Wednesday, December 23, 2015

It's About the Baby

Occasionally, I like to write personal essays. In honor of my son's birthday today, I thought I would share this one with you that I wrote a couple of years ago, but pulled out and updated this year. I hope you enjoy, and all have a very Merry Christmas!

I about fell off the examination table when the ultrasound technician told me my due date was December 25th.  “Are you sure?” I asked, hoping there was some kind of mistake, or at least some cruel joke. While this pregnancy was “planned”, we certainly had not intended to have a holiday baby. My cycles had not been very regular after going off birth control, which is why we needed an ultrasound to date the pregnancy in the first place. So I was more than a little bit shocked when she reassured me that yes, this baby was measuring on course for a Christmas delivery.

Friday, December 18, 2015

The Book Blab: Pretty Books for Pretty Gifts (Episode 2 Show Notes)

If you haven't already had a chance to watch, Amy and I recorded our second episode of The Book Blab this past Wednesday, and we had a ton of fun with this episode. We discussed "pretty books," those gorgeous editions of classic books that make the perfect quality gifts for the book lovers in your life (they are all on my to-buy list for myself). Honestly, there were SO MANY other editions and collections and books we could've talked about, but we kept the show to 30 minutes for your sake (you're welcome). Let me know in the comments what your favorite "pretty books" are, I'd love to know what else I should have my eye on. Show notes are posted after the break, with links to everything we talk about. (Also, we experienced some technical difficulties in this episode, so please forgive, but it's all part of doing a live show.)

Show Notes

0:20 - Christmas preparations
1:50 - Book buying philosophy
  • 2:10 - Suzanne's
  • 3:53 - Amy's
5:35 - Beautiful editions
  • 5:53 - Suzanne's favorites
  • 8:09 - Amy's favorites
11:32 - The problem of not being able to get the entire series in some editions

15:37 - Collected works (pros and cons) 

17:42 - Thoughts on the newly illustrated Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone 

21:15 - (Some of) the books we're buying for Christmas

24:56 - Two favorite books that were published in 2015
  • 25:50 - Suzanne's pick
  • 27:08 - Amy's pick 
30:34 - Conclusion

Links from the show:

The Count of Monte Cristo -  Penguin classics hardcover clothbound edition
Alice's Adventures in Wonderland - Puffin in Bloom edition
A Merry Christmas and Other Christmas Stories - Penguin Christmas Classics edition
Little Men - Hesperus Press edition
Anne of Green Gables - Puffin in Bloom edition
Anne of Green Gables - Aladdin classics edition
Jane Austen collected works - Barnes & Noble Collectible edition
The Chronicles of Narnia collection - Barnes & Noble Collectible edition
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone - Arthur A. Levine Books edition, illustrated by Jim Kay 
The Chronicles of Narnia - full color collector's edition by HarperTrophy 
Suzanne's review of Go Set a Watchman by Harper Lee  
Amy's review of The Penderwicks in Spring by Jeanne Birdsall

Monday, December 14, 2015

My Christmas Novel To-Read List

A couple years ago I posted about my top 10 favorite Christmas books. I was reviewing that list earlier when I sent my Christmas lists off to various family members (I'm finally getting serious about expanding our Christmas book collection, and using grandparent gifts to do it), and realized that all the books were children's books and picture books (technically The Gift of the Magi is a short story, but that's beside the point).

So this year I thought, why not do a post talking about all the best Christmas novels? After all, I'm really trying to get into the idea of seasonal reading for myself, not just the kids. So, I sat down to write out a list of good Christmas novels, and here's what I came up with:

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Books I Read in November

Well, I hope you all had as lovely a Thanksgiving as I did. It was a bit low-key. For the first time in my married life we didn't travel and we didn't host guests. This meant that for the first time in my life I was solely responsible for the outcome of the turkey, and that was a little intimidating, but all turned out well in the end. We teamed up with our good friends that live in the same apartment complex as us (kind of dreamy, living practically next door to such good friends), and between the two of us we cooked up a storm, enjoyed a fantastic feast, and played games late into the night while eating seconds (and thirds?) of pie. It was pretty perfect.

Thanksgiving Table

Also, we had leftovers for days, which is just the way I like it. I finished off the last of the turkey for lunch today, and I'm already scratching my head about what we're going to eat for dinner tonight. I've nearly forgotten what a dinner looks like that doesn't involve turkey leftovers.

In other news, despite being thoroughly consumed by those pesky term papers I'm still in the middle of, I managed to read some books in November. Also most of them were excellent reads. Yay!