Love-a-Thon Challenge: On the Road (Trip)!

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Love-a-thon 2017 will be taking place from February 18, 2017 -February 20, 2017.  This will be my first year participating in the Love-a-thon and I’m so excited!  🙂 ❤  The purpose of the Love-a-thon is to bring the online book community together, meet new booklovers across all social media platforms and to spread love to those online booklovers we have already met along the way.  This years hosts of the Love-a-thon are Alexa of Alexa Loves Books, Cece of The Novel Hermit, Kristin of Super Space Chick and Mel of The Daily Prophecy.

This challenge is all about creating a virtual road trip with 3-4 people (fictional characters, readers/bloggers, authors, etc) and to talk about all different aspects of the trip.

I have decided that on this road trip, I would take real readers, bloggers and BookTubers. That being said, I’ve met so many wonderful readers through all kinds of social platforms that choosing only 4 people is tough.  I would love to take each and everyone I’ve met and had great bookish (and otherwise) conversation with on this trip!  That’s saying a lot from someone who is as shy as I am!  This community has been so kind and welcoming that I wish I could take all of you on my virtual road trip.  🙂

Since I can only take 4 people with me, here’s who I would take:

  1. Krista from Books and Jams
  2. Katie from Life Between Words
  3. Amanda from Cover 2 Cover Mom
  4. Lauren from Two Birds, One Blog

While on the road, we would talk about books, of course!  I would love to chat with Amanda more about recently meeting Brit Bennett, the author of The Mothers.  I recently read The Mothers and really enjoyed Brit Bennett’s debut novel so I would be really interested to hear from Amanda all about meeting Brit Bennett and any insight into her writing of her first novel.  Lauren and I have both already read The Mothers and I believe the other ladies are planning to read the book.  Hopefully, by our November virtual road trip, they will have read The Mothers too.

We could also talk about Anne of Green Gables and Harry Potter.  Hopefully by November, I will have read the last two Harry Potter books.  Yes, I am one of the last people to still be reading the Harry Potter series for the first time!  LOL

We would probably talk about what authors we’re most excited to meet and why?  Part of our trip would include a book festival, more details to come.  Talking about why we’re excited to meet certain authors might introduce others to new others or inspire us to try out the authors the other ladies are excited about.

Of course, for those of us who have kids on this trip, I’m sure talking about our kids would be part of the conversation as well.  🙂

As far as music on the road trip…we are all book lovers, so I think we would probably choose an audiobook to listen to along the way.  As far as what audiobook?  I’m not sure, I think we’d choose that as a group.

We would be headed to…Austin, Texas!  On November 4-5, 2017 Austin, Texas has the 2017 Texas Book Festival.  So, we would head out on our road trip later this year in time to participate in this book festival.

The Texas Book Festival features: 

  • 250+ nationally and critically recognized authors
  • 20+ venues including the State Capitol
  • 80+ exibitors
  • live music
  • local food trucks
  • opportunities to meet authors

We would also make time to visit Book People, a two story independent bookstore that has been awarded the best bookshop in Texas for the past 15 years!

I think it would be a lot of fun to add some book buying challenges to our group to accomplish in between our time at the Texas Book Festival and Book People.  If we were really going on this trip, I would include the rest of the group in the creation of these challenges, but for the purpose of this post, I came up with some possible challenges for our virtual trip.

  1. Buy a book for each of the other lovely ladies on this trip that you enjoyed and you think they would also enjoy (write a note to each of the ladies inside the book to make this purchase an extra special reminder of our trip)
  2. Cover Buy: Choose a book totally based on it’s cover.  No reading of the synopsis! 😉
  3. Buy a book from a favorite author that you either do not already own or haven’t read yet
  4. Choose a group book together to read when we return home.

Since, this is a virtual trip, cost is irrelevent right?!?!  So, why not stay in the #1 rated hotel in Austin, Texas, the Four Seasons Hotel Austin!

Room with a balcony and lakeside view  🙂

 

Spa Day! 🙂

I think this would make the perfect book lovers getaway and I wish I could share it with every book lover I’ve met through social media.  This community is the best!  ❤ If, this wasn’t a virtual trip, I think I would share it with the rest of you, by daily blogging about it, of course!  🙂  I would also look for the perfect items for all of my book loving friends and have a giveaway when I returned.

Oh how I wish this was a real trip!  Friends who love books, books, authors, bookshops, luxury hotel stay, good food, adventures to blog about, time at the spa…what could be better?!?!

 

2017 Love-a-Thon Challenge: Valentines Care Package

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Love-a-thon 2017 will be taking place from February 18, 2017 -February 20, 2017.  This will be my first year participating in the Love-a-thon and I’m so excited!  🙂 ❤  The purpose of the Love-a-thon is to bring the online book community together, meet new booklovers across all social media platforms and to spread love to those online booklovers we have already met along the way.  This years hosts of the Love-a-thon are Alexa of Alexa Loves Books, Cece of The Novel Hermit, Kristin of Super Space Chick and Mel of The Daily Prophecy.

The purpose of this challenge is to choose one or more of our favorite characters, go virtually shopping for them and surprise them with a Valentine’s Day care package. ❤

I decided to go virtually shopping for Anne Shirley from the Anne of Green Gables series.  As I’ve mentioned many times, I think it would be fun to have had Anne as a friend.  I had a blast “shopping” for some Valentine’s Day treats for her.

Here’s what I would give Anne for Valentine’s Day:

The first item I would give Anne is this journal.  On the front cover it says. “Live Simply, Dream Big. Be Grateful, Give Love, Laugh Lots” which sounds like a perfect summary of the character of Anne.  I imagine that even in this modern day, Anne would be a fan of the written word and hand written journaling.

 

Next, I would choose a bouquet of flowers for Anne. But, not just a traditional bouquet, one that says friendship and fun.  Anne was such a fun child who enjoyed nature and I would want the bouquet to represent that with bright, fun colors.

 

 

I would also include a photography book or two all about nature. I could see Anne sitting outside on a porch swing admiring the beautiful nature throughout the pages of the book.  Or, curled up on a big comfy chair, under a warm blanket in front of a fireplace on a cold winter night, flipping through the pages looking at the pictures, just dreaming of Spring.

I would also include this beautiful necklace.  It says “Know your own happiness. Want for nothing but patience-or give it a more fascinating name: Call it home.”  A beautiful quote from Jane Austin that fits Anne perfectly. In Anne of Green Gables, Anne gets a new home and to have the love of a family. Anne knows her own happiness.  This necklace both in what it says and how it looks, makes me think of Anne.

 

Something that is more modern that I think Anne would enjoy is Harry Potter! I feel like Anne would enjoy imagining being at Hogwarts along with all the readers that enjoy this series. I believe Anne would especially enjoy the beauty of the illustrated editions of the Harry Potter books.  Therefore, I have decided to include the two illustrated versions that have been released so far into Anne’s Valentine’s Day surprise.

 

Finally, what would a Valentine’s Day surprise be without some chocolate? Some simple, but pretty chocolate hearts for Anne just seems perfectly sweet! ❤

 

 

 

 

I would then find a picnic basket to pack all of these surprises into for Anne.  Perhaps, something like this…

In our home, we focus the celebrating of Valentine’s Day on our kids.  We surprise the kids with some candy, a little gift and a card in the morning.  We encourage the kids to spread the love to their friends in some little ways throughout the day.  So, with that it was fun to add a bookish childhood “friend” to my Valentine’s Day this year.  Virtually shopping for Anne was a lot of fun and added something extra special the month. 🙂

 

 

2017 Love-a-Thon Challenge: Fancy Yourself a Poet?

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Love-a-thon 2017 will be taking place from February 18, 2017 -February 20, 2017.  This will be my first year participating in the Love-a-thon and I’m so excited!  🙂 ❤  The purpose of the Love-a-thon is to bring the online book community together, meet new booklovers across all social media platforms and to spread love to those online booklovers we have already met along the way.  This years hosts of the Love-a-thon are Alexa of Alexa Loves Books, Cece of The Novel Hermit, Kristin of Super Space Chick and Mel of The Daily Prophecy.

The purpose of this challenge is to take book spines and create a poem with the book titles.

Their Eyes Were Watching God

in the Beautiful Ruins                        img_6057

Shelter Me

in the Distant Hours

in the Light Between Oceans

in The Secret Place

with Redeeming Love

Thank You for All Things

The Unexpected Everything

2017 Love-a-thon Challenge: Mix + Match

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Love-a-thon 2017 will be taking place from February 18, 2017 -February 20, 2017.  This will be my first year participating in the Love-a-thon and I’m so excited!  🙂 ❤  The purpose of the Love-a-thon is to bring the online book community together, meet new booklovers across all social media platforms and to spread love to those online booklovers we have already met along the way.  This years hosts of the Love-a-thon are Alexa of Alexa Loves Books, Cece of The Novel Hermit, Kristin of Super Space Chick and Mel of The Daily Prophecy.

The purpose of this challenge is to mash-up our non-bookish life (hobbies/passions/talents/fandom) with our bookish life.

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My two favorite hobbies besides reading are crochet and adult coloring. Similar to reading a good book, I find both of these hobbies relaxing and an escape from the routines of daily life. Unlike reading, adult coloring and crochet can be done while watching TV, a movie, Netflix, Hulu, etc.  I have combined my love of adult coloring with books by recently purchasing an Anne of Green Gables and a Beauty and the Beast coloring book/storybook.  My love of crochet comes in handy to make lots of blankets to use when curling up with a good book on cold, winter nights.

2017 Love-a-Thon Challenge: Mad Libs: Fairytale Edition

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Love-a-thon 2017 will be taking place from February 18, 2017 -February 20, 2017.  This will be my first year participating in the Love-a-thon and I’m so excited!  🙂 ❤  The purpose of the Love-a-thon is to bring the online book community together, meet new booklovers across all social media platforms and to spread love to those online booklovers we have already met along the way.  This years hosts of the Love-a-thon are Alexa of Alexa Loves Books, Cece of The Novel Hermit, Kristin of Super Space Chick and Mel of The Daily Prophecy.

Mad Libs: Fairytale Edition

  1. LOCATION Paris
  2. CHARACTER assassin
  3. TYPE OF STORE bookstore
  4. BODY PART (plural) eyes
  5. ITEM iPhone
  6. ROYALTY (any title you can think of) queen
  7. REPEAT ITEM FROM #5.iPhone
  8. ACTIVE VERB (example: running) jumping
  9. ANOTHER LOCATION London
  10. AN EMOTION joy
  11. MUSICAL INSTRUMENT piano
  12. PIECE OF FOOD slice of pizza
  13. NUMBER 23
  14. TYPE OF HOUSE craftsman
  15. VOICE ADJECTIVE honeyed
  16. DESCRIBE A SOUND (ending with –ing) barking
  17. ROOM IN A HOUSE livingroom
  18. OBJECTS books
  19. DESCRIBE AN OUTFIT fancy velvet coat
  20. INFINITIVE VERB, activity crocheting
  21. REPEAT MUSICAL INSTRUMENT from #11 piano
  22. A JOB author

 

Once upon a time, in a far away Paris, there lived a smart assassin. She lived alone in a bookstore, where she had grown up with the deceased owner.She had beautiful eyes, and she was known for her shiny red iPhone, the only thing she had left of her parents.

Alas, the queen of the country became jealous and wanted to own this iPhoneSo, she became a wanted person and had to flee into the forest to find a place to hide. After jumping around for hours, hungry and tired, she stumbled upon  London. An old lady appeared, offering her shelter from the bitter cold.  She looked at her with joy and said: “I will protect you, but I need your help first. Years ago I lost something precious and I want it back. You need to climb into the sky and get my piano back. Here is a magical slice of pizza, throw it into the earth, sprinkle with water and it will sprout a beanstalk. You have 23 days to return before the stalk withers.” 


She followed the instructions given to her, and lo and behold, a beanstalk grew and grew and grew all the way up to the clouds. After an exhausting climb, she saw a huge craftsman. She walked to the door and knocked. A honeyed voice said: ‘Fee-fi-fo-fum, who dares to come and enter my house?” She was not afraid and said: “My name is Jamie and I’ve come to collect an item.” 


The door made a barking sound when it opened and revealed a large livingroom filled with golden books She stepped inside and walked towards the spiraling staircase, where a figure moved, cloaked in darkness.

“Who are you? Step in to the light, so I can see your face.”
The beast growled angry. “Why did you come here? I just want to be left alone.” Still, she moved and stood in front of it. There were three horns on his head, and hair all over his face and his mouth was filled with large teeth. He wore fancy velvet coat.

 

“What happened to you?” She reached out to touch one of the horns, but the beast flinched. “Many years ago I was cursed by a witch. I have one year left crocheting so I can break the spell, but I’m not brave enough.”


“If you give me the pianoI will help you.”


In keeping my promise, the beast and I worked for a few hours and that afternoon, the beast transformed into an ordinary older guy. “I can’t wait to return to my job as author in the normal world. Can I come with you?” Together they climbed down the beanstalk, carrying the instrument for the old lady. The moment she saw the guy and her beloved instrument, she started to weep.

 

“My husband, you have returned!” They hugged and looked at it.

 

“We have to tell you something,” the old lady said. “You are our child. We were separated after the curse, but now we are reunited!” From that day, the three of them lived together in the forest, happily ever after.

Get to Know Me! 2107 Love-a-Thon Questionnaire

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Love-a-thon 2017 will be taking place from February 18, 2017 -February 20, 2017.  This will be my first year participating in the Love-a-thon and I’m so excited!  🙂 ❤  The purpose of the Love-a-thon is to bring the online book community together, meet new booklovers across all social media platforms and to spread love to those online booklovers we have already met along the way.  This years hosts of the Love-a-thon are Alexa of Alexa Loves Books, Cece of The Novel Hermit, Kristin of Super Space Chick and Mel of The Daily Prophecy.

Questionnaire

An Introduction to Me and My Blog

1. What’s your name? Where in the world are you blogging from?

My name is Becky and I’m blogging from the US.

2. Tell us your history with reading.  Were you always a reader?  Were you a reluctant reader?  Was there a book that convinced you to become a reader?

Yes, I have been a reader all of my life.  However, through different stages of life the amount of reading I’ve done has greatly fluctuated.   I was taught the importance of reading at a very young age and I learned to read pretty easily. I remember many trips to the local library.  My favorite days in elementary school were library days and school book fairs. There wasn’t just one book that convinced me to be a reader, there were several.  🙂 I will talk about those books in the Book Talk section of this post below.

3. How did you get involved in the online book community?

I started in the online book community at Goodreads.  I don’t remember how I heard about/found out about Goodreads.  I received a message from Crystal at Sweeter Reads asking if I’d like to join her book club.  Sure!  It looked like an interesting group of ladies reading books that interested me.  That was about 3 years ago, I’m still an active member and I throughly enjoy being a part of Sweeter Reads.  Sweeter Reads helped me to grow my reading by leaps and bounds!  I enjoy talking to fellow booklovers about books and life in general.  The conversations added an extra element to my reading that I never realized was missing.

The next way I got involved with the book community was Bookstagram (Instagram).  I started my Bookstagram feed, Inmyreadingnook, about a year and a half ago.  I enjoy posting monthly photo challenges, what books I’m reading, chatting with even more booklovers and viewing their photos through Bookstagram.

I learned how to crochet through YouTube and then one day I decided to search YouTube for book related videos.  Wow!  I was so surprised to see that there was an extremely active BookTube community.  I started searching for BookTubers to watch and I never stopped.  It’s so much fun to get to know booklovers through their videos.  My TBR pile has grown expedentially due to Booktubers and I don’t regret it one bit!  😉  I’m extremly shy and not good in front of a camera, so I don’t think making videos is for me.  But…you never know!  😉  Sometimes, we surprise ourselves with the things we accomplish as we continue to grow and change.  I’ll never say never…

My newest venture into the online book community is this book blog.  I have been consistently posting on this blog since June of 2016.  It is a learning experience and a work in progress, but I’m enjoying the ride.  I’ve met some lovely book bloggers and I’m hoping to meet many more through this ❤ 2017 Love-a-thon ❤ .

I have also just paired this blog with a Twitter feed.  You can find me on Twitter @InMyReadingNook.  I’d love to have you join me there for lots of bookish content as well.  🙂

4. How did you choose your primary platform (blog, Instagram, Youtube, etc.)?  How did you come up with your blog name?

I have just tried several platforms to see which ones work best for me.  I like to interact with others through these platforms so that is a big factor in what platforms I choose to focus on.  At this moment Bookstagram has the most followers for me, but I am hoping to learn more about blogging to grow this blog into my primary platform.

My blog name came about from some good old brainstorming from my family and I.  We kept throwing out name suggestions until I heard one that just seemed to fit. When my husband suggested “In My Reading Nook”, I thought “Yes!  That’s it!”  🙂  In My Reading Nook was started that very same day.

5. What’s your favorite thing about the online book community?

My favorite thing about the online book community is getting to know fellow booklovers and sharing our love of books with each other.

6. What sort of posts can readers expect from you?

Musing Mondays, Teaser Tuesdays, Top 5 Wednesdays, Book Reviews, Challenges/Tags, etc.  As this blog grows, I would like to also post some discussion blog posts.

7. What book genres do you talk about most?

I talk about whatever book genres I am currently reading.  I’m a mood reader and I read from a wide range of genres.  My favorite genres are historical fiction, literary fiction, thrillers, fantasy, contemporary and YA.  I have a goal this year to read more classics and modern classics as well.

Favorites

1. Favorite food?  Beverage?

My favorite food is Italian food and my favorite Beverage is Teapigs teas, especially their English Breakfast Tea.

2. Favorite color?

My favorite color is purple.

3. Favorite things to do apart from reading?

My favorite things to do besides reading are crochet and adult coloring.  I find both of these hobbies to be very relaxing.

4. Favorite TV shows?

My favorite Tv shows are This Is Us, Gilmore Girls, Friends and Impractical Jokers.  My kids started watching Impractical Jokers and when I saw some of the show, I couldn’t stop laughing!  I don’t usually like shows or movies that I call “stupid funny”, but there’s something about this show.  It just feels good to laugh sometimes.  🙂

5. Favorite Places to shop?

Book Outlet of course!  🙂

Book Talk

1. Favorite childhood books?

When I was young I enjoyed The Berenstein Bears series, The Pokey Little Puppy, The Little Engine that Could, Sesame Street books, The Little Miss series as well as many others. Then, I moved on to the Ramona Quimby series, Judy Blume books, The Secret Garden, The Babysitter’s Club series and Sweet Valley High. Yes, I was a child of the 80’s! In middle school, I enjoyed the Anne of Green Gables series. High school, for me, became more about required school reading and meeting my future husband. Yes, I married my high school sweathert!   My personal reading diminished drastically. I would buy a book, from time to time, but after reading a few chapters, I’d put it aside.

2. Favorite books read in the last five years?

   

    

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Whistling Past the Graveyared: Goodreads

The Storyteller: Goodreads

In the Blood: Goodreads

The Husband’s Secret: Goodreads

Caraval: Goodreads

A Tree Grows in Brooklyn: Goodreads 

The Book Thief: Goodreads

Orange: Goodreads

Slammed: Goodreads

Every Day: Goodreads

I’ll Be Seeing you: Goodreads

Blue Heaven: Goodreads 

Where are the Children: Goodreads

Wonder: Goodreads

Winter Solstice: Goodreads

Before I Go to Sleep: Goodreads

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire: Goodreads 

The Night Circus: Goodreads

The Crown’s Game: Goodreads

Jane Eyre: Goodreads

It Ends with Us: Goodreads

The Taker: Goodreads

The Life We Bury: Goodreads

The Nightingale: Goodreads

Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet: Goodreads 

We Never Asked for Wings: Goodreads

Dark Matter: Goodreads

3. Favorite genres?

My favorite genres are historical fiction, literary fiction, thrillers, fantasy, contemporary and YA.  I have a goal this year to read more classics and modern classics as well.

4. A book you want to see made into a film or TV show?

 

The Night Circus: Goodreads

Caraval: Goodreads

5. Book BFF? Book family?

 

Anne of Green Gables: Goodreads

Harry Potter: Goodreads

My book BFF would be Anne Shirley from the Anne of Green Gables series.  I think she would be a lot of fun to be friends with.  Anne found the joys in the simple aspects of life and I think that would be a refreshing change from the busy lives we live today.

For book family, I’m going to go with the stereotypical choice of the Weasley family from Harry Potter.  I can’t think of a better family!

6. Books you want to read in 2017?

    

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Lilac Girls: Goodreads

Small Great Things: Goodreads

The Black Prism: Goodreads

The Gracekeepers: Goodreads 

Peace Like a River: Goodreads 

The Thirteenth Tale: Goodreads 

Cinder: Goodreads

A Court of Mist and Fury: Goodreads

The Name of the Wind: Goodreads

The Forgotten Garden: Goodreads

Faithful: Goodreads

Cruel Beauty: Goodreads

The Bookshop on the Corner: Goodreads 

11/22/63: Goodreads

Iscariot: Goodreads

Rebecca: Goodreads

A List of Cages: Goodreads

I Capture the Castle:  Goodreads 

The Tenent of Wildfell Hall: Goodreads

The Zookeeper’s Wife:  Goodreads

September: Goodreads

The Shell Seekers: Goodreads 

Beauty and the Beast Lost Book: Goodreads 

Margot: Goodreads

Two More Reading Challenges 2017

I already blogged about my Bookish Goals for 2017 and I talked about the challenges I will be participating in this year.  Well…since that post, I came across two more reading challenges that go right along with my reading goals for this year.  So, I’ve decided to join into these challenges as well.

  1. 2017 Mount TBR Challenge

This chllenge is being hosted by Bev at My Reader’s Block.  The basic premice of this challenge is to read books that you already own, books bought in 2016 or earlier.  I have so many books that I have already purchased and I’d really like to get them read in 2017.  This challenge is the perfect way to motivate me to pick up those books that I’m really looking forward to reading, but I just haven’t read yet.

Here are the levels for this challenge:

Pike’s Peak: Read 12 books from your TBR pile/s
Mount Blanc: Read 24 books from your TBR pile/s
Mt. Vancouver: Read 36 books from your TBR pile/s
Mt. Ararat: Read 48 books from your TBR piles/s
Mt. Kilimanjaro: Read 60 books from your TBR pile/s
El Toro: Read 75 books from your TBR pile/s
Mt. Everest: Read 100 books from your TBR pile/s
Mount Olympus (Mars): Read 150+ books from your TBR pile/s

I think I will go for Mount Blanc and read at least 24 books from my TBR pile in 2017.  I can always raise my goal later in the year if needed.

    2. Pages Read 2017

This challenge is being hosted by Book Dragon’s Lair.  In this challenge you track the total pages read, not the number of books read.  In 2017, I’d like to read some of the big books sitting on my shelves so this challenge is perfect!

Here are the levels for this challenge:

Bonsai – Read 12,000 pages
Shrub – Read 24,000 pages
Dwarf Peach – Read 36,000 pages
Apple Tree – Read  48,000 pages
Oak – Read 60,000 pages
Douglas Fir – Read 72,000 pages
Sequoia – Read 84,000 pages
Redwood – Read 84,001+ pages
For this challenge, I will be going for Bonsai.  I am a bit of a slower reader so I don’t want to pressure myself.  My biggest and most important reading goal for 2017 is just to enjoy what I’m reading.  If I find that I’m reading more pages, I can always raise my level later in the year.