Baxter SP 044

I devoured “Delancey” by Molly Wizenberg when it finally arrived after waiting for about a month in my place in the reserve line.

I shamelessly dog-eared quotes and recipes that I wanted to revisit. (I was out of sticky flags.) And then I dropped it in the return bag with every intention of retrieving it to make notes before I returned it. You can see where this is going. I didn’t take notes, try my favorite recipes.

I returned it.

And when I realized it, I panicked and got online and reserved it again. In the interim I made notes about the particular quotes and recipes I was interested in, having no idea of where they were in the book, thinking I’d have to skim/read the whole thing again. They read: “Kerouac, Madame Baker?, winter salad”

And then the book arrived and the most amazing thing occurred: the same copy, still dog-eared, was returned to my hands.

shotgun matisse

Designs 021

This post is supposed to be all about how we read some great Matisse picture book biographies, went to the Matisse exhibit at the Minneapolis Institute of Art, were deeply moved by the art, made Matisse-inspired art back at our kitchen table and blah, blah, blah.

But that didn’t happen.

We went to the Matisse exhibit and then somewhere in the first gallery, the inner tube in the wheel of the stroller that I was pushing EXPLODED. Have you ever heard an inner tube explode in an echoe-y gallery with 20ish-foot tall ceilings? It sounds a lot like a shotgun would sound, though I haven’t tested this. And to all the security guards working that day, it sounded like that as well.

So, once the inner tube exploded we were mobbed by security and in the blur of my tears (crying in public – yippee!) and transferring of copious gear and my giant baby into a small, wonky loaner stroller and weaving through the crowd with a stroller that mostly just splayed and didn’t do much strolling while making a quick trip to the museum shop where we discovered that ALL the Matisse postcards were sold out we left the museum as quickly as possible.

We didn’t see much Matisse. ahem.

Which is why it’s so great that, you know, BOOKS!

Because, odds are you didn’t make it to the Matisse exhibit either.

But hey, read “Colorful Dreamer” by Marjorie Blain Parker and “Henri’s Scissors” by Jeanette Winter and read about Matisse in “Discovering Great Artists” by MaryAnn F. Kohl and Kim Solga (and do the art activity), ask your husband to overinflate your stroller tires until they explode and you can call it good.

lovely links: october 2014

riding a Willa Cather wave over here. Reading The Professor’s House, O Pioneers!, The Song of the Lark and have some reserves waiting for me at the library. I am in love with this woman’s writing. And I am so upset that most people are introduced to her via My Antonia, which is a fine book but not my favorite. I cannot get enough Cather. Last month I purchased a collection of her short stories as a Christmas stocking stuffer for myself and it is taking all my willpower to not read it now.

also reading: The Essential C.S. Lewis which is really great if you’ve been meaning to read more C.S. Lewis – beyond The Chronicles of Narnia, that is. Finished Writing Down the Bones by Natalie Goldberg (again and again). Also, Driftless by David Rhodes and am in the midst of Don Quixote by Cervantes. Finally finished reading all the Newbery winners.

and I just watched the movie Sweet Land. I know, I know, this is not a blog about movies. But, this is such a beautiful movie. It left me renewed but also wondering about a lot of things and resolving even more. And I think that there should be many, many more films like this. If there were, I’d actually go out to the movies again. It was based on the novel A Gravestone Made of Wheat by Will Weaver. (see? book connection!)

What Writers Can Learn From Goodnight Moon

To Lure Young Readers, Nonfiction Writers Sanitize and Simplify

A Quiz on Children’s Books You Can Do in the Car

have you heard that the AWP conference is going to be in Minneapolis this year?