Grab Your Book: Reading Anything Good?

Grab Your Book

FRIDAY! Finally! This has been the longest week ever and all sorts of stuff happened.

The callback list for Annie posted and both kids got a callback. The Teen got called back for Rooster (Tim Curry played him in the movie), which is what he tried out for but sadly, The Girl did not get called back for Annie. Instead, she got a callback for Duffy, one of the other orphans. Both, great roles. We won’t know who made the final cast until Tuesday afternoon but both said their callback went well. The suspense…it kills me.

I got a promotion at work. I never talk work on here but hey, I am happy.

Another thing that happened this week is that my daughter’s teacher enrolled her in a Title 1 program. Now, I don’t know much about Title 1 so maybe you teacher folks can clue me in but I was a little surprised about her being added to this program. She started Kindergarten when she was four, before they changed the cut-off date so every year she lags a bit in the beginning. I hear this repeatedly at the parent conferences but then once she is back into the routine of things, she is okay. However, this teacher, whom I love and was also was the teacher for my son when he was in 6th, said she needs some additional help so of course, this concerns me. Plus, I asked The Girl who else was added to the program and she said, her words, “The new girl who does not speak English.” Oh my. I have a meeting to discuss the program on 10/16. I figure extra math help cannot hurt but it threw me off a little.

These days, I need reading more than anything. Kid stuff, work stuff, you know the drill. Every time I turn on the TV something horrible has happened somewhere. And although my schedule seems more manageable, I find that I am not handling what I have as well as I used to. I suppose it’s just a lack of patience. Why do I have to be here? What’s the point? Tell it to me in three sentences or less. Yeah. I know many of you can relate.

So, why can’t we all just sit down and read and not worry about any of it? That is my question.

I just finished I Am Malala and I have a confession. I had absolutely NO desire to read it but I flew through it in just a couple of sittings and now I am glad I read it. That is why I belong to a book club. Had it not been chosen, I don’t think I would have picked it up on my own.

Just started Something Wicked This Way Comes for the read along Sandy and I are hosting. More of you have decided to join us and we couldn’t be happier. I am liking it quite a bit. It’s very atmospheric. I need ‘atmospheric’ since it’s supposed to be 108 here this weekend and it just does not feel like fall.

I want to also start this one:

The Book of Strange New Things

It’s a chunkster though and I want to be sure I am done with it in time for my Revival read along. Yes! Another Stephen King read along! That will be announced later this month.

What are you all reading?

The Sunday Salon: Hot

It is blazing hot here in Southern California My sinuses don’t know what to think. First it’s hot and dry, then it’s hot and humid and today it seems to be dry and humid which is impossible. Because of it, I have a raging headache and nothing I take seems to touch it.

In the big scheme of things though, life is going pretty well. After hitting church by myself, no one wanted to go with me, I came straight home, enjoyed a salad and some leftover gluten-free pizza and pretty soon I am going to find myself a comfy spot and take a nap. My head hurts too much to read right now but maybe a nap will do the trick.

Rehearsals for Annie begin tomorrow (Monday) and on Wednesday, the audition process begins. It’s always an exciting time.

Sunday Salon

Let’s see, what else is going on? Well, we had a lovely dinner last night. The Teen’s girlfriend and family came over for pizza and salad. We grilled peaches for dessert, topped with cinnamon butter and vanilla bean ice cream. It was really good. I meant to take a picture but I gobbled it up before I could.

What am I reading?

Well, I finished The Sparrow for the read along Trish was hosting. It’s quite a book. After reading it I felt slightly beat-up and needed something with a lighter tone so I picked up The Way Inn by Will Wiles. It’s a crazy book. I find it funny but the reviews are not that great which has me wondering about the end, of which I am almost to.

Next up? The Bone Clocks.

What am I cooking?

Not a thing. We had leftovers for lunch and I am not ready to even think about dinner. When it’s hot like this, food does not sound good. I’ve been thinking about Thanksgiving though, which is so weird considering it does not feel like fall here at all.

What am I watching?

I watched Pitch Perfect for the first time ever. The Girl forced me to watch it and I was not looking forward to it at all but I really liked it. I don’t know what I thought it was about but I had no idea it was about a choir. With my kids in theater and choir, I can’t believe I didn’t see it earlier.

I recorded a bunch of I Love Lucy episodes and plan to sit down and have a Lucy fest later this afternoon. Those shows are so comforting to me.

What are you up to today?

Oh, and if you don’t have reading plans for October join our read along! We are reading Bradbury’s Something Wicked This Way Comes and it’s going to be awesome! Scary carnival, guys. How can you resist?

Something Wicked This Way Comes button

Grab Your Book! It’s a Long Weekend!

Grab Your BookI literally forgot about the long weekend! Thankfully, Bryan clued me in when he was talking about it the other day. Normally I begin stacking my piles up in anticipation but since it surprised me, I have no stack prepared. I want something really good to read. I am in that awkward “I want something amazing but can’t seem to find it” stage.

I am 25% into Twelve Years a Slave, and it’s good and all, but it’s not a book to get all crazy excited about. I also have Euphoria started but I can tell that one is going to take a little bit of time to get going. I call this my Murakami hangover. I tend to hit a funk after reading his books. It’s like, my brain stops working and needs to be jump-started. I did read Station Eleven right after Murakami because I knew if I didn’t read something fast, I’d fall into that well of despair where nothing sounds good but even with the quick read right after, I am still feeling a little untethered.

I want a book that will make me put off everything else. A book that will make me ignore the very loud cricket that is hiding somewhere in my house. A book that will cause the laundry to pile up. A book that will have me feeding the kids cereal in lieu of cooking a meal. Do you know of any books like that? What will you be reading this weekend?

Friday – The Best Day of the Week

Grab Your BookThe students return to the university next week and all this week, I have been prepping for their return. I am in communications so the week prior to the semester is a busy, busy time. I sort of fell off the edge of the earth. Or so it seems. This week has been a total blur but it’s finally Friday and although next week will be busy, it will be busy in a totally different way.

It’s been difficult to get much reading in but I’ve been snatching time here and there. I am in the final stretch with the Murakami book and I think I am going to start The Little Friend and I must also start Twelve Years a Slave as it was my book club pick and I have yet to read it.

What are you reading?

Also, it’s been very nice this week weather wise. Too bad I have been stuck in this building for most of it but I did feel a tiny tinge of fall in the air when I left the other night. This little taste of fall has me excited for all sorts of things:

  • Candles (I am a candle girl, light ‘em up!)
  • Pumpkin anything
  • Homemade soup!
  • Holiday coffee drinks
  • The super-fun October read-along that Sandy and I have planned (details to come)
  • Thanksgiving (yep, I am thinking about it)

What are you excited about?

The Sunday Salon: Our Super Dry Summer

Sunday Salon

My kids started school this past week and it all went fairly well.  It was a short week for them and they eased into it okay. Of course, today I got a notification that all of the high schools in the area have been openly threatened on Instagram. Not something that a parent wants to read. Ever. I feel uneasy about it. I’ve given The Teen the drill which he immediately shot down in typical teen fashion.

I’m a mom. I worry. I can’t help it. Especially with all the active shooter training I’ve taken. I’d rather talk about it than brush it under the rug and regret it later.

As for work, things are picking. Students return on the 25th but they will be on campus next week paying for parking and straightening out their schedules so I will be working the information counter. Fun! I don’t mind working with the students but in my twenty years there, I have never worked the information counter before. I’ve been pretty exhausted lately due to some health stuff so I hope I can get through the two weeks alright.

Yesterday, we dropped The Teen off at the lake for a church event and the lake was 80 feet below normal! The photo you see below is the boat launch. I took a look at the lake and almost cried. You don’t realize how bad the drought is until you see something like this.

Southern California is in dire need of water. If you are the praying type, can you pray some? We are in mandatory water restrictions now. I don’t know what will happen to our property as we have a large yard and most of it is hillside. If it dies, it will be a major fire concern and there is no water to fight brush fires which makes it even more alarming.

I mean, look at it! As I said, that is the boat launch which is supposed to be IN the water. I feel as if we are the subjects of a dystopian novel. It’s very scary to look around and take it all in.

Castaic Lake

Photo Credit: Castaic Lake

What am I reading?

I am reading Murakami of course! The other day I was chosen as a fan ambassador. I am taking “ambassador” to mean a “super fan” but the best part is that I get a signed copy of the book and four copies of another book to giveaway. I can’t wait to get that box.

As for the book, Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage is probably the most quiet novel of his that I’ve read. I am over halfway through it and so far, it’s very good but a little different.

People often ask me which book of his to read first. If you want the full Murakami experience, I suggest diving into the books that put him on the map, Kafka on the Shore or The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle but those can also turn a reader away if you aren’t used to speculative fiction. So to be safe, I often recommend his short stories or After Dark. But this new book, might be a good choice too.

I also finished Peter Heller’s The Painter. Very, very good I still have to write the review up but I really liked it

What am I cooking?

Again, I have no food in my house. What is up with that? Yesterday, we ate out but today I might cook-up a stir fry. Of course, that means I have to hit the market which I absolutely dread. Grilling, is a possibility too but it was 103 yesterday and today will probably be the same. Not sure I want to deal with the grill in this heat.

What am I watching?

We watched Catching Fire last night. I liked it better than the first movie and actually, The Girl was totally into it. When we saw the first movie, she was bored with it and did not like the few violent scenes that they showed. This time around, she understood the story better. The Teen refused to watch it and chose to hang out in his room. He’s being anti-social again. I know that he eventually reads my Sunday Salons so I will wave to him right now. Waving.

I am looking forward to TV this fall. The Walking Dead returns on October 12 and it feels as if the weeks are flying by so it will be here before we know it.  I am also looking forward to American Horror Story: Freak Show which premiers October 8th. That show is freaky on its own but the theme this season is FREAK SHOW and just the idea of it is freaking me out

Are you starting to think about your October reading? Sandy and I have a little something planned for October. More on that later.

What are you up to today?

Grab Your Book: What Are You Reading?

Grab Your Book

My reading has been going pretty well this summer. I haven’t hit a slump yet, which is good because last year I felt it coming on and man, it hit me full force. I am hoping to avoid that this year by not allowing ANY time to pass between books. So far, it’s working.

I just finished The Three. The Home Place and A Wild Sheep Chase. All, very different reads. All, a little difficult to write about.

California

I started California by Edan Lepucki and although I am only 5% in, I am hooked and will probably blow through it this weekend. It’s gotten a lot of attention lately, with the whole Colbert thing but it took me awhile to get a library copy so I am just getting to it now. In the opening pages, a popular shopping venue (one that I visit often) is mentioned. Have I told you before how much I enjoy reading about places I visit? Even if in the book,  the world has gone to hell, it’s fun to read about familiar places.

What will you be reading this weekend? Trying to fit anything in before school starts? I am also trying to get Desperation read for my Summer of King. It weighs in at 600+ pages but I am going to try to get it read before my kids start school on 8/13 because if I read it after, then it’s not really my Summer of King, is it?

The Sunday Salon: Book Club and a Concert

Concerts at the Park

It’s been a great weekend so far. Yesterday, my book club met to discuss The Goldfinch. I finished it in the nick of time. Seriously. I had a hard time reading that one steadily but I really, really enjoyed it and that last 5% on my Kindle was, well, amazing. It’s one of those books where you definitely feel as if you’ve been on a journey. I miss it a little bit.

Last night, we hit the first concert at the park. It was the largest crowd I’ve ever seen. You can see some of the crowd above. The band was a Journey tribute band and I must say, the lead singer sounded almost identical to Steve Perry. The music was awesome and the forty-somethings, holding each other and singing to Don’t Stop Believing was funny and cool at the same time. BOTH kids came with, which  made it extra nice. Yes, I am talking about The Teen!

Anyway, we snacked and lounged and hung out. It was the perfect way to end the day.

Today? No one feels like going to church except The Teen so he’ll go and I suspect we will end up at the bookstore or the market or both. You know how I hate the market. I really want the food to just appear but no matter how hard I wish, it never happens.

In other news, I entered this design contest to win a signed copy of Murakami’s new book. I’ve posted everywhere about it and will continue to do so until it ends on 8/8. I apologize in advance if you tire of seeing the posts but seriously, it’s two clicks and you don’t need to like a thing in order to vote. Voting can take place daily. I’ve seen  many of you vote already and I can’t tell you how grateful I am . To vote, click here.

Sunday Salon

What am I reading?

Now that I am done with The Goldfinch I am back to my Summer of King with The Regulators. I also realized that I never finished The Three. Probably not a good sign. I mean, I really thought I HAD finished it but looking at my Kindle I left it at 69%. Oops.

What am I cooking?

It has been pretty hot here. The only thing that sounds good right now, is maybe a foo-foo salad with candied pecans and feta or something like that.

What am I watching?

I got Better Off Dead in the mail yesterday from Netflix. I am anxious to share that one with The Girl and Teen.

What are you up to today? Are you reading a must-read book? If so, do tell.

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