Monday, January 2, 2017

Welcome to 2017! Recap, Reading, and a Challenge.

Welcome to 2017!

I know that many of us had a craptastic 2016, and I was no exception. To put it bluntly, there were far too many upheavals last year, and too many dramatics for me to consider it a good year. But. I learned a lot about myself over the past year, and while there were a lot of horrible moments, I am a much stronger, driven person than I was last year. I think I have finally found my voice, and in 2017, you're going to hear it.

One of the biggest disappointments for me last year was my total disengagement with the online communities I have come to love so much. I became too consumed by things outside of my control, that I let go of the things that make me who I am. And a huge part of that is reading. At the beginning of 2016, I went 4 months without picking up a book other than the titles I was teaching. And I did it again in November and December. All told, I spent well over 5 months not reading. That's sad.

So, on this side of 2017, I'm making it a goal to read more regularly and more diversely than I have the last few years. I have gone far away from the original purpose of this blog, which was reading the classics, and while I'm happy to be reading more YA, science-fiction, and fantasy, I need my classics back. I'm hoping I can incorporate more into my reading diet this year. My goal is 1 per month, but I think I can do more.

One of the biggest things that I am continuing to work on is balance. Between home, work, personal goals, and adulting. I know that sounds silly, but I still struggle to manage it all. Quite frankly, there are too many things that I enjoy and not enough hours in the day to do everything. So balance is something I am continuing to work for this year.

In terms of blogging, I've been saying it for what...3, 4 years now? But I would like to blog regularly. As part of that whole balance piece. Even if it is only 1 or 2 posts a week, I'll be happy. I know I will never return to the crazy blogger life I had prior to being a teacher, but I can do better. I will be better at it.

So, with all that in mind, I am joining one challenge for this year, which is Adam's Classic Book-a-Month Club. It's right in line with my goals-reading more classics. It will also include some rereads, which I am really excited for getting to this year. I love rereading, and like Adam, I include many books on my "Favorites" list that I haven't read in a long time.

If you're interested in joining in on the fun, you can find the information on Adam's blog, linked above. And here are the books we're reading over the course of the year (*s denote something that will be a reread for me):

  • January: Little Women by Louisa May Alcott*
  • February: The Three Theban Plays by Sophocles*
  • March: The House of Mirth by Edith Wharton*
  • April: Tender is the Night by F. Scott Fitzgerald* (I think I read half of this....)
  • May: A Raisin in the Sun by Lorraine Hansberry*
  • June: The Confidence-Man by Herman Melville
  • July: Paradise Lost by John Milton
  • August: Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen*
  • September: Death Comes for the Archbishop by Willa Cather
  • October: Angels in America by Tony Kushner 
  • November: The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoyevsky*
  • December: Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë*
That's all for now. Happy New Year!


  1. I don't think it sounds at all silly that you struggle with balance! I think most of us do, even if they don't always admit it! I hope 2017 is a wonderful year for you Allie!

  2. I hope you do find more time to blog. I have missed reading your posts as I really enjoyed them. They were bookish, interesting and yet also personal so we got to know you as a reviewer, teacher, reader. It was good. Don't think you have to include everything in a single post. Sometimes just a couple of things is good enough and at least we hear from you. You don't always have to do A+ work, B and C is fine and many times we might hit lower than that- haha. All the best to you in 2017. (Travellin' Penguin in Tasmania)

  3. Best of luck with your 2017 reading! That classics challenge looks like a fun one!