I don’t know about the rest of you, but now that the school year is fully underway, I finally have the time I need to fully reach my potential both inside and out. Once the little cherubs are dropped off at school my days of leisure kick into high gear. Of course pedicures, massages, facials and waxing appointments fill a good portion of the 7 hours they are gone.
But one can only beautify so many hours in a day. I’m not completely vain. Taking care of myself on the inside is also a personal priority. So while I consume my morning coffee with a crapton hint of Coffeemate and stuff my face with copious amounts of dark chocolate covered acai berries (It’s a fruit so that qualifies as a “healthy breakfast” right?) I like to scour the interwebs looking for information about juicing, vegetable diets and low carb recipes. My Google Fu is strong, people.
After my skin is dewy fresh, my colon has been stripped clean and I am high on caffeine from coffee and dark chocolate, it’s time to work on bettering myself intellectually. Oddly enough, this seems to be the most difficult part for me. I wonder why…? Most people think that because I am a blogger I am absolutely in love with technology.
“Hey, Vicky. What do you think of the new iOS7? Do you find it to be a better operating system? Some feel it rivals the newer operating systems from Windows. Care to weigh in?”
“Um, well, I don’t like the colors on the home screen. It looks like a sorority went crazy with puffy paint. But the font on my calendar is super cute now!”
People also assume that as a blogger who loves all things techy-like, I must spend my days on my iPhone, iPad, MacBook reading nothing but blogs, blogs and more blogs. Now that might be mostly true (Do you know how many hilarious people there are out there?) but I do occasionally read books. No, not just books on my iPad. I’m talking about real books- with hard covers, paper pages and spines. Shocking, but true.
As the temperature drops and Fall settles here in sunny San Diego (It was actually only 81 this weekend! Truly Sweater Weather) I can’t help but feel like hunkering down and snuggling up with a good book. So that’s what I’ve been doing in between Swedish massages and Brazilian waxes- expanding my mind. And I thought I’d share a little bit of what I’ve read recently.
So snuggle under your orange throw blanket, light your pumpkin candle, grab your pumpkin spice latte, spray your pumpkin room spray, find some dark chocolate covered pumpkin seeds and check out these bits of literary awesomeness.
This book was actually written by a friend of mine. Although I’m not typically one to promote stuff on my page, I couldn’t resist the opportunity to share her book with you. Not only am I completely amazed by anyone who can write a book- a whole book! But the creativity that went into developing this story is wonderful. This is the first of The Narthex Academy Series and there are so many mysteries introduced that by the time you reach the end, you can’t wait for the next one to be released. Sixteen year old Asher Haynes is our main character. He seems like your typical shy, awkward teenager at first. But as the story unfolds you learn that Asher is anything but ordinary. He has the gift of seeing the future through his dreams. As a high school junior, this “gift” becomes a nightmare and a race to save his own life from a man who has been searching the globe for the information contained in Asher’s dreams. As I read this exciting story, I couldn’t help but liken it a bit to Harry Potter and the Percy Jackson series as you are introduced to young adults with special gifts in a modern world. This is a fun read that keeps you guessing as to how the story will play out in the remaining books!
We all know I love me some Young Adult reading (Twilight anyone? Perhaps some Hunger Games?) Divergent is definitely a Young Adult book in that our heroine is a 16 year old girl. But unlike some other Young Adult books *coughTwilightcough* this one is actually really really well written. I read it in less than 24 hours. It’s a brilliant story about a dystopian society set in what was once Chicago. “Society has been divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue—Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). On an appointed day of every year, all sixteen-year-olds must select the faction to which they will devote the rest of their lives. For Beatrice, the decision is between staying with her family and being who she really is—she can’t have both. So she makes a choice that surprises everyone, including herself.
“During the highly competitive initiation that follows, Beatrice renames herself Tris and struggles to determine who her friends really are—and where, exactly, a romance with a sometimes fascinating, sometimes infuriating boy fits into the life she’s chosen. But Tris also has a secret, one she’s kept hidden from everyone because she’s been warned it can mean death. And as she discovers a growing conflict that threatens to unravel her seemingly perfect society, she also learns that her secret might help her save those she loves . . . or it might destroy her.**
As soon as I finished, I bought the second book immediately and began devouring it as well. Unfortunately I haven’t had the time to read as much as I did with the first book- there is much to be waxed, you know- but I find myself stealing time whenever I can to just get a little bit further.
All silliness aside, I have to say that this was one of the most beautifully written and poignant books I’ve read. This was the book chosen by my church’s women’s study for our first ever summer book club. TRUST ME- this is not a religious book. No matter where you are in your own faith journey, if you are a mother, a wife, a woman, you will relate to this book. So often in life we are encouraged to take a “leap of faith” to trust and just jump out of the net. “The first step is the hardest” we are told. Rebekah Lyons took that step of faith, she left the nest. But her wings didn’t spread and she didn’t soar off to her great destination. She took that step and began to plummet, face first toward the ground. Personally, I can relate. There are times that my leap of faith and willingness to take a risk did not lead me to a beautiful new place- well, not right away at least. Sometimes, that leap of faith is only a small portion of the journey and it’s in the seemingly endless fall toward the ground that we really learn what we’re made of.
“In this beautifully moving memoir of vulnerability, courage, and ultimately transformation, Rebekah shares her journey into the unknown- a thrilling, terrifying freefall that eventually led to flight.”***
So there you have it. This is how I spend my 35 hours a week while my kids are in school. I am well-read, hair-free and oozing artificial pumpkin from my teeny tiny pores. In fact, there might be an orange haze hovering over my house. All I can say is thank goodness for the staff I have working for me. Without them, the laundry would never get done. The groceries would never be purchased, the meals never made, the homework never checked, the house never cleaned and the dog never walked. Truth is, I ain’t got time for that! I’ve got good books to read.
I like to spend my days with a good book, in a pumpkin haze.
That’s just my normal.
**Synopsis taken from Google ebooks**
***Synopsis taken from Freefall to Fly***