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Thankful: Carole Brown’s List of November Thankfulness

Rejoice and Be Glad!


This is the day which the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it. –Psalm 118:24


It’s so easy in our present day of busyness and deadlines and activities, to forget to take time to relax, be quiet, have fun, and enjoy the blessings we have. Sometimes they are big ones that catch our attention and make us sit up and take notice with the “wow” in our hearts and in our eyes. Others–most of them–are the small, everyday ones that are just as important, but ones that we tend, and usually take for granted. Today, this week, this thanksgiving day, let us remember and lift our hearts in praise for the many blessings we have.


My list of November Gratefulness:


  1. A day I can take to relax and be with others.

  2. A day I can appreciate the bountiful food we have to share and partake of.

  3. A day I can enjoy the presence of family and/or friends who truly love me and show it

  4. A day I can participate and enjoy the antics of three active grandsons.

  5. A day I can ponder upon all the good things God has done for me, all the hardships and sad times He’s brought me through, and the wonderful protection and strength He’s given.

  6. So VERY grateful this November 2015. What a marvelous year!

About Carole Brown:
CaroleAug14 (14) cropped_edited
Brown not only has her award winning (2015 Winner of the USA Best Books Award, 2015 Small Publishers Book Award, RWA International Digital Award finalist, Clash of the Titles Laurel Awards finalist, Selah finalist; Genesis semi-finalist) debut novel, The Redemption of Caralynne Hayman, available for purchase now.

A companion book called West Virginia Scrapbook: From the Life of Caralynne Hayman, filled with tidbits of information about West Virginia, quotes, recipes from West Virginia and from Caralynne’s life, pictures and discussion questions for the novel is also available.

The first book in her Denton & Alex Davies mystery series, Hog Insane and Bat Crazy, the second book are fun, lighthearted novels that not only deal with the mysteries the Davies land in, but relationships too.

The first book in a new WWII Spies Romantic Suspense series, With Music In Their Hearts are nostalgic, warm-hearted books that place readers firmly in that era. Three red-headed sisters. Three spies. Three stories.

This month, Brown is releasing the first book in a new series, The Appleton, WV Romantic Mysteries: Sabotaged Christmas.

Besides being a member and active participant of many writing groups, Carole Brown enjoys mentoring beginning writers. She loves to weave suspense and tough topics into her books, along with a touch of romance and whimsy, and is always on the lookout for outstanding titles and catchy ideas. She and her husband reside in SE Ohio but have ministered and counseled nationally and internationally. Together, they enjoy their grandsons, traveling, gardening, good food, the simple life, and did she mention their grandsons?

Personal blog:
Stitches in Time:
Barn Door Book Loft:

We're thankful for Carole Brown's latest book.

We’re thankful for Carole Brown’s latest book.

Back Cover Blurb
Toni DeLuca, the Italian owner of DeLuca Construction, finds herself confronted with doubts about her father and his possible deceptions–all because of the mysterious pink notes she’s receiving.

Relations with Perrin Douglas who has a troubled history—but the first man in years who’s interested her–is building to a peak. Yet Perrin‘s own personal problems and his doubts about women and God, keep getting in the way.

Gossip, a Spanish proposal, an inheritance, and a sabotaged construction business all converge to play a part in ruining Christmas for Toni’s employees. Will the mysterious person behind it all succeed in pulling off the biggest scam Appleton, West Virginia has ever seen?

Will this culprit destroy Toni’s last chance at happiness with the man of her dreams?
Buy the book here

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Book Review: What Would Jesus Eat by Andrew Hoy

Posted by Julie on January 22, 2014 in Book Review, God's Word, Julie Arduini |

51+wY0eXpeL“Eat Like Jesus” offers a simple, scientific, and comprehensive Bible-based dining theology, examining and explaining what the Bible teaches about food and eating. 

Drawing heavily from the Bible texts, “Eat Like Jesus” puts food-related topics such as veganism, kosher diets, cleansing rituals, and animal physiology (including diet, hygiene, diseases, etc.) into proper perspective, harmonizing New Testament accounts of Jesus, Peter, and Paul with Old Testament teachings of Moses. 

“Eat Like Jesus” uniquely reveals why the first law in the Garden of Eden was dietary, why Noah took extra pairs of certain animal species into the Ark, what kind of animals did Peter saw in his vision, and what Jesus really meant as he “called all foods clean”.

Eat Like Jesus is a book dedicated to the Scriptures and what they say about food. From clean and unclean to Moses to the Garden of Eden, Andrew L. Hoy is passionate about going through the Scriptures and offering a look at Kosher Christianity.

I was impressed with the research that went into this book. It is full of Biblical history and different translations. One of the charts explains different verses and looks at it from a Kosher Christianity vs a Dispensational Christianity perspective.

It’s so well researched and presented I found this to be more of an academic book than one a casual reader interested in a Biblical based diet might be. I think if someone is looking for a bottom line of what foods they should and should not eat based on Kosher Christianity, they might be frustrated to find the information they are looking for. However, for a Bible student hungry for a book full of God’s Word and thoughts on food, this is a perfect read.

To purchase What Would Jesus Eat, click here.

To learn more, visit here.

I received a .pdf from the author in exchange for an honest review.


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Need Wellness Incentive? Try Slimkicker

Posted by Julie on April 25, 2012 in About Me, encouragement, Julie Arduini, Life Lessons, surrender |

I enjoy things that are well done. Even my meat needs to be so well done that most would turn it away for being burned. But in today’s post, I want to share something I find organized, well thought out, and a help to someone like me who needs visuals and incentives. In short, this site is well done.

A few months back I received a friendly e-mail from one of the developers/team members from They let me know about this new website that would help users make healthy choices and enjoy weight loss because of the logging program that features visuals, challenges, and incentives.

Last week I received an update that the site was up and running, and would I mind taking a look?

So, I did.

I’m pretty impressed. Make no mistake, when I read Lysa TerKeurst’s Made to Crave chapter called, But Exercise Makes Me Want to Cry, I thought she was peeking in my windows. I hate the thought of exercise. Once I get going, it isn’t as bad, but there isn’t a whinier couch potato who could find more excuses not to get up than me. I give MyFitnessPal a lot of credit because their site helped me make better choices.

SlimKicker is just as good. Here’s why I think so:

Challenges. You have friends doing the Biggest Loser type challenges at work, don’t you? I hear about them all the time. There is something about knowing you might lose that motivates. SlimKicker has diverse challenge opportunities, including the ability to create your own. I did that—I want to finish my C25K app, so I made it a challenge. Even if no one signs up but me, seeing it out there keeps me accountable.

Incentives. You get points for logging in and the things you log in. You reach achievement levels and can choose how to celebrate. I’m a visual person and I need motivation. I’m sorry, getting sweaty isn’t enough for me. My love language is words of affirmation so some kind of pat on the back when I’m on the wellness journey is a need. I noticed I lost some slim points when I chose no bakes for breakfast, and that number got to me. It will help me choose the granola bar next time. If visuals and incentives help you, SlimKicker will meet that need.

Groups and friendships. When I signed on, it automatically put me in groups, and I was okay with that. I visited the forums and believe that to be another great way to have accountability. What I’d like to see is more Christian based groups. That isn’t SlimKicker’s job, in my opinion, that would be ours. So let’s get at it, my friends!

One element I don’t see yet in SlimKicker is the ability to scan food choices for logging. I know they are new and I believe the app for iPhone is already available. I believe the Android app is in production. I’d like to see badges that I could place on my site so people could find me and/or keep track of my weight loss journey. They are very open to feedback and seem easy to access and communicate with. My sense is what I see in Slimkicker that is good, will only become better as time goes on.

I think it’s worth you checking out. I’m adding SlimKicker to my notes that I plan to hand out and suggest when I teach my small group on self-esteem and wellness through my local church.

Want to be SlimKicker friends? Find me here.

I reviewed SlimKicker because I received a friendly e-mail asking me if I would check it out and possibly blog about it. The opinions are mine and my joining was of my own desire to move forward in my wellness journey. Nobody paid me or told me what to say.

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Character Confession: Foiled. Again.

Posted by Julie on July 23, 2011 in About Me, encouragement, Julie Arduini, Life Lessons, surrender |

Saturday…my day to share my strengths and weaknesses, mostly weaknesses. My prayer is that the things God is walking me through with His help will encourage you.

I know I’m not alone in this frustration because my mom still gets a little passionate mentioning this topic and my dad has been gone for 7 years. It’s the cry heard around the world from (mostly) women who try to throw a little something new into the menu and are…


Literally, in my case.

This summer we’re all eating in a new way that is healthier but is constant work on my part to make sure servings and the new food plate are taken care of.  For a season our oldest was a vegan vegetarian now he’s a carnivore again. But that season forced more creativity from my hands in the kitchen.

My bright idea recently was to grill ham (done before) and have cut up potatoes lightly seasoned with Wegmans Parmesan Italian dressing, red peppers, corn and onions mixed together and put in foil to grill as well. You would have thought when the family saw foil that I had a conspiracy to hurt them going. It’s as if they never saw food wrapped in foil.

I could tell right then and there I could have wrapped Hershey’s in that foil and it wouldn’t matter.

I’d be the only one eating it.

I thought it would go over so well I used 7 potatoes to make the thing.

One tried it and hated it. One tried it without potatoes and ate two helpings of vegetables. One wouldn’t even try.

My mom said when she used to make things my dad used to remark how it didn’t taste “just like mom’s.” One night she got tired of hearing it and threw her dish in the garbage and told him to go to mom’s for dinner if it was that good. He never made that comment again.

I wish for a suspended moment someone would note the work that goes into feeding a family, especially one in such eating transition. I wish foil wasn’t such a mysterious scary object when presented as an item to be on the grill.

I wish those three could make meals for a month and see how many victories they get with thanks, empty plates and the like.

Back to the mundane boring menu tomorrow where I’m sure I’ll get rave reviews.

Can I get an Amen?

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Help! Chocolate Ricecakes Don’t Taste Like a DQ Peanut Buster Parfait…

Posted by Julie on July 15, 2011 in About Me, Book Review, encouragement, God's Word, Julie Arduini, Life Lessons, surrender |

Help! Chocolate Ricecakes Don’t Taste Like a DQ Peanut Buster Parfait…

by Julie Arduini on Thursday, July 14, 2011 at 9:39pm

Hopefully that got your attention, I appreciate you being here this summer evening.


But it’s true. Chocolate rice cakes are better than the cardboard kind from my college days but still. I live half a mile away from Dairy Queen where Thursdays are $2 peanut butter buster days. It’s sad I know this. It’s no surprise when I order one, there is no vanilla, buster. It’s always chocolate.


So I make an unusual choice to be the vessel God is choosing to lead a webinar through Christian Women I believe the first study I would like to present is Lysa TerKeurst’s NYT bestseller, Made to Crave. Made to Crave is a transparent and inspiring book that doesn’t give the how to when it comes to wellness, but as Lysa says, “The want-to.” There are enough diet books out there. I loved Made to Crave because it was about a life change.


Join me for a Made to Crave Bible Study at Christian Women

And I’m ready.


This study is for anyone who like me, found reasons to drive out of the way and sneak food or fancy coffees. It’s for anyone that feels food owns them (or something else might like money, status, etc…) Even if you fit in those skinny jeans do you still reach for a Mountain Dew when you’re having a bad day? It doesn’t have to be that way.


Thing is, we were made to crave. The book and study guide contain so much information and resources that I can’t wait to unpack with you. I can’t think of a better time than summer where everyone seems to be running around in bikinis despite the calorie packed picnics.


So let’s do this.

1. Go get the book Made to Crave by Lysa TerKeurst AND the study guide at your local bookstore, Amazon, etc…It should be about $20 for both.  If possible read Chapters 1-3 in book and Session 1 in participant’s guide. It’s fast reading.


2. Apply for free membership through Christian Women


3. Meet me THURSDAY, JULY 21 from 1-2 p.m. EST where we’ll go over what we learned in the book. I’ll share my story and we’ll just have a good time.  I promise I will not have any DQ with me!


4. Tell others!


Lastly, I’m updating things and I have enough new FB friends on my personal page that I want to take a second to remind you/make you aware I have other things here on FB.  I’d love for you to check everything out and participate.

My FB Writer Page:


FB Group is also here under Julie Arduini: The Surrendered Scribe


Thanks so much for reading this. I look forward to journeying with you!

Julie Arduini

Surrendering the good, the bad, and—maybe one day—the chocolate



I plan to teach Made to Crave more than once so if this summer doesn’t work, keep an eye out for future studies. I believe this fall I’ll present one of the most life changing studies I’ve ever encountered: Captivating by John and Stasi Eldredge.

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WFW: Permissible, but not Beneficial

Posted by Julie on March 22, 2011 in About Me, encouragement, God's Word, Julie Arduini, Life Lessons, surrender |

“I have the right to do anything,” you say—but not everything is beneficial. “I have the right to do anything”—but not everything is constructive.  1 Corinthians 10:23, NIV (BibleGateway)

Last night I finished facilitating the small group study Made to Crave.  There are so many nuggets in this book that I recommend reading it more than once. This time around 1 Corinthians 10:23 really spoke to me.

Especially in church circles, food is permissible.  Some Christian comedians would dare say food is mandated.

But I learned it’s not always beneficial.

There are so many life controlling issues and you can plug anything into what Lysa TerKeurst shares:

We’re meant to crave God, not ______.

Some of us crave shopping or gossip.  We all have our cravings and many of them aren’t illegal or sinful until we take them to an idol status.

A great question I plan to ask myself is although this might be permissible, is it beneficial?

And if the answer is no, I believe with Christ’s help, I’ll walk away.

This is part of Word Full Wednesday.  Share your Scripture and image and link up!

The images today are from Photobucket.

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