MBR reviews Simple Serenity by Nancy Oelklaus

Reviewer’s Bookwatch: April 2022
Carolyn Wilhelm’s Bookshelf

I didn’t think I needed any more finding joy books, so started reading thinking it would be the same old. The author suggested writing, drawing, painting, or other activities to help process the book. Not just read it through? Well, it seems I changed my mind soon after beginning to read. This is not a “preachy” text as Oelklaus explains how her thoughts helped her to find peace. She discusses being “in love” as opposed to trying to fix other people. She explains how she stopped being a fixer of other people and says it is freeing to her to mind her own business.

Yes, some of the short writing pieces with questions at the end did seem quite easy. Some seemed to be great for writing group prompts, some seemed good for a reading group discussion warm-up, or even useful for art class. I think counselors might refer to some chapters for finding discussion topics. One of her ideas to solve feeling overwhelmed is explained in terms of her practical and step-by-step system. All in a very short chapter, which others could try although it is explained in terms of her own life. Her lesson from a ceiling fan recently happened to me after I found a telescoping and bending duster online, bought it, and was able to dust our ceiling fans. The vignettes are relatable. She asks:

“When have you felt as if you were being held hostage and your world was narrowing? How did you work your way out of it?”

A wardrobe can support the life you truly want to live, according to Oelklaus. She tells about buying three pieces of clothing and donating four. No piling all the clothes you own in one room, just thinking about the life you want.

She also discusses a “God box.” Any nagging thoughts can be put in such a box until you can see it clearly for what is really is about.

With poetry, stories from real life, and questions, this book offers a chance for a new view of life. Highly recommend.


U.P. Reader -- Issue #1 [HC]

SKU 978-1-61599-355-0
$21.95
In stock
1
Product Details
UPC: 978-1-61599-355-0
Brand: Modern History Press
Binding: Hardcover
Edition: 1st
Author: Mikel B. Classen

Michigan’s Upper Peninsula is blessed with a treasure chest of writers and poets, all seeking to capture the diverse experiences of Yooper Life. Now U.P. Reader offers a rich collection of their voices that embraces the U.P.’s natural beauty and way of life, along with a few surprises.

The twenty-eight works in this first annual volume take readers on a U.P. Road Trip from the Mackinac Bridge to Menominee. Every page is rich with descriptions of the characters and culture that make the Upper Peninsula worth living in and writing about.

Whether you’re a native Yooper or just wish you were, you’ll love U.P. Reader and want to share it with all your Yooper family and friends.

U.P. Reader offers a wonderful mix of storytelling, poetry, and Yooper culture. Here’s to many future volumes!”

— Sonny Longtine, author of Murder in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula

“Share in the bounty of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula with those who love it most. The U.P. Reader has something for everyone. Congratulations to my writer and poet peers for a job well done.”
— Gretchen Preston, Vice President, Upper Peninsula Publishers and Authors Association

“As readers embark upon this storied landscape, they learn that the people of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula offer a unique voice, a tribute to a timeless place too long silent.”
— Sue Harrison, international bestselling author of Mother Earth Father Sky

“I was amazed by the variety of voices in this volume. U.P. Reader offers a little of everything, from short stories to nature poetry, fantasy to reality, Yooper lore to humor. I look forward to the next issue.”
— Jackie Stark, editor, Marquette Monthly

“Like the best of U.P. blizzards, U.P. Reader covers all of Upper Michigan in the variety of its offerings. A fine mix of nature, engaging characters, the supernatural, poetry, and much more.”
— Karl Bohnak, TV 6 meteorologist and author of So Cold a Sky: Upper Michigan Weather Stories

Learn more at www.UPReader.org

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Simple Serenity: Finding Joy in Your Life
Nancy Oelklaus
http://nancyoelklaus.com
Loving Healing Press
https://www.lhpress.com
9781615996636, $16.95 Paperback, $28.95 Hardcover, $4.95 Kindle, 168p

Carolyn Wilhelm, Reviewer
Wise Owl Factory LLC

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