February 28, 2011

Ladies' Goodreads: March 2011

Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking
Malcolm Gladwell

Malcom's Summary of this book:
"It's a book about rapid cognition, about the kind of thinking that happens in a blink of an eye. When you meet someone for the first time, or walk into a house you are thinking of buying, or read the first few sentences of a book, your mind takes about two seconds to jump to a series of conclusions. Well, "Blink" is a book about those two seconds, because I think those instant conclusions that we reach are really powerful and really important and, occasionally, really good.
"You could also say that it's a book about intuition, except that I don't like that word. In fact it never appears in "Blink." Intuition strikes me as a concept we use to describe emotional reactions, gut feelings--thoughts and impressions that don't seem entirely rational. But I think that what goes on in that first two seconds is perfectly rational. It's thinking--its just thinking that moves a little faster and operates a little more mysteriously than the kind of deliberate, conscious decision-making that we usually associate with "thinking." In "Blink" I'm trying to understand those two seconds. What is going on inside our heads when we engage in rapid cognition? When are snap judgments good and when are they not? What kinds of things can we do to make our powers of rapid cognition better?"

**I've read three of his books so far. They're definitely non-fiction--which I rather enjoy. So if you're nt into that, you may not care for it. But, it's pretty fascinating all the studies he shares across multiple industries and the patterns and connections he makes. I rather enjoyed his Tipping Point, Blink came in second, and then Outliers was ok. He's also written a fourth book, but I haven't got to reading that one yet. He's a national best-selling author of at least two of his books. Feel free to visit his website for further info and summaries: http://www.gladwell.com/

Let us know what you think....

February 22, 2011

Reusable Bag Toy Box?

Ok, so when we moved, we had a leftover box that was the perfect size to fit in our cheap and broken bookshelf (but that's another story). So, instead of wasting $15 on buying two of those cute little boxes for cubby shelves, I pulled out two reusable cloth grocery bags I had laying around and cut off one side of each and sewed them together.They happened to be the perfect fit. Then I cut off the handles from the top and sewed two little side handle things on the front. And voila! A simple and subtle toy box on our living room bottom shelf for Ethan to enjoy. Plus it's convenient to just pull off and wash. (I can't say the inside looks that pretty: A) I'm not a real sew-er, and B) I didn't really know what I was doing) But from the outside it looks just dandy, and that's all that really matters.
Classy creativity on a dime.

February 21, 2011

Patience--A Quality Worth the Wait

I decided that it's good to improve ourselves little by little and so why not pick a topic to work on and post about it.

This post is on PATIENCE (click the word for what inspired me to work on this).

After watching this, I thought about different times in my life that my patience has been tried....whether by small things like little kids being annoying or breaking my stuff, to major things like a big event I'd planned on (for what seemed like forever) not happening, or happening 180 degrees differently than what I expected.

That's the key to patience: Expectations.

I realize that we all have expectations about things. We can't help that. But, with trust in the Lord, we can turn our expectations over to Him--tell Him what we'd like and want. And then we know that, because He knows what's best for us, things will turn out the way they need to, but at least we've told Him our preference.

Whether or not this sounds silly, it is true and has helped me so many times in my life! I can't even begin to count all the times I've relied on His knowing what's best, but not until after I've had a good and long chat with Him. I also sometimes write in my journal how I'm feeling, so I slow down to understand my feelings and can then get them off my chest. These things help me feel more calm and peaceful (so that if things turn out differently, at least I'm aware of my feelings and am more prepared for it).

I know that as I do this, I get increased ability to trust in Him and His timing...which helps when then next time that I need patience is for something even bigger than waiting to get another marshmallow.

Patience in the small things can build a good pattern to living patiently with the large things.

What causes your impatience? What can you do now to help you better have patience for those?

February 18, 2011

Jane Austen Type Movies List

We all love them...we can't help it! JAne Austen type movies capture the charm and romance and chivalry we all love...if they're produced well. Yes, I know...the books are generally what make them. But...I wanted to post about these style of movies so we can comment on additional ones we like (or don't like), and therefore keep a running list.

Here are the chart-toppers!
Pride & Prejudice (A&E; and the runner up 2005 version)
North & South (2004 British mini-series; not the Civil War movie)
Jane Eyre (2006)
Wives & Daughters
Emma (1996 Gweneth Paltrow version and the 2009 version)
Sense and Sensibility (1995, 2008)
Much Ado About Nothing (1993)
Persuasion (1995)

Other Good Ones
Pride & Prejudice (1940)
Lark Rise to Candleford (series)
Jane Eyre (2011)
Lost in Austen
Bleakhouse (1985 and 2009)
Little Women
The Importance of Being Earnest

Our Mutual Friend (1999)
Return to Cranford

Emma (1972?)
Persuasion (2007--but don't like the main girl)
Horatio Hornblower (ok; not great)
Downtown Abbey

Just Ok--more just to pass time with, but not amazing
Jane Eyre (1996, 1983)
Bride & Prejudice (Bollywood: Modern Spoof with an American Darcy and Liz from India--a litttle cheesy and is a musical)
Pride and Prejudice (2003--Latter-day Saint Spoof)
Little Dorrit (2009, although the French guy is creepy)
MiddleMarch (2004 tv series)
Daniel Deronda (2002, although it's a little dark)
Mansfield Park (1983, 1997, 2007--the main character is awesome, but other characters seem over the top artsy)

On Trial (feel free to comment if you've seen them....this list will be updated as we see them)A Modern Pride & Prejudice (coming out 2011)
Wuthering Heights
Vanity Fair
As You Like It
Miss Potter

Here's a great list by year that's been produced!

February 14, 2011

Two Homemade Dishwasher Soap Recipes

I've heard this works well in the dishwashing machine, but I haven't tried it yet, because we don't use ours often enough to use up our old stuff. When that's gone, then I'll try thins. Let me know what you think.

1/2 cup liquid castile soap
1/2 cup water
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
3 drops tea tree oil
1/2 cup white vinegar

Stir all ingredients together until blended. Store in a squirt top bottle. Use 2 tablespoons per load of dishes, shake well before use.

*from www.greenlivingtips.com


1 cup borax
1 cup baking soda
1/4 cup salt (I just use whatever I have on hand, it doesn't matter if it's coarse or just regular table salt)
10-20 drops lemon or tea tree essential oil

I use 1 Tablespoon for a normal load of dishes, a little more for heavy loads. 

I also use white vinegar in my dishwashers rinse aide compartment, it's super cheap and my dishes come out with no water spots when I use it. 

*From Trista (Chantel's friend)

February 8, 2011

Ladies' Goodreads- February

A Tree Grows in Brooklyn
Betty Smith

Goodreads Rating: 4.22 of 5

The beloved American classic about a young girl's coming-of-age at the turn of the century, Betty Smith's A Tree Grows in Brooklyn is a poignant and moving tale filled with compassion and cruelty, laughter and heartache, crowded with life and people and incident. The story of young, sensitive, and idealistic Francie Nolan and her bittersweet formative years in the slums of Williamsburg has enchanted and inspired millions of readers for more than sixty years. By turns overwhelming, sublime, heartbreaking, and uplifting, the daily experiences of the unforgettable Nolans are raw with honesty and tenderly threaded with family connectedness -- in a work of literary art that brilliantly captures a unique time and place as well as incredibly rich moments of universal experience.

Please Share your thoughts on the book by leaving a comment.