New Year Resolutions, 2016, new year goals, goal setting, reading, books, a year of reading the world, travel,

30 books in 2016

when it comes to new year’s resolutions, some struggle to set goals and put them in ink; my struggle tends to be quite the opposite. an old friend, coach, and boss, has always told me that i was a paradigm of “having too many irons in the fire.” in years past, i laughed at him when he said that to me. but now that i am all the older and all the wiser, i completely understand what he meant, and how being that person can also be negative. in contrast to those individuals who may not finalize their goal setting, i tend to set so many resolutions that the degree to which i can extend myself in any one of them is limited. in 2016, i am recognizing that fault, and making a change. i don’t need to do everything, but everything i do, i need to do well.

in 2015, i set a new year’s resolution to read 30 books in the year. 30 books in 52 weeks, equates to just under 2 books a month. this is not a tall order for many people.  but for people who spend their entire summer bouncing around from beach town to beach town playing volleyball, who have a hobby blog, who are dedicated to their full time career, who have a hobby wine club, who are dedicated to their family, who strive to spend as much time as they possibly can outdoors, and who dedicated years of their life to working out. 30 books in 52 weeks becomes a very large feat.

last year, i exemplified having “too many irons in the fire,” and i failed at achieving my goal. this is the first time i have admitted that failure at loud. i’ve struggled with it internally, because i am not the kind of person who sets goals, and does not achieve them.

so this time around, i am making this goal public. in 2016, i am going to read 30 books, and i am not going to let any irons inhibit me from finding success.

thus far, i am off to a great start.

for christmas my husband bought me a book he said he thought i would relate to, and he was right. it felt as if i read it in a matter of minutes.

WILD by Cheryl Strayed

“It has only to do with how it felt to be wild. With what it was like to walk for miles for no reason other than to witness the accumulation of trees and meadows, mountains and deserts, streams and rocks, rivers and grasses, sunrises and sunsets. The experience was powerful and fundamental. It seemed to me that it had always felt like this to be a human in the wild, and as long as the wild existed it would always feel that way.”


immediately after i cracked open a book that my Steve-O recommended to me after he read about my new found love for rowing on my blog, (which you can read HERE).  just yesterday i closed the back cover of THE BOYS IN THE BOAT by Daniel James Brown, with a tear in my eye. i loved it, and i can’t recommend this book enough, especially to others who have ever been a part of an athletic team.

“If you simply kept your eyes open, it seemed, you just might find something valuable in the most unlikely of places.”


tomorrow i will start reading AN AFRICAN IN GREENLAND by Tété-Michel Kpomassie, which came to me as a suggestion from Ann Morgan in her Year of Reading the World. I discovered Ann, her blog, and her mission through a Ted Talk. talk about humbling. my goal is to read 30 books in one year. her goal was to read 196 books in one year, from every country of the world, and to blog about them all the way. and she did it. i would love to meet this Ann Morgan someday, but in the meantime, i will read the books she suggests as a means of broadening my perspective of life.

and already in the que is THE STORYTELLER by Mario Vargas Llosa, a Peruvian writer who received the Nobel Prize in Literature in 2010. i was inspired to start with Peru as my first country to read off of Ann Morgan’s list due to my plans to hike the Inca trail this spring with my husband.

this year, i WILL be reading 30 books; if not more, to make up for the fact that i fell short of my goal in 2015. and i would love to receive your recommendations, and to hear about your 2016 goals.

in the 14 days that have passed thus far in 2016, i’ve organically begun highlighting quotes within the books i’ve read that inspired me; and using those words as the caption of my instragram photos.  the combination of my reading goal, along with my passion for the outdoors (which is exemplified in my instagram account) has been extremely rewarding.

i foresee many more folded over book pages, and many more instagram photos that bring those powerful words into vision. for those that have an interest in following my book entries via instragram, feel free to click here:  THEFIRST2HOURS ON INSTAGRAM .

and on a side note, if you have not yet discovered GOODREADS, and you enjoy wrapping up with a good ol’fashioned book once in awhile (or a new-fashioned electronic reading device), take a peak.

if you would like to read along with me, here are links to the books on my list thus far:

WILD by Cheryl Strayed

THE BOYS IN THE BOAT by Daniel James Brown

AN AFRICAN IN GREENLAND by Tété-Michel Kpomassie

THE STORYTELLER by Mario Vargas Llosa


What books have you read recently that you recommend?
What are your 2016 Resolutions?


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