Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Some Thoughts...

I saw this post on another blog (A Northern Belle), and thought it looked like fun! I tag Katie R. from Lilies of Grace, Mikayla H. from The Bubblegum Ballerina, and Jessica Joy from (Almost) Perfectly Pink to do this, too! Have fun! :)

(All you have to do is write your own post, using these question thingys, and tag someone, if you want to!)
Making - a blog button. (It's coming...eventually!)
Drinking - a smoothie (in a little while).
Reading - God's Smuggler, which is absolutely amazing. If you haven't read it yet, you should!
Looking - forward to traveling the world someday and to starting the One Year Adventure Novel curriculum - hopefully I'll keep you all updated on how things go. I'll be writing a book in a year!
Playing - Nintendoland on the Wii.U occasionally with my brother and sister.
Deciding - what exactly to do with my work-in-progress, Trapped on the Islands of Panama.
Wishing - my new dictionary and Annabeth's War were here in the mail already.
Enjoying - my Pinterest account.
Waiting - to watch the first episode of season eight of CBC's Heartland.
Liking - Sadie Robertson and Bethany Mota on Dancing with the Stars.
Wondering - what I will get everyone for Christmas this year!
Loving - my family, my dog, my life.
Pondering - every different kind of food we'll be making for Thanksgiving dinner with my grandparents. ;)
Hoping - John J. Horn will release another novel next fall.
Marveling - at God's incredible love and grace.
Needing - to check the mail. ;)
Smelling - Cinnamon-Apple potpourri.
Wearing - my hair up in a bun.
Knowing - that God works all things together for the good of those who love Him.
Thinking - it will most likely rain within the next few days.
Sorting - out my new curriculum from My Father's World.
Feeling - excited to see Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No-Good, Very Bad Day in theaters!

P.S. This is my 50th post!

Fall is in the air!

Fall is definitely around the corner - or, actually, here. This means the leaves are turning, the weather's getting colder, and we get to go back to wearing jeans, sweaters, scarves, and boots. Oh, and Pumpkin Spice Lattes are again being sold at Starbucks. ;)

Here are some fun pictures (via Pinterest):



Aren't these outfit ideas cute!?

Lampposts remind me of Narnia. :) Anyone else?

The forest!
This is so pretty!
Who's excited about this fall??? We are one step closer to Thanksgiving, which also means I am one step closer to having my grandparents come to visit! Which I am excited about, by the way... ;)
What do you have planned for this fall? What is your favorite thing about the season?
P.S. I'll be doing another post soon, since this one was kind of short. :)
P.P.S. I added two blog buttons to the side of my blog! (Almost) Perfectly Pink's, and The Bubblegum Ballerina's. 

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Quote of the Week

"Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect." - Mark Twain

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

A Life of Faith: Millie Keith (Millie's Unsettled Season, Book Review #1)

You can read my introduction to the series here!
The A Life of Faith: Millie Keith series is wonderful. I have only read the adapted versions of the Millie novels, not the originals, but I have to say that I love the updated versions. They are humorous, well-written, full of fun, adventurous, dramatic, and Godly. I would recommend the whole series to Christian girls looking for a good, clean read. The Millie Keith books are filled to the brim with hilarious, amazing characters that you won't soon forget. I can't even begin to explain my love for these books.
In all seriousness, I owe my love of the Victorian era and my love of historical fiction to the A Life of Faith series (not just Millie Keith, but also the Violet Travilla and Elsie Dinsmore series).
*Note: The Millie series ranges from 1833-1844, starting just a few years before the Victorian era. The Elsie series starts in the early 1840s and ends in 1874. The Violet books start just three years after the Elsie series - 1877. The last tale of the whole A Life of Faith series - Violet's Foreign Intrigue - is set in 1886.*
I would have to say, though, that out of all of the A Life of Faith book series, Millie's tales would be my favorite. Why? Well, Millie and I are more alike than any of the other heroines, and her story is adventurous, funny, and so enjoyable. Don't get me wrong, both the Violet and Elsie series are great too, and all of them hold a special place in my heart (and always will!), but the Millie Keith novels hold a very special place in my heart.

Here is a review of the first book (be looking out for reviews on all seven other books in the series as well!):

Millie's Unsettled Season
(A Life of Faith: Millie Keith, Book One)
By: Martha Finley
Rating: 5 stars
Ages: 10-14

'"Oh, Aunt Wealthy," Millie cried, as Wealthy's boot touched solid ground. "It's decided!"
    "My child, what is it?" asked the older lady, dropping the letter to take the girl's hand and draw her to the sofa. "What is decided?"
         Millie spoke with a determined effort to be calm. "This morning at breakfast, Pappa told us - us children, I mean - he and Mamma had talked it over last night, and you know they have been praying about it, and..."
        "And?" Wealthy clasped Millie's hand to her heart.
        "We're moving...to...to...Pleasant Plains, Indiana."
        "The frontier!" Wealthy gasped, sinking back on the couch.' (excerpt from Chapter One)
Meet Millie Keith, a bright and energetic twelve-year-old living in the charming town of  Lansdale, Ohio, in 1833. Her world is about to be turned upside down when her Pappa announces that he is moving the family west to an undeveloped town on the frontier. The eldest daughter of eight lively children, Millie must shoulder responsibility for her mischievous brothers and sisters on the perilous journey and learn to trust God for her uncertain future. Will her Christian faith sustain her as she leaves behind friendships and everything she has ever known?
Millie's Unsettled Season is the opening chapter, the first glimpse of Millie's world that we get. Millie's father and mother, Stuart and Marcia, decide to move their family from charming Lansdale, Ohio to Indiana (it's for the best, really). ;) Devastated, Millie is forced to leave behind her beloved house and neighborhood, her friends, and a life of ease and comfort to take the long, grueling trip to an undeveloped town on the frontier - Pleasant Plains.
I loved the story of their journey, and I love the way her family interacts, especially the twins, Cyril and Don. They are so mischievous and funny! Honestly, all the times they made me smile or laugh... Cyril is actually one of my favorite characters of the whole series! If you read the books, you'd know why! His story was so awesome and fun! I could almost tear up just thinking about it... ;)
It was fun being introduced to a new town right along side Millie. She bravely faced the hardships of finding new friends, meeting and helping Indians, and just adapting to living life in a harsh, unforgiving environment - an environment where there are epidemics about every year, and life can get hard and frustrating. As always, though, there are the charms that make Pleasant Plains a wonderful place to live - such as the wonderful, absolutely superb cast mem-, er...townspeople who also call Pleasant Plains their home, and the vast, beautiful landscape!  
The whole story was an interesting and good opening. It was a fantastic novel! It was a delightful, informative look into the strength it took to endure life on the frontier. You really learn a lot about the Victorian era and the Western frontier without even realizing it! Wonderful. Highly recommended! 

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Quote of the Week

"We can complain because rose bushes have thorns, or rejoice because thorn bushes have roses." - Abraham Lincoln

Friday, September 19, 2014

A Tour of My Room

Hi, all! As of recently, my sister and I have been decorating our room safari themed, and so I thought I'd share some of our progress with you! I personally think it's coming along rather well. ;)

Here are some photos:

This is our bunk-bed...decked out in giraffe and leopard print covers. ;) Ashley, my sister, gets the bottom, while I sleep in the top.

Here's two other views - of my bed and hers:
This is mine...with my bookshelves full. :)
This is Ashley's:
(She currently doesn't have much in her bookshelves, but, the first one holds her much-loved copies of the extended version of all three movies in the Lord of the Rings trilogy.)

This is my Bible and devotional.
My books (with my makeshift bookend)! ;) I'm building up my collection of Janette Oke books. I would totally recommend her Canadian West series. I love it!

My Ballantyne collection:
This is missing The Coral Island. I currently keep that novel on another bookshelf, which I will show you in a moment.
Here are some of the books I've read for school, including By Searching, Treasures of the Snow, and Through Gates of Splendor. Those are all good books I'd recommend!
Here's a little sign I have above my window by my bed - it reads: 'Dream it, believe it, do it!'
That other bookshelf I mentioned! This holds my sister's books, a ton of which are in her Garfield collection! She also owns some of Ted Dekker's, Frank Peretti's, and Lisa Bergren's books. My books occupy only the top shelf - the two bottom ones are completely hers. :)
A close-up! Here are two of John Horn's novels (The Boy Colonel is on my desk - I'm rereading it!), The Chronicles of Narnia, The Coral Island, Titanic Crossing, D.L. Moody, and four of Melanie Dickerson's novels, also, The Queen's Handmaid by Tracy L. Higley - that's actually my sister's book, but she had no room, so I put it with mine. :)
My adored A Life of Faith novels! All but one is here...the missing one is on my desk also. :)
A close-up of some of Ashley's:
Here's our reading chair! It's very comfy. Plus our zebra print throw blanket - which is SO soft.
That's my chore chart and my sister's glass owl from Italy on our little table! :)
Here's is our desk:
And wall mural!
And some more books. What else? ;) Here is War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy, which both my sister and I are reading right now, The Red Rag Riddle, which my little bro, Jeremiah, is reading, and Millie's Reluctant Sacrifice and The Boy Colonel are mine...I'm currently reading those too! And, the bottom one is a book titled, The Horse, which I will be using to study up on the animal for my books!
These are my notebooks and binders:
And, well, that's about it! I hope you've enjoyed this rather long tour through my room! :)
I'll be back again tomorrow for the Quote of the Week!

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

The Blogs I Follow

(Via Pinterest) This is so pretty!
I recently did a post (You can click here to see it: LG Award post) where I was asked the question, "How many blogs do you follow?" Well, quite a few. When I wrote the LG Award post I found myself thinking I could do another post just listing the blogs I follow! I hope you can look into and even subscribe to some of these great blogs!

And there you have it - all the blogs I follow! :)


Tuesday, September 16, 2014

The LG Award

I was nominated for the LG Award by Mikayla H. from The Bubblegum Ballerina. I was excited to be nominated for another award, so, thank you, Mikayla!

I know you're supposed to nominate someone (or, actually, three someones) but I don't know anyone who blogs that I could nominate other than my nominator, Mikayla H. or Jessica Joy over at (Almost) Perfectly Pink...but she's already been nominated by Mikayla. Can someone be nominated more than once? If so, Jessica, you're nominated (I'll ask my questions after the end of this post)! ;)

Now, onto Mikayla's questions:

How many blogs do you follow?
Let's see...I follow ten blogs on blogger.com, Braden Russel's blog - The Storymonger, I occasionally read posts from K.M. Weiland's, I read almost every post on the Heartland blog, Inspired By Life...and Fiction, and...that totals to fourteen. Whoa. I didn't even realize it was that many! Oh, and the Bethany House Fiction blog...so I was missing one...sorry, guys, the total is actually fifteen. ;) And...I could be missing one...most likely not, though.
How's school going for you so far? 
Well, I've only done a little bit of school so far this year, but I haven't exactly started because we're still waiting on my 9th grade curriculum. :)
Have you read Nancy Drew? If so, what are your thoughts on them?
I actually haven't read any of the Nancy Drew books. :)
What is your favorite part of blogging?
Probably putting together the posts - I really enjoy writing them and adding photos and such.

Who is your favorite character you've ever created? 
Good question! My favorite male character that I've created would be Theodore Williams - he's the hero to my WIP, Trapped on the Islands of Panama. And, my favorite female character that I've created would be Theodore's sister, Madeline Williams - the heroine to Trapped. Both of them are really cool, and I love them. I am really excited to begin really working on the book, also.
What's something you want to do right now more than anything? 
I'd say travel. A few of the places I most want to visit are: Scotland, Ireland, England, Greece, Paris, France, and Alaska.
Where's your favorite place to read?
Either on the couch or in my room sitting in my and my sister's 'reading chair' - it's plush and really comfy to sit and read in.

All right! Now for my questions:

#1 - Have you ever read any of R.M. Ballantyne's novels? If so, which one is your favorite?
#2 - What is your favorite genre of music?
#3 - What is your favorite thing to do on the weekend?
#4 - What is your favorite subject in school?
#5 - Have you ever watched the movie 'Letters to Juliet'? If you have, what are your thoughts on it? Did you like it?

Thanks again to Mikayla for nominating me! I've had fun answering the questions!

Monday, September 15, 2014

I've Been Interviewed!

Hey, all! I was recently interviewed by my blogger friend, Jessica Joy, on her blog (Almost) Perfectly Pink! It was a lot of fun and she asked some pretty cool and fun questions. But, no spoilers here! You'll just have to read the interview to find out! Click HERE to head over to (Almost) Perfectly Pink to read it!

Also, check out the rest of Jessica's great blog! I especially liked one of her 'Thought provoking' posts, titled 'You Don't Want Prince Charming!' :)

And, I'll be doing my regular post tomorrow, so look out for that, and enjoy the interview!


Saturday, September 13, 2014

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

A Different Kind of Courage Blog Tour

Hello, everyone! I was invited to do a blog tour with Sarah Holman for her latest book, A Different Kind of Courage! I am looking forward to reading this novel, and I will be soon! Below, you can enter for a chance to win a copy of her book! But for now...here is a fun interview with the author:

Hello there, and welcome to Adventures Beyond the Horizon, Sarah!

Thank you for having me! I am very excited to be here!
What inspired your newest release, A Different Kind of Courage?

Two conversations actually. The first was one our family had after watching several of movies and TV shows about people with secret identities. We talked about the real consequences of such a life style that most of the movies and such didn’t show. The second conversation was one my mom and I had about people who try to live up to their parents expectations for them, instead of God’s.
Would you give us a synopsis?

After three years in England, William Landor returns to Boston in 1774, little knowing the events that are about to unfold.

England has issued an ultimatum: pay for the tea that was destroyed in the Boston Tea Party, or the Port of Boston will be closed. Williams knows that this will have a devastating effect on his hometown, which is so dependent on the sea. However, he finds himself in the middle of the political struggle he wanted to avoid.

William's father is a merchant and loyal to the kind and is furious at what the rebels of Boston have cost him. He would like nothing more than to rid the city of their poisonous influence. Meanwhile, William's best friend, Dr. Joseph Warren, is one of the leaders of the rebels, or Whigs, as they call themselves.

As if his life was not complicated enough, he meets a fiery indentured servant who tugs at his heart as well as his loyalty. When he is confronted by the consequences of his many secrets, he has to make a choice whether of not to tell the truth. Does he have the kind of courage it will take?

What was the hardest part of writing it?

Editing. Editing for me is very hard. It takes a lot of time, and is tedious.

What's your favorite part of the writing process?

I love it when I get the feeling that I am just watching the story unfold along with my readers; the unexpected twists and turns that come as a surprise to even me. I also love creating stories like the ones I always wanted to read as a kid.

What/who inspired you to start writing?

It was a joint effort of my mom and Robin Hood. I was a little obsessed with Robin Hood at one point and I wanted to write a version of my own. My mom encouraged me to write my own stories, instead of retelling someone else's, so I did.

Who is your favorite author?

It would be a toss up between Elizabeth Camden and Sarah Sundin. Both of them are amazing story tellers who tackle tough issues without being crude. Both are amazing story tellers that have kept me up late at night. I would be hard pressed to pick between them.

Can you name a few of your favorite books?

I can indeed! Christy by Catherine Marshall (that was a life changing book for me), A Distant Melody by Sarah Sundin, Against the Tide by Elizabeth Camden, the Firmament series by J. Grace Pennington, The Charity's Diary by Elisabeth Allen, The Messenger by Siri Mitchell, and many, many more.

Who is your favorite fictional character?

Christy from the book of the same name. Her journey's story was life changing for me in many ways and she and I have so much in common.

If you could meet one person, who would you meet (other than Jesus)?

George W. Bush. He was very inspiring to me and is someone I have greatly admired.

Which time period is your favorite to read/write about? Why?

Until a little over a year ago, I would have said the Middle Ages, but the early American Revolution has captured my imagination after doing all the research that was necessary for this book. I think that wars tend to bring out the best and worst in people, and the American Revolution was no exception. For this reason as well as others, I love this time period.

Favorite writing space and snack?

My favorite writing space is my writing corner in my room or on the couch. Snack? Cheez-Its! I love munching on them while I am working out a plot, writing, or am editing.

If money were no object, where would you go for vacation? Who would you bring with you?

I would go to England and take my whole family with me. I would visit castles and museums, and maybe even make time to visit Jane Austen's home.

Any final thoughts?

Don't give up on your writing. Few, if any of us, are born with all the talent it takes to make a good book. You have to keep writing and building your skills to get good.

Thanks for being here, Sarah! We enjoyed getting to know more about you!
Sarah Holman is a not so typical mid-twenties girl: A homeschool graduate, sister to six awesome siblings, and author of five published books and counting. If there is anything adventuresome about her life, it is because she serves a God with a destiny bigger than anything she could have imagined.

You can find Sarah over at her blog, The Destiny of One, her Facebook page, Twitter (@thedestinyofone), Pinterest , GoodReads, and her LinkedIn!

I hope you enjoyed the interview - I did! You can enter the giveaway below to receive a copy of A Different Kind of Courage! I haven't read A Different Kind of Courage yet, but I've a feeling it's good book!!!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, September 5, 2014

Interview with Jessica Joy from (Almost) Perfectly Pink!

Hi, all! I had the privilege of interviewing Miss Jessica Joy! She runs a blog that I follow - (Almost) Perfectly Pink. You should go check it out!

Here's the fun interview... Enjoy!

Hi there, and welcome to Adventures Beyond the Horizon!

Hiya! Thank you so much for asking me to be here!

Could you tell us a bit about yourself?

I can! Haha! My name is Jessica Joy, but sometimes I call myself Jess. I'm fifteen and a half, and round my height up to 5 ft. 4in.  I love writing, reading, and words in general.  I'm a natural born leader, so I have to remind myself not to become bossy.  I have two little siblings who I adore, and I like baking.  I'm in 10th grade, homeschooled, and a Christian.  My LORD is my everything.  I love music, and Beauty and the Beast.  It's my favorite movie.  I care a lot about my reputation, and most of the time, I'm more comfortable around adults then teenagers, which translates to me being pretty awkward around them.  My little sister in my best friend.  I like lasagna.  And, if you couldn't tell from this paragraph, I can be extremely random. =D

Why did you begin blogging?
It was actually because of our mutual friend, Mikayla H. I saw her profile on a different site, and then noticed that she had a blog. She inspired me to start my own, she was one of my first followers, and the very first person to ever comment on my blog! She has grown to be a very dear friend. =)  I also love to write, and I'm a pretty outgoing person, so combining those two things: writing and meeting new people, seemed like a good idea. =)
When did you begin blogging?
I had a few other blogs before, but they were when I was little, and they never really stuck.  I would write on them for a few weeks and then drop them.  I started my current blog, (Almost) Perfectly Pink, in October 2013.  =)

How did you choose your blog title?
Haha!  Anyone who was around at the beginning of my blog will know that my name changed a ton!  I had many different names, and the first one was Homeschooled Author, which is how my blog got it's URL.  Finally, though, I decided on (Almost) Perfectly Pink.  What inspired me was because a clothing store moved into my town called Almost Pink, and it got me thinking along that line.  Also, it has a double meaning, in the fact that in Christ we are called to be like Him, even though we will never reach that goal on earth.  So, as Christians, we are called to be almost perfect.  That combined with the fact that I love the color pink cinched the name. =)
What are some of your hobbies?
Oh boy.  I love reading, writing, baking, listening to music, training my dog, spending time with family, playing board and card games, chatting with friends, riding my bike, and day dreaming. =)

What’s your favorite book genre?
Realistic fiction. The only one I really don't care for is Sci-Fi.

Who is your favorite author?
Mikayla H.  =) Published wise, either Phoebe Stone, Elizabeth George Speare, or the wonderful people who wrote Nancy Drew. =)

Favorite book?
This is always the hardest question!  Um, Nancy Drew, the Bible, of course, books by Phoebe Stone and Elizabeth Speare, obviously, C.S. Lewis' books, and waaaayyy more.  I couldn't even tell you.  Those are just the few that immediately come to mind.  I also love missionary biographies.

What are you currently reading?
An International Adventure book, which is a series of autobiographies written by missionaries. =)

Tangled or Frozen?
Must I choose??? Ooooohhhhhh.....I'll get back to you on that one. (NOT, cause I'll never make a decision ;D )
Action, adventure, or mystery?
Mystery! Definitely! =D

Who’s your favorite fictional character?
Oh, gosh, I could never say.  Probably Nancy Drew.

T.V. or movies?
Movies, unless it's an old T.V show, like Perry Mason or Get Smart. Also, I must be able to watch a lot of them at once. XD

If money were no object, where would you go for vacation? Who would you bring with you?
Oh, either a tour of Europe, a tour of Central America, or a road trip across the US.  I would take my sister, my mom, and my 3 closest friends, Mikayla, Rachel, and Israel. =)

Favorite time period? Why?
Hum, I don't really know.  Probably all of the 1900's, but without the wars. =(  Because they wore pretty dresses, and did their hair up nice, had typewriters, and roller skated  =)

What are three words that best describe you?
I'd say: Kind, Compassionate, and Outgoing.  But someone else might say different. ;)

What is your favorite movie?
Beauty and the Beast, the Disney one. =)

Which is your favorite movie in the Chronicles of Narnia? Favorite character from that movie?

I have not seen these movies in a very long time.  Probably Susan, though.

What is your favorite holiday?
Either Christmas or the 4th of July.

What’s your favorite type of food?

Lasagna!  But I love all Mexican and Italian food.  Plus burgers. =D

Do you write? If so, what do you like to write about?

I do write! lol I write poems, realistic fiction, and historic fiction. =)

And, if you could meet one person, who would you choose (dead or living)?

Oh no!  I could never answer this....I'm just going to say Amy Carmichael. =)

Thanks for being here, Jessica!