Monday, August 24, 2009

WELCOME HOME

About the author:

Kimberley Woodhouse is a wife, mother, author, and musician with a quick wit and positive outlook despite difficult circumstances. A popular speaker, she’s shared at more than 600 venues across the country.

Kimberley and her family's story have garnered national media attention for many years, but most recently her family was chosen for ABC's Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, The Montel Williams Show, and Discovery Health channel’s Mystery ER. Welcome Home: Our Family’s Journey to Extreme Joy, releases from Tyndale House Publishers September first. In addition to her non-fiction, she also writes romantic suspense and children’s books. Kimberley lives, writes, and homeschools in Colorado with her husband and two children in their truly “extreme” home. www.kimberleywoodhouse.com

The Blurb:

Overwhelming trials . . . met with overcoming joy.
Kayla Woodhouse is not your typical twelve-year-old. Due to a rare medical disorder, she feels no pain, doesn’t sweat, and needs protective cooling gear just to go outside. With her restrictive lifestyle; countless hospitalizations, including brain surgery; and the resulting mountain of hospital bills, what’s a family to do?

How the Woodhouse family has faced seemingly impossible challenges is a story that has captured the hearts of America. Millions of people have experienced glimpses of their lives on Discovery’s Mystery ER, The Montel Williams Show, and Extreme Makeover: Home Edition (recently voted one of the show’s all-time best episodes!).

Now Kayla’s mom, Kimberley, takes readers behind the cameras to reveal their family’s journey as never before told. From medical sleuthing to cross-country moves, from freak fires to battles with insurance companies, Welcome Home proves that truth really is stranger than fiction. This candid life story reveals both success and failure and demonstrates how, even during tough circumstances, to shift your life from heartbreak to extreme joy.

Peak inside the Woodhouse family’s life (and their famous house) with a 16-page photo insert.

What Others Say:

“Want to see what real faith is. Real faith in action is when things don't always go our way and yet we trust God anyway. That's what Kim's book has taught me.

It really helped me see God in a whole new light. Having come from a teaching that has all but destroyed my faith in a loving God, through Kim's testimony, I saw a woman who, in spite of many horrific trials and tribulations, never lost faith in her God. Instead of turning away from Him, she turned to Him. Isn't that what real faith is? When you still trust in God when everything seems to be falling apart around you? Kim found comfort in His word, in prayer, and in God himself. Plus, Kim didn't have faith in her faith and in her works. Kim taught me that God is in control - not me in control through my works. What a load that takes off of my shoulders.

Because of Kim's book, for the first time in a long time, I'm reading the Word again. I'm enjoying it again. And, I've learned my name isn't Woe unto you, or Hypocrite. It's Beloved.

Most of all, Kim's book showed me that I can make it through any trial because the joy of the Lord is my strength.”~ Debra Ullrick, author of The Bride Wore Coveralls

“Woodhouse Family Welcome Home is an inspiring, authentic portrayal of a family that dared, by God's strength, to overcome larger-than-life obstacles. Not one prone to tears, I cried through their struggles, their victories, their beautiful togetherness. If you struggle with painful family issues or your faith's been on the back burner far too long, pick up this book and be encouraged and strengthened.” ~~Mary DeMuth, author of Daisy Chain

My Take:

I’ve never met Kim Woodhouse. But after reading this book I sure want to. This puts my own problems in perspective. Kim is very truthful though out the book. She did have her down times, her pity parties and her rages. But she didn’t need to stay there. And neither do we. She determined to have the Joy of the Lord in her heart in spite of the many obstacles that came her way.

I had to think of the scripture in John 9:2-3 (King James Version)And his disciples asked him, saying, Master, who did sin, this man, or his parents, that he was born blind? Jesus answered, Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents: but that the works of God should be made manifest in him.

Read this book and be blessed,

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

An Angel Works . . .

in the dead letter office of the US postal service!

Author Unknown:

My friend's 14 year old dog, Abbey, died last month. The day after she died, my friend's 4 year old daughter Meredith was crying and talking about how much she missed Abbey... She asked if we could write a letter to God so that when Abbey got to heaven, God would recognize her. My friend told her daughter she could, so the child dictated these words:

Dear God,
Will you please take care of my dog? She died yesterday and is with you in heaven. I miss her very much. I am happy that you let me have her as my dog even though she got sick.

I hope you will play with her. She likes to play with balls and to swim. I am sending a picture of her so when you see her You will know that she is my dog. I really miss her.
Love, Meredith


They put the letter in an envelope with a picture of Abbey and Meredith and addressed it to God/Heaven. My friend put their return address on it. Then Meredith pasted several stamps on the front of the envelope because she said it would take lots of stamps to get the letter all the way to heaven. That afternoon she dropped it into the letter box at the post office. A few days later, she asked if God had gotten the letter yet. Her mother was sure He had.

A few days later, there was a package wrapped in gold paper on my friend's front porch addressed, 'To Meredith' in an unfamiliar hand. Meredith opened it. Inside was a book by Mr. Rogers called, 'When a Pet Dies..' Taped to the inside front cover was the letter we had written to God in its opened envelope. On the opposite page was the picture of Abbey &Meredith and this note:


Dear Meredith,
Abbey arrived safely in heaven.
Having the picture was a big help. I recognized Abbey right away.
Abbey isn't sick anymore. Her spirit is here with me just like it stays in your heart. Abbey loved being your dog. Since we don't need our bodies in heaven, I don't have any pockets to keep your picture in, so I am sending it back to you in this little book for you to keep and have something to remember Abbey by...
Thank you for the beautiful letter and thank your mother for helping you write it and sending it to me. What a wonderful mother you have. I picked her especially for you.
I send my blessings every day and remember that I love you very much.
By the way, I'm easy to find, I am wherever there is love.

Love,
God

Monday, August 10, 2009

My Soul Cries Out

Sherry Lewis has bravely taken a sensitive subject, a controversial subject, a heartbreaking subject and woven a tale that will make every reader examine her own heart. Sherry has the gift of writing fiction that makes you think.

The main thread of the story is the devastation of a young Christian woman who discovers her husband is bisexual, something she never knew until she came home and found her husband cheating on her with another man.

Another thread is the corruption in this young couples church. Corruption in high places. Corruption in the very people who should be there to help them, to protect them.

My Soul Cries out is a must read. I highly recommend it.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Dating Your Spouse or Take Your Spouse On A Date


Guest Blogger: Alyice Edrich

When was the last time you went out on a real date with your significant other? And no, a real date doesn’t mean taking the kids to the movies with you and sitting them in the front row while you sit five rows back to cuddle, eat popcorn, and share a large soda. If your date nights have consisted of squeezing in a little time while the kids play or go off to bed then it’s time to dust off your dancing shoes and find a sitter!

Spending time with your better half can not only save your marriage, but bring it back to life. To discover what it feels like to fall in love all over again follow these simple steps:

Find a sitter. 
If you can’t afford to hire a sitter because money is too tight, enroll the help of a trusted friend or family member. If you feel guilty, offer to swap sitter duties.

Listen to your spouse. 
What is your better half constantly wishing she could do? Is that something you can turn into an evening of fun?

Ask your spouse out on a date. 
Don’t just tell your loved one that you two are going out without the kids, get romantic and ask her out on a date.

Buy a gift. 
Is there something your loved one has been eyeing but just couldn’t justify buying? Is it in your “cash only” budget? If it is, buy it. If it’s not, find something comparable and unique, then wrap it up in a real elegant box, tie a ribbon around it, and place a bow on the top.

Handwrite a love note. 
Hallmark is famous for offering cards that pull on one’s heartstrings. If you can’t think of something romantic to say on your own, spend a little time in the card section and find the perfect card to say it for you. But don’t just sign your name to the card, adlib by writing a few extra special lines to personalize that card for your spouse.

Make reservations. 
Don’t head out to the local chain restaurant for a meal; you can do that any day. Instead, call ahead and make reservations to some place new. Is there a local resort in the area? How about a private club?

Dress elsewhere. 
Tell your spouse you’ll be back to pick her up, then head on over to your friend’s house to get ready.

Surprise your date. 
When it’s time to pick up your spouse, surprise her by coming to the door with a bouquet of flowers and/or box of chocolates. (Save the gift and card for later.)

Don’t talk shop. 
When you finally make it out of the house, don’t talk about the kids, work, school, finances, health problems, or anything else that could add stress or put a damper on the evening. Talk about fun, no-nonsense things instead.

Share a dessert. 
Order your spouse’s favorite dessert and two forks, and then intertwine those arms and offer a bite to one another.

Bring out the finale. 
If you’re really adventurous, get down on one knee, look your spouse in the eyes, and tell her how much your life together means to you while handing over that beautifully gift-wrapped box. If that’s a bit too mushy for you, just reach across the table, grab your spouse’s hands, tell her how much you love her and then say, “Oh wait, I have something for you.” And pop out that gift.

Go dancing. 
Have you always wanted to try salsa dancing? What about line dancing? Now is the time to try something new, you’ll laugh so hard that it’s the perfect way to end the evening. Can’t find a themed dance studio in your area? That’s okay, just boogie the night away at your local dance club. 

Every marriage deserves a little spicing up from time to time. If you follow these simple steps, not only will your marriage thank you for it, but your spouse will be reminded of her importance in your life.

Byline
Alyice Edrich is the author of several highly praised e-books designed to help you work from home. To discover how you can earn $50 in two hours or up to $10K in your spare time visit her store: http://thedabblingmum.com/ebookstore 

Monday, August 3, 2009

MISS MATCH

by Sara Mills

About the author:

Sara encourages all pre-published authors to stand firm and keep on writing. “Use the time it takes to get ‘the call’ to write your heart out. Being a career novelist means writing more than one book and your skills grow with every word you write, so never sit still waiting for your masterpiece to be discovered.”

She gives this advice based on her own experiences. The first manuscript she had her agent shopping around didn’t sell, but she was busy writing something else, and that’s what finally sold.

Miss Match ~ Book 2 in the Allie Fortune Mystery Series

The Blurb:

FBI agent Jack O'Connor receives a letter from Maggie, a woman he used to love, saying she's in trouble in Berlin. The FBI refuses to get involved, so Jack asks Allie Fortune to help him investigate. Allie and Jack pose as a missionary couple who want to bring orphans back to the United States.

A child finds important documents that everyone in the city-- Soviets and Allies alike -- want for themselves. Maggie refuses to tell Jack what the documents are, saying if things go wrong they are better off not knowing.

Through the course of the search Allie's past is brought back to her, half a world away from home.

What Others Say:

"Miss Match" is the 2nd book in the Allie Fortune mystery series by Sara Mills. First of all, I find it hard to believe that this is Sara Mills' 2nd book she has written. It seems like she has been writing for years. I adore this series and the adventures it takes us within the pages.

Allie Fortune, the best and only female private investigator in NYC in 1947, is once again thrown into a case. This time in Berlin. Her friend and colleague Jack O'Connor, the FBI agent receives a note from Maggie, his long-lost friend. Maggie seems to be in some sort of trouble in Berlin and pleads for Jack to come to her rescue. Wanting to help out her friend, Allie comes up with a plan that she and Jack pose as a married couple who are part of a missionary adoption group organized by a local church. They arrive in Berlin to discover the Maggie and her adopted daughter Greta are considered the most wanted in all of Germany. Apparently Greta had found a document that held the names of 3 American spies in the Russian military. And while trying to hand the document to authorities, 2 soldiers were killed. Now not only does the entire city of Berlin think she murdered those 2 soldiers, every military presence in the city is after the document that Greta had found. It's up to Allie and Jack to think of a way to get Maggie and Greta out of Berlin--alive.

I really enjoyed the look into Maggie and Jack's past in the book. This occurred in the first book with Allie and David's past so it was nice to see deeper into Maggie and Jack's character. Again, the book plays out like an old black and white movie. The time-period just seems so real from the words Sara Mills' has written. And the entire scenario of the book was quite adventurous. I received the book in the mail yesterday afternoon, and had all 300-some pages of it finished by tonight. It was just impossible to put down. The book does end rather abruptly though. And it has me looking forward to the 3rd book whenever it comes out...hopefully it is soon! :)" ~~ Kimberly

My Take:

After I read Miss Fortune I had to read Miss Match. I had already met the characters and when I opened the book it was like returning to visit with old friends. Only this time, instead of Jack helping Allie with a problem, Allie follows Jack to Germany. Although he doesn't think he wants or needs her help.

I've always thought Germany in the 1940's as a very scary place so I really felt the tension as I read the book. If you like to read page turners, this is the book for you.

Book Contest: Leave a comment on my any of my blog pages this week I will send Miss Match to the lucky winner. =)