Sunday, May 29, 2011

Random Thoughts on a Sunday Afternoon...

This is just a Random Post.  It has been awhile!  Sorry for all the book reviews, I had to get caught up.  We have limited internet while in Arkansas, so things tend to get behind.  We had a wonderful time in Arkansas, it was so good to get away and enjoy our kids.

What a beautiful day God has given us!  The sun is shining, it is 88 degrees out, if the wind was not blowing it would probably feel quite hot.  What a wonderful day!

We are grounded at home for a little over a month unless short little trips come up.  We might actually get a few other projects caught up.

I have a picture I want to share.  This is my Aunt Maxine with Eden.  My aunt is the youngest of my mom's family and the only one we have left. She was 86 this year, don't tell her I just told the world how old she is.   She is a very special lady and we get such a charge out of her.  She still lives by herself next door to her daughters, and is still driving.  While in Arkansas I made homemade pizzas and had her and one of her daughters over.
Eden loves her Aunt Maxine and was so glad to get her picture taken with her and was happy to spend some time with her.  Bless her heart, believe it or not Eden's hair had been combed, it is so curly especially if it is humid.  She will probably hate it when she reaches her teen years.

On one of my other posts I mentioned the doll house that I have that was my mom's.  I took a couple pictures of it while we were at our home away from home. 
This may not seem like much to a lot of people, but I consider it an heirloom.  This was my mom's, her dad made it for her.  I am not sure how old she was when he made it, but I do know it is over 72 years old because he passed away in 1939.  I was told he made it from an old piano.  The door even has a little handle on it and it is attached with little hinges.  I am not sure about the rocking chair that may have been carved by one of the uncles, but every southern porch has to have a rocking chair.

When I look at this house I wonder what my grandpa was really like.  I know I have heard stories, not good ones, he was an alcoholic, but when I see this house I know in my heart he had a soft side also.  The patience and skill it took to build a house like this tells me alot.  I wish I would of asked my mom more about it, like why did he decide to build her a house? And how old she was when he gave it to her?  I treasure the dollhouse like I know my daughter and her daughter will eventually, something special to pass down through the ages.  I also have the old kitchen table that he made along with the bench that my mom sat at when growing up.  Memories...

I hope you are having a wonderful Memorial Day weekend! 

"I remember the days of old; I meditate on all thy works; I muse on the work of thy hands."  Psalm 143:5 KJV 

until next time... nel

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Book Review: I Shine NLT Bibles

The I Shine NLT Bible is geared for the young person. The boys’ bible is a dark blue with a guitar-playing boy embossed on the front. The girls’ bible is two shades of pink with a bouquet of stars and sparkles and three girls embossed across the bottom. They are both made of soft leather-like material and are the New Living Translation, which makes it easier for the Tween to understand.

Following is a list of three sections taken from these Bibles.
They are:
Section 1: You have Value. What matters to you? You are created by God and he cares – you can’t get more valuable than that.
Section 2: Who are you? Your identity is not just about who you are but whose you are.
Section 3: Why are you here? What’s your purpose?

These bibles also have a wonderful section in the front that deals with finding your identity in Jesus and a section with different things the Bible talks about. There are approximately 78 different headings with anywhere from one to four different scriptures and subheadings explaining and discussing the different subject matter. These bibles seem very kid friendly and will be easy for them to understand.

My grandson is nine years old and I cannot wait to give him the boys’ bible. He is at the age where he is asking questions and curious about things. I believe he will love it.

I received this book free from Tyndale House Publishers as part of their Blogger Review program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

For more information on the Tyndale Website click here

until next time... nel

FYI:  I gave this bible to my grandson last week, he loved it.  He told me he was going to carry it in his backpack so he can read it on the bus. Nothing like making a grandma proud!

BOOK REVIEW: Nick of Time

What a wonderful book. Tim Downs managed to capture my attention throughout this book and the ending totally blew me away. I did not want to put it down. Now that I have said that, let’s get into the story.

Nick Polchak is a strange sort of character; his colleagues call him the Bug Man. He is a Forensic Entomologist; he studies the bugs on decomposing bodies, determining the time of death. Believe it or not he does have a fiancé, Alena Savard; she is pretty much a recluse, living on a mountain alone with her dogs that she trains as cadaver dogs to find human remains. She also trains them to sniff for drugs and bombs and trains tracking dogs, along with security dogs.

Alena is all about planning their wedding and expects Nick to participate in these plans. However, Nick is having a problem thinking about all of these preparations, they are making him crazy. A week before the wedding Nick needs to leave town for a day to attend a Vidocq meeting in Philadelphia. The Vidocq Society is compromised of over seventy forensic specialists and detectives who help with cold cases. Nick received a special invitation from an old friend Peter who requested his presence; he needed his help with a case he had been working on.

All of this did not help the way Alena felt about his leaving a week before their wedding. She was not happy with his decision to leave and even questioned his love for her. Nick had a present for Alena, a cell phone, so they could talk to each other while he was gone. Their plans were to talk at 9:00 every night; Alena would have to come into town since there was no reception on the mountain.

At the meeting Nick was congratulated by all his colleagues but Peter, who was not there. Following the meeting Nick drove to Peter’s house. Nick found everything quiet, almost too quiet, Peter’s car was in the garage but he could not rouse anyone to the door. The only thing he found was blowflies, the kind that collect when there is something dead around. Nick immediately called the police.

Is Nick’s friend Peter really dead? Will Nick be able to help with the investigation? How about Alena will she receive a call from Nick at 9:00? Will Alena track Nick down? Will Nick make it back in time for his wedding? Will there be a wedding? Which is more important to Nick finding his friend’s killer or marrying his fiancĂ©? Find the answers to these questions and oh so many more by reading Nick of Time by Tim Downs.

I highly recommend this book!

I received this book free from Book Sneeze a division of Thomas Nelson as part of their Blogger Review program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

You can read more about this book here.

until next time... nel

Friday, May 27, 2011

BOOK REVIEW: Paradise Valley

Life is quickly changing for the Amish in Eastern Ohio. Part of the Amish life is work on the farm; there are many chores to do from gathering eggs to milking cows, feeding all of the animals and then of course gardening. The Amish belief was what needed to be learned came from the parents and the farm along with God. However, the government in Ohio began to see things differently, thus passing the Bing Act requiring all children ages 6 – 18 to attend public school 5 days a week, with the exception of a work exemption at the age of 16.

Five Amish fathers were taken to jail because they refused to send their children to the public worldly school. After a week in jail these same men were brought before the judge and asked how they pleaded, they were then asked to sign a paper stating they would send their children to public school and they refused. The judge sentenced them to sixty days.

With the fathers away from home the rest of the family had to take up the slack. In the Bender household the girls had to work alongside their brother. Rachel was working in the field beside her brother when they saw an Amish boy running towards their house. Rachel recognized him as Jake, the boy she was secretly fond of. They decided he must have been bringing important news so Aaron being the oldest sent Rachel to see what was going on. Unfortunately, it was not good news; the sheriff was making his rounds, taking the school age children into custody and placing them in a home. Rachel and two of her sisters were taken to the home along with other Amish children, from that moment on their lives began to change.

When the Amish fathers heard of this they decided they had no choice but to send their children to the public school, it was the lesser of two evils. The children along with their fathers were allowed to return home, providing they started attending school. The school was nearly three miles from the Bender home, but if they timed it right Jake and Rachel could walk to school together. They were becoming quite fond of each other but had to keep quiet about it because they were not dating age yet.

Caleb Bender was at a loss of how to get his family passed these hardships that they had encountered. He tried his best to follow God’s leading and one day after praying about it he turned and there it was; a flyer staring him in the face with the words: MEXICO – Land for Sale – Paradise Valley – 5000 acres of prime flat fertile farmland. Caleb felt like this might be his answer so he promptly went to talk to the land broker. Everything seemed to good to be true including the fact there was no public school system, a dream come true.

Will Caleb Bender uproot his family and travel across country to Mexico? Will any of the other Amish families follow? Will Rachel’s sister Emma marry her beau Levi and travel to Mexico? How will Rachel react to leaving Jake behind? Will they ever find each other again? What perils will the Amish families face in traveling to Mexico? Will Paradise Valley live up to its name and description? Find the answers to these questions and many more in Paradise Valley!

This is a great book, a lot happening throughout the book, very fast paced but easy to follow! I recommend it to everyone.
To read an excerpt of Paradise Valley click here.

I received this book free from Bethany House a division of Baker Publishing Group as part of their Blogger Review program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

until next time... nel

Thursday, May 26, 2011

BOOK REVIEW: Larkspur Cove

After living in Houston for years Andrea Henderson finds herself coming home to Larkspur Cove across from Moses Lake, Texas, an area familiar to her but completely foreign to her son Dustin. Andrea is trying to make a new life for her and Dustin after a painful divorce; unfortunately her new job requires daily travel into godforsaken areas leaving Dustin on his own. Andrea trusts Dustin on his own; he has always been a good responsible young boy, however divorce does sometimes have a negative effect on children. Andrea realizes exactly what kind of effect it is having on Dustin when Mart McClendon the game warden shows up early one morning after Dustin had been in some trouble on the lake. Dustin did not quite tell his mom just how much trouble he was in or what his choices of punishment were. Andrea and Mart find themselves on the same side of the law when they begin searching for the identity of a homely little girl who is keeping company with the town recluse.

Will Dustin ever recover from his parents’ divorce or will he find himself in constant trouble? Will Andrea and Mart find the identity and the truth about the little girl? Does Mart ever face his painful memories that he has been running from? Do Andrea and Mart ever find happiness again? Find the answers to these questions and many more in Larkspur Cove by Lisa Wingate.

I enjoyed this book. It was a very fast paced book and there was a lot going on. It was hard to put it down.

You can read an excerpt from this book here.

If you would be interesting in purchasing the book directly from Bethany House click here.

I received this book free from Bethany House a division of Baker Publishing Group as part of their Blogger Review program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

until next time... nel

Book Review: Amish Prayers

Beverly Lewis who is a fantastic author of Christian Fiction and Amish Fiction, has compiled a devotion book titled Amish Prayers. These prayers have been translated from the German prayer book Die Ernsthafte Christenpflicht that Amish and Mennonites both hold as precious possessions even today. With each prayer is a bible scripture that is relevant to the prayer. The prayers are conveniently divided into categories such as: Prayers for Comfort, Prayers for Strength, Prayers of Humility, Prayers for Unity along with eight other categories.

This book is well organized and beautifully illustrated. It is a wonderful devotional for personal use or group study. It will be an asset to any library, I am glad to have it in mine.

I received this book free from Bethany House a division of Baker Publishing Group as part of their Blogger Review program. I was not required to write a positive review.

You can see an excerpt from the book and purchase the book from Bethany House here.

until next time... nel

Wednesday, May 25, 2011


It is that fun time again where Joyce gives us a random list of questions and we answer them to the best of our ability.  If you would like to join in click on the link above and slide over to her spot in blog land so you can join in on the fun.  It is a great way to meet new friends. 

Here is my version:

1.  What is something about living in this country that you value? This country is whatever country you call home.

I think one of things I value the most above everything else is our freedom to worship the way we want.  Little by little we are seeing changes but hopefully we will always be able to worship our Lord and Savior. 

2.  What is a favorite something you own that is red, white, and/or blue?

I would have to say my flag.  I cannot pass a flag without taking a picture, to me it represents what we are about.  I get upset when I see someone not respecting our flag.

3.  Do you fly a flag at your house on patriotic holidays?

You betcha! As long as it is not raining.

4.  What ingredients do you think should be included in a great picnic basket?

It does not have to be extravagant.  We have had a lot of wonderful picnics by throwing a loaf of bread, Sam's chicken salad, chips, and a few cookies, along with plates and a spoon in the basket and taking off for the day, of course we put the salad and cokes in a cooler.  Or even mayo, bologna or turkey and cheese in the cooler with the basket ingredients makes a great quick picnic.  If you are with the right person it does not matter what is in the basket... just saying!

5.  What is one interesting piece of trivia you know? 

My brain is not working tonight, that is not my piece of trivia, just a fact.  Sorry can't think of anything.

6.  Wednesday, May 24th is National Escargot day... have you ever tried them?  Eww or ohhh?

Can't say that I have or that I am going too.  Yuck!

7.  What is one thing that you know for sure?

I probably should of waited and answered these questions on Wednesday morning after a good nights sleep.  My answers may not make a whole lot of sense.

8.  Random thought!

We need to remember the people that have been affected by the tornadoes this last week.  Joplin is 70 miles from our house, a little close for comfort. We need to pray for everyone involved.  The seasons seem to be shifting, the weather is changing...we all need to read our bibles and pray for those who do not know the Lord as their personal savior!   Enough said.

until next time... nel

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Wednesday Hodgepodge...

It is Hodgepodge time, if you would like to join in just click on Joyce's button above and it will transport you over to her corner of blogland, there you can find the prompts for this week.  However, you know you want to read my answers to her wonderful questions first, right?

Here we go:

1.  How many times in your life have you moved house?

Wow, since I was a baby 11 times.  By the time I was in 3rd grade we had moved 3 times.  When I was 22 years old I moved to Arkansas, stored my belongings and stayed with my aunt and uncle for 6 months.  Then I rented an apartment in town for about 18 months.  My parents were then moved to Arkansas and I put a small trailer on their property.  After marrying and having my daughter we purchased a doublewide and moved it in where the small trailer was.  Years later we bought a house that was probably 3 miles away and moved there.  After my daughter married and they were able they bought my house and I moved back to Appleton in my mom's house.  My kids and I switched houses.  Then shortly after I married Stan, I moved to Willard, however most of my things are still in Arkansas, at our home away from home.  I never moved a great distance but sometimes I think those short moves are the worst because it seems like you never get completely done and it takes forever. 

2.  What subject would you study if you had a year to devote to it?

This is a hard question, decisions, decisions, decisions.  Probably genealogy.  There are so many places you can find information.  I would love to be able to go to the National Archives and take my time and do research and learn where to look things up.

3.  What in this world breaks your heart?

I hate when I see parents with young children and they are short with them, or walking and almost dragging the kids.  We live in such a busy society, it is so hard to make time to enjoy life.  Kids are only small for such a short time and parents tend to think I will have time tomorrow, and before you know it tomorrow is gone and their babies are no longer babies.

4.  What is one item that symbolizes the times in which we live?  Why?

Computer or internet.  Look how far we have come!  Almost everyone is exposed to a computer of some sort.  And the internet blows my mind at what and how much is available, good and bad.

5.  Share a favorite bumper sticker or t-shirt slogan.

Hope is faith holding out its hand in the dark.
This too shall pass...
There are no strangers here, only friends we haven't met.

6.  How do you like your spaghetti?

I really prefer Angel Hair spaghetti and I like to put my own sauce on the noodles and then top it with parmesan cheese.

7.  What is one piece of advice you would give a recent, or soon to be recent, graduate?

Believe in yourself and always believe in God!  Treat other people like you would want to be treated.  And remember everyone starts somewhere.  Don't be afraid to step out in faith.

8.  Insert your own random thought here.

We have attended two graduations of our grandkids this last week.  Eden Jade graduated from preschool and Michael, Stan's grandson graduated from college.  We had a wonderful time at both events and was glad we got to spend some time with family.  Stan actually had 3 other grandkids graduate this year, Jennifer and Tim along with Tim's wife Jackie.  I looked at his grandkids and it made me realize how quick time will pass before Eden and Cain are their age.  Here are a few pictures we took.
Our Preschool Graduate - Eden Jade

Eden and Mawmaw, Granny and Nanna

Leave it to my kids...

Michael after getting diploma.
Michael - Glad it is over
Stan and the 3 graduates - Jennifer,
Michael and Tim Price
Good looking group of kids if I do say so myself.  Wish Tim's wife Jackie would of been there to be in the picture, then it would of been complete. 

Another random thought - Please remember my husband Stan in your prayers.  He has been having problems with his knees and we found out he has severe arthritis in them.  He will begin cortisone shots tomorrow.  Please pray that these will help and he will find some relief and comfort.

until next time... nel

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Graduations Galore...

We are in Arkansas, believe it or not Eden Jade is graduating tonight from Preschool.  She will be a kindergartener come September.  Where does the time go?  I am sure a few pictures will follow.

We are headed home tomorrow then off Saturday morning to Kirksville MO for another graduation.  Stan's grandson Michael is graduating from college, since it is closer to home we will be able to attend! 
Stan's granddaughter Jenny, grandson Tim and his wife Jackie all graduated from college.  Unfortunately they were in Utah and we were not able to make the trip.  We will get caught up on Congratulations shortly!  We are proud of all of them!

After a few days of resting at home we will be off and running back to Arkansas.  Decoration where my Mom and Dad are buried is the 15th.  Plans are already made to be there and visit with family we do not see all the time.
Life is good and I believe Spring is finally here, what more can you ask for?

until next time... nel