How I Find Time for Reading

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reading at the lake

Reading has always been my favorite hobby (minus the few years in university where I was bogged down by books that I didn’t want to read). I’ve shared so many times how I love the library and it keeps me from going broke. I posted this a few weeks ago and had a few people asking how I have the time to read.

So today I thought I would share a few ways I find the time in my days to go through the books from the library.

Also, as a side note: a lot of people have asked over the years where I hear about so many books to begin with. And it really is a variety of sources; sometimes people will recommend some on Instagram/blogs/etc, or I’ll go to Amazon looking for one book and I’ll check out the similar books that they list underneath, or when I’m reading one book they will often mention a few different books, and when I hear about these I either request them from the library right away, add it to a list to request soon, or if my library doesn’t have it I’ll add it to my Amazon wishlist and check at a later date to see if my library gets it in. 

Now, on to how I go through so many books:

I Don’t Finish Every Book
When I was younger I felt bad if I didn’t finish I book I started so I made sure to always finish every single book. Now I’ve realized that life is too short (and free time too precious) to waste time reading books I don’t want to or that aren’t catching my interest. This is a huge reason I love the library, if I don’t read the book I’m not wasting any money.

Always Take One With You
If I’m going to be sitting in a waiting room or going somewhere that I will be waiting for more than two minutes I’ll make sure to throw a book or two into my purse.

and on the same note . . .

Always Have One Close By
I like to have at least one book in the kitchen/living room area and then the majority of my stack is beside my bed. This way I have a book (or nine) for reading in bed and I have a couple for grabbing when I have a few minutes when making supper or if I have a few seconds to sit on the couch.

Put Aside a Few Minutes to Read Before Bed
Even 10 minutes spent reading before bed will add up over the course of the week.

Get Multiple Books Out at a Time
I find that being able to see the stacks of books I have around the house gives me the motivation to get through my book because I want to go on to another one. And also, if I don’t feel like reading one type of book one day I probably have a different genre sitting around that I would be interested in reading at that moment.

Every Minute Counts
That’s really the key here. I hardly get an hour at a time to read, my books are mostly read in short 5-10 minute time spans that just add up over time.

How about you, how do you find time to read?

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Homemade Chicken Stock

I made my first chicken stock from scratch last year from some recipe I found in a cookbook. I found that it was okay, but definitely lacking in flavor and I thought it used up a lot of good vegetables for such a bland stock.

Then this spring I came across Christina’s vegetable stock recipe, she shared that she keeps all the cut offs from various vegetables and stores them in a large freezer bag to use in her stocks. I thought this sounded amazing, how about making homemade chicken stock purely out of stuff that I would have just thrown away (or composted). This was right up my simple living alley.

So I started saving the ends and peels of carrots, leftover bits of garlic and onion and their skins, broccoli stems, pepper stems, insides and seeds, the ends of celery stalks as well as any herb trimmings. In just a few short weeks I filled up my freezer bag. I then made a whole chicken for supper one night (I always use my slow cooker for whole chicken, so easy) and after supper I placed the remaining bones and skins from the chicken into a 6 quart stock pot with as much of my frozen vegetable trimmings as I could fit, filled it with water and let it simmer.

A few hours later I had an amazing chicken stock that I made from what would normally be wasted food. I just love that!

I also like that I get to choose how much salt gets added into my stock (none!) and bone broth has a lot of health benefits including reducing joint pain, heals the gut and promotes healthy digestion, prevents infection, promotes healthy bones, gives healthy hair and nail growth and fights inflammation (who knew it did so much?)!

I mainly use the chicken stock for rice, whenever I make rice I just use the chicken stock in place of water. And of course I love it for soups, I guess with all the benefits of bone broth there really is something to the whole idea of having a bowl of chicken noodle soup when you are sick.

What recipes do you use chicken stock in?
Do you make your own stock?

Homemade Chicken Stock
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Ingredients
  1. cooked chicken carcass
  2. freezer bag of vegetable and herb trimmings
  3. water
Instructions
  1. Place cooked chicken and frozen vegetable and herb trimmings into a 6 quart pot.
  2. Add water to the pot until it is mostly full (I usually leave about an inch of space).
  3. Bring water to a slow boil over medium heat. Once it has reached a boil, turn down to medium low heat.
  4. Simmer for approximately 4 hours, the longer it simmers the more concentrated the stock will be, I find 4 hours is perfect.
  5. While the stock is simmering periodically skim off the fat that rises to the surface.
  6. Once the stock is done remove it from the heat and let it cool for about half an hour.
  7. Place a fine strainer over a large bowl and slowly pour the stock into the bowl.
  8. Pour the stock into containers, I usually use 1-2 cups at a time so I put my stock in containers of that size.
  9. Refrigerate your stock overnight and then freeze the containers in the morning.
Notes
  1. Stock will keep in the fridge for one week and for a few months in the freezer.
  2. If you are freezing in glass jars be sure to leave at least an inch of room for the stock to expand, as well place them in the refrigerator overnight before freezing so they are completely cool when they go in the freezer, then when freezing make sure to store them upright until they are completely frozen.
Adapted from Sweet Lavender Bake Shoppe
A Harvest of Blessing http://www.aharvestofblessing.com/

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Jack of All Trades Link Up #18

This link up is a place where we as bloggers can find new blogs to read,
to be able to give encouragement to others
and also be encouraged.

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