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Sunday, December 1, 2019

You and Your Horse by Dandi Daley Mackall ~ Book Review


Synopsis


Do you love horses? 

Author Dandi Daley Mackall does, and has written a book full of tips, ideas, and tricks for really getting to know and love your horse - and getting some love back. Whether you ride every day or once a year, this book is for you!

Review


I first read this book quite a few years ago, and really enjoyed it and appreciated the information in it. This book covers the nature of horses and how they respond, to how to deal with obstacles or problems. It was fascinating to discover more about how horses react, and how we as humans can relate to them and make them feel safe. If you love horses, I'd highly suggest picking this book up! :)

Saturday, November 23, 2019

Horses and Friends by Miralee Ferrell ~ Book Review



Synopsis


Note: This is the synopsis for Book 1. There are six books in the series so far. Don't forget to check out the other novels, too! :)


A horse of her own would be awesome. But Kate figures that might be a long way away, especially since she had to give up riding lessons and move to her late grandfather's farm. Besides, it would be a lot more fun to have a best friend to ride with. When Kate discovers a barn on their new farm that's perfect for a horse, and a dusty bridle too, she starts to think that her dream might come true. Then she meets Tori at school, who is totally the best. So when they discover a thoroughbred that appears to be all alone, could it be the answer to her prayers? Maybe. If she can convince her dad...and figure out what's going on with that horse.

Review


This is a review of all six books.

This was a fun series! It's probably one of my favorite horse-related fiction series I've found. The characters are so different, and yet work so well together--(although they still disagree.). ;) My favorite characters are Tori and Pete. Pete is Kate's little autistic brother. I loved how the author added that element into the novels!

I really liked how the characters' relationship with God were interwoven throughout the entire series. The characters struggled, had joys and triumphs and it was cool to watch them get through it all. Two of my favorite aspects of this series are the horses and the mysteries. The mysteries are fascinating, and not overly gross or creepy. They're just great mysteries 13-year-old kids are solving. :)

These are great novels for anyone who loves horses, friendships, and mysteries.

Saturday, November 16, 2019

National Collection Week - OCC ~ Show His Love

Today, I have something special for you all! This upcoming week, (November 18-25th), is National Collection Week for Operation Christmas Child. My family and I have packed boxes for years; and have always enjoyed it immensely!
My sister has really taken off with creating things for little kids. Last year, in the fall of 2018, I wrote this story for her. My sister creates absolutely beautiful and amazing items for so many little children. She is the one who gave me the inspiration to write this story. :) 

Show His Love


Excited, squealing kids swarmed around us and the yaks that carried the OCC shoeboxes. We began opening and passing out individual boxes and placing them in the children's waiting arms. As I looked past the sea of smiling faces, I saw a little girl, about three years old, peeking out from behind a tree. She was watching the commotion with wide, dark eyes. She looked like she wanted a box, but was hesitant to come near the excited jumble of kids.

I searched through the pile of boxes on the ground, grabbed a box from the girls' 2-4 section, removed the tape, and walked toward the little girl. She crept from behind the tree, and moved in front of it and sat down. She watched me, hungrily looking at the box.

Just looking at the small girl brought a soft smile to my face. I sat down next to her, and gently handed her the box.

She made a small noise of excitement, and opened the box. She spotted a doll, wrapped up in a fuzzy, adorable, turquoise and multi-colored blanket. A joyful squeal erupted from the little girl. Gently, but excitedly, she lifted out the doll. She stared at the baby doll,  then placed it in her arms and held it close, a happy smile on her face.

After holding the doll for several moments, she then continued to unwrap the other contents of the box, excitement still evident on her face. The items included: a toothbrush, a washcloth, soap, a puzzle, and a beautiful headband; not to mention other things. She loved it all; although her favorite item was definitely the doll. She held the doll like she would never let go. After a few moments, she looked up at me, smiled, and whispered, "Thank you".

This was what it meant to show the love of Jesus. I had never seen it expressed in such a way before. I loved handing out the shoeboxes, gazing into those beautiful eyes; watching them light up as they open their box. It fills you with a joy that cannot be expressed in words. I would not give up this experience for the world.

~~~



So, go pack a shoebox! Make a child's day; or you may even change their life! If you want to hear more, go to their website. :)

Saturday, November 9, 2019

The Prophetess by Jill Eileen Smith ~ Book Review


Synopsis


Outspoken and fearless, Deborah has faith in God but struggles to see the potential her own life holds. As an Israelite woman, she'll marry, have a family, and seek to teach her children about Adonai--and those tasks seem to be more than enough to occupy her time. But God has another plan for her. Israel has been under the near constant terror of Canaan's armies for twenty years, and now God has called Deborah to deliver her people from this oppression. Will her family understand? Will her people even believe God's calling on her life? And can the menace of Canaan be stopped?

Synopsis


This was a fascinating novel about Deborah! Deborah has always been a favorite Bible character of mine, and although I've read a few novelizations of her story, this one is definitely the best one I've read so far! 

This book focuses on Deborah's life and Barak's life. Barak is the leader of Israel's armies. I really liked how the author portrayed Deborah- strong, and as mother to all of Israel. The way that Deborah and Barak's relationship was played out was amazing. Barak knew and understood that Deborah heard from God- and that's why he wanted Deborah to come with him to battle. I also appreciated how Lappidoth (Deborah's husband) supported her and how he wasn't threatened by her position. He was instrumental in how people viewed Deborah as a prophetess and in showing the people that she was truly appointed by God. The people had a lot of respect for her as a result. He helped her learn to read, and taught her Adonai's laws. Back in the days of the Judges, most women didn't know how to read. Although we don't know for sure if Deborah's husband taught her to read, it is an interesting thought.

This book is an amazing portrayal of Deborah and Barak's story. It is still fiction, so don't take every word for fact. But it is a wonderful example of Who God is and how He gives His people chance, after chance. 

Saturday, November 2, 2019

The Silent Blade by Jesseca Wheaton ~ Book Review

Synopsis 


Dromiskin, Ireland. 925 A.D.

Eira has no greater desire than to see her life returned to what it once was-before her older brother Kevin's sudden disappearance four years earlier. But the simple life she hoped for seems unattainable; on the contrary, her life is about to get all the more complicated. 

When she suddenly finds herself and Willem, her twin brother, taken captive by someone who claims to be Kevin's enemy, things go from bad to worse. It soon becomes clear that she and Willem are to become bait in a trap set for Kevin, and Eira knows she must try to warn him. But how, when she herself is a captive? 

As mysteries of the past are unveiled, and loyalties are revealed, Eira realizes how precious her friends truly are. And when mortal danger threatens those nearest to her, will she be able to trust God with the lives of her friends and family?


Review


This was a great book! I really enjoy the way Jesseca writes!

The characters were amazing! Eira, Casimir, Willem, Kevin, and Stace- just to name a few. :)
I liked how Eira learned to use the sword, and was actually really good at it. It added a nice twist to the story. The suspense and twists in the storyline kept me guessing. It was fascinating to read more about Dromiskin, Ireland.

I really appreciated the faith theme: dealing with jealousy. If it is left alone to fester in your soul, it can lead to destruction. The Silent Blade was well researched and well written! 

Favorite quote: "Jealousy is like a sword, a silent blade that comes into our life and wrenches from us any good that may have been there before. And without Jesus' help it will never stop..."