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Well, Bilbo made it there and back again, safely, once more. And now I am following Frodo, Sam, Merry & Pippin and of course Strider (Aragorn) towards Rivendell. There they’ll join others who will help the ring journey  towards its (hopefully) final destination.

The Lord of the Rings is another one of those books I visit quite frequently. I always read The Hobbit and start right into LOTR.

There are so many life lessons that can be learned from these books:

  • no matter how small or insignificant someone seems to be, they can make a difference
  • when wise people speak, it’s a good idea to pay attention.
  • people can look scary or different and still be good people

For six more lessons from Lord of the Rings, see this link.

If you’ve never traveled to Middle Earth, I’d like to encourage you to give it a try. And one of the great things about ebooks – you can get a free sample of most of them to ‘try before you buy’.

Author: Beth R - Categories: books and movies,writing

Chime Rhymes


Congratulations to Greta Kataha on the release of her newest book, Rhyme Chimes. It’s a children’s activity and oral language book that encourages kids’ imaginations. They’ll practice letter sounds, rhyming and hand-eye coordination.

If you’re interested in purchasing in bulk for your school or church, please contact Greta on Facebook.

Author: Beth R - Categories: books and movies,the writers life,writing

One very effective, FREE, way to get a little publicity is by supplying press releases to local and regional newspapers. Blogs, internet news sites (both legitimate and satire) and social media continue to keep the newest piece of information in front of readers. Since newspapers continue to cut staff to keep budgets in line, they’re going to look more and more to customer-supplied information and news stories.

So if you can create a well-written press release about your story, you can many times get your story printed. Here’s a good article from CBS News that lists several things to consider when writing a press release. It also has several examples to look at.

Besides these suggestions, I was always taught to put the most important part of the story at the front – each following paragraph should be of lesser importance. This helps the editor – if they need to cut some of the text for space, they can simply remove the later paragraphs.

And another idea- if you can include a picture, that’s even better. Most people are more likely to read a story if there’s a picture attached.

Author: Beth R - Categories: Living an intentional life,marketing

Once upon a time there was a little boy who loved trucks, and he loved animals too. So one day his mama found a book called The Happy Dump Truck Man.  The man owned a truck and stopped to let some of his animal friends ride.

The little boy loved the book so much that his mama read it to him ‘most every day. She read it so much that she read it to pieces, and they had to buy another copy.

The little boy grew up and had little girls of his own. His mama still loved him very much, and now she had his sweet girls to love too.  One day while his mama was looking through some boxes, she found the copy of the book, so she took it to his house so he could see. Now he can read it to his little girls, who also love animals!


As I’ve said before, books are a treasure- make sure you invest in your kids’ and grandkids’ lives by finding great books to share and build memories around…

What books are you sharing?

Author: Beth R - Categories: books and movies,family and friends,nostalgia

I’ve been reminded again that we’re all just about as happy or unhappy as we choose to be. I know we can’t choose when good or bag things happen to us, but we can choose how we react to those things.

I’ve heard it said that there are two kinds of people- those who wake up saying, “Good Lord, it’s morning.” (usually said with a growl or grimace!) And then there are those of us who choose to say “Good morning, Lord! It’s a beautiful day!” My friend Bro Mark (of God Speed Ministries) says when we wake up we need to pull a deep breath in and remind ourselves that we’ve got another day to do what we’re supposed to do.

So if you’re walking around with a rain cloud around your head, make your mind up that you’re going to make the best of any situation that comes up. Choose to be happy- choose to be a good person- choose to respond to today’s challenges in a positive manner. Don’t allow the little things around you to lose your purpose. It’s too important!

Author: Beth R - Categories: Living an intentional life

Congratulations to David Tadlock on his newest novel, Woman of Courage. It’s been accepted in Smashword’s premium catalog and is available for purchase here.

Woman of Courage is the story of Beverly Tarvey. She was given a bad hand from the very beginning, from a father whose heavy hand was quick to punish, to a teenage marriage that was doomed almost from the start, and then, just as she’d found the husband of her dreams, and they had built their life together, even more tragedy follows. But as tough as her life was, each test drew her closer to the one thing that mattered the most to her: her love for family, friends, God and church. Through hardships she questioned why God would let such things happen to good people. But the wisdom of a loving grandmother taught her that we don’t always go through trials because of what we’ve done but of what we can overcome. Beverly overcame many obstacles from the very beginning but she held on and never lost her faith.

If you’ve read Woman of Courage, please consider leaving a review on your favorite bookseller’s website.



Author: Beth R - Categories: books and movies,the writers life,writing

Rhonda Allen wrote this devotional and prayer guide for women who want to know more about how to operate in the will of God. This devotional/journal will strengthen your faith in God and draw you closer to God.

You can purchase the print book on Amazon at this link;  you can also purchase the e-book version on Smashwords under the title “Wisdom Prayers and Confessions“.


Author: Beth R - Categories: books and movies,the writers life,writing

I’ve always loved doing creative, ‘artsy-craftsy’ things – it’s a great stress reliever, as well as a fun way to spend time between ‘work’ projects (I’m not really sure I know where that line is!)

I bought the domain for Spider Lady Customs several years ago, but I haven’t done anything with it up to now. In the next few days I’ll be posting the link to the website- it will show some of the things I’ve made over the past few years- some photography, sewing, quilting, doll-making- plus probably some other things as I work on them.

Author: Beth R - Categories: design

I love to read – it’s one of my favorite things to do. I have a wide variety of interests in books, and I’m usually pretty forgiving when it comes to “suspension of disbelief” as Stephen King likes to put it- in other words, it’s fairly easy for me to submerge into a book and lose myself. But once I ever get the point where I realize I’m reading, forget it- I’ll just put the book down and try something else; I usually don’t visit those books again, unless I find a review that makes me want to try again.

But one of my all time favorite book series is The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings. These books are some of the ones that I visit very regularly- maybe not once a year but close.

I started back into The Hobbit last week – this will be my first re-reading since I’ve seen all the movies. I will say that I almost always enjoy a book more than it’s movie, simply because the book can cover more ground, and obviously is closer to what the author wants told than a movie. As of last night, Bilbo and the dwarves are coming through Mirkwood and have just escaped the horrible spiders.  What will happen next? If you’ve read the book, you know….

But if you haven’t – well, you need to pick up a copy of The Hobbit, either in printed form or as an ebook. There have been several lovely covers done for both The Hobbit and The Lord of The Rings, so you’ll have a great time picking out your favorite even before you start.

“In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit. Not a nasty, dirty, wet hole, filled with the ends of worms and an oozy smell, nor yet a dry, bare, sandy hole with nothing in it to sit down on or to eat: it was a hobbit-hole, and that means comfort…”

And here we go!

Author: Beth R - Categories: books and movies

I learned to sew when I was 15, when my mom loaned me her Kenmore. It was in a cabinet with a lift-up top and the machine was mounted on a shelf that lowered into the cabinet as the top was folded closed.

I had a lot of fun making clothes – I’m pretty sure the first thing I ever made was an angel costume for a church production; I also used an old pattern to make a skirt and wrap blouse. I’m sure it didn’t look nearly as good as I thought it did, but I had a good time, and I learned a lot making it.

Since then, I’ve made lots of things- smocked outfits for my kids when they were little; dresses and suits for myself; baby dolls, teddy bears and other craft items.

I finally even learned to quilt; I’ve made several since 2012 when I first learned, and again, it’s such an enjoyable hobby. Each one has been special to me and I’ve got quite a list still to make.

My latest project has been a doll that we’ll be raffling off at Cancer Freeze on Saturday, Feb 4.  I had the idea for a biker doll several years ago, but it never came together until we decided to be a part of this year’s Cancer Freeze. I found a doll pattern on that has worked out perfectly! He puts clear instructions with lots of pictures on every pattern and while I was a little nervous about it, I believe she turned out beautifully.

I’ll be making more dolls from this website- I hope you’ll visit it as well.

Author: Beth R - Categories: country life,design
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