I went to Hawaii!

Some colleagues and I presented at the Hawaii International Conference on Arts & Humanities (our topic was multimodal assignments), which means I finally got to go to Hawaii, one of my lifelong dreams.

Our conference presentation went well, though the turnout was light. We think it was a combo of being scheduled to present at 8 a.m. (later sessions had higher turnout) and not using some keywords that may have intrigued more people (e.g., “creative problem solving”). My colleagues are amazing and do really creative and innovative work, so it’s always exciting to hear what they’re doing in their classrooms–not to mention hearing from people at other institutions about the interesting things they’re doing in their classrooms. I got so many great ideas for assignments and not always from other English teachers. A really cool one I got from some drama/costume teachers is to have students create a shoebox that represents the mood of the play. I may play around with that next fall.

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The best of all quotes which is a picture I took of someone else’s picture on their phone because the slides went by too fast. Text says, “Critical thinking is thinking about your thinking while you’re thinking, in order to make your thinking better.”

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It’s Monday, and I’ve read some books since the beginning of the year

This is strictly a reading update!

Giant Days, Vol. 5 (Giant Days, #5)Giant Days, Vol. 5 by John Allison

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This was so fun. A plagiarism plot, a mean professor, Susan being a stalker, Esther dabbling in pens, Daisy being the all-around best, and a trip to Ikea. Did I mention Daisy is the best? I love her. I mean, they’re all pretty great IN GENERAL, but specifically in this volume Daisy is the best.

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I threw some axes

(Note: I wrote this two days ago but finally got a moment to post it.)

I’m on a plane to Hawaii, which means I finally have time to update my blog. Y’all, being on vacation is hard work. Between my trip to San Diego and prepping for this conference (why I’m headed to Hawaii), I have been super busy. And somehow I left my house a wreck before this trip. Oh well. I can’t do everything.

Okay, so I went to San Diego because my oldest (by which I mean longest running since she is actually younger than me—we have been friends for over 30 years, a fact that makes both of just sit back and go “Whoa” when we think about it. Over 30!) friend was there for a conference (not the one I’m headed to, obviously). She asked if I would be around, and I was like YES!!! so I headed down there for a visit.

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2018 End of Year Book Survey

Hosted, as always, by Jamie @ The Perpetual Page Turner. I am also cross-posting this with the #AMonthofFaves blog event. Today’s prompt is squee worthy reads, and I think I more than cover that in this post!

Reading Stats

Number Of Books You Read: 75
Number of Audiobooks: 10
Number of Rereads: 4
Number Unfinished/Abandoned: 12 (3 of these were audiobooks)


Best in Books

1. Best Book You Read In 2018?

The Mother of Black Hollywood: A MemoirThe Mother of Black Hollywood: A Memoir by Jenifer Lewis

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I listened to the audio version of this, which I highly recommend. It’s like sitting in a room with her while she tells you her story. Plus, she sings! So that’s fun.

I appreciated Lewis’s honesty here, especially as she spoke of her sex addiction and bipolar disorder. I *loved* all the stuff about how she came to terms with her childhood and how she learned to forgive her mother. The story about the white man coming to the door and insulting her mother? WHEW.

Lewis makes liberal use of the f-word and isn’t shy about detailing her sexual history (there’s a chapter called “Dick Diva,” for example). If these are things that may offend you, probably don’t read this. But if you want a brutally honest account of working in show business while learning to accept and manage a mental illness, then definitely check it out.

Also, I totally want to hang out with Jenifer Lewis and Brandy. How do I make this happen?

Read Harder 2018, Task 12: A celebrity memoir

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It’s practically Monday, so here’s what I’m reading

This is it! My last weekly roundup of the year because tomorrow will be all about wrapping up the WHOLE YEAR. Whew. 2018, man. I had a lot of personal ups and downs this year, and they were all very keenly felt. Many were good and a lot more than I would have liked were emotionally intense and draining. It will be interesting (in a good way, I hope) to see what 2019 brings.

I have been in super vacation mode for the past week. In fact, I’ve been so in the vacation zone that I only made it to the gym once (on Christmas Eve) for low impact exercise, which was me and a bunch of elderly people. It was a pretty good workout–especially considering I didn’t do any other exercise last week–and I should probably repeat that tomorrow since this upcoming week looks to be more of the same. Except I’ll be taking a short trip to San Diego, so that may include more walking.

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#AMonthofFaves This Is How I Read & Blog

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#AMonthofFaves This Is How We Read and Blogged This Year – eg. Number of books read so far, genre you read the most from, picture of favorite (or most often used) reading location, most read author, % eBooks, hardcovers, paperbacks and/or audiobooks, hint at what your favorite read of the year is (let us guess), types of books you wish you read more of, month you read the most and least). Plus tell us how you blogged – most popular blog posts, you faves, did you try anything new on your blog this year, did you make blogging goals – how did you do, essential programs, apps, plugins, websites and / or your blogging routine, blogs on blogging that you follow, blog tips you learned and used this year.

Okay, this year I kept better track of how many books I read per month so here are those totals:

  • January – 8
  • February – 10
  • March – 7
  • April – 3
  • May – 2
  • June – 5
  • July – 8
  • August – 6
  • September – 5
  • October – 5
  • November – 5
  • December – 9 (so far–I plan to finish at least one more)

I started but didn’t finish 12 throughout the year. Some of them I got farther into than others, of course.

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#MustReadin2018 Year End Check In

It’s time for the final Must Read check in!

Since my last check in, I have attempted no new books from the list, which means my total is 14/20 attempted.

Here are the books on my list:

must read 2018

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#AMonthofFaves Cover Love

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Favorite Book Covers From Our Reads This Year #AMonthofFaves – what did you like about each one?

Emergency Contact by Mary H.K. Choi

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#AMonthofFaves Goals, Goals, All Types of Goals

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#AMonthofFaves Challenges and Goals –  Reading challenges, personal goals, resolutions – how did you do? What are your goals for this month, this season or next year. Check in here.

These were my goals for 2018:

  • deal with my mail as it comes in ❌
  • eat the frog when it comes to grading 🤷🏾‍♀️
  • enter at least one writing contest ✅
  • work on my creative writing every day ❌
  • see Hamilton ✅
  • eat more vegetables ✅

✅ means done, obviously.

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#AMonthofFaves on the Screen

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#AMonthofFaves On the Screen – What did you watch this year that you absolutely loved and did you see any movies inspired by books you’ve read – what did you think?

This was the year of MoviePass (*pours one out*) and then my daughter had a job at the movie theater this summer so I actually saw a bunch of movies!

Movies I Loved

  • Black Panther
  • The Incredibles 2
  • Won’t You Be My Neighbor?

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