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Like many gardeners, I love to read. I also love listening to audiobooks and podcasts. So, I thought a nice addition to the blog would be a monthly list of books to explore, maybe together. If you give one of these recommendations a try please leave a comment, or better yet, email me your thoughts.
What’s got a bookmark in it right now?
I’m reading 2 books by Dorie Clark. I can’t recommend them enough. Click the hotlinks below to see the books and their online reviews.
- Reinventing You: Define Your Brand, Imagine Your Future
- Entrepreneurial You: Monetize Your Expertise, Create Multiple Income Streams, and Thrive
The enthusiasm I feel when building this blog comes from my desire to help women make the mid-life shift they’re practically dying to give a try, and connecting with these women through our mutual love of garden, kitchen, and seasons. As you may know, I did this in my early 40s – left a 25-year career in community organizing and nonprofit management to start a small farm with my husband. In retrospect, there are many, many things I could have done better. Things like not repeating the same choices that caught me in my previous career, not being cautious enough about who I invited into the business aspects of my new life, not tending to my money well enough. Pretty standard regrets/lessons, I think.
I’m here to say, “Sister, hold on a minute! Slow down and make choices for the long term.” And, guess what?!?! So is Dorie Clark. Dorie is a marketing consultant with a specialty in knowing the entrepreneurial mind. These books on thoughtfully creating a mid-life career change are a must read for anyone thinking about creating the 2.0 version of their life, career and all. If you want to know more about Dorie and the books, listen to this podcast on Food Blogger Pro. That’s how I discovered her and the books.
What audiobook is entertaining me while I weed?
I just finished listening to Solace of the Road by Siobhan Dowd and narrated by Sile Bermingham. Yes, this is Young Adult Fiction. I loved every second of the story and narration. Solace is the alter ego of Holly Hogan, a 14-year-old living at a ‘home’ in London since being abandoned by her mom when she was 4. In this crazy, mixed-up world we are all currently trying to make sense of, you will be delighted to be transported into Holly’s road trip. She thinks she’s traveling to reconnect with her mom, but she’s really on the road to self-discovery.
The author, Siobhan Dowd, is an author-activist who donates much of the proceeds from her books to a foundation that helps get reading materials into the hands of disadvantaged youth. I just learned that fact while writing this recommendation. Makes me happier to introduce the book to you.
On the topic of health and food…
All things Dr. Sara Gottfried are on this list. I have read The Hormone Cure, The Hormone Reset Diet, and Younger twice. Dr. Gottfried is a Harvard trained medical doctor who specializes in women’s medicine. While working with her patients, she began to see a pattern of mid-life health issues in her patients that mimicked her own journey: stubborn weight gain in the gut area, fatigue, joint and muscle pain, etc. Dr. Sara, as she has come to be known, used her analytical mind, Harvard training, and clinical practice to develop diet protocols that help women reset their hormones, lose weight, increase their energy levels, and (Yes!) look younger.
You may remember that last year I eliminated sugar and wheat from my diet to help heal severe joint pain and try and help with my persistent weight gain issues. These books have helped me see that there’s more I can do to better manage my mid-life body changes. These are tough ones that I haven’t begun to work on yet – eliminating coffee, dairy, and (God help me!) wine. I’m sure I’ll be writing about the journey.
Fangirl follow –
Two words – Brene Brown. Anything, really anything she’s written is worth your time and energy. If you have a lifelong struggle, like your’s truly, with outsider issues (think always being the kid in The Emporer’s New Clothes), then her most recent book Braving the Wilderness: The Quest for True Belonging and the Courage to Stand Alone is the one for you. Once again, Dr. Brown offers strategies to help you cope with issues of shame and vulnerability by offering accessible strategies to tend to your well-being while living open-hearted in this tumultuous world. Braving the Wilderness is the resource for those of us who are always finding ourselves starting sentences with, “Wait a minute…”
The strategy that has stayed with me since finishing the book, the one that I find myself thinking about over an over, is- “Hold hand with strangers.” It speaks of the importance of public gatherings from church services and funerals to rock concerts in creating a resilient fabric of life that can withstand the strains of a social wilderness.
I would definitely love to hear from you if you read this book.
I was able to see and hear Brene Brown last month at a gathering in Philadelphia. She gave an overview of the book, and I ordered it while in the audience at the end of the presentation. I think I’ll re-read it this week!
Odds and ends…
Need your help –
So, I’m sitting here editing and realizing how middle-aged white woman this list is.Send me recommendations for books, podcasts, etc. from other voices. I’m obviously a bit too caught in my farm bubble these days. Thanks!
Until next month…
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