Tuesday, May 7, 2013

What I'm Into

What I Read

If you read my last What I'm Into post, you might remember that Wuthering Heights was on my "currently reading" list. You might also notice that it's not mentioned below. No joke, I've attempted to read that book three times over the past few years and I never finish it. I don't know what it is, but I never get past page 50. It puts me to sleep. Oh well, maybe next year.

A Year of Biblical Womanhood by Rachel Held Evans- From what I understand, there was quite a bit of controversy/debate surrounding this book when it released. For what it's worth, I found it an engaging, thought-provoking, and worthwhile read. Rachel doesn't make a mockery of the Bible, as she's been accused of (although I wonder if those accusers even read the book?). She delves into a lot of subjects I'd like to explore more, probably here on this blog one day soonthe use of the word "biblical" as an adjective for one, how it applies to womanhood especially. This is what the entire book is about, presumably—the ways in which we choose to apply that word, how our cultural context and that of the Bible inform that, and ultimately, what it means for us as women, today, right now. 

Half the Sky: Turning Oppression Into Opportunity for Women Worldwide  by Nicholas D. Kristof & Sheryl WuDunn- I could write pages and pages about this book. It was a God-interruption. I am forever changed. I wish every human being, every Christian, would read it.

The Road of Lost Innocence by Somaly Mam- It's difficult to know what to say about this book. It is one of the most difficult I have ever read. At times I couldn't breathe, it was all so heavy. It is a good, good book, a necessary one, but even saying that is hard because the subject matter is so heartbreaking, so dark. Somaly tells her own story of being orphaned, passed around, sold to a Cambodian brothel as a young girl, her life there, her escape, her determination to rescue other girls. Her story, the stories of the other girls, they will change you. And Somaly is a light, an incredible and brave woman.

Undaunted by Christine Caine- I read this because I wanted to hear more about Christine's ministry, the A21 Campaign. She tells some of her own story, and the story of A21. It is inspiring, challenging, a call to action. 

Home by Toni Morrison- This is her newest novel, released earlier this year. Toni Morrison is easily one of our best living writers, and has been a favorite of mine for a long time, but this book fell short for me. Beautifully written, of course. I don't think she could write bad prose if she tried, and I'd give an appendage for a measly ounce of her talent. But her novels usually stay with me, for weeks sometimes, but this one hasn't. Maybe it's because I'm comparing it to Sula and Song of Solomon, but I can't help that. I'll probably revisit it again next year, see what I glean from a second reading.

Song of Solomon by Toni Morrison- This was actually the first Toni Morrison book I ever read, back in ninth grade, upon the recommendation of my English teacher. It has stayed me with all these years, and I'm so glad I reread it this month. It deserves an entire Master's thesis, not this tiny paragraph I'm giving it. The writing is suberb; sometimes it left me breathless with its beauty, its clarity. The characters are brilliantly imagined. I think Pilate is one of the most intriguing characters in all of literature. President Obama said this book taught him "how to be," and I get that. I really get that.

Currently Reading

A Mercy by Toni Morrison
The Bottom Billion: Why the Poorest Countries are Failing and What Can Be Done About It by Paul Collier
The Prophetic Imagination by Walter Brueggemann  
Protecting the Gift: Keeping Children & Teenagers Safe (and Parents Sane) by Gavin de Becker 

In My Ears

Listening to a lot of Waterdeep, Enter the Worship Circle and United Pursuit this month. Absolutely love this song. Enter the Worship Circle has a lot of albums, but I've been enjoying Chair & Microphone Vol. 3 the most.

Also, I've heard this song more than any human being should ever have to. Every time we get in the car, Diana asks for "apples," which means she wants to hear the "apple song." We play it over and over and over again; if I try for another song, she screams for "apples!!" Multiply 2 minutes by a forty minute drive twice a week. Yeah, waaaaay too much.

On My Television

Why do I even include this section? I don't think I watched any TV this month. There are a few shows I'd like to catch up on, I just haven't made time for it. Shows on my list to catch up on: Grey's Anatomy, Bones, Once Upon a Time, Call the Midwife. Maybe this month :)

What I'm Looking Forward To

I'm taking the Friday of Memorial Day weekend off from work, so I will have four days off! I'm still deciding how we'll spend the long weekend. I'd like to take Diana to the zoo, and if I can save some money, maybe to Sea World.

And, I know it's still quite a few months away, but I am also looking forward to the release of Sarah Bessey's first book. This is the only time I've ever considered pre-ordering a book.

Other Favorite Things

Can I recommend this TED talk to you? It is worth your time, especially in light of Steubenville, and stories like this, and this absolutely horrific one. There are no easy solutions, I know this. But we each play a part in our communities, here and abroad. There is something we can do, man or woman, to stand up against rape culture and gender-based violence against women and children. It happens too often, there is unspeakable suffering, and although I am still figuring out what I can do, I can't stand by idle anymore. Anyway, take a listen. Pass it along to the men in your life.

My favorite blog post this month came from Rachel Held Evans—Why Progressive Christians Should Care About Abortion.

Also found this wonderful little infographic:

I'm a big fan of the Myers-Brigg test. It's helped me understand myself and others a bit better. This sums me up pretty well, although it does leave out how I'm always running late.

My Little One

She turned two this month!! Here are a few pictures of this little doll


Little tea drinker

What are YOU into this month, my friends? I'd love to hear all about it

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