I read 50 books in 2020. Books written by republicans and books written by democrats. Books about Muslims who were mistreated after 9/11 and books about a Mormon whose family took religion too far. I read books by authors in the LGBT community and books by navy seals. Books about police brutality and books about astrophysics. Books by legendary Black female authors and books by financial freedom moguls. Memoirs by self-proclaimed hillbillies, CEOs and neurosurgeons. Fiction novels took me to other times, and other worlds. I may not have traveled 50 miles but I sure traveled through words.
Our diversity is our strength. Not a weakness. And there’s so much to learn from one another.
I’ve periodically shared some of my books I’ve read in my Instagram stories and I’ve promised a list for awhile. Well here it comes.
First, let me point out that I absolutely count audio books as reading. Finishing a book is finishing a book. Having a child with dyslexia I’m very sensitive to the fact that eye reading and ear reading both get the job done. So if audiobooks help you reach your goal, or you like digital, or prefer to hold a paper book–All is great in my eyes.
Reading Tools That Helped Me Reach My Goal:
- The Libby App: Free library app to download digital books and audio books. Downside is sometimes there are long waits for popular books.
- Audible: If I’m keepin it real, I share an account. I listen to a lot of popular books this way but I try my best not to hog the credits.
- Scribd: A combo of the first two. It’s less than Audible (only $9.99/month) and you get unlimited digital and audio books without the library wait times. The selection isn’t always as great though. Use my link to get an extra 30 days on your free trial.
- Goodreads: The only reason I’m able to keep a tally of how many books I read, and how I remember what books I want to read next. Otherwise I’m not that organized. It’s a free app! Here’s my Goodreads profile if you want to connect. You can also rate the books as you finish them to keep track of your favorites, and set book goals.
I wanted to share some of my favorites in different varieties and genres. Usually I enjoy fiction and fantasy books but last year I stepped out of my shell a bit and read more nonfiction. I already shared a list of my favorite money books. Many of those I read last year. Now I’ll share some of the books that stood out to me in 2020. You can see my full list and keep up with my 2021 on Goodreads or on my Instagram stories but for now here are some that stood out the most and got either a 4 or 5 star rating from me. I recommend each and every one of these. Many I’ll consider re-reading.
Most Thought-Provoking Books of 2020
- Talking to Strangers
- The Hate U Give
- Think Like a Freak
- Astrophysics for People in A Hurry
My Favorite Memoir Books of 2020
- Can’t Hurt Me
- The Ride of a Lifetime
- When Breath Becomes Air
Books Helping Me Raise My Kids
- Dyslexic Advantage
- Free to Learn
- The 7 Mindsets to Live Your Ultimate Life
My Favorite Inspiring/ Uplifting Books of 2020
- The Path Made Clear
- A New Earth
My Most Motivational Books of 2020
- Atomic Habits
- Unapologetically Ambitious
- The One Thing
- Start With Why
My Favorite Fiction Books of 2020
- Parable of the Sower (dystopian)
- Court of Thorns and Roses (fantasy series)
- The Trials of Apollo (mythology series)
- All We Have Left (historical fiction)
Bill Nye says “Everyone you’ll ever meet knows something you don’t.” So let’s keep talking, listening, and learning about one another.
My goal this year is to read 52 books and I’m hoping to find more fun fantasy novels (my favorite genre) to feel more of an escape this year. But I’ll keep mixing it up the variety.
One thing is for sure. I fell in love with nonfiction in 2020.
Have you read any of these books? Do you have any reading goals for the year? What others would you recommend?
Alright, so we’ve been doing Disney movie reviews here on Cherish 365 for years. I keep saying I’m going to branch out a bit and start adding some reviews for other studios. There’s so much great content out there and I’d love to give some input on other movies and shows your kids might like. Especially if you’re wondering if they might be too scary for your little ones. Jurassic World Camp Cretaceous is the first Universal Studios show, and Netflix exclusive we’re going to share about.
Let me tell you a funny story. When we decided to build our home, I knew we wanted a little bit of land. Nothing crazy, just an acre or two. What I didn’t realize is that even with that amount of land (at least out here), some utilities were done differently.
Life is so busy. Even in lockdown, during days where I feel so unproductive, I’ll look back and wonder where the time went. But the one thing I never miss out on is spending quality time with my kids. Children grow up so fast, the phrase, ‘blink, and you’ll miss it’ really is true. One of the best things Brian and I have ever done was deciding to reserve specific time to spend with our kids. It’s one of the best tools we have for keeping our family so close together. Spending time with your children is not just necessary for their well-being but also for yours too.
Let’s talk about Family Movie Night. For those of you who don’t already know about my family’s tradition, every week a different person selects their favorite movie which we all watch together – along with homemade treats, fresh popcorn, and under a big, warm blanket.
Ready to see the ultimate 90s movie checklist? You can download and print off my checklist right here. See if your picks make the cut!
I love books! Books can teach us so many things, open our eyes to new worlds and new prospective and it’s a feeling I love sharing with my kids too.
We’re pretty fortunate as we’ve always been a pretty active family. My husband has always been an active person and both of us enjoyed sports as kids. He has better active habits than I do and it’s been an important value that has always been part of his life and we’re trying to pass on to our kids.
Those of you who are long-term readers will already know that I’m big on goal setting. I don’t do New Year’s resolutions or get too caught up if I miss a day on my journey towards my next goal, but I do like to work my plans and aspirations into my everyday life. I feel like I’ve perfected a great, fool-proof system which helps me race through my to-do list without it ever feeling overbearing. Recently, I’ve been passing on my tips and tricks to my two eldest kids.
Here’s how I help my kids to set goals and achieve their dreams and I hope you can use these tips to help you kids set goals for themselves as well!
So have you set your New Year’s resolutions yet? According to Forbes, less than 25% of people stay committed to their resolutions after just 30 days, and only 8% accomplish them. That’s why I focus less on resolutions and instead focus more on yearly goals.
And what’s the difference between a resolution and a goal? Well, a goal is flexible; it grows and shrinks as your year does. A resolution is stationary, you either achieve it or you don’t (and a lot of times it’s the latter). If your New Year’s resolution is to go on a run every week, and you go a week without exercising, you might feel as if your resolution is ‘broken’ and therefore, don’t keep working at it. Goals, however, change as you do and there’s no time limit for them. You don’t have to wait until January 1st to go after what you want. Make it a yearly goal and start working toward it!
It’s nearly over. We’ve almost seen the back of 2020. And although this crazy year has thrown surprise after surprise at us, there were still plenty of moments of magic.
Cherish365 is all about appreciating each and every day and not missing the powerful moments as they pass you by so when I flick through my photo album on my phone or reread the blogs I’ve written this year, I’ve come to realize something. Even in a pandemic – 2020 hosted some remarkable achievements for my family and me. And I want to remember and celebrate them!
So, here are my top 10 favorite moment of 2020 that made me happy this year:
I already shared a spoiler-free review of Disney Pixar’s Soul and a kid’s review. But I wanted to spill the beans a little bit in this one, especially for those who want to watch and discuss the film over and over, or others who may be holding off on watching it for one reason or another. Soul is the movie we all need this year to remind us of why we’re here.
Yesterday a woman thanked me for “normalizing mortgage-free life”. I didn’t think much of it at first, but then I remembered the Black women I watched on TV reporting the news, or the teen I saw on stage who earned enough scholarships to pay for college, and the stories I’d read of families paying off their mortgage early. All of these examples represented hope and possibilities for me. If they could do it, I could do it. Representation matters in so many ways.