Amanda Cade

Worth It! (Things to try, read, watch, hear, and discuss)

For the first week of January, I was on top of the world. I was all caught up at work, I’d finished my blog an Instagram content calendar, the house was organized, and I was writing every day, with half a dozen future blog posts in various states of drafting. I was all over it.

Then the rest of the month hit like a freight train.

Challenges

Half of my family got sick at some point in the last three weeks, including me. Twice. I missed two days of work, and was ragged and unfocused for days, both times.

working

This did not create a great situation at work. With lower energy comes lower productivity, and so I was soon completely buried, and it just kept coming. As soon as I felt like I was getting close, something else came up, or went wrong, or ended up being way more time consuming than I had expected. Even with working at home on the weekends, I spent most of the month just trying not to get further behind. Adding to that (and forgive me for going negative for a minute), I also got hit with some extra work that was tedious, confusing, incredibly time-consuming, and definitely not in my job description. In fact, this migraine-inducing project is part of someone else’s job, but she convinced the higher-ups to let her hand it off because…

…you know, I think I’m just going to cut off that rant. The point is that work was incredibly busy and very stressful.

nogasI’m sad to say that I barely did any writing this month. I’ve been so mentally exhausted most of the time that I’ve been consistently choosing reading over writing when I’ve had some time to spare (or just had to shut down for a while). I have a lot of trouble writing when I’m sick, stressed, or tired, and that’s where I’ve been for most of the month. I’ve been sitting on several nominations and tags that I really want to finish, but I just haven’t had the energy. To those of you that tagged and nominated me, I really appreciate it, and I promise that I haven’t forgotten. It’s just taking a while.

Celebrations

I hope you didn’t think this post was going to be all doom and gloom, because that’s just not how I roll. Despite the craziness, there were definitely upsides…and I’m all about the upsides.

First of all (drumroll, please), as of last night I am officially caught up with the backlog at work. Starting today, I’ll be able to throttle back and restore some equilibrium.igotthis

Second, I feel fine. Actually, I feel good. I think I’ve finally kicked the lingering traces of both illnesses, which is such a relief.

Third, in spite of everything I managed to keep the plates spinning just fast enough. I was able to get my Sunday posts finished on time, didn’t neglect my family, avoided the temptation to work myself to death, and read fourteen books.

Speaking of Books

This has been a good reading month.

screenshot2019-01-31at8.08.46am

I’m already a little behind on my 2019 reading goal, but I know I’ll catch up. Of the fourteen books I read this month, all but one were fantasy books that I’ve been meaning to read for some time. I really enjoyed the majority, and the rest were at least ok.

High Point: Strange the Dreamer and Muse of Nightmares. Totally amazing and wonderful. I started recommending these like crazy before I was halfway through the first book. Just make sure to get both. Trust me.

Low Point: I feel like I’m inviting people to throw rotten fruit at me, because they’re immensely popular, but I just didn’t care for Caraval and LegendThey weren’t bad, and there were elements that I enjoyed, but on the whole they just didn’t work for me. I loved the setting and the concept, but in my opinion they weren’t fully realized, and the story’s eventual focus just, well, sort of bored me. I’d be more specific, but that would involve spoilers. At any rate, I was disappointed.

So this month has been crazy, but all is well. Time to bid January adieu, because…

Here comes February!

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How was your January? What’s ahead for you in February? Let’s discuss!

27 thoughts on “January in Review (Challenges, Celebrations, and Good Books)

  1. Glad you are feeling better, Amanda. I’m looking forward to more of your posts.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Amanda Cade says:

      Thank you! The last three weeks have been a blur, but I’m finally feeling like myself again.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. The Eclectic Contrarian says:

    You go girl!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Amanda Cade says:

      I’m all over it…for the moment. Lol.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Oh my, what a month! I can’t believe you were able to read 14 books despite being sick and overwhelmed at work! Great job setting boundaries between your work obligations and what you need to do to be happy.

    Also, no harm in being a little negative every now and then! Always forcing ourselves to be positive isn’t healthy: we have negative emotions for a reason. We just have to be careful not to get bogged down in negativity, as I’m sure you already understand.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Amanda Cade says:

      Reading is my go-to activity, and I read at least 30 minutes a day no matter how busy I am. On really stressful days, I often read more, especially if I’ve worked for ten hours straight and feel my brain starting to rebel. When things are slow, I’ve been known to read three or four books in a weekend. I’m also a really fast reader, and on the days I was the sickest this month I would read a few chapters and then listen to audio for a while. I love whispersync!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Sam R says:

    tbh I haven’t read Caraval yet I have bleh feeling about it as it is

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Amanda Cade says:

      I kept going back and forth on reading it. I had some reservations, but I heard so much praise from so many people that I finally decided to give it a try. I kind of wish I’d gone with my instincts. Just wasn’t for me.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I love your book reading for the month. We are on the same page! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Amanda Cade says:

      Do you mean that you’re also on the “Caraval is overrated” team?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I was noticing all the Barduga titles. I binged on all five in December! Now I’m bingeing on Jeff Wheeler. I haven’t read Caraval and probably won’t now. Lol.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Amanda Cade says:

        I’m reading King of Scars right now.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Sigh – so many books so little time. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Paul says:

    14 books in January? And here was me thinking I’d done well to have read three…

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Amanda Cade says:

      That is doing well! Reading is what I do with the majority of my free time, so I get through more books than most. It’s my superpower…and my addiction.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Whew! Glad your month got better! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Amanda Cade says:

      Thanks. Maybe I’ve already used up my February back luck…

      Liked by 1 person

  8. krcc says:

    Keep it goin’! Great job.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. hiddenzzzzz says:

    January was filled with many challenges and hardships for me in terms of studies but I also enjoyed it! Love this post!!❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Amanda Cade says:

      Thank you so much! I hope you’re having a great February.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Shell Vera says:

    Where do you read that tracks books like that? I need something to remind me of all the books I read!

    Glad you’re feeling better and hope February will be a great month!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Amanda Cade says:

      I use Goodreads. It’s really helpful, and gives me graphics, and I do love graphics. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Shell Vera says:

        I am going to have to consider that. I really should write some reviews since I read sooo much!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Amanda Cade says:

        Definitely! I love reading reviews. They’re the best way to find great books.

        Liked by 1 person

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