Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Blogging from A to Z April Challenge - Z #atozchallenge

Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah, we are done! Today is the final day of the Blogging from A to Z April Challenge. Thanks for sticking with me until the end. To thank you for your readership, I am giving away a $10 Amazon gift card. You can enter for your chance to win using the Rafflecopter form below. Now, on to today's randomness.

Zymurgy - branch of chemistry dealing with brewing and distilling. Some people might know this one, but not being much of a drinker, I had no idea there was an actual name for this. I also think it's a neat looking word.

Zinnia - I don't have any of these in my garden, but I have seen some once or twice. A genus of 20 species of annual and perennial plants, they are commonly found in the southwestern United States and South America. They can come in a variety of colors and can withstand some serious summer heat.

Zamboni - we are a hockey-loving family, so we are familiar with Frank J. Zamboni, the inventor and mechanic who invented the Zamboni Ice Resurfacing Machine in 1949. Ten years prior, Zamboni and his brother-in-law bought an ice skating rink in California, which proved hard to resurface and required numerous men for the task. In 1942, Zamboni converted a tractor to scrape and smooth the ice in a single pass. To see who purchased the first Zamboni, visit My son, who used to work at a hockey rink knows how to drive one of these monsters. It's fun to watch.

Thanks again for sticking with us this month. I hope you'll keep reading along now that you're a fan of visiting. You can see my weekly features in the sidebar. I might even do some changing up in the future, so I would appreciate your input as to what you would like to see here regularly.

Good luck to all who enter the giveaway!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Blogging from A to Z April Challenge - Y #atozchallenge

We're down to the wire with this challenge--the final two days. Wow! April has flown by. Here's my randomness for the day.

Yegg - a burglar of safes; safecracker. Again, I am amazed by the words we use. Now I want to write a mystery novel with a safecracker just so I can use the term "yegg."

Yucca - I love adding ornamental plants to my garden. The Yucca is a genus of perennial shrubs and trees that includes 40 - 50 species. Native Americans found the Yucca useful for fiber for ropes, sandals, and cloths. They boiled or baked the fruit, ate the blossoms, and chewed the raw leaves. The fermented fruit was used to produce a beverage for rituals. The plant is reported to be beneficial for treating colitis, hypertension, arthritis, and migraine headaches. You can read more at

Ypres -  A Belgian municipality located in the Flemish province of West Flanders. The Battles of the Ypres Salient began when German troops arrived on October 7, 1914. The Allies were finally able to push back the Germans in September 1918. For more information, visit

Monday, April 28, 2014

Mailbox Monday - April 27

Mailbox Monday is a meme started by Marcia of To Be Continued. Mailbox Monday is the gathering place for readers to share the books that came in their mailbox during the last week. It now has a permanent home at the Mailbox Monday blog.

Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles, and humongous wish lists.

Last week is a blur. Between taking my real estate exam and the girls' being on vacation, I can't even tell you much of what happened. I do know that no books arrived in the mail--only because I'm looking at the floor where I keep them and there aren't any there.  :)  However, I bought a couple of Kindle books last week.

This first one was self-published by a friend of mine. He is a long time outdoors writer for our local paper. He is the one who introduced me to Write Angles Conference. This is his first book, but he is already working on his third.

Brought up in the Depression, Johnny DaSilva is leader of a fun and imaginative gang that lives out their dreams in the Big Tree in which each has a branch that serves as the Lone Ranger’s Silver, the race car of Morey Amsterdam, the rocket ship of Buck Rogers, the crow’s nest for Black Bart the Pirate.

When World War II broke out, they tried every ruse their young imaginations could think of to get into the marines, army, and navy but had to settle for the Boy Scouts. But the faux pas war to end all wars came too soon for the Big Tree Gang.

Johnny is best described by an aunt as having the millstone around the neck of having a strict English Episcopalian conscience and bucking bronco Portuguese sexual proclivities.

Two girls are in love with him, one wealthy and popular, the other sexually abused and who considered herself a worthless toy, until she met Johnny.

Whatever they knew about the facts of life, male and female, were learned pretty much by trial and error.

This was on sale for only $1.99, so I picked it up. I love Jerry B. Jenkins' books, but I have a hard time buying anything these days when I have so many unread books here.

Watch out! The Timberline twins are on the loose. Bryce and Ashley are ATV-riding tweens from Colorado who unearth action-packed mystery and adventure wherever they go. From clearing the name of a local miscreant to thwarting a gold-stealing heist, the twins' growing faith and the strong example of their parents guide them through even the most life-threatening situations. With the trademark page-turner style used by Jerry Jenkins and Chris Fabry in the Left Behind: The Kids series, these fast-paced books will keep even reluctant readers on the edge of their seats. Readers will definitely get hooked by the unbelievable cliff-hanger at the end of book one, Haunted Waters. Perfect for ages 8-12.

That's it for me. What did you receive?

CFBA: Paige Turned by Erynn Mangum

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Paige Turned
TH1NK (April 1, 2014)
Erynn Mangum


A few things about her:

So, if we were having this conversation in person, we would probably be hanging out at Starbucks or one of the cute coffeehouses in town. I’m nuts about all things coffee, I’m crazy about all things pink and girly, and I love, love, love the Food Network! I’m married to my best friend and the most amazing guy ever, Jon. He is amiable toward coffee, does not like anything pink or girly and tolerates the Food Network. So, we make a good match! In July 2010, we became parents to one of the funniest, cutest, sweetest little guys in the whole world (and nope, we aren’t biased at all!), our Nater-Tot, who is legally known as Nathan. Most days, I’m cleaning up messes, making goofy faces, trying to fit some writing in, and just LOVING the life that God has given me!


Despite her valiant efforts, Paige Alder seems stuck in chaos. Her new job as youth intern keeps her hopping from coffee shop to coffee shop all summer long, but at least she’s loving the one-on-one time she gets to spend with the girls. The unfortunate side-effect is that now, four weeks of laundry fills her apartment. Plus, she barely has time to help her sister and best friend with their weddings! And even worse? Something is definitely wrong between her and Tyler. She apologized for what he thought he saw happen with Luke. Can’t they move past it? Or could there be something he’s not telling her—something that could change everything?

If you'd like to read the first chapter of Paige Turned, go HERE.

Blogging from A to Z April Challenge - X #atozchallenge

I'm doing my happy dance. We are in the last three days of the Blogging from A to Z Challenge. I've really enjoyed it again this year and made some new online chums. What could be better than that? Well, a million dollars. But other than that....

Here is today's randomness:

Xylotherapy - use of certain kinds of wood in the cure of disease; certain kinds of wood applied to the skin to regain sensibililty to otherwise insensitive (non-feeling) skin. I bet if someone hit you with a 2 x 4 you would feel it. Okay, that's just my crazy, evil twin escaping today. I'll behave now.

Xiphoid Process - This is the lowest and smallest division of the human sternum. Xiphoeides is a Greek word that means sword-shaped. When they were teaching CPR in high school, I remember them saying you feel for the xiphoid process, so you know where to place your hands. Not sure if that is true anymore. On a side note, the xiphoid process is cartilaginous when we are younger and then ossifies (turns into bone or bony tissue) as we get older. My xiphoid process actually pops out on occasion when I am exercising. It's very painful. I was told we don't actually need it. One specialist said some people have them removed for cosmetic reasons.

Xena: Warrior Princess - Did you know they published a bunch of Xena: Warrior Princess books based upon the show from the 1990s? I can't believe I didn't know, because I was a fan of the show. This A to Z Challenge helps keep me posted on all kinds of pop culture stuff.

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Bargain Book: The Big Book of Green Smoothie Cravings for Cleanse, Detox and Weight Loss by Ravi Kishore

Lacking Nutrition: Are You Taking in the Right Amount of Nutrition in Your Daily Diet

There are many resources available to the public that states how crucial it is to consume the right amount of nutrition. Still, the standard American diet is lacking the most important food groups, which are fruits and vegetables. With the increase in pollution, the vegetables and fruits presently grown contain less nutrition than those produced around the time of our forefathers.

The Secrets: Green Smoothie Recipes For Weight Loss

The only effective solution is to consume foods with a low sugar content, high water content, and are low in fat and calories. Most people may wonder exactly where can we find miracle foods like these? Oh yeah, in your grocery's produce section or at your local farmers market! With the huge selection of produce offered, it may get a bit difficult and confusing to figure out which foods work the best for you. Do not fret; I have you covered.

Discover Nutritional Synergy When You Drink Green Smoothies

Synergy occurs when components of different foods work together and their effects are increased. They become more potent and more powerful than if they were consumed alone.

Is A Green Smoothie Fast In Your Future? How Does it Work?

This dietary method can assist in shedding unwanted extra pounds while concurrently boosting energy. You will be drinking all your meals while on a smoothie fast. Some people believe that green smoothies are better than juice fasting as they deliver fiber!!

The Power Of Green Smoothies For Detoxification And Cleansing

Toxins induce sickness and disease in the human body. There are many effective products available on the market that claim to cleanse and detox the body. While they may be effective, many of them contain harsh chemicals and solvents that may not be suited for just anybody.

Green Smoothies: The Sources Of Positive Energy

Have you ever felt tired after sleeping eight hours or taken a nap and discovered that you still felt fatigued? Well you are not alone and like most Americans you probably suffer from a diet lacking adequate nutrition. Rather than grabbing a soda, energy drink, or a cup of coffee, try a green smoothie.

Beauty Cravings - A Natural Anti-Aging Therapy

Upon gazing at yourself in the mirror, you notice that your face has lost its luster. Your complexion is faded, and tiny wrinkles are starting to appear around those creases in your eyes. You wonder, just briefly, the cost of plastic surgery and then shake that idea out of your head accepting the fact that you are aging.

A Miracle to Lower Blood Pressure

Green smoothies are the little miracle workers that have the ability to lower your blood pressure while completely eliminating your medical condition all together. According to the American Heart Association, food sources that deliver ample amounts of potassium are an important factor in regulating blood pressure.

Utilize the Health Benefits of Green Smoothies for Diabetes

To reduce their dependency of insulin medications, most diabetics have utilized healthy meal plans consisting of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains as they deliver essential nutrients to the body.

Green Smoothies - Actively Fighting Cancer; New Age Treatments & Healing: Being Diagnosed With The Big "C" - Cancer

Green smoothies have been known to halt the growth of the bacterium throughout the entire vessel and stop it from spreading to the bloodstream, organs, and other tissues, as well. It has been found that consuming leafy type greens and fruits rich in chlorophyll, iron, nutrients, and enzymes can flush out the kidneys.

File Size: 1606 KB
Print Length: 240 pages
Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
Language: English

Blogging from A to Z April Challenge - W #atozchallenge

We've come to the end of week 4 in the Blogging from A to Z Challenge. Today are my random thoughts beginning with the Letter W.

Woofits - an unwell feeling, especially a headache; a moody depression; a hangover. Thankfully I have never binged enough to suffer from a woofits.

Water - WebMD made a list of "6 Reasons to Drink Water." From keeping your body fluids balanced, to controlling calories, to helping energize muscles and more, water is something we need every day. You can read the article at

World War II Monument opens - Next Tuesday will be the tenth anniversary of the opening of the World War II Monument in Washington D.C. It is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. You can read more at

Friday, April 25, 2014

Blogging from A to Z April Challenge - V #atozchallenge

I can almost taste the victory. It's a good thing life is cooperating as we come close to the end of the Blogging from A to Z April Challenge.

Vivers - food; eatables

Verbena - Have you ever planted verbena? I haven't, but I might this year because it attracts butterflies. According to HGTV Gardens, this perennial likes full sun and dry to moist conditions. On a side note, Miss Beadle from Little House on the Prairie used to wear lemon verbena perfume. Whenever I hear the word "verbena," that's what I think of.

Vampire Academy - I just bought the first book of this series for my daughter. It included a poster from the movie, too. Not sure why she likes reading about vamps so much. They don't do a lot for me. I went through my vamp stage about 20 years ago when Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel were on TV. I haven't really bothered with vampires much since then.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Guest Post: Why Busy Moms Need to Bore Their Kids by Michelle LaRowe

Many families commit to an arduous schedule of school, activities, classes, and lessons for their children at an early age. Kids are entertained and taught with things that demand their attention from sun up to sunset. But what about boredom? If "I'm bored" isn't a term you hear around the house often, it may be time to integrate it into you and your children's daily lives. 

Boredom Feeds Creativity

You may look at boredom as time wasted but actually, boredom is an essential component of raising a creative and insightful human being. Humans weren't meant to be amused 24 hours a day. There's no time for reflection in that space. Instead, boredom forces kids (and adults) to take meaningful action and find their own ways of amusing themselves and interacting with others. 

Stop the Stimulation

Unplugging and winding down to give time for boredom is essential. While it may seem that sitting the kids in front of the television or giving in to their demands for video games is a sanity saving step for you and your children, it actually gives them constant stimulation that isn't allowing them to foster their own ideas. Unplug, unwind, and work "boring" into your daily or weekly schedule. 

Boredom Helps "Soft" Skills

We all know the importance of good test scores but what about relationship skills or tactile skills? These can't be taught in classrooms or trained in classes. They need to be developed through trial and error. Leaving room for "boredom" or free time allows children to develop these pivotal skills on their own, with freedom and independence to make mistakes, correct them, and learn from them. 

Boredom Allows Time for Reflection

Learning to be more introspective is a skill many adults spend their entire life trying to achieve. For children, this time to reflect is even more pivotal. They are expected to excel in school, play sports, and create relationships with children and adults. When kids are ferried from activity to activity without a chance to process all these connections and what they mean, they lose much of the impact of forming them. To raise a child that can assess and understand their place in the world, time for boredom is a necessity. 

Boredom Searches for Passion

The point of boredom isn't for your children to twiddle their thumbs for hours on end in silence. It's meant to open up space for their reflection and to find their passions. When you're bored, what's the first thing you pick up? Maybe it's a set of knitting needles or a favorite recipe or an exercise mat. Your kids need time to discover what activities they enjoy and find peace within their daily lives. Creating space for boredom allows them to truly assess what drives them and creates happiness.

While all moms want the best for their children and many hope to achieve this by padding their schedule with activities and classes, understanding the importance of boredom may change your mind about whether your child needs another gymnastics lesson or scouts meeting. Boredom allows young minds to assess their surroundings, understand their relationships, and find what activities interest them. So, when's the last time you heard, "Mom, I'm bored"?

With over 20 years of experience in the nanny world as an award-winning nanny, agency director, and parenting author, Michelle LaRowe is considered a leading industry expert. A mom herself, she loves to educate parents and nannies on the importance of quality in-home childcare. Find out more by visiting @eNannySource on Twitter. 

Blogging from A to Z April Challenge - U #atozchallenge

Now I'm really feeling like we're in the homestretch of the Blogging from A To Z April Challenge. If I've made it this far, I'll make it to the end. Here is today's randomness.

Umbriferous - giving or bearing shade. The woods around our house are umbriferous.

UGLI® - these are tangelos from Jamaica. According to the company's website, UGLI was found growing wild in Jamaica over 80 years ago, and then developed into the commercial variety available now. "The original tree is believed to have been a hybrid formed from the Seville orange, the grapefruit and the tangerine families." For more information, you can visit

Union issues code of conduct for soldiers - On April 24, 1863, "the Union army issued General Orders No. 100, which provided a code of conduct for Federal soldiers and officers when dealing with Confederate prisoners and civilians." The orders established policies for the treatment of prisoners, prisoner exchanges, and flags of truce. You can find out more at

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

CFBA: The Amish Groom by Mindy Starns Clark and Susan Meissner

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
The Amish Groom
Harvest House Publishers (April 1, 2014)
Mindy Starns Clark
Susan Meissner


Mindy Starns Clark Mindy Starns Clark is the bestselling author of the inspirational Million Dollar Mysteries, the Smart Chick Mysteries, and three standalone mysteries, as well as the nonfiction books The House That Cleans Itself and A Pocket Guide to Amish Life. Her novels include A Penny for Your Thoughts, Don't Take Any Wooden Nickels, A Dime a Dozen, A Quarter for a Kiss, The Buck Stops Here, The Trouble with Tulip, Blind Dates Can Be Murder, Elementary, My Dear Watkins, Whispers of the Bayou, Shadows of Lancaster County, and Under the Cajun Moon, plus other books!

Mindy is also the author of numerous plays and musicals which have been performed all over the United States. She has written textbooks, articles, short stories, and more than 75 computer software manuals. A former singer and stand-up comedian, Mindy lives with her husband and two teenage daughters near Valley Forge, PA. She enjoys speaking to churches, civic groups, and libraries across the country. Her unique blend of humor and insight make her an audience favorite.

Susan Meissner is a multi-published author, speaker, and writing workshop leader with a background in community journalism. Her novels include The Shape of Mercy, named by Publishers Weekly as one of the 100 Best Novels of 2008 and a Carol Award winner. She is a pastor’s wife and the mother of four young adults. When she's not writing, Susan writes small group curriculum for her San Diego church. Visit Susan at her website:, on Twitter at @SusanMeissner, or at


New from bestselling authors Mindy Starns Clark and Susan Meissner, The Amish Groom (Book 1 in The Men of Lancaster County series) explores the men of an Amish community in Lancaster County, how their Amish beliefs play out in their unique roles, and the women who change their lives.

Born to an ex-Amish mother and an Englisch father, 23-year-old Tyler Anderson was raised as a military kid until the age of 6, when his mom passed away. His dad, shipping off to yet another overseas post, placed Tyler in the care of his Amish grandparents, an arrangement that was supposed to be temporary. It lasted a lifetime.

Rachel Hoeck is the young woman waiting for Tyler’s proposal. She senses that though he loves her and wishes to make a commitment to her and his Amish beliefs, part of him still wonders whether an Amish lifestyle is truly for him.

When an opportunity to connect with his father unexpectedly arises, a visit to California causes Tyler to question everything, including a future with Rachel. Will the new girl in his life, Lark, cause him to remain in the Englisch world? Or will he choose to be an Amish groom after all?

A poignant novel of hoping for romance and searching for identity, set in a beloved Amish community.

If you would like to read the first chapter of The Amish Groom, go HERE.

Guest Post: Taking Care of Oral Health by Stephanie Ingram

Think about the fearful moment when you sit in a dentist’s chair and have the noisy drill inside your mouth. The little noise of that drill thunders in your head and you feel like shouting out of fear.

Healthy teeth and gums are good for your general health and encourage a confident smile. A bright shiny smile can boost your social life and confidence. Here are the Top 5 Oral Health Dangers:

With proper care, you can waive off the dreaded moments in a dentist’s clinic. Here are some dental health care tips:

Maintain Dental Hygiene
Brushing, flossing, and rinsing are essential steps for optimal dental health. Brushing in the morning is an age-old practice that has its own benefits, but proper technique should be considered to maintain dental hygiene. Brushing twice a day is advised, but doing so after every meal is a much better practice. Changing the brush every three to four months is also recommended by dentists. Rotate a soft bristle brush with a fluoride toothpaste in circular motions for two to three minutes. Flossing removes plaque and tiny food particles that stick between your teeth. Be gentle to your teeth and gums during both brushing and flossing. Rinsing well is essential to cleaning up the mouth.

Consume a Balanced Diet
Receive the essential nutrients via lots of vegetables and fruits and drink plenty of water to maintain a balanced diet. A balanced diet aids in having naturally strong and healthy teeth and gums. Food with high sugar content should be avoided to decrease the risk of damage to teeth, plaque, and growth of bacteria. Avoid eating right before going to bed and never sleep without brushing your teeth. Dairy products including milk, yogurt, and cheese are a perfect choice to maintain oral health. The high amount of calcium and phosphorus in dairy items aids in protecting the natural enamel and strength of teeth. Unsweetened beverages, plain water, and herbal and green teas inhibit bacteria growth and fight bad breath. Just a few smart changes in your diet and dental routine will help you to have a strong set of teeth with a shiny smile.

Regular Dental Checkups
Many people only go to dentists when they have a toothache. To keep yourself free from common oral health problems, make it a habit to visit your dentist every four to six months, whether you have a problem or not. This will provide you with insight into your oral health and how to take care of common teeth and gum problems in the initial stages. Don’t risk your oral health with home remedies and self medications. A periodical dental checkup helps prevent long-term suffering.

Stephanie Ingram is a blogger, writer and an enthusiast to spend her efforts and time in learning, applying and writing fitness articles, listening Zumba songs, food and nutrition, health care and green living. She has been passionate about learning and sharing the ways to improve fitness and maintain optimal health in order to live an active life.

Blogging from A to Z April Challenge - T #atozchallenge

Less than a week remains in the Blogging from A to Z April Challenge. It's been another wild ride this year. It's been tough to keep up sometimes, but overall I'm glad I opted to participate again.

Theurgy - magic or miracles by the agency of good spirits. Merriam-Webster gives a slightly different definition: the art or technique of compelling or persuading a god or beneficent or supernatural power to do or refrain from doing something. All I know is that the prayers all my friends lifted up helped me to pass my real estate exam yesterday. It was the hardest test I've ever taken. Thankfully, I never need to do that again.

Tea - I've been a lover of tea since I was a kid. Not all the weird flavors, but the standard orange or black tea. I've stuck mainly to decaffeinated versions for years. One of the things I do with used tea bags is soothe irritated eyes. The Lil' Diva and I have allergies, so watery, itchy eyes are something we deal with seasonally. My eyes can swell up almost to the point of shutting. That's when I make a cup of tea, pull out the bags without squeezing them, cool them, and place them on my eyes. Works every time.

Tea also makes a good natural cleanser. Fox News ran an article titled "49 Uses for Tea." You can find it at

To Kill a Mockingbird - Can you believe I've never read this classic novel by Harper Lee? I really am bad when it comes to classics. I think being forced to read them in high school turned me off them. I need to change that.

First published in 1960, To Kill A Mockingbird  won a Pulitzer Prize in 1961 and was made into a film in 1962 starring Gregory Peck. Atticus Finch (Peck) is a lawyer in the Depression-era South who defends a black man against an undeserved rape charge, and his kids against prejudice.

What are some classics you haven't read yet?

Book Spotlight: Directory of Federal Prisons by Christopher Zoukis and Dr. Randall Radic

The DIRECTORY OF FEDERAL PRISONS:'s Federal Bureau of Prisons Facility Directory by Christopher Zoukis and Dr. Randall Radic is a comprehensive, yet succinct, guide to the contact information and basic character profile information of every prison within the Federal Bureau of Prisons, plus all private prisons under contract with the Federal Bureau of Prisons to house federal inmates.

It is an essential guide for everyone who knows anyone incarcerated within the Federal Bureau of Prisons, and sets the standard for basic character profiles and contact information for the Federal Bureau of Prisons.

This electronic guidebook enables attorneys, family members and friends of federal prisoners, journalists, government officials, prison volunteers, and members of the general public to quickly locate the contact information and inmate correspondence address of every prison within the Federal Bureau of Prisons and every private prison which houses federal inmates.

Purchase your copy at AMAZON 

Discuss this book in our PUYB Virtual Book Club at Goodreads by clicking HERE

Book Excerpt:

A day doesn't go by that we don’t receive email at or at from a friend, family member, or from an attorney representing a federal prisoner who is seeking the proper mailing address for a federal prisoner or official contact information for a specific federal prison. It would be helpful if the Federal Bureau of Prisons would publish a hardcopy version of this basic information. Unfortunately, it is only available for those who are technologically savvy enough to locate the information on the Federal Bureau of Prisons' website – if, in fact, the seeker knows that this is where to go.

The Directory of Federal Prisons, envisioned as a solution to this problem, is an inexpensive, regularly updated, quick reference guide to contact information and basic character profiles for every prison within the Federal Bureau of Prisons, including private prisons which house federal prisoners. While this information is generally static -- other than population numbers, that is -- it must be updated periodically to reflect local policy revisions that impact information, such as the inmate correspondence address and new prisons being built (or, in the case of private prisons, new contracts awarded or old contracts not renewed).

Our solution is a concise directory containing official contact information, inmate correspondence addresses, and other basic character profile information about each federal prison, such as the gender of the inmates, security level, federal district, population number, and adjacent satellite prison camp, if there is one, etc.
The reader can simply flip to the regional chapter containing the federal prison in question and locate the specific prison in an alphabetical listing. That’s it. All the information is there. It is that easy to use.No more digging through the Federal Bureau of Prisons' website or purchasing expensive legal texts or worry about losing contact with a family member, friend, or client.

To make the information even more accessible, we have cross-referenced the listing of prison facilities in six appendices, five of which further categorize every federal prison to make locating them within the text even easier.

• Appendix 1 divides every federal prison by BOP region,
• Appendix 2 provides an alphabetical list of all federal prisons listed in the directory,
• Appendix 3 lists every federal prison which houses female prisoners, and does this by the BOP region in which it is contained,
• Appendix 4 divides all federal prisons by security level. And,
• Appendix 5 provides a list of every satellite prison camp, also divided by BOP region, and the gender of prisoners housed therein.

Each appendix provides an additional vehicle for locating information about the federal prison which our reader seeks, in a format that they find easiest to use.

On a cautionary note, some of the information will, of course, change. For this reason, we plan to update the text periodically. If you, our reader, locate errors or outdated information, please feel free to contact us at We will gladly make the updates and we will provide you with a free copy of the next edition of the text.

The authors push forward, shoulder to shoulder with our readers, in the struggle for a criminal justice system which will be more equitable and innovative and which will transcend locked doors, shattered lives, and broken families. We are with you. You are not forgotten.

Christopher Zoukis is an impassioned advocate for prison education, a legal scholar, and a prolific writer of books, book reviews, and articles. His articles on prison education and prison law appear frequently in Prison Legal News, and have been published in The Kansas City Star, The Sacramento Bee, Blog Critics, and Midwest Book Review, among other national, regional, and specialty publications.

Mr. Zoukis is often quoted on matters concerning prison law, criminal law, prisoners' rights, and prison education. Recently, he was the focus of an article at concerning America's broken criminal justice system and potential solutions to the current crisis.

When not in the thick of the battle for prison reform, prison education, or prisoners' rights advocacy, Mr. Zoukis can be found blogging at,, and

Randall Radic is the Senior Editor and Chief Operating Officer of Middle Street Publishing (MSP), where he superintends and, and manages all of MSP's print and online endeavors.

After graduating from the University of Arizona with a B.A. in the classics, Dr. Radic matriculated at Agape Seminary, where he received the degree of Doctor of Sacred Theology, and then Trinity Seminary where he received the degree of Doctor of Theology.

Dr. Radic is the author of several non-fiction books, including Blood In, Blood Out: The Violent Empire of the Aryan Brotherhood (Headpress, 2011), The Sound of Meat (Ephemera Bound Publishing, 2008), A Priest in Hell: True Crimes of America's Clergy (ECW Press, 2009), and Terminal Disaster: Inside the Money Machine (Sunbury Press, 2012).

Dr. Radic has appeared on National Public Radio and A&E Television discussing prison education and America's prison gangs.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Book Spotlight: The Chronicles of Martin by Martin R. Adams

Martin’s Chronicles is about living life to its fullest; rising to the summits and falling to the bottom; faith and its power to heal; and finding a new way to live. There are three stand-alone parts of the book: 1) Martin’s memoirs, covering his upbringing in East Texas; his university years at Texas A&M and the University of Colorado; ascent into the world of oil, money and politics; and ultimately his calamitous fall and recovery through faith. 2) Martin’s life as an alcoholic and his recovery. And, 3) A collection of thought provoking essays Martin has written during his 20 years of sobriety. Martin’s essays delve deeply into the subject of faith; philosophical issues that have puzzled man for eons; and his special insights about creation and the universe, mankind and animals, and eternity and eternal life. This book is a must read for you if you’ve had to face some of life’s most challenging problems, if you have ever questioned your faith, or if you have ever had to rebuild your way. It is not a how-to book. Chronicles is a book of encouragement that traces how God worked in the life of a man.



You are about to begin a journey with me down my particular road in life. I want my children, grandchildren and others to read, understand and perhaps reread my story, learning more about me and hopefully about themselves, life in the fast lane, and the miracle of God’s love and grace. This work consists of three parts----BOOK ONE, My Beginnings, is my life’s story. BOOK TWO tells you about my drinking life as an alcoholic, and my recovery. BOOK THREE is a collection of Essays I have written over the years.

BOOK ONE discusses three distinctly different parts of my life---1) Before I knew Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior---2) After He became my Lord and Savior---3) Then Redemption and Sanctification, moving me to a closer, more intimate relationship with Him.

The first part of my life spanned about 38 years. It was marked by successes, sometimes confusion, occasional heartaches, and some unfulfilled dreams. It was characterized by self-striving and after my considerable successes, failure.

The second part covered about 20 years, after I came to know Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior. I continued living in the world, occasionally drinking to excess, sometimes womanizing, and striving harder than ever to achieve my goals. I still wanted badly to have my own way. Some would say this part of my life exemplifies “carnal Christianity”. Others would question whether I had met Jesus Christ at all twenty years earlier. Regardless, I absolutely knew in my heart and believed totally that if I died, I would be in heaven-- in the arms of Jesus Christ. The old question about whether one can lose his salvation was settled in my heart. I had never committed that unpardonable sin as I understand it, declaring overtly or covertly that I reject and renounce Jesus Christ as my Savior. I was satisfied knowing I was saved for all eternity, certain beyond all doubt that Jesus Christ was and is my Savior.

Twenty years passed before events in my life conspired for the Lord to begin the process of Sanctification, in which I was drawn into a much deeper relationship with Christ Jesus than I had ever known or imagined. Sometimes I have to pinch myself to realize I’m that person Christ changed.

No, I haven’t emoted into Mr. Goody Two Shoes by any means. But my entire outlook has been changed by the hands of God during the past twenty years. I sometimes wonder if this Martin would succeed again today as a businessman in the cutthroat world in which I’ve lived. The short answer is “yes”, because I am led by the Lord whether into success or failure. God changed my desires when I got out of His way.

Finally I wanted Him to have His way with me. I wanted to walk so close to Him that I would KNOW His will for me. I knew alcohol had stood between me and my desire for that fuller richer fellowship with Him. I wearied of analyzing everything to death and just finally decided to rest in His will for me.

Joy and contentment generally characterize my life, joy beyond anything I knew during those first 58 years. I don’t want to disobey the Lord. Sins of the flesh no longer please or fulfill me. In fact I want to avoid committing sin, looking daily to the Lord to help me.

Thank you for letting me share my story with you. It's a long personal journey, from my provincial upbringings ultimately to my life with Christ Jesus. I think many who walk in the ways of the world, eventually coming out the other end, will identify with my experiences. This is meant to be a source of encouragement to you. If sometimes it seems to you like all is lost and there is no way out, my story is for you.

During the last 20 years, I've written many essays covering a variety of topics. Many are spiritual, some are philosophical, and some are simply my analytical way of looking at things. I’ve collected those I believe you’ll enjoy into BOOK THREE---ESSAYS. Please read them slowly and thoughtfully-- maybe only one or two at a time. Think about what you’ve read afterwards. Maybe some light will shine on things you may have wondered about. Reread them, and see if they help with riddles in your life.

Martin R. Adams, September, 2013
College Station, Texas

“And we know that in all things God works for
the good of those who love him, who have
been called according to his purpose.”
Romans 8:28 (NRSV)

Publish date: March 2014
Publisher: Virtualbook Worm
Barnes and Noble:

Martin Adams has spent most of his career being what he calls “a corporate midwife.” The meaning of the euphemism is clear…deliver the business. Whether it is re-packaging existing businesses, strengthening weak businesses, or playing into a market need, Martin has been a professional builder of business. Some have called him a “rainmaker,” referring to Martin’s ability to promulgate new business in torrents like rainfall. Educated as a chemical engineer at Texas A&M University and the University of Colorado, Martin used his strong analytic skills and experiences at the Humble Oil & Refining Co. (Exxon Mobil) to become fully adroit with business and management skills. He was born in the East Texas piney woods, educated in Aggieland, forged in the Houston oil game and tempered on Wall Street investing. Felled by addiction to the bottle, rallied in the Nation’s Capitol, Martin found peace through faith and recreated his life. Today, he lives with his wife in College Station, TX.

Blogging from A to Z April Challenge - S #atozchallenge

Moving right along with the Blogging from A to Z April Challenge, we're up to the letter S--the only letter I know of that is shaped like an animal.

Saccadic - jerky movement of the eye as it jumps from one fixation point to another; twitching.

Soap (as in goat's milk soap) - A few years back, I agreed to review some soap from Happy Goats Soap. Little did I know it would mean I would forever turn away from store-bought soap. I love it because it doesn't irritate my sensitive skin the way other soaps do. In addition, I can choose all kinds of neat shapes and sizes, scented or unscented. That, and I love following the antics of Pricilla, her herd, and the farm cats over at their blog:

Shakespeare - The birthday of William Shakespeare is coming up tomorrow; well they don't really know when he was born, but they place his date of birth as three days prior to his baptism on April 26, which was the custom then. While not a lot is known about his life, his plays have been performed and analyzed extensively. I haven't read as many as a writer probably should, but I recall reading Hamlet and Romeo and Juliet in high school, and having to memorize lines from the latter. Have you read any Shakespeare?

Monday, April 21, 2014

Celebrate ARTHUR “Outdoor Week” on PBS KIDS

Join PBS KIDS and ARTHUR this week to celebrate ARTHUR “Outdoor Week” with two all-new episodes.

Beginning today and ending Friday, Arthur and friends will explore the outdoors in a week of fun-filled, outdoor-themed episodes. “Outdoor Week” includes the premieres of two all-new ARTHUR episodes, “Speak Up Francine/Waiting for Snow,” which airs on April 21, and “Pets and Pests/Go Fly a Kite,” which airs on April 22.

A new ARTHUR digital game, “Backyard Jungle,” will also launch in April. In “Backyard Jungle,” kids will join D.W. and Bud as they embark on an epic adventure using the power of their imaginations.

CFBA: A Promise in Pieces by Emily T. Wierenga

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
A Promise in Pieces
Abingdon Press (April 15, 2014)
Emily T. Wierenga


A Word from the Author:

I’m Emily, and I’m honored and humbled to meet you, friend.

We’re all stumbling along on this journey and you can approach me about anything okay? I’m an open book, with dog-eared pages and a worn cover.

I’m mama to two boys, ages two and four, and married to a farm-boy-turned-math-teacher. We live in a small Dutch hamlet with three churches, one Co-Op and no stop lights. There are a lot of fields out here, there’s a lot of space and sky for breathing and running and writing.

We foster two boys in addition to our own two, and before I had kids, I took care of my Mum who had brain cancer. She fought back and has recovered, all glory to God, and my pastor-father still holds her hand while they go for daily walks.

I battled anorexia nervosa as a child, and then again as a newly married woman, and I write a lot about body image now and have a passion for women to learn to love themselves.

My husband and I have battled infertility and are currently trying to adopt our third child through the local Alberta government.

I hurt for the church, and believe in it, and pray for it, as I’ve grown up inside its walls and have heard its groanings.

I have a heart for Africa, particularly Uganda, and went there in January on a bloggers’ trip with World Help.

My favorite things to do are read literary novels, play guitar, snowboard, paint with oil and acrylics and hug my babies.

I am the author of two books on eating disorders, a novel releasing this spring, and a memoir coming out this summer.

I hope you’ll connect with me on FB:, or if you prefer, Twitter: @emily_wierenga. I’d love to have a virtual glass of wine, or cup of coffee, with you.

Peace to you friends,



After the end of World War II, Clara Kirkpatrick returns from the Women’s Army Corp to deliver a dying soldier’s last wishes: convey his love to his young widow, Mattie, with apologies for the missed life they had planned to share.

Struggling with her own post-war trauma, Clara thinks she’s not prepared to handle the grief of this broken family. Yet upon meeting Mattie, and receiving a baby quilt that will never cuddle the soldier’s baby, Clara vows to honor the sacrifices that family made.

Now a labor and delivery nurse in her rural hometown, Clara wraps each new babe in the gifted quilt and later stitches the child’s name into the cloth. As each new child is welcomed by the quilt, Clara begins to wonder whatever happened to Mattie—and if her own life would ever experience the love of a newborn. Little does she know that she will have the opportunity to re-gift the special quilt—years later and carrying even greater significance than when it was first bestowed.

If you would like to read the first chapter of A Promise in Pieces, go HERE.

Blogging from A to Z April Challenge - R #atozchallenge

Today starts the fourth week of the Blogging from A to Z April Challenge. We're at the letter R.

Runcation - action of weeding. Really? I've always just called it weeding.

Rosewood Oil - According to Experience-Essential-Oils, rosewood oil rejuvenates the skin. What I like about this website is that it offers a great deal of information and even historical tidbits on essential oils. You can check out what they have to say about rosewood oil at

Rome - According to legend, on April 21, 753 B.C., Rome was founded by twin brothers Romulus and Remus. Find out more at

Mailbox Monday - April 21

Mailbox Monday is a meme started by Marcia of To Be Continued. Mailbox Monday is the gathering place for readers to share the books that came in their mailbox during the last week. It now has a permanent home at the Mailbox Monday blog.

Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles, and humongous wish lists.

Hope everyone had a nice Easter. All my kids were here for a change, so that made it special. Greek Easter was the same day this year, so I cooked lamb and roasted potatoes. I think we actually had more desserts than we had people. I stuffed myself a bit too much.

I didn't receive any books in the mail this week, but I did pick up a few Kindle freebies and a bargain one.

I keep thinking that one day I'll get around to self-publishing; even if it's just once to try it out. I like checking out the available resources.  

If you're selling ebooks on Amazon, you're about to find out the very best ways of how to promote your book, and actually selling ebooks on Amazon, The author has found these, more than anything else, to deliver the best results.

PLEASE NOTE: This is for non-fiction Kindle ebooks, not fiction.

I'm also looking more often into natural ways to live and heal. I also prefer to grow as much of our produce as I can. I really don't know much about essential oils, but I hear about them from time to time, so I thought I would check out this book.

This is an in depth introduction to the use of Essential Oils. Essential Oils provide us with an alternative solution to regaining control of our healthcare needs. As survivalists and preppers one of the things we must include in our strategies is the ability to tend to our sick and injured without the advantage of having modern medicine available to us. The use of Essential Oils is something that we can begin using now, which will increase the quality of your life before a disaster strikes. These notes will serve as a quick flip guide of the most important things to remember about using Essential Oils. This may come in handy should SHTF and serve as a backup for the audio files you may not be able to listen to.

Oils Covered Are:
Frankincense, Oregano, Lemon, Melaleuca, Lavender, Peppermint, Basil, Birch, Cinnamon Bark, Clove, Coriander, Cypress, Geranium, Helichrysum, MelissaMood, Wintergreen, Ylang Ylang, Eucalyptus, Wild Orange, Grapefruit, Lemongrass, BugShield, Bergamot, Black Pepper, Cilantro , Cassia, Clary Sage, Fennel, Ginger, Myrrh, Patchouli, Roman Chamomile, Rosemary, Sandalwood, Thyme, Vetiver, White Fir, Dill, Tangerine, Spearmint, Whisper, ZendBlend, Solace, Rose, Jasmine, DDR-Blend, TuneUP, Respiratory Blend, Digestion, Cold & Flu Blend, Muscle Pain Blend, Purity, Elevate, Serene, Balanced, Marjoram, Aroma Blend, Citrus Blend, Slimming Blend, Lime, Headache Blend, Coconut Oil

These are the notes from a special Essential Oils 5 day class. Bonus links to the downloadable MP3s from the class are available inside.

Though I didn't talk about it much at the blog this year, I'm a Downton Abbey fan. I thought Season 4 was a nice bounce back from the tragic end from Season 3. There were some disappointments, but some stellar parts too. I pick up books that have a Downton Abbey tie-in from time to time.

*** #1 Best Seller in Brunch and Tea as well as Coffee and Tea ***

Come rain or shine in Edwardian England, everything stopped for tea. Downton Abbey was no different.

But what would our beloved Crawley household have eaten at their sacred 4 o’clock institution?

In "Tea at Downton - Afternoon Tea Recipes From The Unofficial Guide to Downton Abbey" we share some recipes from the golden age of England. At the height of the power of the British Empire, Mrs Patmore would have every possible kind of delicious ingredients to draw from.

In this concise book you’ll learn:

• Step by step through how to throw the perfect tea party – Downton Style. From the etiquette behind how to hold one’s tea cup correctly to the recipe for the favourite sandwich of Queen Alexandra of the time.
• Wow all of your friends with these simple to follow authentic recipes, and be sure even the Dowager Duchess would be impressed by your social graces.
• From the bottom tier sandwiches to the elegant cakes of the top tier, we cover it all. Not forgetting of course the perfect scone recipe and its accompanying jams.
• Follow the ways Mrs Patmore would have planned her menus to keep spending to minimum and you too can enjoy a most delightful repast for just a few shilling!

So, what are you waiting for? Carson has opened the door to let you in. Let’s see what’s for tea....

Scroll up and get your copy of "Tea at Downton - Afternoon Tea Recipes From The Unofficial Guide to Downton Abbey". You’ll be glad you did!

I'm also a fan of Chuck Norris. My girls actually watch Walker, Texas Ranger on DVD with their dad at night. When I saw his autobiography was on sale for only 99 cents, I picked it up.

A New York Times best seller. Millions of people worldwide know Chuck Norris as the star of more than twenty motion pictures, a martial arts expert, and the only man in the Western Hemisphere to hold an eighth degree Black Belt Grand Master in Tae Kwon Do. Countless others see him daily in syndicated reruns as the hero of the longest running CBS series to date, “Walker, Texas Ranger.” What many don’t know is that Chuck Norris is a sincere Christian–a man whose faith plays a role in everything he does. Against All Odds is the inspirational story of how Norris overcame abject poverty from childhood, the effects of his father’s alcoholism and desertion of the family, and his own shyness and lack of strength and ability early in his life. Norris writes candidly about the past and gives God full credit for where he is today.

What did you find in your mailbox?

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Blogging from A to Z Challenge - Q #atozchallenge

This ends the third week of the Blogging from A to Z Challenge. I can't believe we've come this far already. Hope your challenge is going well. Here is today's randomness.

Parvanimity - smallness of mind

Pansy - These have been one of my favorite flowers since childhood. Usually grown as annuals or biennials (requires two growing seasons to complete its life cycle), pansies are hardy, colorful flowers. You can check The Old Farmer's Almanac for how to care for pansies:

Peace of Paris (1783) - a collection of treaties signed by Great Britain on one side and the United States, France, and Spain on the other. These treaties ended the American Revolution. For details on these treaties, visit

Hope you all have a wonderful Easter.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Jesus in the Garden Today at Christian Children's Authors

I am a regular contributor to the Christian Children's Authors blog. Today, I am speaking about Jesus in the garden of Gethsemane. You can find this post at

I'm also considering posting some of the past vacation Bible school lessons I've created at my personal blog. What do you think of this idea? Is this something you might be looking for?

I'll be blogging tomorrow for the Blogging from A to Z April Challenge, but probably not online much. Wishing all of you a blessed Easter.

Blogging from A to Z April Challenge - P #atozchallenge

Almost at the end of week 3 of the Blogging from A to Z April Challenge. I'm typing up this post to distract me from working on something I would rather avoid right now. Does that make me bad?

Psychalgia - mental pain or distress. There are days my kids cause me this.

Perennials - Our flowers beds feature a variety of perennials. From astilbes and hostas to liatrises and yarrows, I love exploring with colors in the garden. Now, if my thumb was a little less brown, things would be perfect.

Paul Revere's Ride - Paul Revere and William Dawes set off across the countryside on April 18, 1775 rousing hundreds of Minutemen who armed themselves to oppose the incoming British troops. This ride would become the inspiration for a poem by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. To learn more, you can visit

On a side note, I had to memorize Longfellow's poem in its entirety as a high school assignment. It seemed silly at the time, but I can still recall bits and pieces of it by heart nearly 30 years later.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Blogging from A to Z April Challenge - O #atozchallenge

More than halfway through week 3 of the Blogging from A to Z April Challenge. Hope you're enjoying my posts.

Obmutescent - speechless; persistently silent. I doubt anyone would ever accuse me of this.

Oils - as in essential oils and cooking oils. Both are natural cleaning solutions. Essential oils can help clean hair brushes, shower doors, and gum-encrusted items. See here for more uses. Cooking oils can clean cast iron pans, help get paint off your hands, and buff stainless steel surfaces. I use oil olive to season the grates on our gas grill. For more uses, click here.

On the Banks of Plum Creek - The fourth book of the Little House Series, On the Banks of Plum Creek by Laura Ingalls Wilder tells the story of life for the Ingalls family on the banks of Plum Creek in Minnesota. They purchased a sod house from Mr. Hanson, but then Pa built a clean new house beside the creek, buying all the materials on credit, intending to pay for them with the fall wheat harvest. But then the grasshoppers came; millions of them descended over the countryside and destroyed the wheat crop.

Though a book filled with many difficulties, it ends on an optimistic note with a satisfied Laura patting her dog Jack's furry forehead. It's Christmas Eve, another blizzard is on the way, and there is no money for presents. But all Laura can think of is how happy she is to have Pa home again now that he has returned from back east where he had gone to find work.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

CFBA: Lip Reading by Harry Kraus

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Lip Reading
David C. Cook (March 1, 2014)
Harry Kraus


A Word from Harry:

I started writing my first novel during my last year of surgery training at UK. I was a chief resident, and started writing Stainless Steal Hearts in a call room at the Veteran's Administration Hospital in Lexington. It was a crazy time to write! I had a very demanding schedule, often spending days and nights in the hospital. I had two sons at that time, and I recognized the wisdom in my wife's urging: "Now doesn't seem the right time for this dream."

My experience as a writer is far from typical. Having received my formal training in biology and chemistry and medicine, my only preparation for a writing career was a love for reading. The longest thing I'd written before my first novel was a term paper in undergraduate school. My first novel was accepted by Crossway Books and published in 1994, and it wasn't until after I had FOUR published novels that I even opened a book of instruction about the craft of writing fiction. This is not what I recommend to others! Yes, I was successful, but I was bending the "rules" without knowing it. I had a natural talent for plotting, but I realize my initial success may have stunted my growth as a writer. I'd have made faster progress if I'd have gone to the fiction teachers sooner.

I have three sons: Joel, Evan, and Samuel. Look closely in all of my books and you'll see them there. My lovely wife, Kris, provides the basic composition for all those beautiful, athletic, dedicated women in my novels.


She Could Save Millions, or Save Herself

She just needs a little longer. She’s really close. Dr. Rebecca Jackson, a medical researcher, stands on the verge of a breakthrough that will transform medicine. But she soon discovers the reason behind the miraculous progress in her research, and it leaves her with a nearly impossible choice . . . and little time to decide. More than her research is at stake. And more threatens it than this latest revelation. Something she’s tried hard to cover up. There is a high cost to some things in medicine and it’s not always the patient who pays. Can Rebecca find the faith and wisdom she needs to make the right call? The clock is ticking and the pressure is on.

If you would like to read the first chapter of Lip Reading, go HERE.

Blogging from A to Z April Challenge - N #atozchallenge

It's another fine day in the Blogging from A to Z Challenge. Hope all of you are managing to keep up the pace of this exciting and fun blogging event. Today's post was inspired by overnight events.

Névé - granular snow; field of granular snow. According to Merriam-Webster, this partially compacted granular snow forms the surface part of the upper end of a glacier.

Nature (as in Mother Nature) - Imagine the scene. The kids have been in shorts and T-shirts the past several days, as temperatures have been in the high 60s to mid 70s. Tulip leaves have sprouted out of the ground and purple crocus fill the flowers beds. The dwarf cherry tree even has some buds. As I marched down to the mailbox yesterday in a torrential downpour, I kept thinking "April showers bring May flowers." This morning, however, we opened to the blinds to a blanket of white, heavy snow. This past winter was one that had even the girls complaining about how much Mother Nature dumped on us. Definitely not what we were looking for a few days before Easter. The bitter winds this morning sure aren't helping.

Nor’easter - Since we're on the topic of snow today, we'll dedicate this last item to the type of massive storm no one likes to hear about. A nor’easter, given its name from the direction the wind is coming, is a macro-scale storm along the upper East Coast and Atlantic Canada. In February 1978, meteorologists had predicted a large storm for the Northeast. When the pre-dawn flakes didn't appear on February 5, people discounted the reports and went about their day. Later on, hurricane-force winds and whiteout conditions caused gridlock on the highways, forcing drivers to abandon their cars. Lasting through February 7, snowdrifts trapped people in their homes and places of business. Record snowfall left residents of Massachusetts and Rhode Island without heat, water or electricity for more than a week; approximately 10,000 sought refuge in shelters. Severe flooding damaged or destroyed homes on the Long Island Sound and Cape Cod Bay. An estimated 100 people died as a result of the storm. To read more about major blizzards in U.S. history, visit

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Divergent: Original Motion Picture Score Releases Today!

Well, there has to be something good about Tax Day. Today is also the release of the Divergent: Original Motion Picture Score. Did you see the movie? Did you read the books? The Lil' Diva is a huge fan. Any time we ask her to do anything she doesn't like she says, "I'm Divergent. And I can't be controlled."

Book Spotlight: Nine Days by Christine Pisera Naman

Twenty-three year-old Mary Grace Mastrianni returns home to face her past. Having had a lonely childhood after the painful death of her mother, she thought she left it all behind her when she escaped to New York City to attend college and build a new life. But after being forced to return to sell the family home, memories of her early years surround her, making her come to terms with unresolved feelings and desires she had pushed away for so long. Finding her mother's tattered and worn sweater that has not been touched since the day of her mother s passing, Mary Grace apprehensively puts it on, wrapping it around herself for comfort. Teary-eyed, she slides her hand into its pocket to discover a yellowing square of paper on which a Novena is printed. The prayer promises that any request will be granted as long as the person fervently prays the prayer in church for nine consecutive days. Mary Grace, who has often found herself lacking faith, decides to stay in town just long enough to pray the Novena. In her heart she holds a very special request. As Mary Grace dutifully proceeds along her nine day journey of prayer she undoubtedly feels her faith growing. The beauty of God surrounds her but she can t help but wonder if her most heartfelt prayer will be answered. Nine Days is the story of one woman s discovery of the presence of God s amazing grace.

Paperback: 112 pages
Publisher: Kirk House Publisher (April 1, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 193379478X
ISBN-13: 978-1933794785

Purchase here!

Praise for Christine Pisera Naman’s previous books:

Praise for Faces of Hope: Babies Born on 9/11:
“Christina was given to us on September 11th, 2001, one of 50 babies born that day to be pictured in a book called Faces of Hope. On either side of her photo in that book were simple wishes for a child’s life. ‘I hope you help those in need,’ read one. ‘I hope you know all of the words to the National Anthem and sing it with your hand over your heart. I hope you jump in rain puddles.’ If there are rain puddles in heaven, Christina is jumping in themtoday.” --President Barack Obama, in his address at the Tucson memorial event for those killed by gunfire, making reference to Faces of Hope as he spoke of nine year-old Christina Taylor-Green

Praise for The Believers:
"Christine Naman is a delightful storyteller and brings thoughtfulness, style and faith to the printed page." -- Gary Jansen, author of Exercising Your Soul and Holy Ghosts

Honorable Mention at the 2013 New York Book Festival Awards in Spiritual Book Category

Praise for Caterpillar Kisses:
“If it's true that all we ever need to know we learned in kindergarten, this gift book is a fount of simple but necessary insights.” --Publishers Weekly

“Caterpillar Kisses by Christine Pisera Naman is a book you don't want to miss… Give this book to anyone who wants and needs to see the magic in the world.” --Armchair Interviews

Praise for Christmas Lights:
“…Proof that a quiet afternoon spent reading can, through stories of family, inspiration, and God’s grace, ultimately change a reader’s perspective or reinvigorate their thriving holiday spirit.” --Happy Tonic Blog

“Alternately laugh-out-loud funny and poignant, Christmas Lights celebrates the most significant aspects of the season. Small, beautifully designed, and full of festive cheer, it is the ideal gift for anyone longing to rediscover the magic of Christmas.”--Image Catholic Books

Christine Pisera Naman is the author of six books including, Faces of Hope 10 Years Later (Health Communications, 2011), The Believers (Kirk House Publishers, 2011), Christmas Lights (Random House, 2007), Caterpillar Kisses (Random House, 2005), Faces of Hope (Health Communications, 2002). Christine has appeared on many national television programs including the Today Show and Fox & Friends, featured in a variety of national and local print and online outlets and interviewed on numerous radio shows around the country. Prior to her illustrious writing career, Christine was a Catholic school Kindergarten teacher. For additional information please visit her at

Blogging from A to Z April Challenge - M #atozchallenge

Moving right along with the Blogging from A to Z April Challenge. Today, I also have a neat post up at The Book Connection blog. It's all about books--or should I say, book decor. You can check it out here.

Missal - book containing complete service for mass. I remember these from the Catholic church I attended as a child and young adult.

Mold and mildew - Talk about yuck. This can ruin a lot of things (like books) and can create health issues for some. offers three ways to kill mold naturally in this article. I knew about vinegar, but I didn't know about the others. Mother Nature Network has this article on how to tackle mildew naturally.

Mortal Instruments Series - My daughter just borrowed the first book of this series, City of Bones, from the library. This fantasy series has already captured her attention and she is more than half way through the book. Probably not something I would read, but she and I usually have very different tastes in reading material. Have you read any of these books yet?

Monday, April 14, 2014

Bargain Kindle Book: Bible Feasts by Donna Baer

THE BIBLE'S FEASTS is an engaging summary of the Bible’s winsome narrative of redemption, viewed through the lens of Israel’s feasts. Since these feasts construct a framework for understanding all of redemptive history, they provide a template for describing the major events in the Bible and the important doctrines of the Christian faith. The sizzle that makes this approach to understanding the Scriptures so compelling is remarkable: The Messiah’s death, burial and resurrection are depicted clearly in the feasts themselves, and each event actually occurred on the day of the feast which predicted it!

Here's what great biblical thinkers have to say about THE BIBLE'S FEASTS:

In these pages, the Feasts of Israel span the centuries, coming to life not as ancient rituals but as a framework for all of redemptive story. Written to engage the teenage mind, but also instructive for the rest of us, we discover that the feasts of Israel are rich with prophecy and present day application. Proof of this book’s relevance is that Donna has taught its contents to many teenagers who, for the first time, see the Old Testament not as an ancient narrative, but a life-changing account of God’s intervention into human history. Read it, learn from it and recommend it to your friends.

Dr. Erwin W. Lutzer, Senior Pastor
The Moody Church

Some years ago my wife and I--both Jewish believers in the Messiah-- wrote a book entitled the Fall Feasts of Israel to try and explain these three great biblical festivals to both Christians and Jewish people. It was our hope to help the reader understand the festival and discover the fulfillment of the festivals in Jesus the Messiah. Our book was geared towards adults but it was always my hope that someone would write a book relating these magnificent truths to young people. Donna Baer has now written this book and it is my pleasure to recommend the Bible's Feasts to you and especially to Christian teenagers. I also believe the Bible's Feasts will be helpful to young people who have not yet accepted Jesus as their Messiah and are seeking spiritual solutions to the everyday challenges they face.

Dr. Mitch Glaser
President Chosen People Ministries

Imagine the long sweep of Biblical history falling into place, making good sense, in one or two sittings with this brief book. How engaging for both teens and lifelong learners to consider the symbolic and prophetic meanings of the Feasts--of celebrations!--all fulfilled, and consummated, in Christ. Though I personally still hold prophetic fulfillment with questions, this thoughtful book helps us place our lives in the world's most substantial and beautiful love story—God's.

Kelly Monroe Kullberg
Founder, Veritas Forum

While many seek to replace the narrative of sin and redemption in the pages of scripture with a storyline that fits their own agenda, Donna has captured the redemptive meaning of the Feasts of Israel, evidencing that God's plan of salvation was always central to the life of Israel and is the source of true hope for each of us today. For those who believe the Old Testament lacks relevance for faith in the 21st century, discovering the imagery of Christ and his love for us through an understanding of the Feasts will awaken your passion for sharing the gospel. A book for all ages, make this an opportunity to deepen your understanding of Christ and his mission -- and share it with others.

Sarah Flashing
Director, The Center for Women of Faith in Culture

This STUDY GUIDE accompanies THE BIBLE'S FEASTS, part of the Theology for Novices Series. This Guide not only reinforces material covered in the companion book, but also teaches new information using drills and mnemonics. The separate LEADER'S EDITION provides useful background information, along with creative discussion tips. Ideal for individual or group studies, these books will engage your mind, strengthen your faith, and kindle in you a love for the Scriptures.

File Size: 255 KB
Print Length: 109 pages
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
Language: English