So Thankful

by adustyframe ~ June 12th, 2017

Little guy was outside enjoying his pool the other day. I was reading a book on the patio sipping some cold tea.

I thought about some fun things I wanted to put in the water table for him to play with  and some popsicle recipes I wanted to try.

I listened to him splashing and laughing and saying, “This is the BEST DAY EVER OF MY LIFE!” and was overwhelmed with thankfulness.

I’m so thankful we get to do the little kid thing again. He’s so fun and keeps us laughing every day.

I was thankful for our one boy, but I’m so thankful God decided to let us have this boy!

 

Lizzie

Driver Confessional~By David L Winters~Book Review

by adustyframe ~ June 4th, 2017

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About the Book:

Ride share driver Antonio cruises the streets of Washington, D.C. looking for his next fare.
He has an unusual gift for relaxing his customers and stimulating their desire to reveal more than they planned. By the completion of their ride, many feel so comfortable that they confess their sins great and small. Antonio’s faith guides his discussions and points him in new directions. Suddenly, his peaceful world is turned upside down by a mysterious business woman. As she heads to a midnight rendezvous, she confesses more than Antonio can handle. Her story sends him into a world of espionage, international terrorism and danger.
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About the Author:
David L Winters is an award-winning author, humorist and speaker, originally from Ohio, who lives in the suburbs of Washington, D.C. His first book, “Sabbatical of the Mind: The Journey from Anxiety to Peace,” won several awards including a Silver Illumination Award from the Jenkins Group and two Finalist Medals from the Next Generation Indies Book Awards.
Find out more about David at his website.
My thoughts:
I would like to preface this with the admission that I have never published a book………
But I had a lot of difficulty enjoying this book. The writing doesn’t appeal to me at all. I have no ill intentions or meanness in my mind about this. I just couldn’t get past the poor writing.  I feel like I have some responsibility to my friends who read here, and I wouldn’t want anyone to purchase this on my recommendation and be disappointed.
The premise sounds great, but I wasn’t able to get wrapped up in the story.
Good points:
*The premise sounds like a good idea.
*The cover is intriguing.
*The main character relies on God.
*The setting of D.C. is interesting.
Harder Stuff:
*Hard to read
*In my opinion, the writing wasn’t interesting.
*Too many details….waaaaaaaaaay too many details.
Here’s an example, the main character is a driver….he gets a flat tire…oh no that’s going to cost too much….oh wait he bought his tires at Costco……yeah there’s a warranty….does the warranty cover road damage? He reads the warranty and it does. ….phew!….Gets to Costco and they will replace the tires……oh, he has to pay $10 because one tire has road wear……tires replaced….he has to pay $9 and change.
All of that really had very little to do with the story and could have easily been completely eliminated or greatly minimized.
The details of how to be a “Buber” driver were also long and unnecessary.
*The lead character is a “Buber” driver which is a thinly disguised Uber driver I believe. But the author uses many other brand names like Costco, Starbucks and Mr. Clean so I’m not sure why Uber had to be “Buber” or even why there were so many brand names in the book.
I hear that perhaps men would enjoy it better. I don’t know. I read mysteries and thrillers written by men or women and enjoy them but this one didn’t capture my attention.
I really do hope that the author has good success in his endeavors. If you want to try a thriller set in D. C., you truly may enjoy this book. Sometimes the things one person doesn’t enjoy about a book are exactly the things others will enjoy!
Disclosure: I received this book from LitFuse Publicity in order to provide a review. All opinions are my own. 
Lizzie

Luxuries

by adustyframe ~ June 2nd, 2017

I was hanging laundry on the line this morning. Lee built me a beautiful clothesline for Mother’s Day a few years ago and I’m so happy to have it.

I was hanging our wash and listening to birds and just thinking about miscellaneous things. But mostly how having time to hang laundry is a luxury that I’m afforded because I am not a single mom anymore.

It’s not that I didn’t ever pop something on our old line before but it’s not the same. It may be a hard thing to understand and perhaps I won’t explain well, but when I was alone even the few minutes hanging a load of laundry wasn’t available.

Could I have made it a priority? Well sure……but everything was a priority. Every single thing that needed to be done had to be done by me.

I had people say to me (about other small chores) “Well, how hard is it to xyz?” It’s not that that one little thing is hard. It’s that there are 10,000 little things and it just can’t always get done or I didn’t have enough energy to take the extra steps. Again, if you’ve never been a truly single mom,  (not  the “I’m just like one because my husband is traveling for work” kind) it’s hard to understand.

I was thinking this morning that every spare minute I had needed to be used to help my son have an enjoyable and as “normal” as possible childhood, chores, paperwork, and earning $ to pay for our bills. A lot of things I enjoy now were just not feasible at the time.

Other luxuries?

*sewing

*taking time to visit with friends over coffee

*going to Bible study or ladies groups

*buying an ice cream cone without taking cans to the recycling center so we could pay for the ice cream

*filling the gas tank

*having time to putz in the kitchen with new recipes or DIY foods (mayo, yogurt, etc)

*leaving town and feeling safe in my car

*being able to talk to my husband whenever I want to

*having another adult to help around here

*having an income!

My point of this rambling post, is that if you know a single mom, realize the many things you do in a day to keep your home and care for your children and health are luxuries to exhausted single moms who are just trying to keep from sinking. Even if you consider it a tiny thing that’s no big deal.

Lizzie

I’ve Been Sewing

by adustyframe ~ May 31st, 2017

I haven’t sewn since little guy needed a romper a couple years ago. (ok “needed”).

Before that, I probably hadn’t sewn for 18 years. But recently, I found some fabric that made me excited to sew.

So, I made myself a few things and now I’m sewing for little guy.

I’ve been having so much fun (“sew” much? har har). But tonight the bobbin kept jamming on me and I was super frustrated. I began to think I was about to put the machine away for another decade or so, but I think I got it figured out.

I can’t quit yet, I have fabric in the washer for the next two projects for Nathan and James put in a request.

Do any of you sew? Are you making anything fun lately?

Lizzie

Time Flies

by adustyframe ~ May 19th, 2017

The other day, I mentioned that James is driving. Barbara said she couldn’t believe he’s that old.

I started thinking of how long I’ve puttered around in this corner of the internet and the old saying is true. “Time flies.”

James was not quite 6 when I started this blog.

I think of those of you who literally carried me through the darkest days I’ve ever lived through. Your kindness and prayers and encouragement meant (and still means) more to me than you may ever realize.

You supported me financially as well. Some with gifts, and donations. Others by sharing my cookbook and Etsy shop. And many more of you with prayer. So much prayer! And we needed it–we still do!

When I started thinking about time flying, I thought of a few other instances that remind me how quickly time has flown.

Our baby will be 4 this summer–and yep he’s still our baby–and Lee came home to live with us 6 years ago.

I wish that I could catch up with some of my “old” regular commenters who don’t blog anymore. I hope all is well.

I wish I could meet so many of you in person. I’m so thankful for you.

 

 

 

Lizzie

Happy Mother’s Day

by adustyframe ~ May 13th, 2017

romantic-pink-rosesA very happy Mother’s day to all the moms!

I don’t know what our plans are but Lee is home so that is nice. Do you have plans?

 

Little guy said, “I told dad I wanted to go to the jewelry store for Mother’s day and he said we can’t!” Awwww………he’s a sweetie.

I’m so blessed to be mom to both of my boys.

Sending a big hug to the single moms. You work so hard and so few take time to recognize you.

 

Lizzie

Around Here

by adustyframe ~ May 7th, 2017

Spring is finally arriving. We’re still having lots of cool days but there are many very nice days (or hours) interspersed in there.

We’re looking forward to lots of outside time.

Nathan has graduated from a baby pool to one of those longer rectangle pools. Not a huge one but much bigger than the one he’s had. He’s so excited and can’t wait to set it up. He’s going to have to wait awhile longer.

I’m trying to decide what I want in the garden this year. I enjoy puttering around out there and there’s nothing better than a garden fresh tomato!

James got his driver’s license a few weeks ago. His aunt sold him her old car for an excellent deal. He’s enjoying having wheels and I have to admit I am too.

I was nervous about sending him out into the world on his own. There are crazy drivers everywhere! So far it’s been great. I’m amazed at all the free time I have. Phew!!

I can’t quite believe he’s old enough for that though.

God continues to refine us in relationships and that’s a good thing! We’re always a work in progress.

Lee is busy on the road most of the time. When he gets home, he tries to catch up on home improvement projects around here. I’m looking forward to replacing our nasty kitchen flooring–hopefully soon!

I’m still working on my healthy eating plan. I’ve lost 40+ lbs since October. Plugging away!

What about you? Any gardening plans? Anything interesting going on this summer?

Lizzie

Did I Ever Tell You About The Time…….

by adustyframe ~ April 24th, 2017

When Lee called OSHA for a dangerous work environment? For those of you reading from other countries, OSHA is Occupational Safety & Health Administration.

This was shortly after he was released and was trying to find a decent job. He was willing to work anywhere for any amount.

He found a job at a small paint company.

The boss was difficult to work for and the pay wasn’t great but he and I were thankful for anything.

The problem was that in the paint shop, industrial machines were plugged into the wall on extension cords that zig zagged at knee level across the room.

Industrial machines shouldn’t operate by extension cord, and cords all over the workroom are a tripping hazard.

He called OSHA to file a complaint and the agent returned his call.

He told Lee, “I looked you up and since you’re a criminal, I’m not looking into your complaint.”

I think that I still am shocked when I think about this. He could have pushed or called again but at that point, I think he and I were beaten down and exhausted and it wasn’t worth our energy.

Lee reminded me about this story when there was a news story about someone with a checkered past who was badly mistreated. People said, “Well, he’s not squeaky clean so…..”

The thing is that we don’t intentionally mistreat people or expect them to earn a living in the midst of ridiculous safety hazards. But I guess not everyone thinks like we do.

 

Lizzie

A Fragile Hope~By Cynthia Ruchti~Book Review

by adustyframe ~ April 22nd, 2017

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About the book:
Hope grows when seeds are planted-even in the muddy middle of life.
Josiah Chamberlain’s life’s work revolves around repairing other people’s marriages. When his own is threatened by his wife’s unexplained distance, and then threatened further when she’s unexpectedly plunged into an unending fog, Josiah finds his expertise, quick wit and clever quips are no match for a relationship that is clearly broken.
Feeling betrayed, confused, and ill-equipped for a crisis this crippling, he reexamines everything he knows about the fragility of hope and the strength of his faith and love. Love seems to have failed him. Will what’s left of his faith fail him, too? Or will it be the one thing that holds him together and sears through the impenetrable wall that separates them?
About the author:
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Cynthia Ruchti tells stories hemmed in hope through her novels, novellas, nonfiction books, articles and devotionals, drawing from 33 years of on-air radio ministry. Ruchti has written more than 20 award-winning novels, novellas, nonfiction books and devotionals. Her books have received numerous awards and nominations, including the RT Reviewers’ Choice, ForeWord Reviews Book of the Year nominations, two Selah Awards, Christian Retailing’s BEST, was an ACFW Carol Award finalist and a Christy finalist, among other honors. Her latest release is the novel A Fragile Hope.
One of Ruchti’s greatest joys is helping other writers grow in their craft. To that end, she has served as worship and devotions staff and faculty for the Write-to-Publish conference and teaches at other writers’ conferences across the country and internationally as opportunities arise. She also serves as the professional relations liaison for American Christian Fiction Writers.
Ruchti speaks frequently for women’s groups and serves on her church’s worship team. She and her husband live in the heart of Wisconsin, not far from their three children and five grandchildren.
Find out more about Cynthia at http://www.cynthiaruchti.com.

My thoughts:

I enjoyed this book and was wrapped up in it within a few pages. I haven’t read many of Cynthia’s books but I really enjoyed this one.

The story is compelling.

The husband in the story is a marriage therapist with books and speaking engagements. His wife is distant and considering leaving.

He has no idea that trouble is brewing until there’s a horrible accident.

He’s left struggling to find answers and asking questions about his faith while he sits and waits and tries to hold onto hope.

If you’re looking for a good read try this one.

Check out more reviews at the Litfuse site.
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A Fragile Hope Cynthia Ruchti
Disclaimer~I received a free copy of this book from Litfuse Publicity in order to provide a review. All opinions are my own. 

Lizzie

Cave Tools Barbecue Wing Rack & Drip Pan~ Review

by adustyframe ~ April 22nd, 2017

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The boys at my house like chicken wings so when Cave tools asked me to review one of their products, I had to choose this one.

It’s very nicely made with some nice features!

Fits up to 12 wings, legs, thighs, or drumsticks

Sturdy rack doesn’t collapse or tip over when full

Can be used in the oven or on the grill

Pan underneath to grill veggies or collect drippings–or both!

100% dishwasher safe

rack

It also comes with a recipe book to get you started.

You may purchase this at Cave Tools with a 15% discount using the code: WING15

Or Amazon

We have always put chicken wings in the oven but we’re giving the grill a workout this year with this cool tool!

Disclaimer~I received a free wing rack in order to provide a review. All opinions are my own.

Lizzie