Monday, November 17, 2014

It's Monday! What are you reading? 11-17-14

Originally hosted by Sheila at Book Journey, Jen over at Teach Mentor Texts along with Kellee and Ricki at Unleashing Readers also host a kidlit version of It's Monday! What are You Reading?

My Monday posts are generally just a highlight of what I've been reading during the week so if you'd like to see all that I've been reading, follow my Goodreads page.

I can't believe I leave for the NCTE Convention on Wednesday! If you're going to be there, I hope you're able to make it to one of my sessions:

Friday 2:30 - 3:45 PM
Heart and Mind: Stories and Ideas That Keep Us Teaching  

Saturday 8:00 - 9:15 AM
Students CAN Write: Changing the Narrative of a Deficit Model

And I was added last minute to this Ignite session on Saturday 9:30-10: 45 AM due to a cancellation:
Common Standards, Uncommon Teaching
My Ignite session is going to be about using social media to transform your teaching.


Needless to say, given that I have two part-time jobs, am taking two grad classes, and have three NCTE presentations to prepare for, I haven't gotten a whole lot of reading done this past week.


I did manage to finish this audiobook:

Better Nate Than Ever by Tim Federle
I absolutely LOVED this book! I need to write a full review soon. It's one of those books that needs a full-review written about it, not just a one-sentence summary.


And this book for my children's lit class:

Mister Orange by Truus Maati
I don't have much to say about this one. It just wasn't the right book for me as a reader. I would have never picked it up had it not been required reading for a class.


Returned to reading:

Winger by Andrew Smith
I'm getting through this one slowly but surely. I paused it for a couple weeks and now I'm back to it, a few chapters at a time. 


Still reading with my ears:

Guys Read: True Stories edited by Jon Scieszka


Who knows what reading adventures await me upon my return from NCTE next week. :) 

Monday, November 10, 2014

It's Monday! What are you reading? 11-10-14

Originally hosted by Sheila at Book Journey, Jen over at Teach Mentor Texts along with Kellee and Ricki at Unleashing Readers also host a kidlit version of It's Monday! What are You Reading?

My Monday posts are generally just a highlight of what I've been reading during the week so if you'd like to see all that I've been reading, follow my Goodreads page.

As I was writing this, I didn't even realize it was my birthday until I wrote the title and had to think about what today's date was. *Sigh* This is what getting older is like I suppose -- not finding birthdays all that big a deal anymore.


I finished reading with my ears:

Anatomy of a Misfit by Andrea Portes
A Long Walk to Water by Linda Sue Park 


Favorite picture books from last week:

When Dinosaurs Came with Everything by Elise Broach, illustrated by David Small
Imagine going to the doctor and instead of getting a lollipop, you get a dinosaur. Or what if, free with a dozen donuts, the bakery gives away dinosaurs? This book has a delightfully absurd yet oh so fun premise.


Ivan: The Remarkable True Story of the Shopping Mall Gorilla by Katherine Applegate
Thank you Katherine Applegate for giving readers not just The One and Only Ivan, but this beautiful nonfiction account of the real Ivan's life. A must-read for any classroom using The One and Only Ivan as a read aloud. 


Currently reading:
 
X: A Novel by Ilyasah Shabazz and Kekla Magoon
I'm only on chapter 3 but already I can tell this is going to be a powerful book. Look for this one in January 2015.  


Currently reading with my ears:

Better Nate Than Ever by Tim Federle
Guys Read: True Stories edited by Jon Scieszka


Last week on my teaching blog:
Do You NaNoWriMo?
NaNoWriMo: Seeing My Students in a New Light
Remember, Remember the 9th of November
 

Monday, November 3, 2014

It's Monday! What are you reading? 11-3-14

Originally hosted by Sheila at Book Journey, Jen over at Teach Mentor Texts along with Kellee and Ricki at Unleashing Readers also host a kidlit version of It's Monday! What are You Reading?

My Monday posts are generally just a highlight of what I've been reading during the week so if you'd like to see all that I've been reading, follow my Goodreads page.

We've come to that point in the semester where I'm starting to get overwhelmed and that is clearly reflected in my reading for this week, which is pretty negligible. 

I finished reading:

Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz
Just as special as the first time I read it.  


Currently reading with my ears:

Anatomy of a Misfit by Andrea Portes
A Long Walk to Water by Linda Sue Park 


On my teaching blog I wrote: 
Celebrate teaching and learning with PLN Colleagues: #MCTE14

Monday, October 27, 2014

It's Monday! What are you reading? 10-27-14

Originally hosted by Sheila at Book Journey, Jen over at Teach Mentor Texts along with Kellee and Ricki at Unleashing Readers also host a kidlit version of It's Monday! What are You Reading?

My Monday posts are generally just a highlight of what I've been reading during the week so if you'd like to see all that I've been reading, follow my Goodreads page.


Last week I finished reading with my ears:
 
Monster by Walter Dean Myers 
Bud, Not Buddy by Christopher Paul Curtis
Both of these selections were assigned reading for my prizing children's literature class.


Picture books I loved: 

The Farmer and the Clown by Marla Frazee
How Marla Frazee managed to make this book endearing rather than creepy is true talent because, let's face it, clowns are creepy. This book, however, will convert even the most persistent of clown-haters. 

Flora and the Penguin by Molly Idle
Maybe because I am a huge fan of figure skating, but I liked this one better than Flora and the Flamingo.


Currently Reading:

Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz
I'm not one to reread books unless I'm required to. There are just so many books out there in the world that I want to read that it's hard to justify rereading one. Needless to say, I'm grateful that my prizing children's literature class is requiring me to reread this because coming back to it has been like visiting with an old friend. It's definitely one of those blanket books Kurt Stroh was talking about.


Paused reading:

Winger by Andrew Smith
Since the amount of reading for both of my grad classes has increased, I had to put this one on hold for a while. I look forward to going back to it though in a few weeks.  


Currently reading with my ears:

Anatomy of a Misfit by Andrea Portes


Last week I posted:
HUGE giveaway from Kimberly Griffiths Little, author of FORBIDDEN
Why I haven't talked about food in a while


On my teaching blog I posted:
Happiness is a baby grand piano

Friday, October 24, 2014

Why I haven't talked about food in a while

For a blog about food, books, and travel, I've certainly been neglecting everything but the books lately. The reason I don't always talk about travel is because I don't always get to travel as much as I'd like. But food is another story...

I have suffered from IBS a majority of my life. It started when I was in 7th grade and has manifested itself in different ways over the years. I haven't had it so severe though that it has impacted my day to day life... until recently. My lowest point was this past June when I was on vacation with my husband and some dear friends in Northern California, a culinary wonderland, and I barely ate the whole time because I felt so horrible. That was the moment I knew something had to change -- and I started with changing my doctors. I decided I was tired of going to doctors who would only prescribe some medication or, to appease me, test me for something, tell me the results were negative, and then never follow-up. I decided to go to a place where doctors are in-the-know because research is happening all the time: a university health system.

My new gastroenterologist put me in touch with a nutritionist and for the past 8 weeks I have been on a low FODMAP diet. FODMAPs are different types of sugars that are not absorbed well in the small intestine and for people with IBS, this is what causes so many of our unfortunate gastrointestinal symptoms. I have to admit that when I first heard about this diet I was dubious. I had been living with this disorder for so long and dealing with my fear of being in an inopportune place when an attack came that I just assumed that this was my lot in life. While no means a cure, I have discovered that I now am understanding my body better than I ever have. I am finally understanding which foods trigger my symptoms and how I can better manage what I eat so I don't have to worry about whether or not I can go somewhere after dinner for fear of having an attack.

I am so grateful to my doctor and nutritionist at the University of Michigan and I highly recommend giving this diet a try if you suffer from IBS -- though I wouldn't suggest going it alone. Being under the care and guidance of a nutritionist has helped educate me on how this process works. And the process is ever-evolving, which is why I am so happy that I now have a doctor who cares enough to follow up with me rather than just testing me for something, telling me nothing's wrong, and then never attempting to seek further answers. So for those of you out there who are suffering from any kind of health ailment and the doctors aren't giving you answers, I say to you: find a doctor who will keep fighting right along with you. It makes a world of difference.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

HUGE giveaway from Kimberley Griffiths Little, author of FORBIDDEN

On November 4th, HarperCollins unveils Forbidden, a seductive YA debut from award-winning middle grade author Kimberley Griffiths Little. Forbidden transports readers back in time to the deadly deserts and sweltering heat of Ancient Mesopotamia for a tale of danger, duty, and forbidden love. Jayden is on the brink of womanhood and betrothed to her tribe’s prince, cold-hearted Horeb. But when tragedy strikes, Jayden meets Kadesh, a mysterious visitor from the south who makes Jayden doubt everything she knows. Torn between loyalty to her tribe and the chance to escape her fate, Jayden must make a choice that will change her life forever.
Kimberley is also offering a HUGE preorder giveaway from October 6th to November 4th (release day!) to celebrate. See below for full details on how to enter. TO ENTER:
  • You must preorder Forbidden through an online retailer or your local bookstore, then email a photo of your receipt to forbiddengiveaway@gmail.com.
  • Fill out the rafflecopter below
  • US/Canada Only
  • Ends at midnight EST on November 3, 2014
  • Optional entries: share the trailer on your own site or social media, follow Kimberley on twitter, and tweet about the giveaway (can be repeated daily for extra entries!)
  • Winners will be announced and contacted November 4th (release day!)
  • If the winner does not respond with their mailing address within one week, a new winner will be chosen.
PRIZES:
(1) GRAND PRIZE WINNER: 1. NEWLY RELEASED Kindle Fire HD6 Tablet with 6" HD Display, Wi-Fi, Front and Rear Cameras, 8 GB -- choose your color! (Black, Magenta, White, Citron, or Cobalt) 2. GIRL OF FIRE AND THORNS by Rae Carson 3. CHAOS OF STARS by Kiersten White 4. Satin Belly Dance Skirt 5. Belly Dance 150-Coin Hip Scarf 6. Red Silk Veil (not pictured) 7. Red Middle Eastern Earrings 8. Belly dance DVD: Sensual Belly Dance with Blanca, a professional dancer (technique, choreography, and performances) 9. "Will YOU risk it all?" button (not pictured) 10. Set of 10 Book Club Cards 11. Jeweled bookmark (not pictured)
(1) SECOND PLACE WINNER:
1. GIRL OF FIRE AND THORNS by Rae Carson
2. Red Middle Eastern Earrings
3. Red Silk Veil (not pictured)
4. Belly dance DVD: Sensual Belly Dance with Blanca, a professional dancer (technique, choreography, and performances)
5. "Will YOU risk it all?" button (not pictured)
6. Set of 10 Book Club Cards
7. Jeweled bookmark (not pictured)
(13) RUNNERS-UP WINNERS:
1. Red Middle Eastern Earrings
2. "Will YOU risk it all?" button (not pictured)
3. Set of 10 Book Club Cards
4. Jeweled bookmark (not pictured)
Good luck!











About Forbidden: In the unforgiving Mesopotamian desert where Jayden’s tribe lives, betrothal celebrations abound, and tonight it is Jayden’s turn to be honored. But while this union with Horeb, the son of her tribe’s leader, will bring a life of riches and restore her family’s position within the tribe, it will come at the price of Jayden’s heart.
Then a shadowy boy from the Southern Lands appears. Handsome and mysterious, Kadesh fills Jayden’s heart with a passion she never knew possible. But with Horeb’s increasingly violent threats haunting Jayden’s every move, she knows she must find a way to escape—or die trying.
With a forbidden romance blossoming in her heart and her family’s survival on the line, Jayden must embark on a deadly journey to save the ones she loves—and find a true love for herself.
Set against the brilliant backdrop of the sprawling desert, the story of Jayden and Kadesh will leave readers absolutely breathless as they defy the odds and risk it all to be together.

Follow Kimberley:
About Kimberley: Award-winning author Kimberley Griffiths Little was born in San Francisco, but now lives in New Mexico on the banks of the Rio Grande with her husband and their three sons. Her middle-grade novels, When the Butterflies Came, The Last Snake Runner, The Healing Spell, and Circle of Secrets, have been praised as “fast-paced and dramatic,” with “beautifully realized settings.” Kimberley adores anything old and musty with a secret story to tell. She’s stayed in the haunted tower room at Borthwick Castle in Scotland; sailed the Seine in Paris; ridden a camel in Petra, Jordan; shopped the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul; and spent the night in an old Communist hotel in Bulgaria. You can visit her online at www.kimberleygriffithslittle.com.
Share your thoughts on the trailer in the comments!

Monday, October 20, 2014

It's Monday! What are you reading? 10-20-14

Originally hosted by Sheila at Book Journey, Jen over at Teach Mentor Texts along with Kellee and Ricki at Unleashing Readers also host a kidlit version of It's Monday! What are You Reading?

My Monday posts are generally just a highlight of what I've been reading during the week so if you'd like to see all that I've been reading, follow my Goodreads page.


Last week I reviewed:

Press Play by Eric Devine
Viva Frida by Yuyi Morales


Finished reading with my ears:

Charles and Emma: The Darwins' Leap of Faith by Deborah Heiligman 

A solid, interesting read about the life of Charles Darwin and his wife Emma. I'm still scratching my head as to why it was marketed as YA though. Seemed more like an adult read to me.

Bomb: The Race to Build - and Steal - the World's Most Dangerous Weapon by Steve Sheinkin
I actually read this book last year, but it's required reading this week for my prizing children's literature class, so I thought I'd give the audio a go. Whether you choose to read it or listen to it, this is one fascinating read.


Still reading:

Winger by Andrew Smith
Still really enjoying this, but other reading obligations for my grad classes are making this slow-going. At least I've finally passed the page 100 mark. Baby steps, right?


Currently reading with my ears:
 
Monster by Walter Dean Myers
This is another selection for my prizing children's literature class. I decided to listen to the audio instead of read it because the screenplay format was not very engaging to me. I'm still finding the format a little vexing as I'm listening, but at least it's easier to picture events in my mind as I listen to the different character voices.


On my teaching blog I wrote:
5 things I loved about last week