While the first half of this pregnancy mostly involved me lying on the couch watching every Masterpiece Theatre series ever released, as the HG nausea has improved I’m trying to make up for lost time on my to-be-read pile. Here’s a few of the great titles I’ve picked up lately:
(This post contains Amazon affiliate links.)
One Beautiful Dream by Jennifer Fulwiler:
Sometimes you read a book that makes the mascara run down your cheeks. And it makes you laugh so hard your kids say,
“What’s the deal with Mom?”
“Oh, she’s just reading Mrs. Fulwiler’s new book.”
Jennifer Fulwiler’s second book made me say “YES” out loud multiple times while I soaked in its wisdom. Jen hit it out of the park with this one, folks. I know you’ve seen it everywhere on social media (it was even #1 on Barnes on Noble! And no, not just for Catholic books for ALL BOOKS) but it lives up to the hype, I promise.
It’s on a topic that is so dear to my heart: how do we follow our dreams AND nurture our families? How do we reshape our expectations and individualism to see ourselves as part of a thriving team that is changing the world by honoring our God-given talents and passions?
I know Jen in real life. I love her family. She is the real deal and I am truly indebted to her personally for how she has encouraged me over the years to live out my passions so that I can be the woman and mother God designed me to be. Friends, God loves YOU and made YOU. He knows how you are wired because he MADE YOU THAT WAY. Do not believe the lies that want to keep you boxed in, ignoring your family’s unique calling. He has a plan for setting the world on fire with your talents, creativity, and love. Read this book and laugh and cry and let it inspire you. And listen to our Fountains of Carrots podcast interview with Jen on this topic because it will PUMP YOU UP.
I loved this book so much and I think it’s so important that I devoted an entire blog post review of it! So check that out or listen to our Fountains of Carrots interview with author Tyler Blanski here. If you’re a millennial or want to understand the millennial experience of our modern spiritual landscape, this book is for YOU and it is far and away the best conversion story I’ve read in years.
One of my goals this year is to make it habit to pray the hours. I really like The Little Office!
Jesus of Nazareth: The Infancy Narratives by Pope Benedict XVI
I started this one when I was super sick with this pregnancy and now I’m just a couple of pages away from finishing. Beautiful!
Books In Progress
Made for This: The Catholic Mom’s Guide to Birth by Mary Haseltine
I can’t believe this book hasn’t existed until now. Where has it been all my life (and all my pregnancies)? Mary Haseltine, a mom of many and doula who has studied theology of the body, has done a masterful job at filling a deep need.
Mary brings such theological depth to the discussion of pregnancy, birth, our bodies, and how it all relates to God and his presence in our lives. Reading it as I prepare for my 4th birth has been an unbelievable blessing and has honestly transformed the way I think about birth. This isn’t my first rodeo, but I’m learning so much about the sacredness of birth and the strength and beauty of women brought to light in the Catholic tradition.
In addition to tons of practical information about preparing ourselves to bring new souls into the world, the way Mary frames the whole topic is so beautiful. (I was honored to contribute a couple of short reflections that were included in the book and there’s oodles of great birth stories and thoughts from other Catholic women about their diverse experiences.)
And if you haven’t listened to our podcast interview with Mary, definitely check it out!
Mystery and Manners by Flannery O’Connor
The sweet ladies of the St. Thomas Aquinas Mothers Association gifted me this beauty when I gave a talk for their meeting in Dallas last month and I can’t believe I’ve never read it before. Whether Flannery is discussing peacocks or Catholic creatives, every sentence is gold!
Water at the Roots by Philip Britts
Fans of Wendell Berry will enjoy these beautiful poems by visionary farmer, Philip Britts. I had never heard of Britts, but he’s a fascinating figure and the poems are lovely.
When We Were Eve: Unveiling the Woman God Created You to Be by Colleen C. Mitchell
Just recently started this one but am really enjoying this examination of what it means to be a woman in light of the Creation story from Genesis.
I’m really excited about this new periodical print project. This issue includes some great writers like Eve Tushnet, Leah Libresco, and Ross Douthat.
Books I’m Reading with the Kids:
Kendra Tierney’s Traditional Catholic Prayers for Awesome Catholic Kids books
There’s three options: Superhero theme, Fairytale theme, and Woodland theme and I just happen to have three kids who are very into each of those themes at this present time. These are such a great resource and my kids love them!
Building the Way to Heaven: The Tower of Babel and Pentecost by Maura Roan McKeegan, Illustrated by T. Schluenderfritz
This is a beautiful picture book from the creators of Into the Sea, Out of the Tomb about Jonah and Jesus. This series of books puts Old Testament and New Testament stories side by side to help kids see the the connection between the two.
Saints and Social Justice: A Guide to Changing the World by Brandon Vogt
This isn’t a children’s book but we’re reading snippets of it at the breakfast table as a family. Thumbs up! Brandon writes so beautifully and with such love about the saints.
The House at Pooh Corner by A.A. Milne
It’s always the right time to read Pooh.
Mr. Popper’s Penguins by Richard and Florence Atwater
I read this one to Benjamin when he was little but this is the first time the girls have heard it and they love it!
Out of the Silent Planet by C.S. Lewis
This is Benjamin’s current bedtime read after the girls are tucked in. My first time reading the space trilogy and we’re both really enjoying it!
What are you reading and enjoying lately? Let me know in the comments!
(And psst! Don’t forget that This Week’s Miscellany is moving to my email newsletter ONLY and won’t be showing up on the blog anymore so don’t forget to sign up to be a subscriber–it’s free, of course!–before I send out the first revamped TWM this weekend)