52 Books in 2012: March & April Update
So, not surprisingly, progress really slowed down in March and April. I read five books total, bringing my total up to 11. I have 41 books left to read. Eek!
In March, I read:
Jesus for President: Politics for Ordinary Radicals was interesting. It was a quick read.
I think the authors (or maybe it’s the editor or publisher?) spent a little too much time on the layout/design of this book. It’s really cool looking… but sometimes that’s distracting from the actual text.
I took this book with a grain of salt. The authors would have you be a complete and total pacifist. I don’t think that that is wrong or a bad way to be, but I do think it flattens out Jesus’s personality – he is so complex.
The only other complaint about this book is sometimes the language is really condescending. This is completely on accident, I think. But it comes across sometimes as though the authors are imagining they’re talking to a small child.
I’ve read other books by Regina Leeds so I already knew how One Year to an Organized Financial Life was going to be setup and what to expect. Since I got this from the library, I didn’t have a year to read through it. I didn’t read the entire thing from cover to cover – instead, I skipped around to what applied to me and what I wanted to focus on.
I appreciate that Regina considers herself a ‘zen organizer’ which means she not only focuses on the actual act of decluttering your physical surroundings, but also on decluttering your mind/psyche as well and exploring why you got cluttered up to begin with. So the exercises where you explore your personal relationship to money was pretty interesting and I did enjoy that.
Overall, this is a pretty good book to get yourself in a solid position for understanding your finances. It’s probably worth purchasing, to use as a reference throughout the year.
Beautiful Outlaw by John Eldredge was a pretty good book. It has some controversy surrounding it, with some pastors saying that its theology is not sound. I didn’t read it for the theology, though. I read it because I was interested in how John Eldredge thought Jesus’s personality shined through in the scriptures.
I’m glad I read the book because it does give the reader an interesting look into how scripture displays Jesus. You learn to read things a little less flatly. So often I read things in the bible and don’t really think about the emotion behind it. This book challenges you to do that.
I would recommend it to someone who wants to add a little dimension to their understanding of Jesus and the scripture.
I had read parts of The Help by Kathryn Stockett last year and decided to give it another shot. I never finished it when I first picked it up because I just kind of forgot about it. I saw it on our library’s Quick Picks shelf and decided to revisit it and I’m so glad I did.
Like The Night Circus, this is up on my list of favorites. It was a little slow-going at first, but then I got hooked and finished it in four days. I was sad to see it end. I really loved the characters and wanted to just keep hanging out in their world with them.
A couple nights ago, we rented the movie and watched it. The movie was just as great as the book, I think. It was a pretty good adaptation. If you haven’t seen it or read the book yet, I’d read the book before seeing the movie.
In April I read:
My sister-in-law got me Bringing up Bebe by Pamela Druckerman back in February and I didn’t get around to reading it until the last week of March. Serendipitously, I finished it the night before Ezra was born.
I’ll admit that I was a little skeptical about this book. I thought “what could the French possibly know about parenting that’s any different from what I can read in an American parenting book??” As it turns out, they don’t really have special knowledge per se. They just have common sense.
I didn’t always agree with what Druckerman said or how she painted American parenting, but she did get one thing right – American parents are a little too involved. I think maybe we have too much information at our fingertips and the tendency is to go overboard.
We’ve been using some of the French techniques since day 1 and I think they’ve helped us not go too crazy. The main we use is ‘the pause’ and I 100% credit this to being able to understand Ezra’s facial expressions, cries and movements by the time he was 2 weeks old. The basic idea behind The Pause is to not pick your child up the second they make a sound. Instead, observe them and see what they’re doing. This has definitely kept me from snatching him up when he’s sleeping peacefully because he lets out a little grunt or squeal… and that means baby sleeps longer and so does mommy and daddy.
I would recommend this to parents just to get a different perspective on parenting practices. It never hurts to get a little more education 🙂
Of course I was reading What to Expect When You’re Expecting! I didn’t read a lot of pregnancy books but this one I kept by my bedside and read faithfully each week. A lot of people say this book freaks them out, but that wasn’t the case for me. I think the key is to skim the question section and read only the questions that apply to your current situation. If you read all of it, I can see how it would plant seeds of paranoia in your already pregnancy-hormone-adled brain (oh no! My leg twitched! I must have a blood clot! or OH EM GEE my arm is itching, I must have PUPPS!).
When I was in labor, I read the labor section and it was very helpful in terms of me understanding where I was at in labor. I read the post-partum section after we brought Ezra home and it was packed with great information about taking care of your baby in the first week, as well as taking care of yourself.
This book is a must-have for any expectant mom. Don’t get a library copy, either. You’ll want to have this whole nine months.
In May, I’m currently reading:
- What to Expect: The First Year by Heidi Murkoff
- Mom Incorporated: A Guide to Business + Baby by Aliza Sherman
- The BabyCenter Essential Guide to your Baby’s First Year by Linda Murray et al
- Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis