16 June 2018

Instagram Today


Book Review: Am I Enough?: Embracing the Truth About Who You Are By Grace Valentine

Am I Enough?: Embracing the Truth About Who You Are By Grace Valentine  

Am I Enough? by Grace Valentine is a book of encouragement for those of us feeling like we are never enough. Grace is a young, single woman and her book is primarily aimed at younger women. However, we older gals can learn a thing or two from this young lady.

Where Grace has been, we have been and maybe still are, feeling like we are not and can never be enough, as judged by the human eyes and hearts in this world.

Grace encourages us to see ourselves as Heavenly Father sees us, beautifully made in His image. He made us and He doesn’t make junk. We are each beautiful AND enough!

One thing that I learned while reading this book is that one doesn’t necessarily have to be happy to be joyful. I can be sad, but still have joy in knowing that He has this all covered, including whatever may be causing my sadness.

“Out of the mouths of babes,” as they say. Grace tells it like it is and gives us questions to ponder along the way. Am I Enough? Has been an eye-opener for me in a multitude of ways. We older ladies are supposed to teach the younger ladies, but I think that we also should be open to learning from them.

I give Am I Enough? 5 stars and hope that you will get as much from it as I did. I hope that you learn that you ARE enough, enough for Him, your Creator.


We were sent a complimentary copy of this book. We are under no obligation to write any review, positive or negative. We are disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255.  

Notice: This post contains affiliate links. If you click a link and make a purchase, we may financially benefit from your transaction, at no additional cost to you. Thank you for your support.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Please be sure to visit David over at Random Thoughts and Observations.

I respond to all comments on this blog, ideally within 24 hours.  Please check back here for a response to your comment.  Thank you!
 
Please subscribe to David's YouTube Channel. Thanks!

15 June 2018

Book Review: Overcoming the Hand You Were Dealt by Kisha Taylor

Overcoming the Hand You Were Dealt by Kisha Taylor

From time to time, we get a book that is just screaming, “Me next, me next.” Overcoming the Hand You Were Dealt by Kisha Taylor was one of those books. There are over 53,000 books in our to be read file, each with the hope that it will receive a review.

It is difficult to believe that this book is the first book out of the chute for this author. Taylor is a master storyteller who tells the story very well.

It does not matter that there are times this old Southern white male needed a hood-to-redneck dictionary. We speak the same language, Christian.

The author writes in such a way that you can feel the pain. You can feel the betrayal. Readers follow as one person after another in the main character’s life hurts her in one way or another.

Then, we read in this true story of how the main character overcame all odds. How she pulled herself up by the bootstraps she did not have and overcame.

We think Overcoming the Hand You Were Dealt would make a good book for a small group Bible Study. The author makes no excuses for her character and she admits to mistakes along the way.

We give this book all five stars. It is one of those books you won’t want to put down. One that you want to think everything is rosey in the end, but it is about real life. You will want to buy a copy for all those independent black women in your life and maybe a copy for that redneck man, too.

We were sent a complimentary copy of Overcoming the Hand You Were Dealt. We are under no obligation to write any review, positive or negative.

We are disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255.

Notice: This post contains affiliate links. If you click a link and make a purchase, we may financially benefit from your transaction, at no additional cost to you. Thank you for your support.
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Please be sure to visit David over at Random Thoughts and Observations.

I respond to all comments on this blog, ideally within 24 hours.  Please check back here for a response to your comment.  Thank you!
 
Please subscribe to David's YouTube Channel. Thanks!

Friendly Fill-Ins

This is a fun meme co-hosted by 15 and Meowing and Four-Legged Furballs. Be sure to visit and join in the fun!

New Friday_Fill-In_Badge
Here are the fill-ins:
  1. My favorite Disney character is __________________.
    2. If I could stay any age for life, I would choose to be age ___________________.
    3. _________ is my secret talent.
    4. Life is like a _________.
sandcastle-1546788_640_crop

Here are my responses:

My favorite Disney character is Grandma Tala from Moana. She is such an expressive, loving, and supportive grandma. She knew what was inside Moana to do, her destiny, and helped her to it. She is the one that speaks one of my most favorite lines in that movie: “There's nowhere you could go that I won't be with you.” It gets to me every time I hear it.

Part of me says that I would choose to stay 17, but, although David and I were together then, we weren’t yet married and I was still under parental authority. So, I will choose 19. At 19, I was a young married girl with my whole life ahead of me and no clue of the many things that were ahead for me or would be removed from me. It was a time of hope and excitement. AND, a much better body!

I think any talent I have must be a secret because I haven’t found an actual talent yet. Maybe that will change once I get more into the pottery making. I sure hope so. I don’t want to disappoint my ancestors, too.

Life is like a big puzzle without a picture on the box front. Maybe you can find the edge pieces with no problem, but the rest you’re on your own trying to get all figured out. Each piece is a surprise.

Our daughter Maggie has a new blog for her furbaby Martha. You can find it at: Martha’s Daily Mews

Our Marine needs your help. Please see New York or Bust.

Have a blessed weekend, y’all!



Image Source: Pixabay


Notice: This post may contain affiliate links. If you click a link and make a purchase, we may financially benefit from your transaction, at no additional cost to you. Thank you for your support.
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Please be sure to visit David over at Random Thoughts and Observations.

I respond to all comments on this blog, ideally within 24 hours.  Please check back here for a response to your comment.  Thank you!
 
Please subscribe to David's YouTube Channel. Thanks!

11 June 2018

Book Review: It’s All About You: A Guide to Good Mental Health and Wellness by Cynthia Rapazzini

It’s All About You: A Guide to Good Mental Health and Wellness by Cynthia Rapazzini

If we were to decide how good or bad It’s All About You: A Guide to Good Mental Health and Wellness by Cynthia Rapazzini is based upon whether or not we agree with everything the author writes, it would fail miserably.

Our family has had many experiences with the mental health care system, all bad. We have dealt with ADHD, Depression, PTSD, Psychosis, Schizophrenia, Bipolar disorder, and more. In every case, the mental health care system made the situation worse. Once to the point suicide was seriously a possibility.

Somewhere some self-appointed expert decided that if a situation lasted more than two weeks, it was mental illness; we beg to differ.

Too often all the mental health “professionals” have to offer are drugs. One so-called professional did not offer anything other than a drug and then said, “You are crazy if you don’t take it.“ Those are the exact words.

But, a review is supposed to be about the book and not about how well we agree with what the author has to say. In this case, we don’t agree with very much.

Rapazzini attempts to explain the mental health care system. She says we should choose our mental health care providers carefully. It would be great if it worked that way for poor people. When you have to go through non-profits and government programs to get mental health care, you don’t get to choose.

The author tells us that there are laws in place to prevent abuses. Tell that to our family member who found herself handcuffed to a bench after speaking with a mental health professional.

We cannot say this book is well-written because there are a few occasions where the author, or someone on her behalf, went back to edit her work and left an extraneous word or two. The most glaring problem is the misuse of the word “whether”. In school we were taught there was always another option given when the word whether was used. “I don’t know whether OR NOT I am going the the show.” Maybe that is nitpicking.

On pages 42 and 43, we are given statistics on suicide for 18-34 year olds. The two groups most likely to commit suicide, each with double digit figures, are Native Americans and Whites. The other two groups were the lowest Hispanics and African Americans, both with single digit figures. The author goes on to say that minorities are less likely than whites to seek mental health care. It would appear that the African Americans and the Hispanics benefit from this since their rates of suicide are lower. This would imply that you are less likely to commit suicide if you DON’T seek the help. We doubt this is always true but, statistically speaking, there is a case to be made.

We give It’s All About You three stars. We do not feel it is a useful tool in our toolbox.

We were sent a complimentary copy of this book. We are under no obligation to write any review, positive or negative. We are disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255.  

Notice: This post contains affiliate links. If you click a link and make a purchase, we may financially benefit from your transaction, at no additional cost to you. Thank you for your support.
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Please be sure to visit David over at Random Thoughts and Observations.

I respond to all comments on this blog, ideally within 24 hours.  Please check back here for a response to your comment.  Thank you!
 
Please subscribe to David's YouTube Channel. Thanks!

10 June 2018

My First Adventure With Clay

First things first, many of you already know this, but for those that don't, I have discovered that some of my forefathers were potters. The first place that I discovered them as potters was in Edgefield, South Carolina, in the early-to-mid 1800s. They moved to the Hart County, Georgia area, where they were pioneers in the alkaline glazing technique. They trained other potters in this technique. I wish I could have been there for them to teach me, too, but c'est la vie.

As I understand it, it wasn't typical for women to be potters, but some of the Gunter women were. My Gunter forefathers (my daddy's side of the family) were utilitarian potters, making jugs and containers for storing dry goods and liquid goods (or bads, however you want to look at whiskey storage). This was their livelihood and way of life until cheaper, mass produced pottery came in vogue, greatly reducing the volume of business and, therefore, their income.

Now comes me. I want to learn this craft that my forefathers mastered so many years ago. Maybe it will never be a livelihood for me or pay the bills. That is okay. It is in me to do. It is part of who I am. I can hear them calling me to the clay and the pull is strong. I don't want to fight it. I do know that there will be challenges to fight through and I'm willing to do so. Hey, I'm a Gunter by birth. We don't back down from fights! :)

While reading on the history of pottery making in Edgefield, I learned about pottery marks. It is a way for potters to mark their goods to distinguish their works from those of others. I have been praying and pondering over what my mark should be. One day, while out watching the birds, Heavenly Father gave it to me. Here is a picture of what I saw:

Original_Inspiration_Piece_6406_web 
Pottery Mark Inspiration ©30 May 2018 Suzanne Gunter McClendon

Heavenly Father definitely has a sense of humor. How fitting that the pottery mark He gave me would be the very thing that keeps me sneezing almost non-stop. :) Nature is very important and peace-giving to me, in spite of the sneezing. This mark fits me. It represents to me nature, the family tree and, of course, an "S" for Suzanne.

I made a batch of air dry clay using a recipe that I got from a craft website. I wanted to try to recreate the above design, plus, I needed to know if I would actually be able to manipulate the clay before I invested in more costly clay. I have rheumatoid arthritis and multiple hand injuries that cause a great deal of pain at times and limit the use of my left hand. Thankfully, I was able to manipulate this clay.

I decided that I would pat it out by hand (I don't currently have a rolling pin) as good as I could and take it outside to press it into the "nature" that was displayed on our patio. This part worked out okay except that it got the clay dirty. This was expected, it is outside, after all. I brushed off as much of the extra nature as I could, much of which would not come off. That's okay. Then, I put the tile in a safe place to dry.

This is the part that didn't work out so well. It cracked all the way through as it was drying. At this point, I assume it cracked because the thicker area of the clay took longer to dry than the thinner areas. This is why rolling it out evenly is important, which I can't seem to achieve having to pat it out by hand. That problem will soon be remedied.

Here are photos of the front and the back of my original air dry clay experiment, featuring my pottery mark design:

Original_Front_6454_web 
Original Tile Front - Pottery Mark Design ©31 May 2018

Original_Back_6456_web 
Original Tile Back - Pottery Mark Design ©31 May 2018

As you can see, that is a pretty significant crack. Oh well, maybe next time will be better. This one will always be a treasure to me, cracks, extra nature, and all, because it is the first step to joining my ancestors as potters.









Notice: This post may contain affiliate links. If you click a link and make a purchase, we may financially benefit from your transaction, at no additional cost to you. Thank you for your support.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Please be sure to visit David over at Random Thoughts and Observations.

I respond to all comments on this blog, ideally within 24 hours.  Please check back here for a response to your comment.  Thank you!
 
Please subscribe to David's YouTube Channel. Thanks!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...