NIV Holy Bible for Girls, Journal Edition – A Review

teal-niv-journal-bible-coverNIV Holy Bible for Girls, Journal Edition is a very pretty journaling Bible for girls, or young women, or any woman that likes pretty. Each page has the place to write your thoughts, verses, etc. down the length of the page. There is a nice elastic to keep the Bible closed, and a lovely bookmark that matches the cover. I chose the turquoise edition to review (a personal favorite color) and the cover is incredibly lovely. The cover doesn’t contain text so it’s nice to have sitting out.  The book is more compact and a bit ‘smaller’ than a lot of Bibles, so it would be nice to slip into a book bag for  a Bible study or to cart with you.  There is a nice dedication page and unlike most Bibles, no maps or reference pages.

A horrible web cam image, but it shows off the cover without the  cardboard holder

A horrible web cam image, but it shows off the cover without the cardboard holder

This is a very lovely Bible, and I love that every page has a place to jot down thoughts, but I found the text really small in comparison to other Bibles I’ve read.  And because of the layout of the lines for journaling, I find the text to be a little compacted on the page.  I wouldn’t say this would be a good Bible for anyone under say 14 or so because of it’s small size, but at the same point, I don’t think most girls will journal under that age. I think for a young woman in Bible study it would be a nice edition to be able to jot down your thoughts and prayers.

I really loved the color and feel of the book. My biggest complaint would be the size of the text. Overall, it’s a nice Bible and it would be a lovely gift for a young woman for baptism or some other special occasion.  I would give it probably a 3 out of 5 stars.

This bible was provided to me for my honest review from Harper Collin’s Christian Publishing and BookLookBloggers. I have in no way been compensated for my review.

Kate

Devotions for Christmas – A Review

devotions-for-christmas-coverDevotions for Christmas: A celebration to bring you joy and peace published by Zondervan, is a lovely Christmas and December  devotions book that doesn’t just center on advent like many books for this time of year do. Instead, it takes you through the crazy, busy holiday season with very nicely done devotions. Simplifying life and giving you a moment to really enjoy the holiday season for what it is; a celebration of Christ. Each day has an incredibly appealing photograph of something Christmas-y themed, mostly over a two page spread, which I love. The images are clear and crisp and make you want to decorate. There are simple prayers and each topic is very appealing. Days like ‘Surprise Packaging’,  ‘Family Traditions’, ‘Home for the Holidays’,  ‘Holiday Memories’, ‘Christmas Leftovers’, and one of my favorites, ‘The Aroma of Christmas’.   Simple prayers, verses at both the beginning of each day and mixed within the text, and a whole 31 days of devotions, makes for an incredibly nice ‘coffee table’ book and a wonderful book for the Christmas season.

a-charlie-brown-christmas-abc-11302015-1276x850I was very pleased with this book when it arrived, one being that it is a hardback. I had expected a thin paperback and I am a fan of hardback books because I feel that they will last longer than other books.  The photographs are so incredibly beautiful feeling like they are right out of  a really classy magazine, like Martha Stewart.  The book will put you right in the spirit of Christmas, which sometimes is hard with all the ‘commercialization’ as Charlie Brown says.  It makes you want to sit down and take a moment. I am also very pleased that it is the entire month of December instead of just an advent devotional. I had assumed that this was only going to have 25 days, as it was a Christmas devotional, but it is for the whole month into New Year’s Eve. This is a really nice book for that reason. Because the holiday season doesn’t just stop on the 25th.

I was incredibly pleased with this book. I highly recommend it to anyone who wants a really nice devotional that is not only useful, but pretty, for the holiday season. I also think it would be a lovely gift.   5 out of 5 stars.

This book was provided to me for my honest review with no compensation from Booklook Bloggers and Harper Collin’s Christian Publishing.

Kate

Live Like There is No Tomorrow

There is a new show on the CW called ‘No Tomorrow‘, all about this guy who believes the earth is going to be blown up by an asteroid in 8 months and so many days. Because of this, he has created his Apocalist…… his list of things he is going to do before the world ends. Now, first off, just saying, this is a fun show. Not horribly clean. But still, very fun.

Moving on.  Do you have a list? I guess in a sense this is a bucket list, but I like a ‘no tomorrow’ list. A list of things like you will do like it’s no tomorrow. Personally, I don’t have a list, but I’ve been thinking of doing it just for the fun of it. I have a cute little notebook, one of the many, my family gave me this year for my birthday, and even if I never get to these dreams, it’s not a bad thing.

Some of the things on my list would be:

  1. Go to Paris
  2. Go to Monte Carlo and see Grand Prix
  3. Kiss Boris
  4. Kiss new guy I’m interested in
  5. Play the bassoon
  6. Play a flute
  7. Play a violin
  8. Meet the President (doesn’t matter which one)
  9. Go speed boating on Lake Tahoe
  10. Go to the Space Needle in Seattle……

Okay, so some of them aren’t terribly interesting; going places is a big thing of mine, but there are other things I want to do. I mean, it’s kind of fun to think of doing things and attempting to do things. Granted, a lot of them require money… well except for kissing Boris….. but still, one can dream.

Do you have a list? I think we all should start having lists.  Oh, I want to run a 5K and a 10K!

Kate

The Ultimate List of Bookish Gift Ideas {PLUS 11 Giveaways}

It’s getting to be that time of year where one actually needs to start thinking about Christmas gifts. Gads, it can’t be that time! I am barely out of fall yet! But the season will be here sooner rather than later and if you want to get a jump start on all things bookish delight for your friends, then hop over to this marvelous post of all things bookish. There are some amazing ideas here, things I want, things I need, and things I would love to get people.

Christian Shelf-Esteem

I’m taking a brief departure from book blogging today to help you get a jump start on your holiday shopping. Over the past week I’ve had a lot of fun compiling The Ultimate List of Bookish Gift Ideas. You’ll find gifts on the list for men, women, and children because some people {myself included} are born with an affinity for words.

See something you like? Click on the store name to be linked to the item. Keep an eye out for exclusive coupon codes which are highlighted in green. Amid the collection you will also come upon 11 separate contests, sponsored by individual Etsy stores and hosted on the gleam giveaway platform. Simply click the word GIVEAWAY in order to enter each drawing. All giveaways are open 11/7-11/21, but each shop owner has decided for themselves whether to welcome international entries.

homeforcomfort

I chose AbbieImagine‘s art print to headline this post because when it comes…

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Writing Down Dat Dem Poetry

Ah PAD, not my strong suit this year. I thought I would have poetry flying out of my ears, but I seem to be a tad too emotional as of late for some of the topics to really come out in a good poem. Or one that is a decent poem right off the bat. Most of them are needing some serious reworking and editing.

I had started off rhyming in my head in a partial iambic pentameter, but then I would get stuck writing sonnets that weren’t going well. At all.  But it dawned on me the other day that I needed to stop trying to write sonnets. Just write. Write whatever comes to mind with the prompt, from spirit animal to wire (I liked wire), and just let it flow. Then if I want to take whatever I wrote and turn it into a sonnet with the ideas from the poetry just written, okay fine.  And it’s going better. If I don’t feel inclined to write a sonnet, I don’t have to. But if I want to dabble something out, I can. Which I have done.

It’s actually kind of helpful to have all of the poem written out with all of the ideas there, then to rework it into the sonnet. Now, I’m not saying the sonnets are good, and I only have one mostly done, but  it’s still there.

The fence is wired with rusty barbs and nails
And tangles tight to hold and grip the ties
The baling wire and hooks cling without fail
To posts that once held rails for trains that fly
~Katie Lyn Branson (Wired)

That is the start to the wired poem. Not great, but not bad. All about fence posts on the plains that are faded and held together with wire.

Who knew you could take such an ordinary thing and write a sonnet out of it. But I’m trying to get out of my head, which is harder to do than you think, and just let it come out. I think another part is I’m inspired by certain music I’m listening to, specifically the Strumbellas with their songs of  “Spirits” and “Wild Sun”, and the Lumineers “Stubborn Love”, which is a personal favorite song. I think the folksy aspect of it.

jackie-and-ryan-2014-movie-posterAnother inspiration is the film Jackie and Ryan, with Katherine Heigl and Ben Barnes. I can’t explain how much this movie hit me (I was nearly crying at the end). But the music and the story line and the lyrical quality of it all. If you are a writer, or a musical lyricist, I recommend it. Best part, it is based on a true story of a man,  Nick Hans, who was playing at SXSW, if I remember the story correctly. So that is really cool.

So, is anyone else hard at work on PAD? I’d love to know.

Kate

November Starts With Writing

Today is the start of PAD (poem a day) through Writer’s Digest. This is the Chapbook challenge.  I did it last year, writing as many sonnets as I could. This year I’m starting off the same way, writing a sonnet. Granted, I’m only one stanza in, but I have the vibe going. I guess playing around with iambic pentameter for some blank verse I did for an open reading my writing group did, has put me in the same mood to play with that form. I can think in that form easier than I did last year, and I hope that I will be able to write some sonnets.

However, I don’t have plans to stick with just that form. Thirty days of sonnets gets to be a bit much, so I hope to be able to share open verse or free verse or whatever as the month proceeds. I have two people in my writing group that have just now decided to do NaNoWriMo, to which I say, wow, late start… Sorry Dona and CP, I just don’t see how you are going  do that, but I applaud anyone who attempts such a feat. I have never really had the desire to do so, though I suppose there is a tiny part of me that would like to actually be able to write a novel that fast.

But I’m actually quite happy with my poetry. Honestly, I never thought I would be writing more poetry than fiction. I have been reading Ada Limon‘s “Bright Dead Things” and Billy Collins‘s “The Rain in Portugal”  and I am inspired to send out poetry to magazines, things I have never done.  A part of me wonders if I could send off something to The Sun magazine, which would be cool. Or others. I have great hope to be published with something. And if I start with poetry, that’s cool. So, I need to start sending it out!

Does anyone have some places they would recommend sending to first?

So, November is starting off with all kinds of things going on. And what a gorgeous day it was here in the mountains. Such a perfect fall day that I mean, you could just revel in it. The trees are still covered in gorgeous color. I love it.

And now to finish the Cubs game… Come on Cubs!

October 31st – Write 31 Days – Autumn: A Collection

This month has had me taking more pictures than I have most of the year. While I tried to pick favorites and things that would go well with poetry and thoughts, there were so many I didn’t use. Especially in the last few days because I had a plethora of images worth of posting. So, today, in honor of the end of the Write 31 Days challenge, here is a collection of images I didn’t use, but are so so pretty, I can’t not share them with you.

Thank you so much for hanging out with me this month for autumn pictures. You guys have been the best with your likes and viewing and such.  You make it fun to take pictures again.

Happy Halloween

Kate

October 30th – Write 31 Days – Pear Leaves

pear-leavesSometimes it’s the really simple things in life that are beautiful. I was out snapping tons of pictures the other day and out under our pear tree, the dead leaves changed from yellows and oranges to brown. But it’s pretty shades of brown that have so much texture and simplicity in their scatterings over the ground. I had a hard time deciding which image I liked best, but of the three, this one with the blurred top and the slight greyness to the color, screamed, post me!

October 29th – Write 31 Days – Nubbly Oaky Carpet

nubbly-oaky-carpet

The falling leaves
Drift by the window
The autumn leaves
Of red and gold……

The color on the hills are predominantly yellow, green, and shades of a muddy ochre color that mixed with the rest, is rather pretty. The cottonwoods along the creek bank are yellow and the fallen leaves smell of this sticky sweet rotten smell that I love. It’s not really a bad smell, musky maybe. Like the smell of tobacco, it makes me hungry.

Up on the hills the big leaf maples are splotches of yellow, and the nubbly carpet of the black oaks are intermixed with the spikes of the pines.  The mist invades and sinks through the trees, veiling them in a not so clear haze, at least it happens on the foggy days, like today was.

It’s mists and breaks in the sun and yellows and browns and spice and sweet….

Kate