Saturday, April 27, 2013

Book Review - The Rent Collector by Camron Wright

The Rent Collector is the story of a young mother, Sang Ly, struggling to survive by picking through garbage in Cambodia's largest municipal dump. Under the threat of eviction by an embittered old drunk who is charged with collecting rents from the poor of Stung Meanchey, Sang Ly embarks on a desperate journey to save her ailing son from a life of ignorance and poverty. It's a tale of discovery and redemption in which she learns that literature, like hope, is found in the most unexpected places. (from

I have been wanting to read this book for a long time. I saw the cover and was immediately curious about what was hidden in the pages of this book. I requested the book from the library (did you know you could do that?) and waited and waited until finally it was my turn to read. I loved this book. Even though it's fiction, it's based on real people and real places. The story is beautifully written and there are so many little stories within the novel that keep you wanting to read to find out all of the answers. I loved the characters and their stories, their struggles, the way they made a home -  a community - in the middle of a dump. This story has such a positive, uplifting message. Anyone who loves books, who has ever had a sick child, who has struggled or had to hold on to hope this would be the perfect read.

LIBRARY BOOK REQUESTS - For those of you who live in Las Vegas, did you know you can access the city's library catalog from your computer and request books? You can! All you have to do is go to any library and ask the librarian you set you up with an account. Then, using your library card number you can look up books online, request them to be sent to your home library and you will get an e-mail when the books are ready to be picked up. You can also renew books online! Click here to access the library's website.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Home work

I'm a homebody. I love being home. When Dave and I were still dating we decided that if when we got married I would stay home and he would work. I'm not one to run a lot of errands during the week and on the weekends we spend a lot of time at home. In the past I always thought how great it would be to have a job where I could stay home and work. I thought it would be so easy to get in a lot of work time and still be home with my kids. A few weeks ago I started an at home job. I got a job scoring state writing tests. I thought it was going to be so great and so easy to log in 20 hours a week or more. But I was wrong. It's not that easy. Between home school, spending time with Logan, helping Colin with homework after school, grocery shopping, cleaning, cooking, laundry, preparing my Sunday School lesson, taking care of my garden and everything else I need to do in a week it's been really hard to work at home. I get interrupted a lot. The phone rings, my kids need me, I remember the clothes in the wash from the day before, the Internet crashes. The past few weeks I have felt a little overwhelmed, a little frazzled. I told Dave last night that I feel like I have a million things I need to do RIGHT THEN and I can't seem to get them all done. I try to make a schedule but sometimes it goes right out the window when you're at home and the unexpected happens (like your kid throws up). It's been a few weeks since I started working and it's not a long-term job. Just a month or so until these papers all get scored and then after that whenever they need me again. But it's been a learning experience. It's taught me what my priorities are and that I need to do those things first and then try and get my hours of work in. I might not get in 30 hours a week, I might barely get in 20. But I really like that I can do it. It's nice that I can stay home and work and earn a little money. It's nice that I can stop and read a book to Logan or eat lunch with my kids. It's nice that I can tuck them in at night and then log in a few work hours, or wake up before them to get some uninterrupted work time. It's hard to balance everything, but I learned these past couple of weeks that when I take care of my family responsibilities first, it makes getting the other stuff done a little easier.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Surprise picture

The other night Dave and I were downstairs when I noticed how quiet the house was. In the old days of toddlers we knew that meant there was trouble. But now, where there is quiet in the house it means boys are busy, having fun, playing together. I grabbed my camera and tried to take pictures of them playing without them seeing me. I love moments like that - when you can watch or listen to your kids and they don't know you're there. For just a moment you're let into their imagination, their creative world. Every now and then it's nice to stop and listen and hear the sounds of happy boys.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Bigger kids

I keep forgetting that my kids are getting bigger. Sometimes I look at them and I am astonished that they are so big. And it happened so fast. Dave used to tell me to enjoy certain things because someday I would miss it. Well, someday is here.
Logan used to come into our room almost every night with his blanket and pillow and sleep on the floor next to our bed. He would wake me up every night to put his blanket on, but I liked waking up in the morning seeing him sleeping there. He doesn't do that anymore. Makes me sad. I miss him in my room.
When I took Colin to school the other day I walked him up to his classroom (I usually just drop him off but I was actually showered and dressed). When we got to his class I bent down to give him a kiss on the cheek and he said, "Just a hug Mom, no kiss." Makes me sad that he's too old for even a kiss on the cheek at school. At home it's fine, but not in front of his friends. 
Trevor still lets me tuck him in at night, but I recently noticed that when I said, "Love you," he would not say it back anymore. Really made me sad. So one night when I was putting him to bed I said, "Love you....are you too big to say it back? Too cool? Is it embarrassing to say?" He just smiled. I told him it was okay if he didn't want to say it, but that it was nice to hear. Most of the time he'll say it back, but not all of the time. Makes me sad.