Sunday, August 30, 2009

Music Rings Again

Today was my choir's first Sunday back from our summer break. It was so nice to be back with a group of people who share my love of music! We are the "contemporary" choir - meaning we like non-stodgy music - and encompass members from all age groups. I love all of the care, concern, and support each of these people brings to every other member of our group! It was great to be "home" and I hope the congregation is glad we're back too.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Surprising News

I found out this week that someone I knew from high school has died. Being 38, this was kind of a shocker! I worst thing for me was that I knew about the incident that happened, but was not aware that the victim was a person that I knew. Reading other classmates Facebook comments and seeing my classmate's obituary today made me realize that while I knew this person twenty years ago - I don't know her now. I feel sad, especially for her husband and children, but I'm not devastated. Is this because her passing has no real affect on my daily life? It does make me regret not staying in closer contact with more people from high school and college. The ones I do tend to stay in contact with are my friends that I have had since early elementary school. Am I shallow or picky? Or is it just easier to keep the circle small? I wish I knew the answer...

Saturday, August 15, 2009

BBC Book Dare

The BBC believes most people will have read only 6 of the 100 books here. How do your reading habits stack up?
1 Pride and Prejudice -Jane Austen X
2 The Lord of the Rings -JRR Tolkien
3 Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte X
4 Harry Potter series - JK Rowling X
5 To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee X
6 The Bible X
7 Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte X
8 Nineteen Eighty Four - George Orwell X
9 His Dark Materials - Philip Pullman
10 Great Expectations - Charles Dickens X

11 Little Women - Louisa M Alcott X
12 Tess of the D’Urbervilles - Thomas Hardy X
13 Catch 22 - Joseph Heller
14 Complete Works of Shakespeare - William Shakespeare (I've read parts, but not COMPLETE)
15 Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier
16 The Hobbit - JRR Tolkien
17 Birdsong - Sebastian Faulk
18 Catcher in the Rye - JD Salinger
19 The Time Traveler’s Wife - Audrey Niffenegger (I think this is on my book club list)
20 Middlemarch - George Eliot

21 Gone With The Wind - Margaret Mitchell X
22 The Great Gatsby - F Scott Fitzgerald X
23 Bleak House - Charles Dickens
24 War and Peace - Leo Tolstoy
25 The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams
27 Crime and Punishment - Fyodor Dostoyevsky
28 Grapes of Wrath - John Steinbeck X
29 Alice in Wonderland - Lewis Carroll (I've seen the movie...does that count?)
30 The Wind in the Willows - Kenneth Grahame

31 Anna Karenina - Leo Tolstoy
32 David Copperfield - Charles Dickens X
33 Chronicles of Narnia - CS Lewis
34 Emma - Jane Austen X
35 Persuasion - Jane Austen X
36 The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe - CS Lewis (Will be reading, I'm supposed to teach it this year!)
37 The Kite Runner - Khaled Hosseini
38 Captain Corelli’s Mandolin - Louis De Bernieres
39 Memoirs of a Geisha - Arthur Golden X
40 Winnie the Pooh - AA Milne X

41 Animal Farm - George Orwell X
42 The Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown X
43 One Hundred Years of Solitude - Gabriel Garcia Marquez X
44 A Prayer for Owen Meaney - John Irving
45 The Woman in White - Wilkie Collins
46 Anne of Green Gables - LM Montgomery X
47 Far From The Madding Crowd - Thomas Hardy
48 The Handmaid’s Tale - Margaret Atwood X
49 Lord of the Flies - William Golding X
50 Atonement - Ian McEwan

51 Life of Pi - Yann Martel
52 Dune - Frank Herbert
53 Cold Comfort Farm - Stella Gibbons X
54 Sense and Sensibility - Jane Austen X
55 A Suitable Boy - Vikram Seth
56 The Shadow of the Wind - Carlos Ruiz Zafon
57 A Tale Of Two Cities - Charles Dickens X
58 Brave New World - Aldous Huxley X
59 The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night - Mark Haddon
60 Love In The Time Of Cholera - Gabriel Garcia Marquez

61 Of Mice and Men - John Steinbeck X
62 Lolita - Vladimir Nabokov
63 The Secret History - Donna Tartt
64 The Lovely Bones - Alice Sebold (started to read it...couldn't finish)
65 Count of Monte Cristo - Alexandre Dumas
66 On The Road - Jack Kerouac
67 Jude the Obscure - Thomas Hardy
68 Bridget Jones’s Diary - Helen Fielding
69 Midnight’s Children - Salman Rushdie
70 Moby Dick - Herman Melville

71 Oliver Twist - Charles Dickens X
72 Dracula - Bram Stoker
73 The Secret Garden - Frances Hodgson Burnett X
74 Notes From A Small Island - Bill Bryson
75 Ulysses - James Joyce
76 The Inferno – Dante
77 Swallows and Amazons - Arthur Ransome
78 Germinal - Emile Zola
79 Vanity Fair - William Makepeace Thackeray
80 Possession - AS Byatt

81 A Christmas Carol - Charles Dickens X
82 Cloud Atlas - David Mitchell
83 The Color Purple - Alice Walker X
84 The Remains of the Day - Kazuo Ishiguro (Again, does the movie count?)
85 Madame Bovary - Gustave Flaubert
86 A Fine Balance - Rohinton Mistry
87 Charlotte’s Web - EB White X
88 The Five People You Meet In Heaven - Mitch Albom X
89 Adventures of Sherlock Holmes - Sir Arthur Conan Doyle X
90 The Faraway Tree Collection - Enid Blyton

91 Heart of Darkness - Joseph Conrad (read it as a short story version)
92 The Little Prince - Antoine De Saint-Exupery
93 The Wasp Factory - Iain Banks
94 Watership Down - Richard Adams
95 A Confederacy of Dunces - John Kennedy Toole
96 A Town Like Alice - Nevil Shute
97 The Three Musketeers - Alexandre Dumas
98 Hamlet - William Shakespeare X
99 Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - Roald Dahl X
100 Les Miserables — Victor Hugo X

Not too bad, a respectable 39 of the 100 books. Certainly much better than SIX! I should however qualify that over half a lot many just a few of the ones I've checked off were read while I was in high school taking Honors English 11 and 12 and British Literature! My thanks to Mrs. Goodick, Mrs. Hauser, and Mrs. Scott!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Good-bye John Hughes

Thanks to my good friend Mrs. B, who linked to this wonderful post on her blog "The Dreamers & Me." John Hughes films were very much a part of my high school years - Breakfast Club, Sixteen Candles, Ferris Bueller... the list goes on. Please click below to see a bit of the person behind the very talented and famous man.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Wonders of the World

This is just one of the great images I have from our daytrip to see Niagara Falls!

My friend has lived in Buffalo for almost four years and had never been to see the Falls on the American side ... she'd been told by many native Buffalo residents that it wasn't worth the trip, just go to Canada. She was very pleasantly surprised by the lovely Niagara Falls State Park. We had great views and wonderful walking paths. We were able to go out to Luna Island, which is in between Bridal Veil Falls and American Falls - it felt like you could reach out and touch the falls!
Plus we both learned some really cool information - Niagara Falls State Park is the oldest state park in the U.S., established in 1885. And Goat Island, located in between Horseshoe Falls and Bridal Veil Falls was named that because of a farmer who left his animals on the island to get supplies and when he returned, the only animal left alive was a goat!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Boys -vs- Girls

I've been surprised this week to see how Faith interacts with my friend's two boys. She plays with both boys and girls at school so no worries there. At home she is busy with art, stuffed animals, dolls, lots of creative activities. Here she has had no problems joining in on wrestling matches, tug-of-war, Lego construction - and is having a blast! So is it nature or nurture?