Month: January 2016

Book Fridays: Thoughts on reading

I have been doing a lot of reading this month and it feels good. I have momentum going and I don’t want to lose it. I’ve never been one to care about how many books I read and it wasn’t until two years ago that I started tracking my reading and participating in the Goodreads Reading Challenge. Having said that, I just read 10 books this month and it’s a meaningless statistic that I am excited about. It’s the most I have ever read in a month.

This year I am participating in the #readmyowndamnbooks challenge and so far I am happy with my efforts. I did just purchase a book  but it’s not a novel! And so I am allowing it. If you’re curious, I picked up The Whole30 the 30-day guide to total health and food freedom by Melissa Hartwig and Dallas Hartwig. My husband and I are starting Whole30 on February 1st and while this will be my second Whole30 I found that the book is a worthwhile investment especially for the recipes and food plans.

Reading is something that I enjoy. I love to read and I can get lost in a book to the point where I will want to shirk my responsibilities. It’s difficult to pry myself away and do mundane things like tidy up, make dinner and put my son to bed BUT I do these things and jump back into reading. I can’t read when I am feeling anxious or stress which is why I often take week long breaks from reading. When my anxiety peaks I find myself consumed by it and the last thing I want is to tarnish my most beloved pastime. Currently, my anxiety is under control and my life has taken a turn for the better which is why I am taking full advantage of my good mental health.

Diego started preschool this month and this has given me two days a week where I have a period of about 7 hours to myself. I try to do as much as I can around the house. Everything is easier and gets done faster when Diego isn’t here to interrupt me! I do miss him but we are both getting some much needed time away from each other. At first I thought I would read during his absence but I have found it much more appealing to be productive. At the moment, I am decluttering and reorganizing closets and drawers. It’s messy work but the end result will hopefully keep us organized. That might not seem like it has anything to do with reading but to me it has everything to do with reading. I like to be relaxed when I am reading. Clutter and outstanding chores get in the way of this so being organized allows me to spend more time reading and less time cleaning up.

Those are all the random thoughts for the day. Next week I will wrap up my reading month and share some thoughts on the books I read in January.

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Book Fridays: #ReadMyOwnDamnBooks

Last year I sorta lost steam with Book Fridays towards the end. I was reading faster than I was writing blog posts and I just felt like writing about the books I was reading had become a chore. So I took a break from doing that so that I could read in peace and regroup. I don’t consider myself a book reviewer but I suppose that any discussion of a book can be called a review of sorts. I am not sure what my approach will be this year but one thing I am definitely doing is participating in the #ReadMyOwnDamnBooks challenge. The point of this challenge is pretty straight forward: read books you already own rather than buying more books to add to your TBR pile. I really like this idea, especially after shopping my own shelves last year and realizing I had a bad habit of buying books and not reading them. I don’t have a lot of books compared to some but I do have a nice little pile of them that I am going to get through this year.

Currently, I have 11 books on my nightstand and 1 book on my Kindle. I also have a few more on my bookshelf downstairs. There are no set rules in this challenge, you decide how you want to tackle your pile of books. Some people want to knock a certain number of books out before allowing themselves any new purchases. Others, like me, are going cold turkey: NO NEW BOOKS UNTIL…these books are read. It’s OK not to finish a book (life is too short to read books we aren’t into). I am not purchasing or borrowing books from the library until I’ve gotten through at least most of the books I have at home. I’m planning to be strict on zero purchases but a library book or two might happen.

These are the books I’ve already read/ plan to read in 2016.

  1. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J. K. Rowling read
  2. Midnight Taxi Tango by Daniel José Older read
  3. The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls currently reading
  4. Negro: Este Color Que Me Queda Bonito by Benito Massó Jr.
  5. Perfume by Patrick Süskind
  6. Ishmael by Daniel Quinn*
  7. The New Moon’s Arms by Nalo Hopkinson
  8. The Demon King by Cinda Williams Chima
  9. Tom’s Midnight Garden by Philippa Pearce*
  10. Ghost Knight by Cornelia Funke
  11. Bellman & Black by Diane Setterfield
  12. The Zenith by Duon Thu Huong
  13. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix by J.K. Rowling
  14. Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince by J.K. Rowling
  15. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling
  16. The Queen by Tiffany Reisz

*denotes a re-read

I don’t plan to read these in any particular order. Once I finish a book I usually look at my TBR list and decide what I’m in the mood for. Most of the time I borrow books from the library but last year I discovered that Dollar Tree sells books and they’re not the kind of books I assumed they were (trash) so I loaded up on quite a few. I plan on writing about these Dollar Tree books soon.

How about you? Do you have a lot of books laying around? Consider reading your own damn books!

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