Another Book Review...

Two days in a row, y'all.  I'm on a roll.  A roll that is about to take a week or two hiatus.....  It is what it is. 

A while back, I was given (at my request) this book:

click HERE for more info

I had read or heard others talking about it, and I think what finally sold me on it was my friend Brite's post about it... (maybe I'm imagining it?  I can't seem to find it on her site... Brite, if you find it I'll link to it.)

It would be too strong to say that I didn't like the book or that I didn't get anything out of it.  It was an easy, entertaining read, and Rachel is a delightful author with a witty sense of humor.  But, I didn't really find much in it that was helpful, like everyone else that had read it seemed to.  The difference, I realized, is that most of my friends who were loving this book had 2, 3, 4, or 5+ children...whereas I just have one.  While I am very content in the place where God has put me right now, and I really love being able to focus a lot of my attention on my daughter, it does set us apart.  That is not to say that I am never overwhelmed in my mothering and parenting, or that I don't have crazy days of chaos too, but it's not the same kind of chaos.  (As a side note, this article is a good reminder that whatever stage we are at in our mothering and family size, we are going to feel "maxed out" as God is shaping and molding us.)

So, the best way to sum it up was to say that I simply couldn't relate to a lot of what the author was saying.  I did come away with a few good ideas, but overall I was disappointed and frustrated.

Fast-forward to Mother's Day this year, and my mom sent me this book in the mail:

click HERE for more info
Given that it came during the Spring/Summer when I was not reading much and spending a lot of time outdoors, and the frustration brought on by the previous book, I was not inclined to read it right away, so it sat in my reading bag throughout the summer.  (Sorry, Mom)  Two weeks ago, a friend casually mentioned if I had read any of Rachel Jankovic's books, and I was reminded of the book sitting in my family room. (Thanks, Megan!)  In the midst of a particularly trying week of parenting last week, I started reading it.

To my surprise, relief, and delight, I was able to relate to this book in so many more ways!  (I'm a highlighter when I read my own books, and to give you an idea of the difference, the first book has NO...as in ZERO, ZILCH yellow in it....the blue book....loaded.)

I feel like the first book speaks more to a practical carrying out of mothering and family life which definitely looks different based on size of family and other dynamics.  The second book gets to the heart of mothering, and focuses a LOT on the mother's heart.  In this aspect, we truly all struggle with the same sins and frustrations regardless of how many children we have.  

The book is convicting, and I've found myself wrestling through some sins in my own life that I was ignoring, but it is SO encouraging in that it points you straight to the cross and Jesus' accomplishing it ALL for us.  It's already done....revel in it, delight in it, rejoice in it!

Regardless of where you are in your mothering, I encourage you to give Fit to Burst a chance....  The chapters are short and very easy to read...Even if you read one chapter a day (it might take 5-10 minutes) you'd finish the book in less than 3 weeks, and I guarantee you would be encouraged by it.  

There are lots of portions that I could include (all those places I highlighted!), but the last chapter that I read this morning was especially encouraging and a good reminder for me (after having been whiny about a hard week/stage of parenting), so I will leave you with that...

Discontent will never change the world.  If you want your work to have a lasting impact on the world, define yourself with gratitude............Gratitude is like that.  It transforms.  It is such a force that it cannot coexist with selfishness, with discouragement, with discontent.  When you are thankful for what God gave you to do, you are fit to do it..............Gratitude enable us to do our daily work as unto the Lord.  It makes the little things that we do every day an offering to God.  When we do the dishes, when we correct the children, when we mop the floors, when we sort out the clothes and clean out the basement.  When we do all these little things full of gratitude, we are making a difference in the kingdom of God.  

In our church, at the conclusion of each worship service, we sing the "Gloria Patri" with our hands raised.  We lift our hands in a gesture of lifting our worship up to God, but also a gesture of lifting the work of our hands up to Him.  Asking Him to use the things that we do in the course of the week for the kingdom.  We lift up the hands that have been in the sink with the dishes, hands that have been fixing hair and buttoning pants, hands that have been wiping off the table and driving to school, hands that have been changing diapers and tickling tummies, hands that have been busy holding other hands.

These hands, this work, Lord, take them.  And when I look down our row at church, I see that God has multiplied the work of our hands.  All these little hands raised to Him.  Offering up their coloring and schoolwork.  Offering up their staying in bed at nap time.  Offering up their laughter, their joy, and their lives.  And I know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that there is nothing better or more powerful that I could be doing with my hands.


Book Review & Quick Summer Recap...

Summertime finds me spending more time outside and less time inside which translates to less time spent reading and blogging.  You may have noticed my lack of presence during the summer?

That being said, I am wading back into reading and have updated my Books tab at the top of this page.  I will try to keep it current...

This summer was very much characterized by rain and clouds, but we were able to spend ample amounts of time hanging out at the pool, traveled several times to visit with family, attend weddings and birthday parties, and enjoyed working in our little garden.

We switched over to raised beds this year and currently we have two 4x4 boxes.  This is a small start towards my dream of basically "gardening" our entire back yard.  I would love to have fruit trees and bushes, and lots of garden boxes all over.

In the Spring a crazy person took over my being and decided to start running, something I have always hated.  Everyone said that in order to stick with it you need to sign up for a race, so I did.  I ran/walked (it was about 1/2 - 2/3 walking) my first 5K in June.  It was a great experience and pushed me to continue trying to run.  I have since discovered that I prefer running intervals and have more fun doing that.  I am much more likely to get out there an do it if it's something I enjoy so I've been working through an interval training program for the last several weeks.

The running led to a quest for healthier eating, which led to starting a low-carb program, which led to whole foods, which led to real foods, which has opened up a huge, gigantic vat of information on holistic living, organic food, etc, etc.  I think I have been avoiding this path for a while because I was overwhelmed by it and felt like innocence was bliss.  Sadly and thankfully, I am at a place where I can no longer ignore it, so I am diving in, researching and learning as much as I can and trying to do the best that I can with the resources that are available to me.  This has led to me requesting all sorts of books from all over my state, and the people at my library probably roll their eyes every time I come in to pick up my next stack of books that have come in...

All of this has inspired several posts that are still floating around in my head, but as we head into Fall and Winter, I hope to get back into regular blogging.  

For today, I leave you with a brief book review...

Click HERE for more info
I recently read a blog post that contained links to several books regarding food, specifically real, whole foods and eating organic, etc.  This was one of the books.  I took it with me on a trip to visit family, and devoured it in less than 2 hours while sitting around listening to other conversations.  It is a very easy read, and the writing as well as the illustrations are very entertaining.  

Once you get past the introductions, of which there are three, the rest of the book is broken into 3 sections:
  • What should I eat?  
  • What kind of food should I eat?
  • How should I eat?
The answers to these questions, and the guidelines for eating can be easily summed up in seven words:
  • Eat Food.  Mostly Plants.  Not Too Much.
From here, the author gives a collection of 83 "rules" for eating.  Some are what you might call no-brainers, some really make you think, some might disgust you, some might seem silly...  For each rule, there is a brief explanation.

A few of my favorites are:
  • Don't eat anything your great-grandmother wouldn't recognize as food.
  • Avoid food products containing ingredients that a third-grader cannot pronounce.
  • Don't eat breakfast cereals that change the color of the milk.
  • Have a glass of wine with dinner.
  • Pay more, eat less.
  • Try to spend as much time enjoying the meal as it took to prepare it.
  • Treat treats as treats.  (no snacks, no seconds, so sweets - except on days that begin with "S")
  • Break the rules once in awhile.

This was definitely a lighter read than a lot of the other books I have acquired on the topic, but I enjoyed it, learned from, and definitely recommend reading it.  My favorite illustration is on the page following Rule #13, "Shop the peripheries of the supermarket and stay out of the middle."  It is most amusing, but you'll have to get the book and look at it for yourself.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...