"But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give a reason for the hope you have. But do this with gentleness and respect." 1 Peter 3:15

Tuesday, April 20, 2021

Enhance Your Marriage

Enhance your Marriage: The surprising benefits of exercising as husband and wife by [Elizabeth Tayem, Eric Tangumonkem]

Title: Enhance Your Marriage: The Surprising Benefits of Exercising as Husband and Wife

Authors: Elizabeth Tayem, M.S. and Eric Tangumonkem, Ph.D.

Publisher: IEM Press

Genre: Self-help/Sex and Relationships

Synopsis:

Marriage is like a three-legged stool! Every successful marriage has three legs that it stands on, and it is impossible to build a strong and enduring marriage without communication, money, and sex. Most marriage experts have identified three aspects of marriage that MUST be present and functioning well for any successful marriage. All three aspects feed into each other, and the more you strengthen one, the stronger the other two become, and the deeper the level of commitment and the more enjoyable the marriage will be. We have added a catalyst that will enhance communication, money, and sex in every marriage. In fact, exercise is more than a catalyst; it is the bedrock on which the three legs stand. This book will enhance, energize and synergize revolutionize your marriage beyond your greatest imagination.

My review:

https://reedsy.com/discovery/book/enhance-your-marriage-the-surprising-benefits-of-exercising-as-husband-and-wife-eric-tangumonkem#review

 

Sunday, April 18, 2021

Bookshop by the Sea

 Title: Bookshop by the Sea

Author: Denise Hunter

Publisher: Thomas Nelson

Genre: Romance

Synopsis:

Sophie Lawson should be enjoying her sister’s wedding day. But nothing could have prepared her to see the best man again.

After her mother became bedridden and her father bailed on the family, Sophie found herself serving as a second mother to her twin brother, Seth, and younger sister, Jenna. Sophie supported her siblings through their college years, putting aside her own dream of opening a bookshop in Piper’s Cove—the quaint North Carolina beach town they frequented as children.

Now it’s finally time for Sophie to follow her own pursuits. Seth has a new job, and Jenna is set to marry her college beau in Piper’s Cove. But the destination wedding reunites Sophie with best man Aiden Maddox, her high school sweetheart who left her without a backward glance.

When an advancing hurricane strands Aiden in Piper’s Cove after the wedding, he finds the hotels booked to capacity and has to ask Sophie to put him up until the storm passes. As the two ride out the weather, old feelings rise to the surface. The delay also leaves Sophie with mere days to get her bookshop up and running. Can she trust Aiden to stick around? And will he find the courage to risk his heart?

My Review:

Denise Hunter is a highly skilled contemporary fiction/romance writer. Her books are clean, engaging, and always have a happily ever after. I decided to read Bookshop by the Sea simply from the cover design. I did not read what it was because I LOVE books and enjoy reading about bookshops/libraries or anything else that has to do with literacy. Of course, this book did not disappoint.

From the first line, "Eleven months had not been long enough to prepare Sophie Lawson for the sight of him" I was completely captivated. I had all kinds of questions and the only way I was going to find the answers was by reading on! 

The reader gets to know Sophie and Aiden by the story alternating between their perspectives. Sophie is the mother figure to her siblings, caring, empathetic, and oblivious to the ways that they take advantage of her. She struggles with trust and abandonment issues, but she is working hard to have her own life after being a caregiver for many years. Her dreams are finally about to come true as she works to get her bookshop open. However, due to unforeseen circumstances, she struggles to meet her deadline.

Aiden is the dreamy, dare-devil, run from commitment type. He left Sophie once to chase after his dreams. When a hurricane strands him in Piper's Cove he is forced to reconnect with Sophie. As they spend time together the wall that Sophie has built to keep Aiden out starts to thaw. She reveals things from the past that he had no clue about and he is hurt that Sophie had not trusted him at the time to share the details. Aiden is dealing with his own abandonment and trust issues and when Sophie is hurt, he decides to stay to help her get her bookstore off the ground. Unfortunately, Aidan once again runs when his fears get the best of him.

"But when you give fear a voice, it's louder than logic or reality. It overshadows everything you know to be true, and all you can hear are the lies you fear most."

I enjoyed this book immensely. I was surprised when a character from a different book made an appearance and had to go back and see if this book was part of a series. It is not, it is a standalone novel, and it was great fun for the character to make an appearance here! The dynamics between Sophie and her family are so real and relatable. The relationship that Sophie had with her mom and Aiden has with his dad, had me longing for a better relationship with my parents. I absolutely adored the way the residents of Piper's welcomed Sophie into their community.

A heart-warming, second-chance romance sure to engage and delight avid romance readers. From the engaging characters, witty dialogue, and slow-burn romance you will have a hard time putting this one down.

Thank you to Net Galley and Thomas Nelson for the complimentary copy of this book. I was not required to give a positive review but I am happy to be able to do so. All thoughts and opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

Saturday, April 17, 2021

Obsolete

 When I first started this blog back in November 2011 I was so excited about it. (You can take a sneak peek back at my first post here.) I set it up as a more streamlined way for people to keep up with what was going on with us, so I wouldn't have to email so many people the same thing! We were traveling a lot and there always seemed to be something to say. I was thinking about that last night and wondered why at times I struggle with what to write. I came up with several reasons.

First, I started posting to Facebook and later Instagram things that were going on with us. To then put it in a blog post seemed redundant. 

Second, I thought my blog was getting de-activated, but there was a change that I did not understand and so I stopped writing, thinking my posts were no longer there.

Third, once I started actively keeping up with the blog again we went through several upheavals, changes, and then got a puppy...all of that took/takes time and so I don't have time to sit and write a post very often...which makes me sad because I have a lot of ideas that I hope to eventually get to write out. But, what typically happens is by the time I get around to writing them I have forgotten where I am going with them.

One of the main reasons I love this blog is it gives me a place to process my thoughts and feelings about different things. When I have the time I enjoy it and when I don't I miss it.

When I first started this blog I had a lot of engagement/comments/and friends who were also keeping up with blogs. Now, I have a little engagement (lost momentum when I didn't post for a few years, LOL), occasional comments, and most of my friends have stopped keeping up with their blogs as well. I had to wonder what has kind of made the blogs obsolete. I know part of my problem is that I took so long off from writing, and possibly, what I am writing right now is not interesting to that many people. I am okay with that. I think most people want the quick snapshots that places like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter can give them, without having to read long blog posts. (I know I am old, I did not mention Tik-Tok or any other thing that young people use, LOL).

As the years have gone by I have given the blog a face-lift or two, and feel that it is time to do it again. I am hoping to revamp my blog without losing too much of my content. I am a little scared to change anything though, as I no longer remember all the features of the blog 😜 Which is what happens when you go so long without doing anything with it. 

Anyway, I would love to hear your thoughts on this. Do you feel like blogs are becoming more obsolete? Do you have blogs you regularly follow or do you prefer more interaction on other social media platforms?

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