Hello, friends! Summer is here and has brought an unexpected event in my life which will affect my schedule somewhat for a few months. My husband is scheduled for surgery next week and will be off work for six weeks.
Add that on top of my increased babysitting in the summer and a large garden to pick, can, and freeze. I’ve decided to scale back my blog work for a couple of months which includes Favorite Friday Fiction.
I still plan to get some reading time in so when Favorite Friday Fiction resumes on September 7th, I’ll have lots of new books to share with y’all. I’ll still post every Monday with Small Acts of Kindness so don’t miss those fun reads.
I hope you enjoy your summer. And I can’t wait to meet you back here in September!
By Jennifer Hallmark
**If you missed it, you’ll find part 1 here...
Hello, world! It’s Sunday, January 21. I’ve just left the church, and I’m driving home. After the service, standing in the parking lot, I showed my daughter my tattoo. I can’t help but smile because I’ve just totally shocked her. I didn’t think it was possible.
She asked if it hurt. In fact, even today, that’s the question I’m asked the most.
Yes, it hurt. A lot.
But really not as bad as I imagined. I’m a writer, and I have a big imagination. I went in with a large cup of iced coffee and my friend, so I was ready. The artists were very professional and the parlor was super clean, which was the main thing I’d been researching for the last six months.
The lady and I discussed again what I wanted (we’d already been chatting on FB messenger), I paid her, and she went to get the template for the word “fearless.” I’d picked a specific font, one where the letters were in cursive, but the “r” wasn’t joined to the “l.” That way, it could read fearless or fear less.
In life, I’ve always been cautious, conservative, and reserved. Nothing wrong with that except when I let it affect my walk with God and my witness. Or it comes between me and my family and friends. So this year, I want to fear less and faith more.
I love the little story that says, “Fear knocked on the door. Faith answered. No one was there.” That’s how I want to live. I’m not there yet. Every day, I ask God to help me recognize fear and shut the door by my faith in Him.
Anyway, the whole process from when I entered the shop lasted about an hour and a half. I’d already purchased the soap and ointment and things for aftercare. It’s healed well.
Am I ready for another one?
No. I broke through that wall and it is enough. It’s taken me a few months to get up the courage to share it with y’all. I shake my head as I think how crazy I am to get so worked up over a tattoo. But one of my fears throughout my life has been fear of rejection. So, it makes sense.
Why have I shared this over the last two weeks? I guess it’s mostly for me. I have my first novel coming out in June of 2019 with Firefly Southern fiction, and I’m already struggling a little with what people will think of my book. Will they cringe? Laugh? Love it? Or reject it?
I give these fears to God. I like to say I don’t write for God; I write with Him. We laugh and cry together as I pen words that reduce me to a transparent, vulnerable state I’d rather not be in, at times. But it’s a healing place.
And it’s me.
To me, Spring is an act of kindness to my soul after a long winter…
By Jennifer Hallmark
No one can show kindness like a child. Young children have a generally happy, carefree look at life, not yet jaded by the pain and sorrow associated with growing up.
My granddaughter, Phoebe, came to visit one day, bearing the gift of a picture she’d drawn for my refrigerator. The simple drawing of me and her with lots of love touched my heart and I still display it to this day.
If you have children you care for, encourage them to draw or make simple gifts for people around you that need to be lifted up. This doesn’t have to be expensive but it can make the world of difference for someone struggling.
The difference made by the love of a child…
P.S. And I love that she drew me with long hair 🙂
Storms in Serenity is a complex, engaging story by Fay Lamb. The way she weaves her characters brings them to life and makes you want to know what happens to them. The suspense is terrific and I didn’t want to put it down until I could see how it would end. Another great novel by Fay.
How can one man save the town he loves when he’s the reason for the destruction?
Serenity Key, Florida, has seen its share of hurricanes, but this time, one foul weather system is about to collide with another storm, and this one has nothing to do with atmospheric pressure.
David New has guarded his secrets for years, but when two brothers, John and Andy Ryan, arrive in town and he gets news that the daughter he’s never told anyone about has disappeared, possibly the victim of a heinous crime, and the lives of many of the town residents begin to unravel in the gale force consequences of Jake’s past, he has nowhere else to turn.
God is the only one Who can calm the storms, but can David and the good folks of Serenity Key survive until He does?
A tempest has been brewing for thirty years, with only one island town in its path.
By Jennifer Hallmark
“Friends are needed both for joy and for sorrow.”
~ Yiddish Proverb
I’m a writer and I love writing. But it’s not always easy. Sometimes I struggle with disappointment, fear, tiredness, and apathy. My friendship with other writers has kept me from changing my vocation.
I know that if I start down the “give up” road, I can call or Facebook message one of “these” friends and they’ll talk me off the ledge of quitting. They’ll share a story about a time they wanted to give up or remind me of the way I’ve grown over the years. We laugh and send emojis and before you know it, I’m ready to sit at the computer once again and start a story or blog post.
Some of my friends are authors, others are unpublished for the moment. I know editors, publishers, and agents. They get tired just like I do and I hope I can often encourage them in return.
Because we all need a little encouragement now and then. Thank you to all my writing friends. There are too many to name but you know who you are.
“If you want a friend, be a friend. “
~ English Proverb
For my February classic favorite, I chose The Return of the King, the third book in the Lord of the Rings series by J.R.R Tolkien. Over Christmas, I rewatched the three movies and decided to read The Return of the King once more.
An epic fantasy novel, it never disappoints as I once again enjoyed a world full of men, elves, dwarves, evil creatures, and, of course, hobbits.
The third volume in J.R.R. Tolkien’s epic adventure THE LORD OF THE RINGS
One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them, One Ring to bring them all and in the darkness bind them
As the Shadow of Mordor grows across the land, the Companions of the Ring have become involved in separate adventures. Aragorn, revealed as the hidden heir of the ancient Kings of the West, has joined with the Riders of Rohan against the forces of Isengard, and takes part in the desperate victory of the Hornburg. Merry and Pippin, captured by Orcs, escape into Fangorn Forest and there encounter the Ents. Gandalf has miraculously returned and defeated the evil wizard, Saruman. Sam has left his master for dead after a battle with the giant spider, Shelob; but Frodo is still alive—now in the foul hands of the Orcs. And all the while the armies of the Dark Lord are massing as the One Ring draws ever nearer to the Cracks of Doom.