I’m back!

It’s been a while. A long while. A way too long while since I even logged on to WordPress, let alone wrote anything! But I’m back, well I’m trying to be (I imagineĀ Arnie saying “I’ll try to be back” wouldn’t have made quite the same impact – ha ha).

Jacob has recently started pre-school 3 hours a day, and the weeks leading up to that, a lot of my sentences started with: “Well, when Jacob goes to nursery I’ll have a bit more time to do that…” so I planned to do a lot of things, and I mean a lot of things.

First things first though, I increased my hours at work. Working only two days a week is lovely, but it does not help ones financial situation much, so half of the hours Jacob was going to be at nursery I agreed to work. Luckily the amazing company I work for are really flexible and were happy to let me do the extra hours from home.

After taking off time that I spend walking to school and back to do the now 3 school runs a day, this leaves me with about 3 hours at home to do other things. In those 3 hours I decided to do the following:

  • Go for at least 2 runs every week
  • Cook lots of meals to go in our freezer for the busy days
  • Write at least 2 or 3 blog posts a week
  • Become a domestic goddess whose house is so clean it barely looks lived in
  • Catch up with some friends I haven’t seen for a while
  • And write a book

All of that in 3 hours a week.

I don’t think I need to explain why this hasn’t happened. Although in the first two weeks of Jacob’s new adventure (for details of this you will have to wait for my next post) I did go for 1 run, cleaned and tidied up our dining room and generally got the house in a state that, although it very much looks lived in, you don’t stick to the kitchen floor anymore. And the best bit is that I have actually finished the first draft of my first ever novel – eek!

Oh, and I have just written a blog post, but obviously you already knew that šŸ™‚

 

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It’s the words that count!

Ever since my husband bought me a kindle for Christmas just over a year ago, I have been involved in several discussions on whether they are a good thing or whether we should stick to books just to make sure they will still be around in a hundred years time. I have also read several posts about the subject and I have even written one myself.

This Friday I heard a line that solved the whole debate for me forever. I was watching room 101, a brilliant program where (for those of you who don’t know it) well known people get to choose something they would like to get rid of, they argue the case why and the presenter then decides whether the object will go into room 101. Anyway, one of the guests wanted to put e-books into room 101, this fired the usual debates of 1 person saying they love books too much to own an e-reader and the other person saying they love reading so much they love being able to carry hundreds of books with them on their e-reader. But then came the line, the line that was going to, in my opinion, solve this problem forever. It wasn’t anything philosophical or deep and meaningful. It wasn’t particularly clever but it made sense. “It’s the words that count, not how you read them”.

And that’s just it, it is the words that count.

Enough said.

To Kindle or not……

I love books, I love reading, I love owning and buying books. I love standing in front of my bookcase and thinking hmmmm, what shall I read next. Shall I pick one that I have never read before or re-read a favourite, should it be easy reading or a bit more intellectual, English or Dutch, fiction or non-fiction, so many choices. In life I hate choosing, but when it comes to books I love it.

I have several bookcases at home and some books move from one to another. This is because I have a favourites bookcase. The one in the living room has all my favourite books in, but when I acquire a new book and really enjoy it, a current favourite might have to move to make room. Within the favourites bookcase I even have favourite shelves, they are basically the ones I have the best view of from the sofa, and that’s where the favourites of all favourites live. The ones like: Love in the times of cholera, The shadow of the wind, Simon, Memoirs of a Geisha, The time travellers wife, I could go on.

Anyway, my point is that I really like books. So when e-readers were starting to become really popular I was confused; why would anyone want one? I could obviously see that it is practical for commuters and on holidays, but still, surely you would rather have actual books? So it was clear to me from the start; I didn’t want one. I asked my husband (who doesn’t like reading and therefore probably doesn’t get my obsession with books) to please never buy me a Kindle.

Fast forward to the following Christmas…… My husband, who is the most wonderful person in the world but also most likely the worst listener, bought me a Kindle! When he gave me the present he said he was a bit nervous about it because he wasn’t sure whether I wanted one. Ha ha, I guess some of the comment ‘I don’t want one’ must have gotten through :-). I immediately knew what it was and I had about 10 seconds (whilst I opened the present) to decide how to react when I “found out what it was”. I obviously didn’t want to be ungrateful, but I had specifically asked him not to buy me one. By the time I opened it I was actually quite interested to find out how it worked, what it would look like and what it would be like to read a book on it, so actually, even though I still didn’t want one, I was pleased to be able to satisfy my curiosity. I could always sell it it if I really didn’t like it.

Fast forward to the day after Boxing Day….. My husband looks at me and says: “For someone who didn’t want a Kindle (so he had been paying attention!) you’ve used it an awful lot so far.” He was right, By that evening, I had only owned it for about 60 hours, I had finished the first book and had built up quite a library of interesting and free books. Free books! That was something I hadn’t counted on. I knew you could get some of the classics for free, but I was not aware of the enormous amount of free and/or cheap books that were out there just waiting for me to download. And I loved it!

But don’t worry, I will never ever give up on actual books. If I really want a book or if one of my favourite authors has a new book out, or just when I fancy, I will go into a bookshop and buy actual books. But I also love my Kindle because without it there would be a lot of books that I would never have read. So I would like to thank my husband for completely ignoring my request, thinking he knew better and being right. You rock!

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