Beginning 2017-Slice of Life

I began this new year reading, rocked in the arms of the giant peonies of my new favorite chair from Craigslist, while the peonies in my garden slumber under a blanket of snow. As 2017 opens to spin its own tale, I finished the last pages of The Girl Who Drank the Moon by Kelly Barnhill. A tangle of dogs at my feet, I sat book closed, holding the story close to my heart. It’s a fairy tale perhaps. There are monsters and dragons, and witches and common folk, but it is not at first apparent who truly wears sheep’s clothing. That is only revealed, as the story unfolds, and the intentions of the characters come to light through their words and deeds. Amidst birth and death, joy and sorrow, amidst the messiness of finding one’s way, it’s also a story of families, those we are born to, those we create…and the inter-connections of each. But bookmost of all, like all fairy tales, this story is steeped in magic. It is a reminder that each of us needs to be mindful of the source of our own power, and the purpose toward which we focus it. An apt tale for these times. In 2017, may we acknowledge and honor our family- in all its extended forms and expressions. In our joy, may we also be mindful of sorrow. May we not make assumptions about those who are different, before knowing their hearts. May we keep ours eyes open for those in sheep’s clothing, and use our magic for the good of all. Happy New Year!


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If you would like to purchase this amazing book, I always recommend local bookstores. Here in Vermont, I love Northshire in Manchester, and Misty Valley in Chester-the two closest to my home and school.

But Powell’s City of Books in Portland, Oregon will always be the one closest to my heart. Powell’s is the bookstore I grew up with. All the independent reading phases of my life I have cherished browsing the rooms and shelves of this incredible bookstore, for both new titles and great used book finds. These days, I make it a point to visit whenever I am back on the West Coast, but they do mail order too!


6 thoughts on “Beginning 2017-Slice of Life

  1. “May we not make assumptions about those who are different, before knowing their hearts. May we keep ours eyes open for those in sheep’s clothing, and use our magic for the good of all.” Amen! Thanks for these lovely thoughts!


  2. Powell’s is one of my favorites too. I live in South Dakota–few bookstores here! But I feel lucky to have a tiny independent about 60 miles away. It has a surprisingly good children’s section–very small but choice selections curated by someone who clearly knows children’s lit. My nearest big indie is in Denver, and I spend many happy hours at each branch of The Tattered Cover every time I go.


  3. Here in the Washington, DC area, I love Politics and Prose. I can always count on them for great recommendations. There is also a children’s toy store with an awesome book section in McLean VA–Barston’s Child’s Play. They must have a librarian/buyer who knows books!
    Love your writing:).


  4. I love Northshire, too – it’s about a half hour drive from our farm in Washington County, NY. Battenkill Books is closer to us, though, and another fabulous indie bookstore. Loved the first line of your post in particular – I could picture it all so vividly.


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