March 2012 Update

Found at http://socialsistersblog.wordpress.com/2012/01/12/blog-update/It has been some time since I last did a monthly update and I guess that’s because I didn’t have much to share.  I’ve been reading books and working and that’s about all I’ve done over the past few months so there wasn’t much to say other than my reviews, so on to the various updates!

The Oddness of Moving Things
Last month was my most successful month ever! It’s not a lot compared to some of the sites out there, but I had over 1100 unique views in the month and I was excited.  I remember when I started and I was getting 75-100 views each month!  So THANK YOU, everyone who reads and comments and for all the other wonderful book blogs out there who inspire me to change things on here, read different books and interact with the awesome book blogging community!

Reading
According to Goodreads I am currently two books (2%) ahead of my goal of 60 books (five books a month) for the year.  So far this year I have read 12 books totaling 5,729 pages.  I have also made progress on my three reading challenges, but I’m not quite where I want to be.  I have read 6 of 25 for the Mount TBR Reading Challenge, 0 of 9 for the Back to the Classics Reading Challenge and 4 of 7 for the Tea and Books Reading Challenge.  Four of the 10 books overlap, so I’ve only read six books, but this isn’t too worrying as four of those six books are 700+ pages so I’m getting the bricks/tomes/whatever you want to call them out-of-the-way.

I’m about 30% of the way through A Dance with Dragons, and will follow that up with either David Guterson’s Snow Falling on Cedars for March book group or Grace McCleen’s The Land of Decoration (my first advanced readers copy of a novel). As you can see in the picture above or on my lists page I’ve still got plenty to read!

Life
I’ve just sort of been trudging along, but have had a few exciting highlights over the past few weeks.  The coolest by far was getting to see President Obama speak up at Nashua Community College.  Our friend was able to get us tickets and it was fascinating.  President Obama was far more personable than I thought he would be.  We were probably 100 feet from the podium, but behind a second barrier (so not quite VIP, we were just IP).  My best photo is to the left, and a photo from my friend in the VIP section is below that.

The President spoke mostly about gas and oil and the federal government’s car fleet.  It was interesting because Nashua Community College has a large mechanical program and a large population of veteran students. President Obama pledged to have the entire federal fleet using hybrids or cleaner more efficient fuel by 2015. He also called on people to join him in a stand against congress’ oil subsidies. It was incredibly political without being political (as it was an official White House visit, he couldn’t mention running for office or really talk about the election).

I’ve not done much else. Tom and I went to the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum this past weekend to preview their new additions (a really nice Welcome Center, Greenhouse, Library, Restaurant, Performance Hall and administrative space). It was nice, but crazy – I couldn’t believe how many people were there that day. We had time entry tickets and we got in line 30 minutes before our time and were only just at the front of the line when our time came up. Afterward we swung by the Museum of Fine Arts to look for a 2012 calendar. They were sold out, so I bought a new postcard to add to my collection (and specifically to go in my frame I bought at Ikea on Saturday. This was the end result:

I didn’t realize how blurry the picture was until just now, but it’s the best I have.  Some of these postcards were sent from friends (and I’ve noted that below), others I’ve collected from my travels.  From left to right working my way down the postcards are:

  • Siena, Italy (with family)
  • Royal Gorge, Colorado (with family)
  • Duomo – Siena, Italy (Bookmark)
  • House of Seven Gables – Salem, MA (with family) [And I reviewed the book 11/15/2]
  • Nature’s Window – Western Australia (from Helen)
  • The Torn Hat, Thomas Sully – Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, MA
  • The Daughters of Edward Darley Boit, John Singer Sargent – Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, MA
  • Golden, Colorado (with family)
  • Swiss Alps (from Mia)
  • Calm Morning, Frank W. Benson – Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, MA
  • Magna Carta – British Library, London, United Kingdom (with Alex)
  • Tattered Cover Book Store – Denver, Colorado
  • The Loves of Shepherds 2000 (after Tony Roberts) – Tate Modern, Liverpool, UK (with Tara)
  • Colorful Union Jack – London, UK
  • New Orleans, LA (from Tom)
  • San Francisco, CA (from Leigh)
  • House of Parliament Entrance – London, UK (with Tara)
  • The Parthanon (Elgin) Marbles – The Louvre, Paris, France
  • Durham Cathedral – Durham, UK (with Alex)
  • Rosetta Stone – The British Museum, London, UK (with Alex)

Honestly I’m not sure if I like it.  Some of the postcards keep moving and I can’t see all of every postcard.  I may get a larger piece of poster board to act as a ‘matte’ and the place just a few in the frame and get smaller frames for some of the others.  Mostly I am just impressed I actually followed through with it.  I still have plenty of other postcards lying about waiting to be used and have quite a few in my cubicle at work.

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6 thoughts on “March 2012 Update

  1. I’d say you’ve had a pretty good year so far! I’m quite jealous that you got to hear/see Obama speak, and your postcard collage is wonderful.

    Snow Falling on Cedars is a very good book. I look forward to your thoughts on it when you read it.

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    • It has been and it took writing the post to realize it. There’s been other great stuff too, but sometimes it just takes a moment of reflection to realize it. I’ll definitely post about Snow Falling on Cedars (and our kooky book group discussion I’m sure).

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  2. I had forgotten they were renovating the Gardner Museum! I’ll have to visit, next time I’m Stateside.

    I collect postcards as well, though they aren’t so nicely displayed, they’re pinned on my bulletin board.

    Sounds like you’re having a good year–may the rest of it be as awesome!

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    • The Gardner was surprisingly less than I thought it would be. The new portion is beautiful and amazing, but the rest seemed just the same to me – still fascinating. We’ll see what they do over time. And Thanks!

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  3. Congrats on the blog success. I can’t believe you are 4/7 for the Tea and books challenge. I’m only 1 in…I have a lot of reading left. Good thing I love to read! Happy reading!

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    • Haahaa – it’s only because I read a series and it really sucked me in! I’m fairly certain I’m the only one this far into the challenge so far. Good luck on the rest of yours!

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