What’s On Your Nightstand Series | Book Recommendations & More | Kari

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Happy Friday! Do you have any fun plans for the weekend? We don’t have a lot planned but we are going to a pond hockey tournament which is always a good time. The kids love collecting all the flying pucks and it is a fun way to enjoy the winter weather with friends.

Today I am excited to introduce you to my friend Kari! Kari and I met when our kids were in kindergarten together and this is the 4th year they are in the same class together. She was my first real “school mom” friend and I will never forget the first time I emailed her asking her for a recipe (she is a fabulous baker and cook) and I was so nervous! I really wanted to be her friend but I wasn’t sure if the feeling was mutual…she wrote back though and the rest is history. 😉


Introduction: 

Hi, I’m Kari! I live in Vermont with my husband, our 8-going-on -18 year-old daughter and our ferocious cat named Oscar. By day, I’m a programmer working for a company located in Charleston, SC. I also have recently started a home-based bakery, specializing in vegan sweets and treats! When I do get some free time, I love to travel with my family, see as many Avett Brothers concerts as I can, hike Mt. Philo, draw & paint, and try to play the banjo. Oh, I also like to read and sleep!

Reading is something I never really appreciated until well into the adulting phase of my life. Throughout high school and college, I quite literally never read a single book. I have no idea how I managed to write papers or pass any of my English classes. Once my husband and I started traveling, I needed to find something to do on overnight flights, while everyone else was sleeping. This was before iPads and iPhones and endless seatback entertainment, so books became my new friend. I used to carry around ridiculously large novels in my backpack and then complain about how heavy my bag was. But, oh how times have changed! I am strictly a Kindle reader now – the mere thought of having to hold up a big old book makes me cringe.

What’s on my Kindle:

I try not to spend any money on books; so most of my reading list comes from the Libby app (library books), amazon prime reading, amazon kindle lending library, and Amazon first reads (yay for Amazon!). I’m sort of a panic reader, meaning I don’t have a list of books I want to read or plan to read. Instead, I finish the book I’m reading, then panic that I don’t have another book to read and search any one of the above-mentioned places for something that looks interesting.

While I do love my Kindle, it does make it difficult for me to remember what I’m reading or have read. I truthfully could not tell you the names of the last few books I read or who wrote them, simply because I don’t look at the book cover each time I pick it up. Thank goodness for Goodreads, though, because there I am able to see what I’ve read!

There are a few genres I stick to, but occasionally, on the recommendation of others, I’ll branch out. I love historical fiction and tend to gravitate towards WWII novels. I recently started reading Who Will Write Our History by Samuel Kassow, which is incredibly powerful and such important work.

I’ll read anything about ancient Rome and hope to find Splendor Before the Dark (A Novel of Emperor Nero) for free at some point in the near future. I also enjoy a good mystery and started getting into the Mary Russell series by Laurie King. I’ve read the Harry Potter series 9 times, and also enjoy books like The Hobbit, Lord of the Rings and the Game of Thrones Series. But, if you asked me if I like reading fantasy books, I’d probably tell you I don’t. Some of my other favorite past reads include All The Light We Cannot See, The Goldfinch, Fates & Furies and The Nightingale.

What’s on my Nightstand:

If I’m being honest, my Kindle actually isn’t on my nightstand, as I like to read on the couch. But, I do have some other fun stuff on my nightstand! When going to bed, I always have to have a completely full container of water that is ice cold. I will probably only take one sip throughout the night, but I need to know that it is completely full, for some neurotic reason! I also have a baby monitor on my nightstand (yep, I still use a baby monitor for my 8 year old). It makes it easier to hear her if she yells to us, and I get a kick out of hearing her talk in her sleep every once and a while.

I also can’t live without my Korres Guava body butter. I’ve been using this stuff for like 13 years now, and it is hands down the best lotion ever made. No joke – I’ve tried tons of other lotions and nothing comes close to this stuff. I can’t live without it. I’ve also got my lip balm that I put on every night before bed, because chapped lips are no joke during the long VT winters! Lastly, I have my journal that I use to write down all my goals. I try to do this on a regular basis just to keep myself motivated and as a reminder of all the ways I want to better myself!

Ok, well, that’s enough from me. Thanks for reading, and thanks Gen, for inviting me to share!


Thanks so much for sharing, Kari! <3

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