What A Difference

by adustyframe ~ October 23rd, 2017

Several times over the past year, I’ve thought about how different our lives are now than what they used to be.

I don’t know if I can even list all the ways it’s different but one I notice often is when we take a road trip.

My siblings live at a distance from us–a short drive but longer than hopping in the car and going to the next town.

Many times over the years Lee was gone, that trip was daunting to me.

Often, we didn’t have a car that was reliable and had to borrow a car. If you think I love asking people to borrow their vehicle, you don’t know me. UGGGG. I hated needing to ask for so many things and a car is a big ask!

I also had zero energy. I described it once as feeling constantly as if I was coming down with the flu. That drug out exhausted “can’t keep my eyes open” everything hurts type of feeling.

Usually, I couldn’t drive the entire trip without stopping to close my eyes. It’s laughable really but at the time it was all I could do.

I remember once stopping at a wayside area and James bounced around the car waiting for me to get myself together enough to drive the rest of the way home.

I haven’t had to stop to rest my eyes for ages. Last night, I was on the way home from dropping James off to do some work with my brother in law. I was tired and it was dark and rainy. In the past, I don’t think I could have made it home under those condition.

Last night, Nathan fell asleep in the back and I turned on Christian radio and drove home. Just like a normal person! (lol!)

I’m thankful that things are different and that I can make a normal little road trip without being exhausted and overwhelmed.
Thank you, God!

Lizzie

Things You Can DIY

by adustyframe ~ October 17th, 2017

DIY is not a new idea of course!

I was thinking of some things my sister and I make at home that are quick and easy and thought I’d share them once in awhile.

Sometimes, I think some DIY things aren’t really worth my time….tortillas. It was fun to make them and say I made them but it’s not something I would keep doing.

Once in awhile, a DIY thing is time consuming but I enjoy doing it anyway and so I don’t mind…..knitting.

Today’s DIY is dryer balls. Dryer balls are used to fluff up clothing in the dryer. They bounce around between items to separate them and help them to dry quicker. They can also soften the clothes. This is a bonus since we do not use fabric softener.

I have purchased wool dryer balls and have seen tutorials but never took the time to make them. I found some 100% wool yarn  at the outlet thrift store. I purchase yarn at the thrift store, but the outlet thrift store is a bit dirtier so I didn’t want to use it for knitting.

In the past, I didn’t want to waste good wool making dryer balls so this was a win-win!

This DIY is super easy. All you have to do is roll the yarn into a ball like you would do if you wanted to use it for a project.

Place each ball into a leg of an old pair of pantyhose and tie knots between each ball.

I threw them into the washer and dryer for every load I washed for a week to felt them. Felting is what happens to wool when it’s washed in hot water and friction is applied. (Think your favorite sweater that shrunk).

After washing and drying them for a week, I felt they were sufficiently felted. I cut them out of the old nylons and tossed them in the dryer.

I chose to felt them a little at a time over the week by tossing in our laundry loads because I didn’t want to waste that much water to felt them. If I were giving them as a gift, I would have washed them alone.

I got two balls out of each skein of yarn. This will vary of course depending on how much yarn is in the skein and how large you make the balls. They did shrink but it didn’t seem to be a huge amount.

I store them in the dryer. That’s it–easy peasy.

 

Lizzie

Faithful

by adustyframe ~ October 6th, 2017

The other day, Lee called me and said, “You know I’ve been thinking that God’s taken care of us. He gave me a good job. He gave us a nice house. A good car. Good kids.”

 

I thought about this song immediately–YouTube Preview Image

 

I watched it before I sent it to Lee and it made me cry. It’s so true. I think this is the line that gets me

Looking Back His Love And Mercy I See. In the middle, oh man! It didn’t feel like the end would ever arrive. It didn’t look like things were working out for good. It was just sad and overwhelming and ugly. But looking back? Wow! What a faithful God.

 

 

In my moments of Fear
Though Every Pain Every Tear
There’s A God Who’s Been Faithful To Me
When My Strength Was All Gone
When My Heart Had No Song
Still In Love He’s Proved Faithful To Me
Every Word He’s Promised Is True
What I Thought Was Impossible
I’ve Seen My God Do
He’s Been Faithful
Faithful To Me

He’s been faithful, faithful to me
Looking Back His Love And Mercy I See
Though In My Heart I Have Questioned
And Failed To Believe
He’s Been Faithful, Faithful To Me

When My Heart Looked Away
The Many Times I Could Not Pray
Still My God Was Faithful To Me
The Days Are Spent So Selfishly
Reaching Out For What Pleased Me
Even Then God Was Faithful To Me
Every Time I Come Back To Him
He Is Waiting with Open Arms
And I See Once Again

He’s Been Faithful
Faithful To Me
Looking Back His Love And Mercy I See
Though In My Heart I Have Questioned
Even Failed To Believe
Yet He’s Been Faithful, Faithful

oh
In my heart I have questioned,
even failed to believe
yet he’s been faithful, faithful
In my heart I have questioned, Ive even failed to believe

Yet you’ve been faithful, faithful to me.

Lizzie

Liar’s Winter~By Cindy K Sproles~Book Review

by adustyframe ~ September 29th, 2017

liars

 

About the book:

Lochiel Ogle was born with a red-wine birthmark–and it put her life in jeopardy from the moment she entered the world. Mountain folks called it “the mark of the devil,” and for all the evil that has plagued her nineteen-year existence, Lochiel is ready to believe that is true. And the evil surely took control of the mind of the boy who stole her as an infant, bringing her home for his mother to raise.
Abused and abandoned by the only people she knows as family, Lochiel is rescued by a peddler and given the first glimpse of love she has ever known. The truth of her past is gradually revealed as is the fact that she is still hunted by a brother driven to see her dead. Unsure if there’s anyone she can truly trust, Lochiel is faced with a series of choices: Will she continue to run for escape or will she face her past and accept the heartbreaking secrets it reveals? Which will truly free her?
Set in the wild and beautiful Appalachian Mountains of nineteenth-century East Tennessee, Liar’s Winter is an unflinching yet inspirational exploration of prejudice and choice.

About the Author:

cindy

Cindy Sproles is an author and speaker. She has cofounded ChristianDevotions.us and serves as managing editor for SonRise Books and Straight Street Books, imprints of Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas. Cindy teaches at Christian Writers Conferences and ladies retreats and ladies conferences across the country. Her devotions are heartfelt and honest. Edgy and inviting. Cindy serves as the executive editor of ChristianDevotions.us, a writing mentor, and life-coach. Author of four non-fiction books, Cindy’s Fiction debut novel, Mercy’s Rain(Kregel Publishing), released January 2015. She is a contributing author to CBN.com and InspireaFire.com and serves as the director of Writers ADVANCE! Boot Camp Conference. Visit her at www.cindysproles.com.

 

My Thoughts:

My dad’s mom grew up in a very tiny Appalachian community so I was interested in this book as soon as I saw it on the review list.

I really enjoyed reading it. I hadn’t read anything by this author before and I’m always a little unsure how I will like a new author but it was fine!

Cindy does a great job describing the Appalachians and some of their beliefs and superstitions. The characters were well thought out and definitely felt real. I found myself with my heart beating during some of the plot twists. I was completely sucked into the story and enjoyed it a lot.

If you’d like to learn a little about the Appalachians or try out a new author, check out Liar’s Winter. You can read an excerpt here. 

 


Disclaimer~I received a copy of this book in order to provide a review. All opinions are my own. 

Lizzie

Psalm 91:1

by adustyframe ~ September 25th, 2017

He that dwells in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.

I woke up thinking about this verse this morning. What a wonderful place to be!

Lizzie

Mercy Triumphs~By Jana Kelley~Book Review

by adustyframe ~ September 23rd, 2017

Mercy Triumphs

About the Book:

Three women. Three impossible circumstances. One merciful God.
Mia, an American Christian, has lived in Sudan so long that persecution, harassment, and danger have become commonplace for her. Her tough outer shell threatens to harden her heart while her newly Christian friends, Halimah and Rania, former Muslims, are forced to live in exile outside Sudan. All three quickly discover that escaping danger in one place only means facing even greater challenges elsewhere. As God’s mercy becomes evident in their lives, they must choose whether or not to offer mercy to those who don’t deserve it.
Third in a trilogy, Mercy Triumphs opens the reader’s eyes to modern-day persecution and the life of Muslims in Sudan. Based on real-life events, 
Mercy Triumphs reveals some of the struggles Christians face when living under Islamic law. The reader will be inspired to pray for new believers, those who are persecuted for their faith, and even for the salvation of the persecutors.
About the Author:
mercy
Author of the captivating novel “Side by Side,” Jana Kelley is a Texan who hardly ever lives in Texas. Raised in Southeast Asia, Jana developed a love for cross-cultural living early in life. Her love for writing came soon after. Jana returned to Texas to attend East Texas Baptist University. She and her husband married a month after she graduated, and by their second anniversary, they were living in a remote African town. After 13 years living in Africa and the Middle East, Jana, her husband, and their three boys moved to Southeast Asia where they currently live.
Find out more about Jana at http://www.janakelley.com.
My Thoughts:
It took me a bit to get into this story. I appreciate the details of living in a country like this and it gave me a new appreciation for what believers struggle with in these countries.
This book is third in a trilogy but I feel you can read it on it’s own.
I have to finish it yet so I can’t report on if I liked how it turned out or not!
To see what other reviewers thought check out this page on Litfuse Publicity. 

Kelley 2

Kelley 1

Disclaimer:
I was given a copy of this book in order to provide a review. All opinions are my own. 
Pin It Lizzie

Rule Of Law~Randy Singer~Book Review

by adustyframe ~ September 20th, 2017

Rule of Law

About the Book:
What did the president know? And when did she know it?
For the members of SEAL Team Six, it was a rare mission ordered by the president, monitored in real time from the Situation Room. The Houthi rebels in Yemen had captured an American journalist and a member of the Saudi royal family. Their executions were scheduled for Easter Sunday. The SEAL team would break them out.
But when the mission results in spectacular failure, the finger-pointing goes all the way to the top.
Did the president play political games with the lives of U.S. service members?
Paige Chambers, a determined young lawyer, has a very personal reason for wanting to know the answer. The case she files will polarize the nation and test the resiliency of the Constitution. The stakes are huge, the alliances shaky, and she will be left to wonder if the saying on the Supreme Court building still holds true.
Equal justice under law.
It makes a nice motto. But will it work when one of the most powerful people on the planet is also a defendant?
About the Author:
Singer
Randy Singer is a critically acclaimed author and veteran trial attorney. He has penned more than ten legal thrillers, including his award-winning debut novel “Directed Verdict.” In addition to his law practice and writing, he serves as a teaching pastor for Trinity Church in Virginia Beach, Virginia. He also teaches classes in advocacy and ethics at Regent Law School and serves on the school’s Board of Visitors.
Learn more about Randy at his website. 
My thoughts:
We really enjoyed this book. The first couple of pages, I wondered if I would get into this story but after that I was hooked.
It’s a well written easy to follow story that leaves you wondering what will happen next.
I enjoy books that I can’t easily predict what will happen and this book was not easy to predict. Actually, I predicted the ending wrong!
It’s definitely a page turner.
When I was finished with the book, I passed it onto James who is staying up into the night reading it and every morning telling me how good it is.
It makes you question many things about our government and wonder how things really work behind the scenes too.
To see what other reviewers thought check out this page on Litfuse.

Singer 1

Singer 2

Disclaimer: I was given a free copy of this book in order to provide a review. All opinions are my own.

Lizzie

Tears & Trauma

by adustyframe ~ September 4th, 2017

Once in awhile, I think that we’re past “all this”. That we’ve moved on and we’re all good.
But now and then something happens to remind me that it’s still there. It still affects us. It still hurts.

The other day, I was telling a friend that our church is always looking for volunteers for women’s Bible study at our county jail.
When they announce the need for volunteers, I feel that I should look into it. I just keep putting it off.
I had never spoken out loud anything about this. I only thought about it.

When I was talking to her, I said, “I just don’t know if I can handle the smell and hearing those doors shut.” And then I choked up and got teary eyed. I hadn’t realized why I was putting it off until I said the words out loud.

She said, “That shows the trauma you’ve been through. You’re not ready and that’s ok.”

I am not sure I ever used the word “trauma” to describe what we’ve been through but …..yeah….it’s pretty accurate.
In some ways, I think it’s ridiculous that I’m “not ready”. But I’m just not. I am however praying that I won’t use it as an excuse and that if God truly wants me to minister in a prison or jail, He will make it very clear to me and that I will be willing.

The other day, Lee was watching a documentary about prison (he watches a lot of those shows……I’m not sure why!) The documentary showed a man released from prison after being held unjustly for 14 years. When the man walked out of prison, Lee looked at me with tears in his eyes.

I thought “yes trauma”.

It still affects us and will always be part of our story but God? Well, He is good.

Lizzie

This Boy

by adustyframe ~ August 25th, 2017

I’m going to have to change the category “baby” one of these days…….

I have been thinking a lot lately that this is the life. It won’t be much longer that we’ll all be in the same house.
For the most part, we have our health.
Life is peaceful, gentle, slow….

We are doing ok financially.

Life is good.

Little guy and I were at the library the other day and he was playing in one of the play centers.
He called me to look at what he was doing. He was building something with cardboard blocks.

“Hey, Mom! I’m building a jail! This is for the bad guys and this is for the police…..”

Yes, this is the life. A life where this little guy already older than James was when Daddy went “away”, doesn’t know anything about jail.

He doesn’t know about trying to touch daddy’s hand through the glass. Or waiting in the jail lobby for them to call our group. He doesn’t know anything about a missing dad. He doesn’t have a mom bone weary from exhaustion and stress and sadness.

In his little life jail is something to play pretend. It’s not a shadow darkening every area of his existence.

I said, “Oh honey, we don’t play jail.”

“Why not?”

Why not…..I couldn’t really explain it to him and I’m so thankful he can’t understand why we don’t play jail.

This is the life most certainly.

Lizzie

I Am Not The Same

by adustyframe ~ August 20th, 2017

We sang this in church this morning.

The first phrase is “You restore the wasted years….”

Isn’t that the truth?

I don’t like our wilderness years and while I don’t actually think they were wasted, I’m so thankful God restores.

Lizzie