Friday, April 27, 2012

The Scent of Cherry Blossoms by Cindy Woodsmall - a book review

This book is more of a novella than a full novel, and while it is not technically a sequel to the Christmas Singing, it does reacquaint us with some of the characters from that novella.  Cindy Woodsmall does a fantastic job of portraying the Amish community with insight and sensitivity.  Many people think that the Amish are governed by a strict set of rules with no consideration for feelings.  While that is true to a certain extent Woodsmall shows us that they experience many of the same feelings, hurts, sadness, disappointments and heartaches that the rest of us face. 

This book is about an Old Order Mennonite girl, Annie and an Old Order Amish boy, Aden, who fall in love. While both sects are friendly with each other and share certain beliefs and practices, there are strict rules about not intermarrying.   If they decide to pursue their love, one must sacrifice not only their faith, but risk being shunned.

They secretly meet in Annie’s grandfathers cherry orchard.  The cherry orchard plays an important part in this story with a history of its own.

As is common with novellas, there isn’t as much time to deeply develop plots and characters like there would be in a full sized novel and it seemed like the ending was very abrupt. It does, however, leave us with a hint of another ‘sister’ novella with Aden’s brother, Roman, as a central character.
Cindy Woodsmall is one of my favorite Christian authors and I can't wait for the next peek into the lives of the people of Apple Ridge and Zook'z diner.

The Scent of Cherry Blossoms by Cindy Woodsmall (Chapter 1 Excerpt)

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Blogging for Books and WaterBrook Press  through their book review program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed above are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Tuesday, April 03, 2012

What I've been up to.....

Between visiting family and babysitting my newest grandbaby, there hasn't been much time for alot of other activities. I have, however, squeezed in a little sewing.  This is what I've been doing:

Can you tell what I used to make this fancy baby bonnet?  I bought 3 matching ladies hankerchiefs from the local dollar store. They come in pairs but are packaged with two different ones in each package so I had to buy 3 packages. That just means I have three more to make another one!  I lined it with plain white cotton.  The brim is a wide piece of eyelet lace.( I had just enough) A little elastic in the back and pretty white ribbon for ties and voila!  (It's hard to see but there is also a tiny bit of pink trim inserted where the brim meets the crown,)

I was on a roll so I decided to make this too!

Isn't this cute!? Pink camo for a future tom-boy and polka dots and ruffles for a little lady.  As usual, I started with a pattern but had to make some adjustment for size and, well, just because I like to change things a bit.  I have 4 more I'm working on, each one a little different.  One will be hot pink leopard print with a coordinating floral brim, another is hunting camo with matching color stripes.  I try to use coordinating fabrics but not 'match-ey, match-ey'.  The last one will be a small floral print combined with a larger floral in coordinating colors.

I have a few more sewing projects that I need to get busy on also: decorative pillow cases, curtains, and some maternity tops for my daughter.

I also will be posting a couple of book reviews in the near future.  But right now, I think I'll just enjoy watching my new grand-daughter sleeping peacefully in her swing.

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