Sunday, January 31, 2010

It's snowing books

This happens to be one of my favorite times of year to read and read and read. Days are shorter and there's something relaxing about curling up with a good book, cuppa something, and not feel pulled to be outside (as I so often am at other times of the year). Like any addiction, the more you turn to it, the more you crave it. So with already 7 books under my belt this year, I wanted to share some quick thoughts before I forget the things that made them so memorable. Outliers, The Anybodies, The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, The Mysterious Benedict Society, Alabama Moon, The Cupcake Queen, A Reliable Wife.

Alabama Moon was surprisingly good--great book to recommend to boys who like Gary Paulsen or Holes. I read it and could envision it as a movie, did a quick internet search and found that it has already been made into a film w/John Goodman, but maybe hasn't been released yet! Cupcake Queen I read in a flash last night. It reminded me a bit of Sarah Dessen's books--but lighter and for younger girls. Loved all the bakery bits--my ideal job would be to run a bookstore/bakery. The Anybodies took me a bit to get into, but I really liked its quirkiness and the house made out of books. Loved that I could figure out almost every book she wove into the story. Guernsey and A Reliable Wife were both for my book group and they were great. Totally different from one another, but very enjoyable. Guernsey was unique in that it's all told in letters, and was a lighter read. A Reliable Wife really got under my skin and was disturbing and the rare example of a book where my dislike of the characters' actions didn't make me dislike the book or even the characters themselves. Finally, Outliers was the sole non-fiction selection and was excellent! I really found it engrossing and as a parent, I could apply some of the examples. More on that later...

Next on the bookshelf: Going Bovine (Printz award-winner for 2010), Half-Broke Horses, I am the Messenger, Vive la Paris.

Monday, January 11, 2010

2010 marches on

New year, new blog posting, loooooong overdue! How did I manage to go months without blogging here? I am big on beginnings, fresh starts, clean breaks and other such things that one reflects upon at the advent of a New Year. I am usually full of resolutions, most of which I fail to keep. Some are pedestrian fare (lose weight/exercise more) and others are simple: get outside for at least 15 minutes everyday. (in Pittsburgh with its very rainy weather this is sometimes easier said than done). But this year, I have decided to tackle something doable that will also hopefully make our family's life easier. The kids already tease me about it, but at least they're cognizant of it and, in their way, helping me keep to the commitment. I no longer want to go rushing around from place to place, feeling like we're going to be late. (And annoyingly, half the time that I rush around thinking we're going to be late, we arrive early and I feel I've wasted my energy!). So for the punctuality freak in me, I just want to stop that mad rush so we are easily on time to all the random appointments/rehearsals/lessons/services. Hmm..what do you think? It's working so far. Yeah, only 11 days in, but still that's better than I've done with some past resolutions.