Wednesday, October 3, 2018

SIX SISTERS' STUFF COPYCAT COOKING COOKBOOK



I was excited to try this cookbook. I had my kids go through and sticky note all the recipes they wanted to try. The book is a colorful rainbow of tabs. We have since tried several of the recipes and they have all been a hit. For someone as cooking challenged as I am, the recipes were easy to follow and I knew what most of the ingredients were. In fact I had most of them in my house for the recipes we tried. This is a great book for those who love to eat out, but don't necessarily want to spend the money on it. Click on the link above for a free recipe from the book, and let me know what you think!

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The popular Six Sisters' Stuff bloggers come to the rescue with a new collection of more than 100 easy-to-make recipes of popular restaurant dishes and take-out favorites for busy families.
With more than fifty recipes that you can make in 30 minutes or less, this cookbook can help make meal planning a breeze as you mix-and-match side dishes from one restaurant with main courses from another and finish it off with a dessert from a third.
Save money while spending more time with your family. Change dining-out to dining-in for a memorable experience your whole family will enjoy.
Includes copycat recipes for Texas Roadhouse Cactus Blossom, Panda Express Orange Chicken, Olive Garden Chicken Parmesan, Disneyland Monte Cristo Sandwich, Chili's Molten Hot Lava Cake, Sprinkles Red Velvet Cupcakes, and Universal Studios Butterbeer.

Monday, October 1, 2018

PROXIMITY by Traci Hunter Abramson

PROXIMITY by Traci Hunter Abramson. This was a great read. Tia was so fun and I loved her relationship with Evan. I was sad when distance seemed to be in the way. Then with Colby, I could tell something was off but couldn't figure out exactly what and why until the end. It is a fantastic read full of suspense and romance. It is a perfect read for anyone who loves a good suspense novel.

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Tia Parker always seems to fall for the wrong guy. But when she meets Evan Spence at a friend's wedding, it seems like she's finally found Mr. Right. Their spark is undeniable, but reality may extinguish any hope for a future: they are separated by thousands of miles. As the couple struggles with the pitfalls of pursuing romance long-distance, Tia is taken off guard by a new arrival in town. Colby Farren is handsome and charming and has made it clear he's interested in Tia. Yet despite his obvious infatuation, Tia can't seem to get Evan out of her mind. Caught between the attention of two very different men, her complicated love life is soon eclipsed by much more sobering concerns. A break-in at her apartment is just the first in a series of bizarre events, each bringing her one step closer to a dangerous liaison. And knowing who to trust could be a matter of life and death.



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Tuesday, September 25, 2018

CHRISTMAS BY ACCIDENT by Camron Wright

CHRISTMAS BY ACCIDENT by Camron Wright. This was a very cute Christmas read. It's more light-hearted than the backcover blurb makes it sound. I enjoyed the little references to miracles that Uncle Mannie slides in as he's talking to Carter, as well as the self discoveries he makes along the way. It's fun to see Carter's attitude toward Christmas change, as well as his realization about writing. Abby is a steady influence throughout the story. It is a great way to get your Christmas season started. I would recommend it to anyone.

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Carter is an insurance adjuster whose longing for creative expression spills over sometimes into his accident reports.
Abby works for her adoptive father, Uncle Mannie, in the family bookstore, the ReadMore Cafe.
Carter can barely tolerate Christmas; Abby loves it. She can't wait past October to build her favorite display, the annual Christmas book tree stack, which Carter despises.
When an automobile accident throws Carter and Abby together, Uncle Mannie, who is harboring secrets of his own, sees a chance for lasting happiness for his little girl. But there are so many hurdles, and not much time left. Will this Christmas deliver the miracles everyone is hoping for?



Wednesday, September 12, 2018

LONG JOURNEY HOME by Sarah M Eden

LONG JOURNEY HOME by Sarah M Eden. Sarah will always be one of my favorite authors. I have loved all of the Hope Springs Novel and this one did not disappoint. I love learning of the trials and hardships of a new nation and how people sacrificed to make a place for themselves. It gives me a good reminder to be grateful for everything I have. Maura's journey is no exception. I knew who I thought she would get together with, but I wasn't sure it was actually going to happen until the very end. The way things played out was so incredible. This is a wonderful novel for anyone who loves a bit of history with their romance and who loves the O'Conner family. They will teach one how to love, work together, stick together, and survive.

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Widowed by war, Maura O’Connor has raised her son alone under the weight of poverty in the unforgiving slums of New York City. That harsh and difficult life has taken a toll on them both. Desperate to save her son from the misery around them, she moves them both to the tiny western town of Hope Springs, where her late husband’s family lives, hoping that the decade of silence between them does not mean she and Aidan will be rejected outright. Her son needs family, and she would endure anything to see him happy.


Ryan Callaghan has worked the land belonging to the late Granny Claire for years, dreaming of one day claiming it as his own. Living in his brother’s home affords him no freedom, no stability, no joy. The arrangement is even harder on his mother, whose health is quickly deteriorating. A risky investment in the land has finally begun to pay off, and he is at last in a position to secure a better future for them both. When use of the home is, without warning, offered to a newly arrived widow and her son, that future is entirely uncertain.


Both Maura and Ryan desperately need the Claire farm, for their own futures as well as those of the loved ones who depend on them. Neither can remain in Hope Springs without the house and land, but only one can claim it in the end.


Longing for Home Series:
Longing for Home
Hope Springs
My Dearest Love
Love Remains
Long Journey Home



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Tuesday, September 11, 2018

THE NEVERLAND INN by K. C. Grant

THE NEVERLAND INN by K.C. Grant. This was a very cute romance. I enjoyed Sarah's character and loved to get to know her. Daniel was a little bit harder to like, although I felt for him in the beginning and the situation he was placed in. I haven't quite put my finger on what I was missing with Daniel. At times I felt like Sarah turned shy when she didn't need to, but I enjoyed the story. The recipes included appeared easy enough that as an untalented cook, I could try them. This is a story that I can recommend for everyone though.

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Daniel Cavanaugh has it all—a lucrative career as a lawyer, a gorgeous fiancee, and his future mapped out for him. So why is he feeling increasingly dissatisfied with his life? When the assignment to handle his lat grandmother's estate takes him to the California coast, Daniel welcomes the escape. Staying at the nearby bed-and-breakfast isn't really his style, but he soon realizes the inn may hold the key to the answers he's been seeking.
Spindrift Cove has few opportunities for a young unmarried woman like Sarah Michaels. Even so, she enjoys her solitude as owner and chef at the Neverland Inn. She thrives on catering to the needs of her guests and treating them to her fantastic cooking. But when Daniel walks through her door, he immediately tests her patience. Though he is handsome and well-bred, she finds him insufferable. Soon, however, the tranquility of the inn works its magic, and Daniel and Sarah forge a sweet and unexpected connection—until the life he left behind in the city demands his return and it seems that a happily ever after may not be on the menu after all.


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Tuesday, September 4, 2018

THE SHIPBUILDER'S WIFE by Jennifer Moore

THE SHIPBUILDER'S WIFE by Jennifer Moore. I really enjoyed this book. Not only were the characters fun to love, it gave me a different sense of what the world was like in America during this particular time period. It showed how war changes some people and brings others closer. It showed how shallow some people in society were as well as who kind and loving others are. I loved Lydia and her growth throughout the store. I enjoyed watching Jacob learn to deal with his trust issues. There was one unanswered question that I'm hoping will be answered in another novel sometime, or it just may be one that is left dangling. I'd love to hear your thoughts on this. It was a wonderful read that I would recommend to anyone.

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The day of her parents' garden party dawns bright as Lydia Prescott eagerly anticipates a marriage proposal from a handsome and wealthy plantation owner. The lovely debutante plans to steal a moment away with her beau, but her plans go terribly awry. Instead of her intended, she is joined by a stranger—the largest man she's ever laid eyes on. And it is clear Jacob Steel is there for reasons far more sober than the party. With British raids erupting all around them, it is his job to reassure plantation owners of their safety. In reality, however, Jacob is an espionage agent, and the truth is dire: America is on the verge of invasion by the British.
Blissfully unaware of the danger surrounding her, Lydia basks in the glow of her recent engagement. But her joy is short-lived—a surprise British attack results in a devastating wound, and her plans for the future are shattered. Lost in her devastation, Lydia could never dream that Jacob, that giant of a man she met so briefly, would prove to be her saving grace. And with a war raging around them, she may be called upon to save him too.






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Thursday, August 23, 2018

SHORT INVESTIGATIONS by Clair M Pulson

SHORT INVESTIGATIONS by Clair M Poulson. This was a good suspense novel. There wasn't anything that was too intense, but it kept me on my toes, trying to figure out who did it. It was easy to like both Rhett, Max, and Patches, and there wasn't too much romance involved. Sometimes I get annoyed with the romancey side of things in the middle of a suspense novel, but things were just right in this one. There were some predicatable twists and some not so predicatable. I would recommend this book to anyone who loves a good suspense with some romance in it. 

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In the sleepy town of Heber, a strange 911 call is made to report an unthinkable crime: someone has murdered a woman . . . and her body has been found in Rhett Ketchum's barn. Rhett, a well-known rodeo cowboy, is placed firmly at the top of the suspect list—the only problem is, he's innocent. As officers search tirelessly for the evidence needed to lock him up, Rhett takes matters into his own hands.
Max and Patches Fisher are the father-daughter duo behind the unconventional PI firm Short Investigations, and they agree to undertake the task of proving Rhett's innocence. Soon the list of suspects begins to grow, and Rhett feels a glimmer of hope—and an undeniable attraction to Patches. But when the officers on the case become targets themselves, it seems they may be the ones in need of protection. As events take a deadly turn, it's up to Max and Patches to uncover the truth before time runs out.










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Wednesday, July 18, 2018

KISS OF A SPINDLE by Nancy Campbell Allen

KISS OF A SPINDLE by Nancy Campbell Allen. Everytime I read a steampunk novel I smile, and this romance is no exception. I wasn't sure how a steampunk version of Sleeping Beauty would be pulled off, but this was done brillantly. I loved Isla. I loved Daniel. I loved how they had to grow to trust each other dispite the blackmail involved. It was fantastic from page one to the end. There was even a twist that played out very nicely. I would highly recommend this to anyone who loves a good romance teamed with adventure, suspense, secrets, and more.

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A steampunk Sleeping Beauty story from the author of Beauty and the Clockwork Beast.
Doctor Isla Cooper is cursed. Literally. Each night, at the stroke of midnight she falls into a death-like sleep from which she cannot be awakened for six hours. To make it worse, the curse has an expiration date--after a year, it becomes permanent. And the year is almost up.
In a desperate attempt to find Malette—the witch who cursed her—Isla blackmails her way onto Daniel Pickett's private airship bound for the Caribbean, only to discover she's traveling with three illegal shapeshifters and the despicable Nigel Crowe, a government official determined to hunt down and exterminate every shapeshifter in England. Isla and Daniel must work together to keep the identities of the shapeshifters hidden while coming to terms with their own hidden secrets, and their blossoming attraction to each other.
Filled with suspense, intrigue, and plenty of romance, Kiss of the Spindle is steampunk Sleeping Beauty story. It is a race against the clock as Isla and Daniel try to hunt down the elusive Malette before Isla's death-like sleep becomes permanent.



Tuesday, July 17, 2018

THE MATCHMAKER'S MATCH by Brittany Larsen


THE MATCHMAKER'S MATCH by Brittany Larsen. This was a fun read. I enjoyed the flower shop and Liza and Parker's relationship. The plot is wonderful and the setting is beautiful. I had a hard time with Liza though. By the end of the book I honestly didn't believe that she could be or that a person would be that clueless to things going on around her and, more so what her words and behavior did to other people. To me, I would think someone would have at least some idea of how words can hurt, especially face to face. I could be wrong. She was too niave.

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 Eliza Woodhouse has everything a girl could want: a delightful little beachside flower shop, a loving family, and the best friend a girl could ask for. And while she suffers a chronic lack of romance in her own life, the bohemian beauty is a self-proclaimed matchmaker extraordinaire, as evidenced by her recent successes. Having found a fiancĂ© for her sister and a boyfriend for her best friend, she is now taking her lovelorn new employee under her wing. Yes, life is working out quite nicely for Eliza. Until Parker Knightley walks back into her life. After three years in Hong Kong, Parker is in town for his brother’s upcoming wedding to Eliza’s sister. They’ve all known each other their whole lives, and Eliza will never be anything but Little Liza Belle to her handsome childhood tormenter. So the fact that their siblings are getting married simply puts Parker one step closer to becoming the big brother he and Eliza have always joked about him being. But the more time they spend together, the more confused Eliza’s feelings become. Because she has come to the shocking realization that the role of brother is the last role she wants Parker to play in her life . . .



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Monday, July 9, 2018

TREK THE MOVIE

TREK THE MOVIE. I watched this movie with my kids and enjoyed most of it. It has a lot of things that would be over someone's head if they've never heard of or been on a trek before though. I had to explain a lot to my kids. However, they did get some of the humor and I laughed through most of it. They did a good job portraying a trek for the most part. There is growth for most of the characters and some really good, powerful lessons that were shown. There were some cheesy things but overall it was an enjoyable film that I would recommend to most people. It is worth seeing at least once. There is a curse word in it that surprised me since it really didn't need to be used.  

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Trek follows a young Mormon teenager named Tom and his friends on their handcart journey. Along the way, they try to smuggle in unsanctioned food, battle sibling rivalry, encounter a "special ops" Young Men leader, match wits with a Twinkie-loving skunk, and ponder doctrinal brain teasers like, "Do General Authorities go to PG-13 movies?" But, when they encounter unexpected trouble, their faith is tested much like that of their pioneer ancestors. Whether you've been on a trek or not, your family will laugh along and ultimately be inspired as you enjoy this delightful film.

Special Features
  • Trek bloopers
  • Meet the Cast
  • Director Commentary
This is a link to an exclusive seen for LDSLiving that is one of the hilarious parts. If the link doesn't work, click on the title of the movie here and it will be on the Deseret Bookstore page.



*I received a copy from the publisher in exchange for an unbiased review.





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Monday, June 11, 2018

UNSHATTERED by Carol Decker and Stacey Nash

UNSHATTERED Overcoming Tragedy and Choosing a Beautiful Life by Carol Decker and Stacey Nash. This is an incredible read of exactly what the title says. I know Stacey and have met Carol on several occasions. Both are amazing women. To be able to come back from what happened to Carol and turn life into a beautiful experience is truly inspiring. It puts a lot of things into perspective. I highly recommend this book to everyone. Anyone can learn from Carol's experiences and how to overcome tragedies in their lives and choose beauty. 

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On June 10, 2008, Carol Decker walked through the hospital doors a healthy woman with flu-like symptoms and early labor contractions. Three months later, she returned home a blind, triple-amputee struggling to bond with a daughter she would never see.
Unshattered: Overcoming Tragedy and Choosing a Beautiful Life recounts Carol's fight for survival against sepsis and its life-shattering complications. From excruciating skin grafts to learning how to function in daily life without lower legs, a left hand, and her sight, Carol takes us on a personal and raw, yet inspiring journey. She travels through the darkness of trauma, anxiety, and depression to arrive, literally, at the peak of a mountain with a heart full of gratitude and love. More than a story of triumph over tragedy, the book offers inspiring life-lessons and insights which can help readers to do more than endure unimaginable pain and darkness in their own lives. This book can give them the perspective and strength to pick up the pieces of their own tragedies and choose a life of healing, purpose, and joy—a beautiful life.
    Lessons learned:
  • There is always hope, even if it sometimes feels small and hard to find.
  • Even if you're the most capable person, you can't do this life alone. We all need a support system. It is okay to ask for help.
  • Happiness takes work. It doesn't just happen.
  • The human spirit is able to endure and withstand great adversity.
  • Even the smallest broken pieces of a life can be put back together.






Monday, June 4, 2018

LOVING LIEUTENANT LANCASTER by Sara M Eden

LOVING LIEUTENANT LANCASTER by Sara M Eden. Two of my favorite families come together in this book, The Lancaster's and the Jonquil's. I had a smile on my face through out the entire book. Arabella is a wonderful addition to the characters that I love. Getting to know Linus better was a treat. Seeing how the two struggled to bridge their worlds was delightful. I would highly recommend this book to everyone. Once you read it, you'll want to learn more about the other characters that are involved. It's a fantastic addition to the Lancaster family books. 

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Orphaned as a child, Arabella Hampton was the unwanted and unloved charge of a cruel aunt and neglectful uncle. The only light in her young life was the kindness of the Jonquil family, and she clung to the childish dream of someday living with them at Lampton Park. Now, years later, that opportunity is presented to Arabella in a most unexpected way: she is to be the lady’s companion to the dowager countess. As she takes up residence at the estate, the young woman soon finds that life at the Park is far more complicated than she imagined. The lines of her position are blurred, and she is neither family nor servant. So when the countess plans a grand house party, Arabella is content to hide in the shadows. But one gentleman sees her there. 
Lieutenant Linus Lancaster has retired from the navy and is not looking for love, especially when he finds himself entangled in his sisters’ scheme to trap him into finding a wife at a house party at Lampton Park. Yet amid the festivities, he’s impossibly drawn to the dowager’s quiet companion, Arabella. Their regard for each other is undeniable, but they are haunted by their pasts. Can the two find a way to bridge their worlds?


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Friday, May 25, 2018

PERFECT SET by Melanie Jacobson

PERFECT SET by Melanie Jacobson. This was such a fun read. I wanted to be on the beach with my toes in the sand through the whole book. I loved the Bree and the mess she got herself into. I loved Kade and his quiet nature. They made a perfect team right down to the end. It was a fantastic page turned that had me feeling like I wanted to work as hard as Kade and be as dedicated as Bree. This book is a perfect beach read, cabin read, or at home read for anyone who loves sports with romance. I highly recommend it.

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Bree Mercer is an ambitious sports reporter who has risen through the ranks to land her dream job. Basking in the sun, sea, and seriously cute guys in her new singles ward, things couldn't be better. That is, until she's assigned to write a feature on the one person she can't stand—professional beach volleyball player Kade Townsend. A typical cocky athlete, Kade's previous attempt to woo her was foiled by Bree's hard-and-fast rule: don't date athletes. Ever.
Kade loathes the media, and for good reason: when his hard-partying ways were exposed by a reporter who claimed to be his friend, the scandal rocked his entire family. Now reformed, Kade has put his life back together, and he has no interest in talking to reporters—least of all Bree Mercer. But when the pair is thrown together despite their best efforts, their chemistry is undeniable. They can't seem to put the brakes on their feelings—until their connection threatens Bree's reputation and Kade's hard-won redemption. Now they must decide if there is a place for love in their plans for the future.


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