I enjoyed reading my choices and the posts of others readers as they shared their summer read picks. It made a season of quarantine feel like it a had some sense of community.
For Summer 2021, I am eager to dive into my summer reads, but I’m going to challenge myself to 21 reads before September 1st! #20booksofsummer2021 +1.
As the volunteer librarian at my children’s school, I host a reading club each year, and I always try to include the books in contention for the Mark Twain Award. There at 12 books nominated each year, and I have yet to be disappointed whenever I read those nominated. Students love them and often make informal waiting lists on my library desk for the Mark Twain Award titles. These 12 titles will definitely make up part of my 21 reads this summer, so I thought I would kick the list off with the nominees.
I learned about this #20BookOfSummer20 challenge from one of my favorite book bloggers Fictionofile. The Reading Challenge was created by Cathy at 746books.com and I am excited to give it a go. I plan to double dip my reading though as I join my kiddos in participating in the local library’s summer reading program too.
The rules are simple:
If you want to join in, just nab Cathy’s Books of Summer image, pick your own 20 books you would like to read and link back to her Master post from 1 June to let her know that you are taking part. She’d love your support and hopes some of you will join in the summer reading fun!
Choosing your list of books is half the fun, as is following along with everyone’s progress on this years new #20booksofsummer20 hashtag.
The challenge starts off on Monday, June 1st and finishes on Tuesday, September 1st.
Because life is CRAZY I’m not sure I can pull off 20 titles before September 1st, but here are the books I hope to devour in my efforts:
*I hyperlinked titles to the Goodreads’ description for each book.
Books bring people together. I still love the practice of asking those I meet what they are reading. (Will Schwalbe is a genius.) I hope you find some quality reading time this summer and nurture your imagination and positive energy with some sweet or scary literature.
By: Melanie A. Peters
P.S. What are you reading?
P.P.S. Be sure to share what you plan to read this summer.
I don’t know about you, but it seems like as soon as 4th of July hits, the year speeds up. It’s like the fireworks fuel the sun’s rotations to rev up its turns. My kids seem to grow faster. The school year speeds at me. Even Christmas seems to come closer at a much more rapid pace.
As fireflies make their evening entrance and whippoorwills warm up their whistles, the light wanes and twilight touches porches across the country. There is no better time to feel the power of sundown and breathe in the shift between day and night.
Twilight possesses the power to slow time and heal the aches of the day. I recently had the chance to share a sunset rocking in porch chairs with my cousin. All our lives it seems like we have been racing to get to whatever destination life has in store for us next. Our pride in the tenacious nature with which we usually attack our lives was set aside. The sway of our rocking soothed our need to speed through the rest of the day. Sitting there, being serenaded by the crickets, it seemed as if the sunset was giving us permission to slow down and embrace the chance to just be.
Soaking in the serenity of the moment, we both acknowledged that we felt better somehow. I knew I was tired before our visit, but after taking that time to quietly experience the evening, I found that I would rest better that night.
By witnessing twilight touch the porch, we allowed it to touch our hearts and minds, we invited the sun to take away our worries and weariness.
When twilight touches the porch, we really need to be a part of that moment.
As one of the greatest wonders of the world, humming birds defy the odds of nature and mystify with the speed of their wings and delicate ability to hover. For Christmas my children surprised me with a hummingbird feeder to put in my flower bed. No contemplation was necessary over its destined location. That hummingbird feeder was going outside my office window. The notion of having nonstop opportunities to see those winged wonders was pretty exciting for me.
As the winter dragged on, I sadly gazed at the feeder in its box on a garage shelf for months. Hummingbirds certainly weren’t going to come if the weather never got warm.
Finally, spring arrived!
I carefully mixed the nectar according to the directions and poured it into the feeder’s reservoir. With excitement I lined up the lid to screw it on just the right way and SNAPthe neck of the reservoir cracked off rendering the feeder useless.
As a surprise, hubby and I headed out for a short two-day camp out with the kids as soon as they were dismissed from the last day of school. Their excitement was contagious and the chance to get away was too tempting to resist.
One of our favorite parts of camping is always the campfire. The kids and I seek out the best sticks and logs and enjoy hours of flame watching and food roasting. Campfires always seem to pull us into the warmth and light of their flames and inspire memorable moments and sharing.
The dancing flames provide one of nature’s greatest entertainments. The fantastic show they perform can never be duplicated and never ceases to amaze us. The first campfire of the year holds a special power. Continue reading “First Fire of the Year”→
After another speedy summer break, I revisited this post from 2016 and the sentiments still ring so true. I hope you can relate to this message of summer and its downhill slide. Enjoy your summer and I wish you a happy autumn.
My daughter recently discovered how much fun it is to ride her bike down the hill of our drive way. She hasn’t mastered riding her bike up it, but, boy, can she ride down it!
As I watched her ride down for the second time the other day, I realized I was witnessing moments of fleeting fun. How long will she shout out, “Watch me, mama!”? How long will it be before she isn’t excited about that hill or her bike anymore? How long before the muggy, summer days start to shorten and the chill of fall sends us in early?
I know. I know. Summer is just getting started.
I thought this would be a great time to remind everyone to slow down and enjoy it because, like those rapid rides down the driveway, another summer will be in the history books…
I would love to blame my inability to successfully focus on the phases of the moon, or my kids’ schedules, or the incurability of freckles but the reality is that I have failed to give myself focus and therefore my energy has gone spastic this summer, but I’m working on it.
Spastic energy results in ineffective effort.
Ineffective effort results in failure on epic levels.
After I caught this crappie at Truman Lake, my husband told my kids, “Now Mama is happy.”
I made them take my picture. I was proud of my catch and I wanted my kids to see my pride.
Heavy storms with lots of thunder and lightening blew through two of the three nights we were at the lake. The storm fronts seemed to have scared off the fish because we only caught about 15 fish the entire trip. My contributions to the fishing came in the form of this and one other fish caught, keeping the boys from falling in the water, and having minnows ready to bait my daughter’s hook. I just happened to catch this guy during one of the quieter moments of our excursion. I fished with my youngest son on my lap so he could “catch” one too, but he couldn’t stand the wait so we never snagged one for him.
Fishing with my kids is stressful and scary for me. I am afraid of water.
Water has frightened me since I was a teenager. As a camp counselor, I had to rescue two girls after they tipped over their canoe in a deep and restricted part of the camp lake. A year later I had to provide first aid to a man who sustained a head injury at a local water slide when he flipped off the mat (on which he was supposed to remain seated). People who are not afraid of water get hurt. I am afraid of water.
On our fishing trip, safety precautions were my number one concern. Appropriately fitting life jackets, secured seats, swimming lesson reminders, and safety whistles were all in place. The waters were calm and my always zen husband sat confidently as he drove the boat. I clutched my youngest son for dear life. Continue reading “Mama Catches Happiness”→
Last week we decided to take an impromptu vacation to Truman Lake in Warsaw, Missouri. We have visited this lake in the past, but this would be our first trip with all three kids and the dog.
Taking the kids was not the shocking part of our planning. Taking the dog tested my husband’s bounds of comfort on many levels. He is not a fan of dogs in cars. He is not a fan of dogs licking faces or hands or legs or any other body part. He is adamantly against dogs in the house. Living up to the July Intentergy Positivity Challenge he gave in and allowed us to borrow a travel kennel from friends and bring our fur-baby along.
Bandit was the picture of puppy grace on the trip. He rode happily and quietly in the kids’ laps on the drive to and from the lake. Quickly did his business in the grass and took a nap in the kennel while we stopped to eat. Never once did the dog ask, “How much longer?” or complain about what food we chose to eat. Not once did Bandit whine about one of the kids touching him or looking at him or breathing the same air he did. Never did we have to deal with him throwing a fit because he was hot, hungry, or tired. Continue reading “Dog on Vacation”→