Thursday, January 27, 2011

ABC Thursdays: volumes R & V


Reading

I really like having a good, thick novel waiting for me at my bedside table at the end of the day. I like certain genres of books (historical fiction, coming-of-age fiction, fiction, fiction, fiction), but I usually pick a book based more on the writing style than the genre. I also read cookbooks, craft books and how-to books. I’ll read the occasional parenting book, though I often find them stressful and loaded. I am thinking about switching my book reading to an electronic reader because after I’m finished with a book it seems so much easier to push ‘delete’ than to find a place to put it.

Replacing Strollers

When Andrew was born I was convinced that we would be leaving Brooklyn very soon and that I didn’t need an urban mama stroller. I wanted something more suburban: easily collapsible, less expensive but bulky, matching car seat. Looking back, it was a silly move. I should have gotten the more expensive, sleek, light-weight workhorse my friends all have. About a year and a half into suburban stroller ownership, our stroller fell apart right under Andrew. I replaced our suburban stroller with the only logical choice, another suburban stroller. I’m not entirely clear why I made that choice, but I remember standing in the store, debating stroller models, and was ultimately seduced by a considerably lower price and a large and welcoming cup holder. That stroller lasted a couple of years as well and has since been replaced twice over. We are now on stroller number 4 with still at least another year or so of heavy stroller use in our future. Here’s hoping this one lasts.


Vermont
When I am not in Vermont, I tell people that that is where I am from. But when I lived there, everyone knew that I wasn’t really from Vermont. I moved to Vermont in the 6th grade, after my father retired from the Air Force. I went to a private high school that everyone in the town went to because the town paid the tuition (a set-up that is VERY New England). I learned to drive in Vermont, in the winter, with a clutch. When we moved there, there was still 4 digit dialing, and my parents only recently got a street address because only recently did the area get 911 services. I like going back to Vermont and I LOVE that my kids’ grandparents live there. But I’m not sure I could move back at this point. There’s something about it that just doesn’t seem to fit me and I’m not really sure why.

Vacation, beach

Every summer my parents rent a house in Ocean City, New Jersey for a few weeks and my brother, sister and I bring our families and take advantage of my father’s generosity. This beach vacation has meant different things to me over the years. When I was teenager, it was a hassle. When I was a young adult, I wanted to stay longer, but couldn’t. When I had just Andrew, it was fantastic. When I had both kids, it got a little more stressful, but was still very important. Every year, when I go, I notice all these changes in myself. When I walk down the same boardwalk, passing the same custard stands and t-shirt shops the sameness of the routines and traditions reflect back to me my changing self. And I guess I really like that.

8 comments:

Cat said...

I also just read that book (translated in french) not knowing everybody is reading it! I really liked it and was sad when I realised I was on the last page.
I feel so lucky about my walmart bought safety first stroller. Jake used it and now Julia. It is feeling tired and the back wheels are not as aligned as they used to be but it still works fine. I hope it lasts until Julia outgrows it!
I'd love to be from Vermont!

Ruth said...

Good reading choice. DS is on his 2nd pushchair (not that he uses it now). The front wheel came off the last one on an icy December day in 2009 ~ it was not funny. I'm intrigued by the idea that a town pays the school fees ~ how does that work, higher taxes?

Mama V said...

I liked reading about those fun Vermont tidbits.

Not sure what I'd do without the Brooklyn library's interlibrary loan system. You know how much we read, but we put a moratorium on book buying a few years ago, and the library has saved us!

Ladkyis said...

Have you ever tried bookcrossing? Where you read the book and then register it at www.bookcrossing.com and then leave it somewhere for someone to find so that they can go to the website and say they found it and where they are going to release it.
I have been a member since 2004 and I have swapped books with dozens of people and also released some into the "wild"

firefly said...

How many letters do you have left?

This has been one of my favorite projects you've ever done. I almost want to make one myself, I like it so much.

firefly said...

Mama V, I am a terrible, terrible scatterbrain and often lose track of my books and forget to return them to the library. I had to put a moratorium on checking books out of the library, in fact, because the late fines and lost book fees were so much more expensive than just heading to the used bookstore. I just can't afford to patron the library. Sad, but true. :)

Mama V said...

Haha! Marti, we've racked up our own share of library fines as well! But what helps is our library sends handy email alerts to let me know when I need to renew, which I do online. Sometimes somebody else places a book on reserve that I have checked out, and that's where I get into trouble by not returning on time. But it helps that my spouse rides his bike by the library every day to and from work. We fully realize that we have a nice system in place that helps us become good patrons and that might not happen if we had a different arrangement. Even still, I have wished for a book delivery and pick-up system, especially on snowy days! ;)

Robyn said...

Thanks, Marti. I'm really surprised to hear that. I think I have about 5 more letters, plus a cover page and a wrap-up at the end. Almost there!