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, October 19, 2016

Wednesday Words With Hodge Podge

Joyce is moving in less than three weeks, and yet, here she is jumping right in to this week's edition of the Wednesday Hodgepodge. Excellent! If you've answered the questions, add your link at the end of her post then leave a comment for the blogger before you. Here we go-

1. What would you say is your strongest sense?  Hearing according to my students.  I can hear a whisper in a crowded room.  I have a strong sense of smell too.

 2. Do you believe in the idea of a 'sixth sense'? Why or why not? I am like Joyce on this one.  I pay attention at the Holy Spirit's prompting and therefore am extremely aware of things.
  3. When do you most feel like a slave to time? Explain.  Often I find I'm not much of  slave to time. Sometimes I get so caught up in the busyness of life and work that I miss the simple things. 

 4. Have you ever worked in a restaurant? How would you rate the experience? If you could own a restaurant what kind would it be?  I worked in a restaurant during college. It was a nice place, nice people, and served the best chicken wings you had ever eaten.  They were awesome.   Things I did not enjoy? I agree with Joyce on the clothes.  I could never get the grease smell out of my clothes, and one night late, a particularly demanding party of 12(automatic tip now a days), who received stellar service, left me a dollar tip.  There bill was well over 100.00  and as they were leaving.....and I was clearing their table....there was that dollar.....I walked out the front door with the dollar in my hand and handed to the man who front of his friends.....he reassured me that it was my tip.....and I countered back little regard I had for that dollar and obviously he needed it more than I did.  I am surprised I kept my job.  I will give working in a restaurant a 7.  It was not the best job I ever had....and certainly not the worst.  I have never ever wanted to own a restaurant, but if you forced me I'd have a tearoom or a little dessert shop ...with sweets and books.....and great coffee.

5. Ever traced your family tree? Share something interesting you learned there.  I have several family members who have worked on family tree stuff.  I have a cane that my great great grandfather carved, inserted a newspaper clipping into during the Battle Above The Clouds. He was wounded during that battle.  I also love the story of my great great grandfather on my mom's side who rode a horse into a courthouse and shot the lights out.

6. What did your childhood bedroom look like?  It varied in colors from the time I was 5.  When I went away to college it was a green color.  There was a love seat in the little alcove(that took the place of the piano I tried to learn to play), two lingerie dressers that were white in one of the closets, a twin bed, and a stereo.  My room was small with a capital S.
7. Anyone who knows me knows I love_______________________?
Cades Cove in the fall....heck for that matter they know I love fall....period.

 8. Insert your own random thought here.
October has been a busy month. It seems like we have had something going every single weekend,  I am actually excited to see it come to a close.  Maybe November will be quieter.  I hope so, but it is not looking to promising.  I am finished Christmas shopping....all but two about you?  Are you a person who shops ahead?,,...or one that waits til Christmas Eve?

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Alabama Irish

About The Book:  Brian was raised on "the wrong side of the railroad tracks" in inner-city Alabama. Now, at nineteen, with a troubled past and juvenile record, Brian struggles to earn a living and find a life purpose. When he journeys to New York on a chance trip, Brian meets and falls in love with Shannon; a bright eyed, aspiring actress from California. Brian returns to Alabama stirred by Shannon's courage and passion for life. With a new zest and reason for living, Brian is determined to turn himself into a man worthy of her love. Unable to afford college, Brian discovers the Os Guinness Scholarship, which provides free tuition to Pepperdine University for Irish students who desire to train for Ireland's ministry. With some innovative thinking, Brian fakes his Irish citizenry, accepts the scholarship, and moves to Southern California to attend school and pursue Shannon.  However, when Brian visits Alabama, all the lies come crashing down and Brian comes face to face with a past he thought was finished. Now, Brian must make a choice: lose Shannon by spinning more lies and choosing vengeance in hopes of putting his past to rest. Or choose honesty and forgiveness and embrace a new life with the only woman he ever loved.  Alabama Irish will make us sit back and laugh, then lay the book down and cry. But in the end, we'll be reminded that no matter our pasts, the possibility to find true love again is never lost.  (This coming of age love story teaches readers the necessity of honesty and openness in the pursuit of loving, long-lasting relationships.)

About The Author:  This amazing young man needs to be checked out,  so hop over to his website and learn more about him.  James Russell Lingerfelt was raised on a cattle ranch in a northeast Alabama town of 750 people. Literature was his high school emphasis, gravitating toward the writings of Emerson, Thoreau, and Longfellow. He started at point guard on the varsity basketball team, served as president of the student government, and was the first recipient of the Hugh O'Brian Youth Leadership award at his high school. His writings have been featured in A New ModeThe Elephant JournalElite Daily, and The Good Men Project. Lingerfelt keeps readers briefed at his blog, Love Story from the Male Perspective, which garnered over 5 million views within one year.  Lingerfelt is currently helping spearhead The Alabama Film Education Initiative, which is developing the state's first standard high school film curriculum. The program is predicted to help bring an estimated $4.6 to $6 billion into Alabama before the year 2025.  He received the DeKalb County's Top 40 Leaders Award by The Time's Journal in April 2016, and he's raising funds for his first major feature film My Home's In Alabama. Talent attached consists of actress Sandra Lafferty (Walk The Line, Hunger Games, Selfless), music Grammy-nominee David Hammonds (Executive Producer for Norman Blake), and Red Sky Studios, which will oversee post-production.   If you would like to write James Russell Lingerfelt or book him for a speaking engagement, see Contact above. He is represented by The MacGregor Literary Agency.

My Thoughts On The Book: I was a  a  huge fan of Lingerfelt's first book, The Mason Jar, I could not wait to get this book for review.   As an Irish Alabamian the location and subject were near and dear.  In Lingerfelt’s novel is such a surprise for romance readers.  I am not a huge journal entry reading fan.  I write in a journal, but am not fond of reading others. ...but I was captivated immediately.  I fell in love with the story’s hero, Brian,  as a high schooler.  As a teacher of high schoolers I was drawn to his lack of drive in school....but these are the students I am always drawn too.  As I read on I so wanted Brian to succeed.  Uncle Mike was my hero when he encouraged young Brian to begin journaling. I remember well my first journaling experience.  From the first Brian does you can see him come to life.  I felt as if I knew each one of these characters personally.  They sprang to life on the page and I love it when an author can master that.  This was an awesome read and I encourage anyone who loves  a good "coming of age" story, a good romance, and great character development to read this.  I promise you will not regret it.  Thank you so much Mr. Lingerfelt for giving me this opportunity.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from William and Keats Publishing and James Russell Lingerfelt, the author.  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 12, 2016

Moving On With Wednesday Hodge Podge

Joyce took some time off last week but  here are the questions to this week's Wednesday Hodgepodge. Answer on your own blog then hop back here to share answers with the rest of the world. See you there-

1. What would you say is the best and worst thing about moving house? The best is starting fresh somewhere else and getting to change up your d├ęcor.  The worst has to be leaving friends behind and packing up all the stuff you thought you had to have.  You find yourself asking...."why was this important?"  Unpacking once you arrive is not a piece of cake either.  We moved last 7 years ago and I am still finding things.  Frank and I are itinerate we can be moved any time at all.
2. What's moved you recently?  It Is Well by the Issacs.  I heard it yesterday and was moved tears.

 3. Do you feel your life is moving forward, backward, or is on hold? How so?  It depends on the day.  Some days I am charging forward with amazing clarity.  Other's I meet a headwind that thrusts me backwards.
4. On the move, move mountains, get a move on, it's your move, or bust a move...which phrase best applies to some aspect of your life right now? Explain.  I am moving mountains.  I have so much I want to accomplish and when I feel as if I have met a mountain that is too big....I say a prayer and God and I move that bad boy.
5. What song makes you want to get up and move?  To be honest....I have a couple.  The first is by Toby Mac called Move.

 6. Your favorite snack to grab when you're 'on the move'?  Pretzels, an apple, or some cheese.
7. What one accessory makes your house feel like home? Family pictures.
8. Insert your own random thought here. What is fall like where you live?  I grew up in South Florida....there was no fall.  I love the seasonal changes we  have here in Alabama.  Leaves are starting to change and there is a crispness in the air.  What is your favorite season?  Bet you can't
guess....mine is Fall in Cades Cove.

Saturday, October 1, 2016

Thinking About FALL!


What’s your idea of a perfect weekend? Is it a trip to the mountains?  Is it a trip to the lake? Is it a weekend at the beach? Is it a camping trip? Is it a weekend getaway with someone special or some friends? Everyone has their own idea of what is the perfect bit of time doing something they enjoy. So when I tell you what I find to be a perfect weekend, you might be surprised, confused or a little bored. Kat was home last fall, and since she is just here for a few weeks before heading back to Moldova everyone wanted to spend time with Kat and Brian. I planned a big family gathering, but also had planned for the two of them to hang out at the house after the guest had left and just chill with Frank and I….you know…simple time together…..but that wasn’t going to happen and I was disappointed.  They had a lot of people to see and a lot to do to prepare to get the Christmas gifts packed up and ready to go to Moldova.  Don’t feel bad for me….Kat and I found time to be together….it wasn’t what I had in mind….but it was time.  We shopped for the orphans, ate a few meals together in Montgomery and in Auburn….you know…just hung out together.  It was heavenly just spending time with each other.  If I enjoy spending time with my daughter that much I wonder how much our Father in heaven likes it, when we just “hang out” with Him. Sometimes I think we make it quite a complicated endeavor to spend time with God. It’s as simple as a personal conversation with Him, sharing time in the words he left for us to get to know him, singing a song on our hearts for him, being thankful in thought and deed. We can do everything, honoring God even in ways that seem quite small and inconsequential to us or others. He loves it when we think about him, even when we’re just going about our day, doing ordinary tasks. We can enjoy his being with us anytime, just like our family can enjoy being in the room together doing very little, but just being together. Acknowledgement is really everything, as it reminds us we “belong”. I’m so grateful I can always “hang out” with my father in heaven.  Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. (Matthew 11:28)

Blessings,  Karen

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Love Our Vets With PTSD

About The Book:  Love Our Vets: Restoring Hope for Families of Veterans with PTSD (Deep River Books, April 2015)
Chances are that if your loved one has seen war, he or she has Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder at some level, and you who love your veteran will also be deeply and profoundly affected.  Finally, the cries and needs of the loved ones have been addressed in this comprehensive, practical book, now newly updated in its second edition!
Love Our Vets answers more than 60 heartfelt questions, providing down-to-earth wisdom and much-needed tips for taking care of yourself. Sharing as a counselor and from her personal experience of living with a 100% disabled veteran with PTSD, Welby O'Brien gives hope, encouragement, and practical help for families and loved ones who are caught in the wake of the trauma. This book addresses a broad spectrum of issues and concerns and offers realistic wisdom from a wide variety of individuals who share from real hearts and lives.
Now newly revised and updated with additional material, the second edition of Love Our Vets continues to be enthusiastically welcomed by VA and other counselors. This is not just another book about PTSD; rather, it is a tremendous resource for families and loved ones who struggle heroically along with their vets to face the day-to-day challenges.
Purchase a copy:
About The Author:  Welby O'Brien holds a Masters Degree in counseling (Portland State University) and a teaching degree (Biola University). Author of Formerly A Wife, and Good-bye for Now (Wingspread); contributing author, Shepherding Women in Pain (Moody Press), and Chicken Soup for the Soul, Divorce and Recovery. Founder of Love Our Vets support network; wife of veteran with PTSD.  Website | Facebook
My Thoughts On This Book:  I was diagnosed with PTSD at the age of ten after witnessing my brother die. It was a secret I did not share for years.  I thought I was a freak and so I kept quiet....and so did my parents.  It was not until I was older that I began to share my dark secret with others and discovered that I was not alone.  There were many out there who shared this....people I knew....people I loved.  I chose to review this book for that very reason.  It touched home.  The book, Love Our Vets, is broken down in to 3 parts.  The first section is called "Reaffirm." This section is filled with a number of questions and answers that are often asked.  The second section, "Replenish," talks about meeting the needs of the loved ones....the ones who care for the person suffering.  People need to understand that when someone you love suffers from PTSD....everyone suffers.  The last section is "Reflect" and contains a number of touching personal stories. There is a section to aid in a group discussion and a section on prayer.  It is practical book and not a light and easy read.  It deals with a hard subject.  I would recommend this book for anyone with a friend, neighbor, or loved one who suffers from PTSD.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Deep River Books and the Litfuse Publicity Group. 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, September 28, 2016

Last Hodge Podge of September

Welcome to the Wednesday Hodgepodge. If you want to play along and  answer the questions, please share by adding your link at the end of Joyce's post. Be sure to leave a comment for the blogger linking before you because comments beget comments. Everyone loves some good old fashioned bloggy loving.

1. Have you ever been to and/or lived near the desert? What did you think? Travel and Leisure lists the 'coolest' American desert towns as-  Palm Springs CA, Virgina City NE, Bend OR, Winslow AZ, Marfa TX, Grand Junction CO, Silver City NM, Moab UT, Taos NM, Yakima WA, Borrego Springs CA, Terlingua TX, and St. George UT, and Tubac AZ
Have you been to any of these? Would you like to visit a desert town? Which on the list would you most like to see?  I've been to the desert a few times...I have stood on the corner in Winslow, AZ a couple of times.  I have spent a great amount of time in Yakima, WA since I spent the summer in Walla Walla  going to school.  I have been to 48 of the 50 states and have seen a lot of desert.  I have never been to Moab and would love to go.
2. What's a plan or project you've deserted in the past year?  Besides blogging more would have to be getting my craft room in order.3. Desert-dessert? Share two or three words you find yourself having to think twice about when it comes to spelling.
Principal and Principle.  If I am not thinking I will miss this one.  Capitol and Capital would be the other one.4. High and dry, like watching paint dry, dry run, dry as dust, not a dry eye in the house...which phrase can you relate to currently? Explain.  Dry run.  I have been in a lot of training session on methods to teach where we have gotten into groups and done dry runs.5. How often do you frequent the dry cleaners? Starch or no starch?   Once every month or so I take Frank's suits.  He likes light starch in his shirts. 6. What's a food or beverage you enjoy that's named for a place?  New England Clam Chowder and Boston Cream Pie.
 7. Do you need solitude?  Sometimes.  I love being around people, but I like aloneness too.
 8.  Insert your own random thought here.  Next week is Homecoming at both schools I work at.  It is a big deal and a crazy week.  What was Homecoming like when you were in school?  My senior year the Youth for Christ club I was in won the float competition.

Friday, September 23, 2016

Jesus and the Beanstalk

About The Book:  Jesus and the Beanstalk: Overcoming Your Giants and Living a Fruitful Life (Abingdon Press, September 2016)What if a fairy tale and ten Bible verses could free you to live an effective, fruitful life in Christ?
We live in unsettling, challenging times. Everywhere we look, we see giant problems: giant obstacles to sharing faith, giant barriers to peaceful lives, giant strongholds of fear. But what if you knew eight small secrets to unlocking a strength big enough to overcome whatever obstacle life may bring?Using allegory and a bit of humor, Jesus and the Beanstalk explores a passage in 2 Peter 1 to uncover eight truths that will help you unleash a larger-than-life faith:
-Affection for others
In this creative, refreshing perspective on spiritual growth, you will discover an unyielding strength when you tap the power of a God who is stronger than any beanstalk and bigger than your biggest giants.  Purchase a copy:
About The Author:  Lori Stanley Roeleveld is the author of Running from a Crazy Man (and other adventures traveling with Jesus) and Red Pen Redemption. Her blog,, was voted Top 100 Christian Blogs by and has enjoyed over 1.5 million views. Lori lives in Hope Valley, RI.
My Thoughts On The Book:  I had to chuckle to myself when I read the title of the book.  I mean, come on!  Jesus and the Beanstalk....but being a huge fan of Jack and the Beanstalk I was curious to say the least.  Lori Roeleveld did an wonderful job of writing this devotional.  I struggle with giants in my life on a day to day basis and was delighted to find this little help to defeating those giants and bearing fruit in my Christian life.  This book inspired me to get out my dusty journal and dig deeper in the Word.  I have been journaling, praying, meditating and searching more than I have in a long time thanks to Jesus and the Beanstalk.  I found the Word Study Exercise and Role Model Ministudy very helpful.  The Heritage Faith Walkers was inspiring and the Small Steps was the spark that lit the fire in me to begin digging, writing, and journaling again. I really enjoyed the book and cannot wait to share it, or at least do a book study with it.  Thank you for allowing me to review it!
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Abingdon Press and the Litfuse Publicity Group. 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.”