Feb 18, 2014

Book Review - Self Confidence by Anastasia Verg

Disclosure: I got this product as part of an advertorial.

About the Book:

In Self Confidence - How To Overcome Shyness, Worry And Boost Your Self-Esteem you will find out proven steps and strategies you can start applying instantly, in order to build up your confidence as well as your self esteem. You will learn about the importance of external appearance, little known tips you can implement and some mistakes you have to avoid. You will learn about positive affirmations, how and when to properly use them and of course why you should even bother.  You will be able to determine whether you are suffering from insecurity and how to overcome it. Furthermore, you will find out how to stop worrying and start living and how to harness the power of positive thinking. Finally, you will learn ways you can instantly apply to improve your self esteem and how it can affect the quality of your relationships. 

My Review:

Although my first love was and always will be fiction, lately I've been reading a lot of non-fiction -- mostly in the personal development genre.  I also blog about healthy living at SublimeReflection.com, so I'm very familiar with the trends being talked about in this area.  This book was very basic but had some good information.  Some topics it includes:

How to Overcome Shyness by Changing your Appearance

How to be Confident by Using Positive Affirmations
How to Overcome Insecurity Once and for All
How to Stop Worrying and Use the Power of Positive Thinking
How to Improve Low Self-Esteem and Have Healthy Relationships

I can't really say that it includes any new groundbreaking information, but the author's passion for her topic is evident throughout.  Unfortunately, the book could have used a good edit.  This made it distracting and a little hard to read.  But if you're new to the area of self-improvement you can probably pick up some good tips to increase your self confidence.

I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

Jan 9, 2013

Book Review: Finished Being Fat

Author:  Betsy Schow
Website:  www.betsyschow.com

About the book:
Not everyone can win the race, but everyone can finish it.
Find the strength to conquer even your most daunting goals in this inspiring account of one woman’s journey to the life of her dreams. It all started the morning Betsy Schow woke up ten pounds heavier than the month before and surrounded by the clutter of halfhearted projects and discarded hobbies. She decided she’d had enough. 
What followed in her quest to wish away the extra 75 pounds around her middle accidentally changed her life for good. Using her Philosophy of Finishing, Betsy snowballed her efforts from weight loss into a bucket list of seemingly impossible dreams. Now she’s here to share the simple secret to her incredible success.  
Whether your goal is losing weight, running a marathon, cleaning out the basement, or all of the above, this informative book will teach you how to achieve more than you ever thought possible without sacrificing your sanity or your sense of humor.

My review:

I had seen Betsy Schow's amazing before and after pictures floating around on Facebook and had read a few of her blog posts and found her very inspiring, so I was super excited when she asked me to review Finished being Fat.

Believe me, I'm a collector of diet books.  I've already bought four or five this year.  I'm not sure what the pull is.  I think I keep looking for the magic bullet that will finally help me achieve the weight loss and happiness I've been searching for.  The truth is, I think I'm really just putting off the inevitable.  I know the answer is already inside me.  I already have all the tools and knowledge I need to lose weight.

I just don't do it.  

I loved Finished Being Fat because it's not just another diet book.  There are no food lists or exercise charts.  Instead, it's full of real life, true struggles, and a good hard look at what it takes to follow through on something even when it's hard.  This book talks about some heavy subjects and exposes Betsy's vulnerability, but because of her unique sense of humor, the book feels light and uplifting.

I was extremely motivated by her weight loss story and the personal growth she experienced through the process.  I appreciated an honest look at the truth behind weight loss.  I cheered for her every time she achieved a milestone, and felt sad at her setbacks.  After reading this book, I feel a renewed motivation to make the changes I need to make, and I realized it really isn't about losing weight at all.  It's about taking one day at a time, loving yourself through the ups and downs, and finishing what you start.  You are worth it, and so am I.  

This book is not just for people who want to lose weight.  Betsy's journey of self-discovery will help anyone who feels like they are floundering and needs a push to find the inner motivation necessary to achieve their goals.  The final chapter of  Finished being Fat includes Betsy's current list of goals.  You can follow her progress and learn more about her by visiting her website, www.betsyschow.com

Sep 19, 2012

Unstoppable by Nick Vujicic

If you spend much time online, you've probably seen or heard of Nick Vujicic. He was born without arms and legs and has spent his life making the most of it. He believes that with God, all things are possible. In fact, he says, "I keep a pair of shoes in my closet, because I believe in miracles."  On October 2, his new book Unstoppable will be released by Random House.

Now, if that video is not enough to convince you that this is a book you need to read, you can download an excerpt here. Nick's life and his new book, Unstoppable, hold a very inspiring message, and I don't want you to miss it!

May 14, 2012

Book Review: Million Dollar Diva

Authors:  Tristi Pinkston, Brett Kitchen, & Ethan Kap

About the book:

Finally - the woman's answer to growing rich safely! Women today face more money challenges than ever before, from managing careers and families to finances - the demands on their time and resources are increasing. Bad financial advice abounds, and it can be hard to know what to do. Award-winning author Tristi Pinkston teams up with bestselling authors Brett Kitchen and Ethan Kap to bring you Million Dollar Diva. Experience Tristi's real-life transformation from stuggling in debt to million-dollar retirement!  In this book, you'll discover:  
  • The 5-step, simple, safe, and predictable process to change living paycheck-to-paycheck to enjoying wealth and security.
  • How to give yourself a $400 per month raise without asking the boss or working a minute of overtime.
  • "Spend Like a Diva." How to have anything you want - nice vacations, eating out, trips to the mall. It's all part of the plan!
  • The secret formula of how to completely eliminate your debt in 1/3 the time and save tens of thousands on interest costs in the process. You'll see why all the TV gurus are wrong!
  • 5 Million-Dollar-Diva investing strategies that will grow your money safely and predictably every year, without the guesswork.
  • Plus! Discover the key to stop fighting and quarreling with your spouse about money forever!
  • Imagine yourself living debt-free and building a million-dollar retirement safely and securely, so you can have total confidence in yourself and your future.

    Get a copy of this book for FREE!

    From now until JUNE 15th, you can get Million Dollar Diva for free!  All you have to do is pay for shipping and handling.  To get your copy today, please visit milliondollardiva.com.

    My review:

    First, let me start off by saying we have an interesting, but all too common, situation in our family.  My husband and I have both been married before, and like many divorces, we were left with far too much debt, and very few "things."  But we're okay with that.  After all, things are just things.  We both know someday we'll be able to buy more things and that things don't make you happy anyway, but neither does debt.  

    Million Dollar Diva addresses the ever-growing epidemic of personal debt.  It teaches a unique method for paying down your debt and saving money for your future.  I'm a numbers kind of gal, so I appreciated the calculations and scenarios presented showing how investing in yourself can pay big dividends in the future!

    The format of the book was a refreshing change from other books I've read about personal finances.  It was a very down-to-earth look at how women and families can change their lives and tackle their personal financial situation.  I really admire Tristi Pinkston for being brave enough to share her own story.  It helps to know that others are out there struggling with the same things I am, and asking the same questions.  That was my favorite part of the book.  Tristi asks all the questions that come to my mind when I'm thinking about the reality of my finances and getting out of debt.

    I highly recommend this book.  Be sure to check out the Million Dollar Diva website.  There are lots of great resources there, so take a look around, and order the free book while you're at it!  You'll be glad you did!

    May 7, 2012

    It's So Cherry Super Spring Kickoff!

    I was excited to be asked to participate in the It's So Cherry super spring giveaway!  If you haven't checked out their website, you totally should.  They have the cutest accessories and gifts -- a perfect Mother's Day idea!!  They are also running a contest.  Keep reading more all the details.

    The trees and flowers are blooming, the sun is out (well, sometimes) and we here at It's So Cherry are all about celebrating, so we're giving away gift bags to four lucky winners, and a pair of barefoot sandals to 20 more. That’s right, you have TWENTY-FOUR chances to win.

    To enter, register at www.itssocherry.com, and follow one (or more) of the participating blogs, then fill out the form below.

    Contest Rules:

    - Must be 16 and over
    - One prize per household
    - Must be registered @www.itssocherry.com
    - Only valid for those living within the continental US, or with a United States mailing address

    Each grand prize goodie bag will contain (1) Flower necklace set (with earrings), (1) crochet head wrap (color may vary), (1) scarf (color and style may vary), (1) package nail wraps, and (1) black wrap bracelet.  We will also give away 20 pairs of barefoot sandals to 20 winners.  

    To enter, simply register for an account with It's So Cherry (www.itssocherry.com) and sign up for their email list.  Entries will be accepted starting Monday, May 7th, until midnight, mountain standard time, on Friday, May 18th.  

    Prizes will be shipped within 10 business days after contest winners have been announced.   Winners will be selected using random.org, and contacted using the email provided for registration on the It's So Cherry website.  

    Names of the goodie bag winners will be posted to participating blog sites as well as the blog for It's So Cherry, www.itssocherry.blogspot.com. Upon notification, winners will have 7 days to respond, after which another winner will be chosen. 

    Apr 29, 2012

    Book Review: The Newport Ladies Book Club: Olivia

    Author:  Julie Wright
    Author's Website:  juliewright.com
    Newport Ladies Book Club Blog:  thenewportladiesbookclub.blogspot.com

    About the book:
    The Robbins household looks perfect from the outside: no dust, no stains, no wrinkles. Yet a glimpse into its heart reveals no laughter, no closeness, no joy. Olivia thinks that if she keeps everything tidy and serves delicious meals on time, family life is bound to get better. But when her husband, Nick, misses their anniversary, she realizes no amount of domestic success will compensate for failure in their marriage, or for her own failure to develop her identity, always busy as a mother, wife, and neighbor, she has forgotten how to be a unique and vibrant individual. Determined to make a change, Olivia joins a local book club, where she nurtures new friendships and explores new ideas. But her growing confidence falters when Nick declares his independence, and while her new friends lovingly encircle her with support, only Olivia can reach into the depths of her fledgling self to find the faith, hope, and love her troubled family needs.

    My review:

    I was excited about the opportunity to read and review Olivia by Julie Wright, the first book in the  Newport Ladies Book Club series.  This series is written by four of my favorite authors.  These ladies came up with the ingenious idea of writing a series together.  Each of the authors is already successful in their own right, so when I heard about their new venture, I knew it would be a great success.  After reading Olivia, I'm sure of it.

    Authors of the Newport Ladies Book Club Series
    Josi Kilpack, Annette Lyon, Julie Wright, and Heather Moore
    I've kind of been on a non-fiction self-improvement kick lately, which made me read this book from an interesting perspective.  I was reminded of so many truths through Olivia's story.  Things like we need to fill ourselves in order to have anything to give to others, that when comparing our weaknesses to other's strengths we'll always come up short, and that everyone has a story.

    Olivia comes from a place that is common for women.  She gives and gives, taking care of everyone around her, until she's at the point where she needs to do something for herself or break.  In an act of desperation, she decides to join a book club.  The women she meets there each enhance her life in different ways.

    A big part of the story is about the broken relationship between Olivia and her husband, Nick.  Having lived through some similar circumstances, I felt great empathy for her situation and was impressed by the grace with which she handled it.  Character growth is one of my favorite elements in a story, and Olivia doesn't disappoint.  Another element of the story that touched my heart were the Heaven Reminders--gentle nudgings Olivia received to help other people, which also blessed her life in the process.  Since reading about them, I've been paying closer attention to such promptings in my own life.

    I am intrigued by the other women in the story and look forward to reviewing the other books in the series.  Daisy by Josi Kilpack will be released in May 2012.  I can't wait!

    To learn more about the authors or the series, please visit the Newport Ladies Book Club blog.

    Apr 16, 2012

    Book Review: Banana Split

    Author:  Josi Kilpack
    Author's Website:  www.josikilpack.com

    About the book:

    Sadie Hoffmiller has survived eighteen months of nonstop adventures filled with murder, deceit, and danger. She could really use some rest—and maybe even some time to heal—relaxing in the tropical paradise of Kaua'i. However, palm trees and sunshine are not as effective a medication as Sadie had hoped. And when she finds herself entangled—literally—with a dead body, she is forced to face the compounding fears and anxieties that are making her life so difficult to live.

    Her determination to stay out of danger and to focus on overcoming her anxieties soon takes a backseat when she meets eleven-year-old Charlie, the son of the woman whose body she discovered near Anahola Beach. Charlies has some questions of his own about what happened to his mother, and he is convinced that only Sadie can help him. If only Sadie were as confident in her abilities as Charlie is.

    With the help of her best friend and a local social worker, Sadie dives into another mystery with the hope that, at the end, she'll be able to find the peace and closure that has eluded her.

    My review:

    I was so excited when asked to read and review Josi Kilpack's most recent Sadie Hoffmiller culinary mystery.  Because my life is crazy busy between working, writing, and carpooling ten kids around, I'm ashamed to admit I haven't read any of the other books in this series, but I promise you, after reading Banana Split, that's going to change.

    I have always loved to read.  It's been my escape from my own often challenging life.  But lately, I haven't  found the pleasure in reading that I used to.  I could probably sum up my review simply by telling you that Banana Split reminded me of exactly why I love to read.

    Sadie Hoffmiller accidentally falls into a murder mystery, but this time she's not quite up to the task.  I loved the vulnerability expressed through Sadie's character.  Her fears and emotions helped me personally identify with her character.  This book was full of twists and turns and tender moments.  I loved it!

    On top of the amazing story, Banana Split includes ten mouthwatering recipes tested and approved by the  official bakers of Sadie's test kitchen.  

    Banana Split can be purchased here.  To learn more about Josi's other books, please visit her website.
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