If you haven’t already heard, we’re all in for something crazy this February: Valentine’s Day this year falls on Ash Wednesday, the start of Lent. In Christian tradition, Lent is a time marked by prayer, penance, and reflection geared towards spiritual growth. Lots of people give up something as a Lenten sacrifice (like chocolate or social media), and Ash Wednesday in particular is a day of fasting and prayer.
This will obviously make Valentine’s Day 2018 a bit tricky for those of us observing Lent. I’m pretty sure my brain short-circuited when I realized I couldn’t give my husband ANYTHING involving food (unless I wanted to make him wait a whole day to enjoy it), and I’m pretty sure he was worried about what to get me too. Luckily, I’m a reader, which makes me super easy to buy for even in the midst of a 40-day penance. This inspired me to make a list for other gift givers who might be looking to wow the reader in their life while still honoring the spirit of the Lenten season. Here are my 10 Lent-friendly Valentine’s Day gifts for book lovers—sure to blow their minds!
Are we already halfway through January? Things have been so crazy around here, I feel like the new year blew right by. The holidays always go fast, but this year it was wrapped in with cookbook writing for added excitement. I just submitted the last round of edits to my cookbook editor, so I should have an progress update for you all soon. In the mean time, I’m taking a little extra time to relax and think about my goals for the upcoming year.
Read More Books is ALWAYS on my to-do list, but I decided not to create a specific reading goal this year. My busy baby (almost toddler! he’s pulled himself to standing a few times!) doesn’t leave much room for reading goals. Example: I’ve been trying to read a friend’s manuscript for several months, but as great as it is, it’s hard to make headway when the Little Mister shreds the dust jackets of my books and tries to eat a screw he pulled up from the transition strip in the kitchen doorway (both true stories).
So instead of goals, I found myself fantasizing about how lovely it would be to find a quiet corner to read in fictional places like Hobbiton, Redwall Abbey, or Mr. Tumnus’s cozy cave. Before long, I had a list of 10 fictional places I’d like to curl up with a good book! They’re all quiet, soothing places because that’s what I need in my life right now, but whose to say the list won’t change some day to include the deck of a pirate ship or a haunted manor at midnight? 😉
My little boy turned 9 months old earlier this month, and I can hardly believe it. When I look back at pictures of him when he was born, it blows my mind that the teeny baby in the pictures is the same adorably chunky kiddo currently zooming around the house on all fours with a floof of brown hair and a grin that’s equal parts charming and mischievous. He’s already an industrious little guy, packing as much activity into his day as possible (Crawling! Trying to chew computer cords! Dumping entire plates of rice on the floor when Mommy isn’t looking!).
He may seem like the sort of kid who’d never sit still to read a book, but story time is among his favorite activities. I tucked a few stacks of books around the house when I baby proofed, and we pull one out a few times a week for reading. And he loves to look at (and chew) them on his own.
I did a post before he was born about the books I wanted to read to him as a baby, but I recently got to thinking about the books I’d like to introduce him to in the years to come. Of course, he’ll have his own favorite books, but there are some I want to be sure to squeeze in there because they’re just too important to pass up. I figured it’s probably a reasonable goal to introduce one of these books each year, so I sat down and made a list! So here are the 10 books I want to read to my son before he’s 10!
A lot of bibliophiles love a bit of seasonal reading, especially around Halloween time. There’s something about curling up with a big blanket, a mug of cocoa, and a super spooky read that turns the early darkness of chill autumn nights into something cozy and fun. I always like to save recipes from books like this for my October blog menus, because this is just the right time of year for them. Some of my fondest blogging memories are of making recipe posts for books like Dracula, Sherlock Holmes, various Edgar Allen Poe titles, and most recently The Phantom of the Opera. They allow so much room for creativity, and I often get to use fun colors and plating styles that normally wouldn’t fit the tone of other books.
Below are my Top 10 Bookish Halloween Recipes, a roundup of my favorite blog recipes from Octobers past. I hope you all enjoy them and that they make the spookiest day of the year just a little bit sweeter! 😉
This week’s Top Ten Tuesday prompt—“Ten Yummy Foods in Books”—seemed tailor made for my blog. After all, food in books is what I DO. As excited as I was to tackle the prompt, it only seemed fair to up the ante and make it a bit more challenging. So instead of ten yummy foods, I chose ten books (some of them are series) that all have iconic dishes associated with them. In the end, I got closer to 20 foods than 10, but everything’s better when there’s more food, right? Hope y’all enjoy! 😉
Most of the Top Ten Tuesday prompts this month revolved around reading goals, but with a new baby arriving any day now, I have virtually no reading goals for this year. So instead I decided to do a slight twist on the suggested theme and write a Top 10 list that was more applicable to my current station in life.
I got a big stack of picture books as shower gifts, and I’m already looking forward to reading to our new little person. The books listed below are the top ten books I’m most looking forward to sharing with Baby. Enjoy! 🙂
When I was writing a Top Ten Tuesday post last month for literary Christmas decorations, I came across an amazing array of bookish Christmas ornaments. So many, in fact, that I decided to give them their own TTT post!
A few months back, I joined a pop culture recipe group called Fandom Foodies, which hosts a different themed recipe linkup every month. The theme for December is Narnia, which I’m a HUGE fan of, so I volunteered to be the host! 😀
Got a Narnia recipe you’d like to share? Submit a link to your recipe below, and share about the linkup on social media using the #AslansFeast hashtag!
Also, don’t forget to check out the other recipes people have shared. Cook on, Sons of Adam and Daughters of Eve! ^.^
The linkup closes on Dec. 31st,
so be sure to get your recipes in ASAP.
And check back daily for new recipes!
‘Tis the season to deck the halls! As I started planning my Christmas decorations for this year, I thought about how great it would be to use wintery decor as a way to celebrate my love of books. I searched the interwebs, and it turns out there are TONS of gorgeous, festive literary decorations out there. Here are my top ten!
I’m actually really horrible at coming up with creative Halloween costumes, so I commend anyone who can dream up a clever, gorgeous costume all on their own. And if that costume just so happens to be inspired by a book character, then I’m pretty sure I’ve found my new best friend. 😉
Of course there are LOADS of awesome bookish costumes out there, but these are my ten favorites. Some are quick and easy to throw together, others are practically pieces of art. But they’re ALL super creative ways to use Halloween to share your love of reading! 🙂