Hi! I’m Rebecca, lover of Jesus, my hubby, good hot tea and great conversations! I claim a little town in western North Carolina as my home, but Texas has stolen my country-girl heart. 

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The 95 Books of 2016

Yes, I read 95 books this year. I'm still in disbelief. When I started reading 100 pages a day at the beginning of the year in effort to keep my sanity during a crazy season of life, I had absolutely no idea where I would end up. I didn't set a book goal; I set a goal to have some margin in my life, to do something for myself, to make sure I was actually sitting in my home and not running around like a crazy person 24/7. I read an average of a page a minute, and so 100 pages a day meant that I was carving out an hour and a half each day for myself. During the first couple of months, I was a stickler about my goal. I would get up early to read if my day was going to be crazy. Over time, however, reading became a habit and I didn't really pay attention to how many pages I was reading. I just settled into my own rhythm. 

Towards the end of the year, I thought it would be fun to see if I could reach 100 books. Real life kept me from making it there, and that's 100% okay. 95 books in a year is still pretty stellar in my opinion!

I want to share the books with you here. It's fun to share such a big accomplishment. Let me know if you have questions about any of these books in the comments! I am happy to share my thoughts. These are in order of what I read ... or am wrapping up!

1. Why Not Me? by Mindy Kaling

2. Four Seasons in Rome: On Twins, Insomnia, and the Biggest Funeral in the History of the World by Anthony Doerr

3. Longbourn by Jo Baker

4. It Starts with Food: Discover the Whole30 and Change Your Life in Unexpected Ways by Melissa & Dallas Hartwig

5. Mr. Penumbra's 24 Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan

6. Cupcakes and Cashmere: A Guide for Defining Your Style, Reinventing Your Space, and Entertaining with Ease by Emily Schuman

7. Stop Asking Jesus Into Your Heart: How to Know for Sure You Are Saved - JD Greear

8. The Fringe Hours: Making Time for You by Jessica Turner

9. Root to Leaf: A Southern Chef Cooks Through the Seasons by Steven Satterfield

10. Girl Waits with A Gun by Amy Stewart

11. The Nesting Place: It Doesn't Have to be Perfect to be Beautiful by Myquillyn Smith

12. Barbara Westbrook: Gracious Rooms by Barbara Westbrook

13. The Choice by Nicholas Sparks

14. Me Before You: A Novel by Jojo Moyes'

15. Seven Women: And The Secret of Their Greatness by Eric Metaxas

16. Write Without Crushing Your Soul: Sustainable Publishing and Freelancing by Ed Cyzewski

17. Manage Your Day to Day: Build Your Routine, Find Your Focus, and Sharpen Your Creative Mind by Jocelyn K. Glei

18. Emily of New Moon by LM Montgomery

19. What the Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast: And Two Other Short Guides to Achieving More at Work and at Home by Laura Vanderkam

20. Servants' Hall: A Real Life Upstairs, Downstairs Romance by Margaret Powell

21. The Secret Keeper: A Novel by Kate Morton

22. Delicious! A Novel by Ruth Reichl

23. After You: A Novel by Jojo Moyes'

24. For the Love: Fighting for Grace in a World of Impossible Standards by Jen Hatmaker

25. The Checklist Manifesto: How to Get Things Right by Atul Gawande

26. Emily Climbs by LM Montgomery

27. Fierce Convictions: The Extraordinary Life of Hannah More: Poet, Reformer, Abolitionist by Karen Swallow Prior

28. Home by Marilynne Robinson

29. You Learn by Living: Eleven Keys for a More Fulfilling Life by Eleanor Roosevelt

30. The Poisonwood Bible: A Novel by Barbara Kingsolver

31. Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption by Bryan Stevenson

32. Making Toast: A Family Story by Roger Rosenblatt

33. The Year of Cozy: 125 Recipes, Crafts, and Other Homemade Adventures by Adriana Adarme

34. See Me by Nicholas Sparks

35. I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith

36. The Best Yes: Making Wise Decisions in the Midst of Endless Demands by Lysa Terkeurst

37. The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business by Charles Duhigg

38. Breaking Busy: How to Find Peace and Purpose in a World of Crazy by Alli Worthington

39. Brooklyn: A Novel by Colm Toibin

40. 7: An Experimental Mutiny Against Excess by Jen Hatmaker

41. Inspired You: Breathing New Life into Your Heart and Home by Miss Mustard Seed

42. Faithful Women and Their Extraordinary God by Noël Piper

43. Looking for Lovely: Collecting the Moments that Matter by Annie F. Downs

44. The Cost of Discipleship by Dietrich Bonhoeffer

45. Essays of EB White by EB White

46. Year of Yes: How to Dance It Out, Stand In the Sun and Be Your Own Person by Shonda Rhimes

47. The Knockoff: A Novel by Lucy Sykes & Jo Piazza

48. Things Pondered: From the Heart of a Lesser Woman by Beth Moore

49. Emily's Quest by LM Montgomery

50. Spark Joy: An Illustrated Master Class on the Art of Organizing and Tidying Up by Marie Kondo

51. Girl Meets God: On the Path to a Spiritual Life by Lauren F. Winner

52. BiblioTech: Why Libraries Matter More Than Ever in the Age of Google by John Palfrey

53. Wild and Free: A Hope-Filled Anthem for the Woman Who Feels She is Both Too Much and Never Enough by Jess Connolly & Haley Morgan

54. Always Pack a Party Dress: And Other Lessons Learned From a (Half) Life in Fashion by Amanda Brooks

55. Beautiful Ruins: A Novel by Jess Walter

56. Eligible: A Novel by Curtis Sittenfeld

57. Still Life: A Chief Inspector Gamache Novel by Louise Penny

58. Audacious by Beth Moore

59. The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah

60. Onward: Engaging the Culture without Losing the Gospel by Russell Moore

61. Sweeter Off the Vine: Fruit Desserts for Every Season by Yossy Arefi

62. The Power of Full Engagement: Managing Energy, Not Time, is the Key to High Performance and Personal Renewal by Jim Loehr & Tony Schwartz

63. Simply Tuesday: Small-Moment Living in a Fast-Moving World by Emily P. Freeman

64. A Fatal Grace: A Chief Inspector Gamache Novel by Louise Penny

65. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith

66. The Cruelest Month: A Chief Inspector Gamache Novel by Louise Penny

67. Introverts in the Church: Finding Our Place in an Extroverted Culture by Adam S. McHugh

68. Steadfast Love: The Response of God to the Cries of Our Heart by Lauren Chandler

69. Present Over Perfect: Leaving Behind Frantic for a Simpler, More Soulful Way of Living by Shauna Niequist

70. Great by Choice: Uncertainty, Chaos, and Luck--Why Some Thrive Despite Them All by Jim Collins and Morten T Hansen

71. Encounters with Jesus: Unexpected Answers to Life's Biggest Questions by Tim Keller

72. Real Sex: The Naked Truth about Chastity by Lauren F. Winner

73. The Magician's Assistant by Ann Patchett

74. A Rule Against Murder: A Chief Inspector Gamache Novel by Louise Penny

75. Everyone Brave is Forgiven by Chris Cleave

76. The Quotidian Mysteries: Laundry, Liturgy, and "Women's Work" by Kathleen Norris

77. Women of the Word: How to Study the Bible with Both Our Hearts and Our Minds by Jen Wilkin

78. Linchpin: Are you Indispensable? by Seth Godin

79. Creative You: Using Your Personality Type to Thrive by Otto Kroeger & David B. Goldstein

80. House Beautiful Pink by Lisa Cregan

81. A Brutal Telling: A Chief Inspector Gamache Novel by Louise Penny

82. Let Your Life Speak: Listening for the Voice of Vocation by Parker J. Palmer

83. Thrive: The Third Metric to Redefining Success and Creating a Life of Well-Being, Wisdom, and Wonder by Ariana Huffington

84. Messy Grace: How a Pastor with Gay Parents Learned to Love Others without Sacrificing Conviction by Caleb Kaltenbach

85. America's Best Breakfasts: Favorite Local Recipes from Coast to Coast by Lee Brian Schrager & Adeena Sussman

86. Rules of Civility: A Novel by Amor Towles

87. Space at the Table: Conversations Between an Evangelical Theologian and His Gay Son by Brad Harper & Drew Harper

88. Treasuring God in Our Traditions by Noël Piper & John Piper

89. An Invitation to Solitude and Silence: Experiencing God's Transforming Presence by Ruth Haley Barton

90. The One in a Million Boy by Monica Wood

91. We Cannot be Silent: Speaking Truth to a Culture Redefining Sex, Marriage, and the Very Meaning of Right and Wrong by R. Albert Mohler Jr.

92. Uninvited: Living Loved When You Feel Less Than, Left Out, and Lonely by Lysa Terkeurst

93. Commonwealth by Ann Patchett

94. Tasting Rome: Fresh Flavors and Forgotten Recipes from an Ancient City by Katie Parla & Kristina Gill

95. The Bible

I don't know all of what 2017 holds for my reading life. Of course, I've continued to build my TBR list and it is quite sizable!! As I've read this year, I've discovered the space and time that I have in the edges of my life and have been dreaming about all of the things that I could do with it. I would love to see my reading be more focused around certain topics like the Bible/theology, politics, History of America, and have some big reading and writing projects up my sleeve! 

On this note, I wave goodbye for the year of 2016. What a great first year it has been blogging! Thank you for reading and joining me here! I look forward to all that 2017 holds. 

XOXO, 

Rebecca

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