Author Archives: charii23
The Power of Broke couldn’t have come at a better or crazier time in my life. In the midst of my own entrepreneur journey and launching a business, I was neck deep in stress and self-doubt. I bought The Power of Broke with hopes that Daymond’s story would help inspire me in my own extrepeneur adventure. I was skeptical at first, as to whether I was just buying into this book because of the name and face that went with it, and whether it’s words would be of any true value. I have to say, this was the first in a long while that I actually found myself so positively impacted by a book. Daymond John’s book was every bit as inspiring as I was hoping it would be.
Although I have to agree with a few other reviewers on the point that this book sort of stops at “inspiring” and doesn’t really touch on the “how to’s” in building your business, I don’t think that this book was ever supposed to be a guide to reaching millionare status. There is no one answer, as every entrepreneur and business is very different. Most businesses hire business and financial advisors for just that sort of thing. That’s a whole other book in itself. What Daymond did instead was reach out to us as individuals and with his story, and the stories of the many other entrepenurs that you will find in this book, he focused on “inspiring” you as an extrepenur to find strength and power in you and your own abilities.
The biggest downfall of any company is a weak foundation, and what is that foundation? We are the foundation. And yet, too many times we doubt our own strengths because we’re too small, too poor, unqualified, or uneducated. We get caught up in the idea that we need college degrees and large sums of money in order to be successful in life. It’s the biggest lie we could ever tell ourselves. A short ways into reading The Power of Broke, Daymond gives a perfect example as to how being broke can actually be your greatest asset in building a strong foundation for your business. In the long run it can be even more valuable then money. You don’t agree? Just read up on the many examples Daymond gives in the following chapters.
You will find entrepreneurs from all walks of life that will teach and inspire you from their own journey from broke to thriving. Whether they had money or little to nothing to start with, each example proves just how little money effected their climb up the ladder of success, and proves just how valuable a lesson it can be to build a business using just the skills given you. When you’re forced to get creative with those skills, you’re building up a stronger foundation. You’re building yourself up in passion and drive, in confidence and character, in knowledge and understanding, (and so much more) but even better you’re more of a peoples people and an inspirations to the many others just like you.
Yes, many may have picked up this book hoping Daymond would give you the secret key to success, so you could open the door to all the answers you’ve been looking for, and finally launch your business into a multi million dollar standing. You may not have found that, but I feel what Daymond gave us in this book is so much more valuable.
I received this book for free through blogging for books in exchange for an honest review.
Lord, Have Mercy is a day by day pick me up for the “drowning” mother on her last nerve. As mothers, we all go through those rough patches in life where we feel like we’re climbing a rocky cliff, and with every step we take we slide down two or three feet. The stress just never lets up and the chores just never end. Peace and quiet can be found, but only after you’ve laid your head to rest on your pillow. At this point you have a million things you want to do with your quiet time, but you’re too exhausted to do anything. So you decide to just go to sleep, but the moment you close your eyes your mind starts reeling with all the things going wrong in your life. Sound familiar? Yes, it does, and that is how books like these get written.
It was for these reasons, and many more, that when I saw this book I knew I would be reviewing it. Lord, Have Mercy provides you with ninety days of stories to give help and hope to moms, through stories from a mom who’s been through it all before. Best of all, Ellen Miller is here to remind you that you are not alone, for God is with you, no matter how small and seemingly insignificant or how big and overwhelmingly impossibly your problems may be, He is here with you every step of the way.
What I love most about books such as this is that it takes you out of your own problems for a brief moment and puts you in the shoes of another who has been there before. I for one kept this book on my treadmill, and for a half hour out of my day I would walk, and read, and reflect on what I’ve read and how I could apply it to my own life. I was working through my problems both physical and mental. It’s always great to see that we aren’t the only women struggling to find perfection in all aspects of our lives, or feeling like we’re failing to reach our goals of achieving the “mother of the year” award. As a mom, you need to know you are not alone, and this is what Ellen Miller is here to tell you.
On a personal note:
As a reader, I go all in, and as a mother, I love my “Mom” books. I jumped right into the stories of this book, and I will say that I enjoyed each one of them. Unfortunately, I felt as though the stories were a little lacking, though it was hard to pinpoint where. Ellen Miller did go through some tough moments as a mother. She never lacked to open up about these moments in her life, whether they were heartfelt, funny, or some of a mother’s worst nightmares. I think part of it came down to the length of the stories. Each day’s thought was so short lived, about a page and a half, sometimes two. For a reader such as me, you are sort of left with a lot more questions then things to reflect on. I felt like Ellen had a lot to say, but the daily devotion style kept her from going too deep.
Lord, Have Mercy is a great book for the lighter readers who are looking for short pick-me-up moments. I personally am a heavy reader and I like feeling drawn into my stories. I didn’t have time during my daily reading to feel drawn in. Although this book does touch on a lot of motherly moments, and will have you giggling with a, “Oh yea, been there,” I felt I just had a hard time emotionally connecting with this book. Regardless, the stories were well written, and there are plenty of mothers/readers out there who would find this book a very pleasant read. Lord, Have Mercy is still a good book for the mother on her last nerve and I don’t regret getting the chance to review it.
I received this book for free through Tyndale House Publishers in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.
James Van Patten, a local to Seattle, Washington, graduated from the University of Washington in 1965 with a BA in art education. When I first picked up Patten’s book ‘the Acrylic Painter’ I didn’t know I’d be learning from such an amazing teacher, as well as one who once lived only a couple hours from myself. It’s no wonder Patten eventually became inspired by water and wetlands, as there is an abundance of that here in Oregon/Washington! Of course, I didn’t find out I was learning from a local until the end of his book. The reason I chose Patten’s book is all in the name, “the Acrylic Painter: Tools and techniques for the most versatile medium”. Acrylic paint was the first paint I ever touched, mostly due to it being the most commonly used paint for beginning painters. Unfortunately, without doing the research yourself, you won’t realize just how complex this paint can be. Looking back now, I don’t see how I could have gone any further into my career as an artist without this book.
I first thought of acrylics as the easy option for artists. I mean, you look at the price alone and you’re going to get more bang for your buck with acrylics. So that is where I started, before I began to learn the many frustrations that comes with working with acrylics. As a self-taught artist, I didn’t have the schooling and teachers to grow me in the art of working with acrylics. No one was there tell me that acrylics dry so fast, or that you shouldn’t pour more then you need to work with at that time, or that there are additives you can mix into it to slow the drying process. Books soon became my teachers, and believe me, I’ve read a lot. Up until Patten’s book, almost every book I picked up felt like a really boring art class. Reading through these books just wasn’t an option as much as I tried. Patten’s book was one of two books on acrylic’s that I fell in love with from the moment I turned the first page. For an entire summer it became my life source. His book answered so many questions about acrylics that I’ve had over the years, and taught me so many tricks of the trade that have opened new doors for me as a painter.
What I loved first about his book was how Patten doesn’t just speak about acrylic paints generically. As an artist, the first question that runs through my mind when I meet another artist is, “What brand of paint do you use?”. I get kinda nosy and want to learn which brand, body, and consistency they prefer. Patten touches on this subject from the get go. I was soon pleasantly surprised to find my paints of choice are right up there with Patten’s. Through his teachings I have become so much more familiar and comfortable working with my paints. I no longer look at paint additives like their foreign objects, or look at the more expensive brands of paint like they’re too far out of my league. Learning to use your paint right makes a difference in whether or not you will become a successful artist in both product and profit. (Better product and less waste.) With the proper palette and formula, my paint has come to last so much longer.
My second biggest curiosity when I meet an artist is their brushes. A brush to an artist is like an extension of their own hand. As a beginner, your standing in the paint isle at Michael’s and you’re staring at the brushes thinking, “What does it all mean!?!” The fibers, the shapes, the angles, and the brands! Even to this day, I mostly make my decision using my own imagination and observation. I basically run the brush across my hand and watch the movement of the fibers and say, “Yup! Looks about right…” Patten dedicates an entire chapter to palettes and brushes, and it’s just beautiful! The same benefit that comes from choosing a proper brand of paint comes when choosing a proper brush. Better product and a longer lifespan. You aren’t replacing brushes every couple weeks, or finding fibers glued to your canvas. You’re getting finer, straighter lines, and less unwanted lines.
Just the same, I could go on and on about each chapter following, but I think you get the gist. From painting surfaces, to learning what gesso really is and what it’s used for, to color theory and finding out that the color wheel doesn’t just consist of primary and secondary colors, and finally the proper way to finish and present your art, he literally touches on everything. James Van Patten makes the world of acrylics so much bigger, especially for a small artist like myself. I honestly can’t thank him enough for what this book did for me this summer. I have a lot more confidence in my knowledge and the choices I make as an artist, and it’s already showing in my work. I’ve ventured out to Michael’s (to my husbands dismay, ha!) and have slowly started adding products to my studio. I would honestly suggest this book to any artist, even if it’s just for the purpose of a great reference book. James Patten’s advice and experience alone makes it worth the read.
-I received this book for free through blogging for books in exchange for an honest review.
This is the second pocket devotional I have reviewed, and I was more then happy to be getting the chance to do so. I truly adored 365 Pocket Devotions. Not only did I love the color of it, but it felt as good as it looks. I know that sounds silly, but if you own a nice leather bible you know the feeling. The leather is sturdy yet soft and flexible. I found the 365 Pocket Morning Prayers to be just as pleasing, if not more so, for this leather not only looks soft but it is soft (like suede). The color pallet of the soft blue leather with the vibrant green interior and ribbon are beautiful. The embossed palm tree and birds just make this devotional so endearing, and the size of it makes it convenient to take anywhere. It’s easy to toss into a bag or suitcase, like my first pocket devotional which went with me on a trip to Hawaii. It fit into my carry-on bag and left plenty of room to spare (which was needed since I also had two other books and my kindle as well).
What I enjoy about these devotionals is how personal they are. When you’re reading them, whether you’re reading quietly to yourself or out loud, it feels like the words are your own. Each devotion or prayer speaks to you in one way or another, and if it happens that the prayer for that day isn’t speaking to you at the moment, you can look through the index for one that will. So, if you have a day where you feel you’re in need of strength, you can look up a prayer that speaks on strength, and use that to start your day. There are no rules as to how you utilize your devotional book, or how you spend your morning prayer time. Whether it sits beside your bed, on your coffee table, or you toss this little book into your bag and venture out into nature to spend some quiet time with God, these devotionals are great to have at hand anywhere.
For me, I enjoyed the sight of my pocket devotions so much I have it out where I can see it each day, and the same will be for my morning prayers book. These books are an eye catcher as well as a great reminder when you’re running around your house to stop and spend some time with God.
-I received this book for free from Tyndale House Publishers in exchange for an honest review.
Growing up I could always count on finding my mother writing in a journal, a cup of coffee sitting beside her that had long since grown cold during the early, early morning hours. I admired her persistence in keeping to her routine of having her devotion time. Over the years I’ve tried following suit, but I’ve learned since I do not enjoy the wee hours of the morning, even after three cups of coffee. I also found, even though I thrive off the joy of writing fiction, I am not such a fan of writing in reflection to my own life. Still, it’s never stopped me from adoring a cute journal when I see one, or even occasionally buying one when I just can’t help myself. But something about those blank pages can be intimidating. I was far more comfortable bending to the artist in me and sketching my feelings onto paper. I may not have been putting my feelings into words, but I was still letting out those emotions that tend to bottle up inside of me. Just the feeling of putting pencil to paper without the obligation of thought helped relax my spirit. Little did I know there was a journal that could do just that.
When the opportunity arose to review Gratitude: A Prayer and Praise Coloring Journal, I was actually very excited. Not only was its cardboard cover beautiful, but this journal also doubled as a coloring book! Each page turned opens up to beautiful designs and characters waiting to be filled with color. Within those beautiful black and white designs was a short devotional, and a page to journal your own thoughts.There’s even pages for those like me who enjoy sketching what they’re feelings. This is the perfect journal for a relaxing, carefree devotion time. How you spend your time in your journal is up to you. For me, when I first sat down with it, I pulled out my brush markers, found a page that intrigued my creative interest, and spent some time quietly coloring. The amount of time spent filling in the delicate empty spaces, and choosing which colors to put where, cleared away any train of thought i had going on, leaving me feeling peaceful, and in a way rather kiddish. I don’t believe God wants our devotion time to be a stressful time. He calls for us to be like the children. He wants us to come to him happily, and excited to be in his word, even if it means taking a few moments to color a picture.
-I received this book for free through Tyndale House Publishers in exchange for an honest review.
Review of – Having a Martha Home the Mary Way: 31 Days to a Clean House and a Satisfied Soul by Sarah Mae