Showing posts from March, 2012

Book Review: Need You Now by Beth Wiseman

Brad and Darlene Henderson were married as high school sweethearts. They have 3 teenagers: Chad, Grace and Ansley. When the big city life seemed to be too much for all of them, they moved from Houston to the small town of Round Top, Texas. Adjusting to small town living is a challenge for all of them but seems to have been hardest on Grace. Grace is coping in a challenging way.

At the same time, Darlene starts to feel like she isn't needed as much at home now that her children are older. She takes a job away from home. Brad is trying hard to make partnership in his firm. Life gets to be complicated for all of them. But will they turn to God or turn away and each cope in their own ways?

This is the first book I've ready by Beth Wiseman. I haven't read her Amish books but I found this book to hold my interest through to the end. In fact, I enjoyed the book more as I went along and got to know the characters than I did at the beginning. The characters seem to be realistic to…

Book Review: Farm Fresh Southern Cooking--Straight from the Garden to Your Dinner Table By Tammy Algood

Farm Fresh Southern Cooking offers a beautifully illustrated virtual kitchen table of goodies arrayed from trips to the Farmer's Markets in the South. While I am a Midwestern gal myself, I found several recipes that I would enjoy using once our local produce is in full season.

Recipes like:
*Spring Green spread made from freshly shelled peas
*Spring Collection Cucumber Plate (a slice of cucumber with a chicken salad topped with a pecan--sounds beautiful for a tea party!)
*Stuffed strawberries (another pretty one for a tea party)
*Beulah Land Asparagus Pie (asparagus is soon going to be ripe in my garden so one of the first I want to try)
*Grilled Corn Salad
*Fresh Rhubarb Sauce

Several of these recipes sound delicious. The instructions look to be easy to follow and complete--unlike some cookbooks that I have tried to use in the past. Also, there are a couple of canning recipes with some basic canning instructions. The pear preserves sound like something I would make and my family…

Book Review: Great Day Every Day by Max Lucado

I started reading Great Day Every Day by Max Lucado right at the end of winter in the Midwest. . .things outside were looking gray and I was feeling a bit gray inside. For me, this sounded like the perfect book to perk me up and help me focus on things that were on the bright side. From my perspective, the book did that for me--and more.

I've read several Max Lucado books in the past and I have always come away from them feeling better. This book was no exception. I enjoyed Max's storytelling and his words of encouragement designed to spur the reader on to focusing on better things. They did do that for me. However, unlike other Lucado books I've read, this one has a 30-day devotional built in to the book. Each page says "Day Changer" at the top. A Scripture quotation and a prayer are offered for each day followed by some thoughts to help you decide how you can change your day for the better. I especially liked that aspect of this book. It helped me to apply the…

Book Review: The Wedding Dress by Rachel Hauck

The Wedding Dress is a sort of magical book about a magical dress that comes alive for brides through the past century. For me, this book seemed to have mystery, an intricately woven spiritual message, and romance all wrapped into one package.

As I began reading this tale, I found myself drawn into the life of Charlotte Malone, bridal store owner in Birmingham, Alabama. In the beginning, Charlotte takes a day to get away alone to think  about her own impending marriage at the Ludlow Estate. But instead of a peaceful tranquil day to ponder over a picnic, Charlotte found herself drawn into bidding on a mysterious trunk at a fundraising auction. Inside was a beautiful wedding dress. Soon Charlotte begins to search for the gown's history and learns the tales of brides who wore the dress before her.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I didn't figure out all the forthcoming history until the end so I appreciated that some parts of it kept me guessing. At the same time, there was some …

Book Review: Simple Ways to Be Happy by Luci Swindoll

Simple Ways to Be Happy by Luci Swindoll was an enjoyable read. I just felt like I was sitting with Luci and soaking up some of the wisdom she has to share from years of learning. Anne Lamott states in the forward, Luci is every one's best friend and soul mate--and I felt like she was mine as I read through the book.

These couple of sentences from Luci some up the book from my point of view. "Someday when my life is over, I'd like to be remembered for three things, that I was gracious, generous, and grateful. If I can achieve that, I'll feel like I've lived a life of meaning and richness. . .We can have money, fame comfort, belongings, titles, and all that comes with each of those, but if we are not grateful or generous, we've missed the mark of being happy. And if we don't treat other people graciously, we'll never have friends."(from chapter 50) Lucy goes on to say that her prayer for the readers of her book is to live a rich life filled with t…

Book Review: How Do You Kill 11 Million People? by Andy Andrews">

I live in Iowa. Currently we are home to the first caucus on the country. This can be exciting with election years. . .It can also be irritating when you receive phone call after phone call requesting support for this person or that person. After awhile, it gets confusing to me and I'm not really sure I even want to vote. But my husband and I press on and we do go to the caucus and vote after weighing all of the information we have received. My 10 year old son has watched with interest and parroted some of our words as we have hashed out our thoughts on candidates.

Recently a new book came out from Andy Andrews called How Do You Kill 11 Million People? According to the dust jacket, Andy Andrews believes that good answers come only from asking the right questions. Through the question, "How do you …