Ponderings

New Things and Old Things

Isn’t it funny how you start off the year with new goals and new ideas and then halfway through, you’re in a totally different spot. There’s many reasons for this, one being outside life circumstances, but sometimes the Lord is simply calling to you and stirring your hearts in new ways.

That’s where I’ve been (as I’m sure you noticed with the lack of posting on both blogs). Part of it has been life (the summer was really busy – I bought myself a house for my 35th birthday. Yay for mortgages!! :)), but also the Lord whispering to my heart. A change of direction.

I promise the next line isn’t “I’m moving to Europe!” (Although, um…so game!), but a shift in my online writing. I’ve had two blogs for a while, but the past several months I haven’t been sure where I was going with each one. It didn’t seem like I should have two, but I still really enjoyed writing for each one. Did I just stop altogether? I admit, that’s where I was for several weeks, but I didn’t feel peace about that either.

I know it probably seems a bit dramatic to talk about blogs this way, but I truly wanted to be faithful to whatever the Lord was asking of me. So what’s the final verdict? One blog, but a combination of the two. Will I be blogging every day? Not quite. My goal is at least once a week and will be a variety of life posts and bookish posts. I’m figuring out other details (like my Inklings), but I’m ready for a change. I’m also slowly moving over popular posts from each blog to have in the archives, so you can still find them. Plus it’s always nice to have the reminders of early blogging days – sometimes it’s cringe worthy, but worth remembering. (Although true confession, sad to lose all the comments – there were some fun discussions!)

When I first started blogging back in 2012, my time and desire fit my blogging schedule. But, as life happens with new chapters, I don’t have the time (and no longer want to) spend several hours a week on blogging (how different my weekends are with a house. Grass Internet. Grass. It likes to grow). I loved the years when I did that – it was exciting starting and pursuing something I loved. I still love it and am forever thankful it opened up doors to the career I’m in now, but I’m no longer in a place to spend my nights and most weekends working on the blog. And that’s okay. I’m excited to still be in the blogging and bookish world, but at a pace that is healthy for where I’m at now.

I’ll still have my newsletter and of course I won’t stop reading and sharing about my favorite reads on other social channels in addition to blog posts, but I’m excited about this new direction.

I’d love to stay in touch! Here’s how to find me:

Sign up for the newsletter here
Website | Instagram | Facebook | Blog Facebook Page | Twitter | Goodreads  (just note any review prior to 2014-ish may have been during my “everyone gets 5 stars!!” stage 😉
Email: jamie @ musingsofjamie.com

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Bookish Radness

Books and Beverages 2016 Favorites

It’s that time! It’s my final post of 2016 (how in the why and what in the world?). It’s been a year hasn’t it? I can always depend on my books and wanted to share my favorites from this year. I’ve linked to my blog post or Goodreads (if I didn’t review). What do y’all think? What are some of your favorites?

(As always, the Tolkien and Lewis’ books aren’t listed, because y’all know how I feel about them. #NotEmbarassedOrAshamed)

Here they are in no particular order:

  • Under Our Skin by Benjamin Watson
  • The Shock of Night by Patrick W. Carr
  • The Feathered Bone by Julie Cantrell
  • The Edge of Lost by Kristina McMorris
  • Looking for Lovely by Annie F. Downs
  • A Hobbit, A Wardrobe, and a Great War by Joseph Loconte
  • Dressed For Death by Julianna Deering
  • The Art of Losing Yourself by Katie Ganshert
  • The Alliance by Jolina Petersheim
  • Jaded by Varina Denman
  • When Death Draws Near by Carrie Stuart Parks
  • Blue Castle by Lucy Maud Montgomery
  • Newton and Polly by Jody Hedlund
  • The Portrait of Emily Price by Katherine Reay
  • Waves of Mercy by Lynn Austin
  • The Shattered Vigil by Patrick W. Carr

Another favorite from this year has been the start of The Diversity Series. I’m thankful the conversation is happening and look forward to continuing it in 2017.

What were some of your favorite reads this year?

Inklings

The Friendship of J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis (Plus It’s International Inklings Day!!)

(If you’re new, welcome to Inklings Week 2016! I don’t want you to miss any of the posts this week, so be sure to check them out here!) 

I miss you Oxford!

“Friendship makes prosperity more shining and lessens adversity by dividing and sharing it.” Cicero

Today is officially International Inklings Day!!!! On this day 90 years ago, J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis were gathered for English tea with Oxford English faculty at Merton College and met for the first time. This would begin a 40 year friendship and this friendship would inspire generations to come and also help to produce some of literature’s greatest masterpieces.

Yet, truth be told, it wasn’t friendship at first sight. After that first meeting, Lewis commented (I believe jokingly!) about Tolkien: “No harm in him: only needs a smack or so.” He thought him rather opinionated, but this was more due to the fact that at the time Lewis was an atheist and Tolkien was a strong Roman Catholic. As Diana Pavlac Glyer explained in Bandersnatch (which really is an excellent book and you should all read it!)

“It got worse. As Lewis and Tolkien got to know each other, it became clear that they had a number of serious disagreements. They had different interests and personalities. They came from different religious traditions. And they had different academic specialties. Lewis was an expert in literature and philosophy; Tolkien was a philologist, an expert in languages. He loved Old Norse and Anglo-Saxon. Lewis said that meeting Tolkien triggered two of his childhood prejudices. He explains, “At my first coming into the world I had been (implicitly) warned never to trust a [Catholic], and at my first coming into the English Faculty (explicitly) never to trust a philologist. Tolkien was both.

Soon after the faculty disagreed on required courses for English students and Lewis and Tolkien found themselves on opposite sides of the debate. So Tolkien decided that in order to win people over to his curriculum, he would gather the faculty together to bring about love for mythology and ancient languages. This turned out to be a genius move. Once again, I’ll quote Bandersnatch:

Lewis and Tolkien discovered they had significant common ground. They gravitated towards each other because they shared an interest in what they called “northernness,” the vast skies, icy landscapes, and heroic tempers of the ancient Vikings. As they talked together, Lewis was slowly won over to Tolkien’s view of the English curriculum. And as they worked side by side, they forged a solid friendship. E. L. Edmonds, a student at Oxford, remembers, “It was very obvious that [Lewis and Tolkien] were great friends—indeed, they were like two young bear cubs sometimes, just happily quipping with one another.”

Tolkien would go on to play a significant role in Lewis’ conversion to Christianity (especially on the night of September 19, 1931, where, along with Hugo Dyson, the three men spent hours discussing life and faith and Lewis later said this was his final push for Christianity) and Lewis would be Tolkien’s biggest supporter and encourager in finishing Lord of the Rings and other works. Their friendship was a staple in each other’s lives and, while, in later years the friendship did change, it never lost it’s meaning.

In Tolkien and C. S. Lewis: The Gift of a Friendship by Colin Duriez, we see that “with C.S. Lewis’ death, it was a “wound [Tolkien] knew he would not lose, as one loses a falling lead.” Even years after Lewis’ death Tolkien wrote about Lewis: “The unpayable debt that I owe to him was not ‘influence’ as it is ordinarily understood, but sheer encouragement. He was for long my only audience. Only from him [did I] ever get the idea that my ‘stuff’ could be more than a private hobby.”

I’ll leave with a few fun facts because I’m all about fun facts.

  • Lewis’ character, Elwin Random, in Out of the Silent Planet, resembles Tolkien quite a bit. Elwin means “elf-friend” and the character is a Cambridge philologist who has a love for languages.
  • The Professor in Narnia was also inspired by Tolkien.
  • Treebeard was inspired by C.S. Lewis.
  • They each have rad names: John Ronald Reuel Tolkien and Clive Staples Lewis
  • They both lost their moms at a young age
  • Tolkien’s dad died when he was a toddler and Lewis’ Dad withdrew and sent Lewis to a boarding school after his mother’s death.
  • They both fought in WWI.
  • In 1961, Lewis nominated Tolkien for the Nobel Peace Prize in literature (which he totally should have won)
  • Both Humphrey Carpenter (Tolkien’s official biographer) and Edith Tolkien (when she told scholar Clyde S. Kilby) stated that C.S. Lewis actually wrote Tolkien’s obituary, which was published the day after his death (9/2/73) in The Times.

“My happiest hours are spent with three or four old friends and old clothes tramping together and putting up in small pubs – or else sitting up till the small hours in someone’s college rooms talking nonsense, poetry, theology, metaphysics over beer tea and pipes.”

I hope y’all enjoyed this brief look at Tolkien and Lewis’ friendship! Who has greatly encouraged and inspired you in your life?

Bookish Radness

An Open Letter to Goodreads

Dearest Goodreads,
I have to say we’ve had a really good relationship this past year. I feel like we’ve grown together and shared some good times. When we first met, I kind of ignored you. I’m sorry. I didn’t fully see all who you were and all the friends you would introduce me to. That is 100% on me. Mea culpa Goodreads. Mea culpa.

And while we’ve grown stronger, I feel there are some things I need to bring up. As we all know the key to any good relationship is communication. How many books have we read where if there was some quality communication things would have turned out much better? So here we are.

Know I say these things in love, because I wouldn’t be a true friend if I wasn’t willing to bring up the problems.

1. Can you cut us some slack when it comes to your search option? With Amazon (who well…owns you) I can type in Houbittee and it will know I’m looking for The Hobbit. But with y’all, I’m one letter off and no mercy! I’m glad you think I’m intelligent and should know how to spell every single word and author’s name, but I confess, I can’t spell every word in every language ever written. So maybe just a wee bit of slack?

2. I’ve already discussed the whole star rating shenanigans, so I’ll just say this one more time: PLEASE FOR THE LOVE OF THE WRITTEN WORD HALF STAR RATINGS. Thanks.

3. You know what else I love to do? Re-read my favorites, so can we maybe toss around the idea of a re-read shelf option. Yes, yes, we can create a new list called something like “2015 Reads,” but I’ve been know to read the same book twice (or more don’t judge me, you don’t know my life!) in one year. So what’s a book nerd to do? My friend Wesley brought this to my attention and all I can say is truth! I’m not going to lie, I take pride in the books I read and Goodreads is the perfect place to rep that. So maybe a shelf option kay?

Phew! I don’t think that was too bad right? I’m sure there’s a few other thoughts people have, so they might mention them in the comments below, but please don’t take it too hard Goodreads. It’s only because we love you!

Sincerely Yours,

Jamie

(If you’re on Goodreads, let’s connect! Since I don’t blog about every book I read, it’s a great place to still chat books – Connect here!)

UPDATE: In case you’re wondering, here’s their thoughts on half star ratings. Boo. NOT GIVING UP.

Author Interviews

4 Questions with Award-Winning Katie Ganshert | Author Interview

(This interview is part of my 4 Questions Project, where I get the chance to chat with authors and tell stories of people, life, and adventure. Be sure to check out previous interviews here!)

I’ve said this before on the blog, but Katie’s contemporary stories are some of my favorite in that genre. She has a way of captivating the reader and make you fall in love with reading all over again! I hope you enjoy this interview as much as me.

Award-winning author, Katie Ganshert, graduated from the University of Wisconsin in Madison with a degree in education, and worked as a fifth grade teacher for several years before staying home to write full-time. She was born and raised in the Midwest, where she lives with her family. When she’s not busy penning novels or spending time with her people, she enjoys drinking coffee with friends, reading great literature, and eating copious amounts of dark chocolate.

4 Questions

1. What is something about your life right now that you would have never imagined 5 years ago?
That I’d be a coffee lover! Seriously, five years ago, I hated coffee. I couldn’t even stand the taste of coffee-flavored ice cream, and I love ice cream. But one morning a while back, I was desperate for an extra kick. So I mixed hot chocolate with coffee, and you know what? It wasn’t the worst thing. Plus, the caffeine kick was great. Then I discovered the world of flavored coffee creamer. My morning cup used to be roughly half creamer, half coffee. Now I just use a little dash, and I drink coffee every morning.

2. What is one thing that you would go back and do differently if you could?
I wouldn’t do anything differently, because every choice I made—including every mistake and failure—made me who I am and brought me to where I am today. Since I like where I am and believe God has me here for a reason, I wouldn’t do anything differently. However, I would worry less. I’ve wasted a lot of energy worrying about things that a) never ended up happening or b) wasn’t a big deal in the grand scheme of things.

3. What is one of the happiest moments of your life?
I’d say it’s a toss-up between the day my husband proposed, finding out we were pregnant with our son while in New York City, holding my Congolese daughter for the first time, or the day I got the call from my agent that I was going to be a published author.

4. What is one thing you want the next generation to know?
Be careful with technology. If you let it, it can rob your life. Turn off the phone. Get away from the screen. Have actual conversations with people. I guarantee when you’re old you won’t regret it.

Thank you so so much for sharing your heart and some of your story Katie! I am most definitely inspired by your journey so far. 

P.S. Katie also recently released a YA series and you should check it out! I have the first one ready for me to read and can’t wait to dive in!

Where to Connect with Author
Website | Twitter | Facebook

Author Interviews

4 Questions with Hillary Manton Lodge | Author Interview

(This interview is part of my 4 Questions Project, where I get the chance to chat with authors and tell stories of people, life, and adventure. Be sure to check out previous interviews here!)

Not only has it been a short week for many of us, but it’s Friday! So how about a fun 4 Questions to kick off the weekend?

I thought it was a great idea too. If you haven’t met Hillary yet, you’re in for a treat! One of her recent books, A Table by the Window, is an INSPY shortlist winner and her second in the series just released! So please, enjoy!

Hillary Manton Lodge is the author of Reservations for Two, A Table by the Window, Plain Jayne, and Simply Sara. A graduate of the University of Oregon’s School of Journalism, Hillary discovered the world of cuisine during her internship at Northwest Palate Magazine. Her next novel, book three in the Two Blue Doors series, will release May 3rd, 2016 from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishers. In her free time, Hillary enjoys experimenting in the kitchen, attending indie concerts, and finding new walking trails. She and her husband make their home in Portland, Oregon, with their Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Shiloh.

4 Questions

1. What is something about your life right now that you would have never imagined 5 years ago?
To be honest, when I was younger I’d planned on starting a family, but it just hasn’t shaken out that way. So while there are hopes and dreams that children might factor into the future, I’ve had the opportunity to focus on writing in a way that I hadn’t anticipated. It’s been a different, but no less worthy path. My fifth novel will release late next spring, with plans – as always – for more.

2. What is one thing that you would go back and do differently if you could?
I would have done a B.S. degree rather than a B.A. in college. And that’s pretty much it. I don’t much believe in regrets, or letting your headspace camp out in them. Grace covers our past; faith and courage inform our future.

3. What is one of the happiest moments of your life?
I really, really liked getting married. I was so excited to marry my husband, and all my favorite people were there, and I loved my dress. I suppose it’s a cliché to cite one’s wedding, but it’s true.

4. What is one thing you want the next generation to know?
I have a niece and nephew who are in middle school and high school, respectively. We have a lot of conversations about the transient nature of popularity and the importance of kindness.

Thank you so so much Hillary for joining in!! Hope y’all enjoyed hearing from her as well and be sure to connect with her around the web!

Where to Connect with Author
Website | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

Author Interviews

4 Questions with Award Winning Kristy Cambron | Author Interview

(This interview is part of my 4 Questions Project, where I get the chance to chat with authors and tell stories of people, life, and adventure. Be sure to check out previous interviews here!)

In case you missed my reviews of Kristy Cambon’s novels, I’ll just say it’s safe to say I’m a fan. Her books are heart-wrenching, yet so incredibly beautiful! I count down the days until her next novel. So of course I’m SOOOOO excited to host her on the blog for a 4 Questions! She’s awesome and I hope you enjoy! Oh and don’t miss out on the giveaway at the end!

Kristy Cambron fancies life as a vintage-inspired storyteller. Her debut historical novel, THE BUTTERFLY AND THE VIOLIN (Thomas Nelson, 2014), was named to Library Journal Reviews’ Best Books of 2014, Family Fiction’s Top Ten Novels of 2014, and received nominations for RT Reviewers’ Choice Awards Best Inspirational Novel of 2014 and the 2015 INSPY Awards for Best Debut Novel. Her second novel, A SPARROW IN TEREZIN (Thomas Nelson, April 2015), was named Library Journal Reviews’ Pick of the Month (Christian Fiction, February 2015) and a Top Pick from RT Book Reviews.

Kristy is an Art/Design Manager at TheGROVEstory.com and holds a degree in Art History from Indiana University. She lives in Indiana with her husband and three football-loving sons, where she can probably be bribed with a coconut mocha latte and a good Christian fiction read.

And y’all – we’re mixing things up with this 4 Questions! Enjoy!

1. What is something about your life right now that you would never imagined 5 years ago?

2. What is one thing that you would go back and do differently if you could?

3. What is one of the happiest moments of your life?

4. What is one thing you want the next generation to know?

Here’s a bit about what’s next! Yay!

Isn’t she the best y’all?! Thank you so so much Kristy! So glad to hear from you and get to introduce you to my readers!

You can connect with Kristy at:
Facebook: Kristy Cambron | Twitter: @KCambronAuthor | Instagram: kristycambron
Pinterest: KCambronAuthor | Web: KristyCambron.com | TheGROVEstory.com

Bookish Radness

Organizing Personal Libraries….Mine is a Hot Mess These Days

I recently had to purchase another book shelf. My shelves were already double stacked and then there were all kinds of wonderful books from the INSPYs, purchases and recent tours, so I deemed it necessary to spend $20.00 at Target instead of having my room become random mountains of books.

So while books are no longer all over the floor, my organization is all over the place. For the Monk in me this is no fun. It got me thinking (and you can thank Pinterest) about how I should organize my books. So what about you?

How do you organize your books?

My dilemma is this. My previous (and full) shelves are nice and organized. Fiction books are organized by author and then alphabetical order, my Inklings have two shelves of their own and non-fiction is, for the most part, divided by topic. Anyone else have to keep non-fiction and fiction completely separate? I like knowing I can go to a certain section and find books about a specific topic. What I can’t have is a grad book (that I can’t seem to let go of) about the Nazi agenda in the 1930s German Church next to 1984 next to Timothy Keller. Commence panic mode in my house. The woes of a reader right? 🙂

This new shelf? It’s all kinds of chaos. Most of it is my TBR mountain and the rest is recent books I’ve read, sorta organized by author, but mainly squeezed in to make as much room as possible.

So I did what I do best when I need ideas.

I took to Pinterest.

Well, instead of solving my shelf organization dilemma, I found beautiful libraries instead. Oops. Here’s a few favs because sometimes I just need to stop and appreciate the beauty.

via here, here, here

(L) Jay Walker’s Library: So entrepreneurship is the way to go to get this. I mean, y’all. (R) Clearly I need to be friends with George Lucas. via here and here

I’m really curious how your bookshelves are. Do you have a system? Or are you more of a read and pass along the book? Do you stick with borrowing from the library (I will say I adore mine)? I look forward to stealing all your ideas :).

Author Interviews

4 Questions with Award Winning Gina Holmes | Author Interview

(This interview is part of my 4 Questions Project, where I get the chance to chat with authors and tell stories of people, life, and adventure. Be sure to check out previous interviews here!)

Today is kicking off with award winning author Gina Holmes! If you’ve read her books, you know they pack a punch of emotions, but are so incredible and such deep reads. I recently read her debut Crossing Oceans and cried all the tears and last year had the chance to read Wings of Glass, which was another incredible read. So yep! I’m super excited to host her (and of course a giveaway!). Enjoy friends!

Gina Holmes is the founder of Novel Rocket, regularly named as one of Writers Digest’s best websites for writers. Her debut, Crossing Oceans, was a Christy and Gold Medallion finalist and winner of the Carol Award, INSPY, and RWA’s Inspirational Reader’s Choice, as well as being a CBA, ECPA, Amazon and PW bestseller. Her sophomore novel, Dry as Rain was a Christy Award finalist. Wings of Glass has been named as one of the best books of the year in 2013 by Library Journal and was a SIBA Okra pick and a finalist for Romantic Times’ Reviewers Choice Award. Her latest novel, Driftwood Tides is in stores now. She holds degrees in science and nursing and currently resides with her family in southern Virginia. She works too hard, laughs too loud, and longs to see others heal from their past and discover their God-given purpose. To learn more about her, visit www.ginaholmes.com.

1. What is something about your life right now that you would have never imagined 5 years ago?
Right now, my youngest son is 18 and getting ready to graduate high-school. I knew it would be emotional, but I had no idea just HOW emotional it would be. When he was a little guy, I would cry just thinking of the day he would leave home. Then, he went through the typical teenage years, where I began to think I might survive him leaving home just fine, ha. Now that it’s fast approaching, I find myself crying and mourning the loss of him as a child I can protect from the world. I have one more son who is 13 and I imagine his flight will be even harder since it will be an empty nest situation. It’s good too, don’t get me wrong. Bitter sweet like most of life.

2. What is one thing that you would go back and do differently if you could?
Wow, you ask some tough questions. Even after I became a Christian, I didn’t always live out my faith. I still don’t at times. If I could go back, I’d have tried much harder to live within the parameters God set out in the BIble. I used to think God was kind of a kill-joy. Now, I realize He just wants to protect us. I could have saved myself and others a lot of grief.

3. What is one of the happiest moments of your life?
My children being born of course and getting married, the usual wonderful stuff. Since this is a book blog though, I’d have to go with the moment I was working as a nurse and got the call that my first novel, and personal favorite, Crossing Oceans, was being offered a contract by Tyndale House. I still remember my agent telling me, “It’s okay to scream.” I was working in the newborn nursery at the time, so it really wasn’t, but it was okay to cry, and I did.

4. What is one thing you want the next generation to know?
Wow, there’s so much. That’s the right of passage for middle-age, having the desire to share what you’ve learned the hard knock way, with a younger generation (who won’t heed anymore than we did at that age). I guess my best piece of advice ties along with my biggest regret. Put God first, right now. Heed His word because it’s the answer to everything.

Thank you so so much Gina for sharing some of your heart with us! I was so encouraged by this and can’t wait for what ever you pen next!

Where to Connect with Author
Website | Twitter | Facebook

Author Interviews

4 Questions with Award Winning Elizabeth Camden | Author Interview

(This interview is part of my 4 Questions Project, where I get the chance to chat with authors and tell stories of people, life, and adventure. Be sure to check out previous interviews here!)

It’s always such a joy to be able to feature some of my favorite authors! One of those? Elizabeth Camden. Not only because she covers such interesting parts of history, but I love the women she creates, women who are strong and inspiring. And what better way to kick off the week than with a 4 Questions and giveaway right?

Elizabeth Camden is a research librarian at a small college in central Florida. Her novels have won the coveted RITA and Christy Awards. She has published several articles for academic publications and is the author of four nonfiction history books. Her ongoing fascination with history and love of literature have led her to write inspirational fiction. Elizabeth lives with her husband near Orlando, Florida.

1. What is something about your life right now that you would have never imagined 5 years ago?
Easy! I would never have dreamed that I’d be writing and publishing novels. It was one of those pie-in-the-sky dreams I worked hard for, but never really expected it would happen. And when it did? It was more thrilling, more challenging, and more heartbreaking than I ever imagined. It’s one thing to write novels in the privacy of your home, quite another to hand it over to others who will slice and dice the text, pick out a cover for it, and send it out into the world where it will be subject to the slings and arrows of public opinion. For the most part folks have been very kind to my books, but I sweat bullets over each one. I never thought about the realities that happen on the other side of getting that first book contract.

2. What is one thing that you would go back and do differently if you could?
I wish I’d been more of a risk-taker when I was younger. I was always very cautious and worked hard, trying to save money for a rainy day, buckle down to get an education, become gainfully employed, etc.

But I’ve always had a couple of wild, unfulfilled dreams. I wanted to move to Alaska for a year and work in a fish cannery. When I was in college I met a girl who did the Alaska-thing, and I immediately glommed onto it as a wild, wonderful adventure I wanted to try, but I was too timid to pursue it. I wish I had. I know the work would be hard, smelly, and uncomfortable, but I wish I had such a year in my memory bank. Now that I’m older I realize that my early twenties was the perfect time to do such a thing. It’s too late now. I’ve got elderly parents who I’m a caregiver for, and a husband who has zero interest in moving to Alaska. When I was in my twenties I was so worried about money and building my own safety net that I didn’t realize it was the perfect time to do something wild and adventurous.

3. What is one of the happiest moments of your life?
Oh my….there isn’t any one thing I can point to. The days I am happiest are not linked to grand events. They come in the quiet moments, or at the end of a long day when I’m tired in both body and mind, but have the satisfaction of a job well done. Those are my happiest times.

4. What is one thing you want the next generation to know?
I worry that we are robbing our kids by trying to keep them constantly amused and stimulated. Television, video games, amusement parks. Now we can stream movies to kids riding in a car. Kids who are bombarded with this sort of entertainment don’t know what to do when the power fails. They grow into adolescents who expect to be entertained, but lack the ability or emotional heft to venture forth and become productive.

There is a certain magic to going out in your own backyard to search for fossils among the rocks in the garden, or riding a bike on a hot summer’s day. Perhaps even more importantly, there is terrific value in learning to do something hard. Kids who train for a sport, build model airplanes, or join the scouts learn great skills. When my husband was in boy scouts he learned to build a fire, catch, skin and cook a fish. This leads to a sense of accomplishment that no video game can ever provide. So I hope the next generation can move away from short attention spans and learn to enjoy things that are hard. Those are the things we are proudest of.

Then again, my husband says my Indian spirit name is “Dream Killer,” and I never learned how to have fun. Maybe that’s true, but I’ve also learned to derive immense satisfaction from sinking my teeth into a big, hard project, and I learned that skill when I was only a kid. I hope the next generation can put down their cell phones and learn to enjoy doing something hard.

Thank you so so much Elizabeth! I love your books, so it’s a pleasure featuring you on the blog!

Where to Connect with Author
Website | Facebook