Now Christmas is Almost Here: Happy Fourth Sunday of Advent

Posted December 21, 2014 in Faith / 0 Comments

It is hard to believe that it is almost Christmas already! It is the 21st of December, only a little over a week from the next year, the new year. This year it seems that Advent has passed so much faster than last year. I feel that I am barely prepared for Christmas.

  1. I have not yet found my Advent wreath. Last year I was driving cross-country during the middle of Advent and never pulled it out. This year, I can’t find it anywhere. It was in a box when I graduated from college in Wisconsin. Where it is now, I’m not entirely sure. Hopefully I’ll find it before next year.
  2. I never sent out Christmas cards. On Friday I finally sent out seven handwritten letters, basically just updates because I have been neglecting to write for so long.
  3. I have not yet decided what I want to make that I can actually eat for Christmas. Food allergies make this a bit more complicated than it usually would be. Not one of the highest priorities, but one I do need to get to… eventually.

In other ways, I am prepared. Barely prepared, I might add, but at least a little bit.

  1. There was a Penance service at my parish last Thursday.
  2. I made it though the last week of school without getting too fed up with some of my students. The last week before break is always the hardest.
  3. I have presents for the three people I actually worry about buying presents for: my mom, my dad, and my sister.
  4. The above mentioned presents are wrapped (as of yesterday) and down by the tree (since it is hard to fit stuff under it).

I hope that your holiday preparations are going well and you are all prepared for Christmas. I know that I am rather glad there are two weeks off school, I know I needed it.

I love the Christmas holidays. They are some of my favorite of the year. For example, some of my favorite holidays this time of the year: Immaculate Conception, Our Lady of Guadalupe, Saint Lucy, Christmas, the Holy Family, the Holy Innocents, Mary the Mother of God, and Epiphany.

Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas to all of you.

amanda

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Review: Chastity Is for Lovers

Posted December 18, 2014 in Faith, Reading, Review / 0 Comments

Review: Chastity Is for LoversChastity is for Lovers by Arleen Spenceley
Publisher: Ave Maria Press (2014)
eARC (120 pages)
Via: NetGalley
Rating:
Reading Challenges: Read 2014

Synopsis

In 2012, journalist Arleen Spenceley outed herself as a twenty-six-year-old virgin in a Tampa Bay Times op-ed that went viral. In Chastity Is for Lovers, Spenceley expands on that piece, advocating Catholic teaching on sex and marriage with candor and humor, and without judgment.
In her debut book, seasoned journalist and self-professed "happy virgin" Arleen Spenceley offers a mature, funny, and relatable vision of Catholic teaching on chastity for young adults. Chastity Is for Lovers provides perspective on a variety of topics—the difference between chastity and abstinence, how virginity is an affirming and valuable life choice, how the word "purity" can be harmful in ministry settings, how to date well, and why sexual self-control is the best form of marriage preparation—and gives single adults the best possible chance to find true love. She carefully avoids using language that shames readers and instead presents a view of chastity that is joyful and positive.

Find the book: Goodreads, Amazon, Book Depository


 

This is a book I had heard about once before I found it on NetGalley. I requested it and read it in two days. Thanks, Ave Maria Press!

Take a look at the publication date. The feast of Saint Catherine Labouré! And the publisher is Ave Maria Press. From that alone, I knew I would like this book.

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Top Ten Tuesday: Top Books I Read in 2014

Posted December 16, 2014 in Reading / 3 Comments

toptentuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly link-up hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This will be my first time joining in the fun.

This week’s list is the Top Ten Books I Read in 2014. This book is a bit difficult because I really didn’t keep track of what I read this year. I know some of them, so I’ll just have to pull from what I can remember. Most of these were rereads this year. And I’m warning you, this is a rather eclectic list.

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Review: Snow

Posted December 15, 2014 in Reading, Review / 0 Comments

Review: SnowSnow by Tracy Lynn
Series: Once Upon A Time
Publisher: Simon Pulse (2003)
Paperback (259 pages)
Rating:
Also in this series: Water Song, Sunlight and Shadow, The Night Dance
Reading Challenges: Read 2014

Synopsis

In a tiny Welsh estate, a duke and duchess lived happily, lacking only a child -- or, more importantly, a son and heir to the estate. Childbirth ultimately proved fatal for the young duchess. After she died, the duke was dismayed to discover that he was not only a widower, but also father to a tiny baby girl. He vowed to begin afresh with a new wife, abandoning his daughter in search of elusive contentment.
Independent -- virtually ignored -- and finding only little animals and a lonely servant boy as her companions, Jessica is pale, lonely, and headstrong... and quick to learn that she has an enemy in her stepmother. "Snow," as she comes to be known, flees the estate to London and finds herself embraced by a band of urban outcasts. But her stepmother isn't finished with her, and if Jessica doesn't take control of her destiny, the wicked witch will certainly harness her youth -- and threaten her very life...

Find the book: Goodreads, Amazon, Book Depository


 

I have a soft spot for fairy tale retellings. I love to hear the tales imagined in different ways. The Once Upon a Time series is great at that. I love the way the stories don’t always follow the path you think they will… or even the setting. For example, I would never have thought to set Snow White in Victorian London and Wales. Or to have the stepmother be a crazy scientist.

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