Friday, June 27, 2014

Review ~ Murder, Simply Stitched by Isabella Alan

When Angela Braddock enters her quilts in an Amish auction, she never expects one of her neighbors to end up going, going, gone....
Angie is finding her niche as the new owner of her late aunt’s Amish quilt shop, Running Stitch. But as the summer is winding down, so is business. To bolster support for the shop, Angie decides to sell her quilts in the Rolling Brook Amish Auction, including some of her aunt’s most prized works.
The quilts promise to be a hit—but the gavel comes down on the lively event when Angie stumbles upon the body of township trustee Wanda Hunt behind a canning shed. The cause of death: a poisoned blueberry fry pie from Rachel Miller’s bakery table. Now Angie’s closest friend is a murder suspect. With Angie taking the lead, she and the other women of her aunt’s quilting circle set out to patch together the clues and stop a killer set on shredding the simple peace of Rolling Brook.
Includes Quilting Tips!

My Review

When I read a book, I want to feel as if I'm a part of the story. The great thing about this book...I moved right in to the community of Rolling Brook. These characters are sweet, annoying, weird and just plain fun to be around.

Murder, Simply Stitched didn’t necessarily keep me on the edge of my seat with a constant thrill ride but what it did do was fold me into a family made of friendships built on a foundation of faith and trust. I don’t think I’m biased when I say these things make great story. And…I was absolutely surprised by whodunit. I was just sorry the murder was committed using a Blueberry Fry Pie. I mean, really. That’s my favorite kind of pie and it could have an impact on whether or not I ever eat another one J

I can honestly recommend Isabella Alan’s cozy mysteries to anyone. They are clean in every way, and being so makes them appropriate for readers of any age. They also appeal to me because I started out reading cozies as a young girl and they fueled my love for books and reading. Plus, if you are a quilter you will love the covers. How’s that for a pun? *grin*

This is book two in the inspirational An Amish Quilt Shop Mystery series. Be sure and check out the first one, Murder, Plain and Simple, as well as the novella Plainly Murder.

I want to thank the author for sending me an ARC in exchange for my honest review. No compensation has been received. 

Have a blessed day in the Lord!

Wednesday, June 25, 2014



You won Heart of Mercy by Sharlene MacLaren!

I can't believe how many people haven't read any of Sharlene's books! I encourage each of you to check with your local library. I'm sure they will carry some of them. Or you can use the purchase link below. I make a small commission on the sale of the book.

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Have a blessed day in the Lord!

Monday, June 23, 2014

Caught my eye

On Sunday morning I went to the kitchen to get a cup of coffee. When I saw how the early morning sunshine was peeking through the bamboo blind and highlighting this pretty blue vase with Wildflowers, I was immediately sidetracked.

I did an about face, picked up my camera and proceeded to spend 30 minutes taking photos, moving the vase to different areas of the kitchen. Would it look good further away from the window? Maybe across the room? What if I take one flower out and try to capture the beauty on the white tile counter top? 

Not too many came out good enough to even edit, but I was quite pleased with this one. A little tweaking in Picmonkey and voila`.

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I saw this quote on a friend's blog post and it couldn't be truer.

"Never lose an opportunity of seeing anything that is beautiful, for beauty is God's handwriting - a wayward sacrament. Welcome it in every fair face, in every fair sky, in every fair flower, and thank God for it as a cup of blessing." ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson 

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Have a beautiful and blessed day in the Lord!

Saturday, June 21, 2014


I was reading the following devotional from Elisabeth Elliot and it really made me think about my attitude toward things I don't want to do, but that God has placed in my life to do. 

I'm copying it here for y'all to read because I think the website changes daily and I can't find where there is an archive of past devotions. With no infringement intended, I am linking back to the original post below.

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Elisabeth Elliot's Daily Devotional

Title: How to Do the Job You Don't Really Want To Do

Author: Elisabeth Elliot

Certain aspects of the job the Lord has given me to do are very easy to postpone. I make excuses, find other things that take precedence, and, when I finally get down to business to do it, it is not always with much grace. A new perspective has helped me recently:

The job has been given to me to do. 

Therefore it is a gift. 

Therefore it is a privilege. 
Therefore it is an offering I may make to God. 
Therefore it is to be done gladly, if it is done for Him. 
Therefore it is the route to sanctity.

Here, not somewhere else, I may learn God's way. In this job, not in some other, God looks for faithfulness. The discipline of this job is, in fact, the chisel God has chosen to shape me with--into the image of Christ.

Thank you, Lord, for the work You have assigned me. I take it as your gift; I offer it back to you. With your help I will do it gladly, faithfully, and I will trust You to make me holy.

Daily devotions courtesy of, a ministry of Back to the Bible.

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I'm sure I'm not the only one who can relate to the devotional above. Let's face it. Sometimes the Lord calls us to do things we just plain don't want to do. But just because we don't want to do it, doesn't mean we should have a bad attitude. 

Scripture is pretty clear...

~ Colossians 3:23-24 ~
Whatever you do, do your work heartily, as for the Lord rather than for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance. It is the Lord Christ whom you serve.

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And I like what she said about the discipline of the job being the chisel God uses to shape me/us into the image of Christ

Clay in the Potter's hands, so to speak. 

So here's to each of us having a right attitude, a willing heart, open hands, and a moldable character to become who we are meant to be.

Can we do this?

Yes, we can!


That's how.

Have a blessed Sabbath day!


Linking with

 The Enchanting Rose

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Giveaway ~ Heart of Mercy by Sharlene MacLaren

 ~ Giveaway has ended ~

About the Book

Mercy Evans has known a great deal of heartache and hardship in her 26 years. She lost her mother at a young age and was only 16 when her father was killed in a brawl sparked by a feud with the Connors family that spans several generations. When a house fire claims the lives of her two best friends, Mercy is devastated, but finds comfort in caring for their two sons, who survived thanks to a heroic rescue by Sam Connors, blacksmith in the small town of Paris, Tennessee. Yet the judge is determined to grant custody only if Mercy is married. Mercy loves the boys as her own, and she’ll go to any lengths to keep them—but what if that means marrying the son of the man who killed her father?  Set in the 1880’s, Heart of Mercy is the first book in MacLaren’s new Tennessee Dreams series.

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Whitaker House has graciously consented to give away a print copy of this fabulous book to one of my blog readers. Aren't they grand?! 

Just leave a comment below letting me know why you would like to read the book, and you will be entered in the drawing. 

Just saying "Enter me" will not get you entered.

Please share with your friends for an extra entry, if they tell me YOU sent them!

Giveaway is open to US only (lower 48) due to postage costs. Ends June 25th!

I will contact the winner by email (be sure and leave me one). You'll have three days to contact me with a mailing address that I can forward to the publisher so they can send you the book. 

If winner doesn't contact me within that time, I will choose another winner!


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Have a blessed day in the Lord!

 ~ Giveaway has ended ~

If you use the purchase link below, I make a small commission on the sale of the book.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Review ~ Full Steam Ahead by Karen Witemeyer


When love simmers between a reclusive scientist and a wealthy debutante, will they abandon ship or is it full steam ahead?

Nicole Renard returns home to Galveston, Texas, to find her father deathly ill. Though she loves him, Nicole's father has always focused on what she's not. Not male. Not married. Not able to run Renard Shipping.

Vowing to find a suitable husband to give her father the heir he desires before it's too late, Nicole sets out with the Renard family's greatest treasure as her dowry: the highly coveted Lafitte Dagger. But her father's rivals come after the dagger, forcing a change in Nicole's plans.

After a boiler explosion aboard the Louisiana nearly took his life, Darius Thornton has been a man obsessed. He will do anything to stop even one more steamship disaster. Even if it means letting a female secretary into his secluded world.

Nicole is determined not to let her odd employer scare her off with his explosive experiments, yet when respect and mutual attraction grow between them, a new fear arises. How can she acquire an heir for her father when her heart belongs to another? And when her father's rivals discover her hiding place, will she have to choose between that love and her family's legacy?
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My Review

Full Steam Ahead is one of my favorite books that Karen has written. It will make my Top Ten this year.  It’s filled with fascinating history regarding steam engines, lots of daring adventure, and her trademark humor woven in with a beautiful message of faith.

Darius’s singular dedication to finding a much needed solution to huge problems in the steam engines is an admirable quality. I hurt for him, that he was so weighed down with guilt from the riverboat accident. What will ever free him from these feelings?

Nicole is an amazingly strong character whom I found to be quite believable. Knowing she is ultimately protecting her family by stealing away with a treasured family heirloom, she is unafraid to face travelling alone and the dangers that await her wherever she goes. She is a woman with a dilemma.  Her father needs an heir so she must find a husband immediately. Will she find the solution to her problem?  

All of the characters, from Nicole and Darius, to her parents and his family, are complex three dimensional characters. I absolutely loved the reclusive scientist plot line, the greedy evil doer after the Lafitte Dagger, and Jacob. Who is Jacob, you ask? Well, you will just have to read the book to find out. I hear he gets his own story in 2015! 

Thanks to Karen Witemeyer and Bethany House Publishers for providing me with a copy for review purposes. No monetary compensation was received.

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Read an excerpt here.


Karen Witemeyer
Two-time RITA finalist and winner of the coveted HOLT Medallion and ACFW Carol Award, CBA bestselling author Karen Witemeyer writes historical romance because she believes that the world needs more happily-ever-afters. She is an avid cross-stitcher, shower singer, and bakes a mean apple cobbler. Karen makes her home in Abilene, Texas, with her husband and three children. Learn more about Karen and her books at

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Summertime meal

I don't know about you, but when the weather starts getting warm I start thinking about what kind of cooler meals I can prepare. 

Since our boys were going to be gone the other evening, I knew it was the perfect time to make one of my husband's favorites dishes. 

~ Guacamole Regionale ~

Start by chopping up fresh Avocado, Roma Tomatoes, Onion (red or white), and Cilantro.
(I didn't have any Cilantro, so I left it out, but it would have been so much better with some.)

Once you have those fresh veggies in your bowl, squeeze a little Lime juice in there, toss a few drops of Texas Pete Hot Sauce in, add a spoonful or two of your favorite salsa (ours is Newman's Own, Medium heat factor), and finally sprinkle a bit of Garlic Salt over the top and start tossing it all together.

If you like yours hot, add some jalapeno peppers to the first stage of chopping. But don't touch your face or eyes because it burns. Um. Don't ask me how I know this. I'll just say that I don't use it anymore ;)

Spoon it out on your plates in heaps because you will want to eat it all at once! 
Don't forget some Tortilla Chips to scoop it up with and enjoy!!!

Don't ask me for measurements because I don't have any. I just chop up however much we want to eat and season to taste. It always comes out different but delicious. J

Do you have a favorite summertime recipe?

Sharing with

The Chicken Chick

Friday, June 6, 2014

Life has been crazy...

CRAZY busy. 

Kitchen renovations combined with getting ready for grandbaby #4 has taken up weeks of my time and energy. I will post photos of the baby when my daughter says I can. And I will post photos of the kitchen when it is done.

In the meantime, the wheat field lining our driveway has turned a beautiful gold.

~Revelation 14:15~
And another angel came out of the temple, calling with a loud voice to him who sat on the cloud, “Put in your sickle, and reap, for the hour to reap has come, for the harvest of the earth is fully ripe."

And I found this lovely patch of Daisy Fleabane. It doesn't look like much from a distance.
Just a bit of yellow and white nestled among the weeds on the edge of the field.

But as you get closer...

It really becomes a beautiful wildflower!

~Psalm 104:24~ (ERV)
Lord, you created so many things!
    With your wisdom you made them all.
    The earth is full of the living things you made.

~ Daisy Fleabane ~
(Erigeron annuus)

With summer only beginning, I am hoping to have many more photo ops, 

both with babies and nature!

What are your plans for the summer; an exciting vacation, read a good book, laze around the swimming pool?

Whatever it is, I hope you have a blessed time in the Lord doing it!

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

New from @RonieKendig | Raptor 6! Enter to win a Kindle HDX

Don't miss the first book, Raptor 6, in Ronie Kendig's new Quiet Professionals series. Ronie combines a dangerous romance and explosive action for a thrilling and satisfying ride. "Lock and load for this Spec Op, fighting under God’s 'rules of engagement.'" —Bob Hamer, veteran FBI undercover agent and award-winning author

Ronie is celebrating with a Kindle HDX Giveaway!


One winner will receive:

  • A Kindle Fire HDX
  • Raptor 6 by Ronie Kendig
Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on June 15th. Winner will be announced June 16th on Ronie's blog.

Don't miss a moment of the fun; enter today and be sure to stop by Ronie's blog on June 16th to see if you won.

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You can read my review of Raptor 6 by Ronie Kendig here.

Sunday, June 1, 2014


~ 2 Corinthians 5:17 ~
Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; 
the old things passed away; behold, new things have come. 

Have a blessed day in the Lord!