September 22, 2009

What's on My Nightstand:September

What's On Your Nightstand

I've gotta say, when I looked back on my Nightstand entry for August, I was so excited because I read everything on the list! I know! Well, CJ & I are still reading A Young Woman's Guide to Making Right Choices: Your Life God's Way, because we're taking our time to read and discuss a little each night before she goes to bed. Still, I'm claiming a victory.

I just finished reading the first two books in the Defiance Texas Trilogy, Daisy Chain and A Slow Burn. Excellent reads, both of them. My reviews will be coming at 5 Minutes for Books soon.

So what's waiting on my nightstand?


~The Missionary

~My Hands Came Away Red

~The Moon Looked Down

~Rooftops of Tehran


~Religions of the Stars: What Hollywood Believes and How It Affects You

~Spiritual Mothering: The Titus 2 Model for Women Mentoring Women

What books are in your future? Leave me a comment here, or click over to 5 Minutes for Books and link up your own entry.

Happy Fall, Y'all!

September 11, 2009


Originally written October 2001.

Lord, I have heard of your fame; I stand in awe of your deeds, O Lord. Renew them in our day, in our time make them known; in wrath remember mercy...I heard and my heart pounded, my lips quivered at the sound; decay crept into my bones, and my legs trembled. Yet I will wait patiently for the day of calamity to come on the nation invading us.
--Habakkuk 3:2, 16

Where were you when you first heard about the madness that struck our country on September 11, 2001? I was sitting at my desk, caught up in my daily routine, when I heard of the first crash into the World Trade Center. At first, I brushed the news off as just a “freak accident”. Checking with CNN, I quickly learned about the second hit. My work forgotten, I became engrossed in following the latest developments. As the hour passed, I could hardly believe the mass chaos and devastation unfolding as I was watched. Indeed, as I sat glued to the internet and the television, realizing the magnitude of this tragedy, my “heart pounded, my lips quivered at the sound.” I realized that life will never be the same again. Days passed. When I pondered this crime & the ramifications for our world, I was astounded by Satan’s sheer evilness. Obviously, I had underestimated the true nature of his spirit. Suddenly, “decay crept into my bones, and my legs trembled” at the horror which he had perpetrated.

Six weeks later, the Lord gave me this passage of Scripture which has not just spoken, but shouted, to my soul. I stand amazed at God’s timeliness! I struggled with putting my feelings into words, but He has given me the most accurate description of the emotions that have flooded my heart since this tragedy. He has also reminded me that He is still capable of performing deeds that will make us stand in awe; all we have to do is ask. Oh! how we need to be asking!

Finally, God has reminded me that He is in control. Justice is His, and His will shall be done. Hijackers do not have the last word. Biological warfare does not have the last word. Terror itself does not have the last word. And so, like Habakkuk, I will wait patiently...for I know that My God reigns!

September 10, 2009

10 on the 10th - September Edition

I haven't participated in Mer's 10 on the 10th in a while, but her list today was so fun that I'm totally copying it. So, here are 10 things that I'm enjoying right now:

1. Cooler temps. Praise Jesus, Amen.

2. College Football. My alma mater probably couldn't beat a high school team this year, but I enjoy watching SEC football.

3. The NFL season opens tonight...with my beloved Steelers playing the Titans. In case you hadn't guessed, football is my favorite sport.

4. Reading this book as part of Joanne's Read + Chat + Live. There's still plenty of time to join us, so come on!

5. My Senior High Girls' Sunday School class. I really have a bunch of awesome girls, and I seriously heart them!

6. CJ. My girl started middle school Tuesday. After the reality of that hit (and I shed just a couple of tears), I realized how much she's grown over the summer. There are still plenty of days with pre-teen attitude, but she's also assuming more responsibility around the house. LAtely, she's wanted to help cook practically every dinner...more accurately, she's wanted me to help her cook. I'm not complaining!

7. Pumpkin Muffins. We just made our first batch Monday.

8. Getting back into a routine. I enjoy the laid back, non-scheduled days of summer for a while, but I do love the routines we've established in our home in the past two years. Still trying to keep things peaceful and simple!

9. My favorite season. I'm an autumn and winter girl.

10. The progress we're making on the long last! We're 2 months in, and things have been S.L.O.W. But it looks like things are finally starting to move in the right direction. Honestly, it hasn't been so bad sharing a bathroom and having the contents of our closet stuffed into our room. (I guess Peru gave me some perspective on that.) We've been able to make some changes to make things more open/functional/pretty. And I've learned that we had WAY TOO MANY clothes! I told R that if we can live without the clothes we stored in the attic during this time, then we should just take them to consignment instead of trying to cram them back in. Thankfully, he agrees. Funny, our closet was the one area I never finished purging. I kept putting it off. I guess God had other plans.

If you've stuck with me this long, head over to Meredith's to see the other 10 on the 10th posts. But first, leave me a comment and let me know what you're enjoying these days.

September 4, 2009

Happy Birthday, Sis!

My first memory of her is watching my mom bathe her in the kitchen sink of our outdated farmhouse. Tiny with a head full of dark hair, she was the complete opposite of me. After all, I was a mature 5 1/2 (ALMOST 6) year old with princess-golden hair ('s my story, so let me embellish a little!). I was fascinated by her little movements and sounds. And I was happy to have my very own LIVE doll baby!

Years went by. It wasn't much fun to have a toddler always dragging out my toys and putting them in places I couldn't find them. It really wasn't fun when I was stuck at Brownies one night until a family friend finally came to pick me up because my parents had the entire neighborhood searching for her. She decided to play hide-and-seek with my mom. Tucked under the hanging clothes in our closet, she heard my mom frantically calling her name & became too afraid to come out. My parents were too concerned with finding her that they didn't even think about me sitting on the steps at the Brownie shack, feeling very alone and very forgotten. Suddenly, I was NOT fascinated by her anymore!

Then came her "artsy" period. She bleached her jeans, dyed her hair & CUT MY CLOTHES. I could only stay out past curfew if I was picking her up from the skating rink (which I still, to this day, don't understand). She resisted my attempts to mother her (I wonder why?!). She did NOT want to be like me in any way, shape or form. I was the "golden child". She was the "black sheep". I studied. She socialized. I worked. She played. I obeyed (mostly). She rebelled with everything in her. We were polar opposites.

Flash forward through the squabbles, hurt feelings and words that should've never been spoken. I went to college and returned home to work. We both married. She had a son so much like her that every time I saw him, I was overwhelmed by memories of our childhood (just the good ones). Then she had a daughter. Six months later, I gave birth to CJ. And there she was, at the hospital, holding my baby and grinning from ear to ear. I knew our relationship would be forever changed.

Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another,"What! You too? I thought I was the only one!" ~ C.S. Lewis

Throughout the past eleven years, my sister & I have been through a lot together. We've swapped war stories. I've given advice & she's listened. She's given advice & I've listened. I suddenly realized that younger doesn't mean not wiser, and older doesn't mean I know it all. We've fought battles together, spent hours on the phone, and even joked about moving our families to Alaska together (I'm still up for that, by the way!). She loves and respects my husband. Of course, we're crazy about the kids. And I would lay down my life for her.

The difference in our ages often means we don't share the same childhood memories, so our friendship is largely based on the women we've become as adults. Still, she's the only other person raised full-time in my home. We share DNA and a history no one else will ever understand. It took a long time to realize that. You see, God made us sisters. Then, when we were ready, He made us friends.

Happy Birthday, Sis! My life is certainly more interesting because of you, and I wouldn't have it any other way ;-)

September 1, 2009

A Return to Guernsey

It's probably a good thing I don't own The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. If I did, I'd be tempted to read nothing else except for my very most favorite book all the time...foregoing all other books. (Not that I see a problem with that, mind you!)

Obviously, I adore Guernsey. After all, I've written an initial review, discussion questions, and another review. Seems I wouldn't have any more to say...and yet, somehow, I do. I wanted to answer one of my own questions - Who is your favorite character, and why?

Juliet is my favorite because she's so spunky and witty.

Dawsey is my favorite because he's so quiet, thoughtful, and shy.

Amelia is my favorite because she's such a mother-hen.

Eben is my favorite because he exudes a quiet strength (He is the one character I didn't get to know as well as I would've liked, though.)

Isola is my favorite because she's just so wacky.

If I hadn't returned the book to the library (sniff, sniff), I would give you the quote in Juliet's letter to Sidney that sums up my feelings. I'll just have to paraphrase..."I have fallen in love with two men, Eben & Dawsey. I want Amelia to adopt me, and I want to adopt Isola."

Then there is Elizabeth, who is no longer physically in Guernsey but who's in everyone's heart (even Juliet's). Elizabeth's presence reminded me of our last Bookclub read, Rebecca.

All in all, I was just as sad to leave Guernsey this time as I was the first. This book is definitely going on my Christmas list!

Want to read what others are saying about this fun book? Click on over to 5 Minutes for Books and join in the discussion!