Wednesday, March 3, 2010

What we're all reading right now

On some level, I think a main motivation for me to homeschool was that we would hopefully have more time to read.

I was a big fan of Beverly Cleary when I was a kid, and right now I'm enjoying them again by reading several of the Henry books to the girls. Beverly Cleary always made me think of Ramona, and I didn't realize that there were many books where Ramona was a very remote, secondary character.

Benjamin has been on an almost ridiculous Richard Scarry kick. We read one of these to him at least twice a day, every day. It's interesting how darn ... well, preachy these books are! Yet they are so loved. I don't know if the lesson is that little kids like the preachiness, or just that that the funny characters and pictures override it.

These days it takes me forever to get through a novel, if I attempt it at all. I was amazed when my mother loaned me The Help (which I had never heard of and thought I would probably hate) and I slurped it up in less than two months.

It's interesting, thought ... I loved reading The Help. However, I would not say that it was an exceptionally good book. I noticed some reviews compared it to Harper Lee. Um, no.

So now I've started slowing tackling A Tree Grows in Brooklyn.

I like this book, but it's a little hard to read because it's so sad. It reminds me a little of The Grapes of Wrath, except for the fact that I actually like it.

Since I always have to be reading more than one thing at once (and I always need non-fiction because it's easier to skim), I'm also reading a fairly new book called Simplicity Parenting.

This is one of those books where it's like, "Yeah, I know, I do try to do this, but I could use the reminder." It talks about purging a lot of the toy and book clutter from the kids' rooms, so their play can be more focused and creative. Having mealtime rituals. He even recommends no TV in the house if your kids are younger than seven. (Which I don't and won't do, but I can appreciate the sentiment.)

Robert hasn't "read" in the traditional sense for years, but he does listen to a lot of audio books during his commute. He's been working hard, on and off, for years, writing "Rachael's Hospital Story," and is listening to this to help him best edit it:

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