And then life happened …

So I had FULL intentions of blogging a lot this December. I had a whole pile of Christmas books I was going to read, giveaways I had planned, and all sorts of fun stuff, but then life sort of happened and now it’s the 17th and I’m WAY too busy to think about blogging.

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This month started off okay with another vampire book (vampires just scream Christmas, right?) and, like I said, the anticipation of reading all of my Christmas books, but then we had a death in the family which led to about 10 days of appointments, funerals, prayer services, and lots and lots of family. Aside from the circumstances, it was wonderful to see family I haven’t seen in so long and to see them play with the boy. We had a week and a half of crying and laughter, with a good dose of family bonding, and I think the family member we lost wouldn’t have had it any other way.

Once it was just the boy and me during the week, the last thing on my mind was reading or blogging. I’m slowly working my way through Stephanie Perkins’s book My True Love Gave To Me (some really cute stories, some just okay) and crocheting up a storm! For the longest time I had been meaning to pick up my crochet hooks and make something, but never did. My sister in law came over and was making a scarf and I got that bug again. Working on a LOT of Christmas gifts now and am woefully behind!

Thankfully, Christmas has been on the TV in full swing, plus lots of my favourite movies and shows, so it’s not hard to get up early and stay up late to get things done. Not only that, but I’ve been spending lots of time playing with my little guy (who, at this stage in life, is finding EVERYTHING hilarious) and relaxing with the husband. AND I’ve gone to two Christmas parties that were full of friends, laughter, and merriment.

We finally put up our Christmas tree about 10 days before Christmas and while I usually go all out with other decorations, it’s really only the tree, a display on the piano, and just a couple other knickknacks that were put out. Simple won this year. And it’s kind of a good thing. Instead of focusing on decking out the house, we’ve been focused on family. And that’s okay.

So, this is me saying Merry Christmas from Reading In Winter! I hope to be back in some way in the New Year. Here’s wishing you all a merry and festive holiday season and all the best in the New Year. May your New Year be full of amazing books, delicious tea, and whatever suits your fancy.

And remember, while it’s always nice to give to family and friends this year, think about other people, too. Maybe donate items to the homeless, or buy the coffee for the guy behind you in the Starbucks lineup, or shovel someone’s driveway. A good deed can go a long way!

Until 2015 …

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A Random Post About Random Things …

When I sat down to write a post for today, I had NO idea what to write about. I decided that even though I had a recap post yesterday, I’d go about writing a random post today, since yesterday’s was EXTREMELY book heavy. Here goes!

1. Last month I read 33 books. I feel like I’m still tired from all that reading. I’ve been reading the same book now since last Thursday and kind of loving that I’m going to bed with one book, waking up with one book, no books in between. At times I felt like I should pick up another book, but it felt nice to slow down and savour.

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2. My little boy turned a year. ONE YEAR. How did time go by so fast? Meanwhile, a friend of mine who I met through childrearing had her second baby, just a few days after my boy turned one. She’s SO tiny and I find myself not believing that my boy was once that little.

3. Speaking of birthdays, since I’m a new mom, I have to say that I still don’t understand the theory behind the “smash cake.” My husband and I have had talks about this and I’m glad that we’re on the same page in not getting it. What’s wrong with giving your child a piece of cake or a cupcake? Why spend tons of money for a pretty cake for them to tear apart. Seriously. I just don’t get it!

Reading by booklight.

Reading by booklight.

4. The power went off this past weekend. The last time the power went off for a significant amount of time was in the summer, so it was a little more tolerable. This time it was in the winter, when the weather was at about -30 outside. I read the updates that it would take upwards of 4 hours to correct and didn’t feel myself panic about things getting too cold. We have a fireplace and the heat wasn’t going to drop THAT fast. Mostly I worried about what lights would come back on while I was trying to sleep, would the boy get cold sleeping, would I even GET to sleep?

5. On the subject of the power going out, I found myself sitting in bed reading for HOURS. Usually I read about 20 pages (I think that’s my record at night these days) and then fall asleep. Maybe it was the absolute silence that kept me up? We live in the country, so it’s very quiet to begin with, but with the power out, it’s even more quiet. Like, SO quiet. Normally I listen to the hum of the fan, or the furnace, but now it was only my thoughts. My thoughts kept straying to the fact that my heating blanket would NOT work without electricity. I was thankful for book lights and books, since my husband had to go to bed without anything (he likes TV.).

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6. Black Friday, Cyber Monday … what’s with all of these so-called sales lately? I once read somewhere that retailers mark up their products throughout the year and so there’s barely a markdown when these days hit, so you just *think* you’re getting a sale. Needless to say, I found myself going through book lists on various retailer sites, looking at the prices, then putting them on my wait list at the library. I’m kind of amazed that happened after buying 50+ books last month.

7. Normally, once December hits, I’m ALL about putting up the Christmas tree, but this year I have no idea when I’ll put it up. First of all, I want to make it a tradition that we put it up as a family, even though I usually do it by myself with Christmas songs in the background, snow falling outside, and tea steeping in my cup. Second of all, I have a child now. A toddler. A small creature who doesn’t know what’s right or wrong and who will be probably climbing the tree at some point. I’m a little nervous about putting the tree up. Meanwhile, though. I’m very excited about taking the boy to see Santa, and to watch him open a few gifts on Christmas. Not to mention the tradition I’m starting of a new Christmas movie, book, jammies, and snacks on Christmas Eve. I look forward to cuddling on the couch with my husband and boy this holiday season!

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8. I’ve been selling tea for almost four months and I can’t believe how it’s brought me out of my shell. I’ve worked in other direct sale companies before (okay, one) and didn’t have anywhere near the experience I’ve had with Steeped Tea. I’ve met so many wonderful people and have actually made money (which usually goes back to buying more tea) … and I get paid to drink tea! I mean, how fun is that? I love that I get to try new teas and share them with people. When someone says they love one of our teas, I get very happy! Plus, I’m already working on my third promotion right now, which is really exciting AND I have 10 other people in my downline, in only FOUR months! It’s pretty amazing.

And that’s about all I can think of to ramble on about! The boy gets more immunizations today and I plan for us to cuddle and watch movies. I have a tea order to go through, plus tea to drink, and maybe I’ll start a new book. I both love and hate that feeling when December rolls around that the year is ending … it makes me excited for what’s to come in the new year, but sad that this year has gone by so fast. Bittersweet, I guess.

Any random thoughts from you today? What’s on your mind? 

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{Graphic Novel Week} My Reading List!

Graphic Novel Week

This past week, I’ve been reading all the non-graphic novels in preparation to read ALL the graphic novels this upcoming week … of course, sometimes I’ll read about 4 graphic novels in a row and just grave something without pictures, so I have an audiobook and a paperbook on hand for that, but I thought I’d share all the graphic novels I have ready to read this week … are you ready? It’s a LOT!

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Awesome, right?

The standout ones I’m looking forward to:

  1. Castle Waiting – I seriously have NO idea what this is about but I read the introduction to it in the car the other day and thought that a lot of what it was saying rang true for graphic novels. I had kind of thought this book was super, duper old, but it’s not. It references how people there’s a fine line between the graphic novels like Castle Waiting and something like Neil Gaiman’s Sandman series, which there totally is. You either have crazy spectacular illustrations with full-blown colour and dark stories, or you have some that are more traditional in their illustrations with stories all over the map. Like I said, this one looks super old, but it’s not. I have no idea what it’s about, but it gets really good ratings, so we’ll see.
  2. Sisters – Who doesn’t like Raina Telgemeier’s books? They’re freaking awesome. I was worried that I might not like this one, or get it as much as her other ones, since I don’t have a sister, but I was reassured that I most definitely will love it. Why did I have any doubts about that?
  3. Hidden – I got a library notification that this one was in and I was like, What?!? I could NOT recall what it was supposed to be about, but that’s usually the case when I go on requesting sprees, so once I read the synopsis that it was a tale of the haulocast from the perspective of a little boy, I was intrigued all over again. I’ve only glanced at this book, but so far I love the illustrations for it.
  4. Maus – NO idea what this one is about, either, but it gets lots of really great reviews. I like that it’s only a 2-part series, so hopefully I get what’s going on. It seems like one of those books that dives deeply into history and I find that they can be hit or miss for me.
  5. Binky the Space Cat – The 5th installment in this series. I’ve loved every single book in this series so far, so I have no doubts that I’ll love this one, too. I mean, it’s Binky. Need I say more?!

There you have it, my pile of graphic novels for the week! Be prepared for TONS of reviews this week, too, since I’ve been reading a LOT of graphic novels this month. It’s been great diving back into the art form and I hope to incorporate more throughout the year, instead of having to dedicated a week/month to it.

What’s on your Graphic Novel Week reading list this week? Anything I should add to my wishlist?

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