I finally began reading The Paris Wife.  I also received The Moveable Feast for Christmas.  I started reading The Moveable Feast first, but he talks about the characters and events as though I already know the story.  I like him and his words, but felt reading The Paris Wife first may give me a better sense of the setting.

I haven’t read much in the years since the kids were born.  The last book I read in its entirety was Eat, Pray, Love and I am quite certain I was still working as a Dental Hygienist.  I, of course, read a lot of things like cookbooks, blogs, articles, magazines, essays, parenting books, and have begun reading many of the novels on our overflowing bookshelves (Oh wait!  I did read the first Harry Potter book recently!), but struggle to finish what I start.

It isn’t that I don’t like reading, it is that I am a slow reader and it needs to be a perfect fit.  I need to be able to absorb each sentence fully; let it roll around in my mouth for a while and allow myself to fall into the depth and perfection of single sentences.  I have no idea how people who read quickly can do that.  It was a skill I never picked up.  I also hate being pulled from a story which is pretty much impossible with two young children who will always require a snack; a drink; a toy; a diaper change; a cuddle; assistance in the bathroom; a referee.  I have also been in the habit of scattering my time across Facebook and Pinterest more and more which has stolen quality time with a good book, not to mention, shortened my attention span.  Reading has become a bit of a laborious task for me.  But when I do return to it, it is magic.

Similar to how I always seem to forget how sweet and decadent things like honey and apples are until I absentmindedly lick my finger while I make the kids’ breakfast and am suddenly reminded of just how good and perfect it is.  Yes, reading is just like that; sweet like honey.

This morning I tidied the front room and ironed Mike’s work clothes while he fed and watered the chickens and brought in more wood.   I stuck a feather in my page and vowed to spend as much time reading today as possible.  I figured my vows would be foiled by toddler mayhem, until Silas climbed up on the couch, picked up my book and said “Lets read this Mommy.”.  I laughed, but humoured him by sitting down, pulling him into my lap and began reading aloud to him.  We stayed like that for a long time until Huck knocked the bowl of last night’s popcorn onto the floor and broke the spell.  There was a short description of Hemingway as a child and it reminded me of Silas.  It made me wonder what greatness our children would realize.

I love reading about a time when they drank wine from teacups on rooftops and eroticism was perhaps only a touch more subtle; dwelling in the unknown.  Very little is unknown these days isn’t it.  Have you seen Midnight in Paris?  I loved the quote about “Golden Age Thinking” {“Nostalgia is denial – denial of the painful present… the name for this denial is golden age thinking – the erroneous notion that a different time period is better than the one ones living in – its a flaw in the romantic imagination of those people who find it difficult to cope with the present. “}.  I am constantly seduced by this, but fear not, there is very little chance of me finding a worm hole which takes me to 1920’s Paris anytime soon, so I will keep reading and adding pieces of Paris to our home and lives where I can.

Yes, this year I vow to read more, write more, and eat more honey.

Join me.

go gently + be wonderful

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  1. Posted January 10, 2013 at 10:21 am by Michelle | Permalink

    I am a slow reader too for exactly the same reason. I don’t read fiction at all. I suppose I am too serious a person for that. I should though but since I read slowly I consider it a potential waste of time. I figure if I am going to be idle and read, I ought to learn something. This sounds so silly typed out here. :0

    • Posted January 10, 2013 at 4:30 pm by erin | Permalink

      I am not crazy about fiction because I feel the need to stay detached from it somehow, but I do LOVE a good story.
      Have you ever listened to The Moth Podcast? I love listening to good story tellers.

  2. Posted January 10, 2013 at 1:01 pm by april | Permalink

    I am currently reading The Paris Wife as well! I downloaded it through my local library onto my nook. I love getting to know Hadley and Ernest :)

  3. Posted January 10, 2013 at 2:11 pm by Joan | Permalink

    I love that movie Midnight in Paris!! I’m exactly that kind of nostalgic person who believes life was better “back then”. My reading lately has taken me back to favorites that I’ve read before: Travis McGee novels, poetry and books started by never finished. I find it hard to feel guilty when reading around my 4yo (at least there is no screen!). Usually I read before I go to bed and end up staying up WAY later than planned.

    Anywho, love your daily dose of photographic beauty. Keep on keepin’ on Erin!

    • Posted January 10, 2013 at 4:27 pm by erin | Permalink

      That was my feeling exactly about reading this to him! It’s funny because he won’t sit still for a kids book/picture book, but this afternoon I began reading to him again and he passed out in my lap.
      This is a game changer 😉

  4. Posted January 10, 2013 at 11:49 pm by melanie | Permalink

    I love reading but I find that since I’ve gotten pregnant with baby #3 I’ve had a hard time concentrating on anything. Normally I can ignore anything in order to read but not lately – I think everything has a seasons. Sometimes I want to knit. Sometimes I want to read. (Sometimes I want to lay on the couch and wait for bedtime.) I actually wish I was a slower reader because I think I miss a lot. Being a slow reader sounds like a good thing so keep it up! : )

  5. Posted January 13, 2013 at 10:26 am by Amanda | Permalink

    I couldn’t resist a comment to say that I love A Moveable Feast. Sometimes it takes a bit to get oriented in a book, but you will quickly get a sense for Paris and the ex-pats living there in the 1920’s. It is fabulous, and it always makes me feel like I’ve taken a trip to Europe when I read it. I hope you enjoy it too!

    • Posted January 13, 2013 at 6:09 pm by erin | Permalink

      You’d like the Paris Wife too then maybe!

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