Dear Millennial, by Chelann Gienger

Book Review: Dear Millennial, by Chelann Gienger

• • • • • • • ► “You have a unique purpose.”

It’s a simple thought. But when you press pass the surface, this statement has power behind it. Because if we each have a one-of-a-kind purpose, then we each have a mission, one that only we can accomplish.

Dear Millennial, brings these abstract principles to concrete reality with examples of purpose in everyday life, ways of getting motivated and accountable for action, and stories of the tough going on when it’s tough. The book takes the reader from the quote above in the opening chapter to the recipe for living out that purpose.

Chelann Gienger

Chelann Gienger

• • • • • • • ► Purpose and finding your own

The book’s subtitle is “A compass to defining your unique purpose, pursuing a life of fulfillment, and building a legacy.” True to those words, the author, Chelann Gienger, helps readers find exactly what they are passionate about. Chelann starts by giving examples of personal mission statements. Next, she talks about values. The examples she shares inspired me to sit down and create my own mission statement and values.

• • • • • • • ► Nurturing motivation

As an entrepreneur, I make quicker progress toward my goals if I am motivated to reach them. Reading Dear Millennial, made me excited to be intentional about achieving my goals and connecting with others who are also pursuing their own goals. Plus, Chelann reminded me why we reach out and make things happen. If one of my goals is to help others (yes), then reaching my goals becomes a win-win situation: my own dreams are fulfilled, and I have aided others in their own as well.

Dear Millennial, cover

• • • • • • • ► Real life stories

Helping others is something Chelann takes seriously. A key feature of the book is her personal stories of real-life experiences. These passages of the book reminded me that success is often born of struggle. Stories on social media and reality TV shows don’t always show us the difficult parts of business, so to have someone tactfully relate the behind-the-scenes of being a business person was timely.

I’m grateful to Chelann for publishing this manual for individuals who have big dreams and want to actively progress toward them. By illuminating the path she has walked, she leaves seeds of motivation to use in our own lives. I definitely recommend this book for adults of any age or as a family read-aloud.

• • • • • • • ► For more about Dear Millennial,

Check out Chelann’s website at:

Or, find her on Facebook or Instagram.

This is an unsponsored review to share a book I found insightful.

Black mortarboard from College Without the Campus

Book Review by Nicki Truesdell

Book Review & Giveaway by Nicki Truesdell


If you’ve been wanting to learn more about College Without the Campus and the topics it covers, check out this new book review from Nicki Truesdell. She explains how she and her family view college and then summarizes each section of the book. My favorite quote from the review is her thoughts about the later chapters of the book:

“Chapters 12 and 13 address concerns about socialization and credentials, as well as life after college. As a homeschool parent, I love her perspective on the socialization issue. Since Hillary’s goal was to earn a degree, college wasn’t meant to be an “experience,” but rather a focused time of learning. I wholeheartedly agree with her.”


You can enter to win one of two copies of College Without the Campus at Nicki Truesdell’s website: The giveaway is open now through April 7th, 2017.

Book Review: Homeschooling for College Credit by Jennifer Cook-DeRosa

• • • • • • • ► Meet Jennifer Cook-DeRosa

I was doing college research on when I first learned about author Jennifer Cook-DeRosa. Because she was both a parent and someone who had earned a bachelor’s degree in social sciences using distance learning techniques, she had experience coaching her teens in earning college credit as well as taking credit-by-exam tests. (Cook-DeRosa has since gone on to earn her master’s degree.) I appreciated her regular posts pertaining to Thomas Edison State University, accreditation, and credit-by-exam tests such as CLEP.

In 2012, Cook-DeRosa published Homeschooling for College Credit. This 200-page book guides parents through implementing courses worth college credit into their high school students’ schedules. She begins the book by encouraging parents that teaching high school is doable and then lists some foundational, but critical, information about college courses.

• • • • • • • ► Transferring College Credits

One of the most memorable stories she shares is how the credits she earned for her AOS (Associate in Occupational Studies) in Culinary Arts did not transfer when she went back to college later in life. Not being able to transfer credits was one of my fears about distance learning, and Cook-DeRosa explains how to avoid this (see chapter 3).

Another helpful tool in Homeschooling for College Credit is her four-year high school planning templates. These are designed to schedule credit earning into your high schooler’s curriculum while meeting the requirements for high school at the same time. Essentially, they’re dual credit plans.

Later in the book Cook-DeRosa covers test resources, test-taking skills, making a high school transcript, paying for college, and taking your credit to a college. Also provided is a list of things she prefers in a college and ten colleges that meet those preferences.

• • • • • • • ► A Valuable Resource

Throughout the book, Cook-DeRosa’s experience as a parent of homeschooled children and as a distance learner give the reader plenty to absorb and put into use. Her love for learning, stretching the family’s dollar, and helping other parents jump-start their teen’s college education make this book a handy resource.

For more information about Homeschooling for College Credit, you can preview the book on and visit the Homeschooling for College Credit Facebook page, which is updated regularly with tips and distance learning news.

This is an unsponsored review to share a book I found helpful.

Black mortarboard from College Without the Campus

Just Do Something with succulent plant

Book Review: Just Do Something by Kevin DeYoung

I was browsing books on Amazon when I saw Just Do Something in the “Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought” list. I clicked on it, read about it, and put the title on my reading list. A few months later after the to-read pile in my nightstand had shrunk, I ordered Just Do Something and began reading.

The nearly pocket-size (5 x 7 x 5/16″) and length (143 pages) of the book made it easy to hold and easy to start. A person could read the book in one or two sessions. (Christmas happened in the middle of my read-through, so it was around six sessions for me!)

Through Kevin DeYoung’s succinct language, I was able to instantly grasp the focus and intention of the book: help young people seize the day to serve God without the fear and indecision that immobilize many of us.

DeYoung reminds readers that God has instructed us to ask for wisdom to make the large and small decisions of life. He writes, “Wisdom is the difference between knowing a world-class biologist who can write your papers for you and studying under a world-class biologist so that you can write the kind of papers he would write. Too many of us want God to be the world-class scholar who will write our papers and live our lives for us, when God wants us to sit at His feet and read His Word so that we can live a life in the image of His Son.” (page 91-92)

The best part of reading this book was the dissipation of some of the anxiety and self-condemnation I feel. Decision-making invites me to be anxious—what if I make the wrong choice? What if I decide too quickly? Or, too slowly? What if I should have asked for more advice?

Self-condemnation creeps in when I make a decision, experience a perfect fail, and then feel I should have known enough to make a different decision. Of course, this is pride. It’s equivalent to saying, “I, with my mortal, finite mind, can be prefect if I try hard enough.” As a Christian, I reject this with the belief that only God is perfect and unerring. I make mistakes. This should not lead me to condemn myself, but instead to draw ever closer to God and to praise him for his awesome power to work in my life beyond what I am able.

DeYoung also encourages readers to take responsibility for our decisions. He shares the story of when he had to make the decision to leave his Iowa church and move to Michigan to take a senior pastor position. He could have told the people who were angry that he was leaving that “If it were up to me, I would stay here…but as I’ve prayed, it’s been very clear to me that this is what the Lord wants.” He explains that while this kind of speech would have defused some of the people’s anger, it would not have been clear that DeYoung had the decision and the responsibility for leaving. “It would have been wrong for me to use God’s will as a way to remove my personal responsibility in the decision.”

As emphasized in Boundaries, there is freedom in knowing what each of us is responsible for and what we have control over. God gives us a brain. We are to ask for wisdom and then use it to live boldly.

The essence of Just Do Something is to look at the big picture: stop nitpicking on the non-moral, non-ethical decisions; focus on the big goals: love, moral purity, faith, and things directly commanded in Scripture.

I recommend this book for an infusion of motivation for living the Christian life and as a reminder to walk in the freedom that comes from having God as number one in our lives.