Monday, December 31, 2012

Happy New Year 2013 Giveaway Hop ~ Ends 1/7/13

This blog hop is hosted by
This has been an amazing year for my blog!  I am so grateful for all of you that come to visit, read my posts and make having giveaways so much fun.  I can't wait to get started on 2013!

I have high hopes for the new year so I'll be giving away a copy of :

Bandit's Hope

"Bandit's Hope"
 by Marcia Gruver

To enter the giveaway:

*Mandatory-  Leave a comment telling me one of your highlights from 2012 or one of your hopes and dreams for 2013.

*Extra-  Follow my blog and leave a second comment telling me that you do :)

The giveaway will run until 11:59pm EST, January 7, 2013.  The winner will be emailed on January 8th.

For more chances to win great bookishness,
check out these other giveaway hoppers :

Motivation Monday ~ 12/31/12

A picture, a scripture or anything I find motivating to start the week.

Victory in Jesus.  My Savior, forever!

Listicles ~ 2012 ~ 12/31/12

I'm going rogue with my listicle today.  I feel like such a rebel!  lol

"Top 10 of 2012"

1.  Can you say "Disney World"!?!?!

2.  Dexter Michael was born :)

3.  We found out my cousin is having TWINS!  In March!  Could be on my birthday!

4.  Laken started Kindergarten and Kaylee started Jr. High.

5.  We saw my aunt and cousins who live in Florida for the first time in 6 years.

Nikki, Heather, Aunt Mary

6.  My Mom and the girls saw the Ocean for the first time!

7.  Kaylee got baptized!

8.  I've gained around 600 new followers of my blog!  Amazing!

9.  We added tons of new items to the Etsy shop and had a great year of sales!

10.  I discovered Listicles!


Happy Monday!

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Spiritual Sunday ~ 12/30/12


This Week's Memory Verse:

"My soul yearns, even faints,
for the courts of the Lord;
my heart and my flesh cry out
for the living God."

Psalm 84:2


This Week's Bible Reading

                                                          Tues, Jan 1.  Genesis 1-3
                                                          Wed, Jan 2.              4-7
                                                         Thurs, Jan 3.             8-11
                                                             Fri, Jan 4.           12-15
                                                            Sat, Jan 5.            16-19


Have a blessed week!


Saturday, December 29, 2012

Cover Crush ~ Best of 2012 ~ 12/29/12

Cover Crush is a new meme over at On The Shelf where beautiful and eye-catching covers are spotlighted! Any cover can be showcased whether it be old or new, read or still sitting in your TBR stack.

Earlier this week I had a post of my Top 10 Favorite Cover of 2012.  I thought I'd share that post for my Cover Crush this week.

HERE it is :)

TSMSS ~ Auld Lang Syne ~ 12/29/12

Have a very Happy New Year!


Have a blessed weekend!

Coffee Date ~ Christmas Week ~ 12/29/12

Won't you come meet Alissa (above), me and the girls for a coffee date,
or in my case, hot chocolate with whipped cream or maybe a chai tea?

Hello, everyone!  I hope you're having a good week.

~I'm having very hot tea today.  My sinuses have been so congested and it is making me miserable.  Yesterday was once of my worst days for sinus pain, so I had to reschedule our Coffee Date for today.  Hope you don't mind!

~The snow is falling again here in the North East.  Right now the snowflakes are big and fluffy.  A bit earlier it was pelting it down pretty good though.  Thankfully we stocked up on bread and milk before the store ran out.  hehe

~We had a GREAT Christmas!  Friday marked the end of school for the kids and work for Doug.  We had already shut down the shop to get all the order finished, so we were free and clear for fun!  We got up bright and early Saturday morning to travel to my cousin's house in VA.  His wife, Michele, is expecting twins in March and wasn't allowed to travel to PA.  So we all went down there!  I was worried it would be too much on her but she was SO excited for us all to come.  We had a fabulous day spending quality time with family.  We cooked, we laughed, we caught up, we played with baby Dex.

Dex on his "Batmobile" from Uncle Eric and Aunt Michele.

We ate and then we went to Bull Run State Park and drove through an AMAZING light show.  The girls love it!  I did too :)

It was an emotional good-bye.  Hopefully we'll be able to make it back down for the big event.  I can't wait!  Twins!  They still won't tell us the sexes though....  We have to have until January 26th for the big reveal.  I think they are both boys.  But I could be wrong.

~Sunday we had our Christmas program in Church.  The kids did an excellent job with their skit.  The Praise Team had practiced some special songs and we sang them instead of the normal praise songs.  Chad had a great sermon.  If you want to see the outline, you can find it on the new blog I'm creating for our Church.  It was called "Do You Have Room for Jesus?"  The outline doesn't do it justice though.  Chad is such a great speaker and spends so much time studying for his messages.  I can't wait until we can link up either audio or video of his sermons.  In the evening we went caroling and had a ball even though our nose and toes were froze!

~Monday we spent the day together at home getting the house ready for Christmas Eve.  It was odd this Christmas.  Things have changed but that isn't necessarily a bad thing.  As I said, Eric and Michele couldn't travel; Mike, Steph and Dex went to Philadelphia to visit Mike's family, and then Aunt Donna and Uncle Charlie couldn't make it down because Uncle Charlie was sick in bed.  It ended up being my immediate family which was kinda nice.  My Mom and Dad and my brother Dan came and we ate and watched a Christmas movie.  It was low-key but relaxing.

~Christmas Day was the best.  My Mom and Dad always stay over night on Christmas Eve so that they are here for present opening in the morning.  We always start with reading the account of Jesus' birth in Luke before any presents are opened.  I love how patient our kids are.  Everyone was very pleased with the gifts they received.  We had a nice, quiet, relaxing afternoon and headed to Mom and Dad's for Christmas Dinner.  Thankfully, Uncle Charlie was feeling better so he and Aunt Donna made it down for some quality time together.

~The rest of the week has been fairly quiet.  The kids are spending their time playing new Wii games and watching new movies.  When I haven't been fighting sinus headaches, I've been working on getting my calendar situated for next year and doing some housework.

~We opened the etsy shop back up.  That was exciting.  I didn't realize how much I would miss it until we had a break!

~I've also spent a bit of time online.  Let's call this my "Challenge Sign-up Week".  I've joined a few reading challenges.  I've also joined a fitness challenge to walk/run "365 miles in 365 Days".  That is only 1 mile a day.  I can do at least that.  Right?

~I hope you've all had a great Christmas and have taken some time to recuperate and get ready for 2013.  I have lots of exciting things going on this coming year and am really looking forward to it.  Did I mention TWINS!?!  I love being and Auntie :)

So, how was your week?

Friday, December 28, 2012

Feature and Follow ~ One Book? ~ 12/28/12



Q: What book do you think everyone should read if you could gift the entire population with one book?

I hope there are a lot of people who their first thought would be the Bible.  The Bible is definitely the book I would like to gift the entire population with.  The problem would be in getting them to actually read it.  Which is so much not a laughing matter.

Some other honorable mentions.

~The Diary of Anne Frank
~Little Women
~Pride and Prejudice

Have a great day!

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Historical Fiction ~ 2013 Reading Challenge ~ 1/25

*Click the picture above for more information and to sign up.*
Ancient History ~ 25+ books

1.  Deadly Plunge by Greg Messel
2.  The Tutor's Daughter by Julie Klassen

Fitness Friday ~ 12/28/12

Along with the 13 in 2013 challenge, I've also decided to participate in RunCrazy~Fit For Life's  "2013 - 365 miles in 365 days".

The goal is to basically complete one mile per day.  7 miles per week.  30 miles per month.  Or any increment you desire.  Any activity other than walking or running can be counted as 1 mile for every 15 minutes of activity.

My goal is to walk at least 10 miles per week so at that rate I SHOULD have no problem completing this goal.  I plan on keeping track of my miles on my Fitness Friday post each week.

I am so excited for the encouragement, community and motivation these two groups are giving me.  I'm ready to get started :)

Are you?

Daily summary:

Fri, 12/21/12 - Chilly but nice to get out and walk.  Dist. = 2 miles / Time = ?

Sat, 12/22/12 - Traveled to VA and back for a Family Christmas Dinner and quality time :)

Sun, 12/23/12 - Walked around town caroling with my Church family and friends!  It was cold but we had so much fun being silly and singing our hearts out!  Dist. = 1 /  Time = 60ish mins.

Mon, 12/24/12 - Christmas Eve morning walk before I had to start cleaning the house.  Not long after I got back, these huge snowflakes started flying and before long we had 2 inches.  Dist. = 1 mile / Time = ?

Tues, 12/25/12 - Christmas Day after presents, before family dinner walk.  It was cold, but I warmed up quickly.  Dist. = 2 miles / Time = 42 mins.

Wed, 12/26/12 - Northeast Snowstorm and I felt like crap!  I haven't had this much sinus pain in years!

Thurs, 12/27/12 - More snow.  Recuperating and recovering...

Total Miles This Week:  6 Miles


Weighed in for starting weight.  Felt like crawling back under the covers!

1st Goal = T - 10 lbs


TT ~ Resolutions ~ 12/27/12

THIS WEEK’S topic is:

New Year's Resolutions.

I don't really do resolutions.  I like to call them "goals".  I have a few goals for 2013.

1.  13 in 2013.  Run, walk, skip, jump or drag myself through 13 "5K's" in the next year.  You can see more information under the "13 in 2013" tab at the top of my blog.

2.  Read the Bible through in 2013.  This is a goal I am sharing with some of the other members at my Church.  If you'd like to join in, I have the first 3 months schedule already listed on the Church blog I am creating.  I think we're going to have a facebook group to help encourage each other.

3.  Open my Etsy shop back up today and stay caught up on orders.  I also want to dust the sewing machine off and add some more sewn items to my shop.

4.  During slow times with the shop, work on creating a nice inventory and have a booth at Homecoming in October.

5.  Stay current on my Bible Study and set aside quiet time each day for prayer.

6.  Get my house organized and strive to keep it that way.

7.  Try to have at least 4 family sit-down dinners a week.

8.  Get back to having a "Family Movie Night".  Lately Doug and I have been using it to get caught up on DVR'd shows instead of watching a movie for the whole family.

9.  Continue with my weekly calendar to keep me on track with each day's tasks as well as keep up with my blogging notebook.

10.  I joined into a few reading challenges for 2013.  You can see them under the Challenges button at the top of my blog.  I want to stay current on my review books and then read from my TBR pile.  I will see where that gets me with the challenges and then somehow try to fill in the blanks.

11.  Re-establish the "once-a-month-date-night" with the hubby.

12.  Get Laken through Kindergarten and get Kaylee through 7th Grade :)

13.  Fitness Friday Goals that I still need to work out and will share more on that post.

Wow!  I had more than I thought but really most of these I already am doing to a certain extent.  It is all about planning and my handy-dandy calendar.  I color-code it, BTW :)  Pink highlighter for bloggy things, blue highlighter for appointments, yellow highlighter for Church events, orange highlighter for school events.

It is so fulfilling at the end of the day to look and see all my tasks crossed-off!  I do use pencil, though, because it is all about flexibility and sometimes I need to move something to another day.

Looks like I have some scheduling to do....

Next week's theme:

Top 10 of 2012 ~ Day 4

Top 10 Book Boyfriends of 2012

1.  Ryder Montgomery from:

The Perfect Hope (Inn BoonsBoro Trilogy, #3)

2.  Owen Montgomery from:

The Last Boyfriend (Inn BoonsBoro Trilogy, #2)

3.  Rourke Walsh from:

No Safe Harbor (Edge of Freedom, #1)

4.  Ridley Cooper from:

To Whisper Her Name (A Belle Meade Plantation Novel)

5.  Daniel Smythe-Smith from:

A Night Like This (Smythe-Smith Quartet, #2)

6.  Morgan Spencer from:

The Breath of Dawn

7.  Nate Stanton from:

Blue Moon Promise

8. Dylan Taylor from:

The Trouble with Cowboys (A Big Sky Romance, #3)

9.  Wyatt Caldwell from:

Every Perfect Gift

10.  Scout Proffitt from:

A Texan's Choice (Heart of a Hero #3)

Tomorrow:  Top 10 Books I'm Looking Forward to in 2013

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Best of 2012 Giveaway Hop ~ Ends 12/31

This blog hop is hosted by
I've read so many great books this year.  I've been thrilled to receive many new release books for review.  I'm going to be giving away one of my very favorites from the year.

The book up for grabs is a brand new copy of :

No Safe Harbor (Edge of Freedom, #1)

"No Safe Harbor"
 by Elizabeth Ludwig

To enter the giveaway:

*Mandatory-  Leave a comment telling me what was one of your favorite reads of 2012.

*Extra-  Follow my blog and leave a second comment telling me that you do :)

The giveaway will run until 11:59pm EST, December 31, 2012.  The winner will be emailed on January 1st.

For more chances to win great bookishness,
check out these other giveaway hoppers :

Top 10 of 2012 ~ Day 3

Top 10 of The Best Contemporaries I Read in 2012

1.  The Things I Do for You by Mary Carter

The Things I Do For You

2.  Wish You Were Here by Beth K. Vogt

Wish You Were Here: A Novel

3.  Sydney West by R. McKinsey

Sydney West (Sydney West #1)

4.  In the Shadow of Evil by Robin Caroll

In the Shadow of Evil

5.  Shattered Silence by Margaret Daley

Shattered Silence (Men of the Texas Rangers series, #2)

6.  Sandwich with a Side of Romance by Krista Phillips

Sandwich, with a Side of Romance

7.  Trouble With Cowboys by Denise Hunter

The Trouble with Cowboys (A Big Sky Romance, #3)

8.  Accidental Bride by Denise Hunter

The Accidental Bride

9.  The Chase by DiAnn Mills

The Chase

10.  Austenland 


Tomorrow:  Best Book Boyfriends of 2012 (I'll probably skip this one.)