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The story of our precious little girl's 17 months of life with Trisomy 18 (July 4, 2010 - December 15, 2011) and of us, re-learning to live "after Lilly."
"I will praise you for I am fearfully and wonderfully made ...." Psalm 139:14

Friday, June 19, 2015

The book list - May & The declining Keet population

Though bringing foreign things to our country might seem interesting, I don't know that it is necessarily a good thing.  At least if left uncontained.  Living in North Carolina, one example that comes to mind is Kudzu.  This highly invasive climbing Asian vine was introduced to the U.S. in 1876.  I have seen areas completely taken over by it.  Kudzu has been dubbed "The vine that ate the south."

I've thought a lot about Keets (baby Guinea fowl) this week since our Sunday surprise.   This bird hails from Africa and thrives in a hot, dry climate.  Though once they are big enough, they are hardy and do fine here.  The trick is protecting the babies to get big enough!  They are so water sensitive they can even drown in the dew.

Sunday we had at least 15 Keets.  The next day we had 8.  Then the next two days we had 7.  The weather has been perfect Keet weather overall - HOT and humid.  We're talking 99 degrees in the shade.  (Whew!)  Last night though, we had a storm.  The earth needed it desperately - I haven't seen plants look so sadly wilted in a long time - but I couldn't help worrying about the Keets.  Sadly this morning, there were only 3 left. 

In the future, if we are able to find one of our guinea hens sitting on a nest in time, we have a plan on how to catch her and relocate her and the eggs to a safe place.

I was able to get some not very good pictures the other day of these cute little Keets:

I was able to finish three books in May, two of which I've been reading a bit at a time for months.  Most of my reading time was consumed with the 464 page utterly gripping novel Redeeming Love

Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers - I don't read a lot of fiction (except historical fiction with Tabby for school) but I am so glad I read this amazing, haunting, and thought provoking book.  It is a modern retelling of the book of Hosea from the Old Testament of the Bible.  (Hosea was one of the prophets - one who I always felt really sorry for!  God told him to take a prostitute as a wife.  She, unsurprisingly, did not remain faithful yet he went and got her and brought her home again.  Their marriage was to show the parallel of how horribly Israel was treating God and how He was still loving and forgiving.)  Redeeming Love is set in 1850, in California's gold country.  Angel was a prostitute that had been sold into the business as a little girl.  She hated men and hated her life.  An upright Christian man, Michael Hosea sees her one day and feels God calling him to marry her and to love her unconditionally.  Though shocked, he obeys.  He rescues Angel from the brothel in a very dramatic way - after she had been beaten almost to the point of death - and marries her.  It takes years for Angel to heal and trust Michael, and to become a child of God herself.  Many turbulent years, including times of her running away and Michael bringing her back.

The parallels of Michael and Angel, and like the prophet Hosea and his wife Gomer, are not unlike us in our sinful lives.  They are all reminders of the way that our God loves us unconditionally, redemptively, and all-consumingly.   This book just made me thank God over and over again for this.

Blurry picture - but you get the idea.  They enjoy duets!

The Joyful Child:  Montessori, Global Wisdom for Birth to Three by Susan Mayclin Stephenson - I continue to be fascinated with a lot of the Montessori methods, and Solomon continues to enjoy and learn from them.  He often asks for new "mont-ssori activities."  Though I found some little parts of this book a bit weird, overall much of it was very interesting and made so much sense.  It will really make you rethink giving all the plastic toys with the "bells whistles and lights" to your baby or toddler.  I love how the Montessori approach focuses on so many aspects of a little ones life, including practical life skills.  In America, kids (and many adults) just dread "chores."  But Montessori, work is given a high importance and children taught skills early.  In everything from dressing themselves to cleaning up after themselves to just doing more for themselves.  Guess what - our young kids are perfectly capable of all these things and actually LOVE it.  I think Solomon's very favorite kind of play is helping us with our chores!

On a funny note, I have to say that teaching them skills can sometimes backfire.  Last week, we met our field trip group at Jordan Lake.  We first heard a presentation on bald eagles.  Then we all stayed to have a picnic lunch and to swim in the lake.  When it was time to get ready to swim, I turned around to gather our things to take to the bath house to change.  When I turned back around, Solomon was standing there without any of his clothes on!  All ready for his bathing suit.  Ooops!  Not in public, buddy.

The author of this book has written another for older children:  Child of the World: Montessori, Global Education for Age 3-12+.  I look forward to reading this one, hopefully later this year.

Pepper - time for fresh cold water

What Mary & Joseph Knew About Parenting:  Surprising Insights from the Best (and Worst) Parents in the Bible by Rick Osborne - I admit - it was the title that intrigued me to buy this book.  I found this book a big help in picking apart and giving good insight into parents in the Bible.  The author did a great job at this.  I am not very good at really reflecting deeply and getting a lot of insights from what I read in the Bible, though I do try.  (I also often need help with practical application.)  I've often wondered why, for example, that King David had some really rotten children, since he was "a man after God's own heart."  Rick Osborne focused in on a particular verse in the Bible about David and after reading it I thought "Ohhhhh!"  I had never really thought about it.  This book has lots of short chapters.  First the Biblical story, then a discussion of it.  Then practical application on how to incorporate the lessons learned into your parenting.

The biddies are getting big!  And getting curious about that yard out there.


  1. I love Francine Rivers, and I love Redeeming Love. It's one of my favorite books of all time. I also highly recommend her novel The Bridge to Haven.

    1. Oh thank you for the recommendation. I will put that one on my list!

  2. Francine rivers is a favorite of mine also...Although I do not usually read fiction books hers are worth it, The Scarlet there'd is really good! I'm curious about what you found weird about the Montessori book, my sister is in their training program and I do not know much about them. I would love to here you Christian perspective on it. Thanks for the recommendations!