Thursday, October 30, 2014

Rice Krispie Pumpkin Treats

These yummy Pumpkin Rice Krispie Treats are super easy to make and the perfect fall snack.  We are taking a batch with us to a hayride tomorrow and I am sure all the kids will love them!  The stem is a tootsie roll and the pumpkin itself is an orange rice krispie treat.  
How cute is that?!
So if you have ever made Rice Krispie Treats before you will have no problem making these.  You use the same recipe and as you are mixing/melting your marshmallows in the butter you add a mixture of red and yellow food coloring until you get your desired pumpkin color.  After you mix in the melted marshmallows with your rice krispies you can start shaping them into pumpkins/balls.  We coated our hands with butter to keep everything from sticking and if you have little kids helping you, make sure the mixture has cooled a little before you start shaping them.   You don't want any burns!  I also unwrapped my tootsie rolls and put them in the microwave for about 10 seconds to make them easy to mold.  I gave them a little twist and pushed it in the top while the "pumpkins" were still warm.  That's all there was to it.  Simple and fun!

Here is the original Rice Krispie Treat Recipe just in case you have misplaced yours! ;)


  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 package (10 oz., about 40)  Marshmallows
  • OR
  • 4 cups  Miniature Marshmallows
  • 6 cups Rice Krispie cereal


1. In large saucepan melt butter over low heat. Add marshmallows and stir until completely melted. Remove from heat.   (this is the when you would add your food coloring)

2. Add Rice Krispie cereal. Stir until well coated. (after this step is when you would shape your pumpkins and then add your tootsie roll stems)

3. Using buttered spatula or wax paper evenly press mixture into 13 x 9 x 2-inch pan coated with cooking spray. Cool. Cut into 2-inch squares. Best if served the same day.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Forever Christmas - A Book Review

It seems like every October there are a few Christmas fiction books that start hitting the shelves.  This is about the same time I'm starting to think about what presents to buy for my loved ones,  decorating and snow and just getting in the "Christmas spirit".  I love to sit down with a good Christmas book, a cozy blanket and a cup of coffee.

I had high hopes for Forever Christmas.  From the synopsis it sounded good, I had read some reviews and they were all praising this great story, but I have to say though that I was not as impressed.  I did like it, but I struggled getting in to the story line.  I also am very picky about the type of books I read.  I want good wholesome books with a good story line.  Even one curse word turns me off.  As a book reviewer and a Christian it is hard for me to recommend a book that has even one bad word in it. I feel that it reflects on me as a Christian.  I was not very far into Forever Christmas when I read the first curse word so from that moment I was disappointed.

On a more positive note, the book sends a strong message of not taking your life for granted and to cherish those you love.  It was not predictable and I was really surprised with the ending.  The story reminded me of It's A Wonderful Life and the whole thing had a familiarity about it.  It's also a quick read and depending on how much time you have you could possibly finish it in one sitting.

***This book was provid
ed to my by Booklook in exchange for my honest review.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

To Everything A Season - A Book Review

I was so super excited when I seen Lauraine Snelling's newest novel To Everything A Season where she returns to Blessing, North Dakota and continues her story of the Bjorklund family!  As soon as my book came in the mail I ripped open the package and began reading.  It felt like a letter from home!  I have come to love the people of Blessing and have connected so much to the characters that I love when a new series or book becomes available.  I was afraid that the last series would be the end of The Red River of the North stories, so I was pleasantly surprised (okay, jumping for joy) when I seen that Lauraine Snelling is continuing the saga with this new series - The Song of Blessing.

This book was so good.  I soaked in every word and really felt like I was getting updates from my distant relatives.  One thing I really like about the books about Blessing is that even if the story is about a certain character, for instance this one is about Trygve finding love, there is still enough information about all the other characters that I have connected with in the past.  I will admit that there have been a few series (this new series makes five) that have been a little slow paced, but this book was right on track for me.  I couldn't read it fast enough and it reminded me of the first series when I first came to love this family.

I would definitely recommend this book, but I'm not sure it would be a good "stand alone" book.  I think you would enjoy it much better if you start from the beginning and journey with the Bjorklund's from the start.   I don't think you will be sorry!

If you want to find out more about Lauraine Snellings books you can check out her website HERE.

Now I just have to wait for the next book in the series, A Harvest of Hope!

***This book was provide to me by Bethany House Publishing blog review program in exchange for my honest review.

An Amish Second Christmas - A Book Review

There is something about fall and the onset of cooler weather that makes me want to curl up with a blanket and a book.  An Amish Second Christmas is the perfect book for doing just that.  It consists of four novellas by some of the best Amish Fiction authors.  Beth Wiseman, Ruth Reid, Kathleen Fuller and Tricia Goyer are all featured.  Each story is centered around the Amish celebrated Second Christmas.  Second Christmas is the day after Christmas and it is a continuous celebration of Christmas that is spent with family and friends.

The is a great book and I thoroughly enjoyed all four stories.  They were heartwarming and well written.  My favorite was When Christmas Comes Again by Beth Wiseman.  It was different and not as predictable as a lot of fiction novels I have read.  My second favorite was Her Christmas Pen Pal.  I would of loved for this one to of been longer!

More about the novellas:

When Christmas Comes Again by Beth Wiseman - Christmas is just around the corner and Katherine knows that it will be hard for her and her children.  This will be their first Christmas without Elias their beloved husband/father.  To add to the stress, a mysterious Englischer is following Katherine.  He presents her with photographs of her late husband and her whole family.  When she learns who this mystery man is she is in for a surprise and he blesses their family in ways unimaginable.

Her Christmas Pen Pal by Ruth Reid - Ever since her parents died Joy has engulfed herself into the family business, a bakery that her parents started.  Joy is expecting a proposal from Henry, but instead she finds him courting another woman.  She writes a letter to her cousin that ends up in the wrong hands.  A young cabinetmaker reads the 10 page letter and decides to write her back with his opinion.  They become pen pals, but a lot of twists and turns keep them from coming together.

A Gift for Anne Marie by Kathleen Fuller - Anne Marie and Nathaniel have always been best friends.  When Anne Marie's mother decides to remarry in another state Anne Marie is devastated.  How can she possible leave all her friends, but most importantly how can she leave Nathaniel.  Soon Nathaniel and Anne Marie begin to realize that their feelings for each other are stronger than friendship...seems like everyone else new it all along.

The Christmas Aprons by Tricia Goyer -  Vanilla crumb pie has been Esther's mom's signature pie for decades.  When Esther goes to help a family member she is called upon to help the town  in a benefit for the fire department.  Her mom shares the secret recipe for her vanilla crumb pie with Esther.  What she thought was a simple dessert turns into something much more...bachelor bait!

If you love Amish fiction and short novellas this is the perfect book for you!  Each novella is a fast read, but put together the four novellas offer more than 400 pages of enjoyable reading.  This would make a great Christmas gift too!

***This book was provided to me by the publisher through in exchange for my honest review.

Friday, October 10, 2014

A Robertson Family Christmas - FREE BOOK GIVEAWAY!!

Who doesn't love one of America's best known red-necked families?!   That's why I know ya'll will be super excited about the chance to win "A Roberston Family Christmas".  It is a novella written by Miss Kay Robertson herself with the help of Travis Thrasher.  It is a crazy story of a troubled teen who finds the true meaning of Christmas where he least expects it.

Even though it is a fictional book it is based on real Robertson family Christmas traditions.  As I was reading the book there were several laugh out loud moments along with some heartfelt moments.  It may be a fictional story, but it is written as if it actually happened.  All the things that the characters say are exactly the things you can imagine, and have heard them say on their television show!  It was a cute story and a fast read.

I received two books from Tyndale Publishing.  One to review and keep for myself and an extra copy to giveaway to one of my readers!  It is a nice hardback book with a festive book cover!

So here is what we are going to do...the contest is going to run from now until midnight on Wednesday, October 15, 2014.  I will announce the winner on Thursday the 16'th.

To enter:

1.  Follow my blog if you don't already.
2.  Leave me a comment and tell me what your favorite Christmas tradition in your family is.
3.  Share a link to my blog about the contest on FB or Twitter

For each of the above you will get one entry.  So be sure to do all three to increase your chance of winning and be sure to let me know if you are sharing on FB or twitter.

Winner's address must be in the USA.

***Thanks to Tyndale Publishing for providing me with a copy of A Roberson Family Christmas for review and an additional copy to giveaway!

Friday, October 3, 2014

A Love Undone - A Book Review

When it comes to Amish fiction Cindy Woodsmall is definitely one of my favorite authors.  She has a way of writing about the Amish community that brings it to life and makes the characters seem real and relate-able.   In her most recent novel, A Love Undone, she tells a beautiful story of shattered dreams and God's unfailing grace.  The main male character is Andy Fischer.  If you are familiar with Cindy Woodsmall's books that name may ring a bell.  We were first introduced to Andy in The Dawn of Christmas, we only seen a few glimpses of his character then as he was a minor character.  Since Andy did not have a main story line in The Dawn of Christmas you don't need to read it before you read A Love Undone, however, it is a great story that I think you will love, so you may want to pick up both of these great novels.

More about the book:

In A Love Undone Jolene is a young 19 year old girl who is on the brink of having all her dreams come true.  She is getting ready to marry Van in just 10 days and then she will follow her dreams of painting and selling her work.   In a blink of an eye her world comes crashing down around her.  When her mom and dad are killed in an accident, Jolene is overcome with grief but knows she must step up to the responsibility of taking care of her siblings so they are not separated.  Ten years have now passed and Jolene is comfortable with the role of who she is.  Most of her siblings have started a life of their own except for Hope and Ray who are the youngest.  Ray was struck  by lightening when he was a young child and has many problems as a result.

Andy Fischer is a "grass widower" (a man whose wife has left him) with a young son named Tobias.  He trains horses for a living and when Andy and Jolene come together to train some horses from the Humane Society sparks instantly fly.  When Jolene realizes that they cannot be together because of his marital status her heart is broken.  They fight their feelings and remain separated from each other, but despite their best efforts their feelings for each other remain and the rumors begin to circulate.

A few thoughts:

I really enjoyed the story of Ray.  Reading about his struggle with his emotions and anxieties and watching him come to age was really enjoyable.

Andy and Jolene's story was very unique and I was a little concerned about how the author was going to write this story and keep it "safe" since it was dealing with a married man.  As to not give too much away I will only say that I was very pleased with how the story was concluded.  Both Jolene and Andy are such admirable characters that want to please God and the elders of the church, even if it means sacrificing their own happiness.  It is also a great story of God's healing.  Sometimes life happens and it is not at all what we expected, but God can heal our hearts and help us to come out victorious!

If you want to learn more about the author and her other books you can check out her website at

***This book was provided to me by the publisher in exchange for my honest review.