Wednesday, October 7, 2015

‘Just Show Up’ by Kara Tippetts and Jill Lynn Buteyn (Plus a Tried & True Friendship Giveaway)

Kara Tippetts' and Jill Lynn Buteyn's book, Just Show Up has released!  I found great encouragement in Kara Tippett's book The Hardest Peace and was interested in reading this book about "the dance of walking through suffering together."  We are surrounded by people who bear enormous weights whether that be physical, emotional, or mental.  It's very rare that we don't know someone who is suffering.  Our problem is that we have no idea how to connect with them or be an encouragement to them as they endure suffering.  This book is a such a great resource!  And I would encourage you to take some time and read through why Just Show Up would be a great book to add to your library.

About the book:
Just Show Up
(David C Cook, October 2015)

Kara Tippetts's story was not a story of disease, although she lost her battle with terminal cancer.

It was not a story of saying goodbye, although she was intentional in her time with her husband and four children. Kara's story was one of seeing God in the hard and in the good. It was one of finding grace in the everyday. And it was one of knowing "God with us" through fierce and beautiful friendship.

In Just Show Up, Kara and her close friend, Jill Lynn Buteyn, write about what friendship looks like in the midst of changing life seasons, loads of laundry, and even cancer. Whether you are eager to be present to someone going through a difficult time or simply want inspiration for pursuing friends in a new way, this eloquent and practical book explores the gift of silence, the art of receiving, and what it means to just show up.

Purchase a copy:

My Review: 
Suffering is something that I know of first hand.  My brother was killed in a car accident at age 20. My husband and I have gone through the grief of 5 miscarriages. For two years, we watched my Father-in-law suffer as he endured colon/liver cancer, passing away last year at the age of 66.  My mother had not been doing well for a few years, something we thought was attributed to a possible stroke in 2010.  But as things got worse, she was finally diagnosed with a rare neurological disease called CBGD (Cortical Basil Ganglionic Degeneration) at the age of 65.  This is a disease that has an average time span of 6-8 years.  Best as I can recall from onset to now, we are in year 5.  Life hasn't been easy.  I've had a few friends who have stood by my side to help me through the deep waters of grief.  I'm so thankful that God sent those people when He did to hold my head above the water.  Often we have no idea what to do for people.  We stand back and do nothing hoping someone who knows them better will give them the comfort they need.  Or, we just talk with them acting like life is as it always has been.  We pretend that everything is fine and avoid bringing up the subject because we don't want to bring up their pain.  I find that when others don't say anything  I end up feeling pretty alone wondering if anyone cares.  But then, there are those who have ventured out of their comfort zone to feel uncomfortable with me, and I'm so thankful for them.

I understand what it is like to not know what to do.  You know what? Half of the time I don't even know what to do, and it's my own family.  This book that Kara co-wrote with Jill is an essential tool to help people understand how to open themselves up to be a help to another, just as Jesus would long for us to do for one another.  It's not easy.  The road of suffering is hard, and watching those you care about enduring hard trials, will weigh heavily on you.  But we have hope!  Hope in the One Who gave up His life for us. And if He was willing to give of Himself for us, shouldn't we be willing to "Show Up" for those around us?  This book will help you to see those moments as part of the good works He prepared for you to walk in (Eph. 2:10) instead of moments to fear.  Because... this life isn't about us.  I highly recommend that you take the time to pick up this book, and make it an essential part of your library!

You can visit this webpage to see what others are saying about this great book on the blog tour!

***I received this book for free from Litfuse Publicity Group in exchange for an honest review.  All opinions are my own.

About the authors:

The late Kara Tippetts was the author of "The Hardest Peace" and blogged faithfully at Cancer was only a part of Kara's story. Her real fight was to truly live while facing a crushing reality. Since her death in March 2015, her husband, Jason, is parenting their four children and leading the church they founded in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Read Kara's blog.

Jill Lynn Buteyn is the author of "Falling for Texas," an inspirational novel, and a recipient of the ACFW Genesis Award for her fiction work. She has a bachelor's degree in communications from Bethel University. Jill lives near the beautiful Rocky Mountains with her husband and two children.

Connect with Jill: website, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram

Giveaway Info:

What does friendship look like in the midst of changing life seasons, loads of laundry—and even cancer? Kara Tippetts and Jill Lynn Buteyn teamed up to write Just Show Up, a story of their close friendship and walk through Kara's battle with terminal cancer. Whether you are eager to be present to someone going through a difficult time or simply want inspiration for pursuing friends in a new way, this eloquent and practical book explores the gift of silence, the art of receiving, and what it means to just show up.

Celebrate the gift of friendship with a Tried & True Friendship giveaway—a prize for you and for a friend!

just show up-400 

One grand prize winner will receive:
Enter today by clicking the icon below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on October 23rd. The winner will be announced October 26th on Jill's blog.

Is one of your friends going through a tough time—maybe you need some encouragement? Stop by Kara and Jill's author page, click on the reviews bar, and read through some bloggers' stories of how their friends got them through suffering.

just show up-banner

Monday, October 5, 2015

The Methuselah Project by Rick Barry

Looking for a fun story that has some mysterious, far-fetched scientific experiments happening? Then pick up The Methuselah Project by Rick Barry.  This story will keep you glued to your book wondering how Pilot Captain Roger Greene will every survive being a guinea pig for the Nazi's unthinkable experiment.

From the Back Cover:
Shot down over Nazi Germany in 1943, Roger Greene becomes both a prisoner and an unwilling guinea pig in a bizarre experiment.  Seventy years later, Roger still appears as youthful as the day he crash-landed--and he's still a prisoner.  Nearly insane from his long captivity, Roger finds his only hope in an old Bible.
Not until our present time does Roger finally escape from the secret society running the Methuselah Project.  When he does, the modern world has become a fast-paced, perplexing place.  His only option is to accept the help of Katherine Mueller--crack shot, go-getter, and attractive to boot.  Can he convince her of the truth of his crazy story? And can he continue to trust her when he finds out she works for the very organization he's trying to flee?

My Review:
This book was fun to read.  It was highly entertaining and hard to put down.  Roger Greene is an interesting, likable character that pulls you into his story and has you routing for his escape.  Secret societies are always good for keeping a story filled with action.  And the plot seemed like a story straight out of Hollywood's science fiction.  With way this story ends, I'm hoping that there will be some kind of sequel.  I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book and would recommend it!!!

***I received this book free from Kregel Publications in exchange for an honest review.  All opinions are my own.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Celebrate the Whit Award with Adventures in Odyssey


Most people can think of one or two figures whose love and life example had a great impact on the formation of their spiritual foundation. It might be a coach, a Sunday school teacher or a parent or grandparent. Whatever the role, it’s hard to put a value on the investment these people make on a daily basis. In an effort to bring honor to these countless, quiet heroes, Adventures in Odyssey announces the John Avery Whitaker Award. Named after Odyssey’s resident leader and the namesake of Odyssey’s most famous attraction, Whit’s End, the award will be bestowed annually on one deserving mentor.

Like the Adventures in Odyssey character John Avery Whitaker, or “Whit” as he’s known by fans of the show, the person should be someone who is passionate about innovatively teaching children the truths expressed in the Bible. Those who create Adventures in Odyssey know that while Whit might be a fictitious character, there are thousands of real people just like him. “Our hope is that by bringing those people into the light, others will be inspired to follow their example,” says Dave Arnold, the executive producer of Adventures in Odyssey. “If we can spur mature believers in Christ to mentor and influence a generation being barraged with messages of compromise, we can turn the tide and encourage revival in our youth.”

Nominations are being accepted now through October 31 for the “Whits” out there in the world. Beginning on November 1, one nominee will be selected daily and awarded with a prize package including Adventures in Odyssey's latest album, Taking the Plunge, and a DVD of the movie Beyond the Mask. One grand prize winner will be chosen and announced on November 20. This worthy recipient will receive more than $500 worth of Focus on the Family resources, including an Odyssey Adventure Club (OAC) membership. The OAC offers 24/7, on-the-go access to more than 800 episodes of Adventures in Odyssey, as well as a new, members-only episode every month. It is a safe, fun environment where the whole family can explore, create and imagine, all while learning biblical truth.

Nominations can be submitted via this form, or the information can be emailed to (See the Official Rules for all the details.)

To learn more about the John Avery Whitaker Award, visit Discover the Odyssey Adventure Club at or on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.

15-FOTF-0297-482513_PM_AIO_Whitaker_Award_Web_Ads_Disk_525 x 300

Thursday, September 24, 2015

The Berenstain Bears: The Very First Christmas by Jan and Mike Berenstain

A new Berenstain Bear book is out this year just in time for Christmas. The Very First Christmas by Jan and Mike Berenstain is part of the Living Lights series, and is for kids ages 4-8 yrs. old. The story begins with the Angel coming to Mary and ends with Mary and Joseph fleeing to Egypt to avoid King Herod.

I enjoyed reading through this book and thought that the re-telling of the Christmas story was written well for young children. The illustrations are fun, colorful, and keep the reader's attention.  It was fun to read this familiar Bible story illustrated with the Berenstain Bears characters. The Living Lights series has been a good addition to the old Berenstain Bears books. 
I'm looking forward to wrapping this book up and giving it to my kids this Christmas season!  If you're looking for a cute book that tells the true story of Christmas, pick up this newest Berenstain Bears book to add to your library!

***I received this free book from BookLook Bloggers in exchange for an honest review.  All opinions are my own.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

The Art of Losing Yourself by Katie Ganshert

A new book has graced the shelves since April, and I was able to finally read it.  The Art of Losing Yourself is Katie Ganshert's newest book. I have enjoyed her other books and was excited to read this newest one.

About the Book:
Carmen Hart is a local meteorologist for the panhandle of Florida. She takes pride in the fact that she can predict the weather and that to everyone around her, her life seems perfect.  The only problem is that things are not perfect and are heading on a fast track to disaster.  Her years of miscarriages are eating away at her and causing her to pull away from the man she loves.  In the midst of this crisis of marriage and wanting a baby, Carmen's half sister, Gracie Fisher, shows up needed help. Carmen feels overwhelmed but knows that she must take Gracie in and help her. Can God help heal broken hearts and restore broken relationships?

My Review:
Katie Ganshert's novel is painfully truthful. She expresses the emotions of her characters well and has written a story that is true to life.  I myself have experienced miscarriages...5 of them to be exact. It is an emotional rollercoaster.  One that you have to fight the fear of never being able to have kids and to learn that you must trust an almighty God who has a perfect plan for your life.  I would continually remind myself that my babies were His and that He loved them even more than I could. I can tend to hold things in so I related a lot to Carmen.  She tries to make everyone think she's got it all together, but deep inside she is fighting doubts and fears. The story was interesting going between the two sisters, and it was fun to see the characters develop throughout the story.  The story did leave me thinking that there must be another novel coming out about these characters.  At least I'm hoping so!  There were too many loose ends that didn't get tied up! If you're looking to read a more deeply, moving novel, then make sure to pick up The Art of Losing Yourself!

You can read more about the author by clicking here: Katie Ganshert.
And by clicking here you can read the Prologue and First Chapter of the book.

***I received this book free from Waterbrook Press in exchange for an honest review.  All opinions are my own.

Friday, September 18, 2015

M is for Manger written by Crystal Bowman and Teri McKinley; pictures by Claire Keay

Are you looking for a cute new Christmas book to share with your children this coming Christmas season? Believe it or not Christmas is only 97 days away.  M is for Manger by Crystal Bowman and Teri McKinley is definitely a book you'll want to add to your library for your little ones.  This book uses each letter of the alphabet to share the story of Christ's birth in a poetic form. Each page also includes the Scripture verse to support why the author picked the word she did for that letter of the alphabet.

I thought the illustrations in this book were just beautiful!  I love how it uses the alphabet, something so familiar to small children, to tell the story of Jesus' birth.  The poems are creative, short and to the point.  And what child does not enjoy rhyming! It adds a fun playfulness to the story.  I appreciated the fact that Scripture was included to support why they picked the word they did for the letter of the alphabet. This gives parents the opportunity to open their Bibles and show their kids where we can actually find the story of Jesus.

If you're looking for a sweet little Christmas book for your child this coming holiday season, pick up this new book from Tyndale House Publishers to add to your collection.

***I received this book free from Tyndale House Publishers in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

About the Author:

Crystal Bowman
Crystal Bowman
Crystal Bowman is a former preschool teacher, author, and speaker. She graduated from Calvin College with a degree in elementary education and studied early childhood development at the University of Michigan.
Her writing career began in 1990 as a lyricist for children's piano music. She began writing children's books in 1993 and has since written more than 70 books for children and 3 for women. She has written books for many popular children's series, such as Little Blessings, BOZ the Bear, MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers), and I Can Read! She has also written two books of humorous poetry for children, three books for women, numerous magazine articles, Bible study materials, and educational resource books.
As a speaker, Crystal enjoys sharing her stories and poetry with students in the classroom and also with adults at teachers' conventions, writers' conferences, and women's seminars. "Writing and speaking can be intimidating because in order to connect with your audience you need to be personal and transparent, exposing what's in your heart and soul. But when readers or conference attendees respond positively to something I've said or written, it is humbling and rewarding all at the same time!"
Crystal and her husband, Bob, have enjoyed 38 years of marriage and are the parents of 3 grown children and 1 grandchild. They live in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and Palm Beach Gardens, Florida.

Monday, September 14, 2015

Bible Stories Gone Crazy! by Josh Edwards; Illustrated by Emiliano Migliardo

Do you remember the days of Where's Waldo books from when you were a kid? My kids have a couple of I Spy books by scholastic that they love to find all the objects in.  Candle books has come out with a fun search book that involves your favorite Bible stories.  There are 8 fun stories for your children, ages 5-7 years old, to explore.

My kids have absolutely loved looking at this book.  Each 2 page spread tells the story of the picture depicted, and then along the edge of the pages are questions whose answers are found in the picture.  Now these pages aren't just filled with fun pictures from the famous Bible story, but are filled with things that funny and are obviously not from that time period history. I liked the pages of this book. They are great because they are thick and have a glossy feel to them that almost makes me wonder if dry erase markers could be used on it.  And sure enough, when I tried it out, it worked and erased well!

If you're looking for a fun new book to keep your kids occupied for long periods of time, pick up Candle Books new book Bible Stories Gone Crazy!

***I received this book for free from Kregel Publications in exchange for an honest review.  All opinions are my own.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...