Living Outside the Stacks

Navigating through life away from the library


Book Review: The Gospel According to Lost by Chris Seay

To say that Lost is a phenomenon would be an understatement. Over the last 6 seasons, I’ve watched and listened as viewers have followed the trials of their favorite island castaways and with the final season just beginning, it seemed appropriate for me to review The Gospel According to Lost by Chris Seay.

As many viewers are aware, Lost is more than a story about a group of people who get stranded on an island, it’s a multi~layered story that explores fate, reason, faith, guilt, salvation and a host of other philosophical and religious tenents. And it’s within this framework that Seay seeks to explore the relationship between the television series and the Judeo~Christian beliefs in redemption and salvation. Although he acknowledges the show’s exploration of other religious beliefs, his analysis is grounded in the teachings of Jesus Christ with reference to the Holy Bible.

One of the strongest points in Seay’s analysis relate to the power of words and the belief that they can shape a person’s future. As an example, Seay talks about the names of the characters and how their names influence their personalities. The writers, he believes, put a lot of thought into the naming of the characters much like Jewish parents put serious thought into the names of their children because they knew there was power (or failure) in a name.

Seay also examines the story of Hurley, who believes he is cursed. This curse, Seay writes, can be traced back to the casual utterance of Hurley’s father: “Having hope is never stupid. You gotta believe good things will happen; then they will. In this world, son, you’ve gotta make your own luck.” With those words, Hurley’s father abandoned him, leaving a young boy (and, ultimately, a grown man) feeling “lost” and worthless. Therefore, the question arises, did Hurley allow his father’s abandoment and fruitless words to bury him in hopelessness or could he have escaped the “curse” and made his own luck?

Whether you are a Christian or not, this book offers and interesting analysis of a television series that has offered so much to so many people.

Disclaimer: This book was provided to me courtesy of Thomas Nelson (which is now BookSneeze) free of charge in exchange for a review. To purchase the book, you may click on the picture or the link which will take you to I am an affiliate of the company. This does not in any way influence my review.


Hitting the Rewind Button

Have you ever woken up and just knew it was gonna be a bad day? You know, you got your hair stuck in the flat iron, forgot to put the filter in the coffee pot, arrived at class and realized you didn’t have your flashdrive with your lecture notes on it, etc. Yes, all of that has happened to me in one day. It really was one of those days where I wanted to hit the rewind button and just start all over…

Tell me about a time you wish you had a rewind button? Was life using you for target practice? Did you forget to zip your pants and not notice until the end of that important meeting? Come on, share. We’re all girlfriends here.

Well, Martina McBride is living out every mother’s fantasy in her new video for her song “Wrong Baby Wrong.” She’s hitting the rewind button to make her life better. Check it out:

Don’t you just love her? She has to have one of the most powerful voices of all time, bar none! Anyway, Martina McBride is offering all of my readers a $5 discount on each ticket to her SunnyD Shine All Night Tour. Just go here to find the show nearest you and use the code MOMS when you check out.

Disclosure: I did not receive any compensation for this post. The discount code was supplied courtesy of Martina McBride and Mom Select.


The View Blab Fest

At 11 AM EST it’s coffee and chat time at my house ’cause that’s when I flip the channel to The View and get ready to start laughing and yelling. Thanks to the “snurricane“, the first 5 minutes of the show were preempted by a weather update (um, thank you, Mother Nature, I’d appreciate it if you didn’t cause problems during The View again). Fortunately, the show came in just in time for me to catch the tail end of the following conversation…

Hot Topics

Sherri Broke the Dress Code
Ok, so Sherri admitted to reaching into a dressing room and foisting someone’s dress for an awards banquet because the zipper or something on her dress wasn’t working. Sherri, girl, I love you and I love a fab dress just as much as the next girl (and that was a sweet dress) but you were dead wrong to reach into the dressing room and take that lady’s dress! Like Whoopi said that kinda warrants a throat punch. You broke the code, woman, you broke the code.
Regis and Joy Philbin
Can you believe they are celebrating 40 years of marriage? That is a crazy long time for your average marriage, much less a celebrity marriage. Regis said the key to a lasting marriage is patience because he spends a lot of time waiting for Joy to get dressed for event. Oldest stereotype in the world but, hey, after 40 years he can say it.
I also want to say how beautiful Joy looked ~ girlfriend, whatever you’re doing, you need to let people know (even if it’s surgical, let a girl in on your secrets).
Tanya Zuckerbrot
The latest celeb diet is something called the F~Factor diet which is basically a high fiber diet that focuses on adding foods rather than subtracting foods (whoot!). As my readers know, I’m currently trying to lose weight and move towards a healthier a lifestyle so I’ll definitely be checking this diet out a little more in~depth. Go here for more information on the F~Factor Diet.
Dr. Gadget
I’m an admitted gadget geek, so I was all over this segment. I have to admit to being slightly intrigued by the Palm Pixie (that screen was amazing) but I seriously heart my BlackBerry Storm so there will be no changing. However, I am interested in the Nook by Barnes and Noble. I have not tried any of the e~Readers (I know, bad geek girl) but I just can’t wrap my mind around not being able to feel the roughness of the paper or smell that woodsy inky smell that books carry. Still, I would be willing to give the Nook a look~see. Hint.
To see what others have to say, stop by and visit my girls at It’s Kerry’s World and Parenting by Dummies (they’re the ones who started The View Blab Fest ~ love them!). They’re funny, insightful ladies who’ll have you thinking and laughing.

You can follow along, chat with and connect with other The View Brand Ambassadors every weekday morning at 11 AM EST on Twitter by using the hashtag #theviewmoms. Also, you can fan The View on Facebook, follow The View on Twitter and enter the sweepstakes at Mom Central for a chance to win a trip to New York City to watch a taping of the show. The sweepstakes is open until 28 February.

Disclosure: I am a participant in a Mom Central campaign for ABC Daytime and will receive a tote bag or other The View branded items to facilitate my review.


Follow Friday Blog Hop: Join Us

This morning while checking Twitter from bed (come on, I know I’m not the only one who wakes up and checks in on my friends), I saw a tweet from @bakenate about a Blog Hop which piqued my interest. I’ve never heard of a Blog Hop so I had to check it out….

Basically, it’s way to find new and interesting blogs to read as well as increase your blog readership. The Blog Hop is hosted by One 2 Try, Hearts Make Families and Midday Escapades. If you’d like to join in simply do the following:

~Link up your blog name and URL using the MckLinky below. Only need to add on one blog to be seen on all the blog hops.

~Follow the Friday Follow hostesses listed in the first 3 slots.

~Follow as many blogs as you’d like.

~Take a moment to comment on the blogs telling them you’re from Friday Follow.

~Follow back when you get a new follower through Friday Follow.

A Little About Me…

For my new readers, let me tell you a little bit about myself and my blog. I’m a married mother of 5 and grandmother of 2. In a previous life, I was a librarian and an archivist at a local university, now I teach American History at Misericordia University on a part~time basis. I enjoy photography and can’t wait for it to get warm so I can start taking pictures while I walk. I need to pick up a new camera, right now I use my BlackBerry (I know, right?) and a little digital camera. There’s nothing wrong with them, they take fab pictures, I just think I’m ready to start branching out.
Most of the time I write about the craziness that is my life with a few product or book reviews thrown in and, of course, some giveaways.
I do love to talk, so if you leave a comment I will get back to you. So grab a cup of coffee, pull up a chair and lets chat…


The View Blab Fest

Today’s episode of The View was dedicated to the topic of infertility. Now I have to admit, I have never had any issues with infertility. I’m the mother of 5 beautiful children, so I cannot imagine the heartbreak that comes with trying to have a baby. I have had a miscarriage and I imagine that feeling of loss is duplicated monthly for those who are trying to conceive. So my heart, thoughts and prayers go out to all of you who are dealing with this problem. I pray that you find peace, strength and love in whatever decisions you have to make about your situation.

Listening to Sherri and the other guests discuss the things that they have gone through in order to conceive just blew my mind. I didn’t realize the expense (monetary and emotional) that comes with infertility. For example, the average cost for Invitro Fertilization (IVF) is $12,400. And that’s not counting all the steps that you have to take before you get to that point. Most of these treatments are not covered by insurance, so this is out~of~pocket money. Wow!
Most people tend to think of infertility as a woman’s issue (or at least I did) because you almost never hear about the male side of infertility. So it was interesting to listen to Greg and Julie Wolfe discuss their struggles with infertility and how they felt when they realized that Greg was the problem. Julie even admitted to having “sperm envy” when she would encounter pregnant women. I love that they were able to take a relaxed almost humorous approach to such a stressful situation. I think the guests most people will be discussing will be Bill and Giuliana Rancic. I don’t want to beat this couple up, really, because I think her pronouncement was incredibly sad…
She and her husband discussed their problems with infertility and the steps that they’ve taken in order to conceive a child. Casually, Giuliana mentioned that the doctor told her that she needed to gain between 5 and 10 lbs in order to ovulate regularly and when asked if she had done so, she hesitantly admitted to gaining only 5 lbs. Her arguments against gaining more was her career, her assistant who brings her sample size clothing and the fact that her sister was skinny and got pregnant. Oy! I think this brings up deeper issues about body image, celebrity, unreal expectations of motherhood. Perhaps, Giuliana’s admission that she is willing to do everything except gain weight is an admission that she really is not ready for the sacrifices that motherhood demands.
What do you think? Am I being too hard on her? Or do you think Giuliana and, ultimately, Bill have other issues they need to work on before bringing a child into this world?

You can follow along, chat with and connect with other The View Brand Ambassadors every weekday morning at 11 AM EST on Twitter by using the hashtag #theviewmoms. Also, you can fan The View on Facebook, follow The View on Twitter and enter the sweepstakes at Mom Central for a chance to win a trip to New York City to watch a taping of the show. The sweepstakes is open until 28 February.

Disclosure: I am a participant in a Mom Central campaign for ABC Daytime and will receive a tote bag or other The View branded items to facilitate my review.
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