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Sunday, July 31, 2016

Phase 2 NRA Pistol Shoot Completed

For a couple weeks I've been taking an online course from the N.R.A called Basic Pistol Shooting. Since I got my conceal carry I wanted to be more knowledgeable with my weapon before carrying it on my person. This first phase taught me a lot. Everything I will need to know about the basics of pistols including semi auto and revolver, including taking it apart to cleaning it.

I 'graduated' this course online back on Thursday and then everyone in the group met up for Phase 2 of the course.. Hands on shooting. In order to pass this phase you needed to complete the Red Achievement Target. Get 5 shots into each of the red circles at 10 feet.

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Since this was my 4th time shooting my gun and it's been a good couple months since I've taken it out of my drawer, I did really well.. After all the techniques I learned including form, the fundamentals of shooting and positioning, I am now loving my gun. I thought I was going to have to get another one and after taking this course, I am in love with it all over again..

I passed the Red Test and have completely passed Phase 2 of this course. I do have the opportunity to try for the White and Blue Targets. White at 15 feet and Blue at 20 feet to advance my skills and training. I look forward to doing that in the coming month!

If you'd like to learn more about the N.R.A Training Courses they have online check out the link HERE

You don't need to be a member to take any of these classes..

Daughter's Military Training

If you've been following my blog at all this past 6 months, my oldest, my daughter joined the Air Force and went to basic training back in February. Life has a way of moving forward and I am just now starting to post more regularly on my blog here. I'd like to do a quick re-cap of the past few months in regards to my beautiful, brave daughter.. She headed off the basic to Lackland AFB in mid February. We took her down to the Butte, MT M.E.P.S Station and said our good-bye's.

The first few weeks was hard getting into a routine without her here. Mama here was a sad one for sometime.. What made the days go by was the fact that we were going to travel to Texas in April to see her graduate boot camp. What a fantastic trip it was to spend 3 1/2 days with her.

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We spent the day on base and another day and a half in San Antonio, TX. Saw the Alamo, went to Hard Rock Café, Rain Forest Café and enjoyed a walk on the River Walk. One afternoon we spent looking at all the missions. There were four including the Alamo.

We got to see where she had been living for 8 weeks including her barracks. We saw her earn her coin, and walk the bomb run to celebrate her graduation. I couldn't be anymore proud of her!

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One week after we went to see her, she headed off to Ohio for her training to become a Biochemical Engineer. She has been in Ohio since late April and she is set to graduate this Tuesday.. Woo Hoo! She just finished her Haz Mat Training and sent me some photos of her in her suit and with her class..

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She will be returning home here on Friday the 5th and will stay until the end of the month until we help her drive to her first duty station in Utah.. I can't wait to share her experiences with you as she shares them with me..

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Chocolate Toffee Banana Muffins

I was making banana chocolate chip muffins the other day and realized I didn't have enough chocolate chips to do the amount of muffins I wanted.. I rummaged through my cupboard and saw that I had two bags of Heath English Toffee Bits for future cookies. I thought, okay.. I will give this a try and OH, so glad I did.. They are absolutely DELICIOUS!

I have to share so here goes....


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Chocolate Toffee Banana Muffins

Ingredients Needed:

3 Ripe Bananas
2/3 cup oil (I use extra virgin olive oil)
1 egg
1 1/2 tsp Vanilla Extract
2 cups Unbromated Flour
1/2 cup Organic Sugar
2 TBS Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
1 TBS Aluminum Free Baking Powder
1/2 tsp Sea Salt
8 oz Heath English Toffee Bits Bag

Directions:

Preheat oven 425 degrees

Combine egg, oil, bananas, and vanilla together in small bowl

In large bowl combine all dry ingredients. Flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt 

Stir in wet ingredients with dry ingredients until completely combined. (I use my KitchenAid mixer for all steps)

Fold in toffee bits then spoon even batter into prepared muffin tins, filling 3/4 full.

Bake in preheated oven for 15-20 minutes. (My brand new oven cooks these just perfect at 19 minutes)

This recipe should yield a minimum of a dozen.. I triple this recipe and have more than three dozen muffins when I'm done!


Here is a PRINTER FRIENDLY Version.. ENJOY!

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Weapon Collector's Youth Shoot

Yesterday morning I helped out with the Annual Weapon Collector's Youth Shoot that is sponsored by the Shooting Complex I'm a member of, "Great Falls Shooting Sports Complex" and the Women's Group that I belong too.. the "Missouri River Women's Shooters"..

I worked the check-in table with another fellow member of the women's club and chatted while the kids shot some historical weapons along with some semi's and automatics.. All the kids that came by after the shoot had smiles on their faces and had a fun time participating.

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The best part of volunteering, you get to shoot one.. I chose the AR50. Was a bit intimidating at first when you see the size of the bullet and casing... But after being walked through the process and picking my target I gave it a go.. I not only had fun shooting it, I also hit the target.. Woo Hoo!

I got to keep the bullet casing for a souvenir.. I absolutely LOVE being a part of this group and look forward to shooting more with the ladies at the complex...



I am participating right now in an online NRA Basics of Pistol Shooting course which is called Phase One.. Next Saturday we will all go out on the range and practice what we learned through the online course. I want to be a better shooter and feel 100% confident with my conceal carry and that's why I'm doing this course. If you are interested in taking this course, you don't need to be an NRA member to participate.. Here is the link for more information...


A well educated person regarding guns is a smart informed gun owner..

A Cable Ferry & The Past

Last week hubby and I ventured to a little town called Virgelle, MT. Named after the founder Virgel and his wife Ella. Boomed to a large population of 35 in its hayday! The Mercantile and Bank are still standing and you can go into both to look around.

The Mercantile is now a bed & breakfast on the 2nd floor and an antique store on the main level. The bank is used to house old antiques you can purchase and still has the old vault still in tact..

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The best part of visiting this small quaint town is taking a trip across the Missouri River on the Virgelle Ferry. Free of charge and totally awesome little ride. Get to chat with the locals on the double car ferry boat that drives along a cable across the river.. You can venture on without turning around and the road will land you back onto the highway many miles away...

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Of course, while your on the Missouri River you must dunk a worm or two before heading back across where you will return to Virgelle to take a trip across a wooden boardwalk between the Mercantile and Bank..

You can spend the weekend here in one of their original homestead buildings or enjoy some time at the bed & breakfast for a relaxing time in the quaint town of Virgelle! A true look at Montana's past up close and in personal!

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Save the Ta Ta's 5K Race

Last night was the Annual Save the Ta Ta's 5k Race. This is my 4th year running this race. What I love about this race, it's at night. This is a bonus for me since I don't ever run in the evenings for obvious safety reasons so I jump at the chance to change my running a bit. This year I was able to run with my friend Teresa. I made us some tu tu's and we had t-shirts made for the occasion.

Since I'm a hunter I thought it fitting to include 'racks' on the shirt.. I loved it! We had a blast running together. We came in a little bit over 36 minutes and that included a short stop at the top of the hill to photo the flag across the city..

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The pathway was lit by some beautiful lanterns hanging from the trees. It was really pretty.. We ran up the big hill to the flag that overlooks the city and then back down again.. I hope my friend will join me again next year with this race..  Had a blast!

Friday, July 22, 2016

Thank You Law Enforcement!

The past month has been a tragic scene in the news as we watch multiple police officers dying in the line of duty. Across the U.S we are witnessing the act of domestic terrorism to our police force.

Yesterday the homeschooling community got together to show our local law enforcement that their jobs matter, their lives matter and that we appreciate their sacrifice for our families and the community.

We gathered first at the police station and handed out thank you cards, hugs, handshakes and some gift cards for them to share with their families and co-workers.

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After we passed out the cards, the police officers gave us a tour of the station and then we headed over to the Sheriff's office and did the same thing. These are real people, with families, children, parents.. Their lives matter as much as everyone else. While we are running away from danger, they are running into it.. To Protect Us! They deserve so much more than we could offer them.. A huge THANK YOU just isn't enough!!

Police Lives Matter... God Bless Our Law Enforcement and their families...

4th of July Camp Patriot Fun Run

Back in mid May I saw an advertisement for a new race here in my town. I was excited to do something different. Camp Patriot Fun Fun 5K.. Celebrating on the 4th of July by supporting disabled vets in America.. I was in.. Paid my fee and awaited the day of the race..

Less than two weeks before the race I got a phone call from the director of Camp Patriot letting me know the race was canceled because I was the ONLY one that signed up. Yep, the only one. I was completely shocked. They wouldn't refund my money since they sent me my shirt and goodies so I decided to put together my own race in lieu of this one being canceled.

I started contacting friends and made a Facebook Event as well as contacting the local homeschool community to spread the word. Six days later, on 4th of July we had 27 people participate in a race that was originally just me. I was so excited!

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My friends came out to support me as well as the homeschool community.. It was a truly blessed day enjoying the day of America's birth..

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I have decided to organize next year's Camp Patriot 5K Fun Run.. Looking forward to doing this again next year and with more time I hope the outcome is double or even triple.. Woo Hoo!

Every Bride Has Her Day by Janice Thompson


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Every Bride Has Her Day
by Janice Thompson

About This Book:

Katie's determined to make it down the aisle this time--but it may be easier said than done
Katie Fisher is ecstatic. Pro basketball star Brady James has proposed, and she can't wait to start planning their life together. But it's hard to focus on her own happily ever after when her calendar is filling up with celebrations for friends and family. Beyond that, it seems everyone around her has an opinion--and a strong one at that--on what Katie's special day should look like. Will she ever manage to settle all of the details for her storybook wedding? Or will her overzealous friends and relations make a mess of everything?


My Thoughts on This Book:

Katie's determined to make it down the aisle this time--but it may be easier said than done..

What a sweet, fun finale to the Brides With Style series! It really has been an enjoyable journey for Katie and Brady. Every Bride Has Her Day is filled with romantic moments between these two main characters, yet peppered throughout with the tongue in cheek, small town antics of Katie’s extended family and friends, and a good dose of tension as Katie hopes to be strong enough to stand up to wedding planning meddlers.

The problem is, though, Katie can’t enjoy her upcoming nuptial bliss because everyone has an idea for how her wedding should be. No one seems to care what HER ideas are for HER wedding. Katie must quickly learn how to rein in everyone and get her wedding back on track. And when a major misunderstanding literally rips her small hometown in two, her perfect day starts to look like it won’t be so perfect at all. Will she finally be able to say "I Do?"


About the Author:

Janice Thompson

Inspirational author Janice Thompson also writes under the name Janice Hanna. She got her start in the industry writing screenplays and musical comedies for the stage. Janice has published over 100 books for the Christian market, crossing genre lines to write cozy mysteries, historicals, romances, nonfiction books, devotionals, children's books and more.

I have received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. No other compensation was given.

Her One and Only by Becky Wade

Cover Art

Her One and Only
by Becky Wade


About This Book:

After ten years in the NFL, superstar Gray Fowler is accustomed to obsessive fans. But when Gray starts receiving death threats from a stalker, his team hires an executive protection agency to guard him until the culprit is caught. Dealing with bodyguards 24/7 is a headache, especially when one of them is a young, beautiful woman. How can a female half his size possibly protect him better than he can protect himself?

Dru Porter is a former Marine, an expert markswoman, and a black belt--none of which saved her from disaster on her last assignment. In order to rebuild her tarnished reputation, she's determined to find Gray's stalker and, since relationships between agents and clients are forbidden, avoid a romantic attachment between herself and the rugged football player with the mysterious past.

Yet every secret that leads Dru closer to the stalker also draws her closer to Gray. As the danger escalates, they'll survive only if they can learn to trust their lives--and their hearts--to one another.

My Thoughts on This Book:

Finished another awesome book from this Series by author Becky Wade. Her storyline has always grabbed me from page one and this is no exception. Her One and Only tells the long-awaited story of Dru Porter, the final installment in this series. Dru, a former Marine and current executive protection agent. Gray is a professional football player. Their worlds collide when she becomes his bodyguard.

Can they keep things professional or are things going to get oh so personal?

The message of this story is about letting go. Dru and Gray both have things in their past that have defined how they view life today. By not letting go of those things, they are holding God back from what He can do in their life. As the verse at the end states, by letting go, we can embrace the "new things" God has for us.

Overall, I'm sad that the Porter Family series has come to an end, but I couldn't have asked for a better conclusion to one of the best family series I've ever read!

About the Author:

Becky Wade

Becky Wade is a native of California who attended Baylor University, met and married a Texan, and now lives in Dallas. A favorite among readers of Christian contemporary romance, Becky has won a Carol Award, an Inspirational Reader's Choice Award, and an INSPY Award. Learn more at www.beckywade.com.

I received this book free in exchange for an honest review. No other compensation was given

The I Quit Sugar Cookbook


I Quit Sugar Cookbook
by Sarah Wilson

306 Recipes for a Clean, Healthy Life

Easy. Inventive. Delicious.
When Sarah Wilson gave up sugar for good, she developed a new repertoire of creative, go-to dishes for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. With 306 satisfying recipes for one-pan wonders, grain-free breakfasts, leftover makeovers, smoothie bowls, and more, this comprehensive cookbook makes living sugar-free simple and sustainable.

Start quitting now, with recipes that include:
Bacon ’N’ Egg Quinoa Oatmeal
Gift-Wrapped Miso Cod
Caramelized Leek, Apple, and Rosemary Socca
Green Spaghetti and Meatballs
Two-Minute Desk Noodles
Broc Bites and Cauli Popcorn
Carrot "Bacon"
Red Velvet Crunch Bowl
Chocolate Peanut Butter Crackles
Strawberry Cheesecake Mug Cake

My Thoughts on This Book:

Are you looking to cut sugar out of your diet and eat healthy whole foods? This book is for you.. Recipes laid out easily to follow with photos of all the meals. Includes 6 Steps to Get Started along with recipes for snacks, in a bowl, fish, veggies, leftovers and snacks.

A Sample Recipe Breakdown:

The Basics: Anywhere from Homemade Stock, and dressings to making your own cheese..
Against the Grain Breakfasts: Whip out your slow cooker, bake in the oven or use your sauce pan for some of these yummy breakfast delights..
Snackalicious: From Butter biscuits to Bacon Granola.. Did I say bacon?
Abundance Bowls: Salads anyone?
Just Like Grandma Used to Make: Dumplings to Tacos to yummy meatloaf.. Oh Yah!
Midweek One Pan Wonders: Sweet Potato Nachos, Apple Cider Chicken to name a few.........


About the Author:

SARAH WILSON is the author of the New York Times bestseller I Quit Sugar. Through her books and her online 8-Week Program at IQuitSugar.com, Sarah has enabled more than 1.2 million people to quit sugar worldwide. www.iquitsugar.com

I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. No other compensation was given.

Like Never Before by Melissa Tagg


Like Never Before
by Melissa Tagg

About This Book:

Sure to Be a New Favorite, Tagg's Latest Checks All the Right Boxes for Romance Fans
Maple Valley became Amelia Bentley's haven after her heart and her dreams of a family were shattered, but her new life as a newspaper editor is shaken when the paper is bought out by a chain that plans to incorporate it into a regional paper.

After his biggest campaign success yet, speechwriter Logan Walker is approached to work on a presidential campaign. But he already lost his wife three years ago, and saying yes to the job means he'll see his young daughter even less. When Logan hears of a special election campaign in his hometown, helping out sounds like the perfect way to occupy himself while deciding what to do.

When Amelia hears Logan is back in town, she begs him to lend his previous experience in the newspaper world to help turn her paper's numbers around in time. They may butt heads more than they expected, but a lead on a story that could help save the paper is just the start of the sparks that fly in the office and in their hearts.

My Thoughts on This Book:

Witty, romantic, sweet, heart-wrenching - there's lots to love about this novel. Both Abigail and Logan were developed characters, even if they were flawed including views of what the public sees, what family and closest friends see, and what only themselves and God see as well as things they hide from the world. They both have hurts from the past that make a possible romance difficult. 

I recommend this novel to those who enjoy a good Christian romance. Although the characters have been in the previous book in this series the novel reads very well on its own. This book has many wonderful, lighthearted moments, yet it was packed with deep and meaningful situations that caused the characters to question their beliefs and reevaluate their views about God.

I've read all of Melissa Tagg's books and each one gets better and better. This follows the book "From the Start", Walker Family Series. You'll enjoy all the books in this series as well as her others.

About the Author:

Melissa Tagg

Melissa Tagg, author of Made to Last, Here to Stay, and From the Start, is a former newspaper reporter, current nonprofit grant writer, and total Iowa girl. When she's not writing, she can be found hanging out with the coolest family ever. She's passionate about humor, grace, and happy endings. Melissa blogs regularly at www.melissatagg.com.


I have received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. No other compensation was given.