Happy Thanksgiving!

Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays of the year. I love getting together with family and taking time to reflect on our bounteous blessings. God has been so good to all of us, and it's nice to have a holiday set aside to remember and give thanks. One of our family Thanksgiving traditions is gathering around the table and reading the story below. I put five grains of corn at everyone's...
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Easter in an Egg Carton

Last year to help my grandchildren learn the Easter story, I made them "Easter in an Egg Carton." The carton contains 12 plastic Easter eggs with a part of the Easter story and a token to go with each. I wanted to share it with you. Feel free to copy! First I collected empty egg cartons. You can buy unused egg cartons at a farm or country store. I bought some plastic Easter eggs in a variety of...
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A Gift of Music

I ran across this recording last week. It is my family, me, husband, sons, daughters, and sons-in-law, singing at my mother-in-law's funeral three years ago. My husband is the first tenor soloist and my son--17-years old at the time--is the baritone soloist. My family and I sang this song at several funerals and in church a couple of times. I have so many memories and emotions associated with...
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Safe House: A new book by Shannon Symonds

I met Shannon Symonds at the funeral of my friend Stacy who passed away from cancer about two months ago. Stacy was Shannon's sister and a beautiful person taken from us too early. Shannon is just as lovely as her sister, and I was touched by her poise and loving spirit at such a difficult time in her life. Shannon told me that she was on the verge of publishing her first book. That got me...
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Spread Some Back-to-School Love

It's back-to-school time, and there is a lot of excitement in the air. I created these two handouts for the young women in my church group because I wanted them to know I was thinking about them in what can be an exciting and stressful time. We passed these handouts out to their homes the day before school started. I found SOBEs at the store for a dollar a piece. Last year, I bought Koolaid...
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Forgiveness

In Return to Huckleberry Hill, Reuben Helmuth’s best friend, John, steals Reuben’s girlfriend right out from under his nose. Reuben is deeply hurt and flees to Huckleberry Hill to nurse his wounds. Reuben clings tightly to his resentment and vows to never forgive John for what John did to him. But John’s sister Fern is determined to make things right, and she comes to Wisconsin to convince...
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Prisoners of War on a Utah Farm

By Richard Gappmayer, Jennifer's father Near the end of WWII, German POWs were brought to the United States and housed in camps around the country. They were brought here because there was no place to keep them in Europe, and there was a shortage of labor here. One of these camps was located here in Orem. Farmers could get these men to work on their farms. My father would get ten POWs to help...
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War from the perspective of a nine-year-old boy

My father, Roy, was born in 1900.  He was too young to serve in WWI and too old to be in WWII. (I wonder how high those numbers will go.) Many of the young men from our small town served in the war. Wesley Graff came home burned and disfigured. Every time I saw him I was reminded of the war. George Rohbock spent much of the war in a German POW camp.  He came home and became a florist. Phil...
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What we need…

Just sharing one of my favorite quotes today. I want to thank the many women in my life who embody this: my mother, my daughters, my sisters, my aunts and cousins, my dear friends, and very special readers. I would not be who I am today without you. Thank you for your quiet and loving example! "The world has enough women who are tough; we need women who are tender. There are enough women who are...
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Amish Top 5

As a writer of Amish romances, I am fascinated by the increased media interest in the Amish. I think many of us are attracted to the Amish way of life because it takes us back to a simpler time, when faith and family were society’s most important values and cell phones and computers didn’t distract us from building and strengthening important relationships. There are many things the Amish go...
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