Book Review: Iscariot by Tosca Lee


History has called him many things: Thief. Liar. Traitor. Reviled throughout history and infamous for his suicide, he is the man whose very name is synonymous with betrayal…

And he is the only disciple that Jesus called “friend.”

(Portion of description of book)

So I’m really not all that great at book reviews – it is usually a “Yep, it was good. You should read it” or a “Nope, don’t bother“. However, I’ve decided since I love to read and I want to write – what better thing to do than write about what I’ve been reading. So please bear with me.

I’m usually reading about 4 or 5 books at a time – one at least being fiction, the others are usually non-fiction. My reading interests are widely varied so you’ll get all kinds of stuff from me if I keep this up. Last night I finished a book by Tosca Lee called Iscariot. I discovered Tosca when she co-wrote a series with one of my favorite authors – Ted Dekker and I’ve been checking out her stuff ever since.

As you may have guessed from the book title – this is biblical historical fiction. Tosca seems to specialize in this genre and is known for doing extensive research prior to writing – and it shows. I really love this genre and Judas Iscariot has always been a character who fascinated me. Even those not raised in the church often know of Judas and get a bad taste in their mouth. He has represented over history one of the worst betrayals of friendship. Continue reading “Book Review: Iscariot by Tosca Lee”

3 Day, 3 Quote Challenge – Day 3

I’ve really enjoyed this challenge and in the spirit of my already bending the rules a bit, I’m going to post 3 quotes for Day 3. Today’s Quotes are from 3 cartoons I enjoyed growing up and are about how I’m trying to live my life and/or view life.

Enjoy! But first, the rules!!

1. Thank the person who nominated you.

2. Post a quote for three consecutive days (1 quote for each day).

3. Nominate three bloggers each day to do the same.

So for the first rule – A big thank you and virtual hug goes out to Crazy Lady in My Head for the nomination.

My Quotes:

Calvin & Hobbes were one of my utmost favorite cartoons growing up. And this is definitely something I’ve realized recently about life.
Who doesn’t love Garfield? And changing my perspective has pretty much become my whole goal in life right now.
Dr Seuss – still can’t part with these books. My kids have shown me that no matter how bad things are and how angry or frustrated I may get, I can always find something to laugh about it the situation.  and usually something I can write about too!

And now for the last rule…

My Nominations:

  1. A Thread Full of Dreams
  2. The Stubborn Australian
  3. Everyday Strange

Life Lessons Learned from my Children: It’s all about Perspective

My daughter, The Girl is a 3 sport athlete for the local high school. Spring brings about the sport she is most passionate about – Track & Field. Now to paint you a picture if you don’t already know her – she is a very fierce 4’11”. She is almost 17 and has not grown in the last 4 years, so most likely she is never going to pass up her ole mom at just shy of 5’2″.

However, the Girl specializes in “tall” girl sports. She’s played basketball since 7th grade and this year on the varsity team played point guard and had one of the highest rebound averages on the team. For Track & Field her main and favorite events include the 4×100, High Jump, Long Jump and Triple Jump. You know, the sports that the tall kids usually excel at!

Continue reading “Life Lessons Learned from my Children: It’s all about Perspective”

Road Trip Day 6 & 7: The Journey Back Home

As of today I’m back in my “real” life – no longer in vacation mode. However, I still have some to write about this wonderful week I just spent with The Girl. The last two days of our trip consisted of our drive back home. This was an adventure in and of itself. (WARNING:  Lots of links in this post!)

First stop on our journey home was in Portland. Thank goodness for GPS and Google Maps. We were not very far off our main path for this first step but without my trusty Google Maps we would have been in a lot of trouble. And Portland has a lot of those pesky one way streets just like Eugene!

The Girl is a HUGE fan of cookie dough. If you want in good with her, just buy her anything cookie dough flavored and you’ll have a friend for life. Awhile back she found at Walmart some cookie dough in a tub that was specifically made for eating raw. The dough has no raw eggs in it so it is “safe” (I should be dead so many times by now!). And it tastes good too. Then she found out this product is actually sold in their own cafe – the Cookie Dough Cafe. Think Baskin Robbins but with cookie dough rather than ice cream. So she just HAD to go visit it. Continue reading “Road Trip Day 6 & 7: The Journey Back Home”

Today’s Battle with Anxiety

Why is it such small things create such great anxiety within me?

It is Sunday and here I sit just before heading out for what should be a fun evening with my daughter to watch Roller Derby, yet I’m filled with anxiety.  I keep thinking, today I should have done something more productive.  Maybe trying to get ahead of things for work or done some painting on the bathroom project I’ve not touched in the last few weeks due to the craziness of work and the kid’s sports activities.  But after a long quarter end at work including working last weekend, I really wanted to just chill a bit today.  Spend some time with my daughter watching our newest obsession –  the show Fixer Upper (Chip & Joanna Gaines are adorable!) and reading a couple new books I’ve picked up.

But instead of relaxing and enjoying my chill-time I find myself starting to get a bit anxious thinking about the upcoming work week and all I need to get accomplished.  I then make the mistake of checking my email/calendar to confirm my meetings for tomorrow (first one is at 7am – ugh!) Continue reading “Today’s Battle with Anxiety”

Refuse to Live the Lie

I was raised in a generation that told girls we could grow up to be anything we wanted to be.  Not only that, we could have it ALL!  We could be Super Woman – the perfect mom, with the perfect life and the perfect career.  We had the abilities (and the time and energy) to find a great guy, have a dream wedding and marriage and be a perfect wife.  Have children who excelled in all they did because we supported them as the perfect mom who volunteered in all their activities, was an active part of the PTO and threw them amazing themed birthday parties while always cooking homemade healthy meals.  We could do all this while also being a successful career woman, climbing the corporate ladder and busting out all those glass ceilings.

These are great positive things to share with a young girl who is heading out into the world.  I was told I could have it all and I bought into it 100%.  And I burned myself out because the reality is they lied to me.  The lied to all of us!  And now we are all paying the price for believing this lie.  Suffering in silence we kill ourselves trying to have it all and faking our perfect lives.  We are afraid to speak out because everyone else seems to have it all together and we are the only one failing.  There must be something wrong with us and if we just push a bit harder we can do it too.  So the cycle begins.  Continue reading “Refuse to Live the Lie”

Effort v. Value

So here is a question to ponder – something that has come up for me lately.  Why is it that we believe something does not have value unless we have worked hard for it?  Unless we have endured pain, sweated our asses off or bled for it – figuratively or literally?

Now, don’t get me wrong – I do believe something you have worked for versus been given to you usually holds more value and we tend to take better care of and appreciate these things more.  I remember in high school my parents bought me a car to drive but I had to pay for the gas and insurance.  Later when I wanted to get a car of my own, I bought this car from my parents (at a very good deal!) so I could use it for a trade in.  I had a friend whose parents gave her a car which she never paid a dime towards.  Her car was nicer and newer than mine, but I always took better care of my car. We do value those things we work hard for and we should!

However, it should not mean that things that come easy or are fun should not hold value for us.  To better explain this I’ll share a situation I’ve been in recently and a resulting conversation with a friend (paraphrased of course, as my memory is not that precise!) Continue reading “Effort v. Value”