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Here’s are some great, simple, no fuss websites to help recommend books for you to read. If you enjoyed one book and you’re looking for ideas, these online databases provide some ideas: it may not be as accurate as you’d like, but it certainly gives ideas for additional reads.

www.whatshouldireadnext.com

www.yournextread.com  (This is a BRILLIANT site!!! I loved it!)

I constantly surf the web looking for spiritual help and stories from unemployed people. I know that God’s so, so much bigger than my jobless state, and that my lack of a job is truly nothing. I’m praying for more faith, especially during those terrifying moments of worry. Pangs of anxiety in the middle of the night, worrying about whether or not a job will appear.

I found this blog on Billy Graham’s website: http://www.billygraham.org/articlepage.asp?articleid=6242

A wonderful, memorable time for most children. If you’ve searched for the route online, it’s probably accurate, but the timeline is not. Rather, it’s probably misleading. It might take one foloat an hour to travel from start to finish, but really, the whole parade might be three to four hours long. Be prepared to sit, wait, wait, and wait for Santa. Bring warm drinks and snacks, and be ready for lots and lots of people. Still, a very enjoyable event for little ones, especially if you’ve never been before.

The journey has been tough so far. Not many responses, lots of silence from companies and organizations, and more uncertainty than I can handle. But I know that the challenges I face each day–life’s difficult, unceasing, often tiring challenges–can be met with courage. Not courage of my own, but courage from God. We find strength in our maker, not in ourselves. Take 3 seconds at that very moment when you feel overwhelmed to re-orient your true compass to your spiritual help. Keep yourself pointed in the right direction.

Another Halloween has come and gone, and although this one was a truly festive one, it was certainly filled with moments of reflection.

This was the first Halloween to which my son could socially, culturally, and linguistically relate. He had all the right vocabulary, he was enthusiastic about the occasion, and he was old enough to approach the  neighbours’ doors. We had a lot of fun just watching him go door to door, speaking with strangers, and collecting his Halloween loot.

Living in an affluent neighbourhood when you, yourself, are not affluent, is not always a bad thing. The area school tends to be well-managed and supported, the streets are well maintained and picturesque, and life is quite enjoyable. But when you’re really living on the economic fringe of the core residents of this neighbourhood, it’s tough to swallow your envy as you walk from house to house, peering into their cosy, stylish, and ultimately expensive homes. I had to shake my head a few times to remind myself that these residents are simply at a different stage in their lives, and we’re obviously at a different stage from them. This doesn’t make us worse–it’s just a different time to adjust.

I know that the experience–swallowing my envy, fighting the jealousy, and trying not to beat myself up–is all for my good. God’s plan is to transform me, and I know that I can’t be transformed without the chisel stripping away my insecurities.

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What I’m reading now

"Wanderlust: A Social History of Travel," by Laura Byrne Paquet (Fredericton:Goose Lane Editions, 2007) "The Global Soul: Jet Lag, Shopping malls, and the Search for Home," by Pico Iyer (Toronto: Random House of Canada, 2000). "Outliers: The Story of Success," by Malcolm Gladwell (New York: Little, Brown, and Company, 2008).

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