Free Educational Resources from Microsoft

We wanted to let our blog readers know about an incredible eBook giveaway from Microsoft.

Over the years, Dad has encouraged people to be learners, to continue building your skill set. Dad himself is a great example of always learning.

This eBook giveaway is a superb educational opportunity. Check out the resources, and pass the link along to others. We’re not sure how long this offer lasts (we only found out yesterday), so don’t procrastinate.


“So that thou incline thine ear unto wisdom,
and apply thine heart to understanding.”
(Proverbs 2:2)

Posted in: Family News

Safety Tips for Single Women Flying Alone

I love to fly, and I’ve flown quite a few times without family. I thought of some safety items I’d like to share to help other single ladies. They aren’t earth-shattering, but these are things that have helped me.

  1. Act confident and walk with purpose (even if you don’t feel confident). If you walk as if you don’t know where you’re going or have a helpless-sort-of-attitude, that’s just an invitation for someone to approach you. So I look confident, even if I’m trying to find my way around.
  2. Stay alert. Do not zone out. Always be aware of your surroundings. Always.
  3. If you do happen to need help finding your gate, ask someone who works for the airline.
  4. Do not trust strangers. Honestly, evil people do not always look “bad,” and you must always be on guard.
  5. Very nice, friendly people can also be very convincing liars. Having grown up in a Christian home, we’re used to people telling the truth and trusting them! Well, liars can be extremely conniving and their ploy very believable. Be careful!
  6. When waiting for a flight, choose a public location and select carefully who you sit near. If you want to be by yourself in a secluded area (such as an area at the end of the terminal where no one is waiting), that’s inviting trouble. Even then, if a man approaches you and is being too friendly, just stand up and go somewhere else. This happened to me in a busy airport. So I went over to a group of business travelers (including ladies) and sat with them. I had no more issues.
  7. If you fly Southwest, that’s perfect, because you get to select your seat when you get on the plane. For me, I love window seats, but as I’m boarding, I will look to see who my seat mate will be if I choose a window seat. I may sit further back than I’d like to get a preferential seat mate.
  8. If you do sit next to a man who becomes too friendly (there’s a difference between a person being nice and someone being flirtatious), there’s nothing wrong with politely finding ways to dampen the conversation (talking to the person on your other side who isn’t an issue, reading your book, and only answering questions with as few words as possible, etc).
  9. This may seem obvious, but make sure your cell phone is fully charged and also carry a portable battery. I love the one I have from Amazon (Titus2’s affiliate link to Amazon: see our Privacy Policy if you want). It’s my favorite, and, of course, I have the pink one (the black one is $5 less).


Enjoy yourself! 🙂


“Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil,
as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.”
(1 Peter 5:8)

Children’s Books That Make an Impact

I’m excited to share a sweet testimony from loyal Moody readers. You know. The Moody Family Series is really like a mentor (without children realizing it), and the examples are set through engaging storylines.

Summer offers children more free time than normal, so why not purchase the first several in the series or the entire set?

Read what Kim shared with me.

Sarah, I want to thank you for your precious booksour girls have loved them.  My husband and I have also had an anniversary meal made for us each year because of the example you set in one of your books! We thank the Lord for your influence on our children personally and through your books! Here is a picture of the fruit of your influencea grand anniversary dinner. 🙂 Thank you! Kim

Anniversary dinner inspired by the Moodys! You all did AMAZING on it!

“Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example
of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity,
in spirit, in faith, in purity.”
1 Timothy 4:12

Girl Time

Good morning! Today I’m traveling back home after a wonderful week at my friend’s house on the East Coast.

My friend is expecting her 7th baby and definitely gets a case of severe morning sickness. Her husband was going to have ankle surgery, so I knew she could use extra hands for awhile. I flew in the evening before the surgery.

I’ve been so blessed to be here, and I’ve loved spending time with six little girls. Yes, all girls! I’ve loved their squeals of delight over cute things, like upon opening my Bible, the girl sitting near me was thrilled with my cute pen. So fun. I’ve loved taking the girls on walks in the mornings, making lots of freezer meals, doing water balloons, going on errands with the whole crew, and just helping out. My friend is such a jewel, and I’m blessed by all the sweet fellowship we’ve had.

Enjoy some pictures below!


The flights out were a little rough, the most turbulence I’ve experienced.

“Trust in the LORD, and do good;
so shalt thou dwell in the land, and verily thou shalt be fed.”
Psalm 37:3

What’s on the Outside?

Fresh cherries at our house meant homemade cherry pie. Homemade cherry pie meant rolling the extra pie crust dough into cinnamon and sugar slices to be baked for eating. On this occasion, though, after one pie-crust bite, John said, “Mom, I wonder if you put something other than cinnamon on the pie crust.” Sure enough, cayenne pepper sits in the spice cupboard right next to cinnamon, and that’s what was liberally sprinkled on the pie crust. Looking at the pie crust, we couldn’t tell the difference, but the taste shouted it!

Before I was saved, that was true of me. I thought I looked good on the outside but inside was different. I remember the day I was saved, the pastor had just said, “You can fool everyone around you, but the Lord knows your heart. If you haven’t repented of your sin and placed your faith in Christ, you are not saved.” Those words burned through my facade.

There have been times since then when my outside was put together, but the inside was not. Once I confessed my struggles with depression to my church family, I began to heal. They hadn’t known what I was dealing with inside.

What about you? Is the outside one way, but the inside another? Does the Lord want you to do something about thatdiscuss it with your husband, share it with a friend, ask for prayer at church?

Trusting in Jesus,

“But the LORD said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on
the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the LORD
seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance,
but the LORD looketh on the heart” (1 Samuel 16:7).

A Backpacking Trip for John and Jesse

A while back, John and I decided that we should go on a backpacking trip together. We knew that with our work and the rest of life, we needed to simply schedule a trip or else it would never happen. Sometime a few months ago we decided on a weekend in the middle of May. Due to some unrelated things that came up, we pushed the trip off for two weeksto the first weekend in June. This ended up working out incredibly well as Colorado had a very large snowstorm the weekend we had originally chosen. Honestly, when we first put the date on the calendar, we didn’t think at all about snow. Either way, with the date set, we collected the necessary gear and chose our destinationthe Snowmass-Maroon Bells Wilderness area in the Elk Mountain range of Colorado.

John and Jesse heading out on a backpacking trip.

We left early Thursday for the 12 hour drive. We picked up snowshoes in Denver on our way up to the mountains. We arrived at the trailhead mid-afternoon and hiked a few miles up the valley that evening. About a mile or two into it, we came across a few black bears who were near the trail. Fortunately, though, we didn’t have trouble with bears during our time. In that area, it is required that food be stored in bear canisterslarge plastic containers that are supposed to be bear “proof.” I suppose seeing the bears confirmed to us that there were indeed bears in the area.

Jesse, just before making coffee

Trying out the snowshoes.

The next day we spent a while snowshoeingwhich was a great experience. They effectively prevented “post-holing” but also made traversing hills a bit less convenient. We eventually decided to turn around when the terrain became fairly steep and the snow structure had changed to where the top layer kept sliding on us. While the trail formed a loop, we opted to come back around and go up the other valley (where the loop would be coming down).

We hiked down, around, and into the other valley. That trail was more established, and the valley was even prettier than the first. Our campsite that evening would be difficult to improve on. It was situated in a large, clearing within easy walking distance of a rushing mountain stream. It felt wonderful to be in such a beautiful place and disconnected from cell service.

Our campsite on Friday night.
A beautiful view up the stream.
A view of Snowmass Mountain.

After a hot breakfast the next morning, we set off up the lovely valley. At one point, we got a terrific view of one of the Elk’s 14ersSnowmass Mountain. The views the entire trip were great. Further up the valley was an interesting stream crossing. A log jam had formed over the swollen lake/river and was the only “dry” route across. Fortunately, some of the logs were stable.

A picture of John and the lake below

We then hiked and snowshoed through the beautiful forest above the lake. I liked how quiet and serene it was. Even though it was melting quickly, the snow was still quite deep. The whole environment made for a very peaceful setting.

On a beautiful overlook over the valley.
Our tent, on the last night up the valley.
Almost at the trailhead
Back at the trailhead

We took it easy on the last day of our trip. After waking up with the sunrise, we made coffee, broke camp, and then hiked out. It was a great trip, and John and I had a fantastic time together. I don’t believe the pictures adequately communicate how pretty the scenery was. Even though I was tired at the end of each day, it was very refreshing to spend those three days in the beauty of God’s creation. And, if any of you are interested in going backpacking and haven’t before, here are a few things we learned as first-timers:

  • Everything takes watercooking, coffee, hydrationand it costs time and hand warmth to filter it.
  • Trekking poles (with baskets for snow) are great tools to prevent unintentionally and frequently sitting down when traversing snow.
  • Bears aren’t the only mammals interested in food itemsmarmots sure are too.
  • Melting snow on the edge of water can break when stepped on.


While we have been tent camping before, John and I enjoyed taking it up a level by fully disconnecting for a few days. The Snowmass wilderness area is remote and absolutely beautiful.


“When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers,
the moon and the stars, which thou hast ordained;
What is man, that thou art mindful of him?
and the son of man, that thou visitest him?”
Psalm 8:3-4