Monday, May 3, 2010

Q&A Part III: Books, Books & Music

Two things I REALLY love to talk about are books and music. I don't spend a lot of time posting about either of these things on my blog because I get so wrapped up in bragging about my kids :-) So as you can imagine, I was very excited when Andrea asked...

Hi Jen!
I would like to know your all time favorite that you just couldn't put down!

This was a tough question because I love to read and I have come across MANY books I wasn't able to put down. But I guess when it comes to fiction, my favorite type of books to read are series books. I honestly think its because I have a hard time letting go of characters :-) It all started for me with The Babysitters Club...

If you were a pre-teen girl in the 90s, there's a good chance you read and/or owned this series. I was crazy about it. They were my absolute favorite books to read and I would just wait on pins and needles for each book to be released. Back then, there weren't all these crazy release parties and countdowns. You would just show up at the library or bookstore one day and there would be a new book! But I always remember my mom taking me to the bookstore in our mall to buy each one when they came out.

Now that I am an adult, I would like to say that my obsession with pre-teen books is over, but thanks to these books...

I am right back in the saddle. The Twilight Saga and Harry Potter Series have totally taken me back to my adolescent years (in terms of reading of course :-) and I should be embarrassed by that fact. I should be hiding these books in the back of my closet, but instead I have asked Santa for the collectors edition hardcovers for both series :-) I'm a dork. I will admit it. But I guess what makes both of these series so hard to put down is the attachment you get to the characters! Sadly...both series have ended now but at least I have the movies to get me through. Ha!

Now, when I feel like being an adult, I do love a good Steven King thriller or girly romance book. I especially love all the books by Emily Giffen. She has written Something Borrowed, Something Blue, Baby Proof, Love the One Your With, and in a few weeks, she will release her latest book, Heart of the Matter...

I have always been a sucker for fiction, but sometimes I prefer a little reality. I like reading books that I feel I can relate to and that help me at different stages in my life. For example, since becoming a mother, I have really enjoyed reading some of the funny (and sometimes sad) mommy books that are out there. I loved reading Stefanie Wilder-Taylor's Sippy Cups are Not for Chardonay and Naptime is the New Happy Hour. I also read and reviewed the book I Was a Really Good Mom, Until I Had Kids by Amy Nobile and Trisha Ashworth. And speaking of these authors, they just came out with a new book called I'd Trade My Husband for a Housekeeper...

This book looks SO funny and I can't wait to read it. I promise to review it once I do :-) And speaking of mommy books, or rather pregnancy/baby books, my real life friend Kate asked...

What books would you recommend to a newly pregnant first time mom?

I wouldn't say I am an expert or anything Kate, but since I own about 20 different pregnancy/baby books...I can at least tell you the 3 books that I found most helpful when I was pregnant the first time around.

1.) Although a lot of women swear by What to Expect When You are Expecting, I found the book to be a little too informative. I am a very worrisome person and I didn't need the daily reminder of miscarriage and/or birth defects. I just wanted a book that would show me pictures of the baby and compare his/her size to a piece of fruit. I didn't want any of the scary stuff. So I just opted for a Day-by-Day pregnancy countdown similar to this one...

2.) The list of what you can and can't do while pregnant is pretty long. I could never remember what cheeses I should stay away from, if I could take Benedryl, what sunscreens were safe, etc. So personally, I found this book to be incredibly helpful on more than one occasion...

3.) Because your first pregnancy is a roller coaster of emotions, I thought it was wise to invest in a book that would give me a good laugh when I needed one. Jenny McCarthy's book Belly Laughs did just that. I won't spoil any of it for you, but her take on pregnancy is just HILARIOUS!

Next up...we have the big music question from my bloggy friend Chelsi. She asked:

Do you like music? What kind? Are you the type of person that music can completely change your mood or you could care less to hear it ever? What is your favorite song from the past and your favorite song now?

I love music. You wouldn't know it now, but back when I was in high school and college, I rarely watched TV because I always had music playing. Maybe that's why I was so much more productive? Ha! I don't necessarily have a favorite type of music, since I pretty much listen anything. But I do have favorite types of music for different types of moods. For example:

For relaxing: Don't think I am a loser, but I love classical music. I always have. My mom and I joke about how we want to get a job at Barnes and Noble together just so we can be around books and listen to classical music all day long. It's our happy place :-)

For driving in the car: I have a tendency to get road rage very easily, especially when I am pumped up. So I really like to drive to more mellow music. I love Jack Johnson, The Frey, John Mayer, Coldplay, Train (one of my all-time favorite bands), Sara Bareillis and Sarah McLachlan...just to name a few. But through the months of November and December, my car is 100% Christmas music. You all know how I feel about Christmas music :-)

For Date nights: When Eric and I fist started dating, he would always pick me up in his shiny black truck (that was always freshly washed for date nights) and he would have Dean Martin playing in the background. I love Dean Martin (and the rest of the Rat Pack) so this was a big selling point. It sort of just became our thing to listen to Dean Martin whenever we were in the car together. We still listen to him when we are in a romantic mood :-)

For working out or getting pumped up: I really love Fergie and The Black Eyed Peas, Beyonce, Katy Perry, Jamiroquai, and God help me...Britney Spears. I KNOW!! But her old stuff really gets me moovin and groovin.

Eric has made fun of me for years for my random taste in music. Some of the songs I have on my iPod in Top 25 Most Played that he thinks are random and "hilarious"are:

Pussy Control by Prince
Easy Lover by Phil Collins
Mint Car by The Cure
You Make My Dreams by Hall & Oats
Footloose by Kenny Loggins

He also laughs at all the random artists/bands that I listen too that he has never heard of before. Most of them have been on the radio before, but I have to admit...I don't hear them often. Some of my favorites are:

Kate Havnevik ( I heard a song of hers on Grey's Anatomy and thought she was awesome)
Frou Frou (She had a song in the movie Garden State that was so good. I had to get the album)
Wheat (They were sort of a one hit wonder, but I listen to their album all the time)
Yael Naim (One of her songs was on an Apple commercial)
Keane (I'm sure everyone heard their song "Somewhere Only We Know")

And finally Chelsi, I don't have a favorite song of all time, but I do have a favorite band of all time. Third Eye Blind. I know every word to every song they have ever made and I still keep holding out hope that one day I will meet them :-) Gosh...are you sorry you asked me about music? This turned into a novel!!

Wow...if all of you made it to the end of this incredibly long post...I applaud you! You must be pretty interested in my thoughts on books and music (or maybe you are just totally bored and there is nothing else to read. Ha!). But either way, I appreciate you reading :-) Thanks again for all these fun questions ladies! More to come...


  1. I LOVED your answer! Mostly because it sounds like your taste is similar to mine! I am SO random with my music choices! :o) right now in the car is the new Jay Z album, Lady Antebellum, Sugarland, Colbie Caillet, Brandon Heath and Jack Johnson. I loooooove music! Having a juke box at work is sometimes a GREAT thing when I'm in the mood for a little Spice Girls or Little River Band... :o) Oh and my ringtone is Hey Soul Sister!

    I love the Emily Giffen books too and I can't wait to use your advice on the OTHER books you posted! ;)

    Thanks for this post I loved it!

  2. ha ha. i'm a music schizo, too. i have both morrissey and pavarotti on my iPod (and lots and lots of the cure). i also find a lot of stuff i like on grey's and like the garden state soundtrack a lot, too.
    just wait until you start listening to barry manilow like YOUR MOTHER! he heeeeee

  3. I knew Pussy Control would be first on your top 25 iPod list. :)

  4. Very interesting post!!! Thanks for all the great book recs, I loved Babysitters Club when I was little too and now I am sooo into the Twilight Saga =)

  5. Oh I loooooved the Babysitters Club!!!! I always wanted to have my own babysitters club. :)

  6. The babysitters club!!! Loved them!

    You have great taste in music. Jack Johnson is the hubs fave.

    Can't wait to read your review of that book! Looks awesome.

  7. Jen, I just had to say that you're totally not a loser for liking classical music! I grew up listening to it since that's what my parents listened to. I also played the viola when I was younger so that helped me learn to love it too. I think it's great that we can appreciate all sorts of music. :)