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Who am I?

I’m a mom to Elliott – a smiley, energetic and amazing 3 year-old boy; Elliott has a severe phonological disorder and even though the world can’t understand him, we love to listen to his amazing stories. Let me tell you: This boy can tell a story!

My second-born Isaac is a full-fledged toddler. He is a total talker too — always asking “what’s that?” and pointing to various things around a room and naming them. We’re going through a hair-pulling phase right now…which I will be happy when it’s over.

I’m a wife to Matthew – a journalist by night, a stay-at-home dad by day, and an amazing man all the time. I’m a high school English/Reading/journalism teacher. I’m a writer. A lover of board games (we collect them and own over 300), good wine, cozy fires. I love to sew and be crafty — I love cooking and hosting parties.

Of course, I love reading.

My favorite show on TV right now is Parks and Recreation; followed by 30 Rock. And that’s all the TV I watch. (Well, SNL, too.) So, I will pop in a DVD and re-watch: Freaks & Geeks, Undeclared, The Wire, and Battlestar Galactica. Let’s not get me started on any of those shows. If you are unfamiliar, stop reading, no seriously: PUT DOWN THAT BOOK. And go watch them. 🙂

Why are you doing a reading challenge?

Two years ago, my friend Carrie turned me on to a reading challenge. A-Z titles and authors. I was hooked. Never before had I had any sort of direction with reading…and I was suddenly reading things I would have never picked up before simply because I needed an “X” or a “Q”. It was inspiring and I became a little obsessive with finishing the task. At the end of 2009 I finished 46 books. And now…with a busier plate (I didn’t work for half of 2009 while on maternity leave…although, in fairness, I don’t know how much that helped me with my reading. I was so brain-dead for the first few months, that I stayed on the couch and watched the entire series of The Wire. I recommend it) I have nearly doubled what I’m supposed to accomplish? Seems dumb to me. But we’ll see…

14 Comments leave one →
  1. JoV permalink
    April 4, 2010 12:57 pm

    I am doing the A to Z this year, and just finished Shadow of the Wind, Zafon for Z 4 days ago! Reviews coming up.

    I agree with you that reading challenges does expand my reading sphere and pick up books I wouldn’t have do so on my reading spree.

    btw, your boy is lovely!

    • April 4, 2010 2:48 pm

      Let me know where I can check out your review! I’d love to read it. And yes, without a reading challenge, I’d probably spend $$ on books every year and those books will just sit on a shelf. With the challenges, I’ve become more of the reader I’ve always wanted to be! 🙂

    • April 4, 2010 2:48 pm

      Oh! And thank you! Elliott is such a joy.

      • April 5, 2010 1:56 am

        You can have a look at my A to Z index.

        I have linked some of the review, but didn’t do it for last year. But on the top right coner of my blog you can type in the book title and click search, and scroll down past the index you will find some of the book review on titles I have mentioned.

        Although most titles that I mentioned are books I haven’t read yet or inspired to read. “Geography of bliss” was read before I started the blog. But I have a feeling you might like the book. 🙂

  2. April 10, 2010 12:59 pm

    I’m just attempting to read 125 books this year, but I might tack on the A-Z thing. I wanted to change up my goal a little bit from last year, which was one hundred, though I reached 120. Thanks for the idea!

  3. May 8, 2010 9:01 am

    I *LOVE* your blog & miss you terribly. I think we must move cross country to Portland when Cory graduates so we can do craft projects & read together. And then I can have a little girl who will marry Elliot & we will be BFF in-laws!! Luv you 🙂

  4. June 16, 2010 7:55 pm

    This is a very cool looking blog with a very cool sounding challenge. I will have to drop by more often since I like reading things from all over the world.

  5. September 17, 2010 5:28 am

    What a brilliant idea your blog is. I love it.
    I’m an author based in the UK but I’ve written two books about the Middle East. I know you’ve passed this leg of your journey but…. well, maybe you’ll get the chance to take a look at them. The first, Nabeel’s Song (or The Poet of Baghdad), is about the extraordinary life of the celebrated Iraqi poet Nabeel Yasin who was persecuted by Saddam Hussein and forced into exile. This was nominated for several prizes including the Costa.
    The second – A Diamond in the Desert – is just about to be published in the US. It’s a kind of memoir and exploration of Abu Dhabi, which has sprung out of the sand to become the world’s richest city in just forty years. They are currently building a Guggenheim, a NYU and other branches of American institutions, but beneath the international facade is a more complex, darker city, high on wealth and desperate for influence. There are reviews and other info about it on
    With your interest in literature from around the world I’d love to send you a copy.
    Best, Jo

  6. October 8, 2010 8:36 am

    I admire your focus and determination! I’m still reading your blog; but this appears to be an original challenge—one that only you are doing. I’m not sure I can do this one; but I am thinking about the A-Z Challenge for 2011. I will be dropping in from time to time.

  7. October 14, 2010 5:09 am

    I am happy to find your challenge. I decided recently to do a similar one. An around the world reading challenge but without setting a limit on the number of books. I would like to do as much as I can and evaluate the project at the end of the year. I will follow your journey and check your list closely. It will surely be very inspiring for mine. Thanks!

  8. July 16, 2012 1:45 pm

    This is such a cool idea! I love challenges, but I admit, I don’t DO many challenges. I’ve wanted a way to read more books and this seems like a great opportunity to do so. I’m so glad I came across your blog! I just looked at your post “Around the World in 80 books” Which is also a fantastic idea!

    I’ve done a book club – well – 3 friends and I recently read one book together (Sense & Sensibility!) and it was really fun! We’ve wanted to do another, but we can’t pick a book! Laziness and bussy-ness are definitely participants in the delay of starting a second book too.

    I’m inspired to do some sort of book challenge, and I’ll visit your blog again and keep you informed.


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