Aug 30, 2008
To see other wrap-ups visit the LDS Fiction blog.
1. How many fiction books by LDS authors did you read? Seven
2. Did you read more than you would have read if you hadn't participated in this book trek? No, I love to read. I usually would have read even more than that, but I'm working graveyard and can't seem to stay awake. Lately, sitting down with a book somehow tells my brain it's time to sleep.
3. Did the reviews posted by other participants influence which titles you read? How? No, I already had my books picked out. But I enjoyed the reviews and have added some new books to my reading list.
4. Did the Whitney awards influence which titles you read? How? No.
5. Did the many, many virtual blog tours that happened this summer influence which titles you read? How? The blog tours did influence what I read. I added several books to my list because I reviewed them for the blog tours.
6. Did you finish all the books you had planned to read? If not, why? No, see above post about my sleepy behavior.
7. Did you discover any new authors whom you now love? I didn't read anything I absolutely loved this summer.
8. Did you nominate any of the books you read for Whitney awards? Another thing on my to-do list.
9. Would you be interested in another LDS themed reading challenge either this winter, or next summer? I would definitely be interested. I think next time, I'll keep my list shorter. I don't need another thing to feel guilty about.
Aug 29, 2008
The title can be as simple as a date or word for an event. However you can convey the mood of your page and tell part of the story by using creative titles. To get an idea, here are some examples:
-Place the title beneath the pictures at the bottom of your page.
-For smaller titles, position your words directly above your journaling on the same block.
-Highlight some of the words in your journaling or quote and let that stand as your title.
-Turn things around! Vertical titles offer a wonderful change of pace.
-Place the letters in your title so that they overlap onto a photograph.
-Run your words across the middle of the page.
-Add a title to one side of a thick photo mat.
-Pick up any magazine or newspaper and flip through it for more title placement inspiration.
Aug 25, 2008
Aug 22, 2008
You can use any size paper bag, but my favorite are just standard size lunch bags. When folded, they create an album that is approximately 6x6 inches.
Step by Step Instructions:
1) Take 3-5 paper bags and lay them on top of each other alternating ends.
2) Fold the bags in half and crease to create a book. Notice how the open ends create a pocket? Punch three to five holes along the spine. It is easiest to place the holes at measured points and punch through one folded bag at a time.
4) Decorate the pages using patterned paper, cardstock, photos, stickers, stitching, staples, buttons, fibers and any other embellishments you like.
5) Create coordinating tags to place inside the bags open ends for a nice extra touch. Add a ribbon or paper pull tag to pull the page out of the bag opening.Like any scrapbook, paper bag albums can follow any theme. They are particularly great when you want to scrap one event. Ideas for album themes: Baby’s first Christmas, animals/pets, trips, All about Me, Grandma’s/Grandpa’s brag book, summer camp, holidays, vacations, etc. No matter how you decorate them, paper bag albums make great gift items and are one more creative and unexpected way to use your scrapbooking materials.
REMEMBER, PAPER BAGS ARE NOT ACID FREE, SO BE SURE TO USE DUPLICATE COPIES OF PHOTOS!
Return to the Neighborhood.
Aug 19, 2008
However, It was a little distracting to me to have so many characters and to jump from one character's story to another within the same chapter. I also am not really a fan of reading so many e-mails. It felt a little impersonal and like it took me out of the story somehow.
Aug 18, 2008
A personal scrapbook will leave behind a legacy for those who never get the chance to know you. While writing this blog, I read about a mother who had terminal cancer. In her final days, instead of resting, she struggled to put together scrapbook albums of herself. Why? So that her two very young toddlers will get to know about the mommy whom they'll never see in person again. The scrapbooks will be constant reminders of their mother's love for them. It's a heart-wrenching story, but it's a wake up call as well. Remember that you don't always have an eternity. Make time now to leave behind a part of who you are.
One fun way to create an "About Me" album is to determine a theme for each page and then design a scrapbook page around it. Here are some ideas to get you started:
- 10 Things About Me
- Circle of Friends
- Crafts & Hobbies
- A Day in my Life
- My Favorites
- Where I was Born
- High School Years
- Hopes & Dreams
- I am Blessed
- I am Grateful
- How I'm Unique
- My Quirks
After you create an album all about you, take time often to look through it and discover just how amazing you really are. You'll realize that you aren't 'just a mom'. You'll see that you are a wife, sister, daughter, student, colleague, homemaker, teacher, and friend. As you flip through a scrapbook about you, you'll fondly recall the journey you've been on and all the progress you've made. I know you're amazing, and it's about time the world did too!
Return to the Neighborhood.
Aug 15, 2008
Some of my children are more excited for the new school year than others. There are lots of ways to help your kids get excited for school. Making their own back-to-school crafts is one of them. I've been researching kids crafts online and I found a bunch of fun things you can make with your kids to get them excited about school and get their creative juices flowing.
These ideas came from Family Fun magazine online.
Time needed: Under 1 Hour
2. Fold the pipe cleaner ends against the top and bottom edges of the inner cover, then conceal them with a glued-on sheet of colored paper.
Old pair of jeans
Cloth tape or colored duct tape
8 adhesive-backed magnets (4 for each pocket), each at least 1/8 inch thick
There are tons of fun things you can make and do with your children to make the new school year exciting. You can check out more fun and easy back-to-school crafts here. I hope you have a great first week of school!
Return to the Neighborhood.
Aug 13, 2008
The book catches your attention from the very first sentence. "I don't remember the last thing I said to Krista that Saturday afternoon, but I know it was not 'I love you.'"
Room for Two is the true story of the year of Keogh’s life following his young wife’s suicide. The book begins as he steps through the door of his home and hears a gunshot echo from the bedroom. His worst fears are realized when he finds his pregnant wife dead. Their premature baby is rushed to the hospital and dies nine days later.
The first few chapters of this book were difficult to read. Abel describes his experiences in a very vivid way and my heart wrenched for him as I read them. He helps us realize the stark reality of losing a loved one to suicide and the resulting doubts and guilty feelings that follow.
Throughout the book you learn how Abel dealt with the feelings of guilt. “At some point we’re all going to face a devastating affliction and cope with loss,” Keogh said. “How we choose to react to the bad things that happen in our lives defines who we are. We can either learn from our experiences and become a better person or dwell in bitterness and sorrow. I choose to make the best out of a bad situation."
But don't worry that the book is just a depressing account of a very sad tale. It is so much more. Abel's search for peace and the miracle that follows is proof that love and hope can endure, despite the struggles and tragedies that shape each of our lives.
I applaud the courage it took to share such a personal and difficult trial with the world. I highly recommend this well-written personal life story. It's one of the best books I've read this summer.
More about Room for Two, including the first chapter of the book can be read at http://abelkeogh.com/. You can purchase the book here.
Trade Paperback: 224 pages
Publisher: Cedar Fort (August 2007)
Aug 12, 2008
I always look forward to a new school year. I love the feeling of a new beginning. It's the perfect time to organize your home, get on a schedule, rethink the chore chart, and set goals.
I agree that it can also be a little overwhelming. Sometimes the schedules feel stifling, the homework endless, and the carpools neverending.
With a little planning and organization you can get the school year off to a great start. I think it's helpful for every family to have a master calendar in the kitchen or some other location where the family gathers often. When notes are brought home from school, soccer practice, dance class, and the myriad other places your children are going, transfer the information to the family calendar so everyone is aware of planned activities. If you have more than one child, you can use a different color marker for each one.
To make homework more fun, prepare a healthy snack and set aside time to sit down with your children at the same time each day. Create a homework center with a box that has extra crayons, scissors, glue, markers, etc. Having the supplies on hand you need makes homework easier. Another great idea is to create a reading corner. This could simply be a corner in the kitchen with a beanbag chair or blankets and pillows. Younger children especially like this idea. It makes reading time something to look forward to--even better if you snuggle up with them to read.
A smooth school morning actually starts the night before. There are many small tasks you can perform in the evening before bed to make your morning more pleasant. You can pack lunches and put them in the refrigerator. My kids eat school lunch, but I have a friend who has a great organization system for preparing lunches. She has a drawer full of snacks, a crisper full of cut up fruits and vegetables, and a cupboard full of drinks. She has each of her children get their own lunch bag and then pick a snack, a fruit and veggie, and a drink. Then all she has to do is make sandwiches. You can even make a whole bread sack full of PB&J sandwiches, put them in the freezer, and then just pull them out as you need them.
Make sure homework is done, notes are signed and everything is put back into backpacks the night before. Then put the backpack near the door, so it's ready to grab as the kids leave and there's no last minute searching for a homework assignment, or missing piece of paper. It's also helpful to have clothes picked out the night before, including socks and those pesky shoes that always seem to be missing. This is one area where your kids can feel empowered. It is important for children to learn to make decisions. For smaller children that may not have the ability to pick a shirt and pants that actually match, you can give them the choice between two or three complete outfits.
The most beneficial evening activity I've found is to have a 15 minute family clean-up time. If the entire family works together for 15 minutes a lot can be accomplished, and it puts everyone in a better mood to wake up to a clean orderly house. Sometimes, to make it more fun we put on a CD and agree to work through two or three songs. It helps small children to know there is a specific time when they can stop working
Take the time to sit down with your family and discuss changes that could make your home more organized. Now is a great time to start. Your children deserve to leave for school in the morning from a peaceful organized atmosphere. They will have a better day, and be in a better frame of mind to learn. So start simple. Pick one thing to change and you will be well on the road to a more organized home and family . . . oh, and find those shoes!
Aug 11, 2008
Don't forget the fun photo opportunity that the first day back to school creates. I'm going to share some easy tips with you to make your photos the best they can be.
There's only one "first day of school" each year for every child, so taking a photo that accurately captures this historic event is important. For years to come, both parent and child will look back on that "first day of school photo" with a sense of pride and accomplishment. Without a doubt, parents will want to do a great job of recording this important event on film.
But because the first day of school can create anxiety for both students and parents, Ron Nichols, author of "Picture-Taking for Moms and Dads," shares some tips for creating cherished keepsakes on film without creating unnecessary stress.
Tip 1: Camera, film and a photographic plan should be integrated into that planning. (You don’t want to be scrambling for camera and film as you rush your child out the door to catch the bus.) Hurried activities tend to add stress, so the more prepared and relaxed the parent, the more prepared and relaxed the child.
Tip 2: Be sensitive to your child’s emotions and needs. Preparing your child for both the first day of school, AND the first day of school photo is important. The additional stress of taking a photo before heading off to school might prove a bit taxing for your child. You might wish talk about the “first day of school photo” as a tradition with your child.
Tip 3: Decide where and when would be the most appropriate time to take the photo. If your child’s going off to school on the bus, waiting at the bus stop might be a great place to start. Or perhaps you might even wish to take the photo in front of your house on your way to the bus stop. If you’re picking your child up after school, you might want to take the photo in front of the school. (This can even work out better because the anxiety of over the first day of school will have subsided by then.)
Tip 4: Make it a tradition. The first day of school is a great time to chronicle (photographically) the growth of your child. One day (which will come sooner than you think) you’ll probably take a photo of your child heading off to the first day of college.
Tip 5: Don’t forget to photograph the younger children who may not be going off to school. A picture of a younger brother or sister along with the “first-day-of-school subject” could yield some wonderful images.
Tip 6: Keep shooting throughout the year. Throughout the year, you’ll have multiple opportunities to get wonderful photographs of your child’s school-related activities. Remember to get close, use natural light when you can, AND enjoy every moment with your child! They will be off to college before you know it.
I found these tips helpful, and I hope you did too. If you take some fun back-to-school pictues and create a scrapbooking layout, be sure to send it to me and I'll post it on my blog. Have a great week getting ready for school!
Return to the Neighborhood!
Aug 10, 2008
“They heard this voice, and beheld that it was not a voice of thunder, neither was it a voice of a great tumultuous noise, but behold, it was a still voice of perfect mildness, as if it had been a whisper, and it did pierce even to the very soul.” (Hel. 5:30; italics added.)
As a parent, I’ve found that my children respond more quickly and positively when I use a soft voice. I think our Heavenly Father is the same, although he has the skill perfected. He doesn’t force us to do anything. He calmly and quietly encourages us, and then loves us regardless of our choices.
His soft voice rejoices with us when we make good decisions and softly comforts us when we don’t. He steers us toward repentance when it is needed, but calls from Him are always tender and free from condemnation.
“Every knee shall bow and every tongue will confess that gentleness is better than brutality, that kindness is greater than coercion, that the soft voice turneth away wrath.” –Howard W. Hunter
“We seldom get into trouble when we speak softly. It is only when we raise our voices that the sparks fly and tiny molehills become great mountains of contention.” –Gordon B. Hinckley
In our homes, this can be a model for the way we talk to our family members. Let us not use a loud voice but a soft voice when we talk to those we love. This is the way Heavenly Father speaks to us and wants us to speak to each other.
I hear the voice of the Lord often in my life. At times his voice seems louder than others. I think that is the time when I am more in tune, and when my life is more in line with His teachings. Although there have been times in my life when I have known He is there and heard His voice at times when I probably didn't deserve to have his help. He is a loving father and will never leave us alone. He is always talking, but our ability to hear His voice is based on our own worthiness. Never hesitate to go to Him. Even if it feels like He isn't listening, He is. It's likely that you just aren't hearing Him back.
So what are some things we can each do individually to hear the voice of the Lord more in our lives?
It is our responsibility to step away from the noise of the world. We need to put ourselves in a quiet time and place conducive to hearing His voice. If we strive to hear, he will respond. We can do this through personal meditation, prayer, scripture study, and temple attendance. It is in these moments, away from the cares of the world, that we are more likely to hear His voice.
If we aren’t doing those things, He will still attempt to talk to us. He will never leave us alone, but it’s possible we may not be able to hear. The breakdown of communication will be on our end. Obeying the commandments opens up a line of communication we are otherwise unable to access.
We need to ask for his help and then we need to take the time to listen. He always answers, but we are often too busy going about our noisy, busy lives that we fail to hear. There are lots of outside noises, but often we have inside noises as well. Sin creates inner noise. So do simple things such as hurrying, stress, deadlines, and just being too busy. If we take the time to step away from the noise, we are often more receptive to his voice. We will have a greater desire to follow the counsel we receive, and we will be more aware of His love.
His voice will never get louder. We need to tone down our environment so that we can hear Him. And when you hear him--follow.
Aug 8, 2008
Return to the Neighborhood.
Aug 5, 2008
The day Stephanie Roberts met Jared Wakefield, she didn't realize they'd met before. Running from an abusive marriage and trying to safeguard her children, she turns to Jared for support, but he needs more from her than she might be capable of giving. With her abusive husband looming in her past, the difficulties they must overcome to be together seem insurmountable.
Is it possible for love to conquer all? I'll Know You By Heart is a timeless romance that explores the possibility that relationships span the entire realm of eternity. A story about abuse, hardship, and betrayal, it is ultimately a story about the healing power of everlasting true love.
Publisher: Valor Publishing Group, LLC (March 16, 2010)
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Binding: Trade Paperback
Product Dimensions: 6 x 9 inches
Endorsements for I'll Know You by Heart:
"A story of pain, survival, and love, 'I'll Know You by Heart' is a deeply emotional journey of one woman's determination to save herself and her family from a life of abuse and fear. Kimberly Job writes with power and honesty, allowing us to care deeply about the characters but still giving us hope for a happy ending."
- Michele Ashman Bell
"As a divorced, single mom, reading "I'll Know You By Heart" brought many feelings to the surface for me. Kimberly Job delicately weaves into her pages, the trials of divorce, single parenting and finding love again. My spirits were lifted up as I read of the courage and faith displayed by the main character. I can assure you, your heart will never be the same after reading this stirring romance."
-Sheila Windley Staley
Equal to the Task
There’s a new baby in the house—and it’s not the only one crying. New moms cry happy tears, tired tears, and overwhelmed tears—and that’s when the wisdom, sensitivity, and empathy of women who’ve been there prove invaluable. In this book, you meet fifty mommies who’ve lived and loved through those terribly wonderful first months home with baby. From a first time mom faced with keeping her little miracle safe and happy once daddy goes back to work, to a mother who wonders how she will find time for the newest member of her already sizable family, these moving stories provide the support and reassurance mothers need to enjoy their new role—and their baby—to the fullest!
Here is a short excerpt from my story, Equal to the Task:
"What's wrong? Why isn't she crying?"
A swarm of doctors and nurses were in the delivery room, but no one would tell me anything. As soon as Emily had been delivered just moments before, they'd whisked her to the corner of the room. I lifted my head trying to see what was happening, holding onto a shred of hope. Although I hadn't heard her cry, I thought I'd seen her move. She wouldn't move if she were dead, would she?
To read more of my story, as well as the other amazing stories about new life and love, you can purchase a copy of A Cup of Comfort for New Mothers on Amazon.
Paperback: 336 pages
Publisher: Adams Media (March 18, 2009)
Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 5.4 x 0.9 inches
A Change of Heart
Jessica, a high-powered New York executive, hated by practically everyone she meets, leaves for a business trip, not knowing how much it will change her life--and not necesarilly for the better. She finds herself destitute and alone in a situation her privileged life has made her incapable of handling.
Adam, a recluse trying to escape his former life and all reminders of it, finds Jessica and has no choice but to help. His aloof but tender nature bring out characteristics in Jessica that have always been there, but which she has buried to avoid the pain of past mistakes she would just as soon forget.
Can these two strangers overcome the anguish of their tainted pasts and allow themselves a chance at happiness? A Change of Heart is a story about conquering unrealistic expectations we place upon ourselves and realizing happiness is often well-deserved.
Aug 4, 2008
To create your tag trace around a plastic tag template or use a punched out tag. Sizzix has several different styles of tag dies. You can also find tag punches in a variety of sizes.