Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Kids Book Reviews

 I have three kids. There is a 9 year age difference between the oldest and youngest. Most of the kids books have been passed down over the years, and many have been torn, colored in, or dog-eared, pages ripped, etc. Some of them were getting so rough, it was time to toss them, so I am trying to find my six year old, books to add to her collection. Here are two of the latest kids books I received to review.


Same Kind of A Different Me
–by Ron Hall & Denver Moore

This book wasn’t near as good as I thought it would be. I liked that it had some depth to the wording, so it is better suited for grade school kids. Although the story line was good, the illustrations were lacking and seemed more for toddlers. The story seemed to be missing a link, tying it all together.

 I do love the saying on the last page, “Nobody can help everybody, but everybody can help somebody,” and I definitely want to instill that into my kids’ minds, but, overall, this book didn't do that phrase justice. It’s one of those books that is not horrible, but, just not great, either.



The Beautiful Garden of Eden:
“A Faith That God Built” series 
–by Gary Bowen 

If your kids like the classic 'The House That Jack Built', they will love the whimsical style of this book!  I myself, loved this book and think that it is a fun and entertaining style. I also love that it’s teaching kids Bible stories in a simple, fun way! I think these books could be a good addition to your young child’s library or your home school book collection!
However, my youngest child is six, and she wasn’t very impressed: she kept saying, “They already said that!” -like she couldn't understand why the book kept repeating the phrases.... 

Please share your book recommendations for six (almost seven) year-olds in the comments!

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received these books free from the publisher through BookLookBloggers and Tyndale Blog Network, book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

Friday, January 20, 2017

Effortless Ways to Keep Your Home Clutter-Free

Today's guest post is by Emma Hamilton on keeping your home clutter free!

Maintaining a neat, cozy and well-organized living environment is one of the first steps towards a stress-free, healthier lifestyle. According to Dr. Charisse Ward, clutter is among the top-five culprits causing stress, which has a negative impact on one's mindset and greatly reduces their creativity and productivity. Many people share the common misconception clutter is just physical stuff. This couldn't be further from the truth. Clutter represents all those old ideas, intentions, bad habits and relationships, we find it difficult to let go of. Follow our advice and take some measures to de-clutter your living space right away. Here are a few helpful tips to get you started. 


Learn to Let Go


This is the first step towards a clutter-free lifestyle. We all have items in our lives that we feel emotionally attached to, despite the fact they no longer serve their purpose. The truth of the matter is sentimental clutter is the worst kind to dispose of. If you don't feel ready yet to throw away certain items, you can start by removing them from plain sight. Place the articles in boxes, label their contents and stash them in your garage. Soon your emotional attachment will wane off and you will be able to dispose of the stuff without feeling guilty about it.


Clean up Systematically


Carpet Cleaning West London guarantees it is better to take ten minutes each day to collect dirty laundry and toys from the floor than spend your entire weekend, cleaning up the mess that has accumulated throughout the week. Another option is to use the same amount of time each day to purge or arrange the items in different areas of your living space. For instance, on Monday you can arrange the items in your desk drawers, on Tuesday - arrange the clothes in your closet and so on. At the end of the week, you will be left with a neat home and plenty of time to enjoy various recreational activities that don't involve cleaning. Sounds good, doesn't it?



Optimize Storage Space


Optimizing storage space is an absolute must if you insist on living in a cozy, clutter-free home. To free some space on the floor, for example, you can arrange some of the items you possess in boxes and store them vertically, one on top of the other. You can stick labels with the boxes' content to avoid rummaging at random. The same applies to shelves and drawers – place seasonal items you resort to on rare occasions on the highest shelves, while those, you use on a regular basis should be placed in drawers or shelves that can be reached easily.



Contain Clutter by Using Trays or Bowls


This is an excellent idea, especially for teenage girls as they are the ones in possession of a vast range of hair accessories and make-up articles. These often end up on top of the girls' desks, mingled with other items like keys, cell phones etc. Use an old tray to store your rubber bands and hair pins in. Arrange your eye shades, lip glosses and eye-liners in a small box. The same is applicable for jewelry – if you, like me, experience difficulties in counting the pairs of earrings you possess, you can craft a small stand to hang the pieces of jewelry on. This will allow you to quickly find exactly what you are looking for.




Slow Down on Your Purchases

You will never manage to contain clutter if you keep buying new stuff each and every week. Before you make yet another online purchase, take the time to consider whether or not you really do need this particular t-shirt, for example. If the answer is no, don't bother wasting your money, the tee would most likely end up stuffed in a corner of your closet or under your bed. Each time you buy a new piece of clothing or jewelry, throw one of the old pieces away. This, however, doesn't mean you should resort to disposing of items just so you can buy new ones. If you have enough clothes that are good to wear, why waste your money on buying more in the first place? 


As you can see, containing clutter in your living space is not necessarily a easy task. It takes little time and efforts as long as you manage to successfully incorporate it in your daily schedule. This will not only make your life easier, but will leave you plenty of time to enjoy more pleasant activities, like going out for a walk in the park or spending your Sundays, curled up on your clutter-free couch with a good book in hand.



Emma Hamilton works in a small company in London. She often writes for different blogs on organizing and cleaning topics. 

Sunday, January 15, 2017

The Lord's Prayer Book Review


THE LORD'S PRAYER
by: Rick Warren
3 Stars

I loved the front cover of this book. I also like the fact that the author takes the time to explain what the Lords prayer means so that kids can understand it. I think too often people are to quick to disregard the KJV because they simply do not understand it.

This book will encourage your kids to not only learn this portion of Scripture but to also apply it in all situations. My 6 yr. old was excited to add this book to her collection.

This book is a great resource to add to your home school library.


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through BookLookBloggers, book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Taking Care of Me - 2017

I've never been one for New Years Resolutions....it always seemed kinda silly to me.... So many people make a resolution to change, but so few actually see it through.

However, I do like to pick on word or thought to be a reminder to me throughout the year.

The last few years, my thought has been to Choose Joy. We can all stand to have a little more joy and happiness in our lives.... but this year, I was ready for a new thought.... so, for 2017 - I choose to take care of me!


Over the years as a wife and mom, I often get distracted with the busyness of life and have let myself go. When you have a mini farm, animals, grow and preserve your own produce, home school, run a home business, volunteer, have a special needs son, and in my case have cancer, chronic stress, and multiple autoimmune diseases..... taking care of myself is often the last thing I think of.

So, this year, I am choosing to take care of me...... I'm having a relaxing soak in the bubble bath as I'm writing this. I am seeing a nutritionist regularly and taking Shaklee supplements and protein to get my weight in check. I am relying on my hubby and kids to help more with cleaning, cooking and laundry.


We are planning family activities to spend quality time with each other. We have a vacation planned for later this month to relax on an island beach. I am finding time to exercise, and (I promised new bikes for the whole family for my birthday in April.) When I get stressed and have to much on my plate, I am saying no and not feeling guilty about it. I will not explain my reasons to others and will be shameless. I'm going to take more bubble baths, keep fresh flowers on my table, use my candle warmers, watch more sunsets, spend more time in nature and do more things I love. This year, I will not apologize for taking care of me.


This year, I choose to take care of me!

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Loving Your Hubby and Ex At The Same Time

I still love my ex husband. Yes, you read that right. I may lose a few blog followers and friends with this post, but there it is.






16 years ago, today in the basement of a courthouse in Athens, Georgia, I married my first husband, Jim - and I loved him. Circumstances beyond my control made our life together difficult, and 4 years later, we got a dissolution.



I still love my ex husband. I will always think of him as my friend, and part of my family. I care about him, pray for him, and want the best for him. Sometimes, out of the blue a memory of him or us together, will come to mind and make me smile. (There are sad memories too, our life together wasn't very easy, but the good memories are what I choose to remember.)

Now before you get all worked up over the fact that me, a married wife, would write such a thing, never mind the fact that that is how I truly feel.... let me tell you something else. 

I am deeply in love with my husband, Stephen. I love him with a passion that I never knew could exist between two people. He is my happiness. I'd lay down my life for him. I trust him with my life - completely. He has my respect, and utmost devotion. My complete love. He is mine, the keeper of my heart. My love, always and forever!

Just because things didn't work out between my first husband and myself, doesn't mean that I stopped loving him. The opposite is true, I still love him. Divorce doesn't always have to be a bad thing.... it doesn't have to end in hate, fighting, or arguments. It doesn't mean that you have to throw out all the good that was there, (no mater how little or much it was). It simply means that part of your life ended.

I've heard it said that "If two past lovers can remain friends, either they were never in love or they still are." Well I'm not sure about that, because I can't speak for my ex, but I know there was, and always will be love on my side of that story.

My life is blessed more than I ever thought possible. Yes, I still love my ex husband. I'll never forget him, or the memories we had - that was a part of my life. Love doesn't just disappear. But, I have learned not to hold onto the memories so tightly that you have no room to grasp for something new. Something better. Something life changing.

"Life happens. Things end. Memories stay. Better things come."  -RK

Stephen has my heart. He is the one I do life with, the one I dream with, the one I tell my secrets too, the father of my children, my provider, the one I lay my head on. My lover. My greatest blessing. My best friend. The one I love.

There's different kinds of love, but I'm here to tell you, you can always make room in your heart to love someone. And sometimes, it's possible to love your ex at the same time as you love your spouse. I'm living proof it can be done.

One man, I will always love and care for....
the other man is my Love - and my Everything!

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Enjoy Book Review


Enjoy: Finding the Freedom to Delight Daily in God's Good Gifts 
by: Trillia Newbell
2 Stars

I enjoy reading books and am privileged to review books for Tyndale, Book Look Bloggers and Blogging For Books. I have found some really great and interesting books to add to my bookshelf. Some of them, I will read over and over again... they're just that good! But sometimes, I get a book to review and honestly - it's just not for me..... and that's how I felt about this book

There's really not one certain thing that I didn't like, but it just didn't do anything for me. I guess you could say I was kinda board... it didn't hold my attention, and not to be conceded, but I pretty much already know everything the author talked about in the book.

This is one of the books that will be donated, and hopefully someone, somewhere, sometime, will pick it up and find it useful to them.



*Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through Blogging for Books, book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Starting The New Year Off Right

Happy New Year!

Here's to starting the new year off right!
So many people make a new years resolution to loose weight, but quit after only a few days or weeks. If you want to lose weight and keep it off, you owe it to yourself to try Shaklee's 180 program!



We know losing weight can be as simple as it is difficult. That’s why Shaklee scientists, who are thankfully also human, designed the Shaklee 180 program to help you break the yo-yo dieting cycle to get healthier and fit for life.



This customizable two-meals-a-day kit contains all you need for your first 2 weeks of the program including:

* Two canisters of delicious Life Energizing Shakes packed with protein to curb hunger and increase energy. (16 grams of proprietary, ultra-pure, plant-based non-GMO protein. Added leucine to help preserve lean muscle and keep metabolism strong. A powerful patent-pending combination of prebiotics andone billion CFU of patented probiotics, and Omega-3 ALA to support heart health).
* One box of tasty Shaklee 180 Snack Bars loaded with protein and fiber.
* A Shaklee 180 Metabolic Boost* supplement to help burn calories naturally and keep your metabolism going strong.
* One Vita-Lea® high potency multivitamin/multimineral supplement – bonus 30 day supply.
* Program support including a step-by-step program guide and online access to tools, tips, healthy recipes, meal plans, exercise programs and lifestyle information to help you lose the weight and learn how to keep it off.

How?  Burn fat, not muscle with leucine.

For weight loss that lasts, it isn’t just about food and exercise alone—you need the right nutrition and the right support tools. Powered by Leucine®, our clinically tested products help you keep muscle you have, burn fat you don’t need and lose inches you don’t want. Real science with real results.

Why leucine works:
  • Supports lean muscle. Leucine is an essential amino acid that helps with protein synthesis to build lean muscle.
  • Muscle = Metabolism. Leucine-enriched protein helps your body preserve muscle mass so you lose the right kind of weight and keep metabolism strong.
  • More is better. More muscle means a stronger, leaner looking you.


 Clinically-tested Life Energizing Shake and Shaklee 180 products:
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  • Use ultra-pure non-GMO protein
  • Have absolutely no artificial flavors, sweeteners or preservatives added
  • Gluten free, lactose free and kosher
  • Are low glycemic. Lower GI correlates to a slower rate of digestion and gradual release of glucose, contributing to better weight control


This is the beginning of a new you. 
You'll see and feel the difference.


 SPECIAL DISCOUNTED OFFER through January 31, 2017.  Save over $50 off full retail value ($206.90) at Member price of $150. Free Shaklee Membership with purchase.


The Best of 2016

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