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, 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?


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.


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.


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


A Flight of Fancy


Tuesday, October 23, 2012

L is for Losing

L is for LOSING

Losing weight.
Losing my mind.
Losing my fear to move forward.

Today I've lost the capability to think of anything to blog about, so I will keep it short and ask you...

...what do you want to lose? Or what do you fear losing?


Friday, October 19, 2012

Review: Postmark Christmas

Postmark Christmas 
by Paige Winship Dooly, Darlene Franklin, Kathleen Kovach, and Paula Moldenhauer

I just love Christmas novels, but this set is not just about Christmas, the holiday, it's about the town of Christmas, Florida.

I loved each of the novellas. They are what I consider "sweet" stories that make you feel uplifted all the way through. I enjoyed the love connections made by each set of characters.

Enjoy a bubble-bath, a drink (of your choosing), and grab this book. You'll forget whatever it is that's outside your door--at least until the water gets cold. :-)

Here's the back cover:
The holidays are stamped for love in Christmas, Florida. While keeping her eye open for her next job lead, will nomadic event planner Stella find romance instead? How will one retired major change war widow Randi’s postcard-sending mission? Can photographer David Levine draw shy Gabi Archer out of her shell? Will retired police officer Rick Stanton be able to steal postmistress Edie Hathaway’s heart?
This wonderful collection is available at Amazon and other retailers.


Tuesday, October 16, 2012

K is for Kangaroos, Michelle Meiklejohn

Okay, so let me be honest...even though the title and the picture say Kangaroos, this post is not about Kangaroos, but about my friend and critique partner, Lucy. 

Why the title Kangaroos? Because Lucy is from Australia, so I naturally thought of Kangaroos, and today is the letter K, not the letter L and I just couldn't wait another week to share.

You see Lucy is a single mum of four young children. She homeschools (yeah!). She writes (yippee). She loves God (hallelujah). 

Several weeks ago, I had the privilege of meeting Lucy in person while I was at the ACFW conference in Dallas, TX. Yes, she came all the way from Australia, leaving her young'uns home with a friend, to attend the conference. Her time zone is 12 hours + 2. Our day is her night. Our summer is her winter. The first few days she was a zombie.  :-)

Well, Lucy is a hoot. I had such fun getting to know her better. She's sweet, too. She brought me TimTams. It's an Australian biscuit (cookie). The variety she brought me was caramel. YUM! Unfortunately, they are NOT available in the US. Bummer.

During the weekend, I tried to copy her accent. She said I needed to keep working on it. I couldn't get her name right and I was butchering "g'day". Ah well, maybe a trip to Australia would help? Yeah, right. I'm much better with "Howdy, y'all!"  LOL

Another good thing about Lucy is that she pushes (yes, PUSHES) me to be a better writer. She asks hard questions that make me think (even when I don't wanna <- insert pout here). 

So this post is a great big THANK YOU to my friend from down-under...Lucy. 


PS. Beware Susan and Christina. Your time will come.  mwahahah!

Here's the code for the letter J:

Monday, October 15, 2012

Review: "Jewels for the Kingdom" by Delia Latham

Jewels for the Kingdom by Delia Latham is book one of four novellas. I have read several of Delia's other books, specifically The Solomon's Gate Series, and loved them. I was excited when she contacted me to review her latest release.

In writing Jewels for the Kingdom, Delia lives up to her reputation of writing wonderful, yet real, God-inspired stories. I love, love, love how she incorporates angels in her novels. We didn't "see" them this time, but they were there and they were felt.

It's so amazing to me how she described the hug that Pia Peretti received. Quite a few years ago I was going through a rough patch and needed a touch from God. I NEEDED to know He was still who He said He was. As I rested on my knees in my room, crying out to Him, I physically felt arms wrapping around me. It was so very real and this one scene in Jewels for the Kingdom brought that moment back to my mind. A simple reminder that God is real and alive and loves us SO very much.

Thank you, Delia, for reminding me.

Here's the backcover:

Pia Peretti’s past could destroy her future. Thanks to her pre-Christian lifestyle, she can’t marry a believer, and she won’t marry a non-believer. Minister David Myers wants to help Pia release her guilt and trust that God has forgiven her...but the young minister is working through his own trial of faith.
After a failed counseling session with a wounded soul, David's confidence is shaken. He accepts a new pastorate, and moves to Angel Falls to find a haven for his wounded heart.
Is it possible these two hurting hearts are meant to mend each other’s brokenness with some divine intervention?

Now, people, go out and order this book. It is available for Kindle at Amazon, and for the Nook at Barnes and Noble.

The other three novellas in the series (and their release dates) are:

Operation Breathless by Marianne Evans (Nov. 9)
Leap of Faith by Tanya Stowe (Dec. 12)
Dance with Me by Mary Manners (Jan. 18)


Friday, October 12, 2012

Scribing God's Dictation

Please join me as I welcome Delia Latham. 

I have read a number of Delia's books and have enjoyed everyone. Let's see what she has to say about the "making" of her newest release Jewels for the Kingdom.

Born and raised in Weedpatch, California, Delia Latham moved to Oklahoma in '08, making her a self-proclaimed California Okie. She loves to read and write in her country home, and gets a kick out of watching her husband play Farmer John. She's a Christian wife, mother, grandmother, sister and friend, but especially loves being a princess daughter to the King of Kings. She loves Dr. Pepper and hearing from her readers. Contact her through her website ( or send an e-mail to: delia AT delialatham DOT net.

Delia writes inspirational romance and women's fiction, and is currently contracted through White Rose Publishing and Vinspire Publishing.

 Scribing God’s Dictation
by Delia Latham

As readers, we read. 

But how often do we think about what the author might have learned or experienced during the writing of the book we’re so avidly devouring? 

Before I became one, I never thought about the author as a person—just a name on the front of a book. I knew, of course, that real, live people wrote the books I loved. But I knew nothing about them on a personal level, so they never seemed real to me. I simply recognized names, because I learned which names on the front cover pretty much guaranteed an excellent story. 

As a writer, I’ve learned that most authors experience something personal during the writing of a book—something specific to that book, something they will never forget. I’d like to share with you just a little about—in Hollywood terms—“The Making of Jewels for the Kingdom.”

As an aside…don’t you just love the Christmas collections Barbour Publishing puts out every year? Usually, these books include four stories, each written by a different author. While the characters in the different stories don’t always connect with each other, there’s always some kind of central theme—like maybe a location. A town. A church family. A school. You get the picture.

I enjoy the brevity of those stories, for one thing. During the busy holiday season, anything that takes too long to read is out of the question. So… short stories. A connecting thread. Great writing. What’s not to like?

I wanted to do something similar. Not a copycat version of Barbour’s Christmas books, but something close. 

First I had to sell my publisher on the idea for—blinking light bulb here, please—a Valentine’s Day collection. To my surprise, it wasn't a hard sell…although she didn't want to release a single book with four stories inside the cover. Our collection was to be four individual releases. OK, I could live with that.

Now I needed an idea for a theme so, as I always do when I’m getting ready to write, I took it to God first. Let’s face it, folks…without His anointing and guidance, anything I came up with would be pure drivel. So I took step number one, which was to invite Him into the project. And as usual, once invited, He took control and turned Heart’s Haven into a living, breathing community of living, breathing characters. All four authors fell in love with the concept, and believe me, that heart-connection shows in the end product.

Heart’s Haven is a complex of rental cottages owned by Andrew Hart, a crusty old East Texas bachelor. Rumor has it this old gentleman sees and speaks with angels—his own, and those assigned to others, as well. Hart doesn't even bother to acknowledge the gossip…but he doesn't deny it, either. Hmmm.

I should probably also mention that Heart’s Haven has gained something of a reputation for being a gateway to romance…and the tenants of the Heart’s Haven cottages pass through that gateway, whether or not they intent or even want to do so.

I know from conversations we've all shared that, what started out as just another opportunity for a book contract soon became something personal to each of the four Heart’s Haven authors. Our stories took on lives of their own and developed into beautiful experiences—not only for our characters, but for each of us as well.

My heroine, Pia Peretti, is a beautiful Italian woman whose pre-Christian lifestyle was something less than admirable. At age fourteen, she discovered that she was adopted, and learned the sad truth—that her birth father hadn't wanted her. It stole her sense of identity and destroyed her self-confidence. As so often happens, she tried to recapture it by looking for love in all the wrong places.

Not all that unusual a scenario. But what happens when a young woman with that kind of past—promiscuity, people!—becomes a Christian? What’s she to do with a past that can’t be undone? How can she marry a “godly” man? And to be brutally honest, what truly godly man wants “that kind of girl” as the mother of his children? And yet, as a sincere Christian, she can’t marry a non-believer. That, too, would be unequal yoking.

What, then? Is she sentenced to a life without love? Pia thinks so.

I don’t. I've learned the hard way that God loves each one of us the most. And once He forgives our sins, to Him they no longer exist. They are completely, utterly, totally eradicated and erased from our life story. What a God!

Somehow, God allowed me to relate to Pia on a very deep, extremely personal level. I lay in bed at night and wept after writing scenes in which Pia felt unworthy and unlovable  I sent up my own prayers of gratitude and thanksgiving when she began to realize the awesome depth of God’s love for her. I ached for the hero when he felt incapable of carrying out his calling because he failed to reach a single, desperate soul.

And yes…I felt the brush of angel’s wings when Mr. Hart’s “friends” visited my characters. I experienced the skin-tingling, heart-pounding, soul-changing presence of God’s messengers, right along with Pia Peretti. I got the same goosebumps that peppered her arms, and it was my heart that tried to pound its way right through the walls of my chest.

Was it the first time? No. For some reason, God has chosen to insert an angel into all but one of my published books. I didn't plan it that way, hadn't even considered the possibility. But apparently God has a reason. When I first started writing with a mind to actually being published, I promised my Father that I would be His scribe. If He would provide the inspiration, even write the books, I’d be honored and thrilled to be His transcriptionist. 

And that’s all I am. Anything genuinely good within the pages of a novel with my name on the front cover, without a single exception, was inspired of God. Every scene that grips a reader’s heart and touches her soul…God wrote it. Every touch of humor that makes a reader smile or experience some degree of joy…He made that happen. (Trust me, peeps, I am not a humor writer. I love to laugh, but it isn't usually me who makes laughter happen.)

Remember this, dear reader. Should you ever, while reading a Delia Latham novel, feel the presence of angels or get a little tingle of the spine that makes you wonder if you've been touched by something divine…should you hear the beating of heavenly wings in response to something I “wrote”…well, just know this: Someone much wiser and far more capable than I penned that passage of story.

And ask yourself this: Is it possible He included those precise words in that particular book just for you…?

Me again: Wow. Wasn't that just so powerful? Thanks for letting us see into the making of Jewels for the Kingdom and some insight into who you are, Delia.

Now again, to learn more about Delia or contact her, visit her site,

Release dates for the books in this series:

Jewels for the Kingdom (Oct. 10) 
Operation Breathless by Marianne Evans (Nov. 9)
Leap of Faith by Tanya Stowe (Dec. 12)
Dance with Me by Mary Manners (Jan. 18).

Join me Monday when I review Jewels for the Kingdom, which I finished reading yesterday. 


Tuesday, October 9, 2012

J is for Jellybeans

Courtesy of
 & Bill Longshaw

Jelly Beans

I know, it's not the season for jelly beans, but I proclaim today to be my personal jelly bean day. Wish I had some.

According to the origin of the jelly bean is a mystery. It did, however, come to be an American treat in the early 20th century. The candy even has its own day...National Jelly Bean Day is April 22.

Jelly Belly's, arguably the best jelly bean out there, started in 1976 with eight flavors: Very Cherry, Lemon, Cream Soda, Tangerine, Green Apple, Root Beer, Grape and Licorice. The company, formerly known as the Herman Goelitz Candy Co., had been making candy since the late 1800's, so the intensely flavored jelly beans was a natural progression.

According to their site: Belly makes "50 official flavors and a dizzying array of new flavors, special collections and wacky flavors" 

So, do I have you craving jelly beans? I sure am.



Friday, October 5, 2012

Review: A Bride's Rogue in Roma, Texas by Darlene Franklin

I have had the AWESOME pleasure (and yes, it was a pure pleasure) to read a number of great books lately.

A Bride's Rogue in Roma, Texas by Darlene Franklin is one of them.

Sometimes the next step that God asks us to take has to be on pure faith. Uncertainty causes us to hesitate, but the still small voice sends us forward. So it was with Blanche.

She takes that step of faith and joins Ike on the steamboat, beginning a new season in her life.

Most times that step requires us to release where we are, so we can travel forward. It's not always easy, as we see in this story.

I enjoyed reading A Bride's Rogue in Roma, Texas and I think you will too.


Blanche Lamar has inherited a steamboat from a father she’s never met. As she struggles to adjust to her new life she finds an unexpected ally in Ike Gallagher. She and Ike both want to find a way to make the steamboat profitable but are at odds on how to accomplish it. Can they learn to live in faith, or will their future happiness sink in a river of overwhelming devastation.

To purchase this book from Amazon, click here and help support this blog.


Thursday, October 4, 2012

Review: Be Still My Soul by Joanne Bischof

Joanne Bischof's debut novel Be Still My Soul made me want to read more about Gideon and Lonnie. It's a touching story of how two people are forced into a marriage, though they barely know one another let alone feel love. We see, Lonnie--a shy, young woman--become strong, and we see Gideon--a selfish, angry man--learn to take responsibility for his actions.

I am looking forward to the next book in this series.


Night’s chill tickled her skin. Lonnie pressed her hands together and glanced up. He was even more handsome up close. Having grown up the shy, awkward daughter of Joel Sawyer, she’d hardly spoken to any boy, let alone the one who had mothers whispering warnings in their daughter’s ears and fathers loading shotguns.
Pretty Lonnie Sawyer is shy and innocent, used to fading into the background within her family, and among the creeks and hollows of the Appalachian hills. Though her family is poor and her father abusive, she clings to a quiet faith.  But when handsome ladies’ man and bluegrass musician Gideon O’Riley steals a kiss, that one action seals her fate.

Her father forces her into a hasty marriage with Gideon—a man she barely knows and does not love. Equally frustrated and confused by his new responsibilities, Gideon yearns for a fresh start, forcing  Lonnie on an arduous journey away from her home in Rocky Knob.

Her distant groom can’t seem to surrender his rage at the injustice of the forced matrimony or give Lonnie any claim in his life.  What will it take for Gideon to give up his past, embrace Lonnie’s God, and discover a hope that can heal their two fractured hearts?

Gideon only ever cared about himself. Now that Lonnie is his wife, will he ever be worthy of her heart?

 Link to purchase.


Tuesday, October 2, 2012

I is for Indecision


Should I or shouldn't I? I can't decide.

Eat chicken, or beef, or a salad?

Read or watch tv?

Our lives are filled with decisions. We make small, seemingly insignificant decisions all day long. What to wear, what to eat for breakfast, whether to drink water or tea or soda.

But then comes the moment when we must choose between two equally good things, or between two equally bad things. 

On the season finale of Hawaii 5-0 last year, one of the characters had to choose between saving his wife or saving his cousin (who he was close to). He chose his wife and sent someone else to save his cousin. We found out at the beginning of this season, his cousin was saved, but not his wife. He had a moment of indecision. 

Most of our "moments" are not that life-altering. But they could be. Have you ever considered it? Just five more minutes sleeping could mean you race to work, causing an accident behind you (which you may never see). Or perhaps that five minutes means you avoid an accident. Too confusing? I think so.  :)

And sometimes our indecision is our decision. If you don't know who to vote for in the coming election--the lesser of the two evils, IMO--and don't vote because of your indecision then you have decided. You have decided to let someone else choose for you who should run this country.

I am prone to indecision. I waffle back and forth for a long time before I remember God is waiting for me to ask his opinion. James 1:5 says, "If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him." A source of guidance that can be trusted.

Do you struggle with indecision? Leave me a note and I will pray for you.