College does a funny thing to students. I left for college as someone who absolutely loved to read. I graduated from college having read maybe 3 books just “for fun”. Something about reading textbooks or at least feeling like you should be reading your textbooks really takes away from the enjoyment of reading. After college, it took me a while to get back in to the habit of reading. Now, I read nearly every night.
Lately I’ve been
begging encouraging N to read the Harry Potter series. He isn’t really a reader and the older I get, the more it is something I appreciate and want him to appreciate too (plus I’m desperate for him to become a Harry Potter fan!). Here’s how I rediscovered reading and how N is trying to also:
1. Don’t be ambitious
It might sound really cool to say to other people “I’m reading Pride and Prejudice” but realistically, you probably aren’t going to get sucked into this novel after a long stretch of being a non-reader. Start with something that is an “easy” read. Pick a book from a genre you know you like. Finally get around to reading the book your friends have been raving about. No need to be ambitious about your choice here. You aren’t any less of a reader just because you don’t read books that are wildly academic.
2. Don’t be embarrassed
Read what you want! Are you 25 and you only love Young Adult fiction? Great! You love it and that’s what matters. I’ve read all of the Twilight novels three times, Harry Potter twice, the Hunger Games series, and frequently read “beach reads” i.e. what some might call trashy novels. I’m also a huge fan of historical fiction. If you like it, you are way more likely to keep reading. Have no shame!
3. Carve out 10 minutes
We’re all busy and I know so many people who wish they could find time to read but can’t. I had gotten into the habit of laying in bed at night and scrolling through Instagram, Twitter, and pinning on Pinterest. As a compulsive used book buyer, I had tons of books ready to be enjoyed! So why wasn’t I reading them? Because I wasn’t prioritizing reading. I made a pact with myself to put my phone down and read for at least 10 minutes each night. It worked! These days I read for at least 30 before falling asleep.
4. Start by re-reading something you loved
This is one tip that many may disagree with me on. I am a huge re-reader of books. Maybe it’s because I read so fast and forget many of the details or maybe I just can’t fathom only reading something I loved just once. I love to re-read my favorites. If you have a book that you know you loved once, give it another shot. It could be just what you need to get back on the reading wagon.
5. Embrace real books
Books are expensive. E-books or hardcover books will run you anywhere from $7.99 to $29.99. I have a Kindle and use that for reading non-fiction, books that are only in digital format (like books about blogging!), and embarrassing self-help books. But my real pride and joy is a large collection of real books. Hard cover, paperback, old, new, classics, and loads of fiction. They are almost all from Goodwill and all were less than $1. Goodwill has tons of recent bestsellers, plenty of YA fiction, and for all you moms out there, TONS of books on pregnancy and parenting. Hit them up.
Now for all you readers out there, recommendations please! What books just sucked you in? What could you not put down?
If you haven’t seen the pink cleats scattering the football fields of every NFL game or the umpteen amount of pink ribbons floating around Facebook lately then you might not know that it’s Breast Cancer Awareness month. But have no fear because Erin from Two Thirds Hazel got a whole bunch of bloggers together to bring you a giveaway just to make sure you remember.
The point of the giveaway is to raise awareness about this deadly disease as well as to raise money for breast cancer research in order to hopefully one day end it. And what better way to do that than to throw a whole bunch of PINK prizes your way to entice you to feel yourself up to check for lumps. That’s right, feel yourself up by giving yourself a breast exam! Aka the only mandatory thing you’ll need to do in order to enter for your chance to win. Win what you ask? Well let’s take a little peek and see the prizes shall we.
2) Over $100 worth of makeup and accessories. Snag yourself a lip duo from Sephora, a few blushes, nail polish, lip balms, a makeup bag, a watch, a scarf, a rose quartz and pearl bracelet, a pink pouf from Stella and Dot and more!
And now that you’ve met all of the amazingly generous ladies behind this giveaway, I think it’s about time we got to entering it. So start stripping and begin feeling because the best method of prevention is early detection. If you’ve never given yourself an exam and need some guidance be sure to read the following information brought to you by the National Breast Cancer Foundation on the best ways to get the job done. If you already know how to get yourself to second base then carry on and head straight down to the Rafflecopter below to enter!
1) IN THE SHOWER
Using the pads of your fingers, move around your entire breast in a circular pattern moving from the outside to the center, checking the entire breast and armpit area. Check both breasts each month feeling for any lump, thickening, or hardened knot. Notice any changes and get lumps evaluated by your healthcare provider.
2) IN FRONT OF A MIRROR
Visually inspect your breasts with your arms at your sides. Next, raise your arms high overhead. Look for any changes in the contour, any swelling, or dimpling of the skin, or changes in the nipples. Next, rest your palms on your hips and press firmly to flex your chest muscles. Left and right breasts will not exactly match—few women’s breasts do, so look for any dimpling, puckering, or changes, particularly on one side.
3) LYING DOWN
When lying down, the breast tissue spreads out evenly along the chest wall. Place a pillow under your right shoulder and your right arm behind your head. Using your left hand, move the pads of your fingers around your right breast gently in small circular motions covering the entire breast area and armpit. Use light, medium, and firm pressure. Squeeze the nipple; check for discharge and lumps. Repeat these steps for your left breast.