Book Review-Pre Birth Briefing

Book Review-Pre Birth Briefing

Pre-Birth Briefing

This is a wonderful story of a mother guiding her child to seeing his unique gifts and callings.

Check out the brief video on Susan’s book-Pre-Birth Briefing:


Enjoy this book with your child. Begin talking about how wonderful they are.  This book gives some wonderful insights into how to see what gifts and callings are in your child.

Our children face so many challenges and the enemy would have them believe that they are not special and have nothing to offer but this is a lie.  We as parents can help our children discover the truth that they are unique with specific gifts and callings from the Lord.

Raising children is a challenge.  This book will give you some insight into helping your child connect with their gifts.

I love this book because the author shares in a gentle, loving and humorous way how she guided her child in understanding that he has unique gifts and talents that can and should be used for the glory of God.

This book would make a great gift for expectant parents.  It is loaded with beautiful illustrations and engaging writing.  Get your copy today.

Drop a note in the comments and let me know what you think.

Blogging Resource List

Blogging Resource List

This post contains affiliate links. Please read my full disclosure here.

Blogging is a creative option for bringing in extra money. Many moms and dads are traveling down the blogging path.  Stay at home moms are blogging more and more so they can stay at home their children.  Some dads are joining the moms in the blogging world and are leaving the traditional 9 to 5.

Blog by number resources

Blog by number resources


Blogging is a great way for you to share your thoughts and opinions.

Let your voice be heard.

Teach something to the world.

You can also grow and nurture a community of like-minded people through your blog.

Here are some of my personal experiences as I have made my way through the world of blogging.  I quickly learned there are several moving parts to blogging. I will share a few blogging resources that I have found beneficial.

Hosting-Blogging Resource

SiteGround Web Hosting

SiteGround Web Hosting

I have been using SiteGround for several months. It has proven to be a great resource.  I am not at all tech savvy and the thought of having to learn a lot of technical jargon in order to blog is a deal breaker for me. My mind is just not wired that way and I can live with that.

Even though I am not techy, I can, however, ask questions and follow directions.  SiteGround has a great support team.  Whenever I call with a question, I am greeted by a pleasant knowledgeable person.  SiteGround will even help you transfer your domain.  SiteGround is known for optimal uptime, speed, and security.  Click the banner above to get more information about Siteground.

Theme-Divi Blogging Resource

Think carefully about your theme as well. The theme you select is another place to let your creative juices flow.  On the other hand, it is also a place where you can get bogged down with trying to figure out how to make things work. I have found Divi by Elegant Themes to be a wonderful theme. Divi has a great deal of flexibility but also is easy to navigate Click To Tweet.  Most of the elements are drag and drop but for those of you code experts, Divi is also a great outlet. there is an opportunity for you to use your coding skills.

In addition, you can keep up to date with additions to Divi Theme by subscribing to Elegant Themes Newsletter.  They are making wonderful new updates and information to the Divi Theme.  They have a pretty good support team as well.  Give the Divi Theme a try and let me know what you think.

There are plenty of Divi tutorials out there and but let me recommend Suzi Whitford of Start a Mom Blog. She explains many different elements of the Divi theme in step by step fashion with videos that are easy to follow.

Start a Mom Blog-Blogging Resource

Just another word about Suzi Whitford of Start a Mom Blog. I have found her tutorials to be exceptional. She uses video as well as worksheets to make every blogging step as easy as possible. Suzi is also open to answering questions.  She is a mom of three and very busy. But she will help you.  You can tell that she genuinely wants you to succeed in your blogging journey.

SiteGround and Pinterest

SiteGround and Pinterest

Suzi Whitford of Start a Mom Blog shares tons of great free and paid information to get you started on your blog.  She even helps with determining what type of blog you should write.  Her gentle teaching style gives you confidence as she takes you by the hand.  She provides many videos and worksheets to help you understand just how to put a blog together.

If you are considering starting a blog, I encourage you to check out Suzi’s Blog By Number Ebook


Blog by number fuide

Suzi Whitford’s Blog by Number Ebook

and her Income Journey Ebook




along with her Theme By Number resource



which features the Divi Theme.

I love her instruction and her digital resources.  I also love that she is a mom with three littles and she lets you see some of the business and reality of running a blog with young children.  This is an inspiration and an encouragement for all of you young moms.

Suzi’s Income Journey Blogging is full of money making strategies, time-saving tips, strategies to increase blog traffic as well some of the mistakes she has made along the way.

Even if you are not a young mom, the information is invaluable.

Pinterest-Blogging Resource

Along with the blogging information, you can check out Pinterest as a means of driving traffic to your blog.  You have worked hard on your blog and you want to share what you have created.  Pinterest is one way to get traffic to your blog.

Pinteresting Strategies

Pinterest Secret

I encourage you to check out Carly Campbell’s Pinteresting StrategiesThis is a manual pinning approach that is full of secrets and insight into how Pinterest works. Click To Tweet  The insights in this resource can help you gain the upper hand in the Pinterest game. She shares insights she has learned as she has many mistakes on Pinterest.  There is information in this book that will give insights that you won’t find other Pinterest books.

Be sure to check out the resources mentioned in this post and let me know what you think.  Post a comment or question in the comment section. I look forward to hearing how these resources have helped you in your blogging journey.



What are the Best Bibles for Children – One Determined Life

Giving our children the opportunity to read the Word of God is one of the greatest gifts we can give.  This is a gift that will impact them for years to come.  Reading the Bible to children is the best way to introduce them to Jesus. But sometimes it hard to know which Bible is the best. Read this post to find my top pics I search for a bible for the kids I look for versions that are easier for them to understand. They are too young to understand certain words and I want them to be able to relate to the Bible and enjoy reading it. The best way to do that is by choosing a bible that they can understand. Best Bibles for Children – One Determined Life

Click the link to read more suggestions on how to choose a children’s bible for your young readers.  You will be glad you did.

The Word of God: Plumb Line for Life





The Word of God is our plumb line.

A plumb line is a weight that is suspended by a string.  This is similar to a water level that helps someone doing construction determine if a board is perfectly level. These are standards by which we can measure something.  It is an objective look at something.

I can use a plumb line or a level to see if a particular object meets a specific standard. This is important when constructing a building.  If you don’t know if something is level or sitting at a right angle, you run the risk of an inferior construction.

The Word of God is our plumb line

Amos 7:8 says “The Lord said to me ‘What do you see, Amos?’ And I said, ‘A plumb line.’ Then the Lord said, ‘Behold I am about to put a plumb line in the midst of My people Israel.  I will spare them no longer.” This plumb line of the Word of God is a gift that we can build healthy, whole lives upon.

It is the standard by which we can measure our lives. I cannot stress the importance of being able to look to something outside of ourselves to gauge behavior.  We can fool ourselves into thinking that some sin is ok.  We, as human beings, weigh sins but the Lord does not.  For all have sinned and have fallen short of the glory of God. Romans 3:23 (KJV)

The Word of God provides clarity

People seemed to be confused about many things.  We live in an age where some believe that same-sex marriage is appropriate and gender is fluid  The Lord is not confused and His word does not express confusion Certain things don’t change and that helps us to know how to conduct ourselves.  When the boundaries are fluid and subject to change, we don’t have a sense of stability.

Borders, boundaries, and fences are put in place to keep dangerous things out and keep that which is within those boundaries safe. Stability provides security and it allows us to explore new things knowing that there are some things that do not need exploration.  Those are the things that have grave consequences and could cause harm.

A former pastor of mine said: “experience is not the best teacher”. That statement has stayed with me and allowed me to know that I do not have to experience certain things to learn from them.  I can look to the experience of others that have made those mistakes or I can look to the Bible to gain instruction.

How do we know how to act?

There seems to be some confusion on how to conduct oneself.  How do we know right from wrong?

One of the ways that we can know how to act is to look to the Word of God.  Psalm 119:9 says: Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to thy word. (KJV) The New King James Version puts it this way; How can a young man cleanse his way? By taking heed according to Your word.

The Bible is not flaky on its authority.  It plainly states that it provides instruction for daily life and spiritual growth. Hebrews 4:12  For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

The Word of God, the Bible will read you if you let it.  It is alive and will point out areas in your life that need correcting, It will also bring you comfort and encouragement.

2 Tim 3:16

2 Tim 3:16


Money and Wealth


  • Proverbs 13:11 Wealth gotten by vanity shall be diminished: but he that gathereth by labor shall increase.



  • Proverbs 13:22 A good man leaveth an inheritance to his children’s children: and the wealth of the sinner is laid up for the just.



It may take work to increase wealth but it can be had.  It is not only money that we are talking about here.  Families that are strong and connected have immeasurable wealth.


    • Ephesians 5:21  Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God. Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord.  For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the savior of the body.  Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything. Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it.


Yep, this passage requires a lot more comment than what I am going to offer here.  There will be more.  Keep your eyes open.  Let me just point out that there is a sacrifice on both parts in the marriage covenant Click To Tweet and the husband has a great responsibility to his wife.  This passage connects that the love that a man is to show his wife is the love that Jesus showed the church.  That love sent him to the cross. Much to think about when entering into the covenant of marriage.

Raising Children



    • Gen 18:19 For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the Lord, to do justice and judgment; that the Lord may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him.


The creator of the Universe, God, took note of Abraham’s character and saw that Abraham was going to teach his children about the one true and living God.  The Lord treasured this and entered into a covenant that impacts the entire world even to this day.

Fathers and mothers have a heavy responsibility to the children in their household.  This is where the young ones will learn of the Lord. We must be about our Father’s business when it comes to our children.

Wisdom and Education


  • Proverbs 1:7 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction.



We have seen a lot of foolish behavior come to light over the last several weeks and months.  I believe we will see more as the day progress.  It would be wise to remember that what is done in the dark will come to the light.

This is a good thing although it may be uncomfortable. Allowing the Word of God to shine on us and our conduct is the path to a healthy life.  Following the Word of God will in no way harm us but will, in fact, protect us.  Be encouraged and embrace the Word of God.

How has the Word of God brought clarity or healing in your life?  Please share in the comment section.


Alternatives to Higher Education: What’s Your Plan?

Parenting is a challenge as any parent will tell you.  Education is one of the parenting issues that consume a large portion of a parents thought life. Once parents have gotten their child through elementary, middle and high school, what do they do about college?

Related Post:  6 Key Insights from Homeschool Moms

We will explore some alternatives to higher education.

Parents are concerned about the high cost of college, the pressure to fit in and conform, or making it through to graduation.

Interestingly, parents have held to the idea that the traditional four-year college is the only path after high school.   There are some alternatives to higher education that parents should consider.

College Debt

Many schools offer some level of scholarship or grants to students.  This is helpful to a point.  Grants and scholarships are not paid back. However, students find that there is still a gap in tuition they are responsible for.

If three-quarters of the bill is covered by grants and scholarship that leaves one-quarter of the cost for the family to come up with. If that is $25,000, that amount is multiplied by four in order to get to graduation. For most students that means school loans that will follow the student for several years after graduation.

I am not saying the students and families should not pay for education.  The cost of college is increasing at a rate that is alarming and debilitating.  Look closely at the major you want to pursue.  There may be alternatives to working in the field of your choice.

Debt looms heavy over the heads of young people long after they have left the halls of higher learning.

In addition, many students that enter college with the intention of earning a four-year degree, do not graduate. The college may not be a good fit for the student or traumatic events can cut a college career short.

Tragically, young adults are left to pay off debt that represents time spent on the college campus but no diploma. Click To Tweet Without the diploma, their chances of landing a higher paying job can seem slim.

The future looks very bleak for these students. That’s a terrible way to begin life as an adult.  Debt hinders these young adults’ chance of having a disposable income to purchase a car or home.  The pattern is a cruel one and needs to be changed.

Pressures of College Life

Furthermore, students face pressures that lead to poor decisions that impact the rest of their lives.

Students will be challenged on many different fronts:

  • time management
  • homesickness
  • drug and alcohol experimentation and use
  • premarital sex
  • situations that challenge long-held values

Parents send their children off to college with the hopes that their child will hold onto the values instilled in them but temptations often overpower solid foundations.

The cyber world provides an opportunity for young adults to dive into a dark and dangerous world. The hope is that students will exercise good judgment in this area.

(Get this post in PDF form and receive my Family Tips Series)



Monitoring your Child’s cell phone


6 apps parents need to be aware of

6 apps parents need to be aware of

Teenagers and pre-teens are busy maturing and growing.  Responsibilities increase and these young people are getting prepared for lives as young adults. As they make their way through the pre-teen and teen years they will go through the mind-field of 6 dangerous cell phone apps before they reach adulthood.

It doesn’t matter what kind of phone your child has.  iPhones, as well as androids, have plenty of apps that can cause problems. (I know I have missed some of the current apps. Please feel free to place new apps in the comment section of this post.)

It is difficult being a teen.

Here is a little story to illustrate the point. Charlotte had butterflies in her stomach.  Would Jared think she was cute?  Would he like her?  Her face grew hot as she thought about the text she sent him.  The text said that she hoped that they could be friends and maybe hang out sometime. “Why did I push send?”  she sobbed. “He’s not going to like me!” “I’m so stupid!” The familiar ding for notifications went off as she held her head in her hands.  Jared responded to her text.  She could barely bring herself to read it.  Will she have a new boyfriend or will she be the butt of many jokes at the beginning of her second year in middle school? Teen and pre-teens are trying to find their way in a very confusing world. It can be hard fitting in and finding friends.  Families can make the transition a little easier.

Texting: Just the tip of the iceberg

Teen emotions run high and impulsive behavior runs equally high. Being an emotional pre-teen or teenager along with possessing a cell phone can be a recipe for disaster. It is true that cell phones can be a great way to stay connected to parents if teens are in after-school sports or have a job.

It’s comforting to know that you can text your son or daughters phone and know you can reach them when you are a little worried about them. You can make sure they are safe.  

Strong connections in families are the saving grace in our crazy society. No doubt about it. Cell phones can make communication easier. It is sad to have to admit that the cell phone can also be our greatest hindrance to communication. It is not unusual to see teens, as well as adults, face down in their cell phones not talking to one another.

Some families have rules to promote conversation at dinner by not allowing the cell phone to come to the table with them.  This is a start but there is more involved when dealing with the reality of cell phones.

Cell phone apps

An app on cell phones is like fires with a hamburger. You are, most likely, going to have several apps on your cell phone.  Some of the apps are used for budgeting to tracking your heart rate after exercise.

They are convenient and handy. They can also build walls between people and lure young people into dangerous territory.

Cell phone apps can lay the foundation for trouble if parents are not aware.  Even if you are aware, what do you do to protect your children?

Here are just 6  cell phone apps or online platforms that parents need to be aware of if they hope to keep the connection alive, healthy, and active between their child.  It is up to parents and concerned adults to determine whether these apps and cell phones along with tablets are dangerous to our young people. The dangers that can be found in these apps is in how they are used.

Many of the apps just provide a convenient and often cheap means of communication.  Most of these apps are free and can be used for connecting with other people.  Some of the apps have filters where you can make funny faces and just be silly. The problem lies in the ability for teens to have conversations or share pictures that parents know nothing about.

Sometimes these conversations happen with people that the parents don’t know.  More importantly, some of these individuals mean to do our children harm.

List and description of dangerous apps.

  • Snapchat– is an app that can be used to snap a brief video and then the video self-destructs. The idea is that funny or silly videos are snapped and then they go away.  With that thought in mind, people take more chances on what they are snapping. The user may choose to snap a nude video or something else inappropriate because they feel that it will be gone in a short period of time.  The problem is that people can do a screen grab and post the video anywhere they like.  Therefore, the video then lives on.


  • Snapmap-Snapchat has updated the app. There is now a map that reveals the location of the user.  You can put the app on ghost mode but the problem is there is the potential of someone not known to the user seeing exactly where the user is.  This is another layer of vulnerability that parents need to be aware of.


  • Whatsapp-is an app that can be used to text privately. It is quickly gaining in popularity because it allows you to text free.  Users can use the app in groups or one to one conversations.  There is an encryption feature that prevents anyone from seeing the conversations of the users.  This leaves teens vulnerable to adults that would abuse their trust and also it puts teens at risk for bullying from other teens.  It is difficult to deter the inappropriate conversations when you cannot verify what is being said.

  • Kik-is another messaging app. The attraction for teens is that Kik has an internal web browser so users can play games, watch videos, listen to music and check out content on Reddit.  One of the concerning aspects of Kik is that there is an internal app call Flirt. This exposes teens to others online that may mean them harm. Kik is anonymous which means you do not need to link your account to a phone number, nor do you need to use your real name.  Children are vulnerable to abuse and kidnapping as they engage with adults they do not know. There are stories of the anonymous adults posing as young girls persuading other young girls to send nude pictures and then using those pictures to threaten these young girls.


  • Omegle-is a platform that doesn’t require an app. You can go directly to the site.  Users are paired with others users at random so the potential for inappropriate chats and adult conversation is likely.  This again, is dangerous for teens since their judgment is not fully developed.


  • Whisper– Users on whisper are sharing their deepest darkest secrets because the platform allows you to be anonymous. The rants or comments can be liked by other anonymous users. Users can private message other users and lure them into potentially dangerous situations.


  • Instagram-Finstagram Many of us are familiar with Instagram but have you heard of Finstagram.  Finstagram is the fake version of Instagram that can be created to hide certain chats and photo shares.  This allows users to have their known persona and secret account in order to keep parents from being able to check on their children.

The possibility of creating fake accounts on other platforms is very real. Parents need to know that they may be checking their child’s online accounts but there are ways for the children to create fake accounts that go un-monitored.

Above everything that we can do in the natural, we must share our faith in Jesus with our children and believe the Lord for their lives and salvation.  If our children have a strong relationship with the Lord, they are going to hear the Holy Spirit as He tugs on their hearts when temptations swirl.

This is not to say they won’t make mistakes, but they are likely to think about their actions more carefully when they know their actions may displease the Lord. The underlying problem with these cell phone apps and platforms is that it provides an avenue where parents have a difficult time staying involved and connected to their children’s lives.

Children get the idea that their parents aren’t very smart or are to busy for them. This disconnect only deepens with the abuse of these apps and the potential for seeking connection and understanding from someone other than a parent increases.

Parental Monitoring

There are some things that you, as parents, can do to provide safe boundaries for your children. The first thing you need to do is make sure that the lines of communication are open between you and your child.

They need to know that you are not out to catch them. Teens need to understand that you want them to have good healthy fun lives. Our job, as adults in the lives of these teens and younger, is to communicate that we love them and we want the best for them.

They must trust that. I would also encourage you to think carefully about your child’s age.  Just because your 8-year-old child’s friend has a phone of his or her own, that doesn’t mean that it is time to give your child a phone.

You decide.

You are the parent and you are not running a popularity contest.  This is so critical. Children are looking for you to parent them, not to friend them.  It takes courage and strength but you are responsible for the safety of your child.

Oh, and by the way, you are the one that is going to be paying the bill. When you feel that your child is old enough to handle a phone, then make that step. This next piece of advice applies to cell phones as well as tablets.  All of those screens need to be monitored. The sheer volume of time our children spend on screens is an issue that must be dealt with.

Too much screen time is simply not healthy.  Just to point to one issue, studies have shown that too much screen times leads to obesity. I would encourage you to check out Jay Andrews from Reviews Across the Board.  He has developed several videos that showcase some the current monitoring devices that can help you keep in touch with what your children are watching and who they are talking to. You may need to limit your child’s screen time. You can do this with a device called Circle with Disney.

I (Rosemerry Blash) am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to  This means that if you go to Amazon from my site and make a purchase, I receive payment from Amazon. This will not cause an increase in cost to you but it does help support this blog. This is a parental monitoring device that has filters and controls that you can use to help you and your child create an onscreen atmosphere that is limited and safe. Taking this precautions when they are young will help equip them for the older years when they need to monitor themselves.

As they mature, they will have the ability to make good choices based on values that you have instilled in them. As I mentioned earlier, parenting is not for the faint of heart but it is one of the most rewarding things you will do in your life.  Creating a healthy home atmosphere for your child will ensure healthy generations in the future.  This, in turn, will impact our culture and society.

Have you had any concerns with apps your children are using?  What have you found to be helpful in dealing with this issue? Please share your comments in the comment section.

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