"I hate to read," said Serena on Saturday.
I felt hurt. My chest actually ached. My stomach turned.
"What did you just say to me?" I stared at her.
"I just don't like reading."
"THAT is unacceptable! I can't accept that. I won't... I I I won't ALLOW it," I sputtered. "Are you TRYING to hurt my feelings?"
Serena is testing the boundaries of my limitations. She's getting all teenagery on me. DING! DING! DING! Boundary located.
"Accept it, Mom," she said.
WHERE OH WHERE HAVE I GONE WRONG??
Didn't I read her all the mind-numbing lift-the-flap Little People books I could get my hands on when she was a toddler?
When she demanded I read the same annoying Barney The Purple Dino book "AGAIN!" 7 times in succession didn't I concede?!
Didn't I read "What to Expect When You're Expecting" aloud when she was a fetus in the womb, just so she would know what to EXPECT while we expected each other?!
YES! THE ANSWER IS "YES", my friends, to all of the above!
We went to The Tucson Festival of Books at the U of A on Saturday.
My husband was a Gem and took the kids to all kinds of kiddie booths, crafts and circus events while I attended workshops for writers.
I was in HEAVEN.
I went to a workshop entitled "The Glamour of Grammer". I was ENTRANCED. The speaker said, "I love to read the dictionary."
I stood and shouted for joy. "ME TOO! I LOVE TO READ THE DICTIONARY TOO! YOU AND ME ARE THE SAME! DICTIONARIES ROCK!!!! DICTIONARIES ARE FULL OF WORDS! WORD TO UR MOTHA', YO!"
Security came over and asked me to settle down. I have a hard time settling down when dictionaries and grammer are being discussed. GETS ME ALL RILED!
Did you know Glamour and Grammer used to be the same word in Ye Olde English olden times? Not kidding. Some old dude switched up the "R" with a "L". GRAM is GLAM, baby.
I got to meet actual authors and talk to them and everything. I wanna be in that club. really bad! But I'm a scaredy cat and sabatoge myself. I gotz issues, man.
I met the author of The Wake Trilogy, which will be made into a movie soon by MTV and Paramount Pictures.
I bought her newest YA book, Cryer's Cross. SHE SIGNED IT AND WAS VERY NICE AND POLITE AND WE BANTERED AND I MADE HER LAUGH AND EVERYTHING!! Can you believe it? AHHHHH!
Tonight I gathered my two oldest daughters on my bed for a serious discussion.
"There will be no book haters in my house. If you wanna live under MY roof and if you EVER want me to FEED you ever again you WILL enjoy reading! Do you understand me?!"
"You can't MAKE me enjoy reading," said the defiant Tween.
Watch me, I thought.
"You will sit quietly while I read you this book. We will read every night until it's done. Then I will expect you to find one on your own."
I began reading the spooky lit geared toward rebellious teens/tweens.
My girls were transfixed.
At the end of chapter One Serena sullenly said, "I guess you can read another chapter."
At the end of chapter Two Serena carefully said, "You might as well read the next chapter."
By chapter five Serena was biting her nails in concern for Tiffany, who disappeared without a Trace. "Where could she BE, Mom? I'm dying to know!"
"That's all for tonight. Go to bed."
"NOOOOOOOO! Read more! Pleeeaaaassse?"
Who's in control NOW, ya'll?
"Off to bed, my Love."
And that's how it's done.
The People were giving away Turtle Hats at the Book Festival. Turtle Hats are BOMB! I wore Bella's to the Bowling Alley after the Book Deal-io. His name is Sheldon. Pleasure to meet you.