So . . . to mix things up a little, every Friday I will make a list of four things. Hope you enjoy and let me know your thoughts.

Of course, I can and will read any way, any how, and any where . . . in the carpool line, in line at the grocery store, in the bathroom while drying my hair, at the stove while cooking . . . you get the idea. BUT, if I were pick an ideal environment, well . . .

A comfy spot
Where to read? I enjoy reading in bed but I often struggle with getting comfortable. Can I balance the book on the pillow? Do I have enough back support? Is the light bright enough? Can I stay awake? The answer most often, especially for the last question, is no. I often read at the kitchen table while eating lunch or a snack. This can be dangerous because I will sit and read and eat without thinking; a dangerous binge practice!!

I think the perfect place for me is a large comfortable, but not too comfortable, chair with a strong arm for book balancing. I’m not very tall so I want a chair to curl up in; my feet never are able to reach the floor anyway!

An appropriate beverage
What to drink? This is a loaded question! A cup of tea? A glass of wine? Coke in a glass bottle? All three are enjoyable but it truly does depend on what I’m reading. Tea and wine tend to relax me, which is nice, but I don’t want to fall asleep! Don’t you hate it when you want to keep reading and your eyes just won’t stay open! I have a weakness for soda; I know it’s bad but can’t I have one vice . . . besides spending too much money on books. Caught you there – there is never a reason not to purchase books! The problem with drinking soda is then you have to use the bathroom. Don’t you hate interrupting a book to pee!

So, tea is perfect for me if the weather is cold. I like herbal tea in a hearty mug. Mid-day, a soda works to keep me going. In the evening, as long as the book is exciting, a nice Chardonnay.

A kitty . . . or two
When I am reading, I want a cat curled up on my lap or by my side. There is something so soothing and calming about a cat purring and it really seems to add to the experience. I have two cats – Merlin and Arthur – who enjoy helping me read. When my youngest was learning to read, she would read aloud to Merlin who would curl up in her lap. I still catch her now at almost 13 reading aloud to him. I think he finds her reading voice as soothing as she finds his purring. I must say though that my cats can get very bent out of shape if I laugh or gasp out loud at my reading. I try to explain to them about the story but I usually get an upturned nose or a tail in my face. You know cats!

I think the setting to read a book is sometimes just as important as the setting of the book itself. I love to read while lying on a beach chair with a fruity drink in my hand, listening to the sound of the surf, smelling the sea air; however, I also find this kind of setting can be sometimes distracting. I know, tough life.

Truly, the perfect atmosphere for me to read is next to a cozy fire with some kind of weather outside. A strong rain, gently falling snow, dark skies and wind gusts all add to the atmosphere of what I’m reading. When the weather has personality, it is not a time for laundry or housework — I feel guilty not reading!!

I love sitting down — with an atmospheric mood, in a comfortable chair, with an appropriate beverage, and a snuggling kitty — to read a much anticipated book . . . when I have the laundry done, dinner in the oven, the children entertained, the house cleaned, and all the paperwork done . . . well, I do read fiction.


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