Isaiah 6:8

8 Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?”And I said, “Here am I. Send me!”

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Last November Hodge Podge

Welcome to the end of November and the Wednesday Hodgepodge. Raise your hand if your autumn flew by in the blink of an eye. If you've answered today's questions add your link at the end of Joyce's post. And be sure to leave a comment for the blogger linking before you because the best way to spread Christmas cheer is commenting loud for all to hear...something like that. Okay here we go-

1. Give us three rhyming words that say something about your Thanksgiving holiday (or your most recent holiday gathering if you didn't celebrate Thanksgiving).
Blessed with a huge mess in a shared nest.
2. When did you last say, 'the more the merrier'? Did you mean it?  It is a common phrase in my family.   We're more the merrier kind of people.  One year we packed over 30 of us in my cousins town house apt for the holidays. It was wall to wall beds....but loads of love. This year we rented a condo that sleeps six for us to spend Thanksgiving in....we were planning on throwing down an air mattress and sleeping eight....but at the last minute my cousin and her friend took her camper and camped near us.  It was a good idea.  Eight would have been too much.
3. What's one piece of advice you'd give someone who is your same age?  Embark on an adventure, make sure you have things to least 26 when you retire.  Don't wait to do them now.
4. You're ordering a veggie plate, what four veggies are on it?   Green beans, boiled red potatoes, boiled cabbage, and red ripe summer tomatoes! 
5. Shop til you drop! Did you? Have you ever? Will you between now and Christmas?
When I was younger I've shopped til I dropped.  I don't enjoy it any more.  I definitely do not enjoy Black Friday.  I shop all year so I am pretty much done by Thanksgiving.  I have now become a couple of hours kind of shopper.
6. What's your favorite chair in your house, and why is it a favorite?  My recliner.  I can see out the French doors from it, I can see the Christmas tree, I can read, I can relax.  Love my little corner of the den.
7. Share an early memory of faith, religion, or spirituality.  I grew up in church too and was not the child that needed prodding to attend. I loved it, and still do. My parents did not send me to church.  They took me to church.  They modeled faith for me.  Christmas was a holy time in my house and it revolved around Christ's birth.  Every night my dad would read from the Bible some part of the birth story.  I did the same with my kids.
8. Insert your own random thought here.  I am going to borrow Joyce's random thought.....If you're a person who prays please remember the firefighters, emergency personnel, and residents of Gatlinburg/Pigeon Forge, and the surrounding Smoky Mountain area of East Tennessee where fires have devastated the beautiful landscape and many homes, buildings, and schools. The high winds yesterday contributed to the rapid spread and the photographs are devastating. It's a part of the country so near and dear to the Korb's hearts, and we have family  and dear friends not far from there. 

Monday, November 21, 2016

The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year

About The Book:   The Most Wonderful Time of the Year (Abingdon, October 2016)Celebrate 31 days of a Christ-filled Christmas season.  For Christians worldwide, the month of December is filled with joy and wonder as we anticipate the celebration of Christ's birth. There is no other time of the year that can compare to the Christmas season for both the young and young at heart.  From December to New Year's Eve, reawaken the wonder, joy, and magic that is Christmas with daily scripture and inspirational readings of stories behind popular Christmas traditions, carols and movies. Enjoy a wealth of fun activities to help make the most of the season, including heartwarming holiday recipes and homemade gift ideas.   With this soon-to-be-cherished holiday devotional, best-selling author Ace Collins will capture your imagination and help to make each day of December more memorable and meaningful to you, and those you love, by shining a light on the real spirit of the season.  Purchase a copy:
About The Author:  Ace Collins defines himself as a storyteller. He has authored more than sixty books that have sold more than 2.5 million copies. His catalog includes novels, biographies, children's works as well as books on history, culture and faith. He has also been the featured speaker at the National Archives Distinguished Lecture Series, hosted a network television special and does college basketball play-by-play. Ace lives in Arkansas.
My Thoughts On The Book:  The Most Wonderful Time of the Year by Ace  Collins is a month long devotional book that begins on Dec 1st and runs through the 31st.   Each day is a pleasant read and begins by focusing the reader on the reason for the season.  I loved that!  – Each day has a scripture and then a hymn with lyrics.  I loved that.  I am a musical person and I found myself singing each hymn as I got to it.  Not all the hymns are ones that are commonly song in every church so it was very refreshing. What I liked most of all, being a crafty person was that every single day ended with some kind of season craft, a diy gift, or some amazingly sounding recipe that I cannot wait to try!  This book was a win-win for me!
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book  from Litfuse.  I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. 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.”

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Happy Happy Happy Hodge Podging

Happy Hodgepodge everyone! It's nice to be back on the blog today. If you've answered this week's questions add your link at the end of Joyce's post, then run say hello to your neighbor here. Here we go-

1. Let's all think happy thoughts...share one of yours here.
I will be spending Thanksgiving in Gulf Shores with Linda, Amanda, and Susan and their spouses.  I cannot wait!

2. There's a Chinese proverb that says, "If you want happiness for an hour take a nap, if you want happiness for a day-go fishing...." What say you? If you want happiness for a day _____________.
Read a book or watch the Hallmark Christmas Movies!

3. Where do you go to decompress from the world around you?
Into the pages of a book, to the beach, or up to the mountains.

4. What song never fails to make you happy?
I am a music I have to say lots.  Lots! Going with the first few that popped into my head-Don't Worry Be Happy by Bobby McFerrin, Shackles by Mary Mary, Sister Acts version of Oh Happy Day, Happy Together by the Turtles.

5. Wednesday is National Fast Food Day. Should that be a thing? Apparently it is, so tell us what's the last 'fast food' you consumed? If you were putting together your own version of a 'happy meal' what would you include?
Chick-Fil A on Friday was the last fast food I have eaten.  We have not eaten there in a while and it was very tasty.  My perfect happy meal would include mixed fruit, a salad, and some form of chicken.
6. In a few sentences tell us why you blog.
I blog because it makes me happy.  I began when I was dealing with my mom and Alzheimer's and my dad's dying of cancer.  It was survival at that time.  I love to write and it keeps my mind functional.

7. List seven things you're feeling especially grateful for today.
My husband who has a huge heart and helps take care of others, Face Time, Skype, and Instant Messenger so I can talk with my daughter in Moldova.,

8. Insert your own random thought here. When you were in school how many days did you get out for Thanksgiving vacation.  We only got out for Thursday and Friday.  Now, we have a whole week.  I am excited for a fall break!

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Trust My Heart

About The Book:  Trust My Heart (Waterfall Press, October 2016).  Grant McAllister arrives in Murphy, North Carolina, with one aim: to sell his inherited property and leave as quickly as possible.  The big-city lawyer has no interest in his late, estranged grandparents or the dilapidated mansion he just acquired. After his high-profile divorce, he should be avoiding perky reporters, too. But Jami Carlisle is honest, funny, and undeniably appealing.  After breaking up with her safe-but-smothering boyfriend, Jami is determined to ace her first big assignment. A story about the McAllister estate is too intriguing to ignore---much like its handsome, commitment-phobic heir. Thanks to her digging, the pieces of Grant's fraught family history are gradually fitting into place, but also upending all his old beliefs.  The two draw closer as they share their dreams, until misread signals and misunderstandings begin to test their trust. But in the unspoiled beauty of the Smoky Mountains, there's healing and forgiveness to be found. And for Grant, this unplanned detour may be just what's needed to finally guide him home...  Purchase a copy:
About The Author:

From medical secretary to court reporter to property manager to owner of a special-events decorating company, Carol J. Post's résumé reads as if she hasn't yet decided what she wants to be when she grows up. But one thing that has remained constant through the years is her love of writing. She started as a child composing poetry for family and friends, then graduated to articles for religious and children's publications. Now she pens fun, fast-paced inspirational romance and romantic suspense stories. Her books have been nominated for an RT Reviewers' Choice Best Book award and selected as an RT Top Pick. When Carol isn't writing, she enjoys sailing, hiking, camping---almost anything outdoors. She also plays the piano and sings with her music-minister husband. Their two grown daughters and their grandkids live too far away for her liking, so she now pours all her nurturing into taking care of a fat and sassy black cat and a highly spoiled dachshund.
My Thoughts On The Book:  This was a truly refreshing and wonderful Christian romance. The book is a combination of lifelike characters, intermingled with a touch of faith, a drop or two of romance and some mystery that drew me into the story and kept me there until the end.  I am a huge fan of Murphy, NC and many of the places Jami took Grant to I have seen which made the book that much more lifelike to me.  It was a touching book about how people can overcome their pasts and learn to grow and move on.  I LOVED this book and would highly recommend it to anyone who wants to read a good, clean, Christian romance.  I know I cannot wait until the next one comes out.   
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book  from Waterfall Press and Litfuse.  I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. 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.”

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Ending October Hodge Podge

FYI there will not be a Hodgepodge next week because Joyce is finally getting to move into her house!  YEAH!   November 9th Hodge Podge she is going to play by ear.  For now we are back to our regularly scheduled Hodgepodge Day! Here are my answers to Joyce's questions for the week. If you've played along add your link at the end of her post, then leave some bloggy love for the blogger linking before you. We like to keep it friendly here.

Here we go-

1. Besides your very own house, describe a place where you feel most 'at home'?
My friend Susan's house.  I never feel like a visitor and I love that feeling
2. When did you last 'hit a home run' with something? Explain.  I can't remember the last time I hit a home run at anything.  The only hitting I have done is just like a bug on a windshield.
3. Tell us about something you love in your house or kitchen that is 'homemade'.
Terri and Mandy have given me so many wonderful homemade gifts that I have scattered all around my house.  I love homemade stuff.''
4. 'A man's home is his castle'...which of the world's ten most captivating castles (according to The Travel Channel) would you most like to visit and  why-
Neuschwanstein in Germany is at the top of my list.  I want to see it because it is Cinderella's castle and I know it seems childish but I would love to see this in reality.  I hlanave seen a number of castles in England, Ireland, and Wales and was captivated by them all.  Windsor was one of my favorites.  I would love to see Edinburgh, Swallow's Nest and La Alfombra( in Spain) to round out my castle explorations. I love the haunting sounds of history they have
5. What's a recent or upcoming plan or project that's required you do a little homework before getting started? Did the homework cause you to abandon your plan or adjust it in some way?
I want to design o0utdoor garden areas for the parsonage.  I have been watching a lot
 of gardening shows (Curb Appeal), and reading several books on the subject.  I am planning to start this spring.

6. In your opinion, is homework an unnecessary evil or a valuable practice? Should schools be done with homework? Why or why not?  As a teacher, I'm not a fan of giving homework for the sake of giving homework, and I do think excessive amounts of homework might be an unnecessary evil...BUT! I have to agree with Joyce.  I do give it once in a while and  not all homework is a waste of time. 
7. Share a favorite memory of your childhood hometown. There are too many so I will abbreviate them for you......Skim boarding in the streets after a heavy rain, Banyon Street Park, John Prince Park picnics, days spent at Lake Worth beach and Lido Pool, A & W rootbeer stands for rootbeer floats and  hamburgers, bike riding, Florida cherry wars, going to the movies at the Florida or Carefree.  I had an awesome childhood.
8. Insert your own random thought here.  Have you ever watched any of the TED videos?  I found this one by Candy Chang, adapted it to my Spanish class and thought you might enjoy it.  My
students love it. The link is:

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

A Sister's Wish and An Amish Family Christmas


About The Book: A Sister's Wish (Avon Inspire, September 2016) - In Shelley Shepard Gray's third book in her Charmed Amish Life series, a respectable young woman finds herself falling for an Amish man from the wrong side of the tracks.  Amelia Kinsinger is the perfect Amish woman---at least according to her neighbors. And while Amelia takes pride in her role as homemaker, she's also harboring a secret: She's been in love with bad boy Simon Hochstetler for as long as she can remember. Too bad he's about as far from "perfect" as an Amish man could get . . . but that's exactly why she's so drawn to him.  Life hasn't been kind to Simon. He ran away from an abusive home at fifteen and things went downhill from there. Eventually, Simon landed in prison. But the experience changed him. Now back in Charm as a grown man, he's determined to make a new life for himself and not think too much about his wild past . . . unless it pertains to Amelia.  He's loved Amelia for years. To him, she represents everything good and kind in the world. When he realizes that she returns his affections, he starts calling on her in secret, even though her older brother Lukas---who just happens to be Simon's best friend---has made it perfectly clear that Amelia deserves better. Simon disagrees and believes he's the only one who can truly make her happy.  But when Amelia gets hurt, it sets off a chain of events that forces them to consider their future together---and face their past mistakes. There's a chance for love . . . but only if Simon dares to trust Amelia with the secrets of his past.  Purchase a copy:

My Thoughts On The Book:  A Sister’s Wish is the third book in the Charmed Amish Life series.  It is a not entirely a stand alone, it helps to have read the other two but you can read it without having read the other two.  I am a huge fan of Shelley Shepard Gray and the way she makes her readers part of the lives of her characters.  This was my favorite of the stories so far. This story seemed to touch the very soul of the Amish family beautifully though many different emotions. The main characters, Amelia, a sweet, wonderful woman who has always loved Simon and Simon who bears the scars of a brutal childhood which lead him to making many unAmishlike mistakes come to life on the page.  I don't want to spoil the story.....and I promise you will love it if you are a fan of Amish life and romance books.  This one is the tops!

About The Book: An Amish Family Christmas (Avon Inspire, October 2016). In Shelley Shepard Gray's fourth book in her Charmed Amish Life series, an unlikely Amish romance reveals that Christmas is a time for family, miracles---and love.  Ever since his father died in a tragic fire, Levi Kinsinger has felt adrift. Newly returned to Charm, Ohio, Levi is trying to fit into his old life, only to discover he seems to have outgrown it.  But when Julia, his young widowed neighbor, asks for his help with a Christmas project, Levi finds a sense of purpose for the first time in months. She and her daughter are new to Charm and could use a friend, a job Levi takes personally. Soon enough, friendship grows into attraction, but Levi can't help having doubts. There's something about Julia that doesn't ring quite true . . .Like Levi, Julia Kemps has survived her fair share of hardships---but only by hiding the truth of her past. Being an unmarried mother in an Amish community was unthinkable. Feeling hopeless, Julia did the only thing she could do: she moved to a new town and pretended to be a widow. But meeting Levi, she's hopeful for the first time. Little by little, she begins to imagine telling him her darkest secret, and eventually . . . perhaps even sharing her life with him.  Christmas is a time for family, and as the holiday draws closer, Julia and Levi will have to face their pasts together . . . in order to find the healing, support and love they so desperately desire.  Purchase a copy:

My Thoughts On The Book:  An Amish Family Christmas is the final book in The Charmed Amish Life written by Shelley Shepard Gray. It was a wonderful ending piece that drew the reader in from the start.  I could not put it down.   The characters came to life on the page and mix that with some family Christmas festivities you have a winner.   down to the freezing cold snow.  In this story we meet Levi Kinsinger first hand.  Levi is part of the Kinsinger family we have read about in the other Charmed books.  Levi does not return to the family compound, he lives on Jupiter Street. It is on Jupiter Street that he meets the mysterious Julia Kemp and her daughter and the plot thickens.  If you want to find out what happens then you need to read the book.  I cannot wait to see what Shelley Shepard Gray has in store for us.
About The Author:  Shelley Shepard Gray is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, a finalist for the American Christian Fiction Writers prestigious Carol Award, and a two-time HOLT Medallion winner. She lives in southern Ohio, where she writes full-time, bakes too much, and can often be found walking her dachshunds on her town's bike trail.  Website | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book  from Avon Inspire and Litfuse.  I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. 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.”

Christian's Hope

About The Book:  Christian's Hope (Herald Press, October 2016)  When Christian Hochstetler returns to the Amish after seven years in captivity, he finds that many things have shifted.  Captured as a child during the French and Indian War, Christian has spent much of his life among Native Americans, who cared for him and taught him their ways. Now that Christian is home, his father wants him to settle back into their predictable Amish life of farming, and Christian's budding friendship with Orpha Rupp beckons him to stay as well.  Yet Christian feels restless, and he misses his adoptive Native American family---who raised him as their own son. When faced with a life-altering decision, will Christian choose the Amish identity that his father desires for him? Or will he depart from his family and faith community yet again?  Christian's Hope tells the story of the younger brother of Joseph and son of Jacob, whom readers have come to love in the first two books in the Return to Northkill series. Based on actual events and written by a descendant of the Hochstetler family, Christian's Hope brings the sweeping epic of the Return to Northkill series to a soul-stirring end.

About The Author:  Ervin R. Stutzman is author of Jacob's Choice, Joseph's Dilemma, Tobias of the Amish, and Emma, A Widow Among the Amish. Born into an Amish home in Kalona, Iowa, Stutzman based the Return to Northkill series on the life of his ancestor, Jacob Hochstetler. He has been featured on TLC's Who Do You Think You Are?

My Thoughts On The Book:  This book was the third in a series and I have read the other two books.  I struggled with this one.  I asked to review it because it was based on a factual account and it was written by a descendant of the family.  I struggled to get into the book because for some reason I did not like Christian.  He seemed like a spoiled, coddled kid....and then I realized he was taken from one world, thrust into another, then sent back to the original world all before he was 18.  I guess he had a right to act the way he did.  By the time I finished the book I was drawn in to their lives.  This book is a stand alone although I believe it would help if you read the other two first.  If you are a fan on historical fiction, Indians, and Amish this is the book for you.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book  from Herald Press and Litfuse.  I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. 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.”