Monday, January 15, 2018

Counting Our Blessings Linkup!

Personally, I have to stop and count my blessings. Life can be so difficult if all I focus on is the negative, hard things in life. Thinking about all the big and little things that God blesses me with, frankly, keeps me sane! That's a good thing.

10.  I've been doing my Scripture writing diligently. I have found this really helps me in my quiet time to focus on one passage of Scripture, meditate on it, and understand it more deeply. Here are some pages from last weeks writings.

You can click on the pictures to make them large enough to read. If you're interested in joining me in Scripture Writing, you can find my January list HERE.

I have been asked how I do this and the main thing for me is to write the Scripture out but on the side, I write out what the Scripture is telling me. This helps me to make the Scripture clear in my heart and to remember it.

11. My hand has gotten so much better and I've been stitching on my Celtic Santa - Wales.

Here's a picture of my stitching so far

I haven't stitched on perforated paper for years but I'm really enjoying this! The paper is a better quality and stronger than the paper I used to stitch on - oh so many years ago! 😉 It's working up fast, too!

By the way, I found out my hand pain is not from stitching but from holding my phone! My phone is a larger one and it's hard for me to hold it for very long without pain. Evidently, this is very hard on the tendons in the hand so I got these to put on the back of my phone and what a difference!

I use the ring on my finger to hold my phone and it takes the pressure off of my hand. I also love that it has the clips to hang my phone in my car or wherever I want. I'm just so happy I can stitch again!

What are your blessings? Please share on the linky below!

Blessings - Julie

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Book Review and Giveaway - Gospel Fluency Handbook


We slip in and out of believing God's word about us and trusting in his work on our behalf. We forget who He is, what's He's done and in light of that who we are.

Do these statements resonate with you? Then the Gospel Fluency Handbookwas written for you. For those who've realized there are areas of life-your normal, everyday, busy life-where you disbelieve God, His goodness and His gospel. For those who are keenly aware and weighted down by a failure to connect the way gospel truths actually matter to everyday life.

The Gospel Fluency Handbook is designed to help you and your group become fluent in the gospel-in other words, to help you move from unbelief to belief. The discussions and exercises in this 8-week interactive handbook provide a step-by-step immersion of your mind, heart, soul, and life in the gospel. Each week follows a simple format: three sets of personal readings and reflections, a weekly guide for group discussion and exercises that will lead to becoming a more gospel-fluent people. People who are learning to see and then speak the truths of Jesus into the everyday stuff of life. Handbook includes free download code for a companion video series.


Ben Connelly, his wife Jess, and their kiddos Charlotte, Maggie, and Travis live in Fort Worth, TX. He started and now co-leads The City Church, part of the Acts29 network and Soma family of churches. Ben also directs church planting for Soma churches across North America, has taught university classes, and has published a few books. With degrees from Baylor University and Dallas Theological Seminary, he writes for various publications, trains folks across the country, and blogs occasionally at

Jeff Vanderstelt is the visionary leader for the Soma Family of Churches and the lead teaching pastor at Doxa Church in Bellevue, Washington. When he isn't preaching or mentoring church planters, he and his family share life with their missional community. He is the author of "Saturate: Being Disciples of Jesus in the Everyday Stuff of Life."

Find out more about Ben Connelly and Jeff Vanderstelt at


Gospel Fluency Handbook Ben Connelly Jeff Vanderstelt


This is one of the best, in-depth studies of the Gospel I've ever read. It way exceeds anything I've learned or read in the past. This is not a book/study that you will go through quickly but one you will savor as you dig deep into what the Gospel really means.

I absolutely love all the in-depth questions in this book. They helped me to really focus on what I was learning and apply it to my life. This book is meant to study in a group situation, which would have been great, but I found it a blessing to do it on my own, too.

This book shows us what the Gospel is and how to live it out in our every day life. It's not always easy to do this but I feel more equipped to do so now that I've read and studied through this book.

If you really want to make the Gospel an integral part of your life and truly understand how you can live and breath it, this book is for you! I love this book and plan on going through it again and again because it is truly life changing! I give it 5 out of 5 stars

*This book was provided to me for my honest review by LitFuse Publicity Group

Blessings - Julie

Book Review - Oath of Honor


Police officer Isabelle St. John loves her crazy, loud, law-enforcement family. She knows they'll be there for her when things get tough. Like when her partner is murdered and she barely escapes with her own life.

Izzy is determined to discover exactly what happened, and her investigation sends her headfirst into a criminal organization, possibly with cops on the payroll--including someone from her own family. With her dead partner's brother Ryan, a handsome homicide detective, shadowing her every move, Izzy's head is spinning. How can she secure justice for her partner when doing so could mean sending someone she loves to prison? And how will she guard her heart when the man she's had a secret crush on for years won't leave her side?


Lynette Eason is the bestselling author of the Women of Justice series, the Deadly Reunions series, and the Hidden Identity series, as well as Always Watching, Without Warning, Moving Target, and Chasing Secrets in the Elite Guardians series. She is the winner of two ACFW Carol Awards, the Selah Award, and the Inspirational Readers' Choice Award. She has a master's degree in education from Converse College and lives in South Carolina. Learn more at


I have never been disappointed in a Lynette Eason book and this is no exception! This story had me on the edge of my seat until the end.

Izzy is a police officer from a family of law enforcement. Her mother is the Chief of Police and her dad is a lawyer. She is committed to God and serving the public. When her partner and friend, Kevin, is killed, she's determined to find his killers.

We are left wondering if Izzy's mother and brother are dirty cops and there is a mob involved. There's an important election of the Mayor that seems like it's being manipulated by the wrong people, too. Izzy is left wondering who to trust in all of this.

There is one turn after another in this story and I absolutely loved it! I never was sure what was going to happen and the ending was a real surprise.

Another thing I liked was the faith that Izzy and Ryan have. Their faith in God runs deep and is the center of their lives. It wasn't unusual to see Izzy talking to God about what was going on and to ask for guidance.

This is a great mystery/romance. I enjoyed every page and give it 5 out of 5 stars.

*This book was provided to me for my honest review by Revell

Blessings - Julie

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Counting Our Blessings - Linkup!

It's time to count our blessings! I hope you do that every day but I love having this set time to focus on the blessings from God.

6.  I shared some of the beautiful gifts my youngest son and hubby gave me for Christmas on Sunday. I wanted to share the final counted cross stitch kits they gave me.

I'm a huge Marjolein Bastin fan and I think this is such a beautiful four seasons kit. I have been wanting to do a set of four seasons pictures for years. My grandmother had a set she stitched on her wall and I admired them so while growing up. Now I can make my own!

7.  These ornament kits just speak to my heart. I love birds and animals and these charts are so amazing in their detail!

My son gave me these and he even got the special kits that go with each one! Aren't they adorable?

8.  My husband gave me this gorgeous kit. When I saw this, it just spoke to my fox-loving heart! Those eyes are just amazing!

Such an amazing kit! I can't get over how realistic this is.

9.  Finally, we have the ultimate in gifts because it's a POODLE! Oh my goodness...I can't stand the cuteness of this kit!

I love this!! The little bows on the ears and the ribbon on the top-knot are such cute extras.

Yes, I'm going to be very, very busy stitching this year, but what could be better? I'm so thankful to my youngest son and husband. Being home-bound isn't easy but having all these lovely kits to work on will make the hours go by in a wonderful way. I'm so thankful and so blessed!

It's your turn to share your blessings! Just click on the linky below.

Blessings - Julie

Sunday, January 7, 2018

My Christmas Gifts

My youngest son and hubby were so incredibly generous this past Christmas! My son especially went way above and beyond what he should have. He emphasized to me, though, that he wanted my Christmas to be special. Honestly? It was special because we had such a lovely family time together - enjoying each other. However, the gifts were just a huge cherry on top because they are all stitchy gifts!!

Don't you adore these Celtic Santa's? They are so cute! They speak to my UK loving heart. 😉

Then I received these amazing Mill Hill kits. A lot of them are to be finished magnets but all of my pieces will be made into ornaments for my tree.

Each and every one is absolutely stunning! I love the beading on them and, on a few of the birds, there is a special thread that looks like feathers sticking up! Can you stand it? So CUTE!

There is more, dear friends. Yes, more. I will share the other kits on my Counting Our Blessings post on Tuesday.

Blessings - Julie