7 days until Christmas
I’m a dish washing, floor sweeping, toilet cleaning mom of three kids and one hubby who searches for pockets of time in which I can sit down and write the stories that roll like a movie screen through my brain. I wish I was a good enough writer to translate what goes on in my head onto paper because I’m thoroughly entertained at all times. I’m the mom to two of the most beautiful girls I could possibly imagine and one studly five year old boy who is already breaking girls’ hearts and he’s only in kindergarten. I’m constantly trying to figure out how to lose weight though I’m not quite prepared to live like an Ethiopian just so I can wear size 8 pants (and besides, a blouse just wouldn’t look as cute without a nice muffin top pocking out on the sides, right?) I’m the primary chorister in my ward which is by far my favorite calling yet. And I’m married to the best guy in the world who I’ve followed through undgrad, med school and now a psychiatry residency in Phoenix, Arizona. We’re a happy little five-some though and I truly feel like life can’t get much better than this.
Please take a minute to visit Natalie at one of the links below:
BLOG | TWITTER | FACEBOOK
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LDSWBR: What is your favorite Christmas song/hymn? Does it have special meaning to you?
NATALIE: I love “Oh Holy Night” more than I care to admit. Every time I sing it to my kids at night (no matter what time of year it is) I get all full of emotion and I want to some how dig my way into their tiny brains and make sure the pure and magnificent meaning of that song gets planted there, deep in their sub conscience so that it can forever affect the way they live their lives. Overboard? Maybe a tad, but I’ll take the risk. For me, it’s the one Christmas song that really focuses on the reason we celebrate Christ’s birth.
Long lay the world in sin and error pining,
‘Til he appeared and the soul felt its worth.
So simple and so vitally important. It’s like, you know when Nephi is having his vision of what his father saw in his dream and he asks the Spirit what the meaning of the tree of life is and in order to answer his question the Spirit shows him Christ being born of Mary and in that very moment with no other words exchanged the Spirit asks Nephi if he now knows the meaning of the tree of life and Nephi is like yeah, it’s the pure love of Christ. It’s like that with the words in “Oh Holy Night.” Christ’s birth changed everything.
That was a long answer for a very simple questions. But then again, I get paid to be long winded.
LDSWBR: Do you get together with friends/family to play board games on Christmas or New Year’s? What games do you like to play? Do you have a favorite game from your childhood?
NATALIE: Well, my favorite game is Scrabble. But that’s because I tend to sweep the floor with everyone I play with (my husband will totally deny that). I grew up playing Rook and Monopoly and Parcheesi which are definitely some of my favorites. Though lately I play a lot of Candy Land and Hungry, Hungry Hippo because when I tried to teach my five year old how to play Rook it was just a big mess.
LDSWBR: If you could recommend only one book from those you read this year, what would it be and why?
NATALIE: Hands down “A Million Miles in a Thousand Years” by Donald Miller. It may be safe to go as far as to say he’s one of my new favorite authors. If you haven’t read this book go out and buy it now. Don’t borrow it or it or get it from the library because I promise you’ll want to highlight every other word and dog tail the bologna out of those page corners. But I must warn you that reading this book will inevitably make you want to change your life, for the better, of course, but it’s still change and if you’re anything like me that is an incredibly terrifying endeavor.
LDSWBR is going to think twice before asking me questions again. It’s true, I can be very wordsy at times. But it was so fun to be apart of the count down to Christmas! Thanks LDSWBR!!!
LDSWBR: Aw, thanks, Natalie! It was fun getting to know you better.
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Second to No One
AMAZON | KINDLE | BARNES & NOBLE | NOOK | TATE PUBLISHING | NATALIE’S BLOG
(autographed copies available)
“Things change. People change. Jess and I weren’t above it.”
Gemma’s first year of high school isn’t starting out the way she hoped. Jess is back from California and before she can memorize her class schedule their summer romance comes to a screeching halt. To add to her misery the gorgeous new girl in school also has eyes for Jess and despite Gemma’s unfailing attempts to win him back she keeps finding herself alone.
But when a late night car crash lands her a three month grounding and twenty hours of community service she discovers that there’s more to life than just romance and boyfriends.
Unpredictable and heart wrenching, Second to No One is the perfect continuation to the magical beginning of the Gemma and Jess romance.
One week left until Christmas. Are you ready for the big day?
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**To enter the LDSWBR Countdown to Christmas 2013, leave a thoughtful comment below.**
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Prizes include a $50 Amazon gift card and the author-donated books listed below. This is raffle-style drawing where all entries throughout the contest period are entered into the same “hat” for all prizes. US only. 18 years and older please. See all contest rules and restrictions below.
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NO PURCHASE NECESSARY; entrants must be 18 years or older; open to residents of continental US only; giveaway begins December 3, 2013 and all entries must be received by 12:00 Midnight December 23, 2013 Mountain Time; to enter, complete the required entry on each post and any additional entries of your choice if listed; LDS Women’s Book Review reserves the right to determine what is considered a thoughtful comment as per each post’s required entry; giveaway prizes include a $50 Amazon gift card and a variety of book prizes donated by featured authors; the number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning; LDS Women’s Book Review is not liable for technical problems which may affect entry into the giveaway; winner identity will be verified by email address; winner will be selected December 28, 2013 by use of a sequence generator on random.org; winner will have until January 4, 2014 to claim their prize; if any prize winner forfeits or does not claim prize, prize will be re-awarded to next winner in sequence; all prizes will be awarded; limit of two prizes per entrant; this contest/giveaway is not associated with Facebook, Twitter or any other entity unless otherwise specified; by entering the giveaway you give LDS Women’s Book Review the right to publicize your name on the LDS Women’s Book Review blog; winner agrees to release LDS Women’s Book Review from any liability as a result of winning; email comments and questions to LDS Women’s Book Review – ldswbr (at) gmail (dot) com; giveaway subject to Utah regulations; VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.
**Book Prizes (as of 12/18/13 – more to be added to this list!)**
- Rocky Road by Josi S. Kilpack (personalized copy)
- Shannon’s Hope by Josi S. Kilpack (personalized copy)
- The House at Rose Creek by Jenny Proctor (signed copy)
- Penumbras by Braden Bell (signed copy)
- The Reluctant Blogger by Ryan Rapier (personalized copy)
- Just Ella by Annette K. Larsen (personalized paperback)
- Longing For Home by Sarah M. Eden (signed copy)
- Mile 21 by Sarah Dunster (ebook or signed paperback)
- Blackmoore by Julianne Donaldson (audio CD)
- Finding Sheba or Ruby’s Secret by H.B. Moore (winner’s choice; format of choice)
- Pocket Full of Posies by Julie Coulter Bellon (or other Hostage Negotiation novel of choice in either paperback or Kindle)
- Hadley-Hadley Benson by Jody Wind Durfee (personalized copy)
Previous Countdown to Christmas 2013 posts: