The Time Keeper by Mitch Albom: 4.5 stars

Whenever I read a book and think, “why didn’t I think of that?” It makes me sooo happy. And this book did. The Time Keeper by Mitch Albom (a self-described secular Jew)  is about a man named Dor (Hebrew for “generation”) who first measured time.  This book is a bit of an uncomfortable reminder of how humans, unlike animals, constantly count seconds, minutes, hours, days, months and years. And yet, with all this counting, we have no control over time as far as speeding it up or slowing it down. Instead of controlling time, we are slaves to it. Here’s a video of the author sharing the synopsis of the story. I promise you’ll love the premise: I gave this book 4.5 stars out of 5 simply because, well, I can’t tell you until you read the book. I loved the book. There was just one little irritating thing about it that kept me from giving it a whole 5 stars. When you read it, please share with me what you thought about it! I’d love to...

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Where is Avonte?

Where is Avonte?

While the news focuses on the nightmare of Obamacare, there’s a much more urgent story that isn’t being told. Avonte Oquendo, a 14-year-old autistic child is missing. He walked out of his school in Queens, New York 23 days ago and hasn’t been seen since. His disappearance highlights several disturbing trends for families with autism in this country. 1. Public schools are often ill-equipped to truly understand the keen attention these children need. 2. Public schools sometimes do a poor job of training and informing staff of the great importance of constant supervision of children with autism and other disabilities. Because these students often have trouble communicating verbally, every single person on staff of that school should have been informed or at the very least trained on how kids with autism do or do not communicate. One in 88 children in the U.S. have autism. 40% of them are non-verbal (National Autism Association). 3. Kids with autism are curious and prone to wandering. Why was Avonte not supervised more closely? According to the Interactive Autism Network and the Kennedy Krieger Institute, children with autism wander off at a rate four times higher than siblings without autism. As they grow older, they are at an increased risk for wandering off. In my book, The Pastor’s Wife Wears Biker Boots, one of the characters who has autism, Timmy, wanders off and gets lost. When I wrote about that, I had no idea how prevalent this habit is among children with autism. That’s not to say I didn’t know they would wander. I have twins of my own, age 18, with autism. I’ve been blessed that their wandering hasn’t been too far. But they are insatiably curious, and I can find them in odd places sometimes. My second son who has autistic characteristics wandered a lot as a toddler. He had no fear of anything. I had to put a bell on the door to keep him safe because he’d wander down the road and walk into people’s houses. One lady brought him home from the cemetery. Another saved him from getting lost in a corn field and crossing a busy highway. Please go to the Facebook page and share this flyer with your Facebook friends. Tweet about it. And most of all, pray for this young man and his family. Click to tweet: Pray for missing child with autism: Avonte Oquendo. Help find Avonte. Retweet. Help find non-verbal missing child...

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A to Z Meme: N is for NaNoWriMo!

I actually got my start writing full-length novels via National Novel Writing Month! I was a participant way back in 2005. Chris Baty even loaned me a laptop that year so I could participate. I’ve never, ever forgotten that generosity. A laptop at that time in my life was simply not something I ever thought I would own. But as I showed myself faithful to the gift, God provided later on. I actually wrote my newly released novel, The Pastor’s Wife Wears Biker Boots during NaNoWriMo 2009! (The rough draft, people, the very primitive rough draft.) I’m going to participate this year in order to finish my work in progress. September and October have been insane schedule-wise. And since I’ve participated in NaNoWriMo in the past, my husband and kids are used to Mom’s grueling word count schedule in November. NaNoWriMo taught me how to keep writing even when I didn’t feel like it, when I wasn’t inspired, when I was bored and when the tedium was overwhelming. It taught me a lot, and I highly recommend the experience for anyone who has ever thought about writing a book. NaNoWriMo founder, Christ Baty, actually quotes me several times in his book, No Plot? No Problem! The book is great, but the quotes he used are a little embarrassing…something about me being inspired in the bathroom or some such thing. Can’t imagine that about me, can you? So why not join me and be my writing buddy atNaNoWriMo? Who knows if we get to 50,000, words? We won’t know if we don’t try, right? Here’s your supply list for our noveling marathon: 1. Caffeine 2. Chocolate 3. Favorite sound tracks 4. Chocolate 5. Comfy jammies 6. Chocolate I know it will be tough gathering up all those supplies, but I promise they’re necessary for keeping writer’s block at bay. Leave me a comment below and let me know if you’ll join me in November! Write on, dear friends! The world needs your...

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A Father’s Love

The following video needs little explanation. But I do want to make a correlation between the father in the video and our Heavenly Father. Oh, how very much we are loved. Oh, what a happy day it will be when he embraces us and says “well done.” The depth of the father’s love and pride in this video touched me deeply. Especially the way he stared at the report card like it was a dream. We are God’s dream come true. Never forget how very much you are loved. Never forget how much God is pulling for you and dreams for your success. Or what man is there of you, whom if his son ask bread, will he give him a stone? Matthew 7:9   Click to tweet: Did you know that God dreams for your success? If an earthly father wants his child to succeed, how much more God yearns for your...

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