31 Scriptures of Love, Hope, Joy, and Faith – Day 21

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So today I am continuing my series – 31 Scriptures of Love, Hope, Joy, and Faith.  Today’s Scripture comes from the book of  Jude.  Here is the Scripture.

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So what are some of your favorite Bible Studies or Bible passages?  If you would like to read all my posts in this series, click here.

31 Scriptures of Love, Hope, Joy, and Faith – Day 20

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Today is day 20 of my series – 31 Scriptures of Love, Hope, Joy, and Faith.  Today’s Scripture is from the book of Psalms.  Here is the Scripture for today.

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So what are some of your favorite Bible verses?  I would love to hear from you.  If you would like to read my other posts in this series, click here.

31 Scriptures of Love, Hope, Joy, and Faith – Day 19

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So this is the 19th entry for my series, 31 Scriptures of Love, Hope, Joy, and Faith.  Today’s Scripture is from the book of John.  Here is the Scripture.

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So what are some of your favorite Scriptures?  I would love to hear from you.  If you would like to read alll my entries in this series, click here.

Our Youngest Son’s Birthday

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So today is my youngest son’s birthday.  Eighteen years ago today, he came into the world.   He was my one child whom I actually believed might enter this world with out any coaxing or intervention.  For a couple of weeks before he was born, I felt like he was on his way.  But that was not to be the case.


Instead on Friday, October 20, 2000, we went to the hospital to be induced.  We went in to the room.  My husband and his sister-in-law (his brother’s wife -aka my coach for all four children) and I settled in.  It was typical labor for me in that I spent most of it on my side because of my blood pressure.  At some point during the morning the nurse wanted to check how far along I was, so my husband stepped outside of the room.  To our surprise, he found two of his aunts there because the daughter of one of the aunt’s was in the room directly beside me.  Talk about interesting.  The nurses began taking bets on which one of us would deliver first (me on number 3 or her with her first).  He was my one child who made us nervous prior to delivery -well other than my first who did not seem interested in being born).  

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This son came into the world and brightened our world.  There was not too much he was afraid of.  He would be on the opposite side of a hotel swimming pool and jump in having absolute faith that his father or I would be there to catch him.  He is also the son that required our first trip to the ER for stitches. 

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He is best friends with his baby sister, well for the most part.  He is also our first child to fracture a bone, which was quite the adventure for me.  He is full of hugs and love.  He has a heart of gold. 

Right now he is learning to play the bass clarinet and the viola in addition to continuing his study of the alto saxophone and the piano.  He is quite musical and has intentions of pursuing it in the future.

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So happy 18th birthday to my wonderful son Nathan! If you would like to read what other members of the Home School Review Crew are blogging about this week, click here or on the graphic below.

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Review of “The Vintage Wren” by Chautona Havig

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About the Book

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Book Title: the Vintage Wren Volume 1

Author: Chautona Havig

Genre: Christian / Fiction / General / Romance

Release date: May 25, 2016 (still in progress)

The Vintage Wren is a serial novel released in several chapter episodes. Volume One contains the first four and a half episodes in one full-length novel.

Cassie Wren. Legal assistant. Convenience queen. Thrifter extraordinaire. If there was a “green police” she’d be a fugitive from eco-friendly justice.

But when a friend’s teasing feels like a challenge, Cassie accepts it. The result? One year. Twelve months. Fifty-two weeks. Three hundred sixty-five days–of green.

It seemed simple enough. Cut back on paper plates, plastic forks, and straws. Easy peasy. But when her competitive side wars against her desire for convenience, Cassie finds it’s not so easy to be “eco-friendly” and “Cassie-friendly.”

January Shopping for Cassie’s annual New Year’s Eve party sparks an innocent comment that Cassie can’t forget. So, during their New Year’s Day goal planning session, Cassie’s friends tease her about her lack of eco-consciousness, and Cassie determines to change one new thing in favor of the planet every week. For a year. Even if it kills her.

She’s confident it will.

Cassie’s first month includes eradicating the extraneous paper, glass, plastic, and metal from her life. However, she finds that it’s not quite as easy as she thought. Paper and plastic cover everything manufactured or packaged–even water, produce, and restaurant food! Glass is great, but you can only have so many “reusable jars,” and metal reduction means her hair may end up a nightmare of uncontrollable frizzies!

She doesn’t even want to talk about her water reduction plans.

But it’s not all been bad. She’s saved a lot of money, has prospects for a new business, her impromptu blog is gaining traffic, and she even has a new boyfriend. Add to that, a few great friends who keep her going when things get rough, and the realization that there are only eleven months to go, and Cassie just might make it.

Now only if her car would cooperate and make it, too!

The Vintage Wren. A serial novel released in fifty-two episodes (for obvious reasons). Each month will be released separately as a full-length novel.

Click here to purchase your copy!

About the Author

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The author of dozens of books in a variety of genres, Chautona Havig lives and writes in California’s Mojave Desert where she uses story to nudge her readers to the feet of the Master Storyteller.

Guest Post from Chautona

How Writing about Cassie’s Eco-Challenge Has Changed My Way of Living

I didn’t think it through—not really. I mean, how hard could it be? All I had to do is give Cassie my own reactions to things like giving up straws and having to use tote bags at the grocery store. I just needed 52 simple things she could change in her life—one new one for each episode.

Piece of cake.

I should have known better. I don’t do things halfway when I get into them. Yes, I’ve discovered that Cassie is more like me in some ways than I ever imagined. And as I’ve researched things for her to freak out about, I’ve done a bit of freaking out myself. Certain questions and thoughts won’t go away.

For instance, in 2017 1.26 BILLION dollars were spent on plush toys. Just plush toys. Stuffed animals. And I don’t know how many weren’t purchased. Those are just the ones that were. That’s… a LOT of stuffed toys. If each toy cost 20 dollars (and we all know most are half that or less these days), that’s 63 million of those toys purchased and brought home.

In one year.

Shampoo, conditioner, and laundry soap bottles. Not sure why this one bothers me as much as it does. I think, actually, it’s the huge amount of water as much as it is all the plastic.

Look, we no longer have eight females in our house. But we do still have four there at all times—five on breaks. That’s a lot of shampoo bottles every year. A big portion of both laundry soap, shampoo, and conditioner is… water. We pay for a big bottle (lots of plastic and water) and to ship that to us—either because we had to have it shipped to a store for us to buy it or we had to have it shipped to our house.

I am paying extra for water that I could add myself at a fraction of the cost.

And the things go on and on. The lake that almost disappeared in Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan because of how much water it takes to grow and process cotton.

See, the thing is, I’m not a green nut.

I don’t think it’s as easy to “destroy the planet” as we like to say. I do think, much like we do with our bodies and such, that we can reduce the quality of the world around us, however.

And while I’ll never jump on Cassie’s bandwagon—certainly not for life, I have made a few changes in how I do things. And as time goes on, I find myself making even more.

Like what, you ask?

I’ll tell you.

Here are three small ways I’ve changed how we do things in our house.
  1. I started buying Dropps. They’re an automatically-shipped laundry pod. Each one is tiny—just a little smaller than the average “pod” and a whole lot cheaper. Also, there are no extra dyes or other things that are supposed to be bad for you and the planet.

I don’t really care about that. I just care that they work. And they do. And they’re cheaper than my Tide. 🙂

  1. I got a shampoo bar for my birthday. I thought it would be like washing with regular soap—especially after I started rinsing my hair! It freaked me out. One idea down the drain… I thought.

But no, after the second or third use, it still felt weird while wet, but it dried beautifully, and I didn’t need to use additional conditioner. It’s in the bar or something. I even tried the old way again to compare after-shower tangles. Identical.

  1. Dryer balls. Those felted wool balls really do work! A wonderful reader of mine sent me some, and it made my day! My youngest daughter and I are now trying to work with felted sweaters to try to turn them into dryer balls—or maybe even into sheets! (although, I think the balls bouncing around also kind of pound the clothes into submission or something. “Sheets” might not work, but I’m tempted to try it!

Look, you’ll never find me standing in front of a case in a mini-mart, freaking out because I want a Coke and can’t justify it. That’s not going to happen. But if I can choose a reasonable alternative to what I already do, well… it’s time to consider that.

There you have it. Three ways my life has changed since writing Cassie’s crazy story.

Blog Stops

The April Journal , October 16

Among the Reads , October 16

Inklings and Notions ,October 17

Lots of Helpers, October 18

Carpe Diem, October 19

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 19

Real World Bible Study, October 20

A Baker’s Perspective, October 21

The Lit Addict, October 21

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, October 22

Janice’s Book Reviews, October 23

Aryn The Libraryan , October 23

Bigreadersite, October 24

Mary Hake, October 24

Cultivating Us, October 25

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 26

Multifarious, October 26

Bibliophile Reviews, October 27

Proud to Be an Autism Mom, October 28

Texas Book-aholic,October 29

The Mimosa Blossom, October 29

 

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Chautona is giving away a grand prize package that includes 5 Shopping totes, a Shampoo Bar, a Foldable Straw, and a $10 Amazon gift card!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter. https://promosimple.com/ps/d4eb/the-vintage-wren-celebration-tour-giveaway

 

My Thoughts

Have you ever found an author whose words truly resonate with your soul.  My relationship with the works of Chauntona Havig remains one of complete borderline obsession.  I love reading her books.  So when I found out about The Vintage Wren I was ready to jump into the book.

The book revolves around Cassie Wren and her accidental excursion into the world of saving the planet by going green.  Cassie quickly became a character that I enjoyed reading about.  I could see myself at times in Cassie and her thoughts about using disposable to save work.  Her friend Lauren provides a down to earth example of using eco-friendly practices at times.

Cassie’s obsession with paper, notebooks and pens resembles my love of all things stationary as well.  So I could really relate to Cassie on that level.  Her friend Joel demonstrates his affection for Cassie in everything he does.  She internally debates the ideas of whether to go green or not.  She expresses a determination of not going green while continuing to argue with herself. So when Lauren, Silvie, Amy and Cassie get together on New Year’s Day and her friends throw down the gauntlet, Cassie has no choice but to go green.  I know there are times I have found myself doing something eiher because someone challenged me to do it or someone insisted I could never succeed at it.

As Cassie deals with the decisions about paper products and what to use as well as what to eliminate, I could appreciate her dilemma.  Some paper products are non-negotiable to me.  The ideas of how to go green caused me to really stop and think.  Some things I could not imagine doing and other ones our family already does.

This book truly makes me think about what our family can do to go green.  We use reusable shopping bags, cloth napkins and I attempt to conserve water and electricity.  Truly, this book provides food for thought.

So if you have any desire to go green or any interest in reading about someone who goes green for a challenge, check out this book for yourself.

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31 Scriptures of Love, Hope, Joy, and Faith – Day 18

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Today is day 18 of my series – 31 Scriptures of Love, Hope, Joy, and Faith.  Today’s passage comes from the book of Job.As children of God, we should constantly find ourselves shouting with joy.  But because we are humans who are susceptible to sin, that doesn’t always work.

 

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So what brings you joy?  I would love to hear from you.  If you would like to read my other posts in this series, click here.

Review of Heirloom Audio’s St. Bartholomew’s Eve

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I love adding Christian audio drama to our family’s listening time, and so I was thrilled to receive the 2-CD set of St. Bartholomew’s Eve from Heirloom Audio for our listening pleasure.  For many years, we have enjoyed spending time listening to audio dramas either on the radio or on CDs or from digital downloads.  Heirloom Audio Productions excels at creating family-friendly dramas based on the books by G.A. Henty.  These books capture the hearts and minds of our family.  The stories, actors/actresses and music provide an incredible combination for capturing your family’s imagination.

Heirloom Audio always does a remarkable job of producing engaging and entertaining audio dramas the whole family will enjoy listening to either at home or while traveling.  The dramas are primarily designed for children ages six to sixteen, but our entire family enjoys listening to this type of Christian audio drama. Our family personally prefers listening while traveling as it breaks up the monotony of any trips we take.  The two CDs provide over two hours of listening entertainment.

St. Bartholomew’s Eve opens with G.A. Henty meeting two young men who have slipped out of a church and plan to do some exploring.  The one boy wants to show his cousin some sights.  G.A. Henty reminds the boys about those individuals who died in the past so the boys could have the freedom to worship God.

The story then segues into the tale of an English boy and his French cousin in 1567.  The English lad has come to France to help support the Huguenots.  Because the Huguenots have ties to John Calvin, upon whose ideas the Primitive Baptist Church which is our church affiliation, our family felt a certain kinship to this story.  From the opening through the difficulties encountered by Francois and Philip to the death of one of the two, the story kept our interest the entire time.

Another portion of the story that really drew our family in was the discussion of the young child who Philip and Francois rescue.  They become concerned about whether a Catholic Frenchmen who comes to their aid can be trusted or not.  This led us to have a discussion about those individuals who provided assistance to the Jews during World War II.  We discussed how being of a particular faith does not necessarily make individuals untrustworthy or evil.  Many individuals during the time of the St. Bartholomew Massacre provided assistance to the Huguenots even though they were Catholics.

The St. Bartholomew’s Massacre took place during the reign of King Charles IX under the influence of his mother, Catherine de Medici.  The assassination of Huguenot Protestant leaders in Paris set off a massacre of tens of thousands of Huguenots all across France.  It seemed eerily similar to the deaths of the Jews during World War II.

In addition to St. Bartholomew’s Eve, our family has also had the privilege of reviewing, Wulf the Saxon, In the Reign of Terror, and Captain Bayley’s Heir.  You can check our reviews by clicking on the titles.

You can find Heirloom Audio on social media:  Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Instagram at @HeirloomAudioOfficial.  You can also check out their “Live the Adventure Club.

So if your family enjoys radio drama, check out St. Bartholomew’s Eve from Heirloom Audio  for yourself.  If you would like to read reviews by other members of the Home School Review Crew, click here or on the graphic below.

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Review of This Courageous Journey

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About the Book

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Book Title: This Courageous Journey

Author: Misty Beller

Genre: Christian Historical Romance

Release date: October 9, 2018

As the fifth daughter in a family of nine children, Noelle Grant has spent her life working to be unique. Her love of stories helps define her goal—to be known around the country as one of the top news correspondents of her time. And what better way to uncover sensational stories than to travel through the mountain wilderness to visit the brother she hasn’t seen in years? The trip comes together perfectly as she plans to journey with family friends who will be settling in the same area. Her first inkling that things may not be as perfect as planned comes in the form of the mountain man they hire as their guide for the final leg of the journey.

When Daniel Abrams agrees to guide the small group of easterners along his usual journey northward to the Canadian mountains, his gut tells him he’s making the wrong decision. But if he doesn’t take them, who will? The man in charge refuses to consider turning back. As they start out, Daniel can’t help but notice the woman traveling under the care of her friends. Though she appears too genteel to last long in these mountains, she soon reveals a strength that draws him more than he should allow.

As the dangers of this wilderness become more than the group bargained for, Noelle is faced with the choice to delay her journey northward or proceed alone with the man she’s come to trust against all reason. She never imagines her decision will place her—and the man she loves—in a situation more hazardous than any story her imagination could conjure.

Click here to purchase your copy!

About the Author

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Misty M. Beller writes romantic mountain stories, set on the 1800s frontier and woven with the truth of God’s love.

She was raised on a farm in South Carolina, so her Southern roots run deep. Growing up, her family was close, and they continue to keep that priority today. Her husband and daughters now add another dimension to her life, keeping her both grounded and crazy.

God has placed a desire in Misty’s heart to combine her love for Christian fiction and the simpler ranch life, writing historical novels that display God’s abundant love through the twists and turns in the lives of her characters.

Guest Post from Misty

Ever Been Struck by Lightning?

One of the fun things about being a writer is the crazy topics I get to research. Without giving away too much of the story, part of my research for This Courageous Journey included uncovering what happens when lightning strikes a person. It turns out anything can happen!

Surprisingly, about nine out of ten people struck by lightning live to tell their story. Each person’s experience seems to be different—some are knocked unconscious, while others are horribly aware of everything happening. One person who was struck said it seemed as if time slowed to a crawl and a white haze surrounded him like a bubble, as excruciating pain shot through him.

People usually try to determine the path the lightning traveled through them, based on where burn marks appear on both skin and clothing, but sometimes that can be difficult if jewelry or coins were touching the body. Survivors might suffer a variety of short- and long-term effects, including—but not limited to—cardiac arrest, confusion, seizures, dizziness, muscle aches, deafness, headaches, memory deficits, distractibility, personality changes, and chronic pain, among others. That may sound like an awful list, but it does beat the alternative!

As I considered the possible effects of a lightning strike when I was writing This Courageous Journey, I was reminded once again how magnificent God’s creation is. Both the incredible power contained in one streak of lightning, and the beautiful inner workings of the bodies He created for us. As the Psalmist said, we are “fearfully and wonderfully made!”

Blog Stops

Reading Is My SuperPower, October 11

Among the Reads, October 11

Singing Librarian Books, October 11

The Power of Words, October 12

Multifarious, October 12

Maureen’s Musings, October 12

D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, October 13

Real World Bible Study, October 13

Splashes of Joy, October 14

Artistic Nobody, October 14 (Spotlight)

Joy of Reading, October 15

Mary Hake, October 15

Janices book reviews, October 15

Kat’s Corner Books, October 16

Livin Lit, October 16

KarenSueHadley, October 17

Truth and Grace Homeschool aacademy, October 17

Remembrancy, October 18

Carpe Diem, October 18

Pause for Tales, October 19

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, October 19

Bigreadersite, October 19

A Baker’s Perspective, October 20

Blossoms and Blessings, October 20

Bibliophile Reviews, October 20

Christian Author, J.E. Grace, October 21

Jeanette’s Thoughts, October 21

Wishful Endings, October 22

Simple Harvest Reads, October 22 (Guest post Mindy Houng)

Inspiration Clothesline, October 23

proud to be an autism mom, October 23

Texas Book-aholic, October 24

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 24

 

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Misty is giving away a grand prize of a $50 Amazon gift card!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter. https://promosimple.com/ps/d4cf/this-courageous-journey-celebration-tour-giveaway

 

My Thoughts

This Courageous Journey by Misty Beller pulled me into the story from the moment I began reading.  Noelle Grant and Daniel Abrams possess a determination and drive that made me want to read more to find out how everything ended.  Noelle is the 5th of nine children and aims to move to Canada where her oldest brother is with his own family.   From illness to Indians to lightning strikes and even blizzards and more the adventure never quits.  I found myself desiring these two characters to get together.  Rather than being absolutely perfect, they both possess a realistic nature that pulled me into the story.

This book is the fourth book in Misty Beller’s Heart of the Mountains series.  Noelle desires to become a prominent journalist at the beginning of the story.  But by the end, she realizes what she truly wanted and needed was to belong.  Even though Daniel initially underestimates her ability to adapt to the wild land she is heading for, he comes to recognize her ability to survive.

While Noelle is a definite Christian, Daniel has to come around to that way of thinking.  The hardships Daniel has faced in his life truly come to light in the story.  Ultimately, his love for Noelle and the faith she has demonstrated bring Daniel to God.  The book does not preach at, but rather speaks to the reader.

Truly, this book captivated me from the beginning to the end.  I loved how Misty Beller wove the fabric of the story together in a way that made it seem very realistic.  If you are looking for a historical book in the Christian genre, check out this book for yourself.

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