Tuesday, September 17, 2013

What are you reading?

 Let me make a list of places I have/had library cards to:
  • Sgt. Bluff
  • Sioux City
  • Ames
  • Orange City
  • London
  • Urbandale
  • Johnston
  • Grimes
  • Des Moines Public
And if we throw in school library cards, I also would have ones to Northwestern, Iowa State, London City Metro Colleges, Gonzaga. Basically I collect library cards. I collect library cards like some people collect passport stamps. Fortunately, library cards, not counting library fines, are cheaper than traveling abroad :)

Needless to say, if I bought books I could potentially avoid piling up the library fines that I'm currently accruing at DM Public. And if Lance ever stops working downtown, I'm going to have to find someone else to make my twice a week library run. Lance has been working downtown for eight years, except for a short two month gap a few years ago. He loathes my library runs because he always feels like he's picking up or returning the oddest things - like I've Got Your Number by Sophia Kinsella (don't read, it's really a poor read) or the latest Justin Timberlake cd The 20/20 Experience. I like broad range of topics as illustrated below. I've made my way through most/parts of all these books and here's what I think.

1. Parenting: Illustrated with Crappy Pictures. Great laugh for those with toddlers or those who have been through the parenting game. There are some language things, but when your toddler just dumped pee all over the floor (again) or sneezed his nasty strep throat germs all over you (again) or your husband managed to somehow to sleep through the crying baby for the second night in a row, some language is warranted.
2. Bebe Day by Day. I'm still not convinced that French kids eat sardine mousse at the age of 18 months. In fact I don't know any 18 year-olds that would eat sardine mousse. But I didn't feel like I had any huge revelations, especially after having previously read Druckerman's Bringing up Bebe. Again, don't immediately go to babies when they are crying at night; PAUSE and see if they are truly in need of something. My second learning was that french daycare is AWESOME - cheap, supportive and they all have a personal chef. I might even consider moving to France for that very reason (despite a very apparent lack language skills - parlez-vous anglais?
3. The Condition.  Okay, I didn't read this one. I'm not sure I started it. Perhaps I did and found it depressing. But it must have been due before I really had a chance to dig in. Another day.
4. The Reason for God. Oh Tim Keller, you stretch me. We read this for our small group's "summer book club" and it was thought provoking and challenging. Basically it lays out all the reasons for people who have disbelief about Christianity and dispels each one of the reasons and then Keller gives the reasons why you should believe in Christianity. It's not a light read by any means. 
5. Calling Me Home. I really, really liked this book. It reminded me a bit of The Help in it's setting and era. It surprised, saddened and made me hopeful all in one setting. It's an easy read and enjoyable.
6. Relish: An Adventure in Food, Style and Everyday Fun. I miss daytime television. Daphne Oz is the author of this book and on The Chew. She's stylish and lovely and uber-healthy. It's not so much a cookbook as it's more of a lifestyle book. Which is fine if you like that sort of stuff, but I was looking for food and her recipes were a bit fussy and filled with ingredients that I doubted my family would like. I really wanted to like it, but it fell a bit flat.
7. The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook. Another blogger gone cookbook author. As a general rule I enjoy bloggers gone "authors." Perlman's pictures are beautiful and her recipes are lovely, but they were not where this family is at. I try to introduce adventurous items into the L&L's diets (lest they become picky Todd family eaters *shudders*) but I found that the recipes had "adventurous" ingredients and a long prep time. Not for this busy momma.
8. The Picky Palate Cookbook. Blogger author (have you noticed a trend in my reading patterns?) I think that I should check this one out again. Author Jenny Flake had a lot of good, practical recipes for families that seemed "normal." I didn't get a chance to do more than just flip through this one because it was due back to the library.
9. Garden Rescue. Not a book about food! Or chick lit! Probably my favorite thing about the summer is our garden. I love eating (yes, I know more food) fresh food picked in my backyard. What I don't love so much are the bugs and fungus that occasionally infest our poor plants. In our seven years of owning this house and our subsequent six gardens, we've learned a few things but we have a long ways to go in figuring out most of our garden issues. Lance hoped that this book would contain a magical solution to our terrible grass, but it didn't. I would tell you that solution is fertilizer and regular watering. Bam. Grass and lawn genius. Someone pay me $100 for my consultation fee. But I digress. This book had some helpful solutions and insights. Nothing earth shattering though.

These are just a few things I read this summer. I also re-read the entire Anne of Green Gables series, The Secrets of Happy Families, The Tao of Martha, My Berlin Kitchen and a few others. I'm trying to get Lance to finish reading Parenting with Love and Logic. Because we need to figure out the best way to parent Lucan and not screw him up :)
What's been on your nightstand?

1 comment:

*carrie* said...

Thanks for sharing, Kara. I just put Calling Me Home on my list. I just finished an interesting book called Making It, a radical home ec handbook.

Have a good weekend!