Positive conversations with old and new friends. I'd love for you to join me on my back porch.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving and We've got a winner!

I've had a blessed year. So many great times with family and friends.

The winner of Rose McCauley's Christmas Belles of Georgia is Tiffany Amber Stockton. Congratulations.

1 Thessalonians 5:18 Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

Ephesians 5:20 Giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Chris...

I'm thankful for the friends and family God has blessed me with.

1 Chronicles 16:8 Oh give thanks to the Lord; call upon his name; make known his deeds among the peoples!

Philippians 1:3 I thank God in all my remembrances of you.

Thanks for being part of my life!

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Be Still...Reflections from Susan Tuttle

Susan Tuttle wrote this post a few days ago for her blog, Steps. Susan homeschools her three children and admits she's "utterly in love with my husband of sixteen years." She'll also tell you Jesus is her Savoir and the love of her life.

I'm so happy to have Susan share reflections of God's word with us today.

Be still and know that I am God. Psalm 46:10

A few months back this verse came up in our Sunday service and our pastor served it up with a twist. After going home and looking at the context of this Psalm along with several commentaries, I could see this verse in a different light, and it's stuck with me ever since.

See, we believe this verse is written to us. Encouraging us to be still and know that God is in control. To stop our worrying and working and simply be in His presence allowing Him to do His work. And I believe that idea to be Biblical. It's something we see over and over in Scripture and such an important part of our walk to learn. But that's not what I believe this verse is referring to anymore. If you study this verse you see it's God talking to those who oppose His people. It's His commanding voice saying to those who dare fight against His beloved:

Be still and know that I am God!

In other words, quit it! Stop it! Back off! Do you hear His voice here? Can you see Him saying this to our enemies? How often we forget His power! How often we forget that in His presence ALL must bow. That with one word He can calm any storm. He doesn't simply have authority, He is authority! Oh, amen!

So whatever you are facing today know you don't have to face it alone. Understand that with one word from His mouth God can bring stillness, peace, reconciliation, wholeness, victory, because He is God. And the enemy knows it.

Now we need to believe it. I challenge you today, for whatever circumstance that feels like it is advancing on you, speak back to it: Be still and know that HE is God! And I am His!

Thanks for sharing, Susan. I've reflected on this verse for a few days now, and I'll never look at it the same way again.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Welcome Rose Allen McCauley and a Giveaway

Today I'd like to welcome my friend Rose Allen McCauley to my back porch.

Hi Rose,
Tell us a little about your writing journey.

I have been writing for over 10 years. It took me 9 years to get my first contract and 10 years to hold my first book in my hands, but it was totally worth it!

My first publication was by Barbour Publishing in Sept. 2011. It was entitled Christmas Belles of Georgia. This is the book I am giving away to one commenter on Jackie’s blog, so be sure to leave a comment with a way for Jackie to contact you if you want to be entered into the drawing for this free Christmas book to get you in the Christmas mood!

I'd love to hear more about your venture into e-publishing

A few weeks ago a friend who is one of the other writers in Christmas Belles of Georgia contacted me about joining her and 2 others in another Christmas novella that would be only sold on Amazon. I told her I would pray about it and let her know the next day. After praying, I agreed.

This novella series is called Smoky Mountain Christmas. The novellas will be released 3 days apart in the following order:

Do You See What I See? by Delia Latham released on Kindle on Amazon on November 15, and is the first of 4 novellas about 4 cousins who return to Gatlinburg, TN for the holidays for their granddaddy’s 80th birthday, and find romance on the journey. Book 2 by Tiff Stockton, Hometown Melodies, will release on Nov. 18th, my book about the 3rd cousin, Christmas Grace, releases on Nov. 21st, then Jeanie Smith Cash’s book Sleigh Bells in the Snow, which releases on Nov. 24th about the 4th cousin will also have an epilogue to bring all the cousins together. Lots of fun reading to get you in the mood for the holidays!

After their Kindle release, each book will also be released in paperback from Amazon.com

An interesting fact about my cover is that it has a photo of my oldest daughter and her husband. The book is dedicated to them, and in memory of one of my daughter’s best friends in High School who died from kidney failure. Hope you will enter to win Christmas Belles of Georgia, but if you don’t win, it is still for sale on amazon and cbd.com

Merry Christmas, everyone!

Thanks for stopping by, Rose.

Please leave a comment for a chance to win a copy of Rose's first novella.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Today Alice Wisler joins us to share about her new novel, Under the Silk Hibiscus.

Alice, what's your story about?

This novel takes place in an internment camp in Wyoming where many Japanese-Americans were sent after the bombing of Pearl Harbor. There's upheaval, frustration, pain, and sorrow. Families are separated. Some members are accused of being spies, like Nathan Mori's father.

To balance the discrimination that evolved during this time period, I had to rely on humor and romance.

One of the most fun relationships I enjoyed crafting was between the main character, Nathan, and his aunt Kazuo. Even though she's single and has no children of her own, Aunt Kazuo knows how to keep Nathan and his brothers in line. But even she knows a body can't live on hard work alone. She loves cookies and keeps morsels in her sweater sleeves, taking them out when she needs “a pep".

And of course, there's young romance. Nathan dreams of the lovely singer, Lucy, and wants her to notice him, but she seems more interested in his older brother, Ken.

There are two characters which are not people---one is Heart Mountain, the mountain viewed every day from those in the barracks at the camp. Then there is the Mori family's coveted gold watch, a family heirloom from Japan.

So the questions form: Will Nathan get the girl? What happens to the family heirloom during the war and after the war ends? Does Nathan's father return? How does war and discrimination change hearts? How does God's love prevail?

Will you share a recipe from Under the Silk Hibiscus with us?

My character, Aunt Kazuo, is all about eating a cookie . . . or two. She often says she needs “a pep” to pep her up. Here is her cookie recipe for raisin cookies, sure to add fun to anyone’s day.

Recipe for Aunt Kazuo’s Oatmeal Raisin Cookies (1946)

1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
¼ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ cup shortening
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1 ½ cups rolled oats
2/3 cup buttermilk
½ cup chopped nuts
1 cup seedless raisins
Cream shortening, blend in sugar and add egg. Beat until smooth and light. Sift flour with salt, soda and cinnamon. Stir half the flour in with egg mixture; add milk, the rest of flour, and then oats, nuts and raisins. Stir till well mixed. Drop from a teaspoon onto a buttered baking sheet and bake at 400 degrees F. for 10 minutes or until nicely browned. Yields about 36 cookies.

Alice, thanks for joining us today.

Book blurb:
During World War Two Nathan and his family are sent to Heart Mountain, an internment camp in Wyoming for Japanese-Americans. Nathan's one desire is to protect the family's gold pocket watch, a family heirloom brought over from Japan. He fails; the watch is stolen. Struggling to make sense of his life in a bleak camp as the only responsible man of the household, Nathan discovers truths about his family, God, and the girl he loves.

Alice has authored four contemporary novels published by Bethany House: Rain Song (Christy Finalist), How Sweet It Is (Christy Finalist), Hatteras Girl and A Wedding Invitation, and Still Life in Shadows by River North/Moody. Her newest novel, Under the Silk Hibiscus (Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas) is her first historical romance.

Since the death of her four-year-old son, Alice teaches grief-writing workshops and her devotional, Getting out of Bed in the Morning: Reflections of Comfort in Heartache (Leafwood), covers the many losses we face and how God sustains us through each one. In 2012, Alice and her husband started a business, Carved By Heart, where they carve memorial plaques/remembrances, house number signs, bird feeders, rustic clocks, and other home d├ęcor.

Here are some links where you can find Alice.
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/Alice-J.-Wisler/e/B001J6GVNE/

Website: http://www.alicewisler.com

Facebook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Alice-J-Wisler/333751835453

Alice’s Patchwork Quilt Blog: http://www.alicewisler.blogspot.com/


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