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October 2018 Goals

4 Oct

Happy October, friends! I’ve decided to start these monthly goal posts up again – at least til the end of the year and then we’ll see what happens! I like having some goals set up for the whole of the month – and then to have them posted where I see them regularly helps a lot.

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Photo by Keilidh Ewan on Unsplash

 

Recap of Monthly Goals:

Watch/Read a documentary/biography

Try a new recipe: I am still cooking a lot from  Against All Grain cookbooks. I just tried this mashed cauliflower breakfast bowl (with some changes).

Read theology/marriage/bible study book: I’ve been slowly working my way through Constantine’s Sword

Edit ‘Amelia’ : I finished filling out the plot board for the updated version of Amelia’s story! I am SO excited to have made this headway.

Eat healthier/lose weight : I have lost a bit of weight (!!!)  For the past month (?) I’ve avoided corn and starch for the most part. Sugar remains to be a BIG no-no, as I’m reminded when I cheat and have some.

Post Regularly – not really?

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So because it’s been since June that I last did this, I’m just going to start fresh and move onto October’s goals:

Sketch out new scenes on ‘Amelia’

Make progress on crocheted doll dress

Crochet rag rug for laundry room

Complete Joann’s Crochet along

Stain clean living room rug

Clean Subaru

~Laura

Do you do a monthly goals list? 

Aug/Sept 2018 Book Reviews

29 Sep

Looking at July’s review, I realized that I ended up reading exactly what I had planned to on my to-read list! That doesn’t normally happen, so I’m a little pleased with myself. My list of books is rather short for two months but most of the novels I’ve been reading have been LONG. The Shadowfell series are about 400 pages each, and the Robert Jordan one I’m currently enjoying is about 700 pages. . . I like the extra story development that is allowed in these longer books though! I’m not sure I could ever write that in-depth though.

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Shadowfell series by Juliet Marillier – separate review coming in the next few weeks

Gifts of the Spirit by FFOZ – as of right now, I’m going to just direct you to First Fruits of Zion’s website that gives great info into this well-written and informative book about the gifts of the Spirit and different perspectives on them.

Warbreaker by Brandon Sanderson -Two princesses’ lives are thrown into turmoil. While both scramble to learn the ways of their new environments, political upheaval is on the horizon.

~The first time I read this, I wasn’t sure if I would read it again but I decided to give it another shot. (I’m a sucker for Sanderson apparently). The way he weaves together a story is just incredible. The political and personal struggles of the different characters is engrossing. You can read my original review here.

Unspoken by Dee Henderson – Almost twenty years later, Charlotte Graham still hasn’t spoken about her past. A past that includes her being the center of the most famous kidnapping in Chicago’s history. A past that includes such pain and fear that she’s never risked telling anyone. Can she finally take that risk?

~You might notice that another Henderson kick is beginning… This one is ‘connected’ with Full Disclosure and Taken. While there was a lot of detail about coins, I appreciated how much she researched it out – it didn’t take away from the novel for me. As usual, some of the faith struggles of the characters hit a bit too close to home for me – but that is one reason I appreciate Henderson’s books. She writes not only good fiction, she gives real-life faith struggles to her characters. I highly recommend this book!

 

Trouble in Store by Carol Cox – When her prime governess position is abruptly ended, Melanie Ross sees no other choice but to travel to Idaho to the mercantile her cousin left her in his will. But someone else feels he has the same rights to the store, and Caleb Nelson isn’t about to just step aside and give up his new life to her. He sees her as the newest obstacle to the new life he’s carving out for himself, and he’ll try just about anything to get rid of her.

~ I borrowed this book from a friend as it is by a new-to-me author that I just read a book of hers earlier this year – Truth be Told.  I like Cox’s easy-to-read style and how she actually made me dislike Melanie for a little bit! I was so put off by her actions at one point that I had to keep reading to see how Caleb dealt with her. Brilliant move on Cox’s part. Highly recommend as a relaxing, faith-focused novel.

Traces of Guilt – An Evie Blackwell Cold Case by Dee Henderson – Watch for a separate review of this series! (I know, I said that about the Shadowfell books too but bear with me, the wait will be worth it!) 

Currently Reading:

Dear Theo by Irving Stone

Constantine’s Sword by James Carroll

The Eye of the World  book 1 of the Wheel of Time series by Robert Jordan

Undetected by Dee Henderson

 

To Read:

The Great Hunt by Robert Jordan (book 2)

Traces of Suspicion by Dee Henderson

The Dressmaker by Kate Alcott

 

While covering different genres, I do not read anything that has blatant sexual content. I will tell you if there is any sort of such (typically very mild and delicately put) in them and if I don’t think they’d be appropriate for young/teenage readers.

~Laura

~What have you been reading lately? I’d absolutely love to hear about it and add them to my to-read list!

Writing Prompt: Hesitant Fate

20 Sep

Writing Prompt : Pick up the book closest to you. Turn to page 55. Use the second sentence on the page as your prompt for today

” The lower middle classes, and a substantial swath of the more prosperous, did not have the servants to permit them to lie in bed for weeks (or even days).” –This was my first quote option, from the book Inside the Victorian Home, but since I couldn’t come up with anything I grabbed another book for a different quote.

“She was curled up, drooping and asleep on a cushioned shelf built out from a curved window; and for a moment pity struck him and he hesitated.”

Who was he to change the fate of her life? What right did he have to do this thing to her? But what choice did he have? The fate of those he loved hung in the balance – and was there really any wondering who he would choose in this moment? This stranger or those whom his heart beat for? He hovered over her, taking in everything about her. He wanted to remember this last innocent moment, for they were few and far between these days. He knew that soon her dreams would be haunted, just as his were. He took a deep breath and pulled on his beard, decidedly putting away his doubts. He reached out and woke her. His heart ached at the sudden fear in her eyes.  “Don’t make a sound. Come with me.” Her breath caught in her throat as she took in his threatening appearance. Two sword hilts showing above his right shoulder. The dagger on his belt. The gauntlets covering his forearms. She nodded shakily and he silently thanked her for it. He had no stomach for forcefully threatening such an innocent. They stealthily made their way from room to room, his large hand clamped around her wrist.  Eventually they made it to the relative freedom of the courtyard and he paused in the shadows. Patrols were making their quarter-hour trek around the ground and he pulled the girl close, clamping his hand over her mouth. They stood in the shadows and waited while the oblivious men walked their way. After they had passed, he turned the girl and looked at her. Her eyes were big as she stared back at him, but she remained still. He raised an eyebrow, impressed despite himself. Somehow, he suddenly knew she wouldn’t risk the lives of the men simply to chance an escape. He moved his hand away, feeling oddly ashamed, and continued leading her out of the courtyard. Out of any hope of someone seeing them and rescuing her. Out of any chance of his plan failing. 

~Laura

 

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Health Update: Aug/Sept 2018

14 Sep

Happy Fall! (I know, I’m a bit early, but with the rainstorm we had yesterday and the leaves starting to fall, I feel like I can get away with it.) I am feeling like some of my brain fog is starting to lift a little bit again, so I’m going to aim to get this update written fully! Here we go: fightinglymemigraines

 

Overall Health:  Fatigue, fibromaylgia and back pain are my main struggles this past month odd. After getting my IV with glutathione mid-month in August, everything started calming back down. Which means I’m never going without it again if I have my way.  I have had an upset stomach frequently lately, even with being more strict on my diet.

July 31- a little less fatigue in the am and was able to rest early afternoon, able to get up again mid afternoon. Two clonidine. Upset stomach this evening, the same as a few evenings ago
Started stretching and doing light workouts on Aug 14th
Aug 15- brain fog and tiredness. Ran errands and did some cleaning though. Fibro kicked up in evening again
Aug 16- still decent fatigue but cleaned in am. No clonidine up till 11am
Aug 21 – IV day!
have noticed an increase in energy and some decrease in brain fog from the 24th to 28th. Fibromyalgia still flaring/cramping in feet especially. Jaw still very tender and frequent pain/throbbing/teeth aching. Migraines down some possibly. Trying to pay attention if fatigue increases when I take clonidine. Still some struggling with feelings of being overwhelmed, even at home.

Aug 28 – increased H2PLX to 4/day to see if it helps with fatigue

Aug 29- migraine in am, might be due to pain in neck since yesterday morning. More fatigue today, took 2+ hr nap. Feeling overwhelmed late afternoon. Did work on book a little though 

Sept 4- upset stomach this morning. Two clonidine. Fatigue some today but not awful. Teeth aching, jaw pain.

Sept 6 – started Andrographis

Sept 10- woke up tired but ok. Went to Rosh Hashanah service (almost 2 hrs). napped for 3 hrs. still tired and groggy. 

Sept 11- IV today. didn’t sleep well last night. Decently bad fatigue. did pushes of vitamins and glutathione

20180821_110158  Migraine: On a scale of 1 -10 (10  being debilitating/nuclear) these were an 8 daily, but lately I’ve been hanging out at a 6/7. They do still ratchet up to an 8 come the evenings but they’ve mostly been responding to clonidine and ice.  Speaking of ice…. I have been laying on ice packs/ having them draped over my head for the past 5 odd weeks – it has helped so much to help calm the pain some days.

Sleep:  As long as I’ve got an ice pack – or a heating pad- to lay on, either for my head or my back, I’ve been able to sleep. There have been a few times that I’ve had to move out to the couch. As well as a few times that I had to take melatonin but overall this has stayed good.

Memory/Brain Fog: All Hail Neuroflam!!! I love this product you guys – along with the glutathione, it helps so much in helping clear the fog away so I can think of something other than… well, trying to remember what I was doing or saying. Brain fog is the PITS.

Vision: I might have had one time of sparkles/black spots but I am not sure. And that’s amazing.

TMJ: While it still isn’t popping too much, I would say this has increased lately because it aches SO OFTEN and my teeth just hurt frequently.

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Felt well enough a few weekends ago to go on a 3 mile hike!

Fatigue: As I said, this is still a big struggle for me. I can be feeling halfway decent and then it feels like I get hit by a truck. The other day, while walking in Costco, I got so tired that I could barely remember how to walk. My body just stopped – and forcing it to move was like walking through waist deep mud. Augh.

Fibromyalgia: (how has this not been a category?!)  This is the BIGGEST struggle I’ve been having. Cramping. Aching. Tingling. Joint pain. Driving me crazy, basically. It’s gotten bad enough that I wasn’t able to do anything fine motor-wise a few evenings. Ice helps a lot when it’s in my hip/lower back. My ankles have been popping more when it’s flaring. The best description I can come up with is two levels: 1) it’s a low throb like when your foot falls asleep (before the insanely painful needles) but it’s my whole body. 2) it’s trying to claw it’s way out of my bones. Descriptive enough? Yeah. Fun times.

Weight Loss: I cut starch and corn out of my diet a week and half ago and have been able to lose a smidge of weight. I started working out again earlier this month but fibro and fatigue hit and I couldn’t continue. I’m hoping to start up again soon.

Mood: This has been an issue again, just ask my OH (no, please don’t, actually. I don’t want to know what he says about it.) I did run out of Xiao Chai Hu Tang (warning about this link – I have gotten them before and have been fine, but my doctor said that you have to be careful about where you get chinese herbs from because they can be high in arsenic. So I buy them from my doctor’s office. I shared the link with you because that’s as close to the same ingredients as what I get from my doctor) okay, now that’s out of the way — XCHT is THE thing to take for me for my mood. I know it does a lot of other great things but for me , 4/day is all it takes for me to be my even-keeled self and that is wonderful.

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vitals from before my latest IV

WHEW! It’s been a very rough time lately (which is why it’s been so quiet here on SGL) but I am hoping and praying that I’m entering into a bit of a break, where all my symptoms chill out again.

If you want, follow me on Instagram and Facebook!

~Laura 

Book Review – Literary Yarns

24 Aug

You Guys. If you are crocheters you simply must check this book out! I got it from the library to see if it was something that I’d want in my (tiny yet growing) collection of crochet books and it IS. These patterns are easy to follow and turn out so cute. I’ll admit to only doing one of them so far but that’ll soon change!

 

She was a little nervous about coming on here today because she doesn’t have any flowers on her hat – or even a tiny ribbon! (the horrors). But I convinced her that you all would love her anyway.

The cork is purely for size reference – she’s learned her lesson about raspberry cordial. And she felt kind of silly showing the back of her dress and pinafore.

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The only thing that I did differently from the pattern was that I had to make the pinafore piece wider than it said to. I’m not sure if my little Anne is wider than she’s supposed to be (it’s all that reading and snacking), or what. The back of the pinafore straps are also supposed to cross over but mine weren’t long enough for that. All in all, I think she’s rather cute. I’d like thicker braids perhaps but she’s still cute.

Have you done any crochet amigurumi?

~Laura

July 2018 Book Reviews

10 Aug

It’s finally time for some book reviews! I have decided that I’m just going to share a few of the books I’ve read in the past three odd months (my last review post was April’s) If you want to see everything I’ve read since then, go check out my Goodreads page!

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Full Disclosure by Dee Henderson – Ann Silver, cop, passes off a case to Luke Falcon, FBI. She’s relieved to have it off her desk, as she’s also the Midwest Homicide Investigator. He’s just been handed vital information that ties to a case he’s been working for years. But soon their lives will collide, getting far more personal than either had anticipated.

~ Whooeeee. I’d read this book years before but didn’t remember much of it. I appreciated how different of a lead female character Anne was – her end goal wasn’t marriage and kids and the white picket fence. This book has so many layers to it that I was sucked in very quickly and stayed that way. It is an intense story, as you follow along on a John Doe case. Perhaps a bit too quick of a wrap-up at the end for me, but thankfully, it didn’t ruin the whole thing. (you know what I’m talking about). 

 

Taken by Dee Henderson – Shannon’s escape was planned to the last detail, as is her plan to capture the ones who kidnapped her -the Jacoby family. Her choosing Matthew Dane, private investigator, as the one who helps her gain her freedom, wasn’t an accident. But the task of finding all the evidence, and what happened to the ransom that was paid all those years ago, is going to be harder than she thought.

~you might be noticing a theme here…. I was really on a Henderson kick! I do recommend that you read Full Disclosure before Taken though. You don’t have to, but you get background on several of the supporting characters in Taken that is helpful. I started Taken, but kept wondering why I felt like I should already know some of the characters..so I got Full Disclosure from the library! That aside, I did enjoy this book. It is intense and a bit slow moving but it’s theme was different than I’d read before – taking place AFTER the kidnapping. I liked the faith of Shannon and her coming to terms with the events of her life. The romance was a little odd but it grew on me. 

 

How To Be a Friend To a Friend Who’s Sick by Letty Cottin Pogrebin – Everybody knows someone who is suffering. But how to act is often so confusing and stressful. Pogrebin shares, partly from her own experiences, what to do, what not to do and that sometimes, just being present is all that is needed.

~THANK YOU Letty, for writing such a great book on this subject. I admit that while I was excited to read this, I was a bit nervous as to what her take would be on this. But I learned so much from it, as someone who’s Sick and just as a friend of someone who’s Sick. I recommend this for sure, although, if my memory serves (I read it back in May), there were a few sections in her personal story that were a little off-color to me. (? I’m not sure how to word that properly…)

 

California Passage Series by Elaine Schulte – Follow the adventures of the Talbot family in the 1800’s as they travel to California via the different routes – covered wagon, around the Horn, through Panama.

~I have grown up reading this series of four books. I believe they were my great-aunt’s at one time. The journeys they go through are interesting to read about, especially in this modern age of convenient travel. This is definitely a christian romance series – faith is a strong theme throughout each of them. A fun historical romance read.

 

Wildwood (Wildwood Chronicles #1) by Colin Meloy  – When twelve- year old Prue’s baby brother is kidnapped by crows, she’ll stop at nothing to rescue him. Even entering the Impassable Wilderness.

~I picked this up at a used bookstore because one of my friends’ loves it – but I was still hesitant about whether I would like it. It took me a few months to finally pick it up but I’m glad I did! Her statement of “It’s weird, but I love it” is a perfect review for it. It is a middle-grade fantasy series

 

Uncommon Heroes Series by Dee Henderson – you can find my review here and here. I probably hadn’t read them since 2014, so it was fun to fall in love with this series again. Highly recommend.

 

The Finding of Jasper Holt by Grace Livingston Hill – Jean Grayson and Jasper Holt’s lives were intertwined the night of the train crash. She knows that her heart will never belong to anyone else. He knows that her family will forbid them to be together, so he makes her a promise that he will prove his virtue to all who keep them apart.

~I received this book from my aunt (along with a few other Hill books) and absolutely loved it. I read it in two days- and that’s because I made myself put it down and accomplish life things. Like eating. And sleeping. It was a sweet, heartfelt western romance with great imagery and life lessons. Does that sound cheesy? It wasn’t.  I never was sure what year it was set in but I quickly decided to quit trying to figure it out and just enjoy it. Lovely book. Highly recommend.

 

Currently Reading:

Dear Theo by Vincent Van Gogh

Warbreaker by Brandon Sanderson

Gifts of the Spirit by Fruits of the Zion

 

To Read:

Constantine’s Sword by James Carroll

The Eye of the World by Robert Jordan (new author for me!)

The Shadowfell Trilogy by Juliet Marrillier

 

~Laura

May Recap and June Goals 2018

1 Jun

I feel like I did pretty good on my goals this month considering how many days I spent stuck on the couch.  I do have several goals for this coming month,  but as a few of them are super easy/quick I’m hoping that I’ll be able to get most of them done!

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           (Abby’s first adventure to the beach! More pictures are on Instagram!)

Recap of Monthly Goals:

Watch/Read a documentary/biography : I watched some of Gordon Buchanan’s Elephant Family and Me

Try a new recipe: I am still cooking a lot from  Against All Grain cookbooks. I did make these Stuffed Sweet Potatoes .

Write one letter a month

Read theology/marriage/bible study book: I’ve started reading Gifts of the Spirit put out by First Fruits of Zion.

Edit ‘Amelia’ : I finally picked up a tri-fold cardboard thing and have started putting together a plot board. I can tell already that it’s going to make such a difference.

Eat healthier/lose weight : I haven’t lost any weight, while being decently strict on eating…mostly

Post Regularly

Psalm 103:8

May’s Goals:

Go through/declutter stuff in attic – every week I want to…

Crochet appliques for my aunt-  I’m having some difficulties with this project

Finishing touches on crochet Camper

Character changes/development

Finish reading/reviewing Nick’s book – I’m getting so close to the end, it’s so good!

Visit Collett end of month 

1 thing that I didn’t think I could do: I really, truly did drive to and from Eugene this past weekend! I also sanded my Adirondack chair last week

~~~

June Goals:

Go through/declutter stuff in attic

Crochet appliques for my aunt

Finish reading/reviewing Nick’s book

Transfer plant to Copper pot

Finish Adirondack Chair

Fix/Finish rag rug

Donate box of stuff

Plan Mike’s Graduation parties

 

~Laura

 

What are your goals for June?

Writing Prompts: Character Development (Harrison)

23 May

It’s been ages since I did one of these but I’m having to partially re-work one of my side characters. The time period is late 1890’s, set in the East Coast where Society is still rigid (more lax than it would have been in Europe but stricter than out West).

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Photo by Angelina Litvin on Unsplash

Harrison James – American – Name means ‘Power’ – 19 years old at the beginning of the book – single child – brown hair, brown eyes, 5 foot 9 inches (taller than Amelia, shorter than Ian), trim

Standing in Society – In one of the Prominent families

Type of Childhood- pampered – High Society (raised by nannies?)

First Memory – a nanny getting fired for refusing him something?

Religion – in name/title only

Finances – wealthy and set to inherit the estate

Bad Habits – gambler, drinks, smokes

Hobbies – card playing/gambling, betting on horse races (does he start racing horses too?)

How does he spend a rainy/sunny day? –  at parties, club or the races

PERSONALITY:

Greatest Source of Strength – ????

Greatest Source of Weakness – gambling

Soft Spot – Amelia

Is this soft spot obvious to others? Maybe before he realizes it himself

If not, how does he try to hide it? – Tries to treat her the same as everyone else (but how does it ACTUALLY come off? is he harsher with her or is he simply not able to?)

Biggest Vulnerability – ??

ATTITUDE

Most at Ease when – he’s the center of attention/when he’s working hard at the paper

Ill at Ease when – he’s idle – in Society and after

Priorities – MONEY

Philosophy – ?

If Granted one wish, what would it be? – ?

INTERRELATION WITH OTHERS

How does he relate to others? – on his terms – there are a few that he doesn’t act as arrogant around but not many

How is he perceived by the Heroine? –  Originally she is infatuated with him. She sees only the good. Time goes on and their relationship changes and she starts to see him in a professional light – someone to give her a chance.

How does he view heroine? – Until 1/2 way through the book (?) he sees her as a young girl with impossible dreams. But realizes she’s grown up – wants to help her gain independence/backbone – and snub Society. Is drawn to her.

First Impression and Why? – Depends on his mood – could be very good/charming or could be terrible. he decides in an instant if he likes you or not and bases it off that

What do family/friends like most about him? – He’s entertaining – when in the right mood. He can charm an entire crowd when he wants to

What do family/friends like least about him?- he’s cocky. Arrogant.

GOALS

Immediate Goals – none. Are you kidding? Life’s about having FUN

Long range goals – once tragedy strikes (in whatever form that happens..) to create his own fortune by growing a newspaper empire

How does he plan to accomplish this? – growing a struggling paper and then buy out others as he can

How will other characters be affected? – Amelia will be helped. Georgia will be helped/hurt in the 2nd book. What about his parents?

 

There are 2 more pages of questions but that’s it for now! You’ll notice there are several question marks still – and I didn’t even write all of the blank questions down, just the ones that I feel really need answered.

I recently heard advice for developing a character – take who you want them to be at the end of the story and flip it – that’s who the character is in the beginning. I am trying to follow that with Harrison. But let me tell you, it’s going to be a long road to get him where he should be.

~Laura

~Also, these are the ladies that I’m loving following for all things writing related lately – lara ferrari and Amara Luciano .

 

 

 

April Book Review 2018

4 May

As promised, April’s book reviews! I got a little excited while at the library one day and came home with a STACK of books of all different genres. It’s been fun bouncing around such different styles of writing these past few months. I have decided though, that I’ve got to stay away from the library for a few months at least to tackle my TBR list of books that I already own!

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Photo by John-Mark Smith on Unsplash

Biblically Kosher: A Messianic Jewish Perspective on Kashrut by Aaron Eby – Learn why God calls meat and dairy to be separated, hidden additives that contaminate food and practical ways to eat kosher.

~This was an easy-to-read book on eating kosher. I learned so much from it and it brought up many discussions between my OH and I about the topic. Definitely worth the read if you’re at all curious about the topic!

My Foolish Heart  (Deep Haven #4) by Susan May Warren – Unknown to her town, Isadora Presley is the voice behind Miss Foolish Heart, the talk show host guiding callers through finding  true love. When it seems that she’s falling in love with a caller, her ratings soar. What she doesn’t know is the the caller lives right next door, in the form of Caleb Knight. He has come to Deep Haven to start over after paying a steep price in Iraq. All he wants is to land the high school football coaching job and then he’ll reveal his disability. But he doesn’t count on moving in next door to a beautiful young woman. Desperate, he calls in to Miss Foolish Heart for advice.

~ As I have come to expect from Warren, this was a unique story line with endearing characters. It did take me a little bit to get fully into it though, as I felt there was so much longing for the past that it put me off. After a while, that eased and I just fell in love with Caleb, Issy and supporting characters.

The Shadow of Your Smile (Deep Haven #5) by Susan May Warren –  Noelle and Eli’s marriage is on the verge of divorce when an accident wipes Noelle’s memory of their life together. Not their life together, including their children and the tragedy that tore them apart. As she slowly finds her footing in this strange life that she’s built for herself, will their secrets tear them apart again or give them a second chance?

~Ahh, this one. What a heart-breaker. I’m learning that I have a hard time reading novels where the characters are struggling in their marriage. Aside from that, it was interesting how Warren wove the family’s restoration together after so much tragedy and ill-spoken words.

The Cozy Life : Rediscover the Joy of Simple Things Through the Danish Concept of Hygge by Pia Edberg – Learn how to slow down and enjoy each moment in every aspect of your life in this small treasure trove of inspiration and practical advice.

~This was a nice, easy read about Hygge – disconnecting from the fast-paced society (logging off social media, stepping off the rat race) and creating a life that we can enjoy and feel safe and content in. There’s even a 30 day challenge to Hygge.

Distress Signals by Catherine Ryan Howard – Adam Dunne’s life is perfect. Until his girlfriend doesn’t return from Barcelona. Until he receives her passport and a note “I’m Sorry – S”. He starts searching for her and ends up connecting her to a cruise ship called the Celebrate. And finds that another woman disappeared from the ship a year ago in eerily similar circumstances. To find out what happened, he has to make difficult decisions, do impossible things – like outsmart a predator on what seems like the perfect hunting grounds.

~You. Guys. Thrillers aren’t normally my thing. Well, if I do read them, they are Christian, aka ‘toned down’. But I’ve been following Howard online for years (hopefully that didn’t make me sound like a stalker…) I got this from the library and couldn’t. Put. It. Down. I read it in less than three days – all 368 pages of it. There was some cussing in it so beware if you decide to read it. The plot was incredible though. I was pretty much blindsided by the ending. Brilliant. I am still thinking about it, weeks later. If you enjoy a good thriller that will wake you up at night because the Killer just might be lurking in your bedroom, pick this one up.

As You Wish: Inconceivable tales from the Making of the Princess Bride by Cary Elwes – A first-person account of the making of the Cult Classic, this book is delightful. Elwes’ recounting of the whole process – from auditioning for the part of Wesley, to the 25th Reunion – will bring laughs, tears and add another level of enjoyment to watching Princess Bride

~Delightful. Absolutely Delightful. I am so glad I finally read this! If you’re a fan of Princess Bride, you have got to get your hands on a copy of this.

 

Currently Reading:

You Don’t Know Me by Susan May Warren

The House at Pooh Corner by A.A. Milne

How to be a Friend to a Friend Who’s Sick by Letty Cottin Pogrebin

Taken by Dee Henderson

Gifts of the Spirit by First Fruits of Zion

 

To Read:

Dear Theo: the Autobiography of Vincent Van Gogh by Irving Stone

A Billion Reasons Why by Kristin Billerbeck

Whispers of the Moor series by Sarah Ladd

Constantine’s Sword by James Carroll

March Book Review – 2018

1 May

I know, you’re probably thinking, “Laura, you mean April’s book reviews, don’t you?”

No. No, I don’t. I read so many good books the past two months, I decided not to smoosh them into one long post. So later this week, a post will be up of what I read in April! With these two posts, I am hoping to jump back into blogging – at least once a week – regularly again. I have missed it and really want to keep up with it. Sometimes, these breaks are necessary, even if they are unplanned!

Also, remember, while covering different genres, I do not read anything that has blatant sexual content. I will tell you if there is any sort of such (typically very mild and delicately put) in them and if I don’t think they’d be appropriate for young/teenage readers.

Let’s get to the books!

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Photo by Christin Hume on Unsplash

The BFG by Roald Dahl – When Sophie is carried off by a giant in the middle of the night, she isn’t sure what will become of her. She’s pretty sure she’ll be eaten by morning. And she would have been, if any of the other giants had snatched her – ones like The Bonecruncher or The Fleshlumpeater. But The BFG is not like them, he is kind and jumbly. So when she finds out what the other giants are doing, she comes up with a plan to stop them.

~ After thoroughly enjoying the movie, I knew I had to read this. I hadn’t read any of Roald Dahl before and had no clue how closely the movie had followed the book. When I found a copy at a second-hand bookstore, I snatched it up and read it right away. What a delight! It, of course, was different than the movie, but I simply loved it. The BFG himself is simply delightful and snozzcumbers are just as disgusting. I highly recommend this book!

 

Rose Daughter by Robin Mckinley- When Beauty joins the Beast in the castle, he tells her that the heart of the place is dying. And it’s true. So Beauty sets out to heal it, sure that that is the only reason that she’s there. Because growing roses is the only thing she’s good at. And the glasshouse is full of dying bushes – all prickly stems and brown leaves.

~I decided to pick this up again as I haven’t read it in years. Yes, Mckinley wrote two versions of Beauty and the Beast. The other one is Beauty , this one is a bit more…. fantasty (? I think that would be the word for it). It is still very enjoyable and fun to see how she takes a different route with the story. I enjoy how she has the animals come back to the castle lands – and the background story of the Beast! If you enjoy re-tellings of Beauty and the Beast, you must read this one.

Amazing Grace: William Wilberforce and the Heroic Campaign to End Slavery by Eric Metaxas – A twenty-year battle to abolish slavery was the focus of Wilberforce’s life. But he did much more besides that, to better the lives of his fellow men. He is one of the few men of which it can truly be said ‘ he changed the world’. Victory came for him in 1833, just days before his death.

~I really intended to review this separately because it was just THAT GOOD. If you don’t know who Wilberforce is, or just want to know more about him, read this! I enjoyed it so much and was constantly telling my OH and mom (and basically anyone else who would listen) tidbits from the book. The history of how he and his friends fought slavery for so long is interesting and motivating and heartbreaking all at the same time. 

Vigilante’s Bride by Yvonne Harris – Finally on his way home again, Luke Sullivan doesn’t expect to rob a stagecoach. Much less kidnap a woman passenger. But he’s really rescuing her from having to marry his enemy. Emily McCarthy doesn’t see it as a rescue, though, as she is tossed over a stranger’s shoulder in the dead of night.

~This story had fun, unexpected twists throughout it, keeping me turning pages! I always enjoy a good western novel, but I was pleased with how Harris kept you guessing. My only disappointment was that the ending felt rushed and was slightly less satisfying because of that. I still recommend it though, it didn’t ruin the story at all for me.

Finished the O’Malley Series by Dee Henderson

Finished the Shadowfell Series by Juliet Marillier – upcoming separate review!

 

Have you read any of these? What have you been reading lately? I’d love to hear from you! 

 

 

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