Reads

The Edisto Bookstore

For those of you that know me, you know I go to Edisto Island every chance I get. I’ve always wanted to go to The Edisto Bookstore every time but never did. It was either closed by the time I got there or I was just too lazy from a glorious beach day. There was also one time I was planning on going but was attacked by three jellyfish earlier in the day, but I digress.

This time when I went, I was actually suffering from heat exhaustion from not drinking enough water during the day. I wasn’t feeling my best but my husband insisted that I had to go. I am so very glad I did.

Pretty much anyplace that has a sign that says “The chores can wait, I just want to read!!!” can not be a bad place.

Walking in, I was greeted by a kind man who was assisting other customers as I browsed. I hear him tell a customer that he would never let someone buy a book they shouldn’t waste their time reading. I chimed in with “I’m a book blogger and I hate wasting time reading something that isn’t great”. He looked at the book I selected to buy and said “then don’t get that”.

Some people wouldn’t take too kindly to a stranger commenting on their choices. I loved it!

“Okay! What should I read? Pick a book for me!”

He then introduced himself as Carol, I’m just going to refer to him as the best bookkeeper ever.

He knew almost every book. Every. Single. Book. He takes me to a room that I didn’t stop in when I was looking initially. It was a used books room and next to it was an adorable children’s area.

“Have you read ‘The Great Gatsby?’ He asked me.

“Yes!” It’s one of my most favorite reads of all time.

“Have you read ‘Love in the Time If Cholera’?” He tried again.

“No.”

He handed me the book and I eagerly agreed to take it.

I told him I was going to come back every trip to Edisto and let him have a new pick for me. We had a really great time and nice conversation while he told me about the shop and helped me select a book. They also have gifts, stationery, local products and more. I could easily spend my entire salary here. I’m obsessed with this place.

At checkout I met another lovely associate. Her name was Emily Grace and she was curled in a basket, sleeping away the afternoon.

Emily Grace is an employee and resident. I am very jealous of her. She gets to be surrounded by books and amazing people all day. She was so quiet I hadn’t noticed her at first. She is sweet and I heard she is very knowledgeable on books!

My husband had opted to sit in the car but I had to call him in because I wanted a picture of me and the best bookkeeper ever.

I purchased my book and a mug that has a map of Edisto on it. Carol graciously pointed out that the mug can not be used for navigational purposes. He gave me a store bookmark and on the back suggested two more books I should read.

I will be back. I will go back every time. I’ve never been to a bookstore where I had such an amazing experience in a short period of time. I have been enchanted by bookstores before but I have never felt so much magic as I did with The Edisto Island Bookstore.

-Jen

I Am Number 8

I Am Number 8. What is a number 8? A number 8 is someone who is constantly passed up. Maybe someone who is rarely thought about. But when it is finally their turn, they deliver unimaginable results.

“It’s in the isolation of the field that God creates the greatest leaders. The utter intensity of aloneness is the fertile ground for the birthing of creativity.”

This book resonated with me a lot. Being a foster kid, bouncing from house to house, family to family. Never having stability or someone there to believe in me or tell me I am great, I have made a wonderful life for myself and proved I am able. Reading this book, I saw how being alone most of my life. Learning things for myself and taking care of myself helped shapes me into my destiny.

“David discovered that the rejection of Man was the acceptance of God.”

David was a number 8. He was passed by all of his brothers before he got his anointing and killed Goliath. John Gray introduces this with strong influence around the power of God in your life. David’s own father didn’t think David was worth considering for anointing. But God’s anointing flowed over David while everyone he knew, the people he should have been closest with, had to watch him become a King.

I don’t know if your getting it yet, but this is powerful stuff.

“When you’re in seasons of challenge, brokenness, and failure, identify the voices that will speak not only to your current situation-we all need accountability- but to your future self. Find people who will speak life into where you are going.”

I finished this book a month ago and yet, when I was flipping back through today to write this post, the above quote stuck out to me again. I am going through a season of change and I have found, the people who have been with me before are the same people who are with me now. The people who were only a season in my life are showing themselves to be as such. I find an immense amount of comfort in this quote. I find evidence of not only being a number eight, but also I am pursuing my destiny.

If you read it, let me know what you think! Follow me on Instagram @books_and_a_brunette

Love,

8

Present Over Perfect

Every book you will ever read will change you in some way. This book changed me more than any other.

I was so adjusted to running myself ragged for everybody else. I cared so much what other people thought and how people saw me. I don’t do that anymore. This is not to say I am selfish. I am just way more selective with priorities and what and who I give my time and energy to.

“I fake-rested instead of real-rested, and then found out I was real-tired.”

At one point in the book, she posed the question, if you had a bottomless bank account and blank agenda, what would you do? I ask myself this question almost daily. As a result, my date book hasn’t been touched in a month. I’m behind on stuff that isn’t important. And that’s okay.

This book also taught me that when you are asked to do something, say no if:

1) it won’t bring you happiness

2) it won’t get you love

This sounds so simple it’s absurd. But it’s a reminder and it works.

This book also inspired me to fulfill my life dream of living by the ocean and I’m happy to say that in a few short months, I will be. See, complete life change off of one book.

I’ve passed on “important” things and moved to life’s really important things. I’ve passed on people, workouts, chores. I’ve been focusing on relationships. On myself. On my happiness.

I want you to read this book.

Stay happy,

Jen

The Shack

I started reading The Shack this month because it is my moms birthday month and this was her favorite book. I read this book once about ten years ago but didn’t remember anything super memorable.

This time around was totally different.

I started reading slowly, anticipating that I already knew what was coming. But once Mack (the main character) made it back to the cabin and encountered God, everything changed.

This book basically talks about Gods healing and the power of relationship. As I was reading this book, I was going through a healing time and maybe that’s why it was so different reading it this time.

In the book, Mack has been struck by the tragic disappearance and murder of his youngest daughter. He’s angry at God and his entire family is just barely getting by.God sends him a personal note in the mail to go back to the cabin where his daughter was murdered. I’m not going to give too much away but the journey you will go on with Mack, God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit is transformative and restorative.

If you’ve read it, comment what you thought below! Follow me on Instagram @books_and_a_brunette for constant updates!

Thanks for reading,

Jen

Big Magic

If you follow me at all on social media, you already know I am obsessed with the writing of Elizabeth Gilbert. I devour her books.

I read Eat Pray Love last month but my drive to reread it stemmed from having read Big Magic in January. Guys, I underlined, highlighted and annotated the death out of this book.

It ultimately pushed me to create this blog. I’m going to share some of my many favorite things from the book with you and I hope you get to read it as well!

“As the saying goes: “Argue for your limitations and you get to keep them.” – Page 18

“You didn’t show up ready enough, or fast enough, or openly enough for the idea to take hold within you and complete itself. Therefore, the idea went hunting for a new partner, and somebody else got to make the thing.” – Page 58

“He didn’t quit his day job to follow his dream; he just folded his dream into his everyday life.” – Page 82

She smiled sweetly at everyone and always acted like a total cooperator-but then she shaped her world exactly to her liking while nobody was looking.” – Page 85

These are just a few of my most favorites from the book. If you’ve read it, let me know what you thought.

Live creative,

Jen

Baby My Book

I made my favorite Bookstagram purchase last week. This little guy from Baby my Book.

This amazing padded book sleeve is made to carry and protect your book. Honestly, right now I have two paperback books, two small notebooks, a pen and my reading glasses in mine. It carries all of it and I could not be more obsessed!

I ordered the one for a hardcover book in this amazing, glitter, galaxy print. I added a custom monogram on it so I requested “Bookish AF” 😏. The pocket on the front holds my notebook, pen and reading glasses.

I carry my books everywhere and can’t imagine how I have lived without this thing! They have a lot of different prints to choose from and you can personalize it how you want!

You can purchase yours here: https://www.etsy.com/shop/BabyMyBook

If you’ve got one, I’d love to see it!

Happy Reading,

Jen

My Top Ten…right now

Hi!

I so appreciate everyone who follows my blog and social media. I want to start sharing, maybe once a month or so, a post on the top ten things I’m doing besides reading! They are in no particular order.

So this is the first post and I hope you like it!

1. Kacey Musgraves

I have been a fan of hers for years and I am so excited that she is releasing new music!

2. The Keto Diet

My husband and I are trying this diet. We’re only on day two but so far so good 😁

3. Coach Sharkey Tote

It’s perfect for holding my books and everything else I need for the day. I carry it everywhere. I’m obsessed.

4. My perfect dog, Lulu

Meet Lulu! She is a sweet, small labradoodle and she has my heart ♥️

5. My family

6. My husband

7. The fact that the Philadelphia Eagles won the SuperBowl!

8. Lulu with all of her toys

She doesn’t play with them she just cuddles them ❤️

9. My husband bought us matching ‘Bobs Burger’ shirts

We were made for each other 😁

10. Edisto Beach

This is a view from my tent. I love this place. I want to move to the coast in the next year.

So that’s my top ten right now. Let me know what you think!

Jen