Book Review: The Magician’s Elephant


This is one of my favorite books. The way this book is written is so poetic and beautiful. The story is compelling and beautiful. Can you tell that I think this book is beautifully written?

The audacity of the words, their dizzying promise, made it difficult, suddenly, for him to breathe.

This quote from the book perfectly describes how I feel about the book. The story has a metaphorical quality that brings promise to my life and catches my breath as I read. The book asks its characters and readers alike:

What if? Why not? Could it be? sang the glowing, wondering heart of Leo Matienne. What if? Why not? Could it be?

In asking these questions, and in journeying with the characters that are also asking or avoiding these questions makes the book all that much more personal. If you stop between the paragraphs, instead of plunging ahead to determine what is going to happen to the poor orphan Peter, the book becomes bigger than itself. The wonderings of Peter stop filling you with pity for his situation of living with a crazy old soldier, malnourished and alone in the world. Instead I found myself wondering for all those around me, and for myself. I found myself rejoicing and grateful and also nervous as I walked in his shoes and applied the lessons to the refugee situation here in Lebanon, to my own life as a stay at home mom, as a Christian. The book, for me, was a way to process a great many ideas and thoughts and concerns in a constructive way.

What was it like, Peter wondered, to have someone who knew you would always return and who welcomed you with open arms?

Conversely, what is it like to have that thought? I am loved and know that Louis will always return and welcome me with open arms. Also, my children, my family, and many others show me that welcoming love repeatedly. Yet I am surrounded in this small world with people who do not have that and do not know that they could.

The skies were filled with thick, lowering clouds that obscured the sun and condemned the city to a series of days that resembled nothing so much as a single, unending dusk. It was unimaginably, unbelievably cold.

Darkness prevailed.

I hope that when you read it can enter your soul the way this book has for me. I hope that books can bring to life in words the emotions that are hard to explain. I hope that you are able to find light in the darkness. For me, I see God in these pages, the way he works in His Sovereignty and how others see the world alongside me. The themes in this book are its glory, rather than solely the tale of an orphan seeking hope.

“Please,” said Hans Ickman. He opened his eyes, “It is important that you say what you mean to say. Time is too short. You must speak words that matter.”

I love typing and writing. It is calming and it helps me to think. I struggle with putting things into words most of the time, however, and while honored that I receive compliments on my blog, I know there are other people who write with much more elegance, poise, and eloquence. What I do know is that people know me when they read what I write. I am honest and open and vulnerable. It is my strength (and sometimes a curse) that I can bare my soul so easily, shed the masks that others hold so dear. I believe that time is short. I believe that there are words to say, words that matter. And while I know that I might have a great deal of verbosity that could be left unsaid, somewhere inside is something of value and meaning, and my blog is a way to work it out.

Looking out over the city, Peter decided that it was a terrible and complicated thing to hope, and that it might be easier, instead, to despair.

That line is how I have felt much of my life. So I write this review, strange and disjointed, sharing some pieces of a book that means far more to me than I would like to share. But as I am exiting the darkness that has prevailed on my emotions and thoughts and life in the last year, I must put down on paper (screen) what I find to be hopeful. Perhaps someone else can find hope there as well. It is far easier to despair, to throw up my hands and scream, to give in to the endlessness, but in reality, there is hope. Hope hurts, and it is messy, but that pain proves the love there is to give and receive.

“I do not see,” said the countess. “And you will not make me see.”

“Yes,” said her husband, “I suppose that much is true.”

Yes, that much is true. I cannot make you see what I see. Which is the other reason I am using the book itself to tell you what I found appealing in my fourth read of this book. Yes, I love this book so much that I have read it multiple times.

I cannot visualize things in my head well. This book brings the words into pictures and light and color and emotion and power in my head. It speaks of the worth of having a name, that God has a name for all of His creatures He has created. And as names are forgotten or remembered so shifts the lives of those creatures. The book shares about the changing of a season, the seemingly eternal waiting for the next season, that time when everything remains the same weary season for far too long. Transitions and longing and just wanting something, anything to happen because of the exhaustion found with waiting. Finally, the magic of love and family and relationship and being truly known. When I read this book I feel that hope spring alive of all the friendships that I have wherein I am truly seen, truly known, truly understood, and truly loved.

This book is worth a good read and good cry and a good laugh. When you finish reading it I hope you feel lighter and also more solid and real.


The facts about the book.

Title: The Magician’s Elephant

Author: Kate DiCamillo

Illustrator: Yoko Tanaka

Place: The City of Baltese

Publisher: Candlewick Press: Somerville, Massachusetts

Publication Date: 2009

# Pages: 202

Special Features: Fiction, Children’s Book,

Price: $5.50 on Kindle, and as low as $1.69 with real book smell, or paperback

ISBN: 978-0763680886

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Goals for the Week of March 28th (Kyrie Rebekah’s Birthday Week!)

Successes:

I realize I am posting this late. I actually didn’t realize it until I woke up today and was thinking about what day of the week it is. We had a team this week and I got to help, so that was a huge success.

Another success is that I walked into the kitchen full of dirty dishes and a dirty floor and was not upset by it. Where we eat is clean, and the dishes we eat from are clean. Yes, we are behind, but I was able to be a part of this vision trip for the team we had and I was able to take my kids to Rouche and have a family day along with it. Rather than bow to others’ wishes I am happy with things as they are. If anyone was to visit us the front room is clean. The kids’ rooms are clean. So, I take it back. We aren’t behind. We are spot on with how we can function this far.

Last Week’s Goal Progress:

One Big Goal for the Upcoming Week:

Take a “Quarterly Review” of progress toward my goals for the year. This was fun to do on an infographic. It was also fun to see the goals that are amazingly close to being complete already. It seems I might need to change the goals if I continue at this rate. It was also discouraging to see the ones that were not even close to ¼ done. This changed my outlook and prayers and planning quite a bit.

Bible Reading Lists:

List 1: New Testament—1 Timothy, 2 Timothy, Titus, Philemon, Hebrews 1—6 I didn’t start Hebrews.

    List 2: Acts 4—9

    List 3: Prophecy—Jeremiah I read through 40.

    List 4: History—1 Samuel 26-30

OR Begin in depth Blog Bible Study again
I set up the 1 Samuel posts to start posting again, and there will be a post about this soon.

    List 5: Law—Exodus
Read through 24

    List 6: Poetry—Ecclesiastes 4—8, I read through chapter 5.

Bonus: Psalm 1-10 Davy wanted to read Psalms one night so that is what we did instead of reading all the lists.

Reading:

Read 2 Books. (I am posting where I am at in each in progress book to record how far I get in them for my fun percentage math.)

Overcoming Missionary Stress by Marjory F. Foyle 17% I read part of this book, and I discussed it with a friend on Skype, but I can’t find it anywhere to record how much I read. So, I guess I will get bonus credit next week when I find it.

The History of the Moravian Church by Joseph Edmund Hutton 56%-57% = 1%

The Highly Sensitive Person: How to Thrive When the World Overwhelms You by Elaine N. Aron, Ph.D. 41%-48% = 7% This last week was a lot about getting back on top of documents in my computer, and I was not able to do the assignments in the chapter I read yet, so I decided not to keep reading until I could fully accomplish the book.

The Gospel of John Volume 2: The Daily Study Bible Series by William Barclay. Louis brought this home from our library at the Horizons office and we read about John 7:53—8:11. We read the first section on this and discussed it for awhile. This story is huge in our lvies and in many of the Muslim women who have converted to Christianity, so it was a good story for us to read. We read 1% of the book.

1% + 7% + 1% = 9%

I have been heavily convicted about my lack of reading and blogging. There are weeks when not accomplishing my goals is because I was serving God in another way, but God has made it clear this past week that my goals are what He asked me to do and my hesitation is disobedience.

Blogging:

Before my computer completely crashed I had several blog posts at the final editing stage, so getting my brain back in order this week and rescheduling the 1 Samuel study to begin again.

God and I really did work on my brain. There is a lot more to go as far as blogging and being obedient to Him in blogging, but it has begun. I rescheduled the 1 Samuel study and there will be a post all about that coming soon. As I type this I don’t have internet, so soon is a tremulous word at the moment.

 

This Week’s Goals:

Bible Reading Lists

List 1: John

List 2: Acts 10-13

List 3: Jeremiah 41-44

List 4: Ecclesiastes 6-9

List 5: Jonah

List 6: Exodus 25-28

Reading

Read 2 Books

Complete HSP Assignments

Overcoming Missionary Stress by Marjory F. Foyle 17%

Serving as Senders Today: How to Care for Your Missionaries As They Prepare To Go, Are On The Field And Return Home by Neal Pirolo 44%

Dispensationalism: Essential Beliefs and Common Myths by Michael Vlach 16%

The History of the Moravian Church by Joseph Edmund Hutton 57%

The Highly Sensitive Person: How to Thrive When the World Overwhelms You by Elaine N. Aron, Ph.D. 48%

How to Keep a Spiritual Journal: A Guide to Journal Keeping for Inner Growth and Personal Discovery by Ron Klug 9%

The Gospel of John Volume 2: The Daily Study Bible Series by William Barclay 1%

Blogging

Schedule 4 Blog Posts for The Mommy Book Blog

Schedule 1 Post for Lisses to Lebanon

Progress on my Goals for the Year

Click on the image to view the high definition version. Create infographics at http://venngage.com:

I made an infographic to share my goal progress. It was way harder than I thought it would be and everything is in the same two colors. Next time I will get Louis’ eye for color in there. Click on the picture to see the high definition one.

Thank you all who read my goals and share your own goals and life with me. You guys are my encouragement and you lift me up!

Unplugged

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A few weeks ago my computer broke. As it was breaking I was pretty okay with it. There were frustrating times with it randomly turning off when I hadn’t saved the last 700 words typed, or the times when it would die again while restarting. But for the most part I didn’t care because I still had access to my stuff, just less of the time. When it finally just wouldn’t turn back on it was sad, but Louis quickly found a computer shop and took it in. They were able to find the part and I have my computer back!

Louis and I shared a computer, which meant that a lot of the time I was not on the computer. Louis has more to do on the computer. And the “work” that I do is only to make his life easier, so I did far less secretarial work.

Also, a lot has happened in the time of my computer being broken.

The family that we are good friends with had their baby! Zoey is two weeks old now and we are so happy with her and she is so beautiful and wonderful and I just love her so much!!! Also her mommy was gorgeous in the hospital and Louis got to be their newborn photographer! It was amazing! It is amazing! God is so good! Zoey is my God moment for the last month. I am in love with her. Every day that I think I might see her I get so excited and smile way more than I normally do.

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Kyrie Rebekah “Bekah” Cookie Liss (Davy insists we tell everyone her “whole” name) has been doing well. She had her third tooth finally break through. It hasn’t come in much, but there is this little line of tooth now on the top which is super cute, but soon will cause my fingers sadness. She is my best friend. I love her so much! She is the best daughter anyone could ever hope for! She sleeps more than I want her to because I want to spend all my time with her. I love just cuddling her and smelling her and kissing her all over. She is the most beautiful, amazing, tiny person in the world! She is my God moment for the past year. She is amazing and I love her and she makes my heart melt and I sometimes have to look down to see if it has gotten all over the floor in its meltiness.

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Davy “smiling” in front of a painting of Moses in the Bulrushes painted by our dear friend Joy Houssney.

Davy is progressing through our homeschool and progressing toward going to “real” school. The last three weeks Davy has wanted to do school with such an intensity that instead of the transitions between activities being the majority of the time we have been doing double the activities, which led to us moving ahead of our plan. Davy chose to move from learning number six to seven because, “I know both of those numbers, mom!” So when we did activities up to 6, he would make us do one more. This was super cute, and we also were able to do two weeks’ worth of activities in one week. He is so into learning and it is amazing. I love his little brain working so hard. He is my best friend! We have so much fun together. We have dance parties at least once a week. We will go back to having them once a day now that I have my computer back with the kid music on it. BONUS: At the computer store Louis bought us speakers, so mega dance parties are on the way!!! I love spending time with Davy and hearing his insights. I am not even able to share all the amazing stories of his brain power and love. For instance, he was looking at the curriculum with me and saw that there was an activity for a chain to count down until Christmas. We are not on “schedule” with the curriculum because of starting in November, so it is not time to do Christmas activities. But Davy was adamant that we make a chain and so it was decided we would make a countdown to Cookie’s birthday (March 28th). Each day we have a verse to read over her and we both pray for her that verse. It is soooo cute and makes my heart explode. Davy loves his sister so much and he asks about her birthday almost every day, “What kind of cake should we choose? Let’s make sure there is pink on it because Cookie likes pink.” Or “Make sure that we get Cookie three presents from me, you, and Dad.” Don’t you just want to eat him up?! Seriously this kid!

Ok, one more Davy story (One day when you are reading this, Kyrie, it isn’t that I love Davy more, it is just that he is awake more of the day. Once he starts school I am sure you will become the center of most of my stories.): Every night Davy has been requesting one Bible story: When the ark of the covenant gets placed in the temple of Dagon. No joke, this is the story he cares about. I love this story! So for him to discover it and love it, too has been super important to me. I am so happy to read it to him every night and to share why I love it. Davy is amazing! His love for God is amazing! His prayers are profound and real. “God, bless the dinosaurs and all the people on main street. Help Cookie to never yell at mom and mom to never yell at all. Thank you for our food and for all the rhinos and that The Good Dinosaur came to Lebanon. Amen.” Awesome prayer right? Yes, it is. He cares about not only his own stuff, but all the people around us. He is starting to say hi and give hugs to people all over our street. I am so proud of him, and of course I think he is the best kid ever.

I read a lot. With Louis on the computer I spent more time on my Kindle. I posted the summary of my goals accomplished, along with all that percentage math that is so fun.

I also slowed down a lot. I took time to just sit silently and zone out. I added alone time to my life in a big way.

I prayed a lot. In The Highly Sensitive Person I was encouraged to take intentional time to focus on God’s bigness. So, I am. At first it was challenging because my digital prayer journal was on my computer, but I was able to just start on Louis’ computer. We carved out a new morning routine in which I used his computer for Memverse and prayer time. And in my times of prayer I felt like I was able to hear from God more clearly during some tough discussions and to speak wisdom into Louis’ and my life vision. What we are now using as a filter for our discussions based on this time of prayer is to “Place what God has said at the front of the conversation.” Instead of sharing what we think and feel with each other and ending the conversation in prayer we are bringing forth our concerns or ideas, but before we share our opinions we are trying to see if God has already answered or told us what to do. As I write that it already sounds so silly that we weren’t intentionally doing that before, because it is working out so well.

We caught up on a bunch of chores. All the rooms in the house were* clean at the same time! For multiple days! Crazy! Since I broke our dryer, laundry has been a headache, but the dishes are currently all caught up, the counters are amazingly clean, and there is even a spot to keep our new fancy big cutting board out looking all nice.

I was glad that living a semi-unplugged life was so easy for me. I see all sorts of blog posts about going unplugged for a given amount of time. I tend to live a life that allows for being unplugged at almost any time. With unreliable electricity and two kids and a house to clean and meals to cook and groceries to buy it is usually much easier to be unplugged. With so much of my life being renovated a lot of the time, this is one nice thing to have balance on already.

More on those renovations later, but for now I am glad to give a positive post about the good things going on for all of the lovely people who read this and pray for us.

*For those of you who caught that, yes, they were clean. They are no longer clean because I have piles of clean laundry in my room again.

Successes: The Last Six Weeks Reviewed

What began with merely misposting for a week became no posts for a month. The first week of February I thought I posted my goals for the following week, but when I came back the next week, while the document saved to my computer said that the goals had been published, something had been lost in the meantime. With internet and electricity problems I worked to continue making my goals, but ended up with no computer.

It is a long story that I think my brain is crying out to be told because this blog is a major encouragement to me. Being connected to people back in the States, being able to share my thoughts and refer back to them in a way that my friends can stay up to date. This blog has become very important to me. So, this past month I have somewhat grieved the loss of it. When my computer died with all my half written posts I was so sad. It wasn’t not having a computer, but that I had so badly wanted to share those things while they were relevant. It is hard to explain because, as I wrote in my post about this time of being Unplugged, so many positive and amazing things came from not having a computer.

So, I am going back through my drafts that never came to your eyes, and I know the majority of people would be like “I am so not reading this, that’s crazy!” And that’s cool. There are a few people who read this blog who read the most mundane and they bless my heart with their prayers and responses and the way they know me, so I am writing it anyway.

Successes

January 31-February 6:

DISHES!!! I write in all caps because dishes was finally a success. For the first time since arriving here 2 ½ months ago all of our dishes were clean. Not just once, but three days in a row! Of course, as soon as I would finish dishes Davy would get hungry and I would have to use a plate, fork, etc. but they were all clean! That meant the counter could be cleaned! And it was!

Kyrie got very sick this week. Her tummy has been in a lot of pain, and while she has medicine that is helping, both Louis and I have been very concerned for her. The successes here are that I am finally learning how to care for someone who is sick without anger, which I am learning in The Highly Sensitive Person, is my nervous system getting the signals wrong and translating stress into fear more quickly. I have been worrying more than I want to, but I have also been able to stop worrying and get some sleep so that I can be well rested to care for the family again the next day. These are big changes from when the boys or I have been sick in the past. Another success, of course, was being able to know where to go to get medicine, how to ask, and to know that we chose a pharmacist we could trust. Kyrie has had the medicine for several days now, and each day she is obviously feeling better.

Delegating. Louis and I have both been making huge strides in doing things to help each other and support each other. When I needed groceries and some kitchen tools, I was able to send Louis out to get them so I could stay home with the sleeping baby. Instead of giving into my codependent need to be with Louis all the time, I was able to just be content staying home and continuing to work or play or read. This was also a huge change for me.

Meal Planning. Each week I am using the Bikini Body Mommy Meal Plan, and it is working out so well for us. I go through the list and pick out the recipes that I think we would actually eat, write up a grocery list, and go grocery shopping once a week. I send Louis after some of the things that are farther away so he can pick them up on the way home. Now the great part, with Kyrie sick this week I didn’t go shopping at all, and because of my effective planning and taking time each week to build up pantry items, we had food all week to rely on. *Another reason we had so much extra is that my Dump Soup this week ended up being a triple portion due to a salt explosion on my cottage pie (shepherd’s pie with beef instead of lamb), which when added to soup needed lots of help to stop tasting like eating straight salt. While that failure of a meal was not a success, the calm we used to handle it was a huge success.

Davy has been getting very excited about reading multiple chapters in his Children’s Bibles, so I am going to have to find a time of the day to do my Bible Plan on my own with this new shift in the bedtime routine.

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Last week I didn’t read because I was focusing on my Go-To-Bed-Challenge, and didn’t want to keep myself up with a book. Reading is never boring enough to not finish the next chapter, and the next chapter. So I have stopped reading in bed. This week my Kindle Archived books, which meant that while I can redownload them, most of my books got removed from my device beyond the cover photo. At the times I would grab the Kindle to go read I often had to download the entire book before I could read, which was very frustrating.

76% + 6% + 3% + 9% + 4% + 6% + 22% = 1.26 books read this week

Without bedtime reading I am floundering in the book world, but it will come back to me. I am not concerned.

Where did the time go? I did not spend the time typing or reading that I would have hoped. I will just need to try again next week. Taking care of a sick baby took precedence here. In the times I would usually spend sitting and typing while the two kids played, Kyrie needed to be held so we watched TV instead to distract her.

Louis wrote up blog posts and started on our SAS plan and also went through pictures to find good ones. However, we did not take the time together to do this because of other commitments to the center that Louis had to do this week. We easily readjusted our expectations to fit the current situation, and will be able to account for this earlier on in the future.

I was able to add these things to the calendar, and Louis bought hooks to hang our calendar up. It was very successful as we worked out a plan for all these things that come up.

February 7—13:

Internet has been iffy.

9% + 76% + 14% + 5% + 9% + 78% = I read 1.91 books this week. Pretty close to 2, especially since the 5% in the History of the Moravian Church is 44 pages and almost 4 chapters. It is also pretty crazy to have read out of so many of my books. I am very pleased with how this week went in the reading category.

I took a little time to write this week, but realized that last week’s goals didn’t post and tried to post them again unsuccessfully. Then I worked on book reviews and Louis and I getting back on track. Without internet a few of the projects were challenging due to the time it takes to figure things out without internet some of the time. I felt that at the end of the week, I had made an effort, made time to do it, but in the end I don’t have much to show for it. So 50/50 is how I feel about that goal.

February 14—20:

Even though I have not been able to post my goals each week, I am diligently typing them up for accountability. Hopefully our internet will continue to be progressing toward the status of “fixed”, but right now it oscillates between working and not working.

Last week I did not write out successes. As I went to write the goals for the week I discovered that the previous week’s goals had not been posted, and got distracted for a time. Eventually I gave up, but ended up leaving the document incomplete as far as success for the week. This week I am taking the time now to write down some successes because this is proving to be the most encouraging part of my goals each week.

Laundry! I think I completed three loads. I also broke the dryer, but that turned out okay because we had a few sunny days to dry the clothes with only one windy afternoon that knocked over the drying rack into the dirt on the balcony. Oh well, it was a success to get so much laundry done!

In addition to getting the laundry done we were able to keep the kids’ room clean, spend time cleaning the school room, and making Davy’s drawers easy for him to use to pick his own clothes each day.

We went to the mall as a family. It was part of our plan to go each week as a family on an outing. The mall is easy to get to, and we were able to find the toy that Davy left the house hoping for. A red dragon. In fact, we bought him a Toob (that is the brand name as well as the container the toys come in) of dragons. They are pretty awesome! Kyrie didn’t want anything. We also had fun sitting at a bench seat that put the kids next to us in a “kids’ table” and we were able to have a partial date while they sat together peacefully eating. Davy even fed Kyrie some of his fries.

Louis mopped our house this week. Mopping has been one of those chores that feels like too much for me, so Louis did it one day while I did school with Davy. We felt so accomplished, and the house smelled so clean, still does actually. We got a new welcome mat, pepper shaker (we tried to get both salt and pepper, but we ended up buying 2 pepper shakers so we will fix that this week), a muffin tin, and a few other odds and ends that added up to feeling more and more like Home.

We took the baby food jars we have been saving and turned them into spice jars. I am hoping that we can even hang the spice shelf we were planning on using as a book shelf for Davy and using it as a spice rack instead in the kitchen. Exciting! Super domestic, but also super exciting. It will open up a drawer or two for us, which we are planning on turning into a Kid drawer. We are going to put snacks in bags and such so that Davy can get himself snacks sometimes.

I finally took the time to budget and plan our first visa trip. As each little piece of our lives begins to work itself out we feel more like we can live and survive here.

Last week I did not read the Bible at all. The week before I only opened my Bible twice. This is very unusual to be a continuing problem. I came to Louis crying about it when I realized how little I had read last week. What makes this Bible Reading Plan ideal for me is having a time set apart for this every day, but with Skype meetings in the evenings it has been challenging. It is hard to start and stop and have to find my place all over again after a few days’ break.

In addition, I have been spending so much time staring at screens that I had one eye completely flip out and I had to take a complete break from reading for a few days and limit my screen time as well. Now I am trying to find a new part of the day that can become a Bible Quiet Time for me. In this time of late night Skype meetings we have been giving Davy his alone time and quiet time when he first wakes up, and we sleep an hour or two past him waking up. He eats and plays and then when I wake up I start the day fully investing my time in him. This removes my own alone time and quiet time. At night I am exhausted after our late night meetings and debriefing them and planning after them with Louis, so it is just another transition to work through. I did however, take time to work on Memverse this week. With internet going in and out that has been another frustration.

I read 1% of The Highly Sensitive Person. I didn’t read this week it seems. Sigh. I suppose that eye thing freaked me out and I don’t have a reading time set up for myself either.

Louis wrote many posts this week for our blog, so as soon as we get internet working I will be scheduling those posts. I was working on a book review when my eye freaked out, but didn’t finish it yet because this is really the first thing I have worked on since that night.

Yes! Office Hours is back on track. Now that we plan around these Skype meetings and other work tasks, I am feeling successful!

The next week is when my computer completely gave up on living, and I stopped diligently keeping up.

Summation of the Previous 6 Weeks:

Bible

Read:

List 1: Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, Luke (44 Chapters)

List 2: Acts 17—End (2nd Completion of Acts so far this year) & 1—3 (15 Chapters)

List 3: Numbers 29—End, Exodus 8—17 (18 Chapters)

List 4: 1 Samuel 17—24 (8 Chapters)

List 5: Proverbs 22—End, Ecclesiastes 1—2 (12 Chapters)

List 6: Jeremiah 29—36 (8 Chapters)

Total: 105 Chapters Read

Reading

State of the Onion (A White House Chef Mystery Book 1) by Julie Hyzy 24% to Completed = 76%

Overcoming Missionary Stress by Marjory F. Foyle 4% to 17% = 13%

The Magician’s Elephant by Kate DiCamillo 21% to Completed = 79%

Serving as Senders Today: How to Care for Your Missionaries As They Prepare To Go, Are On The Field And Return Home by Neal Pirolo 21% to 44% = 23%

Dispensationalism: Essential Beliefs and Common Myths by Michael Vlach 16% My Kindle it turns out, cannot hold all the books the three of us are currently reading (especially since Louis just downloaded War and Peace) and along with the visitors we have at the center we took a break on this book for the time being.

The History of the Moravian Church by Joseph Edmund Hutton 35% to 56% = 21%

The Highly Sensitive Person: How to Thrive When the World Overwhelms You by Elaine N. Aron, Ph.D. 12% to 41% = 29%

Bossypants by Tina Fey: Completed = 100%

Yes Please by Amy Poehler: 0%—Completed = 100%

Hail to the Chef by Julie Hyzy: 0%—Completed = 100%

How to Keep a Spiritual Journal: A Guide to Journal Keeping for Inner Growth and Personal Discovery by Ron Klug 0%—9%

Total Read: 550% = 5 ½ Books Read

Books I am Dipping Into Currently:

More-With-Less: Recipes and suggestions by Mennonites on how to eat better and consume less of the world’s limited resources by Doris Janzen Longacre

We made Meadow Tea, a concentrate made from sliced lemons and fresh mint. We didn’t add it to water because we each like it a different level of concentrate. I made Pomegranate Juice ice cubes and that is how Davy and I drink it! So fun!

Dear Jesus by Sarah Young

This is a little devotional I keep in my bed room for staving of anxiety attacks. It works a lot of the time.