Wednesday, March 30, 2011

an ordinary, unpoetic life

Brightly colored sunsets and starry heavens, majestic mountains and shining seas, and fragrant fields and fresh-cut flowers are not even half as beautiful as a soul who is serving Jesus out of love, through the wear and tear of an ordinary, unpoetic life.

The most saintly souls are those who have never distinguished themselves as authors or allowed any major accomplishments of theirs to become the topic of the world's conversation. No, they are usually those who have led a quiet, inner life of holiness instead.

~Streams in the Desert

Monday, March 28, 2011

amazing grace

Whew! What a weekend! I should think twice about posting devotionals as I find I'm being tested in the wake of them:) I hope you're experiencing amazing grace for any bumps you're encountering. HIS grace really is sufficient... I'm so glad it's Monday. My messy house is quiet, the boys are in school, the sun is shining, and it's a good writing day.

Speaking of Amazing Grace, I watched the movie again recently and it was just as moving as the first time. When I think of a perfect 18th-century character, Romola Garai comes to mind. She is so beautiful, and the hats and dresses she wears in the film are simply amazing! Not to mention that lush red wig with all those curls:) My current heroine in The Ballantyne Legacy has the same look...

I'm thinking Romola is in need of a modesty piece for that gown she's wearing. And I've just the one:) Here's a fichu trimmed in lace and an organdy cap below that I have, compliments of Mary over at her beautiful blog/website. The cap was usually worn beneath a hat in the 18th-century and is very pretty that way.

I've just learned that a book trailer might be in the works for The Colonel's Lady. And The Frontiersman's Daughter is going into another printing, always good news for an author:)

Is your day a busy one? Any bumps? Hoping His Amazing Grace is yours this week!

Fear not for the future, weep not for the past. ~ Shelley

Our real blessings often appear to us in the shape of pains, losses, and disappointments; but let us have patience, and we soon shall see them in their proper figures. ~Joseph Addison

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

MY grace

My grace is sufficient for you.
2 Corinthians 12:9

The other day I was riding home after a hard day's work. I was very tired and deeply depressed, when quickly, and as suddenly as a lightning bolt, the verse came to me: "My grace is sufficient for you."

When I arrived home I looked it up in the Word, and it finally came to me this way: "MY grace is sufficient for you." My response was to say, "Yes, Lord, I should think it is!" Then I burst out laughing. This verse seemed to make unbelief totally absurd.

O people of God, be great believers! Little faith will bring your souls to heaven, but great faith will bring heaven to your souls.

~Charles H. Spurgeon

Saturday, March 19, 2011

spring blessings...

I'm learning to take stock of my blessings, big and small. Here are a few recent ones that make me smile. I'm sure you have a blessings list all your own.

These delightfully lovely cards came in the mail today! From a dear reading friend in Michigan. I am always amazed when readers reach out in creative ways whether it be a surprise in the mail or a thoughtful blog comment here. Life is often difficult and encouragement means so very much! Bless you, Stacie, and others!

Randy knows the way to my heart - chocolate carrots! He put it on top my laptop where I would be sure to find it. I did and the rest is history:)

My latest endorsement request is from Barbour - an advanced reader copy is on the way! I'm so excited to be able to endorse MaryLu's upcoming release.

My two latest reads - both wonderful. If only Liz would write faster!

This is a big rehearsal month for Paul and his fiddle. The spring performance is coming up and he's playing Tam Lin and Hurlock's Reel with his friend, Adalie. They make quite a dynamic duo;)

Is it hard for you to count your blessings or does JOY come naturally to you? Can you name some things you're thankful for? Nothing is too big or too small, I'm finding...

Bless you all!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

precious promises

He has given us His very great and precious promises.
2 Peter 1:4

When a shipbuilder erects a boat, does he do so only to keep it on the scaffolding? No, he builds it to sail the seas and to weather the storms. In fact, if he does not think of strong winds and hurricanes as he builds it, he is a poor shipbuilder.

In the same way, when God made you a believer, He meant to test you. He made His promises suitable for times of storms and high seas. Do you believe that some of His promises are counterfeit, similar to a life vest that looks good in the store but is no use on the sea?

Our Lord Jesus has been given to us for our present use. Are you making use of Him as you should? O beloved, I plead with you not to treat God's promises as something to be displayed in a museum but to use them as everyday sources of comfort. And whenever you have a time of need, trust the Lord.

~Charles H. Spurgeon

Monday, March 14, 2011

more cover candy...

Here is more cover candy, at the risk of making you sick:) Some of you may be thinking I need some fresh ideas but I dearly love new covers and it's fun to keep up with the market. Plus these are both Revell covers. I endorsed one of them, but will leave you in suspense as to which...

I'm thankful that there are so many different historicals coming out now. That wasn't always the case. Just a few years ago the CBA wasn't interested in historicals, or so I've heard. Hope that trend doesn't repeat itself!

Speaking of historicals, I have quite a dilemma on my hands - whether to read Liz Curtis Higg's Mine is the Night or begin Betsy Ross and the Making of America by Marla Miller. Grrrr. Don't you wish all decisions were so delicious? Personally, I'm not one who likes juggling books and reading more than one at a time. Call me a purist, but I'm a one book lover all the way.

How about you? Do you read more than one book at a time? Have you seen these covers? Can you tell I'm stuck on historicals;)?!

Happy reading...

Friday, March 11, 2011

pages and pages...

408 of them, to be exact! I just received the final typeset pages for The Colonel's Lady which I'm reviewing for the last time before it goes to print. This go round I have an author's note and also acknowledgements, something I don't always do. Hope you read and enjoy them:) If I could tell each of you readers how much you mean to me, the acknowledgements would be as long as the novel! The page count was 448 but has shrunk a bit now that it's in book form. The longer the better, I say...

This lovely oil painting by artist Meadow Gist at left could be taken right out of The Colonel's Lady. But no spoilers here!

I have to mention a very special blog happening tomorrow at Carla's site. Our beloved Mary Spencer, 18th-century reenactor extraordinaire, will be answering questions from readers. I hope you'll stop by if you have time. Carla has been doing a wonderful series called Dressing a Colonial Lady on her blog recently. Paul and I have a fiddling jam bright and early but will try to visit once we're home.

Speaking of all things 18th-century, which aspects of dress back then do you find appealing? As for me, I'm on the hunt for a hand fan. If you know of a site that might be helpful, I'd love to know about it.

Bless you all!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

the wait

Therefore will the Lord wait, that He may be gracious unto you...blessed are all they that wait for Him.

~Isaiah 30:18

The Lord has an inconceivably glorious purpose for each of His children. "If this is true," you ask, "why is it that He continues to wait longer and longer to offer His grace and to provide the help I seek, even after I have come and waited on Him?"

He does so because He is a wise gardener who "waits for the land to yield its valuable crop" and is patient...for the autumn and spring rains" (James 5:7). God knows He cannot gather the fruit until it is ripe, and He knows precisely when we are spiritually ready to receive blessings for our gain and His glory.

Rest assured that if God waits longer than we desire, it is simply to make the blessings doubly precious. Remember, He waited four thousand years, "but when the time had fully come, God sent His son" (Gal. 4:4). Our time is in His hands.

~Andrew Murray

Friday, March 4, 2011

what page are you on?

Thought I'd share two upcoming CBA covers I discovered this week. Some of you readers are very savvy about cover scouting! Thought I'd try and beat you this time;) Have you seen these yet?

Just finished: Shadow Patriots by Lucia St. Clair Robson

Now reading: Within My Heart by Tamera Alexander

Up next: Mine is the Night by Liz Curtis Higgs

Haunted by: Here Burns My Candle by Liz Curtis Higgs

Researching: Keeping House: Women's Lives in Western Pennsylvania by Virginia K. Bartlett

Wanting to read: The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Society

First Kindle download:) Lady in Waiting
by Susan Meissner

I'm happy to announce that the winner of the $25 Amazon gift card giveaway is...


So...what page are you on?

Happy Friday!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

no one except Jesus

Earnestly desire to get alone with God. If we neglect to do so, we not only rob ourselves of a blessing but rob others as well, since we will have no blessing to pass on to them. It may mean that we do less outward, visible work, but the work we do will have more depth and power. Another wonderful result will be that people will see no one except Jesus.

~Streams in the Desert