Category: Young Adult Lit

11 Random Things (July 2017 Wrap Up)

Well, it’s August 1. Current mood:

And also:

So you know. Yay. Anyway, a lot has happened this past July! Let’s dive in.

1. Yesterday, I officially moved out of my house. Yes, my first house. Yes, the house I just bought last year. It was definitely bittersweet. I am obviously excited about the next phase of my life (moving to California!) but also, you know, I’m going to miss this place and the people, etc. Standing in that empty living room just really solidified that it’s all happening RIGHT NOW.

2. I meant to post about this when it happened but I was too busy (a) prepping for my move, (b) procrastinating prepping for my move, and (c) convincing myself that procrastinating for my move was actually prepping for my move.

On July 4th, I went to a new beach. I did not love this beach. In fact, I would probably not go back to this beach. (In actual fact, if it were up to me, I would NEVER go back to this beach.)

For one thing, the beach is super rocky, which you can’t tell during high tide so I cut my foot on a rock and almost fell/twisted my ankle every time I went in the water. Once low tide happened, we were astounded to see just how rocky the actual beach was. I mean, it was bad. (Sorry, no pics. I didn’t think to take any.)

Second of all, I totally got jacked by seagulls.

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It’s Monday & I’ll be here all week

And by “here,” I mean in Tampa, scoring AP exams.

Hello! This has been a wild weekend. First of all, I fully participated in a yard sale with friends on Saturday. I did make some money, which turned out to be a very good thing because it rained Saturday (we are in our monsoon season) and that reminded me to check the weather for the AP week. And guess what? It’s supposed to rain, rain, rain all this week, too.

And since I don’t have my car here, I realized that I should probably get some rain boots since I will have to walk everywhere.

Especially since our weather has been pretty much like this for the past week or so:

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It’s Monday & I have some great reading ahead of me

On Saturday, I went to the beach with a friend. On our way there, my friend revealed that she had gotten an annual pass to the state parks because her plan is to explore different parts of the state. And I realized that her plan is brilliant–brilliant! Because, essentially, she is going to be a tourist in our state. “Why didn’t I think of that?” I said. So now that is my new goal. State tourism!

Anyway, more happened at the beach, including a blinding migraine caused by sinusitis–opposite of fun and a prime opportunity to practice gratitude for sure. But the beach is the beach and it was marvelous. Because BEACH.

Yesterday and today were fun family times. My mom brought over hamburgers to grill yesterday and then I invited her to bring over kielbasa to grill today. These were both A+ choices.

And tomorrow it’s back to my regularly scheduled vacation. Which is just a fancy way of saying doing more unpacking, cleaning, and purging. While not going to work. Because of vacation. (VACATION.)

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Welp, it’s definitely not Monday, but I still read some things

This was a good weekend. I went to a wedding, which…I love weddings. I don’t ever want to have a wedding (at least not in the traditional sense), but they are a delight. Anyway, the couple was super cute and happy even if there was a slight rain delay. (It’s been bone dry for weeks so of course it finally rains on the day of their wedding. Of course.)

Anyway, some slight changes had to be made to accommodate the weather, but everything after that was two thumbs up, fine holiday fun.

Then, on Sunday, my daughter and I went to my parents’ to spend Mother’s Day with my mom, and we taught my daughter how to play Spades. She’s almost ready for college for real now.

We also watched Miss India America, which is really cute and fun and a great example of a compelling, though mostly unlikable protagonist. It’s also streaming on Netflix. Ahem.

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It’s Monday & I’m on vacation!

Vacation, vacation, vacation, vacation! Also: vacation.

current mood (source)

I am not at Jay Pritchett levels of luxury or anything, but I did wind up taking super long naps every day since Wednesday. You know, not to brag or anything.

(Okay, okay. A little bragging.)

Anyway, this week, I have some appointments so it may be a while before I can get to that nap level again. Oh well.

I may post about being on vacation every week, just so you’re all forewarned. Did you know school doesn’t start until August? Oh, this is just delightful.

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T is for Taking a Break #AtoZChallenge

So, yes, I went on my church retreat and it was quite relaxing and delightful. I took several naps and even got to play Catan, which I now want to play again. Don’t worry. I have pretty much already set up a game night to make that happen.

Ah, the beauty of retreat.

Speaking of the beauty of retreat, here is a picture of my view from the dock on Saturday morning.

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ISO: Books about Sibling Abuse

When I was a teenager, one of my friends had a brother who beat her up. At the time, I didn’t understand what that meant and couldn’t reconcile it with what I thought I knew about sibling relationships. To me, the fact that he “beat her up” meant that they got into fights sometimes. And, for me, then, fights were fair and equal matches that both people signed up for.

I remember I mentioned it/them to my parents once, and my dad even remarked with a shake of his head on it. “Isn’t that the boy who beats up his sister?” he asked. And I corrected him. “No,” I said. “They get into fights sometimes.”

I was young and had a limited understanding of the world. However, I knew about intimate partner violence and child abuse by parents/guardians because of soap operas and books. I had no clue that sibling abuse was a thing. I thought that siblings could fight or maybe get on each other’s nerves or participate in schemes and manipulation (okay, yes, this is all stuff I read in Sweet Valley High), but not once did I understand that domestic violence could occur between siblings.

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It took me over two hours to write this post.

Not because it was hard, but because (a) my daughter kept talking to me and (b) I kept getting distracted by The Oscars. And Twitter and Facebook. Also, I was trying to figure out which leggings to buy. Anyway.

Okay, I had to look at my calendar to see what I actually did this past week. Is that sad? It feels sad. I guess it’s a good thing I’m doing the Slice of Life challenge next month, huh? Anyway, that’s where I am. So yes, this past week I:

  • went to a Hamilton trivia night (my team lost)
  • went to the dentist
  • went to a search committee meeting for the church’s new minister
  • attended a plagiarism hearing as a witness
  • visited an astronomy class as part of the pilot Teaching Squares program at my school (and learned quite a bit!)
  • attended a student conduct hearing as a member of the conduct board
  • went to see a student production of The Drowsy Chaperone, which was super fun (I love a good farce and a good meta-narrative)
  • dropped in to a party I wasn’t invited to to visit a friend who was only in town for one night
  • went to the Women’s March celebration and activist fair held by the local chapter of the march

And that doesn’t even count my regularly scheduled activities (work, gym, etc.).

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First Full Week Back: Monday check-in

I only met with my students once last week, so this week is the full grind. A miracle occurred today, though! I didn’t bring any work home. The key seems to be going back to my office to do work instead of leaving immediately after class. Imagine that.

The rest of last week is a blur, for sure. All that course prep makes my brain go to mush. Oh, and I forgot to post this e-card a friend sent me when I was complaining about course prep last week, so here it is now:

Now that I’m back, of course, I’m fine (and even in the zone). But, man, that prep week is whoa.

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It’s Monday & I’m Never Going to Finish All the Books on My Shelf

No, seriously. I still have ten left in the stack that I want to get to before the move, and I don’t think it’s going to happen. Also, reading them is starting to feel like work now–probably because I am trying to read them in a specific order. It might be time to start jumping around the stack.

This past week, I read:

Dear Bill, Remember Me? and Other StoriesDear Bill, Remember Me? and Other Stories by Norma Fox Mazer
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

The best stories were the title piece, the first story, and “Chocolate Pudding.” But these are all honest, real, and raw and, as someone who will likely be a spinster, I appreciated the last story a lot.

View all my reviews

Two weeks ago, I saw:

Love and Friendship

I forgot to mention that I went to see Love & Friendship, which is based on the novella Lady Susan by Jane Austen. I am not a huge fan of Austen’s books, but I think they translate really well to screen. I should state up front that I’m also not super into period pieces. However, I liked the humor in this, and I loved how Lady Susan was always ten steps ahead of everyone else. This movie is very talky-talky, so if you don’t go in much for that, you might not like it. I am generally a fan of talking movies, though, so this worked for me.

Also, I haven’t read the book but the movie kind of makes me want to and, as I said, I’m not a huge fan of Austen’s books, so it definitely has that going for it.

I do have to say that I don’t get the title at all. It didn’t seem to match the movie. Maybe I’m missing something, though. I think Lady Susan would have worked just fine. I mean, it is all about her and her machinations after all and not really all that much about friendship and Love & Friendship is so darn generic (I kept mistakenly calling the movie Love & Acceptance, for example). Ugh. Anybody else who saw it have an opinion on the title? (ETA: Duh, the title is meant to be ironic. But still, generic and bland, especially given the rest of the movie.)

As of today, I’m reading:

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

 

I was feeling kind of slumpy (and it’s almost time for The Cursed Child), so I decided to reread Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. (I mean, it’s only been a little over a year since my last reread of Prisoner of Azkaban, so. It might be time is what I’m saying.) I’m about 1/3 of the way through, and I can tell you right now that the beginning of the book needed way less Quidditch. Also, there’s a lot of great foreshadowing and framing in all of the opening scenes when they head to the World Cup and before they get to Hogwarts. You know, minus the Quidditch match descriptions.

My plan was also to sign up for the Potterhead July Blog Festival, but I (a) totally missed the sign up AND (b) will be moving in July so it’s probably not the best time to commit to anything. I am looking forward to reading the posts, though.

 

Shadowshaper by Daniel José Older

Daniel José Older is one of my favorite people on Twitter, and my colleague highly recommended his book, so I finally decided to read Shadowshaper. I’m listening to the audiobook, and Anika Noni Rose narrates. I’m digging it so far.

 

Stepping to a New Day by Beverly Jenkins

I’m participating in a blog tour for Stepping to a New Day by Beverly Jenkins at the beginning of July. I’ll be starting this one later today.

 

 

Happy reading, everyone!

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