According to my New Year’s Resolution, I had hoped to read 100 books in the year 2014. I have to admit, I didn’t keep very good track of all the books I tried to read, but I did pin most of the books I finished to this board.
There were a few books that weren’t especially grand, but did have a few useful tidbits here and there. Then there were a few that were really life changing. I thought I’d share my favorite books with you here. If you have a Kindle, be sure to sign up for David C. Cook’s newsletter to get yourself a few books (or two!) every week. Personally, I’m still leaning on the paper book side (mostly because I love the library), but I certainly won’t turn down a free book!
My Favorite Books in 2014
(Listed in the order they were read)
#1 Zero Waste Home
I’m not sure how I came to pick up this book (maybe I spotted in on a shelf at the library), but the concept is very intriguing. Basically, the woman doesn’t own a trash can and tries not to throw anything away (she does recycle). Though it’s a bit extreme, it did make me painfully aware of how much stuff I drag to the curb each week. She says the best way to be a zero waste home is to never let junk come in the door in the first place, and that has been something that stuck with me. I spend a lot of time cleaning out stuff and purging things, mostly because I hate to say no to people when they try to give me things (I might hurt their feelings!. However, if I know I’m just going to cart it to the Salvation Army in two weeks anyway, wouldn’t it be better just to save myself those steps? It’s nothing earth shattering, but it is a great book to get you thinking about this way of life we call normal.
#2 The Year of Learning Dangerously: Adventures in Homeschooling
Grab it on Amazon (affiliate): The Year of Learning Dangerously
This was a very honest book about homeschooling, the reasons for getting into it, and the struggles you’ll face. This woman did a great job exploring all the different “sects” of homeschooling and some of the pros and cons of each approach. It was witty and funny and certainly shed some light on the homeschooling decision for me!
#3 Notes from a Blue Bike
Not only was this book beautifully written, it helped me to redefine some of my overall goals for life and family. Read my full review here.
#4 Making Room for Life
Grab it on Amazon:Making Room for Life
Even though Tsh’s book (Blue Bike) was beautiful and inspiring, it was also, at times a bit vague and seemingly out of reach for the average person. Randy Frazee’s book seemed to put Tsh’s ideals into a practical life setting. I love his concept of working only during daylight hours (based on Hebrew tradition) and hope to incorporate that habit a bit more into my life during 2015.
#7 The Fabulous Reinvention of Sunday School
Grab it on Amazon (affiliate link): The Fabulous Reinvention of Sunday School
This book was so helpful for my large group teaching skills. It’s super practical, fun to read, and a terrific resource for anyone in Children’s Ministry. It’s one you’ll go back to again and again and I wish I would have read it sooner!
#6 Gospel Wakefulness
This book had been recommended to me from a good friend and I finally bought it! I read it over the summer, which seemed like a perfect time to really contemplate all that was within the pages. This is a book you’ll have to read for yourself, but it’s well written and has plenty to think about.
#7 The Sacred Year
I’ll finish up my year with this gem. This book has perhaps been my all time favorite of the year, partly because Michael’s down to earth writing style and partly because of the way I really relate to the struggle of trying to keep the sacred alive in the “grind of every day life”. I love the way he broke down the chapters into different areas of life (going deeper with God, going deeper with others, etc). His chapter on breath verses depth (chapter 2 I think) really struck a chord with me and caused me to make some serious adjustments in my life. Read it.
What About You?
What were your favorite books of the year?