Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Book Review: Travelers Rest

Bethany House has recently sent me another book to read in exchange for writing a review on the book.  The book they sent was Travelers Rest by Ann Tatlock.  This book takes place in current every day North Carolina.  Jane Morrow is searching for so many things in her life.  Her finance, Sean, is currently in the Veterans Hospital in Asheville after being paralyzed while he was on duty serving our country.  Sean's faith has been instilled in him by his parents since his childhood. However, he believes it would have been better for everyone if he had just died on the battlefield. Jane is searching for faith and has to overcome so many obstacles from her childhood to get through this.  While she is visiting Sean daily in the hospital she meets some amazing people who impact her life in more ways than she will ever know.  Truman is a Korean veteran who is a retired doctor. He lives at the Veterans hospital and makes his rounds each day to see patients.  His meeting Jane helps her see Sean's obstacles in a different light and brings light to God and His love for all.  Truman has his own obstacles to overcome having grown up in the time of the Jim Crow laws.  All he really wants is to be forgiven.  Jon-Paul is another new friend that Jane is drawn to during her visits to the hospital because it is when Jon-Paul is playing the piano that he is able to find peace.  As the get to know each other, Jane is beginning to see that everyone has their own obstacles to overcome because she discovers that Jon-Paul is fighting an illness as well that affects his every day life.  All of these people are in Sean and Jane's lives for a reason.  All of these people need each other for one reason or another.  All of these people are just looking for rest.

Ann Tatlock does a great job with the story line as well as her characters.  I loved the book from the very beginning and wanted to see everyone have their "happily ever after" ending.  Her research of the characters' illness and life altering cases was wonderful and you really felt like you should add them all to your prayer list!  A great read that will make you thankful for your life, health and family.  It will really make you stop and think as well as tell your Father, "Thank you!"

Monday, June 25, 2012

MSYC Week 3 Comes to an End

Week 3 has come to an end and LB enjoyed her time there again. She loved going back this week to see friends she made last year as well as making new friends.  There was NO DOUBT friendships were deepened this week.  How thankful we are that she is making and developing such wonderful friendships!

LB with the Morris girls!

Singing Silly Camp Songs

LOVE that they have this time together!

LB and Anniston loved being with the Walker girls again

She ADORES Katie and Claire

Counselor Bailey!

These girls were her right hand men!

Miss Brittany will always hold a special place in her heart!

LOVE us some Miss Ashley!

FINALLY made peace with Joel!!!!
Thank you, MSYC, for wonderful memories, friends and lessons! You have blessed her life in so many ways!

Sunday, June 24, 2012

. . . . And Then Some Fun During Week 3 . . . .

One of the things I don't like about LB going to MSYC is that I am not there to capture every moment on film.  I am sure she is glad of that and if that is the only reason I am not happy about her going to MSYC, I think we are good. However, some of the counselors are sooo good about snapping pictures throughout the week.  In no particular order . . . here are some shots of the week.

The 3 Amigos singing for a package

LB having to sing to Joel for her envelope . . . 

Tacky Day

Scott stole Brittany's camera and went on a photo shoot

LOVIN' time with friends!

Cabin 1!!!!!!

Steven making himself comfortable . . . 

Cabin 1 ready for church at FHU
She had a great week and made some wonderful memories as well as friends.  So glad she loves going to camp!

Saturday, June 23, 2012

MSYC Junior Campers . . .

While LB was a MSYC as a full camper, Carter went as a junior camper this week.  He had a wonderful time.  He was blessed to be with some of his great friends and even a new great friend, Grady (Anniston's brother) until he got sick on Monday and had to miss the rest of the week.  He would come home telling me every detail about the day. He was worn out, but he loved it!

Carter, Cade, Tucker and Lawson

For 2 years now, Amy and KaKole have been his counselors.
He LOVES them!

Mark, Billy and Zeke were the boy counselors this year.

Magen counseled and was their Bible teacher.
She taught them about the Fruit of the Spirit.

Carter and Jackie - the other counselor
Carter got the award for Best Dive (which he does NOT get from his mama!) and he got Camper of the Week!!!! We are just so proud of him and love his little (or big) attitude that obviously came through this week at camp!

The question now is . . . .

"Will he spend the night next year at big camp?"

Friday, June 22, 2012

. . . . And Then Some More of MSYC Week 3

After the first year LB spent the night at camp, she has asked for money for her birthday to pay for a second week of camp.  She just can't get enough!  To add to the fun of week 3, Anniston joined the LB and Madlyn from Florida.  These girls crack me up! They only see each other two times a year, but it is like they have never left each other.  They just pick right back up where they left off and boy were they glad to be at camp!!!! We are adding Bailey (their counselor) to our prayer list this week because I think she will need it!
HELLO!!!!!!! Cabin 1
LB, Anniston, Bailey and Madlyn

Got to LOVE them - they are standing in the order they are on the shirts

They are going to have so much fun while these two . . .

Can't wait until it is their turn to spend the night next year!!!!!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Book Review: So Far This Summer . . .

I told myself at the end of the school year that I was going to read  . . . read . . . read this summer.  I did not care if I just read one whole day . . . I was going to do it, but . . . I haven't.  I have read a lot and have a lot I want to get to.  I thought I would share some of my reads this summer.  All have been good and very different . . .

1.  The Vow -  This book is the real story that the movie The Vow was based around.  I have not seen the movie still, but I have talked to people who have seen the movie.  While many things are still the same, the couple's faith that led them through this horrific deal is not a major part of the movie.  Sad, but true.  The Carpenters are good with the movie's portrayal of their story and when they are called to interview their faith is brought out then. I was very amazed and very impressed with their story. I cannot even imagine having to go through what they did.  It was a very quick and easy read.  It makes you think about your relationships and what you would be willing to do for those people in your life.

2.  The Hunger Games Trilogy - I actually read all 3 books in a matter of days.  I won't tell you how long it took my dad (who can be the slowest reader on the planet) to read them. (ACCHHH-3 days-HHOOO)  What did I think of them? LOVED LOVED LOVED - especially books 1 and 2.  I liked 3, but it was not my favorite.  I had read Hunger Games during my Christmas vacation, but after seeing the movie (finally) I felt like I needed to reread it before I went on, and I am so glad I did.  Now, I will not let Laura Beth and Carter read them (especially 2 and 3) for a long time, but I absolutely enjoyed the series.  It may be my next Harry Potter - ones I have to reread before the movies come out in the theaters.  If you haven't read them and even think these are not "your kind of books" (Dad), try them just so you know what is going on and can say one day that you have read (or tried to read) them.

3.  Love Finds You in Deadwood, South Dakota - I actually read this one in between some of the Hunger Games books for reasons I really don't remember now.  I really enjoy the Love Finds You series.  They are usually very easy to read books that I can just sit down and knock out in no time at all.  I am the kind of reader who needs books like that a lot!  I find myself especially reading these kinds of books during the school year.  However, back to this one . . . I really enjoyed this book.  Jane has been left a son, a child on the way, a loan that has not been paid off (and is in serious trouble) and more troubles by her worthless husband who has been killed.  Franklin is the man who is trying to collect the debt or the land that Jane is not willing to let go so easily.  Even in her "condition" she drives the freight load to try to pay off the debt her husband and built for her.  More trouble comes her way and Franklin is torn between how he can help when he is the one she is fighting against.  This was one of my favorites (although I think I say that about a lot of them after I read them), and would highly recommend it to anyone who needs an easy read.

4.  Chasing the Sun - see the review here.

5.  I was Jane Austen's Best Friend - I LOVE Jane Austen and always have.  I find myself trying to read anything by her and about her, so when this book came across in the book order this spring I knew it was a have to get book for me.  This book is fiction with a lot of facts in it.  Jenny is Jane's cousin and the book is Jenny's diary of a year where she lived with Jane and Jane's family.  It does include factual events and people from Cora Harrison's research.  Of course, not a lot is known of Jane's early life so that is where Cora took some liberties.  I really could not put the book down.  I found it so intriguing and loved getting another glimpse into Jane's life!  If you are a fan of Jane Austen, this is a MUST for you! I really enjoyed it.

6.  Maid to Match - I am in the middle (well, actually the end) of this book but wanted to go ahead and put it on here so I could cross it off my list!  I have been wanting to read this one for a long time not even knowing what it was about (sad, isn't it).  Now, I can say, I am soooo glad I am reading it and I want to go to the Biltmore to see where the story takes place.  I absolutely LOVE Deanna Gist's writing  in this book.  She has developed the characters and story line so well. I don't want to put the book down (boo  . . . inservice the past few days).  I can picture the Biltmore Mansion as she is describing it and can see Tillie and Mack as they walk among the grounds and house even though I have never been there.  I really need to stop writing about it so I can finish it! I will let you know if I change my mind about this one, but I don't see that happening!

Now, go out and read . . . what have you been reading?  Even though my stack is a mile high, I am always looking for a good read!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Happy Father's Day!!!!!!

For Father's Day this year, the kids wanted to make Damon a Dr. Pepper cake with many of his favorite snacks on the cake.  I am VERY frugal and usually only buy him the off brand (Dr. Thunder) which he says tastes the same, but I am sure he is just being nice.  So, we went and bought 3 12 packs of Dr. Peppers, ribbon, and all the favorite snacks of Damon.

To begin, we put 18 cans on the bottom. This is not as easy as it looks.  It was VERY difficult, but we did it.
I am sure LB will love me for this picture later in life . . . 
 For the second level, we put 10 cans. For the third level, we put 7 and one on the very very top.  THEN, we put the ribbon around each row of cans, holding it on with glue dots.  

Finally, they put all the favorite snacks around the cake and were OH SO proud of their creation!

Again, another picture LB will LOVE me for as she gets older!
Damon LOVED it . . . and has enjoyed eating the snacks already! Happy Father's Day, Damon! Thanks for loving us all and being a wonderful dad! We love you!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Not Too Easy

It's not too easy . . . 
trying to take a picture of one child . . . 


let alone 4 children . . . 

two who happened to be 2 and under . . . 

and two who just LOVE to have their picture taken!


We have to catch them at real moments . . .

and before nap time settles in . . .

But we are left with the knowledge that ONE DAY . . .
ONE DAY . . . 
We will have the PERFECT cousin picture!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Cousin Time is the Best Time

After we picked both kids up from camp on Friday, Dad, the kids and I took off to Auburn, AL, to see Richard, Amy, Walker and Lucy.  Amy is one of the ones in charge of their VBS and asked if we would come down to help with the kids, and we jumped on that!  It was a great week.  I loved seeing the cousins bond in ways they had not been able to up till this point.  It was just precious seeing Lucy's face light up at the sight of them and hearing Walker walk run around the house looking for "Lala Bef" and "Carter."

Lucy holding on tight to LB's hand as she was being fed.

Ride a little horsey!

I even got in on some bonding action.  Here I am with my sweet Lucy Katherine!

LOVE this one of the kids leaving Wal-Mart

Eating supper at VBS

Early morning Wiggle time!

Feeding the ducks!

Walker and Gandad

The boys feeding the crazy ducks!

Watching Clues Clues (Blue's Clues) after playing in the pool.

Cousins are those childhood playmates who grow up to be 

forever friends.
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