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Infinite Country by Patricia Engel | Thoughts

   Published : 2021   ||    Format : print   ||    Location : Colombia ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆   What was it about the country that kept everyone hostage to its fantasy? The previous month, on its own soil, an American man went to his job at a plant and gunned down fourteen coworkers, and last spring alone there were four different school shootings. A nation at war with itself, yet people still spoke of it as some kind of paradise.. Thoughts : Infinite Country follows two characters - young Talia, who at the beginning of this book, escapes a girl’s reform school in North Colombia so that she can make her previously booked flight to the US. Before she can do that, she needs to travel many miles to reach her father and get her ticket to the rest of her family. As we follow Talia’s treacherous journey south, we learn about how she ended up in the reform school in the first place and why half her family resides in the US. Infinite Country tells the story of her family through the other protagonist, El

A birthday week and more gardening | Weekly Snapshot

Happy Ascension Day! Happy Memorial Day! Happy Africa Day! No matter what you are celebrating this weekend (or not), have fun and stay safe!

The Boy Turned Two

The little guy turned two this week. He sort of understood that it was a special day and that he was the star of the show. He took a lot of pleasure in all the birthday songs that his family sang to him - he also added some of his own tunes to the mix. Honestly, some days it feels so hard to believe that he is not a baby anymore. With my daughter, I felt the passing of each day and her birthdays appeared to be following the Martian calendar - they felt very far apart. But this guy has blazed through the past two years, I almost feel that I've missed months in between. I'm worried that if I pinch myself and blink twice, I may catch him packing for college. Yikes! 

Happy birthday, little guy! May you continue to have fun breaking apart things - whether that's your take-apart truck or your sister's carefully built Lego tower (on second thoughts, maybe leave the latter alone).

For his birthday, we had tons of fun carving a car cake and icing it blue - it certainly looked very amateur-ish but the kids had fun and the cake was delicious.

Besides that...

Once the birthday planning, preparations, and celebrations were over, life returned back to routine, which is to say, nothing of significance happened. Schools closed here on Friday - my daughter had a Zoom call with her entire class - but let's be honest, nothing's changing on the home-front since it's harder to simulate an end-of-school ceremony at home. Her school did write in this week to let us know that they are offering summer camps, even if at a limited capacity. Since we are still working from home, we are choosing to continue to keep the kids home.

On Friday, the city school organized a drive-by graduation ceremony. The school buses drove through the neighborhoods and stopped at the houses of the graduates (all dressed up in their academic regalia), and hand-delivered them their diploma. I'm so sorry that the students didn't get a traditional graduation ceremony but this has to be one of the most special ways to honor any grad. 


Last week, I showed you pictures of some of the houseplants we bought from our local nursery. We've also planted quite a lot of seeds over the past few weeks - peppers, tomatoes, basil, cilantro, zucchini, and cucumbers. So far only the peppers, basil, and some tomatoes, have sprouted. The rest will likely sprout in a week or so. I'm hoping we get a good amount of viable plants of each type. My kids have been VERY enthusiastic participants in the seeding process. Which kid doesn't like to scoop soil, especially, when the parent is also doing that? They've done most of the soil preparation, and then my daughter planted the seeds. 

Now we wait for them to grow.

Some of you mentioned last week that you don't have green thumbs and won't be able to keep plants alive. My husband loves joking that I've managed to kill even my cacti plants. I still don't know a lot about plants but this year I'm obsessed with them and want to learn how to grow them. I'm very aware that if not for this virus-related stay home spell, I likely would not have gone anywhere near our gardening tools. 


Still reading Homegoing but now just 3 chapters from the end. I actually didn't pick up the book until Friday, but after that, I couldn't put it down anymore. This has to be the first non-thriller book that I'm unable to put down. 

I have a lot of thoughts to share about this book but I'm still making sense of them. For now, I'll just say that if you haven't read this book yet, you're missing out. It pulls you in right from the first page and never lets go. Yaa Gyasi actually makes you care about each and every character in the book and she has succeeded in showing just how wide a net slavery has cast - impacting both those who were shipped to America and those who were not, whether they lived during the 1700s or the 1900s.

I still haven't decided my next read but may pick up If I Had Your Face by Frances Cha.

On the blog

How has your Sunday been so far?

Linking with The Sunday Salon at Readerbuzz and The Sunday Post at Caffeinated Reviewer.