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Good Morning

Yesterday was a great day. I was a domestic diva. I made luscious, homemade lentil soup in the crock pot with freshly baked challah bread that came out just as Jennifer was leaving from our discipleship time. I was able to give her one of the loaves which was my hope but I wasn't sure the timing would be so very perfect.

I also sorted and started the wash; but of course, Michael took over when he got home from his final.

I also did all my back and shoulder exercises and some of the harder Shandra core ones (to see which individual exercise is the one giving me the back problem). After dinner, I took a long walk and talk with Georgie! :)

In addition, I made a library list of all the books (28) I have left from my "100 Great Books List," The library (as opposed to Library2Go) includes all forms of the book: digital audio and Kindle, CD, and print. That was a more efficient way to do it.  I have a game plan for every book. Many of them are on CD which I keep forgetting is an option!  I am having so much fun with this list. It is so much easier than slogging through many of the really HARD (but good) books on The Well-Educated Mind list! I might even complete it by the end of 2012 (Why am I so wanting completion on everything I start?). 

As I worked in the morning, I listened to The Mayor of Casterbridge by Thomas Hardy. What a great story so far. I was intrigued and hooked by the first page (or first minutes of the audio book). He was originally a poet, and it comes through in his prose. As I recall, I also liked The Return of the Native that I read several years ago, but the Book Dames read it and didn't like it as a whole. That one didn't end happily. I hope this one does, but the journey is delightful, and while I don't know the destination, I like the book along the way. It even beat out the next in The Hunger Games Trilogy, Catching Fire, for my affection! Not that Catching Fire is any less consuming, but I listened to The Mayor of Casterbridge first, and when it came down to being able to sit down and read a print book during my rest time, I wanted to continue to listen to it! It is 17 hours and on a limited time check out. Catching Fire is on loan from Shelley.  So, I have some lee-way. 

By the way, I wish I could remember where I heard an analysis of The Mayor of Casterbridge. I remember having a visual of it and thinking, "I must read that!"  I think I had gotten "The Art of Reading" from the library in a DVD, but I don't see it on the library website now. I am so confused. No matter.

It makes me want to form a group that wants to read artfully. There is absolutely nothing wrong with pleasure reading, but I realize I don't read for pleasure or escape. I think the only time I ever have was when I read the Jan Karon Mitford books in Malaysia. Reading about snowstorms in North Carolina was so comforting when I was sweating under my sheets in order to not be attacked by mosquitoes at the GTZ Guest House on the edge of the jungle!

About an artful reading group. I think back to asking Cully what he thought of The Brothers Karamazov, and he gave an answer that challenged my thinking. Made me realize that I hadn't thought as deeply about that book, and I wanted to!  Aaron's question at Christmas about what I thought of the metafiction in Don Quixote made me and Elizabeth laugh (because I didn't know what that word meant), but it also made me think!

Cully, Lee, Aaron, Matt (We love the same kinds of books. My ISFJ soul-mate.), and George would be so awesome to have in a book club. It could be me and all the guys. Elizabeth is gone. She would have done it. I wonder if there are any women out there who would also like to do that. LOL! There would be plenty of women who would feign artful reading if Cully and Lee were in the group! LOL!  They are the heart-throbs of the "Huck Finn" group. (Matt and George are obviously taken, and I don't know Aaron's status with the women.). All that said, I don't want to sound snooty about reading, but I just don't fit, especially in Book Babes. I like Book Dames - they are a very nice group of women.  I have not felt very good at Book Babes.  The people have ebbed and flowed there, and I have liked it at times, but this new mix is not good for me.  I was ready to quit after Henrietta Lax, and I even went to tell Michelle afterward, but we got to talking about other things, and I thought I would give it another try. That was several months ago, and I am still feeling that.  What to do!?

George said something at dinner last night that cracked me up, "When does the boring part of Moby-Dick start, Carol?"  I asked him what page he was on, and he said, "Two hundred."  LOL! If he is that far and not bored, he is a true fan of the book!  I do think if I were to read it again, I would probably not find it as boring because he made so many references to other authors and works that I had not read yet. (George just knows them because of his awesome high school and liberal arts education at Willamette.) Now, I would know who and what Melville is referring to. He was a self-educated man. I admire him so much. 

Speaking of being self-educated, I spied on the Oregon State University MA/MFA Literature degree. Then,  less than an hour later, Michele, who is in that program right now, wrote her sister, brother, Elizabeth, and me to ask about good American Literature books after the 1600's. When I referred her to my lists on this blog she cried, "You are probably the most well-read person I know! You should go to OSU. Then we could be classmates."  I laughed being that I had just looked into that possibility. I could do it for 37.50 per credit hour too (because George is on the faculty).  I love to read and learn for the pure joy of it though. I will ponder it. 

Well, this is too long. I have to get to work since I did very little writing yesterday.

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