Friday, February 28, 2020

{ A bit of a busy week }

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I am so glad that it is Friday night.  So, so glad.

It has been a super busy week, I've been running back and forth, trying to keep up with schooling, housework and everything in between.  I haven't had a chance to get on my blog and sit for a few minutes, to write a post, to put down my thoughts, my memories from my days.

*Sigh*

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It's just been busy, and along with that we've also had very high winds which have kicked up my allergies.  The asthma cough came back, the congestion, and the ringing in the ear even got louder.

I think we forget how well we feel during the months where allergies are not an issue, because when the winds started howling and the niggling symptoms started rearing their ugly head, I knew immediately that things were about to change.

So, I've tried to not go out in the wind unless absolutely necessary, which was not an easy feat since this whole week I was driving my girl back and forth.

Let's just say that Allegra and Singulair are on rotation.  Again!!!

Hopefully for not too long because Spring is right around the corner, and boy is that a tough season for allergy sufferers.  Am I right?

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I have however, kept up with my housework and cooking meals.  No matter how busy things get there are chores and tasks that we can't just set aside until things slow down.   As the weather has warmed up around here, I am pulling out the drying racks and making use of them.

This past week, I washed all the rugs and mats.  On days where the wind was quite strong, I set them outside for about an hour and then brought them back in to finish drying.  I actually love the scent of clothes drying inside, that amazing laundry softener smell is like having a candle burning.

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I've also been moving my plants around.

For years, I could not grow anything. You know that if you've followed me for a long time.  It was a struggle and I used to feel completely defeated when it came to plants.  I've always wanted a house full of plants, I just love greenery.

Much as it used to frustrate me, I was also to blame.  I didn't understand anything about plants and I wasn't invested enough to try and learn either.

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Over the past, I would say maybe 10 years or so, I really became invested and wanted very much to grow things, to plant, to watch and to enjoy.

I started researching, learning, and trying to figure out what I was doing wrong.   Since then I've had a lot of success not only growing vegetables and flowers, but also keeping my inside plants alive.

Plants are a funny thing though aren't they?

They all have their quirks, likes and dislikes, and they will let you know if they're not happy.

Take my Peace Lily above.  My mother in law gave her to me when my grandmother passed away almost two years ago.  I've learned what she likes and dislikes.  Usually when she is needing water, her leaves will wilt and I know to water.

I've also moved her around, put her in different rooms, different windows and so on.  I can't say that I have found her favorite spot yet, but when I do, she will let me know.  I do think I need to move her to a bigger planter, so may need to do that this weekend.

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The few moments that I have had for myself, about 30 minutes here and there and usually between chores or while waiting to pick up Jasmine, I have spent reading.

I have a pile of review books that I have to get through but my all time favorite book author released a new book and as soon as it arrived, I dove right in.

It's like visiting with an old friend.  I just love the way Nancy E. Turner writes.

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This past week, the days have also started getting brighter earlier and staying brighter later in the day.  A sure sign that Spring is on it's way.

Oh Spring, I am eagerly awaiting your arrival.

I've also been baking and cooking up a storm.  My usual meals have been made, along with a few treats here and there.  My plan is to start updating my food blog again, I miss having new recipes to try and recording them online for future use.

I have 3 recipes right now that I need to get up on the blog, and that's for my homemade garlic bread, a copycat Starbucks Banana Bread and some delicious sauteed squash that I made just yesterday.

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Now, next week is going to be much easier for me, as I won't be as busy, at least until Thursday and Friday.

Friday I actually have my mammogram booked in.  It was supposed to be in April but I was able to book it for March and why not?  At least it will be done and out of the way, especially with how I always feel so anxious before it.

It's one of those appointments that stresses me out and I'm not sure even why, I shouldn't let it, but you're women and you know exactly what I mean.

Anyway, it is now 7pm, so I'm going to end this post, lay down and read a bit more or watch some TV.  I do plan on having an early night, the past two nights sleep has not been my friend.


Goodnight friends :)

Monday, February 24, 2020

{ Resistance Women by Jennifer Chiaverini - TLC Book Tour }


• Paperback: 640 pages
• Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks; Reprint edition (February 4, 2020)

One of BookBub’s best historical novels of the year and Oprah magazine’s buzziest books of the month.

From the New York Times bestselling author of Mrs. Lincoln’s Dressmaker, an enthralling historical saga that recreates the danger, romance, and sacrifice of an era and brings to life one courageous, passionate American—Mildred Fish Harnack—and her circle of women friends who waged a clandestine battle against Hitler in Nazi Berlin.

After Wisconsin graduate student Mildred Fish marries brilliant German economist Arvid Harnack, she accompanies him to his German homeland, where a promising future awaits. In the thriving intellectual culture of 1930s Berlin, the newlyweds create a rich new life filled with love, friendships, and rewarding work—but the rise of a malevolent new political faction inexorably changes their fate.
As Adolf Hitler and his Nazi Party wield violence and lies to seize power, Mildred, Arvid, and their friends resolve to resist. Mildred gathers intelligence for her American contacts, including Martha Dodd, the vivacious and very modern daughter of the US ambassador. Her German friends, aspiring author Greta Kuckoff and literature student Sara Weitz, risk their lives to collect information from journalists, military officers, and officials within the highest levels of the Nazi regime.

For years, Mildred’s network stealthily fights to bring down the Third Reich from within. But when Nazi radio operatives detect an errant Russian signal, the Harnack resistance cell is exposed, with fatal consequences.

Inspired by actual events, Resistance Women is an enthralling, unforgettable story of ordinary people determined to resist the rise of evil, sacrificing their own lives and liberty to fight injustice and defend the oppressed.


Purchase Links

HarperCollins | Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Photo by Michael Chiaverini

About Jennifer Chiaverini

Jennifer Chiaverini is the New York Times bestselling author of several acclaimed historical novels and the beloved Elm Creek Quilts series. A graduate of the University of Notre Dame and the University of Chicago, she lives with her husband and two sons in Madison, Wisconsin.
Find out more about Jennifer at her website, and connect with her on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.


 My thoughts:

I am huge fan of Jennifer Chiaverini, and find her to be one of the best historical fiction writers.

In Resistance Women, Chiaverini brings us the story of some remarkably strong women, trying to keep it together during one of the worst times in history.  Hitler's evil reign.

The start of the book was a bit slow and at times slightly confusing,  as the story shifts back and forth between the women.  I don't enjoy books who go back and forth because I often find that I get lost along the way, and it felt that I was headed the same direction with Resistance Women.  But, what Chiaverini was doing in fact, was setting the stage and giving us the background to the actual story that would kick off soon after.  I'm glad I stuck through and kept at it, because I felt that knowing these women's upbringings and life before everything started to implode, gave me a much better understanding where they were all coming from, further down the pages.  

Resistance Women spans the years of 1929 through 1946.  I must say that amongst the characters in the group, I was most pulled towards Mildred Harnack, and the book actually starts with Mildred's story and her journey from America to Germany to join her German husband.  If you don't know who Mildred Harnack is, she is an actual person, not fictional, and played a pivotal role in the resistance against a Nazi Germany.

I just found her so fascinating.

Mildred along with her friends Sara, Martha and Greta create a circle of strong, no nonsense women who are determined not to be forced out of their homes, and sacrifice themselves and their own freedom to fight against a quickly rising Nazi regime.

From Hitlers rise to power and all through World War II, we are privy to the atrocities that Germany endured, as well as the amazing men and women that fought back with everything they had.  This book is much more than a story, it is based on true events

If you love historical fiction, this book needs to be on your shelf.

Thank you to TLC Tours and the publisher for providing me with a review copy of this book, in exchange for my honest review.

{ Happy Homemaker Monday - 02/24/2020 }

Good morning everyone, come on in out of the cold, let's have a cup of coffee or tea, and talk about what is coming up this week.

I have the usual busy home stuff, schooling, driving and all in between, going on.  I can't believe that we are putting up our last Happy Homemaker Monday for the month of February.  How crazy is that?

How is time going by so fast?  We always talk about this, but I still find it so crazy that days and months are just flying right by. 

Anyway, it is what it is right?

I apologize for not making it to anyone's blog last week, it was pretty busy for me and I don't often get to sit on the computer or even pick it up during the day, aside from schooling.  I will make some time today to visit you all, but that will be after dropping Jasmine off at work and getting my housework under way.

Enough babbling, let's get right on with our post.  Have a blessed week friends.




♥♥The Weather♥♥
It is currently howling outside.  The past week we have had strong winds, which have thrown my allergies into high gear.  We also had a bit of rain yesterday afternoon, but nothing to write home about.  The rest of the week looks to be a mild one, with temperatures ranging in the 50s and 60s. 

Monday - Partly cloudy and windy, 63
Tuesday - Partly cloudy and windy, 57
Wednesday - Sunny, 50
Thursday - Sunny, 62
Friday - Sunny, 65
Saturday -  Sunny, 67
Sunday - Partly cloudy and windy, 71


♥♥How I am feeling this morning♥♥
I'm feeling pretty good, aside from the runny/congested nose {I always find that such a weird thing, it's runny and completely clogged at the same time}.  The allergies are playing up so I've been back to taking my allergy meds, the past 3 days or so.   


♥♥On my mind♥♥
The usual, my mind is always constantly going with things to do, things to remember and so on.         


♥♥On the breakfast plate♥♥
Just had a cup of coffee around 5:30 AM with the hubby.  I am not sure what I will eat later.  I've been overdoing it the past few weeks, not watching what I'm eating and mixing a bunch of things that have left me with an upset stomach.  So, I am back to plain water to drink and really just having to watch what I'm putting into my body.            


♥♥On my reading pile♥♥
Finished Resistance Women and will have that review up later today.  I need to check my review list to see which book is next, I can't for the life of me remember.  But, Amazon will be delivering my newest Nancy E. Turner book, and I am so excited for that. 


♥♥On my tv♥♥
Today I'll be watching the new Outlander episode from this weekend, as well as the new When Calls the Heart.

Lots of Portuguese vlogs in between, but other than that, I don't really have a list of anything specific to watch this week. 


♥♥On the menu this week♥♥

Monday - Spaghetti Bolognese, Salad
Tuesday - Chicken Egg Rolls, Chow Mein
Wednesday - Pasteis de Massa Tenra (Meat Patries), Oven Potatoes, Mixed Veggies
ThursdayBeef with Broccoli, Basmati Rice
Friday - Fried Chicken with Milk Gravy, Mashed Potatoes, baked Zucchini and Squash
Saturday - Roast Pork Tenderloins with potatoes and carrots
Sunday - Sanduiche de Forno (Oven Sandwich)


♥♥From the camera♥♥
I love crochet tablecloths, and though some may find it old fashioned, I just think it adds a cozy charm to a dining table, or anywhere for that matter.        



♥♥Looking around the house♥♥
The days are getting brighter much earlier and that brings a smile to my face.  At the moment, the sun is shining a bright golden light through the windows and the house is bathed in orange tones.  It is without a doubt my favorite time of the day.
The house is clean, save for some laundry on the back of the couches, that I let sit there to finish drying after doing laundry yesterday morning.  Will put it all away today. 


♥♥Chore I'm not looking forward to today, or this week♥♥
I need to give all the floors a good wash, and thankfully my nifty mop helps but it's still not one of my favorite household chores.           


♥♥To relax this week, I will♥♥
Definitely be reading my newest Nancy E. Turner book.            


♥♥On my prayer list♥♥
The President, our country.
My mother in law Pat and father in law Ken.
Our friend Stacey who is in ICU fighting for her life.  She is our age, and was diagnosed about 2 years ago with a brain disease that is slowly killing her.  It's heartbreaking.


♥♥Devotional/Bible Verse♥♥
"I will cause the shower to come down in his season; there shall be showers of blessing."
Ezekiel 34:26

Here is sovereign mercy--"I will give them the shower in its season." Is it not sovereign, divine mercy?--for who can say, "I will give them showers," except God? There is only one voice which can speak to the clouds, and bid them beget the rain. Who sendeth down the rain upon the earth? Who scattereth the showers upon the green herb? Do not I, the Lord? So grace is the gift of God, and is not to be created by man. It is also needed grace. What would the ground do without showers? You may break the clods, you may sow your seeds, but what can you do without the rain?

As absolutely needful is the divine blessing. In vain you labour, until God the plenteous shower bestows, and sends salvation down. Then, it is plenteous grace. "I will send them showers." It does not say, "I will send them drops," but "showers." So it is with grace. If God gives a blessing, he usually gives it in such a measure that there is not room enough to receive it. Plenteous grace! Ah! we want plenteous grace to keep us humble, to make us prayerful, to make us holy; plenteous grace to make us zealous, to preserve us through this life, and at last to land us in heaven.

We cannot do without saturating showers of grace. Again, it is seasonable grace. "I will cause the shower to come down in his season." What is thy season this morning? Is it the season of drought? Then that is the season for showers. Is it a season of great heaviness and black clouds? Then that is the season for showers. "As thy days so shall thy strength be." And here is a varied blessing. "I will give thee showers of blessing." The word is in the plural. All kinds of blessings God will send. All God's blessings go together, like links in a golden chain. If he gives converting grace, he will also give comforting grace. He will send "showers of blessing." Look up today, O parched plant, and open thy leaves and flowers for a heavenly watering.


Thursday, February 20, 2020

{ Giving our homes, our love }

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Jasmine didn't have to work yesterday, which meant, I had the whole day to be home and potter around, like I so much enjoy doing.

I was laying in bed after sending Curt off to work, and was mentally going over my list of things to do.  Nowhere in that list did I think about changing my dining room and living room, around.  That is something that I do every year, around Spring, but trust me, we are nowhere near Spring weather.

Yes, there is a day here and there where the temperatures go above 70 but it's very short lived and quickly returns to bitter cold, wind, rain and fog.   But, as I could tell by looking out the window, it was looking to be a pretty good day ahead, the bluest of skies, no wind and even warmer temps.

I made the decision there and then, to take full advantage and get some laundry outside as soon as possible.

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While I hung the laundry, the birds chirped loudly, jets from the nearby base flew overhead and I couldn't help but be grateful for that moment in time.

I've often been told, even by some family members, that they couldn't live in the country like we do, they much prefer the city life.  My own daughter would rather live in a city than in the country.  While I respect all of their opinions, I can only talk for myself and I could never do it.  I have always wanted to live in the country, to be surrounded by nature and fresh air, to be able to hang my clothes to dry outside, while listening to birds and local wildlife.

That simple act of hanging the laundry to dry outside, and the feel of the warmer spring like day, shifted my thoughts to inside the house.  Before I could even talk myself out of it, I had started moving the dining and den area around.

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While I was moving all of this around, a thought was front and center, loudly repeating in my mind.

Give your home love.

We so often get caught up in our day to day lives, and I'm here to tell you that I am guilty of this too.  There are days that I'm too tired, too busy, too this and that, and I give the house a once over, make it look ok and just move on.  Days will go by, it turns into a week, and before I know it, it's been a while since I've really given of myself to my home.

At this point, it is just a house, 4 walls keeping 4 people safe and warm, but the feeling of actual cozy home is non existent.

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The weather, as always, took a turn.  The wind started picking up, the clothes on the drying rack started waving about crazily, so I quickly gathered them up (thankfully they were already dry), and started a fire inside.

I finished getting the den/living area ready, then stood back and smiled.  It is cozy, it is home, and exactly what had been missing the past few weeks.

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The shoes and drawer in the above picture, are not staying there, they are being moved to their proper places.  But hey, this is real life right?

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Simple things such as a crocheted tablecloth, brings a cozy and sweet charm to your home.  Ok, let me rephrase that, they bring a cozy and sweet charm to MY home.  They may not be everyone's cup of tea, and that's perfectly fine.

The point is that whatever your taste in home decorating is, put that extra bit of love into it.  Add a little here or there, take the time to give that specific room or area, a deep clean.  Sometimes we don't like the house we're in, or the city or even State, but when you put a bit of yourself in your home and learn to appreciate what you have around you, you will quickly find that you start loving it and then wish to be nowhere but exactly where you've been planted.

So bloom!

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One of the lessons that I learned from being a military wife for 22 years, was to appreciate, be thankful and grateful, and to make whatever space we were in, our home.

When you're constantly on the move, constantly moving into different houses in different states, with different seasons and new things to adapt to, it can be quite difficult to feel at home.  But that is where our own personal touches come in.

Often in life, we are in a temporary place, in limbo between houses or jobs or whatever it may be.  Those are things we can not change, so rather change the things you can.

When is the last time you really made a room in your home, your own?  When did you last walk into a space and think, yes, it screams me, it is cozy, it is warm, not just a room with furniture.

I think you get the point I'm trying to make.

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Well friends, it is now just shy of 9AM, I need to finish this post, get it published, then get dressed and ready to take Jasmine to work. 

When I return home I have to work on the new menu plan and grocery list for tomorrow, and I also need to get my budget for the upcoming month ready. 

Have a wonderful Thursday. 

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

{ Around here - a look at this past weekend }

There's nothing I enjoy more, than having my husband home with me all day, so when we are graced with a long weekend, we enjoy it to the fullest.  For some people that will mean going out to eat, finding something fun to do outside the house, and so on.   We have done that but mostly, for us, it means staying in, snacking all day long, watching movies, catching up on favorite shows, doing woodwork, pottering around the house, gardening or working on house projects.

I snapped a few photos as I went about my day, or rather days, and I'll share those below, so if you're interested in seeing what we got up to, grab a cup of coffee or tea and check out the photos below.

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Waking up to foggy mornings, dark, dreary and cold weather. 

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On days like these, I stay in comfy clothes and slippers, all day long.  Truth be told, if I am home I am in my slippers, just love them, maybe I have a slight obsession with slippers of all kind and colors.  I think at the moment I have 4 or 5 pairs, all gifted by my family for Christmas and birthdays etc.  They know I'm a pajamas and slippers kinda gal.  Can never have enough.

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Stormy days are spent snuggled in bed, under the warmest and softest of blankets.  Marley has very easily fallen into that routine and we often go looking for him, only to find him on the bed, often times, he has burrowed himself under the blanket until it covers him and then just slips his head out the other side.  Hahaha 

He makes me laugh.

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Most of the days, while hubby played computer games with Nicholas, or watched his tv shows or movies, and while the kids did their own thing, I surrounded myself with books of all kinds.  I would absolutely love to have a full library in my house, I think it would make me super happy.

Above you can see my favorite books, and I've mentioned them before.  I first read These is My Words, back in 2011.  I knew from that moment that this was it, this was my favorite book and as much as I may love some others, they would not come near this one for me.

AND I just found out that Nancy E. Turner's new novel is out, and it follows the story of Sarah Prine's niece.  It is called Light Change Everything, I've already added it to my cart and will grab it on Friday.  Can.not.wait.  I swear anytime Nancy E. Turner brings out a book, it's like Christmas to me.

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Spent a good deal of time reorganizing my bookshelves.  I couldn't decided whether I wanted to do it by color {like I have before and thought looked really cute}, or alphabetically or by author etc.

I decided to go by alphabetical order and as I did so, I got rid of books I no longer wanted to keep.  I had quite a big pile going on.

Much as it seems that a job like this is quick, it turned out that it was actually quite time consuming, which meant a lot of breaks for normal household chores, meal cooking and dish washing.

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I'm still washing dishes by hand, and funny enough I've gotten down to a rhythm, where I don't even take notice any longer.  I get in the kitchen, wash all the dishes, and move on to the next task at hand.

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There were also breaks for hot cups of tea while the wind blew outside and screamed through the fireplace.  It's such a weird sound isn't it?  It's like waves of screams coming through the fireplace while the wind howls outdoors, but weird as it sounds there is something calming about it too.

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Back to washing some dishes that were used for bread making, and then I step away and let nature help me out by drying them for me.

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The pile of books that I no longer want and would like to pass on.   I wasn't quite sure what to do with them all, and then I remembered Paperbackswap.  If you've never heard of it, it is a website I first started using many and I mean many, years ago, like 2006.  You can read some of my posts talking about the website, here:

Grrrrrr
A day of books
Crocheting the Day away

I'm not going to link all the posts, or we will be here all day long, but if you just search paperbackswap here on my blog, you will no doubt find a lot of posts. 

If you're just curious, it is a website where you post the books you have available to give away.  If someone requests one of your books, you mail it off and once the person receives it, you get a credit.  Each credit is worth another book, so then you use those credits to get yourself a book you want, and trust me they have a huge selection of books available.

I think it's a great way to get rid of your books by essentially trading them for new ones you have been wanting.  You can also add certain conditions to the books you order from other people, such as no smoking house, or a house with no pets, or no marks or no this or that etc. 

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These are all my books posted on Paperbackswap at the moment, well these WERE the books posted, because as I was in the middle of posting these, requests started coming in, and I've already mailed off 5 books that were requested.  That means, when the people that I've sent them to, receive them, they mark them as received on the website and I get 5 credits {which means 5 books}. 

I already have a wish list and a reminder list on the website that will make it easier for me to get my new books in.

How exciting is that?

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As always, there is always and I mean, always, laundry to be done.  Many weekend and weekday afternoons, are spent with a pile of clean laundry on the bed, folding and putting away while I watch something on the tv.

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The weather also permitted us to have our first barbecue of the year.  Nothing major, nothing big, not even a side dish to go with it, but we had some burgers from the butcher shop that we wanted to try, so popped those on the grill.  Oh my word, does anyone else get extremely happy with the smell of a barbecue grill on a Saturday afternoon?

I can hardly wait for Summer.

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And from summer vibes and barbecue burgers, to a foggy, cold and 30 degree weather the next day.  Insane. 

I would say it's a Texas thing, but who am I kidding, most of my friends, family and readers are in other states and everyone is complaining of the same thing.  Actually, my family in South Africa have been complaining of the same uncertain crazy weather.  I shudder to think what this all means globally, but it's best not to even go there.

Anyway, I hope you enjoyed a look into my weekend and what we got up to.  A whole bunch of nothing in particular, but a whole lot of plain ol' living, and that is fine with me, it is what I enjoy the most.

Lazy weekend in with my loved ones, no rush, no commitments, no needing to be up at a certain time or in bed by another.  Just going with the flow.

How did you spend your long weekend?

Oh and before I leave, I wanted to ask you all if you had anything you wanted me to do a post on, anything specific you would like to see around here.  Leave your suggestions down below.  I do have my usual posts and ideas but I also like hearing from you, after all, you're the ones reading the blog and if there's something you would like to know more about from me, feel free to ask.

On that note, I am signing off, going to toss some laundry around and then try and get some more reading done on my next review book.

Monday, February 17, 2020

{ Happy Homemaker Monday - 02/17/2020 }

Good morning dear friends, welcome back to my blog and to our Happy Homemaker Monday feature.  How was your weekend, or rather, how is your extended weekend going?

Mine has been great so far, and I even took some pictures and was planning to post last night, then fell asleep.  No surprise there.

I have Curt home today but Jasmine does work, so we will have to take her in, in a few hours.  I don't have much planned for today, just going to potter around the house, maybe get some seeds going and things of that nature.

For now though, I'll continue sipping my hot coffee and working on this post.

I hope you all have a blessed week :) 




♥♥The Weather♥♥
Weather is still struggling with it's identity, doesn't know if it's coming, going, if it's spring or winter, summer or fall.  Barbecue weather on Saturday, foggy and cold weather on Sunday.  Good grief!      

Monday - Sunny, 66
Tuesday - Mostly Sunny and Windy, 57
Wednesday - Mostly cloudy, 54
Thursday - AM clouds, 43
Friday - Partly cloudy, 47
Saturday - Showers, 53
Sunday - AM showers, 61


♥♥How I am feeling this morning♥♥
Pretty good.  Slept quite well, which is always a plus and seems to set the tone for the rest of the day. 


♥♥On my mind♥♥
Schooling.  Just going over what lessons Nick has and what is due today or overdue.         


♥♥On the breakfast plate♥♥
Having a hot cup of coffee, I'm the only one awake at the moment.  Not sure what I'll have for breakfast, probably toast as usual.  Or, cinnamon toast, haven't had that in forever.          


♥♥On my reading pile♥♥
Currently reading  Resistance Women from Jennifer Chiaverini.  I then have Mercy House and The Hunting Party, to read.  My bible and my devotional as well.



♥♥On my tv♥♥
Well first and foremost, the new Outlander, which was SOOO good.  I also spent a bit of time going through the Firestick and finding new shows and movies to add to my favorites list, to watch later. Aside from homemaking vlogs, I really don't have anything else on the list, I think I'll just watch whatever I fancy at that moment.


♥♥On the menu this week♥♥
I will be going grocery shopping on Friday, so don't have meals yet planned for Saturday or Sunday.  Also just remembered that when I last went shopping, they didn't have my wonton wrappers for the chicken egg rolls I planned to make on Thursday, so will have to make something else for that day.

Monday - Meatloaf, Mashed Potatoes, Fried Cabbage with Bacon
Tuesday - Olive Garden Fettucine, Homemade Garlic Bread, Salad
Wednesday - Honey Mustard Chicken Fingers, Potato Wedges
Thursday -  Chicken?
Friday - Yummy Hero Sandwiches, Fries
Saturday -
Sunday -


♥♥From the camera♥♥
My absolute, all time favorite books.  I've talked about them many times before, especially the first in the series which is These is My Words.      



♥♥Looking around the house♥♥
Until about 10 minutes ago, it was quiet but for the sound of my husband and dog snoring.  Now hubby is awake and both he and Marley are playing fetch with a ball, on.the.bed.  Weirdos!
I'm worried my laptop is going to go flying off my lap, any minute.  There's playful growling, Marley jumping up and down from the bed, and tennis balls flying all over. 


♥♥Chore I'm not looking forward to today, or this week♥♥
Ordered a new part for the washer so hoping it gets fixed this week.  If not, guess what, I'll still be hand washing dishes. 
Let me just reiterate the fact that I don't hate doing it, and I think I've actually gotten into a routine now and quite enjoy washing them by hand, but there are days that I truly cringe when I see the sink full of dinner dishes.  Though, the minute I get in there to do it, I quite enjoy it.         


♥♥To relax this week, I will♥♥
Not even sure, but hoping to get some time in the garden.          


♥♥On my prayer list♥♥
The President, our country.
My mother in law Pat and father in law Ken, their continuing health issues. 


♥♥Devotional/Bible Verse♥♥
"Isaac dwelt by the well Lahai-roi."
Genesis 25:11

Hagar had once found deliverance there and Ishmael had drank from the water so graciously revealed by the God who liveth and seeth the sons of men; but this was a merely casual visit, such as worldlings pay to the Lord in times of need, when it serves their turn. They cry to him in trouble, but forsake him in prosperity. Isaac dwelt there, and made the well of the living and all-seeing God his constant source of supply. The usual tenor of a man's life, the dwelling of his soul, is the true test of his state. Perhaps the providential visitation experienced by Hagar struck Isaac's mind, and led him to revere the place; its mystical name endeared it to him; his frequent musings by its brim at eventide made him familiar with the well; his meeting Rebecca there had made his spirit feel at home near the spot; but best of all, the fact that he there enjoyed fellowship with the living God, had made him select that hallowed ground for his dwelling. Let us learn to live in the presence of the living God; let us pray the Holy Spirit that this day, and every other day, we may feel, "Thou God seest me."

May the Lord Jehovah be as a well to us, delightful, comforting, unfailing, springing up unto eternal life. The bottle of the creature cracks and dries up, but the well of the Creator never fails; happy is he who dwells at the well, and so has abundant and constant supplies near at hand. The Lord has been a sure helper to others: his name is Shaddai, God All-sufficient; our hearts have often had most delightful intercourse with him; through him our soul has found her glorious Husband, the Lord Jesus; and in him this day we live, and move, and have our being; let us, then, dwell in closest fellowship with him. Glorious Lord, constrain us that we may never leave thee, but dwell by the well of the living God.


Friday, February 14, 2020

{ The Second Midnight by Andrew Taylor - TLC Book Tour }



• Paperback: 400 pages
• Publisher: HarperCollins; Reprint edition (January 28, 2020)

From the international bestselling author comes a World War Two tale of one boy’s fight for survival in Nazi Europe

A secret mission…
1939. As Europe teeters on the brink of war, Alfred Kendall is tasked with carrying out a minor mission for the British Intelligence Service. Travelling to Prague, he takes his troubled young son, Hugh, as cover.

A terrible choice…
When Hitler invades Czechoslovakia, Alfred is given an ultimatum by the Czech Resistance. They will arrange for him to return to England, but only if he leaves his son Hugh behind as collateral.

A young boy stranded in Nazi terrain…
Hugh is soon taken under the wing of a Nazi colonel – Helmuth Scholl. But even though Scholl treats Hugh well, his son, Heinz, is suspicious of this foreigner. And as the war across the continent intensifies, they are set on a path that will ultimately lead towards destruction…


Purchase Links

HarperCollins | Amazon | Barnes & Noble

About Andrew Taylor

Andrew Taylor is the author of a number of crime novels, including the ground-breaking Roth Trilogy, which was adapted into the acclaimed TV drama Fallen Angel, and the historical crime novels The Ashes of London, The Silent Boy, The Scent of Death and The American Boy, a No.1 Sunday Times bestseller and a 2005 Richard & Judy Book Club Choice.

He has won many awards, including the CWA John Creasey New Blood Dagger, an Edgar Scroll from the Mystery Writers of America, the CWA Ellis Peters Historical Award (the only author to win it three times) and the CWA’s prestigious Diamond Dagger, awarded for sustained excellence in crime writing. He also writes for the Spectator and The Times.

He lives with his wife Caroline in the Forest of Dean.

 

My thoughts:
If you love thrillers, more precisely historical spy thrillers that take place in World War II time, then this is the book for you.  No jokes!!!

You have got to pick yourself up a copy and start reading right away.  (you can find links to purchase the book, above)

All the book reviews I've done lately have been about, or taken time during World War II, which is brilliant, it's an era I love reading about.

In The Second Midnight we meet Alfred Kendall and his young son Hugh.   A father and son, not always getting along well, which is to be expected when you have a young spirited, but albeit troubled young boy who has just been expelled from his boarding school.  Things need to change, and Hugh's father Alfred finds the perfect opportunity when he is sent by the British Intelligence, on a small mission, or so they say.

Unfortunately this happens to coincide with the time that Adolf Hitler is invading Czechoslovakia.  The only way Alfred can get out alive is by making the choice to leave behind his young son.

Maybe being a parent myself, I had a hard time seeing how this would ever have even crossed my mind, but I guess when people find themselves cornered they will do whatever they can.  I still would never have been able to leave my 12 year old behind in a war torn country, but that is just me.

Hugh is left to his own devices, he goes into survival mode and ultimately saves the life of a high ranking colonel, who in turn takes him into his family and raises him as one of his own.

The novel not only touches on the brutality of World War II, but the intricacies of relationships and the spirit of survival.

I loved every page, and was super excited to find out that it is part of a series, being the first in the Blaines Book Series.  I'll be interested to read the remaining two books and hopefully enjoy them as much as I did this one.


 Thank you to TLC Tours and the publisher for providing me with a review copy of this book, in exchange for my honest review.



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