Thursday, October 30, 2014

THE MATCH MAKER by Karey White—Book Blast #amreading #books

Match Maker Book CoverThe Match Maker by Karey White (The Husband Maker #2) (Summary contains spoilers if you have not yet read book #1 The Husband Maker) It’s been six months since Charlotte and Kyle broke up, and the Husband Maker strikes again. Kyle is officially engaged, while Charlotte is still nursing a broken heart. In an effort to get Charlotte out of her rut, she and her best friend decide it’s time for some good old-fashioned matchmaking. While Aleena arranges for Charlotte to meet up with a handsome Scottish tourist, Charlotte gets her two best friends together. But when sparks start to fly between Aleena and Angus, Charlotte is left feeling more alone that ever--at least until the charming Scotsman becomes more than just a safe, rebound guy and teaches her that maybe, just maybe, she can dare to open her heart again.

The Match Maker releases on November 1st
Order your copy Now!
 
Don't miss the Blog Tour hosted by I Am A Reader November 4th to 21st Tour Schedule
The Husband Maker new

The Husband Maker by Karey White Charlotte’s a girl with nicknames. She may not love being called Charles or Chuck, but the hardest nickname to take is the one she was given in college, the one that’s followed her now for too many years. They call her “the husband maker” and sadly, it fits. Every guy she's dated since high school has gone on to marry the next girl they date. Not two or three girls down the road. The very next one. Is she doing something wrong or is she just cursed? When Kyle Aldsworth enters the picture and sweeps her off her feet, Charlotte begins to hope that maybe she's not destined to be single forever. A senator’s son with political aspirations of his own, Kyle's wealthy, handsome, and in need of a wife. Will Charlotte be disappointed yet again, or will she finally be able to make a husband for herself?

Karey White

Author Karey White Karey White grew up in Utah, Idaho, Oregon, and Missouri. She attended Ricks College and Brigham Young University. Her first novel, Gifted, was a Whitney Award Finalist. She loves to travel, read, bake treats, and spend time with family and friends. She and her husband are the parents of four great children. She teaches summer creative writing courses to young people and is currently working on her next book.

    $75 Book Blast Giveaway $75 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash Ends 11/23/14 Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the publisher. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.
  a Rafflecopter giveaway
Match Maker

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

FINALLY YOU: A TRIPLE TREAT ROMANCE—book review/ #amreading #books #bookreview

FINALLY YOU: A TRIPLE TREAT ROMANCE BOX SET. This box set had some amazing books in it. The first, WORKING IT OUT by Rachael Anderson was delightful. Check out my review here

The second, A PERFECT FIT by Heather Tullis began really well but left me disappointed at the end. I loved the characters and the situation they were thrown into. I didn't like some of the choices Cami made. It left a bit of a sour feeling. I'd love to read the rest of this series alone, but I'm not sure I will. 

The third, LOVED LIKE THAT by Julie Wright left me smiling. I remember reading this years ago and I loved it as much as I did back then. It was a clean, sweet romance that I would recommend to anyone.



FINALLY YOU: A TRIPLE TREAT ROMANCE BOX SET 
Three Bestselling Authors, Three Romance Novels, One Great Price 

WORKING IT OUT by USA Today bestselling author Rachael Anderson 
Grace Warren's life is safe and predictable—exactly the way she likes it. But when she gets roped into going to an auction to help out a friend, everything changes. She meets Seth Tuttle—a guy who unexpectedly kisses her then disappears, leaving her flustered and upset. If she never sees him again, it will be too soon. But when Seth limps into Grace's rehab clinic post surgery, there's something about him that makes her second-guess her carefully placed boundaries. Maybe he’s exactly what Grace has needed all along—assuming she's willing to risk safe and predictable for a chance at love. 

A PERFECT FIT by Amazon bestselling author Heather Tullis 
Cami DiCarlo doesn’t agree with her father that her life has been stuck in a rut, so she is not happy when he forces her hand into heading up guest services at his newest five-star hotel. The fact that he unveils the existence of four half-sisters at the same time, and insists that they live together while they launch the new resort, only makes things worse. When she meets Vince Talmadge, the sweet, sexy landscaper her father would never have approved of, Cami can’t say no. If only she could be sure she is on the right track—and that they will be able to stop the person who is trying to destroy everything she and her sisters are working to build. 

LOVED LIKE THAT by Amazon bestselling author Julie Wright 
Does meeting someone when they’re a soul make you soul mates? After being set up on one of the worst blind dates ever, James Hartman decides dating is hopeless and he should just stick to doing what he knows best—being a bachelor cop. That decision lasts all of ten minutes as he comes across the scene of a car accident and finally meets the girl of his dreams. Granted, she’s dead when he meets her, and she doesn’t remember him at all once he resuscitates her. Does he try to help her remember that out of body experience or does he walk away from his one chance to be loved like that?

Monday, October 27, 2014

CINDER & ELLA by Kelly Oram—book review/ #amreading #books #reviews

CINDER & ELLA by Kelly Oram. This was a delightful read. I loved almost everything about it. The tough situation had me sucked in to see how Ella would handle and grow from that experience. I love the fact that Cinder and Ella didn't know know each other personally. I loved how they helped each other through things. It was just a great story that I couldn't put down. However, there was some language and talk of sex involved. I would recommend this book to almost anyone if you're okay with some language and vague talk of sex.

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It’s been almost a year since eighteen-year-old Ella Rodriguez was in a car accident that left her crippled, scarred, and without a mother. After a very difficult recovery, she’s been uprooted across the country and forced into the custody of a father that abandoned her when she was a young child. If Ella wants to escape her father’s home and her awful new stepfamily, she must convince her doctors that she’s capable, both physically and emotionally, of living on her own. The problem is, she’s not ready yet. The only way she can think of to start healing is by reconnecting with the one person left in the world who’s ever meant anything to her—her anonymous Internet best friend, Cinder.
...
Hollywood sensation Brian Oliver has a reputation for being trouble. There’s major buzz around his performance in his upcoming film The Druid Prince, but his management team says he won’t make the transition from teen heartthrob to serious A-list actor unless he can prove he’s left his wild days behind and become a mature adult. In order to douse the flames on Brian’s bad-boy reputation, his management stages a fake engagement for him to his co-star Kaylee. Brian isn’t thrilled with the arrangement—or his fake fiancĂ©e—but decides he’ll suffer through it if it means he’ll get an Oscar nomination. Then a surprise email from an old Internet friend changes everything.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

CONFESSIONS OF A MOM

I went to the funeral of a friend’s sweet little boy last weekend. Hubby knows the couple well and knew a ton of people at the funeral. I got the feeling again that it was a mini reunion. I remember feeling that when we were planning Lion’s funeral. It’s a really sad excuse to have a family reunion, essentially. So as he’s saying hi to everyone, I’m struggling to keep the tears at bay. I remember feeling unsure of how to greet people who were crying and I wanted to be strong for this sweet mom who was going through something I wish no one had to go through.

The casket was closed by the time we got there and I have no idea if it was ever open but in a way I’m glad it wasn’t. I had a hard enough time looking at the beautiful pictures of this little one with his family and by himself. I’m not sure I would have been able to handle really seeing him.

As we sat in the chapel for the funeral service it all felt surreal. Watching the little boys father carry in the beautiful, white casket threw me back to when Hubby carried Lion’s casket into the chapel. The music was perfect. The talks were wonderful. I lost it when the events leading up to when their precious little one went back home. Their experience was much more traumatic than ours but the end result was the same. And my heart broke for them all over again.

I think I squeezed Hubby’s hand too hard but it felt like I had to hang on to ground myself. I cried more at this funeral than I did at Lion’s but I truly believe that’s because I was in shock then. I hadn’t had the time to really process what had happen and what we were doing. The whole time I sat there thinking, we’ve been through this. We’ve actually done this. We’ve felt and are still feeling those things.

Some of the statements I overheard family members make were exactly what we felt or heard our family members say. The emotions talked about in the funeral were what we felt at the time. I felt like the mom was much better prepared for her talk than I was. She delivered it with an incredible amount of composure while I’m sure her heart was breaking even more, if that’s possible.

Oh how I wish no one ever had to experience burying an infant. How I wish I could take that pain and heartache away. How I wish for so many things for those families that I know I can’t do. All I can do is be there as a support and love them. Hopefully my experience will help them get through the rough patches because unfortunately the worst is yet to come for them. Once the meals stop and family isn’t around every day and life moves on, you’re left with a hole and an ache that won’t leave. You don’t want life to move on and yet it does and everyone around you almost expects you to do the same.

I distinctly remember the feeling of emptyness when “life moved on,” whether I wanted it to or not. It was yet another challenge to face, but I know the only way I made it through is with the help of my Savior. The comfort I still receive from Him helps me deal with things as I relive the good and the bad of our precious time with Lion. How I miss Lion and wish he was with us, but I know he’s where he’s supposed to be.


If you’ve lost a loved one, know that my heart breaks for you and with you. But with the help and love and guidance from the Savior, you will make it. Even though it may feel like you won’t, you will make it.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

VISIONS OF HOPE by Annie Henrie—book review/#amreading #books #bookreview

VISIONS OF HOPE by Annie Henrie. This beautiful book contains some wonderful artwork coupled with inspiring scriptures and truth. The pictures were a little different than my taste and they didn't hold my son's interest as much as I would have liked them too, but the artist is obviously very talented. Everyone should take a look at her work.

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The most fundamental questions in our lives—questions about where we came from, why we are here, and where we are gonig—are answered when we have a true understanding of the plan of salvation. Now, our understanding is deepened and enlivened by this beautifully illustrated depiction of God's eternal plan for His children. In her unique, richly textured style, fine artist Annie Henrie offers a visual interpretations of the plan of salvation, including pre-earth life, the Creation, the Fall of Adam and Eve, life on earth, the spirit world, the Atonement and the Resurrection, and the kingdoms of glory. Accompanied by text from the scriptures, each exquisite image testifies of God's love for us and of His plan of happiness.

*A review copy was provided by the publisher, however the opinions are my own.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

SPELL CHECK by Julie Wright—Book Review/ #amreading #books #bookreview

SPELL CHECK by Julie Wright. Julie's books have always been fun to read and this one is no exception! I was hooked from the beginning and couldn't put it down. The situations are hilarious and the magic incredible. I loved all the webs Ally weaves and how she figures out how to untangle herself and others. It is a delightful, funfilled read that anyone would love.

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A skeleton is rattling its way out of the closet marked "FAMILY SECRET! KEEP OUT!"
Allyson Peterson believes that being hanged by the Salem High Witches is the absolute worst thing that can happen. But when her powers, wrested from the trolls of ancient Sweden, manifest themselves, she realizes that a prank hanging by vindictive cheerleaders is the least of her worries.
Ally accidentally sends her parents to the jungle to fight anacondas, turns her brother into a mute, and curses the entire cheerleading team with an illness that has no cure, proving that her spells need a little checking. Her Swedish grandmother shows up to help her through the worst part of all-surviving the Troll Trials and saving the guy of her dreams from a vengeance that has festered through-out generations.
The power is in her, if she can just get the magic right.
*A review copy was provided, however, the opinions are my own.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

CONFESSIONS OF A MOM

This week has been another lesson on perspective. A high school friend of Hubby and me had their five-week-old baby return home. It’s an experience I wish no one ever had to go through and yet many people are. It has brought back many memories and I’ve relived many of those precious times we had with Lion.

Here’s the perspective. As I’m complaining and struggling to get sleep, this sweet family is planning their child’s funeral. As I got frustrated with my kids this week for whatever insignificant reason, I remembered this family and what they are struggling with. Even now as Bear is waking up after not more than a twenty minute nap, I’m remembering how precious life is and how blessed we are to have Bear with us.

And as if the point needs to be driven home, there were several FB posts (I’m spending way too much time on that these days) of different friends with children or themselves in the hospital for various reasons. Life is precious and I’ve taken it for granted lately. I could easily blame the lack of sleep, but that would be an excuse. We are very blessed to have our health and to have wonderful healthy kids that keep us active. Life is short and we should savor every moment of it.

Along with learning of the death of this sweet baby, I have found myself fighting to not read into everything little thing with Bear and Tigger. Visions of my little ones in caskets want to push their way into the for front of my mind and I’m struggling to keep them at bay. Fears of losing my little ones are rising again, and as much as I’m there for this sweet family, I’m not sure I’m ready to see another little angel in a casket tomorrow. (If you haven’t figured it out yet, I usually write these posts on Friday night and schedule them to go live on Saturday morning.)

On a lighter note, Bear was able to be blessed last Sunday. It was wonderful to have so many family and friends around us. We missed those family members that were not able to attend and we’re ever grateful for the support of so many loved ones.

As I dressed Bear in a little white suit, my mind flashed back to the times I dressed Lion in his little white suit. Once for his blessing and the other for his burial. It brought tears to my eyes. Then as Hubby blessed Bear, I couldn’t help but envision one other person standing next to them. How we miss our sweet, little Lion.


I guess the point of this post is to not take life for granted. Give those you love a hug. Tell them you love them. Try not to wish time away because we just don’t know how much time we have with each other. I used to blow off these statements as a clique and didn’t really understand their meaning until recently. Don’t make the mistake I did and underestimate the truth to and the power of each of those statements.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

A REFUGE FROM THE STORM by Boyd K Packer—Book Review/#amreading #books #bookreview

A REFUGE FROM THE STORM by Boyd K Packer. I have always enjoyed President Packer's talks and this book is no exception. It covered things I already know as well as expanded my knowledge of the priesthood, the family, and the Church. The subsections were small enough that I could read one or two and then put the book down put still understand where I was when I picked it back up again. It's a wonderful addition to any library.

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In our tempestuous day, where can we turn for refuge
It is no surprise to anyone familiar with prophecy that the latter days are stormy ones. "We live in a very dangerous world that threatens those things that are most spiritual," writes President Boyd K. Packer. "The adversary is about. His objective is to cause injury."
But there is a place of strength and peace, a true refuge from the storm. In this powerful book, President Packer discusses the priesthood, the family, and the Church, three important forces that, working together, create a haven from the world. "The gospel of Jesus Christ enables individuals to become exalted by being part of eternal families," he writes. "The gospel contains the purpose, the doctrine, and the plan. The priesthood is the power and the authority. The Church has the means and organization. The exalted, eternal family is the end of the gospel plan."
This apostolic counsel will help you build an unshakable foundation for eternity by strengthening your understanding of core doctrine regarding the priesthood, the family, and the Church.

*A review copy was provided by the publisher, however the opinions are my own.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

CONFESSIONS OF A MOM

Have you ever relived a past experience and just kicked yourself for how you reacted or what you said or even what you did? I’ve done a lot of that these past few weeks. How I wish I could turn back time for many things, some of them more recent than others. I’m not sure how to stop those things from happening. Sometimes I wish my memory wasn’t very good (although that’s dwindling with having kids). Not that I’m bragging on having a good memory. Frankly I’m surprised at what I remember and what I don’t. It can be the tiniest, little detail of something that happened years ago for something that I can recall, but I can’t remember what I ate yesterday. :)

Sometimes I have a hard time letting things go and I’m thinking that’s why I seem to relive all the stupid moments of life. I’m working on it but it doesn’t make it any easier. As long as we’re learning from the past right . . . ?

And I’m doing it right now. I had a thought for what to write next and between the time I had the thought and my fingers began to move, I’ve already forgotten. :( So frustrating.

Anyway, along with reliving those moments, I feel a bit like it’s been a Mommy’s fail week. It’s most likely nothing more than being incredible tired and worn out, but I feel that way nonetheless. I think what triggered it is reading someone’s post and hearing a couple other people with newborns talk about how their babies are sleeping through the night at 4 weeks or they get a 12 hour night at 3 months and how it was worth sticking to a schedule and all that. Can I just say that’s incredible frustrating too?

I don’t know how many of you out there have children like that. If you do, you are very blessed. If you don’t, you are blessed too but in different ways. I do not have children like that. And I don’t care how many people say every baby should be able to sleep through the night and it’s something that’s trained and it’s not up to the child but the parent or that it’s a copout to say that some kids are better sleepers than others. (I’m sure I’m missing some of the sayings.) It’s not true. And you may say that I’m wrong in that statement, but that’s my belief.

Here’s why.

I did everything by the book with Tigger, and I mean everything. I had him on a schedule. I followed everything little thing the books said to do to get your baby to sleep through the night by a certain age. It didn’t work. Tigger didn’t sleep through the night for a long time, and even now I’m very grateful every night he sleeps without waking up. He wouldn’t sleep without me holding him.

Again, people will say that’s my fault. Just remember, I did everything by the book. I didn’t hold him all the time. I let him cry it out. I did it all and he still didn’t/wouldn’t sleep.

So with Bear I’ve tried things a little bit differently thinking it might help. It hasn’t. I’ve tried to get him on a consitent schedule and he flat out won’t follow it. Maybe I’m not good at letting him scream it out but to me if a child is hungry you feed him even if it’s not according to “the schedule.” And everytime I feed him he eats an entire meal. It’s not like he’s snacking.

Anyway, it can be irritating when people say things like that. To me, every child is different and some children are sleepers. Others are not. Bear still doesn’t have things figured out, although he’s doing better. It’s one of those things.

I am very blessed though. I have three handsome boys and a wonderful husband with family close by. Life is good, even through the eyes of a very sleep deprived person. :)

Thursday, October 9, 2014

IT'S BETTER TO LOOK UP—Book Review, #amreading #sharegoodness

IT'S BETTER TO LOOK UP. I loved this book. It's great to be able to sit down and read an inspirational story in about five minutes. All of the stories are familiar but it's a great, easy way to have a quick spiritual boost in the middle of a hectic day. I highly recommend this book to any and everyone.

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We all love to be taught with stories. The Savior shared many in his ministry, and His prophets and other Church leaders have often emulated that great example. Gospel lessons come alive when they are presented in this way.
It Is Better to Look Up gathers more than fifty of the most memorable personal experiences shared in general conference over the years and pairs them with stunning photographic images. The result is an irresistible volume filled with remarkable true accounts of God's hand in our lives.
You'll love browsing through such gems as "In Harm's Way," by President Thomas S. Monson; "Man Down!" by President Henry B. Eyring; "Lift Where You Stand," by President Dieter F. Uchtdorf; "You Stupid Cow!" by Elder Mervyn B. Arnold; "Worldly Promises," by Sister Bonnie L. Oscarson; and dozens more. These short pieces are perfect for a quick moment of inspiration in a class, a home evening, or personal devotional time. Each one is presented with a scripture to complement the gospel message.
Featuring stories from every member of the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve, plus many additional leaders past and present, this beautifully illustrated book will soon become a family favorite and a precious keepsake.
*A review copy was provided by the publisher, however all the views are my own.

Saturday, October 4, 2014

CONFESSIONS OF A MOM

Dreams. Living your dream. What is your dream? What have you sacrificed to make your dream a reality? Or have your dreams changed? Was it hard to let go if they have changed? Or do you wish that things had gone differently with your dreams?

This thought process was brought back to my mind this week when Hubby came home from a business trip. He had the opportunity to see a young, humble musician living his dream. Hubby was impressed with not only the talent but the sacrifice he and his family made to get him there. He was also impressed with how humble he was and who he thanked at the end of the performance.

At one point in time I had a dream of being a professional musician. I could have made it to, however, there came a point in time when I had to make a choice. Family or dream. Subconciously I chose family even though my actions may have stated otherwise for a little while. But I still have moments in time when I think of that dream and wonder . . .

I am very happy with where I am right now, minus the lack of sleep because Bear is waking up. :) Yet at times I really wish I had been able to make some of my dreams a reality. Maybe that’s why writing has become so important to me. Maybe that’s why the fact that I’m struggling to get anything written is becoming depressing. Maybe that’s why I don’t want to have to choose between writing and family at the moment. It would feel like I’m letting go of another dream.

Life is not easy and this is one of those things that seems to make it more difficult. How much are we willing to sacrifice? How much am I willing to sacrifice? Is there a way to have it a complete win-win? I’m not sure because life is full of give and takes. With those give and takes comes life lessons. So what am I supposed to be learning at the moment? I’m not a hundred percent sure beyond the standard patience and such.


So with dreams consently changing (at least it feel that way) I find it a hard knock sometimes when past dreams come to the surface again. Life is good though. Dreams are good too, but don’t be afraid to let them go and change them. I believe that’s part of the growth we have during this life. So go ahead and Dream Big! :)

Thursday, October 2, 2014

ALISO CREEK SERIES by Heather B Moore—Review

THE COMPLETE ALISO CREEK SERIES by Heather B Moore. This cute romance series was so much fun to read. I couldn't put it down. Some of the stories I liked more than others. Some I felt ended to soon. Others were just right. I loved how all the charactes wove together and helped spur each other on. This is a delightful, clean, romance series anyone would love. I recommend it to all.

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Liz, Gemma, Arie, Jess, and Drew have been best friends since creating the “Five” at Aliso Creek High School. But that was over ten years ago, and each is still trying to find that perfect someone . . . if perfect is even possible. 

This box set includes all 5 stories: 

PICTURE PERFECT: Gemma Staheli has never done anything out of the ordinary, until her boyfriend Randy starts to ignore her. But even cutting and dyeing her hair doesn’t get his attention. She decides to join her old high school friends for spring vacation, only to be faced with Drew, her best friend who suddenly seems interested in her as more than a friend. Gemma must determine if her heart is on the rebound or if it’s finally met its true match. 

THIRD TIME’S THE CHARM: Liz Carlson will settle for a normal man. A normal man with a job, that is. Married twice, then divorced twice, Liz’s rose-colored glasses fell off and shattered on the ground a long time ago. Her main focus now is raising her six-year-old daughter and surviving long days at work on her feet as a hairdresser. When Sloane Branden answers her call for help, quite literally, Liz doesn’t even give him a second glance. She’s sworn off dating for as many years as it takes, and it seems that Sloane has done the same after his own tumultuous marriage. But when Liz realizes that Sloane defies every stereotypical deadbeat she’s dated, she might just find room in her heart and discover the third time’s the charm. 

THE DAISY CHAIN: Jess Giles does find her perfect match, but since Charlie’s several years older than she, they never have a moment of harmony from his adult kids who protest the marriage. When Charlie dies in a tragic accident, his kids add insult to injury and sue Jess for her share of the inheritance. The only person Jess trusts for financial advice is Charlie’s financial planner, Preston Michaels. Just talking to Preston on the phone makes Jess feel flustered, yet strangely comfortable at the same time, so she puts off meeting him for as long as possible. When Jess has to attend the formal hearing, she’s about to find out if the man she’s been talking to over the phone for several months lives up to the voice that she’s grown attached to. 

LOST THEN FOUND: Arie, at the top of her career as VP of an established real estate company, discovers that her success has led to a less-than-successful dating life. But she may have just met the ideal man in work-a-holic film producer, Dustin Jacobs. Seeing each other once a week, or even once a month, is no big deal since they are both ambitious… until Arie realizes she wants much, much more. 

ONE CHANCE: Valentina is the odd-woman out. She’s part of “the Five” when she dates Drew for a couple of years, and remains friends with the women, but with her traveling schedule as a runway model, it’s impossible to maintain a real relationship. When Valentina attends her cousin’s wedding in LA, she runs into Cesar, who she was school friends with in her native country of Puerto Rico. Cesar is not the young skinny boy she remembers, but a grown man who seems interested in what’s beyond her model-appearance. Back in New York, Valentina can’t get him out of her mind, but she also can’t deny the fact that they’re separated by more than one country.