Troubled youth meets mentor

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What happens when a young girl with a difficult past meets a retired woman ready to take on a challenge? That’s the plot of Grace & Lavender, by Heather Norman Smith. Readers will meet Grace, a youth with a good heart, who keeps getting in trouble at the group home where she lives. Colleen, who has retired from working in healthcare, has a strong propensity to help others and a desire to expand her own horizons. Colleen enjoys improving herself, setting goals, and taking on new projects. Colleen has a strong faith and good relationships with others. Colleen’s husband, Harvey, and daughter, Melody, also play their roles, as does an elderly American veteran.

If you’re looking for action or suspense, this is not the book for you. Readers should know that a lot of what takes place in this book could be described as snippets from ordinary life. Nothing would take your breath away or shock you in a dramatic fashion. However, this type of story does appeal to a lot of people, because it’s very realistic.

Grace & Lavender is published by Ambassador International, a company with a very strong faith-based mission. Norman Smith places footnotes of Scripture in her writing, and blocks of the Word within the story. If you don’t enjoy fiction that is written in this way, you may want to pass on this book.

FTC Disclosure: I received a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. Thank you, Ambassador International!

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Fast Spring Cleaning Tips

Spring is just beginning, and it’s the season for cleaning.

Maybe you realize it’s time for spring cleaning, but you just don’t have the time. It happens, and it’s understandable.

But before summer creeps up on you, don’t let this season pass you by! Take advantage of some fast spring cleaning tips to get your house in order.

Get Rid of Old Pantyhose

Take a look at the pantyhose, socks, and leggings you have. Sort through yours to see if you have any that don’t fit, are too stretched out, are stained, or in the case of socks, those that don’t have a mate. You can Google ways to re-purpose pantyhose and socks and find ways to up-cycle these items that can no longer be worn. Things like using socks as cleaning rags, or using pantyhose for gardening to start seeds, are good ideas. But in the end, if it doesn’t work as part of your wardrobe, it shouldn’t be in your closet! Move those items out so they won’t waste any more of your time or energy. If need be, replacements for the things that no longer fit or are past the point of repair.

Guys, Donate Unwanted Ties

Guys, do you have ties that you haven’t worn in a long time and probably won’t ever wear again? Maybe you work in a job that will never ever require you to wear a tie. Or maybe your personal style has changed – maybe you used to wear lots of ties with cartoon characters on them but your style has matured and you go for a more sophisticated look. Either way, look at your collection of ties, and if you have more that what you want to keep, donate it! There’s bound to be a a thrift shop near you that will happily take your old neck ties. If you find that you need more ties for work or church, you can take care of that in less than five minutes here. There is also a lot of up-cycling potential in ties – the crafty ladies in your life might want to take these for various projects. (Just ask a girl that likes to play on Pinterest what she can do with a bunch of old ties – there are may things.)

Sort Through Children’s Items

While you’re watching TV or listening to a favorite podcast, you can sort through children’s clothing that you’ve just washed and dried, using a critical eye to make sure they still fit properly. Can the items be used as a hand-me-down for a sibling, or is it best to just get rid of the item? Pruning down items that no longer fit can make getting your child dressed much easier and for every child’s clothing item that you get rid of, when you discover that another is needed, you can order a new one.

Tips for Christian Guys Getting Back Into the Dating Scene

Are you a single Christian guy needing advice about how to get back into the dating scene? Maybe you’ve never dated at all, and your lack of experience is making you nervous. Perhaps you’ve been busy with other goals – things like college and work may have been more important than your social life. Or maybe you’ve been through a break-up or a divorce, but now you’re ready to date again. Take these tips for single Christian guys…