This was a pretty good book. Definitely an awesome book (higher rating) for those really into Monopoly or game-history.
My godfather gave me this book...moreThis was a pretty good book. Definitely an awesome book (higher rating) for those really into Monopoly or game-history.
My godfather gave me this book because he and I have played Monopoly together since my first visit to their home in West Virginia when I was fourteen.
Our most recent game was when I drove to visit them in their New Hampshire home in 2004. Our inside joke is that he always accuses me of cheating when I "steal" the lead.
Overall the book was an interesting insight to the story behind the game, the people involved of making what it is today, and the history and economics that weaved around the games success. There were a few typos (bad editor!! bad!!!!) but for the most part was a well put-together and researched book.
And I'm all the wiser for it in the event I play jeopardy or trivial pursuit now.(less)
"But the fear of pain is much worse than the pain itself. That's what you quickly come to realize. And that's a lesson you'll need to learn if you're...more"But the fear of pain is much worse than the pain itself. That's what you quickly come to realize. And that's a lesson you'll need to learn if you're going to survive in this world, so you may as well learn it well." p185-6(less)
In bed that night I invented a special drain that would be underneath every pillow in New York, and would connect to the reservoir. Whenever people c...more In bed that night I invented a special drain that would be underneath every pillow in New York, and would connect to the reservoir. Whenever people cried themselves to sleep, the tears would all go to the same place, and in the morning the weatherman could report if the water level of the Reservoir of Tears had gone up or down, and you could know if New York was in heavy boots. And when something REALLY terrible happened – like a nuclear bomb, or at least a biological weapons attack – an extremely loud siren would go off, telling everyone to get to Central Park to put sandbags around the reservoir. Page 38
When I was a girl, my life was music that was always getting louder. Everything moved me. A dog following a stranger. That made me feel so much. A calendar that showed the wrong month. I could have cried over it. I did. Where the smoke from a chimney ended. How an overturned bottle rested at the edge of a table. I spent my life learning to feel less. Every day I felt less. Is that growing old? Or is it something worse? You cannot protect yourself from sadness without protecting yourself from happiness. Page 180
“I found a bunch of videos on the Internet of bodies falling. They were on a Portuguese site, where there was all sorts of stuff they weren’t showing here, even though it happened here. Whenever I want to try to learn about how Dad died, I have to go to a translator program and find out how to say things in different languages, like ‘September,’ which is ‘Wrzesień,’ or ‘people jumping from burning buildings,’ which is “Menschen, die aus brennenden Gebäuden springen.’ Then I Google those words. It makes me incredibly angry that people all over the world can know things that I can’t, because it happened HERE, and happened to ME, so shouldn’t it be MINE? Page 256
"My father told me where he’d left things, and what he wanted taken care of. He was responsible. He was good. It’s easy to be emotional. You can always make a scene. Remember me eight months ago? That was easy.” “It didn’t sound easy.” “It was simple. Highs and lows make you feel that things matter, but they’re nothing.” “So what’s something?” “Being reliable is something. Being good.” Page 297
This is called the Pygmalion Effect and has been well documented by researchers. The reality is that children learn w...moreMY NOTES/QUOTES/AND USEFUL BITS:
This is called the Pygmalion Effect and has been well documented by researchers. The reality is that children learn what hey are from others in their lives. Think about ht e spirited children you know. What words do you use to describe them? Do they sound like the million-dollar words created by advertising companies, words that can make you wish you could have even more children who are spirited? Are they the kind of descriptors that would make others envy you the opportunity of raising a spirited child? Tags that create, warm, tender feelings? Labels that make you puff with pride, smile in appreciation, and chuckle with enjoyment? Positive words that focus on what’s right instead of what’s wrong? To be perfectly honest, it’s unlikely. Page 23
Research has documented it, when we are happy and feeling good about ourselves, we select higher goals, perform better, and persist longer on tasks. And although your child may initially respond with a bit of skepticism, if you keep it up, eventually he will believe your words and become more open to your guidance. Words really do make a difference. Page 32
It’s easy for a child to build a healthy since of self-esteem when the words used to describe him are the ones like creative, curious, and zestful. Words that create positive images wrap our kids in a protective armor, giving them the strength they need to make the behavior changes that actually turn the inappropriate behavior into acceptable actions. In other words, kids who like themselves, behave themselves. Page 32
Once children have learned to respond to the cues their bodies are sending them and understand time-out as a healthy opportunity to deal with their stress, they can call for one themselves. In fact, you may see your children slide out of the action and into their room for a quick break all by themselves. Intuitively they are bringing their bodies back into the green zone. This is especially true if you have created a sign with the words “I need a hug,” or “I need your attention” on it that they can hand to a parent when time-out alone isn’t enough to pull the game plan back together. Even three-year-olds can begin to appreciate the power of words instead of tantrums to get their needs met. Page 126
People yell when they are angry and frustrated. Mind you, I am not advocating yelling, but it is a reality. In some cultural groups it is very acceptable. In others it may not be as widely approved, but it remains a fact of life. We are all aware of the traumas children experience when they lie in their beds listening to their parents screaming at each other, or stand there, powerless victims, as their parents rage at them. This is verbal abuse, which studies over the last three decades have shown can be even more psychologically harmful than the physical assault of punches and kicks. This kind of yelling is not acceptable. Page 139
Spirited kids are our future politicians, lawyers, salespeople, and agents of change. If we don’t want to spend our time arguing with them every day, we have to be sure our basic ground rules are very clear. Rules describe what behavior you expect. Your family’s rules may not be the same as mine, but what’s important is that there aren’t too many. Spirited kids test every single rule. “Are you sure it’s a rule?” they seem to question. “Is it true that it’s a rule every time? Are you really going to insist I follow it? Do you follow it too?” Rules are your battle lines. The fights you are willing to dig your feet in and be as persistent as your spirted child.
In my classes I’ve whittled the guidelines for rules down to three basic questions: 1. Is the behavior safe? 2. Is it respectful of self and others? 3. Is it respectful of the environment?
If not, it’s the adult’s job to help the kids stop. When you are very clear about what your rules are and why you have them, you will feel confident. When you insist that your three-year-old take a nap or at least have a rest period, you don’t have to question yourself when he starts to put up a fuss. You know it’s important for him and his safety, since preschoolers who go more than eight hours without sleep are 86 percent more likely to end up in an emergency room with injuries. Page 165
CHECK STIMULATION LEVELS I always tell parents in my classes that if they ever feel as if they are the only parents in the world with a sensitive spirited child, they should drop everything and head for the largest, noisiest, most congested store in their area. There they will find spirited kids dropping like little bombs: two down in aisle one; three in aisle four (the candy shelf); and six in aisle seven (the toy department). At first glance in will appear that the explosions are triggered by a refusal to buy a candy bar, a desire to push the cart, or some other insignificant issue. The real trigger, however, is hidden in the fluorescent lights, piped-in music, flashing signs, colorful packages, and crush of people that create more stimulation than a sensitive child can endure, especially if his or her energy bank is low. Pp180-1
Remember introverts only like to share feelings after they’ve had a chance to think about them. Let them know you’re available when they’re ready to talk, but give them the time and space they need to think through their emotions before you expect them to share them. If you push them, they’ll only withdraw. Introverts need their space. Page 188
Sensitivity combines with intensity to make spirited kids very tenderhearted. They form deep and lasting relationships. They have a tremendous sense of justice. They are easily hurt. It is critical that they understand both their sensitivity and intensity, to realize that life may have dumped a bucket of water on their head but they aren’t drowning. They will survive. Page 188
Choosing the right words is critical to winning your child’s cooperation. If you want your child to do something and don’t wish to debate it, be sure your message is a clear direction: “It’s time for bed,” “You may play in the yard,” “It’s time to leave,” “Wash your hands before eating,” “and “The rule is you must wear shoes in school.” These are all straightforward directives. They clearly and simply tell the child exactly what he may do. Make sure you are not unintentionally blurring your direction by adding the words please or okay or even raising your voice at the end of your statement as though asking a question, when there really isn’t any choice. Page 205
If you don’t want to be hit, bitten, whined at, hung on, or disgusted, you have to teach your children how to get your attention. Decide how you would like them to approach you and then show them. Do you want words? What words? “I want attention,” “I need a hug,” or “Please listen to me.” Do you want actions: a tap on the shoulder or the shaking of your hand? Do you need eye contact? Do you want them to stand in front of you? Do you want them to pull you down to their level and talk to you? There isn’t one right way, but just as you have to learn how to get your child’s attention, your child has to learn how to get yours. Next time he whines, say, “Stop. I’m listening. I think you are telling me you want attention. Say it with words.” Or if she hits you, say, “Stop. Hitting hurts. If you want my attention, take my hand.” Then you have to be willing to garner your forces and give your attention to her. Page 211
Spirited children adapt slowly to transitions – any transition – because change can easily put them into a state of alert, ready to move into the red zone of fight, flight, or freeze. When the intensity goes up, adaptability goes down. To shift gears, to pass from one activity, place, or topic to another requires a wrenching, grinding effort on their part. Transitions are the virus that can destroy the system. If you can’t even get the kids out the door, in the door, to the table, from the table, or cleaned up without a major hassle, the good parts of the day lose their sparkle. The day feels rotten. Listening to their vehement squeals of protest make you feel that a major overhaul is needed to correct the problem. Fortunately a mere tune-up will do the job. page 216
*use words *establish a routine * allow time *forewarning is critical *allow time for closure *limit the number of transitions *help them deal with disappointment pp216-229
You can help take the sting out of disappointments by playing “what if” with them. Before an event or departure occurs, talk through the things that could possibly happen. For example, if you are going to a movie, ask you child, “What if we got there and all the tickets were sold out? How would you feel? What would we do?” Or, “What if you went to a birthday part and they served fruit salad instead of birthday cake? How would you feel? What would you do?” Or, “What if you went to swimming lessons and they called everyone’s name but yours?” “What if” teaches kids to be good problem solvers and sets them up for success. If the “what if” actually happens, they’re already prepared. They know how they feel, they have words for it, and they know what to do. Even if you haven’t quite guessed the “what if” situation correctly, you’ve probably come close enough to make comparisons. “Doesn’t this raise anxieties?” parents ask me. Potentially it could, but the emphasis of “what if” is not on what terrible disappointment or calamity could happen. The emphasis is on our confidence in their ability to solve the problem. This is a supportive, comforting message. Kids don’t become anxious when they feel in control. Pp 229-230
Megan Gunnar at the University of Minnesota has found that even infants show elevated levels of stress hormones when their parents are stressed. While all children will respond this way, your spirited child picks it up like a top-of-the-line vacuum. Truly this child is your family’s “emotional barometer.” His spill-over tantrums are a warning sign that can feel overwhelming when you are already at the end of your rope. Page 270
DEVELOPMENTAL SURGES: Kids go through developmental surges. You can mark it on your calendar. Somewhere around their birthday and their half birthday, you can expect trouble. They get cranky and uncooperative. They might be incapable of doing what they were able to do just a few weeks before. Nothing seems right. They’re easily frustrated. Every time you turn around, they’re crying about something else. They won’t cooperate. They want to be held and then push you away when you hold them. They’re angry – angry at you, at the world, and at themselves. They are more easily upset by anything. The developmental theorists tell us that this is a time of disintegration, a time when children are moving from one stage of development to another. Their inner systems are restructuring, creating a new, more complex way of understanding the world. Page 272
Ask your kids if they know what the rules in your house are for tantrums. If they don’t know, sit down and talk about them, but choose your discussion time wisely. Select a time when everyone is well rested, cool, calm, and relaxed. Then you can actually have fun with it. Kids as young as three can develop the rules. Go ahead, ask them. It is fascinating what they have to say. If your spirited child is an infant or toddler, know what your rules are and say them out loud so your child will begin to learn them. At our house the rules for tantrums look like this: It’s all right to cry and throw yourself on the bed. You can stomp your feet, yell like Tarzan, and ask to be held. It’s not all right to hit, kick, pinch, scream in someone’s ear, throw things around the room, blame others, spit, scratch, grab or swear. Page 281
Now select night-sleep time. If, for example, your preschool arises at 7:00 AM every morning and takes a ninety-minute nap, sleep time will be 8:30 PM so that he will get a total of twelve hours sleep in a twenty-four hour period. If he’s school-aged and arises at seven, he’ll need to be asleep by 9:00 PM. This is not bedtime, this is sleep time – the moment you want you child to actually be sound asleep Now think about your child. How long does it take him to prepare for bed and calm his body and his brain so that he’s ready for sleep? Most children will need approximately forty-five minutes to an hour. So if you want your child to be asleep by 8:30, that means bedtime needs to be at 7:30 or 7:45 PM at the latest. Page 323
There are hordes of books on sleep problems that will encourage you to let you child cry it out. Fortunately, even these authors are beginning to recognize that there is a flaw in this advice. Supposedly the child stops crying after a few minutes. Spirited kids don’t. Left to their own devices, intense, spirited children become overwhelmed by their powerful reactions. They may be unable to stop, crying for hours instead of minutes, not because they are “out to get you” but because of their physiology. They get more upset as the minutes tick away. The bedtime battle is extended instead of being shortened. Some children react so strongly that they will vomit. (***THIS WAS ELI) Some experts raise a warning that to respond sympathetically is to be controlled by your child. “If they vomit,” they advise, “clean it up and put them back to bed.” But small children don’t vomit to control their parents; they vomit because they are stressed. They also rarely vomit in a neat little pile. There is nothing worse than walking into a room with vomit sprayed on the walls, the carpet, stuffed animals, and each individual bar of the crib. If your child is prone to vomiting, to to him, help him to take deep breaths and calm down so that he won’t regurgitate. Your support at this point will save you both a great deal of frustration and discomfort when you are much to tired to deal with it. (***AND I LEARNED THIS LESSON QUICKLY!) Page 326
UNDERSTANDING THE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN INTROVERTS AND EXTROVERTS Oftentimes when I talk with parents who are worried about their child’s social skills, I realize the real issue is understanding the differences between introverts and extroverts. It is important to remember that popularity or social skills cannot be measured by the number of friends your child does or does not have. In chapter 5 I explained how introverts and extroverts interact with others. Introverts are frequently not given full credit for their social skills because they are more selective with their friendships. If you are an extroverted parent, you may worry that your introverted child doesn’t have friends because he is not eager to invite other children over to play. Remember that introverts form deep, long-lasting relationships with a few good friends. Their social skills may be excellent they simply are more particular and take longer to form their relationships. If your child is playing successfully with at least one other child, you probably don’t need to worry. He has social skills, He is just being very selective in how he uses them. Remember, Introverts enjoy and need time alone. Being alone and being lonely are not the same thing to an introvert. pp 416-7
Why isn’t it easy to send kids off to school? You’d think we’d be happy – appreciative of the break. And perhaps you are. It is a relief, a milestone. Still, you may find your eyes filling, your vision blurred as soon as your son or daughter mounts the school-bus steps for the first time – alone – or releases your hand and enters that preschool classroom – leaving you behind. She’s on her own to face the world. You gulp, hoping that she will be treasured by those she encounters rather than discussed as an oddity or troublemaker. But you don’t know and you stand there praying that she will be successful, that she will enjoy school, make friends, and bring a smile rather than a frown to her teacher’s face. Spirited kids can prosper in school. You can find them serving as student council leaders, in the starring roles of the school plays, as members of the winning teams, and in the enhanced learning programs. They can be successful in a Montessori school, in a local public school, in a parochial school, or in a private school. They type or location of the school doesn’t really matter. What does matter is that individual differences are respected and that parents, teachers, and kids are working together. In a school where this occurs, you can see, feel, and hear things that let you know spirit blooms here. Pp 440-1
eh. just mindless entertainment. didn't make me think or keep me hooked as much as I'd hoped. just not my genre of lit. I seriously don't get how thes...moreeh. just mindless entertainment. didn't make me think or keep me hooked as much as I'd hoped. just not my genre of lit. I seriously don't get how these things get to be bestsellers. (less)
Your child’s body is also impacted as the tension and fatigue arise. Movements become jerky, frenzied, and often impulsive. How well is your c...moreThe Body
Your child’s body is also impacted as the tension and fatigue arise. Movements become jerky, frenzied, and often impulsive. How well is your child able to control her body? Are her movements smooth and energetic, or is your child “wired” and unable to stop? To determine if your child’s behaviors may be caused by sleep deprivation, look for the following reactions:
- Clumsy, experiences frequent accidents, falls and injuries - Frenzied, hyperactivity - Wild at bedtime, can’t fall asleep – even when tired - Hits, throws things, or shouts - Has to be awakened in the morning - Gets sick more frequently than other kids - Craves carbohydrates or sugar - Is lethargic; can’t seem to do what he is usually capable of doing - Seems unable to stop from breaking the rules
Self-restraint takes energy. Tired, tense kids don’t have the stamina to control themselves.
Another benefit of sleep is greater independence. Children who are well rested are more likely to experience calm energy. IN a state of calm energy, all systems are in balance, allowing them to stay engaged in the task at hand. They don’t’ need your assistance or energy to keep them awake and on task. If your child is struggling to stay focused and pay attention, it’s important to recognize that sleep – or lack of it – may be the real culprit.
How well are you able to concentrate and to perform? Are you easily distracted? When you are missing sleep, you will find yourself more likely to:
- Feel as though you are in a fog - Mix up words - Forget things - Make a list and then lose it - Perform poorly – especially on things that require quick thinking or action - Miss “cues” from your children and others - Miss your exit on the freeway - Have difficulty making decisions or thinking things through - Find it impossible to be creative
Lay one child down, and he may cry for a few minutes. A mad cry, as though to say, “This is hard work! I don’t like it. I don’t want to rest,” but in less than five minutes, he falls blissfully asleep. As his parent, you realize that a bit of fussing was just what he needed to release the tension from his body and that he will now sleep well. Lay another child down, and he screams as though he’s pleading, “Help me, please help me. I can’t stop!” And, indeed, he can’t. His heart racing, eyes wild, hair mussed, he is unable to bring his body back into balance and calm himself. If left unattended, he will cry for hours, overwhelmed by the rush of stress hormones in his body. He cannot stop until someone helps him, not because he’s trying to be manipulative but because of the tension and level of arousal in his body. Or, if he does finally “crash,” as a parent, you are left wondering … does he fall in exhaustion or despair?
By identifying the “window,” you get Mother Nature on your side, helping to move your child towards sleep. … Sometimes, despite your best efforts or intentions, you may miss your child’s “window.” You’ll know it, because he will move into overtired behaviors. ... When your child is crying, has gone into a frenzy of activity, becomes aggressive or silly, starts talking back, has over-the-top reactions, or can’t be satisfied no matter what you do, he’s moved past his “window.” Or, if he’s shrieking and streaking through the house, becoming more and more hyper, a second burst of energy has grabbed him and propelled him on into the night. If this is the case, not the time and move your goal sleep time fifteen minutes earlier the next night. Continue doing so each day until you catch the “window” and she falls asleep easily.
Effective strategies for manging intestity Do not leave this child to cry The advise to teach the intense child to calm himself by letting him cry does NOT work. Because of his physiological makeup, he has great difficulty calming himself, and can cry for hours, vomiting as his distress increases. This is not intentional or manipulative behavior on his part. He simply can’t do it – yet. You can expect that this child, who needs to learn how to soothe himself and to fall asleep on his own, will require a much more exteneded process of breaking down the skills into tiny, manageable steps that don’t overwhelm his abilty to cope. He’ll get there, but it won’t be quickly, and it will take more effort on your part.
- Provide touch - Protect the pace of his life - Allow time to unwind
Place two four-month-old infants together in a room, then sound a loud bell. Odds are that one may not react at all or merely look in the direction of the sound. The other one, however, may startle, her eyes flying wide open, arms thrashing in the air before she bursts into tears. These are not learned response. They are physiological responses. Some children, by their very nature, find it easier to block stimuli than others. That’s why one child can fall asleep amid the noise of a birthday party, while another child awakens when someone merely tiptoes past her bedroom door. It takes much less stimulation for the highly sensitive child to feel agitated, increase her activity, or burst into tears. That’s why she awakens when her diaper is wet, she’s slightly hungry, or is feeling a bit lonely. If your child falls into the 4 or 5 range on the sensitivity scale, you can predict that she will need you to protect her from overstimulation and to help her create a sleeping environment that feels right.
After forty-five minutes to an hour, if your child has not fallen asleep, siesta time is finished. At Paidea Child Development Center, one-third of the kindergarten students nap during siesta, and in the four-year-old program, over three-quarters do.
Consider moving siblings in together The experience of sleeping alone in a bed, in one’s own room, is very much limited to Western culture. It is a luxury rarely enjoyed or, for that matter, desired by many cultures of the world. In many societies, children are never expected to sleep alone. They simply move from their parents’ bed to one shared with their siblings.
Something mysteriously wonderful happens as you and your child truly get the sleep you need. Life becomes a hot-fudge sundae, sweet, delicious, and irresistible. Sound sleep catapults you into the day ready to consume every last ounce of it. You are powerful, enticing, smart and capable when drenched in sleep. Happiness glow in your eyes and skin. It resounds in your laughter, deep and infectious. Your children respond accordingly. Everything is easier; they listen and cooperate, and actually seem to enjoy one another’s company. Surprises are exciting instead of daunting. And, sometimes, they even offer to help without being asked. A good night’s sleep has a power of its own. It allows you to truly discover the delight of living in a world that never stops – yet is enjoyed most – when you do. Choose sleep!
In 1997, Moving Comfort (manufacturer of women’s sports apparel) introduced the Athena Bra for women with a C, D, or DD c...moreHere's to good sports bras!
In 1997, Moving Comfort (manufacturer of women’s sports apparel) introduced the Athena Bra for women with a C, D, or DD cup who participate in such high-impact sports as running. Its design separates and supports the breasts with two form-fitting cups. It provides good coverage and is made from a nylon/Lycra mesh lined with breathable fabric that provides good motion control and doesn’t chafe. Champion offers an underwire support bra in seizes 32 to 42 and cups C to DD for women who need maximum support, and Title Nine Sports has created the Frog Bra “so you can leap without bouncing.” It’s made with a woven fabric that provides better control than do the knits used in many sports bras; plus, it contains 32% Lycra for excellent compression.
Here's to being able to really relate!
Running on a treadmill at my usual 9-minute pace feels so much harder than when I’m running outside. Why is that? It’s a matter of perception, according to exercise physiologist and runner Ken Sparks, who does all his speed training on the treadmill. Nothing is moving around you; your brain notices that you’re working really hard to go nowhere. The perception principle works in reverse during the evening runs outdoors. In semidarkness, the landscape appears to be moving by you so quickly that you feel like you’re running faster than usual without any additional effort. It just goes to show you the powerful influence the mind can have on the body.
Here's to new knowledge!
For Relaxed Running With all of your runs, except speed workouts, your effort and breathing should be comfortable so that you can inhale for three steps and exhale for two steps (a 3:2 ratio).
For Fast-Paced Running When you are running intervals or a race, your breathing rate is much faster, so you will be inhaling for only two steps and exhaling on one (a 2:1 ratio).
Here's to new vocabulary!
Fartlek Swedish for “speed play,” fartlek really is fun because it is so random and spontaneous. You head out on one of your favorite training runs, preferably one with few hills or this won’t be so enjoyable. After you’ve warmed up with 10 to 15 minutes of relaxed running, pick a point in the distance – a tree, a mailbox, a street sign – and then run fast (hard but comfortably) to that point. Slow down, and then when you’re ready to run hard again, pick another landmark and go. Continue in this way, alternating fast and slow running as many times as you desire, and finish with 10 to 15 minutes at a slow pace. You can double the fun by doing a fartlek run with a friend, taking turns calling out a landmark and leading to that point.
Here's to new schedules!
Sample Training Week A week that includes all of the training elements discussed in this chapter might look like this: - Sunday: long run - Monday: day off - Tuesday: relaxed run - Wednesday: speed session - Thursday: relaxed run - Friday: hills - Saturday: day off
And here's to a bit of history!
…[A:]s recently as 1970, women were not officially allowed to run the marathon in the United States. Men, on the other hand, have been running it since the first Boston held in 1897. In fact, the longest official distance women could race in 1970 was 2 ½ miles. Long distances – particularly the marathon – would ruin or reproductive systems, according to the intelligentsia of the time. This didn’t stop women from racing longer distances anyway (with no harmful consequences to their uteruses).
Before 1500 B.C. In ancient Egypt and Sparta, women are encouraged to participate in sports in the belief that it improves reproductive capabilities.
While I liked The Complete Book Of Running For Women, I think I liked this book just a bit more, for different reasons. They both are excellent and in...moreWhile I liked The Complete Book Of Running For Women, I think I liked this book just a bit more, for different reasons. They both are excellent and informative books with many valuable points. This one has great training schedules to help build up mileage. (less)
I can't remember the last time a book made me cry like this one. And that sort of emotional response is most certainly a testament to the talent of th...moreI can't remember the last time a book made me cry like this one. And that sort of emotional response is most certainly a testament to the talent of the person who wrote the story. What characters! What a story! In spite of the undeniably sad qualities of this tale, I thoroughly enjoyed the book and would read it again.(less)
Sometimes I'm stuck in between stars. This work warranted more than three stars but not quite four. I'm rounding up, because it really is a great coll...moreSometimes I'm stuck in between stars. This work warranted more than three stars but not quite four. I'm rounding up, because it really is a great collection of stories :-)
I enjoyed these short stories. I haven't read many short stories since graduating from college, so this book was a pleasant return to the genre. The author has, without question, a gift for story telling. I enjoyed the variety of characters and plots within the book. But what I also really appreciated was the presence of a common thread that bound all the stories together.
I liked the book. Really liked it? At times. But mostly liked it.(less)
**spoiler alert** I was positive Katie's mother had something to do with it. Just from considering who discovered the body, their reactions, and what...more**spoiler alert** I was positive Katie's mother had something to do with it. Just from considering who discovered the body, their reactions, and what they said throughout the book; Katie's mother Sarah were the only logical suspects, and that only left Sarah if Katie really didn't do it. And sure enough, it was her. Honestly, I was expecting a confession from her when Ellie found her in the barn crying (which took place during the trial). Of course that would have changed the trial and the book. And of course Sarah waited until the trial was over and Ellie to move out before she confessed.
A good read. I'll definitely be reading other books by Picoult in the future.(less)
I'm a little biased as really I like Shmuley. I've enjoyed many episodes of Shalom in the Home and am a big fan of his work, which is why I had to rea...moreI'm a little biased as really I like Shmuley. I've enjoyed many episodes of Shalom in the Home and am a big fan of his work, which is why I had to read this!
Over all I liked the book. Maybe even really liked it. Definitely a good reminder for what helps keep relationships electric, if you know what I mean ;-)
* * * *
The Kosher Sutra Shmuley Boteach
I believe that these two facts – the instant availability of sex in the cultural marketplace versus its increasing nonexistence in the American bedroom – far from being contradictory are intimately related. The conversion of sex from the highest form of physical intimacy into a marketing commodity designed to move product has purged it of its erotic allure and diluted it to the point where its experience has become uninviting, even unattractive. Sex has lost its potency. It has been miniaturized, trivialized, and has lost its grip on married couples Worse, eroticism has been vulgarized and cheapened. No longer a pleasurable dream of wild sexual arousal, it is now a pornographic nightmare of misogyny and degradation. Page 6
Similarly, a woman today can change every part of her face and body with plastic surgery. But the moment a man discovers that her breasts are made of silicon, he will not find her to be as attractive. When nature is manipulated it loses its innocence. What makes the innocent person so deeply charming and erotic is the openness of their heart. Because their souls are translucent, you can see right through to their essence. Innocent people disarm us. Because they are so natural, they invite us to behave naturally around them as well, allowing for our deepest selves to be manifest. Page 65
“Nothing could be farther from the truth. We all make mistakes in life. We all do things that we regret. Wrestling with our humanity is the very stuff of living. In life, righteousness is defined not through perfection, but rather through struggle. It is our endeavor to try to do the right thing amid a predilection to do otherwise that makes us unique, not the fact that we always choose the right thing. Page 71
The benefits of seeing your wife through the eyes of another man need not come about in such tragic circumstances. I often tell husbands and wives to walk together on a beach, walk together down the street, with the husband walking a few steps behind. He sees all the men looking at an attractive woman walking on her own. He is reminded that his wife is not just the mother of his children, but first and foremost a woman. Husbands usually make the mistake of thinking that novelty can only come in the form of staring at bodies of new women, which is why they are so often sexually distracted in marriage. In truth, novelty comes not from seeing new women, but from seeing new men stare at the same woman, your wife. What you require is not a new body, but a new set of eyes. Page 90
Men need novelty in order to stimulate eroticism. Many husbands pursue the need for eroticism in a sinful fashion by thinking about other women while making love to their wives. Just think about how bizarre this is. Here he is, in the closest physical proximity to his wife, and in his mind he is doing a guest appearance on “America’s Next Top Model.” It is an utter abuse of the relationship. This is utterly unacceptable and is a sin against the intimacy of marriage. Page 217
I am awash in insecurities, many of which go back to my childhood. I was raised in a home with little stability and I absorbed much of the chaos that surrounded me. So I try to prove myself. I get frustrated because, lacking a secure foundation at the core of my personality, I feel like I’m sinking if I fail. Every professional endeavor is an opportunity to prove that I have value. And if the endeavor fails, then the possibility lurks that I am a failure. So I sweat the small stuff. When you are fighting for your survival, there is no small stuff. It’s all big stuff. And if life doesn’t go according to plan, it tugs at the heart of your existence. The point behind all of this is simple. I refuse to let life bore me. I try to understand myself and thereby heal myself. Life has an erotic, curious quality that I try to grab by the horns. Page 230 (less)
The best bilingual book for kids we have come across yet! Incredibly thorough with the entertaining and kid-friendly pictures we've come to appreciate...moreThe best bilingual book for kids we have come across yet! Incredibly thorough with the entertaining and kid-friendly pictures we've come to appreciate from Priddy Books. Even more helpful is there is a chart of all the words and pronunciation guide in the back of the book for the parents. Bravo!(less)
“My mother-in-law will be waking up soon. We’ve got to get finished.” “I know,” said Masako. “Why don’t you help more with the cutting?” “But we’ve only...more “My mother-in-law will be waking up soon. We’ve got to get finished.” “I know,” said Masako. “Why don’t you help more with the cutting?” “But we’ve only got one saw.” “I should have asked you to bring one with you.” “But if you had, I would never have come,” Yoshie said, sounding shocked. “Good point,” said Masako, suddenly wanting to laugh. There was something so absurd about the whole situation, about the two of them having such an inane conversation while they cut up a total stranger by the name of Kenji. They stood for a moment over the body, eyeing each other as their bloody hands dangled limp at their sides. Page 79
Masako, gazing at his pale face, understood what he’d been through. There was something about dead bodies that made the living recoil. She wondered how long it would take before a corpse cane to seem like any other object. Page 285
[Masako:] hung up and climbed into her jeans and a black sweater she’d bought recently. She’d begun to wear clothes that pleased her again, as she had when she was working at the credit union. She knew why: she was in the process of reassembling a self she’d thrown out long ago. But as the pieces came together again, she realized she was no longer the same woman, like a broken doll that could never quite be whole again. Page 310
No, she wouldn’t go. She couldn’t live her life as someone’s prisoner the way he had lived his, caught up in a dream of the past, with no way forward and no way back, forced to dig down inside oneself. But she’d come this far; where could she go now? She stared at her fingernails, kept short for the past two years for the factory. Her hands were chapped from the constant soaking in disinfectants. She thought about her twenty years at the credit union, about giving birth to a son and making a home for her family. What had it all meant? In the end, she was no more or less than the reality of all those years, with all the marks they’d left on her. And, unlike Satake, she had faced everything reality had brought her way. His idea of freedom had been different from hers. Page 400 (less)