Thursday, January 31, 2013

The first month of the year...

Today is the last day of January.  How has your year begun to take shape?  Have you accomplished new things?  Had some set backs?  Re-evaluated the things you originally planned to do?  Completed something new?
What will the next 30 days hold for you?  Have you set a new goal for yourself?  How can you move forward with that goal with just one thing today?
 Maybe the year started overwhelmingly difficult.  The Lord tells us in His Word that we should "Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God" (Philippians 4:6 NKJV).  Take everything to the Lord in prayer, and see that He will answer you!  I want to pray for you today and your next thirty days of this year...

Father, I thank you for my sisters in the Lord.  I thank you that the plans you have for them are to prosper them; give them a hope, a future, and an expected end.  I thank you, Lord that they have the mind of Christ.  I thank you that You are their peace, their comfort, their All in All!  I bless my sisters in the next thirty days and ask that You show them Your loving kindness and allow them to dream new dreams and make new goals in Jesus' Name!  AMEN!!

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Trophy Child book Giveaway--WINNER!!!

The WINNER for the Trophy Child book giveaway is:

Natasha M.!!  Congratulations!!!!

Thank you to all who entered!  We will have more book giveaways in the coming months, so check back often!!!

Have a BLESSED week!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Imagine...continuing the year with One Word!

Remember what you used to dream about doing/being or where you used to dream about going? Can you IMAGINE doing those things? Going to those places?

Well, God gave you those dreams for a reason!! They weren't just something to think about and NEVER were meant to ACCOMPLISH those dreams!!! You dreamed about those things so when you actually DID them, they wouldn't be foreign to you. Like practicing for the Super Bowl...and then GOING!!

What dreams did you have when you were younger? Have you accomplished them? What can you do TODAY (or tomorrow!) to jump start that dream so it doesn't die? 

If you've forgotten dreams of your youth, perhaps ask the Lord to bring them back to your remembrance or to give you new dreams, goals, and visions!  

When my twin sister and I were younger, we used to watch "BJ and the Bear," a television show about a hunky truck driver (Greg Evigan) and his pet monkey driving an 18-wheeler around the country.  Well, that's what I wanted to be!  Then, "CHiPs" came out with the ever popular Ponch and Jon (Eric Estrada and Larry Wilcox), and my sister and I decided we wanted to be motorcycle cops!  We would ride our Huffy Cactus Flower bikes in tandem, just like Ponch and Jon.  Soon, those dreams faded, and we would play school (my sis was the teacher and I was the student) and television news (I was the news anchor and she was the weather girl!).  Some of those dreams may have been (and really likely were) based on emotions rather than a leading of the Lord, but now as women in our early 40s, I have a degree in journalism (UNC '08!) and she has a degree in teaching (UNC '11).  Those things we played as children were merely practice for our lifelong callings.  

 As I accomplished one goal and saw a dream come to pass, I felt the Lord bringing back to my memory my passion for writing.  Now, I am on the cusp of publishing my first three-part book series and going to writing conferences!  He truly knows the plans He has for us, and they are better than we could ever hope, think, or imagine!  

So again, let me ask you, what are those things you've dreamed about doing in life?  What would you do if you could financially succeed in anything?  Can you imagine??

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Book Review--Trophy Child: Saving Parents From Performance, Preparing Children for Something Greater Than Themselves

I wasn't sure what to expect when I first began reading this book.  Ted Cunningham has a wonderfully personal, real way of relating how to identify if we are trophy parents.  As a mom of eight, I didn't think I saw myself in this manner, but the reality is I am!
 Written for every mom who helps too much with homework just to impress the teacher and every dad who takes credit for
his daughter’s soccer success, Trophy Child will give parents the encouragement they need to nurture their kids into who God
created them to be.
Through careful "parent gut checks" at the end of each chapter, Cunningham takes parents through the process of realization of what type of parent we are, how we can train our children to serve the Lord, and how we can strengthen and prioritize our marriages.  He gives effective, scripture-based ways of preparing our children for adulthood as well as raising them to have a personal relationship with God.
This book is a "must read" for parents desiring to avoid vanity parenting and guiding and directing their children to reach the potential our Heavenly Father has purposed them for.

You can purchase a paperback copy or a Kindle version from Amazon here

Be sure to check back tomorrow to enter the Giveaway for a copy of Trophy Child!!!

Monday, January 21, 2013

Trophy Child book GIVEAWAY!!!

Saving Parents from Performance,  

Preparing Children for Something Greater Than Themselves

Written for every mom who helps too much with homework
just to impress the teacher and every dad who takes credit for
his daughter’s soccer success, Trophy Child will give parents the
encouragement they need to nurture their kids into who God
created them to be.

Our culture’s obsession with achievement often leads parents to form expectations for their kids based on the world’s standards, not on the Bible. As a result, their kids feel they can never measure up. Trophy Child will help modern Christian parents create a home where children find success in following their heavenly Father’s leading for them—and readers know the joy of seeing their children embrace their full potential as children of God.

Pastor Ted Cunningham founded Woodland Hills Family
Church in Branson, Missouri, where he lives with his wife
and two children. A graduate of Liberty University and Dallas
Theological Seminary, he is the author of Young and in Love and
has coauthored several books with Dr. Gary Smalley, including
!e Language of Sex and Great Parents, Lousy Lovers.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

THE WINNER OF Love Finds You in Glacier Bay, Alaska IS...

Today, we are announcing our winner for the LFY in Glacier Bay, Alaska book by Tricia Goyer and Ocieanna Fleiss!!!

We had many entries and I'm so happy to welcome our new followers on the blog and on the Super Mom the Illusion Facebook page!

Our Winner is:

Congratulations, Mary!  And thank you to everyone who entered the drawing!!!!

Monday, January 7, 2013

Love Finds You in Glacier Bay, Alaska GIVEAWAY!!

Starting last week the wonderful book Love Finds You in Glacier Bay, Alaska by Tricia Goyer and Ocieanna Fleiss was released. You can purchase it at either of these retailers: and
Singer Ginny Marshall is one signature away from the recording contract of her dreams—a deal that would guarantee success for the former foster child, who still struggles to bury the memories of her painful childhood. But Ginny needs advice from the one person who will look out for her best interests—her former fiancĂ©, Brett Miller. She travels to the remote town of Glacier Bay, Alaska, where the town’s colorful characters and stunning scenery provide respite from LA’s pressures. In Glacier Bay, Ginny discovers a box of old letters and is swept up in the love story between Clay, an early missionary to Alaska Territory, and Ellie, the woman who traveled there to be his children’s governess. When Ginny is reunited with Brett in Glacier Bay, will she discover—as Ellie did—that healing and love are sometimes found in the most unexpected places?
But this week each blogger (listed in the linky below) is giving you a chance to win the book (and a few have even more prizes) so after you are done entering my giveaway please hop on to the next blog. This giveaway will start on January 8th, 2013 at 12am EST and run until January 14th, 2013 at 11:59pm EST.
My prize is a copy of Love Finds You in Glacier Bay, Alaska!!
You can read my review HERE.

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Now hop on over to these other wonderful blogs to enter to win the book

Another Love Finds You book by Tricia Goyer and Ocieanna Fleiss...

Hey, everyone!  Another novel written by Tricia Goyer and Ocieanna Fleiss is available on Amazon today for just $2.99 for the Kindle version!!!  Love Finds You in Victory Heights, Washington is offered at a special low rate today, so if you've never read any books in the Love Finds You series, here is one to get you started!  Then couple that book with Tricia and Ocieanna's newest book,  Love Finds You in Glacier Bay, Alaska, and you've got a great start to building your LFY library!!!

The Second World War has stolen Rosalie's fiance from her. But rather than wallow, Rosalie throws herself into her work at the Boeing plant in Victory Heights, shooting rivets into the B-17 bombers that will destroy the enemy. A local reporter dubs her Seattle's Own Rosie the Riveter, and her story lends inspiration to women across the country. While Rosalie's strong arms can bear the weight of this new responsibility, her heart cannot handle the intense feelings that begin to surface for Kenny, the handsome reporter. Fear of a second heartbreak is a powerful opponent - but will it claim victory over love?

Follow the link to get your discounted book TODAY!!  Love Finds You in Victory Heights, Washington

Sunday, January 6, 2013

One Word...

Do you know that "one word" from God can change your life?  "One word"  from another person can hurt or support or love or edify or bring back a memory?  My friend Melanie over at Only A Breath felt the Lord leading her to make "one word" buttons for bloggers.  Melanie got the idea from Alece at who choose one word to focus on for the year rather than a bunch of New Year's resolutions that often didn't stick.

MY "One Word" this year is: IMAGINE!

Imagine what you can do when you set your creative mind free to be used wholly for the Lord's purpose!  Imagine what you can accomplish for the Kingdom!  Imagine your best year yet!  Imagine a new financial level!  Imagine the greatest passions the Lord has given you being used to impact others!  Imagine how God is going to change you in 2013!  I imagine all the books I plan to write being written AND published!  IMAGINE!!

 Now this "one word" is the one I personally chose, but you can use it, too!  Or you may think, "I want a different word," or "The Lord is leading me to choose another word to focus on for the year!" That's FINE!  In fact, I encourage you to seek the Lord when choosing your "one word"!
My first choice was different, but I felt the Lord leading me back to IMAGINE!  My first word was actually PASSION.  I tried to make it go and fit, but I kept hearing the word IMAGINE!  You know, the Lord used that very word throughout Scripture.  It was used to mean: consider, conceive, purpose, thought, regard, and meditate!  These are all things I want to do in 2013 because I know that if I can conceive of my purpose and will meditate on it, the Lord will grant it!!

Allow the Father to speak to you because He knows what you want, need, and desire, and HE will tell you the right word for YOU!  Write it down!  Make your "one word" clear and focus on it as you go about your days in 2013!
Habakkuk 2:2 says, "Write the vision and make it plain on tablets,that he may run who reads it" (NKJV).  So write your word down so you can see it, remember it, meditate on the WORD even when you are on the go!

My challenge to you is to choose YOUR "one word" and tell us about it, and if you would like, why you chose it!  I can't wait to see all the wonderful words the Lord is giving us to use this year!!!

If you are interested in getting your own "one word" button from Melanie, visit her Website linked above!!

Just IMAGINE what the New Year holds for us...

Friday, January 4, 2013

Interview with Ocieanna Fleiss, co-author with Tricia Goyer of Love Finds You in Glacier Bay, Alaska

Tell us a bit about you and your writer's journey.

Stories and characters have rattled around in my head since I was a kid, but I began seriously pursuing writing about fourteen years ago. I know! That's a long time. Like many beginners, I thought I knew what I was doing and would quickly see my name in print, but of course, that's NOT what happened.

Through the ups and downs (meaning rejection after rejection) I strove to improve, until I finally gave up. I had one too many doors slam closed, so I told God I wasn't going to try to get published anymore. I'd just write my blog and work on my story, but NEVER send out a query, NEVER talk to a publisher ...

That's when I got the message. My friend Carlton (who I'd known for years) wrote and asked if I wanted to write for his new publishing company.

I wasn't really interested. I'd told God I wasn't going to try to get published, so I just ignored his message. (So rude of me!) About three weeks later, he wrote again and, feeling like I couldn't blow him off a second time, I threw out my ideas, very unprofessionally (no fancy query letter, no perfectly worded blurbs or synopses).

He wrote back and said he liked my ideas. He also sent me a brochure from his company and asked me to see if any of my ideas went along with their line. I opened the brochure to find...the publisher was Summerside Press! Well, hello! I'd heard of Summerside Press. I never knew my friend was the founder of it.

This started a chain of events that ended up with Tricia and I getting our first two contracts with Summerside.

What did this teach me? God is good. I needed to seek Him first. I needed to let go of the desire to get published and fill up with a desire for Him. I try to remember that whether I get a contract or not, my fulfillment comes from Him and my goal is to honor and glorify Him in every area of my life. I don't always do this the way I should, but He guides me along the crazy paths life takes.

This is your third collaboration with Tricia Goyer. How did that come about?

About twelve years ago, I met Tricia at the Mt. Hermon Christian Writers Conference. On the way home, in the airport, she handed me her manuscript--like authors do at conferences. I did a little editing there in the terminal. She liked it so we exchanged e-mail addresses. That manuscript was for her first published book, From Dust and Ashes. Once she got the contract, she continued sending me chapters and our friendship began! I edited about eight of her books and then we decided to write one together. We had such fun, we wrote two more.

Ocieanna Fleiss at a book signing in September 2010.  Photo by Dawn Kinzer.

Tell us something about each of the books you’ve written together.

LFY in Lonesome Prairie, Montana, is a simple prairie romance about a woman searching for home. Tricia and I traveled through the outskirts of Montana researching and met an amazing 91-year-old man whose father had homesteaded in Lonesome Prairie. What a blessing to talk to him.

LFY in Victory Heights, Washington, tells the story of Rosalie, a riveter who worked at the Boeing Plant in Seattle during WWII. She learns to let go of her guilt and trust in the Lord--and it's a fun romance. Our research trip for this one involved talking to awesome, spunky Rosie the Riveters. I'll never forget when 89-year-old Georgie Klunkett stood up in her living room and danced.

LFY in Glacier Bay, Alaska, takes readers from a contemporary tale to a historical, through letters. Both stories' heroines leave their normal life to explore a new world in Alaska--and both learn to overcome fears to find love. What a research trip that was! Bears, whales, otters, puffins, plus amazing folks who live in Glacier Bay. It was a joy to research and write.

You’re a homeschooling mom of four. How, when, and where do you manage to write?

My normal answer for "How do I do it?" is "I don't know." Truly, if it seems impossible to others, it does to me too! I don't have time to get it all done, so my strategy is to throw myself before the Lord and ask Him for help. He always comes through.

As for where I write. I mostly go to coffee shops, which is very embarrassing when I'm really getting into the story and a barista catches me weeping. I also take writing weekends to a lovely spot on the water where some writing friends and I can focus and pump up the word count.

What kinds of books do you love to read? Any favorites from the last year or so?

Honestly, I tend to gravitate toward the classics. I love Jane Eyre and The Count of Monte Christo, anything by Dickens. Lately I've been reading David Copperfield. My favorite contemporary author is Francine Rivers.

What’s next for you?

I'm working on a memoir about my cardiac arrest.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Love Finds You in Glacier Bay, Alaska--Book Review

A love story within a love story...that's what you'll find in Love Finds You in Glacier Bay, Alaska!!

Tricia Goyer and Ocieanna Fleiss doing an amazing job of capturing the feel, the scenery, the people of this remote area of Alaska due in part to a research trip the authors took there as well as their rare talent to weave reality into print!  It is easy to picture the people of this small town, the near by gas station and cafe, and the bay where the orcas feed in the summer.
Since I used to watch Sarah Palin's Alaska, I felt more connected to the scene where the main character could hear the black bear over the ridge or when the bush plane flew Ginny to Glacier Bay.  The author have definitely captured the real-life essence of the area!

This story also reminds us of our need to rely on the Lord in all areas of our lives.  The changes that occur within many of the characters--even that producer, Danny Kingston--instill a sense of hope, of happy endings, of the knowledge that God's plans may be different than our own, but are still better than our own, too! The story intertwines the past with the present giving hope for the future with situations the reader can relate to.  One of my favorite parts was when Clay's nephew rigged a pulley system to get Ellie to the outhouse without disturbing the Mama Moose...Well, you'll just have to read the book to understand part, but I can tell you, for me, that was funny!!

In the next few days, be sure to check back for interviews with Tricia Goyer and Ocieanna Fleiss as well as our first ever book GIVEAWAY at Super Mom the Illusion on January 8th!!  

To order Love Finds You in Glacier Bay, Alaska, visit: or!!  
Enjoy this wonderful addition to the Love Finds You series and be sure to check out Tricia and Ocieanna's other LFY books:  Love Finds You in Lonesome Prairie, Montana and  Love Finds You in Victory Heights, Washington