Monday Morning Check-In: Ugg…

Warning lots of complaining: feel free to skip.

Good Monday morning everyone.  Not going to lie I would love to be still buried deep under the covers fast asleep this morning.  This weekend was nothing but work which started off with me mowing the lawn after work on Friday and going downhill from there to end with me spending Sunday cleaning the house.  Basically, I don’t feel like I had a weekend and would love to do nothing but veg on the couch today playing Sims 3 while listening to an audiobook.  Instead, I have a doctor’s apt this afternoon and three baskets of laundry that won’t get done.   The only upside is that I’m taking my friend Jan with me to town so I should have some great conversations with her.  I’m going to log off now because I’m expecting a phone call soon to see if we still have house insurance because I completely fucked up and forgot to pay it this month…  As soon as I realized I paid over the computer but that might not be good enough.  Seriously, can’t I just stay in bed all day.

After rereading I realized I did nothing but bitch and didn’t talk about reading.  I did make some progress on my audiobook and while I’m enjoying it I’m a little nervous about what the book talk ladies will think of all the sex, drugs, and rock & roll…  Should make for an interesting conversation or a cringe-worthy one

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Monday Check-In: Tough Weekend…

Good Monday Morning for another minute at least.  Last weekend was a tough one.  I’m not a fan of Mother’s Day but life took a nose dive before we could even get to that dreaded day.  Saturday I found one of my sheep in bad shape and needed to put her down about 20 minutes before work.  This is the first time I’ve needed to kill one of my pets myself and while I’m proud of myself for finding the courage to do what was needed and ending her suffering it sure did leave me a bit traumatized.

Sunday was Mother’s Day, a pointless manufactured holiday that I loathe.  We stayed home and tried to work in the yard but it was far to wet out to plant the garden.  Our veggie plants might have to live on the porch for a week or two for it to stop raining and dry out.  I’m not going to complain too much about that because up until now it was a pretty dry spring.  We need to moisture even though it is tough to breathe today with the level of humidity outside.

I’ve been DNFing books at a pretty steady pace recently.  I’m busy outside, busy getting ready for SRP, busy getting ready for the fair,  life is simply in the way and I’m having trouble finding time to get into a read.  Audiobooks have been a lifesaver on the blogging front but I would still like to find something to sink my reading teeth into.  I want to get lost and feel like I need a new urban fantasy series to capture my imagination.

Have a great week everyone, happy reading!

Monday Morning Check-In: Garden Season.

Means slow reading season.  With a late winter transitioning into an instant summer in Eastern Iowa we are all suddenly behind schedule as far as planting goes.  The farmers are in the fields and on the roads like crazy as they struggle to get their corn and soybeans in (not that China is going to buy them…)  Like our larger “gardens” around us, our small plot has remained dormant until this weekend when I spent several hours getting sunburnt and achy cleaning the debris so hubby could till.   We managed to till and even get the potatoes, that should have been planted last month, in the ground.  The thing is our last snow was two weeks ago so it wasn’t like we could do anything until now.  It will be alright though.  Like the farmers, it will all get planted and be fine.  I need to run to town and pick out the plants and get them in the ground.  I might do that today or on Thursday.  Depends how this morning goes because I also need to mow for the first time.  The good part of mowing is I can listen to an audiobook while riding around the yard.  I have Bluetooth headphones this year which should solve my snagging on young trees and bushes problem.  I will try to keep up with the reading but I can’t make any promises this month as all of these chores need to get done.  Have a great week everyone and happy reading.

Monday Check-In: Busy

I think I’m going to drop the morning in my graphic and just call this a Monday Check-In from now on.  I was busy this morning so I didn’t get a chance to post until now.  Not a lot of reading over the weekend.  We were out of the house most of the time.  Did manage to see the new Avengers movie like most the rest of the world and absolutely loved it.  My husband has warmed up to superhero moves over the years through repeated exposure.  Which is great for me, a long time fan, because now he is just as excited to see the movies as I am and actually wants to talk about them afterward!  Sunday we went thrifting and then fiddled around the house.

Today it is more chores but I did manage to make some progress on my audiobook while working.  Going to be a disappointing month for reading because I don’t think I finished many books this month.

Have a great week!

Monday Morning Check-In: Little Reading

Good Monday morning everyone.  I feel like I’ve gotten very little reading done in the last week.  I think it was mainly due to the fact that I was on the run most of last week.  Monday was a book talk at work, Tuesday I had a mammogram and a Creative Arts meeting for the upcoming fair in July, Wednesday I was at work followed by a book signing in Iowa City with John Scalzi!!!  I get off work at 6 pm and needed to drive 60 miles for the book talk/signing at 7 pm.  I made it with ten minutes to spare so you know I was speeding for a good part of the way.  It does help that I could jump on the interstate which has a speed limit of 70 now, although most of the traffic was going 80…  It was a great book talk and the second time I’ve been able to meet Mr. Scalzi.  Unfortunately, I was in such a rush that I left my phone in the car so the only proof I have is the three personalized books I brought home.  I took with my a 65 cent thrift store find from last year which was a first edition copy of his first published book Old Man’s War.  He did warn me that the book would be worth more on eBay if I just had him sign it but since I don’t plan to ever part with it I decided to have it personalized to me.  Like my Star Trek collection after I’m gone I don’t care what my husband does with it or how much or how little it might bring him.  Thursday and Friday were pretty quiet but both work days which means not a lot of reading time followed by a busy weekend of running around town and chores on the farm.

This week is a bit quieter and I have a few audiobooks that I am excited about so it might be a week of crafting while listening to audiobooks.  I have a handful of arcs that I need to get to reading as well.

Have a great week and happy reading!

Monday Morning Check In: Instagram

Good Monday morning everyone.  It was another chilly weekend here in Eastern Iowa.  Fortunately, we did not get the snow that other parts of Iowa or Minnesota received.  Still, there is a fresh layer of the white crap out there and the temps are once again in the 20’s to start off the day…  I hate winter. I just want to turn off my furnace!

Anyway, over the weekend I purged a ton of clothing and reorganized the room we use as a closet as I’ve decided not to wait for spring to start spring cleaning.  I also set up a second Instagram account for the blog where I hope to start posting just bookish related pictures.  Like my book hauls and current reads without the cats, gardening, trek, or knitting shots which will remain on my main account, amyjoiowa.  Now I’ve not posted any pictures yet but if you want to follow the blog on Instagram you can at read_what_i_like.  Will try to take some more aesthetically pleasing shots but I’m not promising anything.

Have a great week everyone!  Happy reading.

Monday Morning Check-in: Missing Spring

Good Monday morning everyone.  Yet another week has passed without any signs of spring.  At this point I don’t care if we dive right into summer I just want to turn off my furnace.  It has been running for six months and I just want to open the windows.

I feel like I have been reading less lately.  Too much time on YouTube I think.  I hope to finish up my Scalzi ARC this week and then I have a book talk read for my library.  I have been approved for several more review books on Net Galley too that I need to read.  I find myself lacking in motivation recently and not just for reading.  The dishes, cleaning, and other projects just don’t seem to be getting done.

I did spend quite a bit of time planning a real vacation for early summer.  Not going far but it will be five days away from home!  Both the husband and I are excited.

Have a great week everyone and happy reading.

Monday Morning Check-In: Still Cold…

Good Monday morning everyone.  I hope you had a great weekend and to those of you that celebrate Easter a good holiday.  Husband and I do not celebrate so our weekend was pretty much normal.  He did get to work on Friday so that should be some nice holiday pay in next week’s paycheck.  Still cold here in Eastern Iowa and I just ordered our third tank of propane this winter. Dammit.  Oh well, we should have a mostly full tank going into next winter then.  Hopefully, it will warm up soon as I would like to get out in the garden.

Started the Dark Hunter book I’ve been avoiding and so far it has been what I had feared.  I’m not into the main characters.  So far it seems to be 100% original plot which was my complaint with the last book but I still think it is going to be tough to get through this one.  I wonder if I just need to move on from her books, that they won’t work for me anymore.  I hope not she was my favorite author.

Brought home a pompom maker for my knitting projects and I have an idea to make some fun bookmarks.  A google search tells me they have already been done before but I’ll post a picture to Instagram anyway when they are done.

Have a great week everyone and happy reading!

Monday Morning Check-In: Waiting on Spring

Good Monday morning everyone.  Coming off a truly good weekend with the hubby.  Saturday was a little tough as we were both frustrated with some light snow but we headed out anyway and did our weekly shopping.  Sunday’s weather was much nicer and we spent much of the day outside working on projects.  Hubby got a new toy drone to play with and I got some yard work done.  In the evening we curled up on the couch to watch Star Trek.  It was such a nice day and just what we both needed to relax.  I did manage to get some reading done but not as much as I might have liked but that’s okay.

This week I have the next two audiobooks in the Charley Davidson series so I plan to work on a set of knit gloves and listen to them.  I am also working on the spin-off Blackdagger Brotherhood’s latest release and I bought the novella in the main series that I will start after finishing that.  After I am all caught up in that world I might move onto Kenyon and catch up in her series.

Spring starts tomorrow and I am so looking forward to warmer weather.  Spring is my favorite time of year and hopefully, we get more than two weeks of it.   I need to make plans for the birds and the garden too.  Potatoes and onions could go in the ground soon but first, we need to clean it up from last year.  I left it as is so the birds could pick through the leftover seeds over the winter.

Have a great weekend everyone and happy reading!

Monday Morning Check-in: Blogging for Books

Good Monday morning everyone.  I have a confession.  I’m typing this up on Saturday, scandalous I know.  I had some time to fill and a topic to discuss so I decided to schedule this post.

So have you heard?  Blogging for Books is closing.  I’m not quite sure how I feel about it.  I did write a Bookish Thoughts post here, about being done with the program as they never had books I was interested in.  I lied, or rather I couldn’t give up the temptation of being offered a physical book to review that I could keep.  Don’t get me wrong I love the digital arcs but it is nice to have a book I can put on my shelf when I’m done.  Especially if it is one I loved.  For instance, I received my copy of The Martian through Blogging For Books and I’ve read it like three times now.  So I’m sad the program is closing down but not surprised.

I imagine they felt the cost of sending the books was not worth the reviews they were getting.  After all, they are still offering digital arcs through Net Galley and their (crappy) First to Read program.  I totally don’t blame them but I have to say if perhaps you offered books that people were excited about then perhaps the quality of reviews would have been better.  I only participated in the program for three or four years but besides The Martian, I never found anything truly exciting in their offerings.  It always felt like books they were second or third tier titles.  Maybe I just wasn’t a popular enough blogger to be offered better titles though.  I also didn’t care for the hoops they made up jump through.  Proving our influence on social media through a Klout rating.  Maybe another reason the program failed.

I’m still active on Net Galley but have noticed that many of the publishers are not listing their big upcoming release titles for request anymore.  I have been offered widgets through email from a couple of publishers but when I go to search the title I can’t find where people can put in a request.  So perhaps all the publishers are simply becoming more exclusive in who they offer their books to.  Or maybe not.

Others have mentioned to me it is nice to not have an arc to review as then there aren’t 40 different blogs reviewing the same book.  I agree but I still find it fun to score an arc by an author I’m a huge fan of.

I know I’ve not been a blogger for all that long but I feel like the environment is changing.  I can only control this little corner of the internet however and no matter what happens as long as I am reading I will be posting my reviews.  You might have to deal with older titles but that isn’t such an awful thing.  After all, it might be a great way to find some great book that perhaps you missed when it first came out.

So what are your thoughts about Blogging for Books closing?  Will you miss them or have you already written them off ages ago?