Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Saffron Cross- Christianity Meets Hinduism

Hello all! Jocelyn here! I know, long time, no post.
I could give you the usual excuses of being busy with the new school year (teaching), with all 3 of my children being in school, and But the truth is that I have simply been lazy. Forgive me.

So, what brings me out of my stupor now? I'm so glad you asked! It's this book:

This story is about the unlikely matching of a Christian Minister (Dana) and a Hindu Monk (Fred). There have been a few books written about interfaith marriages, but none that have covered a Christian/ Hindu relationship- especially with so much feeling and detail.
For those of you who know me, even a little, you know that my usual genre of choice is smut. (That would be romance novels in layman's terms.) There is very little that would make me change the topic on my Kindle screen. For this book, however, I was willing and eager to make an exception.
You see, my sister Joanna is the editor of this book! She works with the Upper Room Publishing House in Nashville, TN and we are so proud of her for using her English major properly! (without having to ask about fries and biggie-sizing!) :)
This book was published through their Fresh Air Books heading, and it certainly was a breath of fresh air. 

I had the pleasure of meeting Dana and Fred this past Sunday when Dana spoke at Belmont United Methodist Church. I attended with my sister, who was there in support of her author. I am so glad I went! Dana and Fred shared pieces of their story, as well as snippets from the book, and I was entranced. I loved hearing about special honeymoon. (I really want you to read the book for yourself, but I found myself laughing and sighing during this chapter.) Just one hour spent with Dana and Fred and I could see what a special team they made. (Check out Dana's website! J. Dana Trent)

 When I attended the book reading/ signing at Parnassus Books on Monday, Dana and Fred again showed their wonderful chemistry and teamwork. Here are a few pictures I got.

Joanna (the editor), Me, and our older (and pregnant) sister Jennifer

With the author Dana Trent!

So, after hearing Dana and Fred on Sunday, I couldn't wait to get the book. Blame it on society's need for instant gratification, but I was very glad that my Kindle is 3G and able to download books from anywhere, say... maybe.... in a pew during church. That's right. DURING CHURCH. The book is about God, so I figured He wouldn't mind. 

Since I began reading it on my Kindle, it just made sense that Dana should sign... my Kindle! I'm totally going to start a trend.

Of course I had to buy paperback as well. There's no way I'm going to loan my Kindle out to anyone. (I'm generous to a fault) Dana graciously signed my paperback as well. I tried to not be too demanding. :)

And Dana with the sisters

So, here are the Top 5 Reasons You Should Buy This Book:

5. My sister is the editor. She worked her tail off to make sure that Dana's book came to fruition and the end result is just fabulous. Plus, it would make my mom really happy. :)

4. It's an easy and pleasurable read. Yes, both Dana and Fred are highly educated in their chosen faiths, but the book is written to share their story with others. It's not full of words that would require the reader ( to have a dictionary handy, or a Masters Degree in Divinity.

3. It has a wonderful attention to detail. The book does an amazing job of "showing" and not just "telling" Dana and Fred's story. To quote Larry the Cucumber, "I laughed. I cried. It moved me, Bob."

2.  It's not just written for couples in interfaith relationships. I am happily married to my hubby and don't plan on ditching him any time soon, but I can see myself using this book in the future. Dana and Fred's marriage is based on communication, understanding, and a shared faith in God. (though practiced in different ways) While I might not use this book in my romantic life, I can see myself using points from it when talking to friends of different faiths. Conversing with people of different beliefs requires both parties to be open in their questioning and sharing. I believe Saffron Cross is a perfect example of the power of open communication.

1. What else have you got to do? Laundry? Dishes? Kids need dinner? Me too, but you don't see me jumping off my couch any time soon!
This book is beautifully written about two individuals deeply in love with each other and with God. Saffron Cross is a beautiful tapestry of their lives interwoven with back-stories , personal trials and successes, and a mutual search of God and His love. And guess what- they find that love, together.

So, seriously, what else have you got to do?

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Welcome to Summer!

It's that time of year again!!  Time to enjoy summer with the Phat Girls!  I don't know about anyone else, but I have tons of things to do in this short two months.  So just for my own accountability purposes here is a short list of the things I plan to do with my two months.

1.  Thing 1 and Thing 2 are just shy of 23 months.  When did that happen?  They need some training.  Daycare has been very good for them, but now it is time for mommy to train them for her own evil purposes.  This summer we will be training them to sleep in big boy beds (starting tonight), pick up their toys, and possibly even dabble in some potty training.  This promises to be a wild, hilarious ride so I will be sure to keep you updated with all of them details.

2.  Cooking.  All sorts of cooking will be happening all summer.  I have some new gadgets that I want to try out, but more importantly we ate out way too much this school year.  That has to stop.  I can't promise any super healthy or organic stuff, but it will be quick and easy.

3.  DIY.  This one is fun for me.  I have plans for a door decoration thing-y that will be easy to change for holidays, some dress-making, clothes for Thing 1 and Thing 2, and outside decorations.

4.  Exercise.  Do I really have to put this one on here?  The short answer is yes.  If I don't put it on here I won't do it.  I have acquired a double-jogging stroller and I plan to use it.  I will take pictures occasionally of all of the pretty and odd, and pretty odd things that we will see.

5.  Brag on myself.  I plan on doing some pretty serious de-junking and organizing.  So don't be surprised to see the occasional before and after, possibly accompanied by a short explination.

6.  Learning with God.  If I hit upon some really deep or not so deep understanding, I'll be sure and share it.

That's it.  Sorry for the lack of pictures, there will be lots of pictures very, very soon.  I wonder what Jocelyn will be doing this summer.....???

What about you guys?  What are you doing this summer?

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

I accept the challenge!

A reading challenge? Really?
Who am I kidding, it's really just an excuse to read regency romance. (Like I need an excuse, right?)

Melissa and I are both avid readers, and we agree that a little romance in our books makes everything better. Or, in my case, a LOT of romance... but that's neither here nor there. The point it this- there has been a challenge issued to read romance novels and I am not going to let it go unanswered.

To check out the original post, check out Austenprose- a Jane Austen Blog.
The best part is that I already have these books in my Kindle- I love Candice Hern! She's a wonderful writer whose publisher understands that Kindle books shouldn't be as expensive as print. (I love a good deal!)

So every month you'll see a review for the next of Candice Hern's books. I hope you'll follow along, or even join the challenge yourself!

The Regency Romance Reading Challenge Review Schedule:

 Here's to a great year of reading!