An Unfortunate Event and A Series of Fortunate Events

1. I lost my wallet at the theater while watching Dear White People. The film was BRILLIANT, but losing my wallet not so much.

2. I enjoyed myself immensely at the teen after hours event hosted by my library. Pizza, chicken, Just Dance, and 28 teenagers. Who could ask for anything more?

3. I worked the morning after the teen event and my first patron of the day came bearing a chocolate muffin, and better yet an apology for behaving badly in the library on a previous occasion.

4. Book Club was FUN!


End of Event Meme

Which hour was most daunting for you? Hour? I think you mean hours, as in hours 18-22. I'm fully awake for hours 23 and 24.          

Could you list a few high-interest books that you think could keep a Reader engaged for next year?
The Secret She Kept by ReShonda Tate Billingsley kept me thoroughly engaged. It is such an important book, but it is also a plain good read. I'd also recommend Bird Box for those who like to be kept in suspense while reading. The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry was "my book" this read-a-thon.                                                                          
Do you have any suggestions for how to improve the Read-a-thon next year?
No suggestions. The Read-a-Thon was great as usual.     
What do you think worked really well in this year’s Read-a-thon? 
I really liked the multiple formats for participating socially. Twitter is my read-a-thon spot, but I will check out what went on at GoodReads                                                 

How many books did you read? 
I read three books (923 pages)

What were the names of the books you read? 
The Secret She Kept by ReShonda Tate Billingsley
The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin
Bird Box by Josh Malerman                                                              
Which book did you enjoy most? 
The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry was the perfect book at the perfect time for me.

Which did you enjoy least? 
I enjoyed all of my books. I chose well this read-a-thon, but I still need to work on the proper sequence for the fastest reading rate.

If you were a Cheerleader, do you have any advice for next year’s Cheerleaders?    
This was my first year as a cheerleader, and I have no advice. I was a very bad (oops forgot all about the spreadsheet) but enthusiastic cheerleader.     

How likely are you to participate in the Read-a-thon again? What role would you be likely to take next time? I am very likely to participate in the Read-a-Thon again. I will be a Reader again, and I am considering spending some time as a Cheerleader.


Hour 12 Mid Event Meme

1. What are you reading right now?
I am reading The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin

2.How many books have you read so far?

I have completed one book so far, The Secret She Kept by ReShonda Tate Billingsley.

3.What book are you most looking forward to for the second half of the Read-a-thon?

Aside from the book I am currently reading, I am most looking forward to Bird Box by Josh Malerman. That will be my last must read book for the read-a-thon before I move onto my optional piles.

4.Did you have to make any special arrangements to free up your whole day?

Yes. I had to request the day off because this is my scheduled Saturday to work.

5. Have you had many interruptions? How did you deal with those? No interruptions and only one schedule mishap. Now back to Mr. A.J. Fikry...

Name Your Read-a-Thon Mini Challenge

This mini challenge was courtesy of  The Geeky Bloggers 
Welcome the Dewey’s #ReadAThon Challenge for Hour 6: Name your Read-A-Thon
The Rules are simple:
  1. Take the books either in your TBR or already pile for Dewey’s
  2. Pick a word from a couple of the titles and come up with a name for your read-a-thon
  3. Leave a comment or post a picture on your blog (fill out the rafflecopter) and you are good to go!
My Read-A-Thon Title: The Storied Life About the Secret She Kept in the Bird Box

Dewey's Read-a-Thon October 2014

 It is time for Dewey's 24 Hour Read-a-thon

Introductory Meme

1) What fine part of the world are you reading from today?
Denver, CO, USA

2) Which book in your stack are you most looking forward to? I have three books that I am really looking forward to reading. I will just list them in alphabetical order by author: 
The Secret She Kept by ReShonda Tate Billingsley
Bird Box by Josh Malerman
The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin

3) Which snack are you most looking forward to?
I am looking forward to my energy boosting treats from Trader Joe's. I am having oatmeal for breakfast, spinach gnocchi for lunch, and pot stickers for dinner. I will be snacking on granny smith apples, carrots, and seedless cucumbers.

4) Tell us a little something about yourself! I am a former classroom teacher and am now a public librarian. I read for business and for pleasure. I have an affinity for children's literature, cozy mysteries and African-American authors. 

 5) If you participated in the last read-a-thon, what’s one thing you’ll do different today? If this is your first read-a-thon, what are you most looking forward to?  This is my fifth read-a-thon, but today will be my first time reading and cheering. I am most looking forward to cheering for other readers.


Thank You, Walter Dean Myers

145th Street: Short Stories
There is nothing I can write about Walter Dean Myers that hasn't been written by others far more eloquent than myself. Today I simply want to express my gratitude. I am thankful that Mr. Myers shared his gift, talent and hard work with the world. I am thankful that he advocated for children and youth. I am thankful that he boldly asked Where Are the People of Color in Children's Books? I am thankful that although he passed away in July, his work continues to inspire the teens at my library who are reading, discussing, and analyzing 145th Street Short Stories as we prepare to celebrate Teen Read Week.

The third week in October marks Teen Read Week. The theme this year is Turn Dreams into Reality @ your library.  Do you remember the dreams you had as a teen? Have you turned those dreams into reality? Perhaps you have new dreams? As a child and young adult I specifically recall having two dreams. 1. I wanted to be happy. 2. I wanted to be a teacher. I graduated from high school, majored in Elementary Education,  earned my certification to teach K-8, and taught for 19 years in the public school system. My dreams became reality.

However, after 13 years in the classroom I realized that my dreams had changed. My dad passed away, and I realized it was time to pursue new dreams of social justice, travel, education, and self-discovery. Long story short, I joined the Peace Corps (which birthed this blog), went to library school, and am now a public librarian. Now, I share resources with others, teach life-long learners, and share great books with teenagers who are discovering their own dreams. My dreams have literally come true at the library. Thank you, Walter Dean Myers for reminding me that sometimes dreams change. The fulfillment of one dream can lead to new dreams. People change and along the way acquire new dreams, but they too can become reality. 


A Rambling Tale of Gratitude, Meeting a New Book, and Saying "Yes"

Yes Man

It is interesting how some books come into our lives.  Generally speaking, I read literary fiction, a cozy mystery now and again,  middle grade children's fiction and contemporary, realistic Young Adult fiction. Sometimes, most times for me, the introduction to a new book is fairly straightforward. A favorite author, a starred review, a book club title, an interesting book jacket, book buzz from my personal learning network...but then there are books that I never would have read except for the occurrence of an exact, special certain set of circumstances. I want to tell you about such a situation. Consider this a tale of how I met my current book.

A short while ago I was feeling particularly low. I was due to travel on September 11th, I had received the results from some medical tests and the results were not good. I was sad. I was disappointed. I was angry. I needed "a good book" and I needed this book to make me LOL. I do not mean I needed a funny book. I do not mean I needed a comfort read. Anne of Green Gables remains my go-to comfort read. I mean I needed a book that would make me LAUGH OUT LOUD. There are certain books that make you laugh so hard that you don't care if you are on public transportation with people giving you the look. I needed that kind of book.

I am a librarian. I know how to find books. Did I dive into specialized databases? No, not this time. Did I look for reviews in professional journals? Nope. What did I do? I went to Facebook. That's right Facebook. More specifically, I went to the ALA Think Tank Group on Facebook. I asked my professional, and some not so professional colleagues (their description not mine)  for their suggestions and they delivered. Wow, did they deliver. I can't say enough about the awesomeness that is  my personal learning network. I received hundreds and hundreds of titles and anecdotes. Needless to say my TBR pile grew exponentially, but back to the story at hand.

I read the suggestions and smiled. I read the suggestions and laughed. I read the suggestions and felt better. Some I had read before. Some were not my tastes. Some were absolutely marvelously me. All were shared with caring and delight. THANK YOU, ALA THINK TANK! THANK YOU!
I narrowed down the list and had decided on two titles. The titles weren't and aren't the matter of importance here. What is important is that I reached out and my library community helped me through a difficult time.

Fast forward to September 22nd. My trip was successful. My first presentation at a library conference had gone well. I  had scheduled needed medical appointments and I was back at work. Actually, I was asked to work on-call at another library and I had said yes. I should note that it is hard to get a yes out of me for most on-call shifts. Anyway, I am working a shift at a nice library and one of the librarians asked if I could work another shift there the next day. I said yes. She asked if I would help her with some collection development. I said yes. I returned the 23rd and began helping her weed. As I was weeding, I was distracted by a paperback with a sky blue spine and a familiar title. Yes Man by Danny Wallace. I laughed out loud right there in the stacks. This was one of the titles that had been recommended to me by ALA Think Tank. I checked it out. The irony was not lost on me that I would not have met this book, if I hadn't said yes to asking the ALA Think Tank for help, yes to working on-call, and yes to helping a fellow librarian with her weeding assignment. So, this has been the tale of how I met my current book. More accurately, this has been a shout-out to the ALA Think Tank,  a rambling tale of gratitude, why I am reading Yes Man, and the interesting things that can happen when you say yes.


What a Pleasant Surprise

Me: Good morning. May I please speak with patron?

Patron: This is she.

Me: Hello. This is Regina Renee from the public library. You returned a book with $ inside. It appears you were using it as a bookmark. I am just giving you a call so that you can come pick up your money.

Patron: No. I make it a practice to leave $ inside books when I return them to the library. It is an act of kindness for the next borrower. Even if they don't like the book, they received a little treat.

Me: That is an act of kindness. Have a nice day. Thank you for using the library.


Believe in the Possible - The Fourteenth Goldfish by Jennifer Holm

The Fourteenth Goldfish

"Average people just give up at the obstacles we face every day. Scientists fail again and again and again. Sometimes for our whole lives. But we don't give up, because we want to solve the puzzle...Scientists never give up. They keep trying because they believe in the possible... That it's possible to create a cure for polio. That it's possible to sequence the human genome. That it's possible to find a way to reverse aging. That science can change the world. " ~Grandpa p. 47

"Science is powerful. There are always consequences - wonderful and terrible. I suppose I lost my way for a moment in all the excitement and forgot what Salk* said."  ~Grandpa, P. 181

"What did he say?"
"Our greatest responsibility is to be good ancestors"

*Jonas Salk (October 28 1914 – June 23 1995) was a medical researcher and author, the inventor of the Salk vaccine against Polio, and the founder of the Salk Institute for Biological Studies.

"To the possible!"
I am not a scientist, but I have failed again and again and again. I am not a scientist, but I keep trying because I believe in the possible. That it's possible to find the perfect book for any situation.  That it's possible to improve the lives of others one interaction at a time. That it's possible to attain intellectual freedom for all. That love can change the world.

Do you believe in the possible? If so, please share in the comments. Cheers, here's to the possible.


Truth in Fiction: Peter Nimble and His Fantastic Eyes by Jonathan Auxier

Peter Nimble and His Fantastic Eyes

"But every person, both great and small, is asked to do difficult things - and this is the difficult thing that I must do." p.59 Professor Cake 

"More than any argument or reasoning, the thing that persuaded Peter to stay was this: Professor Cake had given him a choice - a gift that no one had ever offered him before." p. 68

"As you have undoubtedly noticed in your own life, unsolicited advice amounts to little more than criticism, and Peter had grown increasingly weary of these 'suggestions.'" p. 92


2014 Hub Reading Challenge Wrap-Up

2014_hub_reading_challenge_logo_participant.jpg (396×318)

I participated in YALSA's 2014 Hub Reading Challenge. You can read about the challenge here. The objective of the challenge is to read/listen to 25 books from the  list of eligible titles. I completed this challenge for the first time last year because 1. I like challenges and 2. I am on a YA literature reading binge. This year I completed the challenge because last year was fun and because I liked discovering books that I normally wouldn't have read. The audio of Monstrous Beauty last year was a fantabulous discovery.

I finished the challenge earlier this week, and was able to complete my own personal mini-challenge by reading at least 1 book from each award category along with all of the great graphic novels. 

My 2014 Hub Reading Challenge Favorites:

  1. All The Truth That's In Me by Julie Berry
  2. Beautiful Music For Ugly Children by Kirstin Cronn-Mills
  3. Boxers & Saints by Gene Luen Yang
  4. Dodger by Terry Pratchett
  5. I Am The Messenger by Markus Zusak
  6. Lexicon by Max Barry
  7. Will & Whit by Laura Lee Gulledge

Goals for next year:
  • Finish the challenge.
  • Read at least 1 book from each award category and all of the amazing audio books. (Graphic novels and audio books are difficult for me so I use the challenge for motivation.)
  • Make the challenge more of a social experience by sharing progress updates on social media.


Truth in Fiction: Maggot Moon by Sally Gardner

Maggot Moon

"I collect words - they are sweets in the mouth." Standish Treadwell p. 24

"It had struck me that the world was full of holes, holes which you could fall into, never to be seen again. I couldn't understand the difference between disappearance and death. Both seemed the same to me, both left holes. Holes in your heart. Holes in your life. " Standish Treadwell p. 32

Truth in Fiction - Saints by Gene Luen Yang

Boxers (Boxers & Saints, #1) Saints (Boxers & Saints, #2)

"The world will never be exactly as we want it, Vibiana. But regardless of how imperfect things may seem, God's will can still be found.

God doesn't always speak through angels. His voice is often much quieter, like a fluttering in your heart."

p.85 Joan to Vibiana aka Four-Girl

Truth in Fiction - Manga Edition Strobe Edge by Io Sakisaka

Strobe Edge, Vol. 1 (Strobe Edge, #1)

"Lately, I've been feeling truly blessed for being surrounded by such good people... Because I get to do my work while surrounded by these people, I haven't had to deal with work-related stress...It's because the goodness of the people around me has a healing effect. I'm surrounded by hard workers who serve as my role models. They're so inspiring... Do your best or don't do it at all! BE WELL-ROUNDED AND DO YOUR BEST!" (Io Sakisaka's motto)Vol. 5

Many of us do not get to choose our co-workers. I myself deal with quite a bit of work-related stress, but surrounding myself with positive people has helped tremendously, and in ways I wouldn't have imagined.

"It feels amazing to be yourself without having to worry about what others think." Vol. 6

I agree 100%

"Be Strong and carry on. That's what I told myself that summer night." Vol. 6

Technically, this post should not be part of the Truth in Fiction series because these words from Io Sakisaka are not from the text of Strobe Edge, but from the "free pages" in Strobe Edge where Io Sakisaka shares herself with her readers, so the truth is in the book just not in the fiction. Right?


Truth in Fiction - All The Truth That's in Me by Julie Berry

All the Truth That's in Me

"I never knew a man could speak so boldly, so rudely to a woman. I never knew words could act like fingers, touching where they ought not, grasping their pleasure at the victim's expense." p 183

Most of the women I know remember the first time that a man's words had this effect on them. Do you remember the first time someone spoke to you in a way that violated your being?

*"Maria has taught me anew how to speak; I must teach myself better, when not to." p. 188

There is power in speech. People attend classes to become better speakers and join clubs to overcome the fear of public speaking. Yes, there is power in speech, but there is also power in silence. Perhaps as part of every speech or public speaking class, time out to be allocated for lessons on when not to speak.

*emphasis mine


Truth in Fiction Part 2 - Scumble by Ingrid Law

Scumble (Savvy, #2)

"Some fears can be conquered...Others have a way of coming back around. Sometimes at the moment you least expect. Often with the very worst possible timing. Fear makes it hard to think. And when you can't think, it's hard to figure out your choices. When you can't see all your options, all you can do is react." p.147 
Uncle Autry sharing a life lesson with Ledge on the nature of fear.

"Just because someone's got a knack for something, doesn't mean he can't learn more, right? p. 152
Uncle Autry sharing a life lesson with Ledge about innate abilities and honing our gifts and talents.

"It can take a lot of strength to show up and be yourself... don't you think? p. 240
Uncle Autry sharing a life lesson with Ledge about being your true self .
See Truth in Fiction - Scumble by Ingrid Law

"Scumbling is not about you trying to fit in with the rest of the world; it's about making your savvy fit in better with you. It's simply learning to balance all the different parts of yourself so that you don't let the one thing that feels most out-of-control take over and rule your life. Get it?" p. 251
Cousin Rocket sharing a life lesson with Ledge about balance.

"Wounded animals can be dangerous, Ledge. Some wounded people can be too." p.278
Cousin Rocket sharing a life lesson with Ledge about the danger of wounded people.

Uncle Autry sure has a gift for sharing life lessons. Is there someone in your life who shared their wisdom with you as you were growing up? If so, who? What wisdom did they share with you?


Truth in Fiction - Scumble by Ingrid Law

Scumble (Savvy, #2)

"It can take a lot of strength to show up and be yourself...don't you think?"
Scumble by Ingrid Law

I finished reading Scumble and the above quote has stayed with me. I/We spend a considerable amount of time contemplating, and often discussing, the nature of community and what it means to be part of a community. In order to live, work, and worship in community, I think it is important for people to be themselves and to accept others as they are. I often do not have the strength needed to be my whole, true self within certain communities.

Questions for further consideration:
What can we do to develop the spiritual strength it requires to show up and be ourselves?

Do we recognize the strength that it can take for others to show up and be themselves?

Do we encourage others to show up and be themselves? If so, how do we encourage others to show up and be themselves?

What would it look like for our respective communities if we all showed up and were our true selves?


End of Event Meme

 End of Event Meme:

  1. Which hour was most daunting for you? Hour 22 was brutal.  I nodded off repeatedly until I just decided to sleep for the rest of the hour and start fresh for hour 23.                                                     
  2. Could you list a few high-interest books that you think could keep a Reader engaged for next year?Childhood favorites (I'm definitely reading Judy Blume in October.)Short story collections (Ray Bradbury) Graphic novels                                                                                 
  3. Do you have any suggestions for how to improve the Read-a-thon next year?No suggestions. The Read-a-Thon was great as usual.                                                             
  4. What do you think worked really well in this year’s Read-a-thon? I really liked the Cheerleaders again this year. #TeamHughes is the best!                                                   
  5. How many books did you read? I read three books.
  6. What were the names of the books you read?    I Am the MessengerI am the Messenger by Markus Zusak                 Memories of My Melancholy WhoresMemories of My Melancholy Whores by Gabriel Garcia Marquez                                                                                     Dept. of SpeculationDept. of Speculation by Jenny Offill                                                                     
  7. Which book did you enjoy most? I enjoyed them all, but I think I enjoyed Memories of My Melancholy Whores the most because it has profound sentimental value for me.                                          
  8. Which did you enjoy least? I can't answer this question. Each book was excellent in its own way.                              
  9. If you were a Cheerleader, do you have any advice for next year’s Cheerleaders? I wasn't a Cheerleader.                                                             
  10. How likely are you to participate in the Read-a-thon again? What role would you be likely to take next time? I am very likely to participate in the Read-a-Thon again. I will be a Reader again, and I am considering spending some time as a Cheerleader.


Hour 12 Mid Event Meme

1. What are you reading right now?
I just finished reading Markus Zusak's I Am The Messenger.
I Am the Messenger

2.How many books have you read so far?

I have read one book so far.

3.What book are you most looking forward to for the second half of the Read-a-thon?

I am most looking forward to Dept. of Speculation by Jenny Offill

4.Did you have to make any special arrangements to free up your whole day?

Yes. I had to request the day off because this is my scheduled Saturday to work.

5. Have you had many interruptions? How did you deal with those?

I took a bad fall on the stairs yesterday, so my reading has been constantly interrupted by the distraction of pain. I dealt with this by reading in the bathtub with Epsom salts.

6.What surprises you most about the Read-a-thon, so far?

I am surprised by how difficult it has been for me to read from home. I read at home every day, but this is my first time reading from home for Dewey's Read-a-thon.

7. Do you have any suggestions for how to improve the Read-a-thon next year?

No suggestions. The Read-a-thon is great.

8. What would you do differently, as a Reader or a Cheerleader, if you were to do this again next year?

a. I would not fall down a flight of stairs the night before the Read-a-thon

b. Next Read-a-thon I plan to start with an audiobook to ease into the reading day. In the past I reserved audiobooks for the final hours.

c. I started with a long, sober read this time. Next time I might start and end with  lighter reads, leaving the serious subject matter for mid Read-a-thon.

9. Are you getting tired yet?

Yes, but I woke up tired.

10. Do you have any tips for other Readers or Cheerleaders, something you think is working well for you that others may not have discovered?

No tips.Have fun!  Happy Reading!


Happy Resurrection Day - Dream Big!

When the Lord restored the fortunes of Zion,
we were like those who dream.
Then our mouth was filled with laughter,
 and our tongue with shouts of joy.
~ Psalm 120:1-2a

I have spent the past 40 days with Howard Thurman*. Not with the man himself of course, but with his writings. This week I read a selection from The Inward Journey on dreams... "The dreams belong to us; they come full-blown out of the real world in which we work and hope and carry on. They are not imposters...No! Our dreams are our thing."
The Inward Journey

Gabriel Garcia Marquez passed away and this week, which again got me thinking about dreams.

Which leads me to Langston Hughes. Although Hughes repudiated both Christianity and Atheism, his poetry is deeply spiritual for me. Since I am rambling writing about dreams, and this being National Poetry Month I must share "Dreams" before I get to the point and share what all of this has to do with Resurrection Day. Please bear with me just a while longer.

Langston Hughes
Hold fast to dreams
For if dreams die
Life is a broken-winged bird
That cannot fly.
Hold fast to dreams
For when dreams go
Life is a barren field
Frozen with snow.
~ Langston Hughes

With all of this reading, thinking, and praying about dreams this week, today, Resurrection Day, I am asking myself if there are some dreams that I need to resurrect. What about you? Do you have any dreams that could (or should) be resurrected?

God of today and tomorrow, I pray for really good dreams; for dreams that inspire me and shake me up. Amen.*

* From 40-Day journey with Howard Thurman Editor Donna Schaper


Libraries Making a Difference

Along with being a public librarian, I am also the clerk of my Meeting's Library Committee. Serving Friends in this way is an honor and a privilege. Recently a Friend asked for a Pendle Hill Pamphlet on depression. When s/he returned the pamphlet I asked if it had been helpful or if I needed to find additional materials to meet her/his needs. The Friend was kind of enough to share that the pamphlet was indeed helpful. After reading "Depression and Spiritual Growth" by Dimitri Mihalis an intervention was held by the family. Please hold this family, and all families dealing with depression, in the Light.

Member: You know you have a reputation.
Me: Complete look of dread on my face
Member: You have a reputation for finding just the right book for someone to read.
Me: Thank you so much! That is one of the nicest compliments I will ever receive.


Truth in Fiction - If You Find Me by Emily Murdoch

If You Find Me

"I answer her with my silence, understanding the full power of it for the first time. Words are weapons. Weapons are powerful. So are unsaid words. So are unused weapons." p.24

I have understood the power of silence and words for quite a while. However, I never quite thought of words as weapons which is surprising as I know how much words can hurt. I know how much damage words can inflict on self and on another. Yet, I still see words as tools...tools and weapons.

"What do you mean you got nothin'? You have these books, for one. Books are like whole new worlds," I say, my voice reverent.
"So, that means you have the world. And you better take care of it, I say, handin' the book back to her." p.117

"Good things come to those who let them in. All you have you have to do is take a chance." p.135

I agree that good things come to those who let them in, but for me it is much easier said than done. "All" is a very big word in this instance. Taking chances can be simple in certain aspects of life and complicated in others. Taking chances on myself and on others is a mighty big "all" indeed.

"No one warned me that being close to people meant hurting sometimes, both them and you." p.164

Getting close to people is not something I do well or often. The hurt I have caused loved ones gives me as much pause as the hurt that has been inflicted on me.

"I wait, listening. I reckon it's the biggest gift a human being can give to another." p.185

Listening is indeed a gift, a big and precious gift. There is absolutely nothing like being heard.

Birthday Hangover

My 43rd birthday can be summed up with three words: popcorn, Twizzlers, and movies. My official birthday party was a movie marathon hosted by F/friends. 

1. Despicable Me 2
2. B.A.P.S
3. Brown Sugar (You know all celebrations must include this movie.)
4. The pilot episode of 7th Heaven ( I miss the Camden family, and the birthday party hostess had never seen the show!!!)
5. The Last Dragon (Taimak aka Bruce Leroy catches a bullet with his teeth!)

Why yes, that is the biggest bowl of popcorn I have ever seen.

A singing balloon!!!

Strawberry AND cherry Twizzlers. It was definitely a party!

Tulips and an orchid. Purple beauties everywhere!

Doc Popcorn is the best popcorn in the world. My favorite flavors? I must have the hoppin' jalapeno and cheesy cheddar mix.


Happy Happy Birthday Week

A F/friend who is not a fan of birthdays was thoughtful enough to send me a "HAPPY HAPPY BIRTHDAY WEEK" message. The message made me giddy (imagine me giddy over a birthday related correspondence...shocking, I know) and made me laugh out loud. 

This being my birthday week, I have begun enjoying birthday treats. 

First Day 3-16-23
What a glorious Sabbath! It wasn't freezing outside. Worship was deeply meaningful. I felt...connected. I enjoyed a lovely walk to my favorite indie bookstore followed by a pleasant conversation with a dear friend  in "Tangentese" (My friend made up that word).Tangentese is the language of speaking in tangents. It is the language of friends. You know when you have those rambling conversations where you start off talking about the Sabbath and end up talking about the awesomeness that is the Swingline stapler from "Office Space"? These conversations are punctuated by comments such as, "My house is broken" and must include random quotes from "Brown Sugar". Yes, a wonderful start to a HAPPY HAPPY BIRTHDAY WEEK!

Birthday treats: a bottle of Sparkling Grapefruit Izze and a pleasant conversation. I feel like I should explain why Izze qualifies as a treat. Beside the fact that it's a treat simply because I like it, I enjoy drinking out of glass bottles and belching quite loudly. I drank my beverage, belched loudly, and laughed hard. Happy birthday to me.


A List of Good Ideas

Seven Stories Up
This post is brought to you courtesy of Laurel Snyder's marvelous book Seven Stories Up.
Annie and Molly created  a "list of good ideas to do sooner or later but hopefully sooner." These two fictional young ladies have inspired me to create my own list:
  1. File my income taxes
  2. Go to the movies
  3. Take a walk in the park (when the temperature is above 60 degrees)
  4. Visit Glenwood Springs
  5. Write letters to Junior and Senior Young Friends
  6. Go to Egypt
  7. Dance in the rain
  8. Declare my feelings to someone special
  9. Go skinny dipping
  10. Be kissed


My B Side

Beautiful Music for Ugly Children

I recently read Beautiful Music for Ugly Children by Kristin Cronn-Mills. Although I am not a radio fan, nor am I an Elvis fan, nor am I a vinyl fan... well you get the picture... I enjoyed this book, A LOT! 1. I am most definitely a Prince fan and 2. I am a fan of B Sides. For the record Prince has the most amazing collection of B sides known to woman :-)

A side -  the song everyone knows
B side - not played as often but just as good

My A Side - Christian Friend, Teacher, Librarian, Reader, "Nice quiet girl"

My B Side - Loud, Knicks fan, Inappropriately and Easily Amused

What about you? What grooves are on your A side/B side?


Happy Birthday, Dr. Seuss!

Who is your favorite Dr. Seuss character?
The Grinch
How the Grinch Stole Christmas!
What is your favorite line from a Dr. Seuss book?
"Today you are You! That is truer than true! There is no one alive more Youer than You!
Happy Birthday to You!

What Dr. Seuss book would you recommend that everyone read?
Oh, the Places You'll Go
Oh, the Places You'll Go!
The More that you read,
the more things you will know.
The more that you learn,
the more places you'll go.
~Dr. Seuss


A New Kasama...Farewell, Sony. Hello, Kobo.

Some of you may have heard/read the news on NPR that Sony is closing its e-bookstore, the Reader Store, next month. This was very sad news for me because I own a Sony e-reader, the Sony Daily Edition. I even have the Reader Store app on my phone in case of a reading emergency.

I bought my first and only e-reader before I left for Peace Corps Philippines, and I chose my device with deliberate care. I decided on the Sony Daily Edition because it was user-friendly, had  plenty of storage space along with an SD slot for additional storage (just in case), and most importantly ( for me) because Sony is committed to using open formats. I chose my perfect reader, and it was my faithful Kasama* during my time in the Philippines, and continues to be a wonderful travel companion. The closing of the Reader Store made me sad, but then I continued reading...

Sony is closing its e-bookstore, the Reader Store, and transferring the accounts of American and Canadian customers to e-reading company Kobo. In a press release, Ken Orii, Sony's vice president of Digital Reading Business Division said, "Kobo is the ideal solution for our customers and will deliver a robust and comprehensive user experience. Like Sony, they are committed to those most passionate about reading and share our vision to use open formats** so people can easily read anytime and anywhere." 

Awww Kobo, friend to passionate readers, open formats, and indie booksellers. Farewell, Sony Reader Store. I will miss you dearly. Hello, Kobo. I'm pleased to make your acquaintance. I look forward to getting to know you better.

*Kasama strictly translated means companion. As a female volunteer, I was told/instructed that women in the Philippines did not travel anywhere alone.  While the veracity of that statement is subject to interpretation, it is true that when I went out unaccompanied, I was often asked where was my Kasama or if I needed a Kasama. To enjoy the solitude that I needed and craved, I took to referring to my e-reader as my Kasama.

** emphasis mine


Good News Part 2

Pauline Robinson Branch Library is an official pick-up site for World Book Night 2014

Good News Part 1...I'm a Giver

 2014 logo
Spreading the Love of Reading,
Person to Person
Dear Regina,
Congratulations! You will be a 2014 World Book Night giver...after you do one more thing!

First:  We are delighted to tell you that the book you'll be giving away is Where'd You Go Bernadette, Maria Semple.

Where'd You Go, Bernadette


Truth in Fiction Flora & Ulysses The Illuminated Adventures

 Flora & Ulysses The Illuminated Adventures by Kate DiCamillo

Flora and Ulysses: The Illuminated Adventures
"The giant squid is the loneliest of all God's creatures. He  can sometimes go for the whole of his life without seeing another of his kind." Dr. Meescham to Flora

"That squid is a villain," said Flora out loud. "He needs to be vanquished. He's eating a boat. And he's going to eat all the people on the boat."

"Yes, well, loneliness makes us do terrible things*..." p. 124

* emphasis mine


#Nerdlution Round 2

nerdlution button tiny

Round two? I hear some of you asking "What happened to round one?" I kept my goals modest and quiet during round 1 of #Nerdlution just in case I failed. Despite what I have told my students in the past I HATE failing (not that anyone likes failing, but many have a better perspective on the subject than I do), and I especially hate to fail publicly. The good news is I did not fail. My goal was to post to this blog at least once a week over the course of 50 days and I succeeded. (If you want to learn more about #Nerdlution, check out Chris's post or Colby's post)

Now, for my goals (yes, plural) for #Nerdlution Round 2.

Goal 1: Continue posting to this blog at least once a week. I would like to post more often, but I need to remain realistic. I do not have a computer or internet access at home. I ride the bus for about 30 minutes to get to a public computer. This is not a bad thing, it just means that I need to be intentional about my blogging and make it worthwhile for myself and for potential readers.

Goal 2: I will write meaningful, positive comments on 50 different blogs over the next 50 days. I am borrowing this goal from Kevin Hodgson who wrote 50 comments on 50 blogs over 50 days for round 1 of #Nerdlution. He commented on one of my blog posts and I was thrilled. It is nice when someone comments on the blog, and I want to do something nice for other bloggers. 

Good luck to all. Want to join #Nerdlution? Do it! Tell me about it in the comments if you like, but even if you want to keep your goals modest and quiet... DO IT!