Begin Something New

Wendy Pender, King County Library System | Dec 31, 2016, 8:57 p.m.
King County Library System Older Adults Project Specialist Wendy Pender offers several books to help readers try something new in the year ahead

The new year is upon us, a brand new slate of 365 days! January is the perfect time to begin something new, and to look ahead. Who do we want to become as the year unfolds, and who do we want to accompany us on our journey?

Books are some of my favorite companions. By committing to read SOMEthing every day, you can chart your own course and select your own crew to come along.

If you’re short on inspiration, daily reading guides are available for just about every interest. Remember the story of Julie and Julia (made into a movie starring Meryl Streep and Amy Adams), where the young, frustrated Julie committed to cooking all of Julia Child’s recipes in a year and blogged about it? Your daily reading can be as rigorous as that, or as gentle as a daily moment of mindful contemplation. The best part is, YOU get to choose.

Here are some companions to consider:

• Beautifully produced by National Geographic, Daily Calm: 365 Days of Serenity and Daily Gratitude: 365 Days of Reflection feature gorgeous photographs and quotes to remind us of all that is well in the world. Who doesn’t need a daily reminder of beauty and gratitude? Regardless of our beliefs or circumstances, a moment of stillness in our day can be a balm.

• Since getting organized often pops up as a new year’s resolution, you might consider A Year to Clear: A Daily Guide to Creating Spaciousness in your Home and Heart. Stephanie Bennett Vogt, a space-clearing expert, offers 365 lessons, organized into weekly themes, on letting go of unwanted things and messy habits as a path to stress relief and self-discovery.

Meditations on Intention and Being: Daily Reflections on the Path of Yoga, Mindfulness, and Compassion. Presented in the form of 365 inspirational daily reflections, acclaimed yoga teacher Rolf Gates explores effortlessness, nonviolence, the spirit of practice, mindfulness, compassion and loving-kindness, equanimity and joy, and intention and being. It gives readers the tools they need to effect positive changes in their lives.

Journal Fodder 365: Daily Doses of Inspiration for the Art Addict by Eric M. Gates. This book is organized into “a year-long workshop that encourages you to reflect on who you are and what you want from life by using a variety of writing and art-making techniques. Structured art activities along with weekly writing prompts invite you to cultivate the journaling habit and explore both art and your own depths.

• Have you secretly longed to play guitar? While lead guitarists may get the glory, rhythm guitar is where the vast majority of playing time is spent. Rhythm Guitar 365: Daily Exercises for Developing, Improving and Maintaining Rhythm Guitar Technique brings you daily rhythm exercises for an entire calendar year via a dozen musical styles. Whether you play acoustic or electric, jazz, blues, rock or country, you’ll find popular chord progressions and techniques to hone your skill and maybe even lead the band!

• For a Christian perspective on a healthier life, The Daniel Plan 365 Day Devotional brings you thoughts from the Bible and a power team of current authors including Dr. Daniel Amen, Pastor Rick Warren, Dr. Mark Hyman and more. Interweaving Bible verses with effective techniques for building your brain and body, this daily guide focuses on the “five essentials of faith, food, fitness, focus and friends.”

Regardless of the companions you choose, your library is here for you all year! Come browse our collections or visit us online at www.kcls.org for more!

Wendy Pender is the Older Adults Project Specialist for the King County Library System. Wendy can be reached at wgpender@kcls.org or 425-369-3285. Check out www.kcls.org/ browse/50 for more!

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