Wednesday, June 22, 2016

How I #LiveUnlimited! @MDAnews @EndorphnWarrior

I was NOT compensated for this post. I received a FREE Live Unlimited bracelet. Thanks to The Mission List for allowing me to participate in this campaign.

How do you Live Unlimited? What exactly is "living unlimited"?

Muscular dystrophy, ALS, and related muscle-debilitating diseases take away everyday freedoms - such as walking, running, hugging, talking, and even breathing - from kids and adults. MDA's Live Unlimited Campaign is inspired by the strength and courage of MDA families who do remarkable things every day despite the physical and societal limits these diseases often create. We want to spread the word about MDA and its amazing families, and hopefully inspire everyone to view every day as an opportunity to overcome challenges, doubts, and obstacles.

So how do I Live Unlimited every day? I don't let failure stop me from achieving my dreams or run another mile because of my arthritis defeat me because people who suffer from Muscular dystrophy, like my cousin, don't let their condition stop them from enjoying every moment of their lives.

Anytime you reach beyond your limited - whether they have been set by someone around you or yourself - you are achieving a #LiveUnlimited moment. We all face limits, and we all have the power to break free of our limits.

At mda.org/LiveUnlimited, you can create a custom graphicc to show how you you #LiveUnlimited and share it on social media. For every custom graphic shared, a generous sponsor will donate $1 to MDA, up to $30,00! Help us reach 30,000 #LiveUnlimited moments!


If you want one of those spiffy Endorphin Warrior #LiveUnlimiteed bracelets, you can purchase it at endorphinwarrior.com/live-unlimited. $6 of every bracelet sold benefits MDA. You can also purchase t-shirts, where $7 of each t-shirt sale goes to MDA.

Now I want you to tell me - how do you #LiveUnlimited? What was the biggest obstacle you overcame? Do you know someone with a muscle-debilitating disease?

Tell us your thoughts!


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Saturday, June 18, 2016

#MyMothersQuilts - Quilts With a Story {You could win!} #FlyBy

I was NOT compensated for this post. I received a FREE copy of My Mother's Quilts by Ramona Richards to facilitate this review. All thoughts/opinions are my own. Your experience may differ.

"A quilt is love that serves a purpose."

I don't quilt, and neither does Mom, but I have known plenty of people who do. Each quilt they have started has a story behind it. One particular story was at first sad but made for a happy reason. A friend of mine, her brother died, and he had all of his collegiate clothing hanging around, and his wife was distraught but had a child to take care of. So his sister decided to make a quilt out of his college clothing not only for his wife, but so his child would have something to remember him by.

That's what My Mother's Quilts is about - quilts with a story. Ramona Richards draws together stories about quilts made by loved ones and the quilts are passed down to someone full of love and the meanings of life.

In one story, a quilt had been hidden away in North Carolina during the Civil War to be kept safe from the destruction happening. Her grandmother would take it out once a year to air it out on the clothesline, and then put it away. After being passed down, it became so fragile, and was eventually donated to a museum.

Every single story has a heart-warming and inspirational story that will make you want to find out the story on all of your handmade quilts (if you have any). There are over thirty different stories to draw inspiration and strength from. Not only does each story start with Scripture and end with prayer starters, each story also features full-color photographs of the beautiful quilts that are mentioned.

If you want a book that's a beautiful read with every emotion possible, I highly suggest My Mother's Quilts. It's easily a book I could read whenever I need a prayer starter or just want to find happiness in a story.

You can purchase My Mother's Quilts here.

CONTEST OFFER! 
Win one of the quilts featured in #MyMothersQuilts by Ramona Richards. Also up for grabs: loads of other prizes including quilting hand warmers, coloring books, and 25 signed copies of Ramona’s book. Winners will be emailed after the contest ends on June 30, 2016. Click the image to get started!


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Thursday, June 16, 2016

FREE July 4th Printable


Celebrating Independence Day? Don't forget to get this printable to show your patriotism! It is sized for 5x7 but can be resized, although it will lose some of its printing quality.

Click here to view & download Let Freedom Ring printable. (You will be taken to Google Drive.)
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Monday, June 13, 2016

#FromThisMoment - Can she solve her sister's death without falling love? {Review}

I was NOT compensated for this post. I received a FREE copy of From This Moment by Elizabeth Camden to facilitate this review. All thoughts/opinions are my own. Your experience may differ. This post may contain affiliate links.

Author: Elizabeth Camden
Published: June 2016
ISBN: 0764217216
9.5/10



Follow Elizabeth Camden on Facebook!



DESCRIPTION:
Stella West's artistic talent made her the toast of London, but when her beloved sister dies under mysterious circumstances she abandons everything and heads for Boston. With single-minded determination she fights to pierce the ring of secrecy surrounding her sister's death. Upon meeting Romulus White, a publisher with connections into every important power circle in the city, she quickly realizes he could be a valuable ally in navigating Boston society.

Romulus has been pursuing Stella for years to create art for his magazine. Her luminous illustrations are the missing piece he needs to propel his magazine to the forefront of the industry, and he will stop at nothing to get her on board.

Sparks fly the instant they join forces, but Romulus is unsettled by the unwelcome attraction he feels toward Stella, fearing she might be the one woman who could disrupt his hard-won independence. He may have finally met his match in Stella, but is helping her solve the mystery of her sister's death worth the risk to his publishing empire?

WHAT I THOUGHT
Before having the chance to read From This Moment, I have never read one of Elizabeth Camden's books, and now I wish I had known about her before! WOW! The cover is absolutely stunning and the description pulled me in. It was a stunning work of words, love, anguish, and plot twists. I really had no clue what was coming next, and I couldn't put it down!

Set in the late 1890's, Stella West (whose real last name Westergaard), is a talented artist from London, but decides to move to Boston because she believes Gwendolyn's, her sister, death was not an "accident" as the police and medical examiner put down on the death certificate. She believes something more sinister was the culprit and she aims to find out exactly what happened.

At the same time, publisher of Scientific Weekly magazine , Romulus White, who has claimed he will remain a bachelor until age forty, is smitten with Stella's art so he invites her to come work with him at the magazine. But he's in for more than he bargained for not only because of her personality, but because she coerces him into helping her find out what happened to her sister.

Sparks fly, but they aren't ready to let love get in their way.

There is also a side story of Evelyn (Romulus's cousin), and Clyde (Evelyn's estranged husband). Their marriage had been asunder ever since Evelyn thought Clyde couldn't take care of her. But after a subway-building accident leaves Clyde deaf, can they repair their marriage and find love once again?

I LOVED this book. The only thing keep it from a perfect 10 is a few parts dragged on, which slowed down the reading in a chapter or two. But seriously, this is one to read!

BUY
You can purchase From This Moment by Elizabeth Camden on Amazon. It is available in Paperback and Kindle.
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Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Being a Caregiver - Passing on the Decision-Making


No child ever wants their parents to get old. When they do, it's a shock, no matter how old you are. But when they  need to be taken care of a little bit, your whole world is turned upside down. However, there is a moment when you know they not only do they need help doing chores, they need help making major decisions. That precise moment is not only hard to comprehend at first, but you grow up quicker than you ever imagined.

My mother's health has been declining for quite a while, and a couple of days ago, I made the comment that when me, my father, and twin sister are together, I am the decision-maker of the group. Her response floored me, and I've been mulling it over ever since then.

My mother said, "Yes, you are. I can't handle the stress of major decisions anymore. I'm going to need your help with that now.". So I asked, "So it's like passing the torch.". Her nod said it all. I think my sister's new diagnosis of a rare eye condition called Uveitis had some to do with the passing of the torch.

After it hit me that I will be deciding on things I never imagined I would, I didn't know how to feel. The woman that had been so strong ever since I can remember is now asking my help for the big things, and it kind of makes me scared. What if I screw up something?  What if I make the wrong decision? A lot of "what-ifs" tumbled through my mind. I hardly slept, but I woke up the next morning ready to take on my new role in the family - not only as a daughter and sister, but as master decision-maker. It was a scary feeling, but also necessary.

When you're a caregiver and they pass off the making of almost every major decision off to you, it's okay to feel panicked for a few minutes. Once you've calmed down, take a moment to remember that they trust you. Then sit down,  write out questions or concerns you have, and talk to them.

Sometimes it turns out that the biggest of your fears and worries were not as big as you thought it was. (Trust me on this.)

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