Volume 8. I don’t know if you ever really pay attention to the subject line of this email, but it’s the place where you can find out fun things like how many Warren & the World emails I’ve missed sending out in a given year (if you do the math), and also things like how many years this newsletter has been in existence: we’re on volume 8 now. We’re entering our eighth year of being your allies in imagination, and we are so excited to see what adventures are in store!
Around the Web
20/20: Reading More Clearly (or, Reading Resolutions for New Year’s)
Our friends at Redeemed Reader have some reading resolutions for the new year.
- New Year’s Goals … or … Resolutions
As people are wont to do this time of year, I’ve made a few New Year’s Resolutions. I prefer to think of them as “goals,” not “resolutions,” but I recognize that that’s really just playing semantic games.
Words aside, the heralding of a new decade makes the New Year seem that much more promising, doesn’t it? We look back on the previous year–and decade–and look ahead to this year and those beyond.
Creating An Ecosystem Of Love
Deidre Ann deLaughter helps set a new perspective for a new year.
- When my three daughters were very young, all the back yards in our neighborhood abutted a retention pond. The pond was home to many ducks and slithery creatures as well as an occasional heron.
One morning, I let Muffy, our sweet cockapoo, out in the back yard to pee, and went to check on the girls’ progress in getting ready for the day. I became aware of Muffy’s insistent barking and it wasn’t her typical telling-off-the-ducks barking. I walked onto the back patio and saw a water moccasin lying between the bushes, with a half-swallowed toad wedged in its mouth.
Janie Townsend considers her particular skill in getting unlost, and recommends some music for the journey.
- I was learning every word to Alexi Murdoch’s 2009 album Towards the Sun when I took the wrong exit somewhere between Austin and Louis Henna Boulevard. After thirteen hours in the car—peeling out of Nashville at 4 am, gliding through a misty Arkansas sunrise, stretching my hamstrings while my car gulped gasoline from a pump somewhere north of Sulpher Springs—after thirteen hours alone in a mostly moving vehicle, I was finally a mere thirty minutes from the house I grew up in. It was sure to be swathed in Christmas lights, and fresh greenery, and yarn and sweet smells. And I managed to take the wrong exit.
When You Need Strength for the Battle Ahead
New years can bring along with them new (or continued) challenges as well as new beginnings. Wendy Speake points us to the encouragement we can find in the Bible.
- As we near the end of one year it’s common to fear the battles that loom before us in the next.
God’s Word, however, should give us courage as 2020 advances: “Do not be afraid or discouraged because of the battles you face. They are not yours but mine.”
Wrapping up one year as you prayerfully prepare for another, you may wonder if it’s true.
“Is this Bible promise for me? Are my battles not my battles, but the Lord’s? Is He that intimately aware of the foe I face that He’d call my fight His fight? Is He just waiting for me to turn my face to Him as I await marching orders?”
Around the Warren
Isabel Chenot explores the gift of pictures carried in cupped hands.
- One of my nieces used to cup her hands over the enchanting pictures in her storybooks, and carry them invisibly in a finger-cradle to her mother. At that time, my sister-in-law washed dishes by ones and twos in a portable tub, hung laundry to dry, and revolved a simple routine of feeding, delighting, neatening and soothing three little girls.
Junction Tales: A Review
Ken Priebe reviews Glenn McCarty’s new book Junction Tales.
- Stories are inevitable. You do the living, and stories will happen….they become the fabric that holds a place together, the beating heart of its people.
These are a few golden nuggets from the prologue of Glenn McCarty’s Junction Tales, a collection of short stories from the world of Tumbleweed Thompson. If you’ve read his epic novel that tells the tale of Tumbleweed’s misadventured summer, you’ll find a few familiar characters and threads in here.
We took the week off of the Warren & the World last week, but not from Story Warren. Don’t miss last week’s posts, A Christmas Story from Eugene and 8 Books to Keep Your Kids’ Imagination Busy This Holiday Season.
Something to Do with Your Kids
Need some January coloring sheets? Your young artists do!
Something to Watch
Andrew Wyeth is one of America’s most gifted 20th Century painters. This video is a fascinating look at how he made one of his more famous works, Christina’s World.
Thanks for reading. We’re on your side.
-The Story Warren Team