Wednesday, June 27, 2012

It's been a Pinteresting month around here!

Oh Pinterest, how I love thee! I know that I have posted about Pinterest before but I just love it more & more all the time.  I am using it as a place to organize the things I want to try. A few weeks ago I found some activities for my boys to do this summer so we don't all lose our minds! I have a board called Kid Stuff where I have activities, snacks, and crafts that I think my boys will enjoy. Another thing I found on Pinterest this week was a list of 65 read aloud books for BOYS I am hoping to read at least 2 this summer with the kids.

I have become such an addict that I have even created a board called Things I have made that I pinned so that I can keep track of what we have tried. I am excited to say it is filling up quickly!

Take a look at this beauty that I made for my cousin's wedding: (photo by my amazingly talented husband - it is a copyrighted image)

I used this recipe for the cake, with a few changes (and a LOT of trial & error) and it turned out amazing! It was nice and dense but at the same time perfectly moist! For the frosting I totally ditched my tried & true recipe and method, and after the cake disasters trials it was a little scary. Never have I been so happy I tried something new! I found a video tutorial on how to make the buttercream frosting look perfectly smooth, then I followed the link on her page to the buttercream recipe. The frosting is amazing, I used a clear Mexican vanilla and it just made it perfect!

I also got to make a cute, teeny-tiny outfit for the honorary ring bearer who was 3 weeks old at the wedding - and oh so tiny & perfect!! It was inspired by this onesie, and I made pants from this pattern and they were super quick & easy! Here is how it came out:

So adorable!! Obviously Pinterest has become a great place for me to find new things to try! A couple of days ago I made a new salad to go with our pizza and then tried a new ice cream recipe using root beer - tasted just like a root beer float! There are so many other things I have already made and many, many more that I want to try on Pinterest. Top on my list go things to try is making a maxi dress like this.  I have fallen in love with maxi dresses, which is odd since I'm just not a big fan not dresses or skirts. Hopefully I will be able to try it in the next couple of weeks.

Be looking for another book review soon, I have completely devoured the newest fiction book I was sent. Still working my way through a spiritual growth book also. Reading has been a great way to pass some of these 106 plus degree days here! Stay cool!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Book Review - "The Fiddler" by Beverly Lewis

In case you don't know me well I will share a little secret with you -- I LOVE to read!  Well, maybe it isn't a secret but it is still true. I have always been a bookworm and I enjoy getting lost in a good story or re-living parts of History. 

Beverly Lewis is easily one of my favorite authors. I love her writing style and how easily I get drawn into the story and the lives of her characters.  I just finished reading her latest book - The Fiddler - and really enjoyed it. It was different than many of her Amish novels in that the perspective was from the Englisher and not the Amish character. 

The Fiddler is the first book in the Home to Hickory Hollow series. Amelia is an incredibly gifted violinist who has discovered a passion for fiddling - something she fears will upset her parents. She is basically living a secret life as "Amy Lee" playing as an opening act for country artists. During a terrible storm she gets lost and meets a young Amish man who is trying to decide whether to join the Amish Church.

During a trip to Hickory Hollow, Amelia realizes that her gift is not being used to glorify God. She decides she wants to make some changes in her life and knows that they will not be met with approval from her agent, her father, or her boyfriend. 

I am not going to give away what happens in the book as I don't want to spoil it for anyone! I will say that it is a great reminder that we need to slow down sometimes and look at how we are using our own gifts. Is what we are doing being used to glorify God or are we using our gifts only to further our own desires?

I was concerned that with it being the first in a series I would get to the end of the book and be upset that I will have to wait for the next one to come out. I can say that is not the case! While I am looking forward to the next book, I am not frustrated at an ending that left me hanging. Yet again I am thrilled with another Beverly Lewis novel! 

I was given a copy of this book by Bethany House Publishers to review honestly. A positive review was not required and all of the opinions expressed in this review are my own.