Book Review: Midnight Mom Devotional ( Non-Fiction) 5+ Outstanding Stars #MidnightMomDevotional #NetGalley

Thank you to Netgallery for my free copy, in exchange for an honest review. I read the introduction, the first three pages and ordered myself a copy!! I have received three devotionals, two I’ve bought and one I didn’t. Out of the three, this one is by far the best. I really enjoyed it, and will make  use of it weekly no doubt.

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A yearlong book of prayers to bring nightly hope and a sense of connection to mothers who feel alone, from the mother-daughter team behind the Midnight Mom Devotional Facebook page

There is something about a quiet house in the midnight hours that causes stress and anxious thoughts that have been ignored throughout the day to rise to the surface of a mother’s heart. When the world goes still around you, it’s good to know you’re not alone; there are so many other mommas just like you and a God who wants to meet you in the quiet.

What began as a small online prayer ministry to encourage moms in the middle of the night quickly grew into a worldwide prayer movement known as the Midnight Mom Devotional. Now this encouraging book of prayers connects you with a community of moms to strengthen your heart and give you support when you need it most.

Each night offers a different prayer for mommas in all circumstances of life, including

• being fearful and anxious
• needing a miracle
• caring for a sick child
• feeling as if there is nothing left to give
• welcoming a new baby
• experiencing sorrow
• getting ready for a new beginning

In the stillness and the night, take heart in knowing that women across the world are joining you in prayer and that God is listening and loving you right where you are.

Kim’s Review 5+ Outstanding Stars! A Must For All Mom’s Especially The ‘Non-Religious’

So while browsing the religion and spirituality section on Netgallery I came across this gem! The problem I’ve had with devotionals in the past, and from the three that I have received, is that they’re ALL too far leaned towards ‘religion and God’ in my personal taste. I am HIGHLY spiritual, at lot of you will know that from the ‘woo woo’ books I love to read. But I’m  in no way shape or form religious in the traditional sense. There is a  BIG difference to me, without offending anyone personally, I can’t conform to some of the ‘man made’ aspects of the Bible, and also I know the role that the Christian and Catholic religion played in the mistreatment of my own ancestors, and the transatlantic slave trade. So I won’t buy into it at all, for that alone, period. BUT I do believe in ‘higher powers’ and not one God. I found with this devotional to be just right in it’s approach with prayers, religion and God. In fact to me, there is not a heavy  emphasis  as I flicked through on ‘read this scripture in the Bible’ follow this up etc. It’s simple, plain, in non-religious language. Just one simple ‘prayer’ of well wishes and support for EVERY situation a mother and woman could face, no matter her life circumstances. There’s one for everyday of the year from January-December.

Like I said, I read the first week of prayers and well wishes for January and bought a copy, then I turned to my birthday and it was a lovely prayer for 14th February, and today’s date that I am reviewing this, also an equally beautiful prayer. I loved all these things about this devotional:

The prayers and well wishes- they are simply stunning, helpful, realistic and very uplifting and inspirational. They are short, sweet and even those like me who are non-religious would not be put off at all. I actually found a few very relevant to myself! Which was fantastic.

The community feel– this started off with one mother posting on her Facebook page  at  midnight simply ‘who is up and what are you worried about/going through?’ A flood of mothers responded and from then on, the devotional was written and every night women around the world follow along each night on the date relevant, with a ‘midnight prayer and well wishes’ for whatever subject or situation a mother could face in life, and interact on social media. I LOVE THIS It’s just beautiful and the thought of having an army mothers around the world supporting others with the ‘topic of the day’ makes me wanna cry! Lolz it’s so beautiful.

Overall, I think the idea behind this devotional is a fantastic one,  one that many women  could benefit from, it has been executed well into an actual book, worth the money and I love everything about it. I would recommend it for all mothers.  5+ outstanding stars for me, I can’t wait for my hard copy to arrive! Grab yours now on Amazon.

Daily Writing Prompt: Calling… My Calling Was Bitter Sweet, But Well Worth it!

Calling

 

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I’ve not responded to a WordPress daily writing prompt for what feels like months. I know, I know I always say ‘ so much has been going on.’ Truth be told it has… Where to even start?  Firstly, I should stick to the writing prompt word ‘calling’, then update you as to why I have not blogged a personal blog for months.

When I saw today’s word it made me think of my own calling, why I write, how I write, what it really does for me? As that’s why I write generally for me. I also thought about when my true calling to write came, and how it came.  The only person that knows this is my co-author Didi Oviatt  so here goes, the whole world and it’s mum is about to know. My true calling came at a rather bitter sweet moment in my life. To the outsider it may appear as a sad time, truth be told I was probably the happiest I had been for a number of years.

My calling to write, honestly, not just here and there  secretly but seriously meaning write novels and novellas regularly, came the year I decided to take off my wedding ring, divorce my husband, embrace the decision I had made to start over, leave him, raise my son (who was eighteen months old at the time) on my own. Yep! I finally ditched him I just had enough!! I laugh as I type now, because I never once shed a tear over it, I felt better leaving than staying it was a sense of relief to shed my ring. I threw myself into caring for my boy who I am sooooooooooo proud of and happy to have (who is now four), creating our security and new direction. Then out popped a 90,000 novel, a publishing deal, a re-vamp and self-publish of that novel, then an award for it. Shit! I feel even better about ditching that ring now. You see, once I did not only was I and my son happier, I was allowed to write I just could with no criticism, put downs, or bullshit. Leaving allowed me to become a better person a stronger person also an author.

I just never thought to take it seriously until I broke free, and took my nose out of another author’s novel that I was reading.  I was (and still am) a big bookworm before I started writing. I also never thought about submitting my work to publishers  before. I did it on a whim and stuck lucky  I guess, but my mum would say ‘ no Kim you’re talented not lucky.’ Thanks Mum.

My calling was bitter sweet, writing did not and still does not ‘take away pain’ ‘take my mind off what happened’  put it this way I did not need any of that at the time,  I still don’t and probably won’t ever. I just felt great being able to create. Not just stories, or articles but spend time at my sewing machine too, if I were not a writer I’d probably be a fashion designer or make-up artist I’ve said it so many times!

Fast forward two years down the line to 2017, divorce final, six books under my belt  my calling in full swing what did I do….. I  immigrated!!!  🙂 The reason why I have not had a real chance to do much writing wise or interact with you as I used to, is because I have been busy moving country I now live in France! I love London and I will always be proud to be British and from the UK’s capital  that’s where I spent the first almost thirty-five years of my life. But for a better quality of life for my son and I, security, and a brand new start this is what’s best for us both right where we are now in a new part of Europe. London will always have a place in my heart.

So that’s it, that’s how my calling to write came about,  I decided fuck this shit I’ll be happier and better off as a single mama, and so would my son we  can do this. And  that’s why I have been absent I have relocated to a place with 300 days of sun a year, better quality of life and for a new adventure and I hope one day to find my true husband…. after all I am a romance writer!

But guess what? I’m back y’all, ya  better believe it to! I’m back with a force so I will be a lot more active writing and especially blogging. Now I have the time. I’ve made the leap and dedicating much more time to writing because I can… after all it is my true calling as a vocation in life, I’ve proven this to myself.

 

Writing Prompt: Mid Point State Of Your Year? #reflections #inspiration

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I pulled out my writing prompt book, one prompt for every day of the year. Under today’s date this is the prompt, write up your mid- year  “state of year”... well all-righty then. Hmm, this prompt has really made me stop and think, pull out a bar of chocolate from the fridge (I’m not kidding). Sit back, listen to the rain beat down on my window at a silly hour of the early hours of  Sunday morning, and reflect. I can’t believe we are half way through 2017. For me the year has been a  year of personal growth in a lot of ways. I’d say if I were to sum it up this is what I’d say “growth” as a person, human being, mother and woman.

I took a lot of s*it personally over the last few years. This may surprise you, as I may come across as probably a no nonsense kinda girl. You’re not wrong. But I think sometimes we do things because we feel obligated to, so I did.  I got to a point where I stepped into the last half of 2016, and start of 2017 singing a different tune. It served me well, I’m in a complete new head space. This is personal growth.

So far this year, I’ve knuckled down in what I wish to achieve. I remember I did a writing prompt asking romance writers what their dream would be? Mine is to have a large collection of works our there in the world! So, I’m taking steps toward writing more seriously. As in completing my novels and novellas. I actually can’t believe that in almost one year of signing my first publishing deal, I have six books under my belt. That makes me smile. I’ve also decided to start submitting my work to publishers again. My  full completed romance thriller has been requested by a publisher in the USA, a different one to my last one. They liked my three chapters I sent, all I need to do is write it! With my contemporary romance/ suspense stories I’m browsing publishers that seem to work with romance authors mainly. No more random publishing places, I’d like somewhere I can call home long term for my works. Until I find it, I’ll happily keep self- publishing.

I think the first half of 2017 has been about hard work  and learning too, it’s now I feel like I’m seeing the fruit of this. This fruit has put me on a path to write a whole romance series, of stand alone novellas. Now three books in the hard work has put me on a nice track. Don’t get me wrong it has pulled me away from what I was working on, before this creative idea came to me. I was working on the romantic thriller that got called up from a publisher. It happens to be my first ever real serious idea for a novel before I wrote A Stranger in France!

As a mother I have grown into this role so much and I love it so much. My son is now at an age where his personality is blooming.  I feel like I know who my son is,  and what he will and won’t do as much as I can at this small age. Sounds strange, but I’m sure any parent understands what I mean when you look at your child’s personality. At just three years old he’s a handsome ball of fun, laughs, caring nature,energy and sometimes tantrums.  This first half of the year has allowed me to bond differently with my boy due to his age, and awareness of the world around him. We can do different things now he is a little older and can understand, he can understand what we read in the picture books a bit better now too. He is a true mama’s boy. But not a push over.  A few months ago  his nursery school reported to me one afternoon when I went to collect him ” errm we had an incident today Blake had a fight, yes, yes hmm, we caught him sitting on another boy’s head. The young boy called for help, that’s when we realised Blake got him down on the floor, pinned him down and would not let him go.” Now most parents maybe upset by this or disapprove. My poker face said nothing, inside I was like ” that-a-boy Blakey, hold your own in that playground.” Why? because I  know my boy he is no bully, he is an loving boy, the kind that will come and kiss and hug you and say sorry after a tantrum, he won’t fight unless he is provoked. I’m glad those other boys now know Blake is no push over in the playground, if you provoke him. Did I tell him off? Nah what for? Standing up for himself? That said, if I get poor behaviour reports that’s another story.

This year I’ve also completed a goal I have had for so long! I finally sat three exams in FRENCH back in May. Yep, speaking, reading and writing and listening. My results will be out in August. I swear if I get a B grade or above I’ll be so proud of myself.

Overall, my mid point year review is growth, hand work and learning, a clear direction of where I’m going as a writer and human being. How’s your mid year review? I’d love to read it?? Blog it let me see and link in below if you want.

Motherhood & Writing Oh Boy! Part #2 #amwriting #mootherhood #newrelease

Following on from today’s earlier post on this craziness I wrote about here, without leaving my laptop (only to make another bacon sandwich) I done it! Deadline met on my side, I’ve cleaned up the manuscript for The Suspenseful Collection Volume One ready for next Friday’s release day!! Now as my partner in crime wakes up across the Atlantic ocean, it’s her turn in the hot seat juggling mama and writer. She’ll do it, I know she will c’mon Didi. Me I’m off to collect my baby boy from nursery school, and celebrate with a pizza for dinner tonight. Before I go back to writing book #3 of the Romance Set in Paradise series. #writerslife

 

 

Out now on pre-sale on Amazon.

Release Date: 28th July 2017 on Amazon, Smashwords, ibooks and Barnes and Noble.

Motherhood & Writing! Oh Boy… #writerslife #motherhood #amwriting #kdsuspense

Firstly I love both my jobs as writer and mum. Sometimes it’s a challenge to do both!  Take today for example, and the crazy situation I’m in now… Last night I was up late working on book #3 of my Romance Set In Paradise series.  I fell into bed at the same exact time,  our editor sent back the proof read manuscript of The Suspenseful Collection Volume One . I didn’t see the email as it was the second I was in bed, reading an email from my partner in crime Didi   basically saying ” go to bed what are you doing up?” Argh!! I wish I had stayed up a little later! I could have done one of two things. One set to work on the final book for The Suspenseful Collection Volume One, then send it over to Didi, so she can work on her parts while I slept. Or two send it straight to her, so she can work on it while I slept. Then work on my parts  tonight when the house is quiet. Either one of these options would have allowed us to meet the deadline we both agreed, (today) to have it finalised and uploaded on all platforms this weekend. Then we’re free to enjoy the weekend with our children.

In a lot of ways the seven hour time difference between us works to our advantage, when writing stories. One works while the other sleeps, then she wakes up to something to work on while the other sleeps.

Thursday and Friday I don’t work at the “day job” anymore. I love to have quality time with my three year old son, these early years are important. We also have the whole weekend together as a family when I’m off. It’s all about work  life balance now for me, at this stage of life I’m at as a mum and writer. I’m so glad I’ve reduced my working hours. That said since I went to bed the second the manuscript came back, when I woke up I called my son’s nursery for an extra day today to meet deadlines.  He loves that place! I dropped him off,  then raced home so I can set to work. Today’s goal is to perfect my parts of the manuscript before Didi wakes up, that will be around late afternoon  London time. So she can then juggle her day as mum and writer and meet deadlines too.

Here’s breakfast to set me up to edit, rewrite, and create a bangin’ set of eight suspenseful stories for y’all! A bacon sandwich with a coffee. Mmm my favourite.

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Here’s the last song I heard on the radio, as I drove home from my son’s nursery. I love Outkast what happen to them? I remember buying the album this song is on. Throw back Thursday was yesterday but hey, music always puts me in the mood to write. So I’m throwing it back all the way to 2013 on Friday with Outkast’s song “roses”. The lyrics make me die with laughter!

 

Are you a mum and a writer? Or a carer for someone else and writer? How do you juggle all the demands? Let me know I’d love to hear your stories.

Have a great day all ! I better set to work the clock is ticking. Didi will be up soon.

Romance Writer’s Challenge Week #18: Boy You’re Just Too Funny! – What Makes Me Laugh Out loud#MFRW

It’s week eighteen, well it was last week. Forgive my lateness. I am as always fashionably late with the Romance Writer’s fifty two week writing challenges. Anyway, week eighteen all about what makes you laugh out loud. This writing prompt response is dedicated to a special person, the most handsome boy in the world! My three year old son…. He makes me laugh so  much here’s just a few examples of why.

Bath time:

What is it with little boys and their willies? Fast forward twenty years and I guess nothing changes, as  a grown man for him there will always be a  fascination with his willy! Every night, I ask my son when I undress him for bath time ” do you need to go wee wee?” He shakes his head “no mama ” jumping up and down eager to get in the tub. “Okay son, let’s get in the tub.” I place him in and he stands there  as soon as he gets in, hips thrust with his you know what thrust forward  and pees in the bath! Swirling his hips around for the perfect aim :). Then he has the cheek to say ” ta-dah!”  Look at me and laugh.  I do chuckle, no matter what I do he saves that bath-time pee especially for his ta-dah moment.

High Heels:

I have a pair of gold gladiator heels, I also have them in black too. They have a good say four and a bit inch heel. ( I’m only five foot five). I love them, so does Blake my son. My son is obsessed with walking in these heels, but only the gold pair for some reason. And to my surprise he can walk well, he trots around heels clicking on the wood floor happy as Larry. ” Mummy shoes, mummy shoes.” Every time I hear this I know he’s on about my gold heels he wants to wear them. I’ve tried to  put them away out of sight. Hoping he will mess around with a pair of my flats…. nope! He wants these gold heels. It makes me chuckle.

 

Learning to talk:

I think as a mother you learn to understand your child’s words even when to others they sound like baby babble. Some of my son’s words are so unclear. Fifished = finished. founded-it= found it. vashin’mach-in= washing machine and  mata-toes= tomatoes. It’s so cute when toddlers talk and learn to express themselves. His words often make me chuckle. Especially when he says tomatoes lols 🙂 .

Learning & imagining my future son:

Bless him, he is well house trained already. I watch him pull the hoover out and try to plug it in, try to sweep the floors, unload the washing machine when he hears the click of the end of a load of laundry. To see him do as I do is so heartwarming. The way toddlers learn is entertaining. I do catch him trying to fold himself into the washing machine now and then, the first time it was funny. Now I’ve learned to keep it closed!

Recognising who and what his mama is:

I encourage my son to read a lot, well look at the pictures in books he’s only three. We read together every night. He makes me laugh when he pulls a novel off my bookcase and opens it , then pretends he’s reading. My heart melts…. the best bit, is when he recognises the covers of my books on the case. He’ll pull them down and say “mama book.”  Or he will pick up my notepads I use for creative writing ideas ” mama book” he’ll scream. He’s so cute. He may have little words but he is very aware emotionally.

Kids…. you’ve gatta love ’em 🙂 They’ll always put a smile on your face.

 

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Daily Writing Prompt: Lovingly Does It #motherhood

Lovingly

Today’s WordPress writing prompt word lovingly, describes exactly how I went about my day today.  It was filled with love. I recently reduced my working hours in my day job from full time to part time, so I can spend more quality time with my son, and of course write more novels. Today is  our day off work and nursery. This morning, I told myself I’m not  a writer, teacher, or anything else today but a busy mum, trying not to get lost as I navigate my way through  central London’s traffic, to get to London Zoo, with a  three year old strapped in the backseat, clapping his hands and singing Old Mcdonald a had a farm at the top of his voice.

We had a great time! He has a love for all animals  but he is crazy about wild animals like lions, tigers, giraffes, elephants and hippos etc. Basically any wild animal you’d find on safari in Africa, rather than farm animals. Today for the second time  he saw  real wild animals up close  from different parts of Africa, at a different zoo. Of course he freaked out with happiness when he saw them. I even had a tantrum on my hands when it was time to leave the hippos, he did not want to leave LOL. But he lovingly made up for his mini tantrum when we had lunch, he gave me the biggest, wettest toddler kiss and hug ever. I assume  to show his enjoyment, and thanks for the day out to see the animals.  So today’s writing prompt response for lovingly  is dedicated to my beautiful son Blake and the day filled with love we’ve had at London Zoo.

 

Little boy blue, mama loves all of you! Your

Oval face, and big brown eyes. To see you smile makes mama’s heart go wild,now you’re starting to speak to hear your little

Voice is such a treat, it makes mama feel warm

Inside a feeling  she  just can’t hide,

No regrets at all, now I have you, I feel like I have it all,

God blessed me with you, so I ‘ll do my very best to raise you, I’ll always take care of  all of you, from the tips of the curly hairs on your head to your little hands and feet, to mama you are  such a gorgeous  treat!

Now I will  lovingly prepare one of his favourite dishes he loves, sausage pasta bake  🙂

I hope everyone’s day is filled with love, and  you have lovingly carried out something good today.