Lit Log: March 23-29 2016

Today’s post is an experiment. It’s not a format I’ve used before, but it seems doable. (Here’s why I’m trying it.) I would love your honest feedback. Yes? No? Yes, but…? Yes, and…? Please do let me know!

Also, I know this post is super boring to look at. I meant to take photos but didn’t get to it. If they would help, I’ll try to do better in future. Input welcome!

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

4pm – I decide to take S (my son) for a walk. I’ve been trying to get him used to the stroller; he’s been hit or miss lately, sometimes fine and sometimes freaking out partway through the walk. When he’s amenable, I get exercise and some listening time and he gets a nap. Wins all around.

I check my podcast queue and realize there’s nothing I want to listen to. Crap. I need to leave soon or we’ll be past the nap window and on to S’s second (third? fourth?) wind. Then I remember I got The Martian pre-S with an Audible gift credit. Hooray! I quickly download it and figure out how to get it onto my phone.

4:08pm – On our way. I realize I don’t know where audiobooks end up in this version of iOS, which makes me realize how long it’s been since I listened to one! I figure it out and start listening, trying not to get too absorbed in case I need to deal with S.

4:18pm – He’s out. I should have at least 30 minutes. Hooray! I’m enjoying the book so far, though my exhausted brain is pretty much just zoning out whenever the narration gets too technical. The rest of the walk is uneventful; I listen, S naps.

Thursday, March 24, 2016

2:20pm – Time for another walk. S falls asleep fairly quickly, and I’m back to The Martian. I realize a few minutes in that I’m listening at regular speed; I can’t remember the last time I did that. But after a moment’s contemplation in which I consider bumping the playback speed, I admit to myself that I’m probably too tired to follow anything much faster.

I’m definitely getting more into the book. The potato “storyline” in particular has me hooked, probably because it’s not so technical and I can keep up. Unrelated to potatoes: I can see why they picked Matt Damon for the movie (which I hope to see at some point. Unusual for me; usually I’m a book OR movie girl.)

Friday, March 25, 2016

Evening – I actually consider downloading a novel onto my phone to read. The last one I started — To Say Nothing of the Dog by Connie Willis — I abandoned about a third of the  way in. To slow and too silly. Before that, I’d tried and abandoned John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars. In fact, the last novel I finished was Carry On by Rainbow Rowell shortly after S was born. Since then I’ve just been perusing parenting books. I keep eyeing the Outlander series for some reason, but at my current reading pace I’d have to be a cat with nine lives to get through all the books…not an encouraging thought.

But Eva says Mira Grant’s books are excellent, and Eva has excellent book taste (for instance, she recommended The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater, which I’d never have picked up on my own but really enjoyed), and my library has the ebooks. Hm.

Saturday, March 26, 2016

1:30pm – Today my wonderful husband is watching S so I can get a much-needed massage! I briefly consider listening to The Martian on the hour round-trip drive before remembering there are new episodes of two of my favorite knitting podcasts. (Does anyone care which ones? I have no idea how many of you are knitters, so I’m trying to keep knitting and books kind of separated at the moment.)

9:05pm – S decided not to fall asleep nursing tonight and is now wide awake and cooing, so now we are waiting for him to approach anything resembling sleepy. I pull up my library’s website on my phone and read the descriptions for Feed and Parasite, the first books in Mira Grant’s trilogies. They sound…possibly more than I want at the moment. I bookmark them for later, then hunt around for something less intense. My wishlist is no help; it’s full of books by Margaret Atwood and David Mitchell and Jose Saramago and other authors I adore but who probably are not the best choices until I start getting a little more sleep.

I suddenly remember my hold on Attachments by Rainbow Rowell came up a while back. It has long since expired, but I place it again. I randomly remember how I keep wanting to read something by Diana Wynn Jones and — jackpot — my library has lots of her ebooks. I put a hold on Howl’s Moving Castle because it’s the one I hear about most often. The title always reminds me of We Have Always Lived in the Castle, so I look that one up too. My library has it as a digital audiobook, but whoa…it sounds creepy and not at all like what I’d expected (or what I want to be reading). Ok then, never mind. I’m out of ideas so I give up and go do something else. Hopefully one of the two I reserved will become available soon.

Sunday, March 27, 2016

7:05am – S had a decent night, so I’m feeling somewhat alive. Hopefully it lasts more than an hour or two…ha. I’m poking through my library wishlist again while S has breakfast when I come across Patricia C. Wrede’s Dealing with Dragons. I’ve bookmarked it on audio, but I wonder if they have the ebook. They do! And the rest of the series, too! I put that one on hold as well, hoping I enjoy the books as much as an adult as I did as a teen. All I remember is that there’s a princess named Cimorene.

8:33am – It’s the weekend, which means we have time to make a proper hot breakfast. Today it’s cornbread waffles with fresh strawberries. While I cook, I listen to The Martian. I get to the first part not narrated by Mark and must admit it’s a bit weird to have the same reader doing the third-person bits. Which I guess is a good thing, in a way, since it means he’s doing such a good job being the main character that I’m thinking of them as one and the same. Or something.

1:37pm – I’m alternating between dusting, vacuuming, and cooking some things for the week. I’ve run out of knitting podcasts, so I’m back to The Martian. Really good. I can see now why everyone loves it. Alas, the time comes to feed S and I reluctantly put my headphones away.

8:10pm – I’m moments away from borrowing the ebook version of Anne of Green Gables from my library when I get the notification that Howl’s Moving Castle is available. The ebook gods have spoken. Diana Wynn Jones it is!

9pm – S is taking forever to fall all the way asleep, so while I hold him and wait, I crack open Howl’s Moving Castle and read a little. It isn’t at all what I’d expected. Actually, I didn’t really know what to expect, so that’s not a bad thing! I’m intrigued, and I think once I get used to her style I’ll be hooked. Stay tuned.

Monday, March 28, 2016

4pm – My podcast is over before our walk is, so I switch to The Martian. (I’m into it now, but if I don’t stay on top of the podcasts, I get super behind, so they take priority. Anyway.) The audiobook is really getting good. My brain is still glossing over the more technical stuff, but that doesn’t seem to be a problem. I’m hoping even harder than usual that S will sleep past the 30-minute mark so I can keep walking and listening…but no such luck. Oh well.

8:50pm – A little more of Howl’s Moving Castle while S falls asleep. I’m definitely getting used to the style.

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Almost an hour in the car today, but no Martian. Anyone else feel weird subjecting their preverbal offspring to gratuitous swearing?

5:49pm – S has fallen asleep in my arms in the rocking chair. We met up with friends today, so he hasn’t gotten much in the way of proper naps (even when “proper” is defined as his usual 30 minutes). I am about to lay him in his crib and enjoy a little me time with my knitting. Then I look at his snuggly sleeping little self and I think, “Nah…I’ll just hold him.” I mean, how much longer will I be able to do this? Of course, my headphones are in the other room, so I pull up Howl’s Moving Castle and start reading.

End of chapter 1: a twist! I’m getting into this book for sure. 

So…what do you think??

Join the Conversation


  1. This is life.
    Report back on Howl’s Moving Castle — haven’t read it. WE HAVE ALWAYS LIVED IN THE CASTLE isn’t as creepy as it sounds, but it also doesn’t sound like what you need.

  2. I think this is a really fun post format. It’s interesting to see your thought processes on choosing books during this crazy time. I don’t think I properly read a book until Z started preschool at age 3! I wish there had been smartphones with audiobook apps back then. It really is a good option for when you need to squeeze in something but don’t have free hands.
    I’m glad you’re reading Howl too!

  3. Your post reminds me of how tough it was to read when my kids were babies!!

  4. As a reader, I love this format. I know from writing in the past like this, it was can tedious. Did you enjoy it? That’s what matters. I used to walk and listen all of the time but then hurt my leg and that habit went right out the window. The leg is fine now. Has been for a long time but I never got back in the habit. I should.

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