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reading : {extra}ordinary mind

i love reading. without a doubt, reading is my very favorite thing to do. if you visited my home you would find stacks of books in bookshelves, hidden in cupboards, used as decoration, stacked on every coffee table and end table, and piled at least 20 high on my nightstand. {not to mention stuffed inside!}

i can’t get enough books. some women buy shoes, some buy purses, i buy books. i own a kindle and i use it to read novels, but for non-fiction i need the real, old-fashioned paper kind. an hour in a bookstore is therapy for me. wandering the quiet rows i feel the pull of a book calling me to lift it from its shelf. the time, heart and investment put into each page, the life behind the words. the story.

there’s something about holding a book in your hands and interacting with it that allows the words on the page to settle down into your heart. turning it’s pages, underlining and scribbling in the margins. sweet therapy.

i read not only because i love words and ideas and thoughts, but i love learning. i love to know people’s story. i’ve never been the kind of girl who had to learn things the hard way. from the time i was a child i longed to glean wisdom from the lives of others. my mom, sister, aunt, cousins, my brother, dad…friends. i grew up in a very open and honest family that shared trials and heartache and mistakes very freely. maybe because we had so many it was hard to hide. but we share in each other’s joy and walk through each other’s pain. we share our story.

because i believe the world is not made of people, but stories. individual threads of shared story that tie us together in a beautiful tapestry.

there is nothing new under the sun. your story is the same as my story, is the same story that existed thousands of years ago. we are not that different, after all.

that pattern of learning through others has continued throughout my life in relationship and through reading. entering into a life that is not my own, and learning valuable wisdom from their experience is a high honor, an extraordinary gift.  i read a quote that captured the essence of this so perfectly.

confucius says: “no matter how busy you may think you are, you must find time for reading, or surrender yourself to self-chosen ignorance.”

as i watch my son learning to read i am blown away at our capacity for knowledge. each day he reads i see connections in his brain firing, making new pathways. i know nothing about science or the neurological processes of learning to read but i’m a mom and i know that it’s happening. i see it. and it’s absolutely {extra}ordinary.

thomas reading

i truly believe that fostering a love of reading is one of the greatest gifts we can give our children. learning is power, and the invitation lies open for the taking.

TODAY’S CHALLENGE: sit down with your child, or a niece, nephew, or friend’s child if you don’t have one, and spend time reading. you gift them not only with your time and attention, but the greatest power they can have: the key to knowledge. it’s extraordinary.

today is day 10 of our 31 day extraordinary life challenge. if you’ve missed the earlier posts you can catch up right {here}.

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{ 3 comments… add one }
  • Noelle Sweeney October 21, 2013, 1:10 am

    Wow Tammy, just going back over every day so far and this one really really speaks to me, I think we are like souls in this respect, the love of books since I was a child and still loving books and learning and right just learning about other lives and how they pulled through and got through things. I remember sitting at my desk as a child and thinking oh my there is no way that I can read all of the books in the world in my lifetime! How sad I was.. so thanks for sharing that Confucius quote, that was awesome.

  • Ally December 29, 2013, 12:39 am

    Excellent! Love your words, love how you say (type) them and I love their inspiration! I’m going to spend extra time tonight reading to my boys. Then, go read myself. I’ve been wanting to be inspired for a while now and so thankful I found your blog to help with that! 🙂

    • Tammy December 29, 2013, 3:57 pm

      oh, i’m so thankful you’re here ally!

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