I joined a book club with college friends ten years ago, way before I ever knew how much I’d need that monthly get together. When it started, I was in undergrad, unmarried, and my biggest stressors were far from what they are now. Even then, I loved a reason to get together with my friends for food and good conversations. I’ve always loved reading, so it was an added bonus that we’d talk about books.
Now that I’m a working wife and mother, being in a book club has a whole new meaning. Anytime someone asks me about it, I’ll go on and on about why they should either join our book club or start one of their own. So, naturally, I’m here to tell you the same.
Book club is a mandatory GNO.
Ok so maybe it isn’t mandatory, but it is on the calendar. It’s really easy to put off getting together with friends, but when you have it set every month, you tend to look forward to it and make it a priority. We schedule the next month’s book club date the week after we meet and I pencil it in.
…need I say more? Our book club is structured so that when it’s your month to host, you cook a meal for the other girls. Food and fellowship go together like peas and carrots, so it makes sense that food is involved. I love seeing what everyone else cooks, and it gives me ideas to take home. Also, there’s usually dessert and I’m always down for dessert.
Variety comes in all forms at book club.
The food, the books, the conversations, and points of view – the variety always leaves me thinking about something differently than when I got there. We talk about books, but we also talk a lot about life. Each of us are in a different stage of life, with different professions, and different perspectives about so many things. I’ve read several books that I would’ve never picked up otherwise, and that really is the beauty of reading with others. There is even a healthy dose of friendly debates over book themes that keep it interesting.
Book club gives me a reason to read.
Work and home life are busy for us all. We forget about doing things that really feed our soul. For me, reading makes me happy and let’s be honest, I’m getting old over here and my brain needs some good exercise. Each month, the host for the following month gives us three book choices. We vote, because this is a democracy, and whichever book wins is what we read for the next month. I don’t always have time to read every day, but I squeeze it in when I can. Not that into reading or maybe just don’t have the time? Many of the ladies in our book club listen to the books rather than read them, which isn’t against any rules!
Forming a community of new and old friends has been the highlight of my book club experience. There are a couple of us original members, but mostly the book club consists of people who have joined over the years. I’ve gained many friendships that have lasted for a long time and I have book club to thank.
Come as you are.
This isn’t a fancy dinner at a restaurant or a dressy party. This is book club and there isn’t any pressure here. Running late? Get here when you can. Smell like you’ve taught kindergarten all day? Great, we accept you. Didn’t quite finish the book? That’s life. No one minds. Bringing your newborn along? No problem, I’ll hold her while you eat. Already changed into your pajamas? Even better, sister. Book club is a judgement free zone. You go right ahead and get thirds on tonight’s Mississippi Mud Pie.