Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Counting Our Blessings Linkup

It's time to count our blessings - won't you join me?

57.  I worked on my poodle bookmark this week and finished another poodle.

So adorable! Many thanks to my friend, Vickie at A Stitcher's Story for these beautiful patterns. I think it's so cute because I'm stitching them like Mitzi and Cookie. I think in these pictures you can see that the top poodle is white instead of pink as it showed up on the previous pictures.

Share your own blessings on the linkup below...

Blessings - Julie

Friday, July 13, 2018

Silly Me...

I've been missing and it's because I over-did (much to my husband's chagrin 😟) and ended up in pain again. I have such a hard time letting other's do things for me! I'm not supposed to lift over 10 pounds or do any strenuous things but I find this SO hard! However, I am going to stop feeling like it's wrong for me to ask for help It has not been a fun week because I've had to just rest as much as possible because I aggravated everything and was just miserable. I know...really dumb on my part.

I'm so blessed to have this girl to hang out with me. This is the look of a content poodle who is getting her back rubbed! 😄🐩

Look at that face! LOL

I wanted to let you know that I'm sharing lots of pictures of Cookie and Mitzi, plus my books, on my new Instagram account. If you're interested in following me (and I hope you are), you can find me here:

Thank you for stopping by! Hopefully, I'll be back in full force with my personal posts soon.

Blessings - Julie

Thursday, July 12, 2018

Book Review - The Essential Jonathan Edwards


You've heard his name, you've probably heard your pastor quote him, but who is he really?

250 years later, Jonathan Edwards, America's consummate pastor-theologian, continues to capture the attention of Christians around the world. Yet Edwards left us over 1,200 sermons and thousands of pages of other publications, not to mention the literal thousands of books that have been written about Edwards since he died. Where does one even begin? That's why we created The Essential Jonathan Edwards. It serves as a perfect introduction to Edwards's life and thought. It explores Edwards day-to-day life, and his views on beauty, true Christianity, heaven and hell, and the good life. Strachan and Sweeney strike the perfect balance between necessary background information and giving Edwards's own works room to speak.

Whether you're an Edwards fan already or only know Edwards because of “that Angry God sermon,” this book will lead you to drink deeply of Scripture and gaze longingly at God.


DOUGLAS A. SWEENEY is Professor of Church History and the History of Christian Thought and Director of the Carl F. H. Henry Center for Theological Understanding at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. He formerly served at Yale University, where he edited The Works of Jonathan Edwards and served as a lecturer in church history and historical theology. Sweeney has also served as an adjunct professor at Aquinas College in Nashville, Tennessee, and a visiting professor for both Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary and Reformed Theological Seminary in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Sweeney is the author of a number of books and articles about religious history and the American theologian, Jonathan Edwards. Some of the titles to which he has contributed include The Sermons of Jonathan Edwards: A Reader, The New England Theology: From Jonathan Edwards to Edwards Amasa Park, The American Evangelical Story: A History of the Movement, Nathaniel Taylor, New Haven Theology, and The Legacy of Jonathan Edwards, and Jonathan Edwards at Home and Abroad: Historical Memories, Cultural Movements, Global Horizons, among others.

Sweeney received the Doctor of Philosophy and the Master of Arts in Religion from Vanderbilt University, the Master of Arts in the History of Christian Thought from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, and the Bachelor of Arts in History from Wheaton College. He belongs to numerous professional organizations, including the American Society of Church History, which he serves as a member of the Committee on Research. He is currently President of the Conference on Faith and History. He is also the recipient of numerous awards, including the Jonathan Edwards Research Fellowship, Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Yale University.

Dr. Sweeney resides with his wife, Wilma, and their son in Lindenhurst, Illinois.

OWEN STRACHAN is Associate Professor of Christian Theology at Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. He is also the Director for the Center on Public Theology at MBTS. He holds a PhD from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, an MDiv from Southern Seminary, and an AB from Bowdoin College. Strachan has published fourteen books and writes regularly for The Gospel Coalition, the Christian Post, and Thoughtlife, his Patheos blog. He is married and is the father of three children. Strachan hosts the City of God podcast available at https://cpt.mbts.edu.


Like many of you, I had heard of Jonathan Edwards and had read some of his writings. However, I knew nothing, really, about the man or how profound his belief in God and the Scriptures was.

This is a big book - 428 pages - and sometimes you can start into something like this wondering if it will hold your attention all the way through. Have no fear - this is a wonderful page turner that never is dry or boring. It starts off telling us about Jonathan's family and how he basically became the type of man he became because of the faithful family he had. His education was amazing and he strove to be well educated while still being faithful to God.

This book is divided into five parts: Love of God, Beauty, The Good Life, True Christianity, and finally, Heaven and Hell. The first section lets us get to know Jonathan Edwards from his youth to his death and then the rest focuses on his sermons and writings about each subject. The beauty of this is that we get to know the man before we start reading his writings.

Another thing I absolutely love about this book is at the end of each short chapter, there is a section devoted to living more like Edwards. This brings everything you've read concisely into an understanding of how you can live a more godly life. This was really helpful in my understanding of what I had just read.

Jonathan Edwards writings is beautiful and not at all dry as you might thing considering the era that he was living. The authors of this book, too, write beautifully and draw you into Jonathan Edwards life and his way of living for Jesus.

This is a wonderful book that, I believe, every Christian should read. It will enrich your understanding of who God is and what it means to live a life in spiritual abundance through Jesus. I highly recommend this book and give it 5 out of 5 stars. (I would give it more if I could!)

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

Blesings - Julie

Saturday, July 7, 2018

Book Review - Miss Serena's Secret


With devastating scars in her past, Serena Winthrop is sure no man can be trusted—especially not a man like the too-smooth Viscount Carmichael. His reputation as a flirt and a gambler is everything she despises. And the young artist makes sure that this disreputable heir to an earldom knows of her deep disapproval whenever they encounter one another.

Henry, Lord Carmichael, is perfectly aware of his charms. He's gambled with plenty of ladies' hearts as easily as he has with their husbands' money. But lately he's wondered if there's more to life—and if his actions might prove unworthy of an admirable wife such as his friends have found.

When Serena's guardian asks his best friend to protect his young ward, Henry promises to be on his best behavior and not woo her. But the more he learns of her, the more he realizes she might be his best reason for changing his character.

Then the lady's art leads her to London infamy. Now Henry must choose between the life mapped out for him as the earl apparent and the love of his life. And Serena's secret may mean the end of his titled family line.

This second novel in a new series by internationally popular author Carolyn Miller is full of the rich historical detail and evocative writing her readers enjoy. The witty banter will continue to draw in fans of Jane Austen, Sarah Ladd, and Julie Klassen.


I'm an Inspirational Regency romance author who lives in the beautiful Southern Highlands of New South Wales, Australia with my husband and four children. I love reading (especially Jane Austen and Georgette Heyer), music, films, gardens, art, travel and food. I really enjoy creating worlds where flawed people can grow in faith, hope and love.


This is such an enjoyable book. I loved the characters, the setting, and the story of redemption so much I stayed up all night finishing it!

I really loved Serena and how she used her art to glorify God. Her absorption in her art is something I could relate to and I liked how the author really showed her heart and mind as she painted or didn't paint. This was very realistic, in my opinion, because artistic people really need to create. I also thought how her self-condemnation of herself was so realistic, too. It made her so real!

Henry was likable from the beginning, but he became even more so as the story went on. It was wonderful seeing him transform as he committed himself to God. He falters and stumbles along the way but this made it so relate-able because we all do this sometimes in our walk with God.

Another thing I liked about this story was how the author described things so beautifully, I felt as though I were there. I could imagine the valley and the houses as I read. It was like I was there!

This is a beautiful romance and a story of what happens when we trust God and allow Him to transform our life. I really enjoyed this book and highly recommend it! I give it 5 out of 5 stars.

*This book was provided to me for my honest review by Kregel Tours through NetGalley

Blessings - Julie

Thursday, July 5, 2018

Cross Stitch Poodle!!

Our friend, Vickie, has been sharing her monthly poodle patterns and I have been wanting to stitch them so badly, but up until now, I have had no energy. However, yesterday, I suddenly felt better than I have in months and decided to start on the poodles!

I had these cute bookmarks that have lace around the edge but they were cream color and I knew some of the poodles wouldn't show up too well so I got my Ritz dye out and dyed them a turquoise color. I'm sorry the lighting isn't too good so you can see the color accurately but I'll be doing more picture in the future and am hoping I can get a better picture of the color.

I started out by doing the April poodle because it looks just like my Mitzi!

Again, the color doesn't look right because I was so anxious to share a picture with you, I took the picture at night. 😊 Anyway, here's a couple close-up pictures of the adorable poodle!

It looks like I stitched a pink poodle, but no, it's white. lol Anyway, it's such a cute pattern and I can't wait to do more of the poodles down the bookmark. Many thanks to Vickie at A Stitcher's Story for creating these wonderful poodles for us! They make my heart so happy!! You can find all her poodle patterns on her blog under the Calendar Poodle SAL tab.

Blessings - Julie