About my blog

When I was a little girl, I struggled to read. Reading did not come naturally to me; however, over the last 30 years I have become an avid reader, I love books. I love LDS (Latter Day Saint) Historical fiction, I love romance, I love biographies, I love stories of hope, and ways to help. I will post books that I have read, ones that have warmed my heart and given me hope!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Beau and the Beanstalk

 About the Book:

Beau and the Beanstalk is being released as a revolutionary Interactive App. Children will be able to read along with the text as Lee Baker narrates the story as well as hear the characters speak as they interact on their PC, Mac, ipad, iphone, Android pad, Android phone or Kindle Fire.

Author Lee Baker created a fun new book for children of all ages to enjoy. A reverse on the classic tale, Jack and the Beanstalk, Baker's Children's book Beau and the Beanstalk is about an adolescent giant who is ridiculed in a magical kingdom in the clouds and climbs down a beanstalk to meet Jack, a hack-magician with a love of fire tricks, who will do anything to be the star of the circus.

This book is an instant hit with parents and educators. The book teaches values like overcoming difficulties, taking care of mistakes, standing up to bullies and choosing the right friends. The illustrations will immediately draw the reader into the story.
About the Author:

Lee Baker is the President of Paralight Films, a film development company and Sandman Studios a visual effects and animation company. Lee has taught courses at UCLA Extension, Loyola Marymount University, the University of Utah and the Utah Education Network in the subjects of English, Writing, Educational Technology and Digital Video Editing. He is a producer of the upcoming film Lundon’s Bridge and the three Keys and is the author of the novel Speed of Light and the illustrated books Humbug, A Christmas Carol and Beau and the Beanstalk. Lee earned a degree in English at the University of Utah and currently lives in Utah with is wife and their five children.

My Review:

I received a copy of this book for my iPad, it was a fun interactive book that my children each took turns reading and playing with. The illustrations were clean and crips on the iPad. Each page has interactive characters that talk and then also an interactive reader. I didn't actually read the book I listend to it beign ready to me. I wanted to enjoy it as my children did. I believe that everyone should be read to at some point in their life.

The story a take on the old Jack and the beanstalk, but with a twist...a modern day twist. The story life was good and showed that everyone has choices in life.

My children loved this book and I would recommend this book for anyone who wishes to learn about others and how to handle life situations. Mr Baker found a purpose and reason for doing what he did. For allowing the reader to take a journy with Jack and Beau!

I would recommend this book with a 4 star. I was given a free copy of this book to review from Media Guests and was not paid in any way for my comments.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Summer of Anger, Summer of Peace

 About the Book:

Summer of Anger, Summer of Peace is an inspirational story that will make the reader laugh, cry, and examine just how precious life really is. Written by Rick Dean, Dennis’s brother, this true-life story comes alive with firsthand accounts of Dennis’s struggles and triumphs while living with Muscular Dystrophy. It is doubtful that you could read this story and not be changed and encouraged to make a difference. If you are looking for a story that has all of the elements of life, and one that will give you a new perspective on what you may be currently going through, do not miss this uplifting biography.

About the Author:

Rick Dean was born in Denver, Colorado and spent his youth exploring the adventures of life side by side with his brother, Dennis. Dennis, because of his disease, required someone to be with him at all times, from the time he was eight years old. Much of that responsibility fell to Rick who was grateful for the assignment to always tag along with his older brother.

Having spent a lifetime as a caregiver and as an observer of personal trial, he offers insight on daily life with loved ones afflicted with a devastating disease. Rick was much impressed with Dennis and his ability to overcome just by making the decision to better his life and then work at improving it on a daily basis. Rick learned that people can change. He learned that helping hands are needful and appreciated. Most of all, he learned that life can be a wonderful thing even in the most dire situations if we allow ourselves the blessing of enjoying the journey.

Rick Dean lives with his sweetheart on the Wasatch Front in Utah. He loves every opportunity to share the inspirational story of his brother, Dennis. Rick is currently working on other inspiring life stories.

My Review:

Summer of Anger, Summer of Peace is a true story of two brothers, the main character Dennis has Muscular Dystrophy. As the story evolves the brothers Rick who wrote the book and Dennis go through many of life's challenges by each others side.

Mr. Dean took great care to make sure that this story was authentic of his relationship with his brother Dennis. The story not only is about Dennis accepting his reality of Muscular Dystrophy, but the story is also about a brothers love, struggles, and all that two people can go through. As we the reader watches Rick take on the role of caretaker to his older brother, we are taking on a journey unlike any journey I have ever had the pleasure of taking. This story sometimes feels more than just a story of Dennis, it also feels like a story of Rick who is a devoted brother, who by no fault of his own has a myriad of feelings as well.

This story will pull on the heartstrings, and cause you to laugh, smile and break ones heart. I cried, I laughed, and I took in what this story had to offer. Once anyone reads this book they are a better person for having taken this journey with the author and his brother Dennis from childhood to adults. I highly recommend this story of great courage and brotherhood. I realized as I read about Dennis' change of heart in his summer of peace, all the ways that Dennis had chosen to do for others. This only made me rethink what I am doing in my life to be more helpful and accepting of others. I enjoyed this story so much, I will recommend it to my book club for next years reading.

I recommend this book for anyone. I give this story a 4 start. Thank you to Ballyhoo Publishing for allowing me the opportunity to read this book. I was not paid for my review. The comments are mine.


Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Kirby Puckernut and the Christmas Surprise

Kirby Puckernut and the Christmas Surprise

 What a fun time of year to review books, I am thankful to Media Guests for allowing me the opporutnity to review this book. The words are my own, I was not paid for the review, instead I was given a free copy of the book for an honest review.

About the Book:
You are meeting one of the greatest secrets in my toyshop: an Els Mere elf! His name is Kirby Puckernut, and he’s full of Christmas Magic…        – Santa

Kirby Puckernut is Santa’s cleverest little elf. While dreaming up marvelous toys for good girls and boys, Kirby has his best idea yet – a real elf in every home, all through the holidays, spreading Christmas Magic! Santa finds the perfect family and allows Kirby to serve as the test elf for the first momentous

From December 1st through Christmas Eve, Kirby travels each night to Els Mere to make toys and bring news to Santa, and returns to the family each morning with notes from Santa and other surprises.
Fun and adventure are at every turn, but not everything goes as planned…  Will Kirby’s idea be a success?
Bring the character and warmth of author Alicia Richardson’s holiday creation into your home this Christmas season. Kirby is a tradition the whole family will adore. Celebrate Christmas this year, and for many years to come, with Kirby Puckernut and the Els Mere elves!

About the Author:
Alicia Richardson has created a new Christmas classic with her children’s book, Kirby Puckernut and the Christmas Surprise.
Alicia Richardson resides in Salt Lake City, Utah, with her husband and four children. She has always had a flair for storytelling, and has given life to a special little elf named Kirby Puckernut.
From Alicia:

This magical story came about when Santa sent one of his elves, Kirby Puckernut, to live in our home at Christmastime. Kirby was creative, very fun and persistent. It wasn’t enough for him to simply observe our family and help deliver my children’s gifts – he wanted to get to know them. Our family has enjoyed the magical days of Kirby’s visits year after year.
Come share in our tradition – invite Kirby and the Els Mere elves into your home this Christmas season!

My Review:

The story of Kirby is a heart warming tale about an Elf who spread Christmas magic. Going between Els Mere and the home of a family the Harborsen's who needed to be reminded of what Christmas is all about, especially their 13 year old daughter Izzie. The storyline is a fun creative way to bring magic into any home that reads this book. This book with the beautifully illustrated pictures, glossy pages is an wonderful book to add to any Christmas reading Collection. I read this to my children ages 11, 10 and 6, they thoroughly enjoyed this story.

I would highly recommend this book with 4 stars, because the story is that well done. I would recommend this book to any family young or old. Grandparents should also have this book in the home to read to their grandchildren. 

If you would like to know more, you can go to Kirby's website here. Or Like the Facebook page of Kirby here.

Additionally, Alicia Richardson, author of Kirby Puckernut, hopes that you will share in another of her family traditions. Support Kenya Keys as they build educational opportunities in rural Africa. For every book sold $1 will be donated to Kenya Keys.  Kenya Keys provides scholarships, builds schools and libraries, and creates leadership opportunities in an area where learning is as treasured as water. Kenya Keys has been helping African youth via educational outreach since 2005.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Dancing in the Storm

 About the Author:
Shelly Maguire is the author of the newly released book Dancing in the Storm, owner of Ice Elements skin care products and appears regularly on HSN and the radio program, Strength in Sharing. She lives in Florida with her husband, Frankie Tedesco.
Watch Shelly's recent interview on FoxNY to learn just how amazing she truly is.  Television Interview
“Shelly’s life story is of hope, perseverance and courage. It will be an inspiration to many women entrepreneurs.
HSN is proud to have her as a partner.”
Mindy Grossman, CEO HSN

“Shelly is a visionary - she goes where others don’t because they are told they can’t” She defines the essence of
taking charge of life’s challenges!
Forbes Riley, TV host, author, keynote speaker, National Fitness Hall of Fame inductee

“I can’t think of anyone with more tenacity and drive than Shelly. She sets the standard for what it takes to succeed
in business and in life.”
Alisa Marie Beyer, Founder & CEO, The Beauty Company

About the Book:
What turns an angry adolescent and then a defiant teenager into an indomitable businesswoman who faced so many obstacles in life that she defied all odds for success? Told at the age of nine that she had a lethal disease that could take her life by the age of 18, for Shelly Maguire this was all she had to hear to push herself to the limits and stop at nothing to reach her goals.
Written with heart-pounding honesty and delicious humor, Dancing in the Storm takes the reader along on an emotional roller coaster ride through Shelly Maguire s multi-faceted career from the classroom to the boardroom. An entrepreneur, founder of multiple start-up companies and a skin care developer for several large companies, Shelly takes you inside the world of business, live TV (HSN) and infomercials. This TV and radio personality spells out her formula for success. Think like a child - - they never take no for an answer. You ll be startled and amazed at her confessions and grit, and then wish she were your best friend.

My thoughts and review:
Before I begin my review, I would like to apologize to Ms. Maguire for taking so long to post this review. I was supposed to have it done the end of July, then in August. I have had a crazy life, and just finished this reading. Second I would like to thank Media Guest for the opportunity to review this book. I was given a free copy of the book for my honest review.

I received this book while I was away on vacation this summer. I had great plans to finish it when my family went to on condo in the Mountains of Colorado; however, that weekend it rained and I found myself playing games all weekend to entertain my children.

I eventually started reading the book and was intrigued from the start. While reading the book I did become a little bored with the correspondence that sounded like the same thing repeated by different people, and there was a few times the story dragged on for me; however, over all I loved the story. I found the story heartwarming, genuine and filled with suspense and most especially love! I enjoyed getting to know Shelly Maguire, she is not only a go getter, she is such a kind person that it seemed everyone who knew her was drawn to her.  I could not imagine my life with Shelly's trials, she is couragous and strong. She shows the reader what hard work, determination and faith can do! 

I did find it interesting that Ms. Maguire was a typical teenager, and let nothing stand in her way. When I really started to settle in and read the book where I could not put the book down is when Frankie enters the picture. The relationship between Shelly and Frankie was so crazy, refreshing, and fun! I loved the book and would recommend it to anyone. With all the things this world has to offer, and so much negativity on television and in print, this story will warm your soul and remind you what is good about life!

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Shirley J: Whisk Bliss

 About the Product:

Revamp your kitchen....Revolutionize your cooking.

Shirley J is an exclusive food solutions company that sells just-add-water universal cooking, seasonings and bakery mixes. Their products have been time-tested by Master Chefs in commercial kitchens for more than 30 years! After 30 years, the products that have been proven in the most demanding commercial kitchens are now available for every home chef.

Their Best-Selling Product: Whisk Bliss
Whisk Bliss is a just-add-water cream sauce that makes for Alfredo, gravy, soups, sauces, dips and delights. It can be seasoned, salted and garnished, or mixed with cheese, tomatoes and veggies—for starters. Shirley J Whisk Bliss never separates, lumps or curdles, providing a no-fail base for countless saucy servings.
Shirley J Whisk Bliss uses a base of healthy sunflower oil, which gives it the velvety texture that cooks and consumers love. It contains a fourth of the calories of a made-from-scratch white sauce and has less sodium content than white sauce market alternatives. The Whisk Bliss also serves as a perfect substitute for any condensed cream soup. It is lighter and healthier with less sodium, fewer calories and easier on the food budget!

The proof is in the taste, and satisfaction is 100% guaranteed.
About Shirley J's Area Director:
Georgia Carpenter is one of Shirley J’s top Area Directors. This position gives Georgia the opportunity to reach out to homemakers across the United States to introduce a one-of-a-kind product: Shirley J's Whisk Bliss - a universal cooking base.

Georgia has been cooking for her family and friends for the past 50 years, and now that all of her children are grown and have families of their own, she can focus on her passion which is to save "home chefs" TIME and MONEY in their own kitchens! How? By sharing the benefits of cooking with Whisk Bliss! It is universal, simple and fool proof, delicious, economical and healthier than other creamy alternatives.

Comfortable in her unique friendly style, Georgia's monthly calendar is filled with teaching in-home cooking demonstrations, exhibiting Shirley J's products at County Fairs, Boutiques, at Women's Expo's, or wherever an opportunity arises. Georgia says, “I love the privilege of sharing Whisk Bliss with everyone! One taste is all it takes, then a flood of menu applications start to roll. Whisk Bliss is the most significant cooking discovery in decades!”

My Review:
I must say that I had read a lot about Shirley J products over the last few years and I had wanted to try and see what the product is all about.

My experience with Whisk Bliss was probably a reflection of circumstances more than the product. The instructions for Alfredo called for adding cheese, my family does not eat cheese, so I thought maybe I could get away with it by just adding salt and pepper. I personally do not like Alfredo anything, but I was making food for a night of football, I thought this would be a good time to try out Whisk Bliss. My kids ate it, but I did not care for it. My husband ate it, but he added a few things to his to enhance the flavor.

I wish I had used it to make sausage gravy with biscuits. I could tell that it was a great thickener, but I did not like what I did with the mix. No matter what I added it had no flavor. Therefore, I hope you all read other blogs who loved this product and do not count on my review, because I am sure that mine was a circumstance kind of review, without all that yummy cheese, there was no flavor.

I was given a free packet of Shirley J's Whisk Bliss to try for my honest review from Media Guest.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

The Path

 About the Book:
The Path by Joe Holmes is a book containing the culmination of forty eight years of research on the topics of success and health.

“I have read and attended nearly a thousand books, seminars and speakers about success and health that have led me to write “The Path.” My years of research about herbs and health at herb-discovery.com have helped me add important knowledge about health for our life’s path.”
- Joe Holmes, author

Everything in our Universe has a Positive and a Negative aspect
- You cannot attract positive until you remove negative.

Joe searched for years to discover how to replace negative with positive and could not do it until he discovered the LSFT process.

It teaches you how to make success, health and even money flow to you like a magnet! It can make you a better and happier person as it repairs relationships in your life. Many who have tried it report how it has empowered their lives. It costs nothing yet is the most powerful mental process you will ever use. It can heal your life and those around you and remove stress. If everyone in the world would use this it would eliminate hate and bring peace. It can help you cope with grief, post traumatic stress and change negative emotions to positive.

Removing negative emotions is an important step to better health. It changes hate, frustration and anger to love. It works even if you do not believe it, or believe it will work.
About the Author:
Joe (Joseph) William Holmes started working at the age of six, when not in school, for his
father who was a masonry contractor. At the age of sixteen he was an accomplished brick
mason. He also worked in his Aunt and Uncle’s grocery store while finishing high school,
before attending college for two years.

Joe spent the next five years in service, two years on a ministry mission for his church living with the
Native Americans in Montana, Wyoming, North and South Dakota. The other three years were serving his
nation in the Army which he left as a personnel sergeant and a secret documents NCO.

He spent the rest of his professional life in the construction industry where he held many positions and
titles, both in the private and commercial sectors. His career was cut short by an illness that caused, among
other things, chronic fatigue and included up to twenty hours of sleep daily.

Unable to work, he began to research herbs and health over the next fifteen years, leading him to a gluten free diet and the slow return of energy and health. His focus now is writing and publishing his health
research and books. In 1966 he married his beloved companion, Ann Despain, and together they have
raised six wonderful children.

My Review:
First I want to apologize for being late in this review. I thought finished all my reviews and posted them before I left for vacation, but low and behold, I sure did forget one. Then I had endless Internet issues, so I finally decided to do it once I returned home.

I read this book, with one of those pre-conceived expectations of what another self-help book would be; however, to my delight the approach was an about face to what most self-help books offer. The first thing I noticed was he place of God in The Path, as a religious woman, I like putting God first in my life. The second thing is that this book uses nothing new, just parts of life that have taken a backseat to rude, disrespectful people. This is using the LSFT process. The LSFT process stands for Love, Sorry, Forgiveness, and Thank you. Manners, who would have thought? Such a refreshing book on how to invite people to put God first, and use manners in their life to create a happier whole person.

I found this book and its positive outlook refreshing and I would highly suggest it to anyone looking to find themselves. Being happy, healthy and successful is the golden nugget in life. This book explains and walks he reader through each step along the way. I thoroughly enjoyed this book.  Mr. Holmes wrote this book in a way that is easy to understand, easy to read and completely reader friendly. I give this book 5 stars.

I recieved an electonic version of this book from Ballyhoo Publications a company I review books for. I was not paid for my honest review.


Friday, June 15, 2012

Tension Point:

 About the Author:
Kim Fletcher IS A MASTER LIFE COACH, Author and Professional Speaker. Her extensive background as a Physical Therapist, College Instructor, Disability Advocate and Entrepreneur have equipped Kim with skills in the areas of facilitating freedom, unleashing potential and creating lasting results for clients. The Tension Point concepts emerged from more than a decade of coaching clients to break through invisible walls separating them from reaching their ultimate potential personally and professionally. Kim works globally and relaxes at her favorite beach in Maui, Hawaii.
 About the Co-Author:
Harold Elmore IS AN AWARD-WINNING ENTREPRENEUR, Business Trainer and former Pilot. As a successful Business Owner, his greatest passion is condensing his vast experience into powerful strategies and systems to allow individuals to achieve success in business while achieving fulfillment in life. In this book, Harold condenses his experience, struggles and achievements to enhance the journey of those who are ready to explode beyond the nine-to-five box. He and his beautiful wife, Donna, can be seen on their bright yellow Harley Davidson on the scenic highways across the country.
About the Book:
“Whether your vision is big or small, The Tension Point will take you on a journey from dreamer to achiever.”
—Dr. W. Carl McMillan

We have become conditioned for status quo, yet an echo deep within leaves us longing for more. We each face our own tension points where we must determine if we will press through to discover what we are truly capable of. This book you hold in your hands will leave you:
Awakened to your true identity and potential
Catapulted from mere goals to a life of vision
Positioned to lead with excellence

My Review:
I know what you are thinking. another self-help book right? How many are on the market? The Tension Point has a much different feel than most books of this genre I have read. Ms. Fletcher and Mr. Elmore team up to write a practical book that will help anyone who is willing to put a little effort into this book.

When I received this book, I grabbed my highlighter (I'm a graduate student so I highlight everything) and sat down to read. I found this book more highlighted than not. This to me means that many of the topics resonated with me. I found myself sitting back and taking all the assignments to see where I stood on each subject.

This is an easy read, yet it will require effort if one expects t see some results. I highly recommend this as Kim tried to help the reader understand what a life coach can help individuals understand about self.

Just as I had hoped this book gave me a fresh look at myself, it helped me tune into ideas I had not thought about. I loved this book and recommend it with a five star!

I was provide a copy of this book from Media Guests, I was not paid for my review, the review is entirely my own words.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Speed of Light

 About the Book:
Living the life of his dreams, and married to his longtime sweetheart, Pierce Black has been selected to be the first to pilot the Speed of Light plane. He is destined to make history like John Glenn and Neil Armstrong. Pierce’s idyllic world screeches to a halt when, three weeks before the historic flight, his wife is killed in a tragic car accident.

Determined to carry on with the groundbreaking flight in spite of his grief, Pierce is changed forever when, during the flight, his body is transformed into light. The shock throws Pierce into a deep coma and when he wakes time is not relevant to his mind. Suddenly able to step into visions of the past, Pierce struggles to make sense of what he sees as he learns that his wife’s death was not an accident, but murder and the murderers are still after him.
As Pierce and the beautiful attorney, Vanessa Trace, sort through the bizarre attacks on Pierce and his vivid visions of the past, they cannot substantiate any evidence to his claims. In a frantic race to stay alive, Pierce and Vanessa find themselves matching wits with a conspiracy with seemingly endless resources and a police department convinced Pierce is a murderer, while at the same time they question whether or not Pierce himself is crazy.

Standing out from traditional suspense novels, Speed of Light is fast-paced, intelligent and intricately layered with mind expanding concepts.
About the Author:
Lee Baker is the president of Sandman Studios, a visual effects and animation company and has taught courses at UCLA Extension, Loyola Marymount University and the University of Utah. He is the author of the illustrated books “Humbug, A Christmas Carol” and “Beau and the Beanstalk,” and now his latest thriller “Speed of Light.” Lee lives in Utah with his wife and five children.

My Review:
Lee Baker knows how to keep one on the edge of his or her seat, and not want to put the novel down. I personally found the story of Pierce Black a compelling storyline that kept me up reading half the night away without a thought of being tired. I read this fast paced novel in less than a day.          

Pierce has the family of his dreams, the job of his dreams and is in the middle of the happiest time of his life. His wife a beautiful woman named Catherine is working with her own brother to bring to light the corruption in the company that Pierce works for; however Pierce does not want to have anything to do with this information and ignores the attempts of Catherine and her brother Cole to tell him what they found.

Pierce has a life changing experience when he flies his test plane, this experience alters how he thinks, and sees things. At this point the novel becomes so captivating that it becomes difficult to put the it down, even when common sense says to do so. Catherine’s sister Vanessa helps Pierce solve the mysteries surrounding his dreams, his life, and the death of his wife and brother-in-law (Vanessa’s sister and brother).  

This novel is gripping from the beginning to the very last page. I would highly recommend Mr. Bakers book Speed of Light to anyone. I personally do not like suspense novels, and this one is filled with suspense, yet I loved this book. Mr. Baker’s imagination fills each page and begs the reader to keep going. I give this novel five stars.

I was provided a copy of this novel by Media Guests for my honest review, I was not paid for a postive review.


Thursday, May 31, 2012

Summer Fit: Exercises for the Brain and Body While Away From School

 About the Series:
Summer Fit Learning’s series of educational bridge workbooks aims to prepare children mentally, physically and socially. Fitness is key to the process.
Research shows that students score lower on standardized tests at the end of the summer than at the end of the school year, and are more likely to gain weight while on break. Many exercise experts believe children today are too sedentary, which is contributing to the excess weight in one-third of children in the United States. This has created a groundswell of interest in implementing a whole body approach to education in general while specifically getting kids more active during the summer.
The SUMMER FIT workbook series aims to create fun learning experiences to help children retain and carry over knowledge from the previous school year. Additionally, by presenting a “whole body” approach with lessons and activities that focus on the body and the brain, Summer Fit helps parents and children capitalize on the mental and social benefits of physical exercise. “Summer should be a time for children to step away from their computers and televisions and exercise their brains and bodies naturally,” says series creator George Starks. “Kids should reconnect with themselves, their families and their friends on a personal level. They should be outside playing, but also brushing up on academic skills from the previous year, or those that they may find more challenging than others. They should also read and apply other classroom skills in enjoyable and entertaining ways.”

About the Author:
George Starks founded Summer Fit Learning in 2010 after leading the national bestselling Summer Bridge Activities workbook series for Rainbow Bridge Publishing for 10 years. After the company was sold to North Carolina-based publisher Carson-Dellosa, Starks continued to build and lead a new summer learning division for Carson-Dellosa for four years.
Starks believes that riding a bike and reading a book with a child this summer can make or break their school year. The espresso-making, bike-riding, educational publisher is the creator of the new Summer Fit™ workbook series. He would like nothing better than to inspire parents to put down their smartphones and computers long enough to ride bikes, play at the park and read with their children this summer – some traditions should not be left behind.
Even as a young child, Starks was aware that mental and physical activity are interwinded. The two orientations – which Starks feels represents a balanced approach to learning – are missing in many homes today. Fortunately, they are being adopted by parents and teachers around the country who are taking notice of what researchers are saying about this "whole-body" approach.

My Review:
This is the 2nd year I have reviewed Summer Fit and the 2nd year I will use this wonderful resource for parents. This year I am reviewing the First to Second grade book. As a mother who liked to keep my children busy in the summer, and keep their minds remembering what they learned in school. My husband and I put together every year a summer school program for the kids, that includes reading, writing, piano, math and field trips. Last year we traveled and used three of the books to keep our children sharp and ready for school in the fall. On a very personal note, this wonderful resource helped my children in school, they remembered what they had learned, keep their minds thinking about math facts and yet, there was more involved.

What is more involved? Let me explain based on the book I am reviewing in the first to second grade manual, there is not only the reading, writing, and math which helps these little kiddo's stay sharp on their skills with just a few minutes a day, but there is also a fitness, nutrition and values piece to this book. My children love this all around well rounded book. They look forward to the activities and learn what they can do to be more nutritious each day.

Each page is colorfully illustrated with pictures that are appropriate for the age. The Values piece is wonderful, in the first week, they learn about Honesty for an example, and that is taught using Abraham Lincoln. Week 5 is about Kindness and the illustration is based on Princess Diana, my daughter will love the activities surrounding this value.

I highly suggest this resource to help parents keep their children's minds sharp and teachable all summer long. My three children love the books and I have never had one time that they fought me about learning. They were always anxious to see what the next day would bring them. I am very excited to start that up again tomorrow as our summer begins. I received a copy of this manual from Media Guests for my honest review, I was not paid to review this book. You can watch a video here:

I give this 5 stars!


Friday, May 11, 2012

A Piece of Time

About the Author:

Victoria Fielding is a mother of six, an educator, and a writer.  She is currently the academic director of a residential treatment center for troubled teens in Utah.  It is there that she works with some of the best kids in the world.  Victoria has had a life-long career in public and private education, having taught all ages, but mostly high-energy teens (and she still has her sense of humor—amazing!).
Victoria has lived a full and abundant life.  Her life experience provides much of the background for this novel.  Victoria is also mindful of all her ancestors, some of whom play a role in A Piece of Time.  Her great, great grandmother, Sarah, really did lose her best friend on the plains; Lillie—who loved Teancum dearly– really did misplace her button, which became a fob for her father-in-law’s watch; the farm house does exist, as well as the attic bedroom and the card-table gone mad.  Lastly, departed loved-ones have indeed returned to warn, to reassure, and to inspire the discovery of a golden find in a barn loft.
Victoria’s real claim to fame is her family of six awesome kids, their spouses, her two grand-daughters, and all of her other grandchildren waiting to take their turn on earth.  When she isn’t working with kids or playing with her grandkids, Victoria loves to hike, garden, write,  dance, scrapbook, and eat chocolate (yes, she’s addicted to chocolate).
It is Victoria’s sincere hope that when the last page has been read and the book cover closed, you will recall all the times YOU have been prompted, directed, warned, and comforted.  WHO are your guardian angels?

About the Book:
This is everyone’s story, not just Lilly Hunt’s. Like Lilly, who hasn’t endured peer pressure and fought low self-esteem? Who hasn’t been angry for their losses and heartbroken at losing a loved one? Whose life hasn’t been impacted with the scourge of an addiction? Who hasn’t stumbled under the weight of forgiving someone?
Or, harder yet, forgiving oneself? It isn’t only Lilly who questions why life is so hard, and what IS the point, anyway? Like Lilly, we wonder—when we set this world down—what will be behind death’s door?
Lilly discovers what lies far beyond that door.  And now, you just may too.

My Review:

A Piece of Time is a gripping story of a young woman Lilly Hunt. From the start of the novel I found myself thinking of Lilly as someone I knew, not me, but someone I recognized. Of course I do not know Lilly; however, her story is happy, sad, stomach turning and yet inspiring at the same time. I found my heart wanting to help Lilly, to hug her. This story will hit anyone where they live.

Lilly becomes stronger in the novel; I have to say I cheered at her revenge on Alex! Alex is a boy who loved to lie to girls, and treat them with little respect. The sad part was, I believe we all know guys like that, and there are many Alex's in the world.

As Lilly sits for her life review, this will make one sit and think about their own life, and what good or bad he or she has done. This review made me think about life, school, growing up. Somehow, I think that Lilly has lived more of a life at a young age then most people live in a lifetime...and that is not necessarily a good thing.

I would recommend this book to anyone who wants to consider his or her own life, and where he or she is in the process. I would recommend this book not as a light read, but as a thought provoking, novel that will open up one’s eyes. I would use this book with caution for younger readers, the novel is eye opening and graphic in spots. Life is about living, loving, forgiveness, and connecting to others. In this novel Victoria Fielding does a beautiful job of teaching that lesson!

I received this book from Media Guests for my honest review, I was not paid for this review.


Thursday, April 19, 2012

So you want to start running....AGAIN

About the Book:

So You Want to Start Running…AGAIN! is Jeff Stevenson’s first venture into the realm of authoring a book. Jeff says that he has many passions, but with the exception of his family, he has not experienced one thing that he is truly passionate about until he started running again. “I am not an expert but I liked running in High School, after I graduated and got, what I called domestic, I stopped running all together. Running was one thing that I was naturally good at in the athletic arena.”

In January 2011, Jeff began running again, something he had not done since he was in high school, 25 years ago. At the age of 45, he is not alone in his quest to get back into shape. So You Want to Start Running...AGAIN! is packed full of running tips that will inspire and motivate, many of the tips Jeff used to start him on his journey. This booklet is designed to jumpstart a persons desire to be more physically fit in their lives. As you read about Jeff's personal experiences you will find extremely helpful tips and be inspired to start or restart running... AGAIN! Enjoy Jeff's journey from tired to 10K.

About the Author:

Jeff lives with his family in Boise, Idaho. He has a beautiful wife and 3 wonderful kids. After a long term layoff from running, Jeff recommitted himself to getting healthy and rekindled his love for running.

In high school, Jeff ran track for Carterville High School in Carterville, IL. It really was the only sport he felt like he was built for. At 64 inches tall, Jeff had very strong legs and when he ran not too many could keep up with him. During high school, he only ran sprints and for the longest time he believed he wasn't built to run distance or anything beyond a quarter mile.
At age 30, when Jeff entered the Army he was required to run 2 miles in under 15 minutes. After 14 weeks of training, he ran 2 miles in 14:04 - a personal best. Today Jeff runs 6 miles in just over 1 hour. Roughly, 10 sustained minutes per mile. This may not be very fast for some, but for Jeff it is an unbelievable personal achievement.

Jeff continues to run and log his success on runnerslog.com. He inspires and motivates others to get moving. "Do this for yourself and only yourself. You'll feel good about any progress you make!"

My Review:

I am not a runner, and never have been. However, my husband has been a runner off and on throughout our marriage. Reading this book Jeff Stevenson reminds me of my own husband.

Mr. Stevenson gives sound advice, to make sure you first see your doctor before starting any type of running. I liked how honest and frank Mr. Stevenson was in this book about the hard work, and how to log distance, eat healthy, set goals, warm ups and cool downs, and there was also a chapter on not becoming discourage.

I found this book (its really a pamphlet) to be extremely helpful, and shows that it is never too late to start a program. I recommend this book to anyone wanting to start running again. The book is motivational and has many resources for various helps throughout.


Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Ravens Song

A few months ago I was privileged to read the first novel Echoes of Savanna and review the novel. I loved the novel and when I had the opportunity to read Raven's Song I jumped at the chance to continue reviewing.

About the Book:
The next generation has come into its own. Raven, Savanna’s impulsive, impetuous daughter has begun her own epic journey. Raven was born in a time of turmoil and war. She decides her calling in life is to be a soldier. Sacrificing the shelter and security of Haven, Raven puts herself at risk to save others. She finds herself in perilous situations and thrust into the role of leadership despite her own misgivings. The Siren’s Song of Haven is continuously singing to her. She could be safe, protected, sheltered and warm if she returned to Haven and its stone walls. But, is it her destiny to live in the walls of Haven, or is there another destiny in store for this child of Haven?

About the Author:
Lucinda Moebius grew up in the mountains of Idaho and Eastern Oregon. Her mother taught her to read when she was four years old and since that time books have been her constant companions. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in English Teaching, a Master’s in Educational Leadership and is currently pursuing a Doctorate in Education. Lucinda supports her writing habit by teaching High School and College. She currently lives in Boise, Idaho with her husband, stepson and their dog and cat.

Find me on Facebook: Lucinda Hawks Moebius

Website: http://www.lucindamoebius.com/

Buy on Amazon: Echoes of Savanna: http://www.amazon.com/Echoes-Savanna-Parent-Generation-ebook/dp/B006RM66QM/ref=pd_rhf_gw_p_t_2

Raven’s Song: http://www.amazon.com/Ravens-Haven-Generation-Novels-ebook/dp/B006YJ92GO/ref=pd_rhf_dp_p_t_2

My Review:
One of the endearing things I love about Raven, is her ability to be smart, kind and resourceful. From the first book I read when she was a little girl, she has always been a favorite. In the case of Raven all grown, picks up where Raven left off in the novel Echoes of Savanna. Raven had gone into the military, she has chose a life away from Haven the one home she has known and where her family still resides. Haven is a safe place, a place of refuge from the ongoing storms surrounding the United States at the time.

In this novel Raven is deployed with the military, where she finds several avenues to help children. Her mother sends her many supplies from Haven, which she saves to help others. There are so many times in Raven's experiences that I was tense just waiting to see what happened. She is one lady that lived a full life. Once Raven returned from the war, her life became facinating and filled with suspense. Raven became involved in a community that she was spying on, and her experiences there made me keep turning pages through the night.

Raven, finally had an opportunity to confront Emily, the woman who worked for her mother for years and stole her mothers embryo's. I thought that this story line was not only facinating, but it brought back many memories and emotions I had not considered. Raven was one strong women, she handles a gun as well as any man I know.

Raven's Song is a wonderful novel and I recommend this to anyone who loves an adventure. You do not need to read Savanna to follow along, the transition into its own novel is wonderful. Lucinda Moebius is a wonderful story teller, I would read any novel she wrote. I appreciate the opportunity to review this novel, and to have an opporutnity to continue following the story. I recieved this novel through a free promotion on Amazon, and read this via my Kindle app on my cellphone.


Saturday, February 18, 2012

Intro to Army Life

About the Book:
Intro to Army Life
Intro to Army Life: A Handbook for Spouses and Significant Others Entering the Army Lifestyle was created to encourage, educate and inspire those entering the army culture. No one hands you a guidebook when you enter Army life; you either have to learn the hard way or stumble upon resources on your own…until now. Intro to Army Life gives you the tools and resources necessary to make your transition into the Army lifestyle easier, less stressful and more fun. You don’t have to learn the hard way—all the information you need is here, ready to help you make the transition. Along with engaging personal narrative and stories, Intro to Army Life includes:
• Army hierarchy and social structure• 15 tips for dealing with a deployment• Perks of a military ID• Top 25 Army acronyms• Military discounts and how to find them• Top 10 resources for military children• Fun facts, such as where the term “military brat” originated• …and much more!

Intro to Army Life is an excellent resource for the individual reader or for companies promoting educational resources for the U.S. Army.

Category: Resourse, Military Life, guidebook
Page Count: 176 pages
Publisher: Aloha Publishing
Price: $ 10.95 soft cover, $ 2.99 e-book

About the Author:
Allison Mewes became an army spouse one week before her husband left for a three week Annual Training and then deployed for a year to the Middle East. While he was away, she wrote this book. Her experiences as a newlywed entering the army lifestyle, along with the humorous things that happened along the way, inspired her to help other military spouses and significant others make the transition into army life.
She owns Blue Bamboo Project Services and works as a project manager/event coordinator. Allison and her husband live in Boise, Idaho.

My Review:
I was given this book via Media Guests to review, I was not paid for my review and these are my own words.

I am an Army Wife of 32 years, a dependent daughter of an Army Warrant Officer for my whole life. So between the two I have had 50 years of experience with the military lifestyle. My father and husband are now retired; so I was anxious to read this book so that I could see what Mrs Mewes had to say. I consider myself a seasoned Army wife, and looked at the book with a critical eye.
What I found was a wonderful resource for any company commanders wife to pass out to newly married solders or families that are new to the military lifestyle. When my husband was a company commander 20 years ago in Hawaii, we had so many new wives that were on the island, I wish I had then this resource to help explain what these women should expect.
This book is written in gender neutral, for our "be all you can be Army", which is pretty awesome. However, my husband was an Army Ranger Infantry Officer and there were not any women that worked with him. That is why I refer to my desire for resources for the wives, because I never had to deal with male spouses.
This book was full of information that was easily accessible from other places, rank charts, uniform pictures, chain of command, and branches of the service among other things; however, this book is wonderful because it has everything compiled into one place. Mrs Mewes also gave a list of the top 25 acronyms, I tested myself before I looked at the answers, even after 12 years retired I still remember what these mean. Overall, this is a book filled with information for military families to use as a resource. I honestly believe that every company commanders wife should have a stack of Intro to Army Life ready to pass out. I would even venture to say that every ROTC across the US should have this books handy for the girlfriends/wives to either purchase or hand to them to learn.

I agree that being a military spouse or significant other is not for the faint of heart, there is a huge responsibility today, with soldier being placed in harms way, the spouses are expected to take on a greater responsibility.

This book/resource will help one navigate the experience and enhance the experience just because knowledge is power. I enjoyed reading this book, there is humor throughout. I supposed just little phrases that I had remembered from our military days, like "suck it up", "if the army wanted you to have a wife they would issue you one"and of course my favorite because my soldier said it more than I ever thought humanly possible Hooah!
I recommend this book with a 5 star rating!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

The Lover and The Madman: Memoirs of Joe K.

About the Book:
Touched by the light in his eyes, the spirit in his heart, and the inspiration of his words, Joe K will take you on an unforgettable adventure. You will laugh when you want to cry, love when you want to hate, and keep going when you want to quit. In time your life is different for knowing him and you don’t even know why.
The Lover and The Madman, is a book of self-discovery and philanthropy, of sexual awakening and globe-trotting. It’s the story of a man who has touched and helped so many, and here he has shared it with us, another gift.

About the Author:
Joe K. shows what beauty there is in loss and what victory there is in surrender. Through his personal experiences Joe shares a peaceful message of faith, hope, and recovery in the twelve steps.
From his idyllic childhood in the ranching and mining towns of the Pacific North West, Joe’s life takes him to the glittering nightclubs of the 1960′s where his career as a performer brought his great success, and where his very personal journey began. From gutters and flophouses of San Francisco to the luxury resorts of South America, Africa, Europe and Asia, Joe shares his exciting journey to spiritual and personal awakening and finding self-acceptance and love.
Today Joe is retired and makes his home in Boise, Idaho where he spends his time with his 2 dogs, large family, and many wonderful friends

My Review:

The Memoirs of Joe K is a book full of life. From the first page to the last, this book is filled with stories about the life that Joe lived. I love to hear about people and know them, this book is full of description. One thing that I can say is that Joe lived life to the fullest.

This was a good read; however, if you are a person that does not enjoy reading something in journal form, then this is not the book for you. If you enjoy being uplifted, reading about the adventures in the life of one person then this is absolutely the book for you. If you read this story with an open heart, you will come out a better person than you started!

I was given a free copy of this book from Media Guest this was for my honest review and I was not paid for a positive review.


Friday, February 3, 2012

Sasha, Extraordinary Dachshund

About the Author:
CJ Adams wrote this memoir to let all animal guardians know there are many healing options available for their treasured pets. During her research she began the process of healing from the loss of Sasha and now begins a search for her next little friend. CJ is honored by those that honor Sasha’s memory by reading their story. CJ is happily married to Mel, and lives in Boise, Idaho.

About the Book:
CJ Adams pens a warm and entertaining tale of life with an exceptional dachshund. A friendship that endured paralysis and a cure through acupuncture and holistic medicine. You will enjoy every page of this heartwarming journey through the lives of the very precocious Sasha; the devoted, but not too smart Miniature Pinscher/Chihuahua mix, Squirt; the enduring pack-leader and CJ's husband, Mel; and CJ, the woman who loves them all with every fiber of her being. All animal lovers understand that each pet that comes into our lives is special but that sometimes you are blessed with an extraordinary animal. For CJ that was Sasha. This memoir is about a cycle of life involving family, friends, paralysis, other pets, aging and loss. When faced with the possibility of euthanizing a 4-year-old Sasha, a desperate CJ turns to holistic veterinary medicine and acupuncture to save her Extraordinary Dachshund and learns how to use this "alternative medicine" to complement traditional veterinary medicine. Be prepared to laugh out loud, wonder and learn something new. ENJOY!!

My Review:

I found the story of Sasha, Extraordinary Dachshund to be a fun, happy read. My family had a cute little black dachshund growing up so I knew how lovable these sweet dogs can be. This story did not disappoint as it brought back so many memories of my own dog.

Ms. Adams has an incredible love for dogs and the book talked about all the dogs she has had over the years. However, Sasha was interesting in that she didn't like go to out on the rain and snow, which my dog did not like to do it either. I loved how Sasha had such a warm relationship with her veterinarian Dr. Dawn.

This story is about all the good times with Sasha, and what her life was like in her later years. This is a heart warming story of ones love for an dog that is not only a dog, but a family member. If you love animals, love good stories, love to laugh and enjoy this book. I recommend the book and hope that you enjoy it as much as I did.

Ms. Adams has a way of telling a story that makes you want to be the owner of Sasha. These personal stories allows the reader to take a glimpse into the lives of one family and how extraordinary life can be with a pet like Sasha.


Monday, January 9, 2012

Full Tilt

This is the second book in the trilogy for the Rock Star Chronicles and Christian thriller. I recieved a free copy of this e-book from Media Guests for my honest review. I was not paid for a positive review.

About the Book:
Full TiltWhat Good Can Become of Psychotics, Meth Users, or the Mob?
In this sequel to Dark Star, rock star Everett Lester is eager to share the redeeming power of Christ’s love with the world through his music. But reaching his family in their twisted lives is another issue altogether. His gambling-addicted brother, Eddie, and the rest of his deteriorating family greet Everett’s attempts with disdain and hatred. When the Mob gets involved, dangerous threats become a haunting reality. And when Eddie’s son, Wesley—who blames Everett for his brother’s death—hooks up with psychotic Tony Badino, the two meth-using antichrists will stop at nothing to bring Everett down and secure his demise!

About The Author:

Talented storyteller Creston Mapes graduated from Bowling Green State University in 1983 with a BA in magazine journalism. Since then, he has written for major corporations, colleges, and ministries. He has written for Coca-Cola, TNT Sports, Focus on the Family, Walk Thru the Bible Ministries, and The Urban Alternative. His stories have been featured in magazines including Private Colleges and Universities, In Touch, Leaders for Today, and The Hockey News. Creston makes his home in Georgia.

My Review:

I was supposed to have this book finished in December, and then again on January 5th. But I am glad I took the time to read the whole book because this book was such a great story, of good and evil.

I do not usually read any books that are thrillers; I only agreed to read this book because it had a "Christian" voice. I am usually scared of my own shadow after any type of book or show on television that has suspense.

This book was FILLED to the brim with suspense. I loved the story of Everett and Karen Lester; and how they came to be a couple, and in this second book became powerful partners. In this book Everett is trying to help his brother and his family. This book took so many twists and turns.

The ending of this book was a POWERFUL testimony to me and others that take the time to read this trilogy. I am so glad I stepped out of my comfort zone and took the time to read these first two books. I will be thinking about these characters for weeks to come. I can not wait to read the third and final book in this series.

The author Mr. Mapes wrote a believable story of a family. This book by Mr. Mapes was well written, easy to follow and is the type of book you do not want to put down. I thoroughly enjoyed this book, every word on the page. I highly recommend this book as a follow up to Dark Star. You can read one book without the other, though to understand the full story it is best to read both books. This book was awesome!