How to Find FREE E-books

Since I love to read, my library is starting to overflow.  Once a year I usually purge and take more current titles (still in pristine condition – usually my fiction books) to the library for donation.

Last year I got an iPad 3 and I have gotten hooked on it’s convenience. During my flurry of app downloading, I found the free Kindle app, but didn’t think I would really use it since I definitely like to kick it  “old school” when it comes to reading:  I want to hold, feel, smell and experience the book in the literal, not digital sense.

That has changed.

It all began when starting an investigation at Amazon.com to see if I would be lucky to find some interesting e-books for free in order to experiment with the Kindle app. (And I absolutely love a bargain!) Did you know you can find a listing of 100 FREE Kindle e-books?  Yep.  Go HERE.  It’s updated daily.  You can also find lists of Kindle e-books for $3.99 or less, and you can search for e-books by category.

Have a Nook?  You can find great e-book bargains HERE.

Since then, I have come across these excellent resources I can recommend for finding e-books for free (or nearly free).  Click on the name to go to their website.

Gospel e-books  (Kindle e-books only)
Book Bub (Kindle e-books only)
eReaderGirl (Kindle, Nook; PDF)
David C Cook Publishers – (Kindle, Nook, Google Play, iBook and more)
There are surely more out there, but these sites promote what is current in Spiritual Growth, Inspirational Fiction, and Marriage/Family books.

Although I do not own a Nook, I did find that Barnes and Noble’s The Nook Blog promotes free e-books on Friday

Be sure to follow any available Twitter feeds of free e-book promoters (my first three recommendations are all on Twitter).  It is important to remember that most promoted e-books are only free for that specific day, so if you click on a link the following day, don’t assume that the book is still free.  Look for a $0.00 price before clicking through to the check out.

The great thing about Kindle e-books, even free e-books, is that once you buy, you own them for life.  You can also use them across any device that is associated with your Amazon.com account.  For instance, I have the iPad, but my hubby purchased a Kindle Fire for himself.  We use the same Amazon.com account, so any books I may have “purchased” for free through our account are accessible for his Kindle, and vice versa.

If you don’t have a smart phone, tablet or a Kindle/Nook, no worries!  There are apps for your computer too.  Both Nook and Kindle have apps for your computer, and with Google Play, you can read on the web.

Especially with our tough economy, it can be hard to keep up with a reading habit!  I hope that these e-book hints will help you increase your reading for this year.Some choices for my 2013 reading list will be free e-books that I downloaded in the last couple months.  While I still like to have that actual book in my hand, the digital option is catching on with me quickly!   Knowing that I can download a book and read it at my leisure without ever “unowning” it, plus still have the ability to highlight different quotes and passages, has become more appealing.

Know of a website that offers free e-books?  Please comment and let us know where to find it!  Thanks!

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Need Reading Ideas for 2013?

Thanks for visiting again today!   If you are new here, Welcome!  Please take a moment to subscribe to my blog, or click on the icon to follow me on Twitter.

Yesterday I posted nine different ways to get more out of a book.  Today I wanted to share part of my 2013 reading list.  Yes, just “part” of my list, because as the year moves forward, I like the flexibility of adding any newly released books to the stack or a treasure I may find while scouring the shelves at my local library (or Goodwill!)

Like Crystal at the Money Saving Mom, I always make sure that I have a mixture of spiritual growth, business/leadership/productivity, fiction/biography and family/marriage related books on the list.  While it is important to learn, grow and stretch, it is also important to have some fun reading too.

Here’s just the start of my list (not in any specific order) of what I’m planning to read this year.  If you want more information on the book, simply click on the title.

Spiritual Growth:
Wonderstruck by Margaret Feinberg
One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp
Made to Crave by Lysa TerKeurst
Let. It. Go. by Karen Ehman

Family / Marriage
Unschooling Rules by Clark Aldrich
Grown-up Girlfriends by Erin Smalley and Carrie Oliver
Becoming God’s True Woman by Nancy Leigh Demoss
7: An Experimental Mutiny Against Excess by Jen Hatmaker

Business/Leadership/Productivity
Love Does by Bob Goff
Are You Fit for Life? by Jack Graham
Resolved Primer: A Look Into the 13 Resolutions by Orrin Woodward

Fiction / Biography
Killing Lincoln by Bill O’Reilly

My goal is to read 51 books this year.  If you want to keep up with what I am currently reading, check out my reviews or what I plan to read, you can click on the Goodreads widget on the right hand column of this website. You can also click on the “Book Reviews” tap at the top of my blog for a list of posts related to my book reviews.

If you want to see what Crystal is going to read this year, go to this post at her Money Saving Mom blog for even more ideas (she has listed 48!)

Is there a book that you already know you want to read this year?  Please post it in the comments here!

Tomorrow I will have some fun stuff for you — how to get FREE books to add to your reading library!  Be sure to stop by for that!

Nine Ways to Get More From a Book

First of all – Happy New Year to you and thank you so much for visiting!  Please choose to “follow” my blog or subscribe to my Twitter feed.  2013 is going to be an eventful year here at the blog, and you won’t want to miss anything!

The knowledge I am about to share today is not original; I will fully disclose that I “borrowed” this from a must-read leadership book: “How to Win Friends and Influence People” by Dale Carnegie. If you have not read this book, or it has been years since you have (perhaps in college when you “had” too), then I highly recommend that you add this to the top of your 2013 reading list.  In fact, it has been a couple years since I have I picked up my copy, so I will read it again too, just to show it’s that important.

The reasoning behind writing this post is two-fold: (1) I realized that it would be a good routine to reintroduce for my 2013 reading list, and (2) I had to start it now so that I would not miss any of the fantastic nuggets as I read “Wonderstruck” by Margaret Feinberg.

Here is my paraphrased and condensed version from Carnegie’s Nine Ways given in the introduction of his book:

1.  Have a deep desire to learn something from which you are about to read.  Don’t read to read; decide at the beginning that you are reading to learn.

2.  Read through each chapter twice. Right, I said, “two times.” This really works!  The first time you tend to read at your faster pace; the second time you will undoubtedly find something you missed before. You may be tempted to move to the next chapter, but wait until you’ve read the current chapter twice, unless you are reading entirely for entertainment.

3.  Stop frequently to think about what you are reading.  Again, don’t read just to read, but ask yourself how you can apply what you are reading.

4.  Keep a highlighter by you at all times so you can immediately mark those things that jump out or are important to remember, or make comments or notes in the margins.

5.  If you want to get a real, lasting benefit from a book, don’t think that reading through the book once will work. Take time throughout the year to go back to your highlights or notes to refresh yourself so it will continually be applied.

6.  “Learning is an active process.” says Carnegie.  We learn by doing, so if you want put into practice what you are learning, then do something about it right away.  Choose one principle you read and find a way to put it into practice that very day.

7.  While Carnegie suggests here to give a family member or colleague a dime (this was 1936!) or dollar  when caught violating a learned principle, I like this approach much better:  Find a reading buddy or accountability partner whom you trust.  This will be your “go-to” person who will promise to work with you and to encourage you as you put into practice what you’ve learned.

8.  Go back and check yourself on your progress.  This is where a journal or day timer (if you aren’t a wordy person) comes in handy to chart your progress daily or weekly.  See where you would like to make improvements and what lessons you are learning.

9.  Keep track of successes! A gratitude journal, conversation over coffee with your accountability partner, or even tweeting or Facebook messaging your success to the author will help you celebrate (and the author will appreciate the encouragement too!).  Buy a new copy of the book and share it with another friend.  Not only will you be inspiring your friend, but you will also begin to grow a community who can work together towards learning new principles, scripture or lessons.

While Carnegie’s list was written with his leadership theme in mind, I know that these principles will help with the majority of non-fiction and inspirational books we are reading today.

Nothing is better than reading.  We are losing so much by spending the majority of free time in front of electronics and forgetting the Classics and those books (past and present) written to help, teach and inspire.  Let’s commit to reading more about successes instead of watching the depressing drama of people on TV.  Let’s decide that we will read more about improving ourselves and helping others succeed instead of watching 24 hour news channel stories that can be so negative.  (I’m not saying that knowing what is going on in our country is not relevant; I am saying that we should not constantly dwell on it, but do something instead!)  Let’s make our New Year’s resolution to read more, and everything else we want to accomplish will more than likely come to pass.

I hope these timeless principles will help you as you choose and read through your 2013 reading list.  No reading list yet?  I will share mine tomorrow, but another fantastic list that can help you get started was shared  by Crystal, the Money Saving Mom.  She blogged about her 2012 “plan to read” list HERE and her Top 20 of 2012 HERE.  (Her whole blog is great!)

More fun reading ideas tomorrow, plus later this week how you can get  titles for your 2013 reading FREE!

To order a copy of “How to Win Friends and Influence People” for only $7.99 for your own library, you can follow this link to place an order through our leadership website. Thank you!!!

Living Wonderstruck: Praying for "Pixie Dust"

My friend, Margaret Feinberg has a new book and 7-session DVD Bible study called Wonderstruck: Awaken to the Nearness of God (releasing Christmas Day)—a personal invitation for you to toss back the covers, climb out of bed, and drink in the fullness of life!  To learn more, visit watch the Wonderstruck video HEREor visit the website:  www.margaretfeinberg.com/wonderstruck.

Margaret recently posted a great warning on her site that those who have read Wonderstruck have experienced the following symptoms:
-An inability to stop smiling
-An uncontainable desire to pray
-A loss of interest in judging others
-A quiet, unshakable confidence in God
-A renewed ability to see the wonders of God all around
In fact, as I read a sneak peek of Wonderstruck, there was a  word, (really “two” words) at the beginning that intrigued and pulled me into the pages:  “pixie dust.” 
 
That’s right.  Pixie dust.  
 
Margaret isn’t suggesting that you ask God for magic, but she states:  “Praying for pixie dust is a childlike expression of trust and hope — trusting in both God’s wisdom and winsomeness, finding hope in God’s mercy and mirth.”  She also describes a lovely picture of what Jesus was probably like with children: whispering in their ears, giving bear hugs and twirling them with delight. He declares that “the kingdom of God belongs to those who maintain childlike receptivity.  Those who refuse to receive the kingdom of God like a child will miss it entirely.”  How many times have I missed it?  
 
Read my related November post, “Ageless Childlike Faith” HERE.   
 
Do you recall the phrase, “I want to feel like a kid again”?  That is what I want – to have more childlike receptivity and to be more responsive to Jesus as those children were with Him. I want to feel like a kid again.  
 
Oh, how not to be distracted in this life by “efficiency and effectiveness” and lose the simple closeness I can have of being in the presence of  Jesus!  I don’t want to travel life alone and miss the wonders of what God can show me! I plan to open my arms wide with great expectation and know that He will never disappoint me.  I will be praying for pixie dust, and not “pray it safe.”  
 
I hope you will join me in reading “Wonderstruck.”  Let’s pray for — and expect — wonder.  He’s just waiting to show himself glorious to us.  Let’s feel like kids again.  
 

 

Follow Margaret’s snarky, funny, and inspirational posts on Twitter, Facebook, or her blog. You can learn more about this great book by visiting www.margaretfeinberg.com/wonderstruck where she’s offering some crazy promos right now with up to $300 of free stuff. I’ve seen the book for as low as $7.95 ($14.99 retail) on Barnes & Noblefor all you savvy shoppers.  
 
 
  

Why Live "Wonderstruck?"

My friend, Margaret Feinberg has a new book and 7-session DVD Bible study called Wonderstruck: Awaken to the Nearness of God (releasing Christmas Day)—a personal invitation for you to toss back the covers, climb out of bed, and drink in the fullness of life!  
 
To learn more, visit watch the Wonderstruck video HERE, or visit the website:  www.margaretfeinberg.com/wonderstruck
I have had the privilege of getting a sneak peak of her new book, and it is so good that I immediately ordered a print copy from Amazon, for the killer price of $7.57.  You can also order now and receive access to 6 exclusive gifts worth more than $300. Find out how, HERE.
 
While you are waiting for your order to process, here’s more about Wonderstruck from Margaret herself:
Where did the inspiration for the Wonderstruckbook and Bible study come from?
“Have you ever had one of those seasons where everything goes wrong, and when you think it can’t get worse, it somehow finds a way? Most people who have worked in ministry have experienced those seasons—some may be in one right now.
My husband, Leif, and I had just gone through one of the roughest years of our lives. In the aftermath, as we processed the pain and loss, I had an unexplainable desire in my heart. I began praying for the wonder of God. In essence, I said, ‘God reveal yourself, your whole self to me. I want to know you as Wonderful. I want to know you as I’ve never known you before and see you in places I’ve never recognized you before.’ 
God did not disappoint.”
What do you mean by “the wonder of God”?
“Sometimes talking or writing about wonder feels like tying kite strings to clouds. It’s ethereal, and you can never quite get a grip on it. But if you look in the dictionary, the two main definitions of wonder are: “being filled with admiration, amazement, or awe” and “to think or speculate curiously.”
Those definitions come together beautifully in our relationship with God. That’s why I define the wonder of God as those moments of spiritual awakening that create a desire to know God more.
In other words, the wonder of God isn’t about an emotional experience or having some cool story to tell your friends, but the wonder of God makes us want more of God—to go deeper and further than we’ve ever been before.”
Why are you calling people to #LIVEWONDERSTRUCK?
“If you look in the Gospels, what you’ll discover is that those who encountered Jesus were constantly left in wild amazement. They were awestruck by the teachings of Christ, the healings of Christ, the mind-bending miracles of Christ. Within the Gospel of Luke we see words like “awe” and “wonder” and “marvel” at every turn. If this is the natural response to encountering Christ, how much more should it be for you and I—who are invited to live in relationship with Christ as sons and daughters of our God Most High?  We even created a free PDF that looks at some of these Scriptures. For a free copy, email us at wonderstruck@margaretfeinberg.com and we’ll send you one.”
 
 
Follow Margaret’s snarky, funny, and inspirational posts on Twitter, Facebook, or her blog. 

Seeing God’s Wonder

Photo from: http://climate.gi.alaska.edu/curtis/curtis.html

A wonder of this world that I would absolutely love to see is the Northern Lights.  For me, having the opportunity to see this mysterious and glorious light show would truly be a highlight in my earthly life.  

Unless I travel to the northern part of our hemisphere, I will not get to see this great wonder God has created.  However, I am so thankful for the many other wonders of God that I have experienced in my own backyard! 

Living in the Texas Hill Country, I regularly experience types of nature that are truly beautiful.  White-tailed deer are plentiful here, and waking in the morning to see three or four deer silently having breakfast in your backyard is truly a breathtaking moment designed by God for me to enjoy. 

My friend, Margaret Feinberg [www.margaretfeinberg.com], has a new book and 7-session Bible Study called Wonderstruck: Awaken to the Nearness of God, releasing Christmas Day.  It is a personal invitation for you to toss back the covers, climb out of bed, and drink in the fullness of life.  Wonderstruck [www.margaretfeinberg.com/wonderstruck] will help you:

  • Recognize the presence of God in the midst of your routine
  • Unearth extraordinary moments on ordinary days
  • Develope a renewed passion for God
  • Identifuy what’s holding you back in prayer
  • Discover joy in knowing you’re wildly loved

Want to learn more?  Sure you do!  Watch the Wonderstruck video here:  https://vimeo.com/53953257

So where have you seen the wonder of God in your life?

Follow Margaret’s snarky, funny, and inspirational posts on Twitter Facebookor her blog. You can learn more about this great book by visiting www.margaretfeinberg.com/wonderstruck where she’s offering some crazy promos right NOW with up to $300 of free stuff. I’ve seen the book for as low as $7.57 ($14.99 retail) on Barnes & Noble . 

Tasty Cereal Bars: Easy to Make!

Have you ever purchased a box of cereal and see a recipe on the side that may sound good, but you never get around to making it before the box is thrown away?  That’s me too.  However, this week I actually made a recipe that was on the side of my youngest son’s favorite cereal, Chocolate Cheerios.  It’s like making Rice Krispie treats, but with probably one extra step.  And a couple more ingredients.

When my oldest son Matt likes something, then I am doing pretty good.  Getting a hug for making these tasty cereal bars was a bonus!

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cereal Bars
(courtesy of General Mills)

Prep time:  15 minutes
Total time:  30 minutes
Makes 24 bars

5 cups Chocolate Cheerios cereal
3/4 cup raisins
3/4 cup salted peanuts
1 cup corn syrup
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 cup creamy peanut butter
1/2 cup milk chocolate chips

Spray 13×9 inch pan with cooking spray.  In large bowl, combine cereal, raisins, and peanuts; set aside.  In 2-quart saucepan, place corn syrup and sugars.  Heat to boiling over medium heat, stirring constantly; remove from heat.  Stir in peanut butter.  Pour peanut butter mixture over cereal mixture; mix until thoroughly coated.  Spread evenly in pan.  In small microwavable bowl, microwave chocolate chips on High 1 minute, stirring every 15 seconds, until melted and smooth.  Drizzle over bars.  Refrigerate 15 minutes or until chocolate is set.  (To drizzle chocolate: place melted chocolate chips in resealable plastic bag.  Cut off small piece of corner; drizzle chocolate over bars.)

NOTE:  At first, I was not going to add the raisins; I thought it an odd addition. Since I hadn’t made these before, I went according to the recipe, and the raisins do add another subtle flavor to the bars.  The kids didn’t even notice the raisins were there.  I would suggest using the bag tip for drizzling the chocolate; I decided to just drizzle with a spoon, but ended up with big blops of chocolate and had to use a knife to spread the chocolate evenly over the bars. Finally, I cut the rest of the bars in thin rectangles instead of squares, thinking that when unwrapping, it would be easier to eat.

Be sure to try these and add them to your kid’s lunches or give them for their school snack.  This recipe is the equivalent of buying four boxes of the other General Mills cereal snacks, which could run about $12. All the ingredients of this recipe were in my cupboard, with the exception of buying a new box of cereal and the bag of chocolate chips, so for me it was a cost of $5.