Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Thoughts on 2013 and looking ahead

Every good book blogger must write-up a year-in-review post right? So what if I'm a week late. With the holiday madness of travel and life stuff getting in the way, blogging had to take a backseat these past few weeks. I'm going to try to be better this year... but more on that later.

2013 started off great with books for me. I was flying through them and so many were fantastic that I really thought, despite having a small child, this might be my best reading year yet. Unfortunately, during the summer, my motivation fizzled or the books stopped being quite as great... not really sure what happened, but my reading became sporadic and I really lost my drive to finish any book. Like I referred to it before: life stuff. Sometimes life happens and reading takes a nosedive and that's what happened with me. I'm sad and regretful about it though, so definitely hoping to get it all back. I miss my books!

I originally started out with a goal of 105, which seemed doable, matching my 2012 number of books read. I figured, with a busy toddler, I'd be reading less. I hit 105 sometime over the summer and upped my goal to 150, thinking at the rate I was going, I'd probably fly past that too. Nope. Everything fizzled out and I slowed down. Total number of books read in 2013: 142. 


Where the Stars Still Shine by Trish Doller
The Tragedy Paper by Elizabeth Laban
Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo
The Time Between by Karen White
Looking for Me by Beth Hoffman
Star Cursed by Jessica Spotswood
Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell
Hold Fast by Blue Balliet
7 by Jen Hatmaker
Me Before You by Jojo Moyes
The Girl You Left Behind by Jojo Moyes

Ok, so that's 11, but I couldn't leave out the 2nd Moyes book. So good.

For 2014, I just want to read. Simple as that. Last year I really wanted to read a lot of non-fiction and expand my reading from mainly YA to other things. This year? Just read. Read what I want. Read less books for review and more on my TBR. I might set a numbers goal, I might not. I just want the love of reading that I've always had back. 

A lot of people choose a word to focus on for the year. My word for 2014 is Peace. This past year kicked my butt. Having my baby turn into a toddler was difficult in so many ways. He's the only little one I'll have in our home and so each milestone is incredibly bittersweet, but I also learned that patience can be difficult to come by and my stress level went through the roof some weeks. 

I didn't read as much as I wanted, but also took on the amazing blessing of leading my local chapter of MOPS and becoming an encouragement to 50 women every other week. Some excellent stuff goes on in those meetings and I'm so thankful to just be part of the group. It's a lot to do, but so much fun and more rewarding than I could have ever hoped for. 

In the midst of all the happiness and craziness, there was definitely struggle, but in 2014, peace is what I'm aiming for. Peace and lots of reading. Happy 2014 all. 


Kailana said...

My reading fizzled last year, too. It worked out to be one of my slowest reading years ever. I am hoping 2014 will be more balanced.

Beth Hoffman said...

What a terrific surprise! I'm honored to see my novel on your list. Thank you so much, Amanda!

P.S. The pic of your little guy is soooo cute.

Susan said...

I'm with you -- my only goal this year is to TRY and read 200 books. I only managed 138 this year, I'll at least try to do better than that. No pressure, though. If I do it, yay; if I don't, oh well.

Wishing you all the best in 2014!

Ami said...

Wishing you lots of inner peace, even if there is outer chaos, old friend. (Because, let's face it, having a toddler doesn't go with peaceFUL. And who would want it to?)