Thursday, December 31, 2015

Pen to Paper: Writing Resolutions

Wow! Welcome to the final day of 2015.  Over the past few days I have been posting about my goals and resolutions for 2016. I did post a little bit on my goals page about my letter writing but I wanted to expand on it a little bit here. Maybe you can share some of your resolutions with me as well!
Time to Write
In order to even begin thinking about writing to friends, family and pen pals I need to make the time for it in my life. I had started a while ago dedicating an hour every Thursday night. It worked out well for a while but things started invading as the year drew to an end. I think now that it is dark and cold it would be a great time to establish the writing time. If I can have an established time before the weather gets warm and schedules get busy I think it will be easier to stick with it.  I am going to set aside 1 hour on Tuesday and 1 hour on Thursday evenings, after Munchkin has gone to bed (so about 8:00pm -9:00pm) every week from now on.
I haven't always been great on getting responses out in a timely manner, sometimes going a month or more before sending a response out. It is always easier to respond within a short period of time before I forget what I originally wrote in my letter. So my goal is to make sure to respond within 2 weeks of receiving a letter.
Letters to Send
Now I hate to stipulate how many letters to send each month, it takes some of the fun out of letter writing. However I do have a stationery subscription that sends me 24 pages of stationery every month. I have a rather large amount of stationery building up in my supplies. My letters are usually between 2 and 4 pages long, so I would like to make sure I am sending out at least 5 letters a month.
At one point I had all my writing supplies so organized, I had a nice to go kit that fit in my purse, all my addresses and stamps together, but things have gotten a little scattered. It is time to get all my supplies back together, see what I need to replenish and get it all handy again so I can just sit and write like I enjoy doing.
So there are my goals for my letter writing in the new year. Most importantly though I hope to continue to connect with my current friends and hopefully start connecting with some new pen pals. Do you have any particular writing goals for the new year? Of course let me know if you would like to connect off line with some good old fashioned snail mail!

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

2016 Goals and Resolutions

So yesterday I posted my reading challenges and goals for this next year. Now I wanted to post some of my own personal goals and some of the changes you can expect this coming year.
Personal Goals
Get Organized: I am a little tired of all the clutter in my house, things not having a home and having to scramble on days when things are due at school or some appointment, etc. So I plan to accomplish something each month to work towards a goal of being more organized (ie: update calendar with Birthdays, anniversaries, etc., update address book, clear out old clothes/toys/decorations, unsubscribe to junk emails & junk mail if possible, etc.).
Get Healthy: I have found in the years past that setting diets, exercise, weight or size goals just don't work for me. I decided I will just work towards getting healthier with little goals each month. I am a habitual soda drinker and I want to cut that back and drink more water. I want to get more active but not strictly an exercise routine. I also get fast food breakfast every morning on the way to work because my mornings are so busy getting both Munchkin and myself out the door, I want to cut this back as well.
Projects: I also want to work on some of these crafty projects I have the supplies for, some of them I have never even started. I would like to narrow down on the focus a little bit, decide if I am going to focus on paper art or beading, etc. I would also like to finish up the current works in progress and get my Etsy shop up and running again.
Letter Writing: I have had so much fun writing letters and finding new penpals this year. I want to really set aside time at least 2 days a week for my writing and establish a place to write. 
Nails: I have been really good up until the end of the year with painting my nails weekly. I want to continue doing this, it makes me feel pretty, especially since I don't wear makeup and I am not really all that fashionable.
Family Fun: I can't believe how many fun things we got to do this last year as a family and even just with Munchkin. As a result Munchkin is so curious and has a wide variety of interests now. I want to continue expanding his experiences when I can and plan to take him to another aquarium, a seaport, a butterfly garden, on a trip to MN to see my extended family (and go to see Paul Bunyan and the big ship port in Duluth), among many more things. He is also getting more self reliant so I want to encourage him to do things for himself (getting his own breakfast, helping to cook, etc.). He is also finally getting the tubes out of his ears & I want to get him into swim lessons. Hubby & I will also each be taking a weekend to ourselves and one with just us, we both need a break from the house and some alone time to follow our own interests that have been set aside in recent years.
Bucket List Items:
I know a lot of people use this for selfies, but instead I want to take a picture of something every day that makes me happy.  I tend to be a little pessimistic and want to try to look more toward the good things in my life, sometimes they are just little things like a new pen that writes beautifully, getting to sleep an extra 15 minutes in the morning, or a delicious cup of tea; sometimes the good things are bigger like a really big hug from Munchkin, a free day off from the boss, or a having a debt paid in full. So I have set up a Flickr account to post all of these daily blessings, if you would like to follow them here is my account: EasternSunset9
Believe it or not, come June Hubby & I will have been married for 9 years, and guess what, I still have not made our wedding scrapbook! Let alone start on one for Munchkin! So one of my goals this year will be to finish up that scrapbook.
I have always loved coloring, and in college I would use it as a bit of stress relief during finals. If anything my stress level is just as high if not higher anymore. So I want to get back into this simple form of stress relief for myself. I would like to either finish one of those adult coloring books or 2 children's coloring books.

There is something special about using your holiday to bring joy to someone who might not have had it otherwise. Growing up my family would volunteer at a soup kitchen, or wrap gifts for the food bank, or even deliver for the food bank. Someday I will do those things with Munchkin but I don't feel like he is quite old enough yet. So instead I am going to work throughout the year to make cards for Hospitalized Children. I also came across a program called Operation Christmas Child, while I would like to help kids in our own country, there was just something about seeing the video of kids in other countries who may have never received a gift before open that package. So Munchkin and I will try to fill a shoe box each month of the year (maybe 2 - one for a boy and one for a girl) to send to this program.

So Munchkin and I had some picnics in the front yard last summer, but this year I want to go on an actual picnic. Make a day of it, find a nice spot and laze about with the family, no phones allowed, and spend the whole day relaxing, chatting, resting and playing.
Boy that seems like a lot of goals for the year, but I think the main focus of this next year will be on having fun and looking to the brighter side of life with friends and family. Now that I have all those personal goals out there, I think it is time to let you all know about what to expect blog wise this year.
Blogging in 2016
Can you believe I have been blogging here for over 5 years?! In that time I have made some changes, adjusting to both my preferences and hopefully a little to all of your preferences (I always love to hear if you really like something I am doing or dislike something too). So this next year will be no different, I am going to expand on things that are enjoyed and try a few new things too.
I am going to continue Monday Reading List, Tasty Attempts, Pen to Paper, After Dark Reviews, Early Reader Reviews, Bedtime Stories, Graphic Novel Reviews, Fun with Munchkin and Crafty Times posts.  I will be adding to that list Magic Tree House Mondays, which will be a review of a Magic Tree House book each Monday Afternoon.  I will also be adding Tea Time Tuesdays, it will be every other Tuesday (opposite of Tasty Attempts) where I share my increasing love for tea, I may share a particular flavor I am loving at the time, a new tea goodie, a historical or other fact about tea I recently learned, etc. as I learn more about tea. I will also be adding Sunday Inspirational Snippets, where I will share a quote, a picture, etc. that inspired me to do something or make something and I will encourage you to join me too.

I will be only posting challenge updates every three months but will be updating my challenge page more frequently. I will also be giving up on Story Stacks for a little while to debate them as a regular post or just a special occasion post or not at all.
I will still be maintaining the focus of this blog on books and reviews, but I will be considering an additional blog about crafting.

Points System
So last year I instituted a points system for myself, I earn points for reading books on my shelves and in turn can use those points towards purchasing new books. I stuck to it pretty closely for the most part, occasionally I would still have impulse book buy that I would forget to subtract from the points. I want to continue with the points system and hopefully stick to it even better this year!

Reading values:
Children's Book & Early Reader = 1pt
Graphic Novels, Audio Books & Ebooks = 3pts
Print Books = 5pts

Bonus Points to Earn:
Completing a Series = 5pts
Completing a Challenge = 10pts
10,000 pages read = 10pts
24 hours listening = 10pts
Month with no book purchases = 15pts

How to Spend Points:
Children's Books & Early Readers = 5pts
Graphic Novels, Audio Books & Ebooks = 10pts
Print Books = 15pts

Exceptions to Spending Points:
Scholastic Book Orders - Must still be kept under $25 per order/month
Audible Monthly Download - 1 book per month
BookBub Freebies - 1 book per week
Special Collection books - I am working on filling out special collections/author signed books and these will not cost points as there was already space made for them on the shelves. (Dr. Seuss books, Serendipity books, Robin Cook, Vintage, Author Signed etc.)

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

2016 Reading Challenge List

Another year and many more reading challenges!! I can't believe how well last year went and I am looking forward to another great reading year, especially as Munchkin is starting to identify words and starting to read on his own with the LeapReader tool!
So here are the challenges I hope to complete in the year 2016, I will not be putting up individual sign up posts because I don't really keep up with updating anyway on the original host pages.
Children's Book Challenge
For nearly every year I have made a point to read children's books, and honestly the Bedtime Story posts have been some of my most viewed posts. So I will continue to read Children's books in an abundance. My goal is to read at least 60 but no more than 80 Children's books this year. *I already own all the books needed for this challenge.
Early Reader Challenge
I have started reading early reader (Step into Reading/ I Can Read etc) books of various levels in preparation for Munchkin reaching these reading levels, this year I will be expanding on this challenge as we are starting to break into these books. My goal for this year is to read 60 books. *5 more books needed for this challenge
Graphic Novel Challenge
Since a good friend of mine introduced me to the genre a few years ago I have fallen in love with this vast area of reading. I continue to test out different types and I will continue to do so this year. My goal is to read 26 this year. *Have all the books for this challenge except 1 to be released.
Audio Book Challenge
Over the past couple of years I have found a new love, audiobooks! I have been increasing the number of audiobooks I listen to each year. I almost never listen to music in the car anymore and I always have an audiobook going while doing crafts or painting my nails. This year will be no different. I intend to listen to 24 audiobooks this year. *I own 15 so far.

Series Challenge
I have a habit of waiting to read a series until I own all the books or at least a large number if the series is ongoing. I have several series in my TBR pile so I plan to read (and re-read the early books if I had started the series) 5 full series. For my own reference here are the series I plan to read (with * for the ones I already own)

1. Nine Kingdoms by Lynn Kurland - Book 1*, Book 2*, Book 3*, Book 4*, Book 5*, Book 6*, Book 7*, Book 8*, Book 9*

2. The Hound Saga by Mette Ivie Harrison - Book 1*(print), Book 2*(ebook), Book 3, Book 4, Book 5

3. Deadly Liasons by Leigh Wilder - Book 1*, Book 2*, Book 3*, Book 4*

4. The Selection by Kiera Cass - Book .1*(nook), Book .2* (nook), Book 1*(audio), Book 2* (audio), Book 2.1* (nook), Book 2.2*(nook), Book 3*(audio), Book 3.1, Book 4*(audio), Book 5

5. Heart Mates by Robin D. Owens - Book 1*(rr), Book 2*(rr), Book 3*(rr), Book 4*(rr), Book 5*(rr), Book 6*(rr), Book 7*(rr), Book 8*(rr), Book 9*(rr), Book 10*, Book 11*, Book 12*, Book 13*, Book 14*, Book 15*

6. Princess Diaries by Meg Cabot - Book 1, Book 2, Book 3, Book 4, Book 5, Book 6, Book 7, Book 8, Book 9, Book 10, Book 11* (audio)

7. Compass Girls by Mari Carr - Book 1*, Book 2*, Book 3*, Book 4*

8. Magic Tree House by Mary Pope Osborn - Books 1-50 are owned (need 51-54)

Mount TBR
As always I have a mountain of books that need to be read at some point (especially before purchasing any more books). This year I thought I would split my TBR in half to make sure I read both print and ebooks. So my goal is to read at least 50 print books and 50 ebooks off my TBR pile. *obviously all the books for this challenge are owned.

Rhode Island Authors
Last year after attending a Rhode Island Authors Expo I had a month long feature in March. I plan to have this feature again and of course will be reading books written by my local authors, interviews with a few and of course giveaways. My goal is to have at least 15 books, 3 interviews & 1 giveaway (maybe more).

Requested Reviews:
I am having to start limiting the number of these books that I am taking on, even though I have loved so many wonderful books over the years.  I will still be reading several of these books and hope to continue posting about twice a month on Wednesdays. I will be accepting only 15-20 reviews sent by authors (please be sure to check my policy page before sending a request) and I will read/ request no more than 17 books on Netgalley.

Additional Challenges/ Reading Lists
I have been debating an After Dark challenge, I usually read plenty but I don't want to put pressure on myself to read more than I already have listed. So I may end up reading 20 or so of these but don't want to promise anything.

Additionally, I will continue to have my Advent Reads books, I will read 25 Christmas/holiday books for that December event. I do already own all 25 books that I will need but am open to other suggestions too.

Of course I have been doing the Goodreads Challenge for 5 years now and 2016 will be another year too. I will set my goal at 325 this year.

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Mini Reviews: The Dante Club, Magicians, Pegasus, Love & Leftovers and More

So with reading and reviewing so many books, I am running out of days in which to share them with you.  I am going to start posting Mini Reviews of books that I read through out the month but couldn't find the time to post on the last Sunday of each month.
This is my final mini review post of the year. I hope you have enjoyed all the reviews I have posted throughout the year and stay with me into next year!
A rather dull book for being a murder mystery with literary links. One Paw
Okay for filling up your time with a romance but not as much animal rights as you would expect. Two Paws and a Stump Wag.
A surprisingly enjoyable YA coming of age story written in verse. Three Paws and Stump Wag.

Saturday, December 26, 2015

2015 Challenge Wrap Up!

Holy Cow! What an insane year it was for reading. I read more books than usual and I read a much wider variety of books too.  Here are a list of my challenges, links to my reviews and the end of year totals.
Personal Re-Read Challenge
My goal was to read 15 books.
 This challenge is COMPLETE! I didn't think I would get there on this one but I managed.
1. North of Need
5. Nobody's Prize
7. Om Kas Toe
8. Secret Santa
9. Sir Gawain and the Green Knight
10. Thirty Nights with a Highland Husband
11. Highland Guardian
12. Rikki Tikki Tavi
13. Bunnicula
14. Fire
15. King of the Wind

Personal Children's Book Challenge
This Challenge is COMPLETE! I got a little carried away with this challenge as I do every year, but I will try to keep it under control next year.
1. Peter Loves Penguin
13. Again!
 35. I Took the Moon for a Walk
36. We're Going on a Bear Hunt
37. The Little Red Caboose
38. Happy to Help!
39. Pony Brushes his Teeth
40. A Hole in the Road
41. The Lost Dinosaur Bone
42. Grandpa & the Truck 2
43. Emergency Vehicles
44. C is for Cornhusker
45. Curious George and the Dump Truck
46. Curious George Goes Fishing
47. Mr. Mischief
48. The Best Show & Share
49. Frogs!
50. The Mitten
51. Curiouse George Goes to a Bookstore
52. Oscar the Almost Butterfly
53. Elmo ABCs book with Sound
54. Happy Easter, Curious George
55. Littlest Bunny in Rhode Island
56. The Happy Man and His Dump Truck
57. The Thank You Prayer
58. Pout Pout Fish in the Big Big Dark
59. Scuffy the Tugboat
60. I'm a Bulldozer
61. The Pout Pout Fish
62. A Rainbow of My Own
63. Follow the Leader
64. The Bear Went Over the Mountain
65. Five Green and Speckled Frogs
66. Twinkle Twinkle Little Star
67. Five Little Monkeys Sitting in a Tree
68. Jesus Loves Me
69. Winnie the Pooh
70. Tadpole Trouble
71. Mr. Cheerful
72. A Cuddle for Little Duck
73. Time Together: Me and Mom
74. Wheedle and the Noodle
75. Just a Little Music
76. Mr. Noisy
77. Rain!
78. Storm Song
79. The Little Mouse, the Red Ripe Strawberry and the Big Hungry Bear
80. The Best Teacher Ever
81. Tow Truck Trouble and Lights Out
82. Pete the Cat: Rock On Mom and Dad
83. Look, A Book!
84. Mr. Perfect
85. Outer Space Bedtime Race
86. Pete the Cat: Construction Destruction
87. Meet the Penguins
88. Mr. Strong
89. The Sandcastle
90. Otter in Space
91. Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good Very Bad Day
92. Curious George Gets a Medal
93. Numbers! Take the Dog Out
94. Whose Nose and Toes
95. Mr. Funny
96. Llama Llama Mad at Momma
97. Llama Llama Home with Mama
98. No More Hitting
99. Letters from Felix
100. Elmo's First Babysitter
101. Astronauts
102. Bye Bye Mom and Dad
103. Little Critter Astronaut
104. The Night before Preschool
105. Mr. Slow
106. Octonauts and the Undersea Eruption
 107. The New Bear at School
108. Slowly, Slowly, Slowly said the Sloth
109. Sweet Dreams Pout-Pout Fish
110. Daylight, Night Light
111. Octonauts and the Colossal Squid
112. The Jolly Postman
113. Giraffes Can't Dance
114. Pete the Cat and his Magic Sunglasses
115. There's No Place like Space
116. Look and Find Elmo
117. Book of Planets
118. Big Book of Space
119. Trapped in Toyland
120. When Will it Snow
121. The Gingerbread Man
122. It's the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown
123. How to Read a Story
124. Sixteen Runaway Pumpkins
125. Otis and the Scarecrow
126. Pete The Cat: The First Thanksgiving
127. Dinosaur Christmas
128. Tractor Mac Saves Christmas
129. Froggy's Best Christmas
130. Corduroy's Christmas Surprise
131. Worms for Lunch

Personal Beginning Reader Challenge:
This Challenge is COMPLETE! My goal for this challenge was 30 books.  Next year will be a little different but expect to see many more of these books.
1. Charlie's Snow Day
2. Monsters Munch Lunch
3. Brave Dragon
4. Kick Pass and Run
5. Charlie The Ranch Dog: Where's the Bacon
6. Big Bear, Little Bear
7. Chase on the Case
8. Look for Lorax
9. Curious George, Dinosaur Tracks
10. Danny and the Dinosaur
11. Curious George Colors Eggs
12. Penguins!
13. Pete's Big Lunch
14. Dusty Flies High
15. Ponies Love Pets
16. Just Saving My Money
17. Go, Go, Go!
18. Play Ball
19. Biscuit and the Lost Teddy Bear
20. The Three Little Grouches
21. To the Rescue
22. Just Helping My Dad
23. Little Critter: This is My Town
24. Danny and the Dinosaur Go to Camp
25. Amelia Bedelia Goes Camping
26. Going to the Sea Park
27. Life in Space
28. Best Chef in Second Grade
29. Dixie
30. Mittens at School
31. What's That Mittens
32. Dixie and the Class Treat
33. Moonwalk
34. Snowball Soup

Personal Read Across the States Challenge
Obviously there are 50 books in this challenge. It took some changes of books and a lot more stress towards the end but I managed to COMPLETE this Challenge! I am glad I took the time to do this one, I read a lot of books outside my comfort zone and enjoyed reading the personality of each of those states.

Alabama  - A Redbird Christmas
Alaska - If you Lived Here
Arizona - Veil of Roses
Arkansas - A Suitable Wife
California - Starter Wife
Colorado - Calves in the Mud Room
Connecticut - A Whole Latte Life
Delaware - A Catered Affair
Florida - Because of Winn Dixie
Georgia - Deep Dish
Hawaii - Birth
Idaho - Whatchago Stew
Illinois - The Untouchables
Indiana - The Sun Tea Chronicles
Iowa - Little Heathens
Kansas - A Dog Named Christmas
Kentucky - Bluegrass State of Mind
Louisiana - Taste the Heat
Maine - Stone Bay
Maryland - Dinner at Homesick Restaurant
Massachusetts - The Dante Club
Michigan - South of Superior
Minnesota - Pontoon
Mississippi - The Help
Missouri - The Borrower
Montana - The Smoke Jumper
Nebraska - C is for Cornhusker
Nevada - The Missing Ink
New Hampshire - Love and Leftovers
New Jersey - The Fighting Ground
New Mexico - Pegasus
New York - The Magicians
North Carolina -  Peach Keeper
North Dakota - Codename Zero
Ohio - Dragons of Spratt Ohio
Oklahoma - True Grit
Oregon - Rose Suitors of Seattle
Pennsylvania - The Turncoat
Rhode Island - By the Sea Tess
South Carolina - Girls in Trucks
South Dakota - Buffalo Gal
Tennessee - When Love Finds you in Camelot Tennessee
Texas -  Friday Night Lights
Utah - Wright on Time - Utah
Vermont - Lumberjack Love
Virginia - Crazy VA
Washington - Silver Linings
West Virginia - Locking Horns
Wisconsin - Blankets
Wyoming - Stone Fox

Audio Book Challenge
This challenge is COMPLETE! I surpassed my original goal of I believe 10 very easily and I have become obsessed with audio books. I will definitely be upping the number for 2016.

 1. The Fighting Ground
2. The Last Valentine
3. Deep Dish
4. The Tao of Pooh
5. Little Heathens
6. Veil of Roses
7. The Borrower
8. Winnie The Pooh Classic Tales
9. Rush
10. The Song of Achilles
11. The Lost Continent: Travels in Small Town America
12. The Smokejumper
13 The Turncoat
14. Fever
15. Classic Love Poems
16. Burn
17. Searching for Beautiful
18. Searching for Always
19. Pontoon
20. The Help
21.  The House at Pooh Corner
22. Dante Club

Graphic Novel Challenge
This Challenge is COMPLETE! Again, this is a challenge I really enjoy, I could definitely add to it but I am trying to limit the number I read each year.

1. Tiny Book of Tiny Stories Vol. 3
2. Blankets
3. Shadows of Endor
4. From Fabletown with Love
5. The Books of Magic
6. Mouse Guard: Winter 1152
7. Korgi Vol.2: Cosmic Collector
8. Thor: God of Thunder Vol. 1: The God Butcher
9. Fables are Forever
10. Fables Vol. 4: March of the Wooden Soldiers
11. Saga Vol. 1
12. Saga Vol. 2
13. Hinterkind Vol.1: The Waking World
14. Ravine Vol. 1
15. Ares: Bringer of War
16. Donald Hamlet, Prince of Dunemark
17. Loki Vol. 1 Agent of Asgard: Trust Me
18. Persepolis: A Story of a Childhood
19. Fables Vol. 5: The Mean Seasons
20. Swamp Thing Vol. 1
21. Hinterkind Vol. 2: Written in Blood
22. Northlanders Vol. 3: Blood in the Snow
23. An Age of License
24. Fables Vol. 6: Homelands
25. The Unwritten Vol. 2: Inside Man
26. Camelot 3000

Series Challenge
This Challenge is COMPLETE with a full 7 series read! I didn't get all the series read that I had wanted to but a couple of them have been waiting for quite some time to be completed and some were rather long too! I will continue with series challenges in the future.

1. The Hearts of Anemoi - Book 1, Book 2, Book 3, Book 4 - COMPLETE
2. Pride Series - Book 1, Book 2, Book 3, Book 4, Book 5, Book 6, Book .5, Book 7, Book 8, Book 9 - COMPLETE
3. Princesses of Myth Series - Book 1, Book 2
4. Warrior Series - Book 1, Book 2, Book 3, Book 4, Book 5, Book 6 - COMPLETE
5. Bluegrass Series - Book 1, Book 2, Book 3, Book 3.5 - COMPLETE
6. Searching For Series -  Book 1, Book 2, Book 3, Book 4, Book 2.5 - COMPLETE
7. Throne of Glass Series - Book 1, Book 2, Book 3, Books .1-.5, Book 4 - COMPLETE
8. Daughters of the Glen Series - Book 1,  Book 2, Book 3, Book 4, Book 5, Book 6, Book 7, Book 8 - COMPLETE

TBR Challenge
I set a goal of 50 books and obviously COMPLETED this challenge far to easily. I am definitely going to have to set a higher goal for myself next year since I own nearly all the books I plan to read!
1. Girls in Trucks
2. Because of Winn Dixie
3. Athena the Brain
4. Nubiana
5. Persephone the Phony
6. The Fighting Ground
7. Aphrodite the Beauty
8. The Last Valentine
9. Artemis the Brave
10. By The Sea, Book One, Tess
11. Hickory Daiquiri Dock
12. Locking Horns
13. Stone Bay
14. Dragons of Spratt, Ohio
15. Deep Dish
16. Stone Fox
17. Dragon in the Sock Drawer
18. Birth
19. The Tao of Pooh
20. West of Want
21. South of Surrender
22. Taste the Heat
23. If You Lived Here I'd Know Your Name
24. Fish Perfume
25. More Than Pancakes
26. Reading Between the Lines
27. I'll Never Forget
28. This Point Forward
29. Risking It All
30. East of Ecstasy
31. Sand Dollar
32. Glassblowers Apprentice
33. A Whole Latte of Life
34. Every Sunday
35. Missing Ink
36. Little Heathens
37. Toe to Toe
38. Warrior Beautiful
39. Buffalo Gal
40. To Serve a King
41. Veil of Roses
42. Francesca's Kitchen
43. Wright on Time - Utah
44. My Favorite Witch
45. Aure the Topaz
46. A Catered Affair
47. The Scot The Witch and the Wardrobe
48. Storm Glass
49. If You're Reading This
50. Sea Glass
51. The Borrower
52. Spy Glass
53. Whatchagot Stew
54. Into the Wild
55. Rush
56. Hush: An Irish Princess' Tale
57. Fire and Ice
58. The Mane Attraction
59. The Song of Achilles
60. Crazy, VA
61. A Suitable Wife
62. Forest of Secrets
63. The Mane Squeeze
64. Rose
65. Rising Storm
66. Beast Behaving Badly
67. The Last Continent
68. Big Bad Beast
69. A Dangerous Path
70. Howl For It
71. The Smoke Jumper
72. Darkest Hour
73. Bear Meets Girl
74. Bluegrass State of Mind
75. Dead Heat
76. Risky Shot
77. Wolf with Benefits
78. The Turncoat
79. Bite Me
80. Codename Zero
81. Fever
82. The Peach Keeper
83. Burn
84. Searching for Someday
85. Searching for Perfect
86. The Sun Tea Chronicles
87. Reckless
88. True Grit
89. Throne of Glass
90. Lumberjack in Love
91. Pontoon
92. Dinner at Homesick Restaurant
93. Soul of a Highlander
94. A Highlander of her Own
95. Crown of Midnight
96. The Help
97. A Highlander's Destiny
98. South of Superior
99. Heir of Fire
100. The Assassin's Blade
101. Highlander's Homecoming
102. Healing a Highlander
103. Highlander's Curse
104. Achilles in Vietnam
105. The Dante Club
106. The Starter Wife
107. The Magician
108. Pegasus
109. Friday Night Lights

Requested Reviews My original limit of only 25 books this year which I clearly went over, the ease of Netgalley was far too appealing. It was a little much I think though for one year and I will be cutting way back on the number of requested reviews I will be accepting.
1. Dear Hank Williams
2. Jesper Jinx and the Sneezing Season
3. Calves in the Mud Room
4. Gooseberry Island
5. Dizzy Miss Lizzie
6. Just Not Ready Yet
7. Poole's Paradise
8. Darkness
9. Don't Forget Me Bro
10. Paint
11. Spawn of Medusa
12. The Queen's Dagger
13. One of the Guys
14. Me and Grandpa
15. The Unleashing
16. Jesper Jinx and the Turkish Pepper
17. The Novice
18. HA Rey Treasury of Stories
19. Irona700
20. Parsen Holt- Slinger
21. Rules of Riders
22. Persephone
23. Ratha's Creature
24. Paladin
25. Daughter of Earth and Sky
26. Sonnets
27. How to Live Life
28. Summer Haikus
29. Nostromo the Dwarf
30. How 2 Live Life
31. Summer Haikus
32. Jesper Jinx Goes Fishing
33. Broken
34. Simon
35. In From the Cold
36. Get Yourself Organized for Christmas
37. A Cherry Cola Christmas
38. The Right Hand Rule
39. Gearteeth
40. Next Stop: Nina
41. Dark Sun, Bright Moon

Goodreads Challenge - COMPLETE My Goodreads challenge is complete, I am past my original goal of 312 and am sitting at 389.  I wasn't quite able to reach 400 but I am beyond thrilled with the amount of books I read this year and the variety as well!

As far as my other goals and resolutions . . .
- I did a really good job with keeping up with my letters and mailings this year, and I have met some new and wonderful people I hope to continue corresponding with in the future.
-For the most part I managed to keep up with painting my nails every week (often twice a week) and it was nice to have something to make me feel pretty.
-As far as my goal to spend more time together as a family and give Munchkin some new and fun experiences, I did okay. Munchkin definitely got to experience a lot this year, and it is so much fun now that he is old enough to do these things. Though I wasn't able to get much time with Hubby and definitely no dates.

Total # of Books Read in 2015: 390
Total # of Pages Read in 2015: 56,646
Total Hours Listened in 2015: 198:04 (that is the equivalent of 8 days, 6 hours & 4 minutes!)

Favorite Books in 2015


Least Favorite Books in 2015


Check in next week to see my goals for 2016 reading and personally!

Friday, December 25, 2015

Advent Reads Day 25: Bedtime Story: Corduroy's Christmas Surprise by Don Freeman

Synopsis: "Christmas is coming, and Corduroy has a list of gifts he'd like from Santa-until he discovers the true meaning of Christmas is not about train sets and ice skates, but about good friends. Celebrate the season with Corduroy in this Christmas story that is sure to be a holiday read-aloud favorite."

My Review: This is a fun and sweet book for the little ones during the holiday season. It includes several favorite traditions including gingerbread houses, decorating, making gifts and caroling, as well as letters to Santa. With all those traditions involved the story still really focuses on the spirit of giving and not receiving. It is a touching story that children will enjoy.
My Rating: This is a cute book with the same loveable character and has a sweet message that little ones will be able to grasp. We give it a rating of Four Paws!
From My Family to Yours, We hope you have had a wonderful Christmas and holiday season!
Good Night! Sweet Dreams!