Posts by deniseym

The Notebook by Nicholas Sparks (Book Review)

Posted by on Jun 10, 2014 in Book Reviews, Writing Thoughts | 1 comment

I know I’m a bit late to the game on this contemporary women’s fiction novel, but I give five stars to Nicholas Sparks’s The Notebook because the story touched my heart.

The suffering involved in this beautiful story reveals (to a world that commonly and unfortunately links romance with Hollywood-hype) that true love, romantic love, grows via pain (emotional and/or physical). Sparks’s writing intertwines poetry, descriptions of nature, a fluid flashback narrative, and imperfect characters who (whether they know it or not) deeply trust that the human body is a temple of the Holy Spirit and that marriage is a union of souls. I can feel the Catholic heart of this novel…even though I do not hear any overt evangelization. It is a beautiful love story!

(and, no, I did not see the movie…I enjoyed the book so much and did not want to undermine the reading experience.)

Side-note: I think the original book cover art (on all Sparks’s novels) accurately reveals the book more than the movie still-shot book cover version. (That being said, I understand and respect the marketing effort.)


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The Game is On in 2016!

Posted by on Apr 1, 2014 in News & Events, The Catchall Category | 0 comments

Time really does fly, it’s true…hence the cliche. And as a mom I savor all the little moments in life, grow with the major changes (not merely referring to my tummy expanding to an unbelievable size six times!), and take in and love life day by day. Life is good. But there are two reasons I wouldn’t mind skipping ahead to 2016…Rick 2016

To see Senator Rick Santorum (Chairman of Patriot Voices and CEO of EchoLight Studios) elected president of the United States of America. My whole family would cheer. He is brilliant! He understands that we live in serious times and has the smarts, experience, and faith to safely and responsibly lead this God-given country of ours back onto the straight and narrow. I pick Rick 2016! Game on!

And, on the lighter side of life, to watch Season 4 of Sherlock. My husband and I came late to the game (and I mean late, we only discovered Sherlock two months ago), but we are hooked. The show is brilliant! What a great way to relax! Uncork a bottle of Petite Sirah, nibble on some dark chocolates, and take in all that is Sherlock. It is cinematography beyond its best. Captivating and clever plots, engaging and surprising writing, exceptional and convincing actors. Who doesn’t love following the adventures of a high functioning sociopath and his one friend


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BabyLit is a Hit!

Posted by on Jan 27, 2014 in Book Reviews, Marriage & Family | 1 comment

I purchased some BabyLit board books from Zulily last month. It’s always a bit of a gamble buying books you cannot flip through to sample the text or examine the artwork.

However, I was  pleasantly surprised! These classic titles reveal thick pages of unique art that present (in a clear, fun, creative way) numbers, colors, adjectives, opposites, and characters to little readers. Moby Dick is an ocean primer book, and Wuthering Heights teaches about weather. (And, for all you moms, they are good quality board books! You can wipe off the stickies. Baby can chew the edges. And they withstand numerous throws from the highchair.)

BabyLit Books

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For the “sister-less”…and all other women

Posted by on Jan 8, 2014 in Book Reviews, Church Militant Moments, Marriage & Family, Writing Thoughts | 0 comments

For those of us who are sister-less, let’s thank God for our moms, girlfriends, and, sometimes when they get older and can fill the role more fully, even our daughters when we require a little (or a lot of) sisterhood in our lives. But what about calling upon our sisters, the saints?

In My Sisters the Saints: A Spiritual Memoir, Colleen Carroll Campbell shows how her relationships with the female saints provide companionship, compassion, direction, and peace. Screen shot 2014-01-09 at 11.40.46 AM

In our current culture where the saints are deeply misunderstood, ignored, and sometimes worse…in this same world where true God-given femininity is deeply misunderstood and perverted, then pedestaled and sold to the masses as the one and only real feminism, we desperately need honest, humble voices like Campbell’s to speak the Truth. In sharing her own personal struggles and her spiritual and intellectual encounters with the saints, we witness and understand the beauty and strength of God’s hand in our lives.

Not your typical memoir, not your typical book about saints. Campbell’s book is for Catholics and non-Catholics alike. And, ladies, you will be inspired!

Watch the book trailer here!

My Sisters the Saints: A Spiritual Memoir
By Colleen Carroll Campbell
Publication date: 2012
ISBN 978-0-7704-3649-0


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Thank you, once again, Blessed JPII

Posted by on Nov 7, 2013 in Church Militant Moments, Marriage & Family | 0 comments

As a stay-at-home mom, I say, “THANK YOU!”:

“While it must be recognized that women have the same right as men to perform various public functions, society must be structured in such a way that wives and mothers are not in practice compelled to work outside the home, and that their families can live and prosper in a dignified way even when they themselves devote their full time to their own family.

Furthermore, the mentality which honors women more for their work outside the home than for their work within the family must be overcome. This requires that men should truly esteem and love women with total respect for their personal dignity, and that society should create and develop conditions favoring work in the home.

With due respect to the different vocations of men and women, the church must in her own life promote as far as possible their equality of rights and dignity: and this for the good of all, the family, the church and society.

But clearly all of this does not mean for women a renunciation of their femininity or an imitation of the male role, but the fullness of true feminine humanity which should be expressed in their activity, whether in the family or outside of it, without disregarding the differences of customs and cultures in this sphere.”


from JPII’s On the Christian Family in the Modern World

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