Category: Life as we know it

Tori’s Song

This beautiful post was written about Tori and I want to re-post it on our blog so we will always have it ❤️

Heart & Altar

Such fragile moments these gifted breaths. Each one surmounting the miracle of the one before while in careful awe and anticipation of the one that comes after. Or at least that is our hope, our expectation. We take if for granted and long forget to cherish the divine sweetness filling our lungs: the wind of mercy; this breath of Heaven. But what of when we linger and cling to each heartbeat. savoring every infinitely tiny nuance of mortality in the face of that which thrives in the silence and void of our laughter and joy, our peace, our happiness, and most of all, our faith?

She told me her story a few weeks ago. Cheyenne Bennett is a good friend of mine offering her occupation as a gift to the elderly imparting within them the immeasurable gifts of respect, honor, and love. During one of those phone conversations traversing countless…

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Book Review: The Adventure Bible for Toddlers

The Adventure Bible for Toddlers is a fantastic first Bible! I chose to review this as I am a brand-new parent and want our daughter to experience the Bible as early as possible.

The Bible highlights the key stories in the Bible and presents them in toddler-friendly language with plenty of colorful illustrations. It’s a board book, so the pages cannot be torn easily, which will allow your toddler to enjoy the book in their own way.

The titles of the stories are fantastic as well: my favorites are Daniel and the Lions’ Den – “Drooling Lions” – and Jonah – “Fish Food”.

I can’t wait until our daughter is old enough to start looking at books – this will be the first one we show her. It’s so important to teach our children the Word of God early on, and this is a great way to start.

I received this book from BookLook Bloggers in exchange for my honest review.

Book Review: Fearless Hope by Serena B. Miller

Despite the fact that I live less than thirty minutes from a large Amish community (Lancaster County, PA), I had never read any fiction about the Amish people until I was asked to review Fearless Hope by Serena B. Miller. If all of Ms. Miller’s books are as wonderful as this one, it certainly won’t be my last!

From the time I picked up the book to the time I finished it, it was nearly all that I could think about. I couldn’t stop thinking about the characters, the plot and the mysteries within it even when I wasn’t able to read the book. The characters were so well-developed that I felt like I knew them personally and, because of that, I became emotionally attached to them and their adventures and couldn’t wait to find out what was going to happen next. There are so many great lessons throughout the book, as well, and it gave me a lot to think about.

Here’s the synopsis from the back of the book:

When Hope Yoder loses her husband, she is left trying to support her two small children—and one on the way—any way she can. She ends up taking a job as a part-time housekeeper to the English man who has bought the farm that once belonged to her family. 

Logan Parker is a bestselling crime fiction writer from New York City who accompanies his fiancée on a trip to Holmes County, Ohio, but the trip takes a strange turn when he sees an Amish farmhouse for sale. Intrigued by a strong sense of familiarity, he enters the house and is overcome with a feeling of deep peace. He’s never been to Ohio before, but something in this house feels right, and he purchases the farm to use as a writer’s retreat. Something about the peacefulness of the house frees him the crippling writer’s block that threatens to ruin his career, and something about the quiet Amish woman who comes to clean his home makes him less and less excited about returning to New York and the woman he is supposed to marry. 

Slowly, Logan and Hope are drawn together, and when they discover that they share a strange past, they must decide how that affects their future. Will Hope overcome her fear of embracing love again?

If you love fiction, you will love this book. This one has it all: mystery, romance, history, loveable characters, and great moral lessons. It will be released on April 8th, so pre-order your copy today!

I received a copy of this book from Howard Books in exchange for my honest review. 

United’s Response to the Letter…

It took United TWENTY business days to respond to my original letter. TWENTY. Okay, nineteen if they were off on MLK Day.

Given the amount of time it took to receive a response, I expected more than what I got:

Dear Mrs. Brackbill:

I apologize for our delay in responding. We’re experiencing a higher
volume of e-mail than normal and we’re working on responding as quickly
as possible. Your correspondence just now came across my desk.

I very much regret learning of your disappointment and discomfort on
Flight 1502 and welcome the opportunity to address your concerns.

We believe all customers and co-workers are to be treated with dignity
and respect and we weave this philosophy into everything we do. There is
never an excuse for unprofessional behavior, and I am very sorry this
was your experience of the services received from our flight attendant.

Mrs. Brackbill, I realize my apology cannot erase what happened. I
hope it helps to know we take your concerns very seriously. It was
especially helpful that you were able to capture the flight attendant’s
name. Please be assured your comments will be forwarded to appropriate
senior management within Inflight Crew Services for internal review and
necessary corrective action.

We understand the value of your decision to fly with us and assure you
we will make every effort to leave you with a better impression when we
again have the privilege of serving you. I ask that you accept my
apology and allow us that opportunity.

We appreciate your business and look forward to welcoming you on board a
future United Airlines flight.


Customer Care

By no means did I write this expecting anything in return. I wrote it because we were treated wrongly and the flight attendant needed to be corrected. However, in the past, people have complained about much more trivial things and were offered vouchers, miles, etc., so I am very surprised that an apology (read: form letter with my name inserted) is the best that United could do.

Also, given that this was so clearly a form letter, I cannot believe it took them twenty business days to respond to it. Their customer care team is likely sizeable; and it takes ten minutes or less to write an email/fill in the blanks in a form letter. If my assumptions are correct, that means that they have THOUSANDS of unhappy customers who are all writing in their complaints.

Needless to say, I will think twice before flying with United in the future.

Whirlwind July…

Is it really mid-July already?!

To say that July is a crazy month would be an understatement. I will only be home for 15 nights the entire month. While I can’t say where I’m traveling, I can say that I will be leaving Pennsylvania for the last two weeks of July, essentially. Between California, being at Milton Hershey for two weekends, and Sunoco, I’m really missing my bed already.

I am loving being a spotter for Sunoco again this summer. It’s a great job–being outside, traveling, making people happy (by giving them gift cards and contest entries)…and I really love doing it. Plus, it’s market research, which is something I’ve wanted to get into more, and this is great field experience.

This year is much more intense than last year, and it’s requiring four overnight stays in order to be as efficient as possible. I have 68 total locations to visit in July, and 11 in August. I’ve done 23 so far this month, and will have completed over half by the time we leave for California next Tuesday evening. I’m so thankful for a boss who truly supports my career development enough to let me have most of the month off!

So thankful for this opportunity, as stressful as it can be at times. 🙂

Missing Items…

When our refrigerator died, I had to transfer everything out of the old and into the new, and I tossed some things along the way. That explains where our mayo went. However, I have no idea where our grated Parmesan is! Sigh…It’s only day two and I’m already wishing I had things! We’ll just have to deal with it!