Saturday, August 31, 2013

Life Will Come From the Ashes

Sometimes when we feel like we're going backwards or like things are never going to change, what is really happening is God is actually positioning us to walk into a new season He has planned for us. It may not look like it, and it may not feel like, but He is. We can't go by what we see or feel, His plans are far above what we can understand with our finite minds. We would not have come to this place without going through the storms of life. We would not have been ready to walk into this new season unless we had walked through the fire. The old has been burned away. From the pain and the ashes, beauty and life will arise. Watch for it....wait for it.

Have a great Labor Day weekend, my friends! Be blessed!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Wow Wednesday!

Happy Wednesday to you my friends! I've got some great deals for you today! Christmas will soon be here, so it's not too early to start a little shopping. Grab a cup of coffee or tea and make yourself at home. Have a fabulous day!

Ocean Coasters, Set of 6
I saw these really pretty coasters over at CBD and thought I would pass on the savings to you. They don't cost that much to start with, but they are $1.00 off now. I love the beach theme!

Sale price- $3.99
Regular price- $4.99

Fireproof, Special Collector's Edition DVD
This is an awesome movie! If you haven't seen Fireproof, here's a great deal! This is a Special Collector's Edition.

Sale price- $7.99
Regular price- $19.99

Here's another really cute set of coasters. These are glass with a wooden holder.

Sale price- $5.99
Regular price- $12.99

Jesus Today: Experience Hope Through His Presence
This is a great devotional book. I have really enjoyed reading through it. It's from the same author that wrote Jesus Calling.

Sale price- $8.99
Regular price- $15.99

Jesus Calling: Enjoying Peace in His  Presence - Devotions for Every Day of the Year  -     
        By: Sarah Young
This is a great devotional book! I have this one too!

Sale price- $6.99
Regular price- $15.99

If you want to buy both books in a set, then here's a great deal for you!

Sale price- $14.99
Regular price- $31.98

The Heart of Christmas
If you're a fan of Matthew West, then here's a great deal on a Christmas album.

Sale price- $5.00
Regular price- $9.99

A great deal on a 3 book series from author, Wanda Brunstetter!

Sale price- $4.99
Regular price- $44.85

If you're into suspense thrillers, then here's a great 2 book series deal for you! 

Sale price- $3.99
Regular price- $27.98


This sounds like a great amish-mystery series!

Sale price- $3.99
Regular price- $25.98|917318|1052

When the Devil WhistlesThis looks really good, and it's a great price! I think I may have to order this one for myself!

Sale price- $0.99
Regular price- $14.99

Here's a boxed set of 3 books for a great price!

Sale price- $9.99
Regular price- $44.97

Fiction Surprise Box, 10 Volumes   -
Do you like surprises? Then this is a great deal for you! They will ship you the Mystery Box, which is filled with 10 surprise fiction books!

CBD price- $9.99
Retail price for 10 books- $147.91

Thursday, August 22, 2013

A Few Things To Share & Sweet Potato Casserole

 If you allow yourself to be refined instead of defined, you will be motivated to make healthy choices.
Above picture was found on Pinterest from Lysa TerKeurst 

Hey my friends! Just wanted to share a yummy recipe with you that I came across today. I haven't tried it yet, but I am looking forward to doing so. I am getting in the mood for fall, which means lots of pumpkin recipes! Stay tuned for those! Most of the recipes I will be sharing with you guys will most likely be gluten free and paleo.

I also wanted to share some pictures I took yesterday when I stopped at my secret garden spot to see what was blooming. Enjoy my friends!

Oh, I almost forgot to tell you, I now have a facebook for my blog that you can follow me on. Stop by and check it out! Thanks everyone!

Okay, who doesn't love sweet potato casserole??? It's one of my favorite dishes, especially for Thanksgiving or Christmas. I found this paleo version over at Cupcakes OMG. It looks like she has some really good recipes on her web site. I will definitely be going back to try some of them out. I'll be sure to pass them along to you. Let me know if any of you try this recipe and how you like it.

Here's the link to the web site:

Sweet Potato Casserole

  • 4 large sweet potatoes
  • 1/2 cup canned coconut milk
  • 1 Tbsp. coconut oil
  • 1-2 Tbsp. maple syrup
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • juice of half an orange
Pecan topping
  • 3/4 cup chopped raw pecans
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 Tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tsp melted coconut oil
1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and preheat oven to 350 degrees F. While water comes to a boil, peel and dice sweet potatoes into large chunks.
2. Add sweet potato chunks to water. Boil until fork tender--about 10 minutes.
3. Drain potatoes, then dump them back in the large pot with all the other ingredients. Using a hand mixer, blend until potatoes reach desired consistency and flavor. (You may like to add a little more coconut milk, spices, or syrup based on your taste.)
4. In a small bowl, combine all topping ingredients until pecans are well coated.
5. Dump sweet potatoes into an oven safe dish and top with pecans.
6. Bake in preheated oven until topping is browned--about 15 minutes. Serve warm.
The below pictures are from a place I call "My Secret Garden." I go there sometimes when I feel the need to be alone and just soak up the quiet atmosphere. I think I take pictures every time I go there. I hope you enjoy them my friends! 

Please feel free to let me know what you would like to see on my blog. What are some things that would help you that you would like to see? I am open for suggestions.Until next time my friends, be blessed!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Wednesdays Wow Deals!

 "Judge each day not by the harvest you reap but by the seeds you plant."~Robert Louis Stevenson

Happy Wednesday to you my bloggy friends! I am starting off this lovely morning by passing on some wonderful deals I just recently found. If you love to read and you love Christian fiction, then this post will be right up your alley. I just recently ordered some books from and got the best deal ever. If you've never heard of ( or never ordered anything from them, I highly recommend checking them out. I have used them to order lots of books over the years, including lots of my homeschooling curriculum. They have great prices and they are very quick to ship your items out. I just recently placed an order with them for eight Christian fiction books and one American History book for homeschooling, and I only paid $22.41, which includes shipping for all nine books. The regular price would have been over $100.00. That's right, nine books for less than $20.00, if you don't add the shipping charge of $3.99.

I checked to see if all the books I ordered were still available on CBD, but some of them were no longer listed. I will share the ones I did find and some other great deals. Happy shopping!

(Side note: There are way more books on sale over at CBD than I can list here, so be sure to check them out. You can really mop up on the deals over there. I do not get paid for endorsing CBD at all, I just know a good deal when I see one, and I want to share them with you my friends.)

Here are the links:

Amish Fiction:
(Wanda E. Brunstetter)

Lydia's Charm|1855274|1001

This is priced at $1.99 right now!
Regular price-$14.99

Daughters of Lancaster County - The Series 3 in 1 Edition

This is priced at $3.99 right now! (This is a 3 in 1 book)
Regular price-$19.99

Love Finds a Way: 3 Modern Romances Make Falling in Love Simple and Sweet

This is priced at $2.99 right now! (This is a 3 in 1 book)
Regular price-$12.99

These are priced at $4.99 right now, for both books!
Regular price-$29.98

(Beverly Lewis)

The Crossroad

This is priced at $1.99 right now!
Regular price-$14.99

The Courtship of Nellie Fisher, 3-in-1 Collection

This is priced at $3.99 right now! (This is a 3 in 1 book)
Regular price-$19.99

This is priced at $19.99 right now! (This is a 5 book set)
Regular price-$69.99
That's a savings of $50.00!

The Shunning, The Heritage of Lancaster County Series #1

This is priced at $1.99 right now!
Regular price-$12.99

(Karen Kingsbury)

Kingsbury 3 in 1: When Joy Came to Stay, On Every Side and Where Yesterday Lives

This is priced at $3.99 right now! (This is a 3-in-1 hardcover book)
Regular price-$21.00

Even Now Ever After: 2 Volumes in 1: A Tribute to Our  Military Heroes

This is priced at $4.99 right now! (This is a 2 in 1 book)
Regular price-$14.99

Leaving, Bailey Flanigan Series #1

This is priced at $3.99 right now! (Hardcover)
Regular price-$21.99

Every Now and Then, 911 Series #3

This is priced at $2.99 right now! 
Regular price-$14.99

(More fiction)

Always the Baker, Never the Bride, Emma Rae Creation Series #1

This is priced at $0.99 right now! That's right, .99 cents!
Regular price-$13.99

House of Secrets

This is priced at $1.99 right now!
Regular price-$14.99

Promises to Keep

This is priced at $1.99 right now!
Regular price-$15.00

A Vote of Confidence, Sisters of Bethlehem Springs Series #1

This is priced at $2.99 right now!
Regular price-$14.99

A Matter of Character, Sisters of Bethlehem Springs Series #3

This is priced $1.99 right now!
Regular price-$14.99

Wisconsin Brides

This priced at $0.99 right now!
Regular price-$12.95

A Great Catch, Lake Manawa Series #2

This is priced at $0.49 right now! That's right, .49 cents!
Regular price-$14.99

The Colonel's Lady

This is priced at $2.99 right now!
Regular price-$14.99

A Tailor-Made Bride|1855274|1001

This is priced at $1.99 right now!
Regular price-$14.99

Well, that will do it this time, my friends!  I hope today's post has helped you find some great bargains and some great books to read! Until next time, be blessed!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Ain't Nobody Got Time For That!

Hey my bloggy friends! I'm back! I hope you didn't give up on me. I haven't really had the time or the energy to get anything new posted for a while now. Plus, I really haven't been in a very good frame of mind to share anything worth reading. It would have been all doom and gloom, pissed off at the world kinda stuff. So you can thank me for sparing you that kind of thing. Haha! 

I've been trying to sort through lots of painful thoughts and feelings these last few months. Wait, scratch that, it's been more like these last four years that this "sorting through" thing has been going on.  I've had some pretty good days, not so good days, and really bad days, as far as trying to work through all the physical and emotional challenges I've been walking through. The death of my brother three months ago really threw me for a loop. It seemed to stir up an emotional hornets nest. It brought up so many painful feelings from the past, which had nothing to do with my brother, that I thought I had already dealt with, but obviously hadn't fully processed the pain from those things. On top of having the grief to deal with, I've been trying to deal with all these crappy emotions from the past. Whoa! Where did that come from???

Have you ever had a season where it seems like you constantly have difficult, painful, heartbreaking things happen, over and over? Did it seem like it would never stop? Did you feel like you were going to collapse under the weight of it all? Did you get to the point of just wanting to give up? That is exactly how the last four to five years have been for me, but even more so since my brother passed away. I keep wondering when it will finally be over. I am so ready for a new season to begin. I don't even know who I am anymore. I'm not the same person I used to be. The pain and heartbreak have changed who I once was. I don't know what my purpose is anymore. Did I even have one to start with? I don't know what I believe anymore. Does God even care about me at all? Why does it feel like He has completely left me? Are His promises true for me or am I too far gone? These are the sort of things I have been struggling with for quite some time. Talk about feeling like you're brain and emotions are on overload! Gee whiz! I want to get off this ride now!

I finally realized that I was not able to handle all the emotions I was going through in a healthy way because I was physically exhausted. I had pushed myself beyond what I could deal with. I've learned the hard way how important it is to take care of myself and to make time for me, which means it's okay for me to say NO. I've had to face the fact that I am not Superwoman. I cannot be everything to everyone. I cannot rescue or help everyone. I cannot, nor do I have to, always be there to do whatever someone else wants me to do. I have wants and needs that are just as important as other peoples wants and needs. These have not been easy lessons for me to learn. I can sometimes be a little hard-headed.....okay, maybe a lot hard-headed when it comes to things like changing old habits and ways of thinking. No one likes to admit they can't do something. No one wants to admit they need help from others. No one wants to have to deal with the guilt trips you get from yourself, and sometimes others, when you choose to say no. As a recovering people-pleaser, telling people no, especially family, means you have to deal with this huge guilt trip from yourself, and sometimes from the person you are telling no to. It is no fun at all! you are feeling pushed beyond your limits or like you're burning the candle at both ends, then it's probably time for a change. I can tell you, from personal experience, if you don't take notice and do something about those red flags that are waving at you, your body and your emotions will start breaking down. Our bodies and minds are not meant to constantly be overburdened and stretched beyond what we can handle in a healthy way. All this can leave us stressed out, exhausted, and even depressed. Our bodies were created to have rest. We need to take off the Superwoman/Superman cape. We all have our limits, and that's okay. One person may be able to bear more than another, so don't compare yourself to someone else. This is not about someone else, this is all about you. It's all about knowing what you can handle and what you can't, and being okay with admitting you cannot do it all. It's about recognizing the warning signs that are telling you that you are pushing yourself beyond your limits. It's about making some positive changes for yourself. You are worth it. You have to actively pursue those changes because they will not happen on their own. If you don't make time for yourself, no one else will. It's not going to just happen without making the effort. You cannot give to your family or to the people you love, out of a grateful heart, if you are so worn out and exhausted. To continue trying to give more of yourself than there is to give only results in bitterness and anger.

There are some things I can't change about my life, but there are also things I can change, and one of those things is what I do with my time and energy. I am responsible for how I use my time. God gives us all 24 hours every day, so what am I going to do with it? Am I going to continue to live my life feeling like I am pushed beyond what I can physically and emotionally handle, or am I going to stop and take inventory of the things I give my time and energy to? Am I going to make the necessary changes to get my life and my health back in order? Just because we're busy does not mean we're fruitful. Overextending yourself is not going to produce good fruit.

I want to share a suggestion with you that was inspired by a dear friend of mine recently. It made me realize that I'm the only one who can do something to change the things I choose to spend my time doing. It made me realize that no one else is in charge of the way I spend my time, but me.

So, here's what I want you to do:

1.  Sit down somewhere quiet for a few minutes. Grab a cup of coffee or tea, a pen and a piece of paper. (Yes, that means you have to stop everything for a few minutes and sit down. You can do it! The _____ (fill in the blank) will still be there when you get done.)

2.  Think about all the things you do every day, all the things you give your time and energy towards. 

3.  Make a list of those things. For some of you it may be a very long list, but do it anyway. You may be surprised once you see everything you put your time and effort towards.

4.  Decide what's important on that list. Decide what you want to commit your time and energy to. Every time you say yes to something, you're saying no to something else. Are there things or activities that you really don't have to be committed to? Remember, you don't have to be committed to everything. What are the things on that list that need to be priorities and what are the things that are just taking up your precious time? Are there things on that list that you do because you're afraid to tell someone no? Are you only doing it because you're a people-pleaser? (Oh my friend, I so understand the pressure of that one. It's hard to say no, but it's even harder when you get so physically and emotionally spent that you no longer have anything to give and your body is starting to rebel because it can't take anymore.) Side note: There may be things on that list that you need to be committed to for a certain season. That's okay. I have some of those on my list too. It won't be that way forever.

5.  Do you see any areas where you need/can make changes? What changes can you make to help free up your time and bring more peace in your life? What things do you need to say no to? (Here's a great article on "How To Say No":

It's not easy to make changes, but when you've come to a fork in the road where you know you can't keep going the same old way anymore because you are suffering physically and emotionally, it gives you a little more motivation. We are only hurting ourselves when we keep trying to do more than we are capable of. Don't ignore the red flags. You can make the needed changes to help bring more peace to your life, to have a little more time to focus on yourself, but it will require being persistent and determined. Rest is beneficial to our minds, bodies, and our souls. Best wishes to you my friends, as you sort through the things that take up your time. Life is too short to waste our precious time on things that aren't bearing fruit. Ain't nobody got time for that!

Until next time my friends, be blessed!