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Showing posts from December, 2014

Hodgepodge Wednesday ~ Happy New Year

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Welcome to the last Wednesday Hodgepodge of 2014.
Tomorrow begins 2015 and there will not be a Hodgepodge next week.
Joyce & her daughter are busy planning a wedding. Congratulations!
Now on to this week's Wednesday Hodgepodge.
This is where bloggers answer the questions Joyce asks.
If you would like to participate please click the button.

(1) Share a favorite moment from your Christmas holiday celebration.

 A- One of my favorite moments was the opening of the package with the goodies I won from Joyce's 200th Wednesday Hodgepodge. Thank you, Joyce! The package came as a huge box the week before Christmas. It was actually the biggest thing I opened on Christmas Eve. (We opened our presents Christmas Eve and I cooked a huge feast on Christmas Day.) After I opened the box there was another box inside, with a lovely Christmas card from Joyce. It was at that moment my family teased me that there would be an even smaller box inside that one. ha! However, you'll have to read…

CatchAll Questions...

Every once in a while I come across a blog with some great getting to know you questions.
My friend, Debby, has such questions posted on her blog Just Breathe.
To be fair, Debby found these questions from two of her friends blogs, Betty at A Bench With A View and her IRL friend `Headless Mom` at The Headless Family. As I understand, anyone can play. So if you do answer these please let me know so I can come read your answers, too. There are actually (2) sets of questions.

Set (1)

(1) What is your favorite Christmas song?



(2) Pumpkin or Pecan Pie?

A- I like both, so it depends on my taste at the time. However, my least favorite is Chocolate Pecan Pie. I like chocolate, but not both together.

(3) Did you go to any of your high school reunions?

A- Yes...one. I was a loner in school, definitely not a popular kid. So, high school reunions are not on my list of priorities. I seek out other ways to stay connected with those classmates who were truly friends.

(4) What was the last book you re…

Review: The Secret of Pembrooke Park

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The year is 1818 and the Foster family is facing financial ruin. The family is offered Pembrooke Park as a place to reside for twelve months. The abode was last occupied in 1800.
         Early in the novel I could sense a bit of suspense and had premonition of frightening turn of events. This added to the excitement of the book. This is an entertaining novel, definitely one that keeps you riveted.
         The reader may be interested to note that some of Jane Austen's works are referenced in this novel.
          This 456 page historical fiction novel is author Julie Klassen's longest work to date. I look forward to reading more works by this author, and especially thankful to have some on my Kindle. I recommend this novel to anyone who enjoys reading a challenging, suspenseful novel.

Disclaimer: "I was provided a free copy of this book. All opinions are my own."

I am linking this post up to Literacy Musing Monday's

Sunday Praise (22)

I am linking up with Spiritual Sundays

Hodgepodge Wednesday ~ Merry Christmas

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Welcome to the Christmas Hodgepodge Wednesday.
This is when Joyce asks the questions, and bloggers answer.
If you would like to participate just click the button.

(1) Time Magazine has selected The Ebola Fighters as their person of the year for 2014.  Do you agree, and if so who would you say is a close second? If you disagree with their choice, who do you think should have been chosen?

A- I think our military men and women are always in the top. We don't always hear of those who give of their very lives so we can have the freedom(s) we have.

(2) This question comes to you courtesy of Susan who blogs over at Stew Mama Says. She knows we have a wedding happening any minute now, and she asks, `What's your favorite - something old? something new? something borrowed? something blue in your home?` Be sure you hope over and say hi to Susan today.

A- something old? I have a plastic walrus my dad bought me many years ago, when I was in 6th grade. During that year he would take me out…

My Top Ten 2014 Releases I Read in 2014

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This week's Top Ten is brought to you by The Broke and The Bookish
This week's Top Ten Tuesday question:
Top Ten books I read in 2014 (overall, particular genre, 2014 releases)
Only (1) of my list was not published in 2014.

(1) Abraham (Charles R. Swindoll)

(2) Another Summer (Rebecca Stevenson)

(3) Love Without Limits (Nick & Kanae Vujicic)

(4) Steel Will (Shilo Harris)

(5) The Greatest Gift (Ann Voskamp)

(6) The Reason (Lacey Sturm)

(7) The River (Beverly Lewis)

(8) The Secret of Pembrooke Park (Julie Klassen)

(9) The Trail (Ed Underwood)

(10) Where Treetops Glisten (Tricia Goyer, Cara Putman, Sarah Sundin)


My question:
What is your Top Ten books read in 2014?




Spiritual Sundays (21)

I am linking up with Spiritual Sundays.

Review: Love Without Limits

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List Price: 21.99
ISBN: 978-1-60142-617-8
Release: November 18, 2014
Religion/Christian Life/Inspirational







`Love Without Limits` is based on the experiences of Nick Vujicic and his wife Kanae. It takes the reader through their first meeting, their engagement, wedding, and the birth of their son Kiyoshi. The story recounts how they grew to love one another through personal insecurities and their victories.
             When I saw `Love Without Limits` as a review book, I was excited to read about Nick's marriage. The couple are shown together on the beautiful cover as well as in several pictures in the book. My first introduction to Nick was the book `Life Without Limits`. You can read my review for that book here.
               I recommend this book to older teens and young adults who contemplate marrying one day. I also recommend it to anyone who would like to read more about Nick Vujicic.

More Info

Author Bio

Author Website

Disclaimer: "I was provided a free copy of this book…

Top Ten New-To-Me Authors of 2014

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This week's Top Ten is brought to you by The Broke and The Bookish.
This week's Top Ten: New-To-Me authors I read in 2014.

(1) Matt Appling (Life After Art)

(2) Justin & Trisha Davis (Beyond Ordinary)

(3) Karen Ehman (Let. It. Go)

(4) Margaret Feinberg (Wonderstruck)

(5) Kevin G. Harney (Empowered by His Presence)

(6) Sharon Jaynes (The Power of a Woman's Words)

(7) Vicky Kaseorg (I'm Listening With a Broken Ear)

(8) Rick McKinley (The Answer to Our Cry)

(9) r. William Rogers (Arkansas Valley series)

(10) Ann Voskamp (One Thousand Gifts)


My Question:
What are some new-to-you authors you read in 2014?

Review: The Answer To Our Cry

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Author Rick McKinley breaks down what is perhaps the most familiar verse in the Bible (John 3:16) and explains it in simple terms. The author helps the reader understand the difference between religion and relationship. By developing a relationship with God and our neighbors.
             I was personally encouraged in my walk as a Christian. I realized that when I am not thankful to God I am actually being ungrateful. I learned that I have been given grace and Jesus gave me everything I have. Jesus doesn't want a guilt ridden relationship, but one of love.
            Two quotes I found most meaningful are, "God's love is not about bad versus good; it's about lost versus found" (pg. #59). "We're simply made to enjoy this God as beloved sons and daughters" (pg #60).
            I would recommend this book to Christians who are seeking to understand who they are in Christ, to those who want to bring shalom to their neighborhoods, and tho…

Poll: Who Writes Better - Men or Women?

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The people at Grammarly (grammar checker) recently conducted an online poll of about 3,000 participants, 54% male and 46% female, to see which gender is believed to write better. The poll was conducted through Google Consumer Surveys. If the information resonates well with readers, there are plans for more surveys on similar subjects in the future. I hope you find the infographic below enlightening.


Disclaimer: Many thanks to Nikolas Baron, Online Partnerships Team Member (Grammarly), for supplying me with the information for this post. As compensation for my post Grammarly will donate $10, in my name, to Reading Is Fundamental a charity that promotes literacy. 

New Research: What Kids Want In Books

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Merry Christmas! Books are a great addition to the Christmas list.
To make shopping even easier Scholastic recently released new data titled `What Kids Want in Books` - a "sneak preview" from a new national survey of children ages six - 17 and their parents. Below you will find the `preview` of the report from the fifth edition of the Scholastic Kids & Family Reading Report*. The full report is due out January 2015. You will also find handy links for parents and teachers.



Press ReleaseParent ResourcesTeacher Resources

Reading Report pdf (one page pdf to print out)



Disclaimer: Many thanks to Michael Barrett, Scholastic, for supplying me with the information for this post. I was not compensated in any way to post this information.

I am linking up with The Book Nook at Create With Joy.

I am linking up with Throwback Thursday at Mom's Small Victories.

Spiritual Sundays (20)

I am linking up with Spiritual Sundays

Review: Empowered By His Presence

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Most people are satisfied to just meander through life. In this book, author Kevin G. Harney suggests Christians can live an empowered life through Christ.
            In this daily devotional the reader is taken into the life of a different Biblical character each day. There are four sections each divided into six short chapters. Each are intended for five days of reading, then a weekend session. At the end of each section are `Resources for Living an Empowered Life`.
            I found the scripture references, which are listed daily, to be insightful. Taking time to approach this book as a daily guide can be very enlightening. I used the NIV Bible to look up the scripture verses as the book only had references rather than printed out verses. I liked this since I would rather look up the scripture and read it myself. On the `Journal and Personal Reflections` pages the author brought up some very thoughtful questions.
            As a whole I would recommend this book t…

Wednesday Hodgepodge - Heterogeneous Mixture

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Welcome to week 200 of Hodgepodge Wednesday.
This is when Joyce asks the questions and bloggers answer.
Plus, for week 200, there will be a give-away.
So, if you would like to participate, just click the button.

(1)  What is something in your life right now that feels a little `hodgepodge`?

A- My clothes closet. I have a lot of clothes people have given me. It can be a trick to find clothes that go together. However, I also have some clothes that match beautifully. I am thankful for a summer and winter wardrobe.

(2) What does `peace on earth, good will to men` mean to you?

A- It makes me think of when there will be a New Heaven and a New Earth.
Also, the peace that Jesus gives to Christians.

(3) Which edible treat are you most looking forward to sampling this December?

A- Pecan Wedding Cookies

(4) It's that most wonderful time of the year...do you agree, and if so why is it so wonderful? If not, what would you say is the most wonderful time of the year?

A- I agree!! This is the t…

Top Ten Books to Read in 2015

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This week's Top Ten is brought to you by The Broke and The Bookish
This week's Top Ten: List ten books to read in 2015

(1) A Plague of Bogles (Catherine Jinks)

(2) Mist of Midnight (Sandra Byrd)

(3) At Home in Last Chance (Cathleen Armstrong)

(4) When Grace Sings (Kim Vogel Sawyer)

(5) The Pharaoh's Daughter (Mesu Andrews)

(6) Listen In (Rachael Crabb)

(7) A Sparrow in Terezin (Kristy Cambron)

(8) The Art of Losing Yourself (Katie Ganshert)

(9) The Wood's Edge (Lori Benton)

(10) A Worthy Pursuit (Karen Witemeyer)


My Question:
What books are you looking forward to in 2015?