Books I’ve Read {June Update}

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may15booksFINISHED

Notes From a Blue Bike by Tsh Oxenreider – I ended up not reading this book because I received the launch team copy of Longing for Paris, and didn’t have time to read both. (You can read more about this book HERE, and about us meeting Tsh HERE.)

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo – Hmm…where do I start with this one? I have lots to say about it, but that would turn into a long review, and I know you are in the middle of summer fun. I love Marie’s perspective on clutter. She pretty much says get rid of it all!! The more I have decluttered, the more happy I have become, for sure, but I can honestly say I will never be a minimalist. There are items in my life I would love to pass on to my future generations, photos or items that hold great memories which I will forget if I tossed them, etc. I really like the process she describes to go about decluttering so you can be tidy, but I am not a huge fan of all the talk about (spiritual) energy and saying “thanks!” to my possessions when I get rid of them. I think she does more or less trash (maybe recycle) all items leaving a home, which I don’t like because someone else really can use them, or you can sell them. I also don’t believe that she has kids…when you bring kids into the picture, it’s a whole different story when it comes to the rate of accumulating things. :p

Be You, Bravely: An Experiment in Courage by MOPS – So good! This book is a devotional for MOPS members this past year, so it is not a book you can purchase. I really enjoyed all the stories shared by the authors, and the questions at the end of each article were super thought-provoking. It gave me a new perspective on stepping out of my comfort zone and being brave(r) to do the things God has called me to do. I think there is a new book for the upcoming MOPS year, and I hope someone will let me borrow it when they are done reading it since I am not a member anymore.

Longing for Paris by Sarah Mae – I’ll be posting about this more later, but it is awesome. That’s all for now. 😉 It is only $8.37 on Amazon right now, probably for a limited time, so get on it! Anyone who pre-orders the book can fill out this form HERE and get an invite to a webinar with Sarah and Sally Clarkson. See the video about the book HERE.

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READING
Looking forward to reading these books in July. Anyone else want to join me?

Talking with Your Daughter About Best Friends and Mean Girls (8 Great Dates) by Dannah Gresh
– A Girl’s Guide to Best Friends and Mean Girls by Dannah Gresh
– Classical Christian Education Made Approachable by Classical Conversations
– The Get Yourself Organized Project by Kathi Lipp

20150708_165154Have you read any good books lately? What are your favorite kinds of books to read – mysteries, biographies, historical fiction, cookbooks?Book List 2015To check out the books on my book list, you can READ THIS POST or visit our Amazon store.

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full disclosure policy here.

Books I’ve Read {May Update}

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full disclosure policy here.

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FINISHED

Desperate by Sarah Mae and Sally Clarkson – It was a busy month, so I didn’t get through the entire book. This is my third time reading this, and I pick up a few more great nuggets each time. I actually have two copies of this book, and the one I’m reading is the marked up one with underlining, notes, and highlighting, which is fun to go through, remembering the last season I read through it and things that were happening at that time. Here’s one I posted to my HelloMornings group:

“And above all, I need to remember that “good” motherliness has nothing to do with how God sees me. Nothing. I am pleasing to Him on my good days and my bad days. His love for me never wavers…and never will. Because I’m His.”

Sometimes all we need are reminders like these…that someone knows exactly how we feel, and that it is okay in the rough seasons because God still loves us. Review

Flash by Rachel Anne Ridge – From the moment you read about Flash the Donkey’s arrival appearance in the Ridge family’s driveway, you will start to fall in love with his charming ways. I love Flash..both the book and the donkey. If you don’t think you could learn a thing or two from a donkey, think again! Flash may teach you something about life. Read more about the wisdom that Flash has to bestow upon us in the following links: Flash | My Day with (Flat) Flash.

READING
Looking forward to reading these books in June. Anyone else want to join me?

Notes From a Blue Bike by Tsh Oxenreider
The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo
Be You, Bravely: An Experiment in Courage by MOPS
may15books

Have you read any good books lately? What are your favorite kinds of books to read – mysteries, biographies, historical fiction, cookbooks?Book List 2015To check out the books on my book list, you can READ THIS POST or visit our Amazon store.

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full disclosure policy here.

Book List 2015

Aside

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full disclosure policy here.

Sooo…last year, I didn’t do a good job of updating you on the books I read. I lost track myself. :p But I have a little more accountability this year, so hopefully, I will share my thoughts on some of them. You will notice that there are some that are repeats from last year. It wasn’t that I didn’t read them. I did! And I really liked them, and I want to implement some of what I learned from them.

What books do you have on your Books-to-read list for this year? Are you more of a nonfiction or fiction reader?Book List 2015I will update as the year goes on. Italicized = currently reading, Bold = done reading

Visit our Amazon store to purchase your own copy of these books, or look for similar books.

Tsh on Tour

I recently updated you on how I’m doing with my book list for the year, and you might have noticed that I finished a book called Notes from a Blue Bike by Tsh Oxenreider. (Read my review HERE.)

Tsh is on a book tour, which doesn’t happen too often with authors nowadays since there are usually online book tours. Tsh had a launch party in Texas, and then hit up the East Coast first. She and her family were in Seattle over the weekend, and then drove down to the Bay!

I actually hadn’t decided on whether or not we were going to make the trek across the bridge to the book signing (Bay Area traffic and all the ER craziness of the past week…), but since Norm said he would just take Muni to the location to meet us after work, I got the girls ready and we headed off.

There was surprisingly very little traffic, but it still took us almost an hour to get there because Java Beach Cafe is at the very edge of San Francisco (next to the Pacific Ocean) opposite of where we were. Parking was also surprisingly not bad…it actually was, but I was fortunate to find a tiny spot where my car could fit.

It was already 30 minutes after the start time, but Norm was holding a spot for us at a table, so we quietly slipped in for dinner and strained our ears to hear what Tsh was saying.

Tsh is a delight. I wish we could have coffee (or tea) again, along with some other bloggers I stalk mutual (online) friends. That would be super fun.

With the family too. 🙂

Melody had a few questions she wanted to ask, but she got too shy to ask them. :p

It was already late, and there were still other ladies waiting to get their book signed, so we went on our way, but not without meeting Tsh’s family first. We had a good time chatting with Kyle for a bit. Finn was super cute when he was being introduced, and right away held up 3 fingers to let us know he is three years old. 🙂  As we were leaving, I told Tate to have a fun trip to San Diego, and have a good night, and she said, “You have a good evening too,” because that’s how kids usually respond to “good night”. :p I think she and Melody would get along great. And Reed (I can’t forget the second-born/middle-born since I am one myself), well, how cool is he for being the only one in the family who was not born in the United States (if I remember correctly).

I think the girls enjoyed meeting Ms. Tsh. We started reading Notes from a Blue Bike together the next morning (my second time through so I can marinate in some of the info). When I interrupted the book with a few side notes, the girls told me to not do that, and to keep going. It’s that good. 🙂 It is also fun that some of the places on the map in the book shows places the girls learned about this year. Another thing I like about the book is that the chapters are short. (My other thoughts are on my review of the book HERE.)

Book List 2014 {March Update}

So I know you’re all sitting in anticipation of an update on how I’m doing with my Book List 2014 reads.

FINISHED
Push
Grace Based Parenting
Praying God’s Word for Your Husband
Notes from a Blue Bike
Holey Wholly Holy (for Lent, not on my list)
The Marriage You’ve Always Wanted

READING (not on my list)
Undivided Mom (incourage group)
Balanced: Finding Center as a Work-at-Home Mom (Balanced Challenge)

STARTING
Say Goodbye to Survival Mode
Chasing God
Finding Mommy Bliss (not on my list, launch team)

Have you read any good books so far this year?

booklist2014To check out the books on my book list, you can visit our Amazon store.

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full disclosure policy here.

Living Life {Notes from a Blue Bike}

original(11)This post is part of the Blue Bike Blog Tour, which I’m thrilled to be part of. To learn more and join us, head here.

Why is it so hard to slow down in our fast-paced culture? I think this is a super hard question to answer, especially if you are in the stage of life where you are parenting young ones. Their needs seem never-ending added to the Pinterest-perfect expectations that we think should be attained. There are activities to attend, parties to prepare for, sports teams to join, books to read, baseboards to clean (for real, I haven’t clean mine in years!), and the list goes on.

Enter Tsh’s book Notes from a Blue Bike: The Art of Living Intentionally in a Chaotic World!

Having traveled to other parts of the world, Tsh has seen the cultural differences in how people live in a slower pace, a pace at which they are able to enjoy life more. I want that. I want to enjoy life more.
Tsh 2As I have been trying to work on My One Word this year, I have been seeing more and more how doing less actually helps me to do more. It’s kinda crazy in some ways, but it’s true. Try it!

I am savoring this book, and in the name of slowing down, I am taking in Tsh’s words, her story, a little at a time, and really focusing on doing life as God has called me to.

Our family is more and more enjoying the moments together on our own bike rides:
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I also love what Tsh has to say about education. I’m all kinds of bookworm nerdy, so I love love love learning, and am a life-long learner. I had a great experience in school, and I did learn a lot, but discovering the world through books, through people, through travel, and everything in-between has also been a great teacher for me.

Here’s more from Tsh on: Food | Work | Travel | Entertainment

Get your own copy of Notes from a Blue Bike today!! Lots of fun goodies if you buy multiple copies for your very own book club! #notesfromabluebike

Notes From a Blue Bike is written by Tsh Oxenreider, founder and main voice of The Art of Simple. It doesn’t always feel like it, but we DO have the freedom to creatively change the everyday little things in our lives so that our path better aligns with our values and passions. Grab your copy here. Also available on Kindle.

Book List 2014

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full disclosure policy here.

There are probably a thousand books out there that I would want to read right now, but that is not possible. I usually read multiple books at one time, so it gets a little wild around here. :p Listed are 12 books that I would love to finish by the end of the year, and I will probably read a few others here and there along the way. What books do you have on your Books-to-read list for this year? Are you more of a nonfiction or fiction reader?

booklist2014I will updated as the year goes on. The bold book titles are the ones I am reading right now. The bold and italicized book titles are the ones I have finished reading.

Grace for the Good Girl: Letting Go of the Try-Hard Life by Emily Freeman

The Ministry of Motherhood by Sally Clarkson

The Mission of Motherhood by Sally Clarkson

PUSH: 30 Days to Turbocharged Habits, a Bangin’ Body, and the Life You Deserve! by Chalene Johnson

Grace Based Parenting by Tim Kimmel

Praying God’s Word for Your Husband by Kathi Lipp

Notes from a Blue Bike: The Art of Living Intentionally in a Chaotic World by Tsh Oxenreider

Say Goodbye to Survival Mode: 9 Simple Strategies to Stress Less, Sleep More, and Restore Your Passion for Life by Crystal Paine

Crazy Love by Francis Chan

Breaking Free by Beth Moore

Platform: Get Noticed in a Noisy World  by Michael Hyatt

Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking  by Susan Cain

Some others that I also want to read…I will probably add to this daily if I didn’t have other tasks on my list to do. :p