15 Books in 2013
I didn't call myself a writer until 2007, and it was my husband who named me one initially. Writing has been my passion since childhood, though I never dreamed of being able to publish anything until my 40s. I published on my own site and in a local paper, but had never written anything for pay until 2008. Now, it is a critical element of my job and it remains my passion.
I am a middle-aged, happily married woman. I have a teen age son and two step children in their 20s. My parents call me their "flower child", though my friends consider me relatively conservative. I live in Great Falls, VA with our menagerie of cats and dogs and neighboring wildlife. I vacation in New Mexico and Florida at every possible opportunity.
I was born in El Paso, Texas, but was raised just a few miles from where I live now from age 7 until I attended college at Randolph-Macon College in Ashland, VA. I taught middle and high school English for a few years, moved to Okinawa, Japan for a few years during a short first marriage. I earned my M.Ed. in Counseling & Personnel Services from University of Maryland, then taught a few more years, then married my current husband.
I worked with Jeffrey for 12 years as co-owner of a remodeling company, and then I started myNeighborsNetwork.com in 2000. In 2003, I turned my hobby into a business and have been running it ever since.
I am an introvert, shy by nature. I love to read, knit, needlepoint, pet my cats, and of course, write.
Usually, I have a pretty good list of books that I have read over the past year, and usually, filled with comments about what I thought about each one. This year, not so much. I was spending a lot of my time WRITING my Lyme Savvy book, so I was doing a lot of research and reading articles, parts of books, etc.
Here is my list of the books that I read in their entirety. It is what it is.
If you are female and read no other book, please read Carry On, Warrior by Glennon Melton. You will connect.
If you are working on your meditation practice (or lack thereof), try Passage Meditation by Eknath Easwaran.
If you want a great fiction piece, try Adirondack August by Kay Benedict Sgarlata. I know Kay and I heard part of this book two years ago in a writing workshop with her and I have been anxiously awaiting this book!! When you are reading it, you will think you know. But you won’t know. And then you will know this is a great book!
If you went to Randolph-Macon College, or grew up/live in Ashland, VA (or really anywhere in the south), read The Journal Keeper: A Memoir by Phyllis Theroux.
If you believe that each body contains energy that is passed between people, that we are all part of one great source, if we are all somehow connected, read The Three Waves of Volunteers and the New Earth by Dolores Cannon.
If you have any interest in the effects of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, if you like military related books, read After Action by Dan Sheehan. I know Dan. The book was really good. The last 10% of the book was AMAZING. I wanted to highlight every sentence.
If you want to lead a happier life, have a happier marriage, and learn to be a better person, try The Peacegiver: How Christ Offers to Heal Our Hearts and Homes by James Ferrell
If you want to read the patient’s point of view about Lyme Disease, try Out Of The Woods: Healing Lyme Disease Body, Mind & Spirit by Katina Makris. My only criticism of the book is that I wanted to get to the healing part a bit faster than she wrote it. But that’s honestly more a criticism of myself than of Katina! She does a fantastic job detailing the pain, frustration, and hopelessness of suffering from this disease. Then, she turns it around and shows everyone how the hope can be regained and healing can occur.
If you live in Northern Virginia and want to learn more about some local artists, try Creative Spaces: Inside Great Falls Studios. I know most of the people in the book and I loved reading about their creative spaces and techniques.
Miracles for Daddy by Erica Kosal, Phd. is about a Lyme disease patient who was originally diagnosed with ALS. My aunt had the same experience, but she died two years after her tick bite. Erica’s husband is still recovering and healing. It was hard for me to read, but good for fellow Lyme patients (AND THEIR FAMILIES AND FRIENDS) to read.
Brother Lawrence wrote The Practice of the Presence of God with Spiritual Maxims a very long time ago and every word still rings true. A quick read but very reassuring and comforting.
Finally, I am including Lyme Savvy by Sharon Rainey because I did read that 400+ page manuscript more times than I can count . . . you will be able to read it as well in April of this year!
My last three didn’t make much of an impact on me:Gentle Closings, How to Say Goodbye to Someone You Love by Ted Menten
How to Crate Train Your Dog by Patricia James
Guts by Kristen Johnston
Here is the list of books I am in the middle of: The Complete Conversations with God
The Art of Fear
The Other Medicine by Heidi Dupree
Healing and Recovery by David Hawkins
Here is what’s on my nightstand, kindle, and amazon wish list to read in 2014: No Easy Day by Mark Owen
No More Tears by Margaret Aranda
Mindsight by Daniel Siegel
Wide Awake and Dreaming by Julie Flygare
Scared Sick by Robert Karr-Morse
Stitches by Anne Lamott
Soul Silence by Peter Amato
Buddha's Brain: The Practical Neuroscience of Happiness, Love, and Wisdom by Rick Hanson, Richard Mendius
Why We Write: 20 Acclaimed Authors on How and Why They Do What They Do by Meredith Maran
The 21-Day Consciousness Cleanse by Debbie Ford
Courage: Overcoming Fear and Igniting Self-Confidenc e by Debbie Ford, Wayne W. Dyer
The Casual Vacancy by J.K. Rowling
Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead by Brene Brown
Handbook for Advanced Souls: Eternal Reminders for the Present Moment by Mark Andre Alexander
Drink: The Intimate Relationship Between Women and Alcohol by Ann Dowsett Johnston
Her: A Memoir by Christa Parravani
The Last Summer of the Camperdowns: A Novel by Elizabeth Kelly
Schroder: A Novel by Amity Gaige
Make Good Art by Neil Gaiman
Odd Type Writers: From Joyce and Dickens to Wharton and Welty, the Obsessive Habits and Quirky Techniques of Great Authors by Celia Blue Johnson
Still Writing: The Pleasures and Perils of a Creative Life by Dani Shapiro