This is part of a series that all began with The Official 23 x 23 List for a Six-Tastic Summer, in which we try to stay sane and make the most of our days together this summer.
I felt like I was cheating a bit when I put "Sign up for the summer reading program at our local library" on our 23 x 23 list. After all, it's something we do every summer. But then we moseyed in to sign up and the librarian asked me if I wanted to participate as well. I love to read, but in the last couple of years I've read for pleasure less and less. Who says the kids get to have all the fun? I signed myself up and walked out of the library with a couple of books just for me.
Elena and Eli completed their first reading log this past week, so we turned them in and picked up a new set of books. I'm almost ashamed to admit this, but for the first time that I can remember, Elena and I settled in on the couch together during Eli's nap to read our new books. I do most of my reading in the evenings after the kids are in bed, but this whole summer reading program has me thinking, "Why?" Why not take 30 minutes and read in the middle of the day? The dishes and the laundry can wait. What better way to show my kids that I value reading than to put aside distractions and delve into a story just for fun.
We lay there, feet to feet, engrossed in our books. I laughed aloud at something, and Elena asked me to share what I found so funny. A few minutes later she was giggling, and I asked her to share. It reminded me of one of my favorite memories of Mike's mom before she passed. Dee Dee and I were each stretched out on a couch with our books. She was an avid reader herself, but in this particular time, as she was going through radiation treatments for lung cancer, escaping through a book was precious. Just as Elena and I did this afternoon, we swapped our favorite bits from our books. I can still remember how she sounded when she laughed. I can still remember which books we were reading – The Mitford series by Jan Karon for Dee Dee, Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris for me.
It was one of those full-circle moments for me, one that I might not have made the time to experience if I hadn't "cheated" and put an old-standby on the 23 x 23 list.
What are you reading this summer that has you shirking dish duty? I have one more book to read before I get my very own prize, so give me something good!