Monday, December 23, 2013

New Year's Resolution: Read More

Ever since I can remember, I've been a "goal setter." You could blame this on my first born-ness, my Type A-ness, my neuroses. Most likely all of these combined. Which is a deadly combination for a future diagnosis of OCD. And I'm well on my way, my friends. 

Any good goal setter most likely is also a New Year's Resolutions setter, as well. And I hesitate to tell you all that I may or may not have typed out a list of New Year's resolutions for several years, color coded and categorized. See? Well on my way. Upon having kids, and well, a life, my typed out list of resolutions has ceased to exist. In fact, having kids (in my case, three that are three and under) has a funny way of making you forget that other humans on the planet are able to focus on themselves and their ambitions for more than 5 minutes in a row. 

However, I'm hoping this year will be a little different. Anyone who is a mom knows how easy it is to use your kids as an excuse. And I've been guilty of doing this on more than one occasion. But at some point, enough is enough. I've always believed that we make time for what is really important, no matter how "busy" we are. So I suppose my biggest resolution this year would be just that. To make time in my life for the things that are life-giving, uplifting, and fulfilling.

So on the short list of things I hope to improve about myself, I intend for these resolutions to begin with what I put into my mind. I have found that the times in my life where I am most aware, happy, and myself is when I am challenging my mind. And like I told my students a million times a day, that all begins with a book. I'm not sure if I am putting a number on how many books I'd like to read this year, although God knows I am itching to type out some sort of a spreadsheet for this (HELP ME). I think I will just begin with cutting out a few Real Housewives shows and instead commit some time in the evenings to filling my thoughts with things other than wishing my husband was a plastic surgeon or that I had Lisa Vanderpump's bank account. Baby steps.

Am I the only person who loves a stack of books on her nightstand? Even though I have been a serious slacker in the reading department lately, looking at the high pile of reading material makes me feel like even though I may not pick one of them up for a month, if a burglar breaks in, by golly he sure will think I'm some sort of scholar. 

Currently there are two stacks on mine. This stack would be some of the books I've read over the last six months or so. I thoroughly enjoyed Seven and Sparkly Green Earrings. Both of these books made me laugh out loud and were incredibly inspiring. I agree with the basic tenets of Love and Logic, but can one say that they thoroughly enjoy a parenting book (bleh)? The Happiness Project was very thought provoking, but not the greatest book I've ever read. 

And this would be the stack of books I am hoping to read in the next few months. The jury is out on whether or not I will finish One Thousand Gifts. I might be the first person to read this and say that I find it really, really hard to get through, wordy, and hard to wrap my brain around. Ann Voskamp is undoubtedly an insanely gifted writer, I just can't seem to make myself finish it. Am I the only one? I have already started Give Them Grace and really love it so far. Boundaries is a book I've had since college, but it came up recently in one of my bible study discussions and reminded me how much I could use a re-reading of it. Clean is a book about clean living/eating a friend of mine highly recommended, but if we're being honest, it scares the crap out of me to begin it. I'm sincerely afraid I might start neurotically flipping my lid about all of the toxins we are putting in our body, thus greatly decreasing the amount of Sonic grilled cheeses my children consume, and it might convince me to start doing really crazy things like concocting my own laundry detergent and cloth diapering Burke. And these are just things I am not ready to be inconvenienced by. Maybe 2015 can be the year the Nevels go all crazy organic? Doubtful, but we shall see...

So there you have it. I share these with you because I really enjoy getting new book recommendations. I hope to incorporate some good fiction in with these, as well. 

Hope everyone has a fantastic start to 2014!