Sunday Salon: a very Iowa weekend

The Sunday Salon.comHappy Sunday! The nomadbaby and I are having a very Iowa weekend. Unfortunately, I did not get to participate in the readathon yesterday (tear!), but I hope those who did had a great time (and are doing something not related to reading today--I always needed a break the day after a readathon.) Mr. Nomadreader and I are still sometimes getting used to the idea that we have a baby. We know we have a baby, of course, as we're with him every day, and he's in our thoughts constantly, but sometimes it doesn't quite seem real, as if I'm not old enough or something enough to be a parent yet. I feel similarly about raising an Iowan. I know I live in Iowa, and I even love living in Iowa, but somehow it seems odd to me that the nomadbaby was born in Iowa and will grow up here. And yet, it's a great place to grow up. I just hope he finds his way to a different part of the country for college or some adventure.

Yesterday I had a meeting in Greene, Iowa for my very part-time job coordinating the annual convention for Iowa P.E.O. (a philanthropic educational organization.) Greene is about a two-hour drive, and most of that isn't on the interstate. After finishing my current audiobook Friday, I decided to treat myself to the new Jane Smiley novel, Some Luck, on audio. Some Luck covers thirty-three years. It's the first in a trilogy (and even better news for impatient readers like me: the second volume comes out in the spring and the third volume next fall. No waiting years in between volumes!) The trilogy covers one hundred years of an Iowa farm family in the fictional town of Denby. It begins in 1920, and each chapter covers one year on the farm through a small number of moments. I listened to an interview with Smiley on Iowa Public Radio last week that made me move Some Luck up my TBR quickly. As I drove through rural Iowa, which is astonishingly beautiful with autumn colors this time of year, listening to an Iowa family farm saga with my baby peacefully snoozing in the backseat, I realized I've never felt like more of an Iowan. I'll be squeezing in as much audiobook time as I can this week to finish this one.

Today the nomadbaby and I are enjoying a quiet morning at home cooking breakfasts and lunches for the week ahead and relaxing. This afternoon we're heading out for another very Iowa activity: the political rally. One of the most fun things about living in Iowa is the parade of politicians who come to campaign and the celebrities they bring with them. Typically the excitement is limited to the Iowa caucus and the Presidential general election, but this year there is a very tight race for one of Iowa's Senate seats. Today's treat is Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren, a woman I admire greatly. She's here campaigning for Senate candidate Bruce Braley. Last week, I went to see Michelle Obama campaign for Braley. Hawthorne typically loves any public outing, but I'm curious how he will fare at his first political rally.

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  1. Wait until your kid is old enough to literally disappear in the house! My Teen and Tween hole-up in their rooms now and I have to remind myself that they are home. It feels weird. It's like I am being prepped for the Teen leaving for college or something. He's a junior.

  2. Love this. We visit family in Iowa at least once a year and have been out there during all different seasons. Last time I was there I read Shoeless Joe and it was such a perfect Iowa fit!

  3. I have kids in their twenties and I sometimes still feel like I can't possibly be old enough to even have kids! My book club has been thinking about reading Some Luck. Sounds like a great read but I didn't know it was part of a series. I wonder if we want to start a series we would each need to finish on our own.


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