The Spring Reading List

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Okay, so spring is in theory acoming what with the days slowly getting longer and the fact that it supposedly will begin on 20th March. I’m just getting this set up a teeny bit prematurely, but hey ho.

I am coming at you with another break down of my reading list that I am looking to get read over the next couple of months, it turns out that I quite enjoy creating mini versions of my list mainly because it eliminates an element of so much choice. This is going to be a bit of a non-fiction heavy couple of months just because I feel like I don’t read enough of it in general and so to compensate that I am just going to read a lot of it all at once.

I am currently on 11 out of 65 and similar to the last time I did this where I reckon it should stand at about 6/7 in the period of time, I am tacking on an extra few books because I go on holiday at the end of this month and then it’s Easter and then I have the rest of that week off so I should be able to get a fair amount of reading done in that time, especially because I am going to Amsterdam via train which is about 5 hours of travel time. I read books in roughly that amount of time over the course of a work week in 30 minute bursts, the potential there is high. But whatever. I’m aiming to get 10 books read in the next two months.

In terms of my first one of these I read 8 out of the 9 books, because when it came to me making a decision about whether to read Eat, Pray, Love or Now I Rise I had the epiphany that I want to finish that series straight through and so I’m going to wait for Bright We Burn before I make a start on that one. It turns out I did care.

1) Everyday Sexism – Laura Bates

It’s time that I read this. I have been being to do so for so many weeks, months, years and have just never gotten around to do it. But it’s in my possession and it’s about damn time.

2) Girl Up – Laura Bates

Same goes for this. I’ve read the first page or so and it’s not fucking about. Which is just what I need right now.

3) The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck – Sarah Knight

This was a book that I was looking for in Waterstones, almost gave up and then turned around to see it on a display. It was also this book that made me think that this was going to be a period of time that I was going to read mostly non-fiction books.

4) The Princess Diarist – Carrie Fisher

And now, I am going to complete all the Carrie Fisher books that I have on my list. I almost don’t want to do it, but the time has come. I loved Wishful Drinking and let’s be real I am never going to be truly ready to read it so I might as well just get down to it.

5) The Good Immigrant –  Nikesh Shukla

It’s also time that I read this book. I almost picked it up back in January but didn’t. That’s now changing. It’s time.

6) The Uncommon Type – Tom Hanks

They aren’t all going to be non-fiction on this list because I’ve gotta break it up with some fiction, mainly because the fiction on my list far outweighs the non-fiction. And also I’m curious to see what Tom Hanks has to offer as a writer.

7) The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood

This book is currently staring me straight in the face on my desk. Also season 2 of this show is imminent and I have yet to watch season 1 because I am waiting to read the book before I watch it. This might be an Amsterdam read, but then again it might be a tad too intense for that. We’ll see how it goes.

8)  Call Me By Your Name – André Aciman

I am so excited to read this book. I keep hearing nothing but great things about it and so it’s one that I am most hyped to read.

9) Modern Romance – Aziz Ansari

Okay, so I put this is on my list before the allegations against him came to light and then I had a real think as to whether or not I would still read it. And then when I was reading the responses to it there was an article that mentioned this book in context to his actions and how they somehow didn’t quite match up and so I didn’t take it off the list, because I think on some level this would be interesting to read with the context.

10) the princess saves herself in this one – amanda lovelace

Time to get my first poetry collection of the year read.

And those are my next 10 books, which should take my total to 21 by the end of April, I don’t know whether means I am on track or not but I do know that it means I am inching closer to halfway.

Parentheses count: 1. See you tomorrow!

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Letters to Spring – The Round-Up

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The title says it all I guess, April just happened and all of the letters written to Spring are all collected on my Odes to the Seasons page, I like knowing that they are all together in a post of their own because I’m weird like that.

So here they all are:

1   2   3   4   5   6   7   8   9   10   11   12   13   14   15   16   17   18   19   20   21   22   23   24   25   26   27   28   29   30

Parentheses count: 0. See you tomorrow!

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Letters to Spring 30

Letters to Spring 30

Dear Spring,

Somehow we have reached the end of this month and that seems insane because I could have sworn that it had just started. But I guess I feel like that every single time a month comes to an end and I am faced the with realisation that I am going to have to flip my calendar over to a new picture even though it feels like I just got used to the last picture.

This month has been a bit of a strange one on a few levels. For one the weather has been all over the place in a way that I guess that it always is as this on some level a transitional month and it pretty much always does the insane things that it does, but that doesn’t detract from the fact that it’s still very odd to be walking around in a t-shirt one minute and then feeling like you need your reliable winter coat the next.

Secondly, personally I’ve felt a bit all over the place which has been a bit of an experience to have to deal with and has also taken me back to places that I thought I had left behind me. Although I guess that never truly happens and in some capacity you are always going to be affected by things that have happened. But yeah, that’s been a bit of a rollercoaster to deal with, but I think (hope) that it’s coming to an end as we move through into May.

Thirdly writing letters to you Spring was a bit all over the place. It just sort of highlighted to me  how much of a rut I was in when it comes to being creative right now which I had hoped this project would kind of kick start and get me back on track. And it has in some way, but it also hasn’t. It’s occasionally mocked me in a big way, when I’ve just spent ages looking at a blank screen and wondering what the fuck I am going to talk about today. I’ve thought about giving it up sometimes, but then I remember that this isn’t supposed to be a chore and if it is then I should stop doing it anyway. And yeah, some days the post comes easier and sometimes they are kind of almost not worth posting, but every time I did post it I got one step closer to maybe not being stuck in this weird rut of mine.

So it’s been a bit all over the place and I’ve felt a bit out of my element with it all and writing to you Spring has just reminded me of that. It was an interesting exercise for me to take, when I have written to your other transitional counterpart in the past I have felt like I was settling back into…something and that doesn’t happen with you Spring I’ve learned this month. It might have something to do with the residual terrors in the back of my mind about this time always coinciding with exams and me always being super stressed about them. I hope that leaves me at some point, but something was definitely off kilter this month.

I can’t decide if I’m glad that I have a record of that or not. Either way it’s time to say goodbye to Spring (on here at least) and just be proud that I managed to stick to yet another batch of letters.

Love,

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Letters to Spring 29

Letters to Spring 29

Dear Spring,

Fuck I ache right now. It’s a good kind of ache. It’s an ache that follows the burn of knowing that you are hitting the right muscles while you exercise. It’s an ache that you know come tomorrow is probably going to be much worse and is going to make sitting down and laughing very difficult and slightly painful. It’s an ache that I’ve recently kind of become very used to and on some level might even…like? (I spent a whole day at Be:Fit London today, which even a year ago when I started this thing I never would have even considered doing.)

I mean it’s something that I keep doing and I also work through the ache when come Thursday my glutes feel like dead weight but they still manage to surprise even me. I even so far as to do two 40 minute cardio workouts (the second one I did, Girl Gains, had a banging playlist which when you’re dipping into yet another squat or side plank is really what you need to be honest, give me all the Destiny’s Child songs to work out to please) within the space of an hour that worked pretty much all the same muscle groups and a part of my brain was like ‘you’re being fucking mental’ but then the rest of me was like ‘no this is fine you can do this, your body is stronger than your mind, it will burn but it will be fine’.

And it did burn and it was borderline awful (not in a legit way, just in a this has got to have been longer than 40 seconds why are you still counting down from 20 kind of way)  but it was also kind of invigorating and made me feel powerful and strong. In fact the last couple of workouts that I’ve done this week I’ve noticed that I’m stronger. I can hold a plank better and achieve variations of it with greater ease, there’s way less hip movement involved. I can get into stretches a bit deeper and can touch the floor with straight legs!

I’ve also got a taste for Barry’s Bootcamp today and it was hell (seriously it burned my core in a serious kind of way) but it was also only a condensed version of a class and now I wanna know what the whole thing would feel like…I used to work near one and would see people at lunchtime leaving covered in sweat and clutching protein shakes and I’ve heard things about them and I can understand them, but I also wanna know…this is the kind of person that I am right now.

I’m also slowly making changes to my diet still so it’s not a total shock to the system (not that I’m ever going to do something totally drastic with it or anything), but for now I’m eating pizza and salted caramel ice cream and I’m not going to move from my sofa tomorrow and then I’m gonna feel the burn all over again on (bank holiday) Monday with barre…

Love,

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Letters to Spring 28

Letters to Spring 28

Dear Spring,

This is my 650th post. Which is ridiculous when you think about. Or at least it is to me, just because it means that I have stuck with something for an extensive period of time and I just tend to procrastinate my way out of doing things. But not this. Somehow this keeps going, even though there are definitely times when I have just thought that it might be better for my sanity (I am being hyperbolic here) if I just sort of slipped away quietly from here.

But I haven’t because I have to keep reminding myself that this blog is my creative outlet and even if I don’t venture into other creative ventures as often as I would like I am still maintaining this and I am still putting words onto a page (screen) every day and yeah sometimes they aren’t all that great and sometimes I don’t spend as much time as I would like and it’s a bit all over the place (and I really need to get better at proof reading and not days/weeks/months after the thing has been posted). But I do it. And there’s still a lot of procrastinating and a lot of blogger’s guilt but there I still do it.

Somehow I still do it, and I have done it almost every day for 18 months or something. And yeah I have been feeling kind of unmotivated recently but I’m still doing it because not doing it would make it worse I feel.

So this is my 650th post and today I drank some coffee, ate some food, caught up on some shows and started season 6 of Masterchef USA because there is a lack of cooking shows in my life (seriously, I only watch one and it’s coming to an end soon) and I love me a season of Masterchef (and also I needed a tonic to Big Little Lies, which the family also started this week to fill the Michael Portillo void and while I love it, it’s quite intense).

Love,

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Letters to Spring 27

Letters to Spring 27

Dear Spring,

Today was my Friday and I kept forgetting it. I even agreed to do something tomorrow at work (a small task that I could easily do today) before remembering that I wasn’t going to be there. And then other people kept reminding me that they would see me next week and I kept thinking what?

It means that I’ve bagged myself a further string of 4 day weeks because Monday is a bank holiday and well there are always a good thing to be honest. Something about not having to deal with a full 5 days is quite…nice. In fact I’ve hit a nice streak of four day weeks just because that’s the way bank holidays and Easter worked.

I don’t even know what I’m going to do with this extra day off. Firstly because I am a terrible planner and also because I don’t think I really want to do anything with it other than just not have to be mostly sat at my desk for 8 hours of the day in an office that is soooo hot and is only going to get worse as the (supposedly) warmer months start rolling in. I mean I’m probably just going to lie on my sofa and catch up on some stuff that I’ve not been keeping on top of on the TV. Do some eating, drink some coffee, do some other life admin things. Basically just rest up because I have quite the busy Saturday. Oh and also maybe do some reading just because I need these books done with and I’m trying to stick to reading a book a week (even though the books keep getting longer…).

So that’s where I’m at. Feeling a little bit better than yesterday and really now looking forward to the fact that I have a 4 day weekend. The joy about having one has just hit me. Work week done. Weekend started.

Love,

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Letters to Spring 26

Letters to Spring 26

Dear Spring,

I am going to be honest, my motivation is at an all time low. I don’t even really know what it is, all I know is that it just doesn’t appear to be around right now.

Maybe it’s because the insomnia seems to be slowly creeping back into my life and so I’m not sleeping very well at the moment. Then there’s the whole just general sluggishness because it’s that time of the month and that has somehow caught me off guard despite falling at around the same time each and every single month. Then there’s the fact that for some reason my mind just won’t shut up and I keep worrying about every single little thing right now. Then there’s the fact that a part of me keeps beating myself up about the fact that I’m being unproductive and just sort hanging around on my sofa wasting hours on YouTube and rewatching things on Netflix.

So maybe I do know what’s wrong. Or maybe I do kind of know the source for the lack of motivation. I don’t know what I’m going to do about it at the moment other than just sort of ride the wave out, although that might be a bad idea because I don’t know how big the wave is. I’m basically just going to let myself feel like this for a bit because it’s more annoying to try and ignore it, and then I’m gonna reassess the situation.

Love,

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