Friday, August 31, 2012

Back to the Books Giveaway ~ YA ~ Ends 9/7

This blog hop is hosted by
 I'm a Reader, Not a Writer and Buried in Books

School started for both my girls this past Tuesday.  It has been an adjustment.
I thought for a Back to the Books hop, a book about the "elite Waverly Academy" would be appropriate.

So, this giveaway is for the following book:

Tempted (It Girl, #6)
"Tempted" by Cecily von Ziegesar
Author of "gossip girl".

To enter the giveaway:

*Mandatory-  Leave a comment telling me your favorite (or least favorite) thing about going back to school is/was.

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

The giveaway will run until 11:59pm EST, September 7, 2012.  The winner will be announced on September 8th.

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

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Throwback and the Review Pile ~ 8/31/12

The read and the unread.

We hope to be able to bring attention to some older titles (released 5 or more years ago) that may not be at the top of the current bestseller list, but still deserve a spot in your To-Be-Read pile.

"A Tree Grows in Brooklyn"
Author:  Betty Smith
Publication Date: 1989

The beloved American classic about a young girl's coming-of-age at the turn of the century, Betty Smith's A Tree Grows in Brooklyn is a poignant and moving tale filled with compassion and cruelty, laughter and heartache, crowded with life and people and incident. The story of young, sensitive, and idealistic Francie Nolan and her bittersweet formative years in the slums of Williamsburg has enchanted and inspired millions of readers for more than sixty years. By turns overwhelming, sublime, heartbreaking, and uplifting, the daily experiences of the unforgettable Nolans are raw with honesty and tenderly threaded with family connectedness -- in a work of literary art that brilliantly captures a unique time and place as well as incredibly rich moments of universal experience.
I remember when I plucked this book of the library shelf as a kid thinking, "Don't trees grow everywhere?"  I was quite taken aback by the title.  Of course, I'm a country kid so reading about life in the city was a new experience for me.  This was one of my first tastes of a life so different from my own.

From the Review Pile is hosted by Stepping Out of the Page every Thursday.
The aim is to showcase books that you've received but haven't yet got around to reading.

River's End

"River's End"
Series:  The Inn at Shining Waters
Author:  Melody Carlson
Publication Date:  8/1/2012

In the final story of The Inn at Shining Waters, Anna Larson's granddaughter Sarah is beginning to find her independence. But her relationship with her parents suffer as a result and she travels away from all that is familiar.

While the solace of the river calls Sarah back, surprises await upon her return. Three generations of family heartbreak and disappointments converge at Shining Waters as Sarah finds God right in the center of it all.

I look forward to getting lots of great book ideas for my TBR from everyone's Throwbacks and Review Pile.

Happy Reading!

Its OK ~ Back to School ~ 8/30/12

Its Ok Thursdays

Its OK

...that my baby girl started Kindergarten on Tuesday.

...that I felt a little lost all day.

...that it is getting harder and harder to get the girls up in the morning. know that it would happen.

...that I now have a child in Junior High! enjoy the quiet time during the day. actually have the house stay clean for more than 20 minutes. look forward to picking the girls up at the end of the school day. not like homework :(

...that getting the girls to be early is getting harder also.

...that I'm going to have to crack the whip!

...that my schedule revolves around my babies :)

...that I wouldn't have it any other way!

Have a great Thursday!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Wishing and Waiting ~ 8/29/12

These are two books, one released, one un-released that I can't wait to get my book-loving hands on!


 Wishlist Wednesday is hosted by Pen to Paper 
spotlights a book that has already been released and I can't wait to get my hands on.

A Shore Thing (Otter Bay, Bk 2)

"A Shore Thing"
Series: N/A
Author:  Julie Carobini
Published:  7/1/2010
Publisher:  B&H Books
Position on PBS:  #7

Callie Duflay just isn’t like the rest of her family. While they’ve built white collar lives, she prefers getting her hands dirty by working with children and local California causes. When Callie learns that a beloved piece of untouched property in her town of Otter Bay may soon be developed, she confronts the architect assigned to the project.

Gage Mitchell may be an easygoing, eco-friendly professional, but he’s not about to back off this job no matter how cute Callie or her pet pooch, Moondoggy, may be. His reasons and hers are noble -- both have a heart for protecting God’s creation, and the truth is these two would be perfect for each other outside of this face-off. But will they ever figure that out?


WOW hosted by Breaking the Spine spotlights
an up-coming release that I'm eagerly anticipating.

Duke's Promise: A Forgotten Castles Novel

"A Duke's Promise"
Series:  Forgotten Castles
Author:  Jamie Carie
Release Date:  9/1/2012
Publisher:  B&H Books

From the Land of Fire and Ice back to England’s shores, Alexandria Featherstone finds herself the new Duchess of St. Easton. Her husband has promised a wedding trip to take them to the place where her imperiled parents were last seen -- Italy and the marble caves of Carrara -- but a powerful Italian duke plots against Alex and her treasure-hunting parents.

Hoping to save them, Alex and Gabriel travel to Italy by balloon. Fraught with danger on all sides and pressured by Gabriel’s affliction to the breaking point, they must learn to work and fight together. The mysterious key is within their grasp, but they have yet to recognize it. This journey will require steadfast faith in God and each other -- a risk that will win them everything they want or lose them everything they have.

Wishing and Waiting until next Wednesday,

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Tunes & TV ~ Harper Valley/Suits/Dallas ~8/28/12

A post to combine my love of tv/movies and music :)
With today being the first day of school for my kids, I wanted to find a song that was "school-y".  
"Harper Valley PTA" is the first one that came to mind.  Does that say something?  I remember hearing this song when I was little and my Mom and Aunt Donna would sing along.  And, common, just try not to sway a bit!  lol
This is also "old-school".  Corny, I know.


It is an off-week for the "On Your Screen Link-up",
so you get some of my random TV thoughts!

I want to talk about a few of my favorite summer TV shows that had their season finales recently.  So, if you still have them in your DVR and haven't watched them yet, there are tons of spoilers.  You are warned.

First, who else watches "SUITS"?

It has become one of my absolute favorite lawyer shows EVER!  The dynamics between Harvey and Mike are so entertaining.  Their one-liners and stingers are amazing.

So, the finale starts with Daniel Hardman being voted in as the new Managing Partner.  By the end of the show, Jessica not only is once again the Managing Partner, but Hardman gets FIRED!  Go team, Jessica!

Some other notables are:  Donna is back!  And just when I thought Mike and Rachel had another shot at getting together, once again, a love triangle is introduced.  Rachel, at Mike's door, sees Tess (an old friend of Mike's) walking around in nothing but a sheet.

End season.  Arghhh!


Next up is "DALLAS".

I remember watching the original series when I was a kid and we only got one station on the TV with an antennae.  So I knew I wanted to give the updated show a try.  In fact, I watched the very first episode in our Disney World Resort Room the first week of June!

I DVR'd a few episodes and then sat down one evening and had a mini-Dallas-marathon.  What a roller-coaster.  It definitely has drama down cold.

So, the finale.  J.R. signs over the deed of Southfork to Bobby in a rare moment of sentimentality.  Bobby's brain aneurysm is removed successfully.  John Ross and Elena get engaged.  John Ross and Elena break-up.  Christopher finds out that Rebecca isn't really Rebecca and says they are DONE.  Elena and Christopher hop into bed.

And the shocker of the night:  Rebecca (who BTW is pregnant with Christopher's twins) is really a BARNES!    I DID NOT see that coming!  lol

Like I said:  DRAMA.

And, I can't help it.  John Ross is my favorite!

Hopefully both these shows will be back on for the Winter Season in January.  I'm looking forward to it, if you can' tell :)


With the new Fall shows coming on soon, do you have any suggestions on new shows to watch?  I've seen so many previews for shows that look really interesting and have a good premise.
Please let me know your suggestions!


Teaser Tuesday ~ 8/28/12

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading.

Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title &; author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Here's my teaser for this week:

Taming the Wind (Land of the Lone Star)

~Tyler turned away lest his smile cause the greenhorn to question the validity of their statements.  He'd seen this trick played on more than one new man.  It was just the boys' way of having some good-natured fun, and God knew that by the time they reached Abilene, they'd all be in need of diversion.~

"Taming the Wind"
Series:  The Land of the Lone Star Book 3
Author:  Tracie Peterson
Page 32

Happy Teaser Tuesday!

Monday, August 27, 2012

Listicles ~ Living in 2012 ~ 8/27/12

"10 Clues That I'm Living In 2012"

1.  I just have to say it:  THE CALENDAR!  LOL

2.  Everybody's nose is glued to their cell phone.

3.  My 5-year-old knows more about technology than I do.

4.  There are cars that park themselves!

5.  You can rent a movie out of a machine.

6.  The only reason my girls know who Elvis is was from watching "Lilo & Stitch".

7.  My girls are excited for me to come listen to this "new" song.  Yeah, it was new when I was young too!  But they don't believe me!

8.  They are also remaking movies that came out when I was little!

9.  The kind of bike I had when I was young is now back out as "retro".
10.  I got married in the year 2000.  This will be our 12th Anniversery in September.  2000 + 12 = 2012.  :)
Have fun!

A Musing ~ Crazy! ~ 8/27/12

Each week Miz B at Should Be Reading asks a bookish question to muse over.

This week's musing:

"What is the weirdest/strangest/craziest book you’ve read?"

After thinking about this questions for a bit, I think I've decided.  The craziest book I've read would have to be "The Hunger Games".  I mean, common.  12-18 year olds running around a forest trying to kill each other while "adults" (crazy adults) are watching it all on TV and bet on the survivor.  Very disturbing.  A great book, but disturbing none-the-less.

The Hunger Games (Hunger Games, Bk 1)

Musing along,

Saturday, August 25, 2012

My Weekly Bookishness ~ 8/25/12


Books new to my TBR pile:

Unending Devotion
"Unending Devotion"
Author:  Jody Hedlund
Source:  Publisher for Review

Be Still My Soul: A Novel
"Be Still My Soul"
Series:  The Cadence of Grace Book 1
Author:  Joanne Bischof
Source:  Publisher for Review

Glastonbury: The Novel of Christian England
Author:  Donna Fletcher Crow
Source:  Author for Review

Taming the Wind (Land of the Lone Star)
"Taming the Wind"
Series:  Land of the Lone Star
Author:  Tracie Peterson
Source:  Publisher for Review

The Family Fortune
"The Family Fortune"
Author:  Laurie Horowitz
Source:  Paperbackswap

The Lure of Shapinsay
"The Lure of Shapinsay"
Author:  Krita Holle
Source:  Author for Review

River's End
"River's End"
Series:  The Inn at Shining Waters Book 3
Author:  Melody Carlson
Source:  Publisher for Review

Things Your Dog Doesn't Want You to Know: Eleven Courageous Canines Tell All
"Things Your Dog Doesn't Want You to Know"
Author:  Hy Conrad and Jeff Johnson
Source:  Author for Review
Author:  Eileen Enwright Hodgetts
Source:  Author for Review


This Week's Bookish Posts

-Musing ~ Re-reading
-Teaser Tuesday
-Throwback and the Review Pile
-FF ~ BBH ~ F5


-"Love's First Bloom" by Delia Parr
-The Maidenstone Lighthouse" by Sally Smith O'Rourke


None at this time.


I'm linking up to Stacking the Shelves, Mailbox Monday hosted this month by 5 Minutes for Books , The Sunday Post, The Sunday Salon and Showcase Sunday.

Lovely reading!

Friday, August 24, 2012

FF ~ BBH ~ F5~ 8/24/12


Q: Worst cover? What is the worst cover of a book that you’ve read and loved?

Perfecting Kate (Southern Discomfort, Bk 2)
I just didn't like this cover.  I think it is the lime green and pepto pink.  And the color of her face.  What is up with that.
BUT, I loved the book!  It was a great read!


Book Blogger Hop

Q.  What is your favorite thing about blogging?

I have a few thing about blogging that I love and are my favorites.

1.  Being able to look back and see what I've read and what was going on in my life.  I love history and looking back on my blog is like looking back on MY history.

2.  The community.  Being able to "talk" to other about the same things I'm interested in.  I don't really have anyone in my life that gushes over books the way I do :)

3.  Comments!  I get so excited when I see that someone has commented on a post.  It shows me that people are actually reading my blog and also gives me a chance to interact even more.

I could probably go on and on, but I'll stop there.


Q.  What are your top 5 books of all time?

This is always a hard question!  And most times my list will change each time I think about it.  Here goes:

1.  Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

2.  Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

3.  The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett

4.  The Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett

5.  Emma by Jane Austen

Have a great day!

High Five Friday Fragments and Favorites ~ 8/24/12

PhotobucketMommy's Ideafriday favorite things | finding joy


5 Highlights from the past week:


1. The girls and I made their new routine charts for the school year.  I let them pick out the colors for the lettering and then they spent a WHOLE afternoon decorating them!


2.  We  have been practicing for school next week.  I've been "trying" to wake them up early and we pretend that it is a school day.  They do their Morning Routine and we see how quickly they can get everything finished.  We even packed in the van and drove up around the school for an authentic "school morning" feel.


3. Wednesday we went for the second round of shoe shopping.  It was almost as bad as the first round.  The girls just could NOT decide which shoes to get.  We basically made the rounds through the same stores as before and FINALLY they picked out their shoes!  I was so relieved....


4. After shoe shopping, we got our hair trimmed.  Kaylee is growing out an inverted bob and it needed shaped, majorly.  I got my eyebrows done, a Redkin Shot to condition my hair.  I'm also letting my hair grow so all I got cut were my dead-ends and some long side-swept bangs.  It was so nice to sit in "the chair".  I was overdue.


5. Last night was the Elementary Open House.  We got to go see Laken's classroom, her cubby for her coat and book bag and her seat.  She decorated a name card that she will wear around her neck to school everyday next week.  We didn't really need to "meet" her teacher, because her brother was one of Doug's best friends in school and she was only 2 years older than me and graduated with my brother.  Just one of the benefits of living in a small town :)

I look forward to reading everyone's highlights from the week!

Have a great weekend!

Sanity Saving Routine Chart (remix)

I originally wrote this post about 2 years ago.  I wanted to update it and repost it for those of you who might be new to the school-year and how crazy and hectic those mornings and bedtimes can be.  Hope it helps!

It was the week before school was to start and I was dreading the inevitable fighting in the morning to get ready for school, the afternoon of doing homework and the night to get ready for bed and the new day.

I was trying to forget about all that when I came across a post at New Nostalgia about routine charts. Now, we had tried chore charts in the past with no success. But, I decided to give it another go for the sake of my sanity and mother/daughter relationship.

I thought about what reward to use.  For Kaylee we decided on an allowance system. She gets $0.50 for each day that she completes every one of her tasks. She gets paid when we get paid, which is every two weeks. She can use her pay for the student store, book orders, Dollar General, whatever she wants. It is her spending money and once its gone, its gone.  For Laken, we're still debating what award to use.  Any ideas?

Here's what we did for their charts:

I used DLTK's Custom Chore Charts to print them off. Then we pasted them onto colored posterboard. The girls decorated them with stickers and then I put them into a page-protector so they can use a dry-eraser marker and we could just wipe it clean at the end of the week.  (You can also use a simple spreadsheet to create your chart.)

We taped them on their walls in an area where it is easy to access them.

These are Kaylee's old charts.  Her's look different now than they did then.  I made individualized charts for each of the girls because their ages are so far apart.  Each child will really need one customized just for them.

Morning Routine:
Afternoon Routine:
Bedtime Routine:
I think you should be able to read what we have included in each of her routines. If not, let me know and I can type them out, but only you can know what you need for your child(ren).

Don't forget to post any ideas of a good reward system for a 5 year old!
Good luck to you! Let me know if you try it and how it goes.