Wednesday, March 19, 2014

The Safety of Sleep

The calm in the storm.
Image Courtesy of samuiblue /
Some church friends and I are each doing an Immersion Bible Study on different passages of scripture, the idea being to learn as much about the verses and their personal implications as possible. I am studying Mark's account of Jesus calming the stormy sea, specifically His command in 4:39, "Peace, be still." Those three words have provided much-needed comfort, strength, and constraint over the past few weeks.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Feels Good to be Nominated!

Yesterday was a rather craptacular day. No one did anything to me per se--unless you count Braylee's unrelenting wanna-be-up-under-Mommy attack--but I was definitely wearing my Cranky Pants.

And no, it's not the Waxing Crescent phase of the lunar cycle, thank you.

Yet I felt overwhelmed, tired, frustrated, and downright annoyed with myself and everything else for no particular reason.

So imagine my delight when I checked my email but a half hour ago and found this message:

You have been nominated in The Non-Canon awards! So head on over and check it out...and don't forget to grab your nomination banner! :)

A Twilight fanfiction award?

I was stunned. Geeked beyond measure and stunned.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Confession: I Do Not Play Spades

To Whom It May Concern:

It is Monday, March 10, 2014. We have an African-American president, Lupita won an Oscar last week, and Scandal is one of the highest-rated shows on television. And with these things in mind, I feel it is safe to make a confession.

I am a black person who does not play Spades.

You can't see me, but I'm in there.

Please note I didn’t say I cannot play or do not know how to play, only that I do not play.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Guest Post: Seven Random Questions with Lissa Bryan

On this wonderful Wednesday, I am thrilled to hand the blogging reins to my dear friend and author Lissa Bryan, author of four books including the recently released Under These Restless Skies. As part of her blog tour for UTRS, she has graciously agreed to answer Seven Random Questions for me today, and I don't want to take up any more of her time or space.

Take it away, Lissa! 

1. What surprised you most as you worked on Under These Restless Skies?

Anne Boleyn and Henry VIII got married on January 25, 1533, right before dawn. When I was writing the scene, I went to NASA to find out the phase of the moon, so I could describe the night accurately. That night was a new moon. I immediately wondered if Henry and Anne had chosen that date because it would cover their movements in darkness as they slipped outside to the gatehouse of the palace where the wedding took place.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Book Review: "Under These Restless Skies" by Lissa Bryan

In Lissa Bryan’s Under These Restless Skies, the court of Henry VIII is a fascinating, dangerous place where intrigue and insinuations lurk in every jot and tittle. Amid this swirling cacophony of royals and rascals are two unlikely participants—Will Somers, a humpbacked performer whose jokes and honesty make him a favorite of the king, and his wife Emma, a magical Selkie with otherworldly power in her touch.

This novel has everything—romance, suspense, drama, humor, and traces of the supernatural—masterfully blended by Bryan’s hand to create a compelling story you never want to put down. I could write my own book about how much I enjoyed this one, but in the interest of brevity--and promoting the awesome Guest Post she'll be doing here tomorrow!--I shall instead highlight my favorite features of this captivating novel.

**No spoilers, so no worries**

Monday, March 3, 2014

More than Skin Deep

Last night at the 86th Academy Awards, Lupita Nyong’o completed her sweep of the awards season with a win for Best Actress in a Supporting Role for her work in 12 Years a Slave. As she gave an impassioned, gracious acceptance speech, concluding with “When I look down at this golden statue, may it remind me and every little child that no matter where you’re from, your dreams are valid,” I found myself in tears.

To be clear, I also cried during Jared Leto’s heartfelt tribute to his mother. And when Bette Midler started singing “Wind Beneath My Wings,” I fell apart at the first line, thinking of my dearly departed Ebony and the one and only time I’d ever watched Beaches. But there was no denying the way my soul soared when Lupita took the stage cloaked in glee and gratitude, no escaping how I felt her triumph on a personal level.

And that surprised me.

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Out of the Mouth of Babes

Countless blogs including this one have often paused to admit one truth.

Parenting is difficult.

We don’t complain for kicks or to garner sympathy. We share our passion and pet peeves because we just didn't realize it would be like this, whatever our this is. We thought parenting would be more of abc and less of xyz. We thought our children would reveal one set of traits hidden within us and they instead unleashed a completely different set, one of which we are sometimes ashamed. Realizing other parents experience these dueling dualities makes us feel a little less loopy.

And a lot less alone.

Although I know my children know nothing of these musings, every now and then they say or do something that makes me feel as if I am not totally screwing this (and them) up.

Tonight Braylee did.