Sacred Pauses and the Ultimate Christmas Countdown Checklist

Real Simple magazine has what they call the Ultimate Christmas Countdown Checklist. It actually starts three to six months before Christmas with “Make a family plan. Are you heading to your in-laws’ house? Hosting everyone at yours? Sit down with family members and decide where you’ll be spending the holidays.”

At two months before Christmas, their checklist says ”Start baking things you can freeze.” At one month before: “Wrap gifts as you buy them.” By the first week of December, “Mail cards.” The Real Simple checklist seems like a great way to get organized — the only trouble is, I haven’t done any of those things yet. By their count, I’m about three to six months behind, with Christmas coming in less than two weeks!

So today I’m pushing the pause button on blogging, and while I bake, wrap gifts, and write Christmas cards instead, here are three of my favourite responses I’ve received in the last while. If you’d like to add a short response of your own, please visit Amazon, Goodreads, or leave a comment below. Both books make great last-minute Christmas gifts too, either alone or paired together.

From Bev Short: Thank you, April, for the treasured daybook. I am happy that it is slim, thought-inducing, and beautiful. I went through all of the photographs, matching them with the descriptions and locations. Many of the BC ones were identifiable as such, although it obviously rains in Saskatchewan, too! My husband is a photographer as well. He was intrigued with the quality and uniqueness of Lois’ work. Thanks again. I can see why the first printing sold out.

$19.99. Order my Sacred Pauses daybook 2015 online, or please use my Contact form to arrange pick up in Abbotsford. Sorry, we’re now sold out!


From Danny Ferguson, Youth Unlimited: First of all I have to admit my bias. I know April personally. I also have to admit that Sacred Pauses exceeded my expectations. This is not because I know April, but because I have read many books on spiritual discipline and thought, foolishly, that my understanding of the topic was exhaustive. This book helped me to take the years of gathering information and add these practices to my life in a more natural way than any other attempt. I have started using this book in my mentoring appointments and will gladly go through the book many times. I carry that book around with me every day and use it often when mentoring people.

$19.99. Order Sacred Pauses: Spiritual Practices for Personal Renewal online, or please use my Contact form to arrange pick up in Abbotsford.



From Amy Dueckman on the back page of the Canadian Mennonite

Combining their gifts for words and pictures, two Mennonite Church Canada pastors who are long-time friends have produced a 2015 inspirational daybook.

Lois Siemens, pastor of Superb Mennonite Church in Kerrobert, Sask., and April Yamasaki, pastor of Emmanuel Mennonite Church in Abbotsford, B.C., collaborated on the recently published my Sacred Pauses daybook 2015.

Sorry our daybook is now sold out, but for the rest of this article, please click through to the Canadian Mennonite.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.