Friday, September 7, 2018

August 2018 Reading Log


In August, Augie and I started going to Baby and Me time at our local library.  
The time is real close to his morning nap time but he hangs in there.  
His favorite part of the program is the peek-a-boo scarves.
He loves playing with the colorful scarves.  We can only go once a month in the
Fall because of my work schedule but we love it.

A Simplified Life by Emily Ley, was my bedtime read this month.  I love reading something relaxing in the evening that I can easily step away from.  I also love to read something that can add a little bit to my life as well.

Quotes I want to remember from the book:  
  • “I want a life that is rich, sweet, and uncomplicated.  I don’t want to be weighed down by day-to-day responsibilities."  
  • "I want to be able to enjoy Saturdays, making memories with my family instead of folding mountains of laundry. "
  •  I want dinner to be a calm time to reconnect and enjoy good food with the people I love…...I want to be able to sit with my kids or with a friend and wholeheartedly listen…...I want to be able to enjoy this beautiful life, not be constantly overwhelmed by it.”  
  •   “Our home held only absolute necessities and cherished treasures.”
  •  “Give yourself the time and grace to go little by little.”  
  • "Finding ways to serve your spouse, giving without expectation of return, exemplify a strong union to your children, speak softly, demonstrate healthy love to your children, make your marriage a priority Date Nights, show affection."
  •  Crafting intentional, shared family memories and spending individual, quality time with each child.   #unreadshelfproject2018

Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng is one of those books that catches you out of nowhere.  
It is so captivating it is hard to put down. There is a typical rich family,
The Richersons, who rent a home to the poorer family, Mia and Pearl Warren.  
While Pearl is captivated with the rich lifestyle of the Richerson’s and the steadiness of the family.
The Richersons are captivated with Mia’s cooking and photography.
The lives and beliefs overlap and influence one another and their decisions.  
At the end of the story I still wanted to know more…..I give this book ****/5 stars. #unreadshelfproject2018

My Endless Summer is part 2 to the A Cafe by the Sea both by Jenny Colgan.  
It was a nice way to finish up my summer break now that school is back in session.  
The book is about Flora and Noel’s struggle with a long distance romance. It is a cute little book.
 I give it ***/5 stars.

I just finished Summer At Little Beach Street Bakery and tobe honest I don’t think I am reading the books in order so I am getting a bit confused on the timeline of things.  
However I find the stories of Polly and her pet puffin cute and whimsical. I give this book ***/5 stars.

I have to be honest, I had a hard time with this book, A Barrel of Laughs A Vale of Tears.  
It’s target audience is 4th and 5th graders and the humor is for them.  
I know kids will find this book hilarious but I wasn’t in that place this weekend.  
It was just to bizarre for me. #battleofthebooks2018

Well I’m all caught up with the L. Penny books.  I just finished Glass Houses and once again this is a wonderful mystery series.  Once again there is a mystery brewing in Three Pines, there is a mysterious figure standing in the center park area of Three Pines, all day long, the figure does not move it just stands there looking ahead.  The Three Pines community in creeped out by this figure standing there and wants Gamache, now Chief Superintendent of the Sûreté du Québec, to arrest him or something just get him out of the area.  However Superintendent Gamache does not have a reason or a cause to arrest the dark figure. Just because he is creepy is not a crime. Then one night the figure disappears and a young girl is dead in the basement of the town’s church and Mrs. Gamache find her.  Some months later in July, the trial has begun and it seems like Chief Superintendent Gamache is on trial but is it all a set up to catch the real murder. #unreadshelfproject2018

Big Little Lies has been out for a while but I finally got around to reading it.  
It was a fun book about murder/friendship/ and acceptance.
I just loved how the characters bonded together and how their lives overlapped.  
It is amazing how women can be the best of friends and your worst enemy at the same time.
I have read several Liane Moriarty books and this was my favorite one.  I enjoyed reading this book,
it was hard to put down. I give it ****/5 stars.

Abel’s Island by William Steig was a cute book about love, courage and friendship.  
It was about a mouse that is caught up in a storm and taken from his wife and friends.  
He has to make due on an island by himself until he can find a way to escape.

Baseball Fever is a cute book for baseball lovers.
It was an endearing story about a father and son trying to find a way to relate to each other.  
It is a quick and easy read.   #battleofthebooks2018

All-of-a-Kind Family is a adorable book about a Jewish family living in New York City in the early 1900’s.  I really liked the connection the children feel toward the local librarian. The book focused mainly on the family life and their traditions.  #battleofthebooks2018

Charlie Pippin was my fifth children’s book and WOW was it ever thought provoking and realistic.  
The story follows Charlie a little girl in sixth grade struggling to get along with her father.  
All of Charlie’s good intentions don’t seem to work out and she gets in more trouble at home and at school.  
When Charlie does her report on the Vietnam War, a war her father fought in, somehow she gets in more trouble.  
She doesn't know what else to do. #battleofthebooks2018

My Oxford Year is a wonderful story about a young girl, Ella, who is off to Oxford for one year.  
She is a very independent person. However on her first day there she runs into a handsome man, Jamie,
who happens to be her professor.  They decide to have a “no strings” relationship.
However life and feelings get in the way of this plan. This is the perfect “Chick Flick” book.  I give it ****/5 stars.

I read Rebecca when I was a teenager but honestly I didn’t remember a thing.  I am so glad I reread Rebecca. There are so many layers to this story there is no way I could have understood it at such a young age. #unreadshelfproject2018  #classics

OMG!!! A Fall of Marigolds is a beautiful story.  It centers around an antique scarf and how is came to
America in 1911 to Clara Wood’s life.  Then somehow ends up in Taryn Michaels’ life on Sept. 11 in
New York City. Clara’s and Taryn’s stories are so enchanting and heart breaking.  This is truly an amazing story.
I loved it and give it *****/5 stars.

The Glass Castle is another book that I read this month that left me speechless.  
WOW! This is an eye opening story. It made me think about why people make the choices they make.  
When I see a homeless person I make a lot of assumptions, but this book reminded me that everyone
had a story and reasons for what they do.  It reminded me that I need to listen to people first instead of
judging and asking if and how I can help. This is a *****/5 star book. #unreadshelfproject2018

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

July Reading Log 2018

Wow what an amazing month for reading!!!!! I read some really good books that will definitely be in my top ten of the year. What I am most proud of is that I finally accomplished my goal of reading five middle grade books this month for Battle of the Books. Now on to August....Happy Reading!

Misty of Chincoteague by Marguerite Henry is a book that I read for Battle of the Books.  
I’m not a fan of horse books, but this book has a little history to it as well.  The book is about two children
Paul and Maureen Beebe who plan to own a pony of their own.  And not just any pony, they want the Phantom,
the wildest mare on Assateague Island. Paul plans on buying her after he captures her at the round up.  

On Pony Penning Day Paul surprised the town by bringing home the Phantom and her newborn colt.  
Paul and Maureen need to figure out how to buy them both. But before they get a chance to bid,
someone has already bought the Phantom and the colt.  But fate has other plans and all works out for Paul
and Maureen.
#middlegrades  #battleofthebooks2018   #newberryhonorbook

Reading the Fountain by Katie Klise is another book for the Battle of the Books.  
To me it was somewhat strange and humorous.
The whole story was written in letter form between students, teacher, principal, artist, and
school board president.  Add a bit of a mystery and it is somewhat interesting.
The middle school needs a new drinking fountain. The character Florence has a very different idea in mind
when you say fountain.  #battleofthebooks2018 #middlegradebooks

The Secret Garden, Frances Hodgson Burnett, is my final book for the Modern Mrs. Darcy Challenge.
(a classic you’ve been meaning to read)  I’ve always wanted a garden that was fancy with little benches to sit in.
The story of Mary and Colin who are left on their own and revive a deserted garden as they form a
wonderful friendship.  I know there are some stereotypes in the book but the story is amazing.
#unreadshelfproject2018   #mmdreadingchallenge2018 #readingtheclassics
My dream secret garden.  
Image from:  The Cottage Marke

I used to love watching Veronica Mars with my daughter on TV each week.  
I have a fondness of fun mysteries that don’t get to gory or creepy.
So when I saw this book at the bookstore last year I had to pick it up.  
Veronica Mars The Thousand Dollar Tan Line was just that.  A fun mystery to read.  
It had several twists and turns in the story to keep it interesting.  I will definitely look for the second book.
I give this book ***/5 stars.  #unreadshelfproject2018

Lily’s Crossing by Patricia Reilly Giff is my third book for the Battle of the Books this month.   
This is a wonderful historical fiction story about a young girl living in the US during with WWII.  
The story deals with how the war affects Lily and her Grandmother, her best friend Margaret,
and her neighbors the Orbans and their nephew, Albert.  It tackles wartime through
the emotions of a ten year old. This is a wonderful, thoughtful book. #battleofthebooks2018

Hooray for me!  I read four middle grade books so far this month.  
My goal is five and the last three months I only read one.   
So I am happy to get over that hump. Enough about me, The One and Only Ivan is an adorable book
for all ages.  It is based on a true story but you will figure out real quick it is fiction when the animals start talking.  
What a great story about friendship and courage. It has a lot of humor as well.
#battleofthebooks2018    #middlegrades

Make It Happen by Lara Casey was my quiet meditation book this month.    I have read her other book
Cultivate this year and was so inspired by it I had to get this one as well.  This book speaks to my desire
to live my life on purpose instead of autopilot.  Which I feel I have been doing the last thirty years don’t
get me wrong I have a wonderful life however my husband and I have always operating on what do we
need to get done to get through this week.  The weekends are generally go something like this family stuff
and then what do we need to do to prepare for another busy week. Although I have step back in life and
started working part-time many thanks to my husband for that.  Unfortunately he is still working a lot of hours.
These are my highlighted quotes that I wish to get back to and spend more time journaling and reflecting on.
What are you really chasing?
I needed a heart change.  What would your life look like if you had balance and success in it?  I
f you want change, choose it.  Step into the hard stuff in order to get to the good stuff.
 “Please, God, show me the way.”  Am I waiting to make change because I fear failure or hard work?  
Lean in, be honest, and know God is God.  He will guide you through this. What would happen
if you were capable of doing the very thing you think you cannot do?  
How would you be able to thrive--and help others? List the possibilities.
Our failures are gifts, allowing us to learn, grow, redirect, and take new -- and potentially better--paths.  
Life doesn’t have to be perfect for you to take a leap of faith. Work Hard for What Matters!
My Life + God’s Way = Living On Purpose
  • God’s way is the way of purpose.  Of living intentional in order to love others.
  • God’s way is the way of rest coupled with meaningful work.
  • God’s way is the way of true balance and lasting success.  
  • God’s way means less of us and more of Him.  
  • God’s way brings freedom, joy, and contentment.  
Commit to not working on Sunday  A life of purpose created boundaries.  
Boundaries help you raise the bar. Set office hours, this will change your life.  
The fruit of following him: “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control”
He makes our lives into gardens that our meant to be shared --inspiring others,
nourishing them, and equipping them to live on purpose too.  
Create a Life of Purpose!!  Make Intentional decisions!
  1. Evaluate your life.
  2. Clear the clutter.
  • No Social Media on Sundays
  • Clear the clutter on your computer
  • Unsubscribe, Unsubscribe, Unsubscribe
  • Turn off all alerts and give family members a special ringtone.  
  • Simplify and question everything
  • Fast from buying clothes, home decor, and other things you do not need -- school stuff!
  1. Set purposeful goals.  
  • Every hour of your life holds the possibility to change someone’s for the better.  
  • What long-term goals will help me live a life on purpose.?
  • What short term goals would help me live a life on purpose?
  1. Take Action.
  • Keep your daily lists small, realistic and actionable
  • How we spend our time is how we live our lives
  • Commit and follow through and complete each task
  1. Encourage others..
    • Be A Blessings for Others
Have clear boundaries, but make sure they are purposeful, allowing for relationships to grow.  
Sometimes the most lasting things in our lives are those that grow slowly over time,
with great care and patience.  If you want to live on purpose you will make time and it does
not cost any money!

I have been hiding in the air conditioning as much as possible now that it is fixed.
 I read the book, Young Jane Young, and I thought it was somewhat funny.  
I could relate to the mother/daughter relationship.  I could see my own daughter rolling her eyes at me as I talk.  
I cannot imagine not talking to my daughter for years. It’s hard to go a week without hearing from her.
 This book is fun and easy to read. The characters are interesting and the story is told from different perspectives.  
I give the book ****/5 stars. #bookstagram #booklove #ilovereading #instabooks #mothersanddaughters

Hooray! I met my goal of reading five battle of the books this month.  
This book was a great look into a child’s life of someone who has to deal with being different at
school and struggles with not understanding why her mother is not there to raise her.
 I love throughout the book as Naomi becomes aware of the significance of the others around her
and the meaning of some of the customs from the town where she was born.
(The flowers in this picture are from by garden.)  #battleofthebooks2018 #middlegradebooks

Five Days in Paris by Danielle Steel was by Paris book for the month.  The book was a typical Danielle Steel book,
no surprises, just a cute love story in France.  I give this book ***/5 stars.

I know I am a little late reading This Is How It Always Is, by Laurie Frankel, but I am so glad that I did.  This is a ***** star book without a doubt.
As a mother of three boys this book left me thinking how would I handle the situation
if it were presented to me.  How open would I be to my young child wanted to be something
different that he already is. The parents in this book seemed so calm and thoughtful and enlightened.
 I don’t know if I/we would have handled it in such a reasonable way.
The book leaves you with some thinking points even days after finishing it.

I’ve read some good reviews about this book so I thought I would give it a try.  I was expecting a light fun romance like most of Jojo Moyes books. This one had a bit more of a historical vibe going on.  It was really good with some predictable outcomes. I will give this book ***/5 stars.