I am still learning.” 
-Michelangelo, age 87

Must Reads

George R.R. Martin said: “A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies…The man who never reads lives only one."

We love to read. Reading provides a window into new ideas and new ways of looking at ourselves, our world, and our relationships with all of it. Reading inspires us, motivates us, and broadens our horizons. Here we will share what we've been reading–both fiction and nonfiction–including titles for the young people in your life.

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Better with age: The Psychology of Successful Aging

Successful Aging Demystified

Better With AgeAlan Castel’s book on successful aging is a boon for seniors curious about how to age better and live longer. Castel is a professor of psychology at UCLA and a forward thinker in the field of aging. Better with age is a very readable book that provides an abundance of information on a variety of different aspects of aging. There is some brief information on brain function and cognition as well as memory issues that we confront as we age. His discussion on how to stay sharp as we age is worth the price of admission for this book. You can also rely on Castel to dispel some of the rumors and false narratives around brain training that has become such a big commercial success directed at seniors. This well written, well researched, and very readable book is worth reading and having in your library.

 

Books for Babies

10LittleFingersPeople are always asking me what books they should gift to the young people in their lives. So I am going to use my book review space to recommend books for children and teens. I will create lists of fiction and nonfiction, spanning a variety of genres and interests, for all ages. 

Let's start with babies. Most of us are aware that reading to newborns is integral to their development, but many of us don't know of a single title published after Good Night Moon. 

What books could you take to a baby shower or suggest a pregnant couple add to their gift registry? 

Here's a list of beautifully written and illustrated read alouds crafted with the kinds of words, rhythms, concepts, and illustrations that delight and engage wee ones.

First, I recommend any and all books written by Mem Fox. She is masterful. My favorites include:

 Other titles, authors, and illustrators I love:

 

Time to Fly: Life and Love After Loss

Time To FlyThis is a compelling book about loss, love, and one woman's courageous journey of discovering one's life purpose in the face of a world enexpectedly turned upside down. 

I had the good fortune to meet and spend two weeks with Eileen Robertson Hamra at a small, intimate retreat in Hawaii designed to create clarity and structure for adults looking for freedom and purpose in thier lives. At that time, Eileen had been widowed for less than a year. She was at the retreat to create a future for herself and her three small children that honored her husband Brian Robertson but also allowed Eileen to move forward in becoming the inspirational leader she was meant to be. 

This is a story that will move and inspire, no matter where you are in life. We have all experienced loss in one form or another; loss of a spouse, a parent, a loved one, or maybe a reversal of fortune that shakes us to the core.  A Time to Fly: Life and Love After Loss is a book you can't put down. You are pulled into Eileen's journey in such an intimate way you feel as though you are part of her story. Eileen shows us all that it is possible to move forward and create a life larger and more inclusive than we have imagined, one that is filled with meaning and happiness.

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