January Reads

31 Jan
Lots of great books this month!

Lots of great books this month!


It’s hard to believe January is almost over.  Where did this month go?  Looks like I spent a lot of time reading this month.  🙂

Esther by John Piper: I was surprised when I received this book that it was actually a poetry book.  Just one long poem about Esther.  🙂  I originally thought this book would be similar to Piper’s A Sweet & Bitter Providence (about the book of Ruth) which I have also read.  The illustrations in this book were lovely and I thoroughly enjoyed reading Piper’s poetry.  One could easily sit down and read this short book in one sitting as I did.  After reading this book I am sure I will be reading more of Piper’s poetry.  I also think this book would make a wonderful gift!

As Silver Refined: Learning to Embrace Life’s Disappointments by Kay Arthur: I’ve been a fan of Kay Arthur for years and found this book to be great.  I read it much slower than I usually do and spread out the book throughout the month.  I would read a chapter and then think, ponder, and pray about what God was teaching me through this book.  I think this is the first book I have every read on disappointments even though everyone faces some sort of disappointments in life.  I have no doubt that I will be recommending this book to friends in the future and may possibly use it in counseling.

What’s Your Problem by John Yates: I picked up this book at the library and I must say it was interesting.  He gives helpful suggestions on resolving all sorts of various problems consumers might have.  Personally I am currently having a big problem with HP over a broken laptop so I found this book very helpful.  I do wish that he would have included more specifics in his chapter on fixing problems with your health insurance company.  Overall a nice library book but not one I would want to own.

The Empowered Patient: How to Get the Right Diagnosis, Buy the Cheapest Drugs, Beat Your Insurance Company, & Get the Best Medical Care Every Time by Elizabeth S. Cohen.  This book was awesome.  Well as awesome as a book about healthcare can be.  🙂  A lot of the tips in the book I was already familiar with especially the section on prescription drugs.  I now feel like I have a much better understanding of how pharmaceutical companies influence physician’s decisions when prescribing medicine.  There were also some wonderful sheets to print off in the appendix when preparing for an appointment with your healthcare provider.  I ALWAYS take notes when I go to the doctor for any reason but I found this book to include great suggestions.  Cohen suggests writing down your top 3 concerns before visiting your doctor so that you make sure to discuss them.  Great book!

The Conviction to Lead by Albert Mohler:   I was a little intimidated to review Dr. Mohler’s latest book.  You see I actually graduated from the seminary where he is president less than 2 years ago.  🙂  I have heard him speak on numerous occasions, have met him in person, and have even been over to his house for a reception where I saw his famous library.  😉  I think it has been about four years since I have read a book on leadership or thought much about leadership for that matter.  I don’t know that I would really see myself as a leader today although in the past I would have.  Everyone is a leader to someone though.  I picked up this book because I was really hoping that Dr. Mohler would share about the beginnings of his presidency at Southern.  Although he shared bits and pieces I was a little disappointed that he did not share more.  (I realize this wasn’t the premise of the book but I was just secretly hoping.)  This book was surprisingly easy to read even though I always found myself going huh? during his chapel sermons.  🙂  I did find myself enjoying the book-especially the chapter on how leaders are readers.  I’ve definitely got that one covered!

Young House Love by Sherry & John Petersik: This book was awesome!  I found myself just wanting to start painting things.  I guess it’s a good thing I didn’t have any paint in the house or I might have ended up painting my piano pink.  J/K 😉  (Yes I have played on a pink piano before.)  I absolutely loved this book and hope to purchase it in the future.  Even if you don’t own your home (we don’t) there are many small things you can do to give your house some love.  I am hoping to try my hand at painting a lamp or small table this summer.  This book is very inspiring and I loved that the couple is young & inexperienced just like me!

Sewing Lingerie that Fits by Karen Morris: This book was wonderful and also inspiring.  I learned so much reading through this book that I even  purchased a pattern to make a simple slip and hope to complete it sometime next month.  The book even talks about bra construction which is something I doubt I will ever attempt!

Pocketful of Pinecones by Karen Andreola: This book about nature study for children was absolutely adorable.  The book is written as a journal of a young mother with two children who wants to teach them more about nature.  I found myself falling in love with the young mom and so wish I could invite her over for tea.  Too bad she’s a fictional character!  This book is packed full of encouragement and ideas on teaching your children to love nature.  Elijah and I have long been nature walkers.  I hope to continue this tradition throughout his childhood.  The book also details keeping nature notebooks which I think would also be fun in the future.  Eli seems a bit young for this right now.  🙂  I was encouraged by this book to set more time aside throughout our day for just enjoying the beautiful nature that is around us.

Mini-Farming: Self Sufficiency on 1/4 Acre by Brett Markham.  This book was perfect for the current cold season.  I am itching to get started on my garden!  The book spends a lot of time discussing raised beds.  Unlike other gardening/homesteading books Mini Farming encourages the reader to think about what gardening could mean financially to their family.  Markham notes that for many families the increasing cost of food makes it impossible for both parents not to work full-time.  (Sadly food prices continue to soar each year.)  He talks about how mini-farming could free up a substantial amount of money that might allow one spouse to work fewer hours or even stay home.  In the book he also gives suggestions for selling excess produce in order to generate more income.  I don’t think we will be selling produce this upcoming year but it does give me something to think about.  This book encouraged me to see my gardening as almost a part-time job that will bring incredible financial and health benefits to my family.

What books did you read the past month?  Do you have any recommendations?  



2 Responses to “January Reads”

  1. B-hub 123 January 31, 2013 at 5:23 am #

    Holy cow!

  2. Vanessa February 8, 2013 at 12:05 am #

    I am very jealous that you found Young House Love at the library!! I haven’t seen it at mine, but next time I go I will have to check with the librarians.

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