Instead of blogging . . .

we’ve had a some birthdays:

We’ve been to the Magic House.


Doing things aroud the house:

And we went to visit boy scout camp:

We’ve also been to a Cardinals game, the science center, Grant’s Farm, the park, the pool, and the library (countless times).  I should have a photo of Nevin reading because he has read 18 Redwall books + many others since school let out just more than a month ago.  Finally, we had Mark’s parents here to visit last week after they spent a couple days with the girls in Branson.

In the middle of all this activity, I have been working at my 2 at-home part-time jobs, and Mark has been working on various work projects, sending out many job applications, and doing occasional pulpit supply.

So I interrupted this very busy summer to give you an update.  Hopefully, I’ll find time in the coming weeks to tell you about the books we’re reading and the other activities we get around to.

And the Books Go On

I was able to get back to the library Wednesday and checked out Belong to Me again.  I wasn’t feeling great yesterday, so I used that as an excuse/opportunity to finish it.  I enjoyed the story and the author’s ability to draw me in to the community she created.  This isn’t a recommendation, so if you decide to read it, don’t blame me if the morals, etc., are offensive to you.  However, if you like contemporary television dramas, you will probably like this book.

I might write more about this book later, but I might not.  For now, let’s just say I did ok with picking this book based on the cover.

Summer Reading Redux

In the midst of summer busyness–caring for the kids, yardwork, household projects–I have been trying to get some reading done. Well, I had to return Belong To Me (mentioned in my last post) to the library. I had Mark check it out for me when it was due last week, and then today, it was due again, and I figured they wouldn’t let me check it out again. I am more than half-way through, and I want to finish it. I just haven’t had the time to get to it.

I did finish The Good Earth, and it was worth reading. If you don’t know, it is the story of a farmer in China before the revolution. The farmer, practically worships the land. With the help of his stalwart, former slave wife, O-lan, Wang Lung survives a brutal famine and goes back to his land to farm it and become rich. He amasses more and more land, and becomes a lord in their small town. He also takes a second wife, a real sign of wealth.

What is great about this book are the themes that run through it–the benefit of hard work as opposed to slothfulness, the benefit of long-term faithfulness as opposed to betrayal, true humility versus false humility, being grateful for the gifts you receive in this life, etc., etc. The story is set in a pagan culture where false gods are honored and the people are superstitious, so the benefits of the gospel are missing. But the good and beneficial elements of these qualities to families and communities are still evident.

After I finished the book, I checked out the 1937 film based on it from the library. The movie had a happier ending and Wang Lung’s character was more foolish than in the book, but it was still a good reflection of the novel.

From looking at, it looks like there are 2 sequels to the first one: Sons and A House Divided Maybe I’ll get to reading them next summer!