Sunday, December 25, 2016

Merry Christmas || Christmas Tradition

We have this tradition. One my mom started a while ago. Every Christmas morning, when we wake up, we search for baby Jesus. Our little nativity Jesus is hidden somewhere amongst the house, and all of us sisters take the challenge to go and find Him. Today was the first time my youngest sister really took part in it. Waking up and going out right away to find where he was. Even at my age I still love looking, making sure that my mom hid the firgurine for us too. 

 [Just like that night, when the shepherds searched for the Babe, and then later when men came from afar, we searched, and found Him.]

Today we did something new. We took my sister's horse, decorated both him and the cart, and played Christmas music while we drove him around the neighborhood. Did people driving by think it was wierd to see two girls dancing to music while driving a horse? What they probably thought was more strange was a horse in the city. XD

We watched The Nativity Story. Reading the story again, I have even more questions, and am excited to dig into the word more. Though watching Israel come to live on the Nativity Story was amazing, and I can't wait to see the it in real life.

[Want to read the Christmas story post I did last year? Here you go: click ]

What did you do for Christmas? Do you have any family traditions?

Friday, December 16, 2016

Beyond the Horizon Tour

About the authoress:
Jesseca is an 18-year old daughter, sister, and a child of God. Her days are spent reading, cooking, spending time with siblings, or playing piano. And of course, writing! At an early age, words fascinated her, and her love for the printed page has only grown. She lives with her parents and seven siblings in the sunny state of Kansas,  and she's convinced there's no place like home.   

Summary: Eliana longs to see the world beyond the mountains that tower above Salzburg, Austria, but knows that dream will never see such adventure- and neither will she.

Surrounded by a world of cruelty, she lives for the weekly visits of Aron, a boy she met on one of her rambles through the countryside.

But as the years pass and she begins to grow older, a new and unwelcome world is opened up to her.
On a fateful night at a party she vowed she’d never attend, she comes face to face with a shocking truth.

As the world around her teeters on the brink of war, Eliana struggles to figure out just where her loyalty lies; a decision that will drastically change the course of her life. Will she ever be free to see what lies beyond the horizon?
I love stories set in WW2 era, and I love fairytale retellings, so wanting to read Jesseca's story with both in it was a no brainer. I loved the story and the characters. It was delicate and sweet, and awesome. I wanted it to go on so I could continue enjoying the story. Aron was so kind to Eliana, and I loved their relationiship. When one of them was in trouble, the other would look out for them. If they were going through something, then The other would offer advice.
The story is a generally quick read, and one I think many will enjoy. I encourage you to get your copy of Jesseca's book. It's the perfect read for Christmas time. :)

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Beautiful Books: Introduce Your Novel

beautiful books

~What inspired your novel, and how long have you had it?
Hmm, well, I have had it for a few months now. I was working on a short story, a Beauty and the Beast retelling, early this spring and while trying to make it longer, I decided I wanted to write the story of one of my minor characters-a wolf. (realizes how long a sentence that was). Long story short, I used Red Riding Hood as part of my inspiration, and thus Changeling, and its prequel(s) and sequel, were born.

~Describe what your novel is about.
I'm horrible at summaries, but I will do my best to somewhat explain my novel to you. The main character is a halfling (part changeling and part human) she can turn into the form of a wolf, and is marked by the color of her eyes. She was trained to be the queen's personal guard and assassin, and hunts down those rebelling against the crown. When she goes undercover to find the rumored heir who can take the kingdom away from her queen, she seeks to find out who it is, and then kill the heir (is it bad that I want to insert a: dun, dun, DUN!) In the end, she has to decide what is truly right. Going with what she has always known, or what she has just discovered.

~What is your book's aesthetic? Use words or photos or whatever you like!
*grabs some photos and quotes*

~Introduce us to each of your characters!
Tayliss: She is awesome. I love her a lot, and hope that I can potray her well She had a rough life, and because of an event in her past, she is bent on avenging her family. She is an assassin, part changeling, and finds it hard to trust or show her emotions.
Zane: He was what started my thoughts on Changeling. I still have a lot to discover about him, (he just won't share all of his story with me just yet) and so this will make draft 2 a bit difficult because he hasn't fully opened up. But he definitely care about others, and does his best to protect those under him.
The Queen: She is my villain, and I love her...Not love, love, but if you're a writer, you'll understand. She came up during the middle of NaNo, and I was like "YES! This is an awesome antagonist." It was even better because she is how I'll get one of my main twists in the sequel *super excited*

I have some other great characters, but don't want to give too much away. Hopefully you'll like them if you get to read it. :)

~How do you prepare to write? (Outline, research, stocking up on chocolate, howling, etc?)
I read Red Riding Hood, but mostly I thought about some cool ideas I have been saving, went on Pinterest and pulled some pictures to show some of my ideas. I outlined as much as I could, but this story turned out to be more of the work of a pantser than plotter/ :/ I was grasping for new scenes while doing NaNo, but I loved what came out of it- at least, what will. It's still in the rough draft form. XP

~What are you most looking forward to about this novel?
The feels. At least, I hope there will be some great emotions in this book. I am really excited for this story, and can't wait to begin my second draft. I am mainly looking forward to actually finishing this story, and to share it.

~List 3 things about your novel's setting
caves, mountains, dreams  (I think that is how I am suppose to answer it??)

~What's your character's goal, and who (or what) stands in the way?
One's goal is revenge, and the Changelings stand in the way- as well as the heir. The other's is to protect, and the Red Guard are in danger of finding his charge.

~How does your protagonist change by the end of the novel?
In short, she realized that revenge isn't right, and how to put others before her.

~What are your book's themes? How do you want readers to feel when the story is over?
The themes? I, friendship, and truth.
I want the readers to feel like they could somewhat relate to the characters, but learn from the story too. Reaction wise, I want my readers to be like "WHAT?! It's not over?!"  XD I wrote the finish, but I'm still deciding on a couple of things that may or may not make my readers shun me.

There is still a lot in the works, but even just writing these answers just makes me excited. Even if I have a lot of work in front of me XD


So what do you think? Does it sound intriguing? Any general thoughts? I'd love to hear from you!

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

In Remembrance

What was it like, that fateful day? When the calm was broken and the storm ensued? When peace was lost and loved ones died?
What did you do, when the bombs were dropped and the artillery fired?
We may not know how much you endured, or what you went through, but we are grateful.
So much time has passed since then, but the memories are still there. Of how war affected our country, and our young people served. How so many died for the freedom of our land. You may not think it anymore, but we do appreciate the horrors and hardships you endured. Our country would not be here if you did not fight for our freedom. We will not forget.

Thank you. Thank you for your service. I will be forever grateful.