Books Waiting to be Read

Books to read in 2018

Books to read in 2018

For me, books make the perfect gifts. I love buying my favourite books for people & the thought that someone else might get as much joy as I did from reading a certain book is such a nice feeling. I also really like discussing my favourite books with people and listening to their take on it. Receiving books is so nice too, adding a book to your collection that you may never have picked yourself but it ends up becoming a favourite read is exciting to me. It is safe to say the book fairies were very kind to me this Christmas and I received quite a few new books to kick off my reading list for 2018.

St Petersburg by Jonathan Miles 

I have always been fascinated with in Russia because I feel like it’s quite a dark, unknown place with a very interesting, rich history. It’s so different from anything I have ever known and I love learning all about its past. This book spans three centuries from Peter The Great right up to Putin. It is a hefty book but I started it on Christmas Day and I’m flying through it at some speed. I’ve read about 150 pages and so far it’s very interesting and quite shocking in parts. It’s described as ‘An epic tale of murder, massacre and madness played out against squalor and splendour. It is a remarkable portrait of a city and it’s people.’ What country sparks your interests?

The Little Book of Lykke by Meik Wiking

I’ve read the first book in this Scandi series, Little Book of Hygge & I have to tell you I’m 100% onboard with the whole lighting candles, drinking hot drinks and snuggling under a warm blanket (even when it’s not Winter). I also read The Year of Living Danishly which is a similar book but it takes a more in-depth look at the reasons people in Denmark are inherently happy. It was fantastic, a real eye-opener to learn what almost simple pleasures and small changes in your life can bring you that sense of happiness. This Lykke book seems to be in a similar vein so I’m excited to read it to learn just what happiness means to the people of Denmark and see if I can adopt some new behaviours to increase my own happiness.

Lagom by Linnea Dunne

This is another Scandi inspired book and although written by a different author to the Lykke and Hygge books is it similar in that is discusses the art of balanced living and just how important that is to our relationships and happiness. It is not about the Danes this time but focuses on the Swedes, who also rank very highly on the happiness scale. It looks like a refreshing take on how to find a healthy balance in life to ensure you have time to relax, be sociable and not let work become your entire life. It sounds very interesting and something I think we all strive to achieve a healthy work-life balance is the dream and Sweden appears to have it all worked out. I really like the simple illustrations in these books, they make so nice to flick through even after you’ve read them.

Berlin Style Guide by Ellen & Petra

I adore Berlin and have visited 5 times over a 30 year period and it is safe to say I have seen Berlin go through some major changes and some more subtle changes. It is a mysterious City and one that nurtures creativity. At face value, it feels very quiet, stark and utterly freezing in the Winter but if you get to know it and take time to seek out its beauty it is a city that welcomes you in and gives your soul doses of creativity and inspiration. I love exploring its city streets and each district is very different. This Berlin Style Guide takes you through 8 of Berlins suburbs and in each you get so many recommendations of delicious places to eat, stylish, quirky places to shop, beautiful places to get coffee and many hidden gems that will get your creative juices flowing. It has been so well curated so that you feel like you’re an honorary Berliner (for a few days at least). I love flicking through this guide and bookmarking places I have to visit on my next trip.

Hag-Seed by Margaret Atwood 

I don’t know much about this book, it was a gift from my friend Hayley (who has excellent taste in books). What I do know is it written by the same author that gave us A Handmade Tale so I am expecting great things.

Orwell on Truth

This was bought for my husband but I will be reading it after he has finished. ‘This selection of George Orwell’s writing, from both his novels and non-fiction, gathers together his thoughts on the subject of truth. It ranges from the discussion of personal honesty and morality to freedom of speech and political propaganda. Orwell’s unique clarity of thought and illuminating scepticism provide the perfect defence against our post-truth world of fake news and confusion.’

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50 Things That Make Me Happy

The lovely Hayley who has a beautiful blog all about her gorgeous family (HayleyFromHome) tagged me (challenged me) to think of 50 things that make me happy. I feel I’m quite a pessimistic one might say slightly negative person so I thought this tag might be good for me – to see if I could actually think of 50 things.

50 Things That Make Me Happy

So in no particular order,

1. Chai – I drink tea all day long & love discovering new teas but Chai is my favourite

2. Autumn – I love it when the leaves change colour

3. Museums

4. Castles

5. The night sky

6. Working from home

7. Family

8. Airports

9. Trains

10. Watching TV in bed

11. Crisp, fresh, clean bedding

12. Humous & dips in general

13. My husband bringing me a cup of tea in bed every morning

14. Amsterdam – I adore this city, its so beautiful

15. Snail mail – I love sending & receiving a good old fashioned letter

16. Anything fig scented

17. HEMA – best shop in the world

18. A new notebook

19. Friends – it is the one TV show that will never get old

20. Fairy lights – I have them everywhere

21. Taking photos – When I remember my camera

22. Jam on toast

23. Birkenstocks – Some say ugly, I say comfy

24. My wonderful Mum Linda & our daily phone calls.

25. Pyjama bottoms

26. My favourite Costa ceramic Christmas travel mug that I am still using

27. My makeup collection

28. Lemonade – traditional old fashioned lemonade

29. My cheeky beautiful niece Alyvia

30. Falafel – I could live off them

31. Massive wooly scarves & warm clothing in general

32. Road trips with my husband & taking a picnic

33. Bon Jovi – I’m an 80’s girl at heart & love Jon Bon & Richie Sambora

34. Having my eyebrows done – makes me feel like a new women

35. Into The Wild – Favourite film

36. Trash TV – I do like bad American reality shows & watch them on a Sunday morning in bed

37. Salt & Vinegar crisps

38. Being married – I love being married. Me & my husband John have been a together for 15 years now & everyday is amazing & it gets better and better.

39. Face time / Skype – most of my family & friends live all over the world & I love being able to keep in touch

40. Fresh flowers – Especially Tulips

41. Being a honest, loyal and supportive friend – I try hard to be there for the people I love.

42. Whole Foods – If I could only shop in one shop for the rest of my life it would be here. I love it

43. People watching – I could sit for hours (with a brew) and watch the world go by

44. Buying books – For myself and as gifts. I think books make the most treasured gifts

45. Stationery shops – I need & want all the stationery. Although I have no room for anymore

46. The kindness of strangers – Always comes when you need it most but least expect it

47. Puppies – I love puppies they make my heart swell

48. My Car – Its nothing flash but it represents my decision to downsize & focus on living, instead of earning and spending more money on things I don’t need or want.

49. Savoury snacks – I’m not a sweet tooth kind of girl, but give me all the savoury snacks like crisps & nuts. I am all over those.

50. Hearing my husband sing when he thinks no one is listening – to GnR or Type O Negative. Its priceless

So they’re my 50 things that make me happy. Its quite nice to remind yourself that its mostly the small things that make you happy & almost always things that are free too! Thank you to Hayley for tagging me – it wasn’t as hard as I thought to think of 50 things.

I’m going to tag Amy from Srslylou, Jennie from SailorJennie, Becki from lifelooksperfect and Sarah Temporary Secretary – I would love to know what 50 things make you happy.

Link below in the comments if you have done this tag, I’d love to read them.