Thursday, June 30, 2005

Book Report: The Bookseller's Daughter

I went to the library last night, looking for a summer book. A "beach novel," although I'm not going to the beach. A "trashy novel," a "bodice ripper," a book of the type a woman I once worked with described as "chewing gum for the eyes."

I found it.

The title intrigued me: The Bookseller's Daughter. The author is Pam Rosenthal. I stayed up until 2:00 a.m. this morning to finish it. The story is standard: the lovely bookseller's daughter has been reduced to working as a scullery maid for the local aristocracy. She falls in love with the youngest son of said aristocrats. He lusts after her and--surprise, surprise!--falls in love with her. This is one of the better novels of this type I've read: the erotica is pretty explicit, but it worked for me! . The setting is pre-Revolutionary France in 1783, so there are class issues as well as sexual ones.

Three bookmarks out of five.

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Summertime and the Living is Easy....

I love summer. For two years, I was a camp counselor and I realized that this was the life: 9 months in the city, 3 months in the mountains.

Then I grew up.

Now I love summer because our schedule is relaxed. No homework. No projects due tomorrow. No bedtimes--for the kids, anyway. Hubs and I still have to work! But, still, the longer daylight makes it feel like we have more time. And since all my favorite TV shows are in re-runs, I'm not hooked on the tube.

Hubs and I both feel that summer is a chance for the kids to learn skills not necessarily taught in school. We've never insisted they get summer jobs--at least, not until they graduated from high school. Instead, they've gone to camp, on summer cruise, river rafting, spent time with their grandparents, gone to Japan. They've signed up for the summer reading program at the library, gone to Day Camp and then come back as counselors. We've gone on family camping trips where we've hiked, poked around ghost towns, participated in Pioneer Days, caught fish, and biked. They've taken swimming lessons and worked on craft projects they designed. They stay up late and sleep in. They play video and computer games on their own or with friends.

The results? Well, this summer, DS#1 is teaching at the "College for Kids" program offered at the local community college. DD#1 is a counselor at Girl Scout camp--for pay! Hubs and DS#2 just came back from Boy Scout camp and DS#2 is going back up in two weeks for the Counselor-in-Training program. DD#2 has been swimming, riding her bike around town, reading, and waiting for Girl Scout Day Camp to start, since I did not sign her up for summer camp. (Spring was busy this year!). And we're hosting a Boy Scout and a Girl Scout from Japan, which means, I suppose, we'll have to do some housework around here! DS#2 is also practicing cooking dinner entrees, since DD#1 is going to college this fall.

There is plenty of time to earn money. There is not enough time to be a kid. Summer gives them some of their childhood back. Even the big ones, like me!


After a year of reading OPBs (Other People's Blogs), I decided to create one of my own. So, welcome to my tea party!

By way of introduction... I am a mid-Boomer female, wife to Hubs, mom to DS#1, DD#1, DS#2, and DD#2. I thought about giving the kids "cute" nicknames like "Irresistable Force," "Immovable Object," etc., but that could get out of hand. Not to mention that I'd end up abbreviating their nicknames because I'm lazy. I once was described as "not what you'd expect from a Roman Catholic Girl Scout." Scouting--Boy and Girl--is our family hobby. As for my Catholicism, I'm to the left of Mel Gibson and to the right of Martin Sheen. I'm conservative by inclination.

I love to read. I love to write. I love photography and rubber stamping. I love music, but I'm not very good at it. Hubs is, though. My favorite vacation is camping, preferably by water and hiking. My favorite spot to camp is Yosemite, although the McCloud River is a very close second.

All manner of topics are open, but remember: mind your manners. Play nicely. Sit up straight. Don't slurp your tea out of your saucer. And remember, pinkies up!