Tuesday, June 30, 2015

In which Leslie just has piles of books

I show off the books I have recently checked out. Again. Guys, I like the format of this vlog a lot.

Books featured in this video:
This Shattered World by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner
The Girl at Midnight by Melissa Grey
The Whisperer by Fiona McIntosh
The Eternity Key by Bree Despain
Grounded: The Adventures of Rapunzel by Megan Morrison
Valiant by Sarah McGuire
An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir

Monday, June 29, 2015

followers of my faith [Mormon Monday 79]

Last week I was looking through the Old Testament curriculum and discovered a section of the Pearl of Great Price that I didn't remember ever studying before (though I know I've read it, and maybe even talked about it in seminary).

After Enoch's call to preach repentance, he expresses concerns and the Lord promises He will help. Then this happens:

35 And the Lord spake unto Enoch, and said unto him: Anoint thine eyes with clay, and wash them, and thou shalt see. And he did so.
 36 And he beheld the spirits that God had created; and he beheld also things which were not visible to the natural eye; and from thenceforth came the saying abroad in the land: A seer hath the Lord raised up unto his people. (Moses 6:35-36)
I liked the symbolism of the clay (from the earth) covering his eyes and then being washed away, and Enoch seeing with spiritual eyes. I'm not called to be a seer but I could still benefit from learning to see things with spiritual eyes.

It makes me wonder, what clay do I need to wash away from my eyes?

Because Enoch did as the Lord commanded, he was blessed. By strict obedience and with the Lord's help, we can see with spiritual eyes.

This morning I needed something to listen to while I completed a task. I decided on "Seeing with New Eyes" by Professor Cox in 1995. He talked about how we could broaden our vision by doing four things:

1. Submission to Authority -- "The Prophet Joseph Smith taught: “Now if they will be wise, they will humble themselves in a peculiar manner that God may open the eyes of their understanding” (Teachings, p. 78). The gates of heaven open when we are humble, allowing us to be led and blessed by priesthood authority."
2. Waiting Upon the Lord -- Those who wait upon God find small miracles along the way.
3. Seek for the Beautiful -- When those who call themselves realists urge us to yield to the temptations of the flesh, because everybody’s doing it or because that’s how things are, the living God (through the living prophets, Church, and scriptures) reminds us, not of how things seem to be, but of how things really are.
The genuine realist is really able to “consider the lilies in the field” and thereby see a planning and a providing God in marvelous microcosm—or he can consider the heavens and see God moving in majestic and marvelous macrocosm!
4. Mechanism and the Role of God in the Universe -- Imagine how we would believe and adore if we gazed at the stars and heard the voice of God, as did Moses, saying: “And worlds without number have I created; and I also created them for mine own purpose; and by the Son I created them, which is mine Only Begotten” (Moses 1:33). To a disciple, studies in botany or astrophysics do not weaken faith in the position of God but only increase admiration and love for the Creator.
So there's that.

Friday, June 26, 2015

In which Leslie reads a couple books

I split this video between home and work because recording it all at home didn't work.

Books featured in this video:
Prudence by Gail Carriger
Fairest by Marissa Myer
This Shattered World by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

In which Leslie takes an unexpected turn

Many thanks to my mother who filmed this video for me. There's something to be said about doing a review mere minutes after I finish a book, and also not having to use a webcam.

Books featured in this video:
Top Ten Clues You're Clueless by Liz Czukas

Monday, June 22, 2015

followers of my faith [Mormon Monday 78]

Yesterday was...sort of rough. I ingested caffeine without thinking through the consequences of that action. The main consequence is that I talk faster. I talk so much faster that my brain (not always engaged at the best of times) has no way to keep up. Essentially, my filter disappears.

Awesome! (This is why I avoid caffeine. Yesterday was an accident.)

By the end of the day I wanted to stamp this sentence permanently into my brain:

The meek think of more clever things to say than are said. - Elder Neal A. Maxwell
 Nice, right? I've never met a sentence that needed to be my motto more. Someone should make it into a pretty graphic so I can make it my desktop, phone background, and also maybe tape it to my hand. And then it can make the rounds on the internet.

Ideally it would look better than this.
I made this myself. I don't think I had to tell you that.

Friday, June 19, 2015

in which Leslie has an arithmetic fail

I once (like an hour before I filmed this) gravely miscalculated the number of books I had checked out from the library. The person I told this to responded (weeks later) suggesting I live in a literary nunnery. Not necessarily because of that. But it's very convenient.

I promise that I'll start talking more loudly.

Books featured in this video:
Chasing Power by Sarah Beth Durst
The Cure for Dreaming by Cat Winters
A Dangerous Place by Jacqueline Winspear
Miss Mayhem by Rachel Hawkins

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

in which Leslie would've had a guest

We tried to film a vlog for you. We tried three times. There was a lot of great content, probably, but no one can ever know for sure because my Chromebook burned it up. So this is all you get.

Books featured (briefly) in this video:
Prudence by Gail Carriger
Fairest by Marissa Meyer

Monday, June 15, 2015

followers of my faith [Mormon Monday 77]

Someone called me spiritually stunted yesterday. At least, insinuated that my taste in books (oh, I should post a vlog) is leading me to spiritual stunting. I was a little bit offended and thought "Would a spiritually stunted person post a faith-promoting message on her blog every Monday...ending two months ago?" Hmm.

I really thought I just didn't feel like posting a Mormon Monday for a few weeks, and then I just got out of the habit. But maybe it's just that I'm, you know, stunted.

Well, baby steps back in again. Got to promote some growth somehow.

A song that I've been thinking a lot about this week is "Nephi's Courage." It's a great song! I played it on the piano a few days ago and it's sort of been in my head ever since. It struck me that it's pretty much been since Primary that I've heard Nephi described as "courageous." Full of faith, yes. Giving us an example of receiving revelation, yes.

But on pondering the song I've realized that following the Spirit is really brave. I don't think I would be brave enough to follow the promptings Nephi received, at least not at this stunted stage of my life. Even humbly going into the wilderness with his family was brave.

There are quite a few courageous things we're called on to do, starting with keeping the Lord's commandments. Keeping on keeping on when life looks dreary. Keeping the faith. That's all the "keep" things I can think of right now.

Anyway, it can be hard to keep doing these things. But we should be like Nephi! Reach deep within ourselves and be determined to have courage. I can be courageous, and I can reply, "I will go, I will do the things the Lord commands. I know the Lord provides a way, he wants me to obey."

Friday, June 5, 2015

In which Leslie has a surprise!

I almost forgot to upload this. In fact I was so close to forgetting that this is the unedited version because the edited version is on my other computer. Luckily it's not too different.

Books featured in this video:
Re Jane by Patricia Park