Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Not a dramatization

Seen this commercial?

These are my kids (no...not in REAL life), but especially my daughter. School supplies equals heavenly bliss. Excitement over a pencil sharpener. That is PURPLE mind you.

Colored folders. Ahhhhhh.

MSU clicky pens (which my son is stoked about). They're totally cool mom!

Meijer could've come into my living room, video taped my children and wouldn't have had to pay anyone. With the Meijer bags strewn across the floor, supplies littered everywhere and excitement that was not paid, they could've made out big. Big I tell you.

But the mom would have to be replaced with the dad, because dad was the super hero that took them shopping. I think he may have even worn a cape.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Review (and rating!) of Restless in Carolina by Tamara Leigh

She's a tree-huggin' widow who is in search of an environmental friendly developer to buy her family's historical estate.

He's an acclaimed land developer who is trying to keep a promise generations old.

Through her burying her widow weeds and him burying long ago promises, this book is about growing up, forgiving and moving forward.

1/4 into this book I had to jump back to the beginning to figure out who was who. Once again, I felt like I was jumping into the middle of a story and characters whom I knew nothing about. I'm assuming that Tamara Leigh's previous book Leaving Carolina had something to do with this.

A cute, quick novel laced with light humor and splashes of warm fuzzies, it was overall pretty good. One thing that I did like was even with the emphasis on God throughout the book, by the end it wasn't "and her relationship with God was fully restored and perfect and life was all roses." It was a work in progress, of which I like portrayed.

Waterbrook Multnomah sent me this complimentary to review for them. And hey! They (and I) would love it if you rated my review. No strings attached. I promise.

Review of The Seraph Seal by Leonard Sweet and Lori Wagner

An epic tale of good and evil based on the four horsemen of the Apocalypse found in Revelation.

Using the four horsemen of the Apocalypse to symbolize the four Gospels, four transcendentals, and four forces of the universe (air, water, earth, and fire), Sweet and Wagner weave a fast-paced, end-times tale of good vs. evil and the promise of a new dawn for humanity.

Set in 2048, when planet Earth is suffering from the damaging effects of years of misuse and abuse, cultural history professor Paul Binder receives a mysterious letter that leads him to examine a lost 2nd-century Diatessaron manuscript. Ancient prophecies, cryptic letters, and strange events set him on a course to uncover the missing clues that could lead humanity into a new age. Layered with forgotten symbolism from the ancient, Jewish, and Christian traditions, the novel is a type of engaged fiction in which the main character's lost journal serves as a guide to the reader in interpreting clues and understanding the novel's conclusion.

This book took me a very long time get through. Character upon character were introduced and it got to be pretty confusing as to who was who and how they were tied to what. I must say though, It was very cleaverly written. A prophetic type story that has tied in current life events and technology and wove in the book of Revelation. In some spots, it was actually eerily too close to home.

Overall, a great book. And the reader is able to take it steps further than just being a story. There is an entire key and clues throughout the entire book plus an Alphabet of the End Times at the end to help you put the clues together to find a deeper meaning of the story.

This novel stretches your imagination to the limits and actually messes with your mind. So much to the point that I shouldn't have read it before bed as dreams resulted of the world ending. Not the best medicine to wake up rested in the morning.

Book Sneeze/Thomas Nelson sent me this complimentary copy to review for them.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Being back

One of the things I love about being back in our home town is sharing memories and re-aquainting places with our kids.

Last week we were out driving in two vehicles (in case we found "THE" couch), and were heading down a very familiar road. I was following Ed and I could see him pointing to different buildings. And I knew exactly what he was sharing with the kids.

"Over there is where mom went to college and where Uncle Rob and Aunt Laura work."

"Do you remember coming to see me when I worked over there?"

"Up there was my first apartment. I lived there before mom and I got married."

They may not have been the exact words my husband said, but those places are landmarks for us.

It has been a good reminder for me to slow down. Enjoy life. Not rush around just to get to the next thing. To remember.

Remember all the way back to childhood even.

"See that D&W Sam? That wasn't always there. There used to be an apple orchard there and when I was little we would go there to pick up bushels of apples."

"This road that we're on? It didn't used to have all these lanes or the big grassy area in the middle. It used to just be a two lane road."

I love seeing landmarks every day and remembering. And being able to share my history and Ed and I's history. And even better, being a part of adding landmarks and memories to my kids' history.

It's good to be back.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

the journey

It's been almost two weeks since we drove into Michigan and I now have a few spare moments to sit and recap our cross-country adventure (even though the kitchen does need cleaned up a bit).

Our last day in Seattle seems worlds ago. Loaded in the car, said one last goodbye to neighbors and making it an hour and a half outside of Seattle before bedding down for the night.

Thursday we made it out of Washington and into Montana and the sights were amazing. Beautiful mountains all around. We didn't stop much as we had lots of time to make up.

Friday we drove into Yellowstone via the back door of Wyoming. We stopped and took pictures of a herd of elk and a buffalo, that ended up running right past us (and running with a seven year old child on your back so as not to be in the path of a running buffalo is not an easy feat....adrenaline was pumping!)

Saturday we headed out of Wyoming and ended up just inside of South Dakota. At a hotel with a water park. A watiki to be exact. All four of us played until 10 pm and then Sam was up at 6 ready to get one last watiki thrill before we left.

Sunday we started out on one end of South Dakota. We heard that morning that our house was in Iowa and that the driver was going to be in Michigan the next morning. He was an entire day ahead of us. This was not good. We knew it was going to be a long haul as we had 17+ hours to drive, not including stops.

So we locked down the hatches and started driving. And driving. And driving. South Dakota is one very wide state.

Then came Minnesota. The Iowa at sunset. Midnight loomed and we were still in Iowa. Signs of Illinois were popping up and we were determined to get that far. The kids were fast asleep, as was the cat, whom we let out and he snuggled up with the kids. 2:30 am approached and so did a rest stop. After finally settling in the parking lot that was very hot and humid, we managed to get a couple winks of sleep. 4:30 came all to soon and we were hitting the road. Kids were still fast asleep, as was the cat.

We saw the sunrise outside of Chicago, the haze of Gary, Indiana and then the beautiful sight of Michigan.

We beat the truck by 20 minutes.

All in all, a grand adventure. One I'm so thankful we journeyed. One I know the kids will remember for a very long time.

Oh...and I have to say that my husband is amazing. He drove all but 2 hours. Yeah. Amazing.