July 30, 2014

2 Book Reviews for 1 Post: Speak & The Nourished Kitchen

1 || Speak: How Your Story Can Change the World, by Nish Weiseth (Purchase / Author's Website)

Does sharing our own stories have the power to change hearts, and thus the power to change the world in both big and small ways? Jesus himself, heavily used stories to evoke others to change and discover truth. We live in a culture that is increasingly becoming more and more polarized in their opinions over a multitude of things, but in that we've significantly lost the ability to genuinely listen and be gracious to one another. Behind nearly every opinion is a story, an experience that lead to the formation of it, and when we start sharing the stories we start to see change, we start to see one another better. Humans are not merely statistics, policies, etc. 

I'm in the Millennial generation, and one does not have to read many sociological studies or articles to figure out that we're sick and tired of the culture wars and the polarization we can see happening in venues all around us. Civility is lost on many of us, and we don't know how to truly listen. Story has the power for us to be and do the opposite of that kind of behavior though. So many of the chapters the author wrote resonated with me like the one on listening before speaking, sitting at the well, and using story to advocate justice. Weiseth beautifully shows us what happens when we put away our knee-jerk reaction and see people in light of the stories (experiences) that have made them who they are. However, in as much as I love the book, even after reading some of the stories I would find myself disagreeing with the author on some things. Experiences--the stories we live--are not always ultimate in defining what truth is. But even in my disagreement, which is a testament to the book's topic itself, I still value the author herself and the amazing work she's doing. Speak is also a quick read (I finished it in a day and a half) and after each chapter the reader gets to read other peoples stories as well (from Deeper Story, which Weiseth acts as editor-in-chief). It's a book that we can all take away something helpful from--and for me it will actually be sharing my own personal stories a bit more than I am currently. 

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

2 || The Nourished Kitchen: Farm-to-Table Recipes for the Traditional Foods Lifestyle, by Jennifer McGruther (Purchase / Author's Website)

The Nourished Kitchen offers 160 recipes to support the home cook in the traditional foods movement, which focuses on eating meals that are nutrient dense, as well as a focus on sustainability in the environment and community--moving away from convince and processed food. The cookbook is divided into eight sections inspired from where the primary ingredients are taken from: the garden (vegetables), the waters (fish and seafood), the orchard (think sweets treats), etc. The book is stocked full of gorgeous photographs and the set-up is just lovely.

I primarily liked all the education information the author gives on the traditional food movement (foods of our gardens and farms, as older generations would've understand it), such as sustainability, balanced eating, and nutrient rich foods. The stories the author shares as well before each section and recipe were also enjoyable to read. Who doesn't have a few good stories to tell involving delicious food? I loved her selection of veggie recipes, soups, as well as many of the deserts too. However, being a young, single, living on a budget, and given my location, many of the recipes I found to be impractical for me. In other words, some of the ingredients are just way too out of my price range or not even available for purchase in any of my local grocery stores. So a part of me found that really frustrating--kinda bummed me out. But, as mentioned before, I certainly did learn a lot about making more healthy choices in what ingredients I am selecting to make my meals at home. It would certainly make a great addition to those of you who are interested or already into the traditional foods movement. Finally it's a cookbook you can read. Even though there's a large chunk of recipes I will not be able to make from it for a while, I still just sat with it on my porch reading what the author had to say about each recipe.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Blogging for Books, as part of Waterbrook Multnomah‘s Book Review Blogger Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.


  1. Both of these sound so interesting!
    "Speak" sounds like a good reminder in the power of our words. We are not meant for isolation, but rather, for community since we are to mirror the Triune God who is in community within Himself. We are able to speak Truth and battle lies from the enemy when telling our testimonies/stories of His faithfulness. BUT, like you said, our experiences are not the definition of Truth. It needs to be backed up by the Word.

    "The Nourished Kitchen" sounds really great! I am trying to learn more about sustainability and nutrient-rich cooking, so this may be a book I need to read. Though it's a bummer that some of the ingredients are hard to find and/or expensive!

    1. I'll probably mail you the cookbook in the near future then =D I like it, but it just won't get a lot of use from me. So if you're interested Elle, let me know, and I'll try to get it to you this fall.


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