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The Hibernator Begins a Whole New School Year with Optimism

This is a continuation of the topic The Hibernator Skips April Entirely and Moves to May.

75 Books Challenge for 2019

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1The_Hibernator
Aug 24, 8:50pm Top



Topper: On the left is my family going on a week and a half of Labor Day vacation without me. On the right is what I'm doing about that.

Hi! I'm Rachel, 39yo mother, stepmother, and caretaker of aging parents. I have 2 step-kids: D (9yo) and M (7yo), one biological son IL (9 months old on September 7). I have three cats: Myra, Puck, Hero. I currently work as a dialysis technician. I read all sorts of books, from fluff to literature and nonfiction. (Though I tend not to read fluffy nonfiction.) I am not getting as much read right now as I would like due to all that is going on in my life, but I hope to squeeze in some time here or there.

2The_Hibernator
Edited: Aug 24, 8:54pm Top

2019 books read The books that aren't in bold are children's picture books.

1. Grave Peril, by Jim Butcher
2. America's Champion Swimmer, by David A Adler
3. Harry the Dirty Dog, by Gene Zion
4. Brown Bear, Brown Bear What do You See?, by Bill Martin Jr and Eric Carle
5. Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed, by Eileen Christelow
6. Clifford Cares, by Normon Bridewell
7. On the Night You Were Born, by Nancy Tillman
8. Polar Bear, Polar Bear, What do You See?, by Bill Martin Jr & Eric Carle
9. Frozen: Melt My Heart
10. Where's Spot, by Eric Hill
11. The Elephant and the Bad Baby, by Elfrida Vipont
12. Tiger in my Soup, by Kashmira Sheath
13. Good Night, Alfie Atkins, by Gunilla Bergstrom
14. Bedtime for Frances, by Russell Hoban
15. The One and Only Ivan, by Katherine Applegate
16. Scarlet Letter, by Nathaniel Hawthorne
17. Vote Loki, by Christopher Hastings
18. The Overstory, by Richard Powers
19. Rosie's Walk, by Pat Hutchkins
20. The Very Hungry Caterpillar, by Eric Carle
21. The Merchant of Venice, by William Shakespeare
22. Summer Knight, by Jim Butcher
23. Ruins of Gorlan, by John Flanagan
24. Gulliver's Travels, by Jonathan Swift
25. Between the World and Me, by Ta-Nehisi Coates

3The_Hibernator
Edited: Aug 24, 8:55pm Top

2019 books read

26. Christopher's Garden, by Elsa Beskow
27. The Wolf, the Duck, & the Mouse, by Mac Barnett
28. Now I Rise, by Kiersten White
29. Snail Mail, by Julia Patton
30. The Tale of Emily Windsnap, by Liz Kessler
31. Madeline, by Ludwig Bemelmans
32. Worst in Show, by William Bee & Kate Hindley
33. Rise of the Earth Dragon, by Tracey West
34. Mrs. Mo's Monster, by Paul Beavis
35. Grandma's Purse, by Vanessa Brantley-Newton
36. Citizen: An American Lyric, by Claudia Rankine
37. Saving the Sun Dragon, by Tracey West
38. Bright We Burn, by Kiersten White
39. Much Ado About Nothing, by William Shakespeare
40. Secret of the Water Dragon, by Tracey West
41. The Burning Bridge, by John Flanagan
42. Emily Windsnap and the Monster from the Deep, by Liz Kessler
43. American Overdose, by Chris McGreal
44. Washington Black, by Esi Edugyan
45. Power of the Fire Dragon, by Tracey West
46. Song of the Poison Dragon, by Tracey West
47. Flight of the Moon Dragon, by Tracey West
48. Search for the Lightning Dragon, by Tracey West
49. Brave New World, by Aldous Huxley
50. Roar of the Thunder Dragon, by Tracey West

4The_Hibernator
Edited: Sep 11, 6:52am Top

2019 books read

51. Pride and Prejudice, by Jane Austen
52. Foundation, by Isaac Asimov
53. Death Masks, by Jim Butcher
54. Icebound Land, by John Flanagan
55. The Apothecary's Daughter, by Julie Klassen
56. Radium Girls, by Kate Moore

5The_Hibernator
Aug 24, 8:52pm Top

I used to post all my personal reading challenges after my list of books read, but my challenge for now is "Read something. Anything. Please just finish a book." :) So the thread is open for comments!

6PaulCranswick
Aug 24, 9:50pm Top

>5 The_Hibernator: Hahaha I can certainly identify with that, Rachel. I think of myself as the Prince of Failed Challenges.

Happy new thread. x

7Ameise1
Aug 25, 3:06am Top

Happy new thread, Rachel. Wishing you a lovely Sunday.

8figsfromthistle
Aug 25, 9:02am Top

Happy new one!

9karenmarie
Aug 25, 9:20am Top

Happy new thread, Rachel!

I hope your family has a wonderful time, and I hope that you have a wonderful time. Good luck with the reading and house work.

10BLBera
Aug 25, 10:03am Top

Happy new thread, Rachel. Great photos of your beautiful family.

11charl08
Aug 25, 3:30pm Top

Happy new thread Rachel. Your topper made me smile - lovely smiling / excited faces.

12ronincats
Aug 25, 3:58pm Top

Happy new thread, Rachel. Enjoy your alone time to the utmost!!

13jnwelch
Aug 25, 6:34pm Top

Happy New Thread, Rachel. I love the juxtaposition up top of the gang on vacation and you peacefully reading! :-)

Good idea to read some Toni Morrison. I need to do the same soon.

14foggidawn
Aug 25, 8:34pm Top

Happy new thread!

15Familyhistorian
Aug 25, 9:03pm Top

Happy new thread, Rachel. Enjoy your alone time!

16EBT1002
Aug 25, 9:37pm Top

Hi Rachel! Enjoy your alone time -- with books!! :-)
Beloved. I've read it twice and I could well imagine reading it again (and I'm not much of a re-reader).

And Happy New Thread!

17humouress
Aug 25, 11:49pm Top

Happy new thread Rachel!

>5 The_Hibernator: >6 PaulCranswick: Yup, me too.

>13 jnwelch: >1 The_Hibernator: It's a toss up as to who's having more fun.

18msf59
Edited: Aug 26, 6:33am Top

Happy New Thread, Rachel. I hope you had a nice weekend. Glad you are reading some Morrison. I have Paradise lined up. One I had never read.

19drneutron
Aug 26, 8:34am Top

Happy new thread!

20MickyFine
Aug 26, 3:03pm Top

Happy new thread, Rachel! I hope you have some wonderfully indulgent solo time.

21FAMeulstee
Aug 28, 4:42pm Top

Happy new thread, Rachel!

Wishing you enough reading time to finish a book.

22kidzdoc
Aug 29, 4:29pm Top

Happy new thread, Rachel! Finishing 55 books is nothing to sneeze at, and you've read 20 more books than I have so far.

23Berly
Aug 30, 12:12am Top

Rachel--Happy new thread!! So, I guess you are not coming to Portland? Well, I am coming to MN!! Hoping to meet up with my Twin (BLBera) on Sunday 9/8 for brunch and then visit Milkweed Editions store downtown. I used to be an intern there in my younger days. : ) Are you available?

24The_Hibernator
Aug 30, 8:07am Top

>6 PaulCranswick: Ah, a kindred soul. Hi Paul!

>7 Ameise1: Hi Barb! Thanks! I'm wishing you a lovely Friday. :)

>8 figsfromthistle: Thanks, Anita!

>9 karenmarie: Thanks Karen! So far, I'm doing well on my to-do list. Today I'm tackling the housecleaning. I know that seems like it should have come first in my list of things to do, but I had a BUNCH of errands to run.

>10 BLBera: Thanks Beth!

>11 charl08: Thanks Charlotte! Glad to make you smile!

>12 ronincats: Thanks Roni! I am. :)

>13 jnwelch: Hi Joe! I put the Toni Morrison book in my bag to go to work, and it's been in my car since then (except when I take it in to work for reading during breaks). But I hope to get it out for my Labor Day readathon. I've been reading Gene while home.

>14 foggidawn: Thanks foggi!

>15 Familyhistorian: Hi Meg! I will.

>16 EBT1002: Thanks Ellen. I am enjoying Beloved, though I haven't spent much time on it yet (only breaks at work). It's my first time reading this.

>17 humouress: Hi Nina! I agree about who's having more fun. :)

>18 msf59: Thanks Mark! The only Morrison I've read is Song of Solomon

>19 drneutron: Thanks Jim!

>20 MickyFine: Thanks Micky!

>21 FAMeulstee: Thanks Anita! I don't think I'll finish a book because I've been working on Gene at home and Beloved at work.

>22 kidzdoc: Thanks Darryl! Some of the books I read were to IL. So they were pretty short.

>23 Berly: Hi Kim! I PM'd you.

25The_Hibernator
Edited: Aug 30, 8:18am Top

Hi all! As I said in my message above, I have not gotten through much of Beloved yet this week because I decided to read it at work and Gene at home. I will have a readathon on Labor Day, and will hopefully make some good progress on it then.

Today, after reading Gene for about a half hour, I decided to take a nap. I was awakened by a popping in my head...I was wondering "what was that?" when a really strange feeling washed over my whole body. It was like I was lightheaded and couldn't think straight. I decided "I should call 911 and get a CT scan." So I reached for my phone, and I couldn't move my arms! I tried and tried. And then I tried moving my feet, and they moved just fine. I thought "have I had a stroke, and I'm just going to lie here until Aaron gets home?" I tried moving my arms again, and couldn't. Then, as quickly as it started, it ended. Of course it seemed like a long time, but it was probably only half a minute or less if I'm guessing correctly. I wonder if that's what sleep paralysis feels like? Only shouldn't I have not been able to move my feet. Really, really weird. Oh well. I'm fine now. *shrug

I have finished a lot of stuff since Aaron and the family left. Today I'm going to tackle cleaning the house. I haven't done that yet because I was prioritizing other stuff. I'd expected to get to it on Sunday, but mom had a seizure at church and we took her to the ER. It was nothing special, but her neurologist had said to take her to the hospital as quickly as possible when the next seizure happened to get a scan. Of course, we got the scan, there was nothing to see, and we were promptly sent home. It's not something I'm particularly worried about. Sometimes people develop epilepsy with Alzheimer's. She's been having seizures for about a year and a half now.

ETA: I was going to say that I'm also going hypomanic, which could explain the amount of stuff I'm getting done, and perhaps the lack of adequate prioritization. I'm getting lots of stuff done, but in the wrong order, I suspect. It's also causing problems for me sitting still. I want to get up and pace. My orientation for work and church and eating dinner with dad last night was really difficult for me. I also simply forgot to eat all day yesterday until I ate dinner with dad. I suspect I may have forgotten dinner if dad didn't want to eat with me.

26PawsforThought
Aug 30, 8:33am Top

>25 The_Hibernator: That sounds like sleep paralysis to me. Maybe you being able to move your legs could be that different parts of the body "wake up" faster or slower than others? I've actually hurt myself because I tried to move when I'd just woken up but not all of my body was properly awake.

27jnwelch
Aug 30, 8:45am Top

>24 The_Hibernator: Oh, how are you liking Mukherjee's The Gene? I'm a fan. He explains it so well.

28streamsong
Aug 30, 10:43am Top

Happy New Thread and all the best wishes for the new school year for the not-so-littles!

>25 The_Hibernator: Scary episode! I have no ideas what it may be, but hope others' explanations are the correct ones.

I should reread Beloved. I read it so long ago, that it was pre-LT which I joined in 2006. Details are hazy.

29EBT1002
Sep 3, 9:52pm Top

>25 The_Hibernator: That sounds pretty scary, Rachel. Just sayin'.

Take care of yourself.....

30Ape
Sep 7, 6:12pm Top

I suffer from occasional sleep paralysis and it's the worst. Waking up, being fully conscious, and being completely incapable of moving is pretty alarming, and I had never heard of it the first time it happened, so it scared the crap out of me! I felt like I was lying there for half an hour too, but I doubt it was more than a minute.

I've never experienced it with just my upper body, but it does usually happen when I'm in those awkward "just waking up/falling asleep" sleep phases. Usually when it happens to me, as I'm trying to move the my hands/feet will tingle, like when your leg "falls asleep" from sitting too long or whatever.

My best advice if it ever happens again is focus really hard on moving your fingers (not your arms.) I don't know how to describe it exactly, but when I try to "break free" I twitch my fingers/toes and try to get momentum, like I'm rocking a boat or swinging on a swing. I usually start with my toes, and after a few seconds I can get my foot twitching/moving, and I'll slowly build up more and more "momentum" until I get my foot to jerk at the ankle and then I'll break free of it.

I don't know if I'm actually doing anything, or if my body is just slowly waking up naturally, but I do it every time anyway. *Shrug*

31banjo123
Sep 7, 6:41pm Top

>25 The_Hibernator: That does sound frightening. Hope you are doing better, and take care of yourself.

32BLBera
Sep 8, 10:37pm Top

So great to see you, Rachel and meet your little one. He is a charmer.

33The_Hibernator
Sep 11, 7:01am Top

>26 PawsforThought: Hi Paws! Yes, that's what I finally decided about the incident. Sleep paralysis. Harmless.

>27 jnwelch: Hi Joe! Yes, I am enjoying The Gene quite well. You're right, he explains it so well. I love his previous book The Emperor of All Maladies, too.

>28 streamsong: Hi Janet! Still plugging along on Beloved. I need to try to spend more time reading. I'm just not sure when I'm supposed to fit that in! :(

>29 EBT1002: Thanks Ellen. I have an appointment with my psychiatrist today, so hopefully we'll get me stabilized.

>30 Ape: That's good advice, Stephen. And it's totally great to see you around!

>31 banjo123: Hi Rhonda! Still cycling between depression and hypomania, but as I said above, I am seeing my psychiatrist today and hopefully she will have some advice.

>32 BLBera: Great to meet you, too, Beth.

34The_Hibernator
Sep 11, 7:02am Top



Summary: During WWII, many teenaged girls worked in watch dial painting shops, dipping their brushes into radium and pointing the brush with their lips. When they started presenting horrible side effects of the radium poisoning, such as necrosis of the jaw (to the point of the jaw falling out), cancer, and other horrible diseases, they realized that the firm they worked for had been lying about how dangerous radium was. They sued, they failed. They sued, they failed. They sued, they failed. As they died, the remaining girls sued and sued, until finally a few girls finally won a suit. This is a book about the injustice of the system – and the development of laws regarding work-related poison.

Thoughts: This book was fascinating in itself, though it took me a long time to finish. I enjoyed it, but not as much as I had anticipated. The information was intriguing and I loved learning more about history. But I felt that the book lacked excitement as the suits dragged on and on and nothing seemed to happen.


35The_Hibernator
Sep 11, 7:13am Top

Hi all! As you can see, I finally finished an audiobook. Now that I've started walking again, it makes it much easier to finish books. I'm working on getting some paper books read, but am struggling to find time.

Things are going ok lately. I am cycling between hypomania and depression, and have to see my psychiatrist today. I think it's the sudden change in schedule from working until midnight to starting work at 4am. And I think I'm getting less sleep.

Anyway, I had a good meetup with Beth, Erik, Kim, and Kim's brother Eric. I bought several books:

Stink: The Incredible Shrinking Kid for Malcolm, The Absolutely True Diary of a Part Time Indian, for Deirdre, Rez Life and Round House for me, and They Called Us Enemy for Aaron.

I got some fantastic pictures of the kids courtesy of my mother-in-law while they were in Oregon. Here's one:



I also had my early birthday party (combined with my friend's birthday) last weekend. It was a murder mystery party. I was a painter who loved taking selfies. Here is a selfie of me and Merry Monroe.



And one of me and Aaron:



Aaron ended up being the murderer.

36MickyFine
Sep 11, 11:22am Top

Sounds like a fun birthday celebration!

37PawsforThought
Sep 11, 12:38pm Top

I would *LOVE* a murder mystery birthday party (or any murder mystery party, or just a murder mystery for no particular reason). Sounds like so much fun!

38charl08
Edited: Sep 11, 2:08pm Top

That photo of the children is adorable. Wonderful stuff.
The murder mystery sounds like fun: we did one years ago as a team building work thing and my team, the "juniors" won, to our great delight.

39karenmarie
Sep 12, 10:40am Top

Hi Rachel!

Happy early birthday. A murder mystery sounds like a lot of fun. That's a wonderful pic of the kids, and the look on IL's face is a delight.

Great pics of you, your friend, and Aaron, too!

40BLBera
Sep 13, 11:55am Top

It sounds like a fun celebration, Rachel.

The photo of your kids is lovely!

41ChelleBearss
Sep 13, 8:13pm Top

Happy new thread!

42streamsong
Sep 14, 12:16pm Top

Great picture of the kids! They grow up so fast .....

Hope your appointment went well. Changing your schedule sounds very tough, indeed.

The meetup and mystery birthday party sound like so much fun. Married to a murderer, huh! Did you suspect him from the start?

I felt much the way you did about The Radium Girls. A very sad chapter of history.

43The_Hibernator
Sep 16, 12:15pm Top

>36 MickyFine: >37 PawsforThought: >39 karenmarie: It was Micky, Paws and Karen!

>38 charl08: I love the picture of the kids, too, Charlotte. I can't remember which picture we picked as on our wall, but either my Parents or we got a large print of that one. :)

>40 BLBera: >41 ChelleBearss: Thanks Beth and Chelle!

>42 streamsong: Hi Janet! Yes, they do grow up fast. I was checking out some older pictures from when I married Aaron, and the two older look so tiny and cute!

I actually suspected myself as the murderer. As did everybody else, it seems.

44The_Hibernator
Sep 19, 3:56pm Top

So IL (9mo 12days old) took one single step today with hands completely up in the air. Yes, it was a transfer from one piece of furniture to another, but he took a STEP!

45klobrien2
Sep 19, 9:11pm Top

>44 The_Hibernator: Oh, that is exciting! Now's when the fun begins! Get your running shoes on!

Karen O.

46karenmarie
Sep 21, 10:32pm Top

Hi Rachel! Congrats to IL as his world expands again.

Group: 75 Books Challenge for 2019

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