Thursday, October 27, 2011


On Monday, Katie went to school, then came home to get ready for tap lessons. As we pulled in to the studio, she said her tummy didn't feel well, but insisted she was well enough to stay for dance. I told her if she felt worse to call and I'd come pick her up right away. I left to return some books to the library, then came back to watch her through the observation window. She wasn't visible anywhere. After a few minutes, I poked my head into the room to see where she was and found her sitting in a chair. She didn't feel well at all, so we left to come home. About five minutes after arriving home, she began to scream in pain saying her ear hurt. I put her back into the car and headed to Healthreach to have her checked out. We waited forever (6 pm on a Monday is NOT the time to go there, by the way), but finally made it to an exam room. After a few minutes of sitting there, my poor girl became quite sick to her tummy - everywhere. Not. fun. Although, I think it did speed things up so we were seen a bit more quickly. Verdict: ear infection and strep throat.

The next morning (after getting up with Katie several times throughout the night), I woke up with a headache and sore throat. Mr. C took one look at my throat and sent me directly to Healthreach. Two trips in 18 hours - score! The doctor took one look and diagnosed me with strep, too - she said she didn't even need to swab it because it looked so bad.

Katie has now fully recovered. I am still dragging. Why does it take so much longer to heal when you are an adult? Geez. I have felt like I was run over by a truck for three days now. Mr. C has been a great help - and not nearly as phobic about being around me as he typically is when I'm sick. And he hasn't "lysolled" me once yet - yes, he really did that one time. I was sick with bronchitis and fell asleep. I was awakened about an hour later gasping for air and found myself sitting in a cloud with my handsome groom standing over me holding a can of Lysol. True. story. I think I've forgiven him for that one. Maybe. But if he does it again, he is toast.

Now, I do not have time to be sick. I am training for my half-marathon (which is a mere two weeks away). I am not really on-schedule in my training, but I'm determined to do my best and just cross the finish line. I became much more excited about finishing after I found out that when you complete the race, you are given a gorgeous medal to wear on your neck. How cool is that? I may never take mine off. My thought is that rappers wear big old necklaces, why can't I?

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Softly & Tenderly by Sara Evans with Rachel Hauck

Maybe out there in the country she could catch her breath, learn to breathe again.
Happily married and owner of two successful boutiques, Jade longs to begin a family with her husband, Max. But when she discovers that Max has an illegitimate son—who he wants her to help raise—Jade’s life is turned upside down.
She flees to her childhood home, a rambling Iowa farmhouse, with enough room to breathe. There—while her mother’s health grows fragile, and the tug of her first love grows stronger—Jade begins to question everything she thought she knew about family, love, and motherhood. In the wide-open landscape, Jade begins to see a future that doesn’t rest on the power of her past but in the goodness of God's tender mercies.
This book surprised me. First, it dealt with subjects not typically addressed in Christian Fiction: adultery, deception, divorce, etc. Secondly, Sara Evans is a surprisingly good writer. Jade and Max have a seemingly perfect marriage. They are dealing with infertility and miscarriage, but everything else appears to be wonderful. Until Max has to come clean to Jade that shortly before their wedding, he fathered a child with another woman. He just assumes she will forgive and forget, but Jade is deeply wounded by this revelation. 
On top of everything else, Jade's mother is dying, and her in-laws' marriage is crumbling. Her mother longs to die at home in Iowa so Jade, her mother, and her mother-in-law embark on a road trip to her hometown. While there, she re-connects with her first love and finds herself in a position of having to make some difficult choices.  This is a story of love, hope, forgiveness, redemption, and faith. 
This book kept me interested enough that I read it in two days. I liked the fact that the characters all had flaws...deep flaws. I found myself confused at times - typically during Jade's flashback sections - but I think that may be because I never read the first installment of this series. Other than that, this book was very easy to read and quite enjoyable. 
 I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com <http://BookSneeze®.com> book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 

Blingy Girl

Katie has been begging us to allow her to pierce her ears.
After several months of putting her off, we decided to use this to our advantage.
We made a deal with her:
She keeps her room clean and minds us for two weeks solid
and we would get her ears pierced.
Much to our surprise, she actually did it!
Which meant we had to pay up.
Mom, Bren, and Katie headed to Claire's on Monday.
She wanted diamonds - huge diamonds - 6 mm CZ's to be precise.
We convinced her they were way too big for her little ears.
She finally agreed to go with the 3 mm ones instead.


Cleaning her ears:

Afterwards - she finally believed me that it hurt.

Trying to smile through the pain.

Don't worry - she is totally fine now.
She loves her earrings and is glad she did it.
But I do believe she will not doubt me next time I tell her something hurts.

Also, I should have taken pics of Brendan.
The poor kid couldn't stand to see his sister in pain
so he paced the floor outside in the mall.
Kind of like a nervous expectant father.
After it was all over, he came in and saw her tears...
and he leaned over and kissed her sweaty little forehead.
He told her she would feel better soon
and that he was so sorry it had hurt.
He is the BEST big brother EVER.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

New Project at Ormolu

I posted a new layout at the Ormolu blog over the weekend. It is about one of the funny stories from our trip to The Masters. Check it out!

Dug Down Deep by Joshua Harris

I first want to say that I really enjoyed this book. It was easy to read, and kept me interested. Although I have never before read one of Joshua Harris' books, I had heard of his books on dating (or NOT dating, to be specific). His writing style is enjoyable and he didn't speak over my head in any way. Often, when reading a book on theology, I find I have a difficult time staying attentive to the bigger message - I tend to get caught up in trying to keep track of too many details. Not so with this book.

Harris seems to be completely authentic when writing about his beliefs. I like that he uses people he knows as examples in the book. His discussion of Jesus' birth and childhood , in particular, was captivating. All too often, we tend to forget that, although He was God, He was also a human. He had human experiences and human (physical) frailties.

I also really enjoyed reading the Reflection and Discussion Guide at the end of the book. This would be a wonderful Small Group Study. The questions contained within this section caused me to really stop and THINK about what I believe, and what I intend to do about those beliefs.
I highly recommend this book.

“I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review”.

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

There You'll Find Me by Jenny B. Jones

Grief brought Finley to Ireland. LOVE WILL LEAD HER HOME.
Finley Sinclair is not your typical eighteen-year-old. She’s witty, tough, and driven. With an upcoming interview at the Manhattan music conservatory, Finley needs to compose her audition piece. But her creativity disappeared with the death of her older brother, Will.
She decides to study abroad in Ireland so she can follow Will’s travel journal. It’s the place he felt closest to God, and she’s hopeful being there will help her make peace over losing him. So she agrees to an exchange program and boards the plane.
Beckett Rush, teen heartthrob and Hollywood bad boy, is flying to Ireland to finish filming his latest vampire movie. On the flight, he meets Finley. She’s the one girl who seems immune to his charm. Undeterred, Beckett convinces her to be his assistant in exchange for his help as a tour guide.
Once in Ireland, Finley starts to break down. The loss of her brother and the pressure of school, her audition, and whatever it is that is happening between her and Beckett, leads her to a new and dangerous vice. When is God going to show up for her in this emerald paradise?
Then she experiences something that radically changes her perspective on life. Could it be God convincing her that everything she’s been looking for has been with her all along?

Although I am not in the target age group for this book, I loved it. It was charming and sweet, and I really enjoyed reading it. Finley Sinclair is from a wealthy family, but wealth doesn't make one immune to tragedy. After the death of her brother, Will, Finley takes his journal and follows Will's path to Ireland. While en route, she meets Beckett Rush, a famous young actor. Beckett appreciate's Finley's honesty and convinces her to be his assistant - in exchange, Beckett promises to help her follow Will's travel journal so she can visit the places he did. Will's faith had grown so much during his time in Ireland, and Finley desperately wants (and needs) to experience the same healing and growth. Her months in Ireland also coincide with Finley's preparation for her interview with a music conservatory in New York. She is writing a musical composition, but cannot seem to come up with the ending. Finley is convinced the key to completing the composition is in finding one particular location from Will's journal. As she and Beckett search the Irish countryside, Finley begins to see and feel the things Will did. She faces her fears, her dreams, and her emotions. Beckett also opens up to new goals and dreams, and finds he, too, has some decisions to make that will effect every part of his life. I highly recommend this book, and give it 5 stars!

I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com <http://BookSneeze®.com> book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”