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Archive for the ‘Club Member of the Month’ Category

Musings, Memories and Miscellany from our MoM’s

Thursday, January 5th, 2012

James L. (JimiJam) was named our Member of the Month in August 2011.

 

How long have you been a PBS member?  It’s been a little over 4 1/2 years now, though it honestly feels as if it’s been much longer than that. I can’t fathom how I got on before joining the Swap.

 

How did you find PBS?  My partner at the time had been a member for a few weeks, and kept pestering me to join as well. I remember being severely skeptical for quite a while. I guess I thought it unlikely that I’d find good titles in acceptable condition; my only experiences with used books up to that point had left quite a bit to be desired. When persistence failed to convince me, she resorted to more devious measures: she requested a book she knew I couldn’t resist. I wish I could recall what that book’s title was. As I think back, there’s a blur between my skepticism and filling in my information, reading through the Help Center, and placing the first requests on my own account.

 

How has PBS impacted your life? What does PBS mean to you?  The effects of my new life as a Swapper were almost immediate. I had always been a reader, and had been through more titles than ever during the first 5 months of that year. In retrospect, I liken that pace to a snail’s when compared to the Atlas V rocket of Swap life. I suddenly found myself within easy reach of hundreds of titles from every category along the spectrum of my preferences. It wasn’t long before I reached that point of realizing that every day is like Christmas when you’re a Swapper. I learned to use bibliographies in the first of my Swap books to discover even more titles, branching off into new topics and genres. To me the Swap was, and continues to be, a nigh-inexhaustible source of knowledge, insight, and entertainment. I found vintage copies of favorite books; out of print books now invaluable to my c.v.; titles of which I had heard but had never yet encountered in person; titles of which I had never heard, and now value above most others. What’s more, I discovered that there’s more to the Swap than books; the friends I’ve made in my time here have been the most sincerely and undeniably wonderful people I’ve ever known. Much as I’d be lost without the Swap, I’d be doubly lost without those friends. All in all, the very course of my life life itself was arrested and redirected toward an ever-increasingly excellent state of existence.

 

What book impacted you most as a child or young adult?  I have been most fortunate as a reader, in that I’ve discovered dozens of titles that have been essential to my continued development as a person. It has been a surprisingly frequent occurrence, to find myself claiming “This book completely changed my life!”. Among these are: The Prophet by Kahlil Gibran; Steppenwolf by Hermann Hesse; Notes from Underground by Fyodor Dostoevsky; Escape from Freedom, The Art of Loving, The Art of Being, To Have or to Be, all by Erich Fromm; On Writing, by Stephen King; A Scanner Darkly, by Philip K. Dick; Stranger in a Strange Land, by Robert A. Heinlein; The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, by Douglas Adams; Good Omens, by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett; The Sandman series by Neil Gaiman; Diagnosis of Man by Kenneth Walker; The Image, by Daniel J. Boorstin; and, easily the most important of all, Frank Herbert’s Dune. I’ve reread Dune countless times, having revisited it at least once each year since first reading it as a teen. I could honestly go on for days about what I think of this book, and what reading it and its sequels has done for my life.

 

What is your favorite or most meaningful book read as an adult? Aside from Dune, the book that likely had the biggest impact on my life as an adult would probably be Erich Fromm’s Escape from Freedom. It helped me to better understand so much about myself and the world in which we live, and did more to further me along my personal path–at a time when I most needed it–than any other book I’ve ever read. I now own a dozen or so of Fromm’s works, each of which have proven invaluable to my continued education and development.

What are you reading now? I usually keep a dozen or more books going at a time, but chiefest among these at present are: Becoming a Writer, by Dorothea Brande; Beneath the Wheel, by Hermann Hesse; Gulliver’s Travels, by Jonathan Swift; Civilization and its Discontents, by Sigmund Freud; and The Transformations of Man, by Lewis Mumford.

 

        

 

Musings, Memories and Miscellany from our MoM’s

Wednesday, August 17th, 2011

Amanda S. (ABCatHome) was named our Member of the Month for July 2011.

 

Several years ago…September of 2005, to be exact…I finally became disgusted with the book choices from my local small-town library. I’d read most every book in the genres that I liked and then found out they would charge me money for each book I requested through inter-library loan. Knowing that would add up to be several dollars a month, I quickly began searching for a way to trade books with other book-lovers. After a quick search, PaperbackSwap came up in my results. I browsed the site for just a short time before I knew this was the site I wanted to be a part of. And thus began my addiction…

I honestly don’t remember the specific date that I became a Tour Guide, or when I was asked to be a Tour Guide Assistant Coordinator…I just know that I wanted to help this site grow and become the best book-swapping site that it could be, so every chance I had I stepped up. I also wanted to help other members navigate and learn how to use the site to its fullest potential for them. When the Team approached me about being the Book Bazaar Czar, I wanted to instantly say yes. But knowing that I was expecting our third child and how that would change my life, I wanted to be sure I could truly be committed to doing a good job. It didn’t take me long to realize I would make it work, no matter what.  Being a part of PBS is one area of my life that has stayed constant…no matter what I do, I always have PBS because it joins two of my favorite things in life: books and helping people!

I love to read books…and have enjoyed reading for as long as I can remember. My goal is to instill in my children the love for books, reading, and writing that I have. They get SO excited when they know they’ve ordered a book from PBS and they see that package come through the door…they can’t wait to open it and start reading their new books. As a homeschooling family, we gain a great deal of our knowledge from reading.

My husband, Terry, says that he needs to build me my own library to house all the books I’ve accumulated through swaps and games here at PBS. I’ve gotten very creative with how (and where) to store my books that are waiting to be read. But beyond the books, PBS is an extended family. The Tour Guides have shown me such love and encouragement in the gifts and cards they sent me when my daughter was born. And when my daughter’s birth started a year-long health battle for me, the Tour Guides and members alike showed their concern and their love through cards, PMs, emails, and more. Through the swap games in the  Games Forum I’ve found some great friendships, shared many laughs, and prayed with many members. So while I give back to PBS, the members here have given greatly to me as well.

My favorite set of books growing up was the Anne of Green Gables set by L.M. Montgomery. What a fabulous story of love and acceptance!!

As an adult, Francine Rivers has had a huge impact on me and my reading preferences. Her book, Redeeming Love, is a book all about forgiveness and love. I’ve read it 3 times now and pick it up to read at least once every couple of years. Truthfully, anything by Francine Rivers is a good read!

Other authors I love are Mary Connealy, Miralee Ferrell, Kim Vogel Sawyer, Lauraine Snelling, Debbie Macomber, and Charles Martin just to name a few. And while I truly enjoy Christian Fiction the most, I also read Contemporary Fiction and Chick Lit.

Right now, I’m working my way through the Sons of Encouragement series by Francine Rivers and Bringing up Boys by Dr James Dobson.

 

 

 

 

If you have any nominations for Member of the Month, submit them to us here.  Your nomination will not “expire”–anyone you nominate will have a chance at getting Member of the Month if enough nominations accumulate over time. Each month the person who has the most votes accumulated when the Newsletter goes to press gets to be Member of the Month and gets a newsletter mention and a nifty MoM icon to wear on profile and forum posts with pride.  So go for it! Tell us who’s helped you in the Forums, who’s been a great swapper, who in your opinion is a credit to PBS.  We are keeping a list of all the nominated members.  Who knows–one of them might be YOU!

Memories, Musings and Miscellany from our MoM’s

Saturday, August 6th, 2011

Today our featured Member of the Month is Cozette M. (CozSnShine)

who was named our member of the month in December 2007


How long have you been a PBS member?  

Seems like forever in some ways.  How does one make so many friends, play so many games, swap so many books and have so many discussions in just 1,200 days or so??  Signed up on Feb. 05, 2007.   Don’t add up those days, I’m sure my math is spot on!


How did you find PBS?

I read an article about PBS in some magazine, wrote down the name and promptly forgot about it.   A few months later I came across the name again and here I am!


How has PBS impacted your life?

Wow! that is quite the question.  I guess it would be an overstatement to say that PBS has become my life, but at times it feels that way.  I’ve said before that PBS is more than about books, it’s about community.  I’ve found so many new authors and books I’d never pick up, before, in a million years.  But I’ve also found so many FRIENDS, who I’d never have interacted with if it were not for PBS.  People who do not think like me, who were not raised like me, who I wouldn’t have any reason to meet in real life.  But I come on PBS and here they are, the good and the bad, the caring and the UNcaring, the sensitive and the hard, the liberal and the conservative, the happy and the sad.   Those who interact with you and those who react to you.  People, people, people who make up the fabric of PBS and therefore, the fabric of my life.


What does PBS mean to you?

Paper back swap, what does it mean to you???  Good question.  It means I have a ready supply of both books and friends.  It means that I have support when I need it.  It means that when your loved one dies, there are hundreds that crowd around to surround you with love.  You may never see their faces but you always see their souls.

It means that in the middle of the night, when your heart is aching there is somewhere to go, somewhere to place your thoughts.  SomeONE who will hear you.

It means that I have a safe place to ask questions.  A place where I don’t expect everyone to agree with my ideas but where the majority will at least respect them.   It means that I can read and digest thoughts and ideas that are so foreign to mine that they shock me, and yet I can also value them.


Did you read as a child?

I was one of nine children, growing up on a farm in Kentucky.  We didn’t have much but we always had something to read.  I don’t remember my parents buying books when I was a child.   But we always had magazines and newspapers and books from our school.

Once when I was sick, my brother brought home my new health book, from my teacher.  When I went back to grade school a few days later the first thing my teacher said is, “I imagine you’ve read all of this already?”  She was right – I read it from cover to cover.


What was your favorite book growing up?

I’m not sure I had one.  Between the time I started junior high until I graduated, I read almost every book in our high school library.   I devoured them, sometimes so fast that I didn’t retain all the wonderfulness in them.  I remember going through a phase where I was reading about American heroes.  Our library has a set of books about them and I read them for weeks and weeks.


What is your favorite or most meaningful book read as an adult?

That seems to change as my taste change.  Certainly one of the most meaningful books I’ve ever read is  Banker To the Poor Micro-lending and the Battle Against World Poverty.   It completely changed my definition of poverty and changed my perceptions about it.

The Help, recently read, is one of my favorites.  Wonderful book with great insight into a world I grew up knowing about.




In Love and War by Sybil and Jim Stockdale will always have meaning for me as that introduced me to a world of POW’s that I knew little about.  I knew this couple in the later years of their lives but read the book long before then.





What are you reading now?

I normally only read one book at a time but seem to have several going right now.

I’m deep into Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand.  Not an easy read, but one with a lot of insight and meaning.

I’m also reading a Christian fiction book written in 1946.  It is interesting how the genre has changed over the years.  Not My Will by Francena H Arnold.




Just finished Silver Girl by Elin Hilderbrand, a great summer read.

Just finished Medals, Flags and Memories by John and Stacey Holley.  This is the true story of the death of their son in Iraq and their fight to have the fallen soldiers brought home with honor.  Recently meet this couple and they touched me deeply.




PBS is a source of so much for so many.  I watch and see how people love Lester and Marilyn, how they support Abbey and her girls and how they cheer others on and it just touches a deep cord in me.  It still gives me strength today as it did on the day my husband died.

We never know where the words we throw out there will land and what good or harm they might do.  On PBS they do a whole lot more good than harm.  If this was just another book swap, I’d probably be long gone.  But it’s a community of many, each of which is important and is loved by someone.



If you have any nominations for Member of the Month, submit them to us here.  Your nomination will not “expire”–anyone you nominate will have a chance at getting Member of the Month if enough nominations accumulate over time. Each month the person who has the most votes accumulated when the Newsletter goes to press gets to be Member of the Month and gets a newsletter mention and a nifty MoM icon to wear on profile and forum posts with pride.  So go for it! Tell us who’s helped you in the Forums, who’s been a great swapper, who in your opinion is a credit to PBS.  We are keeping a list of all the nominated members.  Who knows–one of them might be YOU!

MOM MOM MOM MOM MOM MOM MOM MOM MOM MOM MOM MOM MOM

Memories, Musings and Miscellany from our MoM’s

Wednesday, May 25th, 2011

Melody is today’s featured Member of the Month. She was named Member of the Month in June 2008.

 

Joining PBS special meaning for me. On March 1st, 2006, I brought my dog home after having her leg amputated the day before (due to a cancerous tumor). She was confined to a very small area in the living room. For 3-4 weeks, I camped out on the couch next to her as she healed with a stack of books nearby.

By the end of the third week, I had read all my books. I didn’t have money to buy anything new and couldn’t leave Sierra alone to go to the library. Then I saw an article in the newspaper about this website called PaperBackSwap.com. For a couple of days, I did research on these online book trading sites. In the end I decided that PaperBackSwap made the most sense and I joined up on the 31 March of 2006.

As I’m not working, I can’t justify spending money on books. PBS has given me the ability to have new reads without going broke. I’ve also been able to get rid of some books, though it didn’t work out quite as I suspected. I thought I’d be emptying shelves. Instead, I’ve got a box full of unread books and full shelves!

PBS has expanded my reading horizons as well. I tend to read books rather than authors. I’m easily bored if I read too many books in a row that are similar. Through the members on PBS, I’ve found so many different books to read. I’ve read authors I never heard of before joining and picked up books based on others recommendations. It’s so much easier to take a chance on a book when you aren’t spending twenty bucks on it. I’ve found a love for Anne Lamott, Marek Halter, Rett MacPhersonAnita Diamant, and Tracy Chevalier through PBS. There is no way to get into a reading rut when you’re a member of PBS!

But, PBS means more to me than books. I’ve been a member of the online community since I joined up. At first I lurked, trying to get a feel for the dynamics of the group. Giving the number of posts I’ve written, I’ve probably been too active.

I consider the people here my friends. They’ve helped me through some tough times and cheered me through some happy ones. This is an incredibly supportive and diverse bunch of people.

I am a lifelong reader. I think I may have been born with books in my hands, which explains why the delivery was difficult for my Mom. I remember we had this multi-volume set of children’s classics. Even before I could read, I was familiar with all the stories in every book. If someone finds those books, they can open up to the page for Heidi and find my name written there with backwards letters.

Growing up, I loved Amelia Bedelia, Mrs. Piggle Wiggle, Encyclopedia Brown, and The Borrowers. I devoured books in the school library, the bookmobile, the local public library, and still begged my Mom to buy me books from the monthly Scholastic books newsletter.

Island of the Blue Dolphins by Scott O’Dell and The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton would be at the top of my all time favorites list. Though, I think Go Ask Alice was the one book that stayed with me long after I read it. I grew up in the 1970s and I knew a few people who went down the same path and never returned.

There are a few of books which I found meaningful that I read as an adult. Far too many to list, so I’ll give you these: Roots by Alex Haley, Love, Medicine and Miracles by Bernie Siegel, The Color Purple by Alice Walker, Grace (Eventually) by Anne Lamott, and Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse.

I am currently reading Her Daughter’s Eyes by Jessica Barksdale Inclan.

 

If you have any nominations for Member of the Month, submit them to us here.  Your nomination will not “expire”–anyone you nominate will have a chance at getting Member of the Month if enough nominations accumulate over time. Each month the person who has the most votes accumulated when the Newsletter goes to press gets to be Member of the Month and gets a newsletter mention and a nifty MoM icon to wear on profile and forum posts with pride.  So go for it! Tell us who’s helped you in the Forums, who’s been a great swapper, who in your opinion is a credit to PBS.  We are keeping a list of all the nominated members.  Who knows–one of them might be YOU!

Memories, Musings and Miscellany from our MoM’s

Saturday, May 7th, 2011

Today our featured MoM is Patty P. (Patouie) who was named Member of the Month for October 2009

 

Yes — it was October, when the woman with the octuplets had just been in the news. So someone nicknamed me OctoMoM.

So… who else here sat through Dick and Jane books in first grade, reading ahead to discover the thrilling denouement — will Rex run fast?… will Mother be wearing that same dress and apron? — and getting into trouble for not being on the right page? I’m sure I’m not alone.

Some of my favorite books are still children’s books — as a toddler, I felt understood by the author of The Pokey Little Puppy. The first chapter book I read to myself was called The Oregon Trail. It was five or six inches thick at the time. (It has since shrunk.) I didn’t want to come to the last page, and spent some time that summer trying unsuccessfully to design a circular book that would never end.

One of my nicknames growing up was Patty-First-Lemme-Just.

“Turn off the light now.”

“Okay, but first lemme just finish this chapter.”

Two hours later someone would think to check on me. I hadn’t noticed the end of the chapter. Really.

I decided at some point in my twenties that I could write formula romances as well as the next person, and read a whole bunch of them to get the feel of it. It was an overdose. The result was that I cringe at the word “Silhouette”. Kind of like when your mom lets you eat the whole bowl of frosting.

Having my own kids was a wonderful excuse to blend children’s books back into my chosen genres of general literature (a favorite is The Prince of Tides by Pat Conroy), historical fiction (my first was Hawaii by Michener), biography (how about John Adams — or anything by David McCullough?), and general non-fiction (Bronowski’s The Ascent of Man fascinated me, or more recently “Before the Dawn : Recovering the Lost History of Our Ancestors“.)

I’ve started a list here of my favorite children’s literature. You can find it on my Profile. A number of members have added wonderful books to it. When the kids were young, we would rotate who got to choose the book, so we’d read “Treasure Island,” followed by “Mathilda” and “The Princess Bride.” I can still recite aloud the Edward Lear poem “The Jumblies”, and “Winkin’, Blinkin’ and Nod.” As the kids started to read to themselves, I told them they were only allowed to learn to read if they still let me read aloud to them. 🙂 We would read The Harry Potter books to each other, and one of our favorites was The Golden Compass. We’d always have a book in the car.

When my kids were in middle school/high school, I hated the idea of reading amazing books, maybe sharing them with family members, but then having them just sit there. So I set up a little lending library of my current favorites on a shelf near the front door. Some of the books I placed there were The Life of Pi, Water for Elephants, Angela’s Ashes, Pastwatch: The Redemption of Christopher Columbus, 1776 by McCullough, Like Water for Chocolate, Animals in Translation. I don’t think any of the people coming and going in the house ever took me up on it and borrowed a book, but at least my family always knew where to find a winner.

I read about PaperBackSwap somewhere in 2005, and mentioned it to my daughter when she was home for college. She joined, and as I saw her packages start to arrive, I joined. Getting that first book is a little like a first kiss. Very special. I understood the concept of this site somewhere in my gut. It was that failed little lending library on my shelf, but on a grand scale. At first it was hard to mail off a book I’d really loved, but then I told myself that I was storing my favorite books in other people’s homes.

Soon I was volunteering as a tour guide, and on the data editing and book cover image teams — what an amazing group of people. And participating in Ani’s Tea Swap. (I’m drinking some Gingerbread ice tea someone sent me right now.) I’m a lifer.

 

If you have any nominations for Member of the Month, submit them to us here.  Your nomination will not “expire”–anyone you nominate will have a chance at getting Member of the Month if enough nominations accumulate over time. Each month the person who has the most votes accumulated when the Newsletter goes to press gets to be Member of the Month and gets a newsletter mention and a nifty MoM icon to wear on profile and forum posts with pride.  So go for it! Tell us who’s helped you in the Forums, who’s been a great swapper, who in your opinion is a credit to PBS.  We are keeping a list of all the nominated members.  Who knows–one of them might be YOU!

Member of the Month

Monday, January 24th, 2011

Greg H. (VOSTROMO)

If you have spent any time in our Discussion Forums, you know Greg. He’s the one whose posts make you spit coffee onto your keyboard.  He’s the one who shares the funniest links – we don’t know where he finds them – and most surprising stories!  Many members wrote in, all saying the same thing –  basically, “Thanks to Greg for brightening my day!”  One of Greg’s recent posts began:

Here’s one that’s cool because it’s true: the sum total of written human knowledge can be contained in a single line notched on a stick.

(See Greg’s explanation for this statement in the post here.)

We’ll get around to notching this on a stick at some point but for now, accept our digital thanks for brightening so many members’ days with your gentle wit and your always-positive, often thought-provoking and usually hilarious posts. You are our Member of the Month for January.  Congratulations!

If you have any nominations for Member of the Month, submit them to us here. Your nomination will not “expire”–anyone you nominate will have a chance at getting Member of the Month if enough nominations accumulate over time. Each month the person who has the most votes accumulated when the Newsletter goes to press gets to be Member of the Month and gets a newsletter mention and a nifty MoM icon to wear on profile and forum posts with pride.  So go for it! Tell us who’s helped you in the Forums, who’s been a great swapper, who in your opinion is a credit to PBS.  We are keeping a list of all the nominated members.  Who knows–one of them might be YOU!

Club Member of the Month…

Friday, December 17th, 2010

MEMBER OF THE MONTH

Robin K. (jubead)

Robin is one of our Tour Guide Leaders, and is also a Data and Image Approver.   We have gotten lots of nominations for Robin from both her fellow volunteers and “random” members whom she has helped in her role as Tour Guide.  We ourselves appreciated her patient help while we were sorting out some recent issues with the image uploading.  She’s really something special.

Just some examples of the comments we got:

“Her dedication to PBS is wonderful!”

“She’s always ready and willing to assist members, along with fellow TG’s when they need help. She’s friendly and professional and a great asset to PBS.

“I had an issue with another swapper and contacted Robin K. (jubead) for assistance. I wanted to let you know that Robin was very thorough and very prompt in helping me with my issue – the service went above and beyond the normal call of duty! Great job!

“My first swaps went so easily because Robin helped me with every step. Now I feel like a pro swapper, thanks to her.  She was really there for me when I needed a helping hand!”

“She’s very sweet and friendly, and made me feel very welcome in the club.  She’s a great ‘poster girl’ for PBS.”

Robin, all your hard work is really appreciated!  It’s no surprise that “jubead” our Member of the Month for December.  Congratulations!

If you have any nominations for Member of the Month, submit them to us here. Your nomination will not “expire”–anyone you nominate will have a chance at getting Member of the Month if enough nominations accumulate over time. Each month the person who has the most votes accumulated when the Newsletter goes to press gets to be Member of the Month and gets a newsletter mention and a nifty MoM icon to wear on profile and forum posts with pride.  So go for it! Tell us who’s helped you in the Forums, who’s been a great swapper, who in your opinion is a credit to PBS.  We are keeping a list of all the nominated members.  Who knows–one of them might be YOU!