Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Reading Rainbow

Apparently, I can write more words than any one person should about favorite movies and television shows (if that one person is not a movie or television critic, anyway), but then the words dry up, and I forget to post again.

NOT THIS WEEK!! This week, I'm linking up with Ginger's Bring Back the Words prompt around what my favorite toys were as a child, which is actually a surprisingly short list, given how many toys were in my house at any given moment when I was growing up. In fact, there's really only one item on that list...


Now, before I could read, I had a few toys that I liked. When I was three, I wanted a barn and a farm and a horse for Christmas. This was the first Christmas my mom and I shared with my soon-to-be-step-dad, and when I unwrapped the Fisher Price farm set he'd put under the tree for me, I think I knew right then and there that he was a keeper.

(I was right, by the way. He's still a keeper, 30 years later. I am an excellent judge of character, obviously.)

Then there was the American Girl doll I got when I was...10? 11, maybe? I'd wanted a Samantha doll more than ANYTHING ELSE IN THIS WHOLE ENTIRE WORLD, and there she was on Christmas morning. The pictures from that day are a great testament to my joy that morning, but they're also a testament to pre-teen braces, frizzy hair, and remarkably pasty complexion, so...yeah. I think those pictures are in a box at my parents' house somewhere, maybe (hopefully?) never to see the light of day, again.

(Along with the video of my Jr. Miss competition (IT WAS A SCHOLARSHIP COMPETITION!) when I was a senior in high school. I think I've safely hidden that away somewhere, because it was awful. Picture a group of high school girls dancing a horrific dance to Jailhouse Rock by Elvis, in white sweatsuits with black electrical tape lines on them, made to look like jailhouse uniforms. Then imagine the ridiculous answers given to terrible pageant questions, and that is maybe the most cringe-worthy tape of my life. So. Bad.)

But books. Well, books were my life when I was growing up. I would read anything and everything I could get my hands on. I'd read every book in the young adult section at the library that earned me extra points in the Summer Reading Club. I'd read all of the children's books my little sister brought home to read, to her if that was an option, but even to myself, if it wasn't. I'd read really age-inappropriate books, now that I think about it, that I found on my grandpa's bookshelf. I'd read cereal boxes at the kitchen table, just to have something to do.

My mom loves to tell the story about how I got lost driving home from my piano teacher's house, even though she lived five minutes and one turn away from me, because I'd turned the wrong way. Turns out, when you start reading the minute you get into the car, you're not going to know how to get yourself around the small town you've lived in all of your freaking life.

Go figure.

My mom actually had to ground me from reading from time to time, because I wouldn't get anything else done. My room would be a mess, my homework would be incomplete, my chores would be unfinished. Seriously. My mother. Would ground me. From reading.

Who does that?

I hope beyond anything else that I am able to pass this love of reading on to my girls, because I don't know what I'll do if they don't enjoy it like I do. Brigid gets two books read to her every night before bed, and I'm trying to get back into the habit of it with Caitlin, as well. I am SO DAMN EXCITED for the day when I think Brigid is finally old enough to read the Harry Potter books with me, and I have a box full of old Nancy Drew books in the basement with her name on it. Lord of the Rings, Madeleine L'Engle, Narnia, The Babysitters Club, whatever new series they have out for kids now. I want them to want to read it all.

Just as soon as they learn how to read.


  1. I love love love LOVE reading!!! We must be twins in life because I also used to get lost despite living in the same town for 10 years!! I used to take books in the car, to church, outside... basically, anywhere I could get a minute.

    Also, LeVar Burton (Reading Rainbow guy!) tweeted a response to me! I feel like the coolest person ever. :)

  2. A Wrinkle in Time! I need to go and get this trilogy from my mom's house.

    I used to sneak into my closet to read at night, apparently, so that my parents wouldn't see the light of my lamp. I don't remember this, and I am sure that I went to bed when I was told.

  3. I used to get grounded from reading too--it was pretty much the WORST punishment my parents could give me. And in the summers when I would visit my dad, he would take me to this AMAZING used bookstore, and I would end up with basically 2 full paper bags full of paperbacks (lots of babysitters club!) to get me through a month or so with him. Books are the best.


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