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March Titles // 2021

  Never the greatest light in the basement suite, but a good stack of books! March was an good reading month for me. I finished a lot of books, and I started a lot of books I'm still currently enjoying. Just this week I started a 400 page book that I have to lead a book club with on Friday evening, and I couldn't believe that just doing nothing in my free time except reading , I'll easily finish it. I've missed that-the full attention, relaxed-into-a-story feeling that I haven't felt during the last year. I was so optimistic! ( groan ) From the stack above, I'm still currently reading quite a few of them, so only two will be on March's completed list, but that's okay. I'm almost finished with one, and halfway through 3 others! Dusk, Night, Dawn by Anne Lamott - This is the newest Lamott book and every single word she publishes I read. I read her books for her candor, her wit, her judgy-ness (it's a thing), and her self-depreciating humor, but mo
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February Titles // 2021

  Mt. Seymour looking fresh I don't have a book photo for you, as most of the books I finished were actually shown in January's post, but suffice it to say, it was a beautiful late Winter morning on the mountain a few weeks ago with this view. We'll be into ornamental cherry blossoms and daffodils soon enough, but I do love Winter and have enjoyed such an unusually sunny and enjoyable one on the ski hill! This month's reads are similar to last month's, in that there weren't very many as far as quantity, but the quality was excellent.  Carver: A Life in Poems by Marilyn Nelson - This was a book of YA poetry that I came across on a website (yikes, though I can't remember which one) and I instantly put it on hold at the library. History/memoir pairing with YA and poetry? Yes, please. It was right up my alley. I learned so much about George Washington Carver's life from this book, though I was aware in a general sense of what his most well-known achievement

Anikka's Birthday Interview // 12

Ani has grown at least four inches this year and is nearly my height at 12. She has grown in her artistic ability and loves to change her room up, organize, and play with anything art or craft related for hours on end. Often her creativity amazes me for someone her age. She is a better skier than I'll ever be, and has that 'can-do' Mast attitude ("I just think I can do it, so I do it") that is worth its weight in gold.  She is determined when she has a goal and has gone from zero ability to kart wheel to not only kart wheeling, but doing back-bends, leg lifts (straight up and down with her legs!), the splits,  contortionist positions (see below), and incredible dance ability  all because she steadily worked at those goals.  We are so proud of you, Anikka, and we love you! self portrait    What is your favorite color? green  Who are some of your friends?  Lilah, Audrey, Anya, Marie, Kate, Ophelia, Charlotte, Charlee, Summer, Emily, Isla, Kathryn, Anna, CJ What do y

January Titles // 2021

  Very few of the books above were completed in January, but (most) were done by February. I'm already quite behind in getting my monthly book titles out but I want to be a bit more faithful with posts.  A lot of my completed reading right now is tied with my kids' home school curriculum. We're studying the Ancients this year and we have SO many good books that we're reading. You'll see them below in the Read-Aloud section.  The Curve of Time by M. Wylie Blanchet - This memoir is a story about a young widow who sailed all up and down BC's local waters with her 5 children (!) on a small, 25-foot boat each summer. The descriptions of the places they went back to each year, the unusual events and people met along the way, the wildlife run-ins, and the navigational ability of this woman was incredible. Each chapter is a mini essay and although the author puts the essays in chronological order, the book does not always feel cohesive and sometimes the kids' ages

Top 10 Books // 2020

  view from Abby Grind hike 2020 was not a great reading year for me. It wasn't terrible, but it was worse than the past number of years. I had focus issues, read a lot of books I didn't care for, and abandoned more books in this past year than I have in nearly my entire year combined. It was fairly frustrating, since all we had was time with the pandemic keeping us home and without many of our normal activities to look forward to.  All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr  - I started 2020 with finishing this absolute symphony of a book. I still think about this book regularly, and am making plans to read everything he has ever written (which isn't much, to be honest, because he takes his time). This WWII story is clever, tragic, intriguing, and descriptive in the most beautiful way-I still think of the wall of snails he wrote about and it *still* can take my breath away. I could have ended this post with just this book. Stay the course-the first 150 pages can be quit

Cumberland Vacation // 2020

This is nearly 6 months after the fact, but better late than never. I wanted to write about our Cumberland vacation in July because I wanted to share this wonderful little town (and larger Comox Valley) with anyone interested in an outdoor-focused, local(ish) vacation.  We travel light, and expect most of our activities to be somewhat free (hiking, biking, swimming) with our money mostly going to a nicer Airbnb rental and a few treats/meals out in the week. We mostly make all our food, and that helps keep our costs low. This was a really affordable trip for our family of 4, and frankly, the majority of our money went to our lodging and the ferry ride (oof), our splurge was surf + boogie board, wetsuit rentals.  We found so many of these great spots from friends who had been in the area, or had previously lived within a 20 mile radius. Always ask a local!  With our large Europe trip cancelled because of Covid, I wanted to go to the Island because it would feel like we "went somewhe

November - December Titles // 2020

  The Christmas book bin next to the tree As I'm finally getting down to the wire to create any last blog posts about book titles and whatever else, I'm realizing that although I felt I didn't read as much (and my Completed amount says so), I realize I did still manage to finish quite a bit of reading even though it was about 40 titles short compared to other years. I'm okay with that; 2020, the year of unmet expectations! The lost focus was real.  Did any of you experience the inability to read deeply this year? Or did you plunge into the hobby ever-deeper, reading more than you would in a normal year because there was so little to do outside our homes? I hope it was the latter!  The Color of Compromise by Jamar Tisby -  This was probably the most interesting and important book I read all year. It's a look at the Christian church in America's complicity role in racism throughout American history. It. Was. Fascinating. Tisby is a Christian who presents the read