New Year's Resolutions can be a pretty controversial topic. Some people even get a little angry about them. Most of us don't take them very seriously. I like to make them, but honestly I can't say that I remember even ONE resolution I've made and actually kept. We make them, we slip up once and we say "Oh well, here's to next January!" I guess people usually make resolutions revolving around their health or money. Both are great areas to improve in for just about anyone, but there are lots of other areas to work on too. This year, I decided to make quite a few resolutions and I'm trying really hard not to give up on them. Even if I slip up for a day or a week, I've still got most of the year to keep working on it, right!?!
My first resolution for 2012 was to read two books a month. I love to read, but I had all but given it up. Unless you count reading Will's monthly class newsletter or the school lunch menu ;o). I felt like this was a do-able goal and I even gave it a test drive in December. Mostly I've been reading at night. Will and I have been piling up in his bed about 8:00 to read together for 30 minutes almost every night. He's soaring through the chapter books at the speed of light. After Will goes to sleep, and I have everything ready for the next day, I find a spot near John to read for another hour or so. He's taking classes for his full-time job and the Reserves, so his nights have been filled with studying. I feel a little guilty that I'm reading for pleasure while he is prepping for tests, but I think he's thankful that I'm not trying to talk to him while he's studying! So, here's what's been holding my bookmarks:
Sacred Influence by Gary Thomas
The girls in our Sunday School class just finished reading this. I wish I had read this when John and I were first married or even before we were married. It was eye-opening. Gary Thomas' writing was refreshing, honest, and encouraging. It was an easy read for me, in fact, I often read ahead of the one chapter per week schedule that we had. I think I will reference it often throughout our marriage. Did it make a difference in our marriage? You'll have to ask John!
Francine Rivers' Redeeming Love
Woah! I'd not read anything by Francine Rivers before this. My mom and sister-in-law convinced me to tackle this 20lb novel and I'm so glad I did. I read it easily in about 2 weeks (*confession, I could not put it down, so I found myself reading it during Kate's naptime, in the carpool line, and while I was waiting for water to boil when I was making dinner.) Some parts were difficult for me to read. In fact, I almost put it away after reading the Prologue. She tackles some tough issues, but it is a beautifully written story of redemption. Read it if you haven't!
Longing by Karen Kingsbury
I have no idea why this image is larger than the others. If you follow my blog AT ALL, you know that it is a miracle I got any of these images on here! I love, love, love, love, LOVE Karen Kingsbury's work. Her books just wrap you up and make you believe that you're a part of the story. I read this one in 3 days. I would have read it all in one night, but I knew that I needed to get up and make breakfast for two certain someones! I recommend anything by Karen Kingsbury. If you decide to pick this one up, read Leaving and Learning first. You won't regret it!
The Help by Kathryn Stockett
And the images just keep getting bigger ... oh well. I know I'm behind the curve on this one, but I already fessed up that I hadn't been reading much and did I mention that we rarely see movies. What do we do? Oh yeah, basketball, gymnastics, school work, friends ... anyway, I'm late on this one. My mom got the movie for Christmas and she's coming out for a visit soon, so I'm trying to finish it before she gets here ... then I'll have read the book AND seen the movie - two check marks! I'm about half way through with this one. Like Redeeming Love, there have been some parts of this book that have been very difficult to read - I'm anxious to see how it's resolved for sure. I'm hesitant to say that I "like" this book because of the topics that it addresses - I find myself cringing often. However, I think it is an important and eye opening story to tell. I'm hopeful for the ending.
So, what's next? I let it slip to my mom and sisterinlaw that this was one of my resolutions and they gave me the hook up this Christmas. I've got plenty to keep me busy for the next few weeks, but I'll take recommendations if you have any!