Desperately needed: quality reading time for non-textbooks

Right now, I get about 10 minutes of reading time before going to bed. I’m currently reading The Eyre Affair by Jasper Fforde, which I received in a cup of tea and a book swap. It is so weird. It’s like sci-fi plus Jane Austen, set in 1985 England. Very trippy. Still haven’t really figured out what’s going on yet, and I’m in chapter four (generally not a good sign). I’ll finish it (as I almost always do with fiction books), but I’m just not sure of it yet. It has gotten great reviews on Amazon, though, so that’s good. What tripped me up last night: the ending of Jane Eyre in the book is different than it is in reality. It will be interesting to see how that plays out.

At any rate, I have been using my library a lot since they re-opened in January after a remodel. I love that I can look for my books online, request them, and then get an email a few days later saying they’re ready. It takes 3 minutes to go to the library, then, since my books are set aside and there are automatic check-out machines (and there’s never a line). I just returned Danielle Steel’s Amazing Grace, which I would have never purchased or even given a second look at. However, one of my fellow bus riders was reading it, and it takes place in San Francisco (always close to my heart), so I gave it a shot. I figured that Steel is quite popular and it was probably worth the time spent. I reviewed it over on livingsocial / Facebook if you’re really interested (which you probably aren’t).

But, on my most recent trip, I actually, gasp, went into the stacks! I had looked up online previously where the subject of books I was looking for was kept, so it was still a pretty quick trip (the selection of books at the individual branches still seems quite small compared to other libraries I’ve been a patron of, but the Dakota County Library system is quite large and has a lot more books – this means that it’s actually better to do the searching online and request books that are available throughout the system instead of limiting yourself to what’s available in your branch). I picked up four books on soapmaking.

I know. You think that’s weird. But here’s the thing. I bought some coconut oil soap on Amazon that my skin loooooved, but I went through it really fast (less than a month), and that was pretty expensive for soap (at $5/bar plus shipping). [In my defense, I’ll have you know that my skin had absolutely no itchiness the entire time I was using that soap, and it cleaned really well, and now that I’m back on the regular stuff, my skin is less happy, and less clean – ish.] At the same time that I bought the soap, I also bought some coconut oil. I didn’t realize how much coconut oil I was purchasing (liquid measurements don’t really convert well in my head), and ended up with nearly a gallon of coconut oil. Good thing it has lots of uses and won’t go bad.

I digress.  The point is, I had all this oil, and there were only two ingredients on the magic soap bar: coconut oil and lavendar oil. I figured.. what the heck, maybe I could make my own soap at home. And then things got complicated. The internet didn’t really explain it to me, and I was getting confused, and decided that books were needed. Mostly, I needed some clear explanations that would convince me this is a bad idea, and I could just buy the expensive soap and be happy. [I’m really hoping to fall out of like with the idea of making my own soap. Really. I don’t need that in my life. But for happy skin….]

So I’ve had these books for a few days, and not a single minute of time to even crack them open. I’d like to read an introductory section at least. Thankfully, after tonight’s class I am on Spring Break for 10 days, and have very little homework to do (though I think I will be doing more than I assigned myself, I don’t have to get anything but one paper done).

In the commments… please try to convince me not to try to make my own soap at home (or, if you like, tell me I should – whatever makes you happy).