Thursday, April 30, 2009

Book Review: Dear God, It's Me and It's Urgent
I often struggle with my personal prayers and despite writing since I could pick up a pen, words seem to fail me when I need to pray the most. This is the reason I often turn to the Psalms to inspire my prayers. I also lean heavily upon the promise that "the Spirit prays for us in ways that cannot be put into words." (Romans 8:26 CEV) Now, thankfully, I have another resource: Marion Stroud's latest book, Dear God, It's Me and It's Urgent.

Marion has taken into consideration many of the seasons and struggles in a woman's life, and has openly and honestly laid out her own prayers concerning them. In the process, she has given words to the groanings of so many women's hearts. I kept finding myself thinking, "Yeah, that!" as I read the prayers throughout the book. Even when I was reading prayers concerning situations or seasons of life that I haven't experienced yet, I could relate to Marion's deep concerns and pleas to the Father. You feel as if you are in a prayer circle for a loved one or dear friend while reading this book. Sprinkled around each prayer you'll find quotes and scriptures that offer more hope and encouragement.

Whether you have just a minute or two or hours to pray, Dear God, It's Me and It's Urgent will give you an effective tool to both put into words your own feelings about current situations and to lay future situations on the prayer altar. The book is laid out in such a way that you can easily go right to a specific prayer, or simply read through and let the book guide your prayer path. I recommend that any woman that seeks fresh prayer at any age and in any situation get this book.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Learning to Live Financially Free by Marybeth and Curt Whalen


Paperback: 176 pages
Publisher: Kregel Publications
Release Date: March 2009
ISBN-10: 0825441889
ISBN-13: 978-0825441882
Retail: $12.99
(North Carolina) - The fear and reality of tough economic times, foreclosures, bailouts, bankruptcies and falling stocks strike fear in the hearts of many Americans today. With investors, newscasters and bankers giving advice, who can you trust? Marybeth and Curt Whalen share their financial successes and failures in their new book, Learning to Live Financially Free: Hard-Earned Wisdom for Saving Your Marriage & Your Money. If a family parenting six children can get out of debt and live financially free, anyone can. The Whalens readily admit they made their share of mistakes the first ten years of marriage. Becoming more disciplined and intentional in spending and saving helped them learn valuable lessons for better financial stewardship--lessons you'll want to learn too.

Learning to Live Financially Free not only focuses on building a stronger financial understanding in the home, but also encourages couples to communicate, thus building better, stronger marriages. The Whalens clearly comprehend the need for careful money management and commitment in marriage. Money-strapped families will find peace of mind as they begin the process of becoming financially responsible and debt-free.


About the Authors

Marybeth Whalen is a speaker and contributing writer for Proverbs 31 Ministries. The author of For the Write Reason, Marybeth has also written for Parent Life, Money Matters newsletter, The Old Schoolhouse, Hearts at Home magazine, and Homeschooling Today. She contributes regularly to the daily online devotions of Proverbs 31 Ministries.

Curt Whalen is a trained financial counselor through Crown Financial Concepts. He has years of experience helping couples establish budgets, solve financial problems, and learn to communicate more effectively. He has written articles for TEACH Magazine and Money Matters Newsletter and has contributed to books by authors Lysa TerKeurst and Melanie Chitwood.

Are You A Financially Focused Couple?
Instructions: Give yourself 1 point for every "yes" answer, 0 points for every "no."

0-2 points: Don't get discouraged. There's nowhere to go from here except up!

3-5 points: You are taking steps towards being a financially focused couple. Keep working together and you will get there.

6-8 points: You are almost 100% financially focused. Keep up the good work and get intentional about those trouble spots.

9-10 points: You are a financially focused couple and could show us all a thing or two! Consider sharing your wisdom with other couples who are struggling in today's uncertain times.

  1. Do you have regular budget meetings?

  2. Do you communicate about daily expenses?

  3. Do you discuss large purchases before they're made?

  4. Does each spouse have an equal vote about money decisions?

  5. Have you planned for your future through life insurance and a

  6. Do you agree about tithing and giving?

  7. Can you both list out your debts, including the amounts and
    monthly payment for each account?

  8. Do you have a plan that was written together for paying off debt
    and saving money?

  9. Do you encourage each other to save money?

  10. Have you discussed the spending habits and attitudes about money
    that you carried into the marriage?

Tally up your score and use the guide to the right to see what category
you fall into.

Top Ten Tips For Saving Money In Tough Times

  1. Make a budget (and stick to it). A budget overwhelms many people but it is really nothing more than devising a plan for every dollar you bring in. Having a budget helps you spend smarter and think more. It also helps to improve your buying power. The best way to make a budget is to start by sitting down with your spouse and deciding how much you spend on regular categories like groceries, gas, medical, etc. each month. Talk through these things and get them down on paper. Then spend accordingly. An article that goes into step by step detail about making a budget can be found at:

  2. Stop using credit cards. Studies show that people who use credit cards buy more and think less about their purchases. By learning to spend cash and limiting your purchases, you make your money work for you rather than against you. Credit card companies are getting craftier as the economy struggles. 25% of all credit card users in this country will have their rates raised this year, or their monthly payment raised. When you are in debt, you are at the mercy of the company you owe. Don’t let yourself get bogged down by credit card debt.

  3. Cook at home. It sounds so basic and yet how many of us resort to eating out because we just can’t deal with dinner? By taking a few moments once a week to devise a menu plan, shopping for the needed ingredients for that menu plan, and cooking the meals in your home, you can save lots of money and have more time to gather as a family and enjoy a slow evening at home. Eating at home not only saves money, it saves valuable family time.

  4. Buy clothes at thrift or consignment stores. This is especially true with children’s clothes. When you are in a department store, always shop the clearance racks and avoid the other racks so you aren’t tempted. It’s also an income generator if you consign your own clothing. You can then take the money you earn on consignment and buy clothes for a new season without being out of pocket any money!

  5. If you must eat out, only go to places you have coupons for. Keep a small photo album and arrange restaurant coupons so they are easy to find as you are heading out the door. It’s also a great idea to look for “kids eat free” nights and frequent those. Other ways to save on eating out include ordering water (big savings on this), share meals, order a kids’ portion if the restaurant allows it, and go out for lunch instead of dinner. For people who work, it’s always a good idea to pack your lunch regularly instead of running out to eat. A jar of peanut butter and a loaf of bread will go a long way.

  6. Learn to play the coupon game. Many people devote themselves to clipping and organizing coupons—and reap great savings from doing so. There are many frugal websites and blogs that detail exactly how to save a lot of money with coupons. A great one to start with is Coupon Mom. And here is a great tutorial video you can watch:

  7. If you have children, limit the number of activities they do to one per child, per year. If you are struggling to pay for even one activity, consider asking for the activity as a gift from grandparents, aunts and uncles, friends, etc. Instead of another toy that will end up broken or lost, your child can receive a gift that truly keeps on giving as well as one that invests in their future.

  8. Think about the things you regularly spend money on like gas or utilities and research ways to save money on those things. For instance, Gas Buddy tells you where to buy the cheapest gas according to your area code. Bundling services with your cable provider can save money each month. Calling your energy company to find out when their off-peak hours are and doing your laundry or dishes during those times can save on your monthly bill as well.

  9. Don’t shop as a recreational activity. If you can’t see it, you won’t feel a need to have it. Use time you used to spend shopping to go for a walk, visit a park, exercise, read a book, or spend time researching money-saving sites on the internet! If you have a friend you used to enjoy shopping with, sit down and list out other alternatives for your time together.

  10. Look for ways to generate additional income. Whether it be an additional part-time job or a way to make money from home using a skill or talent you possess, get creative, get motivated, and get excited about the potential you have to generate income that you didn’t have before. Every little bit helps, so put on your thinking cap and don’t be shy about stepping out and trying something!

***Prize Alert!***

*If* we get 10 or more comments, one will be randomly chosen to be entered in a grand prize giveaway! The winner will receive:

  • 1 copy of the book

  • 1 copy of Financial Peace Revisited by Dave Ramsey

  • 1 subscription to P31 Woman Magazine

  • 1 copy of God's Purpose For Every Woman (collection of the best devotions from Proverbs 31 Ministries)

  • 1 cd of Marybeth's message "Becoming A Woman of Influence"

  • 1 Dove Chocolate bar (because everything is better with chocolate!)

Oy, I gotta go find another blog hosting this tour so I can enter!

How to Enter:
Leave a comment telling us something you do now to help save or make money.

Extra Entries:

  • Second Entry: Tweet this giveaway and leave a comment with a link to the tweet.

  • Third Entry: Follow me on Twitter and leave a comment letting me know.

  • Fourth Entry: Subscribe to 3Stairs and leave a comment letting me know.

  • Fifth Entry: Blog about this giveaway and leave a comment with a link to your post.

  • Sixth Entry: Add a 3Stairs button to your blog and leave a comment with a link to blog so we can admire it!

I'll let choose the entrant from 3Stairs the morning of Thursday, May 21, so get your comments in by then! I will post the winner on Prizey.Fetched.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Eleventh Anniversary Friday Fill-in

Tomorrow is my eleventh wedding anniversary.


1. Apparently there's some sort of universal law that says everybody has to go through a period of life being really crappy.

2.Here's another sunny day.

3. 2009 has been exceptionally crappy so far.

4. It was temporary insanity. Yeah, that was it.

5. For too long I've been ridiculously depressed.

6. I am not obsessed with floorplans; I am not!

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to the same ol' crap, tomorrow my plans include church, and Sunday, I want to run away!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Mothers of the Bible Speak to Mothers of Today by Kathi Macias


(Homeland, CA) - If you've ever wished for a real live interview from an experienced mother found in God's Word, you'll be thrilled with the message of Kathi Macias' new book, Mothers of the Bible Speak to Mothers of Today. Thankfully the trials, heartaches and transitions mothers face are not new to this generation. Traveling back in time with Eve, Hannah, Sarah, Mary and others, readers will recognize the common struggles that still plague our world today.

This hardback gift book gently calls women to study the lives of biblical moms who were challenged with their own set of circumstances. From fear to insecurities, heartbreak to disappointments -- Kathi's words capture the heart of every woman with hope and encouragement to become the mother God wants them to be. After studying these fifteen biblical mothers, readers will have a solid example of biblical parenting. At the end of each chapter, mothers will find a special place for prayer and application.


About the Author

Award-winning author Kathi Macias has written almost 30 books, including Beyond Me, How Can I Run a Tight Ship When I'm Surrounded by Loose Cannons?, the best-selling devotional A Moment a Day, and the popular "Matthews" mystery novels. She has written commentary for Thomas Nelson's Spirit-Filled Life Bible (Student Edition) and was part of the devotional writing team for Zondervan's New Women's Devotional Bible. She has ghostwritten for several prominent individuals including Josh McDowell. Kathi has won many awards, including the Angel Award from Excellence in Media, fiction awards from the San Diego Christian Writers Guild, and the grand prize in an international writing contest. A mother and grandmother, Kathi and her husband, Al, call California home.

Mothers of the Bible Speak to the Author

As a wife, mother, grandmother--and yes, even a great-grandmother to two-year-old Isaiah--you'd think I'd have this "mom" thing wired by now, wouldn't you? Surprise! We never get too old to learn, and what I learned in my study of Mothers of the Bible has enriched nearly every area and relationship of my life. God loves mothers. We were His idea, after all! And His purpose for our lives as mothers unfolds in beauty and meaning as we listen to the words of the mothers of the Bible....

~author Kathi Macias

***Prize Alert!***

One commenter from 3 Stairs will be chosen at random to be entered into Kathi's grand prize drawing for a gift basket which includes Kathi's book as well as:

  1. It's Not About Me by Michelle Sutton

  2. Sinner by Ted Dekker

  3. Daisy Chain by Mary E. DeMuth

  4. Shade by John B. Olson

  5. Rest: Living in Sabbath Simplicity by Keri Wyatt Kent

  6. The Victor by Marlayne Giron

  7. The Battle for Vast Dominion by George Bryan Polivka

  8. Word Weavers by Eva Marie Everson and Janice Elsheimer


How to Enter:
Leave a comment telling us who your favorite Biblical mother is and why.

Extra Entries:

  • Second Entry: Tweet this giveaway and leave a comment with a link to the tweet.

  • Third Entry: Follow me on Twitter and leave a comment letting me know.

  • Fourth Entry: Subscribe to 3Stairs and leave a comment letting me know.

  • Fifth Entry: Blog about this giveaway and leave a comment with a link to your post.

  • Sixth Entry: Add a 3Stairs button to your blog and leave a comment with a link to blog so we can admire it!

I'll let choose the entrant from 3Stairs the morning of Friday, May 15, so get your comments in by then! I will post the winner on Prizey.Fetched.

Monday, April 20, 2009

ETMIH 2010 Program

Let me know if this doesn't work or if I need to do any additional tweaking.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Birthday Week Friday Fill-in


1. Join me in praying for Billy.

2. Put a little funny in your day!

3. Happiness is a cat curled up next to you while you take a nap in a sunny window seat.

4. Try to put one more thing on my plate, and I'll probably look at you like I'm lost and confused.

5. I'm waiting for the day that I finally realize that I need to stop trying to do it all.

6. Sleep is hard to resist.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to Stampin' Up Technique Club, tomorrow my plans include communion at church and Sunday, I want to take a hot bath and read a book!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

How Can I Run a Tight Ship When I'm Surrounded by Loose Cannons? by Kathi Macias


Paperback: 208 pgs
New Hope Publishers
Retail: $13.99
Release Date: February 1, 2009
ISBN-10: 1596692049
ISBN-13: 978-1596692046

What Others Are Saying:

“Note to marketing department: Retitle this book How Can I Get Any Work Done When I’m Surrounded by Funny Stories? The antics of Kathi Macias made me laugh out loud! As a recovering perfectionist and survivor of three workaholism-related crash and burns, I identified with Kathi’s quest to do it right. Her transparency regarding both her faith and her foibles make this book an essential read for any woman who struggles with that insidious “not good enough” syndrome. Kathi has charted the way to smoother sailing for us all. Anchors aweigh!”

—Debi Stack
humorist, speaker, and author of
Martha to the Max:
Balanced Living for Perfectionists
Smotherly Love™:
I Know Where Your Buttons Are
and I’m Not Afraid to Push Them

(Homeland, CA) - For all the Christian women in the world who dread reading Proverbs 31 and wonder who on earth could ever live up to that woman - this book is for you. Between dirty diapers, complaining children, housework, husbands and a multitude of other attention-grabbing detours women face, award-winning author and speaker, Kathi Macias finds a way to encourage and biblically instruct women of all ages and phases. Women everywhere are the glue that holds their families together. Keeping everything under control challenges even the most organized household CEO. Kathi uses humor, God's Word, as well as practical insight and instruction to lovingly encourage women to grow in this progression of grace.

Readers will find How Can I Run a Tight Ship When I'm Surrounded by Loose Cannons?: Proverbs 31 Discoveries for Yielding to the Master of the Seas, filled with scriptural explanations and journaling pages to process and write their personal feelings and prayers. With sections of the book focused on each step of the learning process to guide our ships to safe harbor, readers will be happily surprised to find the funny without the fluff. Kathi's words are the "spoonful of sugar that makes the medicine go down." Her vulnerable approach facilitates the teachings of Proverbs 31, making it easier for women to swallow. The truth of the scriptures is very much alive and well throughout the pages, yet the ease and charm of the author's words entice readers to press forward and embrace the plan for God's woman today.


Author, Kathy Macias
For more information:
Follow the Blog:
Order the Book:

About the Author:
Kathi Macias is a multi-award winning writer who has authored 26 books and ghostwritten several others. A former newspaper columnist and string reporter, Kathi has taught creative and business writing in various venues and has been a guest on many radio and television programs. Kathi is a popular speaker at churches, women's clubs and retreats, and writers' conferences. She recently won the prestigious 2008 member of the year award from AWSA (Advanced Writers and Speakers Association) at the annual Golden Scrolls award banquet. Kathi "Easy Writer" Macias lives in Homeland, CA, with her husband, Al, where the two of them spend free time riding their Harley.

A Chat with Kathi:
I understand you sometimes refer to this book as "discipleship with a grin." What do you mean by that, and why did you choose a humor format for a discipleship book?

Actually, I chose a discipleship theme for a humor title. As much as I hate to admit it, the title came to me one day and I knew I had to do something with it--just too good to pass up! So the more I thought/prayed about it, the more I realized it described my life, both naturally and spiritually. I began to try to lay out my spiritual growth via humorous life stories, and found they produced a natural pattern. From there I developed the five stages of spiritual growth into five sections for the book, and I was off and running! Besides, I learned from a friend/mentor years ago that you can "shove a lot of truth down people's throat when their mouth is open laughing," so I figured, why not???

What are some of the funniest "loose cannons" stories included in your book?

One of my favorites is the story of my very first women's retreat as a brand new Christian back in the "Jesus freak" days of baptisms at the beach and praise-ins at the park. I shared a room with three ladies I had never met, one of whom ended up being my "bunk mate." She snored, she was quite a bit overweight (taking up much more than her side of the bed!), and she "leaked" because she was still weaning her youngest child. You'll have to read the story to see how that experience taught me a lot about "spiritual face plants."

Another favorite story is about the time I took my three sons (two pre-teens and one elementary school age at the time) to the community swimming pool. The older boys decided to use their younger brother as a human beach ball, and when they ignored my cries from the side of the pool to stop, I actually had the nerve to jump into the water and swim right up to them and order them to stop. Their level of humiliation at being seen in the pool with their mother was as close to social suicide as it gets. But we all survived and learned a lot in the process.

Your book is divided into five sections. Can you briefly explain what they are and what they have to do with discipleship and humor?

As I mentioned earlier, the five sections correspond with what I consider the five stages of spiritual growth: crawling (infants or "rugrats") on our knees; walking (toddlers who are still a bit shaky but exploring and learning); running (stronger, more mature believers who are beginning to make a difference in their world); flying or soaring (eagles with a solid foundation and maturity to share with others); resting (back on our knees and realizing that place of utter dependence on Him is really the best place to be after all). The discipleship correlation is, I believe, evident in these stages; the humor comes in simply because I'm one of those slow learners who needs God to "hit me upside the head" at times, and I haven't been bashful about explaining those times in the book.

What advice can you give to the young mom out there who is juggling two kids, a fulltime job outside the home, a husband, housework, pets and church?

Life happens in seasons! You CAN'T be all things to all people at all times. It simply doesn't work. And if you don't believe it, read about my many crash-and-burn episodes as I tried! The Proverbs 31 woman is a composite picture of many women from different walks and stages of life; when we get a grip on that, it releases us to enjoy the season we're in right now, even as we prepare for the next one.

How did raising your own children help prepare you for the parenting side of the proverbial woman? Any tips you'd like to share?

Relax and enjoy them! Yes, even the rugrats and teenagers, because "this too shall pass." There were times I thought I'd go bald from pulling out my own hair over the frustrations and failures of that season of my life, but now it's my grandchildren who are passing through those rugrat-to-teen stages, and hey, I still have my hair! You'll make it--and so will your kids--in spite of your frustrations and failures. And yes, I know there are too many of those to mention (or admit to). I'm the queen of mom-failures, and yet my kids never cease to bless me with words of love and praise. Do I deserve it? Probably not. But I love every minute of it!

Do you have a favorite part of the book or a favorite chapter?

Several, in fact, but one in particular: Chapter 26, "Back Home Again," contains the story of my precious father, a man who lived for 88 years denying God's existence and then finally turning to him in his last week of life. It's one of the more serious stories in the book, but even that one ends on a humorous note.

If the Proverbs 31 woman is alive today, what does she look like?

She looks like me--and you--and every woman whose heart longs to please God and to raise her children according to the Scriptures, even though she knows she's doing well just to make sure they all have their sack lunches before they leave for school in the morning. She's thin, overweight, short, tall, black, white, brown, red, yellow, and polka dot when she catches her kids' chicken pox. And she's absolutely beautiful!!!

Are there some specific lessons you hope readers will learn and apply to their lives after reading your book?

I want them to learn to relax and laugh and enjoy this voyage called "life," and to trust the Captain of our souls to take us home safely when our trip is over, rather than struggling to "man the oars" ourselves.

What makes your book different than other books similar to yours that are in circulation today?

There are countless books written for "control freak" women who want to do it all and be it all--perfectly and completely at all times. This one, however, is not only written with a humorous tone, but it also takes the reader through what I call the five steps of spiritual growth: crawling, walking, running, flying--and back on our knees, totally dependent once again. I do this by exposing many of the sometimes humorous--and sometimes not so humorous--events in my own life as I progressed through the five stages.

Are there any authors that either influenced you personally or influenced your style of writing? Who are they and how did they influence you?

Brennan Manning, Henri J. M. Nouwen, and Max Lucado have to be right at the top of my favorite nonfiction authors list, simply because they call me back to the heart of worship, to a fresh appreciation of grace and a clarion call to rely totally upon God and not myself. I need those reminders on a regular basis. In addition, I love their writing styles. Their words "sing," and it is my goal to do the same with the words I write.

When you are not writing, what do you like to do? Do you have any hobbies?

Okay, now I have to 'fess up to how nearly one-dimensional I am. If I'm not writing, I'm...well, reading someone else's writing. That's at the top of my "what I like to do" list. However, I also spend time riding on the back of my husband's 2003 Harley Davidson Road King motorcycle. He's been riding HD's since 1970 and says he will never outgrow that youthful passion. On the road we are known as "Big Al" and "Easy Writer..."

***Prize Alert!***
The blog tour host having the most comments left on his or her site for this tour will be able to conduct a random drawing from the reader comments for this very special giveaway. Kathi Macias has put together a lovely collection of books, which include:

  1. A Grace Disguised by Jerry Sittser

  2. A Woman's Guide to Overcoming Depression by Archibald Hart, Ph.D. and Catherine Hart Weber, Ph. D.

  3. Rest: Living in Sabbath Simplicity by Keri Wyatt Kent
    it's[I've read this - it's an *awesome* book!]

  4. Dragonlight, a novel by Donita K. Paul

  5. Blue Heart Blessed, a novel by Susan Meissner

  6. Taking a Stand by Janet Lynn Mitchell

  7. And her own books:
  8. Beyond Me: Living a You-First Life in a Me-First World

  9. The Train-of-Thought Writing Method: Practical, User-Friendly Help for Beginning Writers

  10. Emma Jean Reborn, a novel

  11. Sally Stuart's 2009 Christian Writers Market Guide

Ok, so HELLO - Ten books! Who wouldn't get excited about 10 books?? You have until midnight, CST on Monday, 20 April, so tell me about a time you thought you were surrounded by loose cannons and then get all your friends to come tell us their stories!

Tired of trying to figure out which giveaways you entered and which ones you won? How about posting your e-mail address everywhere? Yuck! I'll make it easy for you: I submit winner info to PRIZEYWinners - you can check there to see if you won and you don't have to post your e-mail address to comments!

Monday, April 13, 2009

Unleash Your Inner Susan Boyle

I've been horribly depressed for days now. Today, I saw something that made me smile, made me cry, made my heart jump to my throat and my soul soar. I watched Susan Boyle sing "I Dreamed a Dream."

I want so badly to embed it for you, but I can't find an embeddable copy of the video since it's from television. Do yourself (and your soul) a favor: go watch Susan Boyle sing.

Update: I found an embeddable version!

If you've ever felt disappointed by your life; if you've ever loved; if you've ever been hurt; if you've ever lived, you will be touched by this song.

More importantly, I think you'll be inspired. Just because you haven't got the looks of a model doesn't mean you're invisible. It doesn't mean you don't have anything to offer the world. Take a cue from Susan Boyle - put on your fancies, get cheeky, and go after your dream!

Friday, April 10, 2009

"Good" Friday Fill-in


1. Anonymous...the coward's way of speaking your mind. Add your name; take a stand.

2. Life is a very long, very arduous, very depressing ordeal right now.

3. Let me embrace thee, sour adversity, for thou art mine only companion.

4. Warmer weather and rain are what I look forward to most about Spring.

5. Who needs therapy when there is chocolate?

6. Cadbury Cream Eggs MUST go into the Easter Basket!

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to sleep, tomorrow my plans include a nap and Sunday, I want to sleep!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

ALL Mothers Matter


I read a post on MomLogic this morning titled "Memo to the World: Black Mothers Matter Too!" The comments are many and vehement. You see cattiness at it best (well, worst). Race is still an issue in America, even though President Obama now brings mixed races to the White House.

Am I the only mom that's agitated that black mothers aren't the only ones left out? What about Islanders? Let’s look at Polynesian moms, Indian moms, Asian moms, Latina moms. A lot of moms are left out of the “[American] white is better, smarter, etc” policy here.
Read my rant at because ALL moms matter.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Donate for Camden

As many of my loyal readers know, my friend Billy Fairchild (tw3nty3ight on Twitter) suffered the devastating loss of his five-year-old son Camden on 22 March. When your baby is only five, you don't think about outrageously high hospital bills and - God forbid - funeral costs. Sadly, Billy's been hit by that truck.

And it's a Mack.

While there is no way to offset the emotional cost of saying goodbye Way Too Soon, a great group of people are rallying behind Billy to host a memorial ride and fundraiser to help offset the monetary cost of losing Camden. Start now to find donations of money and prizes that can be used for the benefit in June. It's a lot closer than you think, believe me.

Update: Billy sent me the button code so you can donate here without have to jump around the 'net.

Cuz he's cool like that. ;)

Here's the flyer (PDF file so it'll print nice and clean) for the benefit. Click on it to open it in a new window so you can print it out and post it everywhere. You don't have to be in Ohio to print this. Bikers will travel all over the country to support each other. Don't withhold the opportunity for bikers in your area to support Billy!


Sunday, April 5, 2009

Celtic Contest

  • Are of you Irish ancestry?

  • Do you love Ireland?

  • Are you still wearing your (many) Irish t-shirts long after St. Patrick's Day?

  • Do the sounds of bagpipes, Uileann pipes, or low whistles make you swoon?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, head on over to carp(e) libris reviews and enter for your chance to win a fantastic CD from Eoin Duignan.

Not sure if you'd love it? Have a listen, fall in love, then go enter.

Friday, April 3, 2009

BAFAB Friday Fill-in


1. Angel or not, I will expect books from my BAFAB wish list for my birthday.
(TOTALLY KIDDDING, here, peeps! A "Happy birthday" will suffice just fine. :D )

2. Tell me you appreciate me and love me (and mean it), and you can have me any way you want me.

3. As my mother used to say, you're full of hookey. (My mother didn't actually say this; I just liked the sound of "hookey" said with the ooo sound like in zoo.)

4. I want to fall over and sleep for a week after I'm done working out or doing something strenuous.

5. Even in the most crowded of rooms I can still recognize Michael's "psst."

6. Any day with my kids is a day fraught with peril.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to sleep (of course!), tomorrow my plans include going to church with my husband (hopefully - he's considering it) and Sunday, I want to go to Sewing Circle, even though it's been canceled :(!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Questions on Heaven

I would take no for an answer,
Just to know I heard You speak.
And I'm wondering why I've never
Seen the signs they claim they see,
A lotta special revelations
Meant for everybody but me.
Maybe I don't truly know You...

-from "Smell the Color 9" by Chris Rice

As I listened to this song this morning on the way home from dropping the kids off at school, it dawned on me that this is exactly how I feel. I've been a "Christian" all my life. I was baptized at 12 and have attended church regularly since then. But I've always questioned my salvation.

I know I can't do anything on my own. I know there's nothing I can do to secure heaven. I know what the Bible says. I know what the church says. I've heard it all before. I can tell it to anyone else. I'm all encouraging and "it's ok" to everyone else.

But I just can't shake the feeling that I'm not it; I'm not in; I'm not worthy enough.

I would take no for an answer. I'd take being told I'm not one of the chosen or saved, just as long as I could say without a doubt or question that God is really real and that He spoke to me.

Even if it was to tell me no.
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