My Reading List for 2016

Did I ever mention I am doing an MA in Applied Theology? I don’t think I have ever talked about it much on the blog… Anyway, I am two years in and I am currently on a ‘study break’, mainly to discern what to do my dissertation on as I have no idea! That’s what I am hoping to do in 2016.

This is the first time I have ever created a reading list. The main aim of it is to keep me focussed during my year of discernment. The majority of the books have come across during my studies and I books I would like to read or re-read. I have also included some books I would like to read for pleasure, because, well, variety is the spice of life!

reading list 2016

One Thousand Gifts Ann VoskampJanuary

  • One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp
  • Reclaiming Conversation by Sherry Turkle
  • Fatal Misconception: The struggle to control the world’s population by Matthew Connelly

February

  • Unplanned by Abby Johnson
  • I Just Came For Ashes
  • The Culture of Narcissism: American Life in an Age of Diminishing Expectations by Christopher Lasch
  • A Feast for Lent by Delia Smith
  • The Everlasting Man by G. K. Chesterton

March

  • Haven in a Heartless World: The Family Besieged by Nicholas Lasch
  • Jesus of Nazareth by Pope Benedict XVI
  • Rediscover Jesus by Matthew Kelly
  • Familiaris Consortio by Saint John Paul

April

  • Called to Love by Anderson and Granados
  • A Civilization of Love by Carl Anderson
  • The Way, Furrow, the Forge by Jose Maria Escriva
  • Deus Caritas Est by Pope Benedict XVI

May

  • The Secret Diary of Elisabeth Leseur
  • Mulieris Dignitatem by Saint John Paul
  • Liquid Love by Zygmunt Bauman
  • The Transformation of Intimacy by Anthony Giddens

June

  • Extreme Makeover by Teresa Tomeo
  • Takedown by Paul Kengor
  • Mystery and Sacrament of Love: A Theology of Marriage and the Family for the New Evangelization by Cardinal Ouellet

July

  • Mother Angelica by Raymond Arroyo
  • Psychology as Religion: The Cult of Self Worship by Paul C. Vitz
  • The Abolition of Man by C. S. Lewis

August

  • Love and Responsibility by Karol Wojytyla

September

  • The Story of a Soul by St Therese of Lisieux
  • God’s World and Our Place in it by Fulton Sheen

October

  • The Domestic Church by Cooper O’Boyle
  • Orthodoxy by G. K. Chesterton

November

  • Kristin Lavransdatter by Sigrid Undset
  • The Year and Our Children by Mary Reed Newland

hahnDecember

  • Joy to the World by Scott Hahn
  • Jesus of Nazareth: The Infancy Narratives by Pope Benedict XVI
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All Things New

All Things New

Linking up with Kelly over at This Aint the Lyceum for another 7 quick takes!

Here’s what happened chez nous

1. I went to my first ever football match (or soccer match, if you are reading this on the other side of The Pond!). Premier League giants Liverpool vs a local Irish team, Waterford United. Talk about David and Goliath! I didn’t really know what to expect, but I enjoyed the match, the cheering from the stands and the family-friendly atmosphere. And, in case you were wondering, Liverpool won, 6 – 0.

2. Its been a bit quiet on the blog for a while… I have been beavering away finishing an essay for my studies, which was about how the EU and the UN shape the socio-political context of the family. It was an eye-opener to see how radical groups that often represent a minority can influence policy.

3. Things I’ve done since the pressure of an essay deadline has been lifted– relaxed on the sofa with my husband, a family trip to the park, tidied the craft room and tonight, maybe even an episode of the West Wing!

4. My Kikki.K planner arrived! #Kikkikplannerlove abound! Its blue, with gold polka dots and now I am going to be the most organised girl in town!

5. T got something new this week too…  Her first pair of shoes! She’s 15 months old and has been cruising and walking while holding my hand for a while. Now she has her new shoes she is even more keen to practice her walking skills and I wonder if she will ever sit in the pram again?

6. We don’t always make it to Mass during the week. Sometimes, it seems impossible to get out of the door on time, its too wet or there is simply too much to do. I know, all rubbish excuses, right? Well this week was one of those grace-filled weeks where, despite the rain and the business, we managed to to Church. Thank you, Lord!

7. With my essay in the post, its time to move on to a new module– Love, Marriage and Family: A Psychological Perspective. I am totally new to psychology but really looking forward to getting stuck into this module. Watch out for a few psychology-related posts in the next weeks!

How was your week? I would love to hear from you 🙂

Head on over to This Aint the Lyceum for more 7QTs!

7QT: Travels, Studying and Toddler Life

7QT Talking about Family Travels Studying and toddler life talking about familyAnother week has flown by.  I’m linking up with Kelly at This Aint the Lyceum for 7 quick takes of the week. These are my quickest ever takes. Hold tight. Here we go!

  1. Flying- Last weekend I flew with a new airline at my local airport called FlyVLM. What a wonderful surprise I had on board- the plane took off and landed early, it was a great flight and we had complementary drinks, sandwiches and chocolate! Ooh, and the views. Check out the view of County Wexford, Ireland, above. Beautiful, huh?!
  2. Maryvale– Did I mention I am doing a MA in Marriage and Family? Well, the purpose of my trip was a study weekend in Maryvale Institute, a Catholic distance learning college. I had a blessed and joyful weekend with the students, staff and Bridgetine sisters.
  3. they say i say talking about familyThey Say, I Say– I am not academically minded by a long shot. I love reading but when it comes to essay writing, I struggle. My tutor suggested this little pocket book which has really helped me get my head around academic writing. I totally recommend it!
  4. Naptimes– Back to real life, baby Teresa is figuring a new nap schedule. Two days this week, she had a monster two hour nap. Just when I was thinking “I could get used to this”, she napped for 30 minutes. The whole day. One half an hour nap!
  5. Sweetcorn fritters– My new favourite food, and Teresa’s too! We’re addicted! I tried these for the first time a couple of weeks ago but have made a double batch of them. They are so yummy, for toddlers and adults alike! They freeze well and you can cook them from frozen in 8 minutes.
  6. Running– still running, post couch 2 5k! Mixing up my runs, doing some 30 minute runs, some 5k+ runs and chopping and changing my routes.
  7. Card making– Ah! Gone are the day-long card making sessions, experimenting with design ideas and making a host cards for different people and occasions. When I have the opportunity, or the necessity, to make cards, I come to the craft table knowing exactly what I am going to make and make ten of the same, simple design. Keep it simple, do it well!

Thank you for hosting, Kelly! Why not head on over to check out more quick takes!

7QTs: Praying, thrifting and books!

7QT: Praying Thrifting and Books Talking about family

Another week has gone by and its time for the seven quick takes on the week that was, hosted at This Aint the Lyceum!

1.parish talking about family Daily Mass: There are so many excuses not to go to daily Mass, a toddler and a to do list being two of them. I read somewhere recently that if you make time for God, He makes time for you. Well, God definitely made time for me this week. Thank you, Lord!

2. Prayer alarm: My husband and I are yet to nail couple prayer. We started a renewed effort this week, as we agreed on a set time of 7:30pm to pray together and I set a daily alarm for this time. However, the way the cookie has crumbled, we have only been together once when the alarm has gone off and at 7:30pm every other day of the week at the most inopportune times… in the middle of Pilates, while reverse hill start parking on a busy street… we must pick a new time!

3. Praying and running: Continuing on the theme of prayer, I am currently doing a couch 2 5k programme. My podcast tells me when to run and when to walk, as well as playing ‘running music’ for the duration. This week, I turned the volume of my podcast down and prayed a rosary each time I ran. Bonus extra prayer time!

4. benedict xvi mother teresa talking about familyThrifting: I went into an SVP charity shop to look for a wooden chair to upcycle. Instead (and much to my husband’s relief!) I came out with two books about Blessed Mother Teresa, and one about Pope Emeritus Benedict. €2 each, and they were three for the price of two! Win!

5. Shopping my wardrobe: When I became pregnant two years ago, I stashed away a blue Ikea bag full of clothes that I knew I wouldn’t wear for a while. Well, I retrieved said back from the attic this week. It was like going shopping, for free! And with all the running I’ve been doing, the clothes fit me better than before!

6. Essay writing: I have an essay due for my course next month and I am on a new study schedule, trying to write a few hours a night every night, instead of spending one day a week on it. So far, things have worked out well. I hope it continues…

7. extra virgin kitchen talking about familyBook loan: Another free perk this week, a friend lent me a copy of The Extra Virgin Kitchen. At the moment, I am simply savoring the recipes of the delicious wheat-free, dairy-free, sugar-free treats, before I decide what to try first.Praline cupcakes and 6am toddler cookies are top of my list!

Thanks Kelly for hosting the 7QTs link up! For more quick takes, visit http://thisaintthelyceum.org/

7QTs: Early Mornings, Journaling and a 1st Birthday

7qts talking about family

Another week has flown by! I’m linking up again with Kelly from This Aint the Lyceum for 7 quick takes on the week that was!

  1. Marriage Referendum – Next month, there will be a referendum in Ireland to redefine marriage. If the ‘yes’ side win, then Ireland will become the first country to introduce same sex marriage following a referendum. Last Friday saw the launch of the ‘no’ campaign. Its going to be an interesting few weeks.
  2. Sleeping Baby T

    I can’t believe this little girl is one!

    1st Birthday My baby is now a toddler! We had a lovely day, a walk to see some deer, a small family lunch, presents, coffee cake (homemade!). I was worried the excitement would be too much, but even though she’s only one, I think baby T had a lovely day!

  3. Early Mornings As baby is only napping once a day at the moment, I’m trying to find more time in the day to get things on my wishlist (things I would like to do but aren’t important enough to make the to do list) done. Husband suggested I get up an hour earlier… now, this seems like an obvious, fair suggestion but since becoming a mum, I have learned that I take the sleep where I can, so this was a painful suggestion. Anyway, Tuesday and Friday mornings I woke up an hour early, bright eyed and bushy tailed and crossed off a few things on my to do list and my wishlist, which gave me a great start to the day. I might try and make a habit of it!
  4. Spiritual Journal I used to keep a spiritual, or a prayer journal, and I found it really helped my faith develop. Somewhere along the way, the practice ceased, until this Lent, when I started journaling again in the Blessed Is She Lenten Journal. I vowed I would continue but there was a slight delay between finishing the old one and starting the new. I am glad to say before the delay became prolonged, I have started journaling again!
  5. Toddler Book On the subject of journaling, poor baby’s baby book has gaping holes in it and the idea of going back to fill in the gaps is, at the moment, a daunting prospect. So, while I was shopping for a spiritual journal, I also bought a toddler book, to mark the start of a new era!
  6. sewing seedsGardening Lots of seeds to be sown in April, and time is running out! I planted tomatoes and beetroot in seed trays, and put some rocket and garlic in containers.
  7. Studying and blogging Did I ever mention I am doing a part-time distance learning MA in Applied Theology? I’m currently doing a module in the socio-political context of the family. It’s incredibly interesting and challenging, and there is a lot of reading and information to take on board. I have decided a good way to process my thoughts would be to write some short blog posts about key aspects of the subject. Watch this space!

Thank you Kelly for hosting! For more quick takes, visit This Aint the Lyceum!