The Ambition~ Lee Strobel~ Review

by adustyframe ~ July 30th, 2017


I found this at the church library and decided to give it a try.

I have to admit that at first, it was slow going and took me a bit to get into it but I kept at it and I’m glad I did.

About the book:

A corrupt judge in a mob murder case. A disillusioned pastor, hungry for power. A cynical reporter, sniffing for a scandal. A gambling addict whose secret tape threatens the lives of everyone who hears it. New York Times bestselling author Lee Strobel weaves these edgy characters into an intricate thriller set in a gleaming, suburban megachurch, a big-city newspaper struggling for survival, and the shadowy corridors of political intrigue. The unexpected climax is as gripping as the contract killing that punctuates the opening scene.

My Thoughts:

I have to admit that at first, it was slow going and took me a bit to get into it but I kept at it and I’m glad I did.  Once I got into the story, it was a page turner.

It was thought provoking without being “preachy”. And at the end, I cheered. 😉 You’ll have to read it to see why.


No one gave me this book to review. I just picked it up at the church library.



by adustyframe ~ July 17th, 2017

When Lee came home from being “away”, he moved right into being home and moving on.

He told me it was over and we made it so move on.

The only trouble was that I had a bucket load of hurt and the impact of his being “away” wasn’t just something I could “move on” from.

I mentioned once that I thought things would be more dreamy when he came home.

Have things been bad? no not at all. But sometimes things have been hard.

I’ve learned to give things to God and to ask Him to help me process and “move on”. I’ve prayed I wouldn’t hold things against him because that sin nature likes to rear it’s ugly head–a lot!

I haven’t been sitting around waiting for an apology. It’s hard for my husband to actually say the words….I know that about him.

He’s worked hard–VERY hard. He’s provided for us. He’s done things to show love to me.

I believe in honoring our covenant–I shared my thoughts on this before. I believe in marriage. I believe in it strongly. I believe in honoring God in our marriage. I think my life backs that belief up. It’s not empty words.

But there were places in my heart that hurt and that wanted him to understand and just say the words.

I’ve been praying again. Giving things to God again.

In the middle of the night Sunday night, the dog was running in circles begging me to let her out. I got up and in the process say my husband had sent me a text.

“I’m sorry. I know those years were miserable for you.”

Out of the blue……….by text yes but it’s the first time he “said” the words.

I turned the phone over and went back to bed but I felt a little uncoiling deep down in my soul. A loosening of the tightly wrapped pain deep down inside.

I felt like if I concentrated on this that I would sob uncontrollably for days….and we had church in the morning!

I still feel a little like that. I probably do need to sob for days at the joy that he “said it”. It’s not the words or that I was demanding an apology. It’s just  knowing that he acknowledged it and verbalized that he knows it hurt.

I’m sure anyone could read what I’m posting here  and pick it apart……point out where I’m wrong or what I should have done or tsk tsk tsk that this many years later, I still deal with pain between my husband and I but that’s ok. It’s not for anyone else to agree or like. This blog has always been my way to share honestly and I’m not going to change that.

‘I’m thankful that God has held us together all these years. Without him, without his strength, without his reminding me of his love and care…..we wouldn’t be here. This is not about us.

I’m thankful for 3 a.m. texts that remind me that my husband loves me and that he understands.


Almost Birthday Season

by adustyframe ~ July 5th, 2017

I guess I can’t click “baby” for the category for little guy posts anymore. WAAAAAAH!!!!

Can you believe our little Nathan is almost 4?

We had a family birthday party with cousins and aunts who have a birthday in the summer time. He said, “I’m FOUR NOW!” I reminded him it wasn’t quite his birthday yet.

He said, “But I had my party!”

He’s so sweet and so fun–and a little spitfire! We’re so thankful God gave him to us…..but wow! I can’t believe he’s almost 4.


Kids’ Visual Study Bible~Review

by adustyframe ~ June 25th, 2017



I was asked to review this Bible by Handlebar Press and said “sure!”

About the Bible:

The NIV Kids’ Visual Study Bible brings the Bible alive for children.The NIV Kids’ Visual Study Bible, for ages 8-12, brings the Bible to life in four-color illustrated splendor.

This study Bible includes a spectacular full-color interior featuring over 700 illustrations, photos, infographics, and maps on every page that visually represent key Bible information.

Each page also features important facts located near the relevant verse.

Intriguing facts; colorful, engaging maps; photographs; and illustrations make this a Bible they’ll want to explore.

Features:: Over 700 four-color photographs, illustrations, infographics, and maps throughout: Full-color design: Book introductions, including important facts and an image to orient the reader: One-column format with side bar study notes for ease of reading: glossy cover.


My Thoughts:

On the cover, some of the pictures are a shiny material slightly different than the rest of the cover which adds interest.

Each book begins with facts–who wrote it? Why was it written? What happens in this book? What do we learn about God? Who are the key people? Where did this happen? What are some of the stories in this book?

The sidebars have pictures of artifacts, explanations of what was going on, charts, and graphics to help explain.

An example is in Zechariah. On the side bar for 10:1 it explains why Zechariah told them God controls the weather—because they believed in Baal and thought he controlled the weather. He wanted the people to know that God was in control of weather and crops.


Just a simple thing to help children understand what the people may have been thinking.

I do think this Bible is nicely done. It is a bit heavy for a kids Bible. I don’t know if that’s a negative or positive. It’s just something I noted.


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


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!



Driver Confessional~By David L Winters~Book Review

by adustyframe ~ June 4th, 2017



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.
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. 


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?


*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.


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?


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.





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.