Books and More Books

This year, I’m really rediscovering my love not only of books (never doubted that one) but of writing. More on that later, but in the meantime it’s long overdue an update on my Reading Challenges for 2016! I just updated the “Books to Read 2016” page, which is my list of owned-but-never-read books that I am attempting to finish this year. I’m very bad at staying focused, so while I have read a total of 45 books for the year, I’m only at 15/45 from that list. Yikes! Need to work on that. But, while I do have reading goals, I am trying to follow the advice of my new mug and read what I love!

Screen Shot 2016-06-15 at 6.06.11 PM

Lovely mug courtesy of the Bookworm Boutique. Besides the shop, she has a beautiful Instagram @bookwormboutique and a book review blog.

Squirrel! Anyway, back to the reading challenges…

The challenge I wrote about doing with some friends is still going strong! Out of 50 categories (my original goal was 12, I’ve since raised it to 36) I’m at 26. Some of them are kind of stretches for me, but it’s fun. We’re not making the list public at this point, but it’s kind of like the PopSugar 2016 Reading Challenge.

I’m going to get back into doing book reviews. For the above challenge, in order to be able to officially list a book we had to write at least a brief review of it on GoodReads, and writing those has motivated me to write more detailed ones. I’ll be posting them here, and on GoodReads, and some on LibraryThing. I’ve been pretty lucky to be selected for a few ARCs from the Early Reviewers group this year, and it seems to be a fun, easy way to score a free book. And since free books don’t feel like failing at my book-buying ban…score! Besides the ER group, I’m expecting my first book from Blogging for Books soon (soon being a relative term ย – overseas media mail shipping takes almost 6 weeks, usually) and can’t wait to get on reviewing from them too!



This is me, pretty much all the time lately. About everything. I’m struggling with feeling guilty again. About…everything. I’m not sure why. I feel like something must have caused it, but I’m not sure what, unless it’s just the stress of new job/new place/new life. But usually that would make me happy, so…I don’t know.

Anyone, tonight my back was aching and felt like a stretch would do some good. I was sitting eating dinner and thinking about the Pilates classes I used to attend, how much I missed them and what good some of the moves would probably do my back. Then I got the idea to look at YouTube for some Pilates videos…long story short, I stumbled onto Fightmaster Yoga. And for the first time in a long time, I’m feeling reasonably inspired to get off my ass. Leslie has a Yoga Fix 90 series that….well…feels doable and challenging at the same time. I have more time on my hands than I know what to do with right now. I can only write so many letters and stitch so long before my twitchy self loses patience. I’m seriously considering trying to make this 90 day challenge my new thing. I’m not sure if trying 90 days in a row is a good idea, because knowing me, something will distract me partway through and if my goal was 90 in a row I’ll be devastated at missing a day. On the other hand, most of the workouts are less than 45 minutes. And it’s yoga. Yoga is amazing, unlike most other forms of working out, which are usually just disguised torture.

Hmm. Hmm, hmm, hmm. I want to measure and plan, but on the other hand, some part of me says I should just jump in. But, I don’t have a mat! I want a journal to record each day! I need a motivation image! I…I just need to do something.

Book Baristas’ Birthday Challenge

Book Baristas is having a little 10 day challenge over on their Instagram, in honor of their one-year anniversary. I’m having so much fun I decided to post my pics for the challenge over here too! Because of course, the obsession continues. I had another book arrive in my mailbox today!!! ๐Ÿ˜€ ๐Ÿ˜€ ๐Ÿ˜€


Day 1: Book and a cafe drink…because what else would you be drinking while reading?

012Day 2: Books that made you cry.

I don’t have all my books, so the only other real tear-jerker I can think of isn’t here. I’m not counting books that just made me tear up a little, but the ones that actually had tears coming down my face. The list is pretty short, actually.

Rules of War:

Rule #1: Good men will die.
Rule #2: Not even Doc can change Rule #1.
Rule #3: For his brothers, Doc will die trying to change both Rule #1 and Rule #2.

I really don’t have anything else to say, other than this is where my heart is. I may not be in a combat arms position, but that doesn’t change the fact that my job is to conserve the fighting strength of my brothers and sisters, and if and when the time comes, to look Death in the face and say, “Not today. Not on my watch.”

Or so they tell me. We’ll see if I pass the test when my turn comes.

Time Out of Mind

I’ve had a lot on my mind the past few weeks. Actually the last several months, but as my time in school is almost finished my thoughts are shifting more and more to home, and my family. I’ve been away so long. The worst part is, I’m not even sure we’ll get to be together when I’m finished. It’s all still up in the air. We’ll be together eventually, and it’ll be worth it, but right now…we’re still waiting. It might be another year or more before we can be physically together again, and sometimes that really feels like too much to take. Like I’m asking too much – of them, of myself. My heart hurts. I have a little hope that it might get better sooner, but I’m bracing for the worst.

Since I don’t have much to say, here are a few of the little inspirational things that have given me a lift recently. Some are from FB, some friends sent to me.



Distance also means you don’t mind dishes in the sink or socks on the floor, because you know it means there was someone there to make the mess.




I had this taped up on my mirror for a long time.


Hard work, work…





This is so true…because in the end it really is worth it.


And this one I really want to buy and hang up or put on my desk.



Dare You to Move

This is kind of where I am today. Been doing a lot, a lot, of thinking.

Welcome to the planet
Welcome to existence
Everyone’s here
Everyone’s here
Everybody’s watching you now
Everybody waits for you now
What happens next
What happens next

I dare you to move
I dare you to move
I dare you to lift yourself up off the floor
I dare you to move
I dare you to move
Like today never happened
Today never happened before

Welcome to the fallout
Welcome to resistance
The tension is here
Tension is here
Between who you are and who you could be
Between how it is and how it should be

Maybe redemption has stories to tell
Maybe forgiveness is right where you fell
Where can you run to escape from yourself?
Where you gonna go?
Where you gonna go?
Salvation is here

I dare you to move
I dare you to move
I dare you to lift yourself up off the floor
I dare you to move
I dare you to move
Like today never happened
Today never happened
Today never happened
Today never happened before.

More Stitching

I’ve been sneaking moments to work on the quilt, even with my recent 10 hour work days. It’s like a siren call…I can’t help but stay up too late to put just one. more. piece. together. The top is almost finished except for the borders, one of which I will have to buy fabric for, and I haven’t quite decided what to do for the back yet. So I suppose after I get the first border on it will sit for a bit while I ruminate on what to do.

The cat was quite approving.

Meanwhile, I have Heidi’s song stuck in my head.