Monday, May 4, 2015

Book Review -- Bonita Avenue

Bonita Avenue

Perhaps it was a matter of poor translation but Bonita Avenue by Peter Buwalda was not a read I could get myself into. It was at times difficult to follow and not easy to fall into. Too many characters, inconsistent, and too long for me to complete. 

Still unsure if it was just a matter of preference but this wasn't a book for me and not one I would recommend. 

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Book Review: Food: A Love Story.

Who would think XX pages of food humor would be so wonderfully great! Jim Gaffigan did and he produced it well! There's nothing more than a book that makes me laugh out loud, or share hilarious quotes with friends who are fellow "eaties." 

His humorous view on food was often relatable to anyone who has a deep love for a good meal!  The title was great! Cover and quality even better!

Food: A Love Story

The flow of the book was great. You will recognize some material from his stand up routines and I don't find that to be a negative thing at all. It builds a comfortable familiarity bridge for the fans between his stand-up and his writing. And for those who not familiar with all of his stand-up, the material is fresh and great for them as well! The only criticism I found was that the book can get a little repetitive, as if to fill pages, and when I began to notice it was happening, it became a bit of a struggle to get through the redundancy. Overall, Jim Gaffigan is absolutely hilarious and this book was well worth the read. We could all use a rainy day bookshelf pick me up and this book is exactly that!

*Disclaimer: You will crave food the entire time. So when you pick up the book - grab a snack, too. Trust me.

Thank you to Blogging for Books for a complimentary copy for my honest review.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Knitting Block by Block: Book Review

Knitting Block by Block by Nicky Epstein is an excellent, high quality, hard back knitting book! It's full of helpful tips and packed with great ideas! This book was absolutely beautiful!! The cover is gorgeous and every time I spot it, it sparks a desire inside to create something great. The quality of the photos, the design, and the instructions inside are immeasurable. 

After going through the book, skimming the pictures and the various swatches, I decided to try a few of the designs and the instructions are flawless. Truly. There are so many patterns, stitches, and designs to fall in love with no matter your personal taste or experience level. 150 to be exact! From cable patterns, Beginner or experienced, young and old, this book can appeal and be helpful to all who knit. 

This book should be a staple to all knitter's library's. Even if you're not a knitter, this book compliments anyone's coffee table. 

Click HERE to purchase the book yourself!

Click HERE for more information on the author, Nicky Epstein.  

Thank you to Blogging for Books for a complimentary copy for my honest review. 

Monday, January 12, 2015

Jesus > Religion: Book Review!

Jesus > Religion by: Jefferson Bethke

We all remember the kid who essentially became a YouTube sensation overnight with his poem entitled "Why I Hate Religion but Love Jesus", right? His name is Jefferson Bethke. Well, Bethke published a book that was released October, 2013. The book features an awesome forward by Christian rapper Lecrae and quotes by the likes of authors Ann Voskamp, Candace Cameron Bure, and Jennie Allen. Aside from those great bells and whistles, Jesus > Religion contains something much greater; the ability to view Jesus Christ in a whole new light. It has you asking questions. It makes you feel vulnerable. Often making you a step back to look at yourself. It makes you think and it inspires you to truly appreciate the gift of Christ's salvation. Ultimately, you'll truly understand the basis of his message, that Jesus is truly GREATER than religion. He's greater than rules and traditions. He  came, died, and rose for us!! As Christians, there is nothing more we could have asked for. His love is amazing.

Jefferson Bethke isn't a theologian by any means, just a child of God who whole heartedly loves The Lord and shares Gods grace in many mediums. Isn't that what God wants us to do? He gives us many talents. All of us. Shouldn't we try and share His message through these talents? Bethke, a young poet and author, understands this greatly. In fact, aside from his YouTube videos, his company called Claro Candles, and this book, he announced that he is sitting down,  standing up actually, to write his second book. It's inspiring to read about the many peoples lives that have been affected by his words. 

That's the power of God!

When you're able to get a nice hot cup of tea, warm throw, and quiet time from your little ones, I suggest diving into Jesus > Religion. It's a quick and easy read containing both comedy and depth that you're sure to enjoy!! 

Disclaimer: I was not asked or paid to write this review. These thoughts are entirely my own. 

Friday, January 2, 2015

Happy 10th!

10 has never looked so adorable! 

...or crazy. 

But mostly adorable. 

My dearest. 

My first love, I cannot believe you are ten even though you're already tall as a teenager! You're truly a special boy. So curious. So smart. Always silly. Always full of fun facts. Always up for a conversation. (Always hungry.) 

The world is your platform. Take full advantage! I pray you continue to learn always and recognize there's no limit to what you can achieve. 

Be the best you can be always!! Happiest of birthdays to you! I love you forever! 

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Happy New Years Eve! - Ringing in 2015!

Happy New Years eve, all!

*Cue brief and sappy reflective post. Cliche and unashamed.*

I always get excited for the New Year. It's a chance for a clean slate and new beginnings. There is something sincerely refreshing about that notion. And yes, I know the start of a new week could possibly be a clean state but I'm a slow mover and prefer to just wait the year out. Judge me not. 

This year I will be ringing in the new year the same way I rung in 2014. In bed. Husband, kids, and pup in tow. Surrounded by snacks, naturally. Laughing and yawning equally. Awaiting the final countdown to midnight so we can all get to bed. I've a geriatric soul at heart. Anytime after 10pm is entirely too late.  I can't hang.

2014 was a good year. It was the first year, in a long time, to be a year of consistency for my family. No moves. No new medical diagnosis', or school changes. No new headaches pets. I did, however, get a gym membership! That was new and fancy and short lived. I honestly wish this tidbit made the year feel different and progressive, but everything remains status quo over here! #foreverfat Oh well. Just another year older, ready to grasp the reigns of 2015 and take it on by storm. 

My 2014 new year resolutions were to love, dance, and read more. I think I held onto them reasonably well. Loved my family harder for sure! Attended a few Zumba classes. (That does count guys. Who are you? The resolution police?) And I read many great books, too! 

My 2015 New Year Resolution is to keep focus. I've many things I hope to achieve and do in the next few years. Too many things probably. And time isn't slowing down. Time, it seems, is like a steep hill and the further we go down this hill, or further into the future, the faster we seem to tumble. It's easy to loose focus, however; it's extremely important not to. Time is flying us by! It's essential for me to keep my vision clear and not focus on life's insignificant bumps and distractions along the way. I simply want to put my best foot forward. Focusing on every step of the way! Word of the day? Focus!

I pray 2015 is another year of consistency. Just another year of good health. Another year of achievements. Another year of joy. For myself. For the Messy Household. For all of us. Christ willing.  

2015 has already promised me so much. I start a  new position at work Jan 5th! Hooray to career changes! RT will be officially in the double digits and QT a whooping 8 years old! Hooray for  my earlier point being made! Time flies!! I'm looking forward to my becoming a brand new aunt in 2015! Hooray for this precious baby boy! Taking my boys to Disney World for the first time! Hooray for empty bank accounts! And bringing more material and posts to this blog! Woo hoo!

Most importantly, I'm looking forward to my resolution. Focus! On Christ. On my family. On my goals. 

I hope 2014 was good to all of you and my prayer is 2015 will be ever better!

Messy Momma

What are some things you appreciated in 2014 and are looking forward to in 2015? Comment below!

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Vanilla Sugar Scrubs: Crafty Creative

Hey there!

It's the most wonderful time of the year! Yes, I am singing. Yes, you are lucky you cannot hear me.

Christmas is quickly approaching and I truly cannot wait! I'm grateful I started early with the Messy Household. Everything is purchased and even wrapped! When I'm behind on things it can really suck the joy out of the season. Thankfully there will be no Grinch over here this Christmas! But lo' and behold - I have found myself last minute with something. A fun gift for my beautiful mother and lovely sisters. Also, getting out the family Christmas cards but who is really keeping track? 

I've been searching the beautiful black hole that is Pinterest for a fun idea that would be both thoughtful, useful, and economically sound. My pockets are running dry this Christmas season. Luckily, I found such a great idea for my mother and sisters!

Vanilla Sugar Scrub!

Look how fancy and festive they are with their miniature bows and santa hat background. & of course I've made one for myself. I can't wait to try it out!

And you can, too! I found the recipe for them here: Vanilla Sugar Scrub

Here's a brief and delicious overview of the benefits of the ingredients:

Sugar: Sugar exfoliates and rids the skin of dead skin cells. 

Honey: Honey is firstly delicious. Not the best reason to slab it all over your body? Okay. Point made. Honey is both an antioxidant and moisturizer for your skin. 
Olive Oil: Moisturizer.
Vanilla: Subtle and charming aroma. 

I just know they're going to love them!

Merry Merry Christmas, all!

What are some great and economically savvy ideas you've on your Christmas lists this year?