Monday Miscellany: Winter Reading Challenge + Analog Art

Happy third week of January, Bookwyrms!

Today’s post is a quick summary of my most recent projects and accomplishments. Think of it as a bullet journal/scrapbook post…or something.

Speaking of scrapbook journaling, I actually started fulfilling one of my 2022 intentions by creating a sticker/scrapbook/bullet journal! Inspired by the ready-made ones at Barnes and Noble and the ideas in this month’s Girls Life, I made my own prompts and segments according to no particular pattern or logic.

I also decided not to follow chronological order. Instead, I flip back and forth from one prompt to another according to my moods. It’s not so important to me when things happened, but how I was feeling and how I dealt with my feelings. And sometimes I just feel like listing my favorite weird ice creams or real-life sirens of the moment.


I completed the Allen County Public Library Winter Reading Challenge.

Challenge completion screen on the library’s Beanstack app.
Overview page in the challenge app.  I earned nineteen badges, read seven hundred and seventy seven minutes, did twenty four activities, and earned ten tickets for prizes.

Besides reaching the ten hour reading goal, I also completed all the recommended activities, all of which follow the theme of Reading for a Better World.

In previous challenges, these activities involved exploring the city — visiting specific library branches, hiking through a forest preserve, trying and trading recipes with neighbors, etc. This year, probably due to the Omicron situation, all of the activities were home-based and most of them were thought or conversational exercises.

For example, “Talk with a friend or family member and learn about how you’re different from one another. You may even find things you have in common!” Or: “What do you think people may be surprised to learn about you?” Obviously, these are questions appropriate for multiple ages.

But the most fun activity for me was participating in the Mock Caldecott Awards for picture books. Library staff chose their five favorite nominees from the official Caldecott ballot and then asked us to vote for our favorite two from those five.

My votes were for Milo Imagines the World by Matt de la Peña and The Wind May Blow by Sasha Quinton— the latter by a mental landslide. All five books fit with the Better World theme, some by explaining specific real-world issues or events, and some by illustrating more general concepts like confidence, friendship, and open-mindedness.

I’m going to say no more because part of the joy for me, with several of these books, was slowly and then suddenly understanding what the story was actually about.

Let me know what you think, Bookwyrms, if you decide to check these books out! Which are your favorite Caldecott nominees, either from these five or from the general list?

What are some of your favorite crafty/artistic de-stressing projects? In addition to the journaling, I also bought a mini stone-stacking kit with a real miniature sand box. I set it up on a giant towel in my room and feel like I’m on an actual beach, playing rock Jenga and making little stone sculptures.


    • I’d love to learn jewelry-making myself! My inner 90s child still wants to make her own Secret Paths necklaces. 😀 . What kinds of papercrafts did you do (besides Sonic Chihuahua 😉 ? That sounds awesome!

  1. Let’s see, you already know I occasionally craft books, but did you know that I enjoy puzzles? It’s probably one of the reasons I enjoy playing Zelda games so much. They always have different puzzles to solve in dungeons, which can be frustrating, but it’s so rewarding when you solve it! Of course, I’m glad the internet exists so I don’t have to give up when I can’t solve it 😀

    • I did not know that! For a second I thought you meant tabletop piece-together-a-picture puzzles. I don’t have the patience for those, but I’m so with you on the Zelda puzzles, especially when they involve musical spells. Fantasy/nature puzzles and visual riddles (like the ones in Secret Paths, eh? Eh? 😃) are my absolute jam! Watch me turn on the aurora borealis by connecting the right stars into a constellation! I can pick the correct rune to complete the message on the forest canyon wall!

      And yes, internet playthroughs are a lifesaver. 😁

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