Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Reading is Fun

I just LOVE reading.

I only wish I had more time to spend with my nose in a book. There are seasons in life, and mine right now is the busy season. So I'm lucky if I get an hour in the evening to read. If I'm not lucky I don't read for a few days.

As you may recall, Dickens is my favorite author. His sardonic perspective and ironic sense of humor match my own outlook pretty closely. And he's just plain funny. He mocks people that deserve mocking.

Currently I'm reading Nicholas Nickelby (by Dickens, of course). I'm trying to read all his works - only have three or four to go. I'm not sure if I want to read his Notes on America from his trip here. From what I can tell, he wasn't too impressed by the good ole' U S of A. In fact, he was deeply disappointed in what he saw. I'm really not in a mood to go there right now.

But Nickelby is highly entertaining so far. It probably helps that I watched a BBC dramatization of the book a few months ago, so the characters are not completely new to me. And the glimpse into 19th century London is always fascinating.

I am also reading Do Hard Things, a book written by two (twin) teenage boys about the myth of adolescence. The gist is that kids have been sold a lie: that the teen years are the time to party, be irresponsible, to lack motivation, and not achieve much of anything. They suggest that the teen years are like a diving board into life. If you work hard, stretch your comfort zone, and pursue your dreams you can hit a sweet spot, and leap off into your adult years. Or you can wake up in six or seven years with no skills, no experience, no motivation and no idea what to do next. It is very interesting.

Passing a love of reading to my kids is important to me. With ARG I can safely say I've been successful. Any free moment (in which the computer is unavailable), he is reading. Fantasy, science fiction, historical novels, nonfiction - he just reads. I'll never forget when he read an adaptation of the Oddessey when he was five: Black Ships Before Troy.

With Rosie I'm still working on it. She loves to be read to. But hasn't picked up the passion for books just yet. But I think (hope) she is turning a corner and beginning to enjoy reading more. Finding books that are at her level, and have interesting storylines is the trick. Not always easy to find easy chapter books with plenty of girls or fairies or horses or sparkles. Ya know?

MiniMe DEMANDS to be read to constantly. When she wakes up? "You're going to read this to me now." she states. Mom has any free time? "NOW you're going to read to me." I probably don't do it enough. I definitely don't read to her as much as I read to ARG and Rosie. In fact, I can safely say that I read exponentially less to each child as they came along. Not that I don't do it - but that I read for several hours every day to ARG when he was little. I just can't do that now.

Like I said, it's a busy season of life.