I have been reading books my entire life, and I have gone through stages of extreme reviewing, and times where I reviewed nothing (two kids, out-of-state moves, etc). I started consistently reviewing again a little over a year ago. I created a Bookstagram, then blog, then Facebook, and Twitter. I found that I loved it so much!
I started noticing that all these bloggers and bookstagrammers had advanced reader’s copies of books, and I wanted them too! So, I started googling, and I found some sites. I have continued to research and find new ways to get ARC’s. I continue to see posts where bookstagrammers are frustrated trying to figure out how to get books.
“A book hangover is a condition where a reader’s emotional investment in a book leaves them at a loss once the book ends. They can’t get into another book, and they want all their next reads to be as good as the last book. This can last days, or weeks, depending on the book.”
She Just Loves Books describing a book hangover
Book hangovers are real…I know I have a book hangover when I go to open my kindle, audible, or physical book and am disappointed when I realize the book I’m currently reading is no longer that last book.
So, here’s my list of recent reads that left me with a book hangover because they were that good! I want you to know about these, because while they will cause a book hangover, they can also cure one. It’s a bit like the hair of the dog…
Alright, we are all in this together, but very much separately. I have appreciated all of the support from friends that have shared their daily lesson plans, their recipes, their links to activities. Having the kiddos at home and trying to work and home school is VERY trying for everyone and I am appreciative of how supportive everyone is being to each other. I thought I would collect some of the things that I have found to share with you here! This is not the cleanest post I have ever made, I just wanted to get this out for people to use!
NetGalley is a website that helps publishers and authors get their books into many reader’s hands. Many of the books are advanced reader’s copies or ARCs, but you will find some that are published works and the author or publisher is looking for reviews for the book.
Today’s post is going to focus on giveaways! Don’t close this reading window yet, I swear, there’s some good stuff in here.
Remember these giveaways can work just like publisher-provided ARCs. Once you receive a giveaway win, promote it, tag the publisher, and make sure to review it. Show the publisher what an awesome reviewer you are!
Every reader knows about this dirty little secret….we buy books, but don’t actually read them all. They sit on our shelves, and we enjoy looking at them fondly and thinking of the day that we will get to them. Or at least this is what happens to me!!
So, this year, I am participating in an Instagram challenge #unreadbookshelf where I have chosen 20 books already on my shelf and will read them in 2020. I will be updating this post throughout the year so you can stay updated on my progress (and so I can stay accountable)!
I rarely talk about myself on this blog, other than to tell you my opinion on a book and that’s really how I want it. I want to tell you about all the fabulous, or not-so-fabulous books I’ve read. Today, however, I’m going to share what my family has been up to this December.
We have two children, 8 and 6 years old. My husband organizes a Christmas Countdown each December. Each day in December the kids get to open a box with a note in it that tells them what family activity we are going to do that day. It’s like a real life advent calendar. We find that it is an amazing way for us to stay connected and to enjoy the holidays as a family!
Day 1 – Advent Calendars
Well we have to kick it off somehow, so we start with actual advent calendars for the kids. This year they each got a chocolate one and a “toy” one.
Our son loves Fortnite, so he received a Funko Pop Fortnite calendar, which was totally worth the money. It’s awesome!
Our daughter loves these tiny little squishy toy things and my husband managed to find an advent calendar for them.
Day 2 – Christmas PJs
Pjs are pretty important in our household. We wear them a lot. My poor husband is always up, dressed and ready at the crack of dawn. The rest of the family will chill in PJs for most of the day if given the chance.
So, each year, the kids get a new pair of pajamas. This year, they got matching ones! If you want to play I Spy, you’ll find these PJs show up a lot because we get our money’s worth out of our Christmas PJs each year!
Day 3 – Letters to Santa
Some might say this is THE most important day of Christmas Countdown. Letters to Santa are a high priority. The kids tore right into this notebook to get started on their lists and we mailed them that day!
Day 4 – Christmas Cups!
We usually get new Christmas plates for the kids each year, but it turns out we have bought all the plates that are available apparently. My husband couldn’t find a Christmas plate that we didn’t already own the pattern of!
He’s quite resourceful though, so he went with Christmas cups instead! And they are actually quite the hit! We have Fa-La-La-Llamas and Cats in Christmas Sweaters.
Day 5 – Salvation Army Jars!
The kids received Rubbermaid food storage totes today. We gave them stickers to decorate and Voila! We’ve turned them into little piggy banks. The kids will store loose change in these and we’ll take them with us when going out shopping to drop change into the bell ringer buckets!
Day 6 – Snowball Fight!
Last year, my husband found these fluffy fake snowballs on Amazon and bought them for 2018 Countdown. We had the most epic snowball fight in the house and the kids absolutely loved it, so it’s now something we will do each year. And the best part is it’s free for us to keep doing it each year! Well, that and the fact that we are indoors and not freezing for this snowball fight!
Day 7 – Movie Night!
Movie night is a top countdown night for us! We get popcorn, order pizza, and watch a favorite Christmas movie together. This year, we picked Elf!
Notice our daughter is showing off those squishy toys she loves so much!
Day 7 (BONUS) – Go See Santa!
A dear friend of ours hosts a Hot Cocoa with Santa party at her house each year and it is the best! The REAL Santa comes, the kids just know it.
Day 8 – Christmas Extravaganza!
This day is made possible by our local city park district. They hosted a super fun Christmas party where the kids got to do a ton of crafts, play games, have hot chocolate, and watch a dance team.
Day 9 – Candy Cane Scavenger Hunt!
My husband hides candy canes all around the house and when the kids get home from school, they get to hunt for candy canes.
Fun fact….11 days later and I was still finding candy canes that we missed the first time around. It’s the game that keeps going 🙂
I linked my reviews to the book titles if you are interested in reading more about these!
Day 11 – Christmas Mad Libs!
Yep. Mad Libs. A super fun and silly activity that was filled with words to describe bodily functions thanks to my kiddos. We all had a great time with these!
Day 12 – Christmas Socks!
Just like we like our PJ’s, we also like warm, fun socks!
Day 13 – Christmas Sundaes!
We buy peppermint ice cream and pull out anything in our cabinets that could be an ice cream topper and then add holiday sprinkles! This is a super fun and yummy night!
Day 14 – Christmas Tree Solo Cup Challenge
A friend of ours did this game with her kids this year and then sent the cups our way so we could too!
The kids had to create a 5 x 5 base and build a tree from there. Each child made quite the successful tree! Since then, we have continued to have fun building different types of Solo cup stacks!
Day 15 – Ice Skating . . .
This was the worst Christmas Countdown day ever. We took the kids ice skating and there was an accident that involved stitches to a finger for our daughter from a very severe cut from another skater. We have crossed this off our list of things to do in the future 😦
Emaline’s finger is healing well though, and she was the bravest little girl.
Day 16 – Christmas Dance Party!
GLOW STICKS AND CHRISTMAS MUSIC…WE SHALL DANCE THE NIGHT AWAY 🙂
A NICE SAFE EVENT AFTER YESTERDAY’S ACCIDENT.
Day 17 – Picnic Under the Tree!
An absolute favorite for the entire household! We lay out a Christmas tablecloth, grab KFC, and eat on Christmas plates with holiday music playing. It’s such an enjoyable evening.
Day 18 – Hot Cocoa and Carols!
Everyone gets a cup of hot chocolate with marshmallows and we play Christmas carols and sing!
Day 19 – Christmas Game Night!
My husband organizes Christmas themed games for this night. Our favorite one was getting snowballs into the cups. Red cups were worth 5 points and green were worth 1. Emaline won (she’s pretty serious about games).
We also had a ring toss onto nutcrackers, a game with Hershey Kisses, and a marshmallow game.
Day 20 – Reindeer Chow!
We picked the kids up from school and made a yummy batch of Reindeer Chow to enjoy over the next few days! We used the recipe from CrunchyCreamySweet but used corn chex instead of muddy buddies.
REINDEER CHOW INGREDIENTS:
red and green M&M’s candy
any other holiday candy you like
HOW TO MAKE REINDEER CHOW?
Prepare Muddy Buddies: melt chocolate with oil, and toss with cereal to coat evenly. Toss with powdered sugar.
Combine pretzels, M&M’s candy and Muddy Buddies in a bowl.
Serve right away or divide into gift bags.
Day 21 – Christmas Cookies!
Of course we have to make cookies for Santa!
We used the Christmas Lights Cookie recipe from Dessert For Two Click on the LINK to see the recipe! It was really pretty easy, and decorating was a ton of fun!
Day 22 – Christmas Lights!
We print out a kid-friendly (words and pictures) Christmas Lights scavenger hunt and drive around finding things to mark off the list.
Each year there’s always ONE thing that is hard to find. Ice skates was the one that got away a few year’s ago. We never did find any.
This year, it turned out to be an Elf. We had just about given up and told the kids it was time to head home, and there, right on the corner were three elves with Santa! Hooray!
I saw this book tag post from @thelibrarylooter and wanted to jump in on it. So, here’s a list of questions and we’ll see if I’m guilty or innocent!
Have you ever said you’ve read a book when you haven’t?
I certainly hope not. I’m pretty darn honest about whether I have read it or not. I’m more likely to let someone know that I’ll be adding it to my #tbr!
Have you ever borrowed a book and not returned it?
Yes! Completely on accident! I was adamant with the library that I returned it, but ended up paying for the book….only to find it months later in a kid’s bookshelf.
Have you ever read a series out of order?
Yes. Until the End of the World by Sarah Lyons Fleming. I picked up the second book and did not realize it was a series. Read the whole book, THEN managed to pick up what I thought was the first book, and turned out to be a novella and titled 1.5 in the series. I still haven’t read the first or third book in the series…it’s still on my #tbr.j
Have you ever spoiled a book for someone?
Never intentionally. I have walked in on a conversation where people were talking about a book, and I thought everyone had read it in the group and that’s why they were talking about it…. and I was incorrect. I that’s why I always ask now if everyone has read it.
Have you ever dog eared a book?
What???? NO!!!! That is a terrible thing to do to a book! I will use ANYTHING as a bookmark to avoid damage to a book. My son on the other hand, has done that. So, I have taught him how to properly treat a book, and have supplied him with 20 year’s worth of bookmarks. See my photo of bookmarks I have recently pulled out of books in an attempt to clean up my bookshelf! Notice the receipt…not for books, I’m not sure how I ended up using that…and a concert ticket LOL.
Have you ever told someone you don’t own a book when you do?
I really doubt it, other than being confused about if I actually own it. I’m proud of my books and display them happily on my bookshelf.
Have you ever skipped a chapter or a section of a book?
Oh my gosh yes! If I am determined to try to finish a book that I am struggling through, I’ll jump sections, especially when the author gets really descriptive about things. A recent book I read went on for two pages about a character walking in a circle around a tree. I was already struggling with the book, and I so I started skipping, and found two pages later, we were still talking about the tree. Skipping is necessary sometimes.
Verdict: Guilty, for sure…when I’m on the struggle train, but want to give the book a chance, it is necessary.
Have you ever bad-mouthed a book you actually liked?
No way. I like it or I don’t, and I’m very proud to talk about either of those feelings.
Have you ever read a book only to realize you have already read it?
Yep. More than once. There are so many books in the world, and after this many years, I’m bound to pick up a book at a bookstore and get into it only to realize I’ve already read it. This actually just happened to me recently…the book was prominently displayed at a bookstore, I thought it was new, and was like, this is a genre I love, and sounds amazing! I paid full price for it and started reading. I kept thinking, this is so like another book I’ve read, I’ve got to figure out what book that was so I can compare them…then 100 pages in, I realized it was, in fact, THE SAME book. *Hanging my head in shame*
Fall is my favorite time of year! It chilly enough for the hoodies and throw blankets. And I love cuddling up in a chair by the window and reading. This season just puts me in the mood to read!
However, every season has its perks for reading. Thought I would take you through the reasons I love to read during each season!
It is starting to get nice out in the spring and we all just want to get outside. I love to set the chairs out on the back deck and sit out there enjoying the first warm rays with a good book!
The best reading in the summer happens on a pool float when the kids are not home and I can just float around and read. It’s amazing. Now, if someone would please invent a waterproof book so I can keep from damaging them, that would be great!
Cuddling on the couch under a blanket is so awesome with a book. I feel like going to bookstores more (bonus for the bookstores)! I just want to be reading!
Winter storms are the best to sit by the window and watch while I read. Everything feels so, extremely quiet and serene, making reading incredibly peaceful. Added bonus is when the Christmas tree is up and I can read by the lights off the tree. It’s so pretty!
Do you have a season, or time of year that you love to read during? I’d love to hear about it!
I saw these questions on a friend’s blog and I thought they would be fun to answer here!
How Many Books Do You Usually Read At Once?
Oh goodness….I am actively reading three right now, and usually at all times. One on audio, one in real, paper-book form, and one on my kindle. I know that sounds a bit crazy, but I have over an hour commute and the audio is a perfect way for me to get through that drive! My phone goes with me everywhere, so having one on the kindle ensures that any lines I wait in will be spent reading a book. Then there is my trusty good-old-fashioned book that I like to curl up and read with.
However, with that said, Goodreads currently has me reading 7 books, which means that I have started multiple books and have had to switch to hit a deadline for a publishing date or a return-to-library date, and then will go back once I’ve completed the first book.
How Do You Decide When To Switch Between Multiple Reads?
Sometimes I switch because it’s convenient. The car demands audio, out somewhere with my phone means I get to jump into the Kindle book. It all just depends on my location.
Do You Ever Switch Bookmarks Partway Through A Book?
I had never done this early in my life, however, my daughter has lately been making me bookmarks. Once she gives me one, she gets upset to not see it in a book, even if the one that is currently in a book is also made by her. So, I end up having to switch out to the newest bookmark.
Where Do You Keep the Book(s) You’re Currently Reading?
I try really hard to put it on the bookshelf, where I’ll be able to find it when I go looking for it, but a lot of times, it’s sitting on my bedside table.
What Time of Day Do You Read the Most?
I read the most at night, but over lunch I’ll try to read a bit as well.
How Long Do You Typically Read in One Session?
With two kids, a job, and two cats, I am really proud if I get 30 mins in at one time.
Do You Read Hardbacks with the Dust Jacket Off?
The dust jacket is a work of art and should be removed to keep it safe. 100 PERCENT. The jacket is removed and placed in a safe location on my bookshelf until I have finished the book.
What Position Do You Mainly Use to Read?
I like to have my feet up on the couch or footrest. If I’m in bed, I try to sit up, once I’m laying down, I inevitably fall asleep with the book hitting me in the face.
Do You Take Your Current Read with You Everywhere You Go?
Yes, there is always a book with me….the kindle makes things quite easy!
How Often Do You Update Your Goodreads Reading Progress?
I update it every few days. Sometimes I’m really good at doing it daily, but not all the time. My favorite is when the kindle updates Goodreads for me!
I’m BreeAnn and I have always loved to read! We love reading just about everything in our house, taking trips to the bookstores and libraries in the area, and even the Little Free Libraries that we find!
I seem to have an affinity towards Historical Fiction lately, but I read just about every genre there is! I review new and old books; ones that I have enjoyed, and even ones I haven’t loved so much. I have two children, so you’ll find lots of great children’s book reviews as well!
I review books I find through my own To Be Read list, NetGalley, BookSirens, and author or publisher requests! If you are interested in learning more, head over to my CONTACT AND REVIEW POLICY page.
Thanks for taking the time to read my blog! I love talking books and I hope you find some fun new reads while you are here!