I love reading. I always list it on whatever silly form asks me about my hobbies and interests. I was an early reader. I am a fast reader. And yet, I don’t do it all that often anymore. I used to be the girl who carried around a thick novel and read it in between classes or at lunch. My brother and I got in *trouble when we were *really little because we would stay up *late at night and *read books with a flashlight we had hidden under the bed in a paper sack.
*trouble=my parents probably just told us to go to sleep
*really little=he was probably 4 and I was 3
*late=it was probably still light out
*read=see really little
I like big, thick novels like Gone With the Wind and East of Eden. I loved Jane Eyre, Tess of the d’Urbervilles, Anne of Green Gables and Rebecca. Little Women, The Great Gatsby, Catcher in the Rye, Farenheit 451, A Farewell to Arms…I’ll admit it. I like bragging that I’ve read all of those. Don’t get me wrong, there are plenty I have not read. I’ve never made it through Wuthering Heights, Dr. Zhivago, A Tale of Two Cities, The Grapes of Wrath or The Scarlet Letter. And while I’ve made a few brave attempts, I have yet to read the entire Bible. I’m perhaps modifying my goal to read it in 90 days, I do believe I will get through it this year.
But lately, lately I’ve been reading screens rather than pages. Not that I’m opposed to reading screens. In fact, I think I’d love a Kindle screen on which to read many pages. My screen reading has been entertaining and sometimes inspiring. I read a lot of blogs. A lot. And, while I have sort of been limiting my internet time during Lent, that has basically amounted to not reading every blog that I have in my reader. As of now, I have 280 unread blog posts. I’d have well over 400 if I hadn’t unsubscribed to my favorite coupon lady. It’s much better just to read her site when I’m in the mood for a good deal. So yes, just keeping up with a few blogs during Lent. I’ll soon have my blogroll updated and posted on my sidebar if you’re interested in what exactly I am reading. For a while that was all the blog reading I was doing, just a few blogs that I was already in the habit of reading. And then I ventured back out into the blogosphere, to my recommended blogs on my reader. Some recommendations are not a good fit at all. For example, I don’t need to read a blog written in Spanish, a blog about Google not releasing honeycomb source code, or a crafty blog that focuses on stamping techniques. I do, however, like to find blogs to send to my husband. These are the ones I sent him this week:
I also end up with new blogs that I really like and want to subscribe to in my reader. If they’re really good, I go back and read the archived posts from months and years past. That happened to me this weekend. I found one blog by an adoptive mom from Oklahoma that is right smack in the middle of a second adoption through DHS. I think I’ll contact her so we can swap stories. I also found a blog by a mom of 10 who lives in Alaska and has a milk cow. I ended up reading her archives for a while today. When their family was stationed in Arizona, they had 9 kids in a 1200 square foot house. We can totally do 5 full-time and 3 (soon to be 2) part-time kids in our 1100 square foot house, right? She’s funny and reminds me a little bit of my friend Robin. Maybe because she’s a military wife. And maybe because she writes about vomit and diapers with the humor and love that comes only from a mother.
I’ve been thinking about the fact that when I spend a large amount of time reading, it only makes sense that even when I am not engrossed in the text I am thinking about the subject matter. (Note to self: Remember this fact when you’re feeling crummy about life and you haven’t spent enough time reading the Word of God.) When I was in junior high I read Heidi and I ate a lot of cheese sandwiches. I seriously considered going to law school at the height of John Grisham’s popularity. I did become a special education teacher because of Torey Hayden. This girl makes me want to eat at Cracker Barrel. She makes me want to homeschool my kids and cook healthy food for my family.
When I was consumed with sadness from not getting pregnant, I read many blogs about infertility. As I was recovering (emotionally and physically) from my miscarriage, I read a lot of blogs about infant loss and dealing with the death of a child. I’ve read a lot about international adoption. I read about families who are called to foreign missions. Now I’m finding blogs about adopting sibling groups, reactive attachment disorder, domestic foster adoption, transracial adoption, and how to maintain a really large household in a rather small house. And sometimes I read about milking cows, raising chickens and growing a sustainable garden.
I suppose reading a million blogs counts as reading. It is a lot of screen time, but I tell myself that if these blogs were published into a book I would certainly be reading the book. Same thing, right? I did just finish reading Rediscovering Catholicism and I really enjoyed it. I highly recommend it to any Catholic, although most of the book applies perfectly to any Christian. I am going to re-read the book. Partly because I want to soak it up a bit more, and also because I want to blog about it. In it, Matthew Kelly challenges us to do several things. I’m anxious to get started on a few of them–including the challenge to read every day. I am going to interpret that to mean reading pages every day. Until I get my Kindle, then I’ll count screen time.
I will be adding a regular feature to my blog. I’m sure there will be some catchy title. I want to be accountable to the idea of reading every day and I want to write about the things I think about.
(Just kidding. But I couldn’t come up with a good way to end this post and I’m tired of writing. That’s what I get for trying to do two blog posts in one day, neither of which included any pictures.)
So I’ll see you tomorrow! With pictures! And a reading report!
Oooh…maybe that’s the catchy title?!