Monday, November 18, 2013

Manage Your Day-to-Day: Build Your Routine, Find Your Focus, and Sharpen Your Creative Mind (My Take)

This was a wonderful read.  I will caveat that there may be some points that will be offensive to some readers- they were to me.  This might be expected given the range of writers involved in the creation of the book.  I still think overall that Behance/99u put together a great book of tips and tricks for not just creative folks but for just about anyone who has to live, work, and play.  The tips do range from simple to somewhat esoteric and as much profound advice is, sometimes obvious- at least after you read it.  You will find yourself noticing the fallbacks that the authors mention and will likely agree with most of their recommendations.  You will undoubtedly disagree with some of the recommendations maybe even the metaphors used to make the points, but please don't throw out the baby with the bath water, this really is a very helpful book and in a great piece by piece format to allow you to read at once or even go through an article at a time and try to implement some changes to your work and life habits.  I have included each of the authors and the links the book provided related to them.  In addition I threw in some quotes that stuck out in my mind.  Please let me know what you think of the book and throw in some quotes you liked, hated, agreed with, identified with, opposed, or didn't have a clue about.  My favorite section was by Elizabeth Grace Saunders.  Did you have a favorite?  I already recommended this one to my wife and I will likely walk through some of the book with my 10 and 12 year olds.

Some names with links to their sites:
Mark McGuiness:
Gretchen Rubin:
Seth Godin:
Tony Schwartz:
“It’s not the load that breaks you down, it’s the way you carry it.”  Lena Horne
Leo Babauta:
“What information consumes is obvious: it consumes the attention of its recipients. Hence a wealth of information creates a poverty of attention”  Herbert Simon
Cal Newport:
Dr. Christian Jarrett:
Dan Ariely:
Erin Rooney Doland:
“Tell me what you pay attention to and I will tell you who you are.” José Ortega Y Gasset
Scott Belsky:
Aaron Dignan:
“The difference between successful people and very successful people is that very successful people say ‘no’ to almost everything.” Warren Buffett
Lori Deschene:
Tiffany Schlain:
“Our intention is to affirm this life, not to bring order out of chaos, not to suggest improvements in creation… but simply to wake up to the very life we’re living.”  John Cage
Linda Stone:       
James Victore:
“Why cheat yourself of the effort?  The work, the process, is the goal.  It builds character.  It makes us better.”  James Victore
Scott McDowell:
Stefan Sagmeister:
Elizabeth Grace Saunders:
“Creativity is not a talent it is a way of operating.” John Cleese
Steven Pressfield:

99u links:

Monday, September 16, 2013

Ready to Discuss

Its heeeerrrrrreeeeeee!
The Book Club is meeting tonight to discuss Thinking: Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman.  This looks to be very interesting discussing whether decisions that don't conform to the Rational Agent Model mean that they are irrational.  Also whether we have any idea what is going on in our brains.  Also the mirage of control when compared to chance, randomness and probability.  While the reading of the book was a bit of a struggle at times the points it brings up are not just interesting but tremendously relevant to society and the individual.  Gut decisions are good, bad, ugly, indifferent, and maybe even right.

Hope to see you at the Church tonight at 7 PM.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Bayesian Probability

On the off chance that I am not the only one that doesn't have a degree in probability I thought I would post some tutorials about Bayesian Probability to give some background in some of the examples that the author gives in the book.

These 2 are similar.  I elected not to post the Bayes made simple link to the 2.5 hr video.  These 2 give a good idea of how it works in a simple example.

Monday, July 29, 2013

I was wondering why I hadn't heard anything about the new book:  Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman (Apr 2, 2013) and then I checked the post to see if anyone had commented...

I hadn't posted it yet......  Well that is the new book and it is written by a Nobel Prize recipient in economics.  It is about how we think, the mistakes we make in thinking, and how we can identify them.

Monday, July 15, 2013

A Hole in Our Gospel

Book club is here.  We meet tonight.  This will be an interesting conversation and I know the Pastor Mike is ready to get it going.  The book has a web site A Hole in Our Gospel web site and I will be posting some more links today and tomorrow that are related to the book and ministries similar to World Vision.  I am really looking forward to tonight's discussion.

God Bless

Thursday, July 11, 2013

World Vision and

Here are two organizations web sites:

World Vison (Hole in Our Gospel author is the CEO)

One (Bono's organization)

Bono on Focus on the Family

Here is the link to Bono's recent interview on Focus on the Family.
Bono Interview

I am looking for the link to his TED talk as well.  I have found a portion of it but not the full presentation.
The interview here goes over justice, extreme poverty, and belief in Jesus.  This ties into the Hole in Our Gospel and is inspiring to see a pop star taking very seriously his walk with the LORD.  It may be harder for a rich man to get to heaven than for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, but with GOD all things are possible.  Hope you enjoy the interview he is rather engaging.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Long time no post

Sorry for my delay in posting.  I have let activity, particularly with the kids get the better of me.  I have also started to try to get back in shape again.  Wow, this is painful.

I wanted to make sure to thank Natalie for a great hosting job at our last meeting.  She really knows CS Lewis and spiritual battle and was a great wealth of knowledge along with a gracious host.  I think she may have inspired much more reading into CS Lewis books by all who were there.

In addition we picked a book for next time, "The Hole in Our Gospel" by Richard Stearns.The Hole in Our Gospel: What Does God Expect of Us? The Answer That Changed My Life and Might Just Change the World by Richard Stearns.  I must admit the reviews come from diverse places like Franklin Graham and Bono.  Truth in lending here, Richard Stearns is the CEO of  World Vision and a good portion of the book is his journey getting there.  That is not to diminish the impact of the book or its message, if anything it brings the message home clearer.

Please join us for a discussion of the book in July, July 15th to be exact at the same bat time, same bat channel.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Happy Mother's Day

I found some interesting information on Mother's Day and its founding.
Two women, Ann and Anna Jarvis are behind it and it all started as a service day by mothers.  Ann Jarvis served all her life and Anna Jarvis set out to honor her with a special day.  Anna wasn't happy with where Mother's Day went though and spent her inheritance trying to decommercialize it.  But it was all started by a woman who witnessed the love and care of her extraordinary mother.

Here are a few links, understand some of the information may be repetitive.

Happy Mother's Day to all Mother's out there and to all who are thankful to have a Mother that loves them.

God Bless.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Soft Power - You Can't Fake it

Influencing other countries without force.  Attracting countries to you by your positive culture.  You can't fake good culture or intentions.

I'm still not giving up my Kindle

Here is one that Pastor Mike passed me about ebooks v. physical books and online reading vs. paper.

Just can't get rid of paper.

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Socially Acceptable Sin

Someone posted a link to this and I thought it might be good to post here.  It made me think of Screwtape and his intentional misguiding of natural tendencies.

What do you think?

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Liberty Denied to the Poor

I read this post and thought it was interesting and maybe even a little depressing.  It contrasts two views of economic development and explains how the one that was followed has created problems in third world countries where the value of the person is diminished.  It mentions the an oil push in Uganda promoted by the World Bank and Ugandan government that is pushing poor villagers out of their homes.  It reminds me of Little Bee.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

A View from the Underside: The Legacy of Dietrich Bonhoeffer

Thanks again, Pastor Mike, for passing this on to me.

A View from the Underside: The Legacy of Dietrich

This is a book and DVD by Al Skaggs and is just one of his justice series.  The series seems to focus on Christians standing up for the oppressed and has 12 different plays/performances that he performs at places around the world, 3 books, and 3 dvds.  I have not read the books or seen play or dvd although I think I will likely do so in the not too distant future.  If I do read or see any I will post that here on the blog.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Books, Trends and Culturomics

Some interesting stuff:

TED talk aboutWhat We Learned from 5 Million Books;"What We Learned from 5 Million Books"
This is about finding cultural trends using 5 million books that have been indexed by Google and can be searched using NGrams

Very interesting.  What do you all think?

Monday, April 8, 2013

Screwtape Letters

I just finished reading Screwtape Letters and Screwtape Toast.  I am really looking forward to talking about this one.  I wondered why demons do what they do if they can't win.  This is an interesting explanation of that.  I am with CS Lewis that this would be easier to write and in my case read, but thinking about it makes you uncomfortable.

By the way, there is an audio version of this with John Cleese of Monty Python fame as the narrator out there as well.  Just in case you want to hear someone else read it.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

CS Lewis links.

Blogger is not allowing me to edit the links on the right side any longer so I will be putting the links here at least for now.

CS Lewis Quotes
CS Lewis- Wikipedia
CS Lewis Classics Web Site
The CS Lewis Foundation
New CS Lewis Biography- story by NarniaFans

These are a few that I have looked at.  Let me know what you think about them and about Screwtape Letters as well.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Screwtape on Easter

Thanks to Pastor Mike for this one.

James Emery White's Blog has a letter from Screwtape to his nephew Wormwood on the dangers of Easter:

Screwtape on Easter.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

New Book- The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis

The new book is The Screwtape Letters by CS Lewis.  I must admit I might have used some influence to get this one in, but I have wanted to read it for a while and haven't gotten the chance. Natalie will be hosting this one in May.  We will need to move to the second Monday in May instead of the third.  This book is a glimpse into what goes on "behind the scenes" in the realm of the unseen, where demons and angels compete for human souls.  I am excited to be reading it and I hope you will be too.

Another Great Discussion

Thanks to Mr. Duncan for leading the discussion on Monday night.  It is interesting to talk about the country with many different perspectives in the room.  It is amazing to go through a book like this and see what a "treasure" Washington, DC is (thanks Pastor for that word).  I will post some links out on the site to the right side related to monuments in DC and will give the link to the map that Newt Gingrich put together on his site to point out the monuments in the book.  While this is a walking tour I think there would be better broken up into at least 3 different walks.  We talked about doing that in the discussion as a group and even opening to others.  Great idea I will put more information out on that although that may be in email.  Please pay attention to the links as it may have some things that I looked up based on what I saw in the book.

Thursday, January 31, 2013

goodreads- Book Review Site

Here is the text from the goodread site.  It has a pretty good depth of books and their reviews.

Share Book Recommendations With Your Friends, Join Book Clubs, Answer Trivia: Deciding what to read next?
You’re in the right place. Tell us what titles or genres you’ve enjoyed in the past, and we’ll give you surprisingly insightful recommendations.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

God Without Religion: We really met last night.

We met last night to discuss God without Religion: Can it Really be that Simple? by Andrew Farley.

The discussion ranged from simplicity to dispensationalism to predestination, to free choice, to sanctification, to love, and to the Holy Spirit.  Overall as a group we reacted positively to the book, but there were some points that we brought up that were concerns and one of them was the dispensational viewpoint that is similar to Farley's split of Old Testament versus New Testament application.  We spoke of different preachers who hold to certain views and we learned a bit more about dispensation theology.  You can find out about that here.  Not being an expert, I am not certain it would deal with the issue adequately but this should be a start.

The book was good in content but did not strike us well written to draw the reader in or light a fire under them.  At points it did seem disjointed, but seemed to stay with the theme.  It did not give much in the way of prescription for how to live and stuck mostly with a different way of looking at things.  The old is gone and behold the new and it is completely compatible with Christ and He does His work through the believer.

If you didn't get a chance to come to the club, feel free to post comments here on the blog.

We decided on a new book.  Our host for next time will be Mr. Al Duncan and he has picked the book Rediscoving God in America by Newt Gingrich, you can find it here.  
We also thought it would be good to plan a walk through DC since the book is about walks through DC and seeing where references God show up.  The meeting for the book will be scheduled for March 18 and our host has challenged us to research a character in the book and share something about that character when we meet.

I want to push the blog again and let you know that I would love to see more comments posted and if you have difficulty posting directly I would be glad to post for you if you email me what you want to post.

God Bless.