Thoughts on books, family, and life in one impressive package.

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You can tell that school is right around the corner. How do I know this? It isn’t the increase in traffic every morning. It isn’t the advertisements for supplies and new clothes. It is because of the activities, meetings and other scheduled events this week. For the next two weeks, we have something on the schedule for every single day of the week, including Saturdays. No wonder school comes as a shock to everyone. We go all summer long clearing our schedules as much as possible only to jam them full once we hit August. It’s crazy.

Adding to my slight state of panic at the severe lack of free time is the fact that I screwed up…royally. My first CMA exam is scheduled for September 12th. I had my study schedule planned perfectly so that I could still enjoy some free time. I have this huge book that I am using for studying, and I’ve noticed that I just wasn’t very far into it. While a normal person would have questioned this, because the first exam covers the material in the entire book, I give it a passing thought and go about my merry way, reading for pleasure rather than studying. Until this Thursday, when I was writing my flashcards and realized that I failed to account for four additional sections in my study schedule. Rather than covering 58 more topics, I had to cover an additional 248 more topics. OMG. I ran through the five states of grief in the course of a day: denial that I had done such a thing, anger at myself for being so stupid, bargaining that I needed to postpone the exam, depression that I was never going to make it, and finally acceptance that I could still fit everything in the remaining time. Lesson learned – check the entire book before creating a study schedule. Additional lesson learned – time to get more hardcore about this exam and treating it more seriously.

Of course, I figured this out on Thursday of this week. The rest of the week, I remained in ignorant bliss and was able to finish two books: Julie & Julia by Julie Powell and Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick. I also made it through this week’s assigned chapters for my ongoing affair with The Brothers Karamazov. Part of me wants to just get the whole thing over with at this point in time. While I have no problems reading multiple books at the same time, I continue to struggle staying motivated with Dostoevsky, especially when I have such fabulous books waiting for me in my TBR piles. I figure that if I just bite the bullet and finish the remaining 250 pages, I can then move on to more books rather than struggle back and forth between the two.

I shouldn’t say that it is a struggle because that is unfair. Now that I’m past the religious preaching, the plot line moves much faster, and I find that I can read through a section fairly quickly. The plot remains interesting as well. It’s just that it isn’t mindless reading. I have to immerse myself into the plot. It isn’t something I can pick up and read while the kids are asking me questions or while cooking dinner. I have to give it my undivided attention. This total immersion is why I typically like classics. They require using your entire brain rather than a small portion of it. However, as I’ve started reading more and more modern literature, the differences between the two are like eating bratwurst or beef stroganoff. Both are delicious, but one takes considerably less time to make and is just as enjoyable as the one that takes an hour to make properly. Classics are delicious; they just take a lot of time and energy – both of which are at a premium now that I have my revised study schedule and way too many kids’ activities to schedule.

So, I’m thinking that like my gaffe with my exam studying, I’m just going to have to sit down and focus on The Brothers to finish it before moving on to anything else. Hopefully, this will mean that I can get caught up on the three book reviews I need to write, one of which is still left over from last week. That’s the plan anyway. Hopefully, I learned my lesson about plans after this week…

I hope everyone has a great week, and as always, happy reading!

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