Monday, March 10, 2014

Book #27: The One I Wish I'd Read YEARS Ago

As I write this, I'm straight up THREE books ahead of you and desperately wanting to launch my Spring Break by diving into the next four books.  I won't let myself start reading until I write up those three book review for you (#discipline). 

Before I can type it up, I need to write it out longhand and put effort into it because all three of these books should be on everyone's bookcase, and I'm sure I will be giving them out as gifts soon. 

But before I can sit down and write all that up, I need to do laundry, laundry and more laundry. 

But before I can do laundry I should take care of the dishes and maybe clean out a few drawers. 
And sweep. And reorganize my computer pack and my purse. And paint my toenails.
But before all that I should get all 10,000 of my steps today (note to world and especially FSU fans: YES the Fitbit counts the "Chop" as "walking"....) but not until after I watch last night's Shameless. And Girls. And Lindsey. 
But before all of that I need to make the perfect cup of coffee, perfectly sweet and creamy, and wait for it to land at the right temperature. 
The fact you are reading this at all is 1) miraculous and 2) evidence I swept the floors.

Let me be honest, I didn't want to like Book #27. I thought OK, I get it.  Your nice family made a huge family decision to sell your nice home and give half your money away. Awesomesauce.

I wanted to skim the book because I was sure I knew the ending (happy) from the beginning (happy) and the middle (why we are so awesome).

I was wrong.  The writing was too good, the story too strong. I couldn't put it down. I feel like I know a lot about generosity and charitable giving but this book schooled me for sure.  I wish I'd read it before my first trip to Cuba and I suggest everyone reads it before embarking on any missionary or charity-tourism trip.

Next semester I am going to re-incorporate service learning and civic engagement back into my syllabus, and I will make sure that copies of this book are widely available as a resource for students and our community.

The Power of Half: One Family's Decision to Stop Taking and Start Giving Back. 
Kevin Salwen and Hannah Salwen.