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2024 Historical Fiction Reading Challenge

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Booklist Queen's 2024 Reading Challenge

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Tuesday, May 16, 2023

Top Ten Tuesday: Do You Do Anything Besides Read? Why Yes, Yes I Do. Occasionally.

Is it starting to get hot—like, really, hot—anywhere other than Arizona? I just got out of my car, which was registering the outside temperature at 103 degrees! Ugh. Swimming is definitely on my schedule for later today. Update: I took a nap and now we're having a rainstorm. I guess swimming will have to wait until tomorrow.

Today's Top Ten Tuesday prompt, Top Ten Things Getting in the Way of My Reading, is a fun one. Don't hate me, but I almost skipped this topic because I actually have almost unlimited reading time. I don't have a job, my kids are teens and young adults, I watch very little t.v., and I don't have a ton of other time-consuming responsibilities or hobbies. If I want to spend all day reading, I can (and often do). Of course, I don't spend 100% of the time with my nose in a book, so how about if I tell you ten other ways I spend my hours on a frequent(ish) basis?

Before we get to that, though, be sure to click on over to That Artsy Reader Girl and give our gracious host, Jana, some love. If you want to join in the TTT fun (and you do!), all the details are on her blog.

Top Ten Things I Do Other Than Read
- in no particular order - 

1. Sleep—When I was a kid, I despised taking naps. I would do almost anything (including climbing out my bedroom window) to avoid them. These days, I can't get enough zzzz's. In addition to my nightly 7-ish hours, I take about a 2-hour nap almost every day. I'm aging, overweight, and living with a chronic illness. That combination makes me very, very tired!

2. Family History Research—I've been a genealogy enthusiast for years. In addition to working on my own family research projects, I also volunteer in a local FamilySearch Center each week. In addition, I do volunteer genealogy work for several organizations, including: FamilySearch, the BYU Record Linking Lab, Stories Behind the Stars, and ICAPGen.

3. Family—I spend a lot of time communing with my dead family members through genealogy, but sometimes the live ones need my attention as well! And guess who will soon be getting the lion's share? My son and daughter-in-law are expecting our first grandbaby. She's a girl and is due in October. Yay!

4. Housework—This one might not count since I actually listen to audiobooks while I clean. Still, it's something that is absolutely endless and takes up lots of my I-could-be-lounging-in-a-recliner-with-my-feet-up-and-a-book-in-my-hands time.

5. Write Reviews—Okay, so I actually haven't been doing much of this lately, but reviews used to take up a lot of my time and should definitely be taking up more of it now. Oops! I read way faster than I review, so I am always behind on reviews. Always.

6. Church/Temple—If you hang around here much, you know I'm a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. In addition to two hours of worship at church each Sunday, I also try to attend the temple at least once a week. All able adults in my church are also given a volunteer job (pianist, Sunday School teacher, Nursery worker, compassionate service, etc.) that helps our congregations function smoothly. I'm the secretary of the women's organization (Relief Society) in my congregation, a "calling" I love, even though it demands a fair amount of my time. 

7. Cross-Stitch—I'm an on-again-off-again stitcher, but it's a hobby I've long enjoyed. At the moment, I'm dealing with some tendonitis in my dominant hand, so I haven't stitched in a few months and probably won't be able to for some time still. Bummer. 

8. Walk/Swim—Anyone who knows me IRL will laugh at this one, but the husband and I are on a joint quest to lose weight and get in shape. We've been walking every morning, even though it's not exactly cool outside, even at 6 a.m. Pretty soon, we're going to have to get our steps at a nearby mall or swim laps in our pool instead. I also asked for an exercise bike for Mother's Day, so you know I'm serious about this! LOL. In addition, I rejoined Weight Watchers (with which I've had success before). If you're a WW member and you use Connect, I'd love to follow you. I'm jensensrk.

9. T.V.—I mentioned that I watch hardly any t.v. and I wasn't lying. However, there are two shows that my husband and I like to watch an episode or two of most nights before we go to bed. Everybody Loves Raymond is an old favorite. Ghosts is a new one. (We're genealogists. Go figure!)

10. Book Blogger Relations—I love being part of this wonderful community! It's a joy to visit and comment on other book blogs. The fun interactions with fellow book lovers is my favorite part of blogging, so I happily spend a fair amount of my time visiting blogs, making comments, and replying to your comments here at BBB.

There you have it, ten things I do on a regular basis besides read. What are your "distractions" from reading? I'd love to know. Leave a comment on this post and I will gladly return the favor on your blog. I also reply to comments here on BBB.

Happy TTT!


  1. Congratulations on your first grandbaby! That will be SO much fun for you. And I love Ghosts. That show is absolutely hilarious.

    1. I don't feel old enough to be a grandma, but I'm still SO excited!

      Ghosts is just clever and fun. It's the perfect before-bed watch.

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Nicole!

  2. Great list! I also dedicate a lot of time to writing reviews and they pretty much take up a lot of my time when it comes to reading.

    Here’s my TTT

    Rabbit Ears Book Blog: WORLD’S WEIRDEST BOOK BLOG!

    1. It really does! That's why I procrastinate them and get so behind.

      Thanks for popping in, Ronyell!

  3. A lovely list. My little one started school this year which has been strange. Even though I have more time to read now I actually read less! I get distracted by other things!

    Have a great week!

    Emily @ Budget Tales Book Blog

    1. I get that. There's so much else that needs to be done and that you want to do with that time. It's great to have a little freedom, though, right? Enjoy it!

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Emily!

  4. Wow, that’s hot! My relatives in Arizona have been spending a lot of time swimming lately.

    I love walking and swimming, too.

    Congratulations on your new grandchild on the way. How exciting. :)

    Here is my Top Ten Tuesday post.


    1. It's been crazy hot during the day and then storming at night with wind, lightning, and a little bit of rain. It's early for summer storms, but the cooling off is nice. In the meantime, the pool water feels super refreshing. Our pool gets a lot of sun, so before long it will start feeling like bathwater, which isn't nearly as refreshing! LOL.

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Lydia!

  5. I like your list too! I wish we didn't need sleep and had 30 hours per day 😅

    1. Right? I could get so much done! I do like my sleep, though :)

      Thanks for popping by, Athena!

  6. It's been hot here in Seattle, too. 90 this past weekend and then 80 now. It's too early for it to be that hot here. I also like to listen to audiobooks while I clean. Makes it go faster.

    1. I wish the heat would hold off a LITTLE longer at least. We've been having evening storms, so that's nice for cooling things off a little.

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Deanna!

  7. I love Ghosts! It makes me so happy - now that the 2nd season is done, I may do a rewatch of the whole thing over the summer. :) Congrats on your first grandbaby!! So exciting (and an amazing reason to have less reading time :) )

  8. Congrats on the grandbaby! A perfectly wonderful reason to read less. <3

    1. I agree! Can't wait to hold my baby granddaughter :)

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Dedra!

  9. All 10 of these are great! I am getting better at naps as I reach my late 50s. Just short ones and only once in a while, but I enjoy them now. And congratulations on the upcoming birth of your first grandbaby!

    1. I've always been a napper. Health issues have always tired me and I'm a low-energy person anyway, so they help me feel recharged. I can't do short naps, though.

      I'm super excited about becoming a grandma! We're just keeping our fingers crossed that the pregnancy keeps going well, the birth is smooth, and baby and mama stay nice and healthy. So far, so good.

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Helen!

  10. Congratulations future grandma! Good news! Thanks for visiting my blog. My husband grew up in John Day so he often drove the Columbia River gorge and is much more familiar with the beauty of that side of things than I am. Our next trip will be to visit the North Cascades National Park. It is quite close to where we live and neither of us have been there. Ha!

    1. The Gorge is absolutely breathtaking. I love it there. I've never been to North Cascades National Park, but I've seen pictures and it looks gorgeous. Isn't crazy how we sometimes neglect sites that are right next door? There are plenty of well-known places in Arizona I've yet to visit (although I've been to the Grand Canyon multiple times).

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Anne!

  11. Housework never ends, but we feel better when everything looks clean and pretty. Congrats on your first grandbaby!

    1. Definitely! I just wish the dang house could clean itself so I didn't have to worry about it. If only.

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Vero!

  12. Love your take on this week's TTT! Sleep is something I crave as I get older. ;D Time with family, church, time blogging, and work are some of my 'distractions' from reading.

    1. I love my sleep so much now that I can't imagine why my young self resisted napping so much! When I don't get my nap in, I can barely keep my eyes open past 8 p.m.!

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Lark!

  13. I try to walk about four days a week, and while I don't always, I try to make it a point to walk in the morning. I find it tedious and boring, so I like to get that task over with - though I'm not as good as you, I go later in the morning! :) Also used to cross stitch years ago. It was a fun thing I enjoyed for a bit. Thanks a bunch for visiting my website this week!!

    1. I agree. In the winter when it's cool, I can walk later in the morning, but right now, if I don't get up super early, it's way too hot to walk outside. Today, I was out at 5:30 a.m. and it was lovely - overcast and cool (in the low 70s). It will be in the 100s later today. Blech.

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Rissi!

  14. Congratulations on the upcoming addition to your family. how exciting!

    Your family history research sounds like fun. I enjoy that when I have time, which isn't often. Cross-stitching is a great hobby.

    Thanks for sharing and for visiting my blog this week.

    1. Family history research leads me down all kinds of rabbit holes that suck me in for hours on end! It's fun and addicting, but it definitely cuts into my reading time.

      Cross-stitching really is a great hobby. I find it relaxing, at least until I realize I've made a huge counting mistake and have to undo hours of work. Then it's just frustrating!

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Cheryl!

  15. That is hot! We're only in the 60's here at the moment, which I guess I should enjoy since the humidity is not far off probably! anyway I hear you on naps. I used to hate napping, but nowadays not so much lol.

    Reviews take so long, don't they? :)

    1. Arizonans joke about our "dry" heat, but it's true. We don't have humidity, except after monsoon storms and even then, it's not bad. I used to think that heat was heat, but then I actually experienced summer heat + humidity and yep, that's worse than our dry heat. LOL.

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Greg!

  16. Congrats on the upcoming grandbaby - how exciting that must be! And your post really put this in perspective for me, because I was starting to think it was getting really hot here in NY when it hit the high 70s, but apparently that's nothing! I also have a lot of time to read since I don't work, but life does get in the way. Genealogy is such a cool hobby! I'd love to learn more about my own family history going back more than a few generations.

    1. Genealogy research is really fun! If you want to know more about your family, I high suggest making an account on, then setting up your family tree. Once you connect yourself to a deceased relative, your tree will automatically populate with the information that's already in the database (which is HUGE). I think you'll be surprised by how much information is already in there. If there's not much, at least you'll know where to start researching. FamilySearch is totally free and it contains a mind-boggling amount of information and historical records, so it's a great place to start. Let me know if you need any help with it. I can walk you through the steps.

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Leah!

  17. Sleep and TV get me quite a bit and genealogy is a rabbit hole I frequently fall down! Congratulations on the grandbaby and Good luck with the walking and swimming. I know staying more active definitely keeps me feeling better!

    1. Right? Those genealogy rabbit holes can keep me busy for DAYS. It's so easy to fall down them, too.

      Exercise is not my favorite, but I definitely feel better when I do it. With the hot weather, swimming feels especially refreshing right now!

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Katherine!

  18. I say that I don't let anything get in the way of my reading, but, honestly, all of these things are very important to me, too.

    1. I mean, no one can read 100% of the time, right? We've got to have SOME variety in our lives.

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Deb!

  19. I love my sleep so that takes up quite a lot of my time, and I spend quite a bit of time watching TV (I definitely have more than two shows that I frequently keep up with!). Reviews do take up a lot of my time, but I am also constantly behind on them! I also spend a fair amount of time (usually on Tuesdays, of course) blog hopping.
    My TTT:

    1. I gave up t.v. some time ago and that was a great decision for me. If it weren't for my husband and kids, I probably wouldn't even own a t.v. I do like the two shows I mentioned and watching them is one way my husband and I spend time together. It doesn't feel like wasted time that way :)

      Thanks, as always, for coming by and commenting, Jo!

  20. Great list! Sleep is really lovely, isn't it? I don't take naps much, but I do love being able to sleep in on weekends.

    I hope you're able to stitch again soon. It's so frustrating when our bodies put obstacles in the way of our hobbies.

  21. I really like the topic this week. It has been fun learning more about all by book friends!

  22. I always put off doing reviews because they take me too long to do, haha!

  23. How great you are researching your genealogy! If I went down that rabbit hole I'd never stop, lol. That is really amazing :) I can see how it would definitely interfere with reading time.

  24. There are quite a few lovely things on here!! We started Ghosts a couple months ago but haven't gone back to it yet! I think we were almost finished with season 1!

  25. What a lovely post. We get to know about your hobbies and your first grandchild. Congratulations to the whole family.

  26. Congratulations on the first grandbaby, that's exciting news!
    Blogging, commenting and writing reviews definitely take up quite some time, kind of funny how we sometimes spend more time blogging than actually reading :)


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