What I’m into: January 2016

January felt like the longest month ever this year and I am happy it’s over. January and February are always harder months especially after the excitement of Christmas. I tried really hard this month to update this post in my drafts as I found things… Hopefully this can be a habit for the future! I know I’m late posting this- but I thought that posting my Weekly adventure was more important earlier this week!

I am linking up with Leigh Kramar for the What I’m Into monthly post! It’s my first time “linking up”… So we’ll see how this works!

What I’ve been watching: 

By the end of December I had a serious netflix addiction and had been binge watching Army Wives along with other things. So for the Month of January any time I wanted to watch Netflix, I picked up a book since one of my New Year’s goals has been to read one book a month. This month I read TWO! Though that’s not many books, I am excited because I believe the more I read the better I will write.

Toward the end of January I broke this habit of reading and started watching Supernatural on Netflix… for two reasons: My best friend in Louisiana LOVES Supernatural and so does my roommate. How could I not join with the fun? I’m trying to catch up….

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What I’ve been reading: 

Broken Harbor by Tana French Screen Shot 2016-01-11 at 10.36.49 AM.png
I’ve been a fan of Tana French since my early college days. I’ve read her first three books and finally landed on Broken Harbor at the beginning of this month. Tana French is a skilled international (Irish) writer of murder mysteries. Most of her books set in Ireland near Dublin are filled with drops of Irish sentence structures and culture, which makes it truly interesting for me. They are full of complex characters, colorful language*, and intense moral themes. Broken Harbor has heavy dialogue and a myriad of details about the murder scene and morgue scene compared to her previous books. This book is revolting and gripping simultaneously making it a fast read, albeit its 400+ pages. Other reviewers believe it was too interview and dialogue-heavy and found it skim-worthy at best, but I disagree. I was drawn into the scenes and found myself wondering how she could craft peoples’ exact personalities into their responses and interactions. Her writing fascinates me. I can feel the small nuances in peoples’ responses such as an eye movement, a small flicker of emotion, a tone of voice, or a dead-pan stare. I was enthralled and thought her writing was crafty and smooth. If you are interested in murder mysteries and want to read a Tana French book, start with In The Woods, which has been one of my favorites!

*Be aware the colorful language means a heavy presence of foul language.

Searching for Sunday by Rachel Held Evans
Rachel Held Evans has become one of my favorite spiritual memoir authors over the last few months. The first book I read in November is a Year of Biblical Womahood, that my friend Ciera let me borrow before she passed away.  When my fellow blogger and friend, Lily learned I enjoyed it so much, she gifted me Searching for Sunday (thank you, Lily!). In the book Searching for Sunday, Evans takes us with her on her searching journeyScreen Shot 2016-01-22 at 11.17.17 PM by using the seven sacraments of the Catholic Church to tell the story of her journey of leaving, searching, and finding the church over the last several years. She doesn’t claim to have finally “found” all the answers to her questions, but she has found what the Church and His Kingdom are all about. When I first read the intro about the seven Sacraments, I worried that the book would be dull and boring. However, it was anything BUT boring. Instead, in her truest way that only Evans can, she brought out the beauties in each sacrament and helped me think more about what the church is all about- especially for millennials, such as myself. I connect to this book a lot more than I had planned on connecting to it. She made each sacrament come to life and applied to her everyday life, making the mundane what it can truly be: holy. I didn’t agree with everything she wrote or all over viewpoints, but that’s not the point. I hope to write about A Year of Biblical Womanhood soon, since it has so radically impacted how I view womanhood and modesty.

On the Internets:

A guest post written by Diane Corner on Anne Voskamp’s A Holy Experience blog. I feel like I could have written it! Diane parallels her progressive deafness and pretending with her inability to pretend for God. She compares the talking to her audiologist gave about being upfront and honest when she cannot hear and not bluffing to God’s acceptance of us in our messes. Since I, too, have deafness and can identify with pretending and bluffing so much in conversation- this hit home with my relationship with Jesus as well! Talk about powerful!

I was introduced to the old song by Michael W Smith Friends are Friends Forever by a dear friend who was sharing that with me in relation to a conversation about Ciera.

This post by Bronwyn Lea about how one word changed her prayers. Thought it was written in 2013, it really impacted how I think about situations in my life, even currently! I also followed her blog and read her blog regularly now- I love what she has to say on certain topics!

Also, I learned Atlanta got 911 text messaging! What an amazing resource for those who Screen Shot 2016-02-01 at 4.56.34 PM.pngare Deaf and Hard of hearing- like myself. I really hope it comes our way to East Tennessee soon! Take a look at the picture to the right of a sample text with Atlanta 911 that floated around on facebook early January: Awesomesauce.

What I’ve been writing: 

I launched into the new year with my New Year Goals and 1 Word. I started the 52 Weeks of Adventures series in January and have decided to post on Monday or Tuesday of an adventure that I’ve taken the previous week! The first week kicked off with my adventure of noticing the Eucharist in the mundane of everyday life! Week 2 was much more adventurous about my time learning self defense moves at Friday Night Fights! That same week, I shared a prayer with you all that had once been shared with me. I spent week 3 of my adventures talking about Snowmageddon and how much fun Watson and I had. Week 4 was somewhat of a tribute to Ciera as I talked about Love Rocks.

For January, 2016…All in all, I kept with my goal of reading one book a month and writing one blog a week! eeeeee! I’m excited about that!


The Books on my Shelves….

One of my New Years Resolutions is to read all the books that I have on my shelves that I haven’t read. This is well over 20 books. I’m going to make a list of them on this post and throughout the year, I hope to actually read them, write reviews about them on another post and link them to this one…This list is HUGE. And slightly ridiculous. I have a feeling I overlooked a book or two, but it’s so long that I’m wondering if I can read them all in a year. 😮 (Or less than, since it’s April now)…. What do you guys think?… Any… Tips? Comments? Where should I even Start?!

Right now I’m currently reading:

Boundaries: when to say yes, how to say no Authors: Henry Cloud and John Townsend I’m about halfway through this book and will write a review when I finish it. I cannot wait

! Boundarieskeepers of the covenant

Keepers of the Covenant (the Restoration Chronicles) by Lynn Austin

Books that are on my shelves that I haven’t read

The Case for Christ by Lee Strobel

Rubyfruit Jungle by Rita Mae Brown

A River Runs Through It by Norman Maclean (i’ve seen the movie)

Unfinished Portrait by Agatha Christie

The Thirteen Problems by Agatha Christie (Yes I’m a hugeeee agatha Christie fan. I don’t care what you say)

When I was a Slave by Yetman

Emma by Jane Austen

Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte (I’ve started this 3 times and school has gotten in the way)

The Road by Cormac McCarthy

Reading Lolita in Tehran by Azar Nafisi (i’m a HUGE fan of middle eastern literature… Haven’t finished this one but started it during college)

The Strange Case of Mr Jekyll and Dr Hyde by Robert Stevenson

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen (I shamefully put this on the haven’t read list)

The Four Loves by CS Lewis

Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis

Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte

Gone with the Wind Margaret Mitchell (this is a book I doubt I will ever finish) T

ill We Have Faces by CS Lewis

The Hole in the Gospel by Richard Stearns

Forgotten God by Francis Chan

Crazy Love by Francis Chan (read several chapters of this in college… see a pattern?)

The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver (Started in college…)

Radical by David Platt (read several chapters of this, halfway finished.. during college)

The Ragamuffin Gospel by Brennan Manning

Not a Fan by Kyle Idleman… I recently finished another book by him last month.

The Friday Night Knitting Club by Jacobs

Same Kind of Different as Me by Ron Hall and Denver Moore

Authentic Beauty by Leslie Ludy

The Explicit Gospel by Matt Chandler

Things as They Are by Amy Carmichael

Toxic Charity by Robert D Lupton Toxic Charity

Born to Run by Christopher McDougall

I’ll Scream Later by Marlee Matlin

Transforming Grace by Jerry Bridges

The Mermaid Chair by Sue Monk Kidd

Plainsong By Kent Haruff

Life Interrupted by Pricilla Shirer

Jane Eyre Pride and Prejudice

Books on my shelves that I HAVE read

Little Bee by Chris Cleave

Fist Stick Knife Gun by Geoffrey Canada (if you work with kids, or inner-city i HIGHLY Recommend this book)

And They Didn’t Die By Lauretta Ngcobo

Aging with Grace by David Snowdon, PhD (This is one of the best longitudinal psychological studies i’ve read)

Me Myself and Lies by Jennifer Rothschild (one of the best bible studies I’ve ever done)

Restoring Sexual Identity by Anne Paulk

One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp (my hero)

The Greatest Gift by Anne Voskamp

Deaf Artists in America by Sonnestrail

Three Cups of Tea by Greg Morteson (Great book)

Every single Francine Rivers book. I own and have read them all.

Looking for Alaska John Green

Books on my Kindle I haven’t read

Twelve years a slave Solomon Northup

Their Eyes were Watching God (Started this in college…)

Jesus > religion Jefferson Bethke

A bunch of Beth Moore books I got for free on Kindle. But it turns out I really dislike her writing. But I like her speaking!

Books on my Kindle that I’ve read: 

Chronicles of Narnia

All Harry Potters

The Secret Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert by Rosaria Butterfield (An interesting read)

Divergent series Brain on Fire: my month of madness by Susanna Cahalan

The fault in our stars by John Green

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

The Hartfiled Mysteries by Chautona Havig

Love Amid the Ashes by Mesu Andrews

Fried Green Tomatoes by Fannie Flagg

Chronicles of the Kings series by Lynn Austin

The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho

Invisible: my journey through Vision and hearing loss by Ann Silver

The body in the Library by Agatha Christie

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