December Highlights

Happy New Year!! I know this post is a few days behind schedule, but I was taking advantage of some vacation time to relax and not worry about blog posts. Instead I was catching up on some reading :)

December was a pretty stressful month, actually, and I think a lot of that had to do with my reading goals for 2014. I’m a predictable procrastinator, and I pushed myself to read some bigger books near the end of the year because I didn’t feel like reading them months ago (I’m also a mood reader). BUT,  I was actually pretty satisfied with how I finished the year.

I read 9 books in December

That doesn’t seem like a whole lot, but 3 of those books were Classics, one of which was in French! 

themessenger julesverne NorthandSouth
MontanaChristmas MatchMadeInTexas FullSteamAhead
aseparatepiece ThisisWhatHappyLooksLike PaperTowns

Most Popular Post From December

My post about my and my husband’s 3rd Wedding Anniversary received the most hits last month :)

Highlights from December

  • Christmastime!!! I love decorating the house for Christmas. Our tradition is to bake Christmas cookies and watch It’s A Wonderful Life after the tree has been set up and decorated.
  • Visiting Mount Vernon for our 3rd Wedding Anniversary. We attended their special Christmas Illuminations event, and it was so much fun that we hope to go again this year!
  • The Broke and the Bookish’s Annual Secret Santa Event. This was my second year participating in this event, and this year it was the best ever! I was so thrilled when I found out that I had received the event’s coordinator, Jamie @ The Perpetual Page Turner, as my secret santa! I think I had more fun picking gifts for her than opening my own gifts! But my secret santa, Alana, did a phenomenal job at gifting me the perfect books! And she also sent me a dinosaur magnet and a Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows necklace! So awesome, right??

December’s Challenges

  • For me, the hardest thing about December was how busy and stressed out I was. Since I started my new job back in November, I’ve realized how little time I can devote to reading now. My commute is 1 hour-1 hour 30 minutes each way, depending on traffic, and so when I get home at night it feels like I have enough time to eat dinner and watch an episode of Supernatural with my husband before I either crash from exhaustion or force myself to go to bed so I can get up for work again in the morning. I’m still shocked that I was able to read 9 books this month, two of which were solely audiobooks. A couple of the Classics I would listen to from YouTube during my commute and then pick up the paperback at home. I’m hoping that we’re able to relocate somewhere closer to my job in January or February, but until then I will just need to come to terms with the fact that my job trumps reading :(
  • Reading Journey to the Center of the Earth in French! To cross off one of my 25 Things, I finished reading Jules Verne’s epic adventure in French last month. I had read the first half back in July (each July to celebrate Bastille Day, I like to read a Verne book. This is my patriotic side coming out, something that Americans delight in having while the French kind of laugh at), but I hadn’t finished it and I wanted to read it by the end of 2014 for my Back to the Classics Challenge. It was hard, but I managed to finish the book in 4 days (I could only read about 50 pages a day before my head started hurting).

Looking forward – January TBR


What I’m Looking Forward to in January…

  • My husband had a phone interview last week and he has another interview tomorrow where he will be given a software test (he’s an engineer so it’s some type of design software). We’d appreciate prayers! He’s been unemployed for over a year now and it has gotten really hard on him.
  • I’m really looking forward to working towards keeping my bookish New Year’s Resolutions! So far, so good. I’m stressing out less about reading, and I’m NOT checking out books from the library until I’ve finished the ones I’ve been renewing since November. I’ve also avoided buying any books in the 4 days since New Years Day (hey, for some people, that could be a record).
  • I bought some yarn today and plan to crochet an afghan this month! I haven’t crocheted anything in about a year, and this is also a bucket list item I’ve put on my 25 Things list :) So expect a post in a few weeks about that!

What were some of your highlights from December? Any big wishes for January that you’d like to share? I’d love to know!

12 thoughts on “December Highlights

  1. I’ve said a prayer for your husband’s job interview :-) And have fun with your afghan! I’m in the final stages of making a twin-bed-sized blanket for my son, kind of a patchwork quilt looking thing. It’s taken me a year because I’ve gotten sidetracked with other projects, but all I have left to do is a quick border around the whole thing. Hooray!

  2. I can’t believe you read the Verne in French! I’m impressed. I’ve always wanted to learn Spanish so I could read Marquez’ books in the original, rather than the translations (though his translators are excellent), but I always seem to lose steam in learning the language.

    Crossing my fingers for good news for you and your husband on the job and moving front!

    • It was quite an accomplishment, I have to be honest! Once I surrendered trying to understand every single word, it was easier for me to actually read the book. I just tried to grasp the main concept of each paragraph and chapter instead. And Verne is very descriptive and it is very easy to visualize his descriptions in your head. I would like to reread Journey in English one day, because I think I would like it a little bit better if I could understand it more. Verne makes subtle jokes that I don’t think I even noticed in French.

      Good luck to you with the Spanish! I hope you’re able to read a Marquez book in the original language.

      And thank you for thinking about my husband’s interview!! I appreciate it so much :)

  3. I know the unemployment battle well….I’ll be praying for Matt! And don’t underrate the value of audio books! They’re super expensive to buy, but I was constantly borrowing them from the library when I had an hour commute to work. (I’ve also heard that Cracker Barrel will allow you to trade in an audio book purchased from their store for a new audio book either free or for a discount. Not sure about the quality of Cracker Barrel’s selection, though.) Your January reads look so good! I’m a little disappointed in myself, because my goal was to read just ONE book during my three-week break, but I was so busy with hosting company for Christmas and preparing food and everything, that I didn’t read any. Whomp whomp. So don’t get down on yourself if you’re too busy to keep up such an aggressive reading schedule….even though you may not have time to read as many books now that you’re working, just know that at least you’re reading more than me, haha! :-)

    On Sun, Jan 4, 2015 at 8:01 AM, macarons & paperbacks wrote:

    > Maggie @ macarons & paperbacks posted: “Happy New Year!! I know this > post is a few days behind schedule, but I was taking advantage of some > vacation time to relax and not worry about blog posts. Instead I was > catching up on some reading :) December was a pretty stressful month, > actually, and”

    • It’s nice to know that there’s someone I can relate to! Audio books are great, but I’m still getting used to them and I have to choose carefully–some types of books I just cannot follow while I’m driving. Right now I’m listening to The Importance of Being Earnest (it’s a first time read for me! I hate admitting that lol) and the quality is very well done. They have several different people performing all the parts so it’s easy to follow, and it’s very entertaining to listen to :)

      Thanks for the Cracker Barrel tip! There isn’t one near us, but next time I visit one I will be sure to ask. Fortunately my library is well stocked, and since a lot of the audiobooks I like to listen to are classics, I can always find free online links to those as well.

      Do not feel bad about the fact that you couldn’t read a book over the break! You have a baby! I admire any parent who is able to read and take care of their kids. I know one day I will have to make lots of (worthy) reading sacrifices when we have kids, so it’s probably good that I have to do that now with my job. I think my reading goals will be easier to adjust to after I catch up on my book reviews. I just get stressed out when I have a big To Do list =P

  4. Happy new year! I hope your husband has some good news soon. I love all of the books you read in December, the covers and titles are so cute. I have to remember some of those titles for next Christmas.

  5. Pingback: Top Ten Tuesday: 2014 Releases I Wanted To Read But Didn’t | macarons & paperbacks

  6. Pingback: January Highlights | macarons & paperbacks

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