18 October 2015

I Hate Goodbyes...



Yes, I truly hate goodbyes but there comes a time when nothing else should be said.

I have written and posted over 1230 posts in the years I kept this blog going and above all,
enjoyed meeting the kindred spirits who shared their thoughts and deeds.

Photos are often worth a thousand words I am told and the incredible pictures I have seen on the many blogs I have visited proved it. Thank you all for sharing!!

So this is goodbye...

Life is made of many such moments and while I do not like to admit, the hours are becoming more and more precious as I get (wiser) older. Like many people I find myself facing a few challenges and I value privacy more than anything else at this time. 

I wanted to thank each and every person who so kindly visited and commented on posts! I treasure each friendly line! 


Winnie said it so much better than I!

God bless,





17 October 2015

When Calls The Heart, DVD reviews

  • Studio: Shout! Factory
  • DVD Release Date: September 8, 2015
  • Run Time: 84 minutes

OVERVIEW

From celebrated author Janette Oke (The Love Comes Softly series) comes a rigorous and romantic adventure as epic as the wide frontier. Erin Krakow (Army Wives), Daniel Lissing (Eye Candy), Jack Wagner (Melrose Place) and Lori Loughlin (Full House, 90210) star in When Calls The Heart, "a beautiful story with roots in relationships, self-empowerment, and the enduring power of love", (Common Sense Media). 


Jack and Elizabeth leave Hope Valley and rush back to the city of Hamilton when they learn that Jacks’ brother, Tom, was involved in an automobile accident... with Elizabeth’s sister, Julie! But Tom and Julie are hiding something about the incident, a deceit that puts Jack and Elizabeth at odds with their families… and with each other. Their trip is further complicated when Tom and Julie endeavor to run off together (via train this time) and Elizabeth’s father offers Jack a job: an offer that puts Jack and Elizabeth’s fledgling romance in peril yet again.






  • Studio: Shout! Factory
  • DVD Release Date: October 13, 2015
  • Run Time: 84 minutes
  • ASIN: B0112HPTSC

OVERVIEW:


While Jack and Elizabeth’s relationship has cooled following their arguments in Hamilton, Jack is hot on the trail of a counterfeiter right in Hope Valley! When he finds the culprit, a two-fisted brawl ensues as Jack apprehends the man. Seeing Jack in danger prompts Elizabeth to confront her feelings and seek him out… but she inadvertently sets Rip, Jack’s dog, loose at the same time. As a violent storm bears down on Hope Valley, Jack and Elizabeth search for Rip and take shelter in an old mineshaft together. But the storm won’t be escaped so easily, and the unstable shaft begins to collapse…



My thoughts on both offerings:


My family has enjoyed very much this series inspired by Janette Oke's novel of the rugged Canadian frontier. From the exclusive behind the scenes interviews it appears the actors also feels the same and perhaps we might see more episodes in the future!

In these latest two episodes of When Calls The Heart we see a deeper relationship evolving between the honest and trustworthy Mountie and Elizabeth the city born teacher whilst both characters demonstrated their love and care for Hope Valley, the community they live in and its citizens. 
Of course as in any relationship there are always some rocky moments...
And if some of the developments are a little predictable, it is easily forgiven as we find our favourites amongst the series. Let's not forget the great sceneries and beautiful costumes!

There is no denying the chemistry between both main characters is owed to a good script and the sterling reputation of its director! 
When Calls The Heart series 1 and 2 reminds us of Little House On The Prairie, a timeless sitcom any family may sit down with and enjoy even today. 
So When Calls The Heart continues in a tradition of good family entertainment with excellent values for young viewers to grow with at the opposite of Hollywood's often tasteless assaults on our senses!

This Hallmark series is well worth checking if you are looking for something to gather the family around and spend quality time!

5 Stars for both episodes!!


Michael Landon Jr. – Executive Producer:  Michael Landon Jr., son of the late television legend Michael Landon, has been in the film business for over 25 years.  With two of the highest rated films in the history of the Hallmark channel, and several top ten releases targeted to the Christian market, Michael has become known for creating heartfelt, inspiring films that connect to the family.  He has developed and/or produced, directed, and written screenplays for Fox, CBS, NBC, Disney, Sony, Lifetime, and others.

About Word Entertainment:  A leader in the music industry for over 60 years, Word Entertainment, a Warner/Curb company, is a unique, comprehensive entertainment company comprised of multi-faceted artist service departments including publishing, merchandising, booking, and online initiatives. Word Entertainment represents some of the top names and brands in music, including Meredith Andrews, Chris August, BarlowGirl, Francesca Battistelli, Big Daddy Weave, Jason Castro, Patrick Ryan Clark, Everfound, for KING and COUNTRY, Group 1 Crew, Love and The Outcome, Dara Maclean, Point Of Grace and Sidewalk Prophets and is home to 25 Entertainment, Word Distribution (representing Curb Records and Big Idea/VeggieTales among others), Word Print, Word Films, Word Music Publishing and Word Label Group’s Word Records, Word Worship and Fervent Records.


Disclaimer: I received a copy of the DVD courtesy of EDIFY MEDIA Inc. as part of the series promotion. I am disclosing this in accordance with the FTC 16 CFR, Part 255 'Guides concerning the use of endorsements and testimonials in advertising. I was not asked to write a positive review and all opinions expressed are entirely my own. 




16 October 2015

Adrenaline, DVD review


  • Studio: Word Films
  • DVD Release Date: September 8, 2015
  • Run Time: 93 minutes
  • ASIN: B00ZCIQ3U6

OVERVIEW:

After a crash leaves him paralyzed, drag racer Joseph Jenkins thinks his life is over. But his hospital roommate Elijah slowly gives him new perspective. When he returns home, his Uncle Paul gets him competing again---and winning. But can he face his nemesis Jason Skynard, the man he was challenging when the accident happened?

My thoughts:

Sometime life takes such a turn we think all is over and it is certainly the case for Joseph when he crashes and finds himself in hospital. 
There is however no rain without a rainbow and meeting Elijah is definitively the turnover point in Joseph's life who reluctantly learns to appreciate the older man's humour as he waits patiently for a heart transplant. For Elijah, everything is possible with God by your side, even the strength of living in and out of hospital for the last 40 years.
For Joseph, life without the thrill of racing feels hopeless but his friendly therapist tells him there is always hope and with hard work, nothing is impossible.

This is story that will touch you on many levels even if you are not into drag racing! John Schneider brings us as usual his own brand of faith and the supporting cast showcases well all the emotions each of the characters feels as the story develops.


I give it a 4 stars!


About Word Entertainment:  A leader in the music industry for over 60 years, Word Entertainment, a Warner/Curb company, is a unique, comprehensive entertainment company comprised of multi-faceted artist service departments including publishing, merchandising, booking, and online initiatives. Word Entertainment represents some of the top names and brands in music, including Meredith Andrews, Chris August, BarlowGirl, Francesca Battistelli, Big Daddy Weave, Jason Castro, Patrick Ryan Clark, Everfound, for KING and COUNTRY, Group 1 Crew, Love & The Outcome, Dara Maclean, Point Of Grace and Sidewalk Prophets and is home to 25 Entertainment, Word Distribution (representing Curb Records and Big Idea/Veggie Tales among others), Word Print, Word Films, Word Music Publishing and Word Label Group’s Word Records, Word Worship and Fervent Records.


Disclaimer: I received a copy of the DVD courtesy of EDIFY MEDIA Inc. as part of the series promotion. I am disclosing this in accordance with the FTC 16 CFR, Part 255 'Guides concerning the use of endorsements and testimonials in advertising. I was not asked to write a positive review and all opinions expressed are entirely my own. 






15 October 2015

Faces Of Courage: Intimate Portraits Of Women On The Edge


  • Hardcover: 344 pages
  • Publisher: Val De Grace (October 14, 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-13: 978-0984884988


Overview:

Mark Tuschman is a man on a quest. For the past decade, he has journeyed across much of the developing world documenting the travails and triumphs of women living in very difficult circumstances. On a daily basis, millions of these women face crippling poverty, sexual violence, serious health problems for themselves and their children, and often a total denial of even their most basic human rights. 

In this extraordinary photo expose, Tuschman documents it all, along with the efforts by many international organizations, aid groups, and doctors and nurses to help these women and girls cope, heal, stand up for themselves and become all they can be. This is reality in the raw, but as Tuschman shows us, these women have an almost unbelievable strength and resilience, and theirs are faces of incomparable dignity and courage. 
The book comes with endorsements from major figures in the world of women’s health and human rights.

My thoughts:

Look deeply into the photo above and now read its description:


- In the rural Pali district of Rajasthan, India, where child marriage is widely practiced, American photographer Mark Tuschman is at the home of young Kala, a child bride. Elegantly dressed for her portrait in a red sari, she looks into the lens of Tuschman’s camera with great dignity. Kala was married when she was three months old so that her family could avoid the payment of a dowry. She is now 13 and in seventh grade. She is still living with her parents, but will soon go to her husband’s home where she will be deprived of the rest of her childhood, trapped in a cycle of poverty that will include years of household labor and childrearing and very possibly, domestic abuse.-

Let me first say upfront I have yet to read this (newly released) compilation of what too many women face everyday in our world but it immediately grabbed my interest! 

Marc Tuschman was unknown to me when I spotted the cover of his book and the related article (see HERE) but I immediately sensed this is a man who through the lenses of his camera brings us stories of unparalleled dimension. 

There you will find the many faces of hunger, deprivation, despair, faces that reminds us the viewers of child marriages leading too often to teen pregnancy, dowry abuse and domestic violence including rape, human trafficking and prostitution to name only a few...

Editorial reviews tells us it would appear the most remarkable of Tuschman's achievement is that it also reflect the hope each and everyone of these women hold deep into their heart...

I recommend you purchase, beg or borrow this one as I will!!

"Faces of Courage is a photo essay of staggering importance. Tuschman has traveled the world to bring back portraits of girls and women struggling against great odds to make something of their lives. His riveting photos open up a window into the hearts and souls of women and girls fighting violence, poor health, oppression, and lack of opportunity. This book will become a part of you and will encourage you in your efforts to make a difference in the world."
 
Ruth W. Messinger
President of the American Jewish World Service



About the Author:


Image result for photographer mark tuschman

For nearly a decade, Tuschman, a veteran freelance photographer of over 35 years, traveled to seventeen countries—India, Bangladesh, Vietnam, Laos, and Indonesia in Asia; Ghana, Nigeria, Ethiopia, Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania and Malawi in Africa; and Nicaragua, Guatemala, Peru, Ecuador and Trinidad in Latin America. 

Note to Readers: I would count this book as an excellent gift idea for the Holidays and NO I was not asked to mention this book by anyone!




05 October 2015

Breast Cancer Awareness and Knitting


(Photo source Google)

I always enjoy visiting other blogs sites and 2 Bags Full (you'll love her latest creation!) reminded me only this week of a very important fact:

This October is once again National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Breast cancer is the second most common kind of cancer in women. About 1 in 8 women born today in the United States will get breast cancer at some point. 
The lifetime risk of cancer in women in the UK continues to rise just as fast (see statistics HERE).
The good news is that many women can survive breast cancer if it’s found and treated early. 

• If you are a woman age 40 to 49, talk with your doctor about when to start getting mammograms and how often to get them. 

• If you are a woman age 50 to 74, be sure to get a mammogram every 2 years. You may also choose to get them more often. 

Talk to a doctor about your risk for breast cancer, especially if a close family member of yours has had breast or ovarian cancer. Your doctor can help you decide when and how often to get mammograms. 

As the daughter of a breast cancer survivor, I take this advice seriously and awaited with some trepidation the results of last year's biopsy...my own! With the upcoming of an MRI of the suspicious breast this year, I urge every woman to take the step...
As any good boy scout will tell you, BE PREPARED is a good motto in this ongoing battle. Don't wait!

And now calling all knitters...Autumn is here and most of us find the season perfect to pick up our knitting needles!

A&S.indd

This October The Campaign for Wool will mark the beginning of UK Wool Week 2015 by partnering with some of the world’s most prestigious tailors, menswear brands and cloth producers. 

Here is a sample of activities:
Monday 5th October 2015 saw two sheep breeds grazing ...the length of Savile Row! 


On Friday 9th October, The Campaign for Wool will be supporting ‘Woolly Hat Day’ in support of ‘The Mission to Seafarers’ charity that provides care for seafarers around the world. In the US, there is the Christmas at Sea program: be sure to check it out!

WHD15

There are many activities across the UK alone so check it out (HERE) and (HERE) and don't miss related events from around the globe (HERE)!

Finally let me advocate stress (any!) has been shown to lighten up with any good hobby.
Knitting happens to be one of those for me (sketching is another) and if you are a kindred spirit, you know what I mean. Knit one, purl one...pushes that negative stress away!

Back to knitting my Royal Luxury lapblanket
P.S. If you are not a member of FREE PATTERNS yet, check it out (HERE)

Note to readers: Any above mention of charities, websites or blogs reflects only my own enthusiasm and was not requested!



30 September 2015

Good Thoughts


(Photo source Google)

Sometimes on the way to your dream you get lost 
and find a better one!



29 September 2015

On Reading And Other Things...


As I have shared with readers this year has seen a few challenges in my life including a pesky eye problem which I am told cannot be diagnosed or cured...because of lack of research...

After seeing a fair amount of doctors, I have been told to learn to live with 'it' as no change has been detected. Easier said than done, the original problem remains and it has taken a toll on life in more ways than I ever imagine. No complaints though, there is worse but it upset my one favourite pastime...you guessed it, READING!

It would appear I must alter my banner from 'Book Reviewer'...Sad!

Still, KINDLE has been a lifesaver as I can adjust the print (providing I can keep at bay the recurring headaches...).
Thus I have been able to enjoy a few good books (particularly as I have been flying a lot lately and layovers are sometimes lengthy).

So here are a couple of titles I would like to bring to your attention if you enjoy reading:

The House By The Dvina: A Russian Childhood by Eugenie Fraser

  • ISBN-13: 978-1845965730

Synopsis:


The House by the Dvina is the riveting story of two families separated in culture and geography but bound together by a Russian-Scottish marriage. It includes episodes as romantic and dramatic as any in fiction: the purchase by the author's great-grandfather of a peasant girl with whom he had fallen in love; the desperate sledge journey in the depths of winter made by her grandmother to intercede with Tsar Aleksandr II for her husband; the extraordinary courtship of her parents; and her Scottish granny being caught up in the abortive revolution of 1905.
Eugenie Fraser herself was brought up in Russia but was taken on visits to Scotland. She marvellously evokes a child's reactions to two totally different environments, sets of customs and family backgrounds, while the characters are beautifully drawn and splendidly memorable.
With the events of 1914 to 1920 - the war with Germany, the Revolution, the murder of the Tsar and the withdrawal of the Allied Intervention in the north - came the disintegration of Russia and of family life. The stark realities of hunger, deprivation and fear are sharply contrasted with the adventures of childhood. The reader shares the family's suspense and concern about the fates of its members and relives with Eugenie her final escape to Scotland.
In The House by the Dvina, Eugenie Fraser has vividly and poignantly portrayed a way of life that finally disappeared in violence and tragedy.


What I thought:


I have always been fascinated by the Russian history and particularly the events leading to its revolution. This beautifully written autobiography will capture your imagination with its romance and dramatic developments. 

And it all starts with the author's great grandfather purchasing a peasant girl with whom he had fallen in love..
.
To note: the book includes many photos to recapture a world gone by!

One of the best books I have read lately and rating 5 stars!!


The Casual Vacancy by J.K. Rowling



  • ISBN-13: 978-0316228589

Synopsis:

A big novel about a small town...
When Barry Fairbrother dies in his early forties, the town of Pagford is left in shock.
Pagford is, seemingly, an English idyll, with a cobbled market square and an ancient abbey, but what lies behind the pretty fa├žade is a town at war.
Rich at war with poor, teenagers at war with their parents, wives at war with their husbands, teachers at war with their pupils...Pagford is not what it first seems.
And the empty seat left by Barry on the parish council soon becomes the catalyst for the biggest war the town has yet seen. Who will triumph in an election fraught with passion, duplicity, and unexpected revelations?

The Casual Vacancy is J.K. Rowling's first novel for adults. It is the work of a storyteller like no other.

My thoughts:

I purchased this novel during a lengthy layover (that's what happens when you miss your flight!) and thought the story to be about Pagford, an idyllic village with colourful characters strolling amongst their cobbled market square, tending their little gardens etc...One look at the cover and I thought I was on a good thing...

Far from being the page turner I expected this one was disappointing. In fact it was hard to get into it and at 639 pages, more than I wanted to read. Those who are fans of the author and her work might well appreciate it but I can only declare it 'not my cup of tea'. I never bothered reading the Harry Potter series and fell asleep not one but twice through the movie...

To be noted: A movie was made of the book starring none other than the talented Michael Gambon so my suggestion is try that instead, it might make more sense!

I'll rate this one 3 stars!



Happy reading!



26 September 2015

When Calls The Heart: Heart Of The Family



  • Studio: Shout! Factory
  • DVD Release Date: August 4, 2015
  • Run Time: 88 minutes

OVERVIEW:
(From AMAZON)

From celebrated author Janette Oke (The Love Comes Softly series) comes a rigorous and romantic adventure as epic as the wide frontier. Erin Krakow (Army Wives), Daniel Lissing (Eye Candy) and Lori Loughlin (Full House, 90210) star in When Calls The Heart, "a beautiful story with roots in relationships, self-empowerment, and the enduring power of love", (Common Sense Media). 


Elizabeth returns to Hope Valley and immediately volunteers to look after a neighbor’s rural homestead… and his two children, an undertaking which proves to be a bigger chore than she’d imagined. But when Jack lends a hand, and they wind up chatting by the fire, all seems right in Hope Valley and the world. Meanwhile, in Hamilton, Bill Avery sets about busting a counterfeiting ring wide open, an endeavor which surprisingly leads him to Hope Valley, where he mysteriously declines Jack’s help. But Bill isn’t the only big-town visitor: Elizabeth is even more surprised to see her former suitor, Charles Kensington, standing right in the middle of her schoolhouse!


MY THOUGHTS:

Gather the family together (no electronics allowed), a cup of something sweet and warm and enjoy one of the latest episodes of this well known series!
Michael Landon Jr. directorial talents and Janette Oke's inspirational novel comes to life once more in this episode and the actors are so likable, you cannot but get into the story. In fact it is a toss between that beautiful Mountie uniform and the ladies' finery!

This is everything in one: a bit of romance, an adventure and a lesson for any of us: together as a family, we can overcome obstacles no matter how trivial or serious. 

This is one of those series which you might say is timeless, the scenery featured is breathtaking and the ladies' costumes continues to be a hit with any romantic! 

This one was a 5 Stars!


Michael Landon Jr. – Executive Producer:  Michael Landon Jr., son of the late television legend Michael Landon, has been in the film business for over 25 years.  With two of the highest rated films in the history of the Hallmark channel, and several top ten releases targeted to the Christian market, Michael has become known for creating heartfelt, inspiring films that connect to the family.  He has developed and/or produced, directed, and written screenplays for Fox, CBS, NBC, Disney, Sony, Lifetime, and others.

About Word Entertainment:  A leader in the music industry for over 60 years, Word Entertainment, a Warner/Curb company, is a unique, comprehensive entertainment company comprised of multi-faceted artist service departments including publishing, merchandising, booking, and online initiatives. Word Entertainment represents some of the top names and brands in music, including Meredith Andrews, Chris August, BarlowGirl, Francesca Battistelli, Big Daddy Weave, Jason Castro, Patrick Ryan Clark, Everfound, for KING & COUNTRY, Group 1 Crew, Love & The Outcome, Dara Maclean, Point Of Grace and Sidewalk Prophets and is home to 25 Entertainment, Word Distribution (representing Curb Records and Big Idea/VeggieTales among others), Word Print, Word Films, Word Music Publishing and Word Label Group’s Word Records, Word Worship and Fervent Records.


Disclaimer: I received a copy of the DVD courtesy of EDIFY MEDIA Inc. as part of the series promotion. I am disclosing this in accordance with the FTC 16 CFR, Part 255 'Guides concerning the use of endorsements and testimonials in advertising. I was not asked to write a positive review and all opinions expressed are entirely my own. 





25 September 2015

Laughter, Imagination and Dreams...




Laughter is timeless,
Imagination has no age,
Dreams are forever.

~Walt Disney~



(Photos source Google)



23 September 2015

When Calls The Heart: Heart And Soul, DVD review


  • Studio: Shout! Factory
  • DVD Release Date: June 23, 2015
  • Run Time: 88 minutes
  • ASIN: B00UART216


Overview:


From celebrated author Janette Oke (The Love Comes Softly series) comes a rigorous and romantic adventure as epic as the wide frontier. Erin Krakow (Army Wives), Daniel Lissing (Eye Candy) and Lori Laughlin (Full House, 90210) star in When Calls The Heart, "a beautiful story with roots in relationships, self-empowerment, and the enduring power of love", (Common Sense Media). 


Further complicating their new romance, Jack and Elizabeth must part company so that Jack can return to Hope Valley and his duties as a Mountie. Elizabeth, however, remains in Hamilton, where she finds herself tending to her family and spending time with the handsome Charles Kensington. Meanwhile, back in Hope Valley, Rosemary has been offered a role in a play in San Francisco and makes preparations to leave with her two producers. When Jack learns that the "producers", have taken Rosemary in the opposite direction, for New York, he races after them to rescue her… a gamble that ends up being the talk of the town when they spend a night together


(Source Amazon)

My thoughts:

An Hallmark favourite with many to date who remember Little House On The Prairie sitcom, this series is inspired by Janette Oke's novel about the rugged Canadian frontier and produced by non other than Michael Landon Jr. 

So far each episode highlighted the life in a small frontier town which depend entirely on mining until the company proves to be guilty of endangering its employees and forced to close its doors. 
Enter a lumber company, new faces and of course new developments. Our heroes remain the amiable Mountie and the young socialite turned teacher, both ready to make a difference in the community.

An enduring series, When Calls The Heart: Heart and Soul is perfect for family viewing and offers a chance to chat about good Christian values without laying a heavy hand.

Heart and Soul episode features Elizabeth's family home and to spice it just a little, a childhood friend and suitor whom her parents believes perfect for her.
Will Elizabeth follow her parents wishes or her heart?

Exquisite costumes and great scenery sets the over all atmosphere and one can forgive the occasional overacting in exchange for clean language and no violence.

4 Stars!

Note: DVD includes exclusive behind the scenes interviews.



Disclaimer: I received a copy of the DVD courtesy of EDIFY MEDIA Inc. as part of the series promotion. I am disclosing this in accordance with the FTC 16 CFR, Part 255 'Guides concerning the use of endorsements and testimonials in advertising. I was not asked to write a positive review and all opinions expressed are entirely my own. 





22 September 2015

Shame On That Employee!


We hear all too often bad news and shy away from listening to much more. That said, too much is at stake for us to ignore what is happening in the world. 

Like most of you I have my (listening) priorities and these ride for the moment on the subjects of the mass exodus of refugees from Syria, Afghanistan, Iraq etc...and of course the arrival of Pope Francis in the US.  

I cannot imagine for a moment what these families have experienced as they flee their countries, often leaving loved ones behind, hoping to find a measure of security and a future for their children! My prayers goes to them!

As to Pope Francis, I find this man of peace the one true hope for our world! 

Injustice has changed the face of our Earth, and too often we believe it is not our responsibility to do something about it. 

I am certain Pope Francis will make a few people squirm in the next few days...

And now for Axel and his companion (see photo above): 

'Captain Jason Haag, a former Marine who served tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, was attending a gala for Service Dog of the Year in Los Angeles where his German shepherd, Axel, was awarded the top honor. 

Jason Haag and his wife were scheduled to fly home to Fredericksburg, Va. after the event but as they were boarding, an American Airlines gate agent reportedly pulled him out of the line, told the veteran the flight was full and demanded proof that Axel was a real service dog.'
(source HERE)

Really Folks? This honourable man served his country yet both he and his rightwing 'man' (Axel in this case) and family were subject to such indifference? 

For shame!

Note: I do not like to voice an opinion usually but this one felt like a good cause! Where would we be without our veterans and the men and women who serve God and Country!!



19 September 2015

Amongst The Broken Dreams...

Brian Skoloff, Thumper: In this Thursday, Sept. 17, 2015, photo, Associated Press reporter Brian Skoloff pets "Thumper," a 70-pound lab, moments after the dog crawled out from beneath a crawl space of her owner's home, covered in ash and soot in a wildfire evacuation zone near Middletown, Calif. Skoloff returned the dog to his owner Lawrence Ross. Officials had not let residents return since the fire erupted about 100 miles north of San Francisco, scorching thousands of acres and reducing more than 800 homes to ash. Thumper survived among homes burned to their foundations and the five days she had been alone at the house that miraculously remained unscathed.

(Photo source © AP Photo/Brian Skoloff)

As one owner who thought her mountain cabin has gone up in smoke this Summer, I can only imagine the heavy heart of Thumper's owner when he thought her lost!

Officials no longer let residents return in Middletown, California, since the fire erupted Saturday about 100 miles north of San Francisco, scorching thousands of acres and reducing more than 800 homes to ash.
Amongst them a 76 year old man named Ross thought he lost his best friend...

When a journalist offered to check out the area, I imagine he never guessed the outcome!

As you can see in the above photo this Thursday, Sept. 17, 2015, Associated Press reporter Brian Skoloff pets "Thumper," a 70-pound lab, moments after the dog crawled out from beneath a crawl space of her owner's home, covered in ash and soot.

You can read the whole story (HERE) and see Thumper on her way to be reunited with her master!

Way to go Brian!!



18 September 2015

For Lucienne


(Photo source HERE)

You probably know how it feels...Wherever you are, you find yourself yearning to be elsewhere...

SKYPE helps of course but it is not the same as being near your loved ones. And sharing daily news means you feel what the others experience and you want to help, knowing all you can do from afar is offer prayers and encouragement.

And sometime you are so thoroughly confused you need a little help...just to keep sane...

I found the above print and could not resist sharing: it features a Corgi and MAC the Corgi gave his seal of approval!

And now I repeat...again and again...


Lord, make me an instrument of Thy peace;

where there is hatred, let me sow love;

where there is injury, pardon;

where there is doubt, faith;

where there is despair, hope;

where there is darkness, light;

and where there is sadness, joy.


(Source St Francis prayer)

Note: This post was written for a dear friend who only a few months after being the victim of a hit and skip accident (yes, the driver actually left the scene) and suffered countless brain surgeries as a result now slipped in the bathroom and broke a vertebra... 

Our prayers goes to you Lucienne!



17 September 2015

Ucommon: Find Your Voice, DVD review

Uncommon, DVD   -

Overview:

When the students of Rosewood High School lose their theater, music and dance departments due to budgets cuts, they create their own. Struggling to find the right script, music & choreography the students get advice from an uncommon source; the Bible!

Each student becomes uniquely influenced as they discover that God takes them personally. Equipped with unique talents, they bond together to prepare the perfect production by exploring the diversity of parables taught in the Bible. Fighting overwhelming challenges, the teens fight against political correctness to defend their privilege to worship, meet and perform.

Will months of constant bullying by the establishment defeat the production and dismantle their faith?Armed with expert legal counsel and unexpected help from Christian music’s finest, these teens realize what it means to be…UNCOMMON!




My thoughts:

Released on 1 Septembre 2015 Uncommon is definitively the sort of movie reminding you that we too often take the path of least resistance. Why else have we failed to oppose a school system where God has no place?
When do we take a stand for what we believe into? When do we fight back and really show our children what can be achieved when we 'love one another as He loves us'?

The story behind this movie is not the sort that will break the box offices by all means but you will remember and appreciate the earnest acting and familiar faces. The heartening message behind UNCOMMON will inspire anyone who believe in peace.  Our world has turned a blind eye on violence and bullying too often, particularly in our schools. Let's share this movie with any young adult to show them it is 'cool' to make a difference and fight for what is right!

A good family movie earning 5 stars! 





Disclaimer: I received a copy of the DVD courtesy of EDIFY MEDIA Inc. as part of the series promotion. I am disclosing this in accordance with the FTC 16 CFR, Part 255 'Guides concerning the use of endorsements and testimonials in advertising. I was not asked to write a positive review and all opinions expressed are entirely my own.