Sunday, July 9, 2017

A Week of a Bridal Shower and a New, Very Small Baby...Plus Books, Of Course

This has been the most tumultuous week, filled with the most extreme highs and lows that make up our lives. 

We delighted in a fun bridal shower for my beautiful daughter-in-law, Stephanie, this week. We played crazy games and ate amazing food and enjoyed the company of our wonderful friends and family. She and my son are planning their church wedding in late December. 

My niece, Sarah, delivered her first child, Oliver, at 25 weeks gestation this week. He is a little less than two pounds, but he is in the very best of care at Texas Children's Hospital in the Houston Medical Center. Here is baby Oliver:

Oliver is doing well, in stable but critical condition, but please pray for this baby boy and his parents, Sarah and Kevin, as well as his grandparents and extended family, who all love him so very much.

I'm way behind in posting the books I've read and the reviews I have written, so I am catching up now. I'm continuing to read a #bookaday and to enjoy Paris in July through books. Here are all the books I've read (so far) this summer:

Emma in Paris
Emma the sparrow has trouble finding her cousin in Paris because of language difficulties. When they finally meet up, they put on a show together and ...more

Thea Stilton And The Mystery In Paris (Thea Stilton, #5)
I've recommended this series to kids for years...without ever having read a single book. Well, finally, I now have.

The story is a mystery with mice as ...more

Eloise in Paris
What do I love most about picture books? Is it the simple text that tells so much in so few words? Or is it the brilliant pictures, an art gallery of ...more

What Degas Saw
See Paris through Degas' eyes, as Degas roams the city and zooms in on the details that make Parisian lives of his time, including dancers and horses ...more

Solve for Happy: Engineer Your Path to Joy
You'd think it couldn't be done: Can you engineer your way to happy? Mo Gawdat, a chief business officer at Google, decided to do so.

Gawdat uses resea ...more

The Trouble with Goats and Sheep
A neighbor disappears. Two young girls set out to find the missing woman by seeking out God.

It's a mystery. It's a coming-of-age novel. It's historic ...more

Mama's Perfect Present
Two children, along with their rambunctious dachshund, look all over Paris for a present for their mother, and finally find the perfect present. The p ...more

Starry Nights
An unexpectedly wacky novel that I could never begin to explain, but let's just say it involves Muses, Renoir, the Louvre, a dancer, a friend who keep ...more

Night of the New Magicians (Magic Tree House, #35)
You know what you get when you read books in a series. Since this is the thirty-fifth book in the Magic Tree House, let's hope you are the wee-bit-ish...more

Pop-up Paris
This is the tiniest of pop-up books, but it's Paris, so who cares how pop-up-ish it is?

Six Dots: A Story of Young Louis Braille
Louis Braille lost his eyesight as a child. He was horrified to learn that the only books available to the blind were terribly short because of the si ...more

Our Story Begins: Your Favorite Authors and Illustrators Share Fun, Inspiring, and Occasionally Ridiculous Things They Wrote and Drew as Kids
How much fun is this?! Twenty-six children's book authors and illustrators (dare to) reveal their childhood stories and art. The authors and illustrat ...more

All Day: A Year of Love and Survival Teaching Incarcerated Kids at Rikers Island, New York's Most Notorious Jail
I've been drawn to black stories this summer, and they have all been amazing. This is the story of an artist who decided to teach incarcerated kids on ...more

Yoga Bodies: Real People, Real Stories, and the Power of Transformation
This is an uplifting and inspiring book of stories who found yoga to be a help in their lives. Many people in this book had huge problems and yoga was ...more

The Tiny Book of Tiny Pleasures
You can't help being happier when you read about small pleasures, and this is a whole book of small pleasures. I would love to now make my own book of...more

The Little Doctor / El Doctorcito
How important it is for children to hear stories and to read stories that apply to their own lives! This is a story many children in the Hispanic comm ...more

Bleaker House: Chasing My Novel to the End of the World
It's a fun premise for a story: Nell Stevens is a wonderful writer but nothing happens in her stories, so she decides to travel to what is almost lite ...more

Schomburg: The Man Who Built a Library
Arturo Schomburg was shamed as a child for wanting to learn about famous black figures in history. He resolved to find out everything he could about t...more

The Story Cure: A Book Doctor's Pain-Free Guide to Finishing Your Novel or Memoir
I am (in theory) the perfect person to read this book. I have been working on a memoir/novel for...wait for it...forty years. Yup. And I haven't finis ...more

The narrator (unnamed) tells a sad tale of her Chinese parents' obsession with education and achievement for her, their only child, and her inability ...more

Bethan Woollvin briskly and boldly retells the story of Rapunzel as a lovely tale of courage and daring with delightful illustrations.

Creative Pep Talk: Inspiration from 50 Artists
When you get stuck as a creator, this is the perfect book to pull out and pop open at any random spot. Every page is filled with clever advise from pe ...more

Highly Illogical Behavior
Solomon has panic attacks and an episode at school, and now he doesn't leave his home. Lisa dreams of being admitted into the country's second best ps...more

Raymie Nightingale
Kate DiCamillo just doesn't write disappointing books. She gets kids. She gets stories. She gets real.

This is just a little tale but it is sparklingly ...more

Dear Carrie: Letters from the Eastern Sierra 1878-1899
My husband oh-so-kindly brought this book home for me after his adventurous rock trip to the Eastern Sierra. He loved this beautiful place during his ...more

Henry and Mudge and the Wild Wind (Henry and Mudge, #12)
Henry helps nervous Mudge cope with the thunder and lightning of a bad storm, using imagination and kindness.

Anything Is Possible
Take a walk with the mean people in this new book by master writer Elizabeth Strout. It's a walk we all know: our friends, our family, who love and ad ...more

The Radium Girls: The Dark Story of America's Shining Women
I was thrilled to get the opportunity to talk with Katy Lynch of Sourcebooks while I was at BookExpo this year. She took the time to share lots of new...more

One Crazy Summer
A crazy summer

Delphine and her two younger sisters are off to California to spend a month with their mother. Their mother who they haven't seen in sev ...more

Eilis can't find work in Ireland, but, sponsored by a priest, she comes to America. Exhilaration...homesickness...jealousies...frustrations...Eilis sh ...more

Tuck Everlasting

Natalie Babbitt took me to another world in this book, a world where I could easily believe a family could drink from a remote spring and ...more

Go Sleep in Your Own Bed
Pig is ready to go to sleep, but who is that in his sty? Cow! C'mon, Cow, go sleep in your own bed. Cow reluctantly gets up, and what do you think he...more

Is there a more universal story for preschoolers? A little girl refuses to nap and then has a huge meltdown at the grocery story and later falls aslee ...more

The Story Circle / El Circulo de Cuentos
When a storm destroys the books on the children's classroom, the teacher proposes telling stories instead of reading them. It's a simple story, but a ...more

A Surprise for Teresita
Do you know how hard it is to find good picture books for young children in Spanish? Trust me. It is difficult.

I am very happy to have found this stor ...more

Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine
Eleanor Oliphant is fine. Really. She reassures herself, as she goes home, alone, after working at a job where she speaks to no one, without family, w ...more

The Underground Railroad
Cora is a slave on a plantation run by a cruel owner. The first time she is asked to run away, she says no. The second time, yes.

You'll never buy the ...more

On the Spot: Countless Funny Stories

Another inspiration for creativity for children from author Amy Krouse Rosenthal.

D'Aulaires' Book of Greek Myths
Not only is this a five star book. I have to add it to my list of best books ever. Every kid should read this one. These are stories full of all the t ...more

The Pudding Problem
Let me tell you the truth right from the start: Sam lies. All the time. Big lies. Small lies. Lies to get out of lies. Lies about whether he is lying. ...more

A Cooked-Up Fairy Tale
Penny Parker Klostermann is at it again, with her zany takes on traditional tales. This time William tries to help out with food for Fairy Tale Headqu ...more

Before We Visit the Goddess
Another amazing novel by master-of-the-emotions Divakaruni. Her stories always have me feeling like the gods are watching the happenings of the world...more

Reading with Patrick: A Teacher, a Student, and a Life-Changing Friendship
This is a book that was written for me, I think. Patrick is a trouble student from a difficult high school, and Michelle Kuo is a deeply committed tea ...more

The Five Invitations: Discovering What Death Can Teach Us About Living Fully
There are nothing like stories of people in hospice to both touch your heart and motivate your inner seize-the-day. Ostaseski is refreshingly frank ab ...more

A Charmed Life / Una Vida Con Suerte
The happiness of the girl on the cover of this book as she is swinging was irresistible: I had to read the story. And now I want to share it with othe ...more

Ghost Ship: The Pharaoh's Buried Vessel
Children are fascinated with Egypt and this new book, Ghost Ship, will continue that fascination. The story takes us through the discovery and uncover ...more

Princess Sophie and the Six Swans: A Tale from the Brothers Grimm
It's about time someone took this little-known tale and made it into a complete book of its own. The story is classic, though it doesn't have the wide ...more

Yes, it's the song, with adorable photo plus cutout illustrations. I think I need this for my library.

Summer (Beginner Books)
Today is the beginning of my summer. What better way to celebrate than to read this little book?! Every delight of summer---swimming, swinging, firewo...more

The Hate U Give
Bing-bang. Do what I did, and read, bing-bang, Just Mercy and then The Hate U Give, and, man-oh-man, you can't help but feel the hurt, the cruelty, th ...more

Have You Seen Elephant? (Gecko Press Titles)
You wouldn't guess it, but this is a surprisingly thoughtful book. Takeaways: We are ignorant of our own flaws. We ignore the flaws of our really good ...more

This Is New York
A delightful look at New York with vintage illustrations from the 60's and a sense of fun.

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian
Junior has had enough. He’s seen enough lives wasted on the reservation, people destroyed by a potent combination of alcohol and hopelessness. Junior...more

Perfecto Pet Show (Bobs and Tweets #2)
I liked it, but I wanted to love it. This is the second book in a series of books about two families, one neat and one sloppy. It may just be me, but ...more

Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption
I cried three times when I read this book. When's the last time you read a book that made you cry three times?

It's such an unexpected story. I couldn ...more

The Ultimate Guide to Gardening Grow Your Own Indoor, Vegetable, Fairy, and Other Great Gardens
Gardening is a sadly neglected section of many school libraries. I intend to remedy this by purchasing a copy of Ultimate Guide for my school library....more

A Walk in New York
Let's take a walk around New York City with our dad. He knows all about the city, and he can show us and tell us everything we would want to know.

Yes ...more

Application for Release from the Dream: Poems

You Don't Have to Say You Love Me: A Memoir
If you are a fan of Sherman Alexie, this is a book you need to read. It's a memoir of his life. It may surprise you to find out how much of his story ...more

See How They Run
This was my first thriller. I have to say that I'm a bit disappointed. Shouldn't a thriller be...well, thrilling? At least a little? Nada, I thought. ...more

Hello, Sunshine
How much of what you post on Fakebook...oops, Facebook (!) really true? What part of your Twitter feed matches up to your real life?

That's what ...more

The Book of Joy: Lasting Happiness in a Changing World
What an idea for an event! Archbishop Desmond Tutu meets the Dalai Lama. Imagine: a book about an extended conversation between two spiritual, thought ...more

Let me leave you with this. Anyone who works in a school or has ever worked in a school will get this.

What is the Sunday SalonImagine some university library's vast reading room. It's filled with people--students and faculty and strangers who've wandered in. They're seated at great oaken desks, books piled all around them,and they're all feverishly reading and jotting notes in their leather-bound journals as they go. Later they'll mill around the open dictionaries and compare their thoughts on the afternoon's literary intake....That's what happens at the Sunday Salon, except it's all virtual. Every Sunday the bloggers participating in that week's Salon get together--at their separate desks, in their own particular time zones--and read. And blog about their reading. And comment on one another's blogs. Think of it as an informal, weekly, mini read-a-thon, an excuse to put aside one's earthly responsibilities and fall into a good book. Click here to join the Salon.

The Sunday Post is a meme hosted by Kimba at Caffeinated Book Reviewer. It's a chance to share news and recap the past week.

Mailbox Monday was created by Marcia at The Printed Page. We share books that we found in our mailboxes last week.  It is now being hosted here.

Stacking the Shelves is a meme hosted by Tynga's Reviews in which you can share the books you've acquired.

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is where we share what we read this past week, what we hope to read this week…. and anything in between!  This is a great way to plan out your reading week and see what others are currently reading as well… you never know where that next “must read” book will come from! I love being a part of this and I hope you do too! It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is now being hosted at The Book Date.

Please join the weekly meme at An Accidental Blog. Share with the rest of us your passion for France. Did you read a good book set in France? See a movie? Take a photo in France? Have an adventure? Eat a fabulous meal or even just a pastry? Or if you're in France now, go ahead and lord it over the rest of us. We can take it.

Il est Juillet et il est temps pour le merveilleux Paris in July hosted by Thyme for Tea! (*It is July and it is time for the wonderful Paris in July!)


  1. Wow, impressive stack! Congrats to your daughter and the upcoming wedding...and your niece's little guy is lucky that today's hospitals are well equipped for preemies. One of my 14-year-old grandsons was born at 23 weeks. He was in hospital for two months, and had a rocky first year, but things are good now.

    Enjoy your week, and thanks for visiting my blog.

    1. I love to hear the stories of successful premies. Thank you!

  2. You have a lot going on in your life. Congrats on the upcoming wedding and your niece's beautiful baby. Will keep him in my thoughts and prayers. Sounds like he's in a great hospital.

    1. Oliver is probably in the best hospital in the world for premies. Nevertheless it will be a long process.

  3. I hope Oliver is doing well!

    Here’s my Sunday Post!

    Ronyell @ Rabbit Ears Book Blog and join in this week’s Book Photo Sundays!

  4. Wow, your stack is huge... and your past week has certainly been one of highs & lows. Thoughts are there for baby Oliver.

    1. I have read a huge number of books this summer. Thank you for your good thoughts for Oliver.

  5. I hope the baby continues to improve and get stronger!

  6. I really will pray for Baby Oliver. He has a rough road a head of him but he can do it!

  7. Look at all those books!!! One of our nephews also spent the first couple of months in the hospital as a premie, but he's all grown up now with no problems at all.

    1. Thank you for sharing the story about your nephew. The premie baby stories are very inspiring.

  8. I love Paris books and have been reading a few! What an extensive review list! Happyreading this week and all the very best for little Oliver.

  9. It really was a week of highs and lows for you. My thoughts and prayers are with Oliver and his family. I think you are reading closer to a book an hour than to a book a day. Lots of good ones there. Come see my week here. Happy reading!

  10. I will pray for Oliver and your entire family.

  11. As a retired teacher loved "What the Heck". All best wishes for baby Oliver, 25 weeks is so young but great there is good medical care.

  12. I will keep Oliver in my thoughts.

    We're in the last few days in our current place. It seems like the work to move will never end. Come see what I'm reading when I'm not packing.

  13. I am praying for baby Oliver and the family. He is definitely getting the best care possible being at TCH!!

  14. Hooray for the bride-to-be, and prayers for baby Oliver. My baby V was at 24 weeks when we lost her, so my heart is full of hope that he survives and thrives!

  15. Keeping that sweet little Oliver and his parents in my thoughts!

  16. Many prayers for baby Oliver and family. I can't imagine the pain and worry that is on their shoulders.
    I'm glad you enjoyed your first Stilton book! We are big fans of the series here though I haven't read any of the ones where Thea is the main character. They were really the books that made my son want to read chapter books and I enjoy them just as much!

  17. Prayers for baby Oliver!! Prayers for the doctors and nursing caring for him as well.

  18. A book a day...what an accomplishment! You more than made up for any lack of reports/reviews/posts about books with your annotated list. Ah, you make the rest of us look lazy!

  19. So sorry to hear the new baby is in critical condition. Praying for his speedy recovery and hope he continues to get bigger!

    Sarah @ A Weebish Book Blog


I hope you will leave a comment so I know you have visited. If you stop by my blog, I will always stop by yours.

Note: Disqus commenting is only available on the web version of the blog. Please switch to the web version if you are using a mobile device.