Tag Archives: Jan Karon

Book Club Cancelled

book club imageSnow has cancelled our monthly book club today but that doesn’t mean I won’t take some time to reflect on reading and the books I am enjoying.  I thought that perhaps you might be somewhere where the snow has changed your plans a bit and you have a minute to enjoy a virtual book club moment in Blog Form.  So, Welcome!
A friend and I both report that we enjoyed The Christmas Thief by Mary Higgins Clark and Carol Higgins Clark.  A fun, easy read mixing mystery and humor.  Mystery is something neither of us tend to read, so this was a fun and simple introduction.  I admit I had read it before and wondered of course, if the rest of the group were enjoying it.  Have you ever done that?  Recommended a book to someone and then been on pins and needles waiting for their response once it was read?  A book you loved with characters you enjoyed might just annoy another reader.  Oh, the pressure of being the one who makes the selection!
Our next selection is The Memory of Old Jack by Wendell Berry.  The back cover says, “In a rural Kentucky river town, “Old Jack” Beechum, a retired farmer, sees his life again through the shades of one burnished day in September 1952.  Bringing the earthiness of America’s past to mind, “The Memory of Old Jack” conveys the truth and integrity of the land and the people who live from it.  Through the eyes of one man can be seen the values Americans strive to recapture as we arrive at the next century.  I am looking forward to reading this American tale.
I also thought I’d share what I’ve been reading.  First off, I read Belles on Their Toes by Frank B. Gilbreth Jr. and Ernestine Gilbreth Carey. It was a companion to Cheaper by the Dozen by the same authors.  This family and their stories are fascinating.  Published in 1950, the family antics are even more interesting as you recognize the signs of the times.
I am currently reading The Resolution for Women by Priscilla Shirer.  A group of Christian friends and I are reading this book and plan to discuss it soon.  I must admit that this book was recommended to me by a friend a few years ago and it has sat on my shelf waiting for me to open it.  Once I opened it I recognized that this is not a book to take lightly.  It is rather convicting at times and may need to be taken in and absorbed in small parts.  I am excited to hear which chapters struck a nerve with my friends. This group of friends are not a book club, but we are just a group that gets together for some “godly gabbing.”  This is only the second book we’ve done.  (The first one was my all time favorite, Loving God with All Your Mind by my “friend” Elizabeth George.  I don’t know her but I quote her so often that people think I do!)
I am also 308 pages into Jan Karon’s 511 page Mitford book, Somewhere Safe with Somebody Good.  A gift I received last year for Christmas.  I can’t tell you how happy I am to get reacquainted with these Mitford folks.  Love, Love, Love them!  And, Father Tim gives some great quotes and scriptures that are entertaining and informative.  Like I have called it before, “Fluff with Stuff.”  Really enjoying this read.
Well, my tea has gotten cold and book club is ending.  I’m glad you’ve joined me here for a bit so I could reflect.  Now it is time for me to switch a load of laundry and read a few more chapters!  Til next time!
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I Just Finished A Book

I just finished a book!  Not writing one, just reading one, but I still feel a true sense of accomplishment.  I love finishing a book. I write it down in my “Books I’ve Read” journal & then I pin it in Pinterest.  I’ve kept track of every book I’ve read since 1993.  What a fun way to review the years.  1993 found me reading 26 books, 10 of them on audio.  I remember listening to those ones while I walked a fussy baby at night.  The titles included Siblings Without Rivalry, The New Dare to Discipline, Is There Life After Housework & What Kids Need Most in a Mom.  I read a few Danielle Steele novels for fun.  But, I think you can see what my life looked like then.  I had two children and was pregnant with the third.  My focus was on my kids and my home with a little escapism thrown in!

1994 I read 15 books, 5 of them audio.   Enough said about that year.  Too busy to read in any way, shape or form!

1997 – 29 books read, a few audio at the beginning of the year, but I must have lost my Walkman cassette player!  (Anyone remember those?)  Fun titles of that year were:  Mom on the Run, Kids Who Do Too Little, PMS – What It Is & What You Can Do About It & Helping Your Child Succeed in Public School.  Being back in college made Deaf Like Me, Deaf Culture: Our Way, & What’s That Pig Outdoors – A Memoir of Deafness required reading.

I can see the seasons of my life by the books I’ve read.  The Difficult Child by Stanley Turecki, MD was read when I thought I had a difficult child before I met and began to raise my actual difficult child! (I wonder if there is a sequel?) I became an Independent Consultant for Usborne Books at Home so 1996 is full of motivational and goal setting books…yes, I had to read those more than once!  In 1998, I met my friends from Mitford thanks to Jan Karon who made that small fictional community part of my life for a couple of years. Fostering and Adoption became major themes in my reading in the 00’s.  In 2003, I read only 12 books and wrote “Is this all I read?  Probably So…Newborns lived in our home!” – I didn’t read much but I fostered 4 different newborns straight from the hospital.  Ann B. Ross introduced me to Miss Julia in 2009 and I’ve enjoyed that series ever since.  You can also see that in certain years I had more time for reading as I recovered from various surgeries.  So, it’s a reading log, but it’s also a life log.  A journal written in book titles.

Though many are reluctant to journal because of the time and discipline to keep at it, I urge you to start today logging the books you read one book at a time.  Right now, it will only be one book, but some day down the road you will be excited to see your life unfold in fiction and non fiction ways.  My “Books I’ve Read” journal is simple.  I document the title, author and if it was given to me by someone.  I include a few words, “great fast read,” or “perfect beach read.”  But every now and then, I’ll find a gem like a quote from the book.

6-21-01 The Rescue – Nicholas Sparks – “Romance about a boy with speech problems, his Mom and a fireman.  Good Book – Interesting thought – People come, people go – They’ll drift in and out of your life, almost like characters in a  favorite book.  When you finally close the cover, the characters have told their story & you start up again with another book, complete with new characters & adventures.(page 89) – To expand – My Thoughts:  Some are keepers to be saved, re-read, some bring comfort by just being on the shelf, etc.”

I am so grateful for books, for people and for journals that can revive all those feelings as you flip through those pages.  I hope you’ll consider joining me on this journey.

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