Wednesday, March 31, 2010

On Death and Dying – again

I just . . . .


I don’t know what to say other than please pray for my family.  My husband’s mother unexpectedly passed away today and we are just stunned. We knew she wasn’t extremely healthy but no way did we think she was this sick.


My heart is breaking for my husband and his dad as well as my kids.


My kids have lost 2 grandparents in barely a month – my husband and I have each lost a parent. 


I just don’t know.

Monday, March 29, 2010

book review – An Absence So Great by Jane Kirkpatrick



Inspired by the engaging stories told through her grandmother’s photographs taken at the turn of the century, award-winning author Jane Kirkpatrick provides a portrait of the tension between darkness and light in the soul of a young woman pursuing her  professional dreams.

Despite growing in confidence as a photographer, eighteen-year-old Jessie Ann Gaebele’s personal life is still at a crossroads. Hoping she’s put an unfortunate romantic longing behind her as “water under the bridge,” she exiles herself to Milwaukee to operate photographic studios for those ill with mercury poisoning. 

Jessie gains footing on her dream to one day own her own studio and soon finds herself in other Midwest towns, pursuing her profession. But even a job she loves can’t keep those painful memories from seeping into her heart, and the shadows of a forbidden love threaten to darken the portrait of her life.


Author Bio:

Jane Kirkpatrick is an award-winning author of sixteen historical novels, including A Flickering Light, the first part of Jessie Gaebale’s story, and three nonfiction titles. Known for her unique insights into the exploration of community, family and faith of actual historical women, the Wisconsin native and her husband have called their ranch in Oregon home for the past 25 years.


My thoughts:

This is the sequel to another book but reads very well on it’s own.  I admit, it would probably be better to read the first one first, but I didn’t.


That said, Jane Kirkpatrick wrote a beautiful work when she penned (or typed) this one.  I loved the old photographs and the stories that went along with them. I enjoyed how they tied in with the unfolding story of Jessie. It is also not the ending that I expected.


If you are expecting a “romance” novel, this probably isn’t one for you. If you are wanting a story about trying to follow God’s will – not always successfully – then you will enjoy this book. I really did.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

under construction

I am doing it again.

At least this time I am not completely making my own backgrounds. I am getting the backgrounds from Mason Creek Creations although I am doing some modifications. For instance, that blue back ground was black and white - which I loved but the contrast was too great for a blog background.

If you do any digiscrapping you will want to check them out - Mason Creek Creations

Anyway, I am hoping to have things settled soon. At least it isn't a major overhaul.

Thursday, March 25, 2010


In Junior's Tae Kwon Do school they have a tradition of doing a belt line when a child has a birthday. They put the kids in two lines and have the birthday kid walk between the lines while the kids get to whack the birthday kid with their belt. There is a challenge for the kids, they can run it like a boy or walk it like a man. Most choose to run but Junior chose to walk.

book review – Here Burns My Candle


A mother who cannot face her future.
A daughter who cannot escape her past.
Lady Elisabeth Kerr is a keeper of secrets. A Highlander by birth and a Lowlander by marriage, she honors the auld ways, even as doubts and fears stir deep within her.
    Her husband, Lord Donald, has secrets of his own, well hidden from the household, yet whispered among the town gossips.
    His mother, the dowager Lady Marjory, hides gold beneath her floor and guilt inside her heart. Though her two abiding passions are maintaining her place in society and coddling her grown sons, Marjory’s many regrets, buried in Greyfriars Churchyard, continue to plague her.
    One by one the Kerr family secrets begin to surface, even as bonny Prince Charlie and his rebel army ride into Edinburgh in September 1745, intent on capturing the crown.
    A timeless story of love and betrayal, loss and redemption, flickering against the vivid backdrop of eighteenth-century Scotland , Here Burns My Candle illumines the dark side of human nature, even as hope, the brightest of tapers, lights the way home.

Author Bio:

LIZ CURTIS HIGGS is the author of twenty-seven books with three million copies in print, including: her best-selling historical novels, Thorn in My Heart, Fair Is the Rose, Christy Award-winner Whence Came a Prince, and Grace in Thine Eyes, a Christy Award finalist; My Heart’s in the Lowlands: Ten Days in Bonny Scotland, an armchair travel guide to Galloway; and her contemporary novels, Mixed Signals, a Rita Award finalist, and Bookends, a Christy Award finalist. Visit the author’s extensive website at


My thoughts:

For a history buff Here Burns My Candle is both a pleasure and painful to read. The imagery and detail in the history are wonderful. The painful part is knowing the history of Scotland and wanting to warn the characters of being on the wrong side.  (I will leave it at that so as not to spoil anything.)

This is an excellent book and I loved reading it and will love rereading it when the sequel comes out in Spring 2011 (yep, I like to read that much). I am definitely going to recommend this book to friends and family.

Here are different options where you can purchase the book online:

I received this book free from WaterBrookMultnomah for purposes of review but I get no other compensation. These opinions stated are mine.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Scrambled Eggs

Sometimes a baby brother is coddled and done for so much that he doesn’t know how to do anything for himself. And sometimes a big sister decides that he needs to learn.


Junior wanted some scrambled eggs and asked Daisy and I if someone would make them for him. She asked if he wanted to learn how to make them and he said he was too young.


I disagreed – he has a healthy respect for being burned and scrambled eggs are simple to do. So Daisy volunteered to teach him.


Part of me would like to have taught him but I could see the value to both kids if Daisy did the teaching.  I love letting them do things that strengthens their relationship to each other.


Never mind that I was also able to sit with my sore foot up while they did so.

book review - Deliver us from Evil

It is time for a FIRST Wild Card Tour book review! If you wish to join the FIRST blog alliance, just click the button. We are a group of reviewers who tour Christian books. A Wild Card post includes a brief bio of the author and a full chapter from each book toured. The reason it is called a FIRST Wild Card Tour is that you never know if the book will be fiction, non~fiction, for young, or for old...or for somewhere in between! Enjoy your free peek into the book!

You never know when I might play a wild card on you!

Today's Wild Card author is:

and the book:

Deliver Us From Evil

B&H Academic (February 1, 2010)

***Special thanks to Julie Gwinn of B&H Publishing Group for sending me a review copy.***


Robin Caroll has authored eight previous books including Bayou Justice and Melody of Murder. She gives back to the writing community as conference director for the American Christian Fiction Writers organization. A proud southerner through and through, Robin lives with her husband and three daughters in Little Rock, Arkansas.

Visit the author's website.

Product Details:

List Price: $14.99
Paperback: 320 pages
Publisher: B&H Academic (February 1, 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0805449809
ISBN-13: 978-0805449808


Tuesday, 3:30 p.m.
FBI Field Office
Knoxville, Tennessee

Jonathan’s throat closed as he stared at the building from the parking lot. He gripped the package tight in his arthritic hands. Could he do this? Turn over evidence that would implicate him?

His heart raced and he froze. Not the best time for his atrial fibrillation to make an appearance. Despite being on the heart transplant list for eight months, it looked like his progressed heart disease would do him in. The most important reason he couldn’t go to prison—he’d never get a heart and would die. While Carmen wanted him to confess his crimes, she wouldn’t want him to die. The memory of saying good-bye to his beloved mere hours ago scorched his soul.

Her eyes fluttered open. Those blue orbs, which had once sparkled even in the absence of light, now blinked flat and lifeless.

He swallowed hard.

“Jonathan,” her voice croaked, “it’s time.”

Tears burned the backs of his eyes, and he rested his hand over her parchmentlike skin. “No, Carmen. Please, let me get the medicine.”

Her eyelids drooped and she gasped. Air wheezed in her lungs. “Sweetheart, the fight’s . . . gone from me.” She let out a hiss, faint and eerie. “The cancer’s . . . won.”

Jonathan laid his lips against her cheek, her skin cold and clammy, as if in preparation for the morgue. How could she continue to refuse the medicine? Even though she didn’t approve of his means of acquisition, the drugs had kept her alive for five years. Five years he cherished every minute of. He’d do anything to keep her alive and the pain at bay—the intense pain that had become her constant companion these last two weeks. It killed him to witness her agony.

She licked her bottom lip, but no moisture soaked into the cracked flesh. “You’ve done . . . your best by me, Jonathan. I know . . . you meant . . . no harm to . . . anyone.” Her eyes lit as they once had. “Oh, how I’ve enjoyed loving you.”

His insides turned to oatmeal. Stubborn woman—she’d allow herself to die, all because she discovered how he’d gotten the money.

“Promise me . . . you’ll . . . tell the . . . truth. Admit what . . . you’ve done.” Her breath rattled. “What you’ve . . . all done.”

Pulling himself from the wretched memory, Jonathan breathed through the heat tightening his chest. He’d secure himself the best deal possible—immunity—or he wouldn’t decipher the papers. And without him no one could make sense of the accounting system he’d created more than five years ago. Officials hadn’t a clue.

With a deep breath he headed to the guardhouse in front of the fenced FBI building. His legs threatened to rebel, stiffening with every step. He forced himself to keep moving, one foot in front of the other.

At the guardhouse, a man behind bulletproof glass looked up. “May I help you?”

“I need to . . . see someone.”

“About what, sir?”

“I have some information regarding a crime.” He waved the file he held.

“One moment, sir, and someone will be with you.”

Jonathan stared at the cloudy sky. He could still turn back, get away scot-free. His heartbeat sped. The world blurred. No, he couldn’t lose consciousness now, nor could he go back on his promise. He owed it to Carmen. No matter what happened, he’d honor Carmen’s dying wish.

“Sir?” A young man in a suit stood beside the fenced entry, hand resting on the butt of his gun. “May I help you?”

Jonathan lifted the file. “I have some evidence regarding an ongoing crime ring.”

The agent motioned him toward a metal-detector arch. “Come through this way, sir.”

Jonathan’s steps wavered. He dragged his feet toward the archway.

A car door creaked. Jonathan glanced over his shoulder just as two men in full tactical gear stormed toward them. He had a split second to recognize one of the men’s eyes, just before gunfire erupted.

A vise gripped Jonathan’s heart, and he slumped to the dirty tile floor, the squeezing of his heart demanding his paralysis.

Too late. I’m sorry, Carmen.

Two Weeks Later—Wednesday, 3:45 p.m.
Golden Gloves Boxing of Knoxville


Brannon Callahan’s head jerked backward. She swiped her headgear with her glove.

“You aren’t concentrating on your form. You’re just trying to whale on me.” Steve Burroughs, her supervisor and sparring partner, bounced on the balls of his feet.

“Then why am I the one getting hit?” She threw a right jab that missed his jaw.

He brushed her off with his glove. “Don’t try to street fight me. Box.”

She clamped down on her mouthpiece and threw an uppercut with her left fist. It made contact, sending vibrations up her arm.

He wobbled backward, then got his balance. “Nice shot.”

It felt good to hit something. Hard. Sparring with Steve was the best form of venting. The energy had to be spent somehow—why not get a workout at the same time? She ducked a right cross, then followed through with a left-right combination. Both shots made full contact.

Steve spit out his mouthpiece and leaned against the ropes. “I think that’s enough for today, girl. I’m an old man, remember?”

She couldn’t fight the grin. Although only in his late forties, the chief ranger looked two decades older. With gray hair, hawk nose, and skin like tanned leather, Steve had already lived a lifetime.

She removed her mouthpiece, gloves, and headgear before sitting on the canvas. “Old? You’re still kickin’ me in the ring.”

He tossed her a towel and sat beside her. “So you wanna tell me what’s got you all hot and bothered this afternoon?”

She shrugged.

“Come on, spit it out. I know something’s gnawing at you, just like you were picking a fight with me in the ring. What’s up?”

How could she explain? “I’m not exactly keen that the district feels there’s a need for another pilot in the park.” She tightened the scrunchie keeping her hair out of her face.

“That’s a compliment—having you on staff has been so successful they want to expand.”

“But I have to train him. Did you notice his arrogance?” She ripped at the tape bound around her knuckles. “He’s nothing more than a young upstart with an ego bigger than the helicopter.” While only thirty-six, she often felt older than Steve looked.

“You’re so good, you can come across a bit intimidating at first, girl.” Steve grabbed the ropes and pulled to standing, then offered her a hand. “Give him a chance.”

She let Steve tug her up. “Yeah, yeah, yeah. Even if he had maturity, I still have to train him. With all the rescues we’ve been called out on of late . . . well, I really don’t have the time.” She exited the ring. “Like those kids yesterday.” She shook her head as she waited for Steve to join her on the gym floor. “Their stupidity almost cost them their lives.”

“They were young, Brannon.”

“Please. Any amateur with half a brain should know better than to try to climb Clingmans Dome in winter.” Didn’t people realize if something happened to them they’d leave behind devastated family and friends? Loved ones who would mourn them forever? She fought against the familiar pain every time she participated in a search and rescue. All because people hadn’t taken necessary precautions.

“They didn’t know any better.”

“It takes a special kind of stupid not to have researched your climb.” Most SARs could be avoided if people planned a little more. It ripped her apart that so many parents, grandparents, siblings . . . fiancĂ©es . . . survived to deal with such grief. She’d tasted the bitterness of grief—twice—and the aftertaste still lingered.

Steve paused outside the locker rooms and shifted his sparring gear to one hand. “I agree, but most people don’t see the dangers we do every day.” He tapped her shoulder. “Hit the showers, champ. You stink.”

She laughed as she headed into the ladies’ locker room. Maybe Steve was right and the new pilot just made a lousy first impression. Maybe he’d be easy to train.

Please, God, let it be so.

Friday, 2:15 p.m.
US Marshals Office, Howard Baker Federal Courthouse
Knoxville, Tennessee

“You want me to escort a heart?” Roark struggled to keep his voice calm. He tapped the butt of his Beretta, welcoming it back to its rightful place on his hip.

Senior US Marshal Gerald Demott glared. “Look, I know you think this is a slight, but it’s important. And for your first assignment back on the job . . .”

“IA cleared me of all wrongdoing. I’m seeing the shrink and everything.” He gritted his teeth and exhaled. “I’ve been released to return to active duty.”

“This is active. It’s a field assignment, and it’s important. Here’s the case information.” Demott passed him a folder, then glanced at his watch. “You’d better hurry or you’ll miss your flight.”

Roark grabbed the file and turned to go.


He looked back at his boss. “Yeah?”

Demott held out Roark’s badge. “You might want to take this with you, too.”

Roark accepted the metal emblem, then clipped it to his belt before marching out of Demott’s office. A heart. His job was to escort a human heart from North Carolina to Knoxville. Any rookie could handle that. But no, they still didn’t trust him enough to handle a real assignment.

He’d done everything they asked—took a medical leave of absence while Internal Affairs went over every painful minute
of his failed mission, saw the shrink they demanded he speak to every week since Mindy’s death, answered their relentless questions. The shrink reiterated he’d been forgiven for acting on his own.

Maybe one day he’d forgive himself. How many innocent lives would he have to save for his conscience to leave him be?

Roark slipped into the car, then headed to the airport. But to be assigned a heart transport? Not only was it wrong, it was downright insulting. After almost fifteen years as a marshal, he’d earned the benefit of the doubt from his supervisors. Especially Demott. His boss should know him better, know he’d only disregard orders if it was a matter of life and death.

But Mindy Pugsley died. They’d all died.

He pushed the nagging voice from his mind. Even Dr. Martin had advised him not to dwell on the past. On what had gone wrong. On disobeying a direct order.

If only Mindy didn’t haunt his dreams.

Roark touched the angry scar that ran along his right cheekbone to his chin. A constant reminder that he’d failed, that he’d made a mistake that took someone’s life. He’d have to live with the pain for the rest of his life.

He skidded the car into the airport’s short-term parking lot. After securing the car and gathering the case folder, Roark grabbed his coat. Snowflakes pelted downward, swirling on the bursts of wind and settling on the concrete. The purple hues of the setting sun streaked across the mountain peaks beyond the runways, making the January snow grab the last hope of light.

Yes, he’d handle this mundane assignment, then tell Demott he wanted back on real active duty. Making a difference would be the best thing for him. Would make him feel whole again.

I will post my actual review later, I don't have the book yet (I signed up for the tour late). But I am looking forward to reading it.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Spring reading thing

You may or may not have noticed, I like to read. ok, I love to read. Given the choice of a book or tv, the book wins - no contest.


I love to dive into a book for the first time, meet the characters and get to know them. I also enjoy reading a new book in a series where I know the characters but get to know them better.


I also love to reread a book, it is like meeting up with an old friend. Anne of Green Gables is a bosom friend of mine. I wish to console Elizabeth Bennet over Mr Darcy’s treatment of her. The clicks of Madam Dafarge’s knitting needles still send chills up my spine.


So with my love of books, it makes sense I would join a reading thing and luckily for me Caddapillar Days is doing a Spring Reading Thing.


I just need to come up with a list of books that I plan to read. Unfortunately I don’t  do book lists well, I always have the best of intentions but I am easily distracted by a new/different book or author. I do usually finish a book before I get distracted and very rarely read more than one at a time.


That said, I will give a booklist a try



  • Here Burns my Candle – Liz Curtis Higgs

  • Deliver Us From Evil – Robin Caroll

  • Witness - Edward Lewis

  • Prophecy – Dawn Miller

  • Finding Jeena -Miralee Ferrell

  • Starlighter  - Bryan Davis

  • Darlington Woods - Mike Dellosso

  • Code Blue - Richard L. Mabry, MD

  • Morning for Dove - Martha Rogers

  • The Chosen Ones - Alister McGrath

  • Songbird Under a German Moon – Tricia Goyer

  • An Unwilling Warrior -  Andrea Boeshaar

  • Deadly Disclosures - Julie Cave

  • Glaen – Fred Lybrand

  • Sing – Lisa Bergren

  • A Flickering Light – Jane Kirkpatrick


Non-fiction & biography:

  • Real World Parents – Mark Matlock

  • Twilight Gospel – David Roberts

  • Bonhoeffer – Eric Metaxas


To read with the kiddos:

  • The Lightning Thief - Rick Riordan

  • Caddie Woodlawn – Carol Brink

  • Kingdom’s Dawn – Chuck Black

  • Kingdom’s Hope – Chuck Black

  • Kingdom’s Edge – Chuck Black

  • Kingdom’s Call – Chuck Black

  • Kingdom’s Quest – Chuck Black

  • Kingdom’s Reign – Chuck Black


Plus any other random books I pick up.


I am also going to see how I can drag my reluctant reader into this.


So what are you going to read?

Thursday, March 18, 2010

“You got me cereal? For my birthday?”

Sitting too much with a broken toe and vicoden causes you to think  too much and sometimes get creative.


Hubby is on evening shift this week so instead of a birthday dinner Junior got a birthday lunch. While he was eating, he got to look at his birthday gift from Hubby and I. And we were mean enough not to let him open them until we had finished eating.


This was the look on Junior’s face when he opened his present from his dad and I.



Then he realized that the cereal box didn’t contain cereal instead it contained  . . .


another wrapped package. Which he opened to find  . . .


another cereal box. The cereal box he opened and found another wrapped package that was unwrapped to become a  . . .


taco shell box. This he opened to find another wrapped package which he unwrapped and was surprised.  Shocked. His jaw dropped.


This is something he has been wanting for months and months. He was hoping to get a Nintendo DSi for Christmas but Santa didn’t come through. He really didn’t seem to hold out much hope that he would get one for his birthday, especially because he knew I hadn’t been shopping so we had shock and awe.


Happy 7th birthday!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

book review – The Language of Love and Respect

love and respect.cover

Book Description:

An in-depth study of why your communication styles are not wrong, just different!

Finally an answer for the number one problem in marriages—communication! This analysis of the vital principles of cross-gender communication helps couples recognize they speak two different languages. They are sending each other messages in "code" but won't be able to crack that code until they realize that she listens to hear the language of love and he listens for respect.

Most advice on this subject fails to understand that husbands and wives are wired very differently, and when those wires get crossed, the communication sparks can fly!

Dr. Eggerich's best-selling book, Love and Respect, launched a revolution in how couples relate to each other. In The Language of Love and Respect he shares how that message can be applied.

Formerly titled Cracking the Communication Code.


My thoughts:

Altogether this is a good book full of sound advice and practical tips. It wasn’t anything incredibly earth shattering for me because I knew that one of the largest needs for men is respect. The Language of Love and Respect is helping me to see areas that I need to improve and ways I have been unintentionally wounding my husband without meaning to do so. I also really liked that  this was God centered because God is a very important part of a Christian marriage.


Would I recommend this book to others? Yes because I think it has something to help almost every marriage.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Why my middle name is not Grace

Today I was enjoying the day outside with the beautiful sunshine. It was so nice out there. Warm but not stiffling you know.

Then it got to be time for Hubby to go to work and I needed to run in the house for a minute.

Did you ever notice how dark it can be inside after you have been outside? And you can't really see? "They" say that when you fall, it is like it is in slow motion but "they" aren't always right.

Somehow I ended up on the floor, on my back with my feet in the air - my sweet daughter compared me to a beetle on its back. I had twisted my ankle some how and that caused the fall but I don't know what I twisted my ankle on or what my toe hit.
I do know that I hit my head hard on the back of the recliner.

Since the room kept going dark (as I was trying not to pass out), I was concerned about a concussion so off to the doctor we went. Not to mention my toe hurt badly enough to cause me to burst into tears.

Well no concussion, although I do have a lump on the back of my head. And I broke my big toe bad enough to need a walking boot.

The thing that is aggravating, breaking a foot sounds really impressive but breaking a toe, not so much. It is just 1/2 an inch difference but a broken toe is almost the equivalent of a hangnail. And there have been times that I thought I broke my little toe (maybe I did, maybe not) but they didn't hurt nearly as bad as this did.

As tempting as it might be to curl up in bed until the month is over, there is some good stuff about to happen. I get a new baby niece soon. My baby boy turns 7 (ok that one is a bit bittersweet). My little sisters creep closer to 30 (hehehehehe). Plus I am sure there will be other blessings coming up later in the month. I just need to focus on the good stuff.

And I am glad my parents didn't name me Grace because that would be so ironic. Not to mention it would have bugged my great-grandmother if I was named after her sister instead of her.

book review – Sons of Thunder by Susan May Warren


Sophie Frangos is torn between the love of two men and the promise that binds them all together. Markos Stavros loves Sophie from afar while battling his thirst for vengeance and his hunger for honor. Dino, his quiet and intelligent brother, simply wants to forget the horror that drove them from their Greek island home to start a new life in America. One of these sons of thunder offers a future she longs for, the other the past she lost. From the sultry Chicago jazz clubs of the roaring twenties to the World War II battlefields of Europe to a final showdown in a Greek island village, they'll discover betrayal, sacrifice and finally redemption. Most of all, when Sophie is forced to make her choice, she'll learn that God honors the promises made by the Sons of Thunder.  
Sons of Thunder launches the new Romantic Suspense line for Summerside Press - it will be available to purchase in Wal-mart mid-January. Also - its uniquely written - its an epic suspense story written as three novellas - 3 points of view, 3 settings.

Susan May Warren is the award-winning author of seventeen novels and novellas with Tyndale, Steeple Hill and Barbour Publishing. Her first book, Happily Ever After won the American Fiction Christian Writers Book of the Year in 2003, and was a 2003 Christy Award finalist. In Sheep's Clothing, a thriller set in Russia, was a 2006 Christy Award finalist and won the 2006 Inspirational Reader's Choice award. A former missionary to Russia, Susan May Warren now writes Suspense/Romance and Chick Lit full time from her home in northern Minnesota. Learn more about Susan here:

My thoughts:
This wasn’t quite what I expected – I thought  it would be more like a light and fluffy romance novel set during before and during WWII. Instead I found myself gripped in a story that was so much deeper than I expected. The characters were very realistic and battled emotions and problems common in people today. 


I would highly recommend this book.


I received this book free for the purposes of review from LitFuse Publicity but received no other form of compensation. These opinions are all mine.

Friday, March 12, 2010

book review – Lady Carliss and the Waters of Moorue by Chuck Black

Lady Carliss and the Waters of Morrue:

Determined, smart and a master of both the sword and the bow, Lady Carliss has proven herself as a veteran Knight of the Prince. Returning from a mission of aid, Carliss is plunged into adventure once again as she searches for the marauders responsible for kidnapping a friends’ family. Along the way she is reunited with Sir Dalton and discovers that the struggle in her heart is far from over. When Dalton falls to the vicious attack of a mysterious, poisonous creature, Carliss finds herself in a race against time. As Dalton clings perilously to life, she must find the antidote in the distant and strange city of Moorue .

While there, Carliss uncovers the master plot of a powerful Shadow Warrior that will soon overtake the entire Kingdom. Her faith in the Prince and her courage as a knight are tested as she faces evil Shadow Warriors and a swamp full of dreadful creatures. The lives of many, including Dalton ’s, depend on Carliss. But she cannot save them all, for time is running out.  She faces an impossible choice: save Dalton , or let him die so that others may live.

Author Bio:

Chuck Black, a former F-16 fighter pilot and tactical communications engineer, is the author of nine novels, including the popular Kingdom series. He has received praise from parents across the country for his unique approach to telling biblical truths. His passion in life is to serve the Lord Jesus Christ and to love his wife, Andrea, and their six children. He lives with his family in North Dakota .


My thoughts:  

Oh my goodness! This book grabbed my attention from page one and held on to it until the very end. It is fast-paced and has bits of humor sprinkled in. I can’t wait to check out the rest of the series. 


This is book 4 in the series but I was able to keep the characters straight and enjoy the story even though I haven’t read any of the others.


I also read the introduction to my daughter and she wants to read it.  She really wants to read it which is very impressive for a reluctant reader.


I heartily recommend this book. you can purchase it here through Random House.


I was provided with this book by Random House for purpose of review but have received no other form of compensation. The opinions expressed are mine.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Right now

I am doing better. The tears still flow fairly frequently but they aren’t quite as close to the surface. I am feeling so grateful for so many things.


  • I am grateful for having such a good Daddy – although it does make it harder that he is gone.
  • I am grateful for the fond memories my kids will have of him.
  • I am grateful for the little miracles that kept him healthy – his first oncologist basically said to wait at home to die,  the second gave him another 4 years of living.
  • I am grateful for feeling closer to God rather than anger at Him.
  • I am grateful for my family and friends who have prayed for us during this time.
  • I am thankful that I could celebrate my Daddy going home even if I wish he could have waited longer.

The saying goes “the devil is in the details” but it is also so true that God is in the details.  There are so many little details that God took care of as a reminder that He is there.


I don’t know why my dad had to get cancer. I don’t know why it had to be an aggressive cancer. But I do know that God is in control, that He will work it for good somehow. I know that right now He has my hand and he won’t let go.

And for my Dad, I love these verses:

I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.
Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day—and not only to me, but also to all who have longed for his appearing.                2 Timothy 4:7 & 8

WFMW – Speed Dial

This is a new one for me, my (much taller) little brother just showed it to last week so I haven’t gotten it completely figured out but I love it so far.


I use a laptop and with the rectangular screen, space is at a premium. I had actually gone through the trouble of making my own toolbar just to have more space for the frequently used links. Yep I am a nerd. And a computer geek.


As a side note, part of the problem is that everyone uses my profile. You know how you can set up different profiles on the computer so that everyone can have their own background? Or their own favorites. Or whatever. My family won’t use them. They use my profile. So I have all my links plus any that anybody else thinks is important. I could lock them out of my profile but that is a little snarky – not to mention a pain for me because I would have to get the other one set up.


Anyway, my little brother saw the frightful mess of links across the tool bars (and the number of toolbars) and suggested I look into Speed Dial instead. It stores the webpages that you load in (which is really easy to do) along with a screenshot so you can easily glance and find whichever website you are wanting.


If Speed Dial is set up as your homepage and set to automatically open in new tabs or windows,  then it is easy to go to any of you favorite places.


You also have the ability to put more spaces in the screen as well as having more “groups.” I have my main group, then a blogging group, one for my husband and then one for my kids.


Easy Peasy.


It is just a simple little download. My only complaint is that I don’t think I can have the other household computers all synced  with this. There is the ability to export settings so I assume that once I get it the way I want, I can import the settings on the other computer. But if I want to add a new webpage, I will have to do it on each computer.  On the other hand, because it is simple to work, Daisy could add the websites herself.


Notice to the FCC – I am not getting any compensation for this review. Speed Dial does not know who I am nor do they care. I got speed dial for free but so can you. 

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

On death and dying

We buried my dad today.


To be honest, it was both expected and unexpected. He had end stage cancer but we really thought we had a few more weeks or even months.


For his sake I am so very, very glad that he is no longer in pain and has energy again.


For his sake I am glad that he is in heaven with his precious savoir.


For our sake, I miss him. I wanted him to meet his other grandchildren who are yet to be born. I wanted him to dance with my mother at my daughter’s wedding. I wanted him to call me up a few more hundred times to just say “hi.”


But I would not have asked him to live one more hour in pain.


Posting may be somewhat sparse in the next few weeks but I will be back soon-ish.