Risen

This book by Angela Hunt is based on the major motion picture that is currently in theaters. The original story is by Paul Aiello and screenplay by Kevin Reynolds and Paul Aiello. Roman Tribune Clavius is responsible for squelching the zealots in Jerusalem. When the body of the recently crucified Nazarene goes missing, Pilate gives Clavius the task of investigating, tracking down the radical followers, and finding the body. Rachel is a widowed Jewish woman who makes a living baking bread. After the death of her husband, she and Clavius enter a forbidden relationship. If her secret was made known, she would surely be stoned. Clavius searches for the missing body, questions possible followers, and gathers information but the questions out way the answers. When tragedy strikes in a personal manner, Clavius questions the Roman gods that he has spent his life praying to and serving. Will Clavius find the answers that he seeks? Will Rachel be able to truly love a man who is not her husband?

I was transported into this story within the first few pages. The author did an excellent job of making me feel like I was in the midst of Clavius’ investigation and Rachel’s searching. The story is mainly told from Clavius’ perspective which is unique from most post resurrection stories. He searches for the truth based on facts and learns about faith along the way. I really liked the explanations of Isaiah’s prophesies and Jewish Passover and how they relate to the Messiah. The relationship between Clavius and Rachel was outside of marriage but I felt that it was tastefully described. As both Clavius and Rachel search for the truth about Yeshua, their relationship resolves in an unexpected way that allows Rachel to show Clavius the love of Christ. This is a historical fiction so some liberties are taken with the story line. The author explains that Clavius and Rachel are fiction characters and would not have been present during some of the scenes she portrayed them in. There are other liberties that she explains at the end of the book. I did not find these liberties to be a deterrent and I felt that the gospel was explained well with an emphasis on God’s love. I would recommend this book to anyone who likes biblical historical fiction.

It is important to note that the author states at the end of the book that although Rachel’s character was created by Paul Aiello, her character did not make the cut for the movie. I am looking forward to seeing the movie, but I am glad to have read the book first so that I know Rachel’s side of the story. I have heard really good things about the movie and based on this book, I am sure that I will not be disappointed. Due to the Roman soldier violence in the movie, Plugged In review suggests that it is not suitable for younger children. You can read their detailed movie review HERE.

In accordance with the Federal Trade Commission I am required to disclose that Bethany House provided this book for free in exchange for my review. I was not required to write a positive review and the opinions I have expressed are my own.

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Risen, paperback
By Angela Hunt / Baker Books

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London Art Chase

This book, by award-winning recording artist Natalie Grant, is the first in the Glimmer Girls series and is a part of the Faithgirlz brand. Twins, Maddie and Mia, and their younger sister Lulu, visit London for the first time. Their mom is a singer and their dad is a musician. While they are performing their concerts, the girls explore London with their nanny. They visit the National Gallery and Maddie thinks she witnesses a painting theft but no one takes her concerns seriously. After seeing the man she thinks is the thief, she leads her sisters and nanny on a chase through London. With all of the misunderstandings and mishaps, can the Glimmer Girls solve the case?

Natalie Grant has always been one of my favorite Christian music artists. I was excited to see that she published this book series. Knowing that she has three daughters (including twins) makes the story even more fun. With an emphasis on prayer, the Christian message of God hearing us and helping us even with the little things is loud and clear. The message is wholesome, lessons are learned, mentoring is given when needed, and the differences between right and wrong are made clear. There is a time where Maddie runs away to chase the thief all by herself because no one believes her. She ends up being safe and everything turns out okay in the end, however, I would have liked there to be more consequences to her wrong actions. The mom mentions that there will be consequences but what they are was not brought to light. Based on other reviews that I read, this comes up in book two but I thought I would mention it as a disclaimer in case anyone would prefer to know that before letting their child read it. It could possibly be a good discussion moment. I would recommend this book for any young girls who are reading chapter books. My daughter (age 9) was immediately attracted to the cover when it arrived in the mail and she has already started reading it!

In accordance with the Federal Trade Commission I am required to disclose that ZonderKidz provided this book for free in exchange for my review. I was not required to write a positive review and the opinions I have expressed are my own.

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Order at Christian Book Distributors through the following link!

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London Art Chase
By Natalie Grant / Zondervan

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Spiritual Parenting in the First Five Years

This book by Callie Grant is subtitled: God’s Plan for Early Childhood Christian Discipleship. The premise of this book is that the first five years of a child’s life is fundamental to their development. This is the time that parents should start meeting the spiritual needs of their children just as they would meet their physical and emotional needs. The following is a summary of the book’s content:

Chapter 1: First Impressions:

Your child was born to believe. You were made to teach.

Chapter 2: Little Think Tanks:

Your child has great capacity for faith. You will help shape it.

Chapter 3: Unique Journeys:

Your child has a one-of-a-kind path. You are a shepherd.

Chapter 4: Personal Ties:

Your child has a special relationship with God. You can honor it.

Chapter 5: Golden Moments:

Your child will ask you about God.

Each chapter is only a few pages long (the book is only 37 pages total). However, I found this book to have very valuable information. There are personal stories from the author, quotes from well known writers such as C.S. Lewis, and encouraging advice. I feel that this would be a perfect inspirational gift for a new parent.

This book is available for Kindle on Amazon. You can also sign up at GrahamBlanchard to receive an e-copy for free (as of the time of publishing this blog post).

The publishing company, GrahamBlanchard.com, has parent and teacher resources to help inspire young children to praise and have a relationship with God. There are also several other books available and a mom blog.

In accordance with the Federal Trade Commission I am required to disclose that GrahamBlanchard provided this e-book for free in exchange for my review. I was not required to write a positive review and the opinions I have expressed are my own.

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February Cards Of Encouragement

Happy Valentine’s Month!

I would like to send YOU a card of encouragement in the mail!

I did receive some responses to my survey last month and I mailed out cards as promised!

Everyone loves to receive good old fashioned mail every once in awhile. With our age of internet and texting, personal mail is rare. So, every month I am going to send out cards of encouragement to whoever sends me their mailing address. I know that this means you have to trust me with your mailing address. For those who know me personally or who have been following my blog for awhile that will not be a problem. Please know that no one other than myself will have access to your personal information. Also, this is just an experiment. I will see how it goes for the next few months and then decide if I will continue doing this or not.

If you are interested in receiving a card from me, please click the link below and take a few minutes to fill out the information survey. This will record your mailing address so that I can mail you a card. Other questions are asked to help me customize the card to you and so that I know how you came to follow my blog. Feel free to share prayer requests, goals, areas that you need encouragement, etc. I will post this link every month so that if something changes, you can edit your information.

CARDS OF ENCOURAGEMENT INFORMATION SURVEY

Thank you all for following my blog. I sincerely hope that my posts are inspirational and encouraging to all of you who read them!

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(image found on Google Images)

Mama Needs A Do-Over – Free Book Giveaway!

CONGRATULATIONS TO MICHELLE B.
WINNER OF THE BOOK GIVEAWAY!

You have been notified with a message to the email address you provided. PLEASE RESPOND WITH YOUR MAILING ADDRESS WITHIN 5 DAYS AT:
hearttreasurescontact@yahoo.com
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This book by Lisa Pennington is subtitled: “Simple Steps To Turning A Hard Day Around.” The back cover captures the intended audience perfectly:

“Dirty dishes overflow the sink. Your two youngest kids just began their third round of hand-to-hand combat today. And now the washing machine won’t start. Visions of putting a home-cooked meal in the oven while the family plays happily in the living room evaporate amid scramming, complaining, and slammed doors–and that’s not even counting what the children are doing!”

The author gives personal stories, practical advice, all mixed with a dose of humor! At the end of each chapter, there are “simple assignments” which may consist of questions, instructions, scripture to look up and read, charting, journaling, etc.

To be honest, I am not a huge self-help book fan. I accepted the opportunity to read and review this book because the title was intriguing and it turns out that this book is a good read! There was not a whole lot of new advice that I felt I should follow, however, there were plenty of reminders of tools that I already knew but haven’t practiced in awhile. For a mom who has not had the opportunity to be mentored by experienced women, this would be a great book to glean practical advice and tools! The author’s humor and positive attitude made this book an easy read (even though I can’t relate to the desire of tearing apart a kitchen and remodeling it on my own)! I also loved how she sprinkled scripture throughout her chapters which was very encouraging! I can definitely see how this book would be especially helpful to a busy mom of young children (and/or many children) but it could be helpful to all moms in various stages of parenting!

In accordance with the Federal Trade Commission I am required to disclose that David C Cook provided this book for free in exchange for my review. I was not required to write a positive review and the opinions I have expressed are my own.

*****

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ENTER TO WIN A COPY OF:
MAMA NEEDS A DO-OVER

1. Entries will be accepted until midnight Sunday, February 14, 2016. One (1) winner will be chosen at random from the entries submitted.

2. On Monday, February 15, 2016 the top of this post will be updated with the announcement of the winner and I will attempt to contact the winner by the email they provide.

3. Winner must e-mail me with name (first & last) and mailing address within 5 days of announcement otherwise the book will be sent to a new winner. hearttreasurescontact@yahoo.com

Disclaimer: This is a free giveaway at the publisher’s expense, therefore, the publisher and Heart Treasures Blog is not responsible for loss or damage of the giveaway item(s). Giveaway open only to residents of the United States (unless you have a US Military address such as APO, FPO, etc.)

Click on the link below to enter! You may enter daily by going to this link!

ENTER HERE!

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Order at Christian Book Distributors through the following link!

I get credit for all purchases made through my CBD links!

Mama Needs a Do-Over: Simple Steps to Turning a Hard Day Around

By Lisa Pennington / David C. Cook

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My Vision Board

As some of you may know, I am a Independent Sales Consultant with NORWEX. This past weekend, I attended the Norwex Leadership Conference in Dallas, Texas. I had an amazing experience connecting with new friends who share the same passions. We learned so much about the Norwex company from a global perspective and great tips, tools, and steps that will help us be successful in our businesses. There are several things that I want to share with my blogging community that I think are great tools for any home business or of great importance to every day life (whether or not you are familiar with Norwex). So, I will be blogging about them on occasion this month!

For those of you who have never heard of Norwex, the Norwex mission statement is as follows:Mission_Statement_Web_Design

One of the things we heard over and over at the conference, is to dream big and set goals. I am sure that these two things are mentioned at any direct sales business conference but these apply to anyone in any situation. If we have dreams and goals for our lives, then we will actively pursue them. We will work harder to accomplish the things we want to accomplish. During one of the sessions I attended, the speaker suggested creating a “Vision Board.” Basically, something that you will see every day that will be an encouraging reminder of why you do what you do and a reminder of the goals you have. You do not have to have a business to create a vision board. Maybe you have a family goal, or a workout goal, or a vacation goal. A vision board could be created for pretty much any type of dream or goal you have. Right now, my goal is to be successful in my Norwex business so that I can provide financial “extras” I want for my family.

I have a large bulletin board already mounted in my office/guest room. I decorated it in a similar way for both of my exchange students that we had. I just left it a blank canvas for them to do what they wanted with it. First, I chose wrapping paper and ribbon that matches the theme I am going for. In this case, blue and green since they are the colors of the Norwex logo. I cut the paper to fit the board and stapled it only around the edges (you can use a knife to trim the edges after you staple the paper). It does not have to be perfect because the ribbon will cover any imperfections on the edges! Then, I cut the ribbon to create a border. I use a 1 inch ribbon because I know it will cover up the staples. I use flat push pins to pin down the ribbon. This allows for easy change if I decide I want a different color at some point. Then I cut several other pieces of ribbon and pin them in a crisscross pattern. I weave them over and under the other ribbons. I used regular push pins to pin where the ribbons cross. This gives me something to hang things on. You can use all the same types of pins or mix them up!

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After the foundation of the board was complete, I started adding things that I thought would be encouraging for me to see every day!

My name badge from conference:

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My immediate financial goals:

[Side Note: In case you are wondering, I over estimate for trips in case there are financial set backs such as car trouble, airline delays, extra hotel expenses, etc. If I have money left over from a trip, it transfers over to the next financial goal. So if we only spend $750 on our Iowa trip then the left over $250 will go towards our Tennessee trip.]

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Lyrics from my all time favorite hymn:

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My Career Plan:

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I am a Sales Leader and my goals this year are to work towards Executive Sales Leader and Senior Executive Sales Leader:

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And some other little things to complete the project!

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I did leave some room because I am planning to add the Norwex mission statement and a family photo since they are the reason I am pursuing my business goals. With this type of set up, I can continue to be creative by adding or changing out things like ribbon color or Enviro cloth color. There is plenty of room to do whatever I want to do with it!

Do you have a vision board?

I would LOVE to hear about yours! Comment below!

Send photos to have the opportunity to be featured on my blog!

hearttreasurescontact@yahoo.com

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Want to know more about NORWEX? Feel free to message me at the email address above or check out my business website:

www.alysasawyer.norwex.biz

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Experimenting With Cookie Decorating!

My oldest daughter (almost 9 years old) and I went to a cookie decorating class in December! We had so much fun learning how to decorate cookies with royal icing! Before now, I have always used a powder sugar glaze on my sugar cookies. Now, I am loving the look of the royal icing.

Here are the cookies I decorated at the class:

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Here are several other photos of Christmas cookies I decorated since the class:12345561_10208275397351707_9197156553318296614_n

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And these are character cookies that I was just experimenting with. Chewbacca is my favorite! My husband wanted me to try and duplicate his patch and that obviously needs a lot of practice.

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It has been fun! I will post more photos whenever I experiment again. There are a ton of Pinterest ideas that I want to try!

Christian Book Distributors Affiliate

REMINDER: I am an affiliate with Christian Book Distributors! Anytime someone clicks on any of my affiliate links and purchases from CBD, I get credit for their purchase! This is a great benefit for me because it will help compensate me for my time when I do book reviews for the publishers that I review for! CBD has been my go to website for the past 13 years when I want to purchase Christian books, resources, gifts, music, etc. for great prices!

I have consistently posted links to CBD whenever I do book reviews or mention books, music, movies, etc.  Along with the direct links to the books and other products that I mention, I will also be placing a CBD graphic for you to click on which will send you to the CBD home page.

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Thank you for your continued support!
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