Book Review – The Life and Times of Thunderbolt Kid – Bill Bryson

I’m currently reading Bill Bryson’s book The Life and Times of Thunderbolt Kid which is his memoir. He was born in 1951 in Iowa and this book is all about it. Doesn’t that sound oh so exciting!!! Haven’t you ever wondered what Iowa was like in the 50s? Or better yet, have you ever wondered what Iowa was like in the 1950s as seen by a young boy?! As he paints his word pictures about life in middle America which includes baseball, pie and comic books he balances it off with the worries of nuclear annihilation, communism, polio, UFOs, Civil Rights issues and the greatest fear – teenagers. I assure you it isn’t my degree in History that makes this book appealing to me (OK well maybe a little) it is the mans gift for writing! He can paint a picture that will leave you gasping for breath and tears rolling down your face because you know its oh so true!

Oh to have that gift!

I usually avoid reading  highly descriptive writing. I’m more interested in what the people are doing, seeing, thinking that what they are wearing and what design is on the wallpaper. I realized that about myself as I was suffering through Moby Dick in college. Never have I had to read such a boring book! Why is it a classic?! It is a huge tome that seriously could be reduced to 5 chapters if they just took out all the overly descriptive vocabulary regarding the boat and the harpoon and the ropes and the hooks, sea spray, foam…………. 😯

So I am quite surprised at how much I’m enjoying Bryson’s books given the fact that they are primarily descriptive. But he does it oh so well! So maybe I do like descriptions but I’m just a very discerning person when it comes to descriptive words and their usage….  😆

Bottom line the man entertains me! I have read many of his travel books and I have loved them! If you are looking for something to read this summer pick up one of his books!

Project 365



We haven’t had the heat we had last summer. I’m OK with that but one of the results is my garden is producing slowly. My mouth is still watering in anticipation of the first red tomato but happily the peas are on. It took some self control to not gobble these up as soon as I opened the pod. Peas rarely make it to the kitchen – they are a gobbled up right there in the garden!  😀 But when I saw there were {5} sweet little peas nestled in there I suddenly knew what I would be taking a picture of. Then I ate them…  😀



Being a photographer makes me slow down and notice the details. I have learned the hard way – I have missed some beauty along the way as I busily scan the horizon for my next adventure. When I have my camera in hand I am much better at paying attention and appreciating the details that surround me. I generally am attracted to large, sharp contrast, bold colors but there is so much beauty to be found in the {little} details.

Negative Space



Sunflowers I love! They are big bold and “contrasty” and every summer you will find me out in my garden trying to find new ways to photograph these beauties! This picture includes several photographic techniques – notice the bokeh or the blurry background, the rule of thirds since the subject fills roughly a third of the frame and finally the {negative space} – where you intentionally leave a portion (usually a large portion) of the frame empty to draw attention to your subject.

I hope you have a lovely day!





  1. Janet July 18, 2016 at 4:57 pm - Reply

    If you think you’ve laughed hard at the Bryson book so far wait until you read about the toity jar. I LOVE that book!

    • Shelly July 19, 2016 at 10:51 am - Reply

      Oh my yes! I don’t think I will ever be able to drink out of a jar again!

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