Book Recommendations

I’ve been reading so much, but here are a few of the recent goodies. Michelle Obama is the queen of the world and her book was nothing short of what you would expect from her - exceptional! The Color of Compromise hurts, racism and the church, it’s hard to read but really important. Joy was based on an interview so the style of the book is really odd, but there are some good bits from both of them so it’s absolutely worth reading. It’s a lesson on finding the sameness in another and not the differences. Finding God in the Waves was incredible, I recommend it for anyone who has any questions about the Christian faith. I think it’s great for Christians who would like to understand what it’s like to struggle with belief, and for those who don’t believe or who work to believe, this will be your heart on paper. Little Fires Everywhere was good, devoured it in days. I had low expectations for Where the Crawdads sing because I saw a bad review, but I LOVED it. The land she lives on is its own well developed character. As you read the book you grow with the character as she grows and by the time you’ve shut the book you’ve left behind a friend. The enneagram obsession is annoying, The Path back to You will make you love it anyways.

Book Recommendations

By Stephanie Danler
By Anne Lamott
By Henry Miller
By Therese Anne Fowler
By Chaim Potok
By Lisa Gungor
By Meaghan O'Connell

I’ve been reading a lot lately and writing less often. It comes in phases I guess. I rifled through my sister’s book shelf because she moved and had to part with many of her beloved books, so my stack included less pop lit and more respectable titles. I felt like a cool kid with my book titles showing at the beach, not like when I read Crazy Rich Asians in an airport before it was well known and folded back the cover to maintain self respect. Also that was a lie, I don’t read at the beach anymore, who am I kidding? Davita’s Harp, Eva Luna, Big Sur and the Oranges of Hieronymus Bosch are a few of these beautiful books. Lisa Gungor’s book was the book I was going to write if someone asked me to, and now I don’t have to, it’s good. Meaghan O’Connell is hilarious on the topic of motherhood, sobbed and laughed, added bonus she’s a great writer. Sweetbitter was good, not as good as expected but worth reading. Loved Z, such interesting insight into the jazz age with all its glory and all its flaws. And of course Ann Lamott, because she’s the queen.

Newborn Fibs


I am so out of shape that I needed to join a gym with classes.  I can’t be trusted to whip myself into shape. I’m so far gone that the prospect of the sensation of burning lungs and aching legs, returning again to the former strength and joy of running, is so far gone I get overwhelmed and quit. It hurts. Never mind, I don’t care about health that much. I’ll invest in one pieces for this summer.  I have a baby, shouldn’t I just go home and take a nap? Yes. - Says my mind.

So I went to Orange Theory. It’s running, rowing and weight training. The whole time you’re monitored by a heart monitor so you can gage your goals more accurately.  I was ready for it and feeling upbeat.  While signing in I was sure to mention I have a 10 month old, which didn’t sound as impressive as I wanted it to.  I feel like I just jumped out of my delivery bed and into the gym, or my knees feel that way anyways. But it’s been almost a year and to an outsider that’s a long time.  She congratulated me and signed me in. 

I got in the room and the trainer was doing a little overview of how the class works for the newbies.  “Sounds good” I said, “I have a six month old so we’ll see how well I do, haha.” It felt better that time.  More congratulations and permission to take is slow. Take it slow, that’s what I wanted to hear, and of course what my ego ignored. I started my run at a pace I would have run when I was in shape. Two years ago. Well before I got pregnant with my 4 month old.

We had to do three cycles of chaos and movements right out of the gate my lungs were screaming at me to slow it down.  Two cycles in and I felt like puking. I didn’t vaguely feel like puking, I had to run to the bathroom for fear I might spew my morning coffee on my treadmill.  I must have looked ghostly when I came back because the trainer asked if I threw up.  “Oh no, I’m good,”  I said with a perky smile, “loving this class by the way”.

I finished without puking but spent a good portion of the weight training bent over my bench willing my vision to return.  Lucky for us our monitors recorded the whole thing.  As it turns out I got five splat point. FIVE! Which has something to do with heart rate and red zone and working hard and burning calories. I’m not quite sure, but everyone else had between 15 and 30. The trainer said I must have an efficient heart, which we both knew wasn't true.  So essentially my low splat points meant I didn’t work that hard.  “Oh man,” I joked to the fellow new comers, “I guess I’m more out of shape than I thought.” This was my moment to fit it in. “I just had a baby a couple months ago so I’m a little out shape I guess.”  The congratulations ensued, I smiled like a champion. It’s incredible how lying to yourself and others can actually make you feel better about yourself.  Way to go Brooke, you’ve got a newborn and you’re here.  Keep it up! 

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The Hoehne's

I should be sleeping. "Sleep while the baby sleeps." But my sister Hayley sent me these photos that she took of us.  They make me so happy I can't sleep. I'm so tired but so happy. That's the definition of motherhood isn't it?