My Big Nightstand

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The other day as I sat in my room working on some project or other while my children indulged in a little TV time, I heard the familiar commercial catchphrase “Capitol One…What’s in your wallet?”  For some unknown reason, what ran through my mind upon hearing this was, “Edie Crabtree, what’s on your nightstand?”

Don’t ask me how my brain made that connection.  I’m guessing that it was a not-so-subconscious reminder that spring is here, and the time for tidying up has come, but that’s another story.

I decided maybe it was time to take stock … what was on my nightstand?  Of course, there was a lamp and alarm clock, also a bejeweled frame of kindergarten artwork and a vase of coffee filter flowers courtesy of my children, a bowl of rice in which my iPhone was submerged after its swim in the toilet, and if I’m being honest, an empty carton of Ben & Jerry’s Peanut Butter World.

In short, it was covered with the standard detritus of motherhood. But wait, there was something else – books.  Now is probably a good time to admit that what I consider my “nightstand” also stretches to include the space between my side of the bed and the floor, and the whole of it is full of books waiting to be read.

There were a couple I purchased that kept getting pushed back in the queue, a few from the group of girlfriends that I usually swap books with, one or two new kids’ novels I am intending to pre-read, and a sizable number from my personal book fairy, AKA my friend Karen.

As I went through the titles, hungrily deciding what to read next, I realized that there was a lot of good stuff down there.  I also realized that with all that good reading to be done, I could put off organizing my bedroom almost indefinitely – how’s that for a silver lining on an already perfect fluffy white cloud?

I figured I’d let you all in on a little of what I have on my to-read list, and maybe help you avoid some odious chores right along with me.  After all, 90 percent of my mother lode came from people who chose to share theirs with me, so why not pay it forward?

So here it is, What’s on My Nightstand, in no particular order:

“Immortal” by Traci L. Slatton

“Signora Da Vinci” by Robin Maxwell

“Dispatches” by Michael Herr

“Half a Life – A Memoir” by Darin Strauss

“Wonderstruck” by Brian Selznick

“Mommy Wars” Essays on motherhood by 26 female authors

“The Russian Concubine” by Kate Furnivall

“Always Looking Up” by Michael J. Fox

“The Hiding Place” by Trezza Azopardi

“Expecting Adam – A True Story of Birth, Rebirth, and Everyday Magic”

by Martha Beck

“The Lacuna” by Barbara Kingsolver

“How to be an American Housewife” by Margaret Dilloway

“The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time” by Mark Haddon

It seems criminal that so many good books are lying there just waiting to be cracked open.  How is it that I haven’t devoured these already?

I can’t, in fact, make any promises as to how long it will take me to enjoy the collection, particularly as this is only a partial listing.  Life seems to rear its head and rearrange my plans often.  Other books will land in my lap and take a priority spot.

What I do know for certain is that I have enough waiting for me to guarantee that, at least where the nightstand is concerned, spring cleaning will probably be put off until next spring, and that’s just fine with me.

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