It's a little more than a month since the world celebrated the New Year and possibly made New Year's resolutions. For those who are of Asian descent, tomorrow starts the Chinese or Lunar New Year--the Year of the Rabbit, which is known by its formal name of Xin mao.
Back though to the subject at hand, which are the New Year's resolutions that many made. As such, how are the resolutions going? Have they gone by the wayside, or is everyone still plugging away at whatever resolution seemed most fitting?
Copied from my blog posted on the 29th of December (about my resolutions) is the following:
As for my resolutions for 2011, I am going to resolve to read even more books than this year. To add to this, I have already set myself two challenges at bookcrossing.com. One is the first quarter SIY in which I have chosen thirteen books on my Mount TBR (to-be-read) and the other is to read at least 20,000 pages next year.
As for the typical New Year's Resolutions, I am going to exercise more and in this regard, my husband and I have started working out with Wii Fit. As I have mentioned numerous times, I am a pedometer geek, and I regularly wear and record my steps each day. Except recently, my pedometer has been working erratically; therefore, I have a new pedometer on order, which will hopefully arrive before the first. I am going to work on at achieving the 10,000 steps regularly. Whether this pedometer geek manages this, keep tuned.
Well, so far, my husband and I have continued to work out on the Wii Fit and have only missed one or two days (one of which was the first of January when we had family here and the other was the weekend of the Burns Night Supper as we were away). For those unfamiliar with Wii Fit, it keeps track of weight, BMI, the amount and kinds of exercise, noting when at least 30 minutes of exercise is finished (Current recommendations are 30 minutes of exerise at least 5 days a week for keeping healthy) .
My pedometer that I ordered actually arrived prior to the first, and while I have not achieved 10,000 steps every day, I had at least five days with at least 10,000 steps or more, and over 200,000 steps for the month of which > 48,000 were considered aerobic steps (at least ten minutes of sustained walking activity is how the pedometer manufacturer defines this). I hope to do even better as the year continues.
But, to me, my other resolutions are the main focus of this post. Last year I read sixty-six books, and I want to read even more this year. I also further resolved to participate in two of bookcrossing.com's challenges. The first is the SIY challenge, also known as set-it-yourself challenge, and I have set a goal of reading thirteen books, but they are specific books of my choosing. The other challenge is reading at least 20,000 pages this year. Of course, each of my resolutions or goals are overlapping, but all still are worth working towards.
So far, on my SIY challenge, I have completed three of the thirteen books on my list in the month of January, and as of yesterday, I finished a fourth. As for my second challenge, in January, I read 2615 pages of the 20,000-page challenge. Those pages comprise the novels that I have read since the beginning of the year, and they are as follows:
The Cat and Mrs. Cary by Doris Gates
Broken for You by Stephanie Kallos
The Last Operative by Jerry B. Jenkins
Enchanted by Magic by Gloria Harchar
The Highlander's Sword by Amanda Forester
Divine Justice by David Baldacci
The Little Giant of Aberdeen County by Tiffany Baker
The Nitrogen Murder by Camille Minichino
Here is a quick rundown on these books. The first by Doris Gates is a book that I read as a child, perhaps when I was about ten or so. Because I was trying to track this book down for another, I re-read it to be sure it was the book that I remembered. It was...it is the story of a woman (Mrs. Cary) and The Cat who adopts her. It was definitely a lighthearted read, but after finishing up Etidorpha by John Uri Lloyd on the 31st of December, I needed something less complex. In fact, much of my reading this month reflects this.
Broken for You, the debut novel of Stephanie Kallos, was a book ring book (a book that was to be passed onto another bookcrosser). It is the story of two diverse women who come to share a house. One rebuilds her life while also looking for the man who left her; the other is dying of cancer, but wants to make sense of her life. Both are "broken", but by breaking priceless objects and working together, they become friends, grow, and change. It was a decent read that I found quite enjoyable.
The Last Operative by Jerry B. Jenkins is a thriller about a man who has been an operative for a clandestine organization in the United States. Recruited as a young man, he must maintain his cover even to his wife and children. When his wife is killed, he wants out, but also wants to stop a terrorist plot that is being planned by an unnamed member of this same organization. Having never read this author before, I found it to be a quick, decent read of a genre I enjoy.
Enchanted by Magic by Gloria Harchar and A Highlander's Sword by Amanda Forester were both lighthearted romances. The former is laced with the magic of sprites who must get a couple to fall in love; the latter novel is a historical romance set in Scotland during the time of Robert the Bruce. A woman, forced to marry to protect her father's lands, is caught between two warring clans, one of which is her husband's, the other is one who has betrayed the Bruce. Like all romances, she finally realizes which of the two men she loves and which is the betrayer, who is also willing to destroy her family in the process.
Divine Justice by David Baldacci is another thriller. This novel is another in the Camel Club series, and it is Oliver Stone, also known as John Carr, who is fighting for his life by hiding out in a small town, but this town is not all that it appears to be. Like all of Baldacci's novels, it is going to take some sleuthing to cut through the intrigues and lies, and it delivers with the help of the remaining Camel Club members.
The Little Giant of Aberdeen County by Tiffany Baker is another debut novel. Told in the first person, It tells the story of two sisters who live very different lives. Truly is a giant and continues to grow larger with the passing years; her sister is as petite and pretty as Truly is not. After their father dies (their mother dies giving birth to Truly), the sisters are separated. The "princess" lives with the minister and his wife; Truly lives out in the country with a woebegone family. Truly ends up rearing the child of her sister and comes into her own. Definitely, it was a novel worth reading...I really loved the character of Truly!
Last of all, I read The Nitrogen Murder by Camille Minichino. Gloria is a retired physicist who, along with her fiance who serves on the police force in Revere, Massachusetts, solves murders. This book is the third in the series, but still was a stand-alone read. In this one, she and her fiance travel to Berkeley so that Gloria can serve as maid-of-honor to her best friend. Unfortunately, her friend's fiance disappears after one murder occurs. He is implicated in the plot, and it is up to Gloria to figure it out. Having a background in chemistry, I really loved all the chemical references, and plan on reading others in this series.
Causes Nancy Smith Supports
Doctors without Borders
American Diabetes Association