It is easy to love the people far away. It is not always easy to love those close to us. It is easier to give a cup of rice to relieve hunger than to relieve the loneliness and pain of someone unloved in our own home. Bring love into your home for this is where our love for each other must start. -Mother Teresa

Friday, September 1, 2017

What I Read in August

I made a goal to read 75 Books in 2017. You can see the books that I have read to far by clicking HERE.

We started school this past month, so I was sure my reading time would disappear but instead as I usually do when I get a little stressed, I create time to read. (Yes, by saying "create time" I pretty much actually mean "ignore the things that I should be doing instead such as cleaning and folding laundry.") 

Often people ask me how I can read so much. There are many other small ways but one of my favorites is reading by reading young adult and children's books.

 I think some of the most beautiful, and even thought-provoking, literature is written specifically for these age groups. This month some of these "younger" books included Mockingbird, Olive's Ocean, and The Graveyard Book.

Read below your reading level because, if not, you are missing out!





Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes

Mockingbird by Kathryn Erskine

Everything we Keep by Kerry Lonsdale







Me, Myself, & Bob: A True Story 
about God, Dreams, and Talking Vegetables by Phil Vischer

Birds: Myth, Lore & Legend by Rachel Warren-Chadd and Marianne Taylor

Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders 
and the Birth of the FBI by David Grann (Book Club) 




Olive's Ocean by Kevin Henkes

Mrs. Bennett has Her Say by Jane Juska

The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman  (Book Club) 

A Thomas Jefferson Education by Oliver DeMille





Book that I enjoyed most this month:
I wouldn't say I enjoyed it most but it is the one that surprised me the most, The Graveyard Book. It was one I voted to read simply because it was a Newberry Award winner. When I started and it involved murder, ghosts, werewolves, and the such I wasn't sure I would finish it. But after the first few pages I was hooked and couldn't put it down. 

Book that still has me thinking about it: 
Me, Myself, & Bob and Mockingbird

Book that I will discuss with my kids: 
A Thomas Jefferson Education and Birds Myth, Lore, & Legend

Book that I will never read again: 
Mrs. Bennett has Her Say

Book that I gave up on and never finished: 
None

Book that I have previously read: 
Flowers for Algernon

Book that I will read again someday: 
Killers of the Flower Moon (It even included Pinkerton and other information from one of last month's Book Clubs, Girl In Disguise!) 





Have you read any of these books? 
What did you think about them? 

What did you read in August? 
Anything you would recommend? 


Wednesday, August 2, 2017

What I Read in July

I made a goal to read 75 books in 2017. This month I only finished 4 books. I have been reading several others but they aren't going to be done until August.

You can see what I have read so far this year by clicking HERE.




*Book Club 2

*Book Club









Book that I enjoyed most this month:
Camino Island

Book that still has me thinking about it: 
none of them really...

Book that I will discuss with my kids: 
none of these...

Book that I will never read again: 
all of these

Book that I gave up on and never finished: 
none but I was close sometimes with We Are Not Ourselves

Book that I have previously read: 
none but I had a huge fear that the John Grisham one would feel like that. That wasn't the case at all and I found the book refreshing and enjoyable. (Haven't said that about a Grisham novel in a LONG time.) 

Book that I will read again someday: 
probably none of these but I may watch Girl in Disguise if they ever make it into a Netflix series. That is sort of how the book felt... as though it was adapted from a movie. 


Have you read any of these books? 
What did you think about them? 

What did you read in July? 
Anything you would recommend? 

Monday, July 10, 2017

What I Read in June

I made a goal to read 75 books in 2017. This month I met my goal! So I am not going to read anymore books for the rest of the year.

Not really, I'm still reading. Actually this month I added Audible to my apps and so I listened and read two of these books: Beneath a Scarlet Sky and Black Beauty. That still counts right?

You can see what I have read so far this year by clicking HERE.




Beneath a Scarlet Sky by Mark Sullivan (Book Club 2)
Andy Warhol was a Hoarder by Claudia Kalb
Once Upon a Summer by Jeanette Oke
A Single Shard by Linda Sue Park
Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg
Looking for Alaska by John Green



The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend by Katarina Bivald
Before the Fall by Noah Hawley (Book Club 1)
Black Beauty by Anna Sewell




The Great Divorce by C.S. Lewis


If at Birth You Don't Succeed by Zach Anner
Talking As Fast As I Can by Lauren Graham




Book that I enjoyed most this month:
 Beneath a Scarlet Sky

Book that still has me thinking about it: 
Beneath a Scarlet Sky, Andy Warhol was a Hoarder, Lean In and The Great Divorce...yeah, I know my brain has too many tabs open. 

Book that I will discuss with my kids: 
The Great Divorce (Nan will read it for school this year along with 8 other of Lewis' books) and Talking As Fast As I Can (because the oldest three and I watched every single episode of Gilmore Girls together) and Lean In (Because every parent should discuss this stuff with their kids...not just because I have 4 daughters)

Book that I will never read again: 
Before the Fall and If At Birth You Don't Succeed

Book that I gave up on and never finished: 
none but I seriously contemplated If At Birth You Don't Succeed

Book that I have previously read: 
Once Upon A Summer (and it inspired me to dig out all of my Jeanette Oke books from a box in the attic. Turns out I already owned a copy...actually I own the whole series in a box set. So they are now out on book shelves which means I had to buy another book shelf. You may be a book hoarder if....) 

Book that I will read again someday: 
The Great Divorce, Black Beauty, Lean In, and possibly Beneath a Scarlet Sky 


Have you read any of these books? 
What did you think about them? 

What did you read in June? 
Anything you would recommend? 


Friday, June 2, 2017

What I read in May














Book that I enjoyed most this month:
Britt-Marie Was Here (Fredrik Backman can't seem to get it wrong!) 


Book that still has me thinking about it:
Love Does and Portraits of Courage


Book that I would discuss with my kids:
Love Does and Portraits of Courage


Book that I will never read again:
This Side of Paradise


Book that I gave up on and didn't finish: 
none


Book that I will read again someday:
Love Does

Have you read any of these books?
What did you think? 


What did you read in May?
What do you recommend? 

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

History: What I Didn't Understand

This past year, the girls and I have visited the Manzanar National Historic Site, which was a Japanese "relocation center" in California.



In Missouri, we studied about slavery and segregation at the George Washington Carver National Monument.



We also spent some time at The Hubbell Trading Post National Historic Site in Arizona, which is the the oldest operating trading post on the Navajo Nation. There we learned about the Native American "relocation" and other injustices.




Most recently, we visited the CANDLES Holocaust Museum in Indiana where we had a Q & A time with a Romanian Holocaust survivor who was part of the horrific "Mengele Twins" experiments in Auschwitz.



In each of those places, we were able to put a literal face to historical events. We heard and we saw another view.


The combination of homeschooling and internationally adopting has completely changed the way I view history. I am only sorry that it took me so long. This is just one of the examples of how the history we studied in school may not have shared multicultural views of an event.



This post was inspired by this article: 




Another place we have yet to take the girls is the Ukrainian National Museum of Chicago. They try to introduce the horrors of the Holodomor, which is the genocide of 10 million people under Stalin's Rule. (Another piece of modern history not often shared or studied.)  

Where have you been or what have you read that has changed your view of history?