So Many Books and Not Enough Time

  Where do I start? I have so many books calling out to me! Do you love books as much as I do? My mom is a varocious reader.  My mom loves history, biographies and detective series.You know the 800 page David McCullough masterpieces of 1776John Adams, and The Great Bridge, the building of the Brooklyn Bridge? She breezes right through these. Lee Child’s Jack Reacher and Tony Hillerman’s Navahoe Mysteries? Yup, she has read every one in those series too. I love to read too. Although we might not always have the same favorites, she definately gave me the love for books. 
 So here is a small stack I have on my table waiting for me to open their pages. It is quite the variety. 

 First up is Lent by She Reads Truth. I love their beautiful books, cards, pictures, and daily readings. This book has led me through Lent with daily scripture readings and hymns along the way. 

 Next comes another study written by the ladies at She Reads Truth, Open Your Bible. I’m going through this eight week study with a dozen women in my home on Wednesday nights. The authors have given us this picture of a tree (the bible) that gives us food (spiritually), shelter, rest, wisdom, correction and hope. We all are given the invitation to climb this tree with its roots grounded deep in the soil and with limbs that reach out and high. This tree allows us to reach up to someone on a higher limb to seek help and wisdom and also to lean down to pull someone up. No matter where we are on this tree, whether just approaching the tree, climbing its branches or resting in its cover, it is for us, you and me, here and now. I’m sad to say that this Wednesdwill be our last gathering until next time.  

 Bees, you ask? Yup! Superman and I won a bee hive at a silent auction fundraiser this past fall. We thought it would be a great addition to the many fruit trees and grape vines we’ve planted at the farm. I’m quite excited to learning more. I’ll definately write about our adventures in beekeeping! 

 Oh my goodness. These four books are not very long in pages, but are making a huge impact in my thinking. Everyday Grace, by Jessica Thompson is reminding me “how to form strong, resilient bonds with people who, like me, are bound to mess up.” Tony Reinke a staff writer for wrote  The Joy Project. The cover of the book says “A true story of inescapable happiness.” Doesn’t that sound wonderful? Joy isn’t something we search for or create or even plan for. Joy was created before we took our first breath. It is in our DNA. Our hearts and souls were created for joy. Unfortunately we’ve put a big wet blanket over it with fear, self doubt and worldly ambition. I want that overwhelming light of joy to shine brightly. I want it.From Good to Grace, by Christine Hoover is a book I need to read over and over again. I so often feel like I’m not good enough. I try so hard to be a good wife, good mother, good daughter, good friend “hoping for that ‘atta-girl’ from God, some heavenly assertion that I matter. In the process, I find myself living by a lesser Gospel: the gospel of goodness. It’s a gospel without grace and in the end, it’s good for nothing. Hoover helps us to start asking ” What does God want for me?” Instead of “What does God want from me?” The last book in this stack, which I really want to start is by Jen Wilken, Women of the Word. The bible is to be read intellectually and emotionally. This book hopefully will teach me how to study the bible with both my mind and my heart. 

 Yea. You knew I had to be reading something about crafts. It sounds crazy, but I really think I’m suppose to be selling my stuff. I’m a newborn crying baby just out of the womb with this whole selling business. I have no idea about anything, but I’m willing to learn, take a few chances and give it a go. I have another craft show I’m doing in a couple of weeks. I’ll let you know how it went. Again, I’d love to be able to use this passion I have for creating to help others in their missions. Last time I was able to give over $200 to a small nonprofit here in town that teaches English to immigrants, helps them assimilate to the area and shares the gospel. 

 This is a heavy one. As a Christian I must know. I’ve read the first few chapters and couldn’t put it down. I need many hours of quiet concentration to get every little bit.  

 The book club I’m in discussed this quirky book, A Man Called Ove, by Fredrik Backman. It touches all of our emotions: sadness, happy, laughter and sympathy. I loved it. 

 This months read is, All the Single Ladies, by Dorothea Benton Frank. I have to say that this may not have been my most favorite of hers, but I always enjoy a book set in my favorite city, Charleston. It’s a story that didn’t seem to take much imagination for the writer. But on the whole it was an enjoyable, easy read. With all the yuck going on in the world, sometimes I just like nice and easy. 

 At night I’ve been curling up with this gem of a book, The Dressmaker, by Rosalie Ham. Set in a small town in Australia, Tilly comes home to take care of her mother, Mad Molly. The townspeople with all of their crazy personalities is making this a funny read. I’m looking forward to watching it on the big screen! Anyone want to go with me?

With all these books, is there any wonder why the laundry is piled high? Oh well, I’ll get to it at the end of this next chapter….heehee.

What books are you reading?

Thanks for dropping by! 


Nothing New Here

IMG_7617I bought a few 1950’s magazines and was flipping through them. You know what? Nothing really has changed.

IMG_7622There were decorating articles.

IMG_7579Beauty tips…I’m loving the feathered hat thingy.

IMG_7586Relationship tips…Don’t brush your hair at dinner…good advice.

IMG_7607Early Pinterest ideas on hosting the perfect party.

IMG_7621Of course fashion. Sleeves are in!

IMG_7603I love the way these ladies are standing, actually showing how regular moms romp at the beach. (HELLOO ! Can you say awkward stance?!?)

IMG_762315 Gauge Stockings?! Dang.

IMG_7573I say Double Dang.

Nope things really haven’t changed in 60 years. Women are still worried about our marriages, our homes and our perceived beauty. As you know, a few weeks ago I wanted to kick start my body into losing weight. I wrote about it here, here, here.So now a week off of the detox and I think I’ve made a new turn in my life. A few things I learned from those two weeks were…

IMG_7602Pills, drinks and smooth marketing isn’t going to help me lose the weight I have gained.

IMG_7631Only a buggy full of veggies, fruits, nuts, seeds, lean meats and ingredients I can pronounce can lead to a healthy body. (I see the Jiffy Pnut butter, probably not very healthy. But honest to goodness, it was requested by Superman.)

IMG_7616Juicing is great, but it can’t be the only form of nutrition. God actually created everything we, as human beings, need to thrive, not just survive. I’ve gotten rid of the “All or Nothing” mentality. This isn’t a “diet” I’m on. I’m on a “Live-it”. (I just made that up.) Die-it means to take something away. Live-it opened my eyes to all of the things I’ve been missing out on- the great taste of fresh! I’ve greatly reduced sugar. I can’t honestly say it’s completely out, but it is so much gone that my taste buds have changed. I don’t have the cravings for it and I can only tolerate a small bit.

IMG_7528This creamy broccoli soup is delicious and oh so nutritious! Simple ingredients: cauliflower, broccoli, chicken stock, coconut milk, salt/pepper and a few seeds. I actually don’t miss the gooey cheese I used to put in it.

IMG_7571When I get done with a workout or a game of tennis, a smoothie like this makes it all worth while. This one is what I call my “Chocolate Covered Strawberry”: almond milk, frozen strawberries, handful of super greens, protein powder, chia seeds and cacao powder. Yummo!

IMG_7632Going out to lunch with my girlfriends isn’t hard. Look at this awesome salad I had at Panera!

IMG_7641I was so stuck on the idea that I had to be able to run a 5K or nothing. Well, my knee began to hurt. But you know what? I could walk until my knee recovered.

IMG_7642Or hit the gym for a class or two.

IMG_7644How did Marilyn have such a great figure? She worked out! If I’m serious about getting fit, then I have to be intentional about my day. I must eat foods that are good for me and move my body in such a way that I get my heart rate up and build muscle.

IMG_7633Not only did I learn more about nutrition, I lost 8 pounds that week. I have a ways to go, but I feel like my body has broken through that wall. I’ve been able to cut back on my Prilosec. My skin is not as dry. No more constipation. I have more energy and feel lighter.

We went to Charleston to meet MC’s soon-to-be in-laws and ate some amazing food. On Monday morning, I weighed myself to see that I had gained back 3 pounds. I’m not in a panic. Not living the All-or-Nothing life, I know what to do to get back on track. If I can live 80% of my life eating healthy and allowing 20% for slips and celebrations, I’m ok with that.

IMG_1011I will never look like her.

IMG_7647Or like Bonnie here, sitting on her husband, Chuck’s lap as they look at their wedding photos a year earlier. (I’m trying to imagine me sitting on Superman’s lap like this…brahaha! Poor Superman wouldn’t be able to breathe.)

IMG_5256I can be me.

IMG_7636Thanks for dropping by!