I couldn’t pick JUST ONE. I just couldn’t. (and thoughts on learning)

I usually have no problem making choices.  Quick, gut felt choices.

But when it came to the book for the mountain, I just couldn’t.

So I picked two.  Sorry.

Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel Garcia Marquez (Amber and Jules suggestion)


A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith (April‘s suggestion)

I’m there for almost 6 days, so I’m pretty sure that I can make it through both.

Thank YOU for all your many suggestions.  I can’t wait to read them!  I even used one of your suggestions for my book club pick for the month and it was picked!  Thanks Amanda


A little update on the book “A Whole New Mind”.  

A quote that I loved:

“People who lean on logic and philosophy and rational exposition end by starving the best part of the mind.”

-William Butler Yates

I do not defend this quote to the point that I believe there is not a vital need for logical and philosophical thought.  I believe we need to flex our brain muscles and learn, read and receive intellectual information about the world around us. However, I believe the creative brain is just as important.  Conceptual thinking with vision and creativity are the things that change the world.  Making things, having an eye for beauty, seeing beyond the conventional.

As a text book right-brainer (and one with a learning disability), I felt out of place in conventional classrooms.  The professors that talked to a projector or handed you a packet of papers and told you when your papers were due.  Uninspired syllabus’ given to you on the first day with a bunch of required reading.  Where is the inspiration in that? Walking into the Disabled Students Office each year in college didn’t exactly buoy my spirits to learn. 

It wasn’t until I entered my children’s literature class, my last year of college, that I truly understood how inspiring a course could be.  The teacher took time to understand what TYPE of learners her students were and let them learn within that realm.  I ended up reading kids books, put on a play for my class and wrote and illustrated a book for 3 and 4 year olds.  To this day, I could tell you everything I learned in that course.  It made a profound impact on my view of children’s literature, authors and illustrators of books.

It also has impacted the way I look at the education of children on a whole (I wont get into that right now)…but to say that not all kids learn the same and we are doing them a disservice to assume they might be within the 15% that actually thrives in a conventional “sit down and read this paragraph and then do a ditto sheet and then do some math problems and then write a well constructed paragraph about it” type of atmosphere.  

I still have a ways to go in this book, but it has been nice to read something that values and notices those that might not fit into the tradition learning environment.  

Have you read anything that inspired you lately? A good quote?


and, I have to be honest.  it’s still on my mind. all the time.

pray for my dad.  he goes in tomorrow.




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4 responses to “I couldn’t pick JUST ONE. I just couldn’t. (and thoughts on learning)

  1. I loved A Tree Grows In Brooklyn. Loved it. Enjoy.

    I have an out of the box learner at my house. We’ve been fortunate to have some really great teachers along the way who have done a great job with him.

    The one or two who haven’t been so great have led to misery for all involved for sure.

  2. hope u enjoy the reading!
    also check out “eat, pray, love” – i only got halfway through but its great so far!

    your dad, his doctors and your family are in my prayers!!!!

  3. I’m reading Eat, Pray, Love right now, too. My MIL gave it to me last year, but so many people here recommended it the other day that I finally got around to reading it.

    I read a Tree Grows… when I was a child, but it’s been SO long that I think I will have to reread it. I don’t remember a thing about it!

  4. Kat

    You know Rachel, some of the most successful, accomplished people I know had to overcome something early in life, whether it be a learning disability, or something else. You had to choose to learn, and it shows in how well you do whatever you put your mind to. People always put more value into things they had to work for than things that were always, simply there.

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