End of the Old (2014), Start of the New (2015)

As we come to the end of 2014 I sit and think about all the goals I would like to accomplish in 2015. I have such high hopes of getting lots done that at times I think it is unattainable. I set goals for 2014 and worked hard to reach them. I also had a lot of things happen in my personal life. Throughout 2014 I really did some searching as to what I wanted my business and blog to look like. I feel happy and comfortable with where I am but know I can always set more goals. I will recap my goals for 2014 and how I did then set come new ones for the NEW YEAR 2015!

GOALS FOR 2014:

1. Read and document 50 books- I started the year sting and hopeful that I would be able to get through all 50 books and then also blog about each one. I have currently read 23 books and have blogged about 15 of them. I still plan to blog about the other 8 I have not blogged about.

2. Host at least 1 Pampered Chef Party per month- I did not do so well on this goal. This year I did not host enough Pampered Chef Parties. I LOVE the product but with everything I have going on it was hard to make time to do shows. I am thinking I will start hosting freezer meal workshops every other month at least to start.

3. Every other month host a craft party- (Everyone pays to come to the party where they will make a craft project to take home!)- I did NONE of these but, I did attend one. I made a great friend who makes craft kits for busy women to buy and have all the supplies they need in the kit. At the start of 2013 I thought this was a great idea but unfortunately did not host a SINGLE ONE!

4. I would like to sell $500 in handmade craft goods!- I did not reach this goal but I didn’t figure out my focus for my shop until the summer months. I would say based on my ETSY stats and custom on the side sales I have made about $200. I would say for just starting a business I did pretty good. I have changes my shop from UrbanAnneBags to UrbanAnneDesigns. I LOVE to sew and didn’t want to have to just sew handbags. I have now added paper garland and baby blankets to my shop. I am excited for 2015 to see what and where my shop goes.

I would say for the year 2014 I didn’t do too bad considering everything that happened this year.

Goals 2015

1) Read and Document 25 books

2) Sell $400 in handmade craft goods!

3) Host a Freezer Meal Workshop every other month.

Love and Peace

Book #15: Bang (Vision) (Goal 50)

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Bang (Vision)

By: Lisa McMann

After reading the first book in this series, Crash (Check out my review HERE), I was hooked. I wanted to know what would happen in the next vision and who it would have the vision. In the second book of this series Bang the vision has now been transferred to another character that is close to Jules, her boyfriend. The remainder of this review is written as if you have read the first book. If you have not read the first book please be sure you do so. If you are the kind of reader where you don’t want anything spoiled please STOP reading and go pick up the first book in this Visions Series: Crash.

If you have read the first book you know that Jules has saved Sawyer and his family from a large truck that was coming towards their pizza shop. Now that Sawyer has been saved the vision has been transfer to him. He is unsure of what the vision is and is having a hard time understanding everything that is happening in his vision. As Jules walks him through the process that she went though in the first book they have to get creative about how they meet up. Jules parents are still not ok with Sawyer and Jules being an item/couple. As the story continues more people become involved in the vision to help them solve the unknown mystery. This book, like the first was VERY good! I would totally recommend this series to others. This is a trilogy so be on the look out for my upcoming post about the third book, Gasp!

Amazon Summary:

What Sawyer’s seeing might mean murder. The second “dramatic, quick-paced thriller (Kirkus Reviews)” in a series from the New York Times bestselling author of the Wake trilogy.

Jules should be happy. She saved a lot of people’s lives and she’s finally with Sawyer, pretty much the guy of her dreams. But the nightmare’s not over, because she somehow managed to pass the psycho vision stuff to Sawyer. Excellent.

Feeling responsible for what he’s going through and knowing that people’s lives are at stake, Jules is determined to help him figure it all out. But Sawyer’s vision is so awful he can barely describe it, much less make sense of it. All he can tell her is there’s a gun, and eleven ear-splitting shots. Bang.

Jules and Sawyer have to work out the details fast, because the visions are getting worse and that means only one thing: time is running out. But every clue they see takes them down the wrong path. If they can’t prevent the vision from happening, lives will be lost. And they may be among the casualties…

{Let me know if you read the book! Would love to know what you think!}

Love and Peace!

One Word, One Prayer: Favorite Verse

I have not done my one word one prayer for a while. Last month I tried to blog everyday in September and this month I am just trying to survive my life and a job. I have several IEP’s that are currently sitting on my desk that need to be completed. Once I am done teaching for the day I need to feed my soul and recharge my body. I have been working out and attending bible study. After attending a woman’s conference event at my local church I have been trying to be consistent in my journaling. While I was journaling a verse caught my eye. I went to my bible and found the verse. I underlined it in my bible it was that striking to me.

 

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This print was found on The Educated Owl’s Etsy shop! Check out her store she has some SUPER cute items!

 

Don’t be concerned about the outward beauty of fancy hairstyles, expensive jewelry, or beautiful clothes. You should clothe yourselves instead with the beauty that comes from within, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is so precious to God.”

1 Peter 3:3-4 New Living Translation (NLT)

 

So for this week instead of a word I have decided to keep this verse at the front of my brain. This verse is so AWESOME for young girls that feel as though they should put so much time, effort and money into their outward beauty.

 

Does this verse hit home for you? Please comment below if this strikes you so that I can pray for you also!

 

Friday Reads Book Club: If I Stay

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If this is your first time joining us, we are a weekly book review link up. This is the place for people to go when they are searching for a new book or want to share one that they recently read. I am hosting this weekly affair along with two other amazing Arizona bloggers, Sarah at Neroli Blossoms and Megan and Joann at A Whimsicle Life.

If I Stay

by: Gayle Forman

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 I decided to read this book after I had seen that a movie was going to be made. I am one that likes to read the books before going to see the movie. I picked up this book before leaving on a long weekend trip to Wisconsin. I thought for sure based on the movie trailer that this book would draw me in right away and I would find it hard to put down. This book was an interesting read in that based on the summary on the back of the book, the movie trailer, and what I had heard/read from other readers I figured I would be drawn right in. It was the complete opposite. I felt like the story dragged a bit. Don’t get me wrong it was a good book. I am very excited to see how the director/screen play writer made it into a movie.

Mia is a high school student. She lives with her  family, her mother, father and her younger brother. When school is cancelled for the day the family decides to drive to a family friends house. In an instant her life is changed. The story goes from Mia being in her body and doing things to being her bodies spirit/soul. When the car accident happens Mia gets out of the car and see the disaster. She finds her mom and dad then while looking for her younger brother she thinks she spots him under the car when she realizes that the person under the car is her. As she is transported to the hospital she has an out of body experience in which she is able to see all that is happening around her and to her. Throughout the remainder of the book she encounters and experiences the deep emotion that the people who she loves struggle through. Mia has a boyfriend and best friend in which the story is centered around. The book has flash back where you learn how her relationships with the people around her have developed. I am neutral on how the story ends. I would like to read find out what happens to Mia in the sequel to If I Stay called: Where She Went.

I am curious is any readers have read this book or seen the movie! If you have read the book let me know what you thought! If you have seen the movie please comment on if you think I should go see the movie!

Book Reviews Link Up

We encourage you to:

  • Visit the host’s blog, check out each week’s book review and leave a comment with your thoughts.
  • Post your own book review in our linkup. (Please link back to us on your own post when you do!! Also, grab our Friday Reads badge to let everyone know you are participating!)

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  • Visit other blogger’s reviews that are posted in the linkup and leave a comment on their post. Vote on your favorite post so that blogger will have a chance to be featured next week!

Love and Peace!


Book #13: Christmas Letters (Goal 50)

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Christmas Letters

By: Debbie Macomber

This was the next book in the Blossom Street series I have been slowly reading through. I loved this book and not just because it was a love story and involved my favorite fictional knitting shop, but because it was a book of true friendships and discovering love. I thought it was super cute that the main character of the story was working at Christmas time as a writer who would write your Christmas letter that the families would send out annually. There was the added excitement of Katherine’s sisters kids being raised the way Dr. Wynn says to raise them. This book was a cute, funny, easy and fun read. I really enjoyed this book. I would recommend that if you like Christmas and love stories to read it even though I say it is a part or a series you could totally just pick up the book and enjoy it as a stand alone.

Amazon Summary:

Katherine O’Connor often spends her days at a cozy café on Blossom Street in Seattle—where she writes Christmas letters for other people. She’s good at making their everyday lives sound more interesting. More humorous. More dramatic.

But for Dr. Wynn Jeffries, who also frequents the café, Christmas means lies and deception. In fact, the renowned child psychologist recommends that parents “bury Santa under the sleigh.” Katherine, however, feels that his parenting philosophy is one big mistake—at least, based on her five-year-old twin nieces, who are being raised according to his “Free Child” methods.

She argues with Wynn about his theories, while he argues that her letters are nothing but lies. They disagree about practically everything—and yet, somehow, they don’t really want to stop arguing.

As the days—and nights—move closer to Christmas, Katherine and Wynn both discover that love means accepting your differences. And Christmas is about the things you share….

What books do you recommend?

Have you read this book?

Tell me what you thought!

Love and Peace

One Word, One Prayer #19

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Where do I start for this One Word, One Prayer post? I had such a GREAT weekend!!! I went to an Insta meet up and met other business owners and bloggers! I had such a GREAT time and was on such a high once I came home. I have lots of great post ideas in the works and other bloggers that I would like to work with! Then, I went to church on Sunday forgetting that there was a BIG NAME leading worship this week. The sermon was AMAZING and the worship was OUT OF THIS WORLD! So, the BIG NAME asked everyone to have a seat and sang one of his songs for us. As, I read the word on the screen I began to cry. The lyrics are as follows:

“Tell Your Heart To Beat Again”

By: Danny Gokey

You’re shattered
Like you’ve never been before
The life you knew
In a thousand pieces on the floor
And words fall short in times like these
When this world drives you to your knees
You think you’re never gonna get back
To the you that used to be

Tell your heart to beat again
Close your eyes and breathe it in
Let the shadows fall away
Step into the light of grace
Yesterday’s a closing door
You don’t live there anymore
Say goodbye to where you’ve been
And tell your heart to beat again

Beginning
Just let that word wash over you
It’s alright now
Love’s healing hands have pulled you through
So get back up, take step one
Leave the darkness, feel the sun
Cause your story’s far from over
And your journey’s just begun

Tell your heart to beat again
Close your eyes and breathe it in
Let the shadows fall away
Step into the light of grace
Yesterday’s a closing door
You don’t live there anymore
Say goodbye to where you’ve been
And tell your heart to beat again

Let every heartbreak
And every scar
Be a picture that reminds you
Who has carried you this far
‘Cause love sees farther than you ever could
In this moment heaven’s working
Everything for your good

Tell your heart to beat again
Close your eyes and breathe it in
Let the shadows fall away
Step into the light of grace
Yesterday’s a closing door
You don’t live there anymore
Say goodbye to where you’ve been
And tell your heart to beat again
Your heart to beat again
Beat again

Oh, so tell your heart to beat again

Danny’s story is heartbreaking. He lost his wife in surgery  just a few short months before trying out for American Idol. I did not loss anyone to death but I went though a really hard patch in my life about 7 years ago. I share this story to try to help and reach people out there knowing they are not alone. I had met the man who I thought was the man of my dreams. After getting married and being married for a year he decided that we should legally separate which in turn became a divorce. I was so crushed and broken at that time in my life.  Looking back I view this event as a speed bump in my life in which made me who I am today.

I LOVE the man I with now and know that a relationship takes work. This song spoke so strongly to me because this is exactly how I felt after the divorce. I had to remind myself that I was starting a new beginning. I have also had a few friends that recently have been going though hard times. They are speed bumps in the journey of life. Even though you can never forget what has happened you have to “step into the light of grace.” This week I will be praying and thinking about the word BEGINNING. I pray for all the people that are starting over and getting over their speed bumps in life. God is great and will move in your life in great and amazing ways.

Love and Peace

Friday Read Book Club: Bridge to Haven #14 (Goal 50)

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Welcome to the 2nd week of Friday Reads Book Club! I am hosting this weekly affair along with two other amazing Arizona bloggers, Sarah at Neroli Blossoms and Megan and Joann at A Whimsicle Life.

This “book club” is intended to create a community where we can all share fantastic books that we read and want to recommend to others. Each week, one of the blogger hosts will write a review of an outstanding book. We will also have a linkup each week where fellow bloggers can post book reviews and recommendations.

We encourage you to:

  • Visit the host’s blog, check out each week’s book review and leave a comment with your thoughts.
  • Post your own book review in our linkup. (Please link back to us on your own post when you do!! Also, grab our Friday Reads badge to let everyone know you are participating!)

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  • Visit other blogger’s reviews that are posted in the linkup and leave a comment on their post.Bridge

Bridge to Haven

By: Francine Rivers

 I was talking with a good friend recently and had told them about my plan to read 50 books this year. She then suggested that I read the book Redeeming Love by: Francine Rivers. I went right out and purchased the book. As I was looking up reviews about the book I had just bought I saw that she was coming out with a new book. I reserved it at my local library and when it came in I began to dig in. As I read this book I felt like I was living with Abra along side her cheering her on and she made the good choices in life and cringing as she made the wrong choices. I really enjoyed this book and I would recommend it to my friends. As I finished the book at times I had chills becasue this is one of those books where you are left with a lot of questions and loose end that are tied up at the end. If I had the chance I would reread this book.

Amazon Summary:

To those who matter in 1950s Hollywood, Lena Scott is the hottest rising star to hit the silver screen since Marilyn Monroe. Few know her real name is Abra. Even fewer know the price she’s paid to finally feel like she’s somebody.

To Pastor Ezekiel Freeman, Abra will always be the little girl who stole his heart the night he found her, a wailing newborn abandoned under a bridge on the outskirts of Haven. Zeke and his son, Joshua—Abra’s closest friend—watch her grow into an exotic beauty. But Zeke knows the circumstances surrounding her birth etched scars deep in her heart, scars that leave her vulnerable to a fast-talking bad boy who proclaims his love and lures her to Tinseltown. Hollywood feels like a million miles from Haven, and naive Abra quickly learns what’s expected of an ambitious girl with stars in her eyes. But fame comes at an awful price. She has burned every bridge to get exactly what she thought she wanted. Now, all she wants is a way back home.

In this riveting and highly anticipated tale of temptation, grace, and unconditional love, New York Times best-selling author Francine Rivers delivers big-canvas storytelling at its very best.

What books do you recommend?

Book #12: Until I Say Good-Bye (Goal 50)

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Until I Say Good-Bye

By: Susan Spencer-Wendel

After I had finished Crash on my nook I thought man is this convenient to only have my nook to carry around and read my book so I decided to start another one on my nook. This book I had purchased awhile ago after I had read a review either in the paper or in a magazine. This book is about a woman’s journey with her family as ALS takes over her body. It is so amazing to me how one can loose function of their body but their mental state be still so sharp. As Susan was getting weaker and losing functions that she was so used to doing on her own she turned to her friends and family. I found this book to be very inspiring and I really loved the way she lived her life and wanted her husband and children to have these great memories with her as she lives out the remainder of her life. I really enjoyed this book and would recommend it to others.

Amazon Summary:

Susan Spencer-Wendel’s Until I Say Good-Bye: My Year of Living with Joy is a moving and inspirational memoir by a woman who makes the most of her final days after discovering she has amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).

After Spencer-Wendel, a celebrated journalist at the Palm Beach Post, learns of her diagnosis of ALS, more commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, she embarks on several adventures, traveling toseveral countries and sharing special experiences with loved ones. One trip takes Spencer-Wendel and her fourteen-year-old daughter, Marina, to New York City’s Kleinfeld’s Bridal to shop for Marina’s future wedding dress—an occasion that Susan knows she will never see.

Co-written with Bret Witter, Until I Say Good-Bye is Spencer-Wendel’s account of living a full life with humor, courage, and love, but also accepting death with grace and dignity. It’s a celebration of life, a look into the face of death, and the effort we must make to show the people that we love and care about how very much they mean to us.

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Be on the look out for the Friday Reads Book Club! I will be linking up every other Friday with some AWESOME bloggers!

One Word, One Prayer #18

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This weekend at the church I have been attending they had friend Sunday. The public figure they had invited out was Sean Lowe from the show The Bachelor. Growing up in a family of girls we would always watch The Bachelor. I knew Sean and I watched both the seasons he was on. I had forgotten that his father was a pastor so I figured I was going to go to church and hear Sean share his testimony instead he was asked several questions. One thing he said caught my attention not because it was new but because it was a great reminder. He stated that “Love is a verb, it is an action.” Sometimes I think that my words show the people around me that I love them but it was a great reminder that what I DO is how I show the people around me that I love/care about them. When I took the love languages quiz mine was physical touch but my fiancee was acts of service. He is really big on me showing him through specific actions that I love him. So this week I want to be intentional about DOING LOVE! I want it to become an action verb for me. So this week my word is LOVE!

How will you show someone LOVE this week though your actions? (Friends, boyfriend, husband, coworkers, anyone)

Book #11: Crash (Vision) (Goal 50)

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Crash (Visions)

By: Lisa McMann

Where do I even start! I have had this book on my nook for a few years thinking I would get to it someday, well, that someday is here! I had finished my book  that I had brought with me on vacation and was getting my nook back from my sister so I figured I would just read one of them on my nook. This book took me all of two days to finish. As I read the chapters they were short and it was a quick read. I found that as I finished one chapter I was left hanging and wanting more. I wanted to know what would happen to the characters and how the vision continued to evolve and effect her life. I really enjoyed this book and have recommended it to a few of my friends. This is the first book of a trilogy so after reading the first book I went to my local book store to see if I could get used copies of book 2 and 3. I was able to find book 2 and book 3 was coming out that week. I was very excited to hear that because Lisa McMann was a local author she was coming to the bookstore. I made it a point to see her in person. I really loved the first book and would recommend it for others to read (oh wait I already did!). Be on the look out for my reviews on the second and third book in this Visions Trilogy.

Amazon Summary:

Jules lives with her family above their restaurant, which means she smells like pizza most of the time and drives their double-meatball-shaped food truck to school. It’s not a recipe for popularity, but she can handle that.

What she can’t handle is the recurring vision that haunts her. Over and over, Jules sees a careening truck hit a building and explode…and nine body bags in the snow.

The vision is everywhere—on billboards, television screens, windows—and she’s the only one who sees it. And the more she sees it, the more she sees. The vision is giving her clues, and soon Jules knows what she has to do. Because now she can see the face in one of the body bags, and it’s someone she knows. Someone she has been in love with for as long as she can remember.

In this riveting start to a gripping series from New York Times bestselling author Lisa McMann, Jules has to act—and act fast—to keep her vision from becoming reality.