Trees of Transition

Planting seeds of hope throughout our world through sharing photography and thoughts on teaching, cooking, and life transitions.


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Book Review: Do You Love YOUR Life?

I LOVE my life right now: I’m a wife, homemaker, and mother. I’m a bit starry-eyed still because I was single for 34 years, and I’ve only had one year or less with all of these new, dreamed-for roles. The job I’ve always wanted is to be a wife and a Mom, now I have it–thanks to God and my husband.

You may be thinking, “Just wait until the baby is born…then you will NOT like your life very much.” Yes, I’ve heard that having a newborn is hard for a season, but I’ve been mentally preparing for it, so I hope that will help. What also is helping is reading books that encourage me to be content wherever I’m at, such as Rachel Cruze’s book,
Love Your Life, Not Theirs: 7 Money Habits for Living the Life You Want.


Rachel shares stories from her life to illustrate her points about being generous, living on a budget, not going into debt, and more. She keeps on encouraging you to love your life–not compare yourself to anyone else. This book is worth reading!

If you prefer videos, check out her show on YouTube:

 

We can choose to be content whatever is happening in our lives. What helps you choose contentment over dissatisfaction?

It will be great to hear what you have to say.

Peace!

~Mary Hope

Copyright 2017

 

P.S. Thank you for stopping by! I insert affiliate links, such as Amazon, into my posts to share interesting books and products. If you buy something or start a registry, I receive income, for which I am thankful. So…

— shop on  Amazon

–shop at my Etsy photo card/notecard/art shop: Trees of Transition Art & Design

–keep on reading this blog.

Thank you again, and peace to you and your family!

~Mary Hope


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Free Prenatal Yoga Videos // Baby Books Recommendations //

With so many books and videos out there on the topic of pregnancy, which ones should a new Mom read and watch?

The book that I found at a thrift store after I found out I was pregnant that I have been reading every week is this:
You and Your Baby Pregnancy: The Ultimate Week-by-Week Pregnancy Guide

 

This book has a few photos, lots of diagrams, and a week-by-week update on how the baby is developing. I read it before bed, and sometimes I read ahead because I get so excited! I'm in week 27 now, feeling the baby kick a lot, and am feeling well.

There are many "Don't's" out there for pregnant mothers; for example, "Don't lie on your back after 20-weeks," "Don't eat cold cuts," and "Don't eat soft cheese." Emily Oster, in her book
Expecting Better: Why the Conventional Pregnancy Wisdom Is Wrong–and What You Really Need to Know

walks you through the nine months of pregnancy and shares all the research she did when she was pregnant about these "don't" and which ones are wise to pay attention to and which ones you have more of a choice than you thought. Stephen's cousin, Anni, gave me the book, and it is one of the first ones I have read. I enjoyed Emily's non-nonsense attitude and all the stories from her pregnancies. Check it out!

I've found several YouTube videos that have helped me start doing prenatal yoga; there are many free yoga routines to choose from, but I have three that I am enjoying using. The first one has peaceful music in the background and the narrator is encouraging (which is my favorite)! Check it out:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MCSFobwvQTg

The next routine is more strenuous, it has no music, but it makes you work harder:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=utINxvh-h9Q

A new video I found recently is a bit shorter, it is a quicker sequence, has a little music in the background, but is a more no-nonsense, get-to-business video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rWjwenVn2uQ

 

Mothers out there, what books and videos have you used that you enjoyed when pregnant? I would like to hear from you.

Have a peaceful day!

~Mary Hope

 

P.S. Thank you for stopping by! I insert affiliate links, such as Amazon, into my posts to share interesting books and products. If you buy something or start a registry, I receive income, for which I am thankful. So…

— shop on  Amazon

–shop at my Etsy photo card/notecard/art shop: Trees of Transition Art & Design

–keep on reading this blog.

Thank you again, and peace to you and your family!

~Mary Hope

 


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Book Review: A New Way to View World War II 

Lilac Girls: A Novel pulls you in with its first lines of, “If I’d known I was about to meet the man who’d shatter me like bone china on terra-cotta, I would have slept in.” Author Martha Hall Kelly hooked me immediately, and she gave me three different angles on the two decades that span before, during, and after World War II that I had not read about before. The book felt authentic, and at the end, Mrs. Kelly describes her journey of researching the people she based her characters upon in this historical fiction book.

This book alternates between the stories of three women, Lilac Girls: A Novel, whose lives overlap during these twenty years. From the picture on the cover, of women walking arm in arm, I assumed that these three women were close friends; however, the opposite is true for one of them. Continue reading


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Standing Beside My Man (Book Talk)

Did you know that guys just want the woman that they love to be near them as they work, play a game, fix a truck, or just watch TV? Dr. Eggerichs, in his insightful book Love & Respect: The Love She Most Desires; The Respect He Desperately Needs, taught me this point again: When my husband says he just wants me near him, that is just what he wants! This winter Stephen was working on his truck, and he invited me to come sit out in the garage near him as he worked; I had lots of lessons to plan and grading to do because of teaching, so I balked for a while, Continue reading


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Classic Book Review: Pride and Prejudice in Less Than 150 Words

Today I wrote a review of Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen using only 144 words; having to condense the story to its main points, like a movie trailer, is a great way to practice writing more concisely. Here’s what came out:

Continue reading


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Need to Get Lost in a Book? This Book Will Do It!

 

Book Review on: The Girl Before by Rena Olsen (Psychological Thriller)

The Girl Before caught me at the title; it made me curious and so I pulled the book off my friend’s bookshelf. Later my friend showed me that her copy is signed by the author because she worked with and is friends with her!

 

This book is psychological thriller (it gets inside your head!) The author structured the book in short, two-page sections where you alternate between the present and the past. It keeps you wondering because it does not keep you in one time period. You get pulled into the action of the book quickly because of this book structure, and I read the whole 300+ page book within 24 hours! There is a lot of twists going on as you understand what the protagonist is going through (as she discovers it herself); you discover the truth along with the main character.

 

The Girl Before by Rena Olsen is beautifully crafted and inspiring, but also heart-wrenching in regards to what it teaches you about the effects of human trafficking. Read this book!

 

~Mary Hope

If you want to buy the book, check it out here:

 

 The Girl Before by Rena Olsen (Psychological Thriller)


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Coffee Shop Quartet of Conversations

It amazes me what connections happen if you’re open and just start conversations! Last week I walked into a local coffee shop, ordered a mulled cider with whipped cream, and found a satisfying corner in which to read and write. I made great progress reading a helpful book called The Career Guide for Creative and Unconventional People, then a stylish gal sat down on the couch across from me.

When she tried to figure out where the plug was for her phone in a case with 1/2-inch rivets, I helped her, and then we started talking about her phone case. That conversation led to talking about why she was here: to surprise her sister because it was Canadian Thanksgiving last weekend.

This lady with 4-inch heels, Tamara, loves horses, her five sisters, and knows over five languages. After a while, a guy with a cane who had lost his hearing aides came and sat down in our cove. He introduced himself as Peter, and we all talked about the weather.

Finally, Tamara’s brother-in-law came back and surprised his wife and daughter with their aunt! We all introduced ourselves and talked a bit.
The family eventually moved where there was more space, Peter told me about how going into the military is a good career choice, and then he had to get home, so my cove cleared out. Tamara came back to get her studded phone and said good-bye.

I’m so thankful we started talking! The care and life of the conversations just kept growing as more people arrived. A seventy-year old man grinned at the one-year old niece, and she laughed back. The sisters hugged and were so happy to be together.

The generations need to interact because it reminds us where we have been or where we are going. The smiles, stories, and hugs release life, and so now I’m more open and eager to have this kind of inter-generational experience again! All you need to do is find a corner in a coffee shop and start a conversation…

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