Wife, Mummy, Nurse

09 February 2016

4 Martin Luther King, Jr. Children's Books

January 18 was Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Drew and I decided to give Charis a day "off" and read books about Martin Luther King, Jr. When I told her we would not have the usual school work, she was slightly downcast, but excited at the same time. Now that it's Black History month, when we go to the library, we see at least three different displays on African Americans. Charis excitedly points out, "There's Martin Luther King, Jr. There's ANOTHER book about him-and another one!!! They have a lot of books about him."

Martin Luther King, Jr. by Edith Hope Fine

Brief biography of Martin Luther King, Jr. Total pages: 32. It has 5 short chapters: 
Chapter 1: Martin's childhood and college.
Chapter 2: Boston University. Marriage to Coretta Scott. Pastor in Montgomery, Alabama. Involvement in boycotting buses in Alabama.
Chapter 3: Martin's involvement as a civil rights leader. Protests against segregation. Wickedness of Bull Connor and the police. Martin's "I have a Dream" speech.
Chapter 4: March for the right to vote.
Chapter 5: Death of Martin Luther King, Jr. 

I like that this book has a glossary in the back and has suggestions for further books to read.

I Have a Dream by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. 

Speech that Martin Luther King, Jr. gave on August 28, 1963. This book is illustrated by fifteen different artists to help display Martin's dream and beliefs that motivated his involvement in the Civil Rights movement.

Overall I enjoyed this book (yes, there's a but coming at the end), it is the story about Martin Luther King's funeral and procession. It was not until the very end that my daughter realized it was talking about Martin Luther King, Jr. 

It is presented as non-fiction, but one should be cautious when reading this book. The author wrote, "The mule is a symbol of freedom... Each slave got a mule and forty acres when he was freed." (I don't believe that is accurate.) Though the author was saying that's why the men wanted mules and that's what they said. (And that part may be true.)

Martin Luther King Jr. Day by Margaret McNamara

Of the four books, this was my least favorite. Mrs. Connor's first grade class went to a museum. While looking at a bust statue, Mrs. Connor asked her class if they knew who it was. One of her student's replied, "That is the Reverend Doctor Martin Luther King Junior." But then it went down hill from there. The book has NOTHING to do with Martin's life, other than he has "big dreams". This would be at best, preschool "literature" (and yes, I use that term loosely). My recommendation with this book is, do not waste your time reading it.

What books about Martin Luther King, Jr. do you recommend for children or adults?

03 February 2016

FO: Snow Country Felted Mittens #YarnAlong

On Black Friday, the only shopping I did was go to Wolf Creek Yarns. Sadly, that was the last day it was open. Yarn was 45% or more off the original price. Patterns were buy one get seven free. I promised Charis that I would knit her a pair of mittens. One of the patterns they had was snow country felted mittens. Into the bag it went. I stood at the pattern section going through every single pattern until I was happy with the eight patterns.

I went back to my parents house and made soup for the Thanksgiving celebrations on my husband's side of the family. When I left to go to my SIL's house, I swung by the yarn store one last time (sniffles) and let Charis pick her own yarn for the mittens. After much deliberation, she choose Rowan Creative Focus Worsted Magenta yarn.

When I went to cast the mittens on, I saw that I was supposed to hold the yarn doubled. What?!?!? Why did I not look at the pattern with greater care? Always, always double (triple) check directions on knitting patterns before buying yarn. Lesson learned. Hopefully, I'll remember in the future. I asked my daughter what other yarn would she like for the mittens? After going through my yarn stash and telling her the various possibilities, she settled on Paton's Classic Wool Magnolia.

The pattern itself is easy. I knit the small (youth) size. The pattern has short rows which allow the thumb to be placed behind the fingers (just a wee bit). Unfortunately, they're TOO big!! I'm trying to find comfort in the fact that she'll be able to wear them in a year or two.

What are you knitting? What's on your needles (or hook)? Join me over at Ginny's Yarn Along.

01 February 2016

Knitting: Not just a Hobby, but a Passion

If you have been reading my blog, it is no secret that I enjoy knitting. In fact, it's one of my passions. Knitting is something I am interested in. Even though there's only two basic stitches-knitting and purling, there are many techniques and projects I have yet to make.

I also enjoy knitting because it's easy to create knitted objects with children (with my other hobby, sewing, I have to clean and clear the table, pull out the sewing machine, ignore my children, make a huge mess, and clean everything up because supper time or breakfast). Knitting requires two needles and yarn. I can take it anywhere. It's easy transportable and a great conversation starter.

What passions or hobbies do you have?

Currently {February 1, 2016}

My eyes on the Iowa caucus. Having lived in Iowa for 9 years, I have friends who will be voting tomorrow, so I'm interested to see how it turns out for the candidates. I am not a fan of any of the front runners, on either side. More and more, it seems Republicans and Democrats are basically the same. They want power and prestige and will say whatever they think will get them elected.

Read The 5 Love Languages. The first completed book I've "read" this year. I'm participating in #26BOOKSwithBringingUpBurns this year (and audiobooks count). I was searching for audiobooks on Hoopla and decided to listen to Chapman's book because it's a book with a number in the title. As of January 31, 1/26 books is now read.

Chapman's thesis is there are 5 love languages: 1. Words of affirmation, 2. Receiving gifts, 3. Acts of service, 4. Quality time, and 5. Physical touch. My two primary love languages are physical touch and acts of service. Drew's love language is words of affirmation. Overall I enjoyed this book. Since words of affirmation is not my love language, I sometimes downplay its importance for Drew. I often (wrongly) think, "How many times does he need me to complement him? It seems like I'm saying the same thing over and over, again and again." Hearing words of affirmation from me is important to Drew.

Some things should be taken with a grain of salt. I did not agree that I request, not demand things from Drew. In our marriage, there have been times when both of us needed to be hit over the head with a 2 by 4. We needed to use discernment about when we needed to sit down and have a serious conversation; there are times in marriage when it's appropriate to bring up issues that one sees in his or her spouse and talk, pray, repent, and forgive each other. One thing I noticed with many of the examples Gary Chapman gave is the couples had stopped communicating their wants, needs, and desires with their spouse. Husbands and wives need to be open and honest with each other.

What book have you read recently? Have you read The 5 Love Languages? If so, what did you think of it?

28 January 2016

Crafters & Co. #Review #Giveaway #lovehallmark

This is a sponsored review.

Since we live in a small, one bedroom apartment, I am not able to decorate it as I would like-most days, I'm trying to survive. One of the few luxuries I purchase for our apartment is scented soaps and candles. I love walking around smelling the burning candle in our entry way. These small things help make our apartment feel more like a home. 

In 2015, I found that Hallmark was carrying Crafters & Co. products-teas, soaps, candles, confections, and more. If you love to be pampered, then check out this line that Hallmark started carrying. The collection is exclusively available at Hallmark Gold Crown® stores and online at Hallmark.com. If you're looking for a Valentine's Day gift, look at Crafters & Co.

I was sent an assortment of Crafters & Co. products:

Eucalyptus spa candle: This was my favorite product that was sent to me. Once opened, I immediately placed it on the bookshelf and lit it. This candle has a slightly woodsy scent. When my husband arrives home from work, he enjoys the eucalyptus spa scent greeting him at the door.

Jasmine luxury liquid soap: The floral jasmine scent is lovely. My daughter likes it too; she often tries to pump the soap 2-3 times when washing her hands.

Two tins of organic green tea-tea sachets and loose-leaf tea: This tea may have made me a little more vain, because when I opened it, I saw these words "Hello, Gorgeous." Plus, it's enjoyable to drink this tea and relax, especially at the end of the day after homeschooling my daughter and chasing buddy around.

Jasmine luxury bar soap: I have not used this yet. I'm waiting until the jasmine luxury liquid soap is finished. But, I can still smell it through the paper. My daughter is not a fan of bar soap, so I'm hoping it will last longer than the liquid soap.

Great news! Do you want to receive some Crafters & Co. products for yourself? Then click enter below via Rafflecopter.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

27 January 2016

FO: Little Valerie #YarnAlong

I have already completed two test knits this year: Little Valerie and Madilyn Slouch hat. Last night, I sewed on the buttons on the Little Valerie dress.

I choose to knit a newborn size because the pattern does not come in Charis's size, plus it's always nice to have a newborn hand knit gift ready to give someone. Let's just say, it will be given to the next baby girl born at my church. (To my knowledge, there are three pregnant women at church.)

If Drew and I have another baby girl, I will be knitting this dress for her. (I should add: No. I'm not pregnant.)

Linking up at Ginny's Yarn Along.

25 January 2016

Currently {January 25, 2016}

Finished knitting Little Valerie on 24 January 2016
All I need to do is block the dress and sew on two buttons. The only way the buttons could have been better for the dress is if they had 6 petals (instead of five).

Under 18+ inches of snow
From Friday afternoon to Saturday night, we had about 20 inches of snow dumped on our city in Maryland.

On Friday, those with government jobs were only at work until 12 PM (and I don't believe they have to go to work today). Our library closed at 2 PM (and is closed today). Panera Bread closed at 3 PM. Drew did not work on Friday or Saturday. Mail was not delivered on Saturday. We did not have church on Sunday. Everything shut down. People are only out of the roads if they have to be out.

I am thankful that I'm not working as a nurse. I hated driving to work in 2009/2010 when we had THREE snow storms. It's nice to stay at home with my children-reading, singing, watching movies, making bread, and drinking hot chocolate together.

One worry I have is wondering how long Drew's work will be canceled. I've written before that he does not get paid time off, so when the tutoring center closes, he does not get paid. When a family already lives from paycheck to paycheck, it makes it hard.

How was your weekend? Did you get snow?
Linking up at Choose Happy.