The Boy Who Would Not Grow Up

Wish I could give you some fairy dust this week! …But since I’m not Tinker Bell here are some “lovely thoughts” to get you thinking before book club on Thursday…

“You just think lovely wonderful thoughts, and they lift you up in the air.”

The magic of dreams are never ending! Do you remember your dreams when you wake? What does your Neverland look like?

A dog for a nanny, a mom cleaning and straightening children’s brains… what was your favorite unrealistic part or scene of this story?

The loss of childhood is inevitable, what do you miss most from your youth? When did you loose your ability to fly? Aka: At what point in your life did you start considering yourself an adult? …if you are, in fact, a grown-up 🙂

Assuming you’ve seen the Disney version of Peter Pan, what are your thoughts on the differences? and similarities?

If you are a mother, how do you encourage your children to dream? Also, Mommies of preschoolers this is an excellent resource to accompany the book from Homeschool Creations: Peter Pan Preschool Pack

Peter Pan discussion:
this Thursday May 12th
@ 7:00pm
Paradise Bakery & Cafe


You Can Fly!

Happy thoughts of this month’s book are lifting me off my feet and into my dreams. Full of whimsy and witty banter, this story is a joy to read as an adult. Peter Pan was a huge hit on the stage before it was transformed into a novel. Children enjoy the story, but the only ones who can truly appreciate the magic of Barrie’s writing are adults willing to tap into their inner child.

What is your childhood fantasy? What would happen if your fantasy came to life? How can you live in the fantasy as an adult? Let Barrie’s story take you on your own magical journey. You already know the way: “Second star on the right and straight on till morning!”

Join us May 12th @ 7pm at Paradise Bakery, Hamilton Town Center. Peter Pan is our young reader for the year. Follow the links to buy it online at Borders (the version I selected has footnotes for some of the British terms). It’s in the public domain so you can find free downloads and audio books online (only in the US) which means e-reader versions should be extremely low-priced.

*disclaimer!!! In my version, Tinker-Bell says a naughty word a few times, and the British language can be tricky to understand here and there. I recommend selecting a children or teen version for reading to your children.

All about Tea

(photo credit)

Our book for April is Three Cups of Tea.

Our discussion will be on location for lunch at Tea’s Me.

Saturday April 16, 2011
*on location*
Three Cups of Tea
by Greg Mortenson and David Oliver Relin

I look forward to going to Tea’s Me every year! Yummy food, an amazing tea experience and all while discussing a book! Hope you are enjoying the book and can fit this little lunch date into your busy Spring schedule! We are meeting on Saturday this month so be sure to change the date on your calendars.
May’s book is still a secret! Come to the April meeting at Tea’s Me and someone will a copy of May’s book!
See you in a few weeks!
Happy Reading

In One Word: Fascinating

What do Paul Revere’s ride, Hush Puppies shoes, Sesame Street and crime rates in New York City have in common? They all are examples of The Tipping Point, and you can find out why in this month’s book, The Tipping Point, by Malcolm Gladwell.

I have to admit that I was a little skeptical when we discussed adding this book to our reading list this year. I don’t get into nonfiction as much and more often than not have problems getting all the way through nonfiction books. The Tipping Point was definitely an exception. And the first word I would use to describe it is “fascinating.”

The Tipping Point proposes that some ideas, products, messages and behaviors act like viruses do, and when certain factors align, they reach a critical “tipping point’ and spread like an epidemic. The research and theories in the book are interesting, but it is the examples and stories that Gladwell uses that really make his theories come to life. I think you’ll find yourself saying, “Wow, I never thought about it that way before.”

This is one of those books that will make you think and start to notice more about the world around you. You just might find yourself applying some of the principles of The Tipping Point to the popularity of Silly Bandz and Beiber Fever.

Read the book and see what you think! And then join us to talk about it at the Borders at Hamilton Town Center on March 17 at 7 p.m.

Happy Reading!

Trust me. It’s awesome.

Our book for the month of February is The Chosen by Chaim Potok.

Yes, that’s right. He’s also the author of My Name Is Asher Lev which we read have already read as a book club.

I know. There are SO many good books and authors out there, but there’s a reason why we chose to read another one of his books.

Oh, you want to know what it is? Easy. Because it’s good.

What do you mean that’s not a good enough reason? Ok fine. Potok is easily one of the best story tellers that I’ve ever come across. The framework for this novel is completely different than Asher Lev – even though the setting is fairly similar. That takes a lot of talent. Plus, we just read A Year of Living Biblically, so we should be all caught up on our Jewish vocabulary. 🙂 The time period of the book is WWII and into the post-war period. It’s a look at a group of people very affected by the war itself and the fallout after the war. But more than that, it’s a story about fathers and sons and friendship.

Well, since you asked nicely, I will share some great quotes that will hopefully peak your interest that Sarah found for me.

(Give me a break! My copy just came yesterday, and it’s been a few years since I read this.)

Right. Quotes. Sorry. I’m a little scatter-brained.

I sat on the lounge chair in the shade that covered the porch and looked out at the back lawn. Somehow everything had changed. I had spent five days in a hospital and the world around seemed sharpened now and pulsing with life. I lay back and put the palms of my hands under my head. I thought of the baseball game, and I asked myself, Was it only last Sunday that it happened, only five days ago? I felt I had crossed into another world, that little pieces of my old self had been left behind on the black asphalt floor of the school yard alongside the shattered lenses of my glasses.

“Ah,” my father murmured. He was silent for a moment. Then he said quietly, “Reuven, listen to me. The Talmud says that a person should do two things for himself. One is to acquire a teacher. Do you remember the other?” “Choose a friend,” I said. “Yes. You know what a friend is, Reuven? A Greek philosopher said that two people who are true friends are like two bodies with one soul.” I nodded.

See. Told ya. That last quote is a great representation of the book as a whole, and so go read it! It’s the perfect snowed-slash-iced-in-and-can’t-go-anywhere-because-I’m-too-lazy-to-scrape-my-car-read. 🙂

Introduction to The Year of Living Biblically

This is a book you gotta read.


It’s interesting. Humorous. Educational. Thought provoking.

Pretty much a page turner type book.

The Year of Living Biblically is A.J. Jacobs’ attempt to follow every commandment of the Bible. He’s not attempting this feat to be legalistic, but to see what it truly would be like to follow something so strictly.

It is great to see his thoughts evolve . . . from never having read the Bible in its entirety or seriously, to seeking to interpret it literally.

A favorite quote thus far:

Regarding Leviticus 19:16,

I feel I have to clam up. It’s the best way to battle the overwhelming urge to spew biblically banned negative language . . . . My theory is this, my thoughts are lazy. They say to themselves, “Well, we’ll never make it out into the world, so why even bother?”

Much to the dismay of his wife and son . . . this year will affect them too. Their son begins to receive the rod, his wife has to live with a very harry man who has eating restrictions, sitting restrictions (which a funny story), is bluntly honest (almost to a fault), and a few bedroom restrictions . . .

Don’t miss this book!

Little Women / Christmas Party

late 1860’s.
Four sisters.
Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy.
Concord, Massachusetts.
vanity, a hot temper, shyness, selfishness.
dances, play acting, an author, an artist, a pianist.
I won’t spoil any more of it for you… in case you haven’t read it yet!

It’s the perfect book to curl up with by the fire and read this cold and snowy time of year! If you’ve read it several times or if this is the first time I think everyone will say it’s a wonderful story.


**This month’s meeting is not on it’s usual day. With busy schedules and many holiday festivities we’re meeting on a WEDNESDAY. December 22 at Jodi’s house at 7pm. AND… it will be the annual Christmas party! Please RSVP if you can make it. (in a comment or to the evite)

Please bring a USED copy of a favorite book wrapped for our book exchange and something to dip on our chocolate fondue! (when you RSVP leave a note of what you’ll be bringing)

Have a joyful, peace-filled December! Hope to see you on the 22nd!!

The Basket of Flowers

The Basket of Flowers: An Introduction

A wonderful and short story for this month of Thanksgiving! The subtitle says, “A Tale for the Young” but I’d say this is a story for ALL ages. I can’t wait to read this aloud to Lydia (and Aaron too!)

I don’t want to give away too much of the story, Lamplighter sums it up like this:

James, the king’s gardener, teaches his 15-year-old daughter Mary all the principles of godliness through his flowers. She is falsely accused of stealing, and the penalty is death. Mary remembers her father had taught her: that it is better to die for the truth than to live for a lie, and that the worst pillow to sleep on is the pillow of a guilty conscience! This story will change your life forever!

character building.
full of Biblical truths.
priceless moral lessons.
first published in the 1800’s, it has stood the test of time.

This book is staying in my permanent collection.
This is a book I WILL read again.

We’re meeting to discuss this book two weeks from today.
November 18th.
Paradise at Hamilton Town Center.

Buy it here from Amazon.
Buy it here from Lamplighter.
Read it free as an ebook here.
Read it free here too.


This is the blog post where I introduce you to Frankenstein. I’m to tell you something about the book that will make you want to read it. So, I set about reading the introductions, and I was planning on doing some masterful synthesis of the historical context with what I’d extrapolated as themes in the book. Then I remembered that I’m not in school anymore, and you can’t make me.

However, I DO want to share some things that will hopefully entice you to read this book.

~This is a classic.
~The author, Mary Shelley, is a woman.
~Frankenstein isn’t the monster; he’s the scientist.
~It’s subtitle is “The Modern Prometheus.” According to Wikipedia: In Greek mythology, Prometheus (Ancient Greek: Προμηθεύς, “forethought”)[1] is a Titan, the son of Iapetus and Themis, and brother to Atlas, Epimetheus and Menoetius. He was a champion of mankind, known for his wily intelligence, who stole fire from Zeus and gave it to mortals.[2] Zeus then punished him for his crime by having him bound to a rock while a great eagle ate his liver every day only to have it grow back to be eaten again the next day.

I guess we’ll all just have to read the book to find out who is supposed to be the “champion of mankind” in this story and who gets their liver eaten every day. 😀

From Austen’s Time to Ours: An Introduction to Mansfield Park

Well, this blog post is late. We’ve been scrambling around getting ready for a trip to Ohio this weekend and between getting some last minute tasks at work finished and packing, it has been a little crazy. As I sit here at my in-laws’ house outside of Dayton, it strikes me how different our society is from the one Jane Austen describes in her novels like this month’s book club selection, Mansfield Park.

The pace of life in the late 1700s society that Austen describes always seems so slow compared to what we experience today. People sit around in drawing rooms and talk, play cards and embroider after dinner. They never seem to go to work. When they visit friends and relatives, they stay at their houses for months— a visit of several weeks would be short. In contrast, We’re making a whirlwind trip and staying with family for a few days, then we will be back to our fast paced life and the frantic day-to-day activities associated with work, taking care of our little boy and the house, and working with the youth of our church.

Mansfield Park gives us a glimpse of that society gone by as Fanny, one of Austen’s most sweet and demure characters, goes to live with her aunt and uncle Bertram and to be raised alongside her cousins. After growing up together, their lives have hit a very predictable rhythm, until brother and sister Henry and Mary Crawford come to the area and start to shake things up at Mansfield Park.

As you read the book, I wonder if you will be struck like I was by how even though the times we live in are so different from the 1700s, the characters of people are very much the same. You could transplant Fanny, her cousins, her aunts and uncles and the Crawfords into our time and Austen’s warnings against the consequences of selfishness and the impulsiveness of youth and her views of love and relationships would still ring true to us today.

I hope you enjoy Mansfield Park as I have, and we also hope you will join us for September’s discussion and “fancy” dinner party. We’ll have more details for you soon. If you missed the Evite, leave a comment, and we’ll make sure to send one to you so we know you’re coming and we can get you information.

Happy reading!