Today I have decided to do a review on a children’s book. Now I haven’t read the entire book but feel I can review this through the eyes of my children.
Currently in our house we are trying to reduce the use of screens. We have recognised we are becoming a little too reliant on them but for my children in particular, especially the eldest, it is becoming the constant go to. So as a result we are increasing screen free time. To assist with this I have been buying more books for the boys and trying to find ones that are a little different or focus on topics the boys are interested in.
One that I bought for my 8 year old is called “A funny thing happened to Simon Sidebottom” by P.Crumble. I was purchasing some other books and this one was at the counter. It is the first in what I hope is going to be a series as it has been a big hit. This book is a choose your own adventure but unlike the ones that were around when I was younger this book has quirky images and is very funny with humour aimed exactly at my boys (think gross jokes about bodily functions and dangerous stunts). Even the font used in the book is fun and easy to read. My boys are seven and eight and I highly recommend it for children in this age range. In the four days since he has had the book I believe he has read every version of the story at least twice.
Tonight in our quest for less screen time the three of us were making pizzas for dinner together. As they were cooking the boys came up with a plan to read the book aloud and at each decision point we took it in turns to decide which way to go. No screens and reading as a family happily at my sons choice – this book is a big winner for me and if there is a second I will definitely be buying it.
I separated from my husband nearly two years ago now. It has been a roller coaster ride that was made more difficult by the fact we have two young boys. Kids are amazing in how quickly they can adapt to situations but Mothers guilt is a shocking thing that attacks us all.
At Christmas my brother bought me Buddhism for Break-Ups by Mishel Laurie as a bit of a light hearted gift to go with my other present. He thought I might be interested or at least read that instead of falling asleep on the couch in front of the TV.
I am not sure that he knew that I have read books previously on Buddhism as it is a topic that interests me given that I believe and agree with many Buddhist principles and beliefs. When I started reading this book I was unsure what to expect having listened to Mishel Laurie on the radio and knowing her as a comedian. Would this book be a comedy full of laughs or a serious look at Buddhism?
What I found the book to be was an interesting, amusing and informative account of the end of Mishel’s 19 year marriage and how she looked to Buddhism for answers. How she applied Buddhist philosophy to her situation and used it to navigate the minefield that separation can be.
What I really liked about this book is that each chapter covers a different philosophy or component of Buddhism. each chapter covers what the philosophy is and means, how Mishel applied it to her situation and, what I really liked, a self reflection section at the end. I found it therapeutic at the end of each chapter to ask myself the questions and think how it applied to me.
Like Mishel I had been married for a long time, had two young children and questioned for a long time whether I was doing the right thing. Probably the biggest difference was I believe in many ways my relationship was the role reversal where I was more like her ex-husband.
It is definitely a book that I recommend for people going through a separation or who are struggling accepting a separation that has already occurred.
I am now reading Mishel’s next book – Buddhism for the Unbelievably Busy, so I wil give you my thoughts on that once I have finished it.