My cousin Katie & I have lived on opposite sides of the county our whole lives, still do. Luckily, summers & family reunions have brought us together again and again, picking up right where we left off. I adore her. She is honest, giving, & such an interesting person. I am endlessly grateful for Facebook & blogs so I can constantly reconnect with & live vicariously through her.
Speaking of her blog, you'll love it. I look forward to every post she does. She's always honest. Always real. And always has amazing pictures of her life & adorable babies.
And speaking of photography, she is an unbelievable photographer who will take family/ individual pictures & all her proceeds goes to charity. Yeah, she's awesome like that.
And speaking of awesome, here she is share a couple of her favorite books with us. Check out her picks & stop on by her blog to say hi!
Welcome to my bedroom. This is where I get my best reading done – lamp on, snuggled under the blankets, ceiling fan blowing overhead. It is my luxury after a long day, a treat to look forward to before sleep comes and brings a new day and all the responsibilities that go with it.
Some of my favorite books over the last year or so have been books that lift me up at the end of a long day – books that give me that little boost to believe that I live in a beautiful world and that I am going to make that world even better when I wake up.
1. 1 Anne of Green Gables, by L.M. Montgomery
My blog is called “Ingleside,” my daughter’s middle name is Anne, and my hometown is Blythe, CA. I had to give a shout out to this book, right? Once every year or two I reread this classic, and it is has shaped my life just as much as any dear childhood friend. About far more than Gilbert and Anne’s love-hate relationship, this book is full of poignantly human characters and achingly gorgeous scenery. You will breathe Prince Edward Island air and stroll down Lover’s Lane and wrap yourself in Anne’s dream to have a place in the world where she is loved and understood.
Read this book before bed and you will fall asleep believing you that will find kindred spirits where you least expect them, and that tomorrow is a brand new day, with no mistakes in it.
2. 2 Born to Run, by Christopher McDougall
Let’s get something straight. I am not a runner. I have never made a little bucket list with “run a marathon” on it. I have zip, zero, NO desire to run anything more than a few miles at a time. This is a book about ultrarunners – runners who go for 25, 50, 100 mile jaunts across deserts and up mountains –and I loved it. The author weaves story after story together into an entertaining and epic tale of the human body and spirit.
Read this book before bed and you will fall asleep believing that you are strong, that your body is an incredible creation, and that you are capable of so much more. You may even dream about running a marathon.
3. 3 Palace of Stone, by Shannon Hale
This is a just-released sequel to Princess Academy, which I definitely recommend you read before picking up this one. Don’t be fooled by the titles – these aren’t your typical wear-a-tiara and learn-to-dance princess stories. There is romance, but it is patient, and is buffeted by a much larger theme of looking at the world around you and using your talents and situation to better it. Shannon Hale’s writing felt a little too simplistic to me in the beginning of this book, but I found a purpose and depth to the writing as the story progressed, and by the end, I was awed by how beautifully she crafted the whole story.
Read this book before bed and you will want to wake your daughter up to read it aloud to her. You will fall asleep thinking of all the great things you are going to do tomorrow.
4. 4 Heaven Is Here, by Stephanie Nielson
I have followed Stephanie Nielson’s blog The Nie Nie Dialouges for 4 ½ years. When I was nine months pregnant with my son Oliver, I was up late one night, unable to sleep, and I hopped on her blog to find a post written by her sister telling us all that Stephanie had been in a plane crash. Like many of you, I followed the story of her recovery closely. When she wrote a book about her experience, I didn’t expect to read anything new. I was wrong. Stephanie tells her story simply, and there is nothing artistic or memorable about the writing itself, but the story is remarkable, touching, and for me, faith-promoting.
Read this book before bed and you will say a prayer to thank God for all you have, you will sneak into your kids’ rooms to whisper “I love you” in their ear, and you will fall asleep curled up next to your husband, remembering that he is the love of your life.
5. 5 Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide, by Nicolas D. Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn
This is a book that I want to hand to every person I know. It undertakes a heavy task – telling the story of oppression of women and girls across the globe. It is depressing and heartbreaking and shocking, and most important, it is provoking. It will provoke your heart and your mind, and you will find yourself looking for solutions right along with the authors.
Read this book before bed and you might lose a little sleep, but sometimes that is a good thing, right?