With the holiday last week, I hope most of you took a bit of a break from email and enjoyed time with family. We did, so our Around the Warren list is extra long this week! Don’t miss it, below.
Around the Web
FOUND: The Secret to Not Losing Hope
As we enter the season of Advent, Ann Voskamp has a beautiful meditation on hope.
- he’d dropped her voice when she told me that first Sunday of Advent that the kid had tried to kill himself.
That there had been texts, photos of a rope, proof of how it was going to be done.
And then this call to 911.
This was the part that she didn’t have words for.
Her hands flailed a bit, like she was drowning, like her flooding tears were drowning her, and she choked and flailed, reached for words to steady herself, as if she could just find words, she could drag herself up out of the depths.
How do you make words stretch around an entire ocean of ache?
Teach Your Children the Virtue of Waiting
Advent is about waiting, and Scott James, author of The Littlest Watchman, has a piece on waiting, the neglected virtue.
- As soon as the last Thanksgiving Turkey bone is gnawed clean, there is only one thought on our minds. Christmas is coming.
In busy households, managing expectations for parents and children can be both a trial and a joy. But the season of Advent—the weeks encompassing the four Sundays leading up to Christmas—represents a wonderful opportunity to teach our children, and ourselves, about waiting, a vital but neglected virtue of the Christian life.
Must Christian art be family-friendly and “safe?”
Heidi White explores how Christian families can approach “dangerous” art.
- When our son, Jack, read the Harry Potter series for the first time, he was nine.
Well-meaning folks told us in shocked tones that he would not be able to “handle” the elements of darkness in the story. They were right. Jack was devastated. When a main character died at the climactic conclusion of one of the books, he wept. He cuddled up to me and whispered what he had just read.
“I know,” I replied, holding him close, “Its so hard. Evil is evil.”
“Mom,” he said, his eyes full of tears, “I hate evil.”
C. S. Lewis, Madeleine L’Engle, and the Power of Storytelling
This week we commemorated the 100th birthday of Madeleine L’Engle and the 120th birthday of C.S. Lewis. Warren Cole Smith wrote a piece for the The Rabbit Room about what these two great authors teach us about the power of storytelling.
- It’s often said that politics is downstream from culture. This is not strictly true, since our laws do shape our culture, and our sense of what is right and wrong.
But there is much truth in that old saying. The ideas that shape politics, and the laws that politicians make, are rarely advanced by argument alone. Rather, they are advanced by the stories that shape our imaginations, stories that teach us what is true. If you can control the stories a people see, hear, and tell each other, you can ultimately control what they think and even how they think.
Around the Warren
While We Dust, They Dream
Lesley Gore remembers what children can teach us about magic.
- Sometimes, if my camera is not nearby, I take a mental snapshot in the hope I might remember.
Board Books: Found & Loved
Laura Peterson introduces us to two new Sally Lloyd-Jones & Jago board books.
- I tend to write about a lot of picture books here at Story Warren, but there’s another format that has been growing in my esteem over the past year: the board book!
My $7 Reading Summer
Mark T. Collins tells us about the summer he learned to love reading as an encouragement to those whose children might not.
- Recently, I pulled some books out I thought my third grade son would enjoy.
Anne Marshall shares five books to welcome the new season with.
- As the days get shorter and colder I love to heighten the anticipation of winter with my children through excellent winter-themed picture books.
Stories Inspired by Jamin Still’s Illustration Prompt
Did your young writers participate in our writing event this year? We’ve begun sharing stories inspired by Jamin Still’s gorgeous painting over the past few weeks. Check them out at the links below.
Something to Do with Your Kids
We’re turning the calendar into December and the folks over at The Spruce have a whole list of ideas of things you can do with your family this month.
Something to Watch
Andrea Bocelli and his son Matteo have teamed up on a new song this year, about a parent’s love for their child. Watch this gorgeous video in which they sing a duet together.