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Include reading in your summer plans

I recently heard an interview with Pamela Paul author of "My life with Bob: Flawed Heroine Keeps Book of Books, Plot Ensues." The author described keeping a list of the books she has read since being in high school. I laughed because I’ve done the same although not nearly as long.
My list started about three years ago. I wish I had thought of it earlier. My start came when I wanted to review some information from a book I had read when our sons were younger. The cover had a woman walking along with a row of ducks following her. I can see it clearly still. Unfortunately, I can’t remember the title or the author. So, a good resource is lost to me.
Motivated to avoid such loss in the future, I started a simple list with titles and authors. I number each one and start over each year. It gives me a quick measure of how many books I have read or listened to each year. This morning, I started book number 75 of 2017.
I would really like to add a short review for each book, but keeping it simple makes it easy for now. An account of time spent reading or listening might be another good addition.
If you decide to try making a list, it’s interesting to review the list occasionally. How are you investing your reading hours? Are you spending time on valuable information or frivolous brain candy? My list has some of both. I like biographies, histories, and travel logs, but cozy mysteries have been frequent this year. I have toyed with writing a novel so the mysteries count a bit toward research as well as fun reading.
How about getting our kids to start keeping lists of their reading this summer? They may really appreciate it, if not now, in the future. Having them write short reviews would be a great way to promote and sharpen writing skills over the summer. Keeping such logs could also help them learn organizational skills.
My kids choose mostly books about agriculture these days. Since they use the information to care for our animals, I’m encouraging them to record the resources they consult and keep notes.
Whether you choose to keep records or not, try weaving books and reading into your schedule regularly.
Summer is a great opportunity to share your favorite authors from your childhood with your kids. Read together or listen to audiobooks. Our family has spent many miles in the car listening to good books. We have even been known to sit in the driveway for a few minutes to listen to the end of a particularly good scene.
To entertain the family, have one of the kids read aloud while the rest of the family makes dinner, washes dishes, or folds laundry. A good story makes a job go faster.
When our kids were small, I spent hours reading books to them wherever we happened to be. They particularly enjoyed having me read while they fished from our boat. When they were old enough to read, we started rotating reading aloud. They still quote things we read years ago.
Summer holds lots of opportunity for fun and relaxation. Finding ways to keep reading as part of the fun will benefit the whole family.

Published: June 15, 2017
New Article ID: 2017170619973