Friday, 27 January 2017

Counting Our Blessings // Odelia Chan

Good morning everyone! Can you believe that next month, it will be a full year since the first post in the Counting Our Blessings link up was published?! Where has the time gone? Thank you all so much who have joined me in this venture the past year, it's been absolutely amazing counting blessings with y'all ^_^ 

For the first guest post of 2017, I'd like to introduce... Odelia Chan! She and her family have been friends with my family since like forever ago. She just recently opened up her own blog - be sure to check it out after this post! So welcome to both the blogosphere and my blog, Odelia! :) 

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My name is Odelia Chan. I am turning fifteen next month.(Whooo-Hooo! Finally!) 
I have wavy black hair, dark brown eyes –that could blaze with fire or twinkle with fun, I am also rather short ☺ and… Yeah! Sorry, I couldn't find a nice, recent portrait/picture, so…..

I live on a hobby farm in Ontario, with my great family of eight kids and my parents (myself included.)  I am the second oldest.

We have sheep (and therefore cute little lambs in the spring—YAY!), a flock of hens, two goldfishes, and probably a few more animals over the summer!!

I, along with my sisters and brothers, are homeschooled- which, by the way, is one of my greatest blessings.

I love to write. Sitting down with a stack of paper to fill with the ideas that storm my mind (and that keeps me awake at night!) with the pencil in my hand, to write for hours, un-interrupted—that is almost pure happiness to me.

I’ve recently started a blog thingy I would like to share with you readers. (It’s my first time, so bear with me in whatever typos and stuff like that I might have overlooked) I launched it in hopes of getting some honest-to-goodness suggestions and advice on how I could better improve my writing. (Another way of saying “Comments, please!!”☺) so…. The link is: Odelia's Writing Blog

Be sure to hop over there after reading this guest post!!

So that’s a little about me: shall we get started on the blessings? 

© Google 
#1 My family. I am sooo thankful that God had placed me in a Christian household: and although none of us are perfect (it’s a wonder how we can get through the day peacefully at all!!) Home is the place where we are taught to live like Christ and for Christ. Parents are the God-appointed mentors of our early years, and siblings often (very often)give you the extra push toward being a more kind, loving, --and patient—servant.

Having a Christ-centered, supportive family is one of the most precious blessings that God has given me.

#2 Beauty. Beauty is everywhere, if we only look for it: in each leaf, each flower, in each toothy smile –God’s creation is perfect, seamless, majestic. Even after the Fall—what unsurpassable beauty must the spotless Garden of Eden have held!--- He has still left us with His creative Beauty on each and every one of His created plants and animals—right down to the smallest snowflake.And not only that, He’s given us the ability to see and enjoy them!! Isn't He marvellous!!

© Google 
#3 Writing—Words. Ideas. Thoughts. Through writing, God speaks to us, guides us, and moulds us to be more like Himself. Through the written Word, He leads us to Himself, and shows us the path to Salvation.
Writing is powerful—perhaps even more so than music.( sorry, musicians…. I’m really biased☺) It is also my life’s calling—to write to His Glory. Writing means a lot to me—sometimes I feel as if I would die from bursting if I don’t sit down and scribble across the page.

I can’t thank God enough for this Blessing!! 
© Google 

#4 Work. This may come as a surprise, but trust me—when you have literally nothing to do in the whole wide world, you’ll be glad to scrub those dishes and sweep those floors, even if just to pass away the time. After all, we are made for work!!!  Mind you, I didn't say I love work—I very rarely enjoy it☺ -- it is still a blessing in disguise; In many, many hidden ways!!!

It gives you a measure of satisfaction to see the results of your work—whether it be cleaning up your baby brother’s mess, mucking up(or down) the stalls, or scrubbing your arms off over the sink. It gives you time away from the grind of schoolwork, a job, or plain boredom. So, praise the Lord for work!!

© Google 
#5 Water. Such a profoundly simple, vitally important element God has given us!! It’s just the combination of two gases, that somehow join together, and become a liquid that all life depends on, that it’s simply profound!!!
Without it we could not quench our thirst, we could not wash our clothes—or ourselves, we could not even flush the toilet. We would not even exist!! We should not take H2O for granted. Water is a great blessing.

So there! A few of the blessings that I receive daily from the gracious hand of God!!

I hope that each one of you have been encouraged by this post, and thanks again, Blessing, for having me here!!!

Wednesday, 25 January 2017

Left to Die // Author Interview and Review

Hello all! 

Guess what guess what guess what?? Ivy Rose is releasing her new novella, Left to Die this week! So exciting!!!! I’m participating in her very awesome book blog tour. Onto the interview and review, shall we? 

Hi there, Ivy Rose! It is so awesome to have you back to the blog and in such exciting circumstances too :) Now if I may ask, what was the inspiration for Left to Die? 
The inspiration for Left to Die comes from my sister. She had a rough start to life and almost didn’t live to see her first birthday, but because of some amazing folks in China, her heart was repaired and she is now a happy, healthy 11 year old ready to take on the world! I want to raise awareness for the orphan crisis in the world, and doing so through a platform I already have—as an author—seemed like a good start.

That’s an amazing background! I’m so glad to hear that your sister is doing so much better, praise the Lord! As for the orphan crisis awareness, you certainly taught me a few things. So thank you! :) Your next question: How long did it take for you to write Left to Die?
If I’m remembering correctly, I believe it took me about 3 weeks to write the first draft. It was my fastest, albeit shortest, work to ever write!

Oh wow! You were very inspired, weren’t ya? ;) And last question, how do you feel publishing another work only 6 months after The Old River Road?
A mixed-up mess of stress and excitement. ;) 6 months might be a little too soon. I don’t know if I’ll be doing releases so close together again.

Hey, just saying, I don’t mind the releases being so close together. More awesome books for all us readers to devour ;) Thank you so much for coming to the blog, Ivy Rose, and blessings in your writing career! 

Note: There are spoilers in this review, so read at your own risk ;) 


Where do I start? This book is just amazing. The characters, the details, the emotions. The emotions especially were really good, and not fake or anything. 

I loved the entire plot, from Lindy finding Jia, to struggling to help her, to finally deciding to keep her as her own child. And when Lindy left Jia with the Owens, gah, the emotions there were so high…there were literally tears in my eyes. Then when Lindy drove all the way back there to pick up Jia, I was like “YES!” :D 

The setting seemed almost unrealistic at times, but I think that was just because of how horrible reality seems. It’s hard to believe that someone would dispose of their child just because of it being a girl, or having a defect. And it’s positively heartbreaking to think that that actually does happen in the world. It was so sad reading about the situation in Left to Die. But I think the author did a really good in exposing the problem and making readers more aware of what was, and still is, happening. 

And Nathan and Lindy 💗  Nathan is just so sweet. His desire to care for Lindy is so sincere and I was just “awww-ing” over him during that scene where Lindy comes home super tired and finds Jia screaming for her. And the Oreo cookies. ;) 

All in all, I really enjoyed Left to Die. Ivy Rose did another amazing job, and if you haven’t read this novella already, I very strongly suggest that you do! 


Go here to enter the Giveaway!
Left to Die Prize Pack

Follow the Tour

Becoming Lost – Review
Anika’s Avenue – Review
Once Upon an Ordinary – Interview

Whispers on the Wind – Interview
Read Another Page – Review

Counting Your Blessings – Review/Interview
Stories by Firefly – Review
Writing in the Light – Interview

Reveries Reviews – Review
Marrok Macintyre – Interview

Having a Heart Like His – Review/Interview
Whimsical Writings – Review

Rebekah’s Remarks - Interview

About the Author:

Ivy Rose is an 18 year old history lover and literary enthusiast. Aside from writing, she enjoys being outdoors, eating chocolate, traveling, reading, and doing TaeKwonDo. She resides with her family of 9 on the banks of the Long Lake in eastern Washington. She can be found at various places on the Internet: 

Monday, 16 January 2017

The Book Tag

Hellooooo!!! This is the post where I finally complete the tags which, coincidentally, both ended up being book ones. How fantastic is that? So, hold onto your seats as we go through these two very fun book tags! 

I was tagged for The Book Tag by both Olivia and Holly! You can check out their amazing blogs by clicking on their name :) 

The Questions 
1. What is your favorite genre of books?
Probably historical fiction, romance, and a little fantasy. 

2. Who is your favorite author and why?
Argh, no idea. Have way too many favorites! 

3. Are you more of a writer or a reader?
More of a reader! Definitely! :) 

4. Which book have you read the most?
Probably the Louisa May Alcott books, Eight Cousins, An Old Fashioned Girl, Little House on the Prairie, and The King's Daughter. (excluding the Bible, of course ;)) 

5. Is there a book that has made you cry?
Oh, definitely! Even short stories have made me cry. (*whispers* I think I cry too much...but that's not a bad thing, right?)

6. What book has made you kinda annoyed at the way they ended it?
Ummm.... so I know that there are books that have made me so annoyed, but I can't remember them o_O Let me think about it while I finish the rest of the tag. Later: Ok, so any story where it's pretty obvious the girl is supposed to get together with the boy, and then something happens and it doesn't come out, then I get sad. More sad than annoyed anyway. Oh yeah, and depressed. 

7. What book is one you can read over and over again?
There are a LOT. An Old Fashioned Girl, The King's Daughter, Camp X, and more recently, Ranger's Apprentice and The Blades of Acktar (I haven't read these last two over and over again...yet. But I just think I would ;))

8. Is there one book in which you couldn’t stop reading until you finished it?
Lately, pretty much any book I read that's under 2000 pages on an iPod. Also Ranger's Apprentice and The Blades of Acktar (you're gonna hear Blades of Acktar a lot, just saying) 

9. Do you have a favorite book?
Yes. And no. The correct way to state it would be I have favourite books.

10. And lastly, What kind of writing style do you like to read?
Probably historical fiction, some fantasy, and some romance. Those are my favourites, anyhoo. 

Thank you so much for tagging me, Olivia and Holly! I tag anyone who is a homeschooler ;) 

And now onto The Bookish Recap Tag. Thank you, Faith, for coming up with such a delightful tag! There is going to be a lot of looking through Goodreads history involved here. Prepare yourself. 

The Rules
-- Include the above button in your post. 
-- Answer the 11 questions. 
-- Use as many book covers as you like. (The correct answer to this question would be ALOT. B-)) 

-- Tag 5-10 people and notify them that they have been tagged. 

The Questions

// How many books did you read in 2016? (Exact if you know, or approximate if not.) 
Soooo....Goodreads says 163, but I know that I went over that. I just didn't log them in because of - well, life happening :) 

// Did you set a reading challenge for yourself and, if so, did you meet it?  
Yes, I did set a reading challenge! I went for 150 books, and I not only met it, I passed it! Woohoo! :D 

// What was your most read genre this year? Least read? 
The most read genre was probably romance-and-historical-fiction combined and the least read was ... sci-fi. Or nonfiction. 

// What's five of your favorite books from 2016? 
No!!!!!!! Faith! Whyyyyyyyy do you do this to meeeeeee?? xD I'm gonna cheat and let series count as one book ;) 
1. Triple Creek Ranch by Rebekah Morris
2. The Blades of Acktar by Tricia Mingerink
3. ALL-the-Melanie-Dickerson-books-that-I-read-this-year by well, duh, Melanie Dickerson 
4. The Ranger's Apprentice by John Flanagan 
5. Racing for Time by my very own, dear friend, Olivia Nickerson 💕

// What's five of your least favorite books from 2016? 
Oh, well this one is definitely easier ;) 
1. Dracula (too creepy)
2. Straight to You (topics that I probably didn't need to read about just yet. Maybe ever) 
3. The Forgotten Garden (the worst book I read this year, I believe. 
4. The Chosen (made an interesting discussion, but it wasn't a favourite) 
5. A Series of Unfortunate Events (not a bad series at all, I just didn't LOVE it) 

// What new favorite author did you discover? (Not necessarily that the author is 'new', but that they became new to you this year.) 
Tricia Mingerinkkkkkkkkkk!!! I am having the hardest time trying not to use caps here.... This author is amazing and I am head over heels in love with The Blades of Acktar!!!!!!!

// What's five of your favorite book covers from the year? 

So pretty so pretty so pretty so pretty!!!!! There are a ton more covers that I love, but I think these are probably my top favourite. 

// How many books did you purchase for yourself in 2016? (Exact if you know, approximate if not.) 
Uh oh. The time of truth where Faith makes you look at all the money you spent on books *sighs* 
Well, I have 69 ebooks on my kindle (but then, I didn't really purchase all of them. Some of them were freebies...) ....and I know I got quite a few paperbacks .... maybe 80? Or 90...

// What's the longest book you read in 2016? 
The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton, at 648 pages. 

// What's the shortest book you read in 2016? 
The Case of the Perfect Maid by Agatha Christie, at 30 pages 

// What's your reading goal for 2017? 
My reading goal for 2017 is 100 books. Down by 50 from my last one, but I've got a feeling that, sad as it is, I'm not gonna have a ton of time to read this year :( If I can go over my goal though, I'm definitely going to do it! 

As was with the last tag, I tag anyone who is/was a homeschooler. Oh, and also has snow :D 

And that about wraps up this post! I will, Lord willing, be coming out soon with either a book review, Week in the Life, or a guest post. 

Have a great start to a new week, everyone! :D 

P.S. Excuse the format of this post....Blogger's acting up again . . . 

Friday, 6 January 2017

Happy New Year!

6 days late o_O

Hello everyone! Apologies for the disappearance from the has been absolutely hectic lately. To sum it up as quickly as possible, our online school closed down, leaving us scrambling for courses (it's really sad because the head of the school was soo nice :( ), I sprained my ankle (snowboarding on a toboggan with Tiger Lily ...not the smartest idea), we celebrated Tiger Lily's 15th birthday (hurrazie!), hosted a few Christmas/New Year parties(soooo much fun!), I got a teaching position (o_O crazy but awesome...more on that later hopefully ;)), oh yes, and I also took my driving test (didn't pass, but maybe next time! :D)

But one of the most exciting things ever....

My friend is releasing her new book!!! *squeals*

Olivia is hosting a blog tour for her brand new book, Racing for Time. You can check out her blog here for more details on participating: Racing for Time - Blog Tour 

You excited now? I know I am! Can't wait!!! :D