Posted in Blog challenge, Books and Shows

Bloganuary 1.14.23

Happy Happy Saturday. See, Saturdays get an extra “happy” when it’s also your birthday.

I’m continuing on with some Bloganuary posts this weekend because I’ve really been enjoying writing about what pops up…

One of the suggested prompts this week was: has a book changed your life?

While of course some books immediately popped into my mind, overall, my first thought was: reading has changed my life

From the time I was little, I remember reading.

Both of my parents are readers. My dad always had a stack of books on the side table by his recliner, and my mom was the one to take us to the library.

In the summer, we’d go to the library pretty often, and we’d always complete the reading challenge…

Around 4th grade, I have memories of reading in my room. I had a little cozy corner (I started making things “cozy” early on!) where I’d sit and read.

I also loved my school librarian, Mrs. Jones. She made reading so much fun. A favorite elementary school memory was when I was in the intermediate grades, some of us would get to help on our class visits and scan books out to our classmates and then tidy up the libary.

Of course, there was the school reading program…

Ahh…I remember those Pizza Hut coupons like it was yesterday.

I feel like I naturally introduced reading to the kids. Even when they were babies, I’d rock them, read them a book, and then put them in bed.

In the summer, it was always a weekly activity to take them to the library. They’d sit and listen during story time, make a craft, click around on the computer, and check out books. The library was a great way to burn a couple of hours once a week in those hot summer months.

My mom, after she retired from teaching after 31 years, worked at the public library for ten more. She even did story time with the little kids, and we’d join her during our summer visits to KC.

Just like when I grew up, during the elementary years, the kids would complete the library summer reading challenge earning free books and stickers instead of pizza.

Hayden’s my reader. I will never forget listening to him read chapter books for the first time. Most nights, I would sit with him in bed, and we’d take turns reading pages of the Magic Treehouse series. There were many nights that I thought he was sleeping only for me to go to bed at 10:00 and see his little lamp light still on. I’d encourage him to finish a chapter and then turn off his light because he needed his rest.

Hadley always preferred shorter books and graphic novels.

She was a serious reader as a toddler…haha


I wish she enjoyed reading, but I think some of it is her attention span. She’s on the go, and it’s hard for her to settle in and focus. That being said, she loves a theme…and “Character Day” in elementary school was always her fave.

Reading through the years...

  • I loved Madeline.
  • I remember asking for Babysitter’s Club books, and even buying them as they came out one by one.
  • In 7th grade, we read Where the Red Fern Grows with Mr. Freeman, and I cried.
  • My dad gave me Tuesdays with Morrie when I was in high school, and I knew it would be a book I’d read time and time again.
  • I bought Cliffs Notes for every Shakespearean play I read in high school. Even as a high school English teacher, I dread teaching Shakespeare.
  • One of my favorite courses in college when we read one “classic” young adult book per week and created a lesson plan. I remember classmates grumbling because we “had” to read one book a week…but I couldn’t wait. We read Chocolate Wars, The Outsiders, The Giver, and more.
  • I hadn’t read To Kill a Mockingbird until I taught it my first year teaching…and couldn’t have loved it more. (*Side note: I wanted Hadley’s name to be Harper, but Travis nixed that suggestion from the start. That being said, we did have a dog named Scout!)

As an adult some recent books that have stuck with me…

  • The Giver of Stars
  • We Were the Lucky Ones
  • American Dirt
  • Maid: Hard Work, Low Pay, and a Mother’s Will to Survive
  • Where the Crawdads Sing

I feel like I said, “I remember…” quite a bit in this post, but I have such fond memories of reading, connecting with a story line, empathizing with a character, and having the best feeling of not wanting a story to end.

Reading has changed my life in more ways than I can count.

What’s a book that has changed your life?

8 thoughts on “Bloganuary 1.14.23

  1. Oh I feel like I could have written this post myself! I used to have my nose buried in a book all the time (still do; in fact my husband remarked last night that he was surprised I hadn’t brought a book to read in the car on our date night.. because yes, I have brought books with us on date night before!). Homeschooling my boys we often spent hours at our library each week and would bring home literal boxes of books. I’d say 90% of our curriculum was books from the library. I have a video of Alec reading the Magic Treehouse books that I posted to Facebook the first day we homeschooled (he was 5! and read with such incredible expression). He’s always been my reader whereas my youngest prefers graphic novels and my oldest just always tried to not read at all if he could get away with it (which he couldn’t).

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  2. You have always read, and I especially remember brown grocery bags filled with the collection of Babysitter Club books. At my appointment with my oncologist this week he talked for about fifteen minutes on his love of reading. His native language is Hindi. He said all the world classics weren’t easily translated into Hindi, so he read them in English as his second language and it helped him learn the language. He is an extremely well read man in world lit; more so than I. Now he listens to audio books more because of time. I found this interesting about him.

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  3. As I picked up a library book this Saturday I had the thought that I still get as giddy over a new stack of library books as an adult as I did as a child. I think the books I loved the most were the Boxcar Children books. I thought it was so cool that kids lived alone in an abandoned train car and I loved reading about them. Both of my kids were avid readers until about middle or high and then Jack became less so but still enjoys graphic novels. Both of them love Shakespeare and I’m like – I have no idea what is going on.

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    1. They both love Shakespeare! Wow! I get the best feeling walking into a book store, a library, and finishing a great book. I hate to think others don’t love those experiences.

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