Sharing new authors, books, movies, and products with you is such a joy! If you are looking for homeschooling reviews from a transparent relaxed learning eclectic lifestyle with two active middle school boys - - you may enjoy my main blog - .

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

A Vision of Lucy



As a female photographer, I really enjoyed reading this tale of a young female working to get her photographs in print, working as a professional taking the photographs of the local townsmen. Sprinkled throughout the book are quotes of Miss Gertrude Hasslebrink, 1878 from The Trials and Travails of a Woman Photographer. These captivating quotes led the storyline for each chapter set in 1882 in Rocky Creek, Texas.  Her opening scene captures ones attention as she dangles from a tree to capture the perfect shot – which launches the storyline that will capture your interest until the last page.  I loved the newspaper’s defense – Pictures are not for newspapers, they are a lazy mans way of reading.  If you are passionate about photography, in need of a cozy afternoon’s read, this book should make you happy in deed!

From the Publisher -

Book Description

Trouble may follow Lucy wherever she goes, but with the help of God and the rugged, reclusive David Wolf, she'll never face adversity alone.

Lucy Fairbanks dreams of working as a photographer at the Rocky Creek newspaper. If she can earn money making photographs, then maybe her father will see that what she does is worthy, more than just a distraction. And her deepest hope is that he’ll see her as an artist, the way he thought of her deceased mother, a painter. But trouble follows Lucy on every photo shoot: a mess of petticoats and ribbons, an accidental shooting, even a fire.

When Lucy meets David Wolf, a quiet, rustic man who lives on the outskirts of town, she thinks she can catch the attention of the town with his photograph. She doesn't count on her feelings stirring whenever she's near him.

Two things happen next that forever change the course of her life: Lucy meets someone who sees her as no one else has—as the compassionate, creative young woman that God made in His image. And Lucy helps David uncover a secret that forces him to change his perspective on an event that left him deeply-scarred.

God’s arms are around this unlikely couple as they discover the truth about long-held assumptions and the importance of forgiveness.


I was given, for free,  A Vision of Lucy, a Rocky Creek Romance by Margaret Brownley in the expectation that I write a review on my blog and an internet site like  I will always give my honest opinion of the book and only submit /request books that I think my readers will enjoy.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Set your TV on Saturday the 11th for NBC at 8

We enjoy watching movies here – on the TV, Computer or DVD player. However, trying to find a family film – we run into themes that go against the message of our conservative family biblical based ideas.  The norm of most stories is the storyline between the hero and the heroine, how little the heroine wears, how testosterone filled the hero must be, and how little involved the parents are. Throw in a splash of disregard for classical based reading – and you’ve got the story line for just about every movie out there.

Which – Is Why - - - -

I am pleased to help promote “Field of Vision”. All of the characters in the story dress modestly – the Senior Football player does have a special girl friend but their friendship and priorities in time spent together are very sweet! The parents are very involved with the entire story line. The idea that a child would not be wanted is a shock to this small town. The idea that any child would be less valuable to another is also a shock to the parents. Older brother protects younger sisters. Senior Teens and the siblings enjoy discussing classical literature together.

I watched the Producers Cut of the movie – I’m not sure how the slicing will be placed for commercials – or if there is any other footage that will be added. The beginning of the movie is slow, a bit choppy, and it is hard to piece together for a bit. It was worth it to watch it til the end – especially considering your other Saturday evening alternatives.  I am not sure that it really faces the bullying that I have seen in the schools, or between school mates – but it does try to put “doing the right thing” as the honorable choice.

For my friends who keep their kids entirely away from magic – there is an element throughout the story of a Video Recorder that can send quips of events, it is said to be "like magic”, or “Works when it wants to”, and it pulls the story line together for a few of the players. I enjoyed the line with the video recorder – and would think it was a needed element to this movie.

Religion – or God – or Faith – was not used to justify any of the characters reasons for being courageous, morally strong, or family based.  We use the “Because that’s what the Bible Says” for a lot of our reasons in our home, and ask each member of the family to pray about decisions and listen to the Holy Spirit.  We talked about this after the movie.

From the Producers:

"Field of Vision" is an uplifting movie that addresses bullying in schools and the importance of standing up in the face of adversity. Nearly three-quarters of Americans consider bullying harassment a serious problem and more than 45% of students admitted to having been bullied in school. This movie provides a great opportunity for families to spend time together in watching and discussing the issue of bullying from a biblical world view.

Star quarterback, Tyler McFarland, learns that some of his teammates have been bullying a troubled new transfer student. Aware that sharing this information with the coach might get his friends kicked off the team and ultimately cost them the state championship, Tyler must choose what's more important: winning or doing what's right. Starring Faith Ford, Tony Oller and Joe Adler this movie airs on Saturday, June 11, 2011 at 8/7c on NBC.



    Mom's for Family TV:

    Dove Foundation Review:


"Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

Monday, June 6, 2011

Already Compromised


Master Books, A division of New Leaf Publishing Group, gave me the opportunity to review Already Compromised by ken Ham and Greg Hall with Britt Beemer.  It is interesting to note – that their goal of giving these free e-books for review – was stated “to serve as a catalyst for the critical message of Biblical Authority”, wanting to “seize every opportunity to share the truth and counter the lies”.

I reviewed the book on my iPod using the iBooks App. I love the ability to highlight notes and set bookmarks.  I have over 30 bookmarks and highlights that I wanted to remember to share with you – and save for re-writing the entire book as a review – I thought I’d focus on a two topics that I have heard on Facebook Regarding this book.

Nowhere, in the pages I read, did I get the message not to send my child to College.  I did not get the message to not send my child to a local community school or a state school. Ever. The authors tell of their times in these institutions as the means to getting them where they are today. This will not be a book that will dissuade you from sending your child to college.

The opposite is true – what they are wanting parents to know – realize – understand – and act upon – is the war that will be waged on your child – to persuade them to believe – that the Bible is not the inerrant Word of God.  In the Private, Public, State, and Christian Colleges. One might think that investing the Tens of Thousands of dollars to send your child to a Christian College would give them a great Biblical Foundation. This is not true. The other part that was revealed in the polls – is that many, a high percentage, of parents send their children to schools based on the way the campus looks and feels, closeness to home and price. They do not spend time talking to the President or Vice President, or asking about the Faculty – where they were trained, and what they believe.  Looking through the polls of these colleges revealed quite a bit!

That you are less saved/not saved/  if you struggle to believe that the Bible is the Inerrant word of God.

Again, the opposite is true – My favorite chapter was actually the Final Thoughts – a Plea for Unity, Chapter 11. He starts out with  this verse:

My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe me through their message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me (Jesus, in John 17:20-22).  Reputation and pride are at stake, not only for these universities, but for those who have graduated from them. For those who have earned livings based on the Scientific Academics – while quenching, changing, not sharing, or disbelieving the Word of God.

I have read many websites that accuse AIG on “being divisive, causing unnecessary conflict, and stirring waters that should be left alone.” They state the accusation like this” Only Christ should matter and those elements of the gospel message essential for salvation – and differing interpretations in Genesis should be acceptable and tolerated.”  He goes on – “But this view ignores a larger question – can we separate the centrality of Christ from the authority of His Word? Surely we would all agree that our unity should be centered in Christ. After all, it is only through faith in Jesus Christ that one can be saved. The question, however, is not whether we are saved, but What Christians should hold as being essential for Christian unity. The Christian Church can only know about Jesus Christ through His Word. If the Word of God is not an authoritative document, then how can we know that the message of Jesus and the gospel is reliable? It’s easy to say wonderful statements about how Jesus is all we need for unity and quickly forget that Christ  is not only the Christ of the Cross but also the giver of His Word. Shouldn’t this  then mean that we need to be united in the authority of the document He has given as His message?”

“Is it possible to de-unify the God of creation from the God of redemption by being willing to accept only one truth in the gospel while accepting the world’s views  in Origins? The Bible tells us that the God of creation IS the God of redemption, so surely this means that unity in Jesus has much wider ramifications than many are realizing. . . .” and he goes on.”

This is a book about College. Oh wait – that is also not true.  Yes, it’s foundations are the findings of a poll given to 200 colleges – but the root of the topic matter is – the authority of the Bible. Moms, Dads, Grandparents, Caregivers, and the like need to wake up. They need to understand how many opinions are out there – opinions based on man – and not the Word – that will have rule over your children. And – the very people that you are paying to train these children – are the ones that are programming them to believe a lie – or are the ones planting the seeds of doubt – and adding fertilizer to boot.

Back to the Gloom of Not Sending Your Child to Any State Run School - They promise to “leave you with an Action Plan that will help protect your child and begin to initiate changes in the system as a whole.”

And why do we need an action plan? Why do we need to face the education of our child from Kindergarten to Graduate school with an action plan?

Because – “A blind man cannot guide a blind man, can he? Will they not both fall into a pit? A pupil is not above his teacher; but everyone, after he has been fully trained, will be like his teacher. (Luke 6:39-40).

I have heard from many a Homeschool Conference Teacher – to make sure that your heart – your passions – your directions are made known to your child. That you Light The Fire – for your child. Do not send your child off to a teacher, who has a passion and opinion – without the passion already lit and fueled in their own heart.

Again, I can’t just type – or retype- the whole book. But I am pleading with you – to read it. To reaffirm why the Authority of the Word is so important – not only to your child – but to you. You will enjoy reading through the

  • Concern for the Curriculum,
  • Welcome to the War,
  • Conflict between the Classrooms,
  • Worth Fighting For,
  • Confusion across Campus,
  • The Battle for the Mind, T
  • he High Call of Taking Action,
  • Ready to Give an Answer,
  • the High Stakes of Good Thinking, the Age of the Earth,
  • Decisions Decisions, Decisions: Choosing the University That’s Right for you,
  • For Students Only: Keys for Surviving and Thriving in College,
  • and the Final Thoughts, A Plea for Unity –

Wrapping it up with Appendixes

  • Speaking of Newspeak, Do you Really Understand “Worldview”?
  • Documentary Hypothesis: Moses, Genesis, and the JEDP:,
  • Institution Questionnaire.

The final thing they leave you with , is a link, found in the book, to their list of colleges that came through the Poll as “Creation Colleges”.

I will probably be sharing my personal thoughts of many of my bookmarks from the book at the Http:// blog – as I am quite passionate about sharing that I believe that My God can and DID do what He, and other first hand witnesses, said that He Did. Any other explanation stemming from a man, opinion or such – just diminishes that My God is All Powerful.  I’m just surprised he didn’t flash create the earth on One Day. Why don’t we start debating why did he even needed 6?

An Unlikely Suitor, Nancy Moser

This book will draw you in, and hold your interest, until the last page. A historical fiction – with a bit of romance towards the end of the book – but unlike most Historical Fiction writers, Nancy made sure that you would feel like you were walking the streets – going to work with our characters, walking around their small apartment. She made sure you would want to protect the characters from the villains and heave a heavy sigh when rescues came. She gave the heroines wisdom, intelligence and a voice. The shy shamed heroin that has no idea what to do with her life until the gentleman shows up and rescues here will not be found in these pages. There is mystery – love – and detailed accounts of being in a dress shop in the gilded age.  A wonderful read for sure!

ImageFrom the Publisher – Bethany House -

Spend a season in glamorous 1895 Newport in this compelling tale of friendship, devotion, and sacrificial love.

New York dressmaker Lucy Scarpelli befriends socialite Rowena Langdon as she's designing her 1895 summer wardrobe. Grateful for Lucy's skill in creating fashions that hide her physical injury, Rowena invites Lucy to the family mansion in Newport, Rhode Island, encouraging the unusual friendship.

One day Lucy encounters an intriguing man on the Cliff Walk, and love begins to blossom. Yet Lucy resists, for what Newport man would want to marry an Italian dressmaker working to support her family?

Rowena faces an arranged marriage to a wealthy heir she doesn't love, but dare a crippled girl hope for anything better?

And Lucy's teenage sister, Sofia, falls for a man well above her social class--but is he willing to give up everything to marry a woman below his station?

As the lives of three young woman--and their unlikely suitors--become entangled in a web of secrets and sacrifice, will the season end with any of them finding true happiness?

I received An Unlikely Suitor by Nancy Moser from the Bethany House for free in exchange for writing an honest review upon completion of reading the book.

Plain Wisdom, Cindy Woodsmall & Miriam Flaud

An Invitation

into An Amish Home

and the Hearts of Two Women

Cindy Woodsmall captured my heart and attention as a great Amish Fiction writer with the Sisters of the Quilt series, When the Heart Cries, When the Morning Comes and  When the Soul Mends. She has written other Amish Fiction stories as well -

She has a voice that captures the heart of the Old Order Amish Community – sharing their day, recipes, friendships – that tells of one who has lived among them.

In Plain Wisdom – you get to hear how that journey started – with the written notes of friendship between Old Order Amish mother Miriam Flaud and Cindy Woodsmall. Their friendship started through the written word, and was sealed through numerous visits to the Flaud home.

Miriam mailed her entries to this book to Cindy’s home, and they worked together to get the text written.

It is a book of encouragement. First – it shows how two moms, who love the Lord, who serve as wives and mothers – can be so utterly alike and so plainly different all in one sentence. To see the common ground that brought these two together is breathtaking.

While reading the book, I found that I enjoyed the style of Miriam’s writing – and will hope to imitate some of her writing style in my own blog.

If you enjoy Cindy’s books – if you enjoy Amish Literature – you WILL enjoy this great read. Each chapter is its own mini essay of sorts, with both voices, and may need time to digest, encourage, exhort and admonish at times. It took me quite a few mornings and afternoons to soak in the wisdom given in this book. Thank you to Cindy and Miriam for taking the time to combine your efforts. And thank you to the Flaud family for allowing your Miriam – to step out – in humility and wisdom to encourage us moms. Thank you to Cindy for the courage and finances that it must have taken to pull off all of the trips and the asking Miriam to write it down. Oh how I wish we could hear those conversations over the dinner table. I am sure that what we read here, is just a fraction of what she has shared with you over the past few years. Thank you.

I received a free copy of Plain Wisdom from the Waterbrook Multnomah program Blogging for Books in exchange for an honest review upon completion of reading the book on my blog, their site and a retailer such as Amazon.