Thursday, 28 March 2013

Book Review - Moonlight Masquerade by Ruth Axtell



Publisher's blurb: Sometimes it is hard to tell if you are the cat or the mouse.

Lady CĂ©line Wexham seems the model British subject. French by birth but enjoying life in 1813 as a widowed English countess, she is in the unique position of being able to help those in need-or to spy for the notorious Napoleon Bonaparte.

When Rees Phillips of the British Foreign Office is sent to pose as the countess’s butler and discover where her true loyalties lie, he is confident he will uncover the truth. But the longer he is in her fashionable townhouse in London’s West End, the more his staunch loyalty to the Crown begins to waver as he falls under Lady Wexham’s spell.

Will he find the proof he needs? And if she is a spy after all, what then will he do?

My review: This is a well written book but I found some of the political info in the book boring. Lady Celine almost seemed a little too perfect as well, making her not quite believable. I would probably still recommend this book to others.

"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group".

Book Review - The Icecutter's Daughter by Tracie Peterson



Publisher's blurb: As the lone female in a houseful of men, Merrill Krause dedicates her life to caring for her family and their business, as her dying mother asked. Besides, it suits her; she's never felt like she fits what most people expect in a girl--she'd rather work with her father’s horses and assist with the ice harvest. And though she’s been mostly content up to this point, a part of her wonders if there will ever be anyone who will notice her amid the bevy of brothers determined to protect her from any possible suitors.

When Rurik Jorgenson arrives in their small Minnesota town to join his uncle's carpentry business, he soon crosses paths with Merrill. But unlike other men, who are often frightened away by her older brothers, Rurik isn't intimidated by them or by Merrill's strength and lack of femininity. The attraction between them begins to build...until Rurik's former fiance shows up with wild claims that bring serious consequences to Rurik.

Can Rurik and Merrill learn to trust God--and each other--when scandal threatens their newfound love?

My Review: I enjoyed this book. It was realistic and the characters were likable. The story was fast-paced and full of detail. I would recommend this book to others.


"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group".



Friday, 15 March 2013

Book Review - Unrivaled by Siri Mitchell



Publisher's blurb: Lucy Kendall returns from a tour of the Continent, her luggage filled with the latest fashions and a mind fired by inspiration. After tasting Europe's best confections, she's sure she'll come up with a recipe that will save her father's struggling candy business and reverse their fortunes. But she soon discovers that their biggest competitor, the cheat who swindled her father out of his prize recipe, has now hired a promotions manager--a cocky, handsome out-of-towner who gets under Lucy’s skin.

Charlie Clarke's new role at Standard Manufacturing is the chance of a lifetime. He can put some rough times behind him and reconnect with the father he's never known. The one thing he never counted on, however, was tenacious Lucy Kendall. She's making his work life miserable...and making herself impossible for him to forget.


My Review: I liked this book for the most part. It was an interesting read. I did find some of the things Lucy did to be quite underhanded and out of character for her. I would still recommend this book to others.


"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group".

Finally Finishing Some Watercolour Paintings

I sorted through my watercolour supplies yesterday and found several unfinished works from approx. 1989.

I decided to finish them up before starting any new paintings.

Here is my progress so far.

In the image collage, the 1st pic is the subject of my painting, either a print I bought or a card. The 2nd pic is the way the painting looked from 1989, before I started work on it again, and finally the 3rd pic is how it looks finished either now. I've also included just the final version to better show the detail.









I have a few more to finish, I will post them once done.

thanks for looking :)

Book Reveiw - Swept Away by Mary Connealy



Publisher's blurb: When a cowboy focused on revenge encounters a woman determined to distract him, there's going to be trouble in Texas!

Swept away when her wagon train attempts a difficult river crossing, Ruthy MacNeil isn't terribly upset at being separated from the family who raised her. All they've ever done is work her to the bone. Alive but disoriented, she's rescued by Luke Stone...so unfortunately, there are more chances to die in her immediate future.

Luke is on a mission to reclaim the ranch stolen from his family. But the men currently on the property won't let it go without a fight. Luke plans to meet up with friends who will help him take back the land, and since he can't just leave Ruthy in the middle of nowhere, she’s going to have to go with him.

But the more time Luke spends around the hardworking young woman, the more he finds himself thinking of things besides revenge. Will Ruthy convince him to give up his destructive path and be swept away by love?

My Review: I enjoyed this book. The story was fairly fast paced, the characters were believable & likable. The connection between Luke & Ruthy is natural. I also like the camaraderie Luke has with Dare & Vince. I would recommend this book to my friends.

"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group".

Book Review - Secent of Lilacs by Ann H. Gabhart



Publisher's blurb: After the summer of 1964, life for Jocie Brooke will never be the same.

Life-changing events rarely happen in quiet Hollyhill, Kentucky, and when they do, they are few and far between. But for young Jocie Brooke and her family, they happen all at once during the humid summer of 1964. Though on the surface things are just fine, it seems like everyone in Jocie’s life has something they’re not saying, something they’re hiding from her-and from themselves. As Jocie digs into her family’s past, she stirs up a whirlwind of discoveries. Will she find the answers everyone so desperately needs? Or will her questions lead to truths better left hidden?

Combining unforgettable characters, true-to-life struggles, and the perfect dose of humor and nostalgia, this riveting story from bestselling author Ann Gabhart explores the very essence of new life and love.


My review: I love this book & this author. The story flows so easily and holds your interest. I like that it is the 1st in a 3 book series - I am looking forward to reading the other two books. The characters are all likable and realistic, you just want to keep reading to find to what happens next. I'd definitely recommend this book & series to others.

"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group".
 

Wednesday, 13 March 2013

Vanity I Made for a Friend's Birthday

I made the following vanity & mini album from a Kathy Orta pattern I bought. I then made the additional two drawer minis on my own.

This post is very pic intensive.

I used Ladies' Diary paper by Graphic 45 that I absolutely LOVE.
My friend loved the vanity as well :)

Click on pics for larger images.
Before I added all the embellishments
I used a key on a brad as a swing closure 
as I didn't have magnets strong enough


Lace on the sides as doilies

 The mini album that fits in the drawer


 Top tray

Mini albums I made for each side drawer

Final version of flowers added to frame & 
cameo pin to embellish top or to wear



 Wrapped and ready to go

 L opening her gift 

 L with her vanity (& Luigi)

The front of the mini album

 Back/spine
The pages with photo mat inserts - this mini can hold 40 photos









The two minis I made for the side drawer - pictures of her 
two sons will be added to these (each mini can hold 24 photos)






Not sure what my next project will be - thanks for looking :)

Sunday, 10 March 2013

Mini Album I made for a Friend's Sister's Birthday

My friend asked me to make this for her sister for her birthday in Dec.

The mini contains photos from infancy to current day of my friend's sister. We had to have her daughter smuggle her photo album out of the house & over to me to scan & print all new photos. It was sneaky & fun :)

The mini is very interactive, with many pullout photo matts.

WARNING: VERY PHOTO HEAVY!













































And finally, a pic of the recipient receiving the mini album.