Tuesday, May 22, 2018

WEEKLY WANDERINGS: #BoutofBooks in Tweets

Last week was Bout of Books, and I decided to throw myself in on the action a bit last minute.  I knew that I would not get a lot done due to a crazy schedule, but I wasn't really in it for the numbers this time around.  I have decided to just wrap up that readathon here with a quick review of my tweets from the week.  Enjoy!

YOUR TURN:  Did you participate in Bout of Books?  How was your reading for the week?

Monday, May 14, 2018

WEEKLY WANDERINGS: #BoutofBooks 22 is Here!

Bout of Books 22 started today.  I have been wavering about joining for weeks now because this week is a beast.  I have something going on every single night this week, and I was assuming that I was not going to get much time for reading.  However, on my walk tonight I decided to join in the fun.  Why not?!  I don't have to have outrageous goals or ambitions.  I can keep it simple, just make it a point to get in a little reading every day, and enjoy it for enjoyment sake.  And with that conclusion, I'm throwing myself in on the action!

Here is my plan for the week . . .

Yes, that is a very small stack of books.  As I mentioned, I'm keeping it simple.  I plan to finish Strange Weather by Joe Hill.  I am already more than halfway done with that one.  I plan to finish my current audiobook of The Witches: Salem, 1692 by Stacy Schiff.  That one is almost done as well.  And, I plan to dive into Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng.  That's my entire plan this week.  Well, that and to survive the chaos!

YOUR TURN:  Are you reading for Bout of Books, or are you reading on your usual schedule?

Thursday, May 10, 2018

BOOK CHAT: February 2018 in Review

You may think that you are reading that title incorrectly.  Or, you may be thinking that I am losing my mind.  Neither of those are correct.  I am just really that far behind in posting my monthly wrap-ups, and I am determined to get them posted over the next few days.  At first, I thought I would just combine them all into one post.  Then, I decided I didn't want to.  So, bear with me as I post three months individually to get caught up.

FEBRUARY proved to be a whirlwind of a month.  My family was sick.  We went on some adventures.  And, I became an aunt for the very first time!  That last item was obviously the biggest news of the month, and one that I am absolutely loving even as I write this today!

The TOP PIC for the month came from one of the adventures our family took.  We started our day with a little snow-shoeing and ended it with some cross-country skiing.  I left the hill with back pain that had me in physical therapy, and deciding to stick with snow-shoeing from now on!

My list of BOOKS READ for the month proved to be a lower number than January, but still not too bad considering that it was a short month and that we had a lot going on.  Here's the full list:
  1. The Battle of the Labyrinth (Percy Jackson #4) by Rick Riordan
  2. Whatever You Are, Be A Good One by Lisa Congdon
  3. Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury

My FAVE BOOK of the bunch was The Battle of the Labyrinth.  I have so much fun with this series for a number of reasons.  Percy Jackson is fun, action-packed, and I read these aloud with my kids.  Such a great combination!

MARCH would prove to be another whirlwind month for much of the same reasons, but I will save that one for later.  Keeping my fingers crossed that I can write more tomorrow and get all these monthly wrap-ups caught up before the end of the weekend.  Wish me luck!

YOUR TURN:  What do you remember from February?  Anything exciting or worth sharing, even a few months later?

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

WEEKLY WANDERINGS: Can We Talk About Infinity War?

I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that Avengers: Infinity War may be one of the most anticipated films of the year.  After the awesomeness of Black Panther, I know that I personally was very curious to see where Marvel would take us in this next chapter of the Avenger world.  This last weekend I finally had the chance, and now I really need to talk about it!!

Let's start with the quick trailer of the film.

That looks amazing, right?  Now, in order to proceed, I must warn you that spoilers will be in abundance from here on out.  Proceed with caution beyond this point.

The one thing that I loved about this movie was the action.  From the very first scene until the very last, the movie was packed with action scenes that were on point.  They had me on the edge of my seat, anticipating what was going to come next.

The other thing that I loved was the mash-up of characters.  To see Thor and Starlord face off was hilarious and priceless.  Thor and Rocket made a great team, especially when you combined the teenage Groot.  Doctor Strange and Iron Man were my personal faves, but I believe that was a result of my personal adoration of Benedict Cumberbatch.

Beyond those two items, my mind becomes a blur.  When the movie ended, my daughter turned to me and screeched, "WHAT?!?"  My own personal thought was similar with "WTF?!!"  And, as soon as I walked out of the theater, I had to start researching everything that I could come up with for future Marvel movies.  Of course, then my mind began considering all the different Marvel universes that the characters appear in, and that research went out the window.

Two days later, I'm still thinking about this movie and trying to come up with how I truly feel about it.  I still do not know.  I tend to be at a loss of words, and I am left with question after question.  Therefore, I am going to leave those questions for you here . . . 

Did all those characters really just die?  Or, did they just disappear into an alternate universe?  (One of my kids mentioned this one to me when I did try to discuss the movie with them!)

After Black Panther, one of my all-time favorite Marvel films, I was really desiring more from Wakanda.  Are you now telling me that I may not get this?

Did Gamora truly die?  She said that she had something that Thanos didn't know she had.  Was it truly the location of the soul stone, or was it something else entirely?  (I may just be wishful thinking here because I adore this character so much.)

Who in the world did Fury contact?  I personally did not recognize the symbol, but my son has theories on this one.  

Why did Marvel have to completely break my heart?  I'm not just talking one time, but multiple times throughout the movie.  Why?  Why?  Why?

I can probably come up with more questions, but I will leave it at that.  I feel like I need to watch the movie again, but I'm not sure I want to go through the heartache again at least while it is still in theaters.  I think I need a little time and space before diving back in.  Until then, I want to hear your thoughts on the film.  Do share!

YOUR TURN:  What did you think about the movie?  Were you left with as many questions as I was?

Sunday, April 29, 2018

Dewey's 24 Hour #Readathon Wrap-Up: Spring 2018

Some people choose to post their real-time updates.  Me?  I prefer to post one great big wrap-up of how the day went.  However, this time around, I'm going to post it like it was real-time updates, complete with pictures.  Hope you enjoy!

Hour 1:  I slept horribly last night, only getting about 4-5 hours of sleep.  I had way too many things running through my head, so I just took advantage of a little extra sleep and relaxation time.

Hour 2:  I was finally able to drag myself out of bed, but my brain was not ready to soak up any stories this morning.

Hour 3:  I am now more awake, and took a bit of time to check-in on social media, comment on some blogs, and even respond to some emails. 

Hour 4:  Finished up a few check-ins.  Ate breakfast made by my husband. 

Hour 5 & 6:  Volunteered at the library for an upcoming used book sale.  No reading, but surrounded by hundreds of amazing books!

Hour 7 & 8:  Spent a bit of time traveling, then working on chores around the house.  Naturally, an audiobook was the perfect fit ... The Witches: Salem, 1692 by Stacy Schiff, listened about 1 hour, 15 minutes (translates to 30 pages).  Note:  I do have a physical copy of my current audiobook, so the page translation is accurate.

Hour 9:  Listened to more of The Witches: Salem, 1692 while working on things around the house, resulting in another 17 pages.

Hour 10:  Switched over to Strange Weather by Joe Hill.  Read about 19 pages.

Hour 11:  I tried to lay down for a little snooze.  My entire family proceeded to wake me up each time I started drifting off.  I was not very happy about that.

Hour 12:  In my frustration with my family, I decided to take a little drive and bought tickets to the new Avengers movie tomorrow.  Then, I returned home to work on laundry while listening to more of The Witches: Salem, 1692, resulting in another 13 pages read.

HALFWAY TOTALS:  I took a quick pause to figure out my halfway totals.  Here's a quick tweet on my numbers and my thoughts . . . 

Hour 13:  My awesome husband made dinner, so I spent some time eating and socializing with the family for a bit.

Hour 14:  Worked on laundry some more with The Witches: Salem, 1692.  This is actually a pretty fascinating book, and one I'm glad I'm listening to.  Added another 15 pages.  I also was able to read a bit more in Strange Weather, resulting in 12 more pages.

Hour 15:  I changed things up and picked up Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince with my kids.  We were able to read 19 pages.

Hour 16:  I continued to read Harry Potter with my kids before they went to bed, getting in 18 more pages.  Then, I returned to The Witches: Salem, 1692 while doing a bit of laundry, getting in 9 more pages.

Hour 17:  Returned to Strange Weather by Joe Hill, while my husband watched Braveheart.  I watched and read sporadically, flipping through only about 8 pages.

Hour 18-21:  Everyone else was in bed at this point, so I dove into my book with more gusto than I did the rest of the day.  In these last four hours, I was able to read another 155 pages in Strange Weather.  This was my final tweet of the night . . .

Hour 22-24:  I stayed awake longer than I have in a long time, but by the time Hour 22 hit (3:00 am my time), I was done for.  I went to bed and got some sleep.  Not bad for only getting about 4-5 hours of sleep the night before.  (I just realized that I have never changed my time zone on Twitter after moving more than three years ago.  Thanks Readathon for helping me to fix this!)

FINAL TOTAL:  269 Pages Read

The Morning After:  I slept in for a bit this morning, taking my time to get moving for the day.  I plan on resting and relaxing some more, and hitting the new Avengers movie later today with my family.  I hope to get in more reading, and I even hope to spend some time this evening writing again.  It's been too long!

YOUR TURN:  How was your reading for the event?  Did you have any favorite reads?

Friday, April 27, 2018

Dewey's 24 Hour #Readathon: Spring 2018

Tomorrow morning begins another 24 Hour Readathon, and I have every intention of making the best of it!  I mentioned earlier this week that I am desperately in need of some self-care, so that is what I will be treating tomorrow as ... a day for myself to rest and relax!  I will be helping out for a small bit in the morning for an upcoming used book sale at the library, but I consider that to be okay because I will still be surrounded by books.  Other than that, I will be chilling at home with a good book or two or three.

Speaking of the books, here is the stack that I will be choosing from . . .

I have no intention of reading all of these books.  I just like to have some options, depending on my mood.  I am currently in the middle of reading Strange Weather by Joe Hill, as well as Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince by J.K. Rowling with my kids.  In addition, I am currently listening to The Witches:  Salem, 1692 by Stacy Schiff.  Thanks to the current goal of the readathon this time around, I will be reporting everything in real time with pages to help aid in reaching the million mark.  When I share my wrap-up post, I will try to report both pages and minutes listened for my own records.

Watch for my updates on Instagram and Twitter throughout the day.  I will be back here on Sunday or Monday to share a full wrap-up of the day.

YOUR TURN:  What will you be reading this weekend, whether you are participating in the readathon or not?

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

WEEKLY WANDERINGS: Reading is Self-Care!

Reading is self-care. 

In my job, I talk a lot about taking care of oneself.  I stress the importance of "filling your bucket" because "you can't pour from an empty cup."  Yet, I am not always that great about following my own advice.  In the last few weeks, I have been traveling to work on two different estates, cleaning prepping for houses to be put on the market in the near future.  I've been chauffeuring children around to one activity or another.  I've even been prepping students and teachers for the last round of testing that is coming up in our final days of school.  Amongst all this chaos, it dawned on me that I have not been doing a great job of taking care of myself and my bucket is pretty empty these days. 

Reading is self-care.

Thankfully, my hero has revealed itself as I realized that this weekend is Dewey's 24-Hour Readathon!!  What better way to rejuvenate myself for these final days of the school year than to spend a day in complete relaxation, reading a good book, and escaping the chaos of my life for a little while.  I do have a few plans that day, but the majority of the day will be focused on me.  Because I need a little self-care.

Reading is self-care.

I will share more detail on what I will be reading later this week.  However, I will likely be focusing on my current audiobook, collections of short stories, and graphic novels.  With all this talk of self-care, I also believe I need a little boost of confidence.  I need to feel like I am finishing things.  This plan will help me to achieve that.  And, I cannot wait to rest, relax, and escape into some good books for a while.  It will be just what I need!

YOUR TURN:  Will you be joining in the readathon?  What will be your plans?