Planning My Winter Reading (a Little Early)

My stack of fall books is sitting on the corner of my desk.  I have only completed 2 out of 26 of those fall books.  I may have *accidentally* ordered some books through the library again.  Look, accidents happen, okay?

But today I started thinking about what I want to read this winter.

The idea just kind of struck me today.  I feel like there are a handful of books that I haven’t read but have always wanted to.  These are the books that I have to explain “I’ve been meaning to get around to” whenever someone asks me about them but also books that I’ve just been wanting to read.  I made a list of 10 that I will base my winter reading off of.

  1. The Hobbit
  2. The Lord of the Rings
  3. The Two Towers
  4. The Return of the King- Why is it that suddenly EVERYONE loves The Lord of the Rings?  I mean, I know that Tolkien has been a thing for a long time but I feel like I am surrounded by hard core fans lately.  I will indulge them.  Or try to.  Again.
  5. Little Women– The only reread on this list!  Woot!  I’ve been thinking a lot about this book lately and a friend said she would like to read it too if I could hold off a bit.  No problems there!
  6. Rebecca– I think that I have spent two years picking this book up and putting down with a dramatic, “I have too many books to read!”
  7. The Group– Honestly, I just want a big, fat book and this one keeps popping up.
  8. The Valley of the Dolls– I started this one years ago and put it aside because of college.  It’s been that long.
  9. Wuthering Heights– At this point, I should know the story well enough that I don’t need to read it.  This is one of those books that everyone just assumes that I’ve read.  I’d like to, you know, actually read it.
  10. The Count of Monte Cristo– Real talk.  A while ago Hubby and I were at a party and a friend of a friend kept making very snooty proclamations.  I like to put on a fake accent as I recount it.  “Merlot is simply the only wine I’ll buy.”  “I HATE ales and simply refuse to drink them.”  “Dumas is simply the BEST author.  If you haven’t read The Count of Monte Cristo I don’t believe that you can even call yourself a reader.”  Seriously.  When it was suggested to me as a great follow-up to War and Peace, I decided to give it another shot… and haven’t.

For now, I am working on my self-help book, chipping away at my e-book, and killing it with the Hygge book.


Fall Reading List

Hello, ladies and gents!  As I mentioned yesterday, I made my fall reading list the other day.  It was a very scientific process of listing all of the books in my TBR pile in pretty pens, making a progress bar, and then decorating.  Scientific.  Still, I thought that I would share it with you.  Also, if I manage to finish this giant list by December 21, I’ll buy myself a subscription to Book of the Month Club or Audible.

Fall Reading List 2018

  1. Jay’s Journal
  2. The Perks of Being a Wallflower
  3. The Little Book of Hygge
  4. Unwasted
  5. How Soccer Explains the World
  6. Turtles All the Way Down
  7. 10% Happier
  8. The Reef
  9. Firestarter
  10. Blood and Chocolate
  11. The Bell Jar
  12. Nature Fix
  13. Purity
  14. The 12 Week Year
  15. Oh Crap!  Potty Training
  16. The Resurrection of Joan Ashby
  17. Living Danishly
  18. Loving and Leaving the Good Life
  19. The Dungeon Master
  20. Sleep Smarter
  21. Howl’s Moving Castle
  22. Nightingale
  23. Elevation
  24. Joyfull
  25. Dark Places

This seemed like a really long list but I just realized that reading 25 books/quarter is how you read 100/year.


Happy reading!

Listy #52- The Last List

Here is a list of lists I made in the past year.

List List!

  1. Movies
  2. Songs
  4. Interwebs
  5. Books
  6. Firsts
  7. 10 Things About My Birthday
  8. Food
  9. I want…
  10. A to Z
  11. Childhood and Current Dream Jobs
  12. Things That Feel Like Home
  13. Essentials
  14. Always Look on the Bright Side of Life
  15. Places I Want to Go
  16. Things that Make Me Happy
  17. Comforts
  18. Words
  19. Clothes
  20. Currently
  21. To Do List
  22. The Joy List
  23. Songs Stuck in My Head
  24. Podcasts
  25. Double Trouble
  26. Shit Needs to Get Done
  27. Games
  28. TBR
  29. Home Essentials
  30. Television
  31. Awesome Things
  32. Things that Always Make Me Happy
  33. Halloween is Grinch Night
  34. CD’s in My Car
  35. Every Cat I’ve Ever Owned
  36. Thankful
  37. Winter Things
  38. Jobs I’ve Had
  39. Abundance
  40. Books Bought This Year
  41. Best Books Read 2016
  42. Why I’m Tired
  43. Things I Want for Maternity Leave
  44. Things I’ve Been Thinking About Reading
  45. A-Z Great Words
  46. Books I’ve Almost Bought Today
  47. Podcasts
  48. Ways to Feel Better
  49. To Dos
  50. List List!

So, you guys… I apparently skipped a couple of numbers back there.  And I DO NOT CARE.  I’m over it!  I’m calling this a success!  No more weekly lists!

I’m kind of out of lists to make! lol.

Listy #51: To Dos

Next week is our last list!  We’ll have made it a whole year!  Actually, a touch more than a year because I missed at least one week.  Anyway, I admit that I am kind of happy about the whole thing being done.  I’ll have stuck with it for a year and that’s awesome but I am running out of ideas!

Today I wanted to share my to do list with you again because it is a touch out of control.  There are a lot of things that I just can’t do because the nursery isn’t quite done yet.  But, I promise, as soon as it is I am going to let the nesting monster loose.  I’ve been keeping her in check for long enough.

My To Do List

  • Clean bedroom
  • Clean office
  • Clean nursery
  • Clean Bathroom
  • Clean Hall
  • Clean kitchen
  • Clean dining room
  • Clean living room
  • Clean stairs/entry
  • Clean basement (This is mostly picking up bottles and trash and empty glasses.)
  • Go through jewelry.  (A coworker gave me a bag of jewelry last week?  No idea why.)
  • Distribute donations.  (More complicated.  At least two loads to Goodwill.)
  • Dye hair.  (Seriously.  By my shower on Saturday.  Preferably tomorrow night but tomorrow night we are hauling our couch out and getting one from my mom.)
  • Book donations.  (Sorting books and getting the nice ones to the used book store and the crappy ones to the trash.)
  • Go bag.  (For the hospital.  Just in case because my mom had my brother a month early and I am totally not ready. lol.)
  • Water bottles  (They need to be cleaned.)

Now, as a special addition to this list, I would like to share with you, pasted from my other blog, what my house is like right now.  Ready?

In my bedroom, the top half of my sewing desk is in front of my dresser.  The clean clothes are in the clothes hamper because I can’t get to the dresser.  The drawers from my sewing desk are split between being on the floor in front of the bed and being on the shelf leaning against my dresser which means that I also cannot quite access the stuff on top of my dresser which includes my bathroom stuff that can’t go back in the bathroom until the shelf it back in the bathroom which can’t go back until it’s painted which can’t be done until the trim is up.

In the office, my armchair is leaning against my desk and my desk is covered with stuff that came from the guest room.  The donations for the Goodwill and the used book store are in there and the bathroom stuff that can’t go back into the bathroom is stacked on top of it all.  Plus, there’s the vacuum cleaner and a big box of my sewing supplies.

In the hallways there’s a rolling bin of fabric piled high with outlet and switch covers.  The stuff to finish the bathroom is against the opposite wall, further down.  The linen closet door is open and leaning against the open door are the doors from the nursery.

In the kitchen, my painting project is on the stove because there was no other available surface.  The rest of the counters are mostly clear but there is a saw and saw table set up where the island usually is.

The island is in the dining area, in front of my  side of the kitchen table and the cat dishes.  There is a high chair in a box and a travel system in a box.  On top of those are bongos and boards.

In the living room?  An amp, a harp, five guitars, a ukulele.  Plus, random stuff that’s been piled around this stuff that I don’t even know what it is.  On the other side of the room, the lower part of my sewing desk on an old piece of carpet so it can be slid.

Listy #50- Ways to Feel Better

It’s been a kind of rocky week around here.  There has been some negativity floating around and I’m having a hard time with it because, you know, I’m tired and very pregnant and trying to keep myself together and trying to stay on top of things and the whole thing wears me out but I also have to pretend that it doesn’t because I’m Rachael and that’s what I do.  So there.  Fuck you.  Nothing phases me.

I think a lot about self care and all of that but something that I often forget about is that there are things that I can do to make myself feel better when I am feeling shitty.  There are things I can do that are NOT just working harder.  That’s the key here.  My go to:  Work Harder.  Right now? Not so much.  Sometimes working harder is actually not an option.

Things That Make Me Feel Better That Aren’t Working Harder

  1. Reading.  It really does make me feel better.  The only problem is that sometimes I have a hard time settling into it when I am really upset.  If I am patient, I can usually do just fine.
  2. Eating.  Okay, but you guys, I totally forgot that I can eat my feelings.  It’s obviously not something that is advisable but it definitely works in a pinch.  Monday night I ate an irresponsible amount of chip dip because I was upset.  And I felt better.  Chip dip is a great go-to.
  3. Shopping.  This is another thing that is not necessarily advisable but works.  Today I was upset so I bought myself some books.  I went to a used bookstore and spent $29 on six books, five of which I had been looking for in used stores for a while.  It felt good and I was excited about my purchases.
  4. Take a nap.  Obs, preferably with cats.
  5. Rachael Time.  This is something I discovered that I liked to do a couple of years ago when I came home from work and Hubby was asleep on the couch and the chair was otherwise occupied.  I make a cup of tea, grab a snack, get my book, go to my room, and prop myself up on my bed rest pillow and enjoy.  It’s kind of like a combo of a lo of things above but it’s totally nice.  In the summer there’s the fan.  In the winter there are throws.  If I’m alone the house is quiet and nice.

After another crazy day, I am already looking forward to getting home and doing a variation on #5.  Book, bed rest pillow, hip tilt and reading.  Close enough.

Listy #49- Podcasts

I told you guys about my little podcast problem on Tuesday.  I have a lot of podcasts to listen to.  I have a lot of podcasts to listen to.  I meant to repeat myself, there.  To emphasize my point.  I follow a lot of podcasts but I have some that I have NEVER listened to.  Why?  Because I have a way of doing things.  I have a way of doing everything.  I start at one end of my podcasts, and work my way to the other, completely catching up on one before I move on to the next.  So here I present a list of podcasts I subscribe to.

(Did I tell you guys that I am planning on plowing through my Ramona books and then slamming down my podcasts until I get back from maternity leave?  I finished Big Magic by Elizabeth Gillbert today and put in my next Ramona.  I have 5 audiobooks to get through and they are all about 2 hours long so it shouldn’t take me too long at all.)

Podcasts I Subscribe To

  1. The Writer’s Almenac
  2. NPR Books
  3. Philosophize This!
  4. Freakenomics
  5. Welcome to Nightvale
  6. Alice Isn’t Dead
  7. Book Riot
  8. The New Yorker: Fiction
  9. The Readers
  10. The Moth
  11. Adventures with Words
  12. Serial
  13. The Splendid Table
  14. All the Books!
  15. Literary Disco
  16. Fat Feminst Witch
  17. Get Booked
  18. 99% Invisible
  19. Eliza Starting at 16
  20. Zestology
  21. Lore
  22. The Allusionist
  23. The Mortified Podcast
  24. The Thrilling Adventure Hour
  25. On Being with Krista Tippett
  26. The Baby-Sitters Club Club
  27. In the Dark
  28. The Archers
  29. Biblioclast Podcast
  30. Book Club for Masochists
  31. BookD Podcast
  32. Book Fight
  33. The Librarian is In
  34. The Penguin Podcast
  35. Reading Envy
  36. Reading Women
  37. What Should I Read Next?
  38. Bookworm
  39. Happier with Gretchen Rubin
  40. My Favorite Murder
  41. Presidential

See what I mean?  I have a Problem.  Of these podcasts, I have listened to at least one episode of the first 20.  The others I have subscribed to, downloaded, and planned on getting to eventually.  Most of them I’ve only downloaded episodes that have come out since I subscribed but some I have the whole run of.  When I try something and like it, I go back and download every episode I can and binge.

Because I have a problem, you guys.  lol

Listy #48- Books I’ve Almost Bought Today

I imagine that it must be hard to be an alcoholic bartender.  It has to be kind of like being a bibliophile librarian.  There are days when I sit at my desk and a positively itch to read.  I want to pull any book off the shelf and just dive in.  I want to hide under my desk and read my book.  It takes all of my effort not to check out everything and order everything and make a big mess out of my TBR pile.

I’ve had a lot of those days lately.  I have been strong.

My name is Rachael and I’m addicted to books.

This morning I discovered that my favorite used book store is a 10 minute drive from the hospital where I have my doctor appointments and that said book store opens at 10 AM.  The only thing that kept me from running to the book store before my appointment was my complete and utter lack of speed.  (Seriously!  I didn’t screw around this morning and had an extra hour to get ready and somehow managed to almost be late.)

And do you know why I need to go to the used book store so badly?  Because I started reading the first book in a romance series and now I need them all.  And I need them before the baby comes.  I have no idea why I need them before the baby comes.  I think that my brain gets all haywire and thinks that it’s going to run out of things to read or that maybe a fluffy, fun romance will be all that I can handle.  But, seriously folks, I have fluffy romances and everything else under the sun.  I don’t need more books.  I could survive the zombie apocalypse on what I have.

Books I’ve Thought About Buying Today

  1. The Bridgertons series by Julia Quinn.  So, I am, like, almost halfway through the first in this series and I am enjoying it immensely.  When I was sick on Tuesday I tore through 120 pages and I was completely charmed.  Then I looked ahead to see what order the books went in and saw a character that I am DYING to know more about.  DYING.
  2. Nancy Drew.  I was reading Step Aside, Pops by Kate Beaton and there were some comics about Nancy Drew that were fabulous.  I have never read Nancy Drew but I suddenly knew that I would LOVE the books and that I needed the first 50 or so to get started.
  3. Anne of Green Gables books.  The whole series.  Also, never read.  Also, sure that I would love and find soothing while on maternity leave.  Even better, I own them on Kindle you guys.  I already freaking own them.
  4. The Heartland Trilogy by Chuck Wendig.  This has been going on for a while.  It’s called corn punk and I must read it.  Instead we keep doing this dangerous dance where I think about checking them out but don’t and then think about buying them but don’t.
  5. The Fairyland series by Catherynne M. Valenti.  I keep reading about how great these books are and I just really want to read them right now.  Out of nowhere.  For no reason.

So, while we’re on the topic, a quick update on this week: My stock pile of DVD’s is slowly dwindling.  I’m through season 4 of Eureka and last night I watch The Ring for the first time.  Yawn.  We just have The 10th Kingdom left to watch.  I just finished Ramona the Brave.  I am halfway through The Duke and I.  I am working through Step Aside, Pops. I am through 4 chapters of War and Peace.  Only 361 to go!  I am trying to decide if I should plow through some more audiobooks or take some time to listen to podcasts since, get this, they are currently taking up 36GB on my phone.  Eek!  But I can’t delete them!  I NEED them!

Again, my name is Rachael and I am an addict.