March 9, 2019

what I’ve been reading

I'm so excited to be reading more this year. I love books!

In order to make sure I stay on top of my goal of 52 books this year, I pulled a bunch of books I've been wanting to read off of our book shelf and put them in a pile next to my bed. That way I never have to take time to figure out what to read next. I can just grab the next book from one of my choices. I have a good mix of nonfiction, fiction, and children's lit so on the weeks I need something lighter or heavier I can pick what I feel like. I also got a kindle for christmas and I love that it gives me another option to make reading easier and accessible. Though I still prefer a copy of a book in my hands, I can easily fold laundry while I read with my kindle. I've been reading more books with Layla now. And when we go to goodwill every couple of weeks on half off day to get Perry new shirts (he is chewing through all of his shirts right now) I always spend some time browsing the books and walk away with some good ones. Book club each month also keeps me reading. It's been wonderful!

I was able to read 12 books in January and February (most of them are pictured above, but not all of them).

Before We Were Yours: I do love historical fiction. And this is a good one. I had never even heard about this part of history before I read this book. It is sometimes hard to read, but man these stories need to be told.

Felicity: an American Girl- I read this with Layla. It brought back happy reading memories from when I was younger. Especially because this was my own childhood copy.

Of Mice and Men: This was the first time I read this book. I skipped and skimmed a little. I kind of wish I didn't read it, but I think it's a story that will stick with me. So maybe the author achieved his goal.

A Town Like Alice: We read this one for book club and I liked it a lot more than I thought I would. It was a loosely based historical fiction and a really great read.

Sometimes You win--Sometimes You Learn for Teens: How to Turn a Loss into a Win- I like the principles and the ideas of the book, but it was pretty dry. Especially being geared towards teens. I'm pretty sure my teens would zone out and fall asleep. But there were a few good stories and lessons and it's worth it to talk about the ideas of the book.

"Sometimes you will win. Sometimes you will lose. But every time you will have the opportunity to ask yourself, "What did I learn?" If you always have an answer to that question, then you will go far. And you will enjoy the journey."

No Ordinary Women: Elaine Dalton is one of my heroes. This was a quick, but great inspirational read.

"It is an interesting thing that as human beings, we seek comfort zones. Based on everything I read in the scriptures, I don't think the Lord likes us to be in a comfort zone. He repeatedly takes his choices disciples out of their comfort zones and challenges them by their circumstances, their trials, and their opportunities to become more and to do more." 

Peter Pan: I loved reading this classic for the first time. And knowing a little background about the author helped add so much more meaning to the story.

Thursdays with Zoe: I think there could have been a more fitting title, but I loved so many of these stories. Zoe was a sweet, incredible person, yet completely relatable. The stories inspired me as a mom and a person and helped me think about how I want to live my life.

"Oh! That's my LAY-deeeeee!"

"One thing that helps my perspective is to remember that the 'things' in our lives pale in comparison to the Real Power. You see, there is no possession in the world--not the biggest house, not the fastest car, not the most extravagant outfit--that can bring tears to my eyes just by thinking about it."

"You must remember that the only thing that matters is what the Lord thinks of you. Is the Lord pleased with you, April?"

How to Train Your Dragon: This was book club pick. I read it to Layla. Though, she didn't listen most of the time. It was a fun book. Not too deep. I've never seen the movies, but I think I will finish the series sometime before watching them.

"It is a lot easier to be brave when you know you have no alternative."

"I have helped the problems of many a Supper. Sometimes meeting a Really Big Problem like myself seems to put everything else in proportion."

My Father's Dragon: a classic a used to read out loud to my first graders when I was teaching. I read it to my own first grader this time.

L. Tom Perry, an Uncommon Life: Years of Preparation: I was excited to read this book because Perry's name was somewhat influenced by this great man. However, I had a hard time getting into the book and I don't think it dove in to L. Tom Perry's life much deeper than what I already learned about him from reading his conference talks. There was a lot of background about his family, but that didn't interest me too much. I'm sure if I were related to him that would've been more valuable though.

"...whatever any of us give up in service to the Lord is returned to us a hundredfold."

The Glass Castle: This book sums up why I want to keep being a foster parent. Her story stays with you. It is shocking and so important that it is told. and I think it is a testament of how complicated life can be. Life isn't always black and white. Even crazy people have some good. And while people can rise up from circumstances, and it is incredible that she does, so many people do not and carry on the cycle.

"Years from no, when all the junk they got is broken and long forgotten,' Dad said, 'you'll still have your stars."

"No child is born a delinquent,' Mom said, They only become that way, she went on, if nobody loved them when they were kids. Unloved children grow up to become serial murderers or alcoholics. mom looked pointedly at dad and then back at me. She told me I should try to be nicer to Billy. 'He doesn't have all the advantages you kids do,' she said."

"It's the Joshua tree's struggle that gives it its beauty."

"Everyone has something good about them,' she said. 'You have to find the redeeming quality and love the person for that.'
'Oh yeah?' I said. 'How about Hitler? What was his redeeming quality?'
'Hitler loved dogs,' Mom said without hesitation."

"I think that maybe sometimes people get the lives they want."

"It's sort of the city's fault,' Mom told me. 'They make it too easy to be homeless. If it was really unbearable, we'd do something different."

"Never did build that Glass Castle.
No. But we had fun planning it."

Happy reading!