Ever since I learned to read in Kindergarten and discovered the magic of words on a page and the worlds that they opened to me, I have been hooked. I spent my formative years carrying around a book in my coat pocket (the 80's version of a Kindle app on a smartphone) and developed a habit of reading at the lunch table while munching on the bologna and mayonnaise sandwich that my mom always made me on school days (again, it was the 80s). In the summers I was often found in the upper branches of the maple tree in our front yard, along with the books and pillow I had somehow managed to wrangle up the tree with me.
Yes, I have always loved books. And...I have always loved to collect books.
Below is a photograph of my real-life nightstand. If I were being really honest, I would have thrown open the doors of the cabinet beneath and let you see the shelves of books, hidden behind closed doors, that have been purchased over the years and are waiting to see the light of day on the top of the cabinet...ever nearer to the hope of possibly being plucked out of line for reading. It's entirely possible that I am a book hoarder. And I'm not sure I'm really apologetic for that. At least...not yet. As you'll see below (if you continue to read), I'm also learning the importance of minimizing and downsizing, so this may change, but for now, books continue to be my friendly vice.
|This image is the personal property of C.G. Koens and may not be used without permission
While there is an incredible backlog of physical books awaiting my attention, today I'm sharing just a few books—some I own, some I'd like to own, and some that have come to me in electronic form on my Kindle—that are making their way to the forefront of my interests as I look towards the new year.
A little background: Ever since I helped my parents clean out this autumn and move the items they had collected over the 28 years they lived in their home, I have been in a purging and simplifying mindset. So many of the books you see on the list are focused on minimizing stuff and maximizing time usage. Life is too short to get bogged down in "woulda, shoulda, coulda" regrets. More on that in a moment.
From Laura Vanderkam:
- Off the Clock: Feel Less Busy While Getting More Done
- Tranquility by Tuesday: 9 Ways to Calm the Chaos and Make Time for What Matters
- 168 Hours: You Have More Time Than You Think
- Things That Matter: Overcoming Distraction to Pursue a More Meaningful Life
- The More of Less: Finding the Life You Want Under Everything You Own
- Let It Go: Downsizing Your Way to a Richer, Happier Life - This one is actually already in process on my Kindle, and I'm about 50% of the way through it, but I doubt I'll finish it before the year ends, as it is the kind of book that you read a little bit, and then mull over what you've read and decide what to do with that step before moving on.
- What She Ate by Laura Shapiro
- Code Girls by Liza Mundy
- Sit, Walk, Stand by Watchman Nee
- 7 Men by Eric Metaxas
- Don't Overthink It by Anne Bogel
- The Joy and Light Bus Company by Alexander McCall Smith
- Classics Reimagined, The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle (a re-read, but in a new version)