Monday, August 14, 2017

Book Review - The Beloved Hope Chest by Amy Clipston


The Beloved Hope Chest is written by Amy Clipston and is published by Zondervan.

Every now and then I get in the mood to read a good Amish story. This is the second fiction book in a row in that genre that I have read - and enjoyed. In The Beloved Hope Chest, Amy Clipston has woven a touching and slightly mysterious tale that kept my attention through to the end.

The bulk of the book is a flashback, told in the viewpoint of Mattie Fisher. Mattie relates to her three daughters the story behind a lock of hair and a baby's onesie that is kept in Mattie's hope chest. She tells her girls of heartache and pain that she went through, pain that was kept a secret from the daughters until now.

I thoroughly enjoyed this story because it openly and honestly reveals that anguish doesn't afflict a select few. The Amish are not immune and neither are we. The story is well written and the main characters well developed. I think there is even a lesson in there of which we can learn.

*I received a copy of The Beloved Hope Chest in exchange for my honest opinion. My thoughts are my own.*

Friday, July 28, 2017

Book Review: Get Out of That Pit: Straight Talk About God's Deliverance, by Beth Moore



Get Out of That Pit: Straight Talk About God's Deliverance is written by Beth Moore and is published by W Publishing Group (Thomas Nelson).

First of all, Get Out of That Pit is not a newly released book, per se. It was originally published in 2007 and is now published with a new, updated cover. Don't let that fool you, however. It is still as relevant today as it was ten years ago, perhaps more so.

Beth Moore speaks quite candidly throughout this helpful self-help book. Actually, the book is not a self-help at all, but is a God-help volume. Throughout the book, Moore takes us the depths of the pit to the top of what God has in store for us. And it's not pity.

Moore doesn't mince words and help us along in self-pity. Instead, she outlines for us the steps that got us into the pit and the hands reaching upward that will get us out of the pit - for good. I like that. I don't want anyone babying me. I want the Truth. The Bible says that "the Truth shall set you free". 

What a great place that is to be.

In Get Out of That Pit, Moore includes some sample Scripture prayers to help us in our prayer lives. The reason for praying Scripture, according to Beth Moore, is that God loves to hear His Word, not because He has an ego thing going on. It is more of a love thing going on. He loves our dependency upon Him. He wants to carry our burdens and lift us from the pit. He isn't handing over the tools to aide us in getting out by ourselves. We're climbing on His back and holding on. And never letting go.

I found this book to be a great reminder of the greatness of the Trinity of God. I think it's a keeper, not just a single read and toss sort of book. I think you just might agree.

*I received a copy of Get Out of That Pit:Straight Talk About God's Deliverance in exchange for my honest opinion. My thoughts are my own.*

Monday, July 24, 2017

Menu Plan Monday - July 24


Happy Monday! How is your summer going? Mine is rapidly passing by. Here in the north, we don't normally get a lot of high temperatures. Last week we saw some upper 90's, which I happen to love. Most people here think it is hot at 70 degrees, but not me. Today, it is only in the 60's, so I am lamenting. It is hard to get a good garden going when it is never really warm for many days (and nights) in a row. So, if you live anywhere near northern Michigan, don't come to me and complain about the heat. I will be quick to remind you that come September, you're going to see temperatures quickly plunge. Then, come January, you're going to be telling me how freezing cold it is.

The moral of my little story is: You can't control the weather. Only God can. If you don't like what we have, either live with it or pray to the One who can change it.

I found a recipe for a gluten-free, dairy-free cake roll this morning. I plan to make it in an hour or so. It is sort of fancy looking. I won't be tackling the design today but maybe someday ....

Monday

Mashed Potatoes
Fresh Green Beans
Macaroni Pickle Salad (made with GF macaroni)
Custard Pie

Tuesday

Grilled Marinated Chicken
Baked Potatoes
Peas
Garden Salads
Sugarless Oatmeal Cookies

Wednesday

Spaghetti with Burger
Garlic Toast 
Salads

Thursday

Roast Whole Chicken
Mashed Potatoes
Zucchini and Cheese

Friday

Pizza & Pop

Saturday

Veggie Burgers
Potato Salad
Fruit Salad

Sunday

On Your Own

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Book Review: Abiding Mercy by Ruth Reid


Abiding Mercy is written by Ruth Reid and is published by Thomas Nelson.

I have read several of Ruth Reid's Amish novels. This one does not disappoint. It has all of the elements of faith, simplicity, and some suspense that I have come to expect from Ms. Reid. To top that, the novel is set in Posen, Michigan, not far from where I live. So, I can relate.

Faith is a lovely young Amish girl who loves God and hopes to join the Amish church soon. She finds herself drawn more and more to her friend, Gideon, who is also drawn to Faith. Everything seems to be going great until a series of events leads Faith down a road she would rather not travel - one that involves secrets, betrayal, and mystery.

I found Abiding Mercy to be a great read and I especially enjoyed the fact that Ruth Reid included the angel element that is so prevalent in her previous novels. The book is as appropriate for a teenager as it is for an adult. I loved it and look forward to the next book.

*I received a copy of Abiding Mercy in exchange for my honest opinion. My thoughts are my own.*

Monday, July 10, 2017

Menu Plan Monday - July 10



Monday

Roast Beef
Carrots
Potatoes

Tuesday

Hamburger Casserole
Cauliflower
Zucchini Bread

Wednesday

Slow-cooked Pork Chops
Mashed Potatoes
Peas

Thursday

Chicken on the Grill
Baked Potatoes
Green Beans

Friday

Pizza & Pop

Saturday

Burgers (including bean burgers)
Potato Salad
Chips & Dip

Sunday

On Your Own

Monday, July 03, 2017

Menu Plan Monday - July 3



Tomorrow is Independence Day here in the United States. Our family never really gets to celebrate in grand style, as my husband and one of my sons has to work. However, that can't diminish our patriotic spirit. In spite of all of the political tension as of late, we are still living in a great country filled with people who still have a heart beating for God. Granted, that number of believers dwindles a bit every year. My prayer is that our nation's people turn their hearts back to Him.

I have created my menu plan to be (for the most part) easy on the digestive system. The way big agriculture has messed with the food supply is appalling and, I believe, has caused innumerable health issues for many people. We have a large garden and are now raising our own chickens (mostly for eggs). We have plans to obtain sheep someday to raise for meat (I don't eat meat except on rare occasions, but the rest of the family is quite carnivorous). Our property is too small to fit cattle, though I would love to have a few steers. Ah, the farmer's daughter in me has never left.

Here is my plan for the week:

Monday

Grilled Cheese Sandwiches
Asparagus Soup
Salads
Leftover Pies


Tuesday

Bean Burgers
Hot Dogs
Creamy White Bean Dip
Roasted Veggies

Wednesday

Chicken Tenders
Baked Potatoes
Green Beans

Thursday

Meatloaf
Mashed Potatoes
Sugar Snap Peas

Friday

Pizza & Pop

Saturday

Rice-Steak-Veggie Stir-fry
Pudding

Sunday

On Your Own

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Book Review: The Noble Servant by Melanie Dickerson


The Noble Servant is written by Melanie Dickerson and is published by Thomas Nelson.

I have to admit that I am hooked on Melanie Dickerson's books. This is another in her offering of fairy tale makeovers. This one is based on The Goose Girl by the Brothers Grimm. Keep in mind that the story is based on the tale, not a retelling of it.

While I was maybe not as enthralled by The Noble Servant as I was of some of the earlier stories in the series, I still loved it. It is a book that I can read and then hand over to my teenager without fear of her coming upon something she probably shouldn't. The story is an easy read, light and enjoyable. It's a sweet love story that does have a mild portion of suspense that keeps you wanting to turn the page until you reach the end.

I am eagerly awaiting the next book by Ms. Dickerson.

*I have received a copy of The Noble Servant in exchange for my honest opinion. My thoughts are my own.*