Saturday, February 26, 2011

LOW comment giveaway!

The Life Ready Woman: Thriving in a Do-It-All World

I must say that I'm completely surprised at the number of entries for this fabulous book giveaway!  If you haven't entered, do so now!  Giveaway ends 2/27.  This is on my MUST READ list for every woman!  Check it out: http://jsknowlton.blogspot.com/2011/02/life-ready-woman-book-reviewgiveaway.html.

Friday, February 25, 2011

52 Weeks of organizing with The Organizing Junkie #8


Theme: Keep flat surfaces clear


Questions to Ponder:
1.  Do find cluttered surfaces make you a little crazy?
     Oh, my yes!  I hate cluttered surfaces, but unfortunately I'm still working on keeping those surfaces clean.  The worst are my dining room table and the big counter in the kitchen.  My dining room table is like a huge desk because that is where my computer is and then I have the printer along with all my notebooks and calendars.  The big counter in the kitchen collects all sorts of "goodies" too.  I'm better at keeping that clear.

2.  Are you managing to stay on top of your 52 weeks list?
      I'm nearly caught up to my 52 weeks list.  I'm not going in the order that I wrote, but I have done 7 areas so far.  I played catch up this week and I have 3 that I made before and after pictures for.

3.  Are you being motivated by your successes yet?
     I'm very motivated my success.  I can see the light coming through.  It's just hard because I have such limited time to clean with a toddler running around all day and a husband that I like to spend time with in the evening.   I'm also pregnant and trying to get ready for this new baby so this is a HUGE motivation for me to clean!  I love it!


Project 1:
Before- letter writing/computer paper file cabinet

After- Everything organized and accounted for!

Project 2:
Before- Emptied out drawers

Before- This is what was in the drawers.  Ugh!!

After- Ahh, feel so much better now.  Purged!

Project 3:
Before- Teaching stuff stored behind couch- removed!

After- all teaching stuff gone.  Next week will have picture of that!
So now I have 7 projects finished and I should finish my 8th one next week.  I'm almost caught up!

Be sure to check out Laura's site- The Organizing Junkie!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Feedback please!

Hi friends!  I've been blogging for a little over 2 years now and I've done many different things.  I'd like some feedback.  Please fill out the form attached.  This is anonymous.  Thanks!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Women in the Word Wednesday- James 1:12-27


I'm so thrilled with this James Bible study that I'm doing with my Good Morning Girls!  I know I'm a bit behind in posting, so I'm trying to catch up here.

So here is what I learned in the last half of James 1:
*I am responsible for my actions when tempted.
*I must be on my guard to not let desire for sin to be conceived.
*Keep my eyes focused on God so I will not be deceived.
*QUICK to listen, SLOW to speak and anger.
*What evil do I need to get rid of?
*Listen and DO God's word.

What has God been teaching you?  I would love to hear!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Tropical Traditions Dish Liquid Review/Giveaway

I was so excited to receive the Dish Liquid from Tropical Traditions to review this month.  I use dish liquid EVERY time I turn on the kitchen sink.  I like to wash a lot of dishes by hand that do not go into the dishwasher and things that I use often that need a quick cleaning.

The Household Traditions Dish Liquid from Tropical Traditions is free of fragrances, dyes, petroleum solvents and respiratory/skin irritants.  This product is coconut based and is safe for dishes and skin.  I found that the smallest amount of liquid produces more than enough suds to get the job done.  Food residue came off easily and my hands felt smooth after each use.  I also like that this one gallon container will last a long time!

Buy it: Right now this one gallon container of Household Traditions Dish Liquid is only $29.50.

When you place your order please use my ID # to get your FREE book: 6015262 in the "Referred by a Friend".  (Thank you!) You can also obtain your own complimentary copy of Virgin Coconut Oil book through the Referral program if you are ordering for the first time.  Please click: http://www.tropicaltraditions.com/referral_program.htm for more info. The book will be automatically be added to your order.  I encourage you to look through the website for some great products.  I have already tried the Lavender Natural Deodorant (aluminum free), the Organic Shredded Coconut and the Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil.  Be sure to sign up for their newsletter to get updated information on products and sales.

If you need any help in placing your order please click here: http://www.tropicaltraditions.com/customerservice.cfm.

Disclaimer: Tropical Traditions provided me with a free sample of this product to review, and I was under no obligation to review it if I so chose.  Nor was I under any obligation to write a positive review in return for the free product.





Win it: One reader will receive one gallon of Household Traditions Dish Liquid.  Giveaway ends Sunday, March 6.

To enter: Be sure to click on all the links before filling out the entry form.  Thanks!


1.Be a follower on my blog (required)
2. Visit Tropical Traditions and tell me another product you would like to try. (required)
3. Subscribe to my blog by email. 
4."Like" The Knowlton Nest on Facebook (link on my blog). 
5. "Like" Tropical Traditions on Facebook
6. Follow Tropical Traditions on Twitter
7. Sign up for the Tropical Traditions Newsletter.
8. Make a purchase at Tropical Traditions using my referral code: 6015262 (+5)
9. Post about this giveaway on another site (your blog, facebook, twitter, etc) (1 entry for every site) 


Saturday, February 19, 2011

The Life Ready Woman Book Review/Giveaway!!

The Life Ready Woman: Thriving in a Do-It-All World
The Life Ready Woman: Thriving in a Do-It-All World by Shaunti Feldhahn and Robert Lewis is a unique overview of what a woman of today should be intentional about.  This book begins with describing how the role of women has changed in the last 60 years.  It identified issues women struggle with and gives an in-depth look at the biblical definition of womanhood, marriage and family.  The book focuses on the core callings that are for every woman: leave & cleave, be fruitful & multiply, and subdue & rule.  The the book explores 10 unique seasons of a woman's life and wise steps to take in each one.  This is followed by how to use wisdom with a man and five faith steps to take.  Each chapter includes interactive charts and thought provoking questions.  A Life Ready Woman's Bible study is also available for further study with this book.

I must say I was not very interested in the first chapter that discussed statistics, but was absolutely captivated and fascinated by the rest of the book.  This book is intended for every woman at every stage of life.  It was very fun to read through all the different "seasons" of a woman's life to see where I've been, where I am now and what I have to look forward to.  I was challenged and encouraged to pursue God in very intentional ways.  I would love to do the Bible study that accompanies this book.  I highly recommend this book to every woman who wants to "thrive in a do-it-all world."

*This book was provided to me free of charge for purpose of this review. This is my honest opinion of this book and no monetary compensation was received for my opinion.*
 

(See below for giveaway details of the book I just reviewed.)


In celebration of Shaunti Feldhahn’s Life Ready Woman, MomLife Today is giving away 2 Weekend To Remember Gift Packs and much more!

Not only, is MomLife Today helping promote Life Ready Woman, but they are thrilled to announce that Shaunti will be joining MomLife Today as a regular contributor!!!

Weekend To Remember Get-Aways offer marriage-changing principles that you can take home and apply to your daily lives to strengthen your marriage. Whether you are newly engaged or have been married for 50 years, you will find value in the tools provided at the getaway.

momlife_300x250

Don’t miss this opportunity to receive a conference registration for you and your spouse … and more! MomLife Today will be randomly selecting NINE lucky recipients to receive one of these great gifts:
  1. 2 Weekend To Remember Get Away conference registrations for two. $259 value each pair (Two couples will receive this.)
  2. 2 Life Ready Woman DVD packs. $149 value each (Two different people will receive this gift.)
  3. 5 The Life Ready Woman books. (Book will go to 5 people.)
To enter click one of the icons below then tell your friends. Winner will be announced on March 2nd on the MomLife Today website.
Enter via E-mail Enter via FacebookEnter via Twitter

MomLife Today provides encouragement, advice and resources to help YOU with your daily Momlife! Because…every MOMent counts!

GIVEAWAY:
*Win this book by just making a comment! (US only)
*Extra entries (leave a separate comment for each) Follow my blog, "Like" The Knowlton Nest on Facebook,  and press Share under this giveaway on Facebook.
*Be sure to include your email address.  You can write it like this so you don't get spam: shondaet at gmail dot com.

Giveaway ends Sunday, Feb 27.

Friday, February 18, 2011

52 Weeks of organizing with The Organizing Junkie #7


Purge until it fits!

Questions to ponder:
1. Let’s talk stuff! What have you tossed out this week?
    I haven't really done any tossing.  I've basically moved things around and I need to actually go through some things before I can put them away.  I like the saying, "Purge until it fits."  Right now I have a junk room that is holding all the stuff I need to purge!  It's ugly!

2. Have you ever regretted something you’ve gotten rid of? Why?
    No, I don't regret anything I have gotten rid of so far.  I'm still making piles for the Goodwill.  Can't wait to see that STUFF go!!

3. How tempted are you to rush out and pick up pretty organizing containers first?
    I would totally love to have cute organizing containers, but we don't have the money so I have to be creative in my own way.

I know I promised pictures, but I'm slow!  I'll get some up within the month.  I have noticed that I'm keeping many areas a lot cleaner since I've decluttered and organized!

Be sure to check out Laura's site- The Organizing Junkie!

Joke: Lipstick in the Catholic School

I receive many emails to forward, but I never do.  This is one I received.  It is a joke and it's too funny.  Enjoy!

According to a news report, a certain private Catholic school in
Brisbane was recently faced with a unique problem. A number of
12-year-old girls were beginning to use lipstick and would put
it on in the bathroom. That was fine provided it was of a natural or
neutral skin tone, but after they put on their lipstick they would press
their lips to the mirror leaving dozens of little lip prints.

Every night the maintenance man would remove them and the next
day the girls would put them back.

Finally the principal, Sister Paschal, decided that something
had to be done. She called all the girls to the bathroom and met them
there with the maintenance man. She explained that all these lip prints were
causing a major problem for the custodian who had to clean the
mirrors every night (you can just imagine the yawns from the little
princesses).


To demonstrate how difficult it had been to clean the
mirrors, Sister Paschal asked the maintenance man to show the
girls how much effort was required.

He took out a long-handled squeegee, dipped it in the toilet, and
cleaned the mirror with it. Since then, there have been no lip prints
on the mirror.

There are teachers.... and then there are educators

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Recipe of the Week: Pumpkin Pie Baked French Toast

I love it when my friends make these goodies and I'm dying to try them out.  Jennifer is my husband's co-worker, but she's also a neighbor.  She recently started a blog which is all about food: Domestic Engineer Extraordinaire.

Here is the recipe for Pumpkin Pie Baked French Toast from Jennifer's blog.  Instead of pumpkin I used sweet potato puree.  And I  made my own french bread from All Recipes.com.  Also, I just made a half pan, but I should have made a whole one!

This was SO yummy!  I will definitely make it again.  It is perfect to bring to a brunch or potluck like MOPS.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Women in the Word Wednesday: James


I have really been enjoying my SOAP Bible study from the Book of James through Good Morning Girls.  I kept seeing posts on Courtney's blog last winter about Good Morning Girls and I finally was able to to be a part of a group that started in January.  I also was introduced to the SOAP Bible study method which has been so beneficial for me to really see what God's Word says and how to apply it to my everyday life.  I also get a chance to be accountable with my GMG group on Facebook each day as we discuss what we learn, challenge each other and share prayer requests.

I'm going to backtrack a little bit since I haven't posted about my James study yet.
Here is what I learned in Week #1- James 1:1-11 (Key words in capitals)
*I am God's servant.
*Approach trials with PURE JOY
*I need to PERSEVERE in daily tasks
*When asking for wisdom- BELIEVE
*God does not promise anything to a doubter
*We find true wealth by developing spiritually (found in NLT Bible notes)

Whew!  God expects a lot from his children and I'm so glad He's there every step of the way.  I love writing in my SOAP journal because I can look back and review the wonderful lessons God is teaching me.  I am going through some trials, but I know I need to believe and not doubt and approach these with pure joy.  My whole perspective has changed as I navigate in this life.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Easy Lunchboxes 50% off coupon Giveaway!!



How do you support a healthy and green lifestyle?  One way is by packing lunches.  Have you heard of Easy Lunchboxes?  Well, hold on tight and you will see why this is a great way to help you create a fun way to make lunches healthy and nutritious as well as eco-friendly!

Last summer I did a review of the Easy Lunchboxes system.  I was given 4 containers with lids and a cooler bag.  I have been using these containers since for every meal my son eats.  Here are a few meal examples:



There are also many more examples on Easy Lunch Boxes.


As you can see each container is compartmentalized for easy separation of food.  
*Using the Easy Lunchbox system saves you time and money.
*The containers are free of toxins.
*Very eco-friendly with waste free packaging!
*All products are very durable and last a long time.
*And very affordable: 4 containers = $13.95, 1 cooler bag = $7.95.

So, what's stopping you from using the Easy Lunch Box System?
Watch this cute video and enter the giveaway for a 50% off coupon today.


WIN:  50% off coupon from Easy Lunchboxes.  Giveaway ends Sunday, Feb 27.  Open to US/CAN.

Giveaway:
Be sure to click on all the links before filling out the form.

1. Be a follower of this blog (required)
2. Answer this question from the video: What dessert did Barry Williams put in his Easy Lunchbox? (required)
3. Subscribe to my blog by email (link on blog)
4. "Like" The Knowlton Nest on Facebook (link on blog)
5. "Like" Easy Lunchboxes.com on Facebook
6. Visit Easy Lunch Boxes - The Best LunchBoxes and tell me one thing you learned/liked.

Monday, February 14, 2011

30 Day Marriage Makeover by Douglas Weiss Book Review

It is time for a FIRST Wild Card Tour book review! If you wish to join the FIRST blog alliance, just click the button. We are a group of reviewers who tour Christian books.  A Wild Card post includes a brief bio of the author and a full chapter from each book toured.  The reason it is called a FIRST Wild Card Tour is that you never know if the book will be fiction, non~fiction, for young, or for old...or for somewhere in between!  Enjoy your free peek into the book!

You never know when I might play a wild card on you!


Today's Wild Card author is:


and the book:

Siloam (February 1, 2011)
***Special thanks to Anna Coelho Silva | Publicity Coordinator, Book Group | Strang Communications for sending me a review copy.***

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:





Douglas Weiss, PhD, is the executive director of Heart to Heart Counseling Center in Colorado Springs, Colorado. The author of Intimacy, The Seven Love Agreements, and Sex, Men, and God, he is a regular guest on national television (both secular and Christian) as well as radio.



Visit the author's website.

SHORT BOOK DESCRIPTION:

Based on principles from his best-selling book Intimacy, Dr. Doug Weiss offers thirty daily teachings for married Christian couples that will help them discover what true intimacy looks like, learn how to overcome the five main roadblocks to intimacy, and help them fall in love all over again.


Product Details:

List Price: $14.99
Paperback: 256 pages
Publisher: Siloam (February 1, 2011)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 161638140X
ISBN-13: 978-1616381400

AND NOW...THE FIRST CHAPTER:


I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything you ask

for, it will be done for you by my "ather in heaven. "or where

two or three come together in my name, there am ! with them.

—Matthew 18:19–20


Throughout my years of counseling, I have discovered that many marriages lack structures to encourage intimacy. We grow up believing that one day we will get married and live happily ever after. We enter marriage ill equipped for intimacy and are disappointed when our husband or wife doesn’t possess the secret code to intimacy either.


At first marriage is fun as you begin to learn about your spouse, go to work or school, get your first apartment, pick out furniture, go to church, and are physically intimate together without guilt. The sheer complexities of your new life together, along with the many new decisions you must make, can keep you talking and sharing regularly.  Slowly and subtly it happens. No one really knows when or where it happens, but something changes within the relationship. You don’t seem to talk as much.


Decisions are not met with the same excitement as when you were first married; instead, they are delegated, then discussed. Purchases become fewer, and sex and life take on a routine. You don’t feel as close but seem just to be living together. What happened? Where did the passion for one another go?  Americans believe that people are either passionate or they are not.  But this kind of thinking is incorrect. Passion is a dividend of consistent investments made into a relationship. Let’s reflect back a minute to when you were dating. You were selling your spouse on the idea that being married to you was a great idea.  Remember the passion you had for your future spouse? Of course you remember the passion, but what you may have forgotten is the foundation of that passion, the priority of the relationship.  Do you remember how you “made” time to be together? You planned your days and weeks around each other’s work schedule, including your days off.  Those of you who were attending school in another city away from your future spouse, as I was, had the phone bills to prove your passion and priority. In my case, those phone bills took a giant bite out of the little income I made just so I could tell her about my day.  If you were a Christian at the time, do you remember how spiritual you were? You prayed together as often as you could and perhaps even read the Bible together. You desired to know God’s will, and you wanted God to help you stay pure and still express your love to one another.  Do you remember the gratitude you had for the smallest things your spouse did for you? ,is was especially true for me when Lisa cooked for me. I was so grateful! I 5lled her life with a constant stream of praise.  Do you remember when you thought she was so smart and attractive and had so much potential? You believed in her and regularly encouraged her.


Understand that passion is a result of setting priorities. Too many people attempt to get back the passion instead of getting back their priorities.  Once you get the priorities back, the passion follows and grows

naturally.  What priorities? I will discuss priorities shortly, but before I do, I want to share an analogy I often use in counseling sessions. Many couples come in for help with sprains or fractures in their relationships. I liken the repair of a marital relationship to 5xing a broken bone. When your bone is broken, you can continue to function in a limited way, but you look and act unusual. When you go to the doctor or emergency room.  The first thing the doctor does is order an X-ray of the bone. Sure enough, he looks at the structure. Regardless of how it happened, the X-ray shows a damaged structure (your bone is broken). The doctor and nurse apply a structural treatment to your structural problem in the form of a cast.  The cast is a structural treatment that allows the bone to heal. The cast itself is just plastic or plaster, and it has no healing properties. But when it is applied to a broken bone to hold the bone in place, surprise!  Healing can and does happen.  The same thing happens when you place the priorities back into your

marriage. No matter how sprained or broken a marriage is, healing can and does take place. I have seen genuine miracles of restoration in marriages when priorities were put back into the relationship. One of

the structures I apply is what I call “the three dailies.”  I want to add a personal note of testimony. As I have stated before, I would never ask you to do something that Lisa and I have not done or are not doing presently in our relationship. Lisa and I have done two of the three dailies every day for years, with only a few exceptions. When I developed the third exercise, we actively applied it to our marriage routine also.


These three exercises help Lisa and I maintain our relationship priorities.  They are part of our bedtime routine. Neither of us expects to go to sleep without our relational ritual of the three dailies.  They are a major highlight of my day. I get to hear about my wife’s day, hear her heart, and she gets to hear about my day and heart as well. ,is relational structure has richly developed our skill for intimacy to such a level that it can weather the day-to-day challenges of children, writing, and media demands, together with all of our other commitments.  When your marriage priorities are restored, your passion will be restored. Everyone who knows me is well aware of my passion for Lisa.


I love her and really like her as well. This passion is the fruit of disciplinethat is born out of a heart of love.


THE THREE DAILIES

1. Prayer

Prayer is an absolute necessity in your marriage. I am constantly amazed when couples tell me that the last time they really prayed together, not including praying over food or a good night prayer with children, was years ago. Sometimes they say, “We both pray, just not together.”  Psalm 127:1 says, “Unless the Lord builds the house, its builders labor in vain.”  The Lord must be part of building your house. Prayer is an active way to include the Lord as part of the building plan of your marriage.


Matthew 18:19 says, “Again, I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything you ask for, it will be done for you by my Father in heaven.” As we’ve previously noted, this verse discusses the importance

of two or more agreeing in God’s name. It doesn’t say when one agrees—it says when two agree.  Since Christ’s resurrection, He intercedes with and for His bride, which is the church. The Lord sees prayer as being extremely important.  God’s pleasure is for us to commune with Him not just as individuals,

but as a couple as well.  Prayer is one of the priorities that must be set in place by a couple desiring more intimacy. Remember, intimacy is three dimensional, involving spirit, soul, and body. As we grow together spiritually, our intimacy in the other two areas will grow as well.  Prayer is just talking aloud to God with your spouse, similar to talking with a friend. Prayer doesn’t have to take long hours in any particular

position. It is the principle of connecting with God that is essential.  As a couple, within your governing style in your marriage, process the decision of daily prayer. As a result of your decision as a couple, place a

check by which of the following statements you agree with.


* We have agreed to pray daily together to improve and maintain our intimacy for the next thirty days.


* We have agreed not to pray together daily for the next thirty days, knowing that it will negatively affect our intimacy.  The structure of prayer taking place within your marriage is one essential part of the three daily exercises. This structure will also be a part of your thirty-day log at the end of each day.  Hopefully you have agreed to daily prayer. I know better than most that each couple has many variables. Some of these differences include sleep preferences, work schedules, children’s school and extracurricular activities, church, and fellowshiping with family and friends.


Look at your schedules. When can you pray together? In the morning?  At lunch? In the evening? Take the time to discuss this with your spouse, and see if you can agree on a time to pray together. In the space below, write your first and second options to pray together.


Option one is ________ a.m./p.m.

Option two is ________ a.m./p.m.


In your thirty-day log, it’s important to track your progress regarding this exercise to maintain the consistency that ignites the passion and intimacy you both desire. Those who travel often ask how to maintain the thirty-day program while out of town. In this day of modern technology, it is a non issue for the creative person. You can use your calling card or mobile phone to pray with your spouse over the phone. This really demonstrates a commitment to maintaining your spiritual intimacy. Even if you’re in Hong Kong, you can e-mail a prayer to your wife and chat with her.  Remember that the structure first brings healing, then passion. As you walk together spiritually, your intimacy over the next thirty days can

nourish.


I love walking in the garden of my life with Lisa and coming with her into the presence of our loving Father. I really believe this has been instrumental in developing the strength and intimacy of our marriage. couples come in for help with sprains or fractures in their relationships. I  liken the repair of a marital relationship to fixing a broken bone. When your bone is broken, you can continue to function in a limited way, but you look and act unusual. Then you go to the doctor or emergency room. 


The first thing the doctor does is order an X-ray of the bone. Sure enough, he looks at the structure.  Regardless of how it happened, the X-ray shows a damaged structure (your bone is broken). The doctor and nurse apply a structural treatment to your structural problem in the form of a cast. 


The cast is a structural treatment that allows the bone to heal. The  cast itself is just plastic or plaster, and it has no healing properties. But  when it is applied to a broken bone to hold the bone in place, surprise! Healing can and does happen.


The same thing happens when you place the priorities back into your marriage. No matter how sprained or broken a marriage is, healing can and does take place. I have seen genuine miracles of restoration in marriages when priorities were put back into the relationship. One of the structures I apply is what I call “the three dailies.”


I want to add a personal note of testimony. As I have stated before, I would never ask you to do something that Lisa and I have not done or are not doing presently in our relationship. Lisa and I have done two of

the three dailies every day for years, with only a few exceptions. When I developed the third exercise, we actively applied it to our marriage routine also. 


These three exercises help Lisa and I maintain our relationship priorities. They are part of our bedtime routine. Neither of us expects to go to sleep without our relational ritual of the three dailies.


They are a major highlight of my day. I get to hear about my wife’s day, hear her heart, and she gets to hear about my day and heart as well. ,is relational structure has richly developed our skill for intimacy to such a

level that it can weather the day-to-day challenges of children, writing, and media demands, together with all of our other commitments.


When your marriage priorities are restored, your passion will be restored. Everyone who knows me is well aware of my passion for Lisa. 


I love her and really like her as well. ,is passion is the fruit of discipline that is born out of a heart of love. 


THE THREE DAILIES 


1. Prayer

Prayer is an absolute necessity in your marriage. I am constantly amazed when couples tell me that the last time they really prayed together, not including praying over food or a good night prayer with children, was years ago. Sometimes they say, “We both pray, just not together.”


Psalm 127:1 says, “Unless the Lord builds the house, its builders labor in vain.” The Lord must be part of building your house. Prayer is an active way to include the Lord as part of the building plan of your

marriage.


Matthew 18:19 says, “Again, I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything you ask for, it will be done for you by my Father in heaven.” As we’ve previously noted, this verse discusses the importance

of two or more agreeing in God’s name. It doesn’t say when one agrees— it says when two agree. 


Since Christ’s resurrection, He intercedes with and for His bride, which is the church. The Lord sees prayer as being extremely important. God’s pleasure is for us to commune with Him not just as individuals,

but as a couple as well.


Prayer is one of the priorities that must be set in place by a couple desiring more intimacy. Remember, intimacy is three dimensional, involving spirit, soul, and body. As we grow together spiritually, our

intimacy in the other two areas will grow as well.


Prayer is just talking aloud to God with your spouse, similar to talking with a friend. Prayer doesn’t have to take long hours in any particular position. It is the principle of connecting with God that is essential.


As a couple, within your governing style in your marriage, process the decision of daily prayer. As a result of your decision as a couple, place a check by which of the following statements you agree with. 


We have agreed to pray daily together to improve and maintain our intimacy for the next thirty days. 


We have agreed not to pray together daily for the next thirty days, knowing that it will negatively affect our intimacy. 


The structure of prayer taking place within your marriage is one essential part of the three daily exercises. This structure will also be a part of your thirty-day log at the end of each day. 


Hopefully you have agreed to daily prayer. I know better than most that each couple has many variables. Some of these differences include sleep preferences, work schedules, children’s school and extracurricular

activities, church, and fellowshiping with family and friends.


Look at your schedules. When can you pray together? In the morning? At lunch? In the evening? Take the time to discuss this with your spouse, and see if you can agree on a time to pray together. In the space below, write your first and second options to pray together. 


Option one is ________ a.m./p.m. 


Option two is ________ a.m./p.m. 


In your thirty-day log, it’s important to track your progress regarding this exercise to maintain the consistency that ignites the passion and intimacy you both desire.


Those who travel often ask how to maintain the thirty-day program while out of town. In this day of modern technology, it is a non issue for the creative person. You can use your calling card or mobile phone to pray with your spouse over the phone. This really demonstrates a commitment to maintaining your spiritual intimacy. Even if you’re in Hong Kong, you can e-mail a prayer to your wife and chat with her.

Remember that the structure first brings healing, then passion. As you walk together spiritually, your intimacy over the next thirty days can nourish. 


I love walking in the garden of my life with Lisa and coming with her into the presence of our loving Father. I really believe this has been instrumental in developing the strength and intimacy of our marriage. 






Here's my review:
30-Day Marriage Makeover: How to get closer, communicate better, and experience more passion in your relationship by next month by Douglas Weiss is an in-depth guide to finding greater intimacy with 30 days of reading and exercises.  Douglas directly addresses many hot topics such as emotions, sex and finances.  He begins the 30 days with building a spiritual foundation of daily prayer.  He creates checklists and agreements for spouses in each chapter.  After every week there is a progress report.  The 30 Day Marriage Makeover has many unique and interesting activities for a couple to discuss and make changes in their lives.  The goal Douglas has for every married couple as they go through this book is to experience the deepest level of intimacy.  He ends the book discussing lighter topics like dating, but encouraging couples to work hard to make changes that will bring ultimate marital satisfaction.

I was really impressed and somewhat overwhelmed at the amount of work that it takes to bring a marriage to deeper intimacy.  I know this book would be a fresh beginning for some marriages and also quite a different perspective on what marriage can become.  I think we all long for that close connection with our spouses, but don't know how to get there.  This book is a great resource to start some essential marriage building activities to increase love that a married couple dreams about.  I would recommend this as a great anniversary gift for any married couple.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Heavenly Homemakers 15% off Valentine sale! Ends Tuesday at Midnight




Heavenly Homemakers
15% off Valentine Sale
ends Tuesday at midnight!

Every downloadable product is on sale!
Simply go to Heavenly Homemakers

Make a selection and type
VALENTINE for 15% off

Choose from ebooks, Kid's character charts and Recipe cards!

** As an affiliate I receive a small percentage of each sale.  Thank you for shopping!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

The Craft Barn Sale- 15% off until 2/20

The Craft Barn


I love the sales at The Craft Barn.  Right now Jennifer is having a 15% off sale until 2/20!

Here are some of the cute and fun items in The Craft Barn store!  And everything is on sale!






Now is the time to get a head start on birthday gifts and Christmas gifts for a loved one.

All orders will receive 15% off with coupon code: LOVE11 until 2/20/11.

Start shopping today: The Craft Barn

**As an affiliate I receive a small percentage from each sale.  Thanks for shopping!

Friday, February 11, 2011

52 Weeks of Organizing with The Organizing Junkie Week #6


This week was full of ups and downs in my schedule, but I managed to get some things done.


Questions to ponder this week:
1.  What did you accomplish this week on your 52 weeks list?
      I was able to clean off a shelf that has been bugging me.  I actually am going to replace what was on there with my teaching things, so I haven't taken a picture this week.  I put everything that was on the bookshelf in a box (it's really heavy)  or recycled.  

2.  Have you had a negative conversation check with yourself lately?
     I am trying to put on a happy face whenever I have to clean because I know that when I'm done I'm really happy!

3.  Are you beginning to see new habits developing yet?
      I can see that I'm picking up clutter faster and not letting things pile up.  I'm walking around my house admiring all my newly cleaned spaces and I LOVE it!  I'm able to relax more and not obsess about all the junk that I was looking at because it's not there.  :)

I hope to get some more pictures up next week!  Progress!  What are you cleaning?

I'm hooked up with Laura The Organizing Junkie!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Life, In Spite of Me by Kristen Jane Anderson Book Review/Giveaway

Life, In Spite of Me: Extraordinary Hope After a Fatal Choice

Life, In Spite of Me: Extraordinary Hope After a Fatal Choice by Kristen Jane Anderson is the true story of a young woman who overcame an almost fatal tragedy to understanding of the hope found in Jesus Christ.  Kristen was only 17 years old when she lay down between railroad tracks one cold January night.  She no longer felt life worth living.  When several personal problems engulfed her, she knew she had to find a way out.  She thought if she committed suicide she would just go to heaven.  As Kristen lay on the tracks after being run over by 33 freight cars and looking at her severed legs, little did she know that God was not finished yet.  Kristen's story is one of struggle, pain, questions and most importantly becoming a true believer.  Even though Kristen's life was forever changed physically, she fought hard and was transformed spiritually as well.

I was amazed at the tenacity of this young woman.  She expected to die that night, but God saved her without her knowing.  I couldn't believe all the pain she suffered and grief that her family endured, but God used this situation to change many lives.  I still don't know how Kristen lives day in and out without her legs due to her choice, but she's chosen to now look beyond herself and help others just like her who have no hope.  Her story will inspire and encourage you.

*This book was provided to me free of charge by Blogging for Books  for purpose of this review. This is my honest opinion of this book and no monetary compensation was received for my opinion.*

Please rank my review:


GIVEAWAY:
*Win this book by just making a comment! (US only)
*Be sure to include your email address.  You can write it like this so you don't get spam: shondaet at gmail dot com.

Giveaway ends Sunday, Feb 20.

Booking It 2011: February

Wow, I love Booking It!  I have considerably decreased my efforts to read this year because I have a toddler and one on the way, but I do always seem to have a book I'm reading.  I'm really trying to refrain from reviewing so many books this year.  It's hard because I just LOVE books.  I'm really looking for quality fiction and non-fiction mostly Christian, but with others mixed in between.

Here is what I read in January:
*Reading through the NT- up to Matthew 20
*Unexpected Love (Seasons of Redemption, Book 3) by Andrea Boeshaar
*Life Without Limits: Inspiration for a Ridiculously Good Life by Nick Vujicic (worth reading)
*Search, The: A Novel (Lancaster County Secrets) by Suzanne Woods Fisher
*Unplanned: The Dramatic True Story of a Former Planned Parenthood Leader's Eye-Opening Journey across the Life Line by Abby Johnson (a MUST READ!)
*31 Days to a Younger You: No Surgery, No Diets, No Kidding by Arlene Pellicane

 From the Eleven List:
*The Happiness Project: Or, Why I Spent a Year Trying to Sing in the Morning, Clean My Closets, Fight Right, Read Aristotle, and Generally Have More Fun by Gretchen Rubin

I thought this was a very good book, but as a Christian, I know the secret to true happiness is through Jesus Christ.  However, I do like many of the ideas that Gretchen presented and I aim to make a list of things that make me "happy" and do them.

So what is on your MUST READ list from last month?

I'm hooked up with Booking It at Life as Mom.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

February Pear Tree Greetings Giveaway- $20 Gift code

Pear Tree Greetings




I am so excited to bring you special offers and fun giveaways from Pear Tree Greetings every month!
 
Take note of the wonderful NEW products that are available!
How fun is it to send out these beautiful Save the Date cards!



And Save the Date magnets!

Pear Tree Greetings
 
 
What about your own UNIQUE Graduation announcements?
Pear Tree Greetings


There are so many possibilities.
I like the address labels and personalized note cards the best.
It's so fun to see my own name or a friend's name that I choose as well as choosing colors and pictures too.  Pear Tree Greetings is so much fun!

So now for the GIVEAWAY!

What would you like to spend $20 on at Pear Tree Greetings?

I'll make it easy this time.  Just leave your comment here.  Be sure to type in your email address like this if you don't want spam: shondaet at gmail dot com.

Giveaway ends Sunday, Feb 20.


Be sure to check out the coupons on the right hand side of my blog for great discounts!