Give me neither poverty nor riches, but give me only my daily bread - Proverbs 30:8

Friday, February 12, 2016

What I'm Reading in 2016 - volume 1



In an effort to better record what I'm reading, I thought I would do a monthly round-up here with some of my thoughts. I do keep track in Goodreads, and also write titles of what I've read in a journal (I started the journal in June 2001), but I rarely take the time to write up my thoughts or feelings about the books I'm reading.

(these aren't book reviews as much as how the book has inspired me)


The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo - This was a re-read for me and I found it inspiring in a different way. The first time I read the book I was inspired by the concept of keeping only the things that spark joy in my life. After reading the book a second time, I realized the reason I was still struggle to keep my space tidy is that I didn't follow her method thoroughly. It's very easy to be inspired while reading the book, but the process of going through all your items takes longer and it's easy to get derailed. I'm hoping to see this through this time.



Essentialism by Greg McKeown - Reading this book was a great way to keep my decluttering inspiration alive. Within the first few pages, Mr. McKeown suggests that we can live our lives in one of two ways - by design or by default. This book deals a lot more with the activities that take our energy and time and less with physical clutter, but it has been a great next step for me and has caused me to evaluate absolutely everything I am committed to.



To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee - Can you believe I've never read this book? I can't. After the hype of Harper Lee's second book released this past summer, I was inspired to read this great American classic. I can absolutely see why this book is loved by so many, and I look forward to reading it again some day. That being said, I have no desire to read Go Set a Watchman, as I've heard mixed reviews about it.



Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert - This is one of those books I've seen photographed and on instagram, so when I saw it on my library shelf I grabbed it. Ms. Gilbert explores the process of creativity and encourages her readers to pursue it no matter the cost and regardless of the outcome. I was encouraged and inspired to pursue my passion for playing violin a little more intentionally - to view it as something that brings me joy and less as something I ought to do.




Rising Strong by Brene Brown - This was my first Brene Brown read and I didn't finish it. I definitely gleaned some wisdom and insight from it, but I found it so easy to put down. I have a feeling that I should start with one of her earlier books and then come back to this one. She kept referring to her previous work in her earlier books, and I think it would be helpful to have that foundation. Also, the book was due and that was reason enough for me to let it go.



The Girl You Left Behind by Jojo Moyes - I'd heard a couple different references to this author and was able to pick up this book at my local library. I was looking for Me Before You (probably her most popular novel), but found this instead. I absolutely loved this story and am glad this was my introduction to this author. The story line alternates between two settings - World War 1 and modern day - and is centered around a painting called "The Girl You Left Behind".



read alouds with my girls:
The Miraculous Journey of Eduard Tulane by Kate DiCamillo - This was actually a re-read for us. We read it quickly so we could have book club with our friends and discuss it. It's a sweet story about the life of a china rabbit. It's story line made for an interesting analysis.


Poppy and Poppy and Rye by Avi - My oldest daughter read this series years ago, and the book Poppy was on our Arrow list (part of our curriculum from Bravewriter). Although Poppy is the second book in the series, I fell in love with the story and the author's style of writing. It's been a while since I've read a good story where animals are the main characters.



I'd love to hear what you reading or your thoughts on any of the books above.

11 comments:

  1. Great reads so far! I am getting into "Americanah" by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie - highly recommend!!

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  2. Thanks for sharing. I've been reading "The Forty-Day Word Fast" by Tim Cameron, "Living in the Miraculous" by Katerine Ruonala and "God's Law of Attraction' by Patricia King.
    All 3 books are written by Christians and they are life-changing. I highly recommend all of them.

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    1. these sounds good...I'll check them out.

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  3. I also needed to read Marie Kondo's book more than once. There's only so much time I can spend tidying so I need to be remotivated after awhile. But another four bags and a bin of stuff left this house yesterday and my scarves are now folded and standing on edge in a drawer where I can see them all at once.

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    1. Isn't it freeing to get the stuff out? I still have a long way to go - I don't seem to get around to it every day, but I'll get there.

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  4. I love 'To Kill a Mockingbird'! I did read 'Go Set a Watchman', had to. I am glad I read it, not my most favorite book. I love following what you are reading on Goodreads. It is my favorite way to add books to my 'want to read' list :)

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  5. I re-read To Kill A Mockingbird this past year in preparation for Go Set A Watchman. I love the first but the second was a hard one. It sounds like it was a more truthful book for her, which is sad in many ways. I got the Tidying Up book for Christmas and, even though I thought I had been making progress decluttering before the book, I now have 6 bags ready to donate and have more areas yet to go through. I really would like to read Big Magic. I hear Brene Brown's name often but have not read anything from her as yet.

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  6. You've got some really good books listed here! I've read everything except Essentialism which I actually have on hold at the library right now! Well, that and the Poppy book. . . which I might have to look into as a read aloud. Thanks for the recommendation!

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  7. I found I got rid of more things on my second go-around of KonMari as well! I was just thinking it might be time for a third round. I know she says you find your sweet spot and should never have to tidy again, but I'm not sure I'll ever get there. I like thrift shopping too much! I also read Big Magic and recently read To Kill A Mockingbird for the first time. I've had Rising Strong on my nightstand for a long time, but heard the other day that you shouldn't start with that book, so thankfully I was able to pick up Daring Greatly at the library to read first.

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  8. Rising Strong and Essentialism are on my list of books to read this year too! I have heard great things about both. Yes, go back and read some of Brene's earlier books or watch her Ted talks. They are great!

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