Tracie Peterson’s “A Beauty Refined”


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Father loves daughter. Right? Count Graf Von Bergen wants a rich husband for Phoebe, takes her with him to America on a special trip, gives her a personal maid, but what is really deep in his heart? Phoebe has been lonely for years, losing her mother very young to a ship drowning. She and her brother are very different in personality and endeavors and her father is a distant figure most of the time. When Phoebe travels to America, she gets to see a new world in Helena, Montana. Her father is there to purchase sapphires to please a client that makes him very wealthy. Secretly he has already chosen a husband for his daughter. She must comply. Or will she? She feels like a woman for the first time as she meets a young man at hotel who is accompanying a little boy teaching him to swim. When the boy sees Phoebe, he is drawn to her face. He draws her in by asking his friend to teach her to swim. She is unsure, but a relationship for the three develops. Soon it becomes apparent that her father (vatter) has lied to her about her life. The mystery unfolds while in America. This is a story of evil, hate, greed and murder. God’s love wins out for our favorite characters. Read this one for intrigue.

This review is my own and this book was provided by Bethany/Baker Books. Mary Ann Young Robinson, Boise, Idaho

Nice and Healthy Skin As You Age?


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Keeping Skin Healthy at 65!

I don’t usually seek to draw a lot of attention to my appearance for many reasons. #1: I never liked my hair: it was naturally curly and frizzy growing up making it unmanageable, and I lived in a humid climate both in Tennessee and Oregon for many years.

#2: Allowing myself to overeat from negative emotions has certainly not helped my high cholesterol or my waistline! What waistline?? My Apple shape has kept me from feeling as feminine. Wearing the clothes I like becomes harder. I do try to wear colors and styles that help me stay vibrant.

What gift I have appreciated is inheriting good skin. My mother aged well and wrinkled late. There are many reasons that help keep your skin healthy, like not smoking or quitting very young like I was able to do. but there are things we need to know to keep our skin healthy and glowing!

I want to share a few of these things that I use to help and have researched:

A.     Know this word. “Phthalates“. This ingredient in creams and soaps can be hidden as fragrance just as Formaldehyde (a chemical that disrupts hormones) is hidden in products. These nasty culprits also cross into your bloodstream. Could these be interfering with your life as headaches, lung dysfunction or other?

B.     Coconut Oil is beneficial from the inside and outside. I use this as a spread on bread and other, cooking, as a cleanser/moisturizer for my face and in my homemade deodorant. Coconut Oil can actually help you keep from sunburn from the inside as it moisturizes your skin. Before I found out just how helpful it is, I used Olive Oil on my face for many years also.

C     Vitamin C/Rose Hips has been known for centuries as a help for healthy skin as well as a healthy immune system. Whether you rub Rose Hips Oil on your skin or take a healthy C supplement, you want to remember that you might not get enough C during the winter especially when fruit is not in season.

D.     WATER, of course, cannot be left off this list as hydration is very important to skin. I have noticed where I live now in the High Desert of Idaho, that when I don’t get enough water it plays out in several ways, but I see more wrinkles in my skin in the mirror.

E.     CoQ10 is already prescribed by most doctors for those who take Statins and are over 55, but there are many reasons to take this supplement. By boosting cells that contribute to Oxygen, then helps energy and heart function, CoQ10 also plays into the way your skin breathes and looks. There is still confusion over whether Ubiquinol or Ubiquenone is the best so you will have to decide yourself, but the choice is available. (Trans-form is a good signal in creams that it is not synthetic)

F.    Last, but not least, I am adding Goat’s Milk because I have enjoyed it in products like healthy made soaps. I know my list is not exhaustive but I am writing this from my own experiences and reading.(Remember, most store soaps are detergents, not real soap, so I use natural made.)

You might purchase some expensive products thinking you are doing yourself a great service to find out when you read the ingredients that there are things in those cosmetics that will eventually cause more damage to your skin or to your health overall.

I turned 65 this June! Wow. But I do enjoy pretty good skin still and hope that I have helped in some small way on your own journey to keep you skin healthy, happy and glowing!

 

 

 

 

 

A Haven on Orchard Lane by Lawana Blackwell


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Yes, she was dramatic in her life and in her profession. And, yes, she was probably self-absorbed. But she never let her daughter drift far from her mind and heart. Although Rosalind would not know for many years that her mother took care of her from a distance while on the stage, it was true. The men in her life were poor choices and added reason to love from afar. Charlotte finally retired to a 16th Century limestone mansion named Fosberry Hall. The first time she saw it, it took her breath away. Now it became almost impossible to breathe from the stuffiness of the life and relationship with her husband, Lord Fosberry. And then it happened. She was contacted to perform. But how would she be able to do it? She was bodily heavy, held like a captive in a fortress, and had little resources now of her own. This story will show how love prevails in an unexpected way and how our true Lord covers our losses in our time of need. Lawana Blackwell is one of my favorite authors of Historical sagas. This is a lovely new story and I whole-hardheartedly recommend it. Don’t miss this intimate mother and daughter renewal.

This book was provided by Bethany-Baker Books. All opinions are my own. Mary Ann Young Robinson, Boise, Idaho

 

 

How to Keep Writing


“I am participating in the Writing Contest: Writers Crushing Doubt. Hosted by Positive Writer.” – See more at: http://positivewriter.com/writing-contest-2016/#sthash.65WYf1CU.dpuf

What I have heard for several years is true. Writing is therapy for those that are moody creative people. And if you are the type that gets bored easily, tasking back and forth to different kinds of writing will help break the monotony of the same topic or genre and give new inspiration. I should have realized this earlier on, as when I worked as a Administrative Assistant and juggled assignments I was the most productive.  For me, chocolate is not enough. I love it, (and how) but I have to have a surge of a different type. The surge of knowing whom I am, remembering details that affirm me, and recalling where I have been helps fill a need. And I found that by doing some personal writing about the past, my childhood, and my experiences in life. Journaling! Yes, they were right. Journaling is a multi-reasonable way to keep writing. Somehow, the juggling of ideas, spaces of time, and reflections of your personality can motivate you to a produce more. You go back to the beginning that will help you move forward. Then you add in the other pieces, of people you care about, places that have inspired you and things you have learned on particular journeys. Everything in life affects your writing. When you make yourself write and you feel empty, your writing will be empty. Yes, you do need to be disciplined, but you don’t have to write on one particular project at that moment. Make the choice to switch avenues, and then choose to write willingly when you are back on track. Some of us moody people also can be rebellious. Don’t let this hang on. Get rid of the reason you feel that way. Start fresh and again. Look at it this way, when you go on vacation, you want varied experiences and activities to make the total of a great time. This can apply to anything you do, especially writing. So, the next time you cannot concentrate and feel inadequate, switch to something totally different and see how this little tip can steer you back to excitement and creativity!

Where is Her Past? “The Inheritance” by Michael Phillips


 Screen Shot 2016-04-09 at 9.45.42 PM.png Oh, Wow. Now I have started another saga and I have to wait to see what happens! A great story in the tradition of Michael Phillips, a master storyteller. You cannot read a novel of the ages like a thriller novel. The story unfolds slowly, and as it does, you will see the author’s romantic and beautiful language. A young woman working in Washington, DC, who is quite successful, is still feeling lost inside. Her lineage is uncertain, she was raised by her grandparents, but she never quite fit in there in their community. She doesn’t understand why. What is missing that would help her feel whole and that she belonged?  If you like history of the Scottish, Celtic, or Norse, this might be just the book for you! This is a very new book, so I will not spill the beans! Read this story; it takes a while to get into it, but it is worth the read. I just hope it will not be too long before the next part of the story is written! Enjoy. Another great book by Michael Phillips and Bethany/Baker Books.

This review is written as my own opinion. This novel was provided to me by Bethany/Baker Books.

Leslie Gould’s “Amish Sweethearts”


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I do not read very many Amish books. This was a free read from Bethany Books for review, but I did enjoy the story. It was a Book Two, but stood alone well. I do wish I had read the beginning of the friendship between Zane, a Mennonite neighbor, of Lila Lehman, from an Amish family. Seems they played together and met frequently at a special fort during their late child years and teen years. When they got towards adulthood, they didn’t know for sure how to process their relationship, being from two different church backgrounds. One thing Lila knew for sure though was that she enjoyed being around Zane, his zeal for adventure, learning, and the ability to listen. She didn’t finish high school, but Zane included her in this studies and they shared many subjects. Finally her father agrees for his daughter to be courted by a young Amish boy, Reuben, whom Lila also knew from church. She believed in commitment and thought that maybe she could learn to love him and that her time with Zane was over, and just a childhood crush. But she never felt entirely comfortable with him, very joyful or fulfilled. Her thoughts would always go back to Zane. Zane was so confusedf over his feelings and her courting, that although he had been a conscientious objector, he joined the Army to get away and think. It was a good thing and a bad thing, but eventually gave Lila time to see her mistake in not being honest to Reuben or Zane. The rest of the story is sweet…read it and see!

This book was provided free by Bethany/Baker Books. All opinions are my own.

 

“A Bright Tommorrow” by Gilbert Morris


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Mary Robinson‘s review

Jan 24, 16 ·  edit
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really liked it
Read from January 20 to 22, 2016

 

Having read other novels from Gilbert Morris and his daughter also, I was not surprised that I was caught up in this family saga. Even though Will Stuart, the father is a weak individual, his wife taught their children about hard work, love and Jesus Christ. Mrs. Stuart dies in mid-life leaving her husband with a pack of kids still at home and him with a girlfriend on the side that talks him into a marriage of convenience if nothing else. A true stepmother she is not, but the Lord is looking out for these children as they begin to wander off looking for love in all the wrong places. Never do they forget what their mother has taught them though, even if they don’t take it seriously enough for some time. The first boy to leave falls in love, but leaves the city for a journalist job overseas. While he is gone, his first love works in a seedy joint that leads to her taking up with a so-called actor that starts her drinking and eventually seduces her. She knows she has lost something precious and continues to drink and carrouse until she falls on the street sick with pneumonia. The Director of the Salvation Army finds her and takes her back to the mission. She is nursed back to health and repents of her sin, finding a new life in Christ. She goes to the mission field in China having no idea what God is going to do for her after she arrives. I will not tell you either because it takes the story deeper. While this is happening, the oldest daughter who was the first child to leave supposedly to go to Bible School, did become an actress and is living a lonely life on the road traveling from theater to theater. God does healing through all these adventures and this is a delightful read. This e-book was free, but I had to purchase the next book immediately! You will want to also!

Susan Anne Mason, “A Worthy Heart”


 

 

 

 

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I read this book as a stand alone with no problem. By reading the back of the book there was enough info to set the scene. First of all, the one thing I really like about Susan’s writing and the story was the flow of characters and different relationships. It takes a good writer to juggle those so that the reader can keep up and have a good sense of time and action. I enjoyed what her character, Adam, showed as a Christian who truly repented and changed his ways and the fact that Maggie respected that and would give him a chance for friendship even before their hearts met. I liked Aurora for having her own mind about things and bucking her father’s pride even though she was raised wealthy and could have married rich. Neil was easy to hate as I had read in another review. I loved the change in James even though he was older he still allowed God to help him see what a strong character Adam had and was able to forgive him and then go out of his way to help him in his new business. Rylan kept his word. I liked all of the characters and their voices. With English/Scotch/Irish in my blood, I do enjoy these stories!

This book was provided to me by Bethany/Baker Books. All opinions are my own from the reading of the novel.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Christmas in the Snow


Photo on 12-16-15 at 9.53 AM #2What should be the loveliest time of the year, content and fun, sometimes is not. When your road is not passable and family does not wish to brave the trails, it can be quite lonely. 10 degrees with chronic pain is not happy. That’s when the word “JOY” has to be looked at and invited into your heart. For what really counts is what the Lord puts into you and what you accept from Him.

I have found from experiencing just happy, it can be a fleeting moment. It will not stick with you or comfort you on a depressing day. The sun will even disappoint you and go behind the clouds leaving you with a dysfunction of sorts. Animals will love you with their gentleness, but because they have no soul, they cannot give you what you really desire for very long either. I know because we have 8 pack goats, a dog, a cat, and chickens!

So, when that day comes, when you feel so alone, isolated, hurting, and detached, remember that word…JOY. Jesus is the only one who can give real joy. When you belong to Him, He longs to give it to you.

Ask Me What I Mean


“I find God to be both old and new.”  Mary Ann Young Robinson

 

This is what Charles Spurgeon had to say one Sunday morning in 1891.

1891, Charles Spurgeon

The new life that God gives us is exceedingly active. I have never read that we are to lie down and sleep in the newness of life. It is true I have met with persons who professed to have been saved, and therefore they took matters easily, and made themselves religiously comfortable in idleness. I greatly question whether you have new life if you do not walk. God’s children are not of a sluggish race. There is vigor and fervency about them. They cannot sleep, as do others. The new life is akin to the life of angels, and angels do not spend the day in slumber or sloth. I never heard of sluggish angels. They are as flames of fire. The new life in a Christian is quick, energetic, forceful. The new life produces a holy walk as soon as it is created. If you have been born unto God, you have cast off your lethargy, and are ready to run the race set before you. You may happen to be dull and sleepy occasionally through disease; but you will not choose this. When in spiritual health, you will glow with divine ardor, and burn with holy fervency, delighting yourself in serving the Lord.

I also am considering what the scripture has to say to us. Always something new. Refining something old. It’s exciting.