Filmmaker, Theatre, Youtuber, Jewelry Consultant, Blogger, Editor, Cat Owner, Teacher, Celiac Disease, RSD, RA

Monday, January 29, 2018

The Empowered by Craig Parshall Book Review

 Grab a large cup of coffee or some Red Bull because you will need it.

The Empowered by Craig Parshall, a Christian crime drama about Trevor Black an ex-attorney who has the power of seeing demons.  This Travor Black sequel touches heavily on human trafficking.  Black takes on investigating a mysterious death in Washington, DC.  This investigation takes him to New Orleans where he tracks a shadowy Internet-driven child abduction group who has pagan sects of the Old Testament. There he discovers the human trafficking of young girls.  The supernatural catches up with him by creating a carefully staged a murder in his hotel room putting him on the top of the suspect list. Soon after the murder setup, his daughter goes missing. He is running out of time to save his daughter's soul. While trying to rescue his daughter, Heather, he uncovers a human trafficking ring that extends far beyond isolated murders, enslaving scores of innocent children with its head perhaps linked to the highest seats of power. The demons only give him a certain amount of time to save his daughter. 

Craig Parshall isn't new to criminal justice. As a constitutional attorney, Craig currently serves as Special Counsel in Washington DC with the American Center for Law and Justice.  He is also a commentator on issues involving culture, faith, freedom, law, media and technology and frequently debates the most controversial and engaging issues of the day with atheist groups and separation-of-church-state leaders. He has even made appearances on legal and constitutional issues before mainstream media including FOX news, CBS television, CBS radio, CNN, NBC's Today Show, Inside Edition, PBS, NPR, and Court TV among others. His cases have even been featured in major newspapers and magazines including the New York Times, the National Law Journal, the Chicago Tribune, the LA Times, the Boston Herald, Atlanta Constitution, Newsweek, and U.S. News and World Reports. 

I found this book to be very Bible preachy. I felt Parshall wrote this book not to tell a crime drama story, but a way to preach scripture. Every problem Black encountered was quickly and easily fixed within 2-4 chapters. The conflicts didn't last long. Human trafficking and scripture seemed to be Parshall's main themes.  I believe Parshall main theme of this book is if you trust in the Lord everything will come easy and turn out better than planned.  At times, I found this book to be very hard to follow. 

"Rely on the Spirit, that's what. Make room for faith in all this, Trevor. this isn't like improving your golf game, you know."  (p. 333)

My favorite part of the story was when his daughter went missing because I felt drawn into the story. This was an actual conflict happening. I was the suspense of him having to find his daughter in a certain amount of time would last through book and at the end of the book Black would find his daughter, but that did not happen. Sadly it only lasted three chapters. 

"Self-pity is a destroyer. A tool of the enemy. " (p. 333)
My least parts of the book are the Voodoo. Everything in this world seemed to be Voodoo to black. If you aren't on your knees begging for God to bless you then you are Voodoo demon.  Basically, I felt there were too many stories going on in this book. I wish he just stuck with having to find his daughter. I would tell you more, but I don't want to ruin the book for you.

The reason why I said get your coffee or a Red Bull because to me this book was very hard to finish. I was very disappointed in this book. For the life of me, I could not feel connected to these characters. I wouldn't recommend this book unless you are church book club.

Author: Craig Parshall
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Craig Parshall is a fiction writer who has authored or co-authored twelve suspense novels. His fiction work has appeared on the New York Times Best Seller List and on the CBA bestseller list. Craig is a current events columnist and has also co-authored several nonfiction books with his wife Janet, a national syndicated radio talk show host on Moody Radio. He was the founding director of the John Milton Project for Free Speech, a pioneering Internet investigation that brought him into contact with world experts on the dangers of the web. Craig has made appearances on mainstream media such as The Today Show, FOX News, CBS TV and Radio, Inside Edition, and many more. Craig is a cum lade graduate of Carroll College (English/Philosophy/Religion) and Marquette University Law School where he received his J.D. degree. As a constitutional attorney, Craig currently serves as a Special Counsel with the American Center for Law and Justice

Check out Craig Parshall's Website: Click Here
Craig Parshall's twitter: Click Here
Craig Parshall's Facebook Page: Click Here

Release Date: January 2018.
ISBN: 978-1-4964-1137-2
Publisher: Tyndale

Friday, January 12, 2018

Jewelry Addiction

Stargaze Jewelry

I may be all about film, theatre, and health, but I am also addicted fashion and style.  I may be broke, but I do have good taste especially shopping at thrift stores. Anyways, my grandpa got me hooked on jewelry. He would always buy me jewelry right and left.  After he passed I am always on the lookout for the style of jewelry he used to buy for me. I am so excited that I found a company that sells the type of jewelry he would buy for me. Stargaze Jewelry 

Their style is so gorgeous. Their jewelry is high quality and makes me feel incredibly pretty.  Their pieces also have a vintage/antique look to them. What  They also have some gorgeous clothing.  The best part is their prices. There Jewelry is as low as $9.99 to the most expensive piece is $44.00. They have amazing sales. That is how I buy my pieces.  They are always putting new pieces on the site. The one negative thing is their pieces sell out fast so if you see something you better get because if you come back to it later likely it gets sold out.

A got a coupon code for you to use: CYBER.

Paris Choker- Stargaze Jewelry

Diamond Cross Necklace Stargaze Jewelry 

Naya Choker- Stargaze Jewelry
Luna Choker- Stargaze Jewelry

Saturday, January 6, 2018

My Cat Has Cancer

As most people are celebrated the holidays I get the news my cat has squamous cell carcinoma. He has been having a runny eye for the past month. Our vet gave him some steroids thinking he might have a cold. He is 15 going on 16 years old and she didn't want the cold to go to his lungs. He was doing not too bad when he was on the steroids. A week later, after the medications ran out.  his eye was running even more. I took him back to the vet. I noticed that his right side by his nose looked a little swollen. My vet saw it too. She thought it could be a tooth root abscess and wanted him to get his teeth cleaned. My mind thought the sooner the better, so we got him in the next day.

7:00am in the morning I dropped him off. I hate leaving him at the vet. They told me they would call around 12:00pm. 12:15pm came and I still didn't hear anything so I called. Come to find out they still haven't gotten to him. I was pissed. You are having him dropped off early in the morning to sit in a cage hearing a bunch of animals crying.  1:00pm came around and still didn't hear anything. 1:30pm I called again and they still didn't get to him yet. At this point, I was fuming. 2:30pm I called again luckily this time they said they just got started working with him. Good because otherwise, they wouldn't like the words that were about to come out of my mouth.  Finally 3:15pm the vet called to tell me his teeth look extremely good, but they did an x-ray to find there is a small mass near the sinus cavity. I asked if there is a way to remove it. Sadly they said no unless you want a deformed looking cat. I don't care if he is deformed as long as I can have him for another 2 or more years. Well, come to find out he would have lots of infections and problems eating, etc.  The vet said there is nothing they can do and it is really painful. I don't want my baby to be in pain, but he is playing, eating and cuddling. We get there to pick him up and come to find my vet didn't do the procedure a different vet did. If I knew that I wouldn't have scheduled him the next day. I am bailing in the room. The vet brings Jakie in the room. She kindly asks what I would like to do with him. Excuse me?!?! I am taking him home. If he wasn't eating, cuddling and playing then that would be another story, but he seems to be doing very well. His fur coat is gorgeous and his eyes are bright and clear. If I listened to the vet 5 years ago he wouldn't be here today. Five years ago, he was diagnosed with a mass on his liver.  They told us it could be a benign mass, but it could also be cancer. They told us it grows fast and if I'm lucky I might have him for another four months to a year, well it has been 5 years now.

His blood work looks awesome for his age, other than the liver enzymes. I am determined to make this vet wrong again and I know he is too.  When I found in July 2017 that the mass got a little bigger than the year before I freaked out and took him to a cancer doctor at Bluepearl. I spent $200 to be told they have to do a biopsy of the liver, but if they go in to take the biopsy there could be a pretty good chance, if it's cancer, to spread. BluePearl said they could take part of his liver, but being 15 years old he is going to have a hard recovery and there is a pretty good chance he could die on the table. I was not going to take that chance. They sent him on his way with a pain medication, but nothing to help slow it down. My mom and I did a lot of research on trying to get cancer to slow down. I will let you know what I find out and tell you his progress. All I ask is for him to be in your prayers.

- Stephanie Norton💜💙

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Holiday Favorites GF Food

The Holiday season has always been the best and worst day for me.  Let us start with the positive first. Ever since the age of two, I have had lots of health problems.  When I was 9 years old I was in and out of my pediatrician office at least every other week with tummy troubles. He ended up diagnosing me with Irritable Bowel Syndrome and told me to eat everything with whole wheat, drink Metamucil at least 2xs day, lots of fruits and veggies.  When I was 13 God was watching out for me. I had to see a different pediatrician because my normal pediatrician was on vacation. I got to see a woman. Sorry guys but I feel women make a better doctor especially for girls because they don't assume it is just depression and anxiety.  She looked at my chart and noticed I haven't gained any weight instead I was losing weight. Another thing she noticed was my bones weren't growing correctly.  She sent me in for a bunch of tests, as well as, sent me to a Ped Gastrologist. Three days before 2001 Thanksgiving around 8:00pm my Gastrologist calls. He told me he has never seen such a severe case celiac disease and he has been doing this for 30 years. He said my celiac level in blood work was sky high and my endoscopy showed no villi and lots of damage. He then tells me if I don't get on a gluten-free diet immediately and follow it to the tee, I probably will not be around in two years.  I was shocked and terrified.  I didn't even know where to begin especially with Thanksgiving three days away. We are also talking about 2001 when there was not much gluten-free food out there and it was so expensive if don't want to make it yourself. My first Thanksgiving on the diet sucked. All I ended up eating was a plain piece of chicken and a baked potato. My mom tried making an apple pie from scratch with a bunch of different gluten-free flours, but it didn't taste very good. We are also talking about a time when companies weren't required to put allergens on their labels. The internet didn't have much on being gluten-free either.  We ended up buying a couple of gluten-free recipe books but their recipes required 8 different flours.

If you are just diagnosed relax and breathe because it is not as hard to go gluten-free anymore.  I wish I was that 13-year-old kid today because my holidays when I was first diagnosed would have been no different than not being on a gluten-free diet. You can enjoy pretty much all that you enjoyed eating before going gluten-free. There is soo many gluten-free foods out there you don't even have to make anything from scratch if you don't want to. 

Here are some of my favorite Holiday Gluten-Free foods:

Purchase Click Here

Pumpkin Spice Donuts Click Here
Glazed Donuts Click Here
Flour Mix
Croutons Click here

Cornbread Click Here
Best Brownies!! at Aldis

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Silver Ballbarians Christmas Cookie Decoration Tradition

Here is a funny family tradition that has been past down from one generation to another.  When my mom and my Aunt were little kids my grandma would make sugar cookies and have them decorate it. They would put those really hard silver ball sprinkles that would break your teeth. Once the cookies were decorated with not just one silver sprinkle hard balls but dozens of them on one cookie my grandpa would eat them.

Guess what!!! Grandma taught me this tradition as well. A couple of weeks before Christmas I would go over to their house. Grandma would make her special homemade sugar cookies. I would always help her make it dough as well as eat it too.  Then we would mix up the frosting. While the frosting was in the refrigerator getting cold and the cookies in the oven, we would set up the newspapers on the floor, put up the card table in the kitchen and set up all the decorating sprinkles. I loved decorating the cookies because every cookie I made was very special especially to my grandpa. I can't believe my grandpa had teeth left from eating all those cookies my mom and my aunt made for him when they were little. I took decorating these Christmas sugar cookies to a whole new level. I had grandma smash up some peppermint candies. I also put those really hot cinnamon candies on them as well as those hard silver ball sprinkles. I made some without the killing decorations because I didn't want to eat those killing decorations. Grandma wouldn't touch the ones with the decorations that kill the teeth.  Grandpa was a very good sport and at them. I would laugh and laugh at the point of almost peeing my pants. I really don't think he liked them that well, but he did whatever made his girls happy.

(Here are some pictures from the early 1990s of me)

Me putting the killing decorations!

Grandpa: Do I have to? 

Me: YES!! 

Grandpa: MY MOUTH!! MY TEETH!! HOTTT!!! 

My Grandpa was so amazing.  He means so much too me. I looked up to him and learned so much from him. He passed away in 2014 but not from my cookies. LOL.  I love you so much Grandpa and miss you sooo much!!! #deathbycookies  #grandpascookies  #ChristmasCookies

Sunday, October 1, 2017

With Love, Wherever You Are Book Review

 With Love, Wherever You Are by is an incredible love story. Does war romances last? Based on a true story. After a whirlwind romance and wedding, Helen Eberhart Daley, an army nurse, and Lieutenant Frank Daley, M.D. are sent to the front lines of Europe, during World War II, with only letters to connect them for months at a time. They are both surrounded by dangers and desperately wounded patients, they soon find that only the war seems real-- and their marriage more and like a distant dream. If they make it through the war, will their marriage survive?
Dandi Daley Mackall

This story tells the real-life story of the romance between Dandi Daley Mackall's parents. Dandi does an amazing job navigating the reader through the hardships, loss, and dangers of the war.  I could not put this book down I had to read the entire book in one sitting. The book is a mix of letters and normal narration.  The story is very easy to follow. I found myself having so many genuine emotions while reading this. I laughed, I cried, I was happy and scared. Their relationship was incredibly strong. This would make a great summer, fall, winter read. I would tell you more about it, but I don't want to ruin it for you. Get this book or check it out at the library. This is such an endearing and uplifting story. The fun part is I am from Michigan and Helen and Frank cross path with each other in Battle Creek, Michigan.

Here is a video about the book:

Check out her website- Click Here
Purchase the book at: Click Here

Alexander Hamilton Comic Book Review

Can history be told through a graphic novel? I wanted to find this out, so I got Jonathan Hennessey's Graphic Novel Alexander Hamilton Biography. Alexander Hamilton is one of the most influential figures in United States history. He fought in the war, helped develop the Constitution and was the first Secretary of the Treasury.  Today, kids know him because of Hamilton the Musical on Broadway.
Justin Greenwood's illustrations are really good. I did, at times, have a hard time figuring out who was who throughout the book, especially because Hennessey seems to skip around in Hamilton's life.
The book starts out with the Monarchy and slavery. It doesn't even start with Hamilton being born. The first ten pages were about growing sugar which created more slavery. Alexander Hamilton is against slavery, but if you only read the first few pages you would think he was for slavery.  I thought this book wouldn't take me very long to read, but it took me an hour to read because I found it hard to follow. I was surprised at how much of the book wasn't about Alexander Hamilton. There were more pages on George Washington than Hamilton. It was a fun read. Did I learn anything from it? No, but then again I am a huge Revolutionary War fan, so I read a lot of books about the founding fathers. This would be a great book for kids, especially kids who don't like to read.

"I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review.

The Empowered by Craig Parshall Book Review

 Grab a large cup of coffee or some Red Bull because you will need it. The Empowered  by Craig Parshall, a Christian crime drama about Tre...