My Favorite Things

Two of my favorite things to do in life are listening to music and reading books.  In the summer of 1989 I had the opportunity to do both.  My entire summer, while all my friends had jobs, I didn’t, and I stayed up, laid in the sun (or tried, I can’t get a tan in Ohio to save my soul) read books and listened to what was Power 108.

This was the summer I fell in love with Jordan Knight and New Kids on the Block (they were Hanging Tough), was excited because I was able to witness the re-emergence of Donny Osmond (my sister was a huge fan in the 70’s, so of course, I became a huge as well, I seriously don’t know of a time in my existence when I didn’t love Donny… and was able to tell him 4 years ago when I won a contest where if you emailed him and he got it promptly at 2:00pm (his time) he would call you.  My husband told me when to hit send, and I figured nothing was happening… until I got a call from a Blocked Phone Number at 5:20 (my time) – I spoke with him for about 5 minutes… and was in heaven! My “On this Day” on FB reminded me of this event just a few days ago). Needless to say when “Soldier of Love” was released, I was an extremely happy camper.

Also on top of the music charts was Milli Vanilli – or who we thought was Milli Vanilli – regardless of the lip syncing scandal, the music was still awesome and I easily listen to “Baby, Don’t Forget My Number” and “Blame It On the Rain” whenever it comes on.  Martika was big (or at least Toy Soldiers was) but my love of her goes back to her glory days as Gloria on KIDS Inc, Michael Damian found a way to “Rock On” and power ballads were plentiful with Chicago releasing one of my favorite songs they sing, “We Can Last Forever”, and Simply Red’s “If You Don’t Know Me By Now”.  Janet Jackson’s “Rhythm Nation” was released that year as well… so you know it was a year of excellent tunes.

But along with being obsessed with what was playing on the radio, I was also mesmerized with reading.  I read all kinds of books that summer… VC Andrews “Heaven” saga was my favorite series.  The music played along nicely with these books… I remember listening to the radio as I read book 2 – Dark Angel – and “Send Me An Angel” by Real Life came on… still associate the 2 to this day.  When I was reading “Fallen Hearts” a short time later, Love & Rockets “So Alive” came out – and if you have ever read “Fallen Hearts” and are a fan of Troy – you know why this song was a perfect fit for this books soundtrack.

Other books that highlighted that year were “Wuthering Heights” by Emily Bronte, “Jane Eyre” by Charlotte Bronte, “The Mill on the Floss” by George Elliot, “Rebecca” by Daphne Du Maurier (this one kills me, I remember my Grandmother recommending this book to me, and so I got it and was reading it and it was going so… slow.  I put it down and read a bunch of other books and then I didn’t have any money to get anymore books so I picked up Rebecca and began reading it again.  The very next page the book completely got interesting. So keep that in mind should you ever have a book that is going a bit slow… the next page may really be the difference – and this is one of my favorite books of all time now).  Mary Higgins Clark books rounded out my summer reading.

This summer I may enjoy listening to the 80’s now more than ever (I can’t get enough of the 80’s on 8 featured on SiriusXM radio) but I still love to read.  A few years ago one of my goals was originally to read 100 books in a year.  I realized it’s hard to have a full time job, kids and a life if you are trying to read that many books… so I changed it to 60… which I actually accomplished with a few days to spare.  Though I don’t have a goal this year, I am reading books and tracking them on my Nook in a shelf entitled 2016… I think I read some in the beginning of the year that I checked out of the library that I need to add… but I’m off to a decent start.  And I’m trying to read a variety of genre’s so if you have a book you just think is so incredible… share it with me!

My present book is entitled “The Last Little Blue Envelope”, the sequel to “13 Little Blue Envelopes” by Maureen Johnson.  It’s about a 17 year old whose aunt has passed and she send her 13 little blue envelopes posthumously, sending her on a trip around Europe.  It left you hanging so I had to get the sequel from the library.  It’s a young adult book… and so refreshing.  Sadly, I remember feeling like Ginny so often.

What are your favorite things? Do you have a love of indulging in 80’s music as well?  What is your favorite genre’s of entertainment… Share your guilty pleasure!  We’re all friends!

P.S.  The title of this post is also a favorite… The Sound of Music one of my favorite movies… but that’s a topic for another day.


Summer of ’89


Ahhh…. yesterday morning was going like any other, I was in the car driving my girl child and boy child to my parents house (who are wonderful and babysit them during the day while my hubby and I work) and “Toy Soldier” by Martika (OMG I LOVE Martika) came on the 80’s on 8. As part of the intro, Mark Goodman asked if it would be on tomorrow’s countdown as this weekend they are counting down the Top 40 hits from this week in 1989 (and yes, I predict it to be in the top 10 if it’s not #1).

I have been so excited ever since and here I sit listening to the 80’s on 8 on my computer as I await a countdown I listened to 26 years ago.

So happy – it’s beginning – and oddly enough song #40 is “Satisfied” by Richard Marx – I’m sure I will be even more satisfied by the time we reach #1 – I’m curious to see how many songs I have predicted to my children are actually on this countdown (I do believe they think I am insane).

I was 16 in the summer of ’89 in between my sophomore and junior years of high school.  I had never had a boyfriend and so life was good as I didn’t know heartbreak – life that summer was all about books and music.

The books I read were V.C. Andrews’ “Heaven” Series and her stand alone “My Sweet Audrina”, Emily Bronte’s “Wuthering Heights”, Charlotte Bronte’s “Jane Eyre”, George Eliot’s “The Mill on the Floss”, various books by Mary Higgins Clark, Daphne DuMaurier’s “Rebecca” and countless others.

The music was all about New Kids on the Block (best concert ever – November 19, 1989 when I saw them live with Sweet Sensation and Dino – so awesome as they did their Christmas music as well as their regular stuff!), Martika (yes, I was a die-hard Kids Incorporated fan – and I will never forget hearing “More Than You Know” on the radio the first time as I knew it was her because I loved her voice so much), Fine Young Cannibals, Milli Vanilli (lip synching or not – the singers could sing) and I believe Donny Osmond was still coasting by from his comeback the year before, I know Madonna should be on – this could be the summer “Cherish” and “Express Yourself” was popular, obviously Richard Marx – if it hadn’t started on the chart “Right Here Waiting” was just weeks away, Chicago’s “We Can Last Forever” – one of my favorite songs of all time, Simpy Red’s “If You Don’t Know Me By Now”, Love & Rockets “So Alive” and Real Life’s “Send Me An Angel”.  Such great songs – gosh I miss the 80’s.

Not that music from the 90’s was bad – it’s probably my 2nd most listened station in the car.

Do you have a time period that you just love when it comes to music? This week’s Countdown may beat out last Thanksgiving 1987 that I listened to 5 times.  We shall see… and I’ll keep you posted to see if my prediction for #1 was right.

As I listen to Michael Damien – though he is singing “Cover of Love” but I’ll close with a Rock On!