Tag Archives: © 2019 Book Chatter

Sunday Matters: Getting Busy Again

Sunday Matters

We are heading into busy again. Are you surprised? Lots of stuff coming up although we did manage to get through those choir concerts last week just fine. I think we are all getting better at handling production weeks around here.

Right Now:

We didn’t go to church on Thursday because I went to urgent care to get a TB test so I can be a theatre volunteer. This also involves buckets of paperwork, training, fingerprints, background check and $85 from me. I’ve been volunteering for theatre for YEARS but new admins mean that policies are now enforced. For a working parent, this is rough. Go here to drop this off. Go there. Go to the district to turn it all in.

All this to say that since we could not go to church on Thursday, we are going this morning.

This Week:

Volunteering at Outreach on Monday. Life group on Tuesday. Wednesday is a theatre showcase. Thursday is Back to School night and then this weekend is a theatre festival. Oh, and I work every day, of course.


I started this:

The Bookshop of the Broken Hearted

It’s slow-going so far.


My son brought up the movie Our Idiot Brother on Netflix and we all kind of fell into it. I expected it to be really dumb but it’s not. It’s funny and sweet and surprisingly entertaining. It’s old. From 2011 but I had missed it when it first came out. It stars Paul Rudd but also has Zooey Deschanel and Elizabeth Banks.

New Things I’ve Tried:

At the conference I attended for work, my breakfast options were not fabulous so I opted for bars for a quick fix. I had not tried this brand before but it was very good and very filling. I was not hungry for lunch after eating one and no sugar dip afterward. They come in lots of flavors. I tried the Almond Bliss one below and it was delicious.

One Bar

Grateful for:

Books in the mail. This does not require explanation but just the sight of a package on my door step makes me so happy after a rough day.

What is your favorite thing right now? 


Review: White Elephant

White Elephant

White Elephant
By Julie Langsdorf
Ecco, 9780062857750, March 26, 2019, 320pp.

The Short of It:

A neighborhood is in flux when one of the homeowners builds a giant, monstrosity of a home right next to his quaint, cozy, cottage style neighbors.

The Rest of It:

Any book centered around a suburban neighborhood is probably a book that will end up on my shelf because I am obsessed with suburbia. Mostly, its inhabitants and in White Elephant, they are an interesting group for sure.

The addition of this ginormous home sets everyone on edge. The early morning hammering and the lack of space between it and the other homes that flank it create stress and frustration for everyone involved. This “stress” is acted on in many different ways. One of which is an affair with the said neighbor. And then, suddenly people are pregnant and talking about their own homes expanding.

Such is the case with master planned communities. Things change. People change. Builders try to predict how people will live but in the end, there is always progress. Homes gets bigger as families get bigger. Marriages fall apart due to stress. Perhaps from having to carry a heftier mortgage. More kids to raise, too. You get it.

White Elephant puts it all right there for you to observe. My one complaint is that I didn’t feel attached to any of the characters so their individual struggles didn’t mean all that much to me. However, what it says about progress and how inevitable it is kind of depressed me. I’ve seen very similar things in my own neighborhood which used to be a cul-de-sac neighborhood but is now no longer that due to the end of the road being opened up to the main highway. With the added through traffic came speed bumps. Progress. Not the good kind.

If you don’t mind a book that is rather episodic in nature, and you have a fascination for suburbia, then you will appreciate White Elephant.

Source: Review copy provided by the publisher.
Disclosure: This post contains Indiebound affiliate links.