reading-vintageNew Years Eve is the traditional time for most people to make resolutions; plans they have to improve their lives, old habits they’d like to break, more healthful habits they’d like to adopt. Some people make bucket lists of things they’d like to accomplish or experience over the course of the coming year. This is all well and good, but I’ve never found myself compelled to jump on the New Year resolution bandwagon. Part of this could be my overall feeling that New Years is an overhyped holiday, and after a solid month of holiday merry-making, I really want nothing to do with any of it.

Or maybe the prospect of facing another brutal Chicago winter is hard enough without giving up my vices or starting a fantastic new health regimen.

Rather, I find that as the school year winds down and the lazy days of summer beckon, I’m in a much better mood and ready to make all kinds of resolutions. Well, not so much resolutions (I am NOT giving up junk food!) but rather lists of things I’d like to accomplish before the tedium of schedules, homework and full calendars takes over my life again come fall. Long, leisurely days with no set routine seems the perfect time to check off all of the meaning-to-get-to-that stuff that clutters my mental check list.

So…for this summer, I’m setting myself the following goals. You’ll notice that not a one of them will result in any kind of personal improvement. No, these are all purely meant to be fun and frivolous.

1. I will binge watch the following TV programs. These are either shows I need to catch up on, ones I once started but never managed to finish, or have so much hype I feel like I must be missing out on something great: “Smallville”, “Arrow”, “Revenge”, “Supernatural”, “Suits”, and “Burn Notice”. I think I may give “Orange Is the New Black” a try as well.

2. I will read as many New Adult books as I can. My daughter and I share a Kindle account, and every time I log on, I find that she’s added another New Adult title, usually something she found at a reduced price. Even though they are her choices, many of them look compelling. I’m going to shoot for one a day. Maybe one every other day. I give myself permission to DNF any that don’t capture my attention within the first couple of chapters, no guilt.

3. Enjoy marathons of my favorite movie franchises, ones I try to watch annually, usually in over-night sessions that get me to bed around six in the morning. These include The Lord of the Rings trilogy, all eight Harry Potter movies (maybe not Chamber of Secrets), and the BBC version of “Pride and Prejudice”.

4. I’m going to read at least one Kristin Ashley book. I’ve heard she’s one of those book-crack authors whose stories contain tons of flaws and questionable writing but are, nonetheless, absolutely captivating. Although I’m sure it will involve a lot of eye rolling, I’m in need of a new reading obsession, especially since I’ve given up on JR Ward’s Black Dagger Brotherhood series.

5. I’m going to catch up on all of my AAR review books ASAP. Due to a heavy school volunteer load that has just consumed my time during all of the year end activities, I’ve been completely slacking on my review books. I’m determined to get my overdue AAR TBR pile finished.

6. For Christmas, my mother gave me a subscription to HGTV magazine. I love the pictures and the articles and all of the fantastic DIY ideas, but I haven’t read a one since the fist issue arrived at my house back in January. I’ve been collecting them with great anticipation of having free time, and now, I’m going to scour every page, hopefully while sitting on my deck drinking a tall glass of iced tea.

7. I’m going to try a lot of the recipes in the new cookbook I just got – Teens Cook: How to Cook What You Want to Eat. No, I’m not a teen, but I have two teens in my house so I got it for them. And the recipes look kind of awesome.

So, how about you? Any summer resolutions? I’ll report back in the fall to see how well I did on my list.

 

Jenna Harper