Thursday, January 13

Books and stuff

I fell off the scripture reading wagon a few days. It smarted a bit. I let myself become distracted, overwhelmed by being a single mom for the week while Ryan's soaking up CA sun - er . . . I mean attending meetings, and just being plain tuckered out! We were all in bed tonight at 7:30 - that's how exhausted we are.

But you know what I love? The resolve to jump back on the scripture wagon tonight made me a better mother this evening. I felt inspired to handle a regular round of the boys' fighting over a book differently. I had already settled into my cozy bed to start my scripture reading when the fight erupted. Hard hearts, hollered tattling. And yet after my instant flame of ire was lit, it was replaced by the light of inspiration. Round one of mediation worked for the younger child who just wanted big brother's attention in the first place, but big brother held out until round three before he softened. Long days at school sure work a number on kids! And yet, an hour later just as I typed this out he came and asked, "Mom, do you know where my Book of Mormon is?" Ahhhh . . . icing on the cake.

Today I went to the first playgroup I've been invited to since living here. A mother from Morgan's nursery class invited classmates and their moms over for what will become a regular playgroup. Most of our kids have struggled with the drop-off and so this mother hoped that by familiarizing her son with his classmates, he'd do better. I was so glad she's gotten it going because I realized how much I miss that regular interaction with other women and the wealth of knowledge and support we glean from one another. Morgan loved it and was thoroughly worn out, taking a great nap without a tantrum this afternoon.

My reading attention is so splintered right now. I've got my Book of Mormon reading which I'm trying to again reassert as numero uno but it's had competition these last few days. Our ward's ladies' book group is reading the Scarlet Pimpernel which I've always wanted to read. I'm enjoying it after scriptures, but before I doze off into dream land which makes finishing it by next week's meeting a bit of a stretch. Then I also began listening to William Shirer's monumental study, The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich: A History of Nazi Germany. It's soooo good! This huge book is so daunting in hard copy but on audiobook, it's just my cup of tea! In the past two days I've gotten through the first six hours while doing chores and driving to/from Easton's school twice a day. I find myself rewinding often to catch important root philosophies, cultural nuances, and historical tidbits. Oh how I wish I had listened to this book years ago to answer my wonderings!

{ I've recently come to the conclusion that I crave audiobooks not only because I love to learn and to fill monotonous housewifery time, but also because I grew up listening to my dad tell me stories a lot. Camp outs and hikes were for outdoor tales, usually bears. Road trips . . . whatever he's read or heard but I'll always remember the Dan Storm Testaments. But any chance we have extended time together - he's got a story to tell and I love it! I've always wished I was a better story teller, but I still crave his stories. Audiobooks is just one way I satiate myself. And he got it from his dad, my Papa. Love you, Dad!!! }

I don't know if it's legal, but in the car I put an ipod earbud in one ear to enjoy my book while the kids enjoy their Scripture Scouts cds. Totally still heard and responded to an ambulance yesterday so I'm feeling like I'm safe and just as alert. I love those Scripture Scouts and that the kids will melt down if I don't turn them on but I just can't take another episode or my brain will explode! For my sake, on the way to school in the morning we listen to the New Testament Stories program done by the Mormon Channel on my ipod/radio tuner plug-in. They're great from a parent's standpoint, but the kids just tolerate it and don't crave it like SS. They're addicted. SS and any Skippy John Jones audiobook!

I found a LDS gal who blogs and reviews books and also has friends that post reviews. She's a voracious reader always searching out clean reads although historical fiction is not her favorite genre and I truly love them most of the time. I've only read her stuff for about a week but her review of "Little Women" was spot on so I'm giving her a go. She's also a homeschooler and reviews lots of children's books too. I love finding new stuff to read that I know is safe!