MY JOURNEY WITH HOPE…

Good morning, Blog World!  It has been too long since I wrote about my One Word, which, for this year, is HOPE.  (Today I’m linking up to Bookishly Boisterous, for my Bookish/Not So Bookish Thoughts).

I am still striving for balance (last year’s word), and hoping to achieve some of my goals for this year.  I’m reading from the Books I Buy, in a challenge, and have read and reviewed 23 so far.

My purchases keep adding to my shelves, with 20 books bought in January; 13 in February; and 4 in March…so far.

But…I think I’ve got this!  See, optimism, second cousin to HOPE.

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Let’s take a look at how it’s going in the other parts of my life:

My daughter is celebrating her marriage on April 1, at a nearby beach community (two hours away).  I have some things on my list, and so far, so good.  I found TWO possible dresses, and decided that one of them (the one my daughter likes best) would be for the wedding, and the other would be fun to wear for the reception (the next day).

Yesterday’s task:  Shoes.  I was hopeful, and went to a couple of shops in the nearby mall, and left very disappointed.  Then I recalled a DSW store even closer to me, and while I wasn’t all that hopeful…I was pleasantly surprised.  Not only was there a great selection, but the shop assistant was very helpful.  Something I didn’t find in the upscale stores I had tried first.

I found the shoes!  Now I just have to manage to stay comfortable enough all day.  Hmm.  You know how they seem comfy in the shop, and then, after a few hours of wearing them, your feet are screaming?  I hope that is not the case, or I’ll be walking around barefoot.

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Nails!  I found a nail salon two miles away with great reviews.  I knew I didn’t want to go all the way over to my daughter’s salon, as I’ll be having them done the day before.

Did I forget anything?  Oh, yeah, hair.  Well…my daughter did the color last week…and she could actually style it before the wedding, but I suspect she’ll be a little busy.  I’ve got this!

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Is HOPE guiding me in the rest of my life?  Am I trying to curtail my book buying compulsions…just a little bit, so I can finish the year with great numbers?  I’ve been bookmarking books I want to buy…and sitting on my hands to avoid that “click to buy” compulsion.  Sometimes it works.

 

 

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Currently, I am reading It Happens All the Time, by Amy Hatvany, a NetGalley review book, a provocative and compelling novel about two friends whose lives are changed by a drunken kiss.

 

 

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So, that’s it for today.  How are you doing with your One Word?  Does it follow you around, reminding you of what you vowed to do this year?

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KEEPING TRACK: THE TBR STACKS

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As I read blogs today, I noticed a recurring theme, one that has been a big part of my life, too, since I started book blogging.  The TBR Pile (or stack, etc.).  Some even mention the TBR Jar.

I don’t have one of those…but I do have a blog that I started in 2009, dedicated to keeping track of my unread books.  Curl up and Read was a desperate attempt to take control, since I moved into this condo in 2007 with 166 unread books that had to be boxed separately from the rest of my library.  I couldn’t mix the two.

For a while, I even had them sitting on the floor in my bedroom.

 

 

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Then I bought a shelf for them, which made them more dignified.  But creating the blog, where I track my purchases, books read and reviewed, etc., made all the difference.

My physical books are under 10 at the moment.  My Kindle books, however, have grown in numbers, since my daughter gifted me with Sparky in 2010.  Then, earlier this year, I upgraded to Pippa.

 

 

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One of my pages on the blog lists books purchased, another lists books read, with a link to the reviews.  There is a separate page for books from publishers, publicists, etc., with links to the reviews.

I also add the link to my review on the “purchased” pages.

So I can see where I am at a glance.

This morning, I counted 153 books PURCHASED in 2014, with 89 read and reviewed.

In 2015, I have purchased 47 books so far, and read and reviewed 21 of them.

My list of review books is pretty much up to date, with only three NetGalley books still to read and review, but they are being published at the end of June, July, and early August.

My review books have never been the issue, though.  I tend to overbuy…and I think that my lower numbers for this year reflect my determination to request books for review whenever possible, instead of purchasing.  To assist with my Compulsive Book Buying Disorder.

 

 

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So should I add a TBR Jar?  Right now I have a list of unread books on paper, in addition to the page in my blog, to guide me in my reading decisions.

What works for you?

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NEW YEAR’S EVE THOUGHTS: ON BOOK BUYING, PURGING, & A CLEAN SLATE!

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Good morning, and welcome to the last day of 2014!

Isn’t this the day when we gather our thoughts, study our numbers, and evaluate what we have accomplished?  Or it could simply be a day when we grab another cup of coffee and smile with gratitude that another year is just ahead.  A blank slate, if you will.

Tomorrow I will be featuring my First Book of 2015, in Sheila’s event, here.

 

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I participated last year, and I have already sent in my photo…the one that Sheila will put into a collage of all of us reading our First Book.

I am tempted to talk about it now…that’s how impatient I get.  But no, that will be later.  Maybe late tonight.

Meanwhile, I have been studying some numbers over at Curl up and Read, where I document my reading by listing books, titles, links…and numbers.  I launched that blog in 2009, when I had 166 unread books on my stacks.  While I haven’t yet cleared out all of my stacks—I keep adding to them!—I did deal with the older books that were sitting there, in one way or another.

Yes, I did some purging this past year, from books to collections, and it was a grueling process.  But I felt a sense of accomplishment afterwards, and my goal—or resolution, if you will—is to make it an ongoing process and avoid the huge piles that have to be sorted in a frenzy.  Here are some recent book donations, below:

 

 

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However, before I get off track, I was updating Curl up and Read, getting ready for the New Year, which involved adding pages and deleting others.  And I noticed my Book Purchases for 2014.  That stack needs work! 

Luckily most of those books are on Sparky, but that means, sometimes, out of sight, out of mind.

I purchased 151 books in 2014!  And, like I said, many are e-books.  But wait for it….I have only read and reviewed 56 of them so far!

There was a trend throughout the year.  I started out moderately, but by November and December, I was downloading and buying like crazy:  18 purchased in November and 11 in December.  May was the other high month with 16 purchases.  Do I suffer from Compulsive Book Buying Disorder?

 

 

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Okay, I can get this under control.  I am not signing up for any challenges to help me with this, as during the past year, I worked to get 32 or so books off my shelves (from previous years), but kept adding to my shelves.

I just love adding books!  I see them on blogs, I find them on Amazon, and CLICK!  It’s all over.

I do try to get freebies now and then, but I have less than 20 books acquired that way, and they are not reflected in my Book Purchases numbers.

I could stay off of Amazon…no, that won’t work.  LOL

Any suggestions?  What works for you?  Are you able to postpone gratification and wait for the books to come to the library?  That seems the sensible thing to do.

I would love to hear your thoughts.  And, by the way, have a WONDERFUL NEW YEAR!

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