Saturday, October 25, 2014

Hello! (A Bit of an Update)

Hi, there! How has everyone been? I'm sorry news and posts from me have been sparse recently - as I've said numerous times before, I've been busy! :) 'Being busy' includes: carving pumpkins (I named mine...! And, although we carve pumpkins, we don't celebrate Halloween), doing double of most of my schoolwork, doing Algebra I (which I've given a category of its own, you see), hiking and rock climbing every weekend with my older brother and his family, squeezing in reading, emailing my pen pal, and
looking forward to my grandparents' visit which is in about three weeks! :)

This is my pumpkin! :)
As you can see, I've been swamped! :) I was also busy today. I helped bake cookies for Home Ec., spent some time with my adorable niece and nephew, read three pages of War and Peace (and three pages only), and did some more Algebra. Tomorrow we are heading off into the vast wilderness and hiking and rock climbing some more! ;) Maybe sometime I'll get some pictures on here to show you!

I even got to stop by Barnes and Noble this week and order my very own copy of Captive of Raven Castle by Jessica Greyson! I'll tell y'all how I like it. :)

On top of it all, I hope to start up a vlog (video blog) soon, but we'll see how that goes! ;)

Heartland's fourth episode this week - Secrets and Lies - was crazy. Heartland's fourth episode of its eighth season was record breaking for CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corp.) - Heartland has now become CBC's longest running one hour show, reaching an amazing 125 episodes! So cool! Heartland really is a fantastic show! I love it. :) Some pretty dramatic things have been developing lately...we'll see where it all leads! You can visit Heartland's site here! Unfortunetly, it's a Canadian show, which means we Americans can't watch it on Sundays when it airs. But, the first five seasons are on Netflix, and you can find most of the other episodes from season 6, 7, and now 8 on YouTube.

Speaking of Heartland, I created my own Heartland board on Pinterest, which is a lot of fun! You can check it out here! I first pinned the Heartland on my Movies and Shows :) board, so I've spent a bit of time switching them over to Heartland's board. :) I'm still not done with that task! :)

Anyways, I'll for sure be back again on Tuesday and Saturday!

Until then!


Quote of the Week

"And in the end it is not the years in your life that count, it's the life in your years." - Abraham Lincoln

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

A Life of Fatih: Millie Keith (Millie's Courageous Days, Book Review #2)

Millie's Courageous Days
(A Life of Faith: Millie Keith, Book Two)
Rating: 5 stars
Ages: 11 and up (for a somewhat intense scene where someone was badly injured, etc.)

'"If God is in control, why did He make Fan fall?" Millie asked desperately. "I thought I was doing so well with the promise God gave me when we left Lansdale. And now it's all come to pieces! If He lets terrible things like this happen, how can anyone trust Him?"
         "Oh, Millie," said Aunt Wealthy. "God didn't make Fan fall, although He did allow it. But we must trust Him," she said passionately. "We cannot give up hope - no matter what the doctor says."' (Excerpt from Chapter Two)

Millie Keith put her faith in the promises of God when her parents moved the entire family out to the wild frontier, where life is full of surprises, adventure, and danger. But now Millie, just turned thirteen, finds her faith tested again when tragedy strikes her family, when she loses her best friend because of her faith, and when deadly fevers stalk the town. Can she trust God with life...and death?
         Millie's Courageous Days, the second book in the A Life of Faith: Millie Keith series, continues the captivating story of Millie Keith. Although she is best known as cousin to the famous fictional heroine Elsie Dinsmore, in this faith-filled, modern-language adaption of the 19th century work by Martha Finley, Millie stands as a strong heroine herself - and one to which 21st century girls can easily relate

Millie's Courageous Days is one of the best books of the whole Millie Keith series! It was captivating, intriguing, and adventurous. Full of touching, heart-felt moments and gripping, page-turning chapters, this book is on my favorites shelf.

It was incredibly exciting. It was definitely more intense than the first book - there are a few major injuries and an epidemic, which are some of the main points of the story - but I loved it all the same.

The characters from Millie's Unsettled Season - both new and old - are back, and are loads of fun. Honestly, a lot of my favorite characters would be from the A Life of Faith series, if I named them! I love Cyril, Gordon Lightcap, Millie, and Aunt Wealthy, just to name a few.

Millie's faith is definitely tested, numerous times, throughout this novel. But it is called the 'A Life of Faith series,' right? ;) I would highly recommend Millie's Courageous Days! An awesome addition to the series. Be sure to pick this one up! I absolutely loved it!

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Annabeth's War - Review

Annabeth's War
By: Jessica Greyson
Rating: 3.5 stars
Ages: 12 and up (best for girls)

With King Harold away at war, Lord Raburn has his eye on the throne. Those who dare to stand in his way fall beneath his power. All but one. A girl named Annabeth. Can a common, ordinary girl, with love for king, country, and her father, achieve the impossible?

Trained by her father, a master swordsman, outlawed Annabeth has only her sword, her wits, and her disguises to keep Belterra from falling entirely into Lord Raburn's clutches. Can she rescue her captured father and Prince Alfred? Will one girl keep the kingdom from falling?

Annabeth's War is my first book from Jessica Greyson, and I enjoyed reading it. Where did she get the fun idea for this book!? It was exciting, adventurous, and the type of book that makes you smile softly to yourself.

Annabeth was honestly the perfect heroine for this. She's actually one of the best heroines I've read a book about - and, let me tell you, it's very hard to impress me with a female character. Why? Because so many are written as wimpy little things who cannot fight for themselves - damsels in distress here, people ;) (this is pertaining to books set in such times as the Medieval and Victorian eras). But Annabeth was certainly not wimpy or delicate! She was extremely brave and tough, yet feminine and ladylike. Her wounds from the past and her desperate attempt to be strong in the face of all opposition kind of endears her to you.

I also want to say that Annabeth's War reminded me of Robin Hood, and I really liked that it was set in the Medieval era! It would not of been as good as it was had it been set in another time - the Medieval era was perfect for the story!

I have to applaud Miss Greyson for creating the fun characters in Annabeth's War! Not just Annabeth, but Ransom, Prince Alfred, Lady Christina, Song Lark, and others. Ransom played the role of hero nicely. I really enjoyed the parts when he was chasing Annabeth down and helping her (against her will). Prince Alfred was the 'big brotherly' friend who's very protective of Annabeth, and, because of that, you end up liking him even more. Although, I think I would've liked a bit more description on what the characters looked like - Song Lark was not described at all, and I don't really think Ransom or Alf or Christina were either. :/ It does give a lot of room for imagination and getting to have your own take on what they look like, but I would've liked a bit more - hair color, eye color, etc. :)

It was nice to be able to see where the romance was heading - for four of the characters. I could kind of see it coming with Alf and a particular lady, and then Ransom and Annabeth. At first, I was thinking that Annabeth and Alfred were together - but they weren't. :) And that's probably the funniest part of the book! Before I read the book I had the idea that there was very little romance in it, and only some at the end - but that wasn't exactly true! ;)

There were a few things that detracted from my enjoyment of the book (hence the 3.5 stars):

        One would be the formatting - it was a bit confusing. I thought that it would be changing from one time to another or something of the like when there was a gap between paragraphs, but I caught on. There were some grammatical errors.
        I thought that the romance in the book was good, but Ransom held Annabeth so many times it was slightly uncomfortable.
       And I didn't like the fact that Lord Raburn told Ransom he could 'have Annabeth' and that little scenario.

Other than that it was a pretty good debut novel, though!

This book was adventurous, fun, romantic, exciting, and fascinating. I really liked the plot! It was very, very unique. This whole book is unique! If you enjoy adventurous books centered around strong heroines, I think you'll enjoy this! :)

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Quote of the Week

"I believe in Christ like I believe in the sun. Not because I can see it, but by it I can see everything else." - C.S. Lewis

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Tag - Chocolatey Books

Hey there! Mikayla H. from The Bubblegum Ballerina tagged me to do the Chocolate Book tag! I was excited when I saw my name! Thanks, Mikayla, for the tag!

All right, with out further ado, the questions:

1. Dark Chocolate (A book that covers a dark topic)

I don't really read dark books...but, From the Dark to the Dawn by Alicia Willis was pretty intense - plus, I cried and teared up numerous times.

2. White Chocolate (A light-hearted, humorous read)

When Calls the Heart by Janette Oke. It wasn't really humorous (well, sorta, but that could've just been me and my sister!), but it was one of the most light-hearted books I've read! ;)

3. Milk Chocolate (A book with a lot of hype that you really want to read)

I really want to read Captive of Raven Castle by Jessica Greyson! I really enjoyed Annabeth's War! I also want to read A.D. 30 by Ted Dekker.

4. Caramel-filled Chocolate (A romantic book)

When Calls the Heart by Janette Oke (again), and the romance in Brothers at Arms was cute!

5. Wafer-less Kit-Kat (A book that surprised you)

God's Smuggler - for some odd reason I was really expecting it to be boring, so I wasn't very happy about reading it, but I actually ended up loving it. Annabeth's War - whatever I was expecting when I opened the first pages was not what I got! It was a lot more fun and adventurous - and maybe just different than what I was thinking it would be (in a good way, of course)! The expectations we put on books... ;)

 6. Snickers (A book you are going nuts about)

As always, Brothers at Arms: Treasure and Treachery in the Amazon by John J. Horn. #favoritebook It's funny (to me, at least. My sister says it's dry humor - whatever that really means ;) - but I think it's so humorous!), adventurous, lively, gripping...need I go on? In one word: Amazing.

7. Hot Chocolate with Mini Marshmallows (A book that you go to for comfort)

The Bible. But otherwise I think it'd be the A Life of Faith: Millie Keith and Violet Travilla series by Martha Finely. Those series are really what got me started reading, and I love the characters!

8. A Box of Chocolates (A series you feel has something for everyone)

Oh, gosh, I don't think I've read one of those! ;) I thought about saying the Men of Grit series by John J. Horn, but that's more just under the genre adventure. So...I don't know!

Oh, and what do you think of this picture below as my blog button - at least, for now? I'd love to hear what you think!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014


*Sigh* The busyness of life can get to even the best of us. :) Well, it actually hasn't really gotten to me very much. But...

I have been incredibly busy last week and today and yesterday, doing school, figuring out my new school (last week), and, er, school. Oh, and writing a thesis statement and argument paper. I decided to write about something I - uh - stand for, since it's an argument paper - Why Print Books Are Better Than E-Books! ;) Maybe I'll post it sometime... Haha! And no laughing! ;) It actually hasn't been that bad lately. Plus, I just did a Math test, and I think I did pretty good! Algebra I isn't really all that bad. It's actually been rather enjoyable.

Speaking of the print books vs. e-books, here's an article I read on it!

But, I'm not here to talk about my argument paper. ;) Although, this is just a random post! And I haven't been completely buried in my books. This weekend I went hiking/rock climbing with my older bro and his family, and we have some fun plans for this week!

First off on the list of randomness, Braden Russell posted again on his blog, The Storymonger, which, for me, was fantastic, because I've been waiting! It was more of an 'I'm back!' post than anything else, but the update was nice, and I am looking forward to seeing what other posts he has planned! Check out the article, Return of the Storymonger here! And this also means he is closer to doing some more of his hilarious videos! Haven't heard of his YouTube channel, Broken Lens Productions? Check it out right HERE! Honestly, I think if you're a homeschooler you'll find them funny. I sure do!

Second, I am looking forward to have the chance to be on Alicia Willis's Beta Reader List for her third installment in the Comrades of Honor series, Rising to the Challenge! It will release early next year (I believe so, anyways), so be on the lookout for it! Haven't read the first two books, To Birmingham Castle and In Search of Adventure? No worries! There's plenty of time left to! It's exciting to be one of Alicia's beta readers, as I get to give my opinion and input on the book before it is sent to the publisher, and look for typos and inconsistencies. And, so, because of all that, I ordered my very own signed copy of the second installment, In Search of Adventure, which I currently haven't read yet! I'll be starting it soon, just after...

Finishing two of the books I am reading right now. Speaking of reading, I just finished Annabeth's War by Jessica Greyson, and God's Smuggler! I finished Annabeth's War last night, and God's Smuggler today! Both were great books, and hopefully I'll post reviews on them soon!

And...I have two books on their way! My sister and I preordered a hardback, signed copy of Ted Dekker's new epic, A.D. 30. It rocked because it was half off! Yes, it's at the start of Jesus' ministry. Yes, He is in it. No, He's not the main character. It's about a young woman named Maviah. It's more for my sister than for me, but, if she thinks it's good, I'll be reading it too! The second book I mentioned I ordered in-store at Barnes and Noble. It's my first book by Douglas Bond - can you guess what it is!? Hostage Lands! Whoop, whoop! Okay, okay...I'll stop! I'm looking forward to reading it, though - have any of you? We'll most likely be picking it up tomorrow because it just came in today!

Other than that I had to watch the dissection of a frog today - but it was only Part I. There are three parts. I only got through the mouth section - and I was covering my eyes... So, yeah, that happened. It was, uh, pretty gross. Hopefully I'll make it through Parts II and III.

On top of it all I am already thinking of what Christmas presents I am going to get everyone! I know, I know, it's early, but I'd rather be safe than sorry! Ugh...I just used a cliché. ;)

(Random note: I recently updated my About Me page! Go check it out!)

Have any of you heard of the Christian band, for KING & COUNTRY? I've been listening to some of their songs from their new album 'Run Wild. Live Free. Love Strong.' on YouTube! I thought I'd share one of my favorites with you! :)

Oh, and guess what movie came out in theaters last Friday? Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day! I am very excited to go and watch it! Are any of you planning on seeing it? It looks adorable and hilarious. Just in case you've not seen the trailer, I've included it below:

What have you all been up to recently? Are you already thinking of Christmas gifts, or is it just me? ;)

You can subscribe to get email updates from me here!

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Quote of the Week

"Within the covers of the Bible are the answers for all the problems men face." - Ronald Reagan

P.S. I am sorry for not posting much lately! My new curriculum has had me on my toes, and I have been really busy every day! Hopefully I'll be posting more in the future - when I get into the rhythm of my new school! :)

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Titanic Crossing - Book Review

Titanic Crossing
Rating: 3 stars
Ages: 9 and up (for the underlying story of the terrible sinking of the Titanic)
Good for ages 9-13
"She's unsinkable. Everyone knows that!"

Thirteen-year-old Albert Trask is going home to America - on the Titanic! Albert's bossy grandmother is forcing his widowed mother to return from England, where she took her children after their father died. Neither Mother nor Virginia, Albert's spoiled little sister, are very happy about the voyage. But nobody can dampen Albert's enthusiasm about on the biggest, most luxurious ocean liner ever built - not even Emily, a know-it-all girl who thinks the ship doesn't have enough lifeboats. Everyone knows the Titanic is unsinkable!

Albert can't wait to see his friends back home, play baseball, and have fun. But when the Titanic hits and iceberg and begins to sink, he suddenly faces adult decisions. Can he save Virginia's life - and his own?

The sinking of the Titanic, one of the greatest maritime disasters of all time, has fascinated the world for over eighty years. This ripping and fast-paced novel puts human faces on the tragedy as it shows us one boy's valiant passage to manhood.

Titanic Crossing is a book with a great mix of fact and fiction. The author did a wonderful job retelling such an event in history. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book (four or so times through, once aloud to my younger brother). :) One thing I want to say, first of all, is that I am not quite sure of the authors descriptions of the ship itself (after having read Titanic Sinks!, which is also a fantastic book), but that could just be meright? I'm not positive.

The whole story moved along easily. It was played out with a bit of drama, a bit of fun, and a bit of roll-your-eyes moments. The characters seemed so real. The relationships felt real. Mrs. Williams did a great job.

The actual sinking of the Titanic and the hours surrounding that, plus the time spent waiting for the Carpathia (the rescue ship), werent told, so younger kids would be able to read this novel, which was actually nice.

One thing, though, is that this book is not Christian. It was very clean, however, and totally suitable for Christians. :) The one thing I would complain about would be the characters' lack of optimism and thankfulness. And Ginny (Albert's little sister) is frustrating, but she gets tremendously better in the end.

Albert Trask was the perfect main character for this story. I enjoyed him and really liked him. His thoughts and feelings were completely realistic, and he was my favorite character.

Emily Brewer was frustrating, irritating at times. But a good character. It was nice having someone Alberts age in the story. Emily seemed a bit stuck up at times, which might or might not have been the authors goal. But, really, shes a nice girl whom Albert comes to enjoy being in the company of.

Clay Trask, Alberts uncle, was frustrating, honestly. But a good character. Sounds strange, doesnt it? I call someone frustrating and then say that person was a good character. But I mean it. A character can be frustrating, annoying, villanious, but still be a good character. The same with Uncle Trask. :)
This book is a good, quick read. I would recommend it.        
*Side note: I really liked the fact that Barbara Williams based Alberts character on an a real boy, whom she read an article about, that wasnt permitted entrance to a lifeboat because he was considered a man.*

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Quote of the Week

"Always bear in mind that your own resolution to succeed is more important than any one thing." - Abraham Lincoln