Friday, August 26, 2016

"Someone Like You" Book Review

There can never be too many Christian Romance books to read, and discovering new authors is great. I had such a great discovery with Victoria Bylin, who writes both contemporary and historical romances.  Her book "Someone Like You" is worth your time.

The story is about Julia Dare, a single mother, who owns and runs her own event-planning business, and is a new Christian.

Our other main character is Zeke Monroe, who had been a strong christian influence in his younger years, but strayed away from God.  He's the general manager of a financially-struggling historic California resort called Caliente Springs.

A big account from Julia's business sends her to Caliente Springs, where the two meet.  Again.  Yes - they had been college sweethearts, and along the way their relationship bitterly ended.  This would be their first encounter with each other since their college days.

With Max, the father of Julia's young son, causing problems, there's conflict interjected in real-life scenarios throughout the book.

There's a hopeful relationship between Julia's widowed mother and one of the owners of the resort, and of course, there's an attraction between Zeke and Julia that is hindered by their past.  Only a clear understanding of exactly what went wrong in their past and forgiveness can help them overcome their fears and doubts with one another.

This is a wonderful modern romance that has great Christian undertones of faith and forgiveness, and a nice relationship-redemption story.

I was privileged to receive this book as part of the Bethany House blogger program in exchange for a review.  I'm glad they sent it.  I can honestly say that it was a good read, and one I recommend buying!

I give "Someone Like You" a 'thumbs up'.  It was a joy to read!

Thursday, August 18, 2016

"God Gave Us Thankful Hearts" Book Review

Let me begin by saying I am in love with this book!

"God Gave Us Thankful Hearts" is the latest in the 'God Gave Us...' series by Lisa Tawn Bergren.  And it's perfectly set to arrive for reading during this Autumn season!  

Lisa Bergren carries on with the delightful, heartwarming, lesson-teaching books to which I've grown accustomed.  Her writing style hits true to the feelings and concerns of children and parents alike, and the illustrations done by David Hohn are colorful, attractive and fun.

While most of Bergren's 'God Gave Us...' book feature bears, "God Gave Us Thankful Hearts" features a wolf cub named Little Pup.  The book is set in the Great North Woods, where Little Pup and his parents live.  It is Autumn, and they are anticipating the coming 'hibernating season'.  Little Pup is sad because so many of his friends will go away to hibernate soon and he won't have anyone to play with.

His mother reminds him of all the beautiful colors of Fall, and the friends he will have in Winter.  She reminds him that "there's a reason for us to be thankful in every season". As they go about their day, and the various activities therein, he's reminded about all the fun, good things Autumn and Winter bring.  His mood is lifted and Little Pup gradually shifts from sad to thankful.

Through their fun activities and reminders of God's provisions, I found myself shifting my focus to thankfulness as well.  So, while this book is written for children, we adults can learn and enjoy it just as much as the little ones to whom we are reading (or who are reading to us).

We can all use a reminder to look more on the bright side of life
and be grateful for all God provides!

It was my pleasure, honor and privilege to receive "God Gave Us Thankful Hearts" from Blogging for Books to review before its release date.  I'm so very grateful to have read and reviewed it, and to have it in my library for anyone else to read.  My grandchildren are going to love it!

"God Gave Us Thankful Hearts" by Lisa Tawn Bergren releases on August 23rd, and I suggest you run to your local store or order it online as soon as it does!  This is a MUST for any child's (or grandparent's) library!  I'm so glad I have it in mine, and I'll be adding it to my grandchildren's collection of Lisa Bergren 'God Gave Us...' books.

Click on the book below and you'll be sent to a site where you can choose which online source from which to order.

To see the other 'God Gave Us...' books, as well as more of what
Lisa Tawn Bergren has written, visit the author's website HERE!

"God Gave Us Thankful Hearts" gets a big 'two thumbs up' from me!  Happy reading!

Sunday, August 7, 2016

"The Pediatrician's Guide to Feeding Babies & Toddlers" Book Review

Eight months ago our daughter had her first baby.  This is our third grandchild, and it is a privilege for me to be 'the nanny', as I babysit her while Mommy works.

Although, it's been 25 years since I've had to worry about a baby, and some things have changed over the years, particularly in the area of when, how, and what to feed babies. Enter in "The Pediatrician's Guide to Feeding Babies & Toddlers" by Anthony F. Porto, MD MPH & Dina M. Dimaggio, MD.

When I first picked up this book I wasn't sure what to expect, and thought it might be full of medical terminology and information way over my head.  What a relief to find out that it is written so we can all understand it, and is way more helpful than I ever expected!

If you have any concerns about nutrition, when and how to start solids, allergies, how to address picky eating, and general feeding, this is the book for you!  

Not only do they cover all of the aforementioned topics, the authors also address expected developmental milestones, breastfeeding, teething, and other medical concerns common in babies and toddlers.  There is even a section on when it might be necessary to visit a specialist and what to expect at the visit.

To top it off, there are healthy recipes for parents, babies and toddlers that are not only very easy, but very tasty!

Our little bundle of joy happens to have a reaction to anything associated with Dairy Protein.  Our daughter is still breastfeeding, so not only does Baby have to be dairy-free, but Mommy has to be dairy-free.  While that sounds easy enough, we found out that her sensitivity is so high that we have to be very careful and read labels for all of the "hidden" dairy in foods.  

On Pages 224 and 225 of this amazing resource, they've listed tips for 'Avoiding Your Allergen'. They actually have lists of all the ingredients to avoid when your child has a sensitivity or allergy.  Who knew that casein and all caseinates in all forms (a popular ingredient in a lot of foods) are dairy?  I had no idea.  On the list it warned that sometimes margarine contains milk product, and when we checked our margarine we found out that yes, indeed, it contained whey a milk protein.  Yikes!  So I snapped a photo of the list on my phone and have it available to review to be certain we don't make the mistake of getting something with "hidden" dairy in it.

They provide ingredient-free lists for dairy (milk), wheat, egg, soy, shellfish, tree-nut, peanut, and fish. Very valuable information these days with all of the allergies our little ones have right?  I love that they included this!

While I happened to receive this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for a review, I am thrilled to say that my review is honest and unbiased.  I don't know what I'd do without this guide, and I am so grateful to have it to reference when I need the information. 

If there is ONE BOOK you get when you want information about feeding your baby and/or toddler, this needs to be that book!  I have it on the bookshelf in my living room and use it all the time.  I've even used it to help other mommies and grandparents when they've had questions.  Of course, I tell them to buy it too, so they don't have to ask me.

Seriously though, this book needs to be in the hands of every parent, and will be one of the blessings I provide to parents when they have their first child.  It is that important and valuable.

"The Pediatrician's Guide to Feeding Babies & Toddlers" by Anthony F. Porto, MD MPH & Dina M. Dimaggio, MD is available in sturdy paperback and as an ebook for your convenience.  I am overjoyed to give this book an emphatic "two thumbs up"!

Here is the link for it again: