What I’ve Been Doing (Instead of Finishing Books and Blogging about Them)

the-dark-days-clubAccording to my Kindle, I’m 30 minutes away from finishing the book The Dark Days Club. I’ve been 30 minutes away from finishing it for over a week now.

I’m feeling anxious about something that I expect will happen, so if I don’t read it, it won’t happen, right? No, I don’t know why I care that much, or why I can’t seem to finish anything else while this book has my reading on hold. I’m driving myself crazy with my ridiculousness, and I’m hoping that by admitting it here, I can finish the dang book already.

What have I been doing instead?

  • Watching Westminster with the kids. And by myself once the kids went to bed. My annual dog show viewing party. I’m always amused by the many many many breeds I have zero interest in ever owning.
  • Slowly making progress on the nonfiction book Appetite for America. It’s interesting, but it seems like it is taking me forever to get through it. I’m hoping that there is a long bibliography in the back, because otherwise it really is the neverending book.
  • Bemoaning the menu plan and shopping trip I just finished before my husband got doctor’s orders to try a sort of elimination diet to see if he can pinpoint the source of some issues he’s had. Literally every vegetable I bought is on his “do not eat” list.
  • Lost my voice for two days, which is a problem when you use a literature-based homeschool curriculum. The kids got an unplanned day off from school on the second day, after I couldn’t manage to whisper my way through read alouds again.
  • Waiting ever so impatiently for The Hanging Tree. I’m on hold at the library, and I’m creeping up the holds list, but I want to know what hapens next in the series!
  • Began working on taxes. I haven’t gotten started on taxes this early in years, but it feels great. I’m hoping to have them finished before March, which would be incredibly exciting.
  • Started working through a backlog of Quicken data entry. I’d kept up with YNAB, which was awesome for budget tracking during the year. Then when I started working on taxes I realized how much better Quicken is for that, so … Good thing I started taxes early.
  • Feeling sheepish as I wait to again borrow for Moloka’i. I started and then got mixed up on my due dates and had it vanish off my Kindle right before the discussion on it began in book club. I’ve been avoiding my facebook group where they’re talking about it, because I don’t want to be spoiled as to what happens in the final third of the book.

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7 Quick Takes: The Book Hangover Edition

Seven Quick Takes

— 1 —

As I write this, I’m feeling a bit of a book hangover both from staying up too late reading the night before, and because all I want to do is get back into that world, and find out more about what happens with those characters. I’m trying to cure it by reading something completely different, but so far it’s not working. ๐Ÿ™‚ (See #7 below to know what book gave me the hangover)

— 2 —

If you remember my post earlier this year about the online course I’m using to teach my kids to cook, you can get their free knife skills mini-course right now. If it sounds appealing, don’t delay – the free offer won’t last long.

— 3 —

I’ll be announcing the picks for my 2017 book club November 14th. I am *so* excited about the selections, and can hardly wait to share them all.

— 4 —

Usborne had some new book releases this week, and I’ve been daydreaming about what books I want to get my kids for Christmas. And by “for Christmas” I mean both as Christmas presents, and as books for the Christmas season – they have some *really* fun interactive books that are Christmas-themed.

usborne-christmas-books-2017

If you click on the image you’ll go to a page with a larger image & info about each book. I’m probably going to get #s 3, 4, and 19. I already own #s 10 & 21.

— 5 —

I loved Big Little Lies as a book club book this year, and I’m kinda excited about the HBO miniseries based on the book. There’s a trailer out for it, and it looks like they’ve changed it a bit, but I’m still debating trying to figure out a way to watch it (we don’t have HBO.)

— 6 —

As much as I’ve resisted it, I think I need to acknowledge that posting 5 times a week isn’t going to reliably happen right now. Homeschooling is taking just a bit longer each day, and my youngest isn’t napping as easily, so my afternoon work time is getting squeezed and squeezed. I seem to be regularly getting only four posts anyway, so it seems like planning for four will be better than planning for five and getting frustrated when I don’t manage to get that fifth one written.

— 7 —

The Silkworm

The best book I’ve finished recently was The Silkworm, the second in the Cormoran Strike series by Robert Galbraith (J. K. Rowling). I enjoyed the first book, but I *really* liked the second. I binge-read it and the next day I paid for the late night I inflicted upon myself. It was worth it.

It’s all I can do to not get the third and start it immediately, but I’m trying to hold off a bit longer. Do not be surprised if next week I admit that I couldn’t wait any longer and binge-read the third. ๐Ÿ™‚

For more Quick Takes, visit This Ain’t The Lyceum!


Previously on The Deliberate Reader

One year ago: Book Club Basics: Food
Two years ago: Eiffelโ€™s Tower
Three years ago: 31 Days of Great Nonfiction: The Flamboya Tree
Four years ago: 31 Days of Great Nonfiction Reads {Day 21} An Innocent, A Broad

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting The Deliberate Reader!

7 Quick Takes in September 2016

Seven Quick Takes

— 1 —

Roughly one year ago I was still hunting for a church for us. Fast forward one year and I’m now regularly attending two churches. We have the one that I consider our home on Sunday morning, but it is SMALL, and my kids have asked to go to another one on Saturday night which has LOTS of kids. So I take them on Saturday night and then we go as a family on Sunday morning. And then on Sunday evening the kids go to Awana at yet a THIRD church. We should be well covered with varying church traditions, as they’re all different denominations (or no denomination at all).


— 2 —

AWANA started back up on recently. I now have two Sparks, and one still in the nursery, as she missed the Puggles cutoff by 18 days. I think she would have loved being a Puggle, and would have done well at it, but they do not budge on their cutoff dates. It was *almost* enough to make me switch back to our old Awana location, especially because we’re going to run into the same issue next year – she’ll miss the Cubbies cutoff by 18 days. Which will mean that she either only does one year of Cubbies or she doesn’t start Sparks as a Kindergartener.

I realize it seems like I’m overthinking it and need to relax, but I do have some extra reasons for wishing she’d made the cutoff this year. Ok, one big reason – potty training! The nursery isn’t set up to handle potty-training kids and I’m thinking before the year ends she will have reached that point.


— 3 —

Due to rainouts we’ve had makeup dates for two soccer games. It ends up meaning games on Saturday morning and then games on Sunday afternoon, and adding that second set of games makes for a really busy weekend. The Sunday afternoon time also conflicts with naptime, which is not ideal, and R isn’t a fan of them because they conflict with football. At least the season is almost over!


— 4 —

I joined a women’s Bible study through church (the Sunday morning one; guess I need to specify. Ha.) It meets weekly and has around 2 hours of homework each week, and I’ve already missed once because I can’t keep up.

I’m thinking I need to concede that it’s not working right now – 2 hours of work that has to be done when kids are occupied and I’m not exhausted (i.e., so I have working brain cells) is a large amount of the kid-free time work time I have each week.


— 5 —

Book club retreat is NEXT WEEK. I meant to search for Harry Potter-themed meal ideas, to forward to the ones planning the menu, but never managed it. I did buy something to bring to the retreat, and I’ll share it once I return (trying to keep the surprise since I know a couple of the book club members read my blog).


— 6 —

I thought I had all of my book club books picked for next year, and then realized I had 13 selected. Plus I forgot to look at page counts, and I don’t want to run into another Count of Monte Cristo behemoth. So, time to update my list and verify lengths and then maybe looking at the calendar and thinking about when each book would fit into an overall reading calendar may make it obvious which one has to go.


— 7 —

Burial RitesThe best book I’ve finished recently was Burial Rites, although I have to admit that it’s not an easy one to read. It’s powerful, and gripping, and heart-wrenching. It makes me very grateful I didn’t live in Iceland in the early 19th century, but it does make me wish I could take a Summer trip to visit.

For more Quick Takes, visit This Ain’t The Lyceum!


Previously on The Deliberate Reader

One year ago: Book Review: The Martian by Andy Weir
Three years ago: Most Memorable Books

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting The Deliberate Reader!

7 Quick Takes: All About The Kids

Seven Quick Takes

— 1 —

School started earlier in August, and I wasn’t entirely sure how things would go, since this is my first year having two official students, plus the baby is much more … troublesome … than she was when she was an actual baby. ๐Ÿ˜‰

So far, I’d have to say that things are going fairly well. My biggest issue currently is that I wish I had a bigger bookcase on the porch where we do most of our schooling. Two students in literature-based curriculum = twice as many books. Turns out we’re overflowing with books and other materials.

Kindergarten Book StackPartial Kindergarten Book Stack

— 2 —

G had a Cub Scout introductory meeting last night. Since I’m writing the post Thursday afternoon he hasn’t had the meeting yet and I have no idea how it’s going to go, what they would do, if if he’ll end up joining. But by the time you read this we should know all of that. Ok, maybe we won’t have decided about joining yet, but we’ll at least have the info to make that decision! He’s really excited about finding out about it at least.

— 3 —

H wants to join scouts too, so I need to get moving on finding out about something for her. Cub Scouts made it easy with signs by the local elementary school. Girl Scouts hasn’t done that, but I have a couple of emails out asking for info. ๐Ÿ˜‰

— 4 —

As I figure out how best to do school with two students and three kids, I’m tweaking things from last year. This week I’ve been splitting up their work into two groups, and doing mini sessions with each. That way they both get a break in the middle, and can do their own thing for a bit while I work with the other one. M also gets her school time – she knows to ask for it (her school time consists of sitting on my lap and listening to me read her books).

Things aren’t as polished as I’d like; I’m hoping we can to get a little bit faster with everything. My preference would be to finish all of school and have lunch eaten and cleaned up before M goes down for a nap at 1:30. We’re making it now, but we also haven’t added in everything I want to do for the year.

It’ll also be a change once the weather isn’t as nice to allow outside playtime. That’s been helpful right now, and I know we’ll miss it this winter. All the more reason to take advantage of it while we can!

School OutsideTaking Advantage of a Beautiful Day to Do Math Outside

— 5 —

The two big kids had dentist appointments this week, and luckily for me R ended up taking the day off of work, so I was able to leave M with him and just take the patients with me. So much easier than keeping her contained and out of trouble during their appointments!

G is going back next week for sealant on his molars and I’ve got my fingers crossed that R can take a longer lunch and come home and watch both girls while I run G over to that appointment. Assuming no crisis pops up that morning he should be able to do that, but I’m trying not to totally be counting on it.

— 6 —

We’ve had a super rainy start to soccer – they actually played their first game without having had a practice because of all the rain-outs. This week they had practice and once again I find myself amazed at my good fortune. Both practices are at the exact same time and location, and they even practice on back-to-back fields. I was able to set my chair in between the fields and swivel my head to watch both of them. I’m going to enjoy that this season, because I don’t imagine I’ll ever get so lucky again with concurrent practices. Or if I do they’ll be at different locations and I’ll be scrambling to get them both where they need to be!

Post Rainy Soccer GameAfter Her First (Very Rainy) Soccer Game

— 7 —

We had roughly a month-long break with chapter book readalouds, and now we’re back into the routine of reading them daily. We’ve recently finished up The Year of the Dog (we all loved it), Nancy Drew and the Clue Crew #1 (H loved it), and Gone Fishing (G & I loved it, and I’ve already gushed about it on Instagram I thought so much of it.).

I am having to pay more attention to library holds lists and pickup times, because adding an extra person I’m trying to intentionally select readalouds for, timed to school topics, is still something I’m getting used to. It’s one thing when I’m getting books for her but it doesn’t matter when they arrive, and another when I want them at particular times, or to be sure I’m getting a balance of topics.

Gone Fishing

For more Quick Takes, visit This Ain’t The Lyceum!

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting The Deliberate Reader!


Previously on The Deliberate Reader

One year ago: Book Review: Daddy Long Legs by Jean Webster
Three years ago: Cooking the Book: Trader Joeโ€™s Vegetarian Cookbook

7QT: Wrapping up Summer Edition

— 1 —

I really didn’t expect to be saying this, but I think I’m ready for summer to be over and for us to get back into our regular routines. I had planned on restarting homeschool the same day the local schools start back up, but now I’m rethinking that plan, and may begin August 1.

Part of the advantage of that is that it’ll give us extra flexibility later in the fall, when hopefully things are cooler and we can spend more time outside than I’m wanting to do currently.

— 2 —

5 Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

I’m still moving along with the reread of Harry Potter. I’m in book #5 now, and I’d forgotten just how long it took for them even to get back to Hogwarts. No wonder this book is so long! I’m savoring every appearance of Fred and George in the book, before they make their dramatic exit.

— 3 —

G has a special outing with his dad coming up next month – they’re going to go and see a baseball game in Cincinnati! G’s favorite team is the Cardinals (why? who knows.) and they’re going to be in town playing the Reds. He’s super excited. We knew H would never last through an entire game, so she’s staying home with me and M.

Instead of going along to the baseball game, H got to go to the movies with daddy last weekend. She was thrilled. They also stopped for ice cream on the way home and she was beyond thrilled about that. ๐Ÿ™‚

— 4 —

I’ve been trying to make some adjustments to my diet and while breakfast has been easy, lunch is a bit more challenging, and snacks have been a real issue. I didn’t realize how much I relied on dairy until I tried limiting it. I find myself reaching for a cheese stick mid-afternoon when I need something quick and easy, and then trying to think of something else. ๐Ÿ™‚

— 5 —

Over the last few years my kids have done VBS at 6 different churches (not all in one year, just that many different places). It’s really been interesting seeing the varying drop off and pick up routines the various churches have – some of them work much more smoothly than others, although I will concede that some of the churches are working with lots more kids than others. Some of them are also much more organized than others as far as passing information along to the parents.

— 6 —

I’ve been working on a homeschooling update for ages now, talking about how I combine Sonlight and Timberdoodle. It’s taking for.ev.er. I need to rethink how I’m structuring it or I’m never going to get it done. Maybe just list the favorite Timberdoodle items we’ve added, instead of trying to be comprehensive with it. But I have very strong negative feelings about some things too, and I kind of want to note that as well, and possibly save someone else their money.

— 7 —

32 Yolks

The best book I’ve finished lately was 32 Yolks – it was perfect for my reading mood at the time, and I flew through it.

For more Quick Takes, visit This Ain’t The Lyceum!

Seven Quick Takes

Disclosure: Amazon links are affiliate links, but none of the others are. Thank you for supporting The Deliberate Reader!


Previously on The Deliberate Reader

One year ago: Book Review: The Other Daughter by Lauren Willig
Two years ago: Book Review: The Professor and the Madman by Simon Winchester
Three years ago: Thoughts on Book Ratings and Reviews

Seven Quick Takes: Summer Edition!

— 1 —

Today is the end of the second week of summer, and next week begins a stretch of busy weeks. VBS, taekwondo camp, more VBS – it’s either going to be the best stretch ever or I’m going to get to the end of it and be ready to collapse from all the driving around town trying to be places at specific times. ๐Ÿ˜‰

— 2 —

The first day of summer break was not so good (kids arguing endlessly over everything) – apparently we need a little more structure to our days. So I stole an idea I found on Facebook that was aimed at teens, and adapted it for my older two.

It’s the daily screen time checklist, listing all the things they need to do before they can have screens. While they haven’t even been doing it for a full two weeks, so far I would say it’s an astonishing success. They do not nag at me for screens, because they know the answer already: if their checklists aren’t done, then they do not get screens.

I haven’t even had to enforce time limits once they get their checklists done, because they take long enough that combining them with late afternoon / evening activities, there isn’t that much time for them to use screens (granted, I’m more lenient than the 15-minutes a day people I seem to run across regularly online.)

— 3 —

I haven’t been doing much with Usborne stuff lately, just because I’ve been so busy with other things. And I have to say that from a totally selfish standpoint, I wish I’d been pushing to make some sales in June because the sales incentive that they’re offering is a mug that has this awesome reading quote.

— 4 —

The idea of a summer reading program is super appealing to me (no surprise, considering how much I love the library), but in practice I find it to be a real pain in the neck. Books that get counted for reading points have to be turned in to a separate location, and I have to note which kid(s) get credit for which books(s) and it ends up being such a hassle. Part of me wants to just say all kids get credit for all the books, but invariably there’s at least some books that one or more didn’t read or listen to and honesty compels me to acknowledge that.

— 5 —

The cooking lessons for the kids continue. They love them, and I keep telling myself that it will pay off eventually. I will keep you posted on what we use for it, but I want to give it a real trial before reporting back. So far I’ve tried two different books and one online program. Updates to come.

— 6 —

M’s vocabulary continues to increase exponentially, and she has this hilarious way of walk/running that cracks me up every time she does it. It’s like she’s in such a rush to get where she’s going that she throws her whole body into it.

— 7 —

The best book I’ve finished recently was Big Little Lies – loved the characters (most of them anyway), loved the twists, loved how I didn’t figure it all out. And, I’m really looking forward to diving into it in the discussion – this week has been introductory/overview questions, but we’ll be getting into more substantive questions next week.

For more Quick Takes, visit This Ain’t The Lyceum!

Seven Quick Takes

Disclosure: Amazon links are affiliate links, but none of the others are. Thank you for supporting The Deliberate Reader!

I Might Not Be Blogging But I Have Been Reading At Least

Spring Flowers 2016Oh, hello there neglected blog.

Last week was … somewhat overwhelming. Mostly in a good way (sister-in-law visiting! book club! making progress on some being-a-responsible-adult projects!), but also in a not-so-good way (illness). Blogging just didn’t happen.

I’ve known that to reliably post, I need to have those posts written on the weekend before, and not count on any time during the week. In case it’s not obvious, my weekends lately have not involved a lot of computer time, and I haven’t mastered blogging from my phone. Perhaps I need to figure that out, or I can just acknowledge that life priorities are what they are and sometimes the blog has to take a step back behind other things.

On a positive note, that reading slump I’ve been in might be over. Tentatively I’m saying it is since I’ve already read more books in March than I’d read in January and February combined. (Not counting picture books; I’m talking books-for-myself books.)

What have I read?

I’m also in the middle of reading Circus Fire (which I’d started ages ago and had to return, but have reborrowed it and am making progress), and Station Eleven. I also did finish reading Ramona the Pest to my kids and they loved it, and it was fun introducing my kids to a book I remember reading as a child. It was also fun seeing just how much of it I remembered so clearly – like Ramona boinging her classmate’s curls! They’ve requested the next book, so we’ve moved on to Ramona the Brave.

And if you’re wondering, no the picture has nothing to do with the post. It’s just a picture I took yesterday of my flowers in the rain and I thought it was pretty, and brightened up an otherwise image-less post. ๐Ÿ™‚

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting The Deliberate Reader!

Seven Quick Takes (mostly about my kids)

Seven Quick Takes

— 1 —

We took a week and a half off from school around Christmas & New Years. It was mostly nice, having the free time, but in many ways I’d just as soon do school if the weather isn’t nice enough for the kids to play outside a lot. When the temps were mild enough that they could have been outside for a long stretch, it was pouring, and when it stopped raining the temperature dropped. They’d go out for 15 minutes or so, but then would come back inside saying they were too cold and needed hot chocolate. ๐Ÿ™‚

— 2 —

G got his huge Lego set for Christmas (and for finishing All About Reading Level 4). He finished it and then was ready to look and see what the next Lego set he wants to get for his birthday.

His birthday is in July.

— 3 —

Also after Christmas both G & H started informing me about what they wanted for their birthday cakes. Like I said, G’s birthday is in July, and H’s is in June. I told them that they had plenty of time to decide, but they were adamant that they needed to tell me RIGHT NOW.

For the record, H wants chocolate with a rainbow and m&m’s. With G I couldn’t even follow what he was saying he was rambling so much. I’ll worry about it in July.

— 4 —

Lately M has started throwing an absolute fit when it’s time to go upstairs and get ready for bed. She’s fine once she actually gets upstairs, and she goes down into her crib without much of a problem (barring fireworks on New Years Eve, thank you so much neighbors), but getting her upstairs? SCREAMING. Tears. Running to me in desperation. It’s kind of funny, but it’s also getting kind of old. It used to be daddy’d tell her it was time to go upstairs and get ready for bed and she’d trot off after him and climb upstairs and it was adorable. I’m hoping she goes back to that soon.

— 5 —

Desert DustupNew Usborne titles are out, and it’s good timing because G finished Wheelnuts book #2 (Spooky Smackdown) and has requested book #3 (Space Mash). He literally finished the book and handed it to me and asked me to order the next one. When I said I couldn’t right then he said “well, I’ll take care of [the baby].”

We weren’t even at home right then, and he still wanted me to put M down and order the new one. Clearly he’s a fan of these books.

— 6 —

G went with Daddy to see the new Star Wars movie last Monday, and I’ve been so worried he’s going to say something about it at taekwondo or Awana or something and spoil it for people who haven’t seen it yet. We’ve emphasized that he can’t talk about it, and H picked up on it, because when G started telling me something about the movie H got very upset: YOU CAN’T TELL ANYONE ANYTHING ABOUT IT!!!”

I clarified that it was ok to tell me about it, because I’d told him that I didn’t mind hearing about it even though I haven’t seen it, but I did think it was funny how concerned she was that he might spoil it for me. ๐Ÿ™‚

— 7 —

The Count of Monte Cristo Robin Buss TranslationFor the best book I finished recently I’m going to give the nod more to the two books I’m most pleased to have finished. First up is The Count of Monte Cristo, because at that many pages it’s an accomplishment. Even finished it before the month we’ll be discussing it, and I was trying really hard to make that happen. I did enjoy it, and it made my best books of 2015 list.

SeabiscuitI’m also happy to have finished Seabiscuit, which took me FOR.EV.ER. I’m not sure what to rate the book, because parts of it I really, really enjoyed, but parts of it dragged on and on and on for me. The parts about the individuals involved with Seabiscuit were a solid 4 or even 4.5. The specific details about all of the races and what happened in each one? A 2, maybe a 1.5. I do not care about horseracing enough to want to know all those details.

For more Quick Takes, visit This Ain’t The Lyceum!

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting The Deliberate Reader!


Previously on The Deliberate Reader

One year ago: Book Review: The Last Song by Eva Wiseman
Two years ago: Book Review: Shades of Grey by Jasper Fforde
Three years ago: Book Review: Memorize the Faith by Kevin Vost

7QT on taekwondo, a literary advent, oils, long weekends, and more books

Seven Quick Takes

— 1 —

The big kids have a taekwondo tournament next weekend. I dithered about putting them in it, but apparently I am a sucker for them begging to do the tournaments, because I have yet to say no to any of the local ones. Fortunately there are only two local ones a year, so it’s not like I’m saying yes all that often.

G is especially excited because as a purple belt, he is able to participate in the board breaking competition. He’s wanting to earn a gold medal by breaking all of his boards!

— 2 —

Advent Book-a-DayA heads-up on a special offer right now: if you’re looking to start a new holiday tradition with a book-a-day advent calendar, check out this great deal: 24 NEW books, for $110, tax & shipping included. That’s under $5 a book. These are not necessarily Christmas-themed books, so you can continue to enjoy them throughout the year.

Let me know if you’re interested – order have to go in soon to ensure you have all the books by December 1!

Curious to know more? Check out these videos, for kids ages 0-7, and kids ages 4-9.

— 3 —

My oils order this month is a *huge* one, because they were having such a great customer special – 6 free oils once my order was high enough. I got sneaky and asked my friends and family if they had any oils they needed or wanted to try, to help get my order total up. It totally worked, so they get oils, I got to put in a bigger order than I personally needed, and I will be getting lots of free oils. A definite win-win!

No picture yet, as it’s still on the way, so instead here’s a (small) picture of last month’s shipment. Not pictured: the free diffuser, and the extra oils I ordered for friends and family and already distributed to them. That’s right, I did the same thing last month. More bonuses for me. ๐Ÿ™‚

October ER order

— 4 —

Last week was just ridiculously amazing as far as the weather goes. The kids got a ton of outside time, and I had the windows and doors open enjoying the temps and breeze. Knowing that it wouldn’t last made it that much sweeter. This week has definitely been cooler, and the kids aren’t as interested in playing outside for long. It’s not even that cold, but with their aversion to shoes they don’t make it too long before they’re ready to come in. Once it gets even colder they’ll finally concede that yes, they should wear shoes, and a coat, and gloves, etc., and they should be good to play outside again for more than 5 minutes.

— 5 —

Sticker Dolly Dressing Fashion Designer Activity PackWhen I got my Usborne starter kit shipment I unpacked it while the kids were around. Which was nice, as I got to see their reactions, but then I was having to keep them from running off with them immediately. H especially claimed several of them – of course they were for her, weren’t they? Later G pulled aside the books for him, and the books for baby M. It was so cute!

What did H claim most insistently? The Sticker Dolly Dressing Fashion Designer Activity Pack, of course. It’s pretty, and it’s got dolls on the cover, and it’s stickers, and why *wouldn’t* it be for her?

— 6 —

My husband’s job has a use-it-or-lose-it vacation day policy (unlike his last place which allowed/encouraged stockpiling of days). What that means for us right now is when he’s got days left at towards the end of the year he has to take them. So, he’s got a lot of three day weekends in his future! ๐Ÿ™‚

— 7 —

My Kitchen YearTwo “best books finished recently” to mention. The first is a nonfiction audiobook: Ruth Reichl’s latest memoir/cookbook, My Kitchen Year. I enjoyed listening to it, but the drawback to doing it that way is that it’s much harder to make note of any recipes that sound tempting. I am such a fan of her nonfiction.

No Children No PetsThe other one was a surprise – No Children, No Pets. It was a readaloud for G’s school, and I wasn’t super excited about starting it. But it ended up being such a fun read. The timing was nice too, as we’d just gotten home from a trip to Florida so reading about that setting was a little more fun for him.

I wouldn’t go out of your way to hunt it down to read as an adult, but as a sweet, old-fashioned readaloud for kids this one gets two thumbs up!

For more Quick Takes, visit This Ain’t The Lyceum!

Disclosure: Amazon links are affiliate links, but none of the others are. Thank you for supporting The Deliberate Reader!


Previously on The Deliberate Reader

One year ago: Book Review: Twerp by Mark Goldblatt
Two years ago: Book Review: In the Shadow of Blackbirds by Cat Winters
Three years ago: Book Review: Perfectly Unique by Annie Downs

7 Quick Takes on Retreats, 31 Days, Book Club(s), and Oils. Plus Reading Slumps.

Seven Quick Takes

— 1 —

I leave for my book club retreat later today. The last two years I’ve been nothing but excited about it, but this year I’m feeling a little more apprehensive. This year I’ll also have a toddler with me. Those facts are definitely related. ๐Ÿ™‚

— 2 —

The last two weeks I’ve been working like crazy on multiple different projects, and feeling like I’m doing the best job I can with any of them. My 31 Days series on book clubs is not complete for next month, and I’d hoped to have it entirely written and scheduled before October began.

— 3 —

I’ve also been working on a joint project with another blogger, and I am so excited about it. I’m not sure when we’ll be announcing it, but you’ll hear all about it as soon as I can share. Combine that with trying to do some prep for other blog plans in the near future, and I’m figuring out that I may be attempting to do more than I can sustain.

— 4 —

The final project is just personal, life as an adult stuff. So not exciting, but so necessary.
Plus all the other stuff that comes with being an adult with small children. Meals! Laundry! Cleaning! Dishes! I feel like I’ve been scrambling for ages and am about to have my head explode – have I missed a deadline? What am I forgetting?

(Then there are lots of other ideas percolating in my brain that I *want* so much to do, but don’t know when I would do them.)

— 5 —

September Young Living Essential Oils Essential Rewards OrderNo good segue here, so let me just say my latest oils order was all about Thieves products. Refills on soap and cleaner (I *love* that cleaner!) and more throat drops. Plus more cedarwood and my one-and-only new-to-me product this month: Spearmint oil! Why spearmint? There’s been several times my reference guides have suggested it for various things, and this way I can try it the next time I run across one of those suggestions.

My vagueness is all because I don’t remember the specific uses I had in mind. ๐Ÿ™‚

— 6 —

I’ve been in a ridiculous reading slump lately. I’ve got so many books started, but finishing them has been a challenge. Looking at my upcoming blogging calendar, and my review list generally inspires me to get reading. Recently it’s been making me want to bury my head under the blankets and sleep for a week. Clearly I don’t do well when I have too many “required” books on my agenda, and I need to be better about remembering that.

— 7 —

And a little bit of housekeeping: because of that 31 Days series that will be posted in October, the “New on the Stack” linkup that usually posts on the 3rd of each month will go up on the 29th – next week! It’ll stay open through October 10th, so plenty of time for you to add your linkup, whenever you might want to do that.

For more Quick Takes, visit This Ain’t The Lyceum!

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