Book Club Babes: Let’s Talk Books

Personally, I love to discuss books, analyze books, and write about books.  For many years, I was a book hoarder refusing to share my love of reading by passing a book along for fear of never seeing said book again.  This unreturned phenomena happened many times to me, by the way, before I decided to put an end to the lending process.  Instead, I chose to alphabetize my books, color-code my books, and stack them in piles by my bed instead of deal with the frustration.

Then, one day I decided not to lend the books, but give them away by stuffing them into friends’ mailboxes or hanging them on their doors, and this felt good. . . right.  I was sharing my love of reading and decluttering my house at the same time.  The likelihood of my rereading a book is slim to none due to the vast assortment of reading materials out there, and I want to read them all.  In truth, I reread books now simply because I have forgotten I have read them at all (until about halfway in) or if a character named Ranger or Morelli is involved. 

So, this morning, my eldest daughter talked books with me, and I was like a kiddo in the candy store.  Scout’s honor, I did not prompt the discussion.  Instead, she admitted to starting Nick and Tesla’s High-Voltage Danger Lab (our third book club selection courtesy of Book Club Babe Colleen) last night after we told her for the third time to return to bed.  Sneaky!  She told me her book club buddy, Ava, had been reading it, so my squirt guesstimated Ava was nearly finished with the book (as she is a voracious reader).  

I asked my daughter, “When did you discuss Nick and Tesla with Ava?”  

She responded, “When I was at her house for the slumber party . . ..”  

I took a brief intermission, ran to my room, popped another Benicar due to my excitement, and then returned to our literacy . . . yes, literacy discussion.  

She continued with, “It’s weird how their names are Nick and Tesla, but are referred to as ‘boy’ and ‘girl’ in the book.”  

She then loaded Nick and Tesla into her backpack with “I’m going to take this to school,” and off she went.

When this same reader returned from school, she took off her backpack and told me she found “older” was mispelled in Nick and Tesla.  

I asked how it was spelled, and she said, “E-l-d-e-r”  (13).

Aha!  I explained the meaning of “elder,” but then asked where she found the word in the book.  She went right to the page as she had asked her teacher for a post-it note (what I use to mark passages in my book).  Happy Mother’s Day to me.  We reread the passage together, and I explained how “elder” was, in fact, the correct spelling in this particular sentence.  Learning vocabulary through context . . . an English teacher’s dream.

Furthermore, she said, “There was a funny line in the book, ‘IF YOU’RE SELLING GIRL SCOUT COOKIES, I’M NOT HOME'” (14).  We giggled together as we are both registered Girl Scouts (adult and child) and have sold and eaten our fair share of cookies.

She then continued the conversation by telling me how another book club buddy, Emma “. . . talks about book club all the time.”  

I asked, “When?”  

She said, “When we’re at recess, and she uses Bink and Gollie to answer questions.”  

I asked, “How does she use Bink and Gollie to answer questions?”  

My squirt thought about it for a minute before responding, “Like she’ll say, ‘I read this book Bink and Gollie, and one girl wanted a pancake, and the other wanted her to take her sock off, so the one girl shared the pancake, and the other girl took her sock off.'”

“Cool!” I said trying to mask my near hyperventilation.

The conversation ended with, “Emma said she started Ivy and Bean and is reading Chewy and Chica.”  

Feigning an eye itch, I wiped a tear from the corner of my eye.

McKendree Women’s Wrestling Meets the Girl Scouts

Proud of the fact Women’s Wrestling is in its first year at McKendree University under the leadership of Coach Sam Schmitz, I knew I wanted to introduce the two female wrestlers, Miss Leila and Miss Olivia, in my English 111 class to my two Girl Scout troops.  Exposing our Brownies and Daisies to women of empowerment is high on the priority list for my co-leader, Sarah Bohnenstiehl, and myself;  for, girls can do anything.  

Unfortunately, on the day scheduled for the two wrestlers to teach us some wrestling moves, Miss Olivia broke her arm while in practice.  So, Miss Leila was in charge of instructing roughly 20+ girls.  Of course, my two daughters were on cloud nine being able to talk with Miss Leila, “an actual wrestler,” on the way to the Girl Scout meeting and pretty much monopolized her time.

Upon arriving at the meeting, the girls outfitted her in a crown (as she was guest of honor) for our Thanksgiving feast.  Come to find out, though, she was attempting to make weight, so was unable to gorge with us at the time.

Once adequate protein and carbs had been ingested by the kindergarteners and second graders, Miss Leila went to work.  The Girl Scouts learned how to engage in a proper stance, how to grab their opponents’ opposite knees, and how to adjust their opponents’ shoulders for proper domination.

Miss Leila had the honor of holding the flag during the Pledge of Allegiance and then joined us in Little Sally Walker and the Circle Hug for our close to the evening.  

Perhaps, a wrestling workshop or camp for young girls will be in these Girl Scouts near future.  On my honor, I will try . . . to make it happen.

Night at the Museum

The Fam

Maybe you’ve seen the movie Night at the Museum, but have you had a chance to live it?  We did just that last night.  Hearing about this event from a fellow Girl Scout troop leader, Tonya Yanchunas, my family and I signed up for this adventure.  What’s nice to know is that one need not be a Girl Scout to participate in this Night at the Museum.  The girls had never been to the Arch, so this was a perfect opportunity.  

This view makes my belly feel  oogey googey.

For $15/person, a ride to the top of the Arch, free parking, a meal (comprised of hot dog, chips, water, and cookie), nine activities, and a child’s (3-15) ticket for a Gateway Arch Riverboat Sightseeing Cruise are included.  Shazam!  Who doesn’t love a bargain?

Right before entering the egg-shaped elevator to the top.
We’re on the way to the top of the Arch and not sure what to think.
“I can see the Cardinals from here!”
Working on one of the nine activities . . .
A completed Night at the Museum log.
A visit to the gift shop will result in fun patches . . .

or a book to remember this adventure.

To discover more adventures, click The Arch Adventures