Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Book Club

I started reading when I was three and a half years old and it has pretty much been a love affair ever since. One of my favorite classes in college was a women's lit class. All we did was read books and then talk and write about them. We read fantastic books like Their Eyes Were Watching God, and some not so good books that I don't remember. We read some horrifying books that I never want to read again, that taught me a lot and I don't regret reading. In class we were free to debate what the author really meant and if she was correct. Every week a new book and a new discussion. Lately I have been reading a lot. I have read some awesome books with characters that I really relate to. I find myself wanting to highlight passages and talk to someone about them. SOOO I was thinking of starting a book club with other like minded readers. Here are the guidelines that I have been thinking of (although I am open to others, or to changing them):

1. The first order of business will be to establish a really great name, because book club sounds lame, but who wouldn't want to be a part of the "Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society."

2. Members HAVE to read the book.

3. Dialogue should be open and honest.

4. Disagreements and debate are welcome (not the primary focus, just a happy addition).

5. There will be 6-12 members (assuming I have that many friends), we will all take a turn picking a book and hosting at our house. We will set a schedule for a year and then rotate. Meetings will be held in the evening once a month.

6. Books should be less than 300 pages, something you have ALREADY read, something with wide appeal, and something that we can talk about (something with a message, something addressing women's issues, or something that you related to). I would prefer to shy away from political and religious books and focus more on women's issues (although political and religious books would be acceptable, just not my first choice). I was about to write that while Twlight was entertaining there really wasn't a whole lot to discuss besides how dreamy Edward was. But then I remembered that some of my most lively discussions about love and about being a woman have come out of that book, so I guess Twlight would be a good pick...we don't want to be all stuffy and Edward is pretty dreamy!

7. Books don't have to be G rated, shoot for PG-13, and try to avoid R.

8. The classics are welcome, but Dostoevsky is pushing it...I really don't want to read about becoming a bug again, I learned my lesson the first time...Well maybe I didn't because I can't remember the moral just that he was a bug, I think it had something to do with communism.

So let me know if you are brave and ready for some thought provoking discourse and friendship.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Big Girl Bed

So we decided it was time to get Emily a "Big Girl Bed" since she had been sleeping pretty poorly in her bed. I sold her bed on ksl and got a new one from someone I found on ksl. Found a mattress and then stumbled into some cute bedding on clearance from Target. Fortuitously the table runner I made for the kids table for her birthday that I LOVED was perfect for the bed skirt. Now I just need to work on some cute pillows and possibly rearrange the furniture. For a really low cost project (under $250 total for EVERYTHING) I am in love with the results.

The sad part is that Em is still sleeping poorly in her bed and has told me on several occasions that she wants her old bed back. Hopefully she adapts a little better once she is feeling better.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Situational Last Name User

Last night on my way home from work I was listening to NPR and they were talking about "situational last name users." I was laughing a little because I didn't realize that they had a name for me. My husband's last name is Hales, my kid's last name is Hales, but my legal last name is Bassett. I didn't keep my last name because I was taking a feminist stand against being considered property of my husband. It wasn't even because I was trying to be different (95% of married women take their husband's last names. Although I joke about it, it wasn't even because I wasn't sure the marriage was going to work and didn't want to change it back later. To be honest it was mostly because it wasn't a big deal to Ry or to me and I liked my name. The biggest factor is that changing your name is a big fat pain in the butt. It involves trips to the social security office and legal paperwork. So we got married and went about our lives with different last names. That is not to say that I won't answer to Jennifer Hales or even introduce myself as Jennifer Hales. Half of my accounts are Jennifer Hales the other half are Jennifer Bassett, the hardest part is remembering which name goes with each account. People regularly ask for ID and see the name on my bank account is Hales, but the name on my ID is Bassett. They often ask "did you just get married?" To which I respond, yeah 10 years ago. They usually just look at me funny. For a long time I intended to change my name, but yesterday I finally realized that I don't want to change my name I am Jennifer Bassett, Jennifer Bassett-Hales, or Jennifer Hales and I am good with that. If you want something more definitive find a more definitive girl. I think it totally fits that I have three names and regularly can't remember which one I am "supposed" to be using. That is just sort of how I roll with everything in my life. More often than not I am riding by the seat of my pants, turning things in 5 minutes after they are due, and forgetting that I left my purse in the cart at Target. I am a proud situational last name user.

Thursday, August 5, 2010