Thoughts on books, family, and life in one impressive package.
Image: The Sunday Salon Button

Good morning, my darlings! Are you enjoying this fine fall-like weather? We couldn’t ask for more perfect weather these days. Sunny, not too hot, a gentle breeze – it is just gorgeous and a wonderful relief after the hellishly hot summer.

Whew. Wisconsin pulled that game out by the skin of their teeth. Last night’s game showed me that my son takes after me in the football-watching department – loud and obnoxious. Unlike me though, he has yet to learn appropriate timing of comments and understand some of the nuances of the game. It was quite amusing to see how semi-disgusted upset he was at his father for not cheering loudly or demonstratively. More proof he is my son.

Another week, another crazy schedule. Jim was gone for most of it, so I spent the entire week playing chauffeur to both kids, trying desperately to get them fed and in bed at a reasonable hour after getting home from their activities around 7 – 7:30 for at least four out of the five weeknights. For the first time since the kids were born, I think I am going to have to become flexible about the idea of family dinners and start making things that everyone can eat when their schedule allows. Trying to get everyone together at a decent hour is proving next to impossible.

My grandma rocks. That is all.

This past week was Book Blogger Appreciation Week, founded several years ago by the absolutely wonderful Amy. My participation was extremely subdued this year (see the previous paragraph for the reason) but I managed to follow along with all of the BBAW love. One of my favorite topics this week was the soul-searching question of what book blogging means to you. The answers were as varied as one might expect, but they definitely got me thinking. Book blogging has always meant community to me. Yes, I tend to review a lot of books on here, but from the very beginning, it is the community that has allowed me to continue to fill the Interwebz with my eclectic opinions and musings. I have always read books and discussed them with interested parties, but I have never experienced an environment that is as diverse and welcoming as my bloggy friends. From them, I have learned that no matter how bad I think things are, someone will always have it worse and finds a way to survive, if not thrive, through their adversity. I have learned that it is okay to fail as long as we keep on trying to succeed. I have learned that it is okay to have strong opinions, and that true friends will support you no matter whether they agree or disagree. And I have learned that honesty truly is the best policy. An honest voice is an authentic voice, and that speaks volumes to me.

Over the years, I’ve tried to become a “big blogger” – lots of followers and following even more, many connections in the publishing community, actively involved in lots of events and even co-founding one major event. In the last few months, I’ve realized that is not me. I will never be a big blogger, and really, nor do I want to be. I have found a core group of followers/friends that I follow and who follow me and whom I would not trade for the world (Amy, Carrie, Chris, Bryan, Jennifer, Michelle, and others – you know who you are). My conversations with them lighten my day, can get me out of any funk, and help me to never give up, even when I am at my lowest. I have my few connections with publishers, but I am severely trying to limit the review copies I obtain. They are still proving to be more than I can read in any given moment, but the list I have is steadily growing smaller, for the first time in three years. This is because I know that it doesn’t matter whether I review the latest, buzziest novel or something that was released ten years ago. People will read my thoughts if they want to or not. And really, I do have over 550 books on my shelves that remain to be read. I really don’t need anymore. Now, whether I want more is always a different question. As for the blogging activities, this past year of blogger scandal and upheaval, coming during my own life’s upheaval, proved to me that it just is not worth it. I’ll participate when I can only if I truly want to do so, hence my lack of participation in BBAW and non-participation in Bloggiesta for the last two events. Life is fleeting, and I already feel like mine is rushing past at breakneck speed. There is no need for me to try to cram even more events into it – even virtual ones – if there is no time.

So what that long rambling paragraph is really saying is that I love the community I have found and my niche group of blogger friends. And they are indeed friends. They provide love and support like the truest friend can. This week reminded me how lucky I am to have found them in this great big blogging world.

Speaking of BBAW, my lone participation this week was for the interviews – always a great time. This year, I had the pleasure of interviewing Melanie from Melanie’s Musings. I hope you check out her site if you haven’t already!

Reviewed this week:

I also shared my initial thoughts in Stephen King’s It based on the first half of the novel. I have since finished the story and feel like I should retract almost everything I said. 
That is about it for me this beautiful Sunday. It is time to catch up on some household chores that got put aside for activities and then yesterday’s Wisconsin game. Thankfully, the weather makes it easy to want to do so. I hope everyone has a peaceful and relaxing Sunday. Happy reading!
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