Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas 2012 from Rhonda's Doings !

    Luke 2:1-14
    In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) And everyone went to his own town to register.
    So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.
    And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger."
    Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,
    "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests." (KJV)

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Review of

66 Amish Recipes: Learn To Cook Authentic Amish Bread, Amish Pies, and Other Delicious Amish Foods!

66 Amish Recipes: Learn To Cook Authentic Amish Bread, Amish Pies, and Other Delicious Amish Foods!

Here are some of the Amish Recipes you will get inside this Amish cookbook:

1. Amіѕh Brеаd Stаrtеr 

2. Amіѕh Frіеndѕhір Brеаd 

3. Amіѕh Cоffее Cаkе

My review of 66 Amish Recipes: Learn to Cook Authentic Amish Bread, Amish Pies, and Other Delicious Amish Foods!:   This book has recipes for breads, pies, cookies, cakes, casseroles, main dishes, vegetables, salads, and more.    I have made some recipes that are similar to some here but there were definitely some interesting additions to recipes, such as a green tart apple to chicken-noodle soup!  I want to try that one!   I would have loved to see a few pictures of the foods prepared, but the recipes are all wonderful.   I made Shoofly Pies, Peanut Pie, and Poor Man's Steak from the recipes.    Each of these recipes turned out great and were a big hit with my family!   

Here is my version of "Poor Man's Steak" which takes ground beef and turns it into a meal fit for a king!  Just by adding onion, cracker crumbs, salt, pepper, eggs, and covering with Cream of Mushroom Soup.   I modified this one a bit by grilling the patties in our George Foreman Grill before putting it into the baking dish.   Delicious!!
Shoofly Pie:    So many people seem to think that this is difficult to prepare, but it is actually quite simple and quick to prepare.   
Oh boy, I love love love shoofly pie!!   I have not made this in a number of years, and don't recall that the recipe I used called for cinnamon and nutmeg as this one did in the crumb topping.  Really tasty!    

Who wouldn't love a Peanut Pie, filled with cream cheese, crunchy peanut butter, whipped topping, and powdered sugar and then put in a graham cracker crust??   This is  a special treat and very quick and simple to make.   Try it yourself!  
Luke Wren is the author of  66 Amish Recipes: Learn To Cook Authentic Amish Bread, Amish Pies, and Other Delicious Amish Foods!
Please hop over to Not Quite Amish website at:  http://notquiteamishliving.com/ to see the many wonderful entries in "31 Days of Cookbooks".  My review is featured as the "guest blog" for December 20, 2012 on www.notquiteamishliving.com.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Review of Not Just a Hearer but a Doer

by Yolanda Shanks

We sit in the pews. We sing the songs. We recite Scripture.  Scripture we know by heart. And yet buried in the midst of this routine are commands and requests straight from the Most High that go ignored. We've become so reliant on God fulfilling His end of the bargain that we fail to follow through with ours.

We've Become Hearers.

In 31 days, Yolanda Shanks' devotional study, Not Just a Hearer but a Doer, will help you find calls to action within Scripture... and then act upon them. Starting with small things, like seeing that the Lord is good and working your way up to bigger actions, such as being a bold witness for Christ, you'll soon have the tools, desire and confidence to put Scripture into practice. Just as God intended.

God wants doers.
My review of Not Just a Hearer but a Doer:
I have read many devotionals over the years, and I feel confident that this is one of the best I've encountered!  It is practical, applicable, and easy-to-read.   Yolanda includes devotional lessons for 31 days.  Each devotional includes:  observations, background, interpretations, application, additional memory scriptures and a section for written notes/prayers.   Some examples of titles of daily devotions are:  Surrendering One's Self as a Disciple of Christ, Having Positioned Feet, Stirred and Willing to Give, and Don't Give Up, Hang in There!, and many more.   Reading and studying with this book felt like sitting down for coffee with an old friend.    
About the Author:

Yolanda Shanks is a motivational speaker and author.  She survived a suicide attempt in her teen years and has written a book based on that experience:  Destined to Live, Despite Me.  She makes her home in Houston, Texas.  You can connect with her at:  http://www.yolandashanks.com.
I received a free copy of this book through Christian Women's Affiliate  (CWA Review Crew) in exchange for my honest review.    I am not required or compensated to say positive things.

Review of Forsaken

Shelley Ring

Lara Blake is determined not to fall in love again, but her mother-in-law has other plans.

Naomi Blake used to care about God’s will for her life. Then her son died, and her faith with him. Naomi is on a crash course to take her own life next, but Lara isn’t so cooperative.

Lara loves Naomi desperately. She will not let the older woman go without a fight, and Naomi proves a worthy adversary. Lara believes if Naomi would just go back to church healing would begin.

Fighting the pull of death with the power of life, Lara realizes Naomi isn’t the only one who needs saving. Faith is not easy, but when you throw in a therapy Rottweiler, a knight in spit-shining armor, and a suicidal old woman, it’s downright scary. Lara almost has it figured out when Naomi seems to get her death wish. Have both women been FORSAKEN?

My Review of Forsaken:  
Shelley Ring's first novel involves a modern-day version of the book of Ruth from the Bible which happens to be my favorite book of Bible.   The mother-in-law, Naomi, is not always the easiest character to love so it truly is an act of love for Lara to remain with her after the death of her husband and Naomi's son.  I highly recommend this novel as you will likely laugh, cry, and wonder if you could ever do the same things that the characters are doing.  If you're looking for a good book to read over the holidays, try this one!   It is sure to give you hours of blissful reading!

About the Author:
Shelley Ring is a busy young wife and mother.  She is also a copywriter for several publishing companies and has many short stories which have also been published.  She enjoys reading, crafting, Bible study, and hearing the laughter of her precious children.  She makes her home in Colorado Springs, Colorado.    You can connect with her at:  http://www.shelleyring.wordpress.com.
I received a free pdf copy of this book from the author in exchange for my honest review.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Review of Secret Santa

by Amanda Tru

It was time for Hailey Rhodes to admit the truth: things were not going well. After losing her job as a teacher, she finds herself broke, unemployed, and tricked into accepting a date from a department store Santa Claus. When new opportunities and new love interests present themselves, will Hailey choose a career and a man she's always admired, or will she wait for the identity of her Secret Santa to be revealed?
My Review of Secret Santa:
Amanda Tru is one of my newly-discovered favorite Christian authors.  Her other books were all suspenses and this one is full of suspense and surprise from the very beginning as well.   Hailey is stuck wearing bells and a cute little elf outfit when she loses her teaching position in economic cuts, and when she begins to be pursued by the resident Santa, she does even know his name or true identity.   This is a true heart-warming story for the holidays or any old time.     I will not spoil the book for potential readers by revealing too much, but I had a terrific time figuring out who the real Santa was--(I was right, by the way!).   "Santa" reminds Hailey often that God does have a plan and a purpose for her life, and I enjoyed seeing that plan and purpose unfold among the pages of Secret Santa.

About the Author:
Amanda Tru is a busy young mother of three active boys and a former school teacher herself.    She blogs about her crafts, activities, and adventures with her children and family as well as writing delightful Christian novels for her eager readers.     

I received a copy of this book from the author in preparation for a book chat in an online group.    

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Review of Buried Treasures by Mary Manners

When Caroline flees Chicago following the brutal murder of her husband, the last thing she expects-or wants-is to fall for Matt Carlson, a builder with strong roots in the small town of Mountainview, Tennessee. She needs to focus on raising her six-year-old daughter and protecting both their hearts from ever being shattered again. Matt is struggling with issues of his own...guilt over the death of his wife and the responsibility of raising a cynical teenaged nephew who is dropped on his doorstep, abandoned by Matt's alcoholic sister. He doesn't have time to fall in love, yet he can't help being drawn to the woman who is ready to defend her home-and her daughter-with nothing more than a feisty attitude and a broom handle. Can Matt's help and friendship convince Caroline to trust again...and when Caroline's daughter goes missing, will Matt be able to find the girl before it's too late and he loses everything he loves...again?

My review of Buried Treasures:
What a delightful story by Mary Manners.  I could just imagine  myself moving into the inherited aunt's home and starting over with a new career as high-school guidance counselor, raising my precious little daughter, Callie, and meeting the most wonderful man, Matt!  They have both experienced such tragedy in their previous marriages and naturally they are reluctant and afraid to love again, but chemistry is there and they must see where it leads or give up and have a loveless existence.   I was so drawn by the sincerity of the characters. I loved the church gatherings and functions the characters attended.  It made me miss the churches where I served as pastor's wife.   I would love to see a second book to tell what does happen next in the lives of Caroline, Callie, Matt, Paul, Andie and the others.   I highly recommend this book to readers.  I think you will be as happy as I am about reading this book by Mary Manners.

About the Author:

Mary Manners lives in the beautiful foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains of East Tennessee with her husband, Tim, and  teen-aged daughter, Danni. Also with them are Lucky and Gus - the two cherished cats they rescued from local animal shelters.
Mary is  a member of the Romance Writers of America and Smoky Mountain Romance Writers.
During the school year, Mary teaches middle-schoolers reading and Algebra. When she has free time, she lovex to garden, take long walks with he husband, and read romance novels in a hammock beneath century-old shade trees.
She writes romance novels for White Rose Publishing. If you'd like to visit, she has an author page there, as well. That's where you'll find everything there is to know about her books.
II was given a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for my honest review.  Thank you, Mary!

Crowned by the King! crowning moment

Crowned by the King--Crowning Moment

Please visit the website for Crowned by the King Ministries at:  http://www.crownedbytheking.com/ for more information and to purchase your own necklaces to "crown" a special woman...young, old, or in-between.
     The Crowned By The King necklace is a tool that reminds women that they are Daughters of the King, beautiful, loved, and purposed to be used by God.   
"I am chosen"--John 15:16
"I am wonderfully made"--Psalm 139:14
"I am dearly loved"--Colossians 3:12
"I am a daughter of the King"--Romans 8:14
The above video will give you a brief introduction to this unique ministry.   
When I was given the opportunity to review the Crowned by the King necklace and share a  crowning moment with another special lady, I was very excited.  I often review books, and I love the Lord, my King, so this was a golden opportunity for me to share a blessing with someone.   
I prayed about the lady that God wanted me to bless by crowning her with the necklace, and I finally felt led to wear it to one of our peer group meetings at a local center and would let a woman "notice and mention" or ask me about the necklace.  Then I would make my move and present her with a necklace.  Sure enough, the meeting started, and ended, and no one mentioned it, but then a special young lady and I were sitting alone and talking and she says "is that a crown?" and points to my necklace.  I told her "yes" and then went on to explain about the ministry I was participating in and I told her that I wanted to "crown her from our King".  She has attended seminary and greatly desires to serve God as a missionary in some capacity in her lifetime.  She was so thrilled with the necklace and its special meaning and related Bible verses.  We got the crown around her neck and clasped it.   We hugged and she was moved to tears, as I was also.   I gave her a special bookmark and leaflet and directed her attention to places where she could find even more information about this exciting ministry and we parted and went our separate ways in a short while.  I walked away, smiling,  and thanking God for her and for her life and  ministry. I am old enough to be her mother and I value our friendship.  I truly enjoy talking and sharing with her and miss seeing her if she does not make it to our group meetings.  I am so glad that God has brought our paths in life together.  I feel that HE destined before we were born for the two of us to meet and to be together on this very day on November 29, 2012 so that I could place the crown around her neck and share its meaning with her.  I thanked Him for bringing her in my path that day as she was in need of some encouragement and uplifting at this time in her life.  

Father, bless this special young woman and lead her in Your will. Show her Your purpose for her.  Let her know that she is loved, chosen by You, wonderfully made, and Your daughter!   Fill her up with Your love. Surround her with angels of mercy, grace, and protection.  Guide  her each day. Fill her with wisdom and understanding.  Thank you for the blessings she has brought to my life just by knowing her.  AMEN

The lovely sterling silver crown necklace makes a wonderful gift and blessing for daughters, mothers, sisters, grandmothers, aunts, nieces, friends, co-workers, waitresses, nurses, female doctors, and more, even complete strangers whom God places in your heart and in your path to bless with being "Crowned by the King".  

I received this product free from Christian Women Affiliate's Review Crew of which I am a member and Crowned by the King Ministry to review.  No other compensation was given to me.  I was to share the necklace and report about my experience in crowning a woman with the necklace for that express purpose.