Wait just a minute…can I call for a foul?

As many of you know, Hannah was on silent retreat for 10 days this June. So basically, she went on retreat where she was not allowed to talk and had no family, work, house, kids, etc. commitments for 10 DAYS!!!  She had 10 full days, that equals 240 hours to devote to reading and since we all know how much she loves reading, I think it’s a safe assumption that she spent a ridiculous number of hours reading during those 10 days. So, I ask you…how does one compete with that?!

Honestly, I figured that she would read at least a dozen books while she was away and probably write a handful of blogs so when she got back I would look like a pathetic slacker in both my reading and my blogging…alas, she wasn’t quite as ambitious as I assumed (thankfully, she loves sleeping almost as much as she loves reading!) So, while I am currently 3 books behind in The Book War, I at least stand a chance of catching back up at some point.

In her blog post from retreat, Hannah asked what we read for ‘joy’ and while it took her awhile to come up with books she reads for the joy of it, I knew a couple right off the top of my head. Every Christmas I read John Grisham’s Skipping Christmas which makes me laugh out loud every single time, and I’ve been reading it for over a decade. The inner monologues of the characters and the reality of the situations they find themselves in always crack me up while also reminding me how ridiculous we can make Christmas when we focus on the wrong stuff. (If you are worried you won’t like the book because you saw the Tim Allen movie and it was lame, not to worry, like so many books that are made into movies, the book is sooooooo much better. Trust me!) I also read the Harry Potter series simply for the enjoyment of the story, characters, and magical world J.K. Rowling creates. George will verify that the Harry Potter movies are the most watched BluRays in the house and I have read the books at least a half a dozen times each. One final addition to my ‘joy’ reading list is The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien. I didn’t initially think of The Hobbit because I often clump it together with The Lord of the Rings which is a bit too heavy for ‘joy’ reading in my opinion, but The Hobbit is different. It’s a light-hearted adventure story about an unlikely hero who makes some fantastic friends and gets home to his comfy hobbit hole in the end with some treasure to boot. Love it! (Now that I’m thinking about it, I just may bring The Hobbit with me to camp next week!)

As Hannah and I discussed ‘joyful’ reading this past week, we came to the conclusion that ‘joyful’ reading means different things to different people. I encourage you to contemplate what ‘joyful’ reading means to you and then pick up a book that brings you joy. What better way to spend your free summer hours than reading something that makes you smile and fills your soul with happiness.

Read on my friends.