in my novels.


When a brilliant surgeon undergoes a heart transplant, her life transforms as she begins experiencing memories of a murder she never witnessed.

The residents worship her. Nurses step out of her way. Her colleagues respect and sometimes even fear her. But surgeon Tori Taylor never expected to end up on this side of the operating table.

Now she has a new heart. This life that was formerly controlled and predictable is now chaotic. Dr. Taylor had famously protected herself from love or commitment, but her walls are beginning to crumble.

And strangest of all, memories surface that will take her on a journey out of the operating room and into a murder investigation.

Where there once was a heart of stone, there is a heart of flesh. And there is no going back.

If you'd like to read the first chapter excerpt of A Heartbeat Away, go HERE.

MY REVIEW-I haven't read that many books by Harry Kraus and I think this was the only one I finished. I found the plot to be quite interesting and really enjoyed the characters and storyline. I have heard about the medical problem in this book and it was interesting to read about. There was a part in this book I didn't think should be in it at all. Maybe I am being too harsh, but there was a whole section that could have been left out and the book would have still made sense. I think it crossed the line of being too descriptive sexually. Believe me, I have read a lot of books and read some things I probably should have just stopped at, but this went above them all. Was it a good book? Definitely. Was it interesting and a good suspense? Absolutely! But definitely a book that is for adults.

I received a copy of this book for my review purposes. I did not receive any monetary compensation. All thoughts are 100% mine.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Clean That Tub! Soft Scrub Review and 3 Winner Giveaway!

As someone who cleans the house a lot, household cleaners are a must have product. That is why I was happy to try out a new for me product called Soft Scrub. You have to understand, when I buy cleaning supplies, I go with the cheapest thing there is. I have always been that way. But now I am happy to report a new product I will be purchasing in the future:)

I received the Soft Scrub Total All Purpose Cleaner with Bleach and the Soft Scrub Total Bath and Bowl. One is perfect for the bathroom and the other is great for any scrubbing I have in the kitchen, dining room, etc. This is an all purpose cleaner that can be used on almost any surface so long as you check it first. I like how well it worked and I think this was my favorite one to try.

The bathroom is one of my least favorite areas to clean. I mean, come on, who wants to scrub the toilet? Not me! But, this new Soft Scrub cleaner is a great toilet bowl product. The thing I like with these is that you can use them upside down! Yep, you can actually use it facing the wrong way. So if you want to spray inside the rim of the toilet, this makes it so easy without getting your hand too close:)

These do not take away from the scrubbing but they are a big help in loosening stains and like I said, I enjoy that you can use them upside down. A big help to cleaning the house in a timely manner! And they smell pretty good too!!

So, anyone interested in winning a coupon? I have three coupons to giveaway to three of my readers. Just to be clear, three winners will be receiving one coupon each. This is good for a free Soft Scrub.

This giveaway will end 10/2. Winners will be chosen through and will have 48 hours to respond or another winner will be chosen.

Soft Scrub provided a free sample of their Bath and Bowl for this post. However, all of the opinions expressed here are my own.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Things Your Dog Doesn't Want You To Know Blog Tour w/Giveaway!!

Why do dogs always dash to a rug when they have to throw up? Why do they eat furniture when endless chew toys are nearby? And why are they always absolutely starving? Get the inside scoop on the other half of the conversation in this lively, clever gift book filled with unforgettable canines who will tell you the truth about dogs, every last dirty, hairy bit of it. Peppered with charmingly devious photos and "my dog does that too!" stories that any dog-lover will recognize, Things Your Dog Doesn't Want You to Know is a must-have for anyone who has a soft spot for a pooch. It's a verbal and visual delight that is laugh-out-loud funny

MY REVIEW-This was a funny book that will have you laughing one minute and saying amen the next. You will find your dog in between these pages and wonder how the author got a hold of your canine friend! This book is full of stories all told through the mouth of a dog, several actually, and they will have you laughing. A couple things I didn't care for and one swear word but they were pretty minor things. Overall a good book that would be great for any dog owner! Check it out when you get the chance!

Readers, one of you will be the winner of your own copy of Things Your Dog Doesn't Want You to Know. Get your entries in below! This giveaway will end 9/27. Winner will be chosen through and will have 48 hours to respond or another winner will be chosen.

I received a copy of this book for review purposes. I did not receive any monetary compensation.

Unending Devotion by Jody Hedlund

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Unending Devotion
Bethany House Publishers (September 1, 2012)
Jody Hedlund


Jody has written novels for the last 20 years (with a hiatus when her children were young). After many years of writing and honing her skills, she finally garnered national attention with her double final in the Genesis Contest, a fiction-writing contest for unpublished writers through ACFW (American Christian Fiction Writers).

Her first published book, The Preacher’s Bride (2010 Bethany House Publishers), became a best seller and has won multiple awards.

Her second book, The Doctor’s Lady, released in September of 2011, and her third book, Unending Devotion, is out now. She’s currently busy researching and writing another book!

Jody has been married for twenty years to her college sweetheart. Jody has five children ranging in ages from 15 to 6, with a set of twin daughters in the mix to make things more lively.


High-Stakes Drama Meets High-Tension Romance

In 1883 Michigan, Lily Young is on a mission to save her lost sister, or die trying. Heedless of the danger, her searches of logging camps lead her to Harrison and into the sights of Connell McCormick, a man doing his best to add to the hard-earned fortunes of his lumber baron father.

Posing during the day as a photographer's assistant, Lily can't understand why any God-fearing citizen would allow evil to persist and why men like Connell McCormick turn a blind eye to the crime rampant in the town. But Connell is boss-man of three of his father's lumber camps in the area, and like most of the other men, he's interested in clearing the pine and earning a profit. He figures as long as he's living an upright life, that's what matters.

Lily challenges everything he thought he knew, and together they work not only to save her sister but to put an end to the corruption that's dominated Harrison for so long.

If you would like to read the first chapter of Unending Devotion, go HERE.

MY REVIEW-This was somewhat of a different plot from Jody and I personally enjoyed it. Her previous books have been based on preacher or missionary wives and Unending Devotion had a flair to it that I think was good. Lots of action and at the same time a lot of things to make you think. This author has written a story that makes you breeze through the book. I read it in one day:) A couple spots where you might say she goes borderline improper but I personally think it was nothing major. This shows the conditions back then and what happened in the logging camps.

I really liked Lily but I also think at times she was overbearing. And she realized this at the end but I almost wanted to slap her myself for Connell. And don't get me started on her younger sister. I realize what the author was trying to get across and I think it was needed. No matter how many times we mess up, God always takes us back, so long as we are remorseful as Daisy was. My favorite person in the book was Connell. He was so lifelike and I loved the whole knife thing.

Overall a good book with a lot to it. Great history and wonderful characters. If you like a book that will make you think and not just a fun read, this book is for you.

According to FTC Regulations, I received a copy of this book for my review purposes. I did not receive any monetary compensation. All thoughts are 100% mine.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

The Reunion by Dan Walsh

Everything lost can be found.

Aaron Miller knows a thing or two about loss. He's lost love. Dignity. Second, and even third, chances. Once honored for his heroism, he now lives in near obscurity, working as a handyman in a humble trailer park.

But God is a master at finding and redeeming the lost things of life. Unbeknownst to Aaron, someone is searching for him.

With deep insight into the human heart, consummate storyteller Dan Walsh gently weaves a tale of a life spent in the shadows but meant for the light. Through tense scenes of war and tender moments of romance, The Reunion will make you believe that everyone can get a second chance at life and love.

MY REVIEW-I have enjoyed every book by Dan Walsh I have ever read. The Reunion is no exception! There is romance, history and emotion wrought throughout the pages of this book. Aaron Miller is the handyman at a trailer park but he also happens to be a Vietnam vet who lost his family and all he had after he comes back a changed man. This story revolves around Aaron, his children Karen and Steven, Dave a reporter who happens to be writing a book about Vietnam Veterans, and several war buddies who want to find the man who saved them in Nam.

This is an excellent book and well written. Lots of history in it but not to the point of where you feel like you are reading a history novel. Lots of times I was in tears so make sure you have the tissues handy. And guys, this is not just a book for the ladies! You will enjoy this book as well. Pick it up wherever you can find it!

Available September 2012 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Found, Secrets of Crittenden County CFBA Tour!

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Avon Inspire; Original edition (September 4, 2012)
Shelley Shepard Gray


Since 2000, Shelley Sabga has sold over thirty novels to numerous publishers, including HarperCollins, Harlequin, Abingdon Press, and Avon Inspire. She has been interviewed by NPR, and her books have been highlighted in numerous publications, including USA Today and The Wall Street Journal.

Under the name Shelley Shepard Gray, Shelley writes Amish romances for HarperCollins’ inspirational line, Avon Inspire. Her recent novel, The Protector, the final book in her “Families of Honor” series, hit the New York Times List, and her previous novel in the same series, The Survivor, appeared on the USA Today bestseller list. Shelley has won the prestigious Holt Medallion for her books, Forgiven and Grace, and her novels have been chosen as Alternate Selections for the Doubleday/Literary Guild Book Club. Her first novel with Avon Inspire, Hidden, was an Inspirational Reader’s Choice finalist.

Before writing romances, Shelley lived in Texas and Colorado, where she taught school and earned both her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in education. She now lives in southern Ohio and writes full time. Shelley is married, the mother of two children in college, and is an active member of her church. She serves on committees, volunteers in the church office, and currently leads a Bible study group, and she looks forward to the opportunity to continue to write novels that showcase her Christian ideals.

When she’s not writing, Shelley often attends conferences and reader retreats in order to give workshops and publicize her work. She’s attended RWA’s national conference six times, the ACFW conference and Romantic Times Magazine’s annual conference as well as traveled to New Jersey, Birmingham, and Tennessee to attend local conferences.

Check out Shelley's Facebook Fan page


A murder is solved and a quiet Amish community must deal with the repercussions. Amid the surprising revelations, can a newfound love survive?

As the search for Perry Borntrager's killer continues, Jacob Schrock feels like his world is about to crumble. Right before Perry went missing, he and Jacob got into a fistfight. Jacob never told anyone what happened that terrible night. He's good at keeping secrets—including his love for Deborah, Perry's sister. But when Deborah takes a job at his family's store and their friendship blossoms, Jacob senses everything is about to be revealed.

Deborah has been searching for a slice of happiness ever since her brother's body was discovered. When the police start questioning Jacob, Deborah can't believe that the one person she's finally allowed in could be the one responsible for her brother's death. Will she believe what everyone seems to think is the truth . . . or listen to her heart, and hope there is still one more person who is keeping secrets in Crittenden County?

If you would like to read the first chapter excerpt of Found, go HERE.

MY REVIEW-I have to admit, most Amish books do not hold much of an appeal to me. They just don't hold my attention the way other genres do. But this series from Shelley Gray has a very different plot. Not only do you have a murder that goes unsolved through three books, but you have a lot of secrets and mystery about many things. This book centers on Jacob and Deborah, minor characters in the previous books, and wraps up the murder of Perry. But in the midst of all this, there were a lot of twists and surprises I didn't see coming. The ending is a lot different than I expected! Overall an excellent book!

I received a copy of this book for review purposes. I did not receive any monetary compensation.

Monday, September 10, 2012

On Vacation!

Hey friends! I am doing this post to let you know I am on vacation!! I will be gone for about a week and the only posts going up will be ones that are already scheduled. There will be a couple book reviews and such but no giveaways. Once I get back though? There will be plenty including Golden Island Jerky, Soft Scrubs, Crave Cheese and Frogger. Please stick around and don't leave me hanging:) Come by and enter the giveaways up and running. Some of these have very few comments on them so you have a good chance of winning. Have a great week all!!

Cell Problems and Hello Better!

How many of you have a cell phone? Have you ever had a problem with your provider? In this day and age you almost can't live without a cell phone. With a business, family, friends, school, etc, you just couldn't make it if you only had a land line:) But there is one thing I have noticed among people who use cell phones. They often have a problem or aren't satisfied with their service provider. Just the other day we had some rain here and guess what? Our cell phones didn't work! We often hit areas that don't have cell phone coverage and that is my major problem with my provider. Wouldn't it be nice if cell phones worked everywhere all the time? Now I understand a tornado or a hurricane, but a little rain and kaput! We couldn't use our phones at all.

Today I want to introduce U.S. Cellular and their Hello Better plan. Often people have a hard time shuffling through the service plans or trying to find exactly what they need as far as minutes, texting and data plans or maybe you just don't like your phone provider. Do you know how many people are unhappy with cell phone provider, and yet they don't take the time to change providers? Well, now you have the reason to and the gumption to. U.S.Cellular is about the people and getting you the service you deserve. They have a great Rewards Program where you can earn points for all types of things you might find valuable.

So, are you unhappy with your cell phone provider? If you are, maybe you should check out Hello Better U.S. Cellular. Not saying this is the best thing for you, but if you are having problems, this just might be your answer.

I participated in this sponsored post campaign for One2One Network. All opinions stated are my own

Friday, September 7, 2012

Love's Reckoning by Laura Frantz


On a bitter December day in 1785, Silas Ballantyne arrives at the door of master blacksmith Liege Lee in York, Pennsylvania. Just months from becoming a master blacksmith himself, Silas is determined to finish his apprenticeship and move west. But Liege soon discovers that Silas is a prodigious worker and craftsman and endeavors to keep him in York. Silas becomes interested in both of Liege's daughters, the gentle and faith-filled Eden and the clever and high-spirited Elspeth. When he chooses one, will the other's jealousy destroy their love?

In this sweeping family saga set in western Pennsylvania, one man's choices in love and work, in friends and enemies, set the stage for generations to come. Love's Reckoning is the first entry in The Ballantyne Legacy, a rich, multi-layered historical quartet from talented writer Laura Frantz, beginning in the late 1700s and following the Ballantyne family through the end of the Civil War.

This next book is by an author I have followed since her first book, The Frontiersman's Daughter. Laura Frantz knows how to write a good book and I have loved all her stories. Love's Reckoning is the first book in the Ballantyne Legacy and I am anxiously awaiting the next one. Let me tell you my thoughts on this one first though:)

One of my favorite things with Laura's books is the ability to go back in time to a different period and see how things were. Reading one of her books is like going on a journey or taking a trip. This one was no different. I also love her Scots who are bigger than life. Silas is the apprentice who is given an ultimatum, marry one of my daughter's, or leave. I had never heard about the tradition of an apprentice marrying into the family to keep the trade alive. He has slowly fallen in love with one of them through a lot of scripture. If you haven't read this, you won't understand what I mean but I don't want to give anything away.

There is a lot of secrecy and mystery in this book along with some good romance. There is one part I didn't care for but I know things like this happen. This part is about two-thirds of the way through and at that point, the story-line took a turn for the worse. Not for me, but for Silas and Eden. It was a little odd going 6 years into the future but didn't take away from the book.

My only gripe, I wish the book hadn't ended where it did. I would have liked to have some of the book with them married but I am hoping the second book delves into that a little bit more. My last thought, I LOVED it! Another excellent read from Laura Frantz. Keep them coming:)

Available September 2012 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.
According to FTC regulations, I received a copy of this book for review purposes. I did not receive any monetary compensation. All thoughts are 100% mine.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

A Strop and Shaving Tips

Howdy all! Boy it has been hot here. Thankfully the weather is slowly cooling off and we aren't having 100 degree heat. But, this is the best time to make sure you are shaving right. We are talking the top time to have the hair all gone:) And you have to make sure you use the strop to sharpen your razors!

I personally had never heard of a strop, so if you all knew what it was, good for you:) I don't think many ladies use it and that might explain why I had never heard of it. I am not a guy so therefore... You get my drift. But today I wanted to share some shaving tips for the ladies. Forget the men and let's focus on looking good for the rest of this year. These are simple tips that I have found useful over the years and even some I have learned about recently. You never know what you will learn if you pay attention.

1.Use Warm Water.
This applies to ladies and men alike but in different areas:) No shaving the face ladies! I actually had someone mention the other day that they liked using cold water when shaving and I couldn't believe it. Give me warm water any time. This really helps to soften the hair and it comes off much easier.

2.Apply Gel or Cream.
I personally love gel instead of the shaving cream. I think it works better, feels better and has a more fragrant scent. Not that I am worried that much about the smell, but it has always been my favorite. And I use one for sensitive skin. Even though my skin is not that bad, it helps to use this one. Let it sit on your skin for a couple minutes as this will stick to the hair and shave easier.

3.End With Moisture.
The perfect ending entails a lotion or oil to moisturize your skin. Not only does it make your legs feel better at the moment, but it also helps for the next shave. I shave at least twice a week which gives you a closer cut. A scrub is good every once in a while too.

Anyone out there have any other tips? I would love to hear them! Leave a comment below:)

This is a sponsored post for The Art of Shaving, however, all the points and views are my own.

Get Ripped with Jari Love Exercise DVD Review + Giveaway!

Wow! That is the main thing I came away with after reviewing my newest product. Get Ripped by Jari Love is one of those exercise workouts that makes you sit up and take notice. Do any of you exercise? Well, you will definitely want to check out this program. Read my review and then enter for the giveaway:)

I want you all to understand one thing before I get into my review. I exercise daily. On a regular basis I do a workout 5 days a week, unless something has come up and I am going out of town, got sick, etc. I do a cardio program but I also use light weights with this and then other weight training as well. So I am not a beginner in this. But let me tell you, I felt like one after doing the Get Ripped DVD!!

The workout features a lot of weight training along with cardio. But the main focus is weights. The first time I did this I didn't use any weights at all, I just did the workout using body weight. Then the second time I used my weighted gloves and I finally did it with my regular hand weights. But they are still lighter than any of the weights being used by the people on this team. You can use either dumb-bells or the bar but they do have different people using different amounts.

Overall a good workout. Definitely not for a beginner though. Even doing this after a week or so, I was out of breath after getting through it. I know it will get easier as I do it more but it was hard. So if you are up to a good workout, go check out the Jari Love website or even the Get Ripped Bootcamp. And make sure to enter the giveaway through the Rafflecopter form and follow directions.

One winner will be receiving the Get Ripped DVD. USA only as I am the one shipping this DVD out. Giveaway will end on 9/20 and winner will be chosen through and will have 48 hours to respond or another winner will be chosen.

According to FTC Regulations, I received complimentary product for review purposes. I did not receive any monetary compensation and all thoughts are 100% mine.

To Write a Wrong by Robin Caroll

It is time for a FIRST Wild Card Tour book review! If you wish to join the FIRST blog alliance, just click the button. We are a group of reviewers who tour Christian books. A Wild Card post includes a brief bio of the author and a full chapter from each book toured. The reason it is called a FIRST Wild Card Tour is that you never know if the book will be fiction, non~fiction, for young, or for old...or for somewhere in between! Enjoy your free peek into the book!

You never know when I might play a wild card on you!

Today's Wild Card author is:

and the book:

B&H Books (September 15, 2012)

***Special thanks to Shannon Kozee of B&H Fiction for sending me a review copy.***

MY THOUGHTS-Robin Caroll writes the type of book that has you rooting for the good guy(or gal) and wishing you were in the fight! This book opens with a scene that makes you want to know what happens and goes full speed ahead from that point. A robbery turns into a murder and you have an exciting plot for an excellent book. There was nothing in this book I had a problem with and Robin did great research on the area and history. It deals with a tough subject of forgiving someone, even when they have done a great wrong. Good thought-provoking novel! Anxiously awaiting the next book in the series which tells Maddie's story.


Robin Caroll has authored twelve previous books including the Holt Medallion Award of Merit winner, Deliver Us From Evil.
She gives back to the writing community by serving as Conference
Director for American Christian Fiction Writers. A proud southerner,
Robin lives with her husband, three daughters, and two precious
grandsons in Arkansas.

Visit the author's website.


In Angola State Penitentiary, a man is serving time for a crime he
didn’t commit. Riley Baxter is an eager reporter desperate for a story
to make a name for herself. When she stumbles upon the daughter of the
incarcerated man, Riley sees a little too much of herself in the teen,
and vows to help prove her father’s innocence.

At the same time,
Hayden Simpson has his hands full with keeping his little sister in
line, worrying about his job as Police Commissioner, and dealing with
his past emotional baggage. The last thing he needs is someone blowing
the lid off his emotional bucket. But when Riley Baxter storms into his
life, struggling to understand why God would let bad things happen to
good people, Hayden has no choice but to follow his heart.

Now, Riley and Hayden must work together to uncover the truth of the past . . . before someone shuts Riley up for good.

Product Details:

List Price: $14.99

Paperback: 352 pages

Publisher: B&H Books

Language: English

ISBN-10: 1433672138

ISBN-13: 9781433672132


Wednesday, September 5, 2012

A Path Toward Love by Cara Lynn James


Katherine Osborne is a young widow who is struggling with making her business, she manages an orange grove, a success. For years she's been estranged from her parents. While the gap has mended slightly, she still feels intimated by her mother. When her father and her long time friend, Andrew Townsend, arrive in Florida with the purpose of bringing Katherine back to the family's summer vacation spot on Raquette Lake in New York's Adirondack Mountains, she resists at first but comes to an agreement with her father - spend the summer at the lake and he will loan her the funds to bring in the harvest. She arrives hoping to find peace and solitude to contemplate her next step regarding her business and her late husband's actions. Her mother is determined to see Katherine make a good marriage to a suitable young man while she's still young. As Katherine confides more and more into Andrew, both come to realize that they love each other. Will Katherine make a choice that could ruin three lives forever? Or will she find the courage to stand up to her parents and follow the path God wants her to?

MY REVIEW-I have read a couple of Cara's other books and have enjoyed them overall. They are the slow sweet read for the time when you want something quiet. Not a lot of action or adventure, but sure comes in handy for those rainy days. Doesn't stand out but still a good novel.

A Path Toward Love is not in a series, which is different from her other books. Katherine is a strong character who made a bad decision in the past and is now paying for it. Her parents really made me sick. She finally stands up to them but I had a hard time reading about them.

There is a strong thread through this book about forgiveness and having a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Not just an average go to Church and all but one where you pray daily and seek His will for what path to take. Not overly preachy but there is a good amount.

A good book and enjoyable read. Check it out for the rainy day blues.

I received a copy of this book for review purposes. I did not receive any monetary compensation.

CFBA Tour Her Good Name

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Her Good Name
River North; New Edition edition (July 24, 2012)
Ruth Axtell


Ruth knew she wanted to be a writer ever since she wrote her first story--a spy thriller--at the age of twelve. She studied comparative literature at Smith College, spending her junior year at the Sorbonne in Paris. After college, she taught English in the Canary Islands then worked in international development in Miami, Florida, before moving to the Netherlands, where for the next several years, she juggled both writing and raising her three children.

In 1994, her second manuscript was a finalist in Romance Writers of America's Golden Heart competition. In 2002, her sixth manuscript took second place in the Laurie Contest of RWA's Smoky Mountain chapter. The final judge requested her full manuscript and this became her first published book, Winter Is Past, which was spotlighted in Christian Retailing magazine. Since then, Ruth has gone on to publish thirteen historical romances and one novella. Her books have been translated into Dutch, Italian, Polish and Afrikaans . Her second historical, Wild Rose, was chosen by Booklist as a "Top Ten Christian Fiction" selection in 2005.

Ruth lives on the coast of Maine where she enjoys gardening, walking, reading romances and gazing at the ocean plotting her next romance.


In the 1890 thriving coastal town of Holliston, Maine, the leading lumber baron's son, Warren Brentwood, III, returns from his years away at college and traveling to take up his position as heir apparent to his father's business empire.

Esperanza Estrada, daughter of a Portuguese immigrant fisherman and a local woman, lives on the wrong side of town, surrounded by a brood of brothers and sisters and a careworn mother. She is unable to pretend she is anything but "one of those Estradas." When she overhears of a position to clean house at a local high school teacher's home on Elm Street, she jumps at the opportunity--to be able to run into Warren Brentwood now and again, but also to imbibe of the culture and intellectual atmosphere of the Stocktons.

When rumors about Espy and her respected employer begin to circulate, the entire church congregation and then the community pronounce judgment on her behavior. Warren believes the lie and his loss of faith in her causes Espy to give up without a fight. She leaves her family and hometown for the nearest city with little money and no acquaintances and is forced to spend the night on the street. A man who heads a mission for the homeless finds Espy and offers her shelter. Espy finds the true love of God while working at the mission. Will she be able to forgive the townspeople and return home?

If you would like to read the first chapter excerpt of Her Good Name, go HERE.

MY REVIEW-This book hasn't arrived yet so I will post my review when the book comes in.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Abducted by Janice Cantore

ABDUCTED by Janice Cantore
After solving the mayor's murder and exposing corruption among the top brass in Las Playas, Carly Edwards is happy to be back on patrol with her partner, Joe, putting bad guys behind bars. For once, everything in life seems to be going right. — But then everything starts going wrong. Slow to recover from an injury, her ex-husband, Nick, begins pulling away just as they were starting to get close again. Meanwhile, when Joe?s wife lands in the hospital with a mysterious illness, their baby is kidnapped. As Carly chases down every lead in a desperate search to find the baby, her newfound faith is pushed to its limits.

MY REVIEW-Have you ever picked up a book and couldn't put it down? That is what happened when I reviewed the newest book by Janice Cantore, Abducted. This is the second book in the Pacific Justice Series and I can't wait for the third one:) I would definitely read them in order or you will wonder at some of what is going on. Not stand-alone novels.

Janice Cantore writes a mean cop story that makes you feel like you are in their shoes. There is a lot of action and a lot of soul searching done in this book. After reading her first one I knew what to expect but I was surprised by the ending. Excellent storyline with good characters. Flawed people who are trying to do right. Nick acts just like any guy would under the circumstances and I am so glad things turned out wonderful for this couple.

If you like a good cop story with a lot of action and adventure, this is the book for you. A cop who writes like a cop! Love it!

According to FTC Regulations, I received a copy of this book for my review purposes. I did not receive any monetary compensation. All thoughts are 100% mine.

Sports Illustrated SportsParent of the Year Contest! And Special Offer Subscription!

Hey readers, I just heard about this neat contest I thought you all might be interested in. Sports Illustrated Kids is having a SportsParent Contest! This sounded like so much fun I figured some kids here would enjoy having a chance to nominate their parent. So take a look at the directions below and make sure to get your entry in. This is not a giveaway hosted on my blog. You have to go to the Sports Illustrated Kids site to enter.

For the first time ever, Sports Illustrated Kids is naming a “SportsParent of the Year” and would like to invite you and your readers to enter or nominate an inspirational SportsParent! Modeled after the famed Sportsman and SportsKid of the Year awards, the SportsParent of the Year title will honor a parent who embodies the essence of sportsmanship. After all, we wouldn’t have a Sportsman or SportsKid without the role model who initially set the example. A true SportsParent is dedicated to using sports to support family and community, not scores and trophies. The SportsParent will exemplify qualities that SI Kids aims to impart to children through a shared passion for sports, including fun, dedication, healthy living, and the value of community and team.

The “2012 SportsParent of the Year” Grand Prize Winner will receive a $1,000 gift card to support his/her child’s or community team’s sports needs! The winner may also be featured in an upcoming issue of Sports Illustrated Kids magazine and/or on Deadline for contest entries end 9/24.

You can also subscribe to Sports Illustrated Kids through the link. This magazine is something good and decent for the younger guys.

SI Kids is THE magazine for boys and girls who love sports. It presents sports the way kids want to read about them: with great action photos, easy-to-read stories about star athletes, helpful instructional tips from the pros, and humor, comics, and activities. SI Kids is a great way to encourage kids to read, and it has won highest honors from the Association of Educational Publishers and the Parents' Choice Award.

Now, for those of you interested in subscribing, they are hosting a special deal. Check it out!

As a special offer for you and your readers, SI Kids is providing their SEPTEMBER tablet issue COMPLETELY FREE! The tablet edition has everything that the print magazine has, but also includes bonus photos and interactive features like games and sports cards that kids will love! Simply download the SI Kids app on iPad or Kindle Fire, and use these credentials to access this latest issue:


Password: september2012

Or, if your readers want to receive an entire year of SI Kids in print and on tablet for only $19.95, they can subscribe immediately by heading HERE.

So, sound like fun? I thought is was a nice way to show appreciation to the parents who take time out of their busy schedule to be a role model in this area. And who knows, someone has to win the prize:)

According to FTC Regulations, I will receive an SI Kids goody basket and a year subscription to Sports Illustrated Kids in conjunction with this post.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Living in Florida and Condos

Any of you live in Florida? Anyone own a condo? Well, how about doing both:) Living in Florida and owning a condo sure sounds great to me. This website is a Luxury oceanfront real estate broker in Golden Beach and many other places. Check them out below!

Florida is a really nice place to live. Sure you sometimes have hot weather and all that but overall it is a great place to settle down in. Whether you are looking for Luxury oceanfront condominiums in Fort Lauderdale or a bigger place in the keys, this is a place you might be able to find the home of your dreams!

For those of you wanting to find out more information, I would suggest looking at their blog, Luxury real estate broker in Miami. Lots of good information and a snazzy site!

LinkI have not used this site. All thoughts are 100% mine.

GlassesUSA and Eyewear

How many of my readers wear glasses? I am one of the few in our family who wears eyeglasses all the time. We aren't talking just reading glasses, but regular prescription glasses. These are something I would rather do without but hey, when you need them, you need them:) One major problem with glasses is the expense that goes into them. Not only are you talking about glasses and the frames, but also the eye exams and all the extras that come with the glasses. So I am always on the lookout for a place to get cheap glasses that are still a good quality product. is one place I can count on for these things.

When I go shopping I prefer doing it online. When I had my recent eye exam the doctor warned me about buying glasses online because you never know what you are getting. Personally I have never had a problem with ordering glasses online and I have done it several times. You do have to have your eyeglasses prescription but that is nothing major, most places will give you a copy if you ask for it. Now the fun thing with GlassesUSA is the new Virtual Mirror aspect. You can actually go on and have a picture of yourself trying on the glasses! You can zoom in, angle the head, etc all to see how a pair of eyeglasses looks. It is amazing how far technology has come! Check it out below! If you are needing a new pair of glasses, this is one place to look. I like their site, their product and their prices. Can't go wrong there:)

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