Thursday, May 31, 2012

Thursday Book Review--Agent in Old Lace by Tristi Pinkston

Agent in Old Lace by Tristi Pinkston 2009

Shannon Tanner has it all, a perfect family, a perfect job, and a perfect boyfriend--or so she thinks.

Turns out he's not all that. Shannon's in for a roller coaster ride of fear and emotion. Just when she thinks she's safe--Bam--something else happens.

She's got a lot on her plate to deal with as it is. Suspense lurks around every corner.Will the handsome FBI agent rescue Shannon in time? Will Shannon be able to trust her own feelings again? What will become of her father? How will she rescue her best friend, Tate?

Suspense seasoned with humor and a wee bit of romance builds to a satisfying resolution--or does it? This made for a rollicking, weekend read. I enjoyed it. I think you will too!

Monday, May 28, 2012

Monday Morning Motivation--Happy Memorial Day

Memorial Day was originally called Decoration Day. It started from women of the South decorating the graves of fallen confederate soldiers. After the war, the North also decorated the graves of their fallen. Each region had their own date in late spring when they decorated. It was seen as more of a reconciliation than of harboring old wounds.

It became a time to remember our fallen heroes of each war by decorating their graves. To let them know we will never forget their sacrifice.

As a child, I remember my mother called it Decoration Day. She'd cut fresh flowers from all over our yard. She filled buckets of water to hold all of her clippings. We'd put them in the back of our car, hoping they wouldn't tip over. I liked going to the cemetery with my mom in the morning. If we went early it was quiet and peaceful. Later on, it would get busy. I learned respect for the dead as we cleaned around the headstones and decorated all of our family graves along with the military graves. I learned proper flag etiquette. I learned respect and gratitude for all who passed before me. They all sacrificed to make life better for me.

I loved Decoration Day. To a kid, it meant school was nearly over, and all my cousins would get together in the afternoon for a barbecue and volleyball. My chore was cleaning off the patio with the hose--my favorite chore because I could get wet.

I don't think I truly appreciated the sacrifices of those lost and fallen until I became an adult. Last year I had the opportunity of visiting the Washington Memorial, the Lincoln Memorial, the Viet Nam memorial, and the WWII Memorial. I felt the sacredness of the area. I knew it was hallowed ground and that the Lord respected their sacrifices. This is where I truly gained reverence and awe for all the sacrifices made in my behalf.

May you enjoy the day with family, but also please take time to remember the cost and those who paid it.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Thursday Book Review--Million Dollar Diva by Tristi Pinkston, Brett Kitchen & Ethan Kap

Million Dollar Diva:The Smart Woman's Guide to Getting Rich Safely by Tristi Pinkston, Brett Kitchen, and Ethan Kap

I was very curious about this book when I first saw it on the author's blog. I've struggled with finances for over thirty years. Money management is not a required course to graduate high school or even college, but it should have been.

I've read a handful of financial self-help books in the quest to be debt free. Some I understood and others not so much. Million Dollar Diva is a quick and easy read with easy to understand principles.

These are the reasons I liked this book:
1) It's written as a narrative with dialogue, so it reads like an interesting story about Tristi's life, and I'm just along for the ride--learning as Tristi learns.

2) Tristi drew me into the story immediately. She used a gentle sense of humor and kept the tone positive throughout the book.

3) Tristi's courage--I wouldn't be able to display my private life like this, but Tristi's honesty and openness showed me that everyone struggles--I'm in good company.

4) A Common Sense Approach--Suggestions are made to lower your interest rates and drive down your debts. This process will take time but it left me feeling like there is a light at the end of the tunnel. This method is very similar to the method the LDS Church suggests to extinguish debt.

5) Teamwork--Tristi and her husband, Matt are on the same page. They are using their talents and strengths to facilitate each other's dreams. They will grow closer together rather than further apart, and this will rub off onto their kids as they teach them. We all know life is work, but it is a blessing to love your work.

6) We get to watch Tristi's progress online. Her family is just getting started, but over the next three years we'll be able to see this plan in action. We can do what she does.

The only thing not mentioned (and most likely not mentioned so this plan would appeal to a broader audience), but the main thing I feel essential in any financial plan is making room for the Lord. Paying tithes and fast offerings may seem counter-productive or at least counter-intuitive, but it goes to Karma and the Law of Attraction. If you pay in faith more than financial blessings return. It allows the Lord to bless you even more, but you don't have to be LDS to give to other churches or charities. Giving back says that you are grateful for what you have and more things to be grateful for come to you again and again.

I'd give this book 4 out of 5 stars for clear, concise common sense. It is hopeful and empowering. It would make a great gift for newlyweds!

If you buy the book from the website you can get the book for just the cost of shipping until May 15, 2012. Here's the link:

After May 15th you can purchase it here:

Brett Kitchen, Tristi Pinkston, and Ethan Kap