Sunday, May 30, 2021
Life: It Goes On - May 30
Wednesday, May 26, 2021
Project Hail Mary by Andy Weir
Except that right now, he doesn’t know that. He can’t even remember his own name, let alone the nature of his assignment or how to complete it.
All he knows is that he’s been asleep for a very, very long time. And he’s just been awakened to find himself millions of miles from home, with nothing but two corpses for company.
His crewmates dead, his memories fuzzily returning, Ryland realizes that an impossible task now confronts him. Hurtling through space on this tiny ship, it’s up to him to puzzle out an impossible scientific mystery—and conquer an extinction-level threat to our species.
And with the clock ticking down and the nearest human being light-years away, he’s got to do it all alone.
Or does he?
Tuesday, May 25, 2021
Leave Out The Tragic Part by Dave Kindred
Sunday, May 23, 2021
Life: It Goes On - May 23
Thursday, May 20, 2021
Behold The Dreamers by Imbolo Mbue
Tuesday, May 18, 2021
Death Of A Gossip: Hamish Macbeth Series #1 by M. C. Beaton
Sunday, May 16, 2021
Life: It Goes On - May 16
Thursday, May 13, 2021
Mrs. Rochester's Ghost by Lindsay Marcott
- Marcott has brought a lot of the elements of Jane Eyre to this retelling - an orphan who travels to be a teacher for a mysterious man's young daughter, a first meeting between the girl and the man that results in the man being knocked off his trusty ride (here a motorcycle instead of a horse), a mad wife and her brother who tries to make Jane believe Rochester is a terrible man, and a gothic atmosphere with dense fog and ghostly apparitions.
- I was kept guessing throughout the book, even though I assumed that I knew what the final answer would be regarding Rochester's guilt. Still, the final reveal was a surprise. And Marcott managed to throw in some things that were red herrings for me, even if she didn't mean them to lead me astray (that's just how my mind started working while reading this book).
- I liked Jane - she understood how to relate to Rochester's daughter, she had devoted friends, she was willing to give people the benefit of the doubt, and she wanted to be able to make her own way in the world.
- Jane's family has some secrets that have been kept from her for most of her life. But it felt unnecessary to me to have it revealed throughout the book. There was enough going on already.
- The chapter's alternate between Jane's story and Beatrice's story of the last day of her life with flashback's to her life. Beatrice's story line seems to be a nod to Jean Rhys' Wide Sargasso Sea, itself a takeoff from Jane Eyre which tells the story of Rochester's first wife. I liked the idea of paying homage to both books. Unfortunately, Beatrice's story didn't entirely work for me.
- Rochester was not a good guy on a number of levels and I had a hard time with the ending of the book because of it. He's done some things that I felt like Jane would not have been able to overlook. In the end of Jane Eyre, I'm able to forgive Rochester. Here I had a harder time which made it harder to be happy for Jane.
Tuesday, May 11, 2021
Wintering: The Power of Rest and Retreat in Difficult Times by Katherine May
"Everybody winters at one time or another: some winter over and over again."
"There are gaps in the mesh of the everyday world, and sometimes they open up and you fall through them into somewhere else. Somewhere Else runs at a different pace to the here and now, where everyone else carries on. Somewhere Else is where ghosts live, concealed from view and only glimpsed by people in the real world. Somewhere Else exists at a delay, so that you can’t quite keep pace."
"Wintering is a season in the cold. It is a fallow period in life when you’re cut off from the world, feeling rejected, sidelined, blocked from progress, or cast into the role of an outsider. Perhaps it results from an illness or a life event such as a bereavement or the birth of a child; perhaps it comes from a humiliation or failure. Perhaps you’re in a period of transition and have temporarily fallen between two worlds. Some winterings creep upon us more slowly, accompanying the protracted death of a relationship, the gradual ratcheting up of caring responsibilities as our parents age, the drip-drip-drip of lost confidence. Some are appallingly sudden , like discovering one day that your skills are considered obsolete, the company you worked for has gone bankrupt, or your partner is in love with someone new. However it arrives, wintering is usually involuntary, lonely, and deeply painful."
As much as I enjoyed the book and felt I'd learned a lot from it, I didn't realize just how much until I went back and copied the many sections that I had bookmarked. I'm going to keep those notes handy. I know I'll come out of this period but I know, from experience, that I will have another period. It might not take something as traumatic as losing a parent, but it will come. Next time I will be better prepared. I will know that what I need to do is to allow myself to feel wintering as a need. "It is the courage to stare down the worst parts of our experience to commit to healing them the best we can." We need to understand that we need to allow ourselves to take care of ourselves during this time and to embrace it.
Sunday, May 9, 2021
Life: it Goes On - May 9
Enjoyed: Getting my hands in the dirt and getting our patio ready for the summer. I'm having fun this year doing some different things in the backyard and The Big Guy moved our raised garden and spent a lot of time getting the vegetable gardens planted and cleaned up.
Friday, May 7, 2021
Backyard Guide To The Night Sky by Andrew Fazekas
Tuesday, May 4, 2021
The Beauty of What Remains by Steve Leder
"Do not waste the rest of your loved one's life worrying about his or her death. Treat the person you love like the fully alive, fully human, fully beautiful person he or she is. Enjoy him or her for every good moment of every hour of every day. Assume your loved one can hear absolutely everything you are saying in his or her presence. She is alive, treat her that way. He is alive, treat him that way.
Give an Academy award-winning performance despite your fears. The fears that dying people express to me at the end of their lives are fears about whether or not the people they love will be okay. Even if you have to pretend a little or a lot, you need to tell that person you love who is dying that you will be okay. [Say] We love you. We will take care of one another. You can rest. You can let go because you have taught us and given us everything we need to be okay when you are gone."
These particular lessons spoke to me. They brought me back to the final 24 hours of my mother-in-law's life. As she lay hours away from death, her family gathered around her bed, taking turns holding her hands, telling her how much we loved her and that she would soon be with her beloved Jack. But I took equal comfort in believing that she could hear the conversations in the room - the stories, the laughter, the comfort we offered each other.
Sunday, May 2, 2021
Life: It Goes On - May 2
Enjoyed: All of that time with my friends, a FaceTime call from my niece with some exciting news, getting my hands in the dirt again and reworking things in the yard. The cat enjoyed spring this week, too.