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Book Review: The Case for the Real Jesus Student Edition by Lee Strobel

The Case for the Real Jesus Student Edition by Lee StrobelSpecial thanks to Book Look Bloggers for providing a review copy of this book.

Book Description:

Bestselling author Lee Strobel, along with Jane Vogel, takes students on an investigative journey to discover the real Jesus.

Teens today are bombarded with all kinds of opinions and research about who Jesus really was, making it difficult to know what to believe. Was Jesus just a good man or was he the Son of God? Did he really rise from the dead? Did he exist at all? In this student edition of The Case for the Real Jesus, Lee Strobel investigates the person behind the myth to help teens weigh the evidence for themselves and discover the truth about the Son of God.

About the Authors:

Lee StrobelLee StrobelLee Strobel (www.LeeStrobel.com), with a journalism degree from the University of Missouri and a Master of Studies in Law degree from Yale Law School, was the award-winning legal editor of the Chicago Tribune and a spiritual skeptic until 1981. His books include four Gold Medallion winners and the 2005 Christian Book of the Year (coauthored with Garry Poole). He and his wife live in Colorado.

Jane VogelJane VogelJane Vogel, a writer who has been involved in youth ministry for over twenty years, wrote The Case for Christ Student Edition and The Case for Faith Student Edition with Lee Strobel. She lives with her husband, Steve, and their two children in Winfield, Illinois.

Book Details:

Series: Case for … Series for Students
Paperback: 208 pages
Publisher: Zondervan; Student edition (June 24, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0310745675
ISBN-13: 978-0310745679
Retail Price: $9.99
Electronic Version also available

My Thoughts:

In The Case for the Real Jesus Student Edition, Lee Strobel tackles 6 different challenges that have been presented to Christians today:

  • Scholars are uncovering a radically different Jesus through ancient documents just as credible as the four gospels.
  • The Bible’s portrait of Jesus can’t be trusted because the church tampered with the text.
  • New explanations have disproved Jesus’ resurrection.
  • Christianity’s beliefs about Jesus were copied from pagan religions.
  • Jesus was an impostor who failed to fulfill the prophecies of the Messiah.
  • People should be free to pick and choose what to believe about Jesus.

Strobel goes to various experts in their field to “get the scoop” on the different challenges. One-by-one the fallacies are revealed through systematic explanations backed by plenty of facts and evidence from the experts. The alternative gospels are shown to be dated too late for historical accuracy, and some are even shown to be hoaxes. The Bible’s portrayal of Christ is shown to be credible through careful studying of varying manuscripts. Attempts to show the resurrection of Christ to be false have fallen short. The theory of pagan roots for Christianity was disproved many decades ago. Through careful study, Jesus has been shown to have fulfilled the OT prophecies of the Messiah. Finally, nothing can change who Jesus was – no matter what we decide to believe about Him.

Strobel concludes with a list of website resources for further study into the Real Jesus. This book is well laid out and thoughtfully presented. Ultimately, it’s up to the reader to decide to believe or not believe based upon the evidence that has been presented.

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Book Review: The Blender Girl by Tess Masters

The Blender Girl by Tess MastersSpecial thanks to Blogging for Books for providing this review copy.

The Blender Girl Book Description:

The debut cookbook from the powerhouse blogger behind theblendergirl.com, featuring 100 gluten-free, vegan recipes for smoothies, meals, and more made quickly and easily in a blender.

What’s your perfect blend?

On her wildly popular recipe blog, Tess Masters—aka, The Blender Girl—shares easy plant-based recipes that anyone can whip up fast in a blender. Tess’s lively, down-to-earth approach has attracted legions of fans looking for quick and fun ways to prepare healthy food. In The Blender Girl, Tess’s much-anticipated debut cookbook, she offers 100 whole-food recipes that are gluten-free and vegan, and rely on natural flavors and sweeteners. Many are also raw and nut-, soy-, corn-, and sugar-free.

Tess MastersAbout the Author:

Australian-born TESS MASTERS is a cook, writer, actor, and voiceover artist. She shares her enthusiasm for plant-based foods at theblendergirl.com.

As a presenter and recipe developer, Tess collaborates with leading food, culinary, and lifestyle brands. She has been featured in the Los Angeles Times, Vegetarian Times, and Zeste and on Glamour.com, Chow, Epicurious, and AllRecipes, among other publications and websites. Away from the blender, Tess enjoys a diverse performance career. She has toured internationally with stage productions, worked in film and television, and lent her voice to commercial campaigns, audiobooks, and popular videogame characters.

Tess and her partner, Scott Brick, live in Studio City, California, with their West Highland White Terrier (and blender-cuisine maven), Cookie. Get to know Tess and see recipes at HealthyBlenderRecipes.com, on Facebook, on Pinterest, and on her Youtube Channel.

Book Details:

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Ten Speed Press (April 8, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1607746433
  • ISBN-13: 978-1607746430
  • Product Dimensions: 9.6 x 7.5 x 0.7 inches
  • Retail Price: $19.99
  • Electronic Version also available

The Blender Girl by Tess Masters

My Thoughts:

The Blender Girl, Tess Masters, is known for all of her concoctions in her blender, but this book isn’t just about blender recipes. While blender recipes may be the may focus of the book, it also delves into the reasons behind why it’s important to be eating our fruits and veggies. Yes, this book is a vegan-focused book, but Tess isn’t promoting a vegan lifestyle for everyone. She’s not a one-size-fits-all type of person. She advocates listening to your own body to determine what it really needs. Of course, in order to do this, you need to get rid of the junk, so your body can tell you what it actually needs.

Tess starts off by telling you her story and how she became the blender girl. She’s careful to explain that her journey to health won’t necessarily look like your journey. She’s just here to share the ideas and some recipes that work(ed) for her. Of course, she gives you tips on picking a blender – including her picks for a variety of price ranges. She talks about how to take care of the blender as well as the best way to load it to keep it running smoothly.

Once Tess goes over the basics, she dives more into food philosophy and the reasons why some foods and food treatments are better for your body.  The Foodie Geek in me really enjoyed learning about the different food combinations and why they work or don’t work for our digestive systems. She went into PH levels and finding the right PH for our bodies. All of this included lessons on soaking, sprouting, nut and seed milks, probiotics, cultured veggies, fermented drinks, and much more.

Having set the foundation for her approach to food, Tess jumps right into the recipes. The recipes are divided into 8 sections:

  • Smoothies and Shakes
  • Appetizers, Snacks, Dips, and Spreads
  • Salads
  • Soups
  • Main Dishes
  • Desserts
  • Drinks, Juices, and Tonics
  • Condiments, Sauces, and Creams

All 100 recipes are both gluten-free and vegan although some suggestions for variations or additions are not gluten free or vegan. While there are specific recipes for smoothies, Tess also talks about how to achieve different flavor and texture profiles in the smoothie. Unlike other recipe books, she encourages you to taste and tweak as you go to create smoothies that are perfect for you. The build-your-own smoothie section gives a great breakdown of liquid, base, cream, greens, boost, and magic with suggested measurements to help you create your own delicious smoothies.

Need to know where to find one of the ingredients or where to purchase one of the recommended blenders? No problem. She has a very nice resource list that includes websites for the various items. Need additional information on a concept covered? She has a resource section for more in-depth study as well.

The photos in this book are gorgeous and honestly, make me quite hungry and eager to try the recipes. I just wanted more photos as I love seeing photos of every recipe. While the blender is the central in the recipes, the recipes are not all drink based. In fact, there are recipes for baked items such as almond crackers and socca (flatbread). You’ll use the blender to create dressings for delicious salads. There are both raw food recipes as well as cooked recipes, so it suits all seasons.

Overall, I was quite impressed with this recipe book as it went beyond my initial expectations.

Disclosure: I received this book from Blogging for Books to help facilitate the writing of a frank and honest review. A positive review is not guaranteed nor expected. All opinions are my own.

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Wordless Wednesday: A Special Gift

Tara's Equine Design Package

A special gift from her best friend made from Munchkin’s Dixie’s (her horse) hair.

Tara's Equine Design Charm

Tara's Equine Design Bracelet

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Introducing Graham – Our Newest Little Guinea Pig

Munchkin and Graham

When Teddy passed away on Saturday, Munchkin’s search for a new guinea pig began. (That’s how she deals with a loss of a pet.) She wanted to adopt a younger guinea pig. She searched guinea pig adoption sites as well as craigslist. She finally found a couple of male guinea pigs that were less than 2 months old. We learned that one of them was still available, so we drove to pick him up.

Graham 1

Poor little guy has a big scab on his nose. He was like that when we got him, so we’re not sure what happened. Thankfully, it’s starting to heal up.

Graham 2

Graham is now getting settled into his new home and getting more familiar with his new surroundings.

Graham 3

He’s learning the ins and outs of being in our home including what its like to have a girl who loves to give him tons of attention. He’s already starting to spend time with her as she works on her school work. He seems to like relaxing with her.

Graham and Alvin

Alvin is doing much better now that there is another guinea pig in the cage with him. He’s even coming out of his shell a little more and being a bit more social with us. ;)

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In Loving Memory of Teddy

Baby Teddy
Theodore “Teddy” was born on September 4th to Rosita and Choco. He was quite the little guy back then. Munchkin had a blast taking care of him and babying him and his siblings. Eventually, we sold Rosita and Teddy’s sisters, so he and Choco were quite spoiled as guinea pigs.

When Choco passed away, Simon and his son Alvin came into our lives. Munchkin and Daddy had gone over to adopt Alvin from someone who needed to get rid of their guinea pigs, and they ended up coming home with both Simon and Alvin. Simon was a HUGE guinea pig, and he was very loving. He kept the two youngsters in check, but sadly, he passed away shortly after we got him. We suspected that his weight and the food the previous owners were giving him played a roll in that.

Theodore Teddy

It wasn’t long before Teddy and Alvin were buds. Teddy spent the most time with Munchkin as he enjoyed the human interaction more than Alvin. In fact, he liked to spent time with her while she did her homework. Alvin, on the other hand, preferred to stay in the cage and just interact with Teddy.

In Loving Memory of Teddy

Teddy had been experiencing a some health issues over the last couple months, but Munchkin continually nursed him back to health. On Saturday morning, Teddy was running around and squeaking for food as normal. On Saturday afternoon, Munchkin went to get him out of the cage to spend time with him as normal and found that he had passed away. With many tears, she said her goodbyes.

Thanks for the many memories, Teddy. You were a great animal companion for Munchkin. You spent time with her as she did her school work and comforted her when she was sad. We’ll miss your silly antics and squeaks. Rest in peace sweet guinea pig.

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