Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Christmas from Heaven

The Mormon Tabernacle Choir takes part in a yearly Christmas tradition.  At each program,
some story is shared.  One of those true stories was read by Tom Brokaw.   This is from the book:

                                                       Christmas from Heaven

It is the story of "The Berlin Candy Bomber," Lt. Gail Halvorsen who was only 27 years old when he first gave 2 pieces of gum to children in Berlin.   This American pilot was delivering necessary food to the city of Berlin in 1948.    He noticed the children standing by the fence, watching.  They were sweet children who didn't ask for anything.  This moved him to share what he had.  It also gave him an idea.  He decided to share his own rations of chocolate and gum with the children. Other soldiers joined the cause.  They made little parachutes out of handkerchiefs and dropped down the treats to the children.

This kind act helped bring hope to the children and their families.  The entire story is told very sweetly in the book, "Christmas from Heaven."  You will also see beautiful illustrations by Robert T. Barrett.  There are even black and white photographs from historical archives.   Inside the book you will find a DVD. This is a short program showing The Mormon Tabernacle Choir performing while Tom Brokaw reads the story to listeners.  We also get to meet Lt. Gail Halvorsen at the end of the program.  This kind, humble man is now in his 90's and a delight to see. 

At the end of the book, we read more about the accomplishments and life of the Lieutenant.  It is impressive and makes one proud!

This is an excellent book for children and families.  The companion DVD is a marvelous resource.  The true story will inspire excellence and compassion in children.  It is a charming lesson in history.

* Disclosure - I received this item for review purposes.*

Sunday, November 10, 2013

The Smart Woman's Guide to Retirement Planning by Mary Hunt

Book - The Smart Woman's Guide to Retirement Planning

Author - Mary Hunt

Publisher - Revell

Hardcover, 213 pages

Mary Hunt always has great ideas for managing money. In each of her books, I find inspiration and motivation!  In her latest book, "The Smart Woman's Guide to Retirement Planning" she shares what it takes to get control of one's finances with the later years in mind.

I was specifically intrigued by the latest resources in money management (including specific banks she considers trustworthy; online banking, bill paying, etc.). I also loved her revelation when she realized she, herself, was very close to the age to begin receiving Medicare, and she had a moment of panic!

Her insight and friendly advice on different types of investments, ideas for savings, and her wonderful "you - can- do - it" attitude is just what we need in today's difficult economy.

She compared taking care of one's health to taking care of one's finances.  When we neglect our health, eating junk food, ignoring our need for exercise, and live stressful lives, the result is damage and disease to the body.  This is very similar to our reckless, and careless approach to our money.  We can live financially healthy lives, or we can live in a financial mess! 

She reminds us that we are responsible for what we do with our money.  Here is a quote from the book:

"If you have a management style like the one I lived by for so many years in which you spend money until it's gone then white - knuckle it until you can manage to get more, you need a change. Your system doesn't work."  (page 57)

She tells us that in our lives, it doesn't matter how much money we made, it will only matter what we DID with that money.

*Disclosure - I received a copy of each book for review purposes.*

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