Lists, Lists, Lists
December 2009: Deck the Halls With Boughs Of Holly, Fa, La, La, La, BLAH.
Name your favorite Christmas carol:
3 Harps for Christmas (volumes I & II), by Sylvia Woods
I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day
It’s Beginning to Feel a lot Like Christmas
Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas sung by Judy Garland in the movie Meet Me in St. Louis
While You Were Sleeping
Sweet Little Jesus Boy
Mary Did You Know
Amy Grant’s rendition of O Little Town of Bethlehem, or Point of Grace, or Manheim Steamroller
Two Steppin’ ‘Round the Christmas Tree
Lo, How a Rose e’er Blooming
I Wonder As I Wander
O’ Come All Ye Faithful
One Small Child
Still Her Little Child
the Garmin Nuvi Christmas commercials
O Holy Night
Hark the Herald Angels Sing
Faith Hill’s A Baby Changes Everything
Joy to the World
Angels From the Realms of Glory
Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire
Celine Dion's Ave Maria
Merry Christmas Strait to You
Merry Christmas, Darling by the Carpenters
Carol of the Bells
O Come, O Come Emmanuel
O Little Town of Bethlehem
Amy Grant’s Emmanuel, God with Us
Sleighride by either the Ronnettes or the Brian Setzer
All I Want for Christmas is You by Mariah Carey
Christmastime is Here by Vince Guaraldi and the Charlie Brown kids
Paul McCartney’s Wonderful Christmastime
Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer
Have A Holly Jolly Christmas’
Peace on Earth/Little Drummer Boy
The Hallelujah Chorus
Take a Walk Through Bethlehem sung by Trisha Yearwood
November 2009: Give Thanks With a Grateful Heart.
I'm thankful for:
My family (There were sooo many entries re family!)
A job during hard times
The surprises God brings
A new baby!!!
The fact that we are not behind on house payments when so many are!
An overall-wearing congregation that God has allowed us to serve (Read more soon!)
Thirty-one years of marriage--to the same man!
The doctor discovering a health problem despite no warning signs
Another year without cancer
The fact that my family has reconciled after years of hard feelings
Money for a relative's gift JUST when I needed it!
People to serve
My church, where I feel so welcome
The B-i-b-l-e. It's just the book for me
Music. I love the music this time of year.
My large, multicultural family gathering around the table, saying grace, and stuffing ourselves (Read more soon!)
October 2009: Rah Rah Mascot Month
Delta State's Fighting Okra
Ohio State Brutus Buckeye
Sammy the Banana Slug, University of Santa Cruz
Traverse City Beach Bums
Kennesaw State University Fighting Hoot Owls
Minnesota Golden Gopher
Alabama Crimson Tide
University of Kentucky Wildcats
Portland Christian Eagles
Southeastern Christian Torches
Gainesville, Missouri, Bulldogs
Oostburg Flying Dutchmen (a clog shoe with wings)
The American Bald Eagle
San Diego Chicken
Frankfort Hot Dogs
Scottsdale Community College's Arty the Fighting Artichoke
Mary Baldwin College's Gladys the Fighting Squirrel
Corny, Heartland Community College
Notre Dame Fighting Irish
The Wheaton Wheaties
Arkansas Monticello Boll Wievels (The only thing that ever stopped the South!!????)
September 2009: Wedding Memories
Dear Readers, please forgive me, but I could not condense your wonderful stories into a list and do them any justice!!!
After we receive our baby's wedding album, I will list MY favorite wedding memories. Unfair! It's life!!!!!!
August 2009: For where your treasure is...
Ministry & More
Doctors Without Borders
American Kidney Fund
Campus Crusade for Christ
Harbor House in Australia
Brandon House Ministry in Wallhalla, South Carolina
Foundation for Cancer Research
DIGS, Inc. (Developing Independence, Growth, and Security)
Fellowship of Christian Athletes
Pregnancy Center in Lebanon, Missouri
Focus on the Family
Rahab Ministries (Rahab Bazaar)
Bany Trading Company
My local church (way too many to list!!)
Reading is Fundamental
Guide Dog for the Blind
The Salvation Army
Habitat for Humanity
Susan G. Komen for the Cure
Pearl Buck International
Greenpeace Fund, Inc.
National Foundation for Research on Schizophrenia and Depression
National Military Family Association
July 2009: 4th of July favorites:
Playing Jimmy Buffett's "The Night I Painted the Sky"
Fireworks at the beach
Fireworks behind the old armory
Fireworks in the park
A huge carry-in with all my friends and family
A neighborhood parade where all the kiddos hang streamers from their bikes and trikes
A day at the lake and skiing
Time at Green Lake Family Camp
Just a day set aside to remember our Founding Fathers
Teaching the little kids of our family how to do sparklers
Putting cheap plastic flags up and down our driveway
Hanging red, white, and blue streamers in all our trees
Putting out the flag and leaving it there for like a week
Watching Born on the 4th of July
Praying for our soldiers, who are all over the world
Making a flag cake outta strawberries and blueberries. It's in The Barefoot Contessa cookbook
Wearing red, white and blue t-shirts
Eating strawberries. Better if they're dipped in chocolate
June 2009: Gotta Get Away?
Michigan, or somewhere, anywhere, cool!
The Oregon coast
New York City
The breathtaking hiking trails of the Grand Canyon
The Four Seasons Hotel on Wailea Beach in Maui! Maui-Maui and snorkeling included!
A deserted sandy beach
A bedbug-free hotel--LOL. Something REALLY nice!
The Holy Land
A sailboat in the Caribbean
The Scottish highlands, especially Dunvegan Castle (home of the McLeods, my ancestors)
Ireland, especially places visited in An Irishwoman's Tale, and Counties Cork and Mayo
London and places mentioned in Elizabeth Goudge's beloved books
Michoacan, Mexico, refuge of the Monarch butterflies
The turquoise and blue waters of a Destin beach are calling my name!!
The big sky country of Montana
Exploring all seven continents, including an Anarctic winter and time in an Amazon rain forest
A beautiful park in St. Louis that we visited when I was a kid
Trips to visit beloved relatives in Illinois and Indiana
Glacier National Park
Acadia National Park in Maine
Charleston, South Carolina
San Diego AND Coronado Island
Cinque de Terra, Italy
Anywhere with my grown-up children. How I long to spend time with them!
Santa Fe's art galleries and the beautiful sculpture garden outside of town
Chicago's ethnic neighborhoods--before they get bulldozed
May 2009: Favorite colognes (my readers love to smell good!):
Japanese Cherry Blossom
ANY Bond perfume, particularly Chinatown, Harlem, and Central Park
L'Air De Temps
Chanel No. 5
An old bottle of musk oil I got in college (?!*)
Aqua de Gio
April 2009: Favorite Easter Memories
Sunrise service on the beach
Getting new clothes for Easter. My brother got the cutest little white suit and bow tie.
Easter baptism in a cold river!
Dad giving Mama Easter lilies
Placing flowers on the graves of my grandpa
The smell of boiling eggs
Dying the eggs crazy colors, then gluing glitter and rick-rack on them
The first date with my husband of thirty years
Easter egg hunts with my cousins
Throwing Easter eggs at cars
Grandma buying us new Easter clothes
My grandparents hiding Easter eggs with money in them
A hard-boiled egg breakfast
Mama making a special Easter casserole before sunrise service. Bacon and eggs and cheese--yum!
My pastor dad riding a donkey down the aisle on Easter morning
My youngest son and his friends getting baptized on Easter morning
A beautiful white "Easter bunny" sitting on our porch
A yummy chocolate bunny sitting on my breakfast plate
Getting dyed chicks in my Easter basket. I have no idea how they stayed put!
Gathering eggs, then dyeing them pink and blue
Hiding eggs for my little cousins
Mother making me starch and iron everyone's Easter best
Our church performing a skit with the women gathered around the tomb
Singing, "He is Not Here, But Risen!"
Wearing an Easter bonnet with plastic fruits and berries glued onto it
March 2009: My Hero
February 2009: Valentine Memories (besides top five)
January 2009: Favorite Snow Memories
December 2008: Special Christmas Memories
Making a completely furnished dollhouse for our daughter, including pictures on the wall!
Getting our first bicycles, thanks to a sacrificially giving mom
Attending movies with the whole family
Attending Midnight Mass or a late church service
Our first Christmas with our adopted sons
A Christmas present vacation to Puerto Rico from my husband
For once, a peaceful household without conflict and tension
A Christmas of yesteryear when my husband proposed on a bridge in Central Park
A picture-perfect image of Nana's and Poppa's house, complete with mountains and waterfalls
A real Christmas tree
Gifts from Sam, the secret Santa
Precious time with loved ones who have passed from this earth (especially Grandma)
Staying up to "catch" Santa Claus in action
Our first white Christmas
The look on my children's faces when they got special gifts
When my nephew got a guitar and "taught" us all how to play it!
Leaving cookies out for Santa Claus
Participating in a Christmas play when I was a youngster at our little country church
Carrying on Dad's tradition of making Christmas cookies
Getting caught snooping around for Christmas presents
Getting a special memory ornament from Mother
Making Christmas treats with my children and a good friend
Singing Christmas carols
Having babies born right around the Christmas season--the best gifts ever!
Watching my kids' faces as they open their presents
Catching Dad eating Santa's fudge
Getting dominoes and playing with Mom
Reading the Christmas story from the Bible and letting the family's youngest child be Baby Jesus
Our family's annual day to volunteer--especially that one poignant visit with Mary, a 92-year-old woman with no family and a need to talk!
November 2008: Favorite Thanksgiving Entrees
October 2008: Lord, I need revival in:
September 2008: School Days Memories
August 2008: Deathbed Memories
July 2008: Poignant First Memories
(Finalists in July contest )
June 2008: Oh, The Places We'll Go!
(Readers' Dream Destinations )
Hawaii, particularly the island of Kauai
remote Caribbean beaches
Denali Park in Alaska
Wyoming and Montana parks
an Alaskan cruise
Mt. Hood and Mt. St. Helens in Washington State
Italy, Greece and France
Backpacking across Ireland
an untouched tropical island
mission trips (particularly in Africa)
A train trip anywhere!
A geneological trip across Ireland, Scotland, England
Helping family in Illinois and Indiana
Cinque Terre in Italy
Switzerland's carless villages
Wisconsin's bike trails, particularly Sparta with its cool railroad tunnels
Santa Fe and the art scene
Maine with its lighthouses and loons
The sea islands off the Georgia coast
May 2008: Get Inspired! (Twenty-six Contest Entries)
April 2008: Let's Go to the Movies
(Twenty-Five Must-See American Films
Will devote another list to foreign films) )
March 2008: Here's to you, Ireland!
(Places to Visit on Lovely Erin)
• The majestic Cliffs of Mohr
• The City of Galway, with its whimsical shops
• The Burren, a vast limestone stretch dotted with exotic wildflowers
• The Burren Perfumery and Tea Room
• The wild, wonderful climb to Croagh Patrick
• Skellig Michael, the "most impossible rock in the world"
• Strangford Lough
• The romantic Aran Islands
• A pub in just about any Irish town. Good food and Guinness
• The Connemara, including Killary Fjord and Kylemore Abbey
• Traditional Irish music pub (different from above. Ask the locals)
February 2008: Valentine's Day Memories
• Toblerone candy bars arriving from my Swiss brother
• Cooking a gourmet meal for our young married small group
• Watching our teenaged son serve the gourmet meal!
• Homemade Valentines from my babies
• Yearly phone calls from both my parents (before Dad died)
• Our annual ritual--ordering Chinese takeout
• Eating above on our china by candlelight
• Taking an elderly friend to tea
• Flowers delivered from an anonymous admirer
• Stuffing white paper sacks with store-bought Valentines
January 2008: New Year's Resolutions Which Rocked My Socks Off
• Quit manipulating my teenagers
• Lose eight pounds
• Eat dark chocolate daily
• Drink coffee with every meal
• Train for and complete a marathon
• Run a 5K, a 10K, and a half-marathon on the same weekend
• Clean my husband's closet
• Read the Bible daily
• Take up jogging...and enjoy it!
• Daily work the newspaper's crossword puzzle
• Do quality research to determine the best presidential candidate
• Laugh more and frown less
• Quit being snippy to my in-laws
• Read every classic title in my local library
• Find the mind of God (winning entry)
• Expect God to work miracles in ME
• Lower bad cholesterol, raise good cholesterol
December 2007: Most Popular Christmas Reads
(Listed in order of votes received)
• Christmas Carol, Dickens
• A Christmas Memory, Capote
• Twas the Night, Moore & Birmingham
• How the Grinch Stole Christmas , Seuss
• The Best Christmas Pageant Ever , Robinson
• Christmas Day in the Morning, Buck and Buehner
• Gift of the Magi, Henry and Zwerger
• The Christmas Box, Evans
• The Polar Express, Van Allsburg
• The Candymaker's Gift: The Legend of the Candy Cane, Haidel
• The Crippled Lamb, Lucado
• Away in a Manger, Kinkade
• Unwrapping Christmas, Copeland
• Jacob's Gift, Lucado
• The Christmas Shoes, VanLiere
• Alabaster's Song: Christmas Through the Eyes of an Angel, Lucado
• An Unexpected Christmas: The Story of Johnny Cornflakes, George
The Mitford novels
October/November 2007: Favorite Fall Memories
September 2007: Places Which Inspire You
August 2007: Old friends
• The Children's Bible, Golden Press
• Little Women, Alcott
• Fairy Tales of the Orient, Buck
• Cowboy Andy, Chandler
The Nancy Drew series, Keene
• Pippi Longstocking, Lindgren
• Beautiful Joe, Saunders
• Five Little Peppers and How they Grew, Sidney
• Booker T. Washington, Stevenson
• A Child's Garden of Verses, Stevenson
July 2007: Summer loves!
Scour your favorite bookstores! Poll your friends!
Come up with at least five scintillating summer reads!
Winner receives a $15 gift certificate to Borders Books & Music!
Please e-mail your selections to firstname.lastname@example.org or
select "Contact Me" on this website and enter your list in the "Message" box.
Patti's Summer Loves 2007
(*Reviewed on the site button entitled Reviews )
• Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, Kingsolver
• Confessions of an Amateur Believer , Kirk
• Confessions of St. Augustine (Ryan, translator)
• *Dispatches From the Edge , Cooper
• *My Father's Secret War , Franks
• Suite Francaise , Nemirovsky
• *The Big House, Colt
• *The Invisible Wall, Bernstein
• The Lost: A Search for Six of Six Million, Mendelsohn
• *The Memory Keeper's Daughter, Edwards
• *The Oak Leaves, Lang
• The Road, McCarthy
• *Watching the Tree Limbs, DeMuth
• West With The Night, Markham
* When Crickets Cry, Martin
Mine was an odd childhood, living in an athletic dormitory with two hundred sometime brothers, my father, the dorm director, and Mother. In May, after the sometimes brothers had ripped sheets from their bed, stuffed satchels and trunks with smelly clothes, and headed home for another summer, loneliness swept in like a Texas thunderstorm.
That first summer they all left, I was four years old, and Mother somehow knew how hard it would be for me to tell my sometime brothers good-bye. After all, there were no kids to play with on a college campus, and my full-time brothers hadn't been born yet.
"Let's find some summer loves!" Mother exclaimed, wiping my tears away as we waved to the last sometime brother.
"What are summer loves?" I asked.
"The best kind!" When she lifted her eyebrows in that funny way she had, her face took on the look of a circus clown's, and I knew fun was on its way. "They take you around the world, then bring you back. They never mess with your stuff, and they don't cost a dime!"
I didn't understand what was going on until we walked across campus, climbed the library steps, and tiptoed into the lobby, which back then was hush-hush even when all the students were around. That day, it was empty as Christ's tomb.
"Books?" I asked Mother, more than slightly disappointed. They child of two educators, I'd been knee deep in books for my whole life. They'd propped up the gimpy leg on my baby bed, been jerryrigged into a coffee table of sorts, preserved and pressed Mother's favorite flowers...but most of all, we read them, talked about them...lived them.
"Special ones. The ones that aren't assigned in school." She patted my head. "Of course, you don't know about that yet." Mother lowered her voice when the crabby librarian eyed her. "The ones you'd pay money for."
My breath caught in my throat. While my parents coveted books like others coveted gold, they'd sworn off buying them until Daddy's dissertation was finished. Our books were borrowed, gifted, traded, and perhaps even obtained under less admirable circumstances. "For real?" I asked.
Another look from Mrs. Crab didn't faze Mother. "For real," she insisted. She took my arm and led me to the study carrel under which I'd played solitaire while Daddy did research. "If they're yours, you can memorize your favorite parts, write in the margins, and read them over and over. They'll make you laugh...and cry, when you realize you're on the last chapter."
As the years went by, I learned just what Mother meant. I sampled Green Eggs and Ham with Seuss, survived a dreadful house fire with Beautiful Joe, solved mysteries with the Bobbsey Twins and Nancy Drew, and visited London and Paris and Narnia, which was such a wonderful place, I never wanted to come home...
Now I'm fifty-two, and I still eagerly reenact the summertime ritual my mother began back in Martin Hall even though now I go to Borders or Barnes & Noble or Berean and buy books instead of checking them out of the library, mainly so I can write in the margins of my summer friends' pages, like my parents loved to do. For weeks, sometimes months, I query my friends and read online reviews, compiling a semifinalist list. To choose the finalists, I scour the bookstores, scooping up an armful of the top ten or twenty, and let them spill onto one of those minuscule tables in the quietest corner of the bookstore's coffee bar, or in the case of Berean, the back corner of the store, by the bathrooms. Some are pretty young things, hot off the presses; others are so old, their authors are cold in their graves and have been for centuries. Be forewarned: just like in real-life relationships, some summer loves just don't work out. But I'll follow my Grandmother Hazel's advice on this type of matter: I won't talk about them if they won't talk about me. And if one summer love doesn't work out, I'll carefully replace it on the store's bookshelf and pull down another and another and another.
June's genre: Christian fiction!
Up, Up, and Away--Twenty-Three Fiction Reads
• Deadline, Alcorn
• Dominion , Alcorn
• All She Ever Wanted (Austin)
• A Light to My Path (Refiner's Fire series) , Austin
• Candle in the Darkness (RF series), Austin
• Fire by Night (RF series) , Austin
• Eve's Daughters, Austin
• Blink , Dekker
• When Heaven Weeps, Dekker
• They Shall See God, Dickson
• Joshua, Girzone
• The Note, Hunt
• The Yada Yada Prayer Group, Jackson
• Sisterchicks on the Loose, Jones
The Mitford series, Karon
• Saving Alice, Lewis
• The Atonement Child, Rivers
• Leota's Garden, Rivers
• When the Shofar Blew, Rivers
• God Made Little Apples, Sheridan
• The Amber Photograph, Stokes
The Galway Chronicles, Thoene & Thoene
• Brigid of Ireland, Thomson
May's Genre: Christian Nonfiction
Tried and Trusted Old Friends: 20 Favorite Books of Christian Nonfiction
• The Cost of Discipleship, Bonhoeffer
• My Utmost for His Highest , Chambers
• Fresh Wind, Fresh Fire, Cymbala
• These Strange Ashes , Elliot
• Passion and Purity, Elliot
• The Savage, My Kinsman , Elliot
• Mere Christianity, Lewis
• Blue Like Jazz , Miller
• Absolute Surrender, Murray
• The Cloister Walk, Norris
• Bruchko, Olsen
• 101 Hymn Stories, Osbeck
• Knowing God, Packer
• Desiring God, Piper
• Following Christ, Stowell
• The Case for Christ, Strobel
• The Best of A.W. Tozer, Tozer
• The Purpose-Driven Life, Warren
• The Jesus I Never Knew, Yancy
• What's So Amazing About Grace? Yancy