I set a big goal to read 75 books this year (and if I’m being honest, I hope to crush that goal!) but I also believe in accountability to complete goals.
Back in the reader’s survey, it was frequently requested to get back to sharing more regularly what I am reading, along with ideas of how to fit in more reading time, so instead of publishing monthly reading updates like I did in the past, I thought it would be a better use of time to publish quarterly updates.
Four times a year I will share more in depth what I have finished reading, what I am currently reading, and a preview of what I plan to read. I’ll also share a little bit of how I find the time to fit in all of my reading in between running the blog and business, raising 3 children, focusing on my family, and caring for my home… you know, #allthestuff 😉
Now for the numbers… in the first quarter (January through mid-March) I have completed 16 books.
According to Goodreads, that is one book ahead of schedule in reaching my goal of 75 books this year!
I am also currently reading 6 books so realistically by the end of the month, I could very well be at over 20 books! But we shall see, a few of these books I have reading for a while now 🙂
Reading Pro-Tip #1 Audiobooks
I don’t know why it took me so long to get into them but listening to audiobooks has been my jam this year.
So far, I have listened to 6 audiobooks, 2 non-fiction, and 4 fiction.
I listen while I’m exercising, folding clothes, making dinner, or just when I need a minute.
Keeping a small set of earbuds in my pocket has made developing this habit so easy. When the kids are nearby, I just put in one earbud so I can still hear what is going on around me.
I’ll share more about my new found love for audiobooks, as well as where I get them and how to listen in a new post I’m working on but for now, I just want to give a plug for Audible, which is an Amazon service for audiobooks.
Reading Pro-Tip #2 Read in the Margins
I hardly ever have regular set aside time where I can sit down and read a whole chapter, from start to finish, so instead, I have to read in the margins.
A few paragraphs here, a page or two there, and if I’m really lucky, I just may read quickly through an entire section or chapter.
Using those few minutes here and there to read instead of scrolling through Facebook or something else meaningless has really helped me work on meeting my reading goals.
OK now for the part you have all been waiting for…
Below is the list of what I have completed. I’ll note if I listened to the audiobook or read it as Kindle or a traditional hardback or paperback copy.
Full: Food, Jesus, and the Battle for Satisfaction by Asheritah Ciuciu (paperback/own)
- I read this while doing my Whole30 back in January and my eyes where opened dramatically to food strongholds in my life. I highly recommend reading.
Business Boutique by Christy Wright (audiobook & referred to the hardback/own)
- I’ve been listening to her podcast so much of what was in her book was repetitive but still good nuggets. Plus she read the audio which is fun since I love her twang!
At Home in Mitford by Jan Karon (paperback/library)
- This is a carryover from last year because it took me so long to get into it. The Mitford series, I’ve been told, is a slow-moving story beautifully woven together so worth the read even though it’s not a page-turner. It took me a little over half the book to get into it but now am committed to reading the next book in the series.
Food Freedom Forever: Letting Go of Bad Habits, Guilt, and Anxiety by Melissa Hartwig (hardback/library)
- Another book I read during my January Whole30. Lots of great ideas to put into place to develop a mindset of what food freedom is and how to plan for it.
A Simplified Life: Tactical Tools for Intentional Living by Emily Ley (hardback/own)
- I’m a fan of everything Emily Ley does and this book is absolutely gorgeous! And it’s also filled with a lot of good stuff too, from making a plan to declutter your home and your mind.
- I listened to the first Emily book back in the fall and fell in love with her so I quickly devoured these two books in the series.
Charlotte’s Web by E.B. White (paperback/own/read aloud with children)
- I loved introducing my kid to the one and only spider I will ever adore 🙂 After we finished reading aloud, I checked out the cartoon version of the movie that I loved when I was a child.
Whole30 Fast & Easy Cookbook by Melissa Hartwig (hardback/library/cookbooks count in my reading goals!)
- Wasn’t a fan of this particular cookbook, only saved two recipes from the entire book. It’s a great resource if you love beautiful paleo recipes but almost all of the new Whole30 recipes I used during January, I found online.
Whole30 Day by Day by Melissa Hartwig (Kindle eBook/own)
- I credit the success of this Whole30 to having this daily guide. I originally checked it out from the library but then quickly purchased my own copy because I knew I would refer to it again and again.
Finding Selah: The Simple Practice of Peace When You Need It the Most by Kristen Kill (paperback/library)
- I devoured this in one whole Sunday afternoon. It is a quick read, more memoir style telling her story but there was also a lot of good truths. I’m planning on going back to re-read a few chapters.
Lilac Girls by Martha Hall Kelly (audiobook/library)
- This was a hard read to listen to but so good as well. Set during WWII, three women’s stories are intertwined together to reveal the terror and harshness of the injustices and concentration camps. Based off true events, I have been researching ever since completing.
Reunion by Lauraine Snelling (paperback/library)
- I needed a lighthearted read between the two WWII fiction books I read. It was breezy, predictable, but still a page-turner. It was a good break between two heavy books.
Building a StoryBrand: Clarifying Your Message So Customers Will Listen by Donald Miller (hardback/library)
- I was slightly disappointed by this one because it’s been heavily recommended by so many business owners but there was no new information I hadn’t already learned and it felt like he wrote this book as a quick introduction to his premium product = if I wanted to really get the information, I would have to pay big money (which I did not)
All The Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr (audiobook/library)
- I loved this one. Hard, heavy, yet beautifully told about the events in WWII on the Paris side. I always learn so many fascinating facts about this time through reading fiction books and this one stayed with me.
Own Your Life: How to Grow a Legacy of Faith, Love and Spiritual Influence by Sally Clarkson (audiobook/own)
- I have read this book three times now, and just feel like it’s a great one to start the year off with. I listened to this one during laundry every afternoon.
The Lifegiving Home: Creating a Place of Becoming and Belonging by Sally and Sarah Clarkson (paperback/own)
- I love everything Sally writes, I’m a fangirl 🙂 I will say that after reading all most all of her books, a lot of her stories and told in almost all of them but I really loved her daughter’s perspective of being raised in a life-giving home.
Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life by Donald Whitney (Kindle eBook/own)
- Re-reading this one slowly, I first read it about three years ago. Lots of good stuff to chew on and it’s definitely a book you want to own so you can mark up.
Personality Plus: How to Understand Others by Understanding Yourself by Florence Littauer
- My husband and I are reading through this one together as a marriage building exercise 🙂
The Wellness Revelation: Lose What Weighs You Down So You Can Love God, Yourself, and Others by Alisa Keeton (paperback/own)
- After finishing Full in January, this was a good one to turn to for a more Biblical approach to overcoming food strongholds. Slowly making my way through this one as there are lots of journaling and Bible questions at the end of each chapter.
A Light in the Window (The Mitford Years) by Jan Karon (paperback/library)
- The second installment in the Mitford series, I’m developing a fondness for the characters and it’s a nice change of pace to a more slow and simple Americana style after the heavy and dark pair of WWII fiction books.
The Hidden Gifts of the Introverted Child: Helping Your Child Thrive in an Extroverted World by Marti Olsen Laney (paperback/on loan from a friend)
- A friend lent me her copy since she has observed one of my children and has an older one who is almost identical in personality. I’m sensitive to this child since I too am an introvert yet I’m struggling with not transferring my issues onto this child.
Mrs. Piggle Wiggle by Betty MacDonald (paperback/own)
- I must have read the other Mrs. Piggle Wiggle books when I was a child because I do not remember this book at all. I personally find it kind of boring yet am loving the old-fashionedT language and ideas. My kids are enjoying it though so I guess that is all that counts. My oh my…. the chapters are LOOOONG though!
Look at this old retro copy I have! The binding is almost non-existent and many of the pages are falling out but I love this vintage edition.
Preview of What I Want to Read Next
I feel like this could accurately be described with the hashtag #VictoriaWantstoReadALLtheBooks 😉 And it’s also entirely dictated by my library holds becoming available.
Anyone else have hundreds of holds that usually all come up at once?
So with that in mind, these are the books I currently own that I plan on reading over the next few months in addition to what becomes available through the library.
Glory in the Ordinary: Why Your Work in the Home Matters to God by Courtney Reissig
Heavenly Minded Mom: A 90-Day Journey to Embrace What Matters Most by Katie Bennett
Good News for Weary Women: Escaping the Bondage of To-Do Lists, Steps, and Bad Advice by Elyse M. Fitzpatrick
Still Life by Louise Penny
What have you been reading that you love?
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