Links, Books, and Things I Love – December 2017

Here are favorites from November and what I’m looking forward to in December. We share once a month at Leigh’s.

Leigh has been hosting the “What I’m Into” linkup for 5 years. To celebrate the anniversary, she had a giveaway and I won the grand prize! It was a box FULL of wonderful goodies of Leigh’s favorite things, including a hardback novel (The Trespasser), a pouch, scented tealights, and much more. Thanks again, Leigh!

1 Second Everyday

[If you can’t see the 1 Second Everyday video, click here]

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5 Things Around the Web

1. What women have been trying to tell us: #believewomen
by John Archibald


John Archibald |

“This is a moment, I keep believing. It’s a cultural awakening and the start of a change. We fail when we say boys will be boys. We hurt when we question what a woman wore when she was assaulted. Those who blame the victims – who call them whores and tramps and sluts – are as guilty as those who commit the acts.”

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2. Begin to Hope Again
by Scott Hubbard


“I’ve come to see that part of my calling here is simply to be a person of hope. . . .
Christian hope, then, is not the kind that blindfolds itself to reality. It’s the kind that looks at a newly sealed tomb and says, ‘This story’s not over.’”

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3. The Invisible Character of White Privilege
by Fr. Richard Rohr, OFM


“Those of us who are white have a very hard time seeing that we constantly receive special treatment just because of the color of our skin. This ‘white privilege’ makes it harder for us to recognize the experiences of people of color as valid and real.”

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4. Why Canceling Plans Is So Satisfying
by Maggie Puniewska


Photo: Stanton Stephens/Getty Images

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5. Christmas Presents (Wonderful Video!)
by Scott Jensen


Instead of feeling pressured to give the perfect gift or being disappointed if we don’t get what we want, this is a great video (1 min, 45 sec) video from a local church in Charlotte – be grateful for the gifts you already have.

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5 Podcasts Episodes You Need to Hear

1. Caleb Wilde Is a Funeral Director
RobCast with Rob Bell interviewing Caleb Wilde

We can learn a lot about life by paying attention to death. Yesterday; I went to the funeral of a best friend’s 61-yr-old brother who died of cancer; Sunday, to a memorial service of a friend’s 91-yr-mother who had dementia; and listened Sunday to the testimony of a son at our church whose father (one of our pastors) died of a massive heart attack. Hopefully no more for awhile.

2. Priest Responds To Gang Members’ ‘Lethal Absence Of Hope’ With Jobs, And Love
Fresh Air with Terry Gross interviewing Greg Boyle

Homeboy Industries founder Father Greg Boyle (and author of the great book Tattoos on the Heart, one of my favorite 10 books in 2013) has spent 30 years working in LA with gang members and young people transitioning out of prison. I can’t wait to read his new book, Barking to the Choir.

3. Fantastic Photo Solutions 
Sorta Awesome with Meg and Laura

Digital Photos – I love them, but they continue to overwhelm me as I try to organize them. A wealth of information here on what to do with all those pictures.

4. Monumental Questions
On the Media Podcast

What do with do with Confederate memorials?

5. Interview with Bryan Stevenson
Pass the Mic interview with Bryan Stevenson

Bryan is a bright light in a dark time in Alabama (desperately needed!) and our nation. I listen to him wherever I find him. He speaks godly truths on hard things with much grace. This interview is another example of his wisdom and faith.

• EXTRA: Meet the People Who Listen to Podcasts at Super-Fast Speeds
by Doree Shafrir

Want to listen to more podcasts in less time? I listen to most podcasts on 2x speed. But some people speed it up even more.

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5 Things on Reading and Writing

1. Word of the Year 2017


Complicit means “choosing to be involved in an illegal or questionable act, especially with others; having partnership or involvement in wrongdoing.” Read why it was chosen as the Word of the Year.

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2. How to Write a Paragraph in 2017 (Yes, the Rules Have Changed)
by Mike Blankenship


The paragraph has changed. I like the changes. Don’t go by the rules you learned in school.

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3. The 2017 Modern Mrs. Darcy Gift Guide for Book Lovers


Here are 32 gift ideas for people in your life who love books (if they want anything other than books; I really don’t).

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4. How the Kindle was designed through 10 years and 16 generations
by Devin Coldewey


I’m on my 2nd Kindle. It’s a Paperwhite, and I do love it. I can never imagine what will come next.

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5. 8 Books I Recommend + What I’m Reading Now

8 Books I Recommend - LisaNotes

To get you thinking, read Dream Hoarders or How to Think or The Righteous Mind.

Reading Now

  • The Gatekeepers
    How the White House Chiefs of Staff Define Every Presidency
    by Chris Whipple
  • Building a StoryBrand
    Clarify Your Message So Customers Will Listen
    by Donald Miller
  • The Daniel Dilemma
    How to Stand Firm and Love Well in a Culture of Compromise
    by Chris Hodges
  • The Trespasser
    by Tana French
  • Ordering Our Affections: Advent 
    by Dr. Melissa McCrory Hatcher
  • Blessed Are the Misfits
    Great News for Believers Who Are Introverts, Spiritual Strugglers, or Just Feel Like They’re Missing Something
    by Brant Hansen

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5 Things I Love

1. Iron Bowl

We take our football seriously in the SEC, and particularly the Auburn-Alabama game. This year was Auburn’s turn to win. With a house full of Auburn grads, there was much celebrating last Saturday night in our family. War Eagle!


Photo credit:

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2. Baby Shower for My 1st Grandchild

We had a family baby shower for my daughter Morgan and little Riley. It was so fun seeing all the little girl clothes. Two more months to wait!


Aunt Jenna, Mommy, Granna (although official name still to be determined)


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3. Maternity Photos

My youngest daughter Jenna took pictures of her big sister Morgan a few weeks ago. This is getting real!



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4. Birthday Boy

Jeff and I have birthdays one week apart in November. Ice cream or yogurt is always his special treat (mine is chocolate). Jenna and Trey treated him to yogurt at 32 Degrees on his birthday night.


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5. Thanksgiving 

We celebrated many Thanksgivings last month; this one was with my in-laws on a beautiful, warm Friday afternoon.

2017-11-24 lisa-jeff

(Yes, I do love this man)

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5 Things on the Blog

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What was one of your highlights from November? What are you looking forward to in December? Please share in the comments.

previous Links and Books

40 thoughts on “Links, Books, and Things I Love – December 2017

  1. Barbara H.

    Congratulations on winning the prize! I posted that gift video last week – cute and with good points. I don’t listen to podcasts – usually, if I’m listening, it’s to audiobooks – but some of those look good.

    I can empathize with canceling plans. As a fairly classic introvert, I don’t make many plans, anyway, so it’s nice when I get that time back to myself. But I do wrestle with the selfishness of that – preferring the time to myself.

    The shower must’ve been so fun! The photos are gorgeous.

    Belated happy birthday!

    I’m going to go check out that book-lover’s gift guide now. 🙂

    1. LisaNotes Post author

      It might have been on your blog that I first saw the video, Barbara, and loved it so much! I need to look at it at least once a month as a contentment discipline. 🙂

      I do feel like I’ve sacrificed audiobooks now that I listen to so many podcasts. 🙁 As with reading, there’s just not enough time for everything, and unfortunately, not even enough time to listen to everything either.

      Yes, the shower was so much fun. Morgan is now at 31 weeks so it won’t be too much longer now!!! I know y’all will have a fun Christmas this year with Timothy another year older. It’s hard to imagine that next Christmas we’ll have an almost 1-yr-old to celebrate with.

    1. LisaNotes Post author

      I almost deleted it too, Michele! ha. But once I started listening, I quickly realized it would have been a mistake. Now I want to read Caleb Wilde’s book as well. One thing always leads to another….

  2. Cathy

    Congrats on becoming a grandma soon! How exciting! I’m heading over to Modern Mrs. Darcy’s gift guide now, thanks for the link!

    P.S. Love the Christmas video you shared!

  3. Sue Donaldson

    What an interesting list!
    Congratulations on that first grandbaby. How exciting!
    I’m linking for Sue Donaldson today and came over on Grace and Truth.
    Hope you have a wonderful weekend~
    Melanie (For Sue)

  4. Jean Wise

    I think this has been my most favorite blog so far. I clicked on so many of your links you shared. Love all the podcasts too. Congrats to Auburn too. May we all win this weekend too – Go Buckeyes!

    1. LisaNotes Post author

      Good luck tomorrow night to you too, Jean! Y’all will have a challenge as well with Wisconsin. So much is on the line for these boys. I wouldn’t want to be in any of their shoes (or pads, ha). But win or lose, it’s been a fun season to this point.

      1. Jean Wise

        OSU will need the luck. should be quite the game. We say this year they have two teams – the one that works and the one who wins. who knows? yes been fun and shows us once again you can’t really predict life!

        1. LisaNotes Post author

          Well, Auburn is out. About to watch your game next! Hope you have better luck than we did. But hey, at least we beat Alabama, and for us, that’s the better game to win than the SEC championship. 🙂

    1. LisaNotes Post author

      Thank you, Lyli. It’s been an especially fun birthday month, even though I am another year older. 🙂 I am thankful for you, too, and your faithfulness in hosting us and feeding us great spiritual food each week!

  5. Trudy

    I always love your roundups, Lisa. Thank you for posting the article by John Archibald. My heart aches for all the victims, and I am glad they are having the courage to step forward to say, “Me, too.” It nauseates me when anyone supports a perpetrator instead of victims. So what if it was many years later that victims come forward. People don’t realize how shame works and how a perpetrator can intimidate a victim from talking. I guess you can see this is a topic that deeply troubles me. On a lighter note, I love your family photos. 🙂 Love and hugs to you!

    1. LisaNotes Post author

      I’m glad you appreciated the article by John Archibald, too. My heart also goes out to the victims. When they finally build up the courage to speak their truth, I so want the world to respect them for that, not dog them for it. It breaks my heart to see people deny their stories. 🙁 Our state will be voting on a new senator in a week and a half, and it’s going to really hurt me if we elect a candidate with a history of molestation. (And I better stop here; I could go on and on about this.)

  6. Emma Hughes

    So much great content in there – I found the paragraph article fascinating and informative, thanks for that! Also, congratulations on the first grandchild- that is so exciting. The photo of your daughter in the maternity shoot is stunning too. What a great recap 🙂

  7. floyd

    I caught that pizza dough being flipped!

    Loved the pictures especially. The ones of your oldest are beautiful. Exciting times!

    I really like the one of you and Jeff. That really captures the essence your love. Really cool.

    Can’t believe another month is down… Wow… just wow.

    1. LisaNotes Post author

      You have such a keen eye, Floyd! The pizza-thrower, Joe Carlucci, is actually a Pizza Throwing Guinness World Record Holder: World’s Highest Pizza Toss – 21.5 feet. 🙂 He is from New York, but now lives in Alabama and has a restaurant here. His church volunteered at House of the Harvest one Saturday morning, and he brought his food truck and made pizzas and gave them away from all morning! Including the show. It was awesome.

  8. Ashley Davis

    Seeing my family for Thanksgiving and celebrating my moms birthday were two special highlights in November. Looking forward to Christmas in December. I get to see my family and some friends then.

  9. Beth

    Amazing photos, great resources and I absolutely loved the one second video, Lisa! This post was packed with so much good stuff, my friend. Makes me smile. 🙂

    I’ll be checking out some of those resources, so thank you for sharing them!

  10. Theresa Boedeker

    So many good things here. I feel like reading this blog is like opening a gift basket of goodies. It is full of fun things and thought provoking things. A little something for everyone. Congrats on first granddaughter. So exciting.

  11. Leigh Kramer

    I’m so glad you enjoyed your prize! Going to have to check out a bunch of the podcast episodes you recommended. I’ve been meaning to listen to Caleb’s episode on the Robcast- he’s a friend of mine, plus I love anything that helps us discuss end of life issues. (I’m so sorry for your recent losses.)

    1. LisaNotes Post author

      Your gifts keep on giving, Leigh. 🙂 I’m enjoying at least one of them on a daily basis! Thanks again. So you know Caleb? I really want to read his book now. I read the Kindle sample and loved his perspective and writing.

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