A reread. First read it as a kid. Loved it even more this time around. I had no intentions of reading it, but it caught my eye. I took it off the shelA reread. First read it as a kid. Loved it even more this time around. I had no intentions of reading it, but it caught my eye. I took it off the shelf and, once again, Maria was a loving friend from the first page.
Books like this are so important. It tells a story, but more importantly, it shares a feeling. Love is the reason and the answer for life. The Trapp story is a lovely reminder of this.
This was a reread for me. I plucked the book off my shelf looking for a particular passage and began to read again. Such an excellent read for anyone.This was a reread for me. I plucked the book off my shelf looking for a particular passage and began to read again. Such an excellent read for anyone. Really.
Taylor has such comforting insights, it's hard to pick one. That we can all access Nirvana any time we wish to, is my favorite. It really is true. Anyone who prays (or meditates, if that makes it easier for you) or anyone who has been working hard to quiet the "chatter" of their left brain can attest to this.
She gives scientifically backed reasons for why worry and negative thinking are time wasters. And goes on to teach you how to silence those thoughts. This is brilliant and undeniably required work for all humans.
Being a registered nurse and having tested many times about 60/40 right/left brained, I love both the way she talks about the anatomy and how it works, but also digs deep into the beauty of who we are in the universe. I believe that God is the collective power of our souls and she talks about this power in a way that had me saying, "Right on, sister." We are all one and we can tap into that if we want to.
What a wonderful world, if we, indeed, did just that.
As someone with a chronic illness, I was first attracted to her because of her thoughts on pain. And those thoughts have been oh so helpful. But, what got me, what really got me, was her advocacy for those who can't speak for themselves or for those who, despite all their best efforts, just simply aren't heard by those that love them or even just the general public. "Be responsible for the energy that you bring," to an ill person is ever so important. I can't tell you how many times people have drained me or blamed me or added rather than subtracted from my symptoms. I always knew this, about the energy you bring, but I didn't have words for it. I knew for sure it wasn't me, but now to have the words, I'm just so grateful.
Her list of assessment questions and the 40 things she needed the most, I plan (and highly recommend everyone) to copy and place in a very important place for my husband and son. These questions and assessments are so respectful and important. I wish they were in every hospital, clinic, or nursing home break room. Loved also that she reminds everyone that people who are unresponsive are still in there---and they can perceive you completely and accurately. "I am wounded. Please respect me."
"Your body is the life force power of some fifty-trillion molecular geniuses. You and you alone choose moment by moment who and how you want to be in the world. I encourage you to pay attention to what is going on in your brain. Own your power and show up for your life. Beam bright!" ...more
This is a tough, grim story to make oneself through, but, I think, an important read. We take the pioneers for granted. Their struggles are distant, bThis is a tough, grim story to make oneself through, but, I think, an important read. We take the pioneers for granted. Their struggles are distant, but should be brought near for us to better understand our country. I had to set this book aside several times. The story so starkly raw, I simply couldn't face it. There were pages I forced my way through, not because of vile descriptions, but because the sense of hopelessness was more than I could bear.
This author takes incredible research, but then paints it with humanity bringing forth relatable history. I could see the events as they occurred, but I could also feel them. His use of Sarah as the central character took me right on the journey. He's simply an astounding historical writer....more
I read this almost in one sitting. Achingly beautiful, it brought to mind the extreme poverty I was surrounded with when growing up. I knew this womanI read this almost in one sitting. Achingly beautiful, it brought to mind the extreme poverty I was surrounded with when growing up. I knew this woman, this child. I saw you at school and I really liked you. You would have been surprised to learn your story was so much more like mine.
"I have said it before: it interests me how we find ways to feel superior to another person, another group of people. It happens everywhere, and all the time. Whatever we call it,I think it's the lowest part of who we are, this need find someone else to put down."
"Don't ever worry about story. You only have one."
I am fascinated by other religions and I read a lot about them as often as I can. I simply just want to understand people better and talking about faiI am fascinated by other religions and I read a lot about them as often as I can. I simply just want to understand people better and talking about faith or one's claim to profess none is a good place to start really honest human interaction. These conversations quickly get to a person's core in a way like no other. Want to try it? Ask a few questions about someone's spiritual life and then shut up.
Before reading this book, I would have admitted I knew very little about Scientology. I would have named the few celebrities that I knew participated in it. And then I'd have mentioned L. Ron Hubbard. I would have probably said the word wackadoodles and then immediately felt guilty about judging other human beings so very harshly.
I never really liked Leah Remini until my husband and I stumbled upon her family's reality show. I thought she was one of those people that complains endlessly, which I tend to limit contact with, and she is and she admits beautifully that she is. But, her family relationship is simply astounding and funny and I'm genuinely envious of it. It was on this show that I learned that she was a Scientologist and that she was raised in the church. Who knew? Who cared? Well, I guess I did, because when her book showed up at the library, I checked it out.
I was riveted by parts of this book. Like ALL religions, there is some really scary stuff that happens. Power and money and faith and corruption can be found everywhere. But, this Scientology stuff was really frightening. The amount of money and some of the methods were astonishing to me. My faith life is pretty beige in comparison, but I am still highly critical of it and I'm allowed to do so. Where my Lutheran church deals in millions, Scientology deals in billions. And it does so in a secretive and controlling environment where criticism is not just outlawed, it's a punishable offense. You question or criticize Scientology and you just might find yourself banished and cut off from everyone you know and love (which is the most benign punishment.) Or you might end up at a camp somewhere being tortured, imprisoned, and abused with no way out.
I can find some good and common ground with most religions. Even Scientology had a few things that made sense to me. I liked being surprised by this in her book. Being open and listening and trying ever so hard not to judge and just meet people where they are is tough stuff, but we all have to make this a priority. It's an election year, so we'll all get plenty of time to practice.
I love how she wrapped this book up. Take the good from your experiences is the bottom line and I think we can all do that better.
I like you now, Leah, because I took the time to listen and because you had the courage to tell your story. I really like when that happens.
This was really fun. It's set in my neck of the woods and includes a chapter partially set in the county where I was, mostl5 full, well-deserved stars
This was really fun. It's set in my neck of the woods and includes a chapter partially set in the county where I was, mostly, raised. Hunting in Pine County? You betcha.
I really enjoyed this and can see why there are so many positive reviews. Really, it's just a book of intertwining short stories, which is one of my favorite ways to approach writing a novel. It all wraps itself up in a satisfying conclusion without being too neatly done. It's funny and heartfelt and just easy to get lost in. Why are you still reading reviews? Go, buy/borrow. READ.
It features some delightful foods indigenous to the Midwest. It starts out with a chapter entitled Lutefisk. Need I say more? Of course, I will. There's an entire chapter about competitive bar baking. Bars are second only to pie, as my favorite dessert, so this was quite enjoyable. I've even made Pat's famous recipe several times. Her competitive cooking reminded me of a few folk. There's wild rice and fresh sweet corn and walleye and Jello even makes an appearance. The whole book a trip through Midwestern fare with one part reminiscence and one part new innovation. I loved the foodie tidbits found throughout.
This is the kind of book that starts out one way and surprisingly heads in another and, before you know it, you're trying to squeeze extra time in your day just to read. I love that.
Slight spoiler (an obvious one) and some quotes contained within. If this would wreck the experience of the book for you, please do not proceed.
“...tSlight spoiler (an obvious one) and some quotes contained within. If this would wreck the experience of the book for you, please do not proceed.
“...there is no better moment in life than finding the right word.”
“I had imagined myself alone in believing that spiders should be the totem of writers. Both go into a space alone and spin out of their own bodies a reality that has never existed before."
This rambling review is what happens when I sit down for five minutes in front of a keyboard and then get lost in the words. Five turned into twenty. Thank you for humoring me. It’s especially enjoyable when I can write about something I love. I loved this book. Quotes included are directly from the pages.
In the last month, three people have gushed so much about this book that they failed to listen or give me opportunity to say that it's been on my Kindle for weeks. I’m completely secure in myself enough for this not to bother me in the least, plus I adore discussing books and half of discussing is listening. It's also so much better to be kind and laugh and listen, but quite ironic since Steinem has always been one of our society's great listeners. She has urged us to simply listen before we give voice. Oh, if it were that simple.
“If you want people to listen to you, you have to listen to them. If you hope people will change how they live, you have to know how they live. If you want people to see you, you have to sit down with them eye-to-eye."
Women aren't very nice to each other, which absolutely infuriates me. As if the world weren't already unfair enough, we attack each other. Well, privileged, White, Americans are pretty excellent at this, anyway. The act of simply asking a woman (or any human) why she does something and then truly listening, is feminism. You can't be a feminist unless you do this. Don't like that a woman works outside of the home instead of raising her children? Ask her why she does it. Can't figure out why a woman won't leave the house without make up? Ask her. Want to know why she never wears make up. I think you know what to do. Can't figure out why a woman would be fulfilled as a mom or without children. Ask her. And then really listen. Ask her. Her story will amaze you.
“Always ask the turtle."
I enjoyed this book. I haven't always agreed with Gloria Steinem in all things, which I'm sure she would love. In fact, watching many interviews with her and reading some of her past work, I didn't like her. Not her message. Her. That isn't a requirement for me to appreciate what she's done for me. I will go to my grave shouting that you (male or female) can't have it all. The sooner you realize this, the happier you'll be. I'd love to tell her or you or anyone why. I know that she'd listen, now.
(Feminists must continually evolve, as Steinem presents in this book. Add sandwich generation+you can have it all=women attacking each other, senseless feelings of failure, guilt, and, the worst...SHAME. Go, dig, read, and then forgive yourself. New life awaits.)
“…Independent and Republican women, the groups most likely to be neglected by the Democratic Party. They felt abandoned by the Republican War Against Women, yet were turned off by accusatory Democratic women saying, “How can you be a Republican?” Instead, we talked about the reasons to support political leaders who support us, never mind party labels.” (yes, Yes, YES!!!!!! We can ask better questions than that, see below.)
This book, although somewhat rambling at times, is a reflection of her on-the-road life. It’s the reminiscing of a life well lived; one that you actually want to listen to. Her reflections are like hearing an elder flit from one memory to another. I guess this is fitting as she is one, although this is very difficult for me to believe as my mind’s eye sees her as an icon with fist raised, her eternally parted-down-the-middle-hair and gigantic last century spectacles. She’s not that woman anymore. She’s older than my mom, for Pete’s sake. I found a person I could connect with in its pages, which as I said above, hasn't easily happened before.
I’ve been to most of the places she mentioned, lived in a few. I thoroughly enjoyed her view. I, too, have a really special place in my soul for the Native country she shared.
“‘In Indian country,’ he says, ‘we have a different sense of time.’”
“In Native spiritualities, there is often a belief that we cannot pray unless we’ve laughed.” (Amen!)
I would take her challenge to travel our country much further. I think our country is only better when people live and move within it to at least 500 miles from the ZIP Code they were born in. I don't mean a college semester away. And I don't mean moving someplace where politics suit yours. I think you can only really make your home town better if you move and live someplace completely different from where you grew up. Then you can choose to go home again. And, as the saying goes, you can never truly go do that again. You will see everything in a different light and add to your community your new experiences. Anything less than this and we become stagnant.
“I can go on the road—because I can come home. I come home—because I’m free to leave."
Moving far, far away from my own ZIP Code taught me lessons that I use every single day of my life. I don’t believe it’s possible to know and understand our country and to participate fully in our democracy in an educated way, if you’ve never lived anywhere else. Living elsewhere taught me the way that I relate to all people. It helps me empathize with people and understand better why their worldview, their country view, doesn't fit mine. It helps me meet them in a neutral place. This, alone, builds so many bridges. And we need them. Not to mention the fact that our country is really amazing and beautiful. Some of the places that you wouldn't actually dream of visiting, let alone live in, can be some of the most beautiful places in the world. It's how I learned to love the prairie and salt marshes and the people who speak slow because it's too hot to do otherwise.
“She acquired a lifetime aversion to the phrases bless your heart and poor dears.”
OK, there’s that and I nearly spit my coffee across the room laughing at that one, Ms. Steinem. I have those aversions too.
But, I digress.
I love our country and Steinem has made it better because she's lived amongst us and listened to us. The country, in it’s entirety, was her home for many, many years.
“Anybody who is experiencing something is more expert in it than the experts.” (!!!!!!)
What continually astounded and amazed me while reading this book was Steinem's ability to just listen and take in new life lessons and continually move forward. That is truly feminism. She finds lessons in unexpected places, which we all can do if we simply look around and sit in silence, listening.
Take that in and use it. The change can happen if we let it. Step one, close your mouth.
Perhaps a start is to ask better questions and to listen without adding one's personal experience. That's powerful and so rare in humans. I think we can all do this better. Hard work, yes, but achievable.
In the end, I am grateful that Steinem found home. Not only did it wrap up her book ever so nicely, but it’s the place I’ve worked at creating for almost two decades and I feel slightly defended that The Feminist has figured out that making it is a worthwhile choice. Home. It even feels good to say the word.
“Home is a symbol of the self. Caring for a home is caring for one’s self.”
5 stars, 3.5 for her editors. Misspelled words, plural. Good writers, write. They don't edit. They can't. I know for sure that you either have the words or you can police them. Letting the clinkers we writers all have through, was a distraction. I've noticed some have been corrected since I highlighted them. Well played, Kindle sync, well played.