Monday, February 27, 2017

What's Saving My Life Right Now ~ from purses to organizers to book series to friends~

I love memoir.
Just adore it.
As a writer, poet and memoirist myself, 
I can't get enough of others' stories.
And that's not due to a voyeuristic streak or anything----
or even a love of biographies.
<Because biographies?  blech. >
Nope.
It's the need I have to get a sense of  how others structure 
snapshot - ing  their lives.
The ordinary-ness, the extraordinary-ness.
Just how other writers 
create a window into a moment 
---or even a day or a year ---- in the life
and make it not only readable, but gripping, is something
I can't get enough of.
Way more important to me  than what writers write  is how they write.
 I guess a post of my can't - live - without -  'em
 memoirs is upcoming? 😏

So what does this have to do with what's saving my life?
 It's all based on the amazing memoir of
Barbra Brown Taylor, Leaving Church.
 Taylor tells us when she was once 
invited to speak at a gathering, her host told her simply, 
“Tell us what is saving your life right now."
She says this is too good a thought not to revisit from time to time.

Most of us can easily articulate what's killing us, but few 
of us pay attention to what’s giving us life.
Anne, at MMD, has begun a 
"what's saving our lives now" party and of course,
I'm happy to join in with a few seriously life - saving items,
books, shows and hacks!

~ 1 ~ 
Let's start with this bag.
I know, not exactly crucial or  meaningful, right?
But as they say, it's the little things....

I thought, years ago, that as the boys got older, my bag would get smaller.
Hmmm, not so.
Now, it's stuffed with all things me.

~ 2 ~ 
Roomy enough to neatly house all my must-haves from keys to planners
< I adore this one, but it's way too pricey sooooo,
I'll stick with this one~

I really like a no - frills month at a glance planner...
I know the whole world is busy tapping their lives into their phones or whatnot
to stay organized.
I'm big on paper planners.
They work for me.

~ 3 ~ 
As does this monthly wipe off  wall calendar 
on which everyone's activities 
and appointments are color coded.

The Board Dudes 16X20-Inches Aluminum Framed Magnetic Dry-Erase Calendar, with a Marker and Two Magnets (CYG21)

I'm definitely an organizational items junkie!

 ~ 4 ~ 
Also in that bag, this awesome zippered pouch 
which contains all those small
items that float around the floor of the bag!

Customizable Medium Sized Cosmetic Case - Light Blue/Navy Damask Design


 ~ 5 ~ 

What else is saving my life??
GOOD friends who have my back, hold me in prayer
and are always there to lend an ear.
They're nearby or just an instant message away.



~ 6 ~ 
Long, brisk walks.....  short ones too.
Definitely getting o-u-t there everyday no matter 
what the temp or if there's precip.
It's necessary, I find.
For too long I never "found the time" to devote to
clearing my head --and exercise of course--through the walk.


~ 7 ~ 
No, it's certainly not high quality lit.
But at night huddled under a warm blanket....
which by the way...yup...another on the saving my life list.....
......is easy reading.
I've come to enjoy following the O'Briens' lives and loves and
trials and tribulations.

I don't carve out time to read during the day;
so nighttime, right before sleep,  is IT.
Chesapeake Shores is just what I needed since 
I think I'm only about a third of the way through 
all of the Shores titles.



While you're here, why not enter my giveaway for
War Room  t shirt? 
You know that movie that you LOVED two years ago when it hit theaters
(or the one you've been meaning to carve out some
family  time to watch??)
That's the one.
Go get the super simple entry and maybe
 an idea or two for a family movie as well!
Good luck!


I'm happy to join  Kelly's Quick Takes link up!

Thank you for spending some of your precious time today
here at my home on the web! 
Have you signed up to receive my posts in your email inbox?
   If not, just click here to 
quickly and easily  so we can be in touch regularly!
You might wish to follow on Facebook as well.....


This post contains amazon affiliate links....
If you are shopping at  amazon and Target
why not consider clicking through my link
In this way, I will receive a small commission on the purchase.....
at no cost to you.
THANK YOU!

Until next time,

~Chris

Sunday, February 26, 2017

What's on My Night Table? { Fiction, Dyslexia, Sacramental prep }


I've been reading a few  titles lately
that are seriously share worthy.... 
Can't wait to get started!





a tremendous amount.
When you have a child with the gift of dyslexia, 
you're always on a  fast train to research and insight  and 
constantly update your knowledge base for newer, better, more efficient
ways to help, accommodate and intervene.
It never stops.
Whether you home school or brick and mortar school,
your work is never "done" when it comes to 
How to Help Make Life Less Frustrating For Your Dyslexic Child.
By the way, here's a post I wrote not 


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Luanne Rice is one of my forever favorite authors!
Seriously if you don't know Luanne, check her out!
She typically sets her stories in Connecticut and/or New England right on the 
Long Island Sound....which is perfect for me....because we live 
directly across The Sound from her  characters...right on LI.
Perfect.
Really......go read this.
You'll love Honor and John and their
three girls and you'll laugh and cry with them.
Add a star if you ( like me!! ) are 100% Irish...
go see why!



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I'm only a few chapters in on Liane Moriarty's latest and of course
I love it!
Her wit and uniqueness are gripping from page one.
Plus I love The Land Down Under where her books are set
...so there's that.



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My youngest is getting ready for confirmation in May 
and we're big on Donna Marie Cooper O'Boyle's
 staple for sacramental prep.
Highly highly recommend!


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I'm thrilled to join in Anne's What I've been Reading Lately
and  Carolyn's Open Book parties!
Please click over for more book recommendations
for all ages and literary genres!

Thank you for spending some of your precious time today
here at my home on the web!

While you're here, why not enter my giveaway for
a War Room  t shirt? 
You know that movie that you LOVED two years ago when it hit theaters
(or the one you've been meaning to carve out some
family  time to watch??)
That's the one.
Go get the super simple entry and maybe
 an idea or two for a family movie as well!
Good luck!


Have you signed up to receive my posts in your email inbox?
   If not, just click here to 
quickly and easily  so we can be in touch regularly!
You might wish to follow on Facebook as well.....

Image result for blog post dividers

This post contains amazon affiliate links....
If you are shopping at  amazon and Target
why not consider clicking through my link
In this way, I will receive a small commission on the purchase.....
at no cost to you.
THANK YOU!

Until next time,

~Chris

Saturday, February 25, 2017

Top 7 Must - See Movies with a Christian Theme { And a T shirt GIVEAWAY! }

Like most families, we enjoy an evening settled under
comforters, popcorn or hot cocoa nearby, spending time
with a movie that's not only entertaining, but also contains
a message, inspiration, or at the very least, leaves you with the
feeling that you are better, fuller, more knowledgeable, 
for having watched that film.
Sure, an occasional Adam Sandler or Ben Stiller flick 
is a must, especially with teen boys in the house!
And I do love that scene between Adam and Jack Nicholson, don't you?

Throw in screaming New Yawkas breezing past on the 59th Street Bridge,
pre 9/11 skyline in the background, 
and it's honestly a classic in my book.
It's kind of, what? ~~~ West Side Story meets The Shining? 
Wellllllllll......sort of.
And I'm not a Nicholson fan.......

ANYWAY~~  back on track----
I recently got to thinking about sharing some of the movies
we've watched recently that are not on inspirational, 
but decidedly Christian and in some cases, very pro life....
I hope you find one on this list that's new and noteworthy and
that "grabs" you as a possibility for a family movie night!
<<  And get details for the t shirt giveaway too! >> 




October Baby


We saw October Baby  on the bus en rotue to DC for The March for Life
a few years ago----what a perfect choice and a great intro to this movie.
A glimpse into a college freshman's world
when she learns she is the adopted survivor of a failed abortion.


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Wood lawn







A  high school football player learns to embrace his talent and his faith as he battles racial tensions on and off the field.


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Moms' Night Out 

Absolutely cannot recommend this movie enough!
If you have not seen it YET, what in the world are you waiting for?

For details, here's my review of the screening 
before it hit theaters in 2014.




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The true story of William Wilberforce’s 20-year battle in Parliament 
to end the slave trade in England.
In the end, the abolitionists win the vote to end the slave trade,Wilberforce died in 1833—just days after learning that Parliament would abolish slavery in the British Empire.

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Oh my goodness,  a touching, but not overly  - done fake maudlin:
When a tragedy strikes close to home, four police officers struggle 
with their faith and their roles as husbands and fathers


Certainly not a well known title, but very powerful:
The scene is Poland, June 1941.... 
German troops  are taking over the the city of Przemysl from the Russians. 
To save their belongings from the Nazis, 
a Jewish family transfers them to 
their 17-year-old Catholic maid, Fusia.
 In return Fusia provides them with food until the ghetto is dissolved, 
and then hides 13 people in her loft for over two years. 

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Follows Elisabeth and Tony,  a couple whose marriage has become a war zone. 
 Elizabeth's newly energized faith transform her life, 
but will Tony join the fight and become the man he knows he needs to be?For more details, here's my review of the screening,
 before The War Room hit theaters in 2015.

So---on to the giveaway!
I have a War Room t shirt that I'd love to gift a reader!
I consider myself very lucky and very blessed to have such wonderful friends

stopping over regularly to visit, comment and in general,
help to make this space a happy and inspired one!
Here are the details for winning the (adult medium sized) t shirt:


Here's the super simple skinny on entering to win:
1. Please like my facebook page.
3. Please share this giveaway post on any social media channel you'd like.
4. Just leave a comment here to say HI and let me know you're IN on the giveaway.

 Contest is open NOW  and closes on Monday March 6 at midnight EST. 
Just in time for Spring-y t shirt weather! 
The lucky reader will be chosen the "old fashioned way" ( the ole pull the name out of the hat method----) and  announced SOON after the drawing so that I can get details on shipping out the prize to my winner!

One caveat, my friends: although I am blessed that international readers visit, the winner 
will be limited to a USA resident. 

Good luck!!

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I'm happy to join  Kelly's Quick Takes link up!



Thank you for spending some of your precious time today
here at my home on the web! 
Have you signed up to receive my posts in your email inbox?
   If not, just click here to 
quickly and easily  so we can be in touch regularly!
You might wish to follow on Facebook as well.....

Image result for blog post dividers

This post contains amazon affiliate links....
If you are shopping at  amazon and Target
why not consider clicking through my link
In this way, I will receive a small commission on the purchase.....
at no cost to you.
THANK YOU!

Until next time,

~Chris