What I’m Reading
The Mysterious Benedict Society by Trenton Lee Stewart is a fun and quirky middle grades novel is the perfect family read aloud if you’re looking for something to keep you on the edge of your seat. I read it by myself to see if it would make a good book for my 7 year old and I to read together and I loved it as an adult reader. Four children, each with their own story to tell, are selected for a secret mission. Their ability to work together to save the world is perfect for Harry, Ron and Hermione fans and the mystery is just fanciful enough to keep the book from being too serious or scary. Take a look at some reviews on Goodreads if you’re handing this to a young reader but the first book in this series gets my vote this month!
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What I’m Watching
The People Vs. OJ Simpson: American Crime Story on FX
The People Vs. OJ Simpson: American Crime Story was my favorite watch in November. I know I’m a little late to the party, but when you don’t have cable you’re at the mercy of the library queue and our lucky number came up this month. I was skeptical when I first heard others raving about this but when my pop culture idols, Knox and Jamie, recommending this I knew we had to check it out. My husband and I both loved this and I found it very thought provoking. I was surprised at how much my thirteen year old self remembered/didn’t understand. The acting is superb and not something that I usually tune into but I was blown away by several performances, minus the obnoxious crying of Cuba Gooding Junior but he plays a minor role after the first couple of episodes. A must see!
What I’m Loving
What Should I Read Next Podcast Mini Series on Kids Lit by Anne Bogel
I’m a huge fan of Anne Bogel’s blog, Modern Mrs. Darcy for her book recommendations and fresh takes on modern living, and also enjoy her podcast where she does literary matchmaking. A few weeks ago she did a week-long mini series on Children’s literature and it was fantastic. Each of the five episodes had me scrambling to write down titles to add to my TBR (to be read) list. My kids loved listening to the episode with kid callers asking for recommendations and I loved the episode with Gretchen Rubin of The Happiness Project.
Indiana State Park Inns
We recently spent our first night in one of the Indiana State Park Inns (full post coming) and we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. We stayed at Clifty Inn at Clifty Falls State Park in Madison, IN and our suite was huge and well equipped for our family. The common areas were cozy and inviting, including offering games and puzzles to encourage families to sit down and spend some unplugged time together. We had a delicious breakfast in the inn’s restaurant (hello, cheesy hashbrowns!) and my kids loved the pool that, unlike a typical hotel pool, it wasn’t 55 degrees. The setting can’t be beat either with access to hiking and beautiful scenery right outside the door. If you’re in the midwest and need a fun family getaway that doesn’t involve sleeping in the dirt, I’d recommend checking out one of the state park inns. PS: I can’t speak to all the other locations and some might not be as updated as Clifty Falls but trust me all of them are better than a tent!
I think we can all agree that November was, all in all, a pretty terrible month. We certainly haven’t been at our finest as a nation, no matter which side of the aisle you stand on, and most of the news continues to be less than optimistic but I think we can all agree that the one shining moment that has come from all of this is the sweet, sweet gift of the Joe Biden meme. I can not get enough of these ridiculous and delightful treasures that keep filling my feed. In a season when I’ve had a lot of other feelings about our political landscape, I’m certainly very grateful for the entertainment these provide.
Make sure to check out October’s edition for more of my favorite books and shows and leave a comment with your favorites from November. What are you loving right now?