Welcome to the November 2015 Edition of Songdove Books Newsletter!

Many of you will be wondering what happened to the October newsletter. . . There is good reason for why it got missed this Fall.  I and my family were moving across town that week.  Boxes and small critters both proved more than my allergic asthma could handle, so if I wasn't packing, I was coughing and if I wasn't coughing, I was attempting to have the wherewithal to get anything else done, which wasn't much.  We are no longer living in a small 2-bedroom apartment and instead are now in a roomy half-duplex!  There is SO much room here, that we are still having to get used to the space.  The rec room downstairs is currently populated with rodents, old dining room chairs, and craft desks made out of cardboard.  We'll eventually have that room more usable.  

To make it up to everyone for missing last month's newsletter, I am offering my ebook, "Pumpkin Pie From the Ground Up! (Well, Sort of!)" as a gift.  This ebook regulary sells for $2.99 over at Smashwords, and when it is ordered from there, you can download the ebook in whatever format you prefer.  I broke down 5 large pumpkins this Fall using the method I describe in the book, and made a small batch of pies using the recipe in this book as well.  This past weekend we had a small housewarming worship party, and I thawed out one of these pies.  One of the attendees is fat-intolerant, much as I have been most of my adult life, so when she had a slice of this pie, she instantly fell in love with it!  I gave her the remainder to take home and apparently her family loved it too!  My daughter says I'm giving away a family secret, but I know I'm not the only person out there who has to watch their gall bladder's behaviour with fat, so I made this available for sale online.  

Another place where this ebook can be found is over at Gumroad.com   Use code: songdovepie to get your free ebook!  This offer is only being made to newsletter recipients!  If you see this newsletter online, it will not have this offer attached.  Only those receiving this in their inbox will have the opportunity to get a free ebook as my apology for missing the October edition..

So what exactly has Songdove Books been up to over the past two months? 

October was largely spent packing up the house.  In early October, I was pleased to be part of a blog tour for Corine Hyman's latest book: "Teaching Christ's Children About Feeling Angry".  You can read that review at the link above.

Prayer cards for "A Year in Prayer With Jesus" got part way through the seventh month before packing got in the way both of creating more, and scheduling them for daily postings through hootesuite.  So if you've wondered where they went and why they seemed to disappear, that's why.  The second reason has been available time with unpacking at the new place and attempting to set down a new schedule.  In some ways it has been easier to attempt new things, than go back to repetitive "old" things, if that makes any sense.  I haven't completely left the concept of expanding "A Year in Prayer With Jesus" to prayer cards, in fact, a second idea hit me for that book after taking in a webinar a couple weeks ago.

The webinar I sat in on was about creating books in an afternoon.  The general consensus is to scoff at that prospect, but a style of book was presented that we all see on bookstore shelves, stationery shelves, etcetera.  That style of book is known as the day planner, journal, activity book, or colouring book.  After taking this webinar, I was literally amazed at how quickly those books can be created, and created well!  Since taking that webinar, the following journals now accompany a couple existing books, and a completely new project that I began in September and completed in late October.  In fact the proofs for my newest project didn't arrive until the week after the move!

Let me introduce you to

"The Poor Man's Budget: Or Anyone for That Matter - a Five Week Course - Learning to live within your means". 

This course is broken down into an instructor's manual, a student's workbook, and after the webinar I took, a three-month journal that helps the student prepare for the five week course.  This course takes the student

• from understanding where their money is going,

• to the concept of needs versus wants and

• correctly identifying a need from a want,

• discussing self-discipline and self-control as it pertains to curbing unnecessary spending and

• using that "found money" to pay down debts and make needs easier to afford. 

This course is great for benevolence ministries seeking to help their clients learn better financial management, great for outreach ministries to the community aimed at helping struggling folk get on their feet again, etc.  Both the Instructor's Manual and the Student's Workbook cost $6.50 each, and the three-month journal costs $10.00  Instructors have full permission to photocopy worksheets out of their manual if cost is an issue and their students can't afford workbooks, or the instructor decides that binders would be better in their situation than the workbook. These are all available on Amazon as we speak, and will soon pop up on my blog store and other locations around the 'net as well.

"One Year Prayer Journal"

Another journal created because of this webinar, is "The One Year Prayer Journal".  This journal can be used separately from "A Year in Prayer With Jesus", but is otherwise designed to accompany that book.  It is available on Amazon now as well for $15.00 and offers 365 journal pages to help you record important thoughts and prayers as you go through each day's private devotions.



A third journal to come out of my time in this webinar is "Becoming the Bride of Christ: Study Journal".  That's right, "Becoming the Bride of Christ: A Personal Journey" now has a study journal to accompany the six volumes in the series.  This JUST hit Amazon this very week!  The cost is $9.75, placing it in the same affordable range as the rest of the books in the series.  Now you can write down your favourite verse from each day's session, favourite song, the topic you want to explore further, and any musings and thoughts as you consider applying what you read to your own life that day.  Currently, the colour on the cover of the study journal matches the Leader's Guide, however, if people request it, I can make more versions that match the covers of the other volumes in the series as well.


Wrap-up and Future Projects

Other potential journals in the works are an Advent/Jesse Tree activity journal where you can gather as a family to read God's Word, colour a picture, and journal thoughts around the table/couch/tree however you do family altar in your home.  Another potential journal is a gratitude journal, encouraging the user to thank God more often for things, people, events, gifts, etc. that come their way.  My goal is to provide one verse for each day of an entire year on the subjects of thankfulness, thanksgiving, and blessing God for all He's done for us.  I've only come across 176 verses so far.  A friend pointed out that if I included horizontal relationships as well, I'd have far more than a year's worth on the subject.  But that is not the focus, the focus is thanking GOD for all HE has done through others or perhaps even directly ir indirectly.  I'm four verses short of doing six monthly gratitude journals or two three month journals.

I'm hoping to get the rough draft of the Advent/Jesse Tree activity journal done before Sunday this very week so that I can begin using the readings for my own Advent celebrations here at home this year.  We have been celebrating Advent and/or the Jesse Tree for the past several years, and my activity journal will feature a combination of Scriptures, headings, and thoughts that are combined and reworded from various calendars we have looked at as a family.  There is a decided focus on Christ's soon return as opposed to His first advent here on earth.  That advent is generously mentioned, but as the saying goes, we look back to look ahead.  Many of the focuses necessary back then are just as necessary now, so the correlations are quite awesome!

As if packing, moving and unpacking weren't making me busy enough, this author, mother and computer repair tech is also getting active with her choir in taking the Gospel to the community!  Our first performance out in the community is this coming Saturday and my daughter is playing her handmade pictish harp that same day, at the same venue herself.  She now has a sampler CD out, so if you've never heard a pictish harp, you can pick up her sampler for $5 plus S&H at this url here:

I feel as if I haven't had time to truly catch my breath yet.  The journals have been something fun, easy, and quick to do, unlike other projects I'd otherwise be working on that require more hours in my day than I have available right now.  Unfortunately, work has been slow too, so the busyness has not translated into monthly income.  I ask my readers to pray for an increase in my work schedule, pray that my books get into the hands of those who need them, and that the monthly prayer card decks that have been created so far will get into the computers of those who need them as well.  I understand that not everyone wants what I write, so I need people to share about my books to help others who do want them, discover them.  For those who are uncomfortable ordering anything online, I now have a PDF order form that can be printed and mailed directly to me, and I will personally fulfill your order and have it drop-shipped to you from the warehouse.

Maybe by January I will be able to catch my breath again and resume the more tedious projects that I have on the go.  We shall see.  In the meantime, as busy as the Christmas season can get at times for many of us, let us deliberately make time to enjoy the reason for the season and why He came!  He didn't come to bring tinsel and candy.  He came to die so that our sins would be paid for, and rise again so that we'd have eternal life with Him forever!  Let us not get caught up in the materialistic nature of the West's consumerist culture, but let us instead be caught up in the greatest gift that was ever given to us, Jesus Christ Himself!  The baby in a manger has grown up and now awaits reunion with His betrothed Bride, the Church.  What gift are you giving Him this Christmas?


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