Giveaway on Simplekids.net

Was reading through my favorite blogs this morning and came across this giveaway at Simplekids.net. AWESOME toys!! I'm definitely going to be checking out the Hearth Song website for the girls' birthdays this year!!


Reading A-Z

So... I've decided to take up a challenge that I found here. It's an A-to-Z reading challenge for 2009. I'll be reading books titled from A to Z. That'll give me two weeks per book. If I finish that, I'm going to move on to Authors from A to Z. Here's my titled reading list...

the Appeal by John Grisham - I just happened to pick this one up at the grocery store for $4, so I put this first on the list...

Blood Sins by Kay Hooper - This one was recommended by Barnes & Nobel as one of it's top 100 books of the year. Looked interesting.

The Christmas Sweater by Glenn Beck - Here's where we start to diversify our reading. Since this will still be January, I couldn't resist one of the best Christmas books of the year.

Dangerous Laughter - Thirteen Stories by Steven Millhauser - This is a compilation of short stories. It was recommended by a list of the top 10 Independent Books of 2008.

Ever After by Karen Kingsbury - This book won the Christian Book Awards overall Book of the Year award. I haven't read anything that she's written yet, so I'm looking forward to this novel.

Fireproof by Eric Wilson - The movie version of this book came out this year with Kirk Cameron playing the lead. I heard that he VOLUNTEERED his time for this movie! Awesome!!! I can't wait to see the movie, but as usual, I want to read it first and form my own vision before I watch the movie.

The Given Day by Dennis Lehane - This was also on Barnes & Nobel's top 100 book list.

The Hour I First Believed - by Wally Lamb - This is supposed to be an amazing novel. This is the same guy who wrote She's Come Undone. What a fantastic author! I'm looking forward to another book by this guy.

In the Woods by Tana French

Just After Sunset by Stephen King

A Kiss before Dying by Ira Levin

The Lucky One - the Nicholas Sparks

A Mercy by Toni Morrison

Netherland by Joseph O'Neill

Outliers - the Story of Success, by Malcolm Gladwell - This is a nonfiction book about the successes of the best, brightest, most famous and successful overachievers. He focuses on their culture, their family, their generation, and the idiosyncratic experiences of their upbringing.

Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen - And... Getting back to the classics.

Quiet Strength : The Principles, Practices, and Priorities of a Winning Life by Tony Dungy - Tony Dungy. What a classy guy!

The Red Tent by Anita Diamant - So how many other people have had this on their "to read" list for years and years and years.

Shadow Country by Peter Matthiessen

2666 by Roberto Bolano, translated by Natasha Wimmer

Unaccustomed Earth by Jhumpa Lahiri

The Vaccine Book: Making the Right Decision for your Child by Robert Sears - Okay, so I was just curious. Not that I've turned down many vaccines for my kids, but I thought I'd educate myself in 2009.

Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte - Another classic that I haven't gotten around to yet.


Your Heart Belongs to Me by Dean Koontz

Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance by Robert M. Pirsig - Greg has been hasseling me for years about reading this book, and I still haven't gotten around to it. We have it somewhere in the attic, though, so I'm going to track it down and see what I can do.

Well, I hope some of you will join me on my reading madness in 2009. You don't have to read my books, but if you want to sign up for the challenge, go to http://atozchallenge.blogspot.com and sign up with me! :-) There are 5 different challenges. I think I may sign the girls up for the kids' challenge - 26 different A-Z children's books! :-)


Contemplating Abraham

In my bible study this morning, I'm reading Genesis 20, 21. Learning about Abraham and Sarah and their journey into parenthood at 90 and 110! Whew! And I thought parenting at 30 was tough!

It amazes me that Abraham, the first major patriarch of the Bible, would sin AGAIN by telling everyone that Sarah was his sister instead of his wife AGAIN. Didn't he just do this in Chapter 12 when they went to Egypt. The most concerning part of this is that G-d had just recently (within a year) visited Abraham in person and told him that Sarah would conceive his son within the year. So, why would he put himself in a situation where she would conceive a child with someone else?? Crazy.

At least it gives us sinners some hope. Even those "perfect" bible figures are not so perfect. It is not what we do or don't do that earns our salvation. It's our belief in the G-d of all creation, and our faith that we are saved through the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross that saves us.