Monday, 2 January 2017

Reading and Resolutions

Back in 2015 I set myself a challenge to read a book a week, and exceeded my target, reading 53 books over the course of the year.  I had planned to try and do the same in 2016, but for one reason and another I was unable to read at all for many months of the year. I still kept a record of the books that I read though, and have catalogued them on Goodreads as before.  Although there were only nine of them, I did a graph of my reading patterns over the year:

This year I also included four children's books, as 2016 was the year that I introduced my son to Harry Potter, by reading them to him at bedtime.  In a year we managed to get through the first four books, but we are now having a break from them, as the fourth book was quite scary and even induced a few nightmares for the 9yo.  He absolutely loves the series, and is now Harry Potter obsessed, but agreed quite willingly to have a break, so I think he realises how scary they are for him.

Of the five books that I read myself, the one that had the most impact on me was Marie Kondo's The Magical Art of Tidying.  I have wanted to declutter for years, and had a good go a couple of years ago, but it wasn't until I read this book that I was finally able to get rid of a whole load of unnecessary stuff.  My books have now been reduced from an amount that filled two Ikea Billy bookcases, several shelves and many piles on the floor to a much more manageable number that all fit on one Billy bookcase, with space for DVDs and CDs as well.  I can now fit all of my clothes into 2 drawers and half a wardrobe, and I have even managed to reduce my photos to one shelf of albums and some picture frames.  I can't say that I live in a minimalist home, but with three children in the house under the age of 10 that isn't really going to be possible.  I have reached a point however where tidying only takes a few minutes, and feel much better about the space I live in.

As it's the New Year, I have also made two resolutions.  I'm keeping it simple this year, with a plan to read just 24 books over the year, and to finish (or discard) my various crochet and knitting projects.  I have really enjoyed learning to crochet over the last few years, and even managed to design my own crochet bunting back in 2014, but I have ended up with four projects actively on the go and one as-yet-unstarted knitted scarf promised to the 9yo. I have resolved that I will not embark on any more woolly projects until I have either finished or discarded all of these.

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