Saturday, January 30, 2010

Faith 'n Fiction Saturday: Why Read?

I'm joining this meme over at My Friend Amy's Blog. (Well she's not really my friend yet because I don't know Amy yet, but I'm sure I will soon with the help of this meme!!).

So the question this week is Why Read?

I read for several reasons:

1. I read to know more about the Word of God. Each day that I read, I learn more and more about Him and what a loving, kind and merciful God he is.

2. I read to learn. I love learning about different cultures and traditions. I love reading the news to learn more about the world about me.

3. I read for enjoyment. I love all kinds of fiction, non-fiction, biographies, self-development books. I love them all. I can read pretty much anything (except textbooks!).

4. Most recently I started reading to review. This is a new thing for me and it's sometimes tedious, but on the other hand it's opening up so many new interests and paths of study for me. Lately I've been reading mostly books by Christian authors with a splash of fiction thrown in.

So there you have it! Those are some of the reasons I read!

Maybe you will join us next week for the next question!

Love and Blessings!

Friday, January 29, 2010

Blog Tour: Tea with the Hezbollah by Ted Dekker and Carl Medearis

Tea with Hezbollah: Sitting at the Enemies' Table, Our Journey Through the Middle East Tea with Hezbollah: Sitting at the Enemies' Table, Our Journey Through the Middle East by Ted Dekker

My rating: 5 of 5 stars
About the book:

Tea with Hezbollah combines nail-biting narrative with the texture of rich historical background, as readers join novelist Ted Dekker and his co-author and Middle East expert, Carl Medearis, on a hair-raising journey. They are with them in every rocky cab ride, late-night border crossing, and back-room conversation as they sit down one-on-one with some of the most notorious leaders of the Arab world. These candid discussions with leaders of Hezbollah and Hamas, with muftis, sheikhs, and ayatollahs, with Osama bin Laden’s brothers, reveal these men to be real people with emotions, fears, and hopes of their own. Along the way, Dekker and Medearis discover surprising answers and even more surprising questions that they could not have anticipated—questions that lead straight to the heart of Middle Eastern conflict.

Through powerful narrative Tea With Hezbollah will draw the West into a completely fresh understanding of those we call our enemies and the teaching that dares us to love them. A must read for all who see the looming threat rising in the Middle East .

My Review:

What a FASCINATING book. Mr. Dekker and Mr. Medearis, told the story in such an interesting way. The fact that two Christian's went to the Middle East to meet with Muslim and Jewish "terrorists" is just amazing to me. But what is even more amazing is the nature of the people they met with along the way. It was so interesting to read the transcripts from the conversations with Hezbollah and the Hamas as well as the Muslim clerics and Christian leaders. Also the story about Nicole that is told throughout the book really helps set the perspective of what the American perception is. The truth is, these are people, some are good and some are bad, just like here in America. They have families, they laugh at jokes, they cry at injustices, just like we do. This book has forever changed my perceptions of the Middle East and it's people.

Jesus told us to love our enemies. After a terrible act committed by a few, my fear of my enemies was much higher then my love (can you say non-existent?). But just like those Americans who commit acts of terror, we cannot blame a whole society. I will be more willing to study these other cultures more to learn more about them. This book was a great beginning. I give it 5 pairs of reading glasses!

Learn more about purchasing this book at This book was provided for review by the WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group, the opinions are my own.

Love and Blessings!

View all my reviews >>

Friday Follow

I found this the other day and told myself I needed to participate this week!  I want to be able to "talk" to people about the love of Christ and my efforts in being frugal.  I hope you will join me!

Copied from the One to Try  Blog:  Welcome to the Friday Follow celebration hosted by One 2 Try, Hearts Make Families (currently not working) and Midday Escapades! We invite you to join us every Friday to get more blog followers and to follow other interesting blogs. It is all about sharing and having fun.

Here’s how YOU can join the celebration:

–Link up your blog name and URL using the MckLinky below. Only need to add on one blog to be seen on all the blog hops.

–Follow the Friday Follow hostesses listed in the first 2 slots. This week Hearts Make Families will not be participating due to technical issues. She will be back next week.

–Follow as many blogs as you’d like.

–Take a moment to comment on the blogs telling them you’re from Friday Follow.

–Follow back when you get a new follower through Friday Follow.

The Blog Hop is the same at each of our three hosts blogs so you do not have to add your blog at each site. Just one – but you can follow each blog. Follow a few or follow them all.

The list is new each week. The links do not carry over. Please link up each week for new participants to find your blogs. The list is only open to add your blog links on Fridays. It will be visible all week to visit the blogs listed.

Please be patient with following or getting followers. With the tremendous response there are a lot to visit. The Mcklinky will stay here so you can visit blogs at your own pace.

MckLinky Blog Hop

Love and Blessings!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Being a Good Steward

We as a family are taking a new path with our finances this year. In the past, we have been very much "instant gratification" kind of people. This has not served us well. We find ourselves falling into credit card debt and with mortgage, car and credit card payments hanging over our heads.

I really feel in my heart, that God wants us to exhibit more self-control in our finances. The main reason for this is so that we are in a position to give to those who are in need, either locally or abroad as the spirit leads. Good stewardship is not easy, and I don't think God intended it to be. There are many verses that speak to this such as Luke 16 (the unjust manager), Proverbs 21:5 (can you say instant gratification!), Proverbs 27:23 (having so much you don't know what you have!), Luke 14:28-30 (proper planning!). Of course I could go on and on. The point is in our family, we definitely need to be better stewards.

One site that is helping me with this is

I first came across this site a few months ago when I first felt the urging to cut costs. It was brought to my attention again recently so I jumped in with both feet! It's really been eye-opening on how much I can save by clipping coupons!! My first time out I saved $80 by using coupons and store discounts!! Now that was really a RUSH!!

The good news is that Coupon Mom (Her real name is Stephanie Nelson) has decided to share videos to help us novices make the most of our coupons (and our time!!). In the videos, she takes you on a virtual shopping trip where she's help real people learn to manage their shopping. Here's an excerpt from the release I received:

About the Coupon Mom Show
The Coupon Mom Show teaches viewers how to save money by watching Stephanie Nelson work with real families to solve their savings challenges in a fun and entertaining way. In each episode, Coupon Mom addresses different financial challenges, from families that want to slash their grocery bills to those hoping to save on holiday meals, birthday parties or even school supplies and provides saving solutions for them. New episodes of the Coupon Mom Show will be airing every Thursday on YouTube and on the Coupon Mom Show website. (Her latest episode talks about saving on school supplies! Whether your outschool or homeschool we all need that!! MR)

Have a question for Coupon Mom? Viewers can submit questions and challenges to the Coupon Mom Show forum.

You don't have to take my word for it, check it out for yourself! I'm so happy to be on my way to frugal living and finding bargains that I can use to help others. I already have an idea for all of the wonderful school supplies I will be getting!

I did not receive any compensation for this post. I was asked to share it by Social Media and after reviewing a few of the videos I agreed that you guys would want to know about this!

Love and Blessings!

Monday, January 25, 2010

I'm done with PG movies

Or I'm a Prude.

Anyway you look at it, I'm DONE! Well at least done watching them with my 9 year old daughter. What caused this you ask? Well... ummm, have you been to see a PG movie lately? PG rating means Parental Guidance is suggested, I get that, really I do! BUT, why make your commercials so enticing to young children if the movie is not meant for them!!!

Take the recent rodent movie that came out around Christmas. These particularly loveable rodents, that apparently come in triplets, have mostly been for the younger crowd. We watched them in their mishaps... er adventures since they came to live with their human dad. So I innocently thought that even though the movie was rated PG, how bad could it be?

It was bad, in my opinion anyway. From the minute the video gaming, irresponsible "cousin" was left in charge, to the female rodents in their skimpy dress to them happily singing that catchy tune "Single Ladies" to the "happy ending" where the boyfriends and girlfriends happily went to bed... in the SAME room!!

Well call me a prude if you will but this is not the message I want to send to my young daughter (she gets enough of that from school!). As I sat there squirming in my seat I thought to myself, well at least this is going over her head. That is until I caught her side glances which told me that she KNEW it was inappropriate and she KNEW I was uncomfortable. What was I to do? My husband thinks I'm overreacting, and maybe I am a bit. But shouldn't I be able to watch movies comfortably with my children? Shouldn't I be able to watch with out worrying about sexual innuendos and curses disguised as "cute" phrases (that's another post altogether!). I really need help with this! I know that God has intstructed me to train my children(Proverbs 22:6), so how do I train them without them feeling like they are being punished?

How do you feel about PG movies for your young children? Does it depend on the subject matter? Do you wait until it comes out on DVD? I need help in this area because I know there are "fights" about this in my future.

If you made it this far, thanks for reading!

Love and Blessings!

Friday, January 22, 2010

Proud Parent Moment

Oh I just have to share this!! My son made me so proud the other day!! He's a high school sophomore and he takes French as his World Language. He loves the class and really enjoys speaking the language.

The other day, his teacher pulled him aside (I admit, when my son told me this, I got a little worried!).

The teacher told my son B, that he really appreciates having him in the class. He said he notices how the other children look to him as a leader and that he appreciates that he sets a good example. He also told him that out of all of the students he's had, even at the (IVY LEAGUE) college level, that my son is one of the most intelligent and mature! Woohoo! You go B!!

I'm so thankful that this teacher took the time to share this with him, it's important to the kids to know this!

Thanks for reading and woohooing with me!!

Love and Blessings!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Blog Tour: Dug Down Deep by Joshua Harris

Dug Down Deep: Unearthing What I Believe and Why It Matters Dug Down Deep: Unearthing What I Believe and Why It Matters by Joshua Harris

My rating: 5 of 5 stars
"What is God like and how does he speak to me? What difference does it make that Jesus was both human and divine? How does Jesus's death on the cross pay for my sins? Who is the Holy Spirit and how does he work in my life? With grace and wisdom, Harris will inspire you to revel in the truth that has captured his own mind and heart. He will ask you to dig deep into a faith so solid you can build your life on it. He will point you to something to believe in again." This excerpt from the book jacket pretty much sums it up!

I have about 20 pages left to read but I can honestly tell you that what I have read has opened my heart to receive all that Jesus has for me and to give HIM all that I have in me. I certainly have a new perspective and I must say, a new attitude.

While I have always had faith that there is a God, that Jesus died for me and that His Holy Spirit dwells in me, I did not have a complete understanding. It hurts me that I have been so cavalier about the sacrifice that Christ made on the cross for me... FOR ME! I have a much better understanding and I can no longer make excuses.

Joshua Harris breaks it down so that the newest of Christians to the most mature, will have a complete understanding of how much Christ sacrificed for us and what our response should be. He explains the nature of God, His Son and the Holy Spirit in such detail, that there is no doubt that he is the Holiest of Holies! He provides scriptural references as well as insights and passages from well known Christian Pastors and theologists. Most importantly, he explains away all of the excuses and lies that belong in the world, not in the Christian life. There is no perfect Christian but there are many who are striving to live a life similar to Jesus. I highly recommend this book to help you answer some of the questions you might have on your path to having a truly fulfilling relationship with Jesus.

Love and Blessings!

This was book was provided for review by WaterBrook Multnomah. Please visit their site to find out where to purchase this book.

View all my reviews >>

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Book Review: What Seems Like Crazy on An Ordinary Day

What Looks Like Crazy on an Ordinary Day What Looks Like Crazy on an Ordinary Day by Pearl Cleage

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
This is not a book I would normally read. But I have to say it is well written, the characters are well-formed and it's engaging.  The story is from a young woman who grew up in Idlewild, Michigan an idyllic town on the shores of the lake.  It talks about how she couldn't wait to escape but when she faces challenges, she can't wait to get back there. She and her widowed sister have their own share of challenges back in Idlewild.

For fiction, it hit on a lot of issues with today's youth and changing times.

I recommend this if you like African American Urban fiction and don't mind a bit of foul language and sexual situations. In this rare case, I don't feel they detracted from the story.

View all my reviews >>

This is a purchased book from my personal collection.

Love and Blessings!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Don't Forget to Wipe!

Ok, just know that you are going to see a LOT of Cottonelle posts over the next few hours.  I mean, who on Mom's Blogger Club COULDN'T use a month's supply!  Cottonelle is offering 24 free rolls for the first 200 bloggers.

  So in order to win, I need to pick whether I'm Team Under or Team Over.  I am definitely Team OVER!! 

I mean think about it... not to be gross but if you are a wrapper (the technique of wrapping Toilet paper around your hand to catch any overflow), the most efficient way to do this is by having the roll over on the spindle.  Don't believe me, check out the poll at  The majority agrees with me!

I'm so glad I could provide this valuable insight!

Oh yea, holla if you want to win a Cottonelle gift basket! You could win one of the 10 they are giving away just by leaving a comment.  Why don't you tell me if you are Team Over or Under??  Winners will be announced on January 29 so don't delay!

Love and Blessings!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Happy New Year!

Hello to all of my dear readers.  I do apologize for being slow to get back on the bandwagon this year.  I just needed a bit more time I guess! 

I’m looking forward to sharing a bit more with you all this year.  You’ll see more book reviews (some giveaways), posts about events I think are interesting, and some personal stories that might encourage some.  Sometimes I will just post a photo with a quote!  Whatever it is, my goal this year is to serve YOU through this blog.

I won’t promise to post everyday, but I do plan to post at least once a week.  I have few stories stored up, but I have to get them written.  Anyway I’m looking forward to 2010 with anticipation!  I can’t wait to see what God has planned for me… and YOU!

Love and Blessings!

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Book Review: The Quickie by James Patterson

And this is a quickie review!

The Quickie The Quickie by James Patterson

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I liked this book.  Just when you think the story is over, a new one starts.  The characters were great and believable, made you hurt all the more when one of them turned out to be rotten! The ending was great and well written!

View all my reviews >>

Love and Blessings!