I enjoy reading, when I get the chance. Mostly I've been nose-deep in fiction these days, since I find it a lot easier to be interrupted from the light and fluffy. But once in a while, I do read an outstanding work of non-fiction, so I thought I'd share with you:
My thirteen all-time favorite non-fiction books (in no particular order)
All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten: Uncommon Thoughts on Common Things by Robert Fulghum
I've read most of Fulghum's books. This was the first. I like what he has to say, even when I don't always agree with his philosophy. Definitely worth taking a look at if you never have or reading again if it's been a long time.
The Five Love Languages: How to Express Heartfelt Commitment to Your Mate by Gary Chapman
I first read this book when I was very single. It's not just for married people. That said, Adam and I do use the information we've read here nearly every day (or at least, we should). A warning, however, do not expect your spouse or anyone else to speak exclusively in your love language. I know couples who have broken up over this.
The Cornbread Book: A Love Story with Recipes
by Jeremy Jackson
A bit of a goofy title, but a really good cookbook. I think I've tried all the basic cornbread recipes and a few of the not-so-basic, like cornbread popovers and popcorn pitas. Yummy food and a laid-back narrative with some history thrown in for kicks.
by Gary L. Thomas
A tough but excellent read! Tough, not because it's hard to follow the language, just because it makes me squirm as I recognize how much selfishness there really is to overcome before I can truly love selflessly.
More Than You and Me: Touching Others Through The Strength of Your Marriage by Karen & Kevin Miller
Since I know the Millers personally, I wouldn't have bought this book except Adam wanted it (sorry, guys). But if you don't have them to consult, it does have lots of good information about finding the mission in your marriage and how to work together serving God.
Taking Charge of Your Fertility: The Definitive Guide to Natural Birth Control, Pregnancy Achievement, and Reproductive Health by Toni Weschler
If you are wanting to be pregnant, trying to keep from being pregnant, ever thought about getting pregnant or just want to understand more about how women's bodies work, you must read this book.
The Baby Book: Everything You Need to Know About Your Baby from Birth to Age Two by William & Martha Sears
A nice alternative to the "What to Expect" series. I don't completely subscribe to the attachment parenting theory, but there is a lot of good solid basic medical and developmental infomation here too. A good one to have on the nightstand when it's 2:00 AM and you don't know why your kid is crying.
The Message®: The Bible in Contemporary Language
translated by Eugene H. Peterson
This version of the Bible helped me to really understand why Wycliffe Bible Translators do what they do. Eugene Peterson worked to translate the Bible into the "heart language" of millions of teens and young adults (and me, since I really don't figure in to either of those categories any more).
The Mother Tongue:English & How It Got That Way
by Bill Bryson
I first read this book in high school. It follows the development of English as we know it. Very informative, and way funnier than any text book I have ever read. If I end up homeschooling high school some day, my kids are reading this book.
The Birth Order Book: Why You Are the Way You Are
by Kevin Leman
This is the very first systematic look at personality that made any sense to my family dynamics. I am a youngest child, but my next sibling is eight years older. No wonder I'm confused! Lots of interesting information for families of varying sizes.
Traveling Light: Releasing the Burdens You Were Never Intended to Bear by Max Lucado
I'm a big Lucado fan in general, but I'm especially fond of this one. It goes through the 23rd Psalm, teaching about how to rest and carry on, with out carrying it all. And, in a small way, it brought Adam and me together before our first date (but that's a story for another day).
A Shepherd Looks at Psalm 23
by Phillip Keller
This was recommended reading in the study guide section of Traveling Light. Very useful information about what the various verses mean, from somebody who actually knows sheep.
When You Look Like Your Passport Photo, It's Time to Go Home
by Erma Bombeck
I bought this at a used book sale for about 75¢. I have read it at least three times since then. My mom got me started on Erma Bombeck when I was only about 10. She's just funny in a very down to earth way--especially for those of us who are at home with our kids.
Check out other "thirteeners" at ThursdayThirteen.com.