Tuesday, May 4, 2021

What I Read in April

April was a good month, the days began to lengthen so I feel more alive! May is shaping up nicely too. I'm out of hibernation so I'm not reading as much, but what I did read was really good.

1. Anne of the Island by L.M. Montgomery
2. Persuasion, A Latter-day Tale by Rebecca H. Jamison (a retelling of Jane Austen)
3. A Disciple's Life, The Biography of Neal A. Maxwell by Bruce C. Hafen
4. Evelyn Cameron - Montana's Frontier Photographer; text by Kristi Hager
5. I Owe You One by Sophie Kinsella (I needed a "cleanse the palate" sort of a read)
6. The Proximity Principle by Ken Coleman
7. The Fortune Teller by Gwendolyn Womak
8. My Not So Perfect Life by Sophie Kensella (another old friend)
9. A Worthy Heart by Susan Anne Mason

The biography was long! The other non-fiction, The Proximity Principle, I read to see if it would benefit my adult children. Yes! It is informative and encouraging. Ken Coleman is part of the team at Ramsey Solutions.

I'm totally enjoying the Anne books; I read them so long ago that I don't remember much and it's like discovering them for the first time. Gwendolyn Womak's book, The Fortune Teller is her third. I read the first in December, the second in January, and then waiting to read the third while I read some more non-fiction. It was worth the wait. She is brilliant at what she does.

What's on your nightstand these days?

Thursday, April 1, 2021

What I Read in March

 Or finished reading.

The non-fiction I've been reading takes longer to finish than fluffy fiction. And that's okay. I have over 1000 non-fiction books inventoried, and two more sections (kitchen and sewing room) with non-inventoried books, so probably closer to 1300 books total. By contrast, I have about 400 fiction books on my shelves. Anyway, the point is that I have lots of books to read! And I'm working to read all the unread non-fiction on my shelves. It's an exercise in discipline.

On to the list for March:

1. Anne of Avonlea by L.M. Montgomery; way too long since I'd read it and I didn't remember anything, so much different from the 1985 TV adaptation.
2. The Department of Sensitive Crimes by Alexander McCall Smith; a new (2019) series about a Swedish detective; interesting, fun, witty and wise.
3. Purity and Passion by Wendy L. Watson PhD; well written book about marital intimacy. Opened my eyes to the whys behind some of my challenges.
4. A Year of Living Kindly by Donna Cameron; 52 short chapters about her year long adventure of living a deliberately kind life. Eye opening and encouraging.
5. The Golden Thread - How Fabric Changed History by Kassia St. Clair; fascinating, well documented. One of those books that makes one want to learn more!
6. Montana Women Homesteaders - A Field of Ones Own, Edited by Sarah Carter; reading this caused feelings of gratitude to well up in me for my totally easy life with all the modern luxuries. What a group of brave, hard working women!
7. Saints Vol 2 - No Unhallowed Hand, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints; once I got started I couldn't put it down. So many wonderful accounts of saints building the Kingdom. Again, many feelings of gratitude for their faithfulness, hard work and sacrifices.

Not so many this month, but those I read (or finished) were thought provoking and informative, as well as great reads.

What are you reading these days?

Wednesday, March 17, 2021

What I Read in February

I continued in hibernation mode during February and was able to read twelve books.

1. A Cup of Comfort, Ed. Colleen Sell - I think this was the first of the series. I buy them at thrift stores and find them interesting and uplifting.
2. All Creatures Great and Small by James Herriot - A re-read as I was watching the new series on PBS.
3. All Thinks Bright and Beautiful by James Herriot - second in the series (By the way, while the PBS series is entertaining, it is not really faithful to the books which are much richer in character and animal stories.)
4. Attitude is Everything by Keith Harrell - A fantastic book that opened my eyes to some news ideas.
5. Love Your Life by Sophie Kinsella - latest stand alone book from Sophie, one of my favorite authors.
6. Everyday Millionaires by Chris Hogan - Report of a survey of over 10,000 millionaires, totally interesting.
7. Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery - I'm reading the whole series this year; wonderful book and I'd forgotten so much!
8. behind the beautiful forevers (sic) by Katherine Boo - fascinating and heart wrenching documentation of life in a Mumbai slum.
9. My Not So Perfect Life by Sophie Kinella - another really good book.
10. Insights from a Prophet's Life by Sheri Dew - Wonderful book about Pres. Russell M. Nelson
11. The Little Cottage on the Hill by Emma Davies - I picked this up at a thrift store for some light reading, and yep, it was very light.
12. Veterans Way by Robin Lee Hatcher - Another thrift store book, enjoyable story about reuniting of high school sweethearts after fifty years.


Wednesday, February 17, 2021

What I Read in January

Entry from my journal last year - "Thursday 30 January 2020 Next year I'm just going to block out January and February with the label "Hibernation" and settle in with a stack of books and movies, stay in my jammies all day and not worry about trying to accomplish anything."

While I haven't actually stayed in my jammies, I have worn sweats a lot (to stay warm) and not gotten a whole lot done. Here's what I've read so far this year:

1. The Memory Painter by Gwendolyn Womack -- A fantastic book that I couldn't put down!
2. In Defense of Food by Michael Pollan -- I know I'm late to the party, but very informative.
3. A Cup of Comfort for Inspiration, Ed. Colleen Sell -- Many good stories.
4. How to Raise an Elephant by Alexander McCall Smith -- The latest installment of the No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency series, always a delight.
5. Miracles Among the Rubble by Carol R. Gray -- Memoir of a British woman who took humanitarian aid to the former Yugoslavia region experiencing civil war.
6. The Gentle Art of Swedish Death Cleaning by Margareta Magnusson -- Decluttering encouragement
7. Longbourne by Jo Baker -- Pride and Prejudice from the servants point of view; while the period details were the best I've ever read, I didn't care about the characters until the second half of the book, and found it to be a very put downable book (unlike The Memory Painter which I stayed up half the night reading!).

We're in the second week of a deep freeze here in southern Minnesota. We keep asking each other "Why did we move here?" Thankfully TopDad has only two more years until retirement; then we can leave during the winter and escape the bitter cold.

What have you been reading lately?

Last year I read 136 books; 30 were new-to-me fiction, 21 non-fiction, and 85 old friends (books I've already read). This year I set a goal to read a non-fiction book for every fiction. I have stacks of non-fiction that interest me but I don't seem to get to them. So far this year I'm doing better. And I plan to share what I read each month to keep me honest.

Thursday, January 7, 2021

Summer Poetry Project

Noble asked me to participate with her in writing poetry this past summer as a practice exercise for her. We were to do one each week. I wrote for two weeks, she lasted only one. Oh well. It was fun anyway.

Here's my second poem, followed by photos to illustrate.

My Classification of Clouds
30 May 2020

First: flat, grey, endless opaque oppression
                                                   sun blocking, soul sucking, spirit squashing
                                                   cool, maybe warm, deceitful

                                                  Second: shimmering sylphs in diaphanous veils
                                                  wispy, lacy, rippling, translucent
                                                  ethereal shreds and strings
                                                  gauzy ghosts afloat

                                                Third: towering, billowing, bulging, blooming, blowing
                                                white, grey, black
                                                playing peek-a-boo with the sun
                                                dropping rain, flashing lightening, booming thunder
                                                piling up, blowing over, moving on
                                                enlivening, rejuvenating

                                                Fourth: fleecy, fluffy, fanciful bright puffs
                                                shapeful, shading, lazy
                                                drifting, driven, floating, fleeing
                                                benign, full of light