Recently, while playing hookey from church, I watched my favorite Sunday television program, “CBS Sunday Morning”. Watching CBS Sunday Morning is a ritual I have enjoyed since I was a kid. Truth be told, I wish I could skip church every Sunday, if only to watch my favorite Sunday morning program. One reason I love the program so much is due to my memories of sitting with my Dad (who also looked for reasons to skip church) and watching the show together.
Before I get to Sunday Morning segment triggering this post, I have a confession. I am not an avid reader. Gosh, I should just go ahead and admit fully, I am not a reader. I know, I shake my head with my own disgust as I admit my shortcoming to you. After all, bloggers tend to be voracious readers. Many blogs pertain to the latest and greatest book. Bloggers throw out names of authors and the books written by the authors, as often as I throw out my love of ice cream and Dutch Monkey Doughnut’s flavor of the day. (Banana cake, by the way. Banana cake is the flavor Dutch Monkey Doughnuts is promoting today.)
I fear I will lose subscribers with my confession.
I try to read. I do. I know how to read. I do.
I just find it challenging to focus on something for more than an hour. I may start at book, and I may get into the first 100 pages of the book. However, the minute I put the book down, I find I rarely go back and pick it up again. (Note: Between my husband and myself, we read to our boys every night.)
Though I may read far fewer books than the average person, I do read. In fact, I have read books that grab my attention to the point where I avoid reading the book because I do not want it to end. You’ve done that right? Let yourself get so involved with the characters to the point that you don’t want to let them go? I love those kind of books. (Elizabeth Brewster is still haunting me, Julie.)
I’ve said it before and I will say it again, when I have down time, reading is not my first choice for something to do. Writing, watching movies/documentaries or just sitting/napping is what I enjoy most. When I do pick up a book, unless it grabs me instantly, chances are it will remain on a shelf, never finished. I have several unfinished books in a cabinet by my bed. Several.
So, what does the above have to do with the story I watched on CBS Sunday Morning? Well, a Dad committed to reading to his 4th grade daughter every night for 100 consecutive nights. After the 100th night, the Dad and daughter continued their reading ritual. How long did this reading ritual last? Until the daughter started college. Yes, college. Here, check out the story, “A Father’s Gift of Reading“.
My oldest is already showing an interest in writing. Oftentimes, while I sit with my laptop and type my latest and greatest post, Joe is nearby, writing in his little green spiral notebook. He writes four or five sentence stories, and he shares the stories with me by either reading it aloud to me or asking me to read it aloud to him. I am thrilled to see Joe’s interest in writing. I believe it is in his best interest (and the best interest of his brother) to have an interest in reading. If Joe and Charlie don’t see me or Rob reading quietly to ourselves, what makes me think they will they will pick up a book and read quietly to themselves?
Inspired by the story on CBS Sunday Morning, as well as some of the books recommended by fellow bloggers, I am committing to reading a book every day for the next 100 consecutive days. Furthermore, I am committing to reading a chapter book to each one of my boys every day for 100 consecutive days (at least one chapter a day).
For my boys, we started the Geronimo Stilton Series, beginning with “Lost Treasure of the Emerald Eye”. Interestingly enough, Geronimo Stilton is a journalist and editor for a local newspaper, which sounds perfect for Joe … a writer and an adventure finder. In addition to Geronimo, I’ll include the entire collection of Beatrix Potter. I am very proud of the fact that my boys love Beatrix Potter. (I have to thank their day care provider, Ms. Suzann, for that fact.)
“A Walk in the Woods” by Bill Bryson
“I Know Just What You Mean: The Power of Friendship in Women’s Lives” by Ellen Goodman and Patricia O’Brien
“The Greatest Secret in the World” by Og Mandino
“The Reading Promise” by Alice Ozma
“In Spite of Myself”, by Christopher Plummer
“Between Shades of Gray” by Ruta Sepetys
In honor of my niece (aka Adventure Girl), who is currently hiking the Appalachian Trail, I started with “A Walk in the Woods”. When I finish Bryson’s book, I will start “The Reading Promise.” After all, Alice and her Dad are my inspiration for deliberately entering my very own reading room. Here’s to the next 100 consecutive days … and beyond?
What books do you recommend? What books have pulled you in to story the point that you did not want the journey to end?
Be kind, and take care of yourself and each other.