It is summer, and we are here, sweating and sweltering and digging our way out of forts.


In some fit of derangement, following a vigorous excavation through piles of dusty workbooks (now artifacts) purchased by a once-hopeful tiger mom, Caleb was looking at a math workbook the other day and he discovered that Tetris is named for its tetromino geometric shapes. It was such a shock to his system that he immediately had to stop and rest. Recovery is slow, but we are all cheering for him.



In other news, I have been pleasantly surprised by the new things coming into the shop these days. I always associate summer with quieter times in the stationery world, or maybe it’s been a relic of the last several years, with all the warm weather activities canceled or abbreviated, and all the time in the world to contemplate the boxes coming into the shop. A new sunshine TWSBI! New yellow pencils from Blackwing that are perfect for back to school! New washi tape! New stamps! Birthday things from TheCoffeeMonsterzCo!


I’ve been finding treasures in winter coat pockets as I finally wash them for the season, at the bottom of backpacks before sending them off to camp. I haven’t dared to look under the beds yet, but I’m sure there will be something potent under there.


I’ve been reading while waiting to pick up the kids from this or that, or at the park while the kids splash about, and the more I read, the more I’ve been accumulating titles I’m interested in reading or in bringing into the shop. It’s a great ice breaker, to read a book while picking up your kids (or waiting for the bus, or at a cafe, or on break at work), because in the sea of phones, another reader usually finds their way over to you, and all of a sudden there’s a connection—and maybe another book or two added to the list. One of my (many) secret delights in life is ordering books late at night, everyone asleep, my ambition soaring up into the sky (and the internet). It won’t be until later that morning, or possibly several days later, when the books start arriving into the shop and Jon starts asking about what’s going on.


Who knows.



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August 05, 2023 — Liz Chan



Kathryn said:

I never knew that Tetris stood for anything other than someone’s imaginative whimsy. Today I learned something!
I am totally with you on the skyrocketing ambition for how much I can read. I recently put all of my library requests on pause so I can tackle the stacks of books I have all over the place. I am always lured by new releases and fun, spooky books come out in the fall so I need to get at it. I think I have multiple lifetimes’ worth of books on my to-be-read list but hey, there are far worse problems to have!

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