I had a brief crisis of conscience today as my heart was singing with the bright skies and warm weather. It felt like spring! And then I thought, "Is it okay to feel this way when I'm supposed to be writing about loving winter?" Of course it is!!! The whole point of all this is to find joy IN THE PRESENT -- whatever that means. We have another warm day tomorrow (52F) and I can't wait to enjoy it!
Last year was a good year for reading. Not that there was much different from previous years (except the books) but I did feel that I read more than one or two really great books. I'm going to put my highly recommended books at the top of this list and then the rest will follow. (Note: the descriptions of the books are written in my record right after I read the book, that's why the word "loved" appears so often in the top 10 or so books!).
One Thousand Gifts
Perhaps my favorite book of the year. A book on gratefulness and one woman's journey through grief and depression to living fully through counting gifts.
A Praying Life
Excellent book on practical prayer. This, with "Praying Backwards", would be my favorite work on prayer.
The Gift of Rest
LOVE this book on the Sabbath!!!! Highly recommend this to everyone who takes the 1o Commandments seriously!
What the Bible Teaches About Guidance
Extremely helpful book on knowing the truth about God and His will.
Eat That Frog!
"21 great ways to stop procrastinating and get more done in less time." Very helpful and easy to read.
The Happiness Project
LOVED this book! So thought-provoking and enjoyable to read and think about. A year of projects to spur on happiness.
Excellent book on the power of the digital age and how to establish a balance in it.
The Distant Hours
Totally engrossing novel set in modern and WWII Britain. Mystery to be solved. Well written.
Loved this novel that is set in modern America but weaves in the Leningrad occupation in WWII.
A Red Herring without Mustard
Another terrific Flavia de Luce novel. I love these!!!
The Wolves of Willoughby Chase
Loved this interest-grabbing kids book set in Victorian England. Two girls must solve a mystery and escape a wicked governess. We also enjoyed the two sequels.
An Irish Country Courtship
I do love this series set in Ireland a generation ago and bringing the day to day life in a little village to life through the eyes of a student doctor. Always disappointed that there is some language.
Historical fiction for kids on life in a Shaker village in the 1800's.
What's He Really Thinking
Some good insights into relating to your husband. Favorite quote: "Don't make your husband pay the bill another man left in your life."
Betrayal at Cross Creek
Juvenile historical fiction set in North Carolina at the start of the Revolutionary War. The kids and I enjoyed this.
Marriage to a Difficult Man
Elisabeth D Dodds
An endearing biography of Jonathan and Sarah Edwards' marriage. Thoroughly enjoyed it.
The Swamp Fox of the Revolution
I thought this was dull but the kids liked it. General Frances Marion of South Carolina during the Revolutionary War. Namesake of Marion County!
Brown Sunshine of Sawdust Valley
Sweet story of a little girl and her mule.
The Journey of Hannah
Very good Christian story of a slave girl beginning in South Carolina and going to Kentucky.
Heart of the Artichoke
Beautiful and enjoyable cookbook.
Good News for Anxious Christians
An incredible book detailing "ten things you don't have to do". Very helpful.
Mitt, the Michigan Mouse
Such a cute book about a mouse. Kids loved it. End did not bring much resolution but I guess there is a sequel.
The Books of Ezra and Nehemia
F. Charles Fensham
Diary of an Early American Boy
Read this with Andrew who loved it! A year in the life of a 15 year old boy in 1805.
Why We Get Fat
Helpful -- points to insulin as the problem.
Jamie C Martin
Helpful little book on setting a routine for young mothers -- mostly helpful for mothers with kids under school age.
When Helping Hurts
Corbett & Fikkert
Thought provoking book about ministry to the poor
A Guide to the Birds of East Africa
Adorable, light novel set in Nairobi.
Black Hearts in Battersea
Sequel to the Wolves of Willoughby Chase. Just as engaging as the first book.
Five Conversations You Must Have With Your Daughter
Good but mostly giving statistics....body image, growing up, relationships, virtue
Our Triune God
Ryken & LeFebvre
Short, helpful book on understanding the work of the trinity in salvation.
How to Make Money on Etsy
Helped me to know I don't want to do what it takes to make money on Etsy!
Chu Ju's House
Story of a young, Chinese girl who has to find her own way in life.
A Little History of the World
E H Gombrich
A small, easy-reading overview of world history.
Major Pettigrew's Last Stand
Adorable little novel about middle-aged, cross-cultural love in an English village.
A Child's History of Indianapolis
Cute, interest-grabbing history of Indpls from about 1816-1840's.
Like a Mantle the Sea
Sweet story of eight years spent on Papa Stour, a small island off the Scottish Shetland isles. Amazing how different life was even 50 years ago.
A Thousand Resurrections
Maria's story of her marriage and inner city life as a minister's wife in Maryland.
Voyage of the Dawn Treader
C S Lewis
The Silver Chair
C S Lewis
From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E Frankweiler
E. L. Konigsburg
Entertaining kid's book taking place in the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Pioneer Woman -- Black Heels to Tractor Wheels
Easy read, entertaining. Enjoyed reading on my trip to Oklahoma.
Captive Queen (Eleanor of Aquitaine novel)
Loved this though a bit shocked at the beginning but got better. Weir is my favorite author.
Nightbirds on Nantucket
Final book in the Woves of Willoughby Chase series. Another good book!
Turkish Delights and Treasure Hunts
"Delightful treats and games from children's classic books."
A Proud Taste for Scarlet and Miniver
E L Konicsburg
Story of Eleanor of Aquitaine -- maybe for kids? But suited more to teens except for one or two things. Not very interesting.
"the clutter-free approach to intentional living"
The 24 Days Before Christmas
Cute, simple, more heartwarming if you had read the Austin family books.
The Rhythm of Family
Amanda and Stephen Soule
Another enjoyable book by Amanda organized by the 12 months.
Tolstoy and the Purple Chair
I guess I must label this as boring -- more about Nina dealing with the death of her sister and her journey through that than about the 365 books she read in a year.
Cut Your Grocery Bill in Half
Steve and Annette Economides
Helpful to me -- especially if you are not couponing.