One evening, B and I took a trip to Costco to grab a bag of frozen chicken breasts. We perused the store, cart in hand, but only had the chicken breasts. It seems logical. It was what we came for. But as we waited in line - in line! - B couldn't handle it. He said, "This is too weird. We can't just buy one thing," turned the cart around, went to the wine section, and picked out four bottles of wine, me trailing along behind him laughing my rear off.
I shouldn't have laughed. I do the same thing with books.
My 6,000+ Europe photos, plus all my others, have slowed my laptop down to a crawl. In case you were wondering, this is why I haven't been able to edit my California pics to show you; my trusty 7-year-old MacBook is staging a sit-in, where it lies on my desk or kitchen table and refuses to upload any more photos.
So B did some research and sent me a link for an external hard drive for all my pictures and asked me to buy it (dangerously, our Amazon account is in my name) - but I couldn't do it. I cannot buy something on Amazon without also buying a book. I just can't. It's too weird. So along with our new hard drive, Elizabeth Gilbert's "Big Magic" was delivered to our door one Monday afternoon. Stay on the lookout for a review soon.
Anyway. Why am I telling you this? Because I just bet I've got some kindred souls among my followers. Read my reviews, find a book you like, click on the link(s) below to Amazon, and buy yourself a book (or two, or 12). I promise I won't laugh.
1 // The Kitchen Counter Cooking School, by Kathleen Flinn. This is the sequel to "The Sharper Your Knife, the Less You Cry." In the grocery store one night, Flinn saw a lady whose cart was overflowing with boxed pasta sides, macaroni and cheese, frozen dinners, and other junk food. She asked the woman why she ate all that, and the woman said she didn't know how to cook. So Flinn started a cooking school for self-proclaimed "bad cooks," sharing her weekly cooking class lessons with the rest of us via this book. I learned so much from this book, and I am absolutely obsessed with it - buy it and read it now. 5/5 stars.
2 // Bittersweet, by Shauna Niequist. This book is a look at how, in both life and faith, bitter is required as well as sweet for physical, mental, and emotional growth. It's set up as a series of essays all based on her personal experience, so it's easy to read a short chapter or two when you have a few minutes. I like her book Cold Tangerines a little better, but as always her writing is fabulous and her love of food is so relatable. 4/5 stars.
3 // Up To This Pointe, by Jennifer Longo. Dancing and cooking are similar to me in that while I love dabbling in both as an amateur, I would not under any circumstances want to do either professionally. However, I love reading about both. This is about a teen who heads to Antarctica when her planned life as a ballerina doesn't pan out. This is a smart, well-written young adult novel that doesn't feature drugs, sex, or - gasp! - sparkly vampires. What a novel concept. 4/5 stars.
4 // A Homemade Life: Stories and Recipes From My Kitchen Table, by Molly Wizenberg. I was surprised by this book, because based on the description it sounded like it would be a straightforward story-like memoir. Instead, it's a series of essays with corresponding recipes; it reminds me a lot of Shauna Niequist's Bread and Wine. Simultaneously heartbreaking, hilarious, and inspiring, this book is a truly worthy read. It's also filled with delicious-sounding recipes that I can't wait to try. I borrowed it from the library, but shortly thereafter ordered my own copy. 4/5 stars.
5 // Delancey, by Molly Wizenberg. This is, in a way, the sequel to A Homemade Life. But it's in more of a narrative format than the short, separate essays in her first book, and it doesn't feature as many recipes. This book is about what happens when her husband wants to open a restaurant and the process involved in that. It's very interesting, but I'm not sure it's worthy of a whole book. She often goes into way too much detail, such as describing the process of her husband building the restaurant's pizza oven. I still think this is a good book, but would perhaps be better condensed as a story in a larger book. 3/5 stars.