“Our Newlywed Kitchen” by Laura Schupp, Book review

newly wed kitchen cover

Our Newlywed Kitchen: The Art of Cooking, Gathering, and Creating Traditions, by Laura Schupp, book review

You just got engaged! It is so exciting! You have dreamed of this day since you were a little girl playing dress up with a white dish town for a veil. But now it is getting a bit real. You and your beloved are planning to set up your first home together. WOW, there are so many decisions. This book is part journal and part how-to of setting up a new kitchen. The illustrations are inspiring and there is room for personal notes and family memories.

This would be a great gift for a newly engaged couple to use during the wedding planning stage.

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the publisher, Tyndale house. All opinions expressed are my own.

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“Room on the Porch Swing” by Amy Clipson, book review

“Room on the Porch Swing” by Amy Clipson, book review

porch swing cover

Laura has finally emerged from the fog of mourning after the sudden death of her mother. But now grief slams her again as her best friend dies from an illness. As the whole community helps Allen with his baby daughter and buggy business, Laura steps in as a nanny when Ira Mae is injured in a fall. Laura quickly bonds with the baby and makes Allen’s life manageable as she cares for the home.

As the weeks go by, Laura and Allen fall in to an easy friendship that helps them both deal with their grief. But when Laura’s boy friend of four years, Rudy, becomes jealous and informs the Bishop that Laura is spending the night unchaperoned, things get out of hand.

This is the second in the Amish Homestead series and many of the same characters appear that we met in the first book. I enjoyed the book and it might stand on its own, if you do not read the others in the series.

Disclaimer: I received this book from the publisher, Zondervan. All opinions expressed are my own.

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“A Breath of Hope” by Lauriane Snelling, book review

“A Breath of Hope” by Lauriane Snelling, book review. Under Northern Skies series.

Nilda has dreamed of coming to America for so long. Her best friend sailed with her family to begin a new life with the promise of property in exchange for work. And now Nilda has received an invitation to come too! While she is sad to leave her parents, the promise of a new life is a blessing!

Signe and Rune have settled into their new life in America. After a rocky start dealing with a difficult relative and employer, they are thriving! The new baby is a wonderful breath of fresh air and reminds them all of the blessings they have been given.

This is a continuation of the series that shares the story of the families moving to America to begin a new life. We are so blessed in the current time that we often forget the sacrifices that those first immigrants made to survive and thrive in America.

I enjoyed this book and could easily follow the plot and characters. I have read all the previous books, which I suggest that you do to fully enjoy the story line.

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the publisher, Bethany House. All opinions expressed are my own.

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“Return to Bella Terra: Book 3 of The Italian Chronicles Trilogy (Volume 3” book review

Return to Bella Terra: Book 3 of The Italian Chronicles Trilogy (Volume 3), book review

This book continues the story of the immigrant family from Sicily. Maria and her family have been in America for several years and are trying to make it work. But they have learned that the stories they heard were greatly exaggerated- the streets were not paved with gold! But they were committed to becoming Americans. Until…

Maria receives word that her mother is dying! Her sister urges her to come for a last visit. After a quick talk with her husband, Maria and her oldest son, Nico book a trip. Thankfully, they arrive in time to spend the last few days with her mother and attend to the funeral and other details after her mother passes.

Nico, on the other hand, learns that things are a bit different than when he left as a child. He meets a beautiful women and instantly falls in love! He also learns the difficult truth regarding the situation of his birth and gets to know his birth father.

This is an interesting book about a close family who is divided by a wide ocean as well as some secrets. But they have faith that God is working in all their lives.

Disclaimer: The publisher provided me a copy of this book. All opinions expressed are my own.

You may purchase this book on Amazon or from a local retailer.

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“the Hidden Side” by Heidi Chiavaroli, book review

hidden side

“the Hidden Side” by Heidi Chiavaroli, book review

Two stories, 200 years apart, slowly come together in this novel by Heidi Chiavoroli. New York 2016- the Abbott family is ok one minute and not ok the next. High school student, Chris, is the shooter at school which kills 3 students. His twin sister witnessed it. Now Natalie, the mother, is trying to keep her family and her whole world from completely falling apart.

New York 1776- Mercy Howard is secretly engaged to Nathan. They hope that the war ends soon so they can wed and begin their lives together. But Nathan Hale is captured and hung as a traitor. Now Mercy goes behind enemy lines to gather intelligence for Washington to further Nathan’s mission.

Both of these stories are full of sadness. In the wake of recent school shootings, it has actually been difficult to read. But the author carefully brings the reader to a place of understanding and peace.

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the publisher, Tyndale Fiction. All opinions are my own.

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“the better mom” by Ruth Schwenk, book review

the better mom

“the better mom” Growing in Grace between perfection and the mess, by Ruth Schwenk, book review

Motherhood is a wonderful and messy time. Just because we now have a child does not mean that we are automatically a good mom. Ruth Schwenk gives and open and honest look at being a mother, along with examples and encouragement that mothers of all ages can relate to.

This is a wonderful book that is focused on the new mother and the mother of young children. As the mother of four children, she is a expert on these topics. She shares examples from her own life that make us feel that she really understands the struggles of mothers everywhere. She also gives Godly counsel for many situations that can be discouraging for mothers of youngsters.

This would be a great gift for a baby shower!

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the publisher, Zondervan. All opinions expressed are my own.

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“The Weaver’s Daughter” by Sarah E. Ladd, book review

weaver's daughter cover

“The Weaver’s Daughter” by Sarah E. Ladd, book review

Kate has grown up in a weaver’s family and is very loyal to the profession and community. So has Henry, but his family has come to dominate the town’s industry by investing in new machines rather than keeping true to the old ways of hand weaving the wool. When these two groups collide, it impacts the whole town.

Henry has seemingly returned from the dead, as he was reported to have been killed during the war. After the family and town bury and mourn him, he returns. This changes everything! His grandfather is ready to push Henry into the business and a suitable marriage. While Henry is resistant, he is trying to learn all the changes that have occurred during his three year absence.

Kate longs to be included in the weavers business. Her father just wants her to keep to the women’s roles of dying wool and caring for the house. She wants more.

This is a story of family loyalty and following God’s leading. I enjoyed the story and look forward to another book about these characters.

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the publisher, Thomas Nelson. All opinions expressed are my own.

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“Martha’s Flowers” by Martha Stewart, book review

“Martha’s Flowers” by Martha Stewart, book review

The cover of this book is just beautiful and makes me think that spring is here! “Martha’s Flowers” is a coffee table book that has wonderful pictures of colorful flowers for every type of gardener and garden. While most of the arrangements may not work for my garden, I was inspired to plant and harvest flowers to brighten my yard and house.

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the publisher as a member of the blogging for books program. All opinions expressed are my own.

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“The Rescue” by Jim Cymbala, book review

the rescue cover

“The Rescue” by Jim Cymbala, Seven People Seven Amazing Stories, book review

This book is a compilation of seven stories about people who had reached the end of themselves and turned to God to save them. Each story has lots of background and substance to demonstrate the depth that people fall to without God’s help. And the wonderful part of each story is how God used ordinary folks to make a difference in their lives and save them from sure destruction.

This is a small, hard cover book that has a nice looking dust jacket. It would be nice to give as a gift to a friend who is going through a hard time.

Disclaimer: I was provided a copy of this book from the publisher. All opinions expressed are my own.

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“The Healthy Living Handbook” by Laury Harris Smith, book review

Healty living cover

“The Healthy Living Handbook” Simple Everyday Habits for your body, mind and spirit, by Laura Harris Smith, book review

This is a book that is divided into three sections: Spirit, Mind, and Body. Each section has 10 chapters that direct the reader to reevaluate and restructure various parts of your life to be healthier.

This book is written from a Christian perspective and begins with making sure your spiritual life is in order and that you have the spiritual disciplines of prayer, Bible reading, church attendance and faith. The second division deals with organization and moods and suggests various areas of life to get together. The final section has to do with your body and includes eating well, exercise and sleep. Each section has specific actions to put into place. The book is designed to be tackled in 30 days, one chapter per day, so that by the end of the month, you have a better grasp of your life as a whole.

From the cover design and title, I expected more of the book to be about physical items and action, rather than the last 10 chapters. But all the info is good and we learn that we are more than our body.

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the publisher, Chosen publisher. All opinions expressed are my own.

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