Book Review: Longing For Paris by Sarah Mae

Longing For Paris by Sarah Mae

This book is about one woman's very emotional journey to find inner peace with herself, her past and her life with lessons she's learned from her experiences as a child, a mother, a wife and a Christian.  She dreams of a life in Paris.. but what she finds that she's truly longing for is much deeper. 

Sometimes, I find myself so busy, that I wish that I could just hit pause, and go on a vacation. A lavish vacation away from my sometimes seemingly dull, and sometimes overly chaotic life. However, finding beauty in things I have right here at home and appreciating the small and the big things alike, is what makes it all worth it.  I found myself laughing and agreeing with certain things in this book. I felt like the way the author told her story, she was in a way telling my own.  I have dreams. Big dreams too. I know most of them will never come true, but embracing what could.. is where I struggle. The author reminds us that sometimes we need to quit fighting our struggles and just give in.  We have this responsibility to ourselves to nurture our souls and the souls of our  spouses and children.  We have to listen. We have to see. We have to experience and live, forgive, truly slow down and live life to it's fullest. 

I loved, loved, loved when the author wrote about her marriage. She wrote,
 "Yeah, it's ugly sometimes in my house, and I'm selfish, and stretching into love with a sinner you have to sleep next to is such a crazy, ridiculous thing. But that crazy thing is God's idea, and so it matters." pg. 102    This hit home for me. It made me laugh and then reflect on my own life even more. Sometimes married life is very hard and the struggle is real, but the big reminder here is that GOD wanted this life for us. He wanted us to sacrifices, and love just as He did. 
When I got to pg 158, the tears came.  What she wrote was so real that I wept for her.  This author shared a very personal sin she had been carrying around with her as this heavy burden and she described how she eventually found the light again with the help of God. 

What I really took from this book is a lot of  little reminders. 

"He set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand..."
"Life is not a ladder to climb but a garden to enjoy." 
"The same stars you are seeing are the same stars someone in Paris is seeing as well."

And, Bible verses. 
"If you seek him, he will be found by you."-1 Chronicles 28:9, ESV
"Don't be concerned about the outward beauty of fancy hairstyles, expensive jewelry, or beautiful clothes. You should clothe yourselves instead with the beauty that comes from within, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is so precious to God."-1 Peter 3:3-4, ESV

What we all need to seek the most in life is a healthy relationship with ourselves and explore those hidden pieces of our souls so we can learn what it is our hearts truly desire and how to get the most out of our lives. GOD loves us and wants us to enjoy this life he created for us. Through Him, we can figure it out, without having to run away, or go on a vacation.   That sums up this book.  This author's writing style was relaxed and I couldn't put this book down. I believe this is a great read for anybody going through the motions and needing spiritual enlightenment & encouragement! 

For more information:

Longing For Paris by Sarah Mae
ISBN: 978-1-4143-7261-7
Christian Life/Women
Retails for: $15.99

*FTC DISCLAIMER: This book was sent to me complimentary from Tyndale Blog Network in exchange for my honest book review!*


Book Review: Capture the Moment by Sarah Wilkerson

Capture the Moment by Sarah Wilkerson
ISBN: 978-0-77043-527-1
Retails for $21.99

"Modern guide to photography."


Capture the Moment is such an eye-catching book, especially when you receive the hardcover version like I did. It most definitely deserves it's own display on a tabletop or a shelf.  When I get my own studio, you better believe it, this book will be displayed!!

This guide book first of all contains such amazing photographs and portraits throughout all of it's 244 pages.  This book covers many techniques and shows you a photograph and then offers suggestions-er teaches you how each image was achieved and how you can utilize lighting to illuminate your subject, how you can use backlighting through natural light, or how you can use a light source to focus on the catch lights in the eyes of your subjects. This book also shows you different ways to capture body language, emotion, perspective, and how to conceptualize photographs to tell stories with your images, making them very powerful to your viewers.  

My favorite chapter was Chapter 5: Black and White.   Black and White photography is so artistic to me and I found this particular chapter to be full of emotion within the photographs. B/W is timeless and you can capture so much mood alone by adjusting your light accordingly and your contrast as well.  I feel like you can appreciate a photograph more when you aren't distracted by colors. 

One particular thing stood out to me through this book that I valued the most and that was that at the very bottom of almost every page, you could find the photographer's name, camera, and camera settings that were used to capture each of the photographs listed throughout. This was very helpful and important to me. As a photographer, we see another's work and often find ourselves asking, "What lens did you use? What camera do you use?" and this answered those questions for me. Incredibly useful. 

Lastly, at the back of this book, you will see a section called the Contributor Directory. This directory includes a photograph, the photographer's name, website, and page number their work was published on.  All of these contributors were from Clickin Moms, which is the largest female organization of photographers in the world. 100% of the royalties from this book's sales go to the Ronald McDonald House Charities!  I love that! 

All in all, this is a great how-to book for the amateur and professional alike. I love this. It's heavy, beautiful,  full of information and gorgeous photography.  I personally hope to be published like this one day! :)  If you buy this book, you will love it! 

Capture the Moment by Sarah Wilkerson
ISBN: 978-0-77043-527-1
Retails for $16.99
To purchase: CaptureTheMoment

Author is the CEO of:

*FTC DISCLAIMER: I received this book from Blogging for Books complimentary in exchange for my honest book review!*