Uncategorized

An Introduction to Patreon

Many of you are aware that The Ameri Brit Mom became personal brand and business on January 1st. Launch Day was such a smooth process and the support the brand received from both friends IRL and the online community was overwhelming. Thank you for making this new adventure an encouraging experience.

Over the next several weeks I plan to give more clarity to the mission and avenues for support available for The Ameri Brit Mom.

The first way you can partner with The Ameri Brit Mom is through Patreon. Patreon is an online platform that provides financial support for Creatives through a unique setup. Instead of just donating money to a brand or cause, Patreon provides a space where Creatives can send exclusive content and material to those who decide to partner with them. So, you as the donor receive numerous benefits from your financial support.

The Ameri Brit Mom is offering three tiers of support. Each level comes with a unique set of monthly benefits. Allow me to break this down for you:

For $5 a month you can receive: a one-page editing service for free, access to a monthly video/vlog, and you allow for The Ameri Brit Mom to continue to offer content connects with readers and writers around the world.

For $10 a month you can receive: a two-page editing service for free, access to a monthly video/vlog, exclusive content and news, and general support for the brand.

For $20 a month you can receive: a five-page editing service for free, access to a monthly video/vlog, exclusive content and news, and general support for the brand.

If you are ready to partner with The Ameri Brit Mom here click HERE!

Financial support is not for everyone. If you find yourself wanting to support the launch of The Ameri Brit Mom, but you are not in a spot financially to do so, do not fear! As I said before, there are several ways to partner with The Ameri Brit Mom and I’ll be highlighting different ways to show support in the coming weeks.

If you have additional question about Patreon, feel free to reach out.

The Ameri Brit Mom

 

Books · Uncategorized

The Great Alone: A Book Review

Title: The Great Alone

Author: Kristin Hannah

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press

Copyright Date: 2018

*Setting for book challenge: Isolated Location (Kaneq, Alaska)

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The Vietnam War stole Leni Allbright’s father.

He returned in 1974 a former POW and a new man with a violent streak. His love for her mother ran deep, but flipped a switch in him. And that switch hurt her mother. Every episode ended with an apology and every time Cora took him back. Meanwhile, teaching her teenage daughter that to wake up to broken glass, overturned furniture, empty whiskey bottles and a mother speckled black and blue is normal.

News that they inherited a cabin in Alaska brings Leni hopes that the move will help him. They pack their Volkswagen bus and settle on a homestead in the beautiful Alaskan wilderness. Leni’s small family from Seattle learns to live off the land and adjust to life without electricity where their nearest neighbor is miles away.

They quickly become part of their new community in Kaneq. Leni befriends Matthew, the only other teenager in town, and he teaches her how to prepare for her first winter in Alaska. He strengthens Leni’s spirit and shows her that love doesn’t have to mean being a punching bag and letting men walk all over you.

“Everyone up here had two stories: the life before and the life now.”

During their first winter in Kaneq, the citizens face a horrific tragedy that soon brings division. When they need to lean into one another for support the town scatters themselves and builds walls of hatred.

“They were trapped, by environment and finances, but mostly by the sick, twisted love that bound her parents together.”

This was a beautifully written novel about a young girl learning to survive harsh circumstances and weather. Life dealt Leni an unfortunate hand, but throughout the course of her story she learns how to live unbroken.

I haven’t read a book I loved this much in a long time. There were at least five twists in this plot that I NEVER SAW COMING. I love a good, unpredictable read. I found myself constantly wanting to know what would happen next. I cheered for Leni, screamed at her mother, and all but spit at her abusive father.

This year, my goal is read books set all over the world. This is my first book of 2019. As I complete books this year I plan to share some details I learn about different corners of the world.

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I felt like I was in the last frontier as I read this novel. Glacier filled white mountains, cloudless cornflower blue skies, fjords, and northern lights all drew me into the landscape of this beautiful state. Orcas, seals, otters, bears, moose, bald eagles, ptarmigans, and cormorants were all wildlife that appeared in the secluded woods of Kaneq.

“The natural world spoke loudest here.”

I experienced both of the Alaskan seasons. The days where the sun barely set were unusual to me. I found myself wondering how one could fall asleep at midnight with the light of day still bright. Other days, the sun surfaced for only a couple of hours. How depressing that must be to endure! I learned that in many parts of Alaska one must travel over the ice by small planes and that during the winter months casualty numbers were high due to stupid mistakes and poor planning.

I’m off on another travel. Stay tuned to see my latest reading destination.

The Ameri Brit Mom

 

 

Books · Uncategorized

Thin Space: A Book Review

Title: Thin Space

Author: Jody Casella

Publisher: Simon Pulse

Copyright Date: 2013

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A few months after the car accident that stole away his twin, Marshall is desperate to contact his brother. He remembers the old Celtic legend that his elderly neighbor told him before her passing. A thin space is a place where a soul both entered and left the world. It is believed that these are places where the wall between this life and the after life is thin enough to pass through. At the time his neighbor explained this legend it sounded insane, but now Marshall is so desperate to see his brother and set things right that he’s willing to give it a try.

Before her passing the neighbor left Marshall instructions for locating a thin space. Part of the legend states that one must enter the thin space with bare feet. Marshall goes all over town in the dead of winter without shoes in the off chance that he walks through a thin space.

When Maddie moves into the neighbor’s house, Marshall starts to open up about the accident. At first, it’s the convenience of wanting to search her house for a thin space which sparks their relationship, but soon Marshall learns that they both have something to gain from finding a thin space.

This is a boy’s journey to cope with the loss of a sibling. It shows how we go to great lengths to just have one more conversation with the ones we love who have passed.

I really enjoyed this read. I’ve been reading through YA fiction from Ohio authors this year. I have actually met Jody Casella on several occassions as she is the coordinator for my chapter of the SCBWI (Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators.) If you are looking for a supernatural thriller Thin Space is an exemplary piece.

The Ameri Brit Mom

Books · Uncategorized

Books of 2016

Happy Christmas Eve!

Another year is coming to a close and as another reflection on where I’ve been and what I have accomplished this year I wanted to capture my 2016 Reading List. I began 2016 with the goal of reading 24 books. I wanted to vary my reading exposure so I created a Reading Challenge for the year. I was able to nearly finish the challenge, but still have a few books to go before I complete it in 2017. I am happy to say that I expanded my exposure to different genres and authors this year and I diversified my reading from online periodicals, magazines, and eBooks (as well as the classic book.)

For each of the books listed below, you can find a review or information about the book under my books category in the right-hand margin. I hope you had a lovely year reading.

Devotional Books

-Fear Fighting by Kelly Balarie

Five Minute Friday by the Five Minute Friday Link Up (with a poem by me!)

For the Love by Jen Hatmaker

-Live Loved by Margaret Feinberg

 

Writing Books-These are books I focused on this year on the blog to hone my writing skills.

Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott

The Writer Magazine

The Irresistible Novel by Jeff Gerke

 

Other Books (Book Challenge)

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Numbers by Rachel Ward

Whole 30/It Starts With Food by Melissa Hartwig

Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck

Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie

Tru and Nelle by G. Neri

The Crown by Keira Cass

The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate

The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo

The Heir by Keira Cass

Wicked by Gregory Maguire

The One by Keira Cass

The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins

A Separate Peace by John Knowles

The Elite by Keira Cass

The Selection by Keira Cass

Real Time by Pnina Moed Kass

Good Omens by Terry Prachett and Neil Gaiman

Schooled in Revenge by Jesse Lasky

My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry by Frederick Backman

City of Bones by Cassandra Clare

Dreamlander by K.M. Weiland

 

I’m looking for reading plan suggestions for the new year. I’ve been really impressed by a new local library and have been spending a lot of time combing through their YA and adult fiction selections. I’m kind of on a YA kick right now as my next book I’m writing is from the perspective of a teenager.

Happy ready goals in 2017!

The Ameri Brit Mom

Books · Uncategorized

Slowly But Surely…

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The school year is now in full swing and I am ready to get back into my personal reading habits. The first few weeks of school involve a lot of adjustment and resting once I finally get home. As I am beginning to settle into what will be my new routine I feel myself craving to be lost in a good book. Over the summer I was constantly reading. Some weeks I finished two or more books and now it’s been a while since I’ve been able to catch some solid reading time.

This week I’m going to get back into my Book Challenge mode and pick up where I left off. Currently, I’m about one-third of the way through The Crown, the last book in The Selection series by Kiera Cass. This has been one of the first series I’ve EVER finished. I am so bad about reading consecutive books with the same characters so I’m excited to say that probably by the end of the week I will have finished this series. I was able to read this series because I alternated between a book from the series and a book from my challenge. I didn’t read the whole series straight through.

Next on my TBR list is a new in 2016 book: Tru and Nelle by G.Neri. This book is about the real life friendship of Truman Capote and Nelle Harper Lee. I cannot tell you how pumped I am for this book! I was at a professional development session this summer where a librarian book-talked this book and I immediately tracked down a copy for me. I can’t wait to read it and review it for you!

Following those two reads I’m looking at Murder on the Orient Express as my mystery novel for the book challenge. I am in love with Agatha Christie’s books. I don’t mind that her books were written in the 1930’s. In my mind, she is still the Queen of Mystery and I don’t think that will ever change. My favorite mystery book of all time was And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie and I’ve heard that Murder on the Orient Express is just as captivating.

So there is a quick update on my reading life and what I hope to accomplish by the end of September. I need to get back to reading constantly and not let my job interfere with something I love so much.

What books are you hoping to read soon?

The Ameri Brit Mom

Books · Uncategorized

24 Book Challenge: A Book Recommended By a Friend

The following is a book review by The Ameri Brit Mom. This is book #11 from The Ameri Brit Mom 24 Book Challenge in 2016. This post expresses the genuine opinion and experiences of The Ameri Brit Mom and is in no way endorsed by authors, publishers, or outside influences.

Title: The One and Only Ivan

Author: Katherine Applegate

Publisher: Harper 

Copyright Date: 2012

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My husband recommended this book to me a few months ago. It is one he plans to read with his fourth grade students this upcoming school year. This was a quick and easy read appropriate for use in the late-elementary classroom. It only took me two days to read through all three hundred pages of this text because I was hooked into the story line and the pace of the book kept my interest.

Ivan is a silver back gorilla. He lives in a cage at the Big Top Mall and Video Arcade. Ivan’s domain is surrounded by other animals and friends that he communicates with regularly, but he is the only gorilla. Julia’s father works maintenance for the mall and most nights she tags along to his shift with him. As her father works Julia can be found near the animal cages working with paints and sketching. Over time, Ivan builds a relationship with Julia and she even teaches him to finger paint.

One day a new elephant, Ruby, joins the animals at Big Top. At first, Ivan isn’t sure what to think about this small elephant, but because of his strong and patient heart he makes a promise to take care of her.

As a silver back gorilla Ivan is a born leader. It is with his instincts to protect that he devises a plan that enlists Julia and her father. And in his act of love for Ruby he helps her out of a dangerous situation.

The One and Only Ivan is a story of friendship and the bonds formed between an unlikely duo. Ivan will stop at anything to make sure Ruby is safe from the owners of the mall. Even if it costs him all he has.

This was an incredibly cute and endearing tale that should be shared with children of all ages. It was no surprise to me to see that the book had won the Newberry Medal. Every reader needs to periodically return to the stories that caused them to first fall in love with reading. This was one of those books for me.

The Ameri Brit Mom

fiction · Uncategorized

Read Everything: The Irresistible Novel

Here we are eighteen weeks into examining The Irresistible Novel by Jeff Gerke. So far, we have examined rules for fiction writing from various perspectives in order to help each of us to develop our fiction voice. This week, Gerke is stepping away from traditional writing rules to investigate a reading rule. The focus of this chapter is that in order to write fiction one must also widely read fiction.

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Read Everything

Most novelists decide to become novelists because they love to read novels. However, there are writers out there who don’t actually read as often as one would think. There are many reasons why an author of fiction may choose not to read fiction often. For some, they may choose not to read because they don’t want the work of others to influence their own writing. They fear that subconsciously the voice of the author they are reading may come out in their own writing. For others, reading fiction is too much like work for them to choose to read as an act of leisure. And still others struggle to find the time to read and write so they choose to spend their time on the latter.

I relate with the other group of writers. I write because I love to read. My first love was reading and I’ve vowed to never let my writing overshadow my love for a good book. Yes, sometimes I’m hard pressed for time to read. Oftentimes I find myself having to choose how to spend my free time. I try my best to split that time between reading and writing, because I know that the more I read the stronger my writing will be. Because of this, I keep a book on my nightstand and at the very least I try to read for a few minutes before bed each night. I go through seasons where I read more than others, but to me to read is to strengthen my writing so I cannot imagine not being a wide reader.

My Current Project…

Instead of focusing on my current writing project today I want to look at my reading. I’m in the middle of a 24 Book Challenge. This was developed to help me read lots of different genres and to keep me consistently reading all year. In the process, I have fallen in love with The Selection series by Keira Cass and so have decided that every other book I read for the next couple of months will be one from that series. Currently, I am finishing up The Heir which is the fourth book in the series.

The Ameri Brit Mom

 

Family · Uncategorized

The New Columbus Library

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It’s been a long time coming, but the wait is finally over!

Over a year ago the Columbus Metropolitan Library Main Branch shut its doors to begin the remodeling process. Already it was the most beautiful library I had ever visited and I couldn’t imagine what type of work would go into this new construction to make it even better. It took over a year between the time the doors were locked and the reopen on June 25. Sadly, we were in England for the grand reopening, but earlier this week we were able to make the twenty minute trip to investigate all of the improvements for ourselves.

The good news is that it is still the same awesome library we said good-bye to last summer. The even better news is that it is now easier to navigate than before.

There are three floors:

Floor #1– Returns, Customer Service, Children’s Books, Gift Shop, Coffee Shop, indoor/outdoor seating

Floor #2– Audio books, Adult Fiction, Teen Fiction, Reading Room over looking a scenic park

Floor #3– Non-Fiction, Reference Materials, Meeting Rooms

All three floors are clean, spacious, and open. The grand atrium is breathtaking. And most of the place is lit completely by natural sunlight. Here is a look at some snapshots we took during our family trip to the Columbus Metropolitan Library Main Branch.

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The Ameri Brit Mom

 

Books · Uncategorized

24 Book Challenge: A Book I’ve Started But Never Finished

The following is a book review by The Ameri Brit Mom. This is book #9 from The Ameri Brit Mom 24 Book Challenge in 2016. This post expresses the genuine opinion and experiences of The Ameri Brit Mom and is in no way endorsed by authors, publishers, or outside influences.

Title: Wicked

Author: Gregory Maguire

Publisher: Regan Books

Copyright Date: 1995

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In honor of the recent announcement that Wicked has been approved to begin filming for a 2019 movie release I decided to give the book another shot. Growing up my favorite movie was The Wizard of Oz. By the age of three I knew all the lines and could reenact scene after scene for hours. Because of my love for the 1939 film I’ve always hoped to see the newer Broadway play Wicked. Over the past few years I’ve visited New York City several times, but have yet to see the play. I think it has something to do with not wanting to ruin my love for the original story line from the movie.

A few years back I got a copy of Wicked at a yard sale and had every intention of reading it. I got a few chapters in and thought, “Man, this is pretty weird stuff.” I proceeded to let it collect dust on my shelf, and eventually it was loaned out never to be returned.

However, with the announcement of the movie coming out in December of 2019 I decided to give the book another shot. My husband found a copy of the book at a Thrift Shop and I read the entire book this time over my English Holiday.

I hit the bulls eye during my first attempt at reading Wicked. It is weird with a capital “W.”

 

Elphaba Thropp is more than just the Wicked Witch of the West; she is the misunderstood assassin from Munchkinland. The story opens with the unusual situations surrounding the birth of Elphaba. From the beginning of her sad life she was introduced to the evil and prejudices of the world. Being a green infant born to a prestigious Munchkinlander family Elphaba is rejected by her mother. Her father was a traveling preacher. Which left her old Nanny to tend to her needs.

As a teenager Elphaba leaves behind her future palace in order to study at the prestigious Shiz University. It’s at the university where she meets Glinda, Boq, Fiyero, and many others. Fitting in is her initial struggle on campus, but during her understudy with Doctor Dillamond she begins to see the battle for the rights of Animals of Oz. (Animals–with a capital A– are those animals with a conscience and ability to perform the things of humans. They differ from animals–in the lowercase.)

A sad murder on the campus causes Elphaba to devote her life to the rights of Animals and the overthrow of the Wizard of Oz. And things go fairly smoothly for her until a house mysteriously lands on her sister, Nessarose. Nessarose is the paraplegic ruler of Munchkinland who leaves with her death the power of her kingdom to her sister, Elphaba. But her magical shoes which gave her the power to stand, although she lacked arms, were given to the Other World girl, Dorothy. (Got all that?)

This story is extremely in-depth. It tells the life of Elphaba in immense detail. From her birth to her death-by-water it seemed as though every moment was covered in this book. At times the book was a little weird like when Elphaba’s unionist father enters into a relationship with both his wife, Melena, and her lover, Turtle Heart. Also, apparently Elphaba has a son, Liir, who she doesn’t even remember giving birth to. But beyond the strange twists and turns there are a few good messages to the story. The first of those being not to judge others. Elphaba has been branded a Wicked Witch because of her pursuit of Dorothy, however, in this book the size of Elphaba’s heart is portrayed in the way she  helps Animals and loves those dearest to her.

I would probably not recommend this book to those who dislike science fiction or who reluctantly read. If I’m being honest, it was the hardest book I’ve read in a long time. The book was 406 long pages and there were times where I was so lost I had to reread sections again. This book is truer to the book The Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum than to the 1939 film, so it would also be helpful to have read the book. In the end, I’m glad I read Wicked because I now feel prepared to see the play or the movie. I’m excited to see how Oz and Elphaba are portrayed in film.

The Ameri Brit Mom

Books · Uncategorized

TBR Summer 2016

Words cannot adequately express how excited I am to make a dent in my To-Be-Read list this summer. I’ve been working my way through a 24 Book Challenge this year and as of late have also fallen in love with The Selection series and plan to intersperse that reading with my book challenge. Here is a look at the next ten books on my TBR list:

  1. A Seperate Peace by John Knowles (currently on page 140/204)
  2. The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins
  3. The One by Kiera Cass
  4. The Casual Vacancy by JK Rowling
  5. The Heir by Kiera Cass
  6. Dreamlander by K.M. Weiland
  7. The Crown by Kiera Cass
  8. The Cellar by Natasha Preston
  9. Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie
  10. Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte