The Ultimate Gift

Life is how you live it…not how you spend it

One of the highlights of the Christmas season for me is indulging in Christmas movies! There’s something so comforting and peaceful about curling up with my family beside a lit Christmas tree or near the roaring fire of the wood stove, and allowing myself to be whisked away into a good story. This year didn’t leave much time for Christmas specials. Lucky for me, I had picked one up at Wal-Mart on one of my far-too-many excursions. This one was called The Ultimate Gift. You’d never guess it, but I’m a sucker for stories of miracles, love, and inspiration ๐Ÿ˜‰

The Ultimate Gift has become my new all-time favorite Christmas movie. It is a heartwarming drama based on the novel The Ultimate Gift by Jim Stovall. It is an inspirational story about a young man of privilege who, like many of us, takes his life for granted. He is rich, carefree, and careless. Living off a trust fund and having never worked a day in his life, Jason Stevens is spoiled and unmotivated with little regard for anyone or anything. When his Grandfather passes away, Jason inherits a series of gifts that promise to lead him to the ‘ultimate gift’.

Life shouldn’t be spent avoiding problems but welcoming them as challenges that will strengthen us so that we can be victorious in the future

Each gift is a task and is specifically designed to challenge Jason to grow as a man. It is through these tasks that Jason learns the Gift of Problems, the Gift of Work, the Gift of the Value of Money, the Gift of Friends,ย  the Gift of Family, the Gift of Laughter, the Gift of Giving, the Gift of Gratitude,ย the Gift of Dreams, the Gift of Love, and the Gift of a Day.

Any process worth going through will get tougher before it gets easier. That’s what makes learning a gift…even if pain is your teacher


For me the true gift in this story is the Gift of Emily. Emily is a young girl Jason meets on his quest for the ultimate gift. Emily is a spitfire of attitude with a heart of gold. Emily suffers from a rare form of leukemia and her only wish is for her Mother’s happiness. She quickly made her way into Jason’s heart … and mine as well.

I’m not sure if it was Emily’s story, or the heartache I felt for the families, the children, and the survivors of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, or perhaps more likely it was both…I’ve decided to write my second book, Letters From Heaven with love from your Child. My hope is that this book will in some small way provide even an ounce of healing to the hearts of parents who’ve suffered the tragedy of losing of a child, as Letters From Heaven Love Mom xo has for ‘children’ – both young and old – who are forced to live without the loving guidance of their Mother.

Come up with a dream and then act on it

Treat yourself to a gift that is sure to nourish your soul this season and find the time to accompany Jason on his quest for The Ultimate Gift ….Don’t forget the tissue!

Merry Christmas, Happy Hanuka, Joyeux Noel, Season’s Greetings,ย  Happy Holidays!

Thank you for sharing in my love of writing this year ๐Ÿ™‚

Embrace your Awesomeness!

Mommy’s Escape….The End of a Beautiful Affair

I am not into vampires, werewolves, or love triangles. In fact, I’m not even a big fan of reading fiction, I tend to prefer non-fiction life-changing books and I occasionally dabble in humor . My favorite movies are inspirational flicks based on true stories and I have a weakness for documentaries. At least that’s who I was before being introduced to Twilight.

Twilight quickly became my guilty pleasure. I had never fully understood the meaning of “getting lost in a book” until this one. I was spellbound. Stephanie Meyer’s world became my unexpected escape. It wasn’t about monsters killing humans or a series of ugly evil doings. The characters came to life and made their way into my heart through their ability to love so deeply. The vampires, the werewolves, nothing was more important than the safety and well being of their families and the community in which they resided. Their heightened senses were intriguing. Through their eyes, ears, nose, and touch I heard, saw, smelled, and felt nature and everything in it in a way that I am usually too busy to pay attention to. The story brought to life the heart-thumping, weak-in-the-knees recollection of falling in love for the first time. Do you ever remember anything more exciting than that feeling?? Young love is one of life’s most exciting experiences.Through this story, Stephanie invites her audience to relive that beautiful experience. She then made the romance forbidden, threw in some danger, threat, and suspense and WHAM! It was a don’t-breathe-until-it’s-over love story!

Edward’s forever calm, protective nature felt safe and strangely exciting, his smile…irresistible! Jacob’s abs,casual, blunt honesty was crazy sexy intoxicating. I could totally relate to Bella’s insecurities, consistent bad decision making, and lack of coordination (however, she didn’t win me over until she became her confident vampire self). Bella’s dad Charlie, OMG! Who wouldn’t love him?! Jasper was my personal favorite…I found his intensity captivating. And Alice! With her graceful moments, her impeccable timing, her immaculate sense of style and calm, friendly demeanor…it’s like we were the same person (tsk, tsk) ๐Ÿ˜‰ I loved Alice!ย  Carlisle’s take charge, humble, leadership nature was HOT so appealing. Add to that their animalistic instincts, and …. BAM! Guilty pleasure! I loved them all!

Breaking Dawn 2 was bitter sweet. I didn’t want the story to end. The end of the book series was heartbreaking. The end of the movies seemed so….final. I have to admit, every time I heard about a ‘surprise twist’, my heart leaped…In my mind, the best ending and the most glorious surprise ending would include the words “to be continued”. Dare I hope to see those words light up the screen??

I accepted the fact that I was a wholehearted Twilight fan, but I hadn’t realized the depth of it until the exact moment I saw Carlisle’s head. In that very moment, I felt my heart crack. I was so angry. Angry and devastated. They had ruined the story and I wanted to hold someone accountable! I probably would have screamed had it not been for the massive lump stuck inside my throat. And then Jasper….I couldn’t believe what I was seeing. What were people thinking when they raved “this is the best movie of all!” Were they mad?! You know the ugly cry? The one that hurts your throat, your head, and neck and turns your face into an unrecognizable mess? I’m embarrassed to admit, that’s the cry that came out of me. And it continued until it was replaced by tears of relief and immense gratitude.

At the end of the movie, a slideshow tribute played briefly bringing to life Twilight moments and treasured memories. I sat in my seat, unable to move, tears flowing freely while people (including small children) pointed and laughed. For a moment I wondered what was wrong with these people? Why weren’t they taking this seriously? I scolded myself “What is wrong with you woman?! Pull yourself together!” I couldn’t help it…I was filled with the oddest sensation…Twilight was breaking up with me!

As I sat there with my raccoon eyes, sore neck, and a broken heart I wondered….Was the vampire movie really worth all this?? You bet your ass it was!!!!

Thank you Stephanie Meyer for taking us on a whirlwind adventure through your imagination, your words, and your spirit! I fully embrace your awesomeness!!!

Tell me…was it the same for you??


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The Juicing Nomads

โ€œTo live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist, that is all.โ€ โ€• Oscar Wilde

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