Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Guest Post over at Genesis 5020

Today I'm delighted to be featured on Genesis 5020. Here's a snippet:
I think God regularly uses the evil of this fallen world to turn us more and more towards His own goodness. In a way, that really comforts me, because I have faith that whatever trial I’m in, He won’t allow it to be wasted. It’ll never be meaningless. (I think meaninglessness might scare me more than anything.)
To read more, please come on over here. Thanks!

Peace of Christ to you,
Jessica Snell

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Weekend Links - Screen Time, the neuroscience of CrossFit, and more!

Some good reading from around the Web for your weekend:

"Parenting Advice on Screen Time":
There are NO well-designed, well-executed empirical studies on how much is too much screen time in terms of video games. So parents are out of luck gleaning any “hard” advice in that domain from the research literature. There’s plenty of media hype, but none is based on good data. TV is the only exception and indeed less is best . . .
"CrossFit, neuroscience, surviving the zombie apocalypse: Is your workout a fraud?":
The modern gym has been deliberately designed to not require any coordination, accuracy, agility, or balance. The attributes of fitness that bind the body and brain together have become the exclusive province of athletes, dancers, and the few lucky children who still climb trees, pop bicycle wheelies, and hang upside down from monkey bars. The stripping-away of coordination, accuracy agility and balance from physical culture – from our modern notion of fitness – has made us weaker, because power, the ability to apply maximum force, requires neural circuitry that’s impossible to develop on a pulley cable.
"This is what happens in your brain when you’re writing": I found this article really interesting - esp. the differences between the brains of experienced writers vs. inexperienced writers.

"Unhappy Hipsters": hat tip to Anne Kennedy. This link has had me laughing for over a day now!

Peace of Christ to you,
Jessica Snell

Monday, July 14, 2014

Daybook for Monday, July 14, 2014

outside my window . . . it's incredibly gloomy for the middle of the summer. And it's so nice. The clouds aren't keeping us from enjoying the pool or the green grass or the flitting of hummingbirds here and there.

As far as I'm concerned, the clouds can stay.

 I am listening to . . . Mumford and Sons.

 I am wearing . . . jeans, a sleeveless tee, and no jewelery except for my wedding set. It's a day for work.

 I am so grateful for . . . my mother-in-law watching the kids for a few hours. For seeing my own mom this morning. For having my grandma and cousin in town last week. For a husband who will come home in a few hours with a smile and a kiss for me. For my brother, for my dad, for my sister. For my growing, gorgeous kids. For family, just all around.

 I am reading . . . an old Bujold novel. Perfect.

 I am creating . . . the first chapter of a new story. Always a joy.

 around the house . . . Somehow it seems like the house needs to be eased into summer - along with the people and the schedule. I'm gradually arranging things around here to the way I want them to be this season.

 from the kitchen . . . we're eating lots of cherries and nectarines and watermelons. I'm making baked cheddar chicken chimichangas for dinner tonight.

picture thought . . . Adam in the middle of the King's River, building a cairn:

Friday, June 27, 2014

A List of Lists of Links

So, I love posting lists of links on the weekends. But the truth is, there are a lot of people out there who do it better than me, and I am their unabashed fans*. Here are a few lists that I love:

-Like Mother, Like Daugther - this Catholic mom-and-girls site posts a list of links called "bits & pieces" every weekend. Lots of stuff on religion, parenting, and homemaking. - Challies is the best. He posts links every morning. His daily "A La Carte" entries are mostly on topics of Christian interest.

-Mere Comments - Touchstone magazine's blog posts their "Mere Links" one weekday mornings. These, like Challies' links, are on topics of Christian interest, but with a more ecumenical flavor.

-Everyday Theology - more Christianity-related links, posted most days.

- The Fug Girls - Now we get to the slightly silly. But this hilarious website (I love their coverage of the fashion of royalty) posts a list of (usually) fashion-related links every Friday.

-College Fashion - this fashion site hosts "haute links" just before the weekend, and I like their links mostly for the interesting DIY links.

Peace of Christ to you,
Jessica Snell

*okay, I am slightly abashed: but only by some of the items that sometimes show up on some of these lists. It should be noted that I like these websites' links posts, but I don't necessarily agree with the perspective of every site, or every link they link. I just think there's enough good reading there that they're worth looking at. Or, at least, fun to look at.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Recently-tried Recipes

I've found out recently, that I can get rid of a lot of the plodding feel of cooking dinner again (it's the again (and again, and again) part that gets difficult) by regularly throwing new recipes into the mix. Here are a few I've tried - and liked - recently.

"Almost Famous: Ikea's Swedish Meatballs": These were creamy and wonderful. Though I had to both make the meatballs and the sauce from scratch, it still didn't feel like a fussy meal. The meatballs came together easily, and the sauce was just a basic white sauce, with a few extra touches. And the results? Deeee-licious.

"Grilled Turkey, Apple, and Cheddar Sandwiches": After hearing the ingredients, our kids opted for regular ol' grilled cheese. Which is probably a good thing, because the mango chutney I bought for this recipe turned out to be pretty spicy (it had a lot of ginger in it).

I loved these. So did my husband. He said, "they're good. Despite the parsley".

And I said, "They're good. Despite the ginger."

So there you go: these sandwiches were good enough to overcome not one, but two mild dislikes on the part of the eaters. We're totally planning on making them again. They were excellent.

If you've tried any new recipes recently that were a hit with your families, I'd love to hear about it in the comments!

Peace of Christ to you,
Jessica Snell

Monday, June 23, 2014

self-motivation for writers

A conversation I overheard myself having with . . . myself:

"Hey, if you write another 300 words, you can have some 10 jellybeans."

"What do you think I am? A five-year-old?"

"Hey, do you want the jellybeans or not?"

". . . Fine."


Peace of Christ to you,
Jessica Snell

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Weekend links!

Just a few this weekend, but I hope you enjoy them!

"10 Lessons from 10 Years of Public Schooling":
The third lesson is this: You do not send your children to public school—you send your family. What I mean is that public schooling requires the participation of the parents which, in our experience, is something the school values just as much as we do. 

This video is funny and informative: