Ps 91 (NKJV)

3 Surely He shall deliver you from the snare of the fowler, and from the perilous pestilence.4 He shall cover you with His feathers, and under His wings you shall take refuge; His truth shall be your shield and buckler.5 You shall not be afraid of the terror by night, nor of the arrow that flies by day,6 nor of the pestilence that walks in darkness, nor of the destruction that lays waste at noonday.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

U for unbelievable


I pray blessings on your families this Christmas. May God's favor be on you and may you be ever mindful of his presence.

Now to the A2Z meme post, which I've titled Unbelievable.

Why?

Because if you don't have a relationship with God, the Father through Jesus, His Son you probably find the whole idea of a baby being born to a virgin unbelievable. You may also find the rest of His story a tad unbelievable.

It's okay to question these things. Without questions, there are no answers. God is not offended with our questions.

I found a video on Youtube recently of a song called "I Believe" by Natalie Grant. It's several years old, but it expresses my beliefs and is very touching. Worship the Son with me and Natalie. :)


Blessings, Ginger

Friday, December 21, 2012

Review: "Doctor to the Rescue" by Cheryl Wyatt



Doctor to the Rescue by Cheryl Wyatt is a wonderfully sweet romance. Two struggling people get together for their mutual benefit, only to fall in love. Simple formula for a romance and an exquisitely written story by Cheryl. We all know the guy and the girl fall in love; it's a given. The joy in reading the story comes from the struggles they overcome to get there both external and internal.

Cheryl provides an engaging story that's easy to read and thoroughly enjoyable. I laughed and cried, and didn't want to put the book down.

Back cover:
Combat doctor Ian Shupe returns home from overseas with his most important mission: to raise his little girl. But Ian's a single dad, and working at Eagle Point's trauma center means having to find child care. When bighearted, struggling lodge owner Bri Landis offers babysitting in exchange for construction work, Ian accepts. He vows to keep his emotional distance from Bri, yet can't deny that his daughter is blossoming under her tender care. But is he ready to believe that his heart's deepest prayer may finally be answered?

Rating: 4.5 stars

Blessings,
Ginger

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Trips

Many things are pulling on my time this season, so I am taking the easy way out and posting some pictures of  some of the trips my family have taken over the years. I hope you enjoy.

2000 - Gatlinburg trip
2001 - My husband and I went to Paris, France
2002 Poconos
2004 Seaworld (and Disney)
2006 - Ohio (Cedar Point is on the other shore)
2008 - Wyoming (husband and I on a cattle ranch)

2010 - A visit to Grandma and Grandpa's
2011 - Gatlinburg (this is Cades Cove)

I hope you've enjoyed my walk down memory lane.

Blessings,
Ginger





Monday, December 17, 2012

Review: Wish You Were Here by Beth K. Vogt


I enjoyed Allison's journey as told by Beth K. Vogt in Wish You Were Here. Allison's need for control and yet her desire to escape the box she's managed to get herself stuck in struck a chord with me. I think we all find ourselves in situations we wish we could avoid, or hadn't agreed to.

Wish You Were Here is a challenging read...not because it was hard to read, but because it challenged me to think about why I do things, rather than just do them because it's "expected".

This book is a light-hearted look into the life of Allison Denman as she struggles with conflicting emotions about two very different brothers. We see her grow from an unsure young lady to a young woman who realizes she doesn't have all the answers, but must take a step of faith to find the happiness God has for her.

I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.  :)

Back cover:
Kissing the wrong guy days before her wedding leads Allison to become a runaway bride. But can it also lead to happily ever after?Allison Denman is supposed to get married in five days, but everything is all wrong: the huge wedding, the frothy dress, and the groom.
Still, kissing the groom’s brother in an unguarded moment is decidedly not the right thing to do. How could she have made such a mistake? It seems Allison’s life is nothing but mistakes at this point. And pulling a “Runaway Bride,” complete with "borrowing" her best friend’s car, doesn’t seem to solve her problems.
Can Allison find her way out of this mess? She prefers to be the one in control, and giving it up is not going to be easy. But to find her way again, she will have to believe that God has a plan for her and find the strength to let Him lead.
Wish You Were Here is fun and full of humor—sure to be a pleasure to inspirational romance readers.

Rating: 5 stars, for challenging me while making me laugh

Available here.

Blessings,
Ginger

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Snow




Two pictures of the same road. Two different scenes.

What caused the change?

SNOW.



We don't get much of the white stuff here in North Alabama, but Christmas of 2010, it came down. My first ever white Christmas. My kids loved it. I loved it because I didn't have any place to go.


Does the snowy picture seem cleaner to you (minus the tire tracks). How about the next two?




There's just something about snow. I can bet we all like to watch it fall. We love it's beauty, how fresh it makes everything look, how clean. It changes how we see things around us.



It reminds me of the verse in Isaiah.

“Come now, and let us reason together,”
Says the Lord,
“Though your sins are like scarlet,
They shall be as white as snow;
Though they are red like crimson,
They shall be as wool. [Emphasis added}

Makes you think, doesn't it?


"Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow."

As you contemplate that verse today, take time to express your gratitude to God for his Son, the one who came to shed his blood so you might be clean.

What are your favorite Snow memories?  

Blessings,
Ginger








Monday, December 10, 2012

What do I do when...?



A friend at church asked if I answered parenting questions on my blog. I thought about it and decided to  answer a her question today. 

Now, before I do this, I want you to know I am NOT an expert by any means. I will only be giving answers based on MY experience raising my seven children. I may be slightly biased, but I can assure you my children are well-behaved, though not perfect. :)

My friend asked me how to handle her daughter, who is 18 months old. When they go shopping, the little one screams and cries to get out of the cart. Mom complies, and the little one proceeds to run around the store. My friend wanted to know how I would handle the situation.

There are probably many ways to manage this, but here was my suggestion. Simply put, I told my friend to spank her daughter when she starts acting out.  I also warned her to be consistent. Every time her daughter threw a fit, she needed to tell her no and, even if she chose not to spank, not to let her out of the cart. 

This is for the safety of the child. A child of 18 months, or even older, has no sense of danger and there are so many perverted and selfish people out there waiting for an opportunity to do evil. I shudder to think of it.

(Note: I do not condone BEATING, but a single swat to the backside for an 18 month old gets the job done.)

So now I throw the question to you, my readers. How would you advise this mom to handle her daughter's temper-tantrums?

And if you have a question you would like answered, I have set up an e-mail BedofRosesThornsIncluded[at]gmail.com. Please replace the [at] with the appropriate symbol.

Blessings,
Ginger

Thursday, December 6, 2012

An Addendum...to Rush, Rush, Rush

I AM

On Tuesday, I posted a blog about some names of God/Jesus. Last night, our worship leader sang a song that reverberated through my weary spirit.

Today, I am sharing it with you. I must admit I prefer my worship leader's version than that of Eddie James--no offense to Mr. James.



Blessings,
Ginger

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Rush, Rush, Rush


Rush, Rush, Rush


You've done it. So have I. We've rushed through a day just trying to get to the next thing on our to do list.

It happens a lot this time of year. Go to work, pick up the kids, find a sitter, get to the Christmas party of the evening, come home and crash. Only to start over the next day with a few variations. Maybe instead of a Christmas party, it's a Christmas performance, or a shopping excursion (when they're rushed it yanks all the fun out of shopping).

But what if this was your last Christmas? Would you do the same things? Buy the same presents? Go to the same parties?

As the world moves away from the REAL Reason for the season (yes, it's now a cliche, but it works), I challenge you to move toward Him. Cast aside all the trappings, even if for only a moment, and focus on giving Him thanks.

Put the to do lists away. Stop rushing about. Focus on the creator of Christmas.


C-Comforter (John 14:16)
H-Healer (Psalm 103:2-4)
R-Righteous one (Psalm 116:5)
I-I am (Exodus 3:14; John 8:58)
S-Son of God (Luke 22:69-70)
T-Truth (John 14:6)
M-Maker of all (John 1:3)
A-Ancient of Days (Daniel 7:13)
S-Savior (Luke 2:11)
 


What can you do without this season?

Blessings,
Ginger




 


Monday, December 3, 2012

Review: Avra's God by Ann Lee Miller



I've reviewed all of Ann's books and each one amazes me. She isn't afraid to tackle tough subjects, and she does it with such grace.

Avra's God is about one college girl living her life for Jesus with an unashamed devotion to His will for her life. It is about the change ONE person can make in those around them if they live a life choosing to please the ONE who gave life. Her friends make some unfortunate choices, but she remains steadfast despite her own self-doubt.

I highly recommend you read Avra's God. It would be a wonderful gift for a college student near you who is struggling with peer pressure or making their way in the world.

Warning: There are a few curse words (less than five) in this book. While I don't care for their use in Christian fiction, it was easy enough to skip over them and continue with the story.

Back cover:

In the tradition of The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, four friends navigate college and the drama churned up by their Florida beach band to cement friendship and more.
Avra wants love, but drummer Cisco—self-medicating from his parents’ divorce with sex and intoxicants—is a poor choice. Cisco hungers for fresh-baked cookies and the scent of family he finds at Avra’s.
Kallie shares her classically trained singing voice only with lead vocalist Jesse and fights to keep her heart safe. Jesse feeds on fame and hides more than insecurity beneath his guitar.
The friends surf ego, betrayal, and ambition and head for wipe-out. But somehow, when they’re not looking, Avra’s God changes them all.

Rating: 4.5 stars

Available here and at other online retailers.

Blessings,
Ginger

Friday, November 30, 2012

Review: "Twice A Bride" by Mona Hodgson



Twice a Bride is book 4 in The Sinclair Sisters of Cripple Creek, but is fine as a stand alone. I hadn't read the first three books and didn't feel like I was missing anything.

I enjoyed this story, but it took me a bit to get into it. Having not lost a spouse, I had a hard time connecting with Willow's grief.  Despite these things, I felt compelled to keep reading because the story pulled me in. I wanted to find out how Willow and Trenton reached their happily-ever-after.

Back cover:
Love lost doesn’t mean love lost forever. 
Can unexpected romance deliver a second chance for two deserving widows?
Full of resolve, young widow Willow Peterson decides to pursue her dreams to be an artist as she settles into a new life in the growing mountain town of Cripple Creek.  When she lands a job working as a portrait painter with handsome entrepreneur and photographer Trenton Van Der Veer, the road before Willow seems to be taking a better-than-anticipated turn.  
With questions tugging at several hearts in town, including the Sinclair Sisters’ beloved Miss Hattie, change is traveling down the tracks as several unexpected visitors make their way out West.  Will the new arrivals threaten the deep family bonds of the Sinclair sisters and the roots of love that are just taking hold for Willow?     
Filled with the resonating questions that all women face, this romance awakens hope against grief, love against loss, and dreams against life’s unexpected turns.
Rating: 4 stars

Available from Amazon and other fine retailers.

Blessings,
Ginger

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Q is for Quotes


Q is for Quotes and Questions

I decided today would be a good day for some quotes.

“Some people grumble because roses have thorns; I am thankful that the thorns have roses. ”

Jean-Baptiste Alphonse Karr (1808-1890);Critic, Journalist, Novelist.
--I have this one posted at the top of this blog. It has been one of my favorite for a long time. It reminds me to be thankful for the good in the midst of the bad.


A friend is one who knows you and loves you just the same.

Elbert Hubbard (1856-1915)US Author

"For I hold you by your right hand--I, the Lord your God. I say to you, 'Don't be afraid. I am here to help you.'"
 Isaiah 41:13(NLT)
--I have this one posted as a sticky note on my monitor. It helps me to remember that even though I doubt my ability to write, he has given me the stories. My only job is to obey.


...And so I'm seriously late getting this out. Tuesday came and went in a heartbeat, I think. I didn't even remember until last night in church. 

Why is it that I always remember stuff while in the middle of listening to my pastor preach? I know I can't be the only one.

Occasionally questions occur to me that I'd like to ask God and get a verbal answer. Of course, now that I'm sitting here writing this I can't remember one. Sometimes, though, I wonder why God continues to love us. We continually throw that love back in his face, not just as a world, or nation, or even a church, but as individuals. I can see in my past where I've done it a number of times. So my one question of the day is...God, why do you still love me?

If you had one question you'd like to ask God, what would it be?

Blessings,
Ginger







Monday, November 26, 2012

"Lord, Enlarge My Territory" by Sherri Wilson Johnson

Today A Bed of Roses welcomes Sherri Wilson Johnson. 

Sherri is an Inspirational Romance novelist, a speaker, social media junkie, and a former homeschooling mom who loves to share God with others, while sharing her life experiences with them.

She lives in Georgia with her husband and two children. She loves to dream of romantic places and romance in general–good, clean romance, that is. She is passionate about purity and sexual integrity.

Please help me welcome her as she shares.


Lord, Enlarge My Territory
Sherri Wilson Johnson


I love to read.

I love to read the Bible, Bible studies, books of many kinds, blogs, emails, Facebook messages, my Twitter feed, texts on my phone, the back of cereal boxes…you get the picture. I spend most of my day writing and then reading what I’ve written as I edit. And then I read books from my favorite authors when I go to bed at night. I love to know what is inside the heart and mind of God and I love to know the same thing about His children. I love to know what makes this world tick. I love for others to know what is inside my mind and heart, as well. I think that’s why I enjoy this calling of being a writer so much.

The book The Prayer of Jabez by Dr. Bruce H. Wilkinson is one of my favorite books. Who is Jabez and what was his prayer? Jabez was just an ordinary man who is mentioned in a tiny section of the Bible. In the long list of names in I Chronicles 4, suddenly there is a break and Jabez and his prayer are mentioned. In verses 9-10, it says: “Now Jabez was more honorable than his brothers, and his mother called his name Jabez, saying, “Because I bore him in pain.” And Jabez called on the God of Israel saying, “Oh, that You would bless me indeed, and enlarge my territory, that Your hand would be with me, and that You would keep me from evil, that I may not cause pain!” So God granted him what he requested.”

Jabez is not anyone of great significance. From the beginning of his life he was kind of marked because the mere mention of his name reminded folks that he caused his mother great pain while she was in childbirth. He was, however, more honorable than his brothers and I suppose it made God want to grant him his request. This prayer inspired the book written by Dr. Wilkinson and it inspires me.

I started praying this prayer at the beginning of September 2011 because I wanted God to do amazing things in my life and in the lives of my family members and friends. I didn’t start praying it because I wanted God to give me wealth or popularity. I wanted God to bless me with whatever He wanted to bless me with. I wanted Him to enlarge my territory because that would enlarge His territory. My thoughts were that the more people that found out about me, the more I would be able to spread the Good News about Him to the world. I wanted His hand to be with me because I couldn’t imagine walking through this life without Him. And I truly wanted Him to keep me far from evil and to guide me along the right path so I would not sin against Him and not cause my friends and family to follow me down the wrong path.

As soon as I began praying this prayer, God started answering it. It’s not a magic prayer. What it is though is a prayer that opens your eyes to the blessings of God that are already there in your life. It makes you watch out for opportunities in which you can tell others about Him. It makes you be more conscious of the traps that Satan tries to set up for you. It makes you see that as a child of the Father, you have an inheritance that compares with no other and blessings that are right there at your fingertips.

James 4:3 says: “You ask and do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, so that you may spend it on your pleasures.”

We can ask God to bless us and to protect us and to enlarge our territories and to be with us always and when we ask with pure motives and with a desire to make Him be glorified, He will answer according to His will.

In this past year, I have had my territory enlarged so much that I can only give God credit for it. He has opened more doors for me to be a minister to others and for me to get my writing out in front of people that normally it would have been impossible to reach. It is amazing how God desires to give everything to His children and sometimes we forget the most important part of it—asking and believing!





Thank you for a wonderful post, Sherri.

If you're a frequent reader here at ABOR, you know I reviewed this book last week. If you didn't get a chance to read it yet, you can see it here.

You can find out more about Sherri at her website and you can purchase Song of the Meadowlark by clicking the title.

Blessings,
Ginger

Friday, November 23, 2012

Review: Song of the Meadowlark by Sherri Wilson Johnson



Having read and loved To Dance Once More, I was sort of expecting another historical. Of course, if I had read the back cover I would have realized it wasn't. Shame on me. However, after I got over my initial shock, I enjoyed this story a great deal. What's not to love about a rugged cowboy and his young daughter? Song of the Meadowlark was a well-written, wonderful story of second chance love. I read it in ONE day and only stopped long enough to feed my hungry crew.

Back cover:

When trusting others only leads to pain and rejection, and loving ends only in loss, what will it take to restore hope again?
Shunned by the uncovered truth about her missing husband’s secret life, Cora Buchanan sets out on a road trip for home to mend her broken relationship with her parents. When her car breaks down, she’s stranded in a small Georgia town.
While staying at the struggling Southern Hope Ranch, she meets little Susie O’Reilly, who unexpectedly fills a void in Cora’s heart. But Rex, Susie’s rugged cowboy father who lost his wife a year earlier, seems to go out of his way to either confront or avoid Cora. It doesn’t help her comfort level that the news continues to report missing and murdered women in the area. 
Cora has no idea just how close to home the crimes will hit…or how much the sweet sound of the meadowlark’s song at the ranch will impact her future.

Rating: 5 stars

Click here to purchase and support this blog.

Please come back for Sherri's guest post on Monday.

Blessings,
Ginger

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

P is for Progress


P is for Progress

As I stated several weeks ago, I am participating in NaNoWriMo. You can see that blog here.

Here are a few things I've learned from this process:

*I don't like plotting before writing.
*It's stressful.
*Getting 2,000 words a day is hard, but doable.
*I have the best husband, who is willing to give up some of his time with me to allow me to write.


Okay, so now the progress part. As of right now, I have 44,796 words complete toward my goal of 50,000. My new goal is to complete the book, which for me usually runs in the 60,000 word range before edits.

I've set December aside to edit my last MS to send to the editor and agent who requested it at ACFW conference.

Have you made progress toward a goal you've set for yourself? It doesn't have to be writing related...it could be losing weight, finding a job, or any other goal you've set for yourself.

Blessings,
Ginger



Monday, November 19, 2012

Review: Spring Meadow Sanctuary by Lynnette Bonner



A little danger, a little intrigue and a lot of romance, Lynnette Bonner's Spring Meadow Sanctuary met this reader's expectations for a thrilling read. Even though I hadn't read the first three in The Shepherd's Heart series, I didn't feel like I had missed anything pertinent to this story.

Back cover:

He broke her heart.
Now he’s back to ask for a second chance.
Heart pounding in shock, Sharyah Jordan gapes at the outlaw staring down the barrel of his gun at her. Cascade Bennett shattered her dreams only last summer, and now he plans to kidnap her and haul her into the wilderness with a bunch of outlaws…for her own protection? She’d rather be locked in her classroom for a whole week with Brandon McBride and his arsenal of tricks, and that was saying something.
Cade Bennett’s heart nearly drops to his toes when he sees Sharyah standing by the desk. Sharyah Jordan was not supposed to be here. Blast if he didn’t hate complications, and Sharyah with her alluring brown eyes and silky blond hair was a walking, talking personification of complication.
Now was probably not the time to tell her he’d made a huge mistake last summer….
Two broken hearts. Dangerous Outlaws. One last chance at love.
Step into a day when outlaws ran free, the land was wild, and guns blazed at the drop of a hat.

Rating: 4 stars

 To purchase, click here and help support this blog. To find out more about Lynnette Bonner, please visit her website. She was also my guest this past Friday. You can find that post here.

Blessings,
Ginger

Friday, November 16, 2012

Goodness and Mercy by Lynnette Bonner

Today I am pleased to give the reins to Lynnette Bonner. Please help me in welcoming her to A Bed of Roses...Thorns Included.

Welcome Lynnette.

Goodness and Mercy


I love the title of this blog, “A Bed of Roses...Thorns Included.” It fits perfectly with a theme I explored in my recent release, Spring Meadow Sanctuary. The Shepherd’s Heart series has taken a couple verses from Psalm 23 as the focus of each book. Spring Meadow Sanctuary’s verse was number 6: “Surely your goodness and mercy will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.” But as I wrote the book I got to thinking that we don’t always FEEL like goodness and mercy are following us. So how do tragedies and trials translate into goodness and mercy?

Sometimes, like the quote at the top of the page, we find the goodness and mercy in the fact that thorns have roses. But other times we can see how, even through seemingly difficult circumstances, God brought about that perfect goodness and mercy in our lives.

Here is a description of the story:
He broke her heart.Now he’s back to ask for a second chance.

Heart pounding in shock, Sharyah Jordan gapes at the outlaw staring down the barrel of his gun at her. Cascade Bennett shattered her dreams only last summer, and now he plans to kidnap her and haul her into the wilderness with a bunch of outlaws…for her own protection? She’d rather be locked in her classroom for a whole week with Brandon McBride and his arsenal of tricks, and that was saying something.
Cade Bennett’s heart nearly drops to his toes when he sees Sharyah standing by the desk. Sharyah Jordan was not supposed to be here. Blast if he didn’t hate complications, and Sharyah with her alluring brown eyes and silky blond hair was a walking, talking personification of complication.
Now was probably not the time to tell her he’d made a huge mistake last summer….
Two broken hearts. Dangerous Outlaws. One last chance at love.Step into a day when outlaws ran free, the land was wild, and guns blazed at the drop of a hat.

Born and raised in Malawi, Africa. Lynnette Bonner spent the first years of her life reveling in warm equatorial sunshine and the late evening duets of cicadas and hyenas. The year she turned eight she was off to Rift Valley Academy, a boarding school in Kenya where she spent many joy-filled years, and graduated in 1990.

That fall, she traded to a new duet--one of traffic and rain--when she moved to Kirkland, Washington to attend Northwest University. It was there that she met her husband and a few years later they moved to the small town of Pierce, Idaho.

During the time they lived in Idaho, while studying the history of their little town, Lynnette was inspired to begin the Shepherd's Heart Series with Rocky Mountain Oasis.

Marty and Lynnette have four children, and currently live in Washington where Marty pastors a church. 


Me again: Thank you for the compliment on my blog. I invite you all to come back on Monday to read my review of Spring Meadow Sanctuary.

How has God changed your trials and tragedies into goodness and mercy?

Blessings,
Ginger

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

O is for Opportunity


O is for Opportunity

Everyone has the opportunity to make the most of whatever situation they've been placed in.

Opportunity to smile.
Opportunity to give with sincerity.
Opportunity to receive with thankfulness.

How often do we forget how blessed we are, being grateful for the things we have instead of bemoaning the things we don't have?

I know I often forget how blessed I am. I bemoan the work my large family requires and forget the blessings they give in return. Someone is always available if I need a hug.  :)  I have lots of helpers with cleaning, dinner and dishes. Even if I'm in a bad mood, someone else is smiling.

Take the OPPORTUNITY today, right here in the comments section, to be thankful for something you've been blessed with. And remember throughout today to be thankful for even the little things.

Blessings,
Ginger




Monday, November 12, 2012

"I will be sure--always" guest blog by Jodie Bailey



Today I have the awesome privilege of welcoming Jodie Bailey, author of Freefall, to my blog. She has come to tell us a little about her findings while researching for her novel.

About Jodie:

Jodie Bailey is Tarheel born and bred. After fifteen years as a military spouse, she's proud to be a retired military spouse settled back in North Carolina with her husband and daughter. She is the author of the military suspense novel Freefall and is a contributor to Edie Melson's devotional for military families, Fighting Fear: Winning the War at Home. While not working on her next novel, she teaches middle schoolers to love writing as much as she does (if she's lucky that day and they're actually listening...). Jodie loves to bake, ride the Harley with her husband, and fish the Outer Banks with their daughter. You can find her on the web at www.jodiebailey.com.


Please help me welcome Jodie.


I Will Be Sure--Always

“I will be sure--always.”  -The Rigger’s Pledge

Freefall takes place on Fort Bragg among the parachute riggers who keep the 82nd Airborne Division’s paratroopers safe under canopy.  My husband was Airborne qualified his entire Army career and later became a military freefall jumpmaster.  Trust me.  Properly working parachutes meant the world to him. 

Until I researched Freefall, though, I’d never really thought about what a rigger actually takes on every day.   These men and women hold a life in their hands every time they inspect and pack a chute.  That’s major.  It’s part of the reason the Rigger’s Pledge ends with the words, “I will be sure—always.”  They can’t take chances or shortcuts.  They can’t skip a step or leave any little thing undone.  After all, they hold lives in their hands.  Not many of us can say that about the work we do every day.

Or can we? 

What would the world look like if we lived by the same creed as a parachute rigger?  If we lived our faith as though we were always sure of our God instead of getting all wishy-washy?  If we never walked away from a person until we were sure we’d left their lives better than we found it?

We encounter dozens of people a day.  Some of us, depending on our jobs, interact with many, many more.  What if we were to look at each encounter—no matter how short—as a God encounter?  If we looked at the face of God and asked, “What do you want me to do here?” and then we did it?  Being sure to step in His footsteps and do exactly what He would do?  Leaving not one thing to chance or undone?

Think the world would change?

Think, maybe, in some small way, we’d “save a life”? 

It makes you wonder, doesn’t it?

Book blurb:
With one accusation, army officer Cassidy Matthews's name, reputation—and life—are on the line. A Special Forces soldier insists that Cassy's Fort Bragg-based unit is smuggling drugs. And the accuser? It's Cassy's handsome, stubborn ex-husband, Major Shane Logan. Shane knows Cassy is innocent, which is why he's sure she's being set up to take the fall. Proving it, though, means working together…and trying to ignore the feelings they still share. The closer they get—to the truth and each other—the more the danger grows from a ruthless criminal who'll stop at nothing to destroy them both. 


Me again: Thank you, Jodie, for encouraging us to be sure about what God would want us to do.

Now, my precious readers, Jodie is offering to give away a copy of Freefall to one lucky commenter, but you have to say something to be eligible. So...answer one of Jodie's questions above (drawing will be 11/18) and be entered to win.

To find out what I thought about Freefall, check here.

For more about Jodie, go to http://jodiebailey.com/.

To purchase Freefall, click here.

Blessings,
Ginger



Friday, November 9, 2012

Review: A Change of Fortune by Jen Turano



Can I just say, "OH MY GOODNESS!"? This is Jen Turano's debut novel and I suggest you run, NOT WALK, to your nearest retailer to grab this book. Add her to your favorite author list. I certainly will.

Ms. Turano imparted to us a wonderful story of misfortune, disappointment, and distrust turned into love, contentment, and trust, not only in man, but in God.

I enjoyed every page and I believe you will too.  :)

Back cover:

Lady Eliza Sumner is on a mission. Her fortune was the last thing she had left after losing her father, her fiance, and her faith. Now, masquerading as Miss Eliza Sumner governess-at-large, she's determined to find the man who ran off with her fortune, reclaim the money, and head straight back to London. 
Mr. Hamilton Beckett, much to his chagrin, is the catch of the season, and all the eyes of New York society--all the female ones, at least--are on him. He has no plans to marry again, especially since his hands are full keeping his business afloat while raising his two children alone.
Eliza's hapless attempts to regain her fortune unexpectedly put her right in Hamilton's path. The discovery of a common nemesis causes them to join forces and, before she knows it, Eliza has a whole retinue of people helping her. Eliza's determination not to trust anyone weakens when everyone's antics and bumbling efforts to assist her make her wonder if there might be more important things than her fortune and independence. 
When all of Hamilton's and Eliza's best-laid plans fall by the wayside, it will take a riot of complications for them to realize that God just might have had a better plan in mind all along.

To purchase this book click the link below and help support this blog.

A Change of Fortune


Blessings,
Ginger


Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Review: "Against the Tide" by Elizabeth Camden


Against the Tide by Elizabeth Camden


It took me a few pages to get into this book, but once I did...it was awesome. While I have never experienced any of the things these characters had to go through, Ms. Camden wrote so eloquently, I felt as if I was going through it with them. Life is full of heartache, disappointments, and failures...it's what you do with them that makes YOU who you are. Against the Tide illustrates this beautifully.

Back cover:
As a child, Lydia Pallas became all too familiar with uncertainty when it came to the future. Now, she's finally carved out a perfect life for herself--a life of stability and order with no changes, surprises, or chaos of any kind. She adores her apartment overlooking the bustling Boston Harbor, and her skill with languages has landed her a secure position as a translator for the U.S. Navy.
However, it is her talent for translation that brings her into contact with Alexander Banebridge, or "Bane," a man who equally attracts and aggravates her. When Bane hires Lydia to translate a seemingly innocuous collection of European documents, she hesitantly agrees, only to discover she is in over her head.
Just as Bane's charm begins to win her over, Lydia learns he is driven by a secret campaign against some of the most dangerous criminals on the East Coast, compelled by his faith and his past. Bane forbids any involvement on Lydia's part, but when the criminals gain the upper hand, it is Lydia on whom he must depend.

Rating: 4.5 stars

Click the title below to purchase and help support this blog.

Against the Tide

Blessings,
Ginger

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

N is for NaNoWriMo

N is for NaNoWriMo

Six days into NaNoWriMo(National Novel Writing Month). 

I should have close to 12,000 words done.  In order to reach the expected 50,000 words, I have set a personal goal of 2,000/day.

My actual word count is: 12,675 I'm hip-hoppin' happy.  ;)

Here are some things that I've done to prepare:

*write several blogs for November in advance, including this one (it was actually written over a week ago and I just plugged in the actual word count).
*research parts of my story in advance - a hard task for this die-hard pantser (I typically write without knowing where the story is going).
*enlisted accountability partners
*informed my family of this commitment, as it will take a lot of time

Things I should have done, but didn't:

*made meals in advance
*done more research

And I'm sure there will be more as the month continues.

So, if you're participating in this year's NaNoWriMo, what did you do to prepare? If you're not, what are some things you do to prepare for stressful/busy times in your life?

Blessings,
Ginger



Monday, November 5, 2012

Review: A Bride Sews with Love in Needles, California by Erica Vetsch



A Bride Sews with Love in Needles, California
by Erica Vetsch

I must admit that I've loved every Harvey Girl novel I've read and this one is no exception. I have had the feeling of never measuring up to someone else's expectation, no matter how hard I tried. I commiserated with Meghan. On the other hand, I also understand what it's like to have a secret that you don't want anyone to know about because of how it will change their perspective, just like Caleb. Ms. Vetsch's writing touched me in several different ways with this novel and I'm sure it'll touch you too.

Back cover:
When her brother is injured fighting in France, Meghan enlists her fellow Harvey Girl waitresses to sew a Red Cross signature quilt to raise money for wounded doughboys. Local horse breeder Caleb McBride longs to join the battle, but the army won’t take him. Because he has kept his shameful infirmity a secret, the townsfolk have labeled him a coward and war profiteer. When Meghan uncovers his malady, her poor opinion of Caleb unravels. Can this beautiful seamstress find a way to mend his heart?
Rating: 4 stars

Click link to order and support this blog.

A Bride Sews with Love in Needles, California 

Blessings,
Ginger

Friday, November 2, 2012

More reviews

I'm almost caught up...here are the last two that I've read and need to be reviewed.  Enjoy.

A Season for Tending by Cindy Woodsmall


This one is a little out of my usual preferred genre-romance. Though there is a touch of romance, it is not at the core of the book. I enjoyed the story despite this "flaw" (LOL).

As with all of Cindy's books, the characters are well thought-out. Her writing makes you look past the obvious and see into a person's hurts, fears, and insecurities.

I look forward to book 2 The Winnowing Season (schedule for Spring 2013). I need to find out what happens to Rhoda, Samuel, and Jacob, which was left open-ended in this story.

Back cover:

Old Order Amish Rhoda Byler’s unusual gift and her remarkable abilities to grow herbs and berries have caused many to think her odd. As rumors mount that Rhoda’s “gift” is a detriment to the community, she chooses isolation, spending her time in her fruit garden and on her thriving canning business.   
Miles away in Harvest Mills, Samuel King struggles to keep his family’s apple orchard profitable. As the eldest son, Samuel farms with his brothers, the irrepressible Jacob and brash Eli, while his longtime girlfriend Catherine remains hopeful that Samuel will marry her when he feels financially stable.   
Meanwhile, Samuel’s younger sister Leah is testing all the boundaries during her rumschpringe, and finds herself far from home in Rhoda’s garden after a night of partying gone badly. But Leah’s poor choices serve as a bridge between Rhoda and the King family when a tragic mistake in the orchard leaves Samuel searching for solutions. Rhoda’s expertise in canning could be the answer, but she struggles with guilt over the tragic death of her sister and doesn’t trust herself outside her garden walls. As the lines between business, love, and family begin to blur, can Rhoda finally open up to a new life? And what effect will this odd, amazing woman have on the entire King family?

Rating: 4 stars


Threads of Faith by Andrea Boeshaar

I LOVED this book. A strong heroine who takes control over her life only to lose it again. 

I did not read book one, so I don't know what I missed (though I think I will have to go back and read it because I enjoyed this one so much).

I highly recommend this book.

Back cover:
Can Julianna and Daniel start a new life in a new country?Julianna Wayland is running for her life! She hides in a crate on London’s dock, only to be loaded onto a ship bound for America. During the voyage she meets Captain Daniel Sundberg, and by the time they reach New York’s harbor, she is certain she’s in love with him. The only problem is, Daniel has plans for himself—plans that don’t include her.
As Julianna struggles to find her way in a new world, will trouble from her past derail the life she is looking for?
Rating: 5 stars


Available at Amazon:

A Season for Tending
Threads of Faith 

Blessings,
Ginger



Tuesday, October 30, 2012

M is for Marriage


M is for Marriage(one man and one woman)

In just a few weeks, my husband and I will celebrate our 22nd anniversary. It's not always been easy. There have been some days when we've both wanted to walk away. But we're committed to each other long term. And that's one of the things a good marriage takes--commitment.

Everyone who says that it's a 50/50 give and take is wrong. Fifty percent of your effort is not enough. You have to give your all and be willing to give up the same in order to make it work.

Is this always easy? Absolutely not. Mostly it's really hard.

We're all selfish creatures. We want our own way. We want what we want, when we want it and how we want it.

Many marriages don't survive because of this selfish attitude.

We need to learn to give 100% of ourselves all of the time. I'm still learning.

Communication between both parties is vital. You must express what you're feeling, but you also have to listen without becoming defensive.

Remember all of the verses in the Bible that compare our relationship with the Lord to a marriage relationship. The whole of the book of Song of Solomon, Matthew 25:1-13, portions of Revelation, among others.

I could go on and on, but I'll stop here.

What is one piece of advice that has helped your marriage the most?

Blessings,
Ginger




Sent from my iPad



Monday, October 29, 2012

Two reviews...



A Heart Made New by Kelly Irvin

Beautifully written story. It started a little slow, but overall I enjoyed the Annie and David's tale. While this is the second book in the series, I have not read the first and did not feel as though I'd missed something vital.

Back cover:
In the second novel of Kelly Irvin's Bliss Creek Amish series, readers will be delighted to return to a town and a family they've already come to love.
Annie Shirack is trying to fight her feelings for David Plank, a young Amish man who's struggling with an aggressive case of Hodgkin's lymphoma. David loves Annie too much to let her into his life, only, he fears, to leave her.
When a homeless young woman named Charisma and her two-year-old daughter, Gracie, show up in Bliss Creek, Annie welcomes them into the Shirack household and tries to help them establish a new life. But all the good deeds in the world can't change the ache in Annie's heart...or help her forget the man she loves.
Rating: 4 stars




Dead Wrong by Susan Sleeman


I do love a good suspense, and Susan has come through for me once again. Dead Wrong is the second book in The Justice Agency series, but you don't need to read Double Exposure to enjoy this book, though I suggest you do simply because it's good.

It has enough twists and turns to keep you guessing, and enough romantic tension to keep you on the edge of your seat.

Back cover:
When her client and old college friend is murdered, P.I. Kat Justice knows the killer will come for her next. Her survival depends on finding her unknown enemy first…and working with homicide detective Mitch Elliot, her onetime crush. It'll take all her professional skills to ignore the sparks between them, but Kat can't allow the handsome cop to get close. She's seen too many people she loves die, so she vows just to do her job without getting emotionally involved. Yet keeping her distance may not be the best way to protect her heart—or their lives.
Rating: 5 stars

If you are interested in purchasing either of these books, please click the links below and help support this blog.

Blessings,
Ginger


Saturday, October 27, 2012

Book Reviews Galore...

I'm terribly behind on my reviews, so several coming your way today. A little something for everyone who likes to read romance.  Enjoy.



The Art of My Life by Ann Lee Miller

This is a sequel to Kicking Eternity, which you will need to read to understand all the backstory/issues.

I enjoyed reading this contemporary romance, but be forewarned tough subjects are covered--seeking sex to compensate for a lack of love, and using drugs to "escape reality"--and a fair amount of foul words. Ann uses the first two effectively to show us the pitfalls of these vices, and how much God loves all of us, despite our sins. As for the foul words, well...I've voiced my opinion about those being in Christian fiction before on this blog.

All in all, I thought The Art of My Life was a thought-provoking book that helped me see things from a different perspective.


Bookcover:

Cal walked out of jail and into a second chance at winning Aly with his grandma’s beater sailboat and a reclaimed dream of sailing charters. 
Aly has the business smarts, strings to a startup loan, and heart he never should have broken. He’s got squat. Unless you count enough original art to stock a monster rummage sale and an affection for weed.
But he’d only ever loved Aly. That had to count for something. Aly needed a guy who owned yard tools, tires worth rotating, and a voter’s registration card. He’d be that guy or die trying.
For anyone who’s ever struggled to measure up. And failed.

Rating: 3 stars--for language


Freefall by Jodie Bailey

Wow. This book was awesome. Intense. Romantic. Any more words would be too many. Oh, wait...two more... READ IT!

Back cover:

With one accusation, army officer Cassidy Matthews's name, reputation-and life-are on the line. A Special Forces soldier insists that Cassy's Fort Bragg-based unit is smuggling drugs. And the accuser? It's Cassy's handsome, stubborn ex-husband, Major Shane Logan. Shane knows Cassy is innocent, which is why he's sure she's being set up to take the fall. Proving it, though, means working together.and trying to ignore the feelings they still share. The closer they get-to the truth and each other-the more the danger grows from a ruthless criminal who'll stop at nothing to destroy them both.

Rating: 5 stars



A Flight of Fancy by Laurie Alice Eakes

I found this romance story to be refreshing. It made me think outside the lines of  the ordinary lives of females during the regency period. How did they break out of the expected and be individuals? 
I was rooting for poor Geoffrey the whole time. Going up in a balloon makes me shudder. :)

If you are a Regency fan, this story is just for you.  :)  I enjoyed every moment of my time reading it.

Back cover:
Cassandra Bainbridge has twice set aside her scholarly pursuits--once for the London Season and once for her wedding preparations. Love seems a wonderful alternative to study, until disaster strikes. When an accident brings an end to her betrothal, she heads for the country to recover from both her injuries and her broken heart. There she pursues her love for ballooning and envisions a future for herself as a daring aeronaut. But when her former fiancé slips back into her life, will she have to choose between him and her dream?
Filled with the mystique of London society and the charming beauty of the English countryside, A Flight of Fancy explores what it means to find the true source of happiness and love amid the distractions of life. Readers will love the next installment in this rousing Regency series from accomplished author Laurie Alice Eakes.
Rating: 4 stars



You can purchase these books, and help support this blog by clicking any or all of these links:

The Art of My Life

Freefall

A Flight of Fancy

Blessings,
Ginger