“Growing up is never straight forward. There are moments when everything is fine, and other moments where you realize that there are certain memories that you’ll never get back, and certain people that are going to change, and the hardest part is knowing that there’s nothing you can do except watch them.”
“One of the oddest things about being grown-up was looking back at something you thought you knew and finding out the truth of it was completely different from what you had always believed.”
“When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I gave up childish ways.”
~1 Corinthians 13:11
Have you had any similar thoughts?
Do you have any favorite childhood memories?
What is ONE memory that you never want to forget?
p.s The cake for the post is the one I made for Hannah’s birthday. It was a two layer cake, one layer raspberry- the other vanilla. With chocolate cream cheese frosting, and strawberries on top.
My newest book review for Bethany House! As you may have noticed…this is only review #2. The reason for that is Bethany House has a limited number of books so it’s a first-come first-serve deal. And I hadn’t been quick enough up until this point. But here we are once again (and I just got a confirmation email that I’ll be receiving another book from BH sometime in April or May). Today, the book up for review is…Quick Tips for Busy Families.
Quick Tips for Busy Families
Sneaky Strategies for Raising Great Kids
By Jay Payleitner
My rating- 4 stars
I may not generally be a non-fiction guru (except when it comes to spiritual books 😉 Still not a guru on that either!)–but I genuinely liked this book. It was interesting and I loved the layout. The book has 144 tips/strategies on raising kids. Here are a few bullet things I loved.
- The layout. (Brief ‘chapters’ which makes it easy to keep on reading!)
- The practical nature. The tips range from very practical to rather sneaky (as the front cover indicates).
- The fact that Bible verses were used in the book. Isn’t it just sad that I have to mention this? But seriously- so many ‘self-help’ books these days say they’re Christian and then have zero Bible verses in them.
Things I felt weren’t as helpful (to me)…
Now I realize that the majority of the stuff I’m about to say probably won’t have much bearing on the majority of parents today. Don’t let some of this necessarily discourage you from buying the book.
- As a young woman who wants to home school her children one day, I think that this book wouldn’t be quite as helpful to me. The book very obviously targets the public/private school crowd. So if you’re a parent doing either of those two things- then wonderful! Otherwise make your own judgement.
- Sometimes I felt like the author minimized sin. One thing that gives me pause is that he also had chapters where he very clearly said that sin is well, sin.
- I don’t agree with the spiritual gift part necessarily. Sorry guys. 😦 If you know anything about reformed people- you’ll know that most of them don’t believe tongues or prophesy continues. Like I said this doesn’t apply to all people. This is really just a note to the reformed crowd. Just to be clear though- I believe in spiritual gifts. I believe we all have God-given gifts. I just don’t buy the speaking in tongues or continued prophecy thing because I don’t believe they continue.
So anyways…just a note of explanation on why the book only got four stars from me: I feel like it was mostly just the fact that it didn’t really relate to me theologically- also the school kid thing. No fear though, I don’t believe it’s wrong to public/private school your child.
Back to the book, though. Overall here’s a summary statement.
Quick Tips for Busy Families is a book with a lot of helpful tips/strategies for parents or guardians. There was a lot of practical advice and insight from the author- who’s raised 5 children along with his wife, Rita. There was also a sense of humor which was enjoyable + the well-loved parenting stories everyone loves to hear. If you’re looking for a book to help you with everyday life and give you practicality mixed with Biblical truths- you’re in the right place.
Thanks to Bethany House for another great book review! All opinions here expressed are my own and haven’t been otherwise influenced. This is an honest review. Thanks for reading.
Welcome to Art Swirls 2. ! I am excited to do this one today because I hunted for a few drawings on Google and came up with two drawings to try freehand. I didn’t measure anything at all…just used the good ole’ eyeballs. 😉
Image 1: Chip (beauty and the beast)
Image 2: Cala Lilly
Image 3: Silhouettes (taken from one of Walter T. Foster’s art books.)
This one had more room for creativity. I sorta’ just chose a bunch of random objects to draw, and some from memory. This is what I came out with.
I did the drawing of Chip as a ‘promo’ art for the live action Beauty and the Beast. Anyone else hoping to ‘be their guest’ this March?
Welcome once again, What I Read Wednesday!
People had begun to think I don’t read anything anymore…but the honest truth is I just haven’t been posting what I’ve been reading. I just decided to be selective and review the last three books in the Love Comes Softly series. They focus on Belinda Davis, Clark and Marty’s daughter. (Oh, if you haven’t read the rest of the series- you should probably do that first–but I would say you can just pick up the three of these as well.)
Love’s Unfolding Dream
love comes softly series
By Janette Oke
My rating- 5 stars
This book was such a fun piece to read. I have to say, I really loved it. It was able to make me feel strongly with and for the characters. There were plenty of things in it that kept me engaged. One thing about is the fact that this focuses on her 12-16 years. That directly identifies it with the teen girl crowd. I thought it was enjoyable, sad, happy, and humorous all at once.
//the plot. I thought it was well developed. There were plenty of characters to like or dislike and some very heart-rending things occurred as well.
//the family aspect. This whole series has family stamped on it. I especially love how Belinda and Marty are so close to each other. I love their mother-daughter relationship.
//the characters. You can’t escape this one! They’re always going to be the ones you like and don’t like. I love Belinda, Marty, Clark, Luke, Drew, and yep. Those are my favorites.
//the spiritual aspect. I always like when a book is faith-driven. This series is pretty faith-driven the whole time. There are some aspects of their theology I don’t agree with, but in principle they do stress the love of God to His children.
//the ‘rivalry’ and tension between family. Yes, there’s some of this too. They do get upset with each other from time to time- just like a real family. I won’t spoil it, but I’ll tell you, it’s interesting.
//the ending. Wait for it, wait for it…the entire book. Okay, not really. But I like the ending because it’s kinda’ nice after the conflict in the book. 😀
Love Takes Wing
love come softly series
By Janette Oke
My rating- 4.5 stars
This book picks up a few years after Love’s Unfolding Dream. It is a little cliff-hangering from the last book, too. They give you the impression something’s going to happen at the end of LUD, and then they stick you here scrambling to figure out what happened. And I’ll just warn you, you’d best be prepared for some waiting. Because you’re going to be waiting pretty much the WHOLE book to hear ANYTHING at all. It plain confused me. I was sitting reading and kept interrupting my sister: “Hannah, what in the world is going on here? Why isn’t so-and-so in the story?” I honestly almost threw the book down at that point. But I picked it back up, and I’m so glad I did.
//the expansion of nursing. If you’ve gotten this far or read any of the synopsis-es, you’ll know Belinda wants to be a nurse. Well, her nursing will take her places in this book.
//Belinda’s continual struggle. Growing up is HARD. And Belinda always has the struggle accompanied with that. I think she experiences the same highs and lows of the Christian life that I do, in some ways. And I think it’s identifiable.
//Mrs. Stafford-Smythe. I love her. She’s an older lady with spunk. I like how Belinda and her relationship gets closer, and I love how she’s always so perky and funny.
//the cliffhanger from LUD. This nearly made me drop the book. I would encourage you to persevere though- it’s worth it!
//the way Belinda treats some of the young men. It’s not necessarily bad- I just wish she would have sent them packing long ago instead of going out with any of them at all. Oh, well. She learns.
//the removal of characters you’ve gotten to know. People leave, people marry, people disappear! Makes me sad. 😦 😥
Love Finds A Home
loves comes softly series
By Janette Oke
My rating- 5 stars
The exciting conclusion! I LOVE this book! Things start to speed up in this book, loose ends get tied up, fun things happen…heartwarming. 😉
// the plot.
// the look at Boston from a bigger angle. I love all the comparison between city vs. country. It’s an interesting thing to look at.
//the thingy that happens in the middle. You will be surprised…maybe even as surprised as Belinda was? 😀
//the other thingy that happens… uh-huh. Several things. (I am really trying not to spoil things for ya’ here).
//the continued faith. Belinda really begins realizing just how important faith is in this book. You can really see her clinging to Him in this one.
//gratification. Belinda gets a happy ending (of a sort)–and I love how you see in the book that romance won’t ultimately satisfy you. Rather, it’s God who can make you delight in Him alone.
*Sorry…but it’s hard to write a review without spoiling something. I keep wanting to say “I liked that THIS happened.” -so I’ll just say I loved the book(s) aaannnd the ending to this book.
p.s. While I do like SOME of the movies made of Janette Oke’s Love Comes Softly series–I am extremely dissatisfied with the later ones. Especially the later ones with Missie, and the ones that describe Belinda. For one, Belinda isn’t even an orphan–she’s Clark and Marty’s youngest daughter! And a minor detail…Belinda’s hair isn’t brown, it’s blond. Another thing: Willie, Missie’s husband–does NOT die either. And neither does Belinda’s husband! Sorry guys. Rant over. Just wanted to make sure y’all knew what I thought in regards to that. Hint to producers: include the author in your productions. 😀 It helps.
Something a teensy bit different for today. I was tagged by Natasha of Looking Through My Lens for the Q and A Tag. I am looking forward to doing this, Natasha, and thank you for tagging me!
The 10 Questions
Caroline @Carabelle Photography
Maggie @Maggie’s Butterfly Kisses
Allison @A Farm Girl’s Life
So…I was sitting around one day thinking about Valentine’s. I like crafting and almost anything diy. Then I was having fun on pinterest and came across something called diy silly putty. So I put my own twist on it!
- Arrowroot powder (or cornstarch).
- Dish soap (preferably colored, instead of white or clear.).
- 1 tbsp measuring spoon.
- heart shaped cookie cutter ❤ .
This is the very basic method:
- Put 2.5 tbsp of arrowroot powder into bowl.
- Pour 1.5 tbsp of dish soap into bowl.
- Stir together.
- Knead with hands.
- Shape with cookie cutter.
- You may also add food coloring if you want more color.
One thing I noticed is I had to add more arrowroot to the mixture so it wouldn’t be sticky. If it’s too dry, add soap. Too wet? Add arrowroot.
haha. Just being silly (get the pun?) 🙂 .
Guess what? Brand new series guys…
I promised a new series, right? Well…here’s another one. Basically- there will be three contributors to this series: Emma, (me) Emily (from guest post), and Ellie. The three E’s, the three musketeers 😛 . Today’s post is by Ellie and I (we’ll mostly focus on my drawing as Ellie was behind me in steps). Here’s the inspiration/prompt photo for this project.
Step One: choose your colors.
Step Two: start with the yellow in the background.
Step Three: add water to your brush along with a drop more of white paint. The, dab the brush around the lighter area- lightening it further.
Tip: Notice the shape of the lighter area looks sort of like a heart. You can also remove any hair from off the painting with anything sharp- just don’t dig a hole through your painting!
Step Four: now darken the ‘dark’ spots with the normal yellow. Then, dry it with a hairdryer.
Step Five: Now choose a circular object in the size that you want the center of your flower to be, and trace around it with a pencil.
Step Six: Now freehand two wider circles around the original circle.
Tip: if you want to be more precise, you can find two more objects about the size that you want them to be. Be as creative as you like- just try to stay somewhat with the reference photo.
Step Seven: Freehand in the five petals.
Step Eight: and now you may freehand the shape/outline of the ladybug.
Tip: try drawing three dots for the circular shape of the ladybug. And also notice that the dots aren’t right on top of each other. Rather, the bottom two are a little to the right of the top two.
Step Nine: the next step is to add your lighter blue with a medium angled brush. And also the normal red of the ladybug. Also add more circles around your original ones, according to what you think of the reference photo.
Step Ten: Now you can begin blending in and adding some of your dark color all over the petals.
Tip: Look at the way the reference photo looks. Especially focus on the blending of the petals.
Step Eleven: the petals should look similar to what you see in my below photo. The next step is to add your dark color the the very first circle around the middle. Then add red to the circle directly below it.
Step Twelve: Now for the fun! Experiment with colors and blending in the middle of the flower. Just make sure whatever you do is well blended.
Step Thirteen: Paint in the ladybug and it’s details. Make sure that you dry it and everything else before adding the white highlight to it. Then TA-DA! You’re done.
Hope you guys enjoyed this!
Special thanks: To Ellie, for helping me hold things for the shot, and for painting with me.
This post is one that’s been set rather immediately on my mind because of some things that have been going on in my life.
This isn’t a post of self-pity.
This isn’t a post telling you it’s all someone else’s fault.
This isn’t a post to tell you if you forgive someone they’ll be automatically changed.
Sometimes life seems like those broken pieces of glass. Getting broken is painful. Being sinned against (and sinning against someone else) hurts. There isn’t an easy fix all the time. Not every relationship can be fixed by simply setting up a day, meeting,
T A L K I N G IT OUT.
People will probably be bitter, have scars, and just be hurt in general. Forgiving someone isn’t just saying you’re sorry something happened. It’s much more difficult than that. If it was that easy, probably no one would have any problem with saying it. True forgiveness is HARD and takes a big dose of grace and humility. Asking forgiveness takes a pride-smashin’ session. And forgiving someone? It takes exactly the same.
For a while, I was feeling pretty comfortable with life (probably a bad sign). There were maybe a few small arguments once in a while…nothing major though. Then, out of the blue to me (also probably a bad sign) things starting coming up. I ended up hurt. There was a lot of emotional taxation. There still is. I was also angry. I didn’t understand why it was happening to me, or what I has done wrong in the particular situation. But I can already see it being used for good. It hurts, it’s maybe very inconvenient, and it makes me sad–but God has been drawing me nearer to Him through it.
Motivation for forgiving others…
“Why should I forgive someone (especially if they don’t even ASK forgiveness) ?” that question was going around in my head. At one point, someone asked me if I hated them and if I didn’t, why didn’t I? I was so tempted to just run off feeling even more hurt. But in that moment someone else told me to ‘start with the obvious’. Now, that probably doesn’t make much sense, but thankfully- I knew just what was meant. The person I was dealing with was a ______ in Christ. Christ had forgiven them with His blood- just the same as He’d saved me. I had no right, absolutely none- to hate the person. Yes, I was hurt. But I have been commanded to love, not to hate.
“Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.”
~Ephesians 4:32, ESV.
You have every reason to love, and NO REASON to hate. Especially someone who is your brother or sister in Christ. If I could remember that every time I wronged someone or was wronged- there would be a huge forgiveness party! We would all be asking forgiveness.
WE HAVE EVERY MOTIVATION IN CHRIST.
Most people enjoy a good watch. This post is me raving (oh okay, maybe not RAVING- that’s too strong a word) about movies coming out this year. That’s right—2017!
1. STAR WARS EPISODE EIGHT: THE LAST JEDI
Some people don’t like the Star Wars series. I totally understand if y’all aren’t thrilled. There are some things that I strongly dislike with the films, but also things I like. It doesn’t help any that my family was sorta’ ‘raised’ on this by our uncle 🙂 . But I am looking forward to the continuation of the series.
(p.s. I am not listing them in the level of my excitement, but rather they are listed VERY randomly.)
2. LIVE ACTION BEAUTY AND THE BEAST
Now I AM pretty excited about this one. When Disney started reproducing the live action fairytales (last year?) I was happy. Cinderella was the first one. And now Beauty and the Beast. So far, Disney has stayed close to their original plot (from what we saw of Cinderella, anyways.). I am quite confident that this movie will indeed be the live action version of their original animated movie. When I was 12 I got into fairytales. Not necessarily Disney princesses but more the brother’s Grimm. But I enjoy a good throw of fantasy and fairytale.
3. CARS 3
My younger siblings love animated movies. I must say, I rather enjoy them too. I have no idea how this one is going to be or if it’ll even be worth watching. But I liked the other two well enough. So maybe this one will be good as well, who knows?
4. PADDINGTON 2
While Paddington 1 was almost nothing like the book…I thought it was a fun little movie. I’m not sorry that they didn’t stick to the book because the book…was very obviously a child’s book. I did NOT like the two children’s attitude towards their parents or a few other little things which had to do with mostly the older girl, Judy. If you’ve watched it- you know what I mean. But I am still looking forward to this and hoping that it won’t be grasping for a plot. That kind of movie annoys me.
5. I’M NOT ASHAMED
The story of Rachel Joy Scott is an inspiring and amazing and heartbreaking story. It’s also disturbing. I know this came out in 2016, but I haven’t watched it yet 😦 . There are several things that I am not sure about in this film, 1 being the possible disturbingness of the shooting. Another thing is the inclusion of some of the Robertsons in this film (Duck Dynasty). I am very certain that isn’t true to the real story. I also don’t know how the theology of the movie will be. Sometimes there’s just an awful lot I don’t agree with even in Christian films. But otherwise I am very excited to possibly watch this sometime. You should look up her story when you have the time- it’s pretty amazing.
Well, that’s all for now!
Which movies are you looking forward to?
What other movies are you excited about? (I very probably forgot to mention quite a few 😀 )
Do any of these look good to you?