A Long Overdue Introduction // Featuring Our Animals // Part 1

Hey Everyone.

Well, here it finally is. I have been promising this post literally since I first started blogging and just haven’t gotten around to it before now. I am quite excited to introduce you to some of our animals!


Prima

This lovely lady is the daughter of one of our favorite cows, she had a beautiful heifer this year named Monarch.


Buttercream

Buttercream is currently one of our wonderful nurse cows.


Addison

This big guy was my brother’s baby when he was little, for now he is hanging out with our dry cows and heifers.


Hope

Hope’s mom was one of our original family cows and my mom’s most special cow. As Hope as gotten older she has grown in her resemblance to her beautiful mama, Grace.


Bobby

This adorable little guy and his sisters (who will be include in Part 2 of this post) have been the source of much joy for my siblings and I over the past few months. He is so adventurous and active.


Ali

Ali is our amazing live-stock guard dog whose primary job is protecting our broilers. She lives out in the field right across the street from our house and we all see her often. obviously these pictures are a few months old, but she is still the same beautiful and obedient dog.


Aren’t they beautiful (and adorable)?! I might not be as crazy about animals as some members of my family are, but I love and appreciate all of our animals and enjoy helping to take care of them during the summer. After all they give us the amazing milk, eggs and meat that I so enjoy cooking with, so it’s hard not to love them. 😀

Do you have any animals? Are you a cat or dog person? ( I am definitely a dog person, with a few exceptions. ) What is your dream pet, fantasy or real?

Disney+ Favorites // Summer 2020 // Part 1

Hey Everyone.

I’ve been wanting to share some of my Disney+ favorites for a while now. I always enjoy posts about what other bloggers are into watching at that point in time and I’m always on the lookout for something new, so I thought that it might be fun to share my own list with you all. I know that most of us have probably spent more time then we are proud of watching things this summer (I certainly am not proud of it), but finding things that do not make you feel like you just lost about a hundred brain cells after watching is always a treat.

So let’s get started. I’ve included a variety of movies and shows that I would recommend to different age groups, so not all of these recommendations are appropriate for all of my readers. 🙂


Watch Marvel's Agent Carter | Disney+

Rating: PG-13

Genres: Strong Female Characters, Action, Post-WW2

Agent Carter has a completely different feel than all of the Marvel movies. It is funny at times, almost cringe-worthy at others and impressive as well. Peggy Carter is amazing, easily one of my favorite female MCU characters. She is strong, constantly underestimated and inspiring. I must say that every time she fights in a skirt and heels I’m amazed, she is incredibly skilled.


Shakespeare Theatre Company | Moana - Shakespeare Theatre Company

Rating: PG

Genres: Strong Female Characters, Adventure, Friendship

Moana, what can I say? It is definitely my all-time favorite animated Disney movie. The focus on the ocean, a young female heroine who doesn’t need a prince, a hilarious demigod and incredible music (that happens to be written by Lin-Manuel Miranda). Really what’s not to like? When the day comes that a Moana 2 movie is announced I will literally squeal. 😀


Three Random Thoughts On Cheaper By The Dozen | scoopsmentalpropaganda

Rating: PG

Genres: Family, Comedy

My family loves this movie and we have watched it many times. It is a funny and largely positive story about a large family, something that is rare. Although it is rather unrealistic at times, it is surprisingly accurate at others. Constant cleaning and everything is still a mess, yelling and crazy kids, good sibling relationships, beating up the oldest sister’s boyfriend, it’s fun to watch over and over again. (And don’t forget the adorable twin boys, I love them. 😀)


Maleficent | Official Website | Disney Movies

Rating: PG

Genres: Strong Female Characters, Fantasy

This movie is just so unique feeling, so different seeming then most Disney movies. The The characters are interesting and I absolutely love Maleficent, for all her issues. I love fairytale retellings that are told from a different point of view than typical, and Maleficent does just that. Something about Maleficent just pulls you into her story, she is elegant, majestic and darkly powerful. Maleficent and Maleficent: Mistress of Evil are two of my favorite live-action Disney movies.


Black Panther (2018) - IMDb

Rating: PG-13

Genres: Action, Strong Female Characters, Fantasy

What’s not to love about Black Panther? An amazing hero, incredible women warriors and a beautiful hidden country. I love it all.


www.gstatic.com/tv/thumb/v22vodart/170620/p1706...

Rating: Pg-13

Genres: Action

Tony Stark, he is either my favorite or second favorite male MCU character. His character growth, his arrogance (lol) and his suits. Sure he has more than his share of issues, but he is mostly reformed. And I can’t forget Pepper, she is tough and doesn’t let Tony walk over her despite her attraction to him. She is really the only one who can actually tell him off and partly get away with it. (I really need to rewatch this movie.)


www.gstatic.com/tv/thumb/v22vodart/14596224/p14...

Rating: PG

Genres: Remake, Musical, Family

Aladdin is full of fun and catchy music and exciting and colorful dance numbers. As someone who enjoys Disney’s live-action remakes, I loved how this movie was done, with the exception of Jasmine’s song Speechless. I found it disappointingly weak, sure the words were great, the actress’ delivery just left much to be desired in my mind. That said this is a great family movie with great music.


Star Wars Rebels TV Show: News, Videos, Full Episodes and More ...

Rating: PG

Genres: Action, Science-Fiction, Kids

I am not a Star Wars person and I actually dislike most of the movies and the majority of the characters. For some reason though, I enjoyed watching bits and pieces of Star Wars Rebels. Not exactly a glowing recommendation, but my siblings really liked it and I didn’t mind it.


Thor Ragnarok Movie Poster Poster Print - Walmart.com - Walmart.com

Rating: PG-13

Genres: Action, Science-Fiction, Female Villains

I equal parts love and hate this movie. Hela is amazing and probably my favorite MCU villain. I love the parts with her in it. The Grandmaster is terrible and I could not like him in any way. He actually kinda ruined the movie for me, but Hela partly saved it, so……


Saving Mr. Banks | Official Website | Disney Movies

Rating: PG-13

Genres: Historical, Drama

Emma Thompson is perfect as P. L. Travers and Tom Hanks is a wonderful Walt Disney. The parts of the movie with the two of them are amazing, I’m less of a fan of the flashbacks, though.


Julie Andrews, Dick Van Dyke - Mary Poppins - Amazon.com Music

Rating: G

Genres: Fantasy, Family, Musical

Julie Andrews is one of my all time favorite actresses, so that puts Mary Poppins on my favorites list. The music is wonderful and so classic, personally I’m partial to A Spoonful of Sugar and Sister Suffragette. The bank scene is slightly creepy, but otherwise this is a great movie to watch with your younger siblings (or on your own).


Amazon.com: Watch The Parent Trap (1961) | Prime Video

Rating: PG

Genre: Comedy, Classic, Family

When I first saw this movie, I loved it. I still love it, I just prefer the “newer” version, with one exception, the drama surrounding the long-awaited meeting of the twins parents. Their meeting is perfectly hilarious, rather painful and delightfully dramatic. Haley Mills, who plays the twins, is probably my least favorite part of the movie, but I still find it enjoyable. 😀


Well, that’s all I’ve got for today. I really enjoyed putting this together and I hope that you enjoyed reading it.

Do you have a favorite of these movies? Thoughts about any of them? Any you haven’t seen? Do you have any Disney+ recommendations for me?

The Dressmaker’s Secret by Kelly Roth & Start With Me by Kara Isaac // Book Reviews

The Dressmaker's Secret (The Chronicles of Alice and Ivy, #1)

Title: The Dressmaker’s Secret

Author: Kellyn Roth

Year Published: 2020

Personal Rating: ★★★

Genre: Christian Fiction, Historical Fiction

My Thoughts:

This was a tough book for me to review, for several reasons. Over the past couple years, I have heard quite a few wonderful things about The Dressmaker’s Secret. Therefore when I realized that I was able to read it using my Kindle Unlimited subscription, I was thrilled. Until I started reading it, that is. (Yes, this is a largely negative review and yes, up to this point I have mostly posted positive reviews. I realized that I really should be sharing both the books I have mixed feelings about and the books that I enjoyed. So here you have it, my first not particularly positive review.)

To begin with, let’s talk about the positive aspects of The Dressmaker’s Secret. The storyline was interesting and fast-paced. Several of the characters were enjoyable to read about, Nettie in particular. The Dressmaker’s Secret manages to deal with some difficult subject matter in a mostly PG-rated way. This book is one that I could hand to my younger siblings without really having to worry about the content. 

Several things annoyed and surprised me about The Dressmaker’s Secret. Number one being, where was the history!? There was absolutely no focus on the historical aspect of the story beyond the necessary notes about horses and carriages. I found this surprising due to the fact that Roth writes about her love and knowledge of history on her blog often. Another thing that frustrated me was the fact that I found the characters difficult to relate to. The thought processes of Alice often seemed far too mature for an eight year old and I would have to remind myself of her age when she did do something that made her seem childish. Last, but not least, the suspenseful piece of the story was not exactly suspenseful or unpredictable. 

All that said, I did not strongly dislike The Dressmaker’s Secret, I simply could not get myself to fully enjoy it. 


Start With Me

Title: Start With Me ❤

Author: Kara Isaac

Year of Publication: 2020

Personal Rating: ★★★★

Genre: Christian Romance, Contemporary Fiction 

My Thoughts:

I know that I haven’t really mentioned Kara Isaac’s books before and I am long overdue to do so. I am absolutely in love with her stories and her beautiful characters. Isaac writes some of the best contemporary clean/Christian novels out there. The characters are always interesting and engaging, real and relatable. Isaac’s story-lines are always well thought out and edited just about perfectly. They pull you in and don’t let go until the last page without being fast-paced. All of Isaac’s books connect through overlapping characters, making reading her books enjoyable on yet another level. 

Starts With Me follows Lacey O’Connor and Victor Carlisle’s story. They are easily my favorite of Isaac’s characters. The two of them come from completely different backgrounds, Lacey’s family are struggling Americans from Minnesota and Victor is the heir of a British Viscount, who just happens to be his father. 

One of the major themes of Start With Me is restoration. Specifically restoration of family and sibling relationships. Lacey and Victor both have sadly strained relationships with their siblings, although for very different reasons. It was satisfying to watch Victor fight to prove that he has changed and to see Lacey called out by her sister. Both Victor and Lacey grew as characters and were able to move forward with their lives, stronger and together.

Start With Me is a satisfying and enjoyable read. One I would absolutely recommend to my slightly older readers who enjoy clean contemporary fiction and relatable characters. 


Have you read either of these books? Which would you be more likely to read? What is one common story trope that drives you crazy

Who seen has Hamilton? Thoughts? (I may be slightly obsessed. 😀)

Mini-Reviews: The Summer 2020 Edition

Hey Everyone.

I’m back and ready to share yet another list of mini-reviews, admittedly it is shorter than normal and mostly made up of books that have been sitting on my shelf for weeks if not months, but there are a couple good ones. It feels really good to be sharing these with all of you, I have missed putting bookish content together. 😀

Without a further intro (I am quite terrible at writing them, as I am sure you are all aware), let’s get started.

*Note: Reviews marked with ❤️ are books I would recommend to older readers and contain some form of slightly more mature content.


The Weaver's Daughter

Title: The Weaver’s Daughter

Author: Sarah E. Ladd

Published: 2018

Rating: ★★★★

My Thoughts:

The Weaver’s Daughter is a slow-paced, historically interesting story with a wintery and cozy feel. Not exactly the type of book anyone is looking for right now, but definitely worth adding to your winter tbr list.

Family and loyalty are the main themes of The Weaver’s Daughter. The story follows two people as they try to determine how to keep their parents’ and grandparents’ legacies alive while being true to themselves.


A Touch of Gold (A Touch of Gold, #1)

Title: A Touch of Gold

Author: Annie Sullivan

Published: 2018

Rating: ★★★

My Thoughts:

I have mixed feelings about A Touch of Gold. On one hand it is an interesting and unique retelling of the story of King Midas, on the other it just felt like it was lacking something. Maybe depth, maybe the author wasn’t particularly passionate about it or maybe it was just me.

From the first time Kora met a certain character, his words rang extremely hollow to me. Finding out that he was actually a villian, not the hero, did not come as a shock. What was frustrating was that as soon as he is out of the picture, Kora begins falling for a man who previously drove her crazy. Another issue for me was the logic behind Kora’s powers, in fact there was none.

All that said, A Touch of Gold is overall an enjoyable story, if you can ignore it’s issues.


Between Shades of Gray

Title: Between Shades of Gray ❤️

Author: Ruta Sepetys

Published: 2011

Rating: ★★★★

My Thoughts:

As you all know, I adore Ruta Sepetys’ writing. Despite the fact that Between Shades of Gray is not my favorite of her beautiful stories (I’m looking at you FOTS), it did not disappoint. Although the writing format and style is slightly more simple than FOTS and Salt To The Sea, it in no way lacks depth.

Between Shades of Gray is about a piece of WWII that is not covered by many (or any) historical fiction writers. We meet Lina as a fifteen year old and follow the next years of her life as she is exiled to Siberia with her family. Between Shades of Gray is filled with sadness and a strong thread of hope.


Spin the Dawn (The Blood of Stars, #1)

Title: Spin the Dawn ❤️

Author: Elizabeth Lim

Published: 2019

Rating: ★★★

My Thoughts:

Spin the Dawn is an interesting and entertaining story with a definite Mulan feel. It is unique and the ending came as a complete surprise. I am definitely looking forward to getting my hands on a copy of the next book in the series.

Spin the Dawn has it’s fair share of issues though. Starting with the fact that it could have used some more editing and that at times things just didn’t quite make sense. I could ignore those issues if it weren’t for the fact that the author couldn’t seem to decide whether Spin the Dawn was a middle-grade or YA book. The writing level felt absolutely middle-grade for much of the book and then at chapter 27, all of the sudden, you have YA content thrown at you. Sure it is subtle, but it is very much there. That said, overall I enjoyed this story.


In Too Deep (Dive Team Investigations, #2)

Title: In Too Deep ❤️

Author: Lynn H. Blackburn

Published: 2018

Rating: ★★★★

My Thoughts:

Lynn Blackburn’s books have found a place on my close-to-favorites mental list. They have a very similar feel to Lynette Eason’s books, which is a positive thing in my opinion. In Too Deep was enjoyable and interesting, with wonderful characters. It also is giving me small amount of hope for the future of the “Christian fiction” genre, but that’s a post for another time.


Have you read any of these books? Who else has seen the cover for Shannon Messenger’s Unlocked!? What are you currently reading?

June // Protector – Kim Walker-Smith

I come out of agreement with the lie that You have left me on my own

I come out of agreement with the worry

And the fear I’ve come to know

They won’t have a hold on me 

Protector, You never let me go

You said You wouldn’t leave me, and You won’t

You’re right by my side, Protector 

I come into agreement with the truth

That You are who You say You are

I can trust Your heart

I come into agreement with what Heaven has declared over my life

You’re right by my side, Protector

You hide me in the shadow of Your wings

Your presence is my peace, my covering, my song in the night, Protector

No weapon, no worry will prosper against me

No darkness, no evil will tease or torment me

All power, dominion to one Name is given

My fortress, my freedom, my refuge, my Jesus

Protector

Protector – Kim Walker Smith


Hey Everyone.

And I’m back with more pictures from the past couple months. This year we have had more flowers than ever and I am, unsurprisingly, enjoying taking pictures of them all. The roses have been particularly beautiful along with the irises. Every year I am amazed by how much beauty flowers can bring to spaces that are not exactly beautiful in themselves.

I wanted to share Protector with you all because it has been serving as an important reminder to me to put my complete trust in Jesus, because despite my frustrations and struggles He will never leave me. For as long as I can remember, I have enjoyed Kim Walker-Smith’s music and the fact that she is putting out an entire new album is really exciting to me. 😀

On a completely unrelated note, I have actually been reading again! It has been wonderful to be able to read without feeling guilty or at least as guilty. I’m currently in the middle of Kara Isaac’s newest book (!!!) Start With Me, so far I love it, and Kellyn Roth’s The Dressmaker’s Secret, I have mixed feelings about this one. Full reviews to come soon. 😀

Have you heard Protector yet? What have you been reading?

May // Praise Him In The Storm – Natalie Grant

I was sure by now, God you would have reached down

And wiped our tears away

Stepped in and saved the day

But once again, I say Amen

And it’s still raining

And as the thunder rolls, I barely hear Your whisper through the rain

I’m with you

And as your mercy falls


I raise my hands and praise the God who gives and takes away

And I’ll praise you in this storm

And I will lift my hands

‘Cause you are who you are, no matter where I am

And every tear I’ve cried You hold in your hand

You never left my side

And though my heart is torn I will praise you in this storm

I remember when I stumbled in the wind

You heard my cry, You raised me up again

My strength is almost gone, how can I carry on?

But as the thunder rolls, I barely hear You whisper through the rain

I’m with you

And I’ll praise you in this storm and I will lift my hands

‘Cause you are who you are, no matter where I am

I lift my eyes unto the hills

Where does my help come from?

My help comes from the Lord

The maker of heaven and earth

And though my heart is torn

I will praise you in this storm

Praise Him In The Storm – Natalie Grant


Hey Everyone.

It’s been awhile, just about a whole month. I didn’t plan on taking the month of June (and most of May) off of blogging, but that’s what ended up happening. When does life go as planned anyway, especially not this year. Taking a break was needed and simply because I just didn’t have time to put a post together. June was a crazy busy month and I know July will be crazy as well. I don’t know if I’m back for good or just for the week, I guess that only time will tell.

July is usually my favorite month of the year. Mainly because it is when I have gone to camp (it’s also my birthday month :). This year camp was canceled, just like so many of the other things we were all looking forward to, and I’ve been missing it every day. It’s hard to not focus on the many things that are not happening this year, but I am trying to choose to focus on the things that I can do (read, go for walks, spend time with my family) instead of the things that can’t do. I am so thankful for all of the space that I have to move around and for the books that I have access to. Although my summer doesn’t look like I planned, that doesn’t mean that I can’t enjoy it fully.

I have a bunch of post ideas (Hamilton themed!! Introducing Animals) and I hope that I end up with enough time to put them together. 🙂

I hope that you are all well and staying safe and healthy.

Who else literally cannot contain their excitement that Hamilton is coming to Disney+ this Friday!? How have you been filling your summer break free time? How are you?

Say It Louder

Hey Everyone.
Lacking words of my own, I want to share the words of a young woman, who like me is a white American. Her words are true and we need to speak up.
My thoughts are with you all during this continually difficult time.
Esmeralda

Amie Anne

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White silence is violence.

I am white, I have remained silent, I have wondered, questioned, disbelieved.

I am part of the violence, one voice that has stayed silent, because my skin wasn’t targeted. Because I was continually told that I was privileged.

And for a long time, I thought that was an insult. But I have since learned that it is not. It is truly a privilege and an opportunity.

I wish they would only take me as I am
— Vincent Van Gogh

One of the people I admire the most doesn’t share my skin color. My co-workers don’t share my skin color. To me, it’s never mattered. To me, that made them prettier than I am, it made me marvel and admire our diversity.

The beauty and uniqueness of life.

But not to others. Others see my friends as less. See them was lives that don’t matter, lives…

View original post 585 more words

Spring Photos// feat. Days Gone By – Hillsong Young And Free

I walked the world afar

Built up a thousand walls

To try and hide away

I searched to find my soul

A journey far from home

Lost in a life I’d made

And I’d been ’round in circles

Living for the moment

I know I ran so far

Was acting kind of crazy

Coming up with empty

Felt like I lost my heart

Now I’ve found a love that is clearer than the deep blue skies

It’s true You were right there

I can see it in the days gone by

I see You in the days gone by

Your promise never left my side

I know sometimes I tried to give up

Still You caught me when I fell from high

You took my fragile fate and didn’t hesitate

Your love in every scar

Passion with no restraints

Held back the darkest days

So now my life is Yours

You’ve got me when I’m broken

You’re with me when I’m hopeless

I know You’re never far

Your mercy has no ending

It perseveres unfailing

You’ll always have my heart

Now I’ve found a love that is clearer than the deep blue skies

It’s true You were right there

I can see it in the days gone by

I see you in the days gone by

Days Gone By – Hillsong Young & Free


Hey Everyone.

I can’t believe that the first week of May is already over! It has been a windy, chilly and sunny May so far for us. All of our cows and calves are now out on grass! (Pictures coming soon.) It is exciting to see things beginning to grow, although the grass is growing slower than we might want.

My brothers found four kittens this morning! A few years ago we got their mom from another farm with a litter of four kittens. Since that litter she has basically become feral and just comes to our barn (or attic) to have kittens every year. We have been seeing her around recently and we were guessing that she had kittens. My brothers have been looking around but didn’t find them until today. There are two boys and two girls, all of them absolutely adorable. I’ll be sure to share some pictures soon. 😀

Do you have a favorite spring flower? What is your favorite thing about spring?

Adventures In Cooking// Quiches

Hey Everyone.

Yesterday, I decided to make a few quiches. We had eggs and cream, and we always have cheese, and it seemed like an easy enough thing to make. Turns out making quiches takes a bit longer than I expected, but I am glad that I spent the time to make them. 😀

So, without further ado, here is another Adventure In Cooking with me.

*Once again I am sorry for the bad quality of some of these pictures, unfortunately it is cloudy almost every time I want to take food pictures.


Step 1: Grate cheese

Step 2: Crack eggs into a bowl

Step 3: Add pepper and salt to eggs

Step 4: Add cream to eggs and whisk together

Step 5: Chop spinach and crush garlic

Step 6: Cook spinach in garlic and ghee

Step 7: Cook bulk sausage, until lightly browned

Step 8: For plain quiche, pour egg mixture into pie pan and sprinkle cheese over it

Step 9: For sausage-spinach quiche, spread sausage and spinach mixture in the bottom of a pie pan and sprinkle with cheese

Step 10: For sausage- spinach quiche, cover with egg mixture and more cheese

Step 11: Bake and enjoy!

(The sausage-spinach quiche was long gone by the time I managed to take pictures. It turned out nicely, although there was a bit too much moisture in it, because I didn’t dry the spinach before adding it to the meat.)


Well, that was fun and time consuming. We enjoyed the quiche with some extra sausages and roasted potatoes. *sighs contentedly* It was quite enjoyable. 😀

Have you ever made quiche? What is one of your favorite foods? How have you been spending your time while stuck at home?

I hope that you are staying healthy and well! Thinking of all my readers.

Spring Colors//feat. Over And Over- Riley Clemmons

Staring at a mountain thought I had already climbed

The weight of my mistakes hold me down like I’m paralyzed, yeah

How many times have I asked for grace

Standing in the same broken place?

I’ve given You every good reason to walk away

But somehow You choose me

Over and over again

You keep running to me

No matter where I am

Over and over again

I get lost I must confess

Oh, how quickly I forget

But You keep on showing me I’m loved, over and over again

God of second chances, here to catch me every time

I thought I was unlovable ’till You told this heart of mine, yeah

I’m worth more than my past mistakes

I’m never too far gone to save

I’ve given You every good reason to walk away

But somehow You choose me, over and over again

You keep running to me, no matter where I am, over and over again

But You keep on showing me I’m loved

Over and over again

In every sunrise I find

Another reminder of how much You love me

For all of this lifetime

You’ll never get tired of chasing my heart

Over And Over – Riley Clemmons


How are you doing amidst the current panic, anxiety and confusion of the world right now? What have you been doing to stay busy and somewhat sane?

Have you heard For King & Country’s new song with Tori Kelly and Kirk Franklin, Together? What have you been listening to? What is your current favorite song?