WHAT I’M CURRENTLY READING

Good morning beautiful souls,

If you follow me on Goodreads you will already know what I’m currently reading, but in case you don’t (psst.. go follow me..) I wanted to share with you the books I’ve been enjoying.

Firstly however I just want to talk about how much I love Goodreads, it is such a great website and if you’re not already on it you totally should be, at least if you’re a bookworm! This site enables you to yourself reading goals and log all the books you’re reading/ have read. You can rate them and leave reviews or even share them/recommend them to friends. If you enjoy discussing books there are also numerous book clubs you can join or even just discussion forums. I’ve not really joined a book club before. Well I tried it once but was put off as soon as the chosen book arrived in the post. Said book was the Count of Monte Christo, which I’d soon discovered was like a 900 page novel in the smallest writing possible! Needless to say I didn’t think I could finish it in a month and so I soon gave up and haven’t joined a book club since. However I did enjoy the story and so as you will see in a minute, I have picked this book up again and it is one of the books I am currently reading.

Every year I set myself a goal of 52 books a year, which can be quite challenging and I rarely complete the challenge, but it’s great fun being able to tick a book of the list and see how far you can get – it gives me a lot of satisfaction! So far I have read 15 books this year and that means I am currently 4 books behind schedule! (I hate seeing when I am behind schedule aha). However I also currently have about 10 books on the go so if I finish them all simultaneously it might balance out again!

I don’t know if you are like me when it comes to books but sometimes I just jump between books or randomly decide start a new one; essentially I follow where my mood takes me. Some books I read every night until they’re finished, others I delve into only now and then and again some are books which I picked up, lost interest in but am still determined to finish!

So without further ado,

The books I am currently/actively reading:

The Ambassadors Mission

As the son of the late High Lord Akkarin, saviour of the city, and Sonea, the former street urchin turned Black Magician, Lorkin has a legacy of heroism and adventure to live up to. So when Lord Dannyl takes the position of Guild Ambassador to Sachaka, Lorkin volunteers to be his assistant in the hopes of making his mark on the world.

When news comes that Lorkin is in danger, the law that forbids Black Magicians leaving the city forces Sonea to trust that Dannyl will save him. Besides, her old friend Cery needs her as never before: someone has been assassinating Thieves, and when his family is targeted he finds evidence that this Thief Hunter uses magic.

Either a member of the Guild is hunting down the Thieves one by one, or there is – once again – a rogue magician on the streets of Imardin. And this one has full control of their powers – and is willing to kill with them.

The Count of Monte Cristo (Audiobook on Audible)

The story of Edmund Dantes, self-styled Count of Monte Cristo, is told with consummate skill. The victim of a miscarriage of justice, Dantes is fired by a desire for retribution and empowered by a stroke of providence. In his campaign of vengeance, he becomes an anonymous agent of fate.

The sensational narrative of intrigue, betrayal, escape, and triumphant revenge moves at a cracking pace. Dumas’ novel presents a powerful conflict between good and evil embodied in an epic saga of rich diversity that is complicated by the hero’s ultimate discomfort with the hubristic implication of his own actions.

And the Mountains Echoed

Ten-year-old Abdullah would do anything for his younger sister. In a life of poverty and struggle, with no mother to care for them, Pari is the only person who brings Abdullah happiness. For her, he will trade his only pair of shoes to give her a feather for her treasured collection. When their father sets off with Pari across the desert to Kabul in search of work, Abdullah is determined not to be separated from her. Neither brother nor sister know what this fateful journey will bring them.

And the Mountains Echoed is a deeply moving epic of heartache, hope and, above all, the unbreakable bonds of love.

Coffee Table books (the now & then books):

Bloom

In Bloom, EstΓ©e shares the moments, people, things and life lessons that have made her who she is today and offers her tips for surviving life. Celebrate your bloom story and what makes you unique.

The Little Book Of Hygge

The Danish word hygge is one of those beautiful words that doesn’t directly translate into English, but it more or less means comfort, warmth or togetherness.

Hygge is the feeling you get when you are cuddled up on a sofa with a loved one, in warm knitted socks, in front of the fire, when it is dark, cold and stormy outside. It that feeling when you are sharing good, comfort food with your closest friends, by candle light and exchanging easy conversation. It is those cold, crisp blue sky mornings when the light through your window is just right.

Denmark is the happiest nation in the world and Meik puts this largely down to them living the hygge way. They focus on the small things that really matter, spend more quality time with friends and family and enjoy the good things in life. The Little Book of Hygge will give you practical steps and tips to become more hygge: how to pick the right lighting, organise a dinner party and even how to dress hygge, all backed up by Meik’s years’ of research at the Happiness Research Institute in Copenhagen.

The Sun And Her Flowers

From Rupi Kaur, the bestselling author of Milk and Honey, comes her long-awaited second collection of poetry. Illustrated by Kaur, The Sun and Her Flowers is a journey of wilting, falling, rooting, rising and blooming. It is a celebration of love in all its forms.

The books I started, haven’t picked up in a while, but will get round to finishing eventually:

Tintenherz (or Inkheart in English – I’m reading it in it’s original language – German)

Meggie loves books. So does her father, Mo, a bookbinder, although he has never read aloud to her since her mother mysteriously disappeared. They live quietly until the night a stranger knocks at their door. He has come with a warning that forces Mo to reveal an extraordinary secret – a storytelling secret that will change their lives for ever.

Cider With Rosie

Cider with Rosie is a wonderfully vivid memoir of childhood in a remote Cotswold village, a village before electricity or cars, a timeless place on the verge of change. Growing up amongst the fields and woods and characters of the place, Laurie Lee depicts a world that is both immediate and real and belongs to a now-distant past.

Anna Karenina

Anna Karenina is one of the most loved and memorable heroines of literature. Her overwhelming charm dominates a novel of unparalleled richness and density.

Tolstoy considered this book to be his first real attempt at a novel form, and it addresses the very nature of society at all levels,- of destiny, death, human relationships and the irreconcilable contradictions of existence. It ends tragically, and there is much that evokes despair, yet set beside this is an abounding joy in life’s many ephemeral pleasures, and a profusion of comic relief.

Have you read any of these books?! I would love to know!! ❀

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CLEARING OUT THE DINING ROOM CABINET

Good evening beautiful souls,

Today has been a lovely day, I finally had a day off and could enjoy the good weather. So as I’ve been out in the sun enjoying myself I’ve not had the time to prepare a post, so here’s a quick one on the clear out of my dining room cabinet the other day!

Bit by bit the display cabinet in our dining room has accumulated a hoard of stuff. I love a good tidy display and as our cabinet has glass doors it was high time to give it a good clear out and reorganisation the space!

Here’s the before and afters:

I know it may not be the biggest change but having it less cluttered makes such a big difference and now I have space for all my beautiful loose teas too!

Love Carina xo

FINALLY PAINTING AGAIN

Good evening beautiful souls,

I’ve had the best day today!

A while ago my dad and I agreed that I could use the upstairs room in his cafe as my art studio so that on the days where I’m only working half days can come in for the full day but get some artwork done too. This morning I finally set up my little studio space and it felt great to have somewhere to work again.

Uni really knocked all my painting confidence out of me so it’s taken a good 2 years for me to even pick up a paintbrush again, but today I finally started a painting and it’s left the biggest smile on my face.

Here’s what I was working on today. Sometimes I almost want to leave paintings in their rough unfinished stages because I rather like the look of the loose brush strokes but I need to show myself that I still have the ability to paint and thus I will be finishing this painting over many sessions I am sure.

Love Carina xo

GARDEN PROJECT BEGINNINGS

Good evening beautiful souls,

I’ve had a busy day at work today and when I got home I decided to make the most of the last rays of sun and do some gardening. I can’t wait to have the garden looking all nice, but it’s going to be a long process till it’s where I want to be. I just bought some vegetable seeds and am excited to get planting however I need to prepare the soil first in our first vegetable patch and then build another raised vegetable patch too.

Anyway, there’s not much to be seen yet I guess, the changes are subtle, but I wanted to share the progress on mine and Jessica’s garden project so far. Here’s the before and afters:

Apart from the addition of a tomato and pepper plant there’s not much of a difference here yet. But the plan is to paint this shelf green and the remove every second shelf to make more room for tall plants. Next I also want to plant flowers or maybe more herbs in the little baskets next to the stairs; I’m not sure yet. It’s a bit broken and was left in the garden from the previous owner of this house, but with a bit of sprucing up I think it’ll look great.

In our bin area we just swept the ground and cleared it of all the small rubbish that was left from the house renovation before we moved in. However there are, as you can see, still some old blind rails and the like which need to go to the tip and as neither Jessica or I can drive we’re going to have to wait till someone can get rid of them for us. The plan for this are is to rid it of everything bar the bins and then add a little greenhouse in the right hand corner.

Again this area doesn’t look nice yet, or as if much has been done, but de-weeded the soil and I loosened it before adding the slab stones at the back instead of the array of uneven stones. This will be our salad patch probably.

Lastly, I moved the bird table onto the pebbled area and put the tree pot in another place too. The plan for this area is to build another raised vegetable patch where our little potted rhubarb plant is now standing.

So as you can see, we’ve only started with little improvements so far, but I am so excited for when it will all be finished because I think it will look really nice. Hopefully we can paint the fences again and power wash the pavement to really give the finished look a nice fresh clean touch.

Well, I hope you enjoyed this glimpse into our garden plans. I shall be keeping you updated!

Has anyone else got any big garden projects planned this year?! I’d love to know!

Love Carina xo