2011: Reflections and Favorite Readings

Wow. What a year.

This is, of course, the time of year that we try to reflect on what was and hope for what will be.

I know I’m “new…er” at the blog thing, but the blog has suffered quite a bit this year.

The biggest thing that happened to strike a blow to my confidence with the blog was becoming an interim reading teacher. I loved my job, temporary though it was, but it really got me thinking as I graded reading journals… is my blog a cheating tool? So my reviews became shorter. I didn’t blog as much, worried that I would step on someone’s toes.

Besides these hesitations, my laptop died. Living with an IT guy, this wasn’t a huge issue: we have an office computer. My cat hates me working in the office. I know, using the ol’ Cat as an excuse, but really: he prefers me on the couch with my laptop where he can cuddle and walk on my keys instead of sitting unsocial in a desk chair. He pretty much attacks me until I play with him. He’s evil. He refuses to use his big cat words. So, long story short, my computer time has decreased, leaving less time to blog.

So, I struggled with these white girl problems most of the year, and then a couple weeks ago, a few students commented on my post on I am the Cheese.  Apparently, their teacher got them to read reviews and comment on the blog or review they read. She commented, her students commented, and other than the smart aleck comment (and reply) about indentation, I felt justified in analyzing a book that other people teach. Sure, a kid could cheat by googling my reviews. But it could (and hopefully has) helped a kid understand a book better by getting an outside opinion. Or, even better, help a parent understand the books their kids are reading.

So, on that note, I plan on writing more thoughtful entries this upcoming year.  I’m still reading like crazy, and I hope to review more often, but no guarantees. There are no signs of Cat suddenly liking the office as a hang-out, and as I hope to get a “real job” soon, who knows?

Now let’s get to the fun stuff!

Bookworm’s Favorite Books and Book-related Happenings of 2011: 

Cake Wrecks Book signing
This is a future blog post. I stink at blogging, as I told you above. I had planned on going to two book signings and having a mega-book signing post. Sadly, a family death occurred when (Judge) John Hodgman was coming to a town near me. (The two events were not related.) So, one of my first entries in the new year will reflect on the Cake Wrecks book signing in Richmond, VA from…. October. (hangs head.)

I finally saw the musical my sister has been singing for years.  Defying Gravity=my theme song.

Harry Potter 7.2
While I’m sad that the series has come to a close,  at least it came to a satisfying end.  Neville got to be a bad ass.  Molly had *the line.*  Snape… oh Snape.

Who cares if it’s ended? Will I still be reading?… Always.

Harry Potter Halloween
My absolute favorite Halloween in ages. Embracing my inner Hermione was a pleasure. AND I have more pictures! That’ll be another new year update, since both future posts involve a lot of scanning.  (Maybe this year I’ll also go digital!)

Learning to be a reading teacher
There’s hope for me yet!

The Nook and the library
I got a Nook last Christmas, and the world changed for me when I found out how to transfer library books online to my Nook.

Books I’ve read this year that I’m truly excited over 

YA/Middle Grades Books:
The Hunger Games
The Book Thief
The Heroes of Olympus
(re-read); Love, Stargirl
The Misfits

I’ve been reading grown-up books too!
 The Help — I actually JUST read this over Christmas.
Parasol Protectorate

Honorable mention: Pride and Prejudice and Zombies… the enhanced audiobook version.   Hearing a very distinguished British lady reading about zombie attacks… a-ma-zing.

Keep calm and read on,

Happy new year!


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