Archive for August 2013

A Booksneeze Review of Simply Delicious Amish Cooking: Recipes and Stories from the Amish of Sarasota, Florida

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Simply Delicious Amish Cooking: Recipes and Stories from the Amish of Sarasota, FloridaSimply Delicious Amish Cooking: Recipes and Stories from the Amish of Sarasota, Florida by Sherry Gore

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I’ve seen a lot of praise for the author of this cookbook from various Amish-Fiction writers so I was excited to have the chance to pick it up. I held off on writing my review until I tried a few of the recipes which might I add—were DELICIOUS! I wanted to get a picture of the recipes we tried but unfortunately the muffins were gobbled up before I had a chance!

I thought this cookbook was great but I will be honest that I’m still slightly confused over cookbooks in e-book format. I understand that this book comes in both print and in e-book but seeing as the ebook version is the one that I read…

The reason ebooks as cookbooks make no sense to me is that you get your kindle or ereader filthy and have to have it in your kitchen which isn’t a very safe place for an electronic. Also, it does not make it easy to flip through and look at which recipes you want to view or to just prop your book open and take a look.

Otherwise, the cookbook itself was a 5 star cookbook simply for the delicious breakfast muffin recipes I found inside! I made the Blueberry Streusel muffins and as I said—they were gone before I could even get a picture of them! I can’t wait to try a few variations of this recipe with other fruits. I’m betting strawberry would be fantastic!

This is a book I will definitely be on the lookout for in printed format. I enjoyed the recipes and the stories inside the beginning of each chapter. I knew very little about Pinecraft, Florida or about the Amish and Mennonite that live there. There was also a “statement of faith” of sorts that helped put their belief system into perspective.

If you’re looking for a recipe book with fantastic desserts—I do suggest this one. I DO suggest getting the book in print rather than ebook publication!
View all my reviews


Sherry Gore has a multiple book contract (including a memoir) with Zondervan, an imprint of HarperCollins. Sherry is the author of Simply Delicious Amish Cooking and is the editor-in-chief of Cooking & Such magazine, which has been called “Visually stunning, completely heartwarming” by Amish novelist, Cindy Woodsmall.

Sherry is also a weekly scribe for the national edition of the 120-year-old Amish newspaper, The Budget. National Geographic Channel featured Sherry prominently in the 2012 season of their documentary series, Amish: Out of Order. Sherry is currently under development contract for a second documentary series and just completed a sizzle tape for Lifetime TV. Sherry is a year-round resident of beautiful, sun-kissed Sarasota, Florida, the vacation paradise of the Plain People. She has three children and is a member of a Beachy Amish Mennonite church. She’s a caregiver to her twenty-two-year-old daughter, a Sunday school teacher, a cooking show host, and an official pie contest judge

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255

The Quarryman's Bride: A Bethany House Review

Saturday, August 17, 2013

The Quarryman's Bride (Land of Shining Water, #2)The Quarryman's Bride by Tracie Peterson

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Isn’t this cover gorgeous?! I love it, it’s one of the reasons I decided to read.

I know I always say not to choose a book based on the cover but sometimes it works out! This is one of those times.

I really enjoyed this book. It was the first I’ve ever read by the author but I’ll definitely be picking up more of this series in the future. In fact, I'm following the release of book #3 in this series on goodreads. You can do the same by clicking here!

Emmalyne’s family has suffered tragic loss and Emmalyne is at the depth of her despair. Not only has she lost her sisters—her father is now refusing to let her marry.

For years Emmalyne does as her father says and cares for her sickly mother and the family rather than listening to her heart. She sacrifices because she feels that is what God had intended—to honor and obey.

The years pass by and Emmalyne and her family return home—and they aren’t the only one. Emma’s old beau returns to the area as well. She tries to ignore the feelings she still feels but her heart is torn between the love of her life and in honoring her parents.

This story deals with a lot of grief and loss as well as mental illness. I thought that it was fairly realistic and didn’t lead to false illusions to what can happen when a person suffers from a mental break and while I was very sad for how some of the story concluded; I felt that it was realistic and that folks could connect to this very human and realistic element.

I very much enjoyed this story and the writing of this author—even though I will admit that I didn’t know what some of the Irish words meant. A glossary of terms would have been beneficial!
View all my reviews|Read an Excerpt


Tracie Peterson is an award-winning, best-selling author of over 95 books. Having given her heart to Jesus at the young age of six, Tracie has always felt called to some form of ministry, and writing fulfills that mission field.

Tracie received her first book contract in November, 1992 and saw A Place To Belong published in February 1993 with Barbour Publishings' Heartsong Presents. She wrote exclusively with Heartsong for the next two years, receiving their readership's vote for Favorite Author of the Year for three years in a row.

In December, 1995 she signed a contract with Bethany House Publishers. Tracie now writes exclusively for Bethany House Publishers. She has co-written with a variety of authors including Judith Pella, Judith Miller, James Scott Bell and her daughter Jennifer.

Learn more about Tracie at

I received this book free from Bethany House Publishers in exchange for an honest review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

Goody Ouchless Ribbon Elastics: An Influenster Review

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Goody Ouchless Ribbon Elastics

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Goody’s NEW Ouchless Ribbon Elastics offer you a unique hair tie to personalize your ponytail. As beautiful as ribbons but soft and stretchy too, these hair ties are “knot” your average elastic. New Ribbon Elastics are both comfortable and fashionable, plus look great in your hair or on your wrist.

Product Features:
• Unique knot style hair tie
• Soft, stretchy ribbon material
• Looks beautiful on the wrist or in the hair!
• Assorted colors
• From America's #1 elastics brand, Goody® Ouchless®

I sort of liked these at first but as I've had them longer I'm realizing that they do not hold up very long.  They also do not work so well in very thick hair. These are perfect for my little ones but I find I either can't stretch them enough for my thick hair or they slip a lot if I actually get it to hold.

They are super cute on the wrist and I even added some charms to mine to make them look more like a bracelet so they are pretty versatile. I just wish they were a bit bigger and more sturdy. Overall, these get a solid 3 from me at this point. They're cute and colorful and would be perfect for young girls and teens but they don't really hold up to a busy mama's abuse of hair accessories!

Pros for me

Cons for me
-Stretch and wear out too fast
-Not a good fit for thick hair


This was a complimentary gift from the Influenster Program in the Sunkissed VoxBox!  I was not required to write a positive review. The views and opinions I have expressed are my own.

The Letters: A Litfuse Review

Saturday, August 10, 2013

The LettersThe Letters by Suzanne Woods Fisher

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The Keeper was on my top 10 list for 2012 so I was very excited to return to Stoney Ridge with this new series by Suzanne Woods Fisher.

I really enjoy authors who return to the same community for new series of books. It makes me feel as if I’m building a lasting connection with an entire community and not just one character.

I cannot wait to read more of this series when they are released! The Calling is book too in the Inn at Eagle Hill series and is set to be released in 2014. You can keep up with information and release date as it becomes available by clicking here.

Rose is a plain woman who has lost her husband and now lives with her children and her ailing mother-in-law. She is determined to pay back the debts that her husband is responsible for and to make amends for his poor decisions.

This leads her to open a bed and breakfast in the basement of her home—much to the disdain of her mother-in-law. In fact, there isn’t much that Rose can do without incurring the wrath of Vera Schrock.

There is also a potential love interest in Galen King. Galen is a bit younger than Rose and that leads to some apprehension for both of them. I really enjoyed Galen’s character. He had an old soul feel to him and just seemed very genuine.

Unlike most Amish stories—this particular tale also had a sideline story involving Rose’s English guest to her bed and breakfast. The inclusion of an Englisher isn’t that unusual in an Amish tale except that this one didn’t show any hint of swaying some innocent Amish girl away from the faith. Rather, she had her own story and conflicts and I thought that was interesting.

Win an iPad, Kindle or Nook!
Overall, this was a 5 star book. I was interested immediately and kept reading well into the early morning hours. A mark of a good book is one that you have trouble putting down!

Suzanne has a way of enriching the lives of her characters (and her readers) with the words and wisdom found in the Bible and I appreciate the spiritual applications. If you have yet to read this author then I highly suggest her books and I’m eager to watch this particular series play out!
View all my reviews|Read an Excerpt


Suzanne Woods Fisher is the bestselling author of the Lancaster County Secrets series and the Stoney Ridge Seasons series, as well as nonfiction books about the Amish, including Amish Peace. She is also the coauthor of a new Amish children's series, The Adventures of Lily Lapp. Her interest in the Anabaptist cultures can be directly traced to her grandfather, who was raised in the Old Order German Baptist Brethren Church in Franklin County, Pennsylvania. Suzanne is a Carol Award winner and a Christy Award finalist. She is a columnist for Christian Post and Cooking & Such magazines. She lives in California. For more information, please visit and connect with her on Twitter @suzannewfisher. Get Amish proverbs delivered right to your iPhone or iPad! Download the Free App!

I received this book free from the publisher through a fantastic program called Litfuse Publicity. I was not required to write a positive review. The thoughts and opinions I have expressed are my own. To view other reviews and learn more about the blog tour for A Big Year for Lily please visit the Litfuse group by clicking here

Win an iPad, Kindle or Nook from @SuzanneWFisher in “The Letters” Giveaway!

Monday, August 5, 2013

Suzanne Woods Fisher is celebrating the release of the first book, The Letters, in her new series by giving away 2 iPads, 2 Kindle Fires and 2 Nook HDs! Wow!


Two grand prize winners will receive:
  • An iPad
  • The Letters by Suzanne Woods Fisher
Four second place winners will receive:
  • A Kindle Fire HD or a Nook HD - winner's choice!
  • The Letters by Suzanne Woods Fisher
Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on August 17th. All winners will be announced August 19th at Suzanne's blog.

Don't miss a moment of the fun; enter today and be sure to visit Suzanne's blog on the 19th to see if you won one of the great prizes! (Or better yet, subscribe to her blog and have the winner announcement delivered to your inbox!)