Month: April 2020

Finding my passion…and a good slice of sourdough

Finding my passion…and a good slice of sourdough

I came home today from meeting Sarah at a park in Salt Lake for lunch—a park that, not too many months ago, I was running laps around with her, burning calories instead of consuming them. Today I was just sitting in a comfy beach chair 

A Garden Tour and The Iridescence of Birds

A Garden Tour and The Iridescence of Birds

I was looking out into our backyard this week and loved gazing on the tulips blooming there. It is a corner of our yard that is a delight each spring! I love flowers in bloom! I was doing a little research online today before I 

Maggie’s Door

Maggie’s Door

Saturday night I was having a bit of a meltdown: I was really stressed out by something–probably in greater part by being inside too much with the quarantine!–so I hid away in my room and read. Ahhh. Lovely, quiet retreat. And I finished reading Maggie’s Door–which gave me a little more perspective on my own tiny problems.

Maggie’s Door is the second book in a 3-book series by Patricia Reilly Giff (Nory Ryan’s Song, Maggie’s Door, Water Street) about two families who emigrate from Ireland to the United States after nearly starving to death in the Great Famine of 1845-49.

Nory Ryan, a young woman about 12 or 13 years old, receives a ticket to sail to America to join the rest of her family who have voyaged there. Her oldest sister, Maggie, is married and already lives in Brooklyn, New York. Sean Red, who is Nory’s best friend and the younger brother of Maggie’s husband, is also trying to get to Maggie’s home. The book tells of their dangerous journey crossing the Atlantic.

I loved this book! While the story is fictitious, about a million Irish people did emigrate during the potato famine, and their journeys to America were fraught with difficulty. Reading this story helped me feel gratitude for those young and old who sacrificed so much, endured so much, and overcame so many obstacles to build a new life here. Surely we have built upon the foundation built by people like Nory Ryan and Sean Red.

A tale of selflessness, faith, and grit, Maggie’s Door will help readers better understand the mettle of so many immigrants. It can inspire younger generations to honor their ancestors and have greater respect for refugees who are making similarly precious journeys to freedom.

An Eternal Mother

An Eternal Mother

My mother saw this print hanging in the home of a friend and invited me to come see it. It is called “An Eternal Mother” by Ardith Nadine Oddous (1927-2002) . I don’t know much about it, but I love it and wanted to post 

The Art of Pekka Halonen and Carl Larsson: Scenes from Our Quarantine

The Art of Pekka Halonen and Carl Larsson: Scenes from Our Quarantine

I love Scandinavia: maybe it’s because I have Danish ancestry! I haven’t been to any Scandinavian countries yet, but it’s on my bucket list. I’d love to go see where my pioneer ancestors lived in Denmark and where Lane’s pioneer ancestors lived in Sweden. I’d 

April 2020 Books

April 2020 Books

This April, we celebrated the 200th anniversary of the First Vision, we watched a very special general conference due to COVID-19, and we celebrated Easter–all in the midst of a beautifully blooming spring.

There were so many things to celebrate! And that was only in the first two weeks of this month!

Here are books that I put on display that relate to each of those special occasions:

Boys Who Became Prophets by Lynda Cory Robinson

Celebrating a Christ-Centered Easter by Emily Belle Freeman and David Butler, illustrated by Ryan Jeppesen

Come Unto Me: Illuminating the Savior’s Life, Mission, Parables, and Miracles by Brad Wilcox, Gayle and Tom Holdman

The First Vision Illustrated by Cary Austin and Greg Newbold

Girls Who Chose God: Stories of Courageous Women in the Bible by McArthur Krishna and Bethany Brady Spalding, illustrated by Kathleen Peterson

He is Risen: Rocks that Tell the Story of Jesus by Patti Rokus

He Took My Lickin’ for Me by Timothy Robinson, illustrated by Ben Sowards

I Am a Child of God (board book) by Wendy and Michael Nelson, illustrated by Greg Olsen

I Love to See the Temple by Kathleen H. Barnes and Virginia H. Pearce, illustrated by Dileen Marsh

(Not pictured) The Messiah: The Little-Known Story of Handel’s Beloved Oratorio by Tim Slover

My First Book of Mormon Stories (board book) by by Deanna Draper Buck, illustrated by Jerry Harston

My First Church History Stories (board book) by Deanna Draper Buck, illustrated by Jerry Harston and Leslie Harston

My First Story of the First Easter by Deanna Draper Buck, illustrated by Jerry Harston

Over and Over by Charlotte Zolotow, illustrated by Garth Williams

Preparing for Easter: Fifty Devotional Readings by C.S. Lewis

Popcorn Popping on the Apricot Tree (board book) by Michael Muir and Georgia W. Bello

Sister Eternal by Dieter F. Uchtdorf, illustrated by Ben Sowards

Son of Man III: King of Kings by Susan Easton Black, illustrated by Liz Lemon Swindle

The Velveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams, illustrated by Sarah Massini

You Are Priceless: The Parable of the Bicycle by Stephen E. Robinson, illustrated by Ben Sowards

Books on Parade

Books on Parade

Why do I put children’s books on display when I no longer have young children in my home? In 2 words: to inspire. First of all, we all love children’s books in our family. Having been raised on reading, our family enjoys children’s books still. 

April, in bloom

April, in bloom

This year’s flower garden has been a great source of joy. I have gone out every day to see which flowers have bloomed. The power of sunshine and rain, good soil and patience all manifest themselves in this gorgeous spring display. Many thanks go to 

March 2020 Books

March 2020 Books

I didn’t get to post as much as I had hoped in March: the coronavirus happened and my schedule shifted. But these are the books that I enjoyed and would recommend and will have to post about another day*:

This is Ireland by M. Sasek

S is for Shamrock by Eve Bunting, illustrated by Matt Faulkner

This is Scotland by M. Sasek

B is for Bagpipes Eve Begley Kiehm, illustrated by Alexa Rutherford

A Child’s Garden of Verses by Robert Louis Stevenson, illustrated by Tasha Tudor

Nory Ryan’s Song by Patricia Reilly Giff

Maggie’s Door by Patricia Reilly Giff

Water Street by Patricia Reilly Giff

Patrick, Patron Saint of Ireland by Tomie dePaola (who passed away in March 2020)

The Hope Springs series by Sarah M. Eden:

Longing for Home, Hope Springs, Love Remains, Long Journey Home, Valley of Dreams

Ireland: A Very Peculiar History by Jim Pipe

*Some of these I did review on Instagram (@RACFLP) during March 2020.

Baking Wednesdays

Baking Wednesdays

After general conference, I had an “ah ha” moment: the thing that really matters most to me is being a homemaker. During the coronavirus, I have truly loved having my children around. I have loved preparing fun dinners and being available to help them with