Thursday, March 28, 2013

How That Reading List Crashed 'n Burned

Last week, I posted about all the wonderful books I planned to read during my spring break.

So far, total, I have read three pages. Maybe.

I did a few other, more worthwhile (gasp) things instead. For example, I spent some time on my collage campus. Because I am student teaching from home, I have been on campus only two occasions this semester. I visited with a few friends, played games (Scrabble, Skee-Ball, Dutch Blitz), began watching two movies (Two Towers, and Sherlock Holmes, Game of Shadows. We didn't finish either of them), made food (you should try this), and marveled that I wasn't reading. I was also invited to a prayer service at a local church my last night on campus. It started at 7, and I planned to duck out around 8. The next morning was going to be very early for me. It turns out, this service was the first in a planned three day revival. And I didn't leave until 10:30, and I left truly blessed. I didn't get home until after midnight, which is very, very late for me, and managed about five and a half hours of sleep. Of course, the next day consisted of a few naps.

I also celebrated Easter with some family. We took separate cars, and I left half an hour after my parents and sisters. It was starting to snow; everything was slippery and visibility was pretty low for a while. I saw many cars in ditches and on the side of the road, a reminder to drive carefully. I had gotten ahead of the storm by the time I came to my exit. There was another vehicle on the side of the road about a quarter mile before the exit. The driver opened the door, and I was astonished at how similar she looked to my mom. So astonished I checked my phone. 17 missed calls. I pulled over on the shoulder, and called her back. She gave me directions and I picked up my dad and sister at the gas station with a full, five-gallon gas can.

Yes, there are still a few days left of my Spring Break. But I'm not going to miss opportunities with family and friends so I can read more books. That is an important lesson I have learned about reading. It can always wait.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

How My Spring Break Reading List Came To Be

When I came home from student teaching yesterday and set down my bag and Teachers Manuals, I noticed one of the books that had been on my bookshelf was on the floor. I called to one of my sisters (16 years old) in the other room and asked if she'd been looking through them again. Of course, she had.

She proceeded to come in and sit in front of my shelf. I was thinking, 'oh, not right now. I have so much to do for school tomorro!'. But I didn't say it outloud.

She started pointing to different books on the disorganized shelf. "I've read that one, and that one, I haven't read that one yet."

We compared which ones she had read to the ones I had read. I can't resist book-talk forever, you know. "Okay, scoot over." I sat down crosslegged next to her, and started taking piles of books off the shelf.

"What are you doing?"

And I explained how I was organizing them into books I have and haven't read. Then, I divided the pile I haven't read up again- books I want to read next week during spring break.

And they are:
The Golden Goblet by McGraw
Our Only May Amelia by Holm
The Sisters Grimm by Buckley
and The Pickwick Papers by Dickens, athough I'm planning on that one carrying over into the summer.

And, for kicks, here's a picture of my newly-organized bookshelf.

And, Yes. I consider this organized.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Knock Knock, Whose There?

My younger sisters and I would sit around the table with mom for lunch. I was probably seven or eight at the time. We would sneack our chips into our sandwhiches because we liked the crunch they made. We always avoided the crusts, nibbling as close to them as we could get. There was no good reason, we just did. We would cover all of our fingers in Bugles and eat them one by one, biting off one tiny bit off the tip at a time.

One day we decided to, between bites, knock on the underside of the table. We thought it sounded like someone at the door, and we liked to trick mom. She would always say, "Oh! Someone's at the door," and get up and walk through the house to the front door, and come back. She would shrug and say, "Hmm, they must have gone away." And we would try to shrug our shoulders innocently and continue eating. And a few minutes later one of us would knock on the underside of the table again, and the rest of us would snicker as mom got up and checked the door again.

Confession? I only found out a month or two ago that she had known all along that it was us. Gotta love moms that play along!

Thursday, March 07, 2013


This book came to me on high reccomendation, so I eagerly inter-library loaned it. 
I've read several books on prayer, and this one was different. I'll let you weigh a few of the differences and decide for yourself if you should find the nearest library.

'The Circle Maker' is filled with light humor. Humor is not the foundation, and it does not hinder the message- it is the tone of the author. 

There aren't methods, it itsn't a how-to, and there is no step-by-step formula presented. There are ideas. And stories. Many, many stories of prayers of all shapes and sizes answered. The author focuses on specificity as an important- and often missing- aspect of prayer. 

The author is a masterful writer. The book is built out of stories, and Mr. Batterson invites the reader into them so smoothly. They leave images in your head, rather than phrases. Those stories of answered prayers will stick with me for quite some time; more inspiration for me to circle my own prayers and not give up on them, even after 'seventy years'. Because our God, He answers prayer.