Saturday, August 27, 2016

I took it back!

We got a new computer!!! We set it up in my office. It was not convenient, because it's actually my daughter's computer and she uses it to interact with her friends, play games and goof off. It's never a good thing to have to deal with that kind of stuff when you want to sit down and get some work done. So yesterday, we moved her computer downstairs and I took my office space back. I undownloaded all her games. Removed them from the system and I took my computer back! It went from on the brink of death to exactly what I needed in the first place!! Yeah!! I'm so stinking happy!!
Who knows exactly what this will mean, but it might possibly mean more blogs! Or more productive time in my office!! Or no more waiting for the computer or dealing with huffs when I ask to use it!! One thing it definitely means is a tax deduction because my office space is now all me!!!!!

Speaking of work...I have something exciting to share with you!! This week is a birthday week at our house and in celebration, I'm offering free shipping between now and September 2, 2016 when you shop through this link

http://www.mytradesofhope.com/parties/34970

Just send me an email after you've placed your order to toh.tinap @ gmail.com and I'll PayPal you the cost of regular shipping. Contact me through that same email if you have any questions!!


Thursday, August 18, 2016

Thankful Thursday



This Thursday, I am thankful for so much!

I'm thankful for an amazing husband that makes me laugh and keeps me on the straight and narrow.

I'm thankful for a daughter that is growing up and becoming a phenomenal woman.

I'm thankful for a house full of pets that check in on me and keep me company.

I'm thankful for my new job! Seriously, I get to take my deep seated desire for the world to have clean water and do something about it! How thankful I am that I get to tell people about the conditions women live in around the world and to encourage them and provide a way for them to do something about it!! That's just mind blowing.
A little peak at my desk this morning!


What about you, what are you thankful for?

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

What's up with me? Well, let me tell you...

Our computer really broke, wouldn't charge, battery was busted, no access at the beginning of the year. My dad came to the rescue and fixed it! Yeah! And then it got something that made it super slow and painful to use. It was time to do something about it. Actually, it was clear it was time to do something about it last fall. I started squirreling away some funds here and there. It was slow and painful, but not nearly as slow and painful as getting on the computer and doing anything on it. It would take me an hour to write and post something, with only about ten of those minutes being utilized for the actual creation of something to write. Meaning 50 minutes of computer wrestling. UGH! I felt like my life was being sucked away every single time I had to get on the computer to do something. Well, this summer, it got worse, taking forever to turn on, going through several reboots every time. You've all heard this story before, I'm sure. Well, finally, we got enough money pulled together and bought a new computer. A fast, efficient, speedy computer.
The other day, I got on to post my latest book review. It was so lovely, my first thought was, "I miss blogging, I should go do that." And so here I am today, telling you the age old story of busted computers and the need to replace them.
I've also had something else going on in my life. I got a job! Yes, me the perpetual stay at home mom, the house wife extraordinary. I got a job. And you know that if I got a job after 15 years of housewife bliss, it must be something extraordinary. And no it wasn't a need for funds, it was a need to learn something new and to explore my purpose in a different way.
I'm a compassionate entrepreneur with Trades of Hope. If you haven't heard of them, they are amazing!! I have been a customer for the past three years or so and just loved all the things!! And finally, this past summer, I decided to take the next step and help other people find their favorite stories and pieces.
Trades of Hope is a direct sales organization that is working to empower women out of poverty. We partner with artisans in 16 different countries to market their jewelry, scarves, handbags and home decor. You can see the entire line online at http://www.mytradesofhope.com/tinapuntigam  I've really been enjoying telling people about our artisans and helping them find beautiful items to add to their collections. It's also been a lot of work.

Monday, August 15, 2016

The Happiness Dare by Jennifer Dukes Lee




The Happiness Dare is look at happiness that I'm pretty sure few of us have taken before. There are five different happiness styles that are discussed in the book as well as an assessment to be able to determine your primary style. (You can take the assessment online http://jenniferdukeslee.com/happiness-style/ )

The parts that I found most helpful were not just the styles and how they make us happy, but the downfalls within each style that we need to be aware of. Kind of like what too much of a good thing looks like for each style.

My family and I took the test. Turns out that we have two Thinkers and one Relator. That definitely explains a lot about our family dynamics :) The dare manifesto itself is a little vague in regards the nitty gritty, but the third part of the book gives very specific action steps for each of the happiness styles.

So the real question is. "Are you happier?" And the answer is "I don't know." I love knowing how to pursue my individual brand of happiness, that has been very helpful, but I'm not at a place where my overall happiness has increased. I would say that it's safe to say that will take some time and hard work. And that is one of the things this book does. It's like an exercise plan for your happiness quotient. You are not going to read this and instantly be happier (Yeah Happy Happy Joy JOY). You will, however, learn how to work at and it will make a difference if you keep at it.


This book was provided to me at no cost for the purpose of review by Tyndale Publishing.

Monday, June 20, 2016

Aetherlight: Chronicles of the Resistance Review





The Aetherlight is a role playing game created by in partnership with Tyndale House Publishing and Scarlet City Studios. It is meant to combine scripture and gaming. We were provided a three day pass to play and provide our opinions.

First of all, it looks like a cool game. The initial landing page is almost not helpful in regards to actual game play. The game is a download that is two to three clicks deep, if you know where you're going. Plus there is parent sign up and child sign up, different things in different places. We had some initial problems downloading the game, contacted customer service after clicking around on the site for awhile. They were very quick to respond. Turns out there is an issue with McAfee and downloading the game, they are working on a solution. As we were dealing with that, we tried to download the mobile version, unfortunately, it was too big for our devices.

So you've downloaded the game for PC, click and it's more downloading. You finally think you're going to start and nope more downloading. When that's all done, you just start the game, no tutorial, no helpful guide, just a person on a boardwalk in the middle of a jungle. Neither my daughter nor I could really get excited about the game play which was a little slow.

I think if you are patient enough to sit through all the downloading and time it would take to figure out how to have fun in this game, it could be worthwhile. As for us, it was not our favorite game out there.

If you're interested in finding out more about The Aetherlight Chronicles, you can follow them on Facebook. There is also an Aetherlight Bible and a reading plan on YouVersion.

As I said, a game code was provided for us at no charge in exchange for our honest reviews. I wish that it could have been a better experience. As you can tell, we couldn't even get in to the game enough to tell you what it was really about and how you could use in  regards to adding it to bible reading. If the amount of time it takes to download and start game play could be reduced along with the addition of an optional tutorial, it would greatly improve this game. 

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Kill Devil by Mike Dellosso




Kill Devil is the second in the Jed Patrick series by Mike Dellosso. In the first of the series, Centralia, we learn about Jed's amazing fighting skills and a little about the government agency that helped hone them. In this book, we see exactly how far Centralia will go to get what they want.

It's a pretty fast paced book, mixed with fight scenes, psychological warfare, and the everlasting grace of God. Dellosso does a great job of mixing in the characters' relationships with God and their struggles. He also does a great job of weaving in a few new characters. If I had any complaint it would be that it all tidied up pretty quick at the end. It could have been a bit more messy and I would have liked it even more, considering there is at least one more in the series.

Overall, the second in the Jed Patrick series does not disappoint. It's a great weekend read about a guy who is trying to discover himself and has the good fortune to have a family to help with that and the bad fortune to have a government agency that wants to keep him under their thumb.

In case you're interested, here's a little more about the author.




What do you hope readers will take away from the story?
That though life may get crazy and reality may seem muddled, though varying
versions of the truth may come your way and different voices will whisper
messages, there is one thing that never changes: God’s truth. He is the only one truly
worthy of our faith, our trust, our love. He is the one constant in life. He never
changes and His will is always right.

You have gone through some challenging situations in your personal life
—cancer, overcoming a severe stutter, cancer, and a failed adoption. What have you learned
through these situations?
I’ve learned that we don’t always understand what God is doing or why He’s doing it.
In fact, truly, we rarely understand it. He opens doors; He closes doors. He permits
some things to happen and prevents other things from happening. He calls us to do
some pretty strange and seemingly irresponsible things. But in spite of all that I’ve
learned to trust Him. I’ve learned that His ways are not our ways. I’ve learned that a
surefire way of heading off disappointment is to hold on loosely to our plans and
label everything with “To be determined [if it’s God’s will].” They have been hard
lessons but once you grasp it, once you truly understand that we belong to Him, that
we are entitled to nothing and are not our own, then it all makes sense. It’s all about walking by faith. One step at a time.



You can find even more Q&A here

A copy of this book was provided for me for the purpose of review from Tyndale Publishers. I'm never required to give a good or bad review, just my own opinions.













Monday, March 21, 2016

The Calling by Rachelle Dekker








The Calling by Rachelle Dekker is the sequel to my favorite book from 2015, The Chosen. In The Chosen, we are introduced to a community that has survived a world wide population near extinction event. There is a group of people that have gathered in a small area that have created a set of rules to help them survive this near extinction event. The majority of those rules revolve around marriage and obedience to the higher powers. In this novel, the story is about a group of renegades who have decided to see what life and marriage can be like outside of those walls. The main character is Remko, who we meet in the first novel and has married Carrington. The two have become integral parts of the rebel group, the seers. Remko because of his guard experience has fallen into the role of protector of this misfit group. He often struggles with the reality that he cannot keep his group safe and eventually has to come to terms with either trusting God or holding on to that fear.

One of the major themes that I really enjoyed about this book was that the root of evil and discord is free will. There is a movement that is trying to rid all people of free will so that they can be happy and content. In addition to this concept making a human a god, it negates the good parts of free will. Without free will, there would be no love or kindness. We would just be puppets in someone's grand play. That is not how we were created. Our steps have not been predetermined, even though they have all been witnessed and God sees where they will lead us, each step is a choice we need to make. Anything less, would not be a choice of following and loving God, it would be an automated response.

I enjoyed The Calling and I'm looking forward to the next in the series. The book was provided to me by Tyndale House Publishers for the purpose of review. My opinions are my own.

And for some fun, in case you are not familiar with Rachelle Dekker, who is the daughter of the author, Ted Dekker, here is a cute Christmas video they released last year as well as a link to some questions and answers from her about the book.






"A Dekker Christmas" with Ted Dekker. From our family to yours, Merry Christmas!
Posted by Rachelle Dekker on Monday, December 14, 2015