Monday Mornings

“Where’d he go?”  I mumble to myself as I walk up the stairs in search of my son.  “Troy, I’m leaving and I need a hug!”  I say through the bathroom door.

“Chill out,” he replies as he walks out of his bathroom to give me a hug.

“Love you!  Have a good day!”

I get an “Love you, too,” and then he walks back into the bathroom looking at his phone.

“And I am chill!  I’m chill as…ice cream.”  He mumbled something in response to that.  It could have been about my lame comparison or something about how I am never chill…probably better that I don’t know.

Back downstairs I go to say goodbye to the baby.

“Aww, she’s holding out her arms when I come close.  She wants me to pick her up,”  I say sort of to my husband, but mostly to myself.  I don’t know if that is actually what’s happening, but that’s what I’m going with this morning.  “Oh, I’m going to be late,” I say as I pick up my smiley baby girl and give her hugs and kisses.

Eventually, I put her down and leave, calling one last good bye to my husband.

I toss my bags onto the passenger seat and hop in the Jeep.  As I pull out of the drive, I turn on the audio book that has been on hold since getting home on Friday.  Leaving the house on Monday mornings isn’t easy, but at least I get to find out how this book ends today.




Which texts have influenced you?

Textual Lineage Charts.  Ever heard of them?  I hadn’t until teaching the Fantasy Book Clubs unit of the 5th grade LC Reading Units.  (Session 7)  Your Textual Lineage includes the books that you have read that have influenced you.

I loved this idea and I needed more information than was in the curriculum.  The most helpful resource I found was from Teaching Tolerance.  So, I provided several of the prompts from the graphic organizer from Teaching Tolerance to my fifth graders.

I got mixed results…

From the very goofy, ready for summer responses…



To the thoughtful responses I had hoped for…




I’ve been thinking about my textual lineage ever since I first read about the concept and this is what I have come up with…

Top 10 Must-SeeTravel Destinations

Falling Up by Shel Silverstein

This was not the first or favorite book of my childhood.  There were so many.  But this is the one I read over and over.  The one that I talked to other people about and that led me to Shel Silverstein’s other masterpieces.  Even though part of my love of books has always been the solitude, there is still enjoyment to be found in sharing them.  This is the text that solidified that books are fun.

Hatchet by Gary Paulsen

I’m not sure exactly when I first read this book, but I think it was sometime in middle school?  And then again in college.  I love this book and it helped me realize that there is no such thing as a “boy book” or a “girl book.”  And if we put these labels on our favorites, a whole group of young people will never read a book that may change their views of reading and life in general.

Furiously Happy:  A Funny Book About Horrible Things by Jenny Lawson

This is one I just read last year and posted about here.  It helped me see that I am not alone and there is nothing wrong with me.   Self-acceptance is a long road, one that I am still traveling down.  However, the message I found in this book sure helped with the journey.

Which texts have influenced you?

Random Slice Plus a Thought

11454297503_e27946e4ff_hI listen to audio books on my commute.  This morning I plugged my headphones into my newest Playaway and…it was a narrator with a British accent!  I can’t put into words how excited I was by this discovery.

I love books, but a British accent just adds to the magic of the text.  It just does!

So my thought about this slice of my life:  Libraries should organize their audio books by the accent of the narrator.  Yep.  Life changing.

Beautiful Book!

My son…when the weather was warmer…

I am a book hoarder.  I am a nerd.  I carry a book in my giant purse and I am not ashamed.  I am “that” person that gives books as gifts.

My siblings never appreciated a good book, but when I became a mother, I saw it as an opportunity to share my love of books with someone.  He saw me reading and enjoying books, it was simple to pass that love along.  However, when my sister got pregnant, one of her first comments was, “You aren’t going to get my kid a book for holidays, are you?”  She definitely does not share my passion.  I knew without a reader as a parent, it wouldn’t be as simple, but I was determined to make my nephew a reader.

My nephews…Too Cute!

I ignored her protests, of course, and get her son books for every holiday beginning be

fore he was born.

This Christmas I knew my mission was a success.  I handed my two and a half year old nephew a book wrapped up in red paper.  He ripped the paper off, throwing it to the side, raised the book up and exclaimed, “Beautiful Book!”