Books & Reviews 📚

10 books with long titles 📚

Ciao! I hope everyone is doing good. I had a different post planned altogether as I’m behind schedule with new material, but I couldn’t resist doing this fun post after seeing areadingwritr do it this week. It’s not going to be an every Tuesday thing, but I’ll love to do a few more at some point.

The Artsy Reader’s Top Ten Tuesdays theme for the week is all about Super Long Book Titles. Over the years, I’ve had my fair share of loooonngggg book titles, but most of them are probably forgotten by now. I’m going to share 10 long titles that are on my TBR (most of them are Paris-based). 

1. Love and Louis XIV: The Women in the Life of the Sun King by Antonia Fraser

Love and Louis XIV: The Women in the Life of the Sun King by Antonia Fraser

Every year, I keep saying that I’ll get to this book, but I’m yet to pick it up… sadly. 

2. The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared by Jonas Jonasson

The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out The Window And Disappeared: Jonasson,  Jonas: 9781443419109: Books - Amazon.ca

Another book that’s been collecting dust on the TBR.

3. We’ll Always Have Paris: Trying and Failing to Be French by Emma Beddington

We'll Always Have Paris: Trying and Failing to Be French by Emma Beddington

I’m actually close to reading this memoir!

4. Eiffel’s Tower and the World’s Fair: Where Buffalo Bill Beguiled Paris, the Artists Quarreled, and Thomas Edison Became a Count by Jill Jonnes

Eiffel's Tower and the World's Fair: Where Buffalo Bill Beguiled Paris, the Artists  Quarreled, and Thomas Edison Became a Count by Jill Jonnes

This is probably the longest title I own! 

5. The Only Street in Paris: Life on the Rue des Martyrs by Elaine Sciolino

The Only Street in Paris: Life on the Rue des Martyrs by Elaine Sciolino

Can’t wait to read about this iconic street!

6. The Lost King of France: How DNA Solved the Mystery of the Murdered Son of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette by Deborah Cadbury

The Lost King of France: How DNA Solved the Mystery of the Murdered Son of Louis  XVI and Marie Antoinette by Deborah Cadbury

I was going to add this book to the wishlist when I realized that I already have it in my TBR!

7. Bright Lights Paris: Shop, Dine & Live…Parisian Style by Angie Niles

Bright Lights Paris: Shop, Dine & Live...Parisian Style: Niles, Angie:  9780425280706: Amazon.com: Books

Ah, Paris, the capital of everything! I look forward to probably breezing through this book soon.

8. The knowledge of the holy: The attributes of God, their meaning in the Christian life by A.W. Tozer

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I can’t wait to read this book, but I have to be in a good headspace to start.

9. Letters to a Law Student: A Guide to Studying Law at University by Nicholas J. McBride

Letters to a Law Student: A Guide to Studying Law at University by Nicholas  J. McBride

I got this book during my law phase and although it’s cooled now, I still look forward to reading this book.

10. Learn Japanese: Discover the right approach to Japanese, forget phrases learn how to form your own sentences by Languages World

Learn Japanese: Discover the right approach to Japanese, forget phrases  learn how to form your own sentences.: World, Languages: 9781095362976:  Amazon.com: Books

This book – and several other language books – is for special hoarding purposes.

Well, that was fun! How about you? Do you have a book with a super long title to share? Let me know in the comments.

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Bible Study

Exodus I: The Israelites in Egypt

In case you missed it:

Bible Study Guide 

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The story of Exodus begins where Genesis ends. The book begins with the words of Genesis 46:8 and from Exodus 1:1 – 12:36 recounts Israel’s final years in Egypt before the Exodus. I’ve always found Ancient Egypt to be fascinating, and although the Biblical Pharaohs may require additional research on my part, I’ve read that during the Second Intermediate Period (1786-1550), Egypt was overrun by the Hyksos (a people of diverse origins possibly from Western Asia).

The Hyksos introduced the horse and chariot to Egypt | Ancient ...

They were said to have introduced the horse and chariot to Egypt. By 1550 B.C., the Hyksos were expelled by Ahmose, who ushered in the 18th Dynasty and the New Kingdom Period (1550-1070 B.C.). It is from this period that a new king arose who did not know what Joseph had done for Egypt and viewed the Israelites mightier than his people (Exodus 1:8-10). Thutmose III was ruler over Egypt while Moses was in exile in Midian, but when he finally returned to Egypt, Amenhotep II was on the throne, and he was the Pharaoh of Exodus.

Fresh Prince of Egypt | Yugioh yami, Yugioh, Yugioh collection

Israel’s affliction in Egypt.

Scripture in focus: Exodus 1

1:1-6 > In these opening verses, we have a recital of Israel coming into Egypt via the 12 patriarchs, Joseph’s death, and the passing away of that generation. 

1:7 > Here, we see that the seed of Abraham was now a nation. Gen. 35:11-12 had been fulfilled in Egypt. To think that this family started with 5 people (Jacob, Rachel, Leah, Zilphah, and Bilhah) back in Haran!

1:8-10 > When Joseph was alive, he was loved for all the good that he did for Egypt, now that he was dead, he was soon forgotten and all of his influences were wiped clean from the new councils. Solomon puts this well in Eccl. 9:5; 15. If we work to please man, our works will die with us, but if we work to please and serve God, they will follow us (Rev. 14:13).

This new king did not care for Joseph’s heroics for he did not live during the famine, did not know him, and thus, felt no obligation to the mass of foreigners living in his land. He only cared that they were too many and some sort of control over them had to take place for he feared they were mightier than the locals. 

Also, this “new king” is said to be most likely a Hykso for the Amorites were one of the main elements of the Hyksos people, and they might as well have a reason to loathe the descendants of Jacob because of the Shechem incident (Gen. 34) and Jacob’s later conflict with the Amorites (Gen. 48:22). 

1:11 > The Hebrews are put to work to build treasure cities for the Egyptians. Work also took the Hebrews’ minds off war: at that time, the Egyptians feared invasion from the Hittites of the north, and had the Hebrews choose to join their enemies, then it would’ve shaken their security.

Pyramid animation egypt GIF - Find on GIFER

1:12-14 > Despite their bondage, the Hebrews continues to prosper and grow. Egypt was like a mother’s womb for Israel to multiple into the nation that it was destined to become so when it was time for them to finally leave Egypt, it was like leaving the nest.

1:15-17 > Pharaoh Amenhotep I (1545-1525 B.C.) commanded the midwives to commit infanticide; he is succeeded by Thutmose I (1525-1508 B.C.) who commanded the Hebrew boys to be thrown into the Nile in verse 22. These Pharaohs were agents of Satan for the attempted destruction of the Seed of the woman, but God preserved the Messiah’s line. The midwives refuse to partake in the killing of the young ones for they feared God. And rightly so, for we should not break God’s law to obey Government.

1:18-21 > Because they obeyed God before man, the midwives were blessed by God.

1:22 > The Pharaoh is relentless in pursuing his drive to get rid of the newborn baby boys, that he goes even further: he gave public orders to drown all the male children of the Hebrews. The Nile river was worshiped by the Egyptians, and they believed in many gods so this was like human sacrifice. However, they’ll rue the day that they followed their Pharaoh’s orders for the 10th plague would kill their firstborn.

Related scripture reading:

^ Psalms 105 and 106: these psalms look at Israel’s history from God’s perspective, their faithfulness, God’s mercy in spite of Israel’s sinfulness, and the Lord’s justice. 

^ Acts 7:8

^ For Exodus 1:7 cross-reference the multiplication promises in Genesis 1:28; 9:1; 12:2; 17:2; 26:4; 28:14 and 48:4.

Additional Notes

^ The book of Exodus reflects how we Christians were in bondage to the slave of sin before our Savior comes to deliver us. The cruel Pharaoh (Satan) afflicts Israel (God’s children) until the gift of salvation through the Deliverer. This is our story, too.

Reference/Aids

* Prayer

* The Holy Spirit

* The Holy Bible

* Historical research

* The ever trusted bible-studys.org

Thank You

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✈ Travel Tuesday ✈

Travel Thoughts: The Airport ✈️

I watch people lugging bags or rolling suitcases. And I wonder what kind of adventure awaits them on their arrival destination?

Is it Egypt to visit the Pyramids, a feat of architectural genius?

India to experience the best of both worlds?

France to learn why the French are so intellectual? Or to understand high culture?

Or are they seeking enlightenment, humility, discernment, peace, God’s face?

Books & Reviews 📚

20 Books I want to read in 2020! 📚

This should’ve been posted since last month, but today’s the 20th, so hey! In no particular order, these are the books I hope to read this year:

1. The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas

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For those of you that read this blog, no explanation is needed. This was my first literature book and the book that made a Francophile out of me. I’m not sure if I’ll get to this book before 2020, but the year’s still young and I’m curious to see if I still like the book… although I don’t think it’ll be a 5-star book anymore.

2. The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway

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This book was only recommended to me 1,000 times. I might’ve exaggerated, but many bookworms have recommended it, so I put it on the list. I don’t think I’ve ever read anything from EH, so this short novel should be the first. 

3. 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die by Peter Boxall

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1001? I’m certain that I haven’t read 90% of the books in there and if I did, I probably strongly disliked them. I love lists, but don’t tell me what to do before I die. However, I’m curious to see how bias this complied list is.

4. Paris Was Ours by Penelope Rowlands

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32 writers share their observations and revelations about the world’s most romantic city. I’m naturally intrigued by anything Paris, so this collection of memoirs should hit the spot.

5. Khu: A Tale of Ancient Egypt by Jocelyn Murray

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I got this book for two things: the cover and the location. I honestly have no idea what the story is about so it’ll be a surprise read.

6. Napoleon by Andrew Roberts

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This man! In 1804, Napoleon declared himself emperor for life. He is one of history’s greatest military leaders and although he won many battles, the defeat at Waterloo probably haunted him to death. When simulations are run today, they show the French winning, so he had no right to lose. However, like Nebuchadnezzar and many other heads of state over the years, they needed to learn WHO really is in charge. 

7. Love and Louis XIV by Antonia Fraser

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This man! I’ve been trying to read this book for so many years now, but I keep putting it off. Louis XIV is fascinating, but I am more intrigued by the way he handled his crown and put France on the map. I’m actually looking forward to reading the detailed part of this Sun King’s reign.

8. Complete Stories and Poems of Edgar Allan Poe

Image result for Complete Stories and Poems of Edgar Allan Poe

I am only familiar with a few works from this man that is said to be a genius and one of the most influential writers in American literary history. I recall “The Tell-Tale Heart” because it was one of the first short stories I had to read for a writing class and also in Spanish. Then there is “Annabel Lee” because I listened to Matthew Gray Gubler read it with such emotion. EAP sounds like an acquired taste, so I’m quite curious to see if it’s a taste that I’ll enjoy.

9. The Knowledge of the Holy by A.W. Tozer

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I don’t normally chase after Christian Literature, but it’s A.W. Tozer. This book focuses on God’s character throughout and I can’t wait to get into it.

10. Akhenaten, Dweller in Truth by Naguib Mahfouz 

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I’ve had this book on my TBR for the longest while, and I am hoping that this is the year that I can finally get this Sun King off it. When I came across it, I had to remind myself that this is a novel and not a history book about the heretic King.

11. The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas

Image result for The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas

I have no idea as to how I’ve never read this book in my teenage years. Absolutely no idea! Inspired by a real-life case of wrongful imprisonment, the protagonist Edmond Dantès appears to capture so many hearts, that I am hoping he can live up to the hype when I get into this book. 

12. How the French Invented Love by Marilyn Yalom

Image result for How the French Invented Love by Marilyn Yalom

When this book first came out – I think it was 2012 – I couldn’t wait to put my hands on it. Then I got it and I dumped it into the ever-growing pile of TBR and forgot all about it… until now. The French didn’t invent love, God did, but the French are so devoted to the pleasures of love, I can’t even stereotype it. Throughout centuries, the French have been exemplary when it comes to showing affection and it’s been recorded in their movies and printed in their literature, but the question is: are they truly the world’s greatest lovers? Eh, anybody can love. This book focuses on love through the eyes of French culture and literature.

13. Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy

Image result for Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy

Here’s the thing: I tried reading this book waaaayyy back and I just couldn’t get into it so when I came across it in my TBR, the first thought was to throw it out, but I relented because I believe in second chances. I also couldn’t get into the movie because Keira Knightley does nothing for me. Neither do Jude Law, or Matthew Macfadyen or any of the actors for that matter. The book was first published in 1878 and many writers consider it to the greatest work of literature ever. 

14. A House for Mr. Biswas by V.S. Naipaul

Image result for A House for Mr. Biswas by V.S. Naipaul

I could never get into books from Caribbean authors for we tend not to see eye to eye. V.S. Naipaul fits perfectly into this category and that’s why I stayed away from reading any work of his for so long, but now, the time has come for that moment of truth, so I really hope to get around to this one before the year ends. 

15. Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis

Image result for Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis

I have no idea what this book is about, I just want to read it, although I didn’t like the last book I read from this author. 

16. The Diving Bell and the Butterfly by Jean-Dominique Bauby

Image result for The Diving Bell and the Butterfly by Jean-Dominique Bauby

This memoir describes Jean-Dominique Bauby’s life before and after suffering a massive stroke that left him with locked-in syndrome. The entire book was dictated, letter by letter, by the blinking of his left eye. He died two days later after the publication of his book. I look forward to actually reading this book.

17. The Romanov Sisters by Helen Rappaport

Image result for The Romanov Sisters by Helen Rappaport

Their story is a tragic one. This book is a look at the last royal family of Russia and I look forward to seeing how Rappaport painted these girls’ portraits.

18. Alexander the Great by Philip Freeman

Image result for Alexander the Great by Philip Freeman

This warrior needs no introduction, but I’ve had this book on my TBR for too long and it’s time to finally get over it.

19. 1984 by George Orwell

Image result for 1984 by George Orwell

This book mirrors a lot of what’s happening in the world today. Written in 1949, this book is said to be a great masterpiece and reasonably “prophetic”. People are in awe of his psychic skills when in fact, God warned us about what was going to come to pass in these last days if we don’t repent in a book written way before 1984 called the Bible for it’s the living and standing Word.

20. The Epic of Gilgamesh, an epic poem from ancient Mesopotamia

Image result for the epic of gilgamesh book

This epic mythological tale is regarded as the earliest surviving great work of literature and the second oldest religious text after the Pyramid Texts. I think it’s a knockoff of the Bible as do all mythologies, but hey, I gotta read it before I knock it. It’s been on my TBR like forever, so I’ll try to get to this one before the year kisses us adieu. 

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To be honest, I am not sure if I’ll even get to read all the books that I mentioned here, but I am looking to expand my reading horizons a little. Lately, I’ve been engrossed in French Literature and I could’ve easily listed 20 French books I’ll love to read before the end of 2020.

What books are you looking forward to reading this year?

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Challenges/Tags/Fun Stuff

꧁30 interesting questions challenge ꧂

I love fun challenges and when I read the 30 interesting questions challenge over on Stories of Hope blog, I just had to participate. This post was supposed to have been done since last month, but I am always late to the party.

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Let’s do this!

1. What are your nicknames? What do you prefer to be called?

Well, almost everyone calls me Dee and I have no problem with that at all.

2. How often do you doodle? What do your doodles look like?

I don’t doodle much as before, but does this…

…count? It’s the last thing I did sometime back in November or so. 

3. What do you do if you can’t sleep at night? Do you count sheep? Toss and turn? Try to get up and do something productive?

I recite Psalm 91 and pray. Another great one is Psalm 4.

4. Do people consider you as talkative or quiet?

I am both talkative (especially if we’re talking about God, the Bible, travels, etc.) and quiet.

5. What makes you cry?

When people accept/return to God acknowledging Him as their EVERYTHING. And humanity…

6. What is your biggest pet peeve?

When the Lord’s name is taken in vain. I also dislike it when people listen to music via their headset really loud. Like, what’s the use of having a headset if other people are going to be hearing your music?

7. How many times a day do you look at yourself in the mirror?

I normally look in the mirror when I’m leaving the house.

8. What is the strangest thing you believed as a child?

That people entered inside the television set from behind to be on TV. 😆

9. What is one guilty pleasure you enjoy too much to give up?

Guilty pleasure? What is that? Here I quote the great Matthew Gray Gubler: “Don’t feel guilty if you like something.”

10. Who performs the most random acts of kindness out of everyone you know?

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11. How often do you read the newspaper? Which sections?

I don’t read the newspapers, but I do read news online once or twice a week.

12. Which animal scares you the most? 

This question is very subjective so I’ll give a pragmatic answer: diseased animals.

13. Are you more likely to avoid conflict or engage it head-on?

I run away from conflicts. 

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14. What was the most recent compliment you received?

It was from my sister in Christ, Leiya. She said that she enjoys watching me grow in Christ. 💙

15. What question are you tired of hearing?

Do you watch Game of Thrones? No. Just no.

Is Annie okay? Of course, she is! She was a CPR mannequin for Smooth Criminal’s sake! She saved millions of lives!

Why do you like Tom Cruise? You, do you.

Why do you support France and not Spain? Last time I checked, Messi wasn’t Spanish and it was Les Bleus who got me into football, not FC Barcelona or Argentina for that matter.  

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16. What is the strangest thing you have eaten?

I’m not an adventurous eater so I have to go with pepperoni. 👎

17. Do you have a whole lot of acquaintances or just a few very close friends?

Close friends that I cherish and love.

18. Do you have a catchphrase?

None I can think of at the moment so I guess I don’t have one.

19. What’s your all-time favorite town or city? Why?

San Fernando! It’s the most beautiful place in the south and it should’ve been the capital of Trinidad. The people there are very different than the town people and they don’t have time to mind your business. And the hill’s got a panoramic view!

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20. If you had to change your first name, what would you change it to?

I love the name my parents gave me so I don’t see the need for changing it.

21. When was the last time you lied?

Let’s see…

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22. What’s something that amazes you?

Simply God. Especially the way He answers prayers! 

23. Would you rather be the first person to explore a planet or be the inventor of a drug that cures a deadly disease?

The inventor for I wouldn’t be able to explore another planet anyway given the firmament God put in place.

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24. What is your favorite amateur activity?

Reading and also walking to clear my mind while communicating with God.

25. What was your first thought when you woke up this morning?

Another day? Thank You, God! 💙

26. What is your favorite song (at least for the moment)?

“All I Want” by Michael W. Smith.

27. List someone you know, and describe them in 5 words.

Lee is caring, eager, driven, focus, and learning.

28. You can select one person from history and have them truthfully answer one question. Who would you select and what would the question be?

Oh my! So many people! Here are a few:

Albert Einstein: Why can’t you take the time to fix your hair? And why would a grown man be sticking his tongue out of his mouth?

King Solomon: How did you ever make time to communicate with your 700 wives one on one?

King Louis XIV: You were four-years-old when you ascended the throne and you became the longest reigning monarch in Europe. How did your longevity affect your reign?

Napoleon Bonaparte: Why in the world did you continue to trust Talleyrand even after you found out that he was not trustworthy? 

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29. Which celebrity or artist do you resemble the most?

It’s been often said that I look like…

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…God! I was created in His image after all. I wouldn’t even give my left foot to look like any of these basic celebrities out here.

30. What do you want me to know?

Jesus is coming again. Are you ready?

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This fun challenge is open to anyone who wishes to participate. Thank you to Stories of Hope for allowing me to join in the fun. See her post here:

30 Interesting Questions Challenge

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Trinidad & Tobago 💙

My first trip to Tobago 🇹🇹

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I’ve been behind in writing posts, scheduling, and reading blogs lately. I’ve had some posts backed up in drafts for months now that need editing or dumping, so I’ll try to get to that soon. 

Anyways, this post is about my trip to Tobago, so allow me to introduce the sister isle.

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Mabrika!!

(In the language of one of Tobago’s original Amerindian tribes, welcome)

Tobago is known as the twin island state of Trinidad. Yeah, we (Trinidad) have a twin. But we’re (Trinidad) still the better-looking twin! Okay, that was childish. Tobago is the smaller of the twin-island state and was once home to an Amerindian community before Christopher Columbus’s claims about “discovering” the island. I am certain that the Caribs did not report it missing! 

Daniel Defoe was inspired to write “Robinson Crusoe” after reading a sales pamphlet on Tobago and to this day, the island is known as Crusoe’s Isle. 

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The island is home to 123 varieties of butterflies and 200 species of birds. It has one of the most beautiful drives with some of the beach vantage points in the world. If you’re into marine activities, Tobago encourages you to indulge in diving, glass-bottom boat tours, snorkeling, wind-surfing, and even kite-boarding. 

Behind every landmark is rich in history, but if I start talking about the Dutch, the British, the Courlanders/Kerlanders (modern-day Latvia) and of course, the French, we’ll be here all day, so if you’re looking for a scenic adventure, visit Tobago today.

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I’ll try to be short. I’ll also try to post a lot of photos!

On the morning of departure (May 31st, 2018), I was up early for I was excited. However, what was supposed to be a midday departure by boat turned into after 1 PM. We were greeted by boring Elvis Presley music and after everyone was on board and the safety announcement was made, Mission: Impossible III came on and as Ethan Matthew Hunt graced the screen with his presence, I was like, “How did they know I was boarding the boat today?!”😁I did not watch the movie, though. I was more focused on the sights before me and silently communicating with God. 

When the boat docked in the port of Scarborough, I just wanted to sleep as it was nearing evening. However, when I got to Sandy Point Beach Club, I didn’t bother to settle in right away. I went for a walk with my sister, took a photo of the remnant of the sunset…

…and then relaxed in the pool. It’s a pity I can’t swim! 😔The next day, we went driving around for a little bit…

…and squeezed in a visit to Fort Milford:

And later that day, we visited Pigeon Point:

That night, we wanted to go out for ice cream and what do you know! At the very end of the street which we stayed on was a homemade ice cream shop and the lady made some of the best ice-cream I’ve ever tasted especially the rice flavor! I could still taste the ice cream. Yum! So we made a mini nightly ritual of going for the tasty treat.

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On our last day, we explored the countryside. We couldn’t do Nylon Pool, but there’s always next time. But I was excited about Parlatuvier Bay for I’ve always wanted to see it up close in person and I was not disappointed at all.

Tobago is panoramic, scenic, and colorful. The locals are helpful and welcoming. You can walk the streets any hour of the night and no one would bat an eye. Tobago embraces you and gets you to live in the moment. She gives you peace of mind. 

As I end here, I am already packing for the next trip (in my mind). I hope to explore Tobago next time with my bestie for I missed having her with me. Everywhere I went, I thought of her and I know she would’ve appreciated the beautiful scenery! 

***GIF & separator via Google Search

Challenges/Tags/Fun Stuff

World Hello Day!

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Every November 21st is World Hello Day! It was created to promote peace throughout the world through communication. 

This global event was first celebrated in 1973 as a response to the Yom Kippur War. 

How to Celebrate?

Participants must greet at least 10 people. They can be family, friends, colleagues, or even the stranger you walk by every day. Well, with the way things are going in this world today, one should be careful in approaching strangers. 

Did You Know…

…that hello was used as a telephone greeting for the first time by Thomas Edison?

…how you do today?

***Image and GIF via Google Search

Books & Reviews 📚

Books #128-#131: history, plants, manners, and Jim Carrey

Book #128: Don’t Throw it, Grow It! by Deborah Peterson & Millicent Selsam

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I read this book out of boredom one day and it sort of inspired me to want to actually plant things and watch them grow. When I was younger, I used to enjoy growing beans, but I lost interest. Anyway, about the book, it’s easy to understand and it’s filled with great ideas for experimenting with gardening.

Reminds me of my dear gardening friends, Luda and Reema. 😄

There are no photographs, but illustrations which is fine by me, but I think the authors could’ve added a bit more information about the plants. Overall, this book is worth love coffeelove coffeelove coffee.

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Book #129: First In Trinidad by Michael Anthony

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I love this book! It was easy to read and I enjoyed discovering more historical facts about my country such as the first survey, the first few streets of Port-of-Spain, how the French made education a thing, the first time we got television service, and the first time the telephone rang which was 1885. 

It’s a really informative book and I’ll read it again when the time permits. While reading, I was inspired to write a story using ‘old’ Trinidad as the backdrop setting, so it looks like I’ll be reading more historical books like these soon. 

I’ll strongly recommend this book for Trinidadians who are not aware of their history: love coffeelove coffeelove coffeelove coffee

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#Yay4History

Book #130: Multicultural Manners: Essential Rules of Etiquette for the 21st Century by Norine Dresser

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This book was written with the American in mind. The author reminds her fellow Americans that they should know another’s culture before doing things the “American Way”, but at the same time, she is defending the “American Way” in some instances.

We all should do a bit of research before visiting a foreign country. A few interesting things I noted:

^ Never call a Mexican the ‘s’ word. Even if you’re correcting a Mexican child, never use the word ‘stupid’ for it’s the worst possible insult to a Mexican.

^ Some Puerto Ricans will not eat pineapple in combination with other foods. 

^ Yellow flowers hold negative connotations for people such as Mexicans, Peruvians, and Iranians so it’s safer not to gift them such color flowers. Meanwhile, Chinese and most Asian people respond negatively to white flowers because it’s often associated with death. 

Overall, I enjoy learning about so many cultures: love coffeelove coffeelove coffee

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Book #131: How Roland Rolls by Jim Carrey

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First, the illustrations in this children’s book (recommended for 4-8-year-olds) is SLAMMING!

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It makes you want to go on a sea adventure. It makes you want to surf and do all water sports. Jim posed for many of the Roland faces throughout the story which is written in rhyme and it flowed well. Roland is a wave and we’re rolled along with his adventure even when he can’t find his friends. Later, Roland will learn that waves cannot make it past land. 

It’s about the importance of friendship, leaving old friends behind and making new friends.

Hmmm… I wonder how Jim Carrey rolls? love coffeelove coffeelove coffee

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Behind the lens! 📸, Trinidad & Tobago 💙

Scenes from Mayaro! 🇹🇹

Hello Friends! 😄

I love discovering my island and I had the pleasure of visiting Mayaro via an excursion trip. It’s a pretty long drive according to which part of the country one is coming from, but I enjoyed it thoroughly. 

I took these while in the back seat of my family friend’s moving car (note the dancing poui tree on the right!):

  

When we arrived in Sangre Grande almost everyone breathed in a sigh of relief, but there were so many more miles to go! We got out to use restrooms and buy refreshments. 

This photo was also taken while driving.

Breaking down the etymology of the origin of the name ‘Mayaro’: ‘maya’ was an Arawakan plant that grew in abundance in the area and ‘ro’ is the Arawak term meaning “the place of”. “The place of maya” or “Mayaro”. But of course, what’s Trinidadian history without the French involvement? 

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French planters settled in Mayaro in the 18th century after they were granted land by the Spanish Governor, Don José María Chacón. At this time, there were no roads leading to Mayaro and the sea was the only way people could get in and out. A census report showed that only 408 people were residents at the time, but it didn’t stop them from having coffee and sugar cane plantations and even cotton estates. In the late 19th century, Mayaro was accessible by a steamer. 

France and Trinidad have a 200-year-old bilateral relationship and I’ll love to explore why the French left the most powerful influence on our culture in another post altogether. Before I get carried away, let me return to the trip.

The tall swaying palm trees are a familiar sight in the country. It’s almost as if they’re following you. 😆

Mayaro is one of our most popular holiday destinations. It got…

All the photos in this collage belong to me. 

When we finally got to the pristine beach a lot of people were frolicking in the warm waves (MILES of clear blue water), walking on the soft, soft fluffy sand and just enjoying the atmosphere. I managed to take a few pictures:

  

  

The sand is cushiony, soft, fluffy and velvety, so it’s better to walk barefooted and I found an abandoned sandcastle.

  

After saving a flopping fish in the sand, I came across a Portuguese Man O War!

Mayaro is also associated with the production of oil and natural gas, but nature will always come out on top for both local and foreign tourists. If you’re planning a trip to Trinidad, make sure you come to Mayaro for the sun, salt, and sand. 

Bible Study

Genesis part VII: Noah’s generation, a geographic history lesson

In case you missed it:

Part 6: Noah leaves the ark and God blesses him

Part 5: The wickedness of the world and the Great Flood

PART 4: The first murder and genealogy of the Patriarchs

PART 3: The Original Sin

PART 2: The making of mankind and the Sabbath

PART 1: Genesis: in the beginning

I am at my happiest when I search the scriptures and ask God to deepen my understanding of His Word by not only opening my mind and ears but most importantly, my heart. I love You, God and I’ll never be ashamed to always say so! 💙

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The generations of Noah 

Scripture in focus: Genesis 10

When I first started to read the Bible, I’ll gloss over the ‘generation/genealogy’ chapters without thinking twice. It’s when I started to really study His Word, I realized that I was wrong to do so for the names were also important. Read 10:1. What are the keywords? If you say “sons of Noah” you’re right. “Sons of Noah” are all the people who descended from Noah’s 3 sons after the Flood (Cross Reference Acts 17:26) as there are no recorded births while they were in the ark.

Noah had 3 sons: Shem, Ham, and Japheth. You’ll notice that whenever the names of Noah’s sons are recorded, Shem is always mentioned first (9:18; 10:2, 21) despite being the second-born. That’s because the Bible often list people according to prominence rather than age and Noah had blessed Shem above his brothers. Let’s look at the oldest son, Japheth who was born when Noah was 500 years. 

10:2-5 traces Japheth’s sons and grandsons. Japheth means “expansion”. Seven of his sons are mentioned: Gomer, Magog, Madai, Javan, Tubal, Meshech, and Tiras (10:2). The first time I read those names, I thought they sounded Indo. Japheth was in fact, the father of the Indo-European peoples (India to Western Europe). Gomer and his people lay north to the north of Judea (see Ezekiel 38:6). From Gomer came the Galatians or Gauls of Asia. They inhabited Phrygia.

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Image via Wikipedia

I love Ancient History and I think it’s vital when it comes to Bible Study for it can come in very handy. I read about the Phrygians settling everywhere in Anatolia and how some of them accepted strange customs and cults, one which was the cult of the great Mother of the gods. The most famous king of Phrygia was Midas. I think I’m getting carried away. So to put:

Gomer (Germany): From him, came the Germanic peoples; most of the original peoples of Western Europe came from them including the original French, Celtic settlers, and Spanish.

Magog, Tiras, Meshech (Moscow) & Tubal: they settled in the far north of Europe and became the Russian peoples (the Russians are the most numerous ethnic group in Europe).

Madai: The ancient Medes came from this son’s line. The peoples of India also came from this family tree branch.

Javan: The ancient Greeks came from this one. 

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Image via Pinterest

I believe that the history of the peoples can be disputed. In 10:3 we meet Gomer’s 3 sons: Ashkenaz (probably Assyrian), Riphath (an obscure tribe that was merely mentioned) and Togarmah (the Armenians were believed to come from his line. They are mentioned as traders in Ezekiel 27:14 and in Ezekiel 38, they were named as followers of Gog along with Persia and Ethiopia). From Javan’s sons (10:4-5) the coastline peoples of the Gentiles were divided into their lands (according to their families, nations, and language). Take note of verse 5: Japheth’s descendants did as God instructed by scattering and populating the area they were given.

Now, let’s go Ham, the youngest of Noah’s sons and the one who discovered his father’s drunkenness in 9:22. Many of Ham’s sons were the enemies of Israel. Ham’s descendants populated the Far East and Africa. Ham is the father of the Arabians, Canaanites, and Africans, and the Egyptians. In 10:6 we meet:

Cush – Divided into two branches, some founded Babylon (Nimrod) and others Ethiopia. 

Mizraim – Hebrew for Egypt and translated as Egypt 87 times in the Bible. Egypt was later called the “land of Ham” (see Psalm 78:51; 105:23; 106:22).

Phut – Refers to Libya.

Canaan – The people who originally settled the land. In v. 15, we’ll see that many races were started from Canaan including the Amorite, Hivite, Hamathite, and Jebusite.

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Image via Biblicomentarios

Cush had 5 sons and 2 grandsons (10:7), but then came Nimrod (10:8-9). A mighty one. A great hunter. The power-hungry leader behind the building of the Tower of Babel (11:1-4). Nimrod means “let us rebel” and I’ll write up a post on this figure soon if the time permits. At 10:10 we see the beginning of Nimrod’s kingdom. He did not want to heed God’s instruction to scatter and populate the earth. 10:11 speaks of Assyria and you might recognize the city of Nineveh which was wicked to the core right down to the time of Jonah. 10:12 speaks of Resen another city Asshur built. 

10:13-14 deals with Mizraim’s (2nd son of Ham) 7 sons from who are derived 8 nations. Ludim is thought to be plural, so Mizraim begat the father of the Ludim which is thought to be Lud in Isaiah 66:19 (Lydians). They were great at archery. Now to the sons of Canaan (10:15-18). Remember, these were the people cursed at the scene of Noah’s drunkenness because of Ham. Not only that, they possessed the Promised Land which Israel needed to conquer. Sidon is related to the Hittites and Lebanese and many people believe that the Oriental peoples descended from the Sinites. Sidon was also Zidon. I could only imagine how beautiful the women were in that town to cause Solomon to sin repeatedly (1 Kings 11:5). Heth was the father of the Hittites and they worshipped a number of Egyptian and Babylonian deities. Their relatives, the Jebusites also worshipped false gods. 

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Map of the Hittite Empire (c. 1300 BC) via Ancient History Encyclopedia

The border at 10:19 is a description of the land of Canaan the Israelites possessed. Gerar and Gaza are two Philistines’ cities. The Hebrew name for Gaza is Azzah (mentioned in Deuteronomy, Kings, and Jeremiah), the capital of the Philistines and Samson lived there. It is the center of the Gaza Strip today. Sodom, Gomorrah, Admah, and Zeboim were destroyed with righteous fire from heaven. 

We now move to the descendants of Shem (meaning “name” because Noah expected the name of his son to become great), the second born of Noah (10:21). Let’s talk about Shem a little. Shem was the father of “all the children of Eber”. The word Eber is the origin of the Hebrew word for “Hebrew.” This is the son whom Noah had blessed above his brothers in 9:26-27. It was through Shem that the promised seed destined to crush the devil came (3:15) and that seed can be traced back to Seth (Adam’s son) in 5:1-32, through Shem, then Abraham, Judah, down to David leading to Christ (Luke 3:36). Ain’t that a beautiful something! Jesus came from this amazing preserved line! Eber is actually the grandson of Arphaxad (10:24). When the Bible uses the term ‘child’ or ‘children’ it does not always mean so.

We meet Shem’s 5 children in 10:22. From Elam sprung the Persians; Asshur was the father of the Assyrians; Arphaxad was the ancestor to Abram and the Hebrews. He dwelt in Mesopotamia and became the progenitor of the Chaldeans. Lud (not the same one mentioned in the line of Ham) was Shem’s 4th son and was the father of the Lydians who lived in Asia Minor. Aram is the father of the Aramaeans, who we know as the Syrians. 

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Image via Bible History

Aram had 4 children (10:23), but it is Uz which gathers much attention. Uz was later a region in Arabia and it was from this land (somewhere in the Arabian Desert) Job came (Job 1:1). Arphaxad was born two years after the flood but decided to commemorate the event by naming his firstborn Salah which means “a sending forth” of waters (10:24). Eber had 2 sons (10:25) and Peleg was so named because of the earth being divided in his time (the dispersion of peoples at the Tower of Babel). Peleg means division. We meet the 13 Joctanites tribes in 10:26-29. There is little known of these sons besides seeming to settle parts of Arabia (10:30) for they disappeared in Bible history. 

10:31 is the spread of Shem’s descendants including Assyria, Arabia, and Syria. Exclusive of Nimrod, there are 70 names of nations, tribes, or heads of families descended from Noah’s 3 sons: 14 from Japheth, 30 from Ham, and 26 from Shem. Among the heads of tribes descended from Japheth are 7 grandsons. Among those from Ham are 23 grandsons and 3 great-grandsons (bible-studys.org). And we conclude this interesting generation chapter with God reminding us that through Noah’s three sons the whole world was repopulated (10:32). Eight people were left after the flood and look at the world now.

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The world so stunk of sin that we have no knowledge of our own origin. We fight for a sense of belonging to this race or that race because we’re not satisfied with the image we were made in, His. There is only one race: the human race. Being Indian, African, Asians etc. are different ethnicities of the human race. God is willing to reveal the truth in His Word, but how can we see it when our eyes are closed? When we’ve made up our minds to follow what man tells us? When our hearts are closed off from God? Search the scriptures today with a new approach and with a spiritual understanding. People didn’t just come into existence. We’re here because of Noah’s descendants. Most importantly, we’re here because of God. 

Additional Notes/Recap

^ Ham means “hot” and the Hamitic people were godless and of a worldly power (Genesis 10:6-20). Ham’s descendants worshipped false gods including the god of fertility. 

^ Heth is the 8th letter of the Hebrew alphabet. 

^ Shem was the ancestor of the Semitic peoples (10:21-31). He is the father of the Hebrew nation from whence Christ came. 

^ Abraham, a descendant of Shem, is the first person in the Bible who is referred to as a “Hebrew” (Genesis 14:13).

^ Arphaxad, along with Shem, was mentioned in the genealogy of Jesus.

REFERENCES/AIDS

* The Holy Bible

* biblestudys.org

*blueletterbible.org

* gotquestions.org