Friday, December 19, 2014

Tea Collection Semi-Annual Sale Starts Now

*This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated a small amount if you make a purchase after clicking on one of my links. 

It's the "best" time of the year... for purchasing clothes on sale!  Tea Collection has just started their semi-annual sale, clearing out merchandise from Germany at up to 50% off.

"This collection features bold colors, cool color-blocking, geometric prints and graphics of local sports, playful animals and the towering Alps."

There are some beautiful styles this year and now is the best time to stock up for next season!  Some stock is limited so make sure to check it out soon!

Be sure to take a peak at the limited edition Global line called Citizen Blue as well, there are some timeless classics available right now.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Kid Quotes

Noah has had a couple of good quotes as well as the sisters so I'm including them all.

When Hope sneezes she says "Bless Me"

Noah got a piece of pineapple down his sleeve while eating pizza the other night.  When Brian asked how it got in there he said "a catapult".  Which devolved into a bunch of random ways it got in there.

Noah playing a video game and doing well, Brian says, "You're cleaning up!" and Noah goes, "I'm cleaning the bathroom!"

The girls sing a great mix of songs, "The ants go marching down to the ground, to get out of the rainbow, boom boom boom" and "The ants go marching, won't you ride along with me?" (Mr. Rogers)

When we wash our hair we use "condition-on-er"

If you are wearing a skirt or dress that makes you a princess, because you can twirl.  If not, you are not a princess according to Joy.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Wordless Wednesday: Uncles are Awesome

This was from a week ago, "birthday dinner" at my parents' house.  Uncle Kevin reading to Hope.

Wednesday, December 03, 2014

(Not So) Wordless Wednesday: Thanksgiving Weekend

These are the crazies that Grandma got to put up with all weekend! 

Grandma and Grandpa were coming for a week for Thanksgiving, but on their arrival here in town Tuesday night they went straight to the hospital because Grandpa had a heart attack on the drive over.  (We won't talk about the crazy couple of hours we had playing phone tag and trying to figure out exactly where they were!)

So Grandpa missed Thanksgiving, spending 2+ days in the hospital and then was pretty tired.  The kids all understood that he was "sick", but they sure were sad to miss playing with him.

Grandma spent more time at our house playing and doing things with them, but it sure wasn't the Thanksgiving weekend we were expecting!  This is the only photo I really have from the weekend with them all together and I have none of Grandpa.

We are thankful that he is okay for the most part though!

Tuesday, December 02, 2014

A New Christmas Tradition: Hog Hollow Farm

We had a rather eventful Thanksgiving, fodder for another post, but Saturday is our traditional day to get our Christmas tree.  This year we opted not to trek out into the woods on our own in hopes of finding the right size tree, but instead visit a farm run by my friend Molly's family, where ALL the trees are potentially the right size!

Hog Hollow Farm isn't too far out of town and they provide the complete experience!

Park just off the pavement and ride up to the farm in your own tractor-pulled hay wagon.  Music provided by Nana's new lyrics to Jingle Bells.

It also got really cold this weekend so we wore ALL our layers.

Once at the farm there are plenty of options besides just cutting a tree.  Try out your face as an ornament (or three), roast your own marshmallows (free!) or hotdogs ($) over the fire, and finally, just find that tree already!

We aren't too picky, just need one that will fit on a table top!  The boys had a go at sawing together with sister, Hope, supervising. 

A little help was required by Daddy, but finally, "timber"!

My tree warriors!
They even hauled it back to the trailer themselves! 

Now off to explore and help Nana find just that "perfect" tree for her house.

Once you are thoroughly chilled, head inside to pay for your tree, have some complimentary hot chocolate with a candy cane stir stick and check out all the fun knitted creations for sale!  Crowns by my friend Molly, hats by my other friend Melanie, and lots of other cute Christmas decorations.

Did I mention we are small town?  This is my friend Molly.  We ran into some other friends while we were there as well!

Micah took the group photo as we prepared to ride back down to our cars.

A very successful tree hunt, a fun new experience, and quite a bit simpler than what we've done in the past!  Besides the cold (did I mention it was cold?) we even got fresh snow on our way there!

Hog Hollow Farm graciously provided us with a free tree, but we were going anyway.  And I think the pictures speak for themselves!

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Book: I Have Seen God

Klaus-Dieter and Martina John---both brilliant, talented, and highly qualified doctors---turned their backs on lucrative careers to follow their dream to open a first-rate medical facility for the Indians of the Peruvian Andes, some of the world's poorest people. The Peruvian Andes natives suffer appallingly from the diseases of poverty and, although they make up approximately 40 percent of Peru's population, are ignored by the authorities.

Having studied at the universities of Harvard, Yale, and Johannesburg during his training as a surgeon, Dr. Klaus-Dieter John together with his wife, Dr. Martina John, a pediatrician, developed a concept for a modern hospital in the Peruvian Highlands.

Turning down other offers, including a professorship, they set themselves the task of raising the millions of dollars needed. God opened the hearts and consciences of individuals and companies to create not just a health center, but a fully equipped hospital. Their story and vision has captured attention around the world and today they have the backing of 180 corporations and 50,000 private supporters.

The hospital's name, Diospi Suyana, means "we trust in God" in Quechua, the native language of the people it serves. It is a testament to their experience that with God the impossible can happen. The incredible conviction and profound faith of the Johns will refresh your heart and stir your spirit.


I haven't quite finished this book, but only for lack of time, not interest!  Dr. John tells this story so matter of factly (and quite Germanly) that sometimes you have to stop for a minute and just think about what he's written and how amazing it is.  What most people would write for pages about he sums up in simple sentences, "Without God, this would have been impossible."

It's an awesome story of "coincidences" that worked together to bring relief to the native people of Peru, descendents of the Incas.  At times the story runs so fast you have trouble keeping up with the timeline, and it skips a bit here and there, but overall it's quite an easy read and you get the big picture of just how much was accomplished in a short period of time.  Especially considering the remoteness of this major project.

I highly recommend this!


Read other reviews and purchase your own copy here!

Klaus-Dieter John studied at the universities of Harvard, Yale, and Johannesburg during his training as a surgeon. He and his wife Dr. Martina John, a pediatrician, have dedicated their lives to the establishment of the hospital in Peru.

You can find more information at the Diospi Suyana website.

I received this book from LitFuse Publicity in exchange for my fair and honest review.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Book: Swept Away

Swept Away

Sara Jane Morgan is trying to balance teaching with caring for her ailing, stubborn grandmother. When school lets out for the summer, the plans are for Grandma to teach Sara Jane to quilt as they finish up the Appalachian Ballad quilt Grandma started as a teenager. But things don’t always go as planned.

Andrew Stevenson is hiding from his past—and his future. He works as a handyman to pay the bills, but also as an artisan, designing homemade brooms. When Sara Jane’s grandmother hires him to renovate her home, sparks fly between him and his new employer’s granddaughter.

Still, it doesn’t take Sara Jane long to see Drew isn’t what he seems. Questions arise, and she starts online researching him. What she discovers could change her life—and her heart—forever.


Hey look, the holidays are fast approaching and I've had time to read part of one book this whole month.  I'm hoping this one will be a fun read for road tripping over the break in December.


If you would like to read the first chapter of Swept Away, go HERE.

Award winning author Laura V. Hilton has penned many novels, including the Amish of Seymour series, the Amish of Webster County series, and the forthcoming Amish of Jamesport series. A member of ACFW, Laura is also a professional book reviewer for the Christian market, with over a thousand book reviews published at various online review sites. A pastor’s wife, stay-at-home mom, and home school teacher, Laura and her family make their home in Horseshoe Bend, Arkansas.

A lifelong reader, Cindy Loven is an active church wife of a minister and mother to one son who is a home school graduate. Cindy and her family reside in Conway, Arkansas.