Friday, November 8, 2013

Shadow on a Tightrope

Title: Shadow on a Tightrope: Writings by Women on Fat Opression
Author: Edited by Lisa Schoenfielder and Barb Wieser (Foreward by Vivan Mayer
Publisher: Aunt Lute Books 1983
ISBN: 978-1879960244
goodreads: 4 of 5

This is the 30th anniversary year for this book that was a groundbreaking release in 1983! First, I want to thank the many who contributed, especially Lisa Schoenfielder and Barb Wieser for putting the final product together! This book was hard to get through, not for any negative reason, but because so many of the stories could be my own and it was emotional to read. I have decided to do a split blog for this book which makes this post the first of a few.

I will focus on the first 'part' of this book: "The Fat Illusion: Exposing the Myths". This section is completely full of stats from 30+ years ago. I found it most interesting that many of these stats have not changes while others grew in size, for example now there are billions of dollars spent on diets and such versus millions 30 years ago. This fact alone is very sad to me and many others that I have met along the way in this movement.

Before I even got to the first part many things stuck out to me  - my pen was out from the first page of the foreword and continued making notes as the pages went on! The first page states: "The pain of fat women is no secret" and goes on to say "The strength of fat women is not so well known."

In the preface I found my own feelings put into words: "I realized that I have always like who I am and that most of my desire to be thinner was coming from forces outside myself." The preface also mentions that they had to narrow the entries used down from the more than 100 submissions they received, this proves that there is a great need for more book like this! I say we start efforts to make another similar compilation, who's game?

The actual book starts out saying that if anyone has any doubts that fat is one of the biggest issues on women's minds...well, just look at any random women's magazine found in the grocery store. This still holds true today. No wonder society is so thin obsessed and that is just wrong on so many levels! It goes on a few pages later to talk about why people are fat, according to society: 1st we are over eaters, 2nd we have no exercise and 3rd we are just lazy! WHAT? I guarantee there are people in this world (and in your life) that even according to society's strict standards do NOT overeat and they exercise and they are NOT lazy yet they are still considered fat!

Another great point made in this section is that it isn't the fat itself that is making us sick, but rather the thought that "Living among people who hate you is enough to make anyone ill." (pg 42)

Just a few other quotes put together as a final thought on this book, their words do it so much more justice than my own words could: "Being fat means a life of ridicule, rejection, starvation, self-hatred and guilt." (pg 54) "For fat liberationists, good health, freedom from hunger, and freedom from discrimination are the first priorities, to be pursued directly. There is no vested interest in seeing people stay fat or get fatter. (It only appears this way because fat liberationists emphasize self-love and fat pride)" (pg 33) "As women liberate knowledge about fat from the medical monopoly, fat women will come out of the closets of our minds to realize that there is nothing wrong with us." (pg 12)

THERE IS NOTHING WRONG WITH ME! I don't think I am "proud" to be fat, but I am certainly NOT ashamed that I am fat! A friend from high school recently told me that she wouldn't know me if I were to become thin, especially if it was sudden, that being fat is part of who I am. This friend is in no way considered fat, but like a few empathize with the message of these type of books.

On another note, there was a book mentioned here that is also mentioned in another book I am currently reading, that seemed way cool and strange, a book I hope to find and read myself: Their Eyes Were Watching God BY Zora Neale Hurston

To buy this book go here:
Aunt Lute

Disclosure: I purchased a copy of this book at a discounted rate for the purpose of a blog carnival, however the discount did not require a positive review. The opinions expressed here are completely my own!

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

A Christmas Gift for Rose BY Tricia Goyer

Title: A Christmas Gift for Rose
Author: Tricia Goyer
Publisher: Zondervan
Sep 2013
ISBN: 978-0310336785
Goodreads: 4 of 5 stars

Tricia continues to bring us wonderful books to read! I am really enjoying these Amish books by Christian authors! Thank you for sharing your talents and passions with all your readers!

In A Christmas Gift for Rose we follow Rose Yoder as she struggles with the fact that the man she loves leave to help the Englisch in World War II and turns her back on him, being encouraged by their Bishop and the community they grew up in...only to find out that she, herself, was born into an Englisch family! We find out how she came to be with the Yoder family and what most likely led up to her biological parents leaving her behind! This great story is inspired by true events. One of the great lessons in this book is that of discovering your own true identity! Rose struggles with this as she tries to choose what to do now that she knows she is Englisch, she recognizes the similarities between her and the main character in the book Heidi, which she reads to the children at the local school...but will she stay or will she go? What about the man she loves?

That pretty well sums it get the answers to these questions, read the book and let me know what you think! Yep, short and sweet, just like the book!  Some of my thoughts: One of the wonderful things I found in this story is how sometimes we might make choices that are not popular in our group of family and friends, but, in the end, the lessons learned end up helping us and others! Also, I'm not quite sure how I feel about the Amish view on their serving in the military. I mean, I understand their thoughts, but I also understand the views of those not part of the Amish, too! See question below to share your thoughts...

One of many quotes I'd like to share: " was time to let the future matter more than the past." (pg 121)

I would like to pose one of the included discussions to you: "During World War II most Amishmen chose to join the Conservation Corp or spend their time in jail or working on farms. How did the war impact these men and those in their community?"

To buy the book, go here:
Barnes & Noble

Disclosure: As part of the Tricia Goyer 2013 Fiction Launch Team, I did receive a free copy of this book; however I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed here are completely my own!

Thursday, September 26, 2013

PREVIEW: The One Year Book of Amish Peace BY Tricia Goyer

In recent years, you have all heard and seen me talk a lot about one of my favorite authors, Tricia Goyer; especially this year, as I've had the honor to be a part of her launch team! I would like to take a moment to mention one of her upcoming books: The One Year Book of Amish Peace!

About the Book:
In our instantly connected world, it’s surprisingly easy to lose our connection to God. This devotional taps Amish wisdom in order to help us draw closer to God and hear his voice. In The One Year® Book of Amish Peace, you’ll get a daily taste of Amish values and wisdom. Tricia Goyer shares her fascination with the Amish in a way that will inspire and encourage believers to carve out more time in each day to listen to God and experience his presence. This daily devotional contains interesting facts about the Amish, recipes, and information about the way the Amish handle money, rear their children, and center their lives on faith in God. You’ll be inspired to slow down and find ways to simplify so that you, too, can experience God in the ordinary.

About the Author:
Tricia Goyer has written more than thirty-five books, including both novels that delight and entertain readers and non- fiction titles that offer encouragement and hope. She has also published more than 500 articles in national publications such as Guideposts,Thriving Family, Proverbs 31, and HomeLife Magazine.

Goyer’s fiction and non-fiction books have won awards from the American Christian Fiction Writers and Mt. Hermon Writers’ Conference. She is also a two-time Carol Award winner, as well as a Christy and ECPA Award Nominee.

Tricia has authored several books on family and parenting, as well as co-written with Max Lucado and Robin Jones Gunn. She collaborated with Ken Blanchard and Phil Hodges for Lead Your Family Like Jesus, published by Focus on the Family/Tyndale.
I am new to Amish fiction and thanks to Tricia, I am loving it and I am so excited for this new book, which comes out 1 Oct 2013! Click here for a sample of this book. I highly recommend this book and this author, hope you enjoy her work as much I do...please share your thoughts, too!

Links to the book:
Barnes & Noble
Christian Book Distributors

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

The Promise Box BY Tricia Goyer

Author: Tricia Goyer
Publisher: Zondervan
May 2013
ISBN: 978-0310335122
Goodreads: 4 of 5 stars

Another great Amish read!

This is the story of Lydia Wyse. She was raised Amish but has chosen to lead an "Englisch" life in Seattle, WA. The book starts off with the passing of her mom, so she returns home to West Kootenai, Montana.

Enter Gideon Hooley, one of the "bachelors" that come at least 6 months before hunting season so they can gain residency for the hunt. We also see the mention of many characters from The Memory Jar. Just a note that you do not need to have read The Memory Jar to read The Promise Box. Ok, back to Gideon. When he first appears, he is training a horse named Blue. He is from Bird-in-Hand, Pennsvylvania and has been to West Kootenai before. As a young child. During that trip, he had an experience that has somewhat haunted him his whole life. His parents have not talked to him, so he's hoping to find out the details while in Montana. When he does, it haunts him even more...all the while he is falling for the new Englisch girl in town...

Lydia has been haunted by her own demons, surrounding her birth. She was adopted by the Wyse's at her birth and left after finding out the truth. The pain was too much. As she returns to help her Dat, the Amish lifestyle and customs come back easily to her. Her boss has planted the idea that the time is ripe for her to write her own book focusing on returning to the Amish community. She isn't so sure...

Will Gideon get over the details of what happened when he was a child?
What about his feelings for the Englisch woman?
Will Lydia really return to the Amish life?
What about her 'book'?

For answers to these questions, read The Promise Box BY Tricia Goyer and then come back and let me know what you think of this great read! Of course, I won't leave you without a quote from the book! It's really hard to choose just one, but here usual, I couldn't bring it down to just one:

pg 13: "Mem had told her that her life was a gift, that God didn't make mistakes."

pg 103: "We aren't perfect. God doesn't expect us to be...Faith isn't about having all the answers. It's about taking one step. The first step."

pg 138: "You can tell when you're on the right track. It's usually uphill."

To buy the book, go here:
Barnes & Noble

Disclosure: As part of the Tricia Goyer 2013 Fiction Launch Team, I did receive a free copy of this book; however I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed here are completely my own!

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

The Memory Jar BY Tricia Goyer

Author Tricia Goyer
Publisher: Zondervan
October 2012
ISBN: 978-0310335108

I do believe this to be the first Amish book I have read and I loved it!

This is the story of Sarah Shelter. Having lost her best friend, Patty, Sarah struggles to allow herself to move on. Having suffered loss of a close loved one, I completely understand. Sarah lives in West Kootenai, Montana where young Amish men come in the spring to live for at least 6 months so they can gain resident status for the hunting season. Each year these "bachelors" often leave with a bride.

For five years, Sarah has allowed love to pass her by, but this year is different. She has some stirrings for Amos not even paying attention to Jathan Schrock. Then, one day a group of friends goes on a hike and life will never be the same!

Sarah keeps a jar with little trinkets she has gathered throughout her life. These serve to remind her of the many memories of life. I love how this habit helps her through her life's decisions and helps her as her life progresses to new adventures. Sarah's dream is to own her own bakery. This dream is a struggle as she likes the 'fancy' things, like decorated cupcakes. So different from the 'simple' things of the Amish life.

Jathan comes from a place where his life has been planned out for him. He is to return to work in the local factory to help take care of his parents. We come to find out that he, too, has an interest in helping with his mom's bakery! Given this hard choice, what would you do? Follow your heart and passion? Or take the job for its security?

You will have to read this great book to find out how it works out in the end. But, suffice to say, that Lord does work in mysterious ways and what we think we want may not be exactly how it works out. Sometimes exciting and new things seem like a good idea and seems like it is the perfect solution to please everyone may or may not work out that way! Change is good, but is it for everyone?

Also, note that you just never know how the people you meet along the way will affect your life's outcome. The great lesson is to trust in the Lord and follow his guidance. Which brings me to the quote I'd like to share: "...the more Sarah thought about the word faith, the more she realized it was all about looking ahead." (pg 240) "...we jest need to keep walking in the direction God pointed us last, and if we keep looking fer him and waiting on him, God will let us know when to make a change of direction." (pg 136)

Do you trust in the Lord to guide you? Enough to follow him? How do you remember your memories? Do you have a jar with a collection of all kinds of things?

To buy the book, go here:
Barnes & Noble

Disclosure: As part of the Tricia Goyer 2013Fiction Launch Team, I did receive a free copy of this book; however I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed here are completely my own!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Radio Rescue BY Lynne Barasch

TITLE: Radio Rescue
AUTHOR: Lynne Barasch
PUBLISHER:  Frances Foster Books (released 10 Oct 2000)
ISBN: 0374361665
Goodreads RATED: 5 of 5 stars

What do the following people have in common: Michael Faraday (1791-1867), Samuel F.B. Morse (1791-1872), James C Maxwell (1831-1879), Heinrich Hertz (1857-1894), Guglielmo Marconi (1874-1937) & Lee de Forest (1873-1961), read the book to find out!

In the Author's note at the beginning of this book it states that the boy in this book is actually her father, who was the youngest to receive an amateur radio license, at that time: 1923, 10 yrs old. Even with this information, the book is not found in the non-fiction area of the Salt Lake County library. (Later found to be in the non-fiction area of the Orem Public Library) At the time, phone calls across the country could take hours to be connected and overseas calls were completely impossible. But there was another form of communication emerging, using electronic signals in Morse Code. Those who use this form of communication were quickly nicknamed HAMS. More importantly, this form of communication made it possible to communicate with others around the world!

Back in this day, it was a must to learn Morse Code, as that is how this system worked. Now, it is no longer a requirement, but in my opinion it is always good to learn new things. One trick this young boy used to learn and remember Morse Code was to tap out everything he saw or thought as we went about his business everyday. What a great tool, works for learning so many things, including most any language...translate any and everything you can, as you learn more and more vocabulary. As I, and many others, know from experience, if you don't use it, you lose it! ..and that is just sad! Another thing he did that is a great learning tool to help remember things is to buddy up with someone who was already licensed and experienced. They can offer so much by example and mentoring and, often most important, encouragement!

Ham radio operators are always on the job and available during emergencies. Often times the phone lines are down and power out and such, leaving every other form of communication impossible. Hams are still needed and used, I would encourage everyone to check into getting licensed. If I can do it, anyone can! It was quite simple, spent a Saturday morning at a class that went over the test info, got to take practice tests to my hearts content and then took the test for real. Passed it on my first try. I have yet to really use it, but it is good to know that I can, if and when I need to or choose to! For more information, check out this website for the Amateur Radio Relay League to find Exam Sessions near you. If you are in Utah, check out the Utah Amateur Radio Club for more local info!

I enjoyed this cute story about something that most would think is completely obsolete. I assure you it is not obsolete! I recommend this book to everyone. It is a children's book and can be used to teach about other forms of communication. Or maybe, someone in your family has their license and can share their experiences alongside this story. Or even used to just learn more about something an ancestor was greatly involved in.....enjoy and let me know what your thoughts are!

My favorite quote would be the following, after this young boy met a local HAM, Bill, who, at 17 was mentoring this 10 yr old. They had the following conversation:
"How would I ever sort it all out? "Dot by dot and dash by dash," Bill joked. Then he laughed and said, "Didididit didit." It was until I read the notebook that I discovered what that meant. Laughter in Morse code!"

Oh, and one last note, here are our call signs - Steve: KB7ZVU since 1993 Rebecca: KD7ZCP since 2003 If you have yours, share your call sign below, if not, go get it now and then come back and let us know what it is and then enjoy!

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Love Finds You In Glacier Bay Alaska BY Tricia Goyer & Ocieanna Fleiss

TITLE: Love Finds You in Glacier Bay Alaska
AUTHOR: Tricia Goyer & Ocieanna Fleiss
PUBLISHER: Summerside Press (release 1 Jan 2013)
ISBN: 978-1609365691

Ok, it is official, Alaska is amazing! You ever been there? I haven’t, but after reading Love Finds You in Glacier Bay Alaska, I know it just has to be amazing! This is the third book that Tricia Goyer & Ocieanna Fleiss have written together! Please say there will be more…please! I’m all for a sequel to this book, but I’m also all for any work the two of you bring to us readers! Thank you!

The story is about Ginny, a rising singer, who is on the verge of getting everything she always wanted….or is she? She has a huge life changing decision to make and seeks out her former fiancĂ© for his advice. Brett lives in Glacier Bay, Alaska. When Ginny arrives Brett is not there, but she is introduced to his grandma, Ethel. Instantly Grandma Ethel takes Ginny right in and while there Ginny discovers the story of Ellie through a box of letters!  What an adventure lies ahead…

I do note there was one little teeny tiny misinformation in chapter two…The Parent Trap reference, I am certain they meant the remake of The Parent Trap and not The Parent Trap II as stated. This was easily and quickly overlooked and forgotten, but I would be remiss if I didn't mention it as many of you know how much I love both The Parent Trap movies, original and remake!

The genealogist in me loved the way this story plays out! My favorite part of this book is the use of letters, kept over time, from people so important to the history of Glacier Bay and now, it turns out, to the future of Ginny! WOW! This novel moved me; it has been a long time since I’ve given a book 5 stars! This book jumped right up there to match the level of my favorite Sisterchick books!

The setting took on a life of its own as a character in the book, the small close knit community! I have always loved the idea of a small community where everyone knows everyone! As I read this story, I could clearly see the book playing in mind as a movie, oh please let this happen! Such a moving story…stories even!

My favorite complete character is Janey and my least favorite character is Mrs. Standard! You will just have to read the entire story for yourself to find out why! Then come back, let me know what you think and who and what you especially liked and didn’t like!

This book was very well researched by the authors! They even went to Glacier Bay, Alaska. This is the third of the three books written by Tricia Goyer & Ocieanna Fleiss, but the first that I have read! I look forward to finding the time to go back and read the other two, Love Finds Youin Lonesome Prairie, Montana & Love Finds You in Victory Heights,Washington!
For more on the authors, connect with them here:

Tricia Goyer, website                                     OcieannaFleiss, website
Tricia Goyer, facebook                                   OcieannaFleiss, facebook
Tricia Goyer, twitter                                        OcieannaFleiss, twitter

QUOTES:  It was really hard to narrow down the amount of great quotes from this book, but I finally got it down to these five:

Pg 30: “Right now he needed to stay put, even though he didn’t exactly know why. But he’d learned not to ignore these feelings.”  ---1Nephi 4:6, need I say more?

Pg 226: ---Seen in the postcard above, (thank you to a fellow launch team member for putting this together) this quote is probably the most applicable one for recent events ---This was THE perfect quote to summarize 2012 for our family! We are now awaiting the ‘masterpiece’ that is still in the works for us!

Pg 262: “They’d come to hear their story. To hear about those who’d come before them and made their life here possible.” ---I’m a genealogist, what’s not to love about this quote?

Pg 289: “I don’t need the approval of others to make me happy. I’ve got Christ, and He’s enough. Well, at least that’s what I’m trying to learn.” --- Words for all of us to live by, yet so hard to remember in our society!

Pg 289: “Our plans are not as His {our dear Lord}, though. We must be prepared for a different outcome than we hope, but we can trust His ways are always the best.” ---Another great reminder that is so hard to remember and also very much applies to our family’s events in 2012, the good, the bad and the ugly!

To buy the book, go here:

Disclosure: As part of the Tricia Goyer 2013Fiction Launch Team, I did receive a free copy of this book; however I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed here are completely my own!