The Power of Books

This morning I finished a really good book by an author who I have enjoyed for a while now — Jane Green.

It was called “Promises To Keep” and without giving away the story, it is one that will make you think and truly appreciate your loved ones and how truly precious and short life is.

When I picked it up I didn’t realize the true subject of the book as it is deep in the story where you find out a main and loved character is very ill.

I have several friends who are ill right now and I couldn’t help but think about them and shed a few tears as I was reading the end of the book.  As I closed the book, I said prayers for my friends and asked for the Lord to pour out His love and mercy to them.  And, I prayed for their families as well.

Isn’t it something how much a work of fiction can affect us?  In either a good way or a bad way. We can lose ourselves in another world and truly come to love the characters we are reading about.

Then when you finish the book, you want to read more and not let those characters go.  You want to continue to go on their journey. That is how I have felt today with that book I finished.  I didn’t want it to end yet I knew that it would.

That to me is the sign of a great story.  There are many kinds that I like — chick lit, mysteries, stories about Amish people, police stories, romances, and many others.

Another book by Jane Green that I really liked is “Jemima J.” I have read this book three times. The book is about ugly ducklings and swans and the main character trying to lose weight (something I can truly relate to).  Jemima is a great girl who you can’t help rooting for and hoping that she will succeed. I imagine I will be reading about her once again.

I also like several other authors a lot and have read many of their books — Carol Higgins Clark writes wonderful mysteries as does her mother, Mary Higgins Clark.  And, I also really have enjoyed Danielle Steel for several years and recently discovered Michael Connelly.

I still remember one of my favorite books when I was a girl, “The Secret Garden.” This is the first book that I really remember enjoying and getting totally swept into. I want to re-read it and see if it holds any of the magic that it used to.

My favorite book series growing up were the “Little House on the Prairie” series by Laura Ingalls Wilder and “The Chronicles of Narnia” by C. S. Lewis.  These were two very distinctive and very different worlds that I was transported into.  I imagined the lives of the characters and wanted to be there with them.

Most of my family loves to read and we like a wide variety.  I am glad of that and enjoy talking to them about a story that was one that they couldn’t put down. Reading books is something to celebrate, in my opinion.

My son Ian has loved books for a while and is now in the early stages of reading.  We regularly go to our city’s library and check out 15 to 20 books at a time for him.  He grins and enjoys each story. I truly love seeing him light up when we read him a story and he later goes back and reads it to himself.

Recently, he has discovered Dr. Seuss.  We have “The Foot Book” and the ABC book as well.  He really likes both of those and recently quoted from The Foot Book.

I hope to write a few books one of these days.  I really want to write a children’s book or book series and will chat with Ian and my nieces and nephews about some ideas.

One idea is in the back of my mind, however, and has been for years.  My grandfather told us stories for many years about a few characters.  I want to compile these into stories for my family. Maybe this year I can work on that. I just need to see what they remember so we can get them recorded on paper before we all forget them.

I am also toying with the idea of writing either a short story or a novel.  I have a story already started and will see where it takes me. I will keep you posted on the progress of this endeavor.

I would love to hear about the books that you enjoy reading.  Please share with us the ones that really spoke to you.

I wonder if I can write as interesting a book as I enjoy reading.  I am going to try, that’s for sure.  Happy reading!!

Time to Lose, Etc.

Time to Lose Week 8

Yet another week has come and gone with the weight loss adventure.

The exercising didn’t go exactly as I had planned, but there is good news. I lost 2 pounds because of better food choices.  YEAH!  It truly is a combination of the two but quite a bit from healthy foods.

In each meal, I am eating either fruits or veggies and am having protein as well. That seems to be making a good difference.  I still, however, have a major appetite and am not sure when that will change.  Hopefully soon, so I am trying to fill up on healthier options – plums, pears, oranges, green salad, corn on the cob, etc.

This morning I tried on a dress that I haven’t worn in a while.  It seems to fit better than it has in recent months.  My shape seems to be improving and that is really nice.

I have to remember that weight loss isn’t all about the scale — but also about how clothes fit and how you feel.  These items are improving and I am very thankful.

There are still plenty of items to work on but each week it’s getting easier!  I still like the occasional really good hamburger with for example, Cali Cobb toppings (blue cheese, bacon, and avocado) and thin-cut fries.  This was a recent meal I enjoyed at a restaurant and it was delicious and the best hamburger I’ve had in ages.

And, I now like dark chocolate which is supposed to be better for you.  My favorite is Ghirardelli dark with mint.  I have learned that when I do want a splurge, it is going to be something I really like and will really enjoy the taste of.  I am not wasting my calories anymore on a so-so tasting item.

Here is to another week that more will be lost and more will be learned. Cheers!!

Etc.

**I have to say how glad I am that it is Friday.  It will be a busy weekend, but I still enjoy the different routine to a Saturday and a Sunday than the other 5 days of the week. Being able to sleep in a little bit on Saturday morning is a treat, as well as a special breakfast or event for the day. And going to church is the highlight for Sunday as well as lunch with the family and then a lazy afternoon.

*And, I have to say Happy Birthday to Dr. Seuss.  He is one of the best children’s authors ever.  I have liked his books for many years. And, now I am so thankful that Ian is enjoying them too.  My grandmother recently gave him “The Foot Book.” Last night as he was going to bed, he quoted from this book.

I have to say that is the mark of a great book when a 4-year-old remembers the lines from it a week after it’s been read to him!!  I hope to write a children’s book one day and can only hope to aspire to a little of the genius of Dr. Seuss.

Hope you have a great week – no matter what you are doing!  I wonder if we can make the most of it and enjoy each and every day! Hope you will!