Saturday, August 22, 2015


Choices. How many choices do we make a day? Tens? Hundreds? Thousands? I shouldn't be amazed, but when I think about it I am amazed at how many choices we have. And every single one of them have a consequence (positive and negative) attached to it, whether we see it right away or many years down the road.

For example, I chose not to post the last couple of weeks because by the time Friday came around I either forgot or decided I was too tired. Not that there's any big consequence other than me feeling bad.

However, choices have been an my mind lately. I understand that some people don't have control over their choices, i.e. addictions, mental disabilities, things along those lines, but for the majority of us we do. Now when I began this post, my thoughts were going one way and since then they have gone another. So I will do my best to merge the two. Bare with me.

A couple of weeks ago I realized/learned something about myself. As a family we went to SeaWorld and I was nervous (that's probably an understatement). Those of you who know Tigger know that he doesn't stay in one place very well. We talked to him and talked to him about the importance of staying with us so we wouldn't lose him. For the most part those conversations went in one ear and out the other. The morning of our visit I found myself very ornery, uptight, and grouchy. I was short with everyone around me and no one was excited to go anymore.

I did my best to take a step back and I realized that I was acting that way because I was scared. I was scared of what Tigger would do. I was scared he'd run off and we wouldn't be able to find him. I was afraid of losing him. With that realized I began to wonder if I was choosing to be that way. I know that I've struggled with the fear of someone taking him from me since before he was born. I know those feelings hightened after Lion went home. But am I choosing to be that way?

Right now I have no answer to that question. I believe fears are there for a reason, a warning per se, but then I'm brought back to the whole you can't have faith and fear at the same time. So I really don't know the answer to that question. At least I've realized what's triggered other emotions and I can work on controlling them.

As for other choices since our SeaWorld trip, I've realized that I'm struggling with some choices I made many, many years ago. I find myself questioning and justifiying different thoughts. I want to feel like I fit in, and it appears that everyone else is doing certain things. I want to feel a part of and yet I know that I've never done what everyone else has done. I've always done what I've felt to be right even if it makes me the odd man out. It shouldn't matter, but I've found that it does. In a way I don't feel comfortable in my skin anymore and I'm trying to figure myself out again. Who would have thought those feelings would continue after high school? :)

So here I find myself wondering if I'm choosing to feel a certain way and struggling to reaffirm the choices I've made years ago. It's an interesting position to be in. Who knows. Maybe I'll actually figure it out and be able to shed some light on things, if not for myself, then for someone else.

For now, keep in mind that we never truly know what someone else is struggling with and/or going through. Choose to be kind to everyone!

Thursday, August 20, 2015

LEGALLY AND LAWFULLY YOURS by Anita Stansfield — #reviews #books #covenant #amreading

LEGALLY AND LAWFULLY YOURS by Anita Stansfield. This was a cute romance. It gripped me from the beginning, but as the story progressed I lost interest. The situation worked well, however, I felt like the danger wasn't real enough for me. Granted, I've never been in this type of situation and I image the fear is very real, but I didn't feel it as a reader. The kids were darling, as was the couple. There were spots where I felt like the tension was rising, but for me it fell flat. This is a clean read that I can recommend to just about everyone though. 

:) :) :)

Following the revelation of her fiancĂ©’s philandering ways, high-powered New York attorney Shannon Turney’s wedding is off. At a time like this, the last thing she can handle is family drama. But when she learns how far her brother’s and sister-in-law’s lives have spiraled out of control, the only thought in her mind is the safety of her young niece and nephew. After Shannon is granted custody, she and the children are eager to run long and far from their problems. 
The end of the road is Sugar City, a place as delightful as its name implies. In the tiny town, Shannon gets much more of a change than she bargained for. Welcomed with open arms by the townspeople, including the handsome local veterinarian, Shannon and the children slowly begin to heal. But when their idyllic existence is threatened by the return of the children’s mother, Shannon has no choice but to return to the courtroom she left behind. She has one last legal battle to fight, and the outcome may mean losing everything she loves.
*A review copy was provided by the publisher in exchange for an unbiased review.

Tour Schedule:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

FREETOWN — #review

FREETOWN. What a powerful, gripping story. I felt the tension and conflict from the beginning. The actors did an incredible job portraying their people. It's absolutely amazing what people and the church lived through. It makes me very grateful for my life. It is a great movie for adults. For me, there was too much violence for my young children. I would recommend it to anyone who loves a great movie full of faith, trial, and survival. (Based on true events.)

:) :) :) :) :)

Caught in the middle of a brutal civil war, six Liberian missionaries in Monrovia flee the widespread violence of their native country. Their destination: Freetown, Sierra Leone. With the help of local Church leader Phillip Abubakar (Henry Adofo), the missionaries make the difficult journey only to have their troubles compounded by a rebel fighter bent on killing one of their own. Based on true events, Freetown is a thrilling and inspiring story of hope and survival. 
*A review copy was provided in exchange for an unbiased review.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

MAYBE TODAY by David Butler & Emily Belle Freeman — #books #amreading #life

MAYBE TODAY by David Butler and Emily Belle Freeman. This book was a pleasant surprise. I wasn't expecting much but I really enjoyed the simple nature of it. The pictures were beautiful and the stories that were chosen to go with the different approaches were perfect. It truly gave me something to think about in how to create a more soul-satisfying life with five easy steps. This book is one for everyone, no matter what your belief system is. I highly recommend it.

:) :) :) :)

He knows your heart. Live your life so you can come to know HIS.

*A copy was provided by the publisher in exchange for an unbiased review.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

PORTRAIT OF LIES by Clair M Poulson — #reviews #bookreviews #giveaway

PORTRAIT OF LIES by Clair M Poulson. This one sounds great! Can't wait to read it. Be sure to take a look.

It was a robbery gone bad, or so they said. For Detective Trey Shotwell, the murder of his mother, a prominent artist, was the catalyst for setting aside his own artistic aspirations to pursue a career in law enforcement—despite the opposition of his father, also a famous painter. When he agrees to attend an art auction featuring his father’s work, the cruise ship locale provides the relaxation Trey needs. And when he meets stunning fellow passenger Aariah Stanton, the undeniable chemistry they share is an unexpected bonus. 
But the tranquil voyage quickly turns into a nightmare at sea. The Shotwell paintings have disappeared, and amidst the chaotic hunt for the thief, a murderer is free to roam the halls of the ship. Aariah finds herself in the wrong place at the wrong time and miraculously escapes the murderer—for now. But another victim is not so lucky . . . 
The crime is eerily reminiscent of the death of Trey’s mother so many years before. But this time, the young detective has the resources he needs to track the killer. As the pieces of the puzzle begin to come together, they paint the chilling picture of a sinister plot years in the making. In a manhunt that takes him from the high seas of the Pacific to the wilderness of Australia, Trey will stop at nothing to solve the crime and protect the woman he loves.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, August 6, 2015

WILL MY CHILD BE READY? edited by Emily Freeman & Merrilee Boyack — #reviews #books #amreading

WILL MY CHILD BE READY? IDEAS FOR PREPARING FUTURE MISSIONARIES OF ALL AGES edited by Emily Freeman and Merrilee Boyack. As I look back on how I was raised, it felt like everywhere I turned I had been taught differently than the rest of the world. Not in a bad way, just different. This book talks about how to prepare future missionaries and I found myself saying, "Yup. That's what I was taught." So in a way, it feels like this book talks about how I was raised. I agree with the principles that are introduced and the ways they suggest on how to teach them to children of all ages. To me, all of these principles again teach a child to not only be a good missionary, but also a great citizen in the community, a wonderful friend, a kind neighbor. I think we can all benifit from implimenting the principles talked about in this book. I highly recommend it to any and everyone.

:) :) :) :) :)

Mothers have an immeasurable influence and a significant responsibility in raising up young men and women who are prepared to further the work of the Lord. This unique resource includes 12 training chapters for moms of prospective missionaries, all written by mothers who have sent children on missions (and some by mothers who have also served as mission presidents wives). Whether you have young children and are hoping to begin the mission training process early or you have less than a year to pull all the pieces together, here is the good news: the path of preparing a child for a mission begins wherever you are. Chapters on topics such as fostering good daily habits, developing relationship skills, being resilient, and recognizing the Spirit shed light on what future missionaries need to know, what they need to do, and what they need to be.

Monday, August 3, 2015

ELEANOR AND THE IRON KING by @juliedaines — #books #reviews #amreading

ELEANOR AND THE IRON KING by Julie Daines. This was a quick, fun read. I loved the characters and the plot. The twists kept the pages turning, and when I thought I'd figured out the ending I couldn't turn them fast enough to see if I was correct. I did feel like Eleanor was to naive at times, which did bother me. But in the end I really enjoyed this story. I would recommend it to anyone who loves a good romance with a bit of a mystery, however, since murder is involved it may not be a good fit for younger readers.

:) :) :) :)

Eleanor de Lacy has been bartered: her hand in marriage in exchange for a truce with her father’s sworn enemy. Now the headstrong beauty must leave her ancestral home and the man she secretly loves to become the wife of the infamous Welsh King Brach Goch. Tales of this cruel leader paint a chilling picture of a ruthless warrior—all Eleanor knows for certain is that he is the villain responsible for the vicious attacks on her people and the death of her beloved brother. Though she must marry against her will, she vows Brach Goch will never possess her heart.
Her arrival at the inhospitable castle Bryn Du confirms her worst fears—a ghost walks the halls of the castle, and Eleanor receives an ominous warning from the uneasy spirit: Brach is not to be trusted. Though resigned to a life of misery, Eleanor soon realizes all is not as it seems, for Brach is not the monster she dreaded but is a handsome and charming man whose gentle ways soon undermine his bride’s resolve to lock her heart. Clinging desperately to her pride, Eleanor finds herself trapped in a web of murder and deceit. And as the lines between good and evil become blurred, Eleanor must decide for herself who is to be trusted—and loved.
*A review copy was provided by the publisher in exchange for an unbiased review.

Tour Schedule:
August 3rd

August 4th

August 5th

August 6th

August 7th

a Rafflecopter giveaway