Posts Tagged ‘books’

Traction – 5 Stars!

Tuesday, November 26th, 2013


Get a Grip on Your Business 


Gino Wickman

Five Stars!


This is a wonderful book on taking your business – any business – and making it wildly successful.  The suggestions are sound, the methods are solid business recommendations and the results used as examples are those of excellent leaders manifesting that excellence and leadership in eventual business success that the author has taught and now explains in his book.  The recommendations seem reasonable and repeatable – as if any excellent leadership team could take them and run.  I loved it, and will return to the book and to its recommendations in Real Life.

The book was not, of course, about the author as some books are, but by the author as…well…all books are, and this type of book does not have a lot of personal information about the one writing, but I love a book with an underlying buzz of a great person writing it.  This book has the feel of being from the perspective of a well-grounded, kind, driven, principled person, and it makes it all the more enjoyable to read.

Thank you to Dr. Beth Davidow, DACVECC for the recommendation of this book!

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This is the last of my reviews of the books from the article  “24 Books to Change Your Life” by Tom McFerson in the June 2013 edition of Veterinary Economics.  A huge “THANK YOU” to the author for such a great reading list and to the contributors for the steady supply of books to read, many of which I would have otherwise accidentally missed!

Read New Books But Keep The Old…

Monday, January 2nd, 2012

…one is silver and the other gold.

Or something.

I LOVE books.  Remember when Veterinary Economics published that article by Tom McFerson, 25 Books for your Summer Reading?  And someone said something like, “Of course you can’t read ALL the books…”

That was fun.

Where is that guy?  I heard he was publishing a list of 25 more books.  I have been kind of lost waiting.  You do NOT want me to come up with a list!  You think THAT list got random?  Mine would be crazy random.  You would be whispering, “This is SO not focused on veterinary medicine…”  So in the meantime, while we wait for THE list, here are books I plan to re-read this year.  They are some of my very favorites.

The New Testament


Some years I try to read the whole Bible.  Having the NIV One Year Bible version has made that very fun and easy the past few years.  This year, I am going to take a break from the Old Testament, and I will tell you why.  There are two  details of minor stories of the Old Testament, that if you read them when you are already sad will sucker punch you.  Not that they should not be in there or that God condones evil by any stretch, but I just don’t want to read those two stories this year.  But I will read Esther.  I love her.  And the Psalms and Proverbs.  And…the New Testament.  See?  I told you, random.  Maybe in my crazy tangents, sometimes there are big important things.  These next ones get randomer though…

The Tightwad Gazette by Amy Dacyczyn


I found this collection of newsletters years ago and I just love it.  I don’t know if it is the Kristin Fuhs-size family of the author or her fun, chit-chatty tone, or the fact that when I found it we were broke new parents looking for fun, free stuff to do, but I still love flipping through this book.  It’s pretty worn.  I don’t think I’ve read it cover to cover since I got it.  Fun.

Sink Reflections by Marla Cilley – The FlyLady


Great tips for the domestically challenged (that is, me) with some really profound wisdom when you read through it a second time.  Here’s hoping that is true the third time as well!

Bread Machine Magic and More Bread Machine Magic by Linda Rehberg and Lois Conway


Fun books, great comments and awesome bread.  Not a cover-to-cover stay up past bedtime with a flashlight sort of read, but definitely two of my very favorite books.  Thanks Mom!!

All New Square Foot Gardening by Mel Bartholomew


We got this when we started gardening about eight years ago, so we didn’t realize it wasn’t a normal way to garden.  I LOVE Square Foot Gardening and am anxious to start again this spring.  We took 2011 off because we missed Ebony Dog and how she would run around (never through!) the boxes while we worked in the garden.  See?  Back to pets!  I CAN focus!


Blackwell’s Five Minute Veterinary Consult:  Canine and Feline, Fifth Edition, edited by Lary P. Tilley and Francis W.K. Smith, Jr.

So I haven’t read this cover-to-cover, but I have wanted to do so since the first edition came out.   And now I have my own copy!  Woo!  (Thank you Veterinary Practice News!)

Skills for Communicating with Patients, Second Edition by Jonathan Silverman, Suzanne Kurtz and Juliet Draper

This was one of the “25 Books” and the one I found most helpful.  I plan on reading through it again this year, and tracking down and reading the companion book, Teaching and Learning Communication Skills in Medicine.


This is going to be fun!  I also still have that whole spin-off list you helped me make last year, and two books I read and loved last year to review – The Thank You Economy by Gary Vaynerchuk (Thank you Dave!) and The Happiness Project by Gretchin Rubin.  (Thank you Cara!)

And I will read some fiction…and your blog posts…and of course, newspaper, journal and magazine articles.

Oh, and Made to Stick by Chip Heath and Dan Heath, which Mike Falconer recommended.  (Thank you Mike!  And thank you for helping me with the Twitter and Facebook buttons!  I almost have them figured out!)

Tom McFerson, I LOVED your list!  Thank you so much.  I  can’t wait to read your next list.  But until then, I think I will be able to keep myself out of trouble.

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Book Reading Project Bunny Trails

Friday, April 29th, 2011

The self-assigned Read Every Single Book on the Veterinary Economics 25 Books List Project was so fun that I read the last two books really slowly because I did not want the project to end. Then I realized that between friends and family loaning, giving and suggesting books, books the authors of the books on the lists recommended, other books they have written and books I found in hunting down all twenty five books, I have an ENDLESS list of books to read this year! Yay!

I wanted to list as many as possible in one place.  Dr. Burcham – I tried the GoodReads website, and I do not get it!  If you help me, I will try again – ha!  I think you may love reading as much as me!

Right now, the books I want to read are in a combination of on-my-shelf, on-my-nightstand, in-my-head, in-my-notebook, in-the-reference-section-of-the-books-I-have-read and in-cyberspace. Very unorganized and overwhelming. AND…when I am overwhelmed, I write a list!

So, you have seen the list of Books I Have Recently Read and Loved.

Here is the list of Books I Would Like to Read. Anytime I try to put What’s In My Head into a list, things can get a little crazy, which makes sense, considering the contents of my head. You’ve been warned. : )

What books would you add that you have read or would like to read? Thank you for all of your recommendations this past year and In The Future! This has been so fun!

The Thank You Economy by Gary Vee (Thank you Dave Nelson!)

Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin (Thanks Cara-I-Love!)

The Twenty Point Day by Bob Nelson

(not yet written, but I hope my Dad will write it – It is going to be AWESOME!)

The Five Tools of Team Leadership by Dr. Scott Christiansen

(not yet written but I hope Pastor Scott will write it-another awesome book-to-be!)

The Book by the person who writes Hyperbole and a Half (not yet written but it WILL be for sure!  It says so in the blog!  Coming out fall 2012)

What Clients Love by Harry Beckwith (Thanks Phil!)

The Greatest Salesman in the World by Og Mandino (Thanks Dad!)

Soar with your Strengths by Donald O. Clifton and Paula Nelson (Thanks Dad!)

Where Have All the Leaders Gone? By Lee Iacocca (Thanks Dad!)

Heaven is for Real by Pastor Todd Burpo (Thanks Karen!)

SuperFreakonomics by Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner

The Future Books by Malcolm Gladwell

Every Book Published by “Twelve”

The Shadow of Her Smile by Mary Higgins Clark (Thanks Mom!)

The Story of Mankind by Hendrik Willem Van Loon (Thanks Brendan!)

How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie (the original edition)

Public Speaking and Influencing Men In Business by Dale Carnegie

Public Speaking for Success by Dale Carnegie

Lincoln the Unknown by Dale Carnegie

Five Minute Biographies by Dale Carnegie

How to Stop Worrying and Start Living by Dale Carnegie

The Johnstown Flood by David McCullough

The Great Bridge by David McCullough

The Path Between the Seas by David McCullough

Mornings on Horseback by David McCullough

Brave Companions by David McCullough

John Adams by David McCullough

1776 by David McCullough (Thanks Cathy-Friend!)

In the Dark Streets Shineth: A 1941 Christmas Eve Story by David McCullough

The Greater Journey by David McCullough (comes out May 24, 2011)

The Happiness Hypothesis by Jonathan Haidt

Made to Stick by Chip Heath and Dan Heath

Built to Last by Jim Collins

Teaching and Learning Communication Skills in Medicine by Dr. Suzanne Kurtz, Dr. Jonathan Silverman and Dr. Juliet Draper

1812 by David Nevin (Thanks Cathy-Friend!)

Velvet Elvis by Rob Bell (Thanks Bryan and Karen! :))

So Long, Insecurity by Beth Moore (Thanks Mom-Karen!)

Heaven by Lisa Miller (Thanks Roberta-Friend!)

Chicken Soup for the Soul – Power Moms

The Divine Life of Animals by Ptolemy Tompkins (Thanks Mom-Karen!)

The Year of Living Biblically by A.J. Jacobs (Thanks Cara-I-Love!)

Don’t Shoot the Dog by Karen Pryor (Thanks Cara-I-Love!)

Son of Hamas by Mosab Hassan Yousef (Thanks Sara-I-Love!)

Social Media for Veterinary Professionals by Brenda Tassava – This one JUST came out!  Woo!  Can’t wait to read it!  I heard that it is great!

May 2, 2011  Update: The author just offered to send me a copy of Social Media for Veterinary Professionals to review!  Woo!  Thank you Brenda!  *standing by the mailbox*

The Dental Radiography book at work

The Five Minute Veterinary Something by Someone and Dr. Tilley – I will write it down and fix this entry! (I have always loved this book, but I have never read it from cover to cover)

The Hill’s Veterinary Nutrition Book

The rest of the Marvin, The Golf Caddy Dog series by Harold R. Mann (This was to be an entire Marvin series, but I am not entirely sure the rest of the series yet exists in Real Life – I hope so or that it will exist soon as it was a fun book!)

Your Dog, The Owner’s Manual by Dr. Marty Becker

Boundries by Dr. Henry Cloud and Dr. John Townsend (Thanks Kim!)

Crucial Conversations: Tools for talking when stakes are high and Crucial Confrontations by Patterson, Grenny, McMillan, and Switzler (Thanks Marnette!)


This may be a longer reading project than the previous one.

Also, I need more suggestions from you.

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I have always loved to read. So has Russ. It has been fun to see this trait passed down to both of our daughters. Our oldest has been told at least once every school year that recess is not for reading, it is for playing.

Once at a party I picked up my friend’s JAVMA (Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association), and he said “Seriously? It’s Friday night!” I said something super cool along the lines of “Um, I hadn’t gotten my mail yet…I didn’t know this issue was out…I…um…” and then joined the party like a Normal Person. I love reading. : )

May 2, 2011  Update! The Awesome Editor Kristi Reimer of Veterinary Economics/dvm360 informed me that Tom McFerson has a SECOND 25 Book List coming out! I told her to remind the author that our ceilings are only eight feet high – ha!  Bring it!  As long as I have time to walk Noodle the Poodle and Joy the Puppy and garden too, I will obsessively read whatever you all suggest!  (Oh, and I need time to raise children and do the whole save and preserve life thing… :))

Coming Soon on Riley and James…

Friday, April 8th, 2011

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Skills for Communicating with Patients – Five Stars! This may be the most helpful book I have read from the  Veterinary Economics 25 Books List.  It is an excellent communication book written for MD’s, though the authors have worked with veterinarians too, which I thought was cool.  It is a medical school textbook and is taking me FOREVER to read!  SO worth it though.  I will review it for you as soon as I finish it!

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Summary of my Favorites from the Veterinary Economics 25 Books List – Very fun project…I am finishing the last two books.

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Anesthesia for the Pet Practitioner – Five Stars! This will be a two part review, the first part here and the second part on Wagging Tail.  Anesthesia for the Pet Practitioner is a wonderful veterinary anesthesia book that I have used for years.  The third edition was recently published by Banfield Pet Hospital, and that is the one I am reviewing.  It is also the best one yet!

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The Complete Cat’s Meow by Darlene Arden – Five Stars! OK, I just started this book, but it has a gorgeous Max the Cat cat on the cover and is written by one of my Very Favorite People AND Darlene mentioned me in the acknowledgements.  (Thank you Darlene!!)  What’s not to love??  Even though I am only a few pages in, I can tell it is also an EXCELLENT resource for cat lovers.  See, I can be objective! : )

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Love Wins by Rob Bell – Just kidding!  Different blog!  I do love it though.  The topics covered in this book are ones I have been struggling with and studying Scripture about for the past few years.  Just reading the intro sitting with Abby in the bookstore allowed me to breathe a deep cosmic sigh of relief.  Not that Rob Bell is the end-all authority on truth, or even claims to be.  He IS, however, very good at making a person think, and tackling Ideas That Shall Not Be Mentioned head on.  At least one Christian leader has been fired over saying he liked the book.  But I am a vet.  I like the book.  And now…back to pets!

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Why all the book reviews?

Life is still sad.  I miss Ebony Dog and Wuzzy Rat terribly.  I also miss Fuzzy Rat, Piggy Pig and Princess Gerbil.

Max the Cat is in the beginning stages of Chronic Kidney Disease.  Not always a big deal for an old cat, actually.  (You know, unless he or she is your cat, or…unless it is.)

But then, when Ebony first got sick, I was hoping that if and when we found the underlying cause of her Immune Mediated Hemolytic Anemia it would not be awful, but it was.  So I am still in a pretty rough season and having a sick cat is freaking me out a bit.  I am writing about all that, but trying hard to keep it upbeat here.

Even so, a Princess Gerbil Memorial is in the works.  She deserves one as much as the other four!  It is not her fault she passed away when I was too exhausted to write One More.  And she was super cute and kind of quirky, so I think you will like it!

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And finally…

Happy Heartworm-Free May!

And then…

I dunno!  A happier season maybe?  Just an idea…

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Houdini Was…

Thursday, October 21st, 2010

In the midst of reading the 25 leadership books recommended by Veterinary Economics, I snuck in this super awesome book that I HAVE to tell you about because I LOVE it.

Houdini Was…

Written and illustrated


the Second Grade Students of White Bluffs Elementary in Richland, Washington

I bought the book because of the very cute hamster on the cover.  (I judge books by their cover, which you should not do, and though I can usually tell at first glance whether I will like a book or not, my reasoning is not always quite…linear.)

This book covers in impressive depth the human-animal bond, pet loss, processing grief, the value of pets, lessons to be learned from our relationships with our pets and even the value a classroom pet adds to the educational experience*.  What impresses me is that all of this is done so poinently and concisely…by second graders…mostly by crayon.  I love the pictures.  I love the humor.  I love seeing Houdini hamster through the eyes of those who knew and loved her.  It almost makes me want to treat my Fuzzy-loss with a hamster…



…but I won’t.


Houdini Was…

Five Stars!


This book won the 2010 Scholastic “Kids Are Authors” contest and is available at all the Scholastic Book Fairs going on now!  I got it tonight during Parent-Teacher conferences :)

*Click here for information on “Pets in the Classroom”, a very fun CareFRESH grant program that assists with the adoption and care of small pets in the classroom.


What I am Reading this Week – The Same Big Important Books

Monday, October 11th, 2010

I am reading through Veterinary Economic’s Summer Reading List.  Ha, very funny Veterinary Economics!  This is not summer reading!  This pile of books is taller than Wuzzy Rat!  At least the Bible in a Year gives me, you know, a year.  From the “summer” list, I am currently reading Collapse, by Jared Diamond, and Truman, by David McCullough.  I expect to be here for quite some time!  So, no reviews for a while!  I am loving Truman, which surprised me.  I am not usually a big history buff, but it is a great book.

Wuzzy Rat and Phil discuss whether I can actually finish this project, while Bunny tries to jump from the lamp to the Bible.


What I am Reading This Week – Big Important Books

Friday, September 17th, 2010

I have not reviewed a book from the Veterinary Economics Summer Reading List here for a while because I have apparently saved all of the big, huge books for last, and they are taking me FOREVER to read!  I am almost halfway done with the twenty-five books.  I am still having fun, and I am learning lots, but I may not have much to say for a while.  I will complete the list, but most likely not by the end of summer!

I found a cute star template weeks ago and have not gotten to use it yet.  So I will give you my input on a Book NOT on the list, you know, so I can use my stars…

Word of God – Five Stars!


What I am Reading This Week: How to Win Friends and Influence People

Thursday, August 19th, 2010

Next in the leadership series…

How to Win Friends and Influence People


Dale Carnegie

Since I am only reviewing leadership books of the Veterinary Economics suggested reading list to which I can give five stars, I think I will start each review the same way…I loved this book!  Five stars!

And I did.  How to Win Friends and Influence People was published in 1936 and I absolutely LOVE Dale Carnegie’s writing style.  He wrote as if he were wearing a top hat.  Unfortunately, I read a rereleased edition that Mrs. Carnegie published in 1981.  She updated some of the stories and language.  So every time I read a story in the first person that occurred after Mr. Carnegie passed away in 1955, I would do a double take – a sort of “I-just-saw-a-ghost” jump and yell.  The lessons in this book are invaluable and timeless.  I will buy it for sure if I can find an original edition.

Bunny Trails Several times, when Mr. Carnegie needed an especially pure or great example, he would turn to a story of a dog.  What struck me was his emphasis on the effectiveness of positive reinforcement training (which he did not word in that way of course, as it is a relatively new term, though not as new of a concept as I had assumed.)  When he wanted to emphasize how kind words are more effective than harsh words, he would remind the readers how much more quickly our pets learn when we train with kindness and rewards.  I began to think it would be very fun to trace the history of animal training.

Of course, as far back as the Old Testament, Balaam was reprimanded by an angel of God Himself for mistreating his poor donkey.  But I had until now assumed that “Positive Reinforcement Training” as a replacement for “Negative Reinforcement Training” had just tipped into favor in the last few decades.  Apparently wise, successful people knew all along that kindness and compassion are the best way to treat anyone, whether human or animal, and just did not have a nifty name for the concept yet.

Also, of course, I would like to read the other books Dale Carnegie has written.  He had an engaging writing style, and fun stories with solid morals.  And while he was a great man in his own right, he also seems to have been one or two degrees from every famous person of his time, which also makes for a fun read.

What I am Reading This Week: Start-Up Nation

Monday, August 16th, 2010

Next in the leadership series…

Start-Up Nation, The Story of Israel’s Economic Miracle


Dan Senor and Saul Singer

I LOVED this book…

Five Stars!


I have a special place in my heart for Israel, and the multilayered reasons for that do not even fit in the “What in The World Does This Have to Do with Pets?” section of this website.  That would be another website entirely!  The history contained in this book is fascinating, and has changed the way I view world history overall.

But this is not a book about heart or emotions or passion.  It is a book about achieving success against seemingly insurmountable odds, which is a theme that I absolutely love.  It is a book about Israel, which I have already told you I love, and it is a book about entrepreneurs and start-up companies, especially those in the technology sector, which, until this past week, I did not care one bit about.  In fact, I had to open the book and change every single vowel in my spelling of entrepreneurs, as I am quite sure I have not ever used the word before today.

And I love that about the book too.  I found myself caring very much why start-ups are successful or not, why Israeli start-ups tend to be SO successful, and even caring about the details of the businesses profiled in the book.

I suppose most of all I love a book that can make me care about things I did not know I would care about.  And in that regard above all, this is a great book.

Bunny Trails: The publishing company of this book intrigues me.  The book was published in November 2009 by Twelve.  They publish at most one book a month and invest in the long term success of the books they publish.  When I have time, I will read the other books published by Twelve.  Theoretically, if I can catch up with what they have published so far, I should be able to keep up by reading one book a month.  Woo!  I need another reading project!  Well, no I don’t.  But I am excited to have one.

What I am Reading This Week: Blink

Tuesday, July 27th, 2010

Next in the leadership series…

Blink, The Power of Thinking Without Thinking


Malcolm Gladwell

I liked this book very much, maybe even more the second time than the first.

Five stars!


That’s all I’ve got.  Also, I took careful note of the cover on this one.  White like the rest of his books.  Classy white, not boring white.  I love it.

Bunny Trails: Now I want to go back and read Tipping Point, Outliers and What the Dog Saw again.  Malcolm Gladwell may very well be my favorite author.

More Bunny Trails: Click here to see a video of my brother Dave Nelson of Secret Penguin and Matt Helt playing paddleball with Malcolm Gladwell.  That would actually lend itself better to a discussion of Tipping Point, but once again, that’s what I’ve got.  And how fun!!