Sunday, February 12, 2017

The Seekers a book review

I just enjoyed reading Amish Cooking Class, The Seekers, by Wanda E. Brunstetter.

I must say I found it such an enjoyable book.  I am a fan of Amish fiction, and have read many of her books, but I found this one to be especially enjoyable.  Lots of characters seeking a change in their lives, and they find themselves on Lyle and Heidi Troyer's farm, to take cooking lessons in a real Amish kitchen.  Like the quilt series books that Wanda published a few years ago, this book blends different backgrounds of the characters into a very enjoyable story.

This book does contain Bible scripture in each lesson, and it is put forth in a simple format of a recipe card.  The recipes shared in the book sound very good, and are included in the back of the book!

I had trouble putting this book down, and finished it way too quickly!  I found myself eager to see the book unfold, and there was a very good surprise ending to it.  It is a wonderful book based on simple principles, love, and forgiveness.

If you enjoy Amish fiction, this is a wonderful book.  I am hoping Wanda will follow it up with more books in the series!

I am receiving nothing for my opinion, but just hoped to share such an enjoyable read!  There are too  many harsh terrible things going on, and we all need a break from the media and everything out there.  This book is a just plain lovely place to visit and unwind for awhile.

Bravo, Wanda!  Thank you for that!






Sunday, February 5, 2017

This is what we are doing this year 😊

This is what we did last year, and the photo shows what we are going to do this year too!

Children are a heritage of the Lord.  We are thankful!



Monday, January 30, 2017

January's End

Hello Friends!

It's hard to believe but January is winding to a close, we had three inches of snow this morning, but most of it has melted off.  That is the most snow we have had this season, this is only  the fifth day of snow at all.  The rest were blowing gusting days, that came and quickly went. The wind is still bitterly cold.  I am hoping this does not follow the early months of 2015, when that happened we had six feet of snow come the first of February, and stay until the first week of March with many Artic blasts.  That year January went pretty much like this month has been, but I still hope for no repeats! 😊

 




You've seen her before, my little back deck angel sitting in her spot by the steps.   I will tell you a quick little story  regarding how she came to live with me.  Years ago there was a very old store that sat on the side of the road.  At one time, it had a store on one end, and a family lived on the other.  Through the years, people came and went and the old store ended up on both sides of the building.  It was perched on a very steep hill, and slowly began to slide off toward the river.  The people abandoned it, and only the front half of it was still attached to a concrete pad at the top beside the road, the other half hung loosely to the front, but the piers had long since fallen off into the river.

Now I confess I have always been driven to save stuff.  Long before hoarders came into fashion, I was dragging things home, especially wooden boards and furniture, and refinishing them, yes I still hoarded them too!  My Sissy Two and I decided it is a disease our Momma passed on to us,  she pretty much escaped much of it, but my poor Sissy One, and I did not!  Long before salvage became mainstream, I lived it, one board, one piece at a time.  Back to the angel, well you see she lived in front of the oval door of the house side of that old store.

At some point someone who lived there had salvaged a wonderful old white painted door with curlicues, and a big oval glass in the center, and hung it on that old place.  It was a handmade door from an old style farmhouse, at least eighty years old, probably more when it came to be there at the store.  By the time I came along, and the drop off to the river was immenient, the door had pretty much rotted along with the rest of the place.  Too late to save it, but the center section was still intact, with the oval glass.

Then the state came along, and finally decided to knock the thing down and run a four lane there.  Nowadays they condemn buildings, and post it to keep out trespassers, hoarders like me, from entering in but then they did not.  I guess they assumed no one was crazy enough to go in there anyway hanging off the road the way it was. But they did not know me, no I did not go in, but I did talk my Sweetie husband into trying to get the center out of that door.  He pried it loose from the outside.  Later I refinished it, painted it, and had a mirror put in it.  I kept it awhile, and yard saled 
it at some point, like countless other things I have done through the years.

The little concrete angel had had her head knocked off a some point, and whoever had her, had reglued it on, and when he rescued the door, he rescued her too.  I remember telling him, "they busted her head off, that's why they left her behind."   Yes, poor man that he is, he still has to live with me talking like that.  So now, she has been here ever since.  It really must have been better glue then than what we can buy now, because it never fell off again.  :)  So now you know, I confessed I am a hoarder.



A couple of gourds my son bought me when they went to the pumpkin patch in the falll.  They're out on the back deck too, drying, maybe rotting away.  If they survive, I'll wash they off with bleach water, and use them to decorate the table, if not I'll take all the seeds out and plant them all over his back fenceline to climb every tree there.  He would have a fit, if that happens!


Monday, January 23, 2017

Amish Weddings by Leslie Gould , a book review

I was given a copy of Amish Weddings, Neighbors Of Lancaster County, Book Three, by the Publisher, Bethany House to review.  I received no other compensation and the opinions are my own.

This book is not an easy book to read, there are multiple characters, and story lines within it as well as several people seeking direction.  I honestly did not like the lead characters for much of the book, Rose is selfish, and munipulative, and shows a lack of faith and commentment.  Her sister Lila, always the care giver of the family has put on blinders to most of Rose's faults other than a surface admission of her sister's self absorption.  Their Dad, Tim is distant and unable to express his feelings very well, and the Bishop, Gideon, seems by his own son Reubens assessment as slow, and too easy going with the Lehman family.  Reuben, having been jilted earlier by Lila is now courting Rose, but he seems unable to keep her, or to really gain access to her heart or tame her reckless nature.  Zane, having converted to the Amish faith, longs for marriage to Lila, but has yet to honestly relinquish his need to control situations.  Then enters Trevor, back from Afghanistan and suffering from post traumatic stress disorder, PTSD, who enters the book weeping, but then exits with tears shed round after his behavior.

This book features a quite a monopoly of interaction between families, friends, faith, and pain.  It is very disfunctional, and seemed to drag on too long to the pain.  This is similar to mainstream families with step,children, second marriage, infeldeity, drug and alcohol use, and vehicle accident and recovery.  That being said, if you enjoy the comparison of Amish family life to  "English" modern living, you would enjoy this book.  If you enjoy something more meatier than a simple Amish story line, you would enjoy the diverse character, and their entanglements. If you enjoy finally finding faith and forgiveness at the end of a story, you will enjoy the finish.  If you don't mind sufffering a bit along with storyline chracters, then you will enjoy the Lehman journey to wholeness.





"Will love be enough to fix what tragedy threatens?"

"Gregarious Rose Lehman, who's always the life of the Amish youth signings, is determined to marry the bishop's son, Reuben Byler, until ...,,,,Trevor"

"When her sister Lila is injured in a devasting accident, Rose finds herself with more freedom than she's ever experienced in her life.  Have her choices ruined her best chance at love, or is there another path to happiness she just hasn't seen yet?"

From the publisher.


Journey along to Juneberry Lane with the Lehman sisters, Lila and Rose in the Lancaster Amish Community, their struggles are as real as our own, and only trust in God can carry them through it all.



Friday, January 13, 2017

Happy weekend friends!

Hope you all have a wonderful happy weekend.  It is amazing that almost half the month of January has come and gone. Today was almost sixty degrees, cloudy, and misty rain after awhile.  I spent some time outside trimming away part of the hedgerow thicket.  There's still more to do, reaching high over my head with the pole trimmer is hard work, but necessary to get it off the edge of the roof.  Hoping to get back at it in the next several  days, it was too thick to tackle until the frosts have killed off much of the vines.  It's good to get outside, I stood and prayed aloud for my family, the neighbors,  our little town, and thanked God for each branch I was able to subdue as I worked. A respite in the midst of winter, will often take you by surprise when you get to enjoy it.  It was a good day to breathe    clean outdoor air, and the cool breeze was very refreshing!  I hope you have a wonderful weekend!  :)


 





Thursday, December 22, 2016

Merry Christmas



My Red Bird Boy, his lovely Bride, and my Grand Baby,  This is where my entire last two years have gone,  smile.  He is now nine months old, and of course, he has stolen all our hearts.  My Sweetie husband is still struggling in some ways, but we are blessed and happy.

I still linger around the blogs, and enjoy your posts very much.  I enjoy your generous hearts and the way you express your creativity.  I often read them, but too often don't comment as I ought.







I love the mountains, and  you will find me on the back roads, sometimes taking the little one along. He loves going bye bye.  Just today I had to bundle him up, cold as it was, and take him out to watch the water rushing over the creek.  He loves being outside, and we have many nice little quick jaunts out the door.  When I get to their house, the big dog outside lets them all know I am there.  Then those two marauders inside have to go out, even if they went just before I got their.

After that the baby has to have his turn,  he knows what walk, and wooders (the dogs),mean.   It means he is next!  I am not on a leash, but I feel like I am, they all lead me where I ought to go.  Whether I want to go or not!

Life is good in the woods, and I go whenever I get the chance.  Hoping for more wonderful days in the new year headed our way.  Time has gone so swiftly, and though many things have been sad, or frustrating, there have been so many good times.  I am always amazed to look around, and see the goodness of the Lord.  He has been so good to me!

Just came by to say,"hello".  I am still here,smile.

I hope you have a wonderful Merry Christmas, and a joy filled New Year.

I had a young friend tell me tonight, he is ready for Christmas.  He said their tree is not big, but there are enough presents around it, that it makes it look bigger.  He said he thought he had everything covered.  You know, even when you don't have a lot of material things, there are always good things to fill in your places here and there, to cover you, in an abundant way.    It's a matter of perspective, I think.


I hope even if things aren't all the way you would like, that there is much good in your Christmas.
God bless us everyone!

Make the most of what you've been given, and like ole'  Ebenezer Scrooge, celebrate Christmas every day  in your  hearts.  keep it!    He had to go through a lot of pain, but in the end, he was jumping up and down on the bed, and sharing the love and hope he found in his heart.

Remember the journey to Bethlehem of Joseph and Mary, and the true gift that was given!  Like those shepherds out in the field keep  watch,and go and see the Miracle in the manger.

I am reminded this late frosty icy night, the best gifts come in the most simple of circumstances.

Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Hello October! And A Review Of The Wish By Beverly Lewis

Hello friends!  My favorite month has come, I simply love this time of year!    All the mountains have come alive with color, and the breeze is sweeping over the ridges.  Just last night I needed a bit of heat in the old home place, and a blanket across the foot of the bed.  The dogs fur has begun to thicken, and the wild grapes have been  heavy in the hedgerows.

      




  

It is a wonderful time to be alive, and just be grateful.  I admit I have shunned the news, having my stomach turned  because of the political mess I hear of.  Enough has been said on both sides of the fence, and I have no need of being inundated daily by the snarling dogs of hatred coming from people who should conduct themselves with dignity, and a desire for good for our country. I just plain pray!  


Our darling grand boy is now seven months, and brings us great joy, and a chance to laugh and smile, and look for energy we thought we'd lost!  He is a smiling bouncy boy with one tooth, but more coming in, and full of seemingly endless energy, and is just joy to us in our hearts.  We took him over to the old grist mill, and picnicked listening to the band and munching good food cooked and served by the local Ruritan group. Oh yes, we had to buy some fresh ground corn meal to make bread with here at home.   There is nothing like fresh ground meal and flour.  I am blessed!





I had the pleasure of reviewing a wonderful Beverly Lewis book,  The Wish.   It was supplied by Bethany House for a review, and I enjoyed it so very much.  If you enjoy Amish fiction, you certainly will enjoy this wonderful book.  Mrs. Lewis is my favorite author, and she always has deep insights that make me think, and ponder what her characters are really dealing with.  I love the settings and background she used for this story of Leona and her friendship with Gloria,  and their desire to reunite after being separated by circumstances beyond their control.  When Leona gets the opportunity to see her friend again, she must step out of her comfort zone, and risk her heart in the process.  The ladies are able to reunite, and the true details of their long separation and absence unfold in the community among their families.  Thankfully Leona has a very devoted mother who has a wish of her own, and a very wise Bishop to guide the women ask they seek to do God's will, and not just their own.  The support of her family, and her beau helps Leona to realize how many things she did not know when the separation occurred.  It is a wonderful love story from end to end, an out flowing from the Father's heart to their own. It is an amazing reality to learn the Father does know your heart, and that your feelings and circumstances matter to Him.  The story is set among the beautiful rolling farms, and makes you feel welcomed and invited in to enjoy and savor simple pleasures, and quite hollows.  It also represents a deep sense of forgiveness, and just today I was reminded that to forgive someone is to pay a debt, and by doing so, we ourselves are set free! By forgiving, then we ourselves can be forgiven.  How great a love is that! Smile!

I received no other compensation for the review, but am simply thankful to have been able to share in Leona's tale.   

I hope you have a wonderful fall season, and are blessed in your own tale.  Life is a gift, I hope we can all make the most of the one we have been given.

Annie

Monday, September 12, 2016

Sweet As Honey book review

Looking for a fun, sweet read, this first in the series The Honeybee Sisters is it!
Written by Jennifer Beckstrand, meet the Christner sisters, Lily, Poppy, and Rose, along with their Aunt Bitsy, handsome Dan Kanagy, and mean spirited Paul Glick.

The first book in the series finds you deep in the Amish countryside surrounded by dandelions, bees, romance, secrets, mischief, and long deep pain of being bullied.  Words sting too, and so often, the  deep buried insults have a way of festering only to pop out later when you least seeing coming.

Forgiveness is a wonderful theme in the story of sisters bound in love, and submitting to someone when they've belittled you for years hurts Lily in more ways than one.  Thankfully humor and adventure come together  to the rescue just in time.  Follow along and enjoy this new series.  I know I did!

No compensation from anyone for this review,  I enjoyed it so much, and these are my own opinions.
Just promoting a clean enjoyable book that's fun and made me smile. :) If you like Amish fiction, you will enjoy this one.

Autumn is knocking at my door, and I am loving it!
Hope you all have a wonderful month of September!



https://www.amazon.com/Sweet-as-Honey-Honeybee-Sisters/dp/1420140205

Sweet As Honey book review

Looking for a fun, sweet read, this first in the series The Honeybee Sisters is it!
Written by Jennifer Beckstrand, meet the Christner sisters, Lily, Poppy, and Rose, along with their Aunt Bitsy, handsome Dan Kanagy, and mean spirited Paul Glick.

The first book in the series finds you deep in the Amish countryside surrounded by dandelions, bees, romance, secrets, mischief, and long deep pain of being bullied.  Words sting too, and so often, the  deep buried insults have a way of festering only to pop out later when you least seeing coming.

Forgiveness is a wonderful theme in the story of sisters bound in love, and submitting to someone when they've belittled you for years hurts Lily in more ways than one.  Thankfully humor and adventure come together  to the rescue just in time.  Follow along and enjoy this new series.  I know I did!

No compensation from anyone for this review,  I enjoyed it so much, and these are my own opinions.
Just promoting a clean enjoyable book that's fun and made me smile. :) If you like Amish fiction, you will enjoy this one.

Autumn is knocking at my door, and I am loving it!
Hope you all have a wonderful month of September!



https://www.amazon.com/Sweet-as-Honey-Honeybee-Sisters/dp/1420140205

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Happy Summer

Hello Friends!

I hope you are having a wonderful summer!

I know things in the world are not wonderful, but I decided to make the best of what I can, and just plain pray about everything.  That carries heaven's significance not mine, and I know not what tomorrow holds, I have only today.  I have come to a place where sometimes, I just can't do an
ything else.  So that is what I do, just plain pray!  It is enough to do it, with an expectant heart!

Our summer is flying by, the dog days are here, humid, hot and steamy. I have been enjoying my day lilies again this year, and some tomatoes, beans, cucumbers, and watermelon.

We often go out on the back roads, my kids, my son and daughter in law, call it piddlin' and joy riding I thought on that one, and I believe they are right.  It does bring me a lot of joy, and has for years longbefore my Seeetie came down the track, me, my Momma and older brother did that. 
 The four lane changed the exact route we used to go on, but the hills and valleys are still there. The sky opens up like a curtain, day or night and just plain brings me joy and quiet contentment.  Most times the crows or cattle or the peepers are the only music we listen to.  Unless it's Sunday night, then I love to listen to the radio preachers.  They bring me a lot to think about, where I stand and all, and where I need to straighten up, and quit acting like a heathen, as Sissy  Two would say, grin.  

Not so long ago, just a few weeks in fact, we celebrated my MIL's birthday.  It was good to get together, see the three new this year babies, and talk about the old days.  We missed many, several have gone on.  More new faces are round the table now, but they don't take the place of the others, they just make their own places in our hearts.  Mamaw was not happy, oh she tried real hard, but her heart was hurting over one of her own kids health issues, and she let that spoil her day.  You know it's just plain hard when you're hurting, over someone you love, and there is nothing you can do to change the situations.  Yes, I know too, but I think on that, and wonder if eighty five will find her 
next year, happy and joyous, or even more hurt, and in pain.  My Sweetie and I speak of what kind of 
legacy do we want to leave behind, what will they remember about me after I've crossed over?  I hope the good times. and not just the miseries of hard days.  I don't want to drink bitter water, and  share it around.  I'd rather pass round the good and be a blessing, and not a curse.

Everyday I  look for the good, sometimes it's just plain to heavy to try and carry other people's burdens, but you the best you can, but don't let it swamp you either.  There's a fine line to giving over to the good Lord burdens, and yet bearing someone else to Him first.  I fail at that!  I still try though, else then I be the one who is a burden to the next person.

Seek out joy, and hope.  You really do have a choice, it's on the inside, so dig deep and hold on with both your hands, tight.  It is a single fact of life, your heart belongs to God, and to you! Be a fragrant incense round His throne when you pray.  By all means, pray, but smell sweet to Him, as soon as you enter into His court.  Hope and joy do that, they smell good around His feet, so wash your prayers with the sweet living water.  It will flow up, and mend your aching hearts.