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One of my personal goals for the new year was to read more. It really wasn’t about reading more per se…but it was about reading more consistently. I wanted to create the rhythm and discipline of reading by dedicating 15 minutes a day to reading a book.
I would say that I didn’t quite achieve that goal this month! Opps. But we have had a lot happening, and its hard to create new healthy habits in the midst of a lot of emotional upheaval. But, I did read two books! So, I’ll count that as a win and work on my reading goal again in March!
Kristen Lavransdatter by Sigrid Undset
So rarely does a book become a portal into which you can utter disappear into another time and another story. This sweeping novel set in medieval Norway follows Kristin Lavransdatter from her girlhood to her days as an older woman. I was completely drawn into her narrative, her choices and her outcomes. This translation by Tiina Nunnally is modern, fresh and captures Undset’s turn of phrase so beautifully. The one thing that surprised me about this novel is how timeless it was…it is set in the 1300s and was written almost a century ago, but the story, the characters and the emotion were all totally relatable. And once the book was finished, the portal closed and the characters vaporized…I was left feeling like I really had been in Medieval Norway. It’s easy to see why Sigrid Undset won a Nobel Prize for Literature.
You can find the book here: https://amzn.to/2EkTuhB
And I loved the audible version as well…I was so engrossed in the story that I liked being able to switch to listening when I was doing other things. You can find the excellent narration here: https://amzn.to/2ECArAE
The Quotidian Mysteries: Laundry, Liturgy, and “Women’s Work” by Kathleen Harris
I’m not sure how I stumbled on this slim little volume, but I was intrigued by the concept of it…in which the author unpacks that the everyday tasks we perform are actually sacred activities. It is a lecture that was adapted, so it is a short read, but full of robust thought in which she links the spiritual importance of doing the quotidian (occurring every day) chores.
This is obviously something that I’m experiencing in this season of life, where the work is repetitive and seemingly menial. So, I found it empowering to explore that this was also a part of my faith playing out in a practical way.
You can find the book here: https://amzn.to/2Vs5Hbh
I haven’t decided on what my next set of books will be for March, but I am considering that I will read a hard book, a biography and then something fun.