Halo Found Hope by Helo Matzelle | A story of hope, healing and a heroic journey of faith!

This story of hope and faith in the midst of great physical and medical adversity is sure to encourage you in your faith. Helo Matzelle’s Halo Found Hope is a must-read. Machines beeping, the blur of medical staff running, a crash cart whizzing into an ICU room—was there any hope? Halo Found Hope is the story of a beautiful, busy wife and mother of three whose life changes instantly with the diagnosis of a rare brain tumor.

Halo Found Hope

A story of hope… and miracles… and life.

This is exactly how I would describe Halo Found Hope, the memoir of Helo Matzelle..

Try to imagine what you would do if you were told you have a brain tumor – I can’t honestly imagine how I would take news like this. How would I tell my family? How would news of a brain tumor affect my faith?

Halo Found Hope is an inspiring story of a young woman who, after a diagnosis of a brain tumor, lives through some very intense moments. I have a lot of respect for a woman who goes through such a serious surgery, then after coming through it without an incident – just to suffer way more than expected when her brain began to swell, causing one problem after another.

But this book is about much more than just a rare, one-in-a-million type of brain tumor and how it affects Helo and her family, it is about how God reveals himself to her – and how her faith is tried – and how she survives the problems that occurred after the brain surgery and the trials she faced on her journey back to the life she previously lived.

If you want your faith to grow, read Helo’s story… I heartily recommend it.

OK... yes, this one gets 5 stars too. I may have to go back and give the first one 5 stars too...



Halo Found Hope(December 2014)

Machines beeping, the blur of medical staff running, a crash cart whizzing into an ICU room—was there any hope?

A young woman lay, packed in ice, as doctors attempted to somehow stop the swelling in her brain that threatened to take her life… and her family waited.

Six days turned into eight weeks. She awoke to discover that she was not the same. She saw two of everything, couldn’t feel half of her face, couldn’t hear from one ear, and could not speak. She couldn’t even tell anyone that she felt hopeless… or could she?

Halo Found Hope is the story of a beautiful, busy wife, and mother of three whose life changes instantly with the diagnosis of a rare brain tumor. An exceptional ENT, a brilliant neurosurgeon and a dedicated medical team tackle the tumor, setting off a series of unbelievable miracles. Helo’s story is not one of survival, or of salvaging a life through a broken body. It is not about endurance through pain, but victory because of it. While the family heard her silence, God heard her prayer. Helo’s story is simply this: Wherever you are and whatever you are going through, God is right there. He doesn’t need to be recognized by you, to be there for you. He can replace fear with courage and discouragement with determination, if you let Him. Helo did, and that is how she found hope.

Learn more and purchase a copy at Helo’s website.


You can learn more and buy this AMAZING book by clicking the links below:



Halo is offering a Kindle Fire to one lucky reader to celebrate the release of Halo Found Hope!


One grand prize winner will receive:

  • A Kindle Fire
  • Halo Found Hope

Enter today by clicking the icon below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on April 3rd. Winner will be announced April 4th on the Litfuse blog.

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Helo Matzelle

Helouise “Halo” Matzelle led a charmed life until receiving a shocking diagnosis in 2011 of a rare brain tumor sitting over the main artery in her brain. Matzelle’s passion is helping those who face various challenges and afflictions discover where true hope is found. She resides in Redmond, WA, with her husband and their three children.

Find out more about Helo athttp://halofoundhope.com/.

A MUST READ for every parent – whether you have girls or not | “Raising a Princess” by John Croyle

Raising A Princess by John CroyleFair warning: This book may make those of you with tender hearts – cry… hard.

Not all of us are called to be an advocate for children but all of us who follow Christ should do everything they can to stand up for and help any child who is not being treated the way they should – even if all we can do about that treatment is pray!

No. It’s not enough to just be a good parent to your own children, although that is one good way to show others how children should be treated.

It’s also very important to raise up our children the way we want them to raise up their own.

If more parents were properly informed of how to be the parent that God calls us to be, there would be a lot less children in need of wonderful organizations like the Big Oak Ranch.

I wholeheartedly recommend this book to EVERY parent! Having said that, it really doesn’t matter if you have children yet or not and it doesn’t matter if you have children but only boys…

Boys need the principles in this book just as much as girls. They also need to know to look for a young woman with all of these principles to marry one day. And they need to know how to incorporate these principles in their own children one day.

I feel it would be beneficial reading for parents who might not have had the best childhood themselves.

After reading this book with tears running down my cheeks, I realized that I was just as much in need of these principles as my daughter. I have spent so much of my life thinking very little of myself – because I listened, far too much, to the people in the world. Unfortunately the world is, far too often, full of people who do everything they can to drag you down.

And I didn’t have a clue that I needed to be praiseworthy, righteous, stable… I never knew how important it was to have a servant’s heart or Christ-like character. Nobody taught me – and it wasn’t really my mother’s fault either because nobody taught her either. And my dad is another story that I won’t go into here…

But since I became a mother, I have finally begun to follow God’s leading in my heart and in my life and with that has come a greater understanding of what being a mother means according to his word.

And I feel that this book will be a tremendous help in that endeavor. As it would be for any other parent who is trying to raise a Proverbs 31 woman!




What B&H has to say about Raising a Princess:

The Bible’s frequently referenced chapter of Proverbs 31 defines godly womanhood.

In Raising a Princess, greatly respected child advocate John Croyle asks, “How do you equip a daughter to become the kind of woman who is described in Proverbs 31?” After all, a woman like that doesn’t appear out of nowhere. Somebody taught her to rise before dawn to provide for her household. Somebody gave her the moral compass to reach out her hand to the needy. Somebody taught her the business principles that made it possible for her to consider a field and buy it. Perhaps most importantly, somebody gave her a sufficiently strong sense of self that made it possible for her to go out and make a huge impact on the world around her.

Raising a Princess begins with the end in mind. The end is the Proverbs 31 woman; Croyle keeps her squarely in view as he looks at what parenting techniques help the reader to raise a princess who will someday be a queen. Based on Croyle’s life and experience parenting more than 1,800 abused and neglected children at Big Oak Ranch, alongside his two biological children, the book is organized around eight virtues a parent can build in his or her princess:

P: Praiseworthiness
R: Righteousness
I: Initiative
N: Nurturing
C: Character
E: Empowered
S: Servant-Hearted
S: Stability


For more about the book, click HERE for the book page at B&H

Click HERE for ChristianBooks   HERE for GoodReads

For more information about BIG OAK RANCH, click HERE






While I did receive this book free in exchange for an honest review from B & H Publishing,
I plan to purchase as many of John Croyle’s other books as I can find because…
100% of the author’s proceeds from his books goes to the children at BIG OAK RANCH!


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I am sorry if any of the content is inappropriate.


“Balanced” – Finding Center as a Work-at-Home Mom | by Tricia Goyer – an Invaluable resource!


Working at home while raising kids and juggling a career and family responsibilities is no easy feat. Author and homeschooling mom Tricia Goyer shares her tips for finding balance among all your many hats as a mom.

I follow Tricia Goyer on Facebook and twitter and her blog and I LOVE her books!

And I must admit that I too wonder how she does all that she does – or I did, until I read this book.

“Balanced” is a wonderful way of finding out the answer to all those questions. Tricia shares with other work-at-home moms how she handles all the hats she has to wear.

I’m not going to spoil it for you but I will say this – At one point in the book, Tricia makes a point of saying:

“Disclaimer. This book may not be for you if: You are looking for a simple how-to manual with only schedules, outlines, and agendas. You don’t think your spiritual life impacts your work and home life. You think the whole balance issue depends on you and not on your dependence on God.

In this book, there is as much inner work I’m going to talk about as there are ideas, helps, and tips for balancing. Because as someone who’s been working at home nearly all of my twenty-four years as a parent, I’ve discovered three main things:

  1. What I do isn’t as important as who I am.
  2. What God can do in my life and what He’s capable of doing can be two very different things—I don’t want to limit Him.
  3. My outward goals are only reachable if I submit my inward soul to God.

If this sounds like a book you need, good. If not, I understand! We moms only have so much time. You need to spend your time, energy, and hard-earned money on a book that will meet your expectations.

Know that I’m praying God will speak to your heart through my story. I hope you’ll discover good advice to help you follow the dreams God has placed in your heart and be the wife and mom you’ve always wanted to be.” – Direct quote from Tricia Goyer (Balanced: Finding Center as a Work-at-Home Mom)

I really respect her for that. It takes a lot of courage and faith to present women with a reason they should not buy your book – and then to tell them you’re OK with it. Ironically, that makes me want to buy the book even more!

Tricia and I have a lot of different ideas on how a person should carry out their faith but they stem from the same ideals. And each Christian really does need to understand that they have a very different journey. Your walk with God is a very personal thing and what God calls one to do – he may not call another to. The point is this – I can see Tricia’s faith in every word. She may go about her faith and her witness differently than me but she definitely puts it all out there for the world to see!

As a homeschooling mom, I am encouraged by Tricia’s story and it definitely tells me I am doing something RIGHT! As a single mom, I am excited to see that Tricia gives so much of her time to help out other mothers – single and married alike. As a struggling writer, I am inspired by Tricia’s journey through writing and publishing and there is a lot of information in this book that benefits me greatly. Tricia talks about homeschool, faith, writing, family life and social media – and how to weave each one into your life without de-railing everything else.

And through it all is woven – a tale of faith so heartwarming, it renews my love for God all over again!

I whole-heartedly recommend this book to anyone who is a struggling writer, a work-at-home mom, a home-schooler, new to Christian faith, or someone who is just interested in Tricia Goyer’s life! It’s a great read – no matter your reasoning!


Click HERE to find out more about the blog tour and for other extras from Litfuse.

Click HERE to see the GoodReads book page.

Click HERE for Amazon.com, where you can purchase the eBook for Kindle!

Click HERE to visit Tricia’s website.

And when you’re done with all that, pop in to the Balanced Challenge

Click the following link to RSVP for the Balanced Facebook Party on March 10th – to chat with Tricia, win goodies and learn more about the Balanced Challenge!

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the Litfuse Publicity book review program in exchange for an honest review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

Happy Reading



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I am sorry if any of the content is inappropriate.

Through rose-colored glasses.

Have you ever watched a movie or read a book that absolutely tore you up until the last five minutes or 20 pages? large-rose-colored-glasses-on-beach

You slog through because you don’t like to quit or because you promised someone you would but it’s a struggle. And until those last five minutes or the last 20 pages, you were either bawling your eyes out or your stomach was all tied up in knots or both… But you got to the end and suddenly the whole thing was worth it.

The last bit completely changes your outlook on the whole thing.

You feel like you’re walking on air, the knots in your stomach disappear and everything is right with the world again.

And the funniest part of it is this: when you’re finished, when it’s all over – it’s a little difficult to remember just how upset or torn up you were. All you remember is that the end left you feeling all warm and fuzzy.

So that’s what sticks with you.

A lot of the books I have read recently have been this way. I go through the whole book worrying that someone is in big trouble or my heart breaks when the guy dumps the girl or vice versa or there’s danger around the corner and I know it’s coming but I can’t do anything but watch as it unfolds and the Hero is completely surprised!

But, for some strange reason, when the end comes and everything is once again right with the world – trouble blew over or went away, the guy got his girl or the villain was foiled… I completely forget about the gnawing in my gut or the feeling of despair that had me in tears for 100 pages.

So tell me, is it just me? Is it a girl thing – like how we forget the excruciating hours of labor we just went through when they place that little pink bundle in our arms…

Or is it something a lot of people do?

PLEASE tell me it’s something a lot of people do! I’m not a freak… I swear. PLEASE tell me I’m not the one weirdo who does this?

Things I have learned about reading, about life, about me Part 1 of 3


I am a reader, I am a writer, I am a teacher. But before all of these things, I am a mother. And being a mother is something that affects all of these things.

Would you like to know how?

I am doing this blog post a little differently. The following article is broken up into three parts. I will be posting it on my three different blogs since each part of it belong with the specific interests covered in that blog. It will make more sense if you read it in order but fee free to read it however you like.

And now: Things I have learned Part 1

Years ago, in a small Christian school, I learned about something called speed-reading. I also learned that it was something I did well — a little too well for some people. Reading has always been something I enjoy, something I do for fun. When other students were groaning about reading stories in English class, I didn’t hear them because I had already immersed myself in the world of that story.

It is true that when you do something a lot, you get better at it, you get faster at it. This was true for me in both ways. As a young woman, I could devour a full-length novel in an hour or two. I dove so deep into those words that the outside world ceased to exist for me. I was in the story and it would take a tremendous effort to drag me back out.

As I grew up and found other things to occupy my time, reading was less easy to sink into at a whim. I had school and I had to work to make money. And the older I grew, the more difficult school became.

For a time, reading was less a joy and more a necessity.

After college, I became a mother. For a long time after that, the only reading I did was food labels and instructions for putting together toys and baby furniture. Eventually I was able to find time for reading again, in small doses (I’ll take whatever I can get). With motherhood, I had to find a new way to read, a new way to explore those worlds. I no longer had the luxury of sinking into a story and tuning out the rest of the world. I had one child and then two who might need me at any given moment. I began exploring bedtime reading. I discovered very quickly that I can exist on little or no sleep. So I used the late hours as reading time. Why would I sleep when I could read!

I am not someone who will quickly choose a movie over a book. I can see the world in my head. Why would I NEED to see it on a screen?

Especially when they get it wrong so often.

Not too long ago, a good friend turned me onto Amish fiction and I am so glad she did. I enjoy it like I never thought I could. Who would think reading about the Amish would be so wonderful and exciting? Aren’t the Amish boring? Their lives consist of praying, working and behaving . . . right? Wrong. There is so much area inside and outside of those three things that we never consider. But trust me when I say, whether they are like us or not, they are immensely interesting and exciting!

And I find it so ironic that now, I have a new challenge that threatens my love of reading.

Go HERE to read Part 2


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God Bless You!