Sunday, September 21, 2014

Ordinary Time: "the work of living"

The challenge of Ordinary Time is that it doesn’t feel important. It can be difficult to sustain a sense of time as holy through the forty days of Lent, or even the twelve days of Christmas. And yet we need a season when the decorations are taken down and the work of living is done.  

- Ann Dominguez,  Let Us Keep the Feast: Pentecost and Ordinary Time

Peace of Christ to you,
Jessica Snell

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Weekend Links: Kids who don't leave church, Knitting reviews, and more!

-"3 Common Traits of Youth Who Don’t Leave the Church":
We pray for conversion; that is all we can do, for it is entirely a gracious gift of God. But after conversion, it is our Christ-given duty to help fan into flame a faith that serves, leads, teaches, and grows.
-"SDfAoWOP: the Room":
Every once in a while, in the travails and duties of life, you might happen upon someone who is a rest and not more work, whose company is a balm for your soul and whose house is a rest for your body. You work and fret and push past the point of exhaustion. You constantly rush through to the next thing. But then, someone urges you to stop, to eat food, to rest.
“Don’t let go of it once you have it,” Marie said, over and over. Her words echoed in my head over the past few rides as Mink and I try to maintain that floating walk without her. But the other day, her words came back to me in a completely different context.

-Yay! The Samurai Knitter is doing pattern reviews again!  Fellow knitters, you'll enjoy this post where she reviews the latest Twist Collective.

-"New England Reflections 2014 (Cont.): The Platypus Travels Part LI":  This is a friend's (educated) reflection on some stained glass he saw in his travels. Interesting and edifying - and just plain pretty.

Friday, September 19, 2014

"Some of you are in dark places right now, and I want you to know that God sees you."

I had the pleasure of being present at this lecture last year, and I was glad to find that it's available to the public on YouTube now.

Here's Dr. Betsy Barber on depression and Christians:

Book Notes: "The Martian", by Andy Weir

On the day I started this book (and got completely hooked, honestly, from the first page), I tried to describe it to my husband.

And my description led him to ask, "So, it's kind of like Robinson Crusoe, but in space?"

And I agreed, Yeah, it kind of is.

But with urgency.

I picked this up on Howard Taylor's recommendation, and I was not disappointed.

"The Martian" is a story about an astronaut who is abandoned on Mars, and has to try to figure out how to survive.

It was all an accident. His fellow crewmates on the mission thought he was dead (reasonably, as it turns out) and left him behind when they bugged out.

It's set in the near-future, which adds to the fun, because all the technology described is stuff you can easily relate to.

I loved watching how he faced his obstacles, and creatively found ways around them. My husband pointed out (he ended up reading it too), that it's fascinating to see what ends up being a problem and what isn't. For instance, you think that water would be a problem, but it isn't. Food now? That's a problem.

I also loved the sense of humor. Most of the story is shown through the astronaut's log entries, and they're often hilarious. Sometimes, it's gallows humor. But that's appropriate to the circumstances.

I have to give a small caution for some language, mostly slightly crude and mostly appropriate to the situation the main character's in.

But on the whole, I highly recommend this book. It's hard science fiction, but it never forgets the importance of character and story.

I really enjoyed it.

Peace of Christ to you,
Jessica Snell

This post contains an Amazon affiliate link. (See full disclosure on sidebar of my blog.)

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Yarnalong: "Lock In", potholders, and dishcloths

Ginny over at Small Things says: ~ Two of my favorite things are knitting and reading, and the evidence of this often shows up in my photographs. I love seeing what other people are knitting and reading as well. So, what are you knitting or crocheting right now? What are you reading? Take a photo and share it either on your blog or on Flickr. Leave a link below to share your photo with the rest of us! ~

The knitting:
I just finished a few new potholders and I'm using the leftovers to make a dishcloth.

Knitting and crochet really are magic: you take thread and then, voila! you have whole objects. And sometimes it's magical, like lace, but honestly, the handmade objects I use most often are my dishcloths and potholders.

Both of the patterns I use are free. You can find the potholder pattern here and the dishcloth pattern here

I love both of these patterns. I've made them so many times, both for myself and others. Pretty and useful, like all the best household items. :)

The book:
I just started "Lock In", by John Scalzi. I've enjoyed some of Scalzi's other books, and this one's interesting because it's a sci fi that's written like a murder mystery.

Genre-mashing can be fun. Or really boring. We'll have to see which one this is! :)

Do you have a favorite genre-mashing novel?  The one that comes first to my mine is "A Civil Campaign", which combines science fiction and romance, and is one of my favorite books ever. Which genres have you seen combined into one book?

Peace of Christ to you,
Jessica Snell

This post contains an Amazon affiliate link. (See full disclosure on sidebar of my blog.)

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Interview on Anglican Review about "Let Us Keep the Feast"

I'm really happy to be on  Anglican Review today, talking about "Let Us Keep the Feast".

The host, Michael Porter, and I talk about
 -how the church year is structured after the gospel
 -how children can celebrate the church year
 -how the structure of the church year takes away anxiety in our devotional life
 -and much more!

The interview is streaming today, Thursday, and Saturday at 11 am, 6:30 pm, and 11 pm PST (12:00 am, noon and 7:30 pm MST).

After that, it'll be available as a podcast on iTunes.

Come on over and give it a listen!

Peace of Christ to you,
Jessica Snell

Recipe: Sweet & Sour Mango Smoothie

This is my favorite refreshment on a hot day (it's been in the 100's here in the Los Angeles basin). I especially like this smoothie because it's not sickly-sweet, but instead it's nice and tangy. The plain yogurt adds a nice hit of sour, and the mango sweetens it naturally. The result is something that's appetizing without being cloying.

Here's the recipe - and it couldn't be simpler - in a blender, put:

-1 c. milk
-1 c. plain yogurt
-1 c. frozen mango
-1 T. ground flaxseed (optional - I put it in for some healthy fat, because I tend to use fat-free milk & yogurt)

Blend it to a smooth consistency.  Enjoy!

Peace of Christ to you,
Jessica Snell

This post contains Amazon affiliate links. (See full disclosure on sidebar of my blog.)