A week ago, I finished a book titled, $2.00 a Day: Living on Almost Nothing in America, by Kathryn J. Edin. It was a long, hard read for me, because much of what they talking about in this book, I would imagine happens in our community. Since we’ve moved here 17 years ago, there  are three major employers who’ve moved factory jobs out of the community. The jobs have taken their place have not been the high paying jobs that were here before, thus, we’ve got families who have moved or who are suffering. That’s a whole different blog post at a later day.

So, when I got finished, I needed an easy read. My head and heart hurt (from both the previously mentioned book and other things going on), so I decided to pick up something from my oldest daughter’s book shelf, Eragon, by Christopher Paolini. I’m not going into the book right here because that’s not the point of all this. I will say, it has a love story, dragons, magics, and some awesome, evil villans! I’ve read it before, probably 10 years ago, but there’s nothing wrong with reading a book a second time (right, Melissa!?).

To say the story washed over me like a cool breeze would be an understatement. I feel into the story, stay up late several nights reading, and feeling better for it. But what I enjoyed most about the story, were the things I missed the first time, banter between Eragon and his mentor, Brom. The banter between Eragon and his dragon, Saphria. The way that evil was truly felt in the pit of my stomach when the Shade was introduced. I know that I noticed them, but reading it the second time makes it “feel” more real.

Now, I’m reading along in a section where Eragon’s uncle has been killed by two creatures called Ra’zac, and he’s sitting with Saphria, lamenting his life, and Saphria gives him some dragon-ily advice. I enjoy Saphria immensely because she’s “a hatchling” but yet has this deep, mystical world where she draws her knowledge from.The words that come from this section are exactly what I needed, what my 8th graders needed, and just speak so much truth!

“What’s the worth of anything we do?”

“The worth is in the act. Your worth halts when you surrender your will to change and experience life.”


It’s a really awesome quote for my 8th graders because I see so many of them thinking about high school and how it’s just going to suck for them. Why? Why lay out that negative path for yourself? If you think it’s going to be awful, it probably will be! We talked about finding those things that drive us each and every day, and not letting them go, using them as motivation to go forward.

For me, life’s tough right now, but there’s too many things I’ve not done yet that I want to experience! Travel, food, family adventures, just life in general. I tend to get lost, distracted by too many things. Focus on my wife, my kids, my family, those things that matter. I’m not going to surrender that will, not any time soon.

Anyway, my wife thinks it’s crazy read books twice, but I’m glad that I picked up Eragon. The problem is, the ending leads you directly to the second book. Guess where I’m going after I post this?


Go, give your life worth with the act of living!