Because Santa brought us a stomach virus as an early Christmas present, and because I had been sleeping days as well as nights to catch up from being up at night, I awoke early Christmas Eve-Day and decided it was the perfect time to rip into a box of donations for my Little Free Library, and dig in. As I went through the books, I wanted to add many to my TBR shelves, but there simply was not room. Discovering that several of the donated books were already on my TBR list, some from years ago (It had been a long time since I had cleaned out my TBR manilla folder full of scraps of paper and newspaper reviews.) I decided to hold my own Christmas Eve-Day marathon.

I spent from 5:30 a.m. CST until 10:45 p.m. CST alternating between reading books, reading blogs I was so far behind on, and snacking on whatever would stay down (mostly water and saltines).

Books I began and finished:

Your Flying Car Awaits by Paul Milo–This one was a clip of a review in The Houston Chronicle from 2009. It was a fun read which described predictions of “robot butlers, lunar vacations, and other dead-wrong predictions of the twentieth century.” (cover blurb)

Books I had already started and continue to read:

The Obelisk Gate by N.K. Jemisin–The second novel in “The Broken Earth” series, a sci fi adventure/thriller/mystery/poetically written novel started as our read-to-each-other for My Better Half and I, but when I needed an “O” for my Alphabet Challenge, I asked permission to go ahead and finish this on my own.  Things just became too busy as the Holidays approached. I now have about 250 pages to finish.  Just “getting back to it” was an accomplishment.

Books I started Christmas Eve-Day and am continuing at the present:

Modern Lovers by Emma Straub was a book I checked out of our local library and began reading Christmas Eve Day while recuperating.  I have only read 106 pages. This refreshing novel was also from a review in The Houston Chronicle’s “Zest” section where books are reviewed on Sundays.

What Great Teachers Do Differently by Todd Whitaker was a donation to my LFL from a friend who is eventually moving and who is “fixing up” her home ahead of schedule, planning construction and remodeling work over the Holidays. I began this one Christmas Eve Day and have read only sixteen pages.

Books I’ve Barely Begun:

Magic Words @Work by Kaminsky and Penney, part of the “Magic Words Series” was a donation by the same friend. I started it Christmas Eve Day, but I only read to page 47 before I had to wait until My Better Half woke up so I could retrieve my Quotes Notebook from the main bedroom to copy many of these “pearls of wisdom” down.

I have failed miserably at catching up with blogging friends’ posts, especially those done just for Christmas.  Honestly, I just wasn’t in the mood to read them, and listened to Christmas music with the lights dimmed and tried to stop my stomach from roiling.

This morning,  I’m “over it all.”  PTL!  I went outside about six a.m. and brought in the paper, then put a nice beef roast in the slow cooker for a late dinner or even maybe supper, depending on how tender the roast is.  The fact that I can write this description of food without becoming nauseous testifies  to how much better I feel. God is good, and happily, today I celebrate His birth!



Author: Rae Longest

This year (2019) finds me with 50 years of teaching "under my belt." I have taught all levels from pre-K "(library lady" or "book lady"--volunteer) to juniors, seniors, and graduate students enrolled in my Advanced Writing class at the university where I have just completed 30 years. My first paying teaching job was junior high, and I spent 13 years with ages 12-13, the "difficult years." I had some of the "funnest" experiences with this age group. When I was no longer the "young, fun teacher," I taught in an elementary school setting before sixth graders went on to junior high, teaching language arts blocs, an assignment that was a "dream-fit" for me. After completing graduate school in my 40s, I went on to community college, then university teaching. Just as teaching is "in my blood," so is a passion for reading, writing, libraries, and everything bookish. This blog will be open to anyone who loves books, promotes literacy and wants to "come out and play."


  1. As I am reading this on the 27th, I hope you are feeling better. I am still trying to catch up on reading blog posts, but as I am driving to Florida for three days, I just keep getting further behind. I hope you had a great Christmas Rae.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It was probably the worst in my whole life! Santa brought My Better Half a stomach virus, then in the “spirit of giving,” he passed it on to me (just after I had thought all the cleaning and hand washing involved in caring for him had prevented me from catching it!). All Christmas cards ceased, some neighbors got cookies and others were ignored, and there is no way I can make it up to everyone with a Best Wishes for the New Year Letter from Us letter. All of the family letters will have to be written individually with the start of “Apologies for…” as their salutation.
      All I can say is, Christmas NEXT year will HAVE to be better, and get our of here 2018, BRING ON 2019.


      1. Oh no, so sorry to hear that. It is tough when we get sick over the holidays. I am sure everyone will understand, there was not much you could do, but I understand. I would be the same way. Wishing, hoping and praying you have a much better 2019. Happy New Year to you and your generous better half.

        Liked by 1 person

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