Monday, September 17, 2012

Some Recent Photography

Since it has been awhile, I wanted to share with you some of my recent photography. Enjoy!

Taken during my cousin's wedding reception
Taken in Loveland, Colorado

Fourth of July 2012

Fourth of July 2012

Sunset on the Lake!

The most beautiful sunset I have EVER seen.

It just kept getting better and better.

The setting sun.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Book Review: When Hope Blossoms (Kim Vogel Sawyer)

While on a road trip this past weekend I read “When Hope Blossoms” by Kim Vogel Sawyer. I have enjoyed previous books that I have read by Ms. Sawyer, and this was no exception! It did not take me long to feel like I, too, was a resident of Weaverly, Kansas. I felt like I personally knew the Knackstedt family and was, myself, a neighbor of Tim Roper’s.

In the book, Amy Knackstedt moves herself and her three children to Weaverly, Kansas, with the hope of a new start. Having recently lost her husband to an accident, and having a son with some developmental difficulties, Amy, who is an Old Order Mennonite, wants to start fresh, and what better place than Weaverly?

Unknowingly she moves in next door to Tim Roper, himself a former Old Order Mennonite member. He left the faith many years ago, and would rather forget about that part of his life altogether. It doesn’t take long, however, before Tim is forming an unlikely friendship with the Knackstedt family! Tim does some soul searching while Amy and her children do some ministering. The friendship that forms is something special.

I very much enjoyed this book and am looking forward to Kim Vogel Sawyer’s next great novel!

I received this book from Bethany House publishers (thank you!).

Book Review: Touching The Sky (Tracie Peterson)

I recently had the opportunity to read “Touching the Sky,” which is Book 2 in Tracie Peterson’s Land of the Lone Star series. The story takes place at the conclusion of the Civil War, in Corpus Christi, Texas….an area that is divided between supporters of the North and supporters of the South. The daughter of a staunch Union supporter, Laura Marquardt finds herself in contact with Captain Brandon Reid. Captain Reid is an officer over the colored troops. Their initial meeting is hardly what one might dream of for a first meeting – Captain Reid encounters Laura in an alleyway and believes that she is being detained by his troops, which results in a misunderstanding that must be resolved.

Laura’s sister Carissa marries her beau, a Confederate soldier who, as it turns out, has ulterior motives in his pursuit of Carissa. This leads to drama amongst the family and amongst Carissa and her new husband. Meanwhile, Laura and Brandon are left to sort out what is going on between them and they must work through some obstacles that are thrown their way.

I enjoyed this book – I loved the time period it was set in, and I felt I really got to know the characters. The story was engaging and really drew me in. Of course it also didn’t hurt any that the protagonist and I share a name! I’m eager for the opportunity to read the next book in this series. I have no doubt that Ms. Peterson will deliver, once again.

Thank you to Bethany House Publishers for the opportunity to read and review this book!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

I'm Baaaack!

Hello, everyone! I'm back. And I'm really going to try hard to get back into this blogging thing!

I've been quite busy since the last time I posted. I went on a few trips, worked a whole lot, and tried to enjoy the sun as much as I could, too. Now it's becoming fall. The leaves are changing colors, the air is crisp, I've resorted to wearing warmer pajamas and I'm starting to have a hard time convincing myself to get out of bed in the morning. Yes, fall is here. And I'm not complaining. Not yet, anyway. I rather enjoy the slight crispness of the air (after I convince myself to get up, that is!). I enjoy the deep aromas of pumpkin and cinnamon. Of apple cider and hot chocolate. I love preparing myself a cup of hot tea to take to work or splurging on a Pumpkin Spice Latte (thanks to Starbucks & Dutch Bros gift cards) on my way to the office.

But all too soon the novelty of fall will wear off. The snow will start to fall and we will transition into winter. And then spring. And, eventually, back to summer and then fall again. It's a never ending cycle.

I have a few goals for this fall: a goal to find some new tasty recipes (hello, Pinterest!)...a goal to take pictures amongst the fall leaves...a goal to go to the local pumpkin patch and apple farm for some fall fun...a goal to try at least one of the DIY projects I have re-pinned on Pinterest. But my biggest goal is to get back into blogging. To get back into sharing moments from my life with you.

To get started, here's some pictures from my recent trip to Seattle: