Purpose of this Blog...

You may have noticed that not all books are equal in capturing children's imaginations and in cultivating those innocent, tender souls. My goal is to help you find the ones that do!
(Painting by Mary Cassatt: "Mrs Cassatt Reading to her Grandchildren" -1888)

Tuesday, December 8, 2020

Signed, Sealed, And Ready To Be Delivered

This afternoon I finally got my Christmas cards all signed and sealed, ready to be delivered out into the wild, wild world!

The journey these cards will make and the Christmas playlist that I've been obsessing over lately reminded me of a charming Christmas picture book I got for my grandchildren: The Queen's Present, by Steve Antony

I'm pretty much an Anglophile, even more so at Christmastime.  My happy place right now is listening to my Christmas playlist of English carols. There's just something about the Choir of King's College, Cambridge that sets a festive, yet majestic mood!

Maybe that's why I love Antony's "Queen books"! In addition to The Queen's Present, there is The Queen's Hat, The Queen's Handbag, and The Queen's Lift-off.  

My daughter had already discovered and given her kids The Queen's Hat - which is a windy tour of London, with it's fun and majestic landmarks. I think it's my favorite.

The Queen's Handbag is a wild goose chase across the UK, and The Queen's Lift-Off is a lightning tour through space! Each book features pages of famous landmarks and lots of fun-to-find details (like the butler, for example). My grandchildren pretty much have a giggle-fest when we read these books!

In the The Queen's Present, the Queen sets off on a global search to find the perfect present for her grandchildren.  Who helps her?  Father Christmas! (And of course the Queen's butler and her Corgi, who are always somewhere to be found along the way)!  There's a sweet ending, as you see what they deliver to the prince and princess.  

Thursday, November 19, 2020

The Grinch Can't Cancel Christmas

For Orthodox Christians, the second Sunday of Advent is almost here (we celebrate 40 days of Advent, with six Sundays as opposed to four), so we started our journey well before Thanksgiving! 

Across the U.S. we are still in various stages of COVID and feelings regarding lockdown.  Especially here in California, where cases are up and deaths are way down, we are sadly expecting not to be allowed to gather in our homes with large extended families and friends for Thanksgiving, or in our churches for our Advent and possibly even Christmas services - even if we are healthy, wear masks, and practice physical distancing of six feet, as we've been asked to.

But even if our governor(s) make these decisions and end up cancelling Christmas services, this time of continued isolation is a good reminder that our homes are all little domestic churches, and there are so many things you can still do to make this a joyful season for your children!  

If you haven't had time in the past to make an effort for family Advent traditions at home, this is definitely the year to start! So, what can you do to help your kids enter into Advent and the Incarnation of Christ?


Last week, I gathered candles for my six-candle Advent Wreath [Note: a seventh white candle will be placed in the middle of the wreath, to be lit on Christmas Day.] 

This is a tradition I learned from a book by Fr. Anthony Coniaris (of blessed memory), Making God Real in the Orthodox Christian Home. I highly recommend the book, which is in its 13th printing.

"The circle (wreath) is a symbol for God who is eternal. The evergreen branches symbolize eternal life, or the life of God, of which Jesus came to make us partakers. The candles represent Christ who is the light of the world. The color of each candle expresses something special that will be discussed each week of Advent as the family celebration unfolds. One candle will be lit each week by a different member of the family." 

Father Coniaris outlines a family devotion time for each of the Sundays of Advent, including Scripture readings, prayers, Christmas carols, and topics for discussion, all based upon the meaning of the candle colors. 

The basic meaning of each candle color follows, together with a brief statement for the head of the family to read when lighting the candle - you can find this adapted here if you need the Sunday Advent readings (but I highly recommend the book for great ideas all year long):
https://www.st-philip.net/files/Bulletins%20plus/Advent-Wreath.pdf .


Go to my Advent and Christmas Resource Page for lots of ideas of how to make your family reading time special for all 40 days of Advent (or you can simplify the idea to all 25 days of December). 

Need Christmas book recommendations?  You'll find all mine here, 

I pray you have a blessed Advent. Stay healthy: pray, sing, exercise, breath fresh air, take your vitamins, eat right, keep washing those hands, hug your kids. And if you are high risk, health-compromised, or have been exposed to sickness, be safe and stay isolated to avoid - or avoid spreading - illness (Covid included) this holiday season.  

Monday, November 16, 2020


Two books for Advent Meditations, and a prayer to start...

Lord Jesus, You have come so many times to us and found no resting place...

forgive us our overcrowded lives,

our vain haste 

and our preoccupation with self.

Come again, O Lord, and though our hearts are a jumble of voices, and our minds overlaid with many fears, find a place however humble, where You can begin to work Your wonder as your create peace and joy within us.

If in some hidden corner, in some out-of-the-way-spot, we can clear away the clutter, and shut out the noise and darkness, come be born again in us, and we shall kneel in perfect peace with the wisest and humblest of men.

Help us to enter into this Christmas Fast with humility, yet with joy.  

And finally Lord, give us Christmas from within, that we may share it from without, on all sides, all around us, wherever there is need.  God help us, every one, to share the blessing of Jesus, in whose name we keep Christmas holy.  Amen. 

-Opening Prayer from Daily Meditations and Prayers for the Christmas Advent Fast and Epiphany, by Presbytera Emily Harakas and Fr. Anthony Coniaris.

The second book that helps my heart, mind and soul during Advent is Meditations for Advent, preparing for Christ's Birth by Vassilios Papavassiliou.

This year, more than ever, with all the unrest and uncertainty in our nation and world, we need to make a place for Him.  

May God bless our efforts. 

Sunday, November 15, 2020

The Broken Wheel: A Graphic Novel for a November Saint

Ancient Faith Publishing as just released Gabriel Wilson's latest graphic novel, THE BROKEN WHEEL, the Triumph of St. Katherine. 

Gabriel has done an excellent job of adapting the story of the Great and Holy Martyr Katherine (305-313) into a gorgeously illustrated graphic novel for ages 10 and up.  

What a role model we find in this saint, especially for girls! This young heroine loves learning.  A governor's daughter, she is intelligent, brave, and beautiful, but also very confident.  She tells her parents that she will enter into marriage only with someone who has surpassed her in nobility, wealth, beauty, and wisdom.   

With the help of her secretly Christian mother, an elder monk, and a miraculous dream, Katherine does find this Bridegroom, as she ultimately chooses a Prince (of Peace) and puts her trust and hope in Him.

Later, Katherine's city is visited by the emperor Maximian. He comes to Alexandria for a pagan festival and Katherine is horrified that Christians are being burned alive and sacrificed because of their refusal to deny Christ.  She is compelled to speak with the emperor and tell him about the True God, asking him to stop the human sacrifices.

Katherine is cast into the dungeon and is visited by St. Michael the Archangel. After the emperor sends 50 of his most renowned philosophers to debate Katherine, they not only believe in Christ, but bravely face death for their belief. 

Now comes the part of the story that really sounds like it was made for a graphic novel: The Wheel. Katherine, our brave heroine, will not deny Christ and voluntarily walks up to her declared method of cruel torture.  Suddenly, St. Michael appears and blows the dreaded wheel to smithereens! 

Witnessing Katherine's bravery and faith, Maximian's wife also comes to believe, along with the emperor's military commander and 200 soldiers, who are beheaded.

And that's not all...though St. Katherine herself is ultimately is beheaded, angels miraculously transport her body to Mt. Sinai, where it was discovered years later.  To this day, her relics are still on Mt. Sinai, at St. Katherine's Monastery. 

At the end of the book is a historical note, along with several icons and the Troparion and Kontakion to St. Katherine.

From Ancient Faith Publishing:
Young Katherine, born into noble wealth with an insatiable hunger for knowledge, surpasses even her tutors when it comes to learning. But her learning counts for nothing when she meets the only man worthy of her - her heavenly Bridegroom. Trading worldly knowledge for eternal wisdom, Katherine challenges even the emperor himself - and he prepares a cruel invention to break her. Meet this great bride of Christ in the second graphic novel in the Among the Saints series - written to inspire both children and adults.

About the Author: Gabriel Wilson lives near his childhood home in rural Indiana with his wife Emily and their three daughters. Their home is over 100 years old - a true fixer-upper - and the subject of many of his woodworking projects. In his free time, he pursues carpentry and music and enjoys making homemade tacos with his wife and sketching with his daughters. Graphic novels are his favorite form of artwork, and aside from his comics based on the lives of saints, he has other secular novels in the works. His first graphic novel was The Cross and the Stag. (read my review, here)

Blessed first day of Advent (if you're an Orthodox Christian). St. Katherine/Catherine is commemorated in the Orthodox Church on November 24 or 25, depending on the tradition. The Broken Wheel is a nice sized soft cover book, 7 x 10 inches, with 104 pages. It would make a wonderful gift for any Katherine/Catherine in your life.

Friday, November 6, 2020


A new book just arrived and is on my desk ready for my review. 
Ready and waiting, since I just finished throwing ingredients into my crockpot for a batch of apple cider (recipe below) to enjoy with guests for a weekend of anticipated rain.

The spicy aroma is starting to fill my house and will keep me company as I peruse and share about the book, A Mother's Prayer, written and illustrated by Megan E. Gilbert (hardcover, 24 pages, from Ancient Faith Publishing). 

It's small in size (only 7.5 x 4.5 inches) and would make a perfect shower gift for a new mom (or for any mom, as a Christmas, Mother's Day, or birthday gift!)

Each colorful page has a different brief prayer, accompanied by Megan Gilbert's precious and delightful mixed media illustrations. 

Though this is a perfect book for moms, I think children will enjoy having it read by their mothers to them - they'll love the seeing the cozy illustrations of mothers and children, and knowing that these are the prayers their mothers pray for them.

About the author: Megan Elizabeth received a BA. in Fine Arts and Art Education from Point Loma Nazarene University in San Diego, while also getting to study in France and Greece.  She has taught art to people of all ages in Canada, the US, and Europe.  She and her husband and their four children are currently residing at St. Vladimir's Orthodox Theological Seminary in New York.

Crockpot Apple Cider Recipe

Put all ingredients in a crockpot: 
8 Cups Water 
4 apples, cored and quartered 
1 pear, cored and quartered 
1 cup sugar 
4 cinnamon sticks 
2 T mulling spices 
1/4 c pomegranate seeds (optional) 

Cook on low for 8 hours, then scoop out and discard the cooked fruit and spices from of the crockpot bowl. Pour remaining liquid through a strainer to remove any leftover bits. Serve warm - with a slice of apple, a stick of cinnamon, or drizzle of Jack Daniel’s (for adults only, of course.)

Notes: I like to use any variety of sweet apple (Honeycrisp apples are especially good!) I store any leftover cider in a large Ball jar in the refrigerator, ready to be microwaved a cup at a time! I found mulling spices at a specialty kitchen store, but you can also make your own. Recipe linked here https://inspiredbycharm.com/mulling-spices/.

Wednesday, October 14, 2020

A Weather Book For the Younger Set

Witnessing the changing sunlight, knowing the tilt of the earth as it travels around the sun brings changes in our seasons and weather, I can't help but think of God's hand in the creation of our world.  It's truly miraculous!

Today I'd like to introduce you to a fun and simple book about weather: Willy and Lilly's Adventures with Weather.  It is written by Meteorologist and now Mom, Jennifer Stanonis. 

Jennifer has covered and forecasted tornadoes, major snow storms, forest fires, floods, polar vortexes and more during her decades of meteorological TV weather reporting. The seeds that grew into Willy and Lilly's Adventures with Weather were sown while taking her twins on walks in all sorts of weather. 

Her engaging explanation of changing weather in this cute picture book - featuring a brother, sister, and their dog and cat - is great for 4-6 year olds. Kids will enjoy Jennifer's Stanonis' rhyming text and Bill Blenk's colorful illustrations.

Among other things, children will learn that their shadows are long in the winter, when the sun is low in the sky and short in the summer, when the sun is highest.  

Lots of different types precipitation are talked about, and a nice meteorologist (who looks a lot like the author, haha!) points out the warm and cold fronts from the kids' television screen. Willy uses technology to help him plan his day as he checks in on the day's forecast by the hour on a small digital screen. 

For further reading:
For children wanting a more in-depth discussion and fun activity exploring the science of the seasons (using an orange and a pencil and flashlight), I highly recommend Frankly M. Branley's Sunshine Makes the Seasons, for ages 4-8.  Our children loved all his science picture books - they're great for homeschoolers!  To see more of his books, go here.

Will and Lilly's Adventures with Weather, by Jennifer Stanonis is illustrated by Bill Blenk and published by CrissCrossAppleSauce/City of Light Publishing. This fun story will help young meteorologists notice important details as they learn about predicting weather!  There's also a handy reference at the back with definitions of "Weather Words" from the book.  

Friday, October 2, 2020

FALLing in...LOVE?

Blogging has fallen on hard times here in my household over the summer.  There were a few reasons for that...
Covid. Bleh - but we've stayed healthy, thank the Lord. 
Masks. Uncomfortable. 
No church. Unprecedented. 
Politics. Yikes. 
Fires. Lord Have Mercy! 
My creative blogging juices were not flowing. 

But something else was happening that I could devote my attention to, thank goodness...

Lots of love. Both our sons decided not to wait out the Corona Virus, but to get married this summer - a challenge, to say the least during these Covid-19 times! 

Small, but ever so beautiful:  joyful ceremonies, sweet family gatherings.

There went June (wedding #1 in Arkansas). There went July (planning) and August (weddding #2, with a tiny reception in our backyard). I adore our two new daughters-in-law.  Our family is growing!  

Come September, my husband and I spent two amazing, energizing weeks out in the open National Parks of Utah and Arizona.  Why sit isolated and socially distanced in front of a computer when you can socially distance while hiking in Capitol Reef, riding electric bicycles through Zion, and off-roading in a 4x4 jeep in the red rock desert of Sedona???  It was glorious.

So: summer of 2020? Gone! 

I've been an absentee blogger for the whole summer season and now it's fall, y'all!  I can only tell it's October because pumpkins are for sale everywhere, squirrels are busy stealing pecans from our neighbor's tree and leaving empty shells on my front porch, and the arc of the sun is much lower in the southern part of the hot sky. No fall leaves yet where I live. Maybe an iced pumpkin latte will have to do.

Even though Blogger changed it's format a little while I've been away (grrr), hopefully I'm getting it figured out and can get back at it here.  I have quite a few books to review!

Did anyone happen to see Enola Homes on Netflix (sorry, yes, that network-that-should-not-be-named, if you're one of those who is boycotting because of the unfortunate Cuties film.  I won't be watching it, but I didn't cancel my subscription.)

Back to Enola ("Alone" spelled backwards) - she is the little sister of Sherlock Holmes, a young heroine created by author Nancy Springer, not Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.  I enjoyed the movie and Millie Bobby Brown's fun and enthusiastic portrayal of Enola and ordered the first book of the YA mystery series, Enola Holmes, The Case of the Missing Marquess.  (LOVE the cover!)

From Common Sense Media:

Set in the days of corsets and horse carriages, this girl-centered mystery keeps readers on their toes with quick action, engaging characters, and fun riddles. Enola Holmes: The Case of the Missing Marquess is a great twist on a well-known name; older brother Sherlock Holmes isn't the focus of the story, and Enola's adventurous, inquisitive attitude help her grow well outside the confines of her society. The language Enola uses fits the early 20th century setting, so it could take readers a few chapters to settle into the style, but it quickly seems like another character in the story. There's violence, tension, and anger throughout, but all of it mild -- and some even comical.  

In the book, Enola is 14 years old, while in the Netflix movie she is 16 - which seems more apropos to her adventures (she goes off to London on her own).  The movie and book differ in quite a few details and even characters/villains, but are equally entertaining.  I think both prompt a good discussion with mothers and daughters about how life has changed for women since the early 20th century.  The movie especially has a strong feminist worldview and will bring up questions about the pros/truths/influence - positive and negative - of feminism in general, depending on where you stand with that.  I would definitely recommend parents previewing the book and movie or at least watching/reading along with their kids. (Movie review here). For ages 13 and up.

What are you reading, these fall days?

Wednesday, April 15, 2020


Our daughter and her young children have been able to help her priest husband with the Holy Week services in their empty church...

O Lord, my God, I call for help by day, I cry out in the night before You.
Let my prayer come before you; incline Your ear to my cry!
-Psalm 88 (87 Septuagint)

She sent me this sweet picture of my little granddaughter reaching up trying to give Jesus a kiss at the end of the Bridegroom Orthros service last night.  

My granddaughter couldn't quite reach and called out, "Help me!"  Out of the mouths of babes.  

Or, as Mommy noted: "Sweet and profound".

Some of you celebrated Easter (at home) this past Sunday, but those of us who are Orthodox are currently observing Holy Week (at home).  

I've been watching and praying our Bridegroom services the past couple of nights on Youtube, which is our new-Coronavirus-normal for awhile.

Earlier in the evening, I had listened to an excellent podcast on Ancient Faith Today Live, hosted by Fr. Tom Soroka: "Holy Week Under Quarantine" - link here - with guest Dr. Nicole Roccas, author of Time and DespondencyI highly recommend the podcast and the book!

Dr. Roccas talked about trying to find positives about what we can do during this time of isolation, instead of dwelling on "what we can't do".  

She specifically brought up that this is a good time to acknowledge how we in North America (she lives in Canada) are very fortunate:  that our current inability to attend services and partake of Holy Communion is only an anomaly here, a temporary "new normal", whereas that privilege is an impossibility in many countries that are suffering persecution - or have suffered persecution in the past. She encouraged listeners that "Maybe as we grieve our inability to receive the Eucharist we can remember those around the world who are unable to gather in even the best of times."

Dr. Roccas' comments made me think of a book about a Russian priest, Fr. Arseny, which we read as a family years ago.

FATHER ARSENY, translated by Vera Bouteneff. A narrative comprised of encounters with Father Arseny, a former art historian and priest imprisoned in the Gulag. He became Prisoner No. 18736 in the brutal 'special sector' of the Soviet prison camp system. In the darkness of systematic degradation of body and soul, he shone with the light of Christ's peace and compassion. I wept, reading this aloud to our teens.  We all loved this book.

So. What else can we do during Holy Week?

-Spend time as a family while journeying towards Pascha at home.
-Go here to my past post with some ideas for quiet activities specifically for Holy Week.

-Listen to saints stories and Orthodox books for children read by Chrissi Hart, here on AFR's Under the Grapevine podcast.

-Decorate eggs: go here for my post, Why Eggs for Easter?
-Pray together and read the Psalms.

-Be thankful for smart phone technology such as FaceTime and Skype and digital live streaming on YouTube, which can bring us "virtually" to our churches and family and friends.

[Speaking of which, please share/forward this post. And if you're not a regular follower yet, please sign up on the web version of my blog for my emails. I am no longer on social media since I realized and embraced the fact that I'm pretty much a JOMO (Joy Of Missing Out) kind of person.  My readership has been down as a result of my choice to leave Facebook and not join the Instagram trend. Thank you! I appreciate your taking time to stop by!]  

Friday, April 3, 2020

Sheltering with Angels, Bluebirds, Psalms, Stitching

I've got a SHELTERING-IN-PLACE GIVEAWAY for your kids, 
an Angel by my door,
Bluebirds nesting outside my window,
Psalms on my heart,
and Embroidery kits ready to start

Psalm 90:11 (Septuagint)  For He shall command His angels concerning you, To keep you in all your ways... 

We mainly come and go through our side door - seeing St. Michael the Archangel there reminds me to pray for protection for myself and others on the now rare occasion I leave my home.  Psalm 120:8 (Septuagint) The Lord will guard your coming and going.

Mommy bluebird getting her nest all ready. (The father bluebird is beautiful - just haven't been able to get a photo of him yet.)

I've been reading and cooking a lot, but wanted to do something beautiful and creative, so I ordered two small embroidery kits.

Check out my dear friend Krista West's site, Avlea - her Mediterranean Folk Embroidery kits are so lovely! (You may remember the past post I did about Krista - she is a priest's wife and very dedicated and talented ecclesiastical tailor.) 

I'd love to offer a SHELTERING GIVEAWAY for your kids today: A Child's Guide to Prayer

Leave your name and contact info at the end of this post with a comment telling me what is helping you through this time of sheltering-in-place. (And for those of you who may have trouble leaving a comment here, please feel free to send me an email: wendyb[spam]1963@[spam]sbcglobal.net)

Giveaway ends Thursday, April 9 at Midnight PST. 

From Ancient Faith Publishing, illustrated by Tara Pappas 

A Child's Guide to Prayer is a beautifully illustrated prayer book for Orthodox Christian children aged 5-10 who are just developing a habit of prayer. The selection includes morning and evening prayers, prayers during the day, at mealtimes, for family and friends, and prayers of and to the saints - along with Psalms to pray and prayers that have to do with communion and confession. 

All the prayers were carefully selected by priests and youth workers to ensure their age-appropriateness. 

The 120-page guide also includes brief instructions on how to pray, why we pray, and a list of different ways to pray. The book concludes with several blank pages for personal prayer requests.

Thursday, March 19, 2020


Amidst all the "sheltering" and "distancing" precautions in answer to the Corona Virus outbreak, there seems to be the happy consequence of many families re-connecting and discovering closeness and the simple things in life.  

No sports, no schools or churches open, no eating out, no movie theaters, lots of parents working from home...we are all being forced to slow down a little and "live in the moment" as we navigate our new normal. 

Hopefully that means we aren't panicking and spending hours with the news and social media, but instead are taking time to talk, play games, pray and cook together, and read more with our families - appreciate each other, and find joy and beauty in the ordinary. 

It is not from external circumstances, but internal attitudes that sorrows and joys are born.
- St. John Chrysostom

And let's not forget those who are alone, infirm, sick, or unable to care for themselves.  They need our prayers, phone calls, cards, and letters now more than ever.  

I was reminded of this when my friend asked for prayers for her sister and niece, who are in separate care facilities and confined to their rooms.  She is trying to figure out little things she can do to help them through this difficult time of isolation.

Did you notice that today is the first day of Spring?  I think it's a great time to think about Spring-ing into Action!  I looked through my stash of Trader Joe's cards and will be sending some off to my friend's loved ones.  

Here are a few other quick ideas I came up with to help others through this time of temporary isolation. Please share yours!
  • If you have children who like to paint or draw, you could encourage them to [wash their hands well and] make cards to send out to local shut-ins. Start with your own neighbors!
  • Be a pen[computer]pal - you or your kids can send daily emails with family updates to any older family members or loved ones who are quarantined. 
  • Send a new mom, who may be feeling extra overwhelmed with being home with limited help, a pack of diapers, or a gift card, or have a meal delivered to her and her family from a nearby restaurant.
  • If you are healthy and not quarantined, check and see if your local food bank needs help packing up boxes for seniors or those in need.
  • Facetime, Skype, or send a video to a child in your life who would love to hear you read aloud a story.
  • Brighten a child's day with inexpensive activity books or little gifts you can buy online and mail (I recently ordered Star Wars Mad Libs for our grandsons and bath tub toys for our granddaughter.) Picture books, chapter books, stickers, hair bows, coloring books, and bath products are fun options.
  • Find child-friendly recipes that your kids can help out with; and then serve your family a special candle-lit dinner.
  • Send or drop off a beautiful live plant to someone.
  • Share a roll of toilet paper with someone.  I'm serious.  Not sure what the toilet paper shortage is about, but last week we nearly fell into the "uh-oh-we're-almost-out-of-TP-what-now" Category, until my husband discovered a big pack we'd forgotten we had in the garage!  I've now given rolls away to two friends, and we still have plenty.  They're relieved and I'm happy to have shared.
  • Listen to music, play the piano, scrapbook, garden, journal, read (especially the Psalms), try writing some poetry, get out and walk, have a family talent show.  Limit screen time, social media, and news.
  • Remember to SMILE - at your postman, your check-out clerk/cashier, and anyone else you come into (6 foot away) contact with. 
  • Pray. Everyday. For the whole world.

You may find my other posts helpful:

Family Read Alouds:

Monday, March 2, 2020

Lent is here, my dears!

And it is sweet. 

The singing of Psalms is like honey...It is the silence of the mind, and harbinger of peace.  For the psalms pray for the future, sigh for the present, repent of the past, rejoice in good works, and call to mind the joy of the heavenly Kingdom...It is the comfort of elders, an adornment for the young, and the maturity and perfection of the intellect. It teaches always to pray more attentively to Christ God, the helper and benefactor, who by the lips of the Prophet ordained these psalms.
~St. Augustine

This will mark the third Lenten season I have made a commitment to read the Psalter everyday, with a little help from this devotional book, Songs of Praise, by Sylvia Leontaritis. 

It's a perfect companion, either along with your morning cup of coffee or tea, or during a quiet evening after you've put the kids down for bed. 

If you want to make the Psalter a more integral part of your life - either on your own or as part of a Psalter group - Songs of Praise is the perfect aid. 

It includes the full text of the Ancient Faith Psalter (with wide margins for note-taking). Each kathisma is followed by a reflection from popular Orthodox Mom blogger Sylvia Leontaritis plus several blank pages for journaling. Read, reflect, and journal your way through the Psalter and let its holy words sink into your soul.

How about a good Lenten book for your children?

childs-guide-to-prayer-ancient-faith__93948.1580830177.1280.1280.jpg (791×1000)

A Child's Guide to Prayer, by Ancient Faith Publishing, illustrated by Tara Pappas, will make a sweet addition to any child's library.
A Child's Guide to Prayer is a beautifully illustrated prayer book for Orthodox Christian children aged 5-10 who are just developing a habit of prayer. The selection includes morning and evening prayers, prayers during the day, at mealtimes, for family and friends, and prayers of and to the saints - along with psalms to pray and prayers that have to do with communion and confession. 

All the prayers were carefully selected by priests and youth workers to ensure their age-appropriateness. The 120-page guide also includes brief instructions on how to pray, why we pray, and a list of different ways to pray. The book concludes with several blank pages for personal prayer requests. 

About the Illustrator: Tara Pappas lives in the beautiful state of Wyoming, where she is a mixed media artist, illustrator, and stay-at-home mother. She has been actively making art since her youth, influenced by the beauty and wonder of God’s creation. When she is not creating in her studio, Tara enjoys spending time outdoors with her family and friends.

My orange tree is in bloom, perfuming the air.  Lent is sweet.