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Simply Tuesday... A Sneak Peek

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Welcome to Sneak Peek Saturday on Reading List! 

Sneak Peek Saturday on Reading List  a glimpse into what I am reading currently

Current book:

Simply Tuesday: Small-Moment Living in a Fast-Moving World

Emily P Freeman

Simply Tuesday  by Emily P Freeman a Sneak Peek on Reading List

Sneak Peek:

"We may make a distinction between the good kind of small and the bad kind of small, but the truth is there is no difference. In all our small ways, it is Christ who makes it possible for us to move through our lives, believing and trusting he is establishing his kingdom-sized purposes within and around us." p 37

Thank you to A Daily Rhythm for inspiring Reading List's Saturday Sneak Peek link up!

Meet the Hosts of Saturday Sneak Peek:

Marissa writes book reviews from a variety of genres and  shares thoughts on motherhood & life on Reading List. She loves to see what others are reading to grow her to-read list.  Marissa also enjoys photography and a new journal to fill. 

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Alyssa reads a variety of genres and writes about it at Sunrise Avenue. She is always looking for new bookish friends and recs'! Besides reading, Alyssa loves to bake and anything Doctor Who.

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Here are some rules if you decide to join in:

• Pick up whatever book you are reading (non-fiction, fiction, children's... really the sky is the limit)
• Open to any page you have already read
• Share a few “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page - make it interesting without flipping to a ton of different pages. 
 BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away -- You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so we can all add your book to our To-Be-Read lists!

This particular link up will be open for a month, so stop by often to share a new sneak peek, and grow your own TBR list!

Marissa at Reading List

Linking up with these fun hops:

Cozy book hop

The Cozy Reading Spot #133

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Welcome to Cozy Reading Spot! 

This is your chance to share your posts, and then grab your favorite drink to curl up with and read other's posts.  You are welcome to share posts that tell us what has been on your heart, mind and bookshelves - yes that means just about anything goes.  As book lovers, we love to read, so share something for us to read today!

Last Week's Features

Marissa's Favorite

My favorite link from last week was by Michele at Living our Days: Rest: A Remedy, a Relief, and a Gift.  She shares a book that has thoroughly intrigued me about rest and prayer. 
The Radical Pursuit of Rest from Living Our Life a Feature post from The Cozy Reading Spot on Reading List

Most Popular

The most popular link from last week was by Beth at Pages and Margins: Caldecott Winners 2016. She shares 5 quick reviews of this year's Caldecott Winners. 
Caldecott Winners - 2016  from Pages and Margins a feature on the Cozy Reading Spot on Reading List

Please link up all you've got!  

This is an open link up, not just a book link up...

There are just a few small requests I have. 
  • Please link to a direct post, and not just your home page.
  • I wish I didn't have to say this, but please keep it clean. I know books & posts can range the gamut on adult content, but please keep your posts and images clean for this one. 
  • Try to stop by another link and say hi. I know we are all busy blogging, reading and writing, not mention living our lives and keeping up with responsibilities - however, what makes the link up so fun is having new people visit your blog!  So spread the love and hop to at least one link for each link you leave.
  • Please include a link back to the hop in your post - the button codes are part of the flair page, but a text hyperlink is just as good! This simply allows others to join in the fun, and isn't that the whole point?                    

Join #TheCozyReadingSpot - share your posts & find new friends! #BloggingFun @Reading_List1

Cozy Reading Spot  {Reading List}

** If you're reading this from your email, click over and join us!  Reading List

The fine print: Please understand that by linking up with the Cozy Reading Spot, you are agreeing to allow Reading List to feature you in a future post.  That includes a link to your post, and a picture you've used on that post.  You are also allowing Reading List to share any post you link up with pinterest, facebook, twitter and/or google+.  Also, by posting in this hop, you are allowing your email address to be used for a weekly reminder of the hop - your email will not be used for any other purpose, period.

See where I link up!

book reflection

What Step Will You Take to Allow More God Space?

Wednesday, March 09, 2016

Take a Step and Allow for God Space

3 Small Steps You Can Take

For a few weeks now I have been taking baby steps towards being clear in the focus here - purposefully engaging in the world around me in order to see the wondering questions that flow from every person's heart. The ideas that have grown into action came from a book, God Space, and years of gentle nudges from the Divine Creator & Writer of our stories. Please, if you have yet to read about it, check it out before reading further.

Allow for God Space in Your Life

Now, let's spend today discussing how you might be keeping your life closed from more moments of God Space. But before we do, please know that these are going to sound like nothing steps, but if you take a moment to pray it over and really consider what steps you can take, you will probably feel a little uncomfortable.  So don't just jump in.  Pray, ponder, bounce your thoughts off your spouse, or a spiritual mentor - ask me if you want. 

Often, once we become faithful, active Christians we dive head first into a church. And this is a good thing. The church is important to our faith walks.  The community of believers gives us support, places to grow safely in our faith, and mentors who can disciple us as we ask questions and grow.  The church provides opportunities to worship in groups and feel the Spirit in powerful ways. Many wonderful churches provide ample chances to serve each other and those in the community God has placed each of us in.  

The thing is, we can quickly become so comfortable in our church that it can consume us. We see it as a safer option to find friends - for us and for our children.  All our time can be spent in church activities or with those people we have become friends with. While this is a good thing, we cannot allow the church, and the people in the church to be the only part of the community we see. 

We have to reach out.

Allow for God Space in Your Life

Those who are not-yet-believers are not likely to walk through the door of the church asking questions. So if we are spending all of our time in church settings and events while praying to be part of God's work, to reach new people, well, we aren't really acting on our prayers.

Have you heard the story about the man who prays to win the lottery every single day?  He prays day and night that God will bless him with the lottery winnings.  He goes on about the righteous ways he could spend the money for God's kingdom work.  Then he has a dream where God tells him He would love to bless the man in such a way, but he must first go buy a ticket.

3 Steps to Allow More God Space 

  1.  Take a look at your life - break it down into a week.  How much time do you spend with other believers?  These could be activities at your church or events. Maybe time you spend with friends who are believers even if you are doing activities outside of the church. Or maybe you spend all your time with your children's faith-based school?  If, like me, you realize that the bulk of your time is segregated away from the not-yet-believers of your community, that needs to be addressed.                                                                                        
  2. Seek out one activity that really interests you and is not overtly religious: running, reading, dancing, hiking, painting... really the options are endless! Put this new activity into your regular routine - maybe weekly, or bi-weekly?  This step will need some heavy prayer so that you can glean wisdom on what activity and the timing of the new event from God.  Know that your goal is to allow your life to intersect more regularly and intentionally with not-yet-believers. Tell God what you are comfortable doing, allow Him to push you just past your comfort zone - this is why I suggest picking an activity that really interests you because then the uncomfort will come from meeting new people while the excitement of trying something you really enjoy can help you step forward.                                                                                
  3. Make friends, even if they are only casual friends, with the people in this new group. Focus your efforts on building friendships and supporting these new people; show a sincere interest in them. Remind yourself that you are not trying to become the popular one in the group or gain in some way - you are simply trying to make connections with people that God is still reaching out to. You are aligning your path with theirs as God continues to weave His masterpiece.  So while you are building these friendships, ask questions about their interests, listen to them and look for wondering questions that could point them to God, even in the slightest. 

We know that God's timing is not our timing. So this process could take a long time for you. A bonus step then is to familiarize yourself with this new little section of the world. Imagine yourself the parent of a teenager, collecting information on the popular slang, and what-not. The thought is that there is no need to judge your new friend as she opens up to you simply because what she is interested in, or wondering about, shocks your socks off.  You are not there to judge, rather meet these people where they are and love them as they find God.

“You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt has become tasteless, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled under foot by men.  “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden; nor does anyone light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on the lamp stand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.   ~Matthew 5:13-16

The more you think on this, and I really hope this little article will stay on your mind, the more unsure and uncomfortable you might feel.  I get that.   The God Space book did that to me, and many of the other ladies who studied it with me. Take those thoughts of insecurity and fear of what-ifs, to God. Take the opportunity to remind yourself of who He is, what His desire is for the people of this world. Grow deeper roots in His unchanging promises. And if He nudges you down a path like I'm describing, know that when you are faithful to His relationship with you, holding on to Him with every step, He will clear temptation from your path no matter how dark the road may appear to our clouded vision.

Those who are not-yet-believers are not likely to walk through the door of the church asking questions... @Reading_List1

Is your involvement in church isolating you from not-yet-believers? What fears are keeping you from making friends with not-yet-believers?

Marissa @ Reading List


Learning Winter Weather from Freddy the Frogcaster

Tuesday, March 08, 2016

Children's Corner

Learning Winter Weather from Freddy the Frogcaster

This has been a winter that even my son knows is not usual.  We have not had as much snow as we usually do, however, we have family and friends who have gotten more snow than they usually get as it came in strong storms.

And now it feels like spring, late spring at that.  

This has resulted in more conversations about the weather.  Some of the questions I've fielded this winter include; why do the seasons change, why does it have to be cold for snow to appear, how do the weather forecasters know what the weather will be?  Have you had similar conversations with your kids?

While earth science and weather are actually a part of science that I am fascinated with, always trying to learn more, I still searched out some books to help answer these questions. 

Freddy the Frogcaster and the Big Blizzard by Janice Dean  a Children's Corner feature on Reading List

We have been enjoying Freddy the Frogcaster - specifically the Big Blizzard - in our search for more weather knowledge.

About the Book

Freddy the Frogcaster and the Big Blizzard** is a great book that really takes kids on an adventure as Freddy helps his friends and community prepare for a major blizzard.  The story opens as Freddy and his classmates take a field trip to the local news station, the Frog New Network.  You see, Freddy, while still being a young frog is a weather expert - and that is what makes this story so interesting to little minds.  Freddy takes on an active role in helping to teach the class all about winter weather.

Once Freddy realizes there is a huge blizzard coming, he jumps into motion.  He puts together a weather emergency kit so that he will be prepared no matter what the storms brings.

Why We Like It

My kids really love the illustrations in this book.  The art is bright and fills each page as Freddy and his friends prepare for the storm.  There are many details that attract my kids and we have to leave time on each page to talk about many of them.

Not only is the lesson of being prepared for different weather emergencies a plus for me, but this book is filled with solid science about the weather.  Even just the story will add concepts and facts about winter weather to your children's brains.  But, after the story is over, there are a few great pages that spell out different facts that will further your science lesson.  Freddy discusses how air masses move and create fronts which result in different weather systems - include major storms.  He then goes into detail about the different forms of winter weather, like frost, sleet and freezing rain. The best part?  This more focused learning section is still written like Freddy is talking to you, which means it reads like the rest of the book.  The result?  My kids keep listening!

And if winter weather isn't something you are going to spend time on right away, there are more Freddy the Frogcaster books out there, including hurricanes and tornados... perfect for spring and summer!

Title: Freddy the Frogcaster and the Big Blizzard
Author: Janice Dean
Illustrator: Russ Cox
Publisher: Regnery Kids
Publication Date: September 2014
For ages: 4-8 - a second-grade level reader
Type: science, weather, non-fiction kids

Freddy the Frogcaster and the Big Blizzard by Janice Dean  a Children's Corner feature on Reading List

Freddy the Frogcaster teaches kids about the weather in a fun way! @JaniceDean #WeatherMachine @Reading_List1

Looking for some more fun weather related activities or crafts? 

  1. Put together an awesome sensory box for your weather lessons and get inspired from Fun a Day.
  2. Play this fun board game all about the weather; Playdough to Plato has it for free!
  3.  Use this idea to help your children visual the weather currents that lead to storms from Learn, Play Imagine. 
  4. Pre-K pages shares three great ways to make art projects while learning about weather. 
  5. If you are still wanting some more ideas, check out Crafts on Sea, she has put together a list of 10 different crafts/activities that will be perfect for any weather-related lesson you have. 

Do your kids ask questions about the weather?  Do you discuss weather patterns or season changes? 

Marissa on Reading List

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***If you're interested in writing a book review on Reading List, please message me on the Facebook page! If you're curious about a book, ask me...  I love to hear from you!

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