42/100 Vikings (Great Courses)

This was a fascinating course I obtained through Audible. I tend to listen to Great Courses while I am in the car and therefore probably do not pay enough attention, but what I did catch of Viking History was fascinating. This lector has a wonderful way of making history come to life. I had no idea how long the Viking Age spanned, nor was I aware of how much impact the vikings had on our history overall.
If you enjoy Norse Mythology, like watching shows about vikings, or love reading about vikings then this is a great course to help you winnow the facts from the fiction.
Happy Listening!

32/100 Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman

This audio book was a very interesting interpretation of the Norse Mythos.  Gaiman is a very talented author and it was amazing to hear about a subject that fascinated him from his own perspective.  The Norse Mythos are indeed one of the less popular/widely known mythos.  They tend to be greatly interpreted by the Marvel Comics from which we find Thor in modern times.  These are not always true to the original myths, in fact they are greatly changed and often misrepresent individuals within the myths.  I enjoyed listening to the retelling of the myths from Gaiman’s perspective and hope that either he continues this trend, or that other authors take up the mythology banner.

30/100 The Little Book of Hygge by Meik Wiking

This is a fascinating study on happiness, taking it easy, and the Danish People.  I find it interesting that the majority of what is recommended is a combination of ‘Carpe Diem’ and ‘Stop and Smell the Roses’.  I love several of the concepts, enjoying your life as it is; making sure that you have time every day for something cozy; coffee.  Some concepts are not congruent with my reality, soft lighting (I like to see what I’m doing) and candles/fireplace (I like having a house not a conflagration).  I do recommend this book, it is a good idea to explore other peoples cultures, even in small doses.  I enjoy the reminder that life is full of little joys, not everything has to be a big event or cost a lot of money.
For an easy read with a few ideas for making your life a little happier, this is a good book.

29/100 Yarnitecture by Jillian Moreno

Okay, when I say I read this, I do admit I did not read every word of every glossary and index found in the back. There were several really neat knitting patterns in this book. I enjoyed reading the tips, the graphics were wonderful, I have a much better grasp of how to spin fine after reading this book. I also have a much better understanding of what I am looking for in a knitting yarn and why yarn is spun in a particular manner. I think that if you are a dedicated knitter hoping to get into spinning this is certainly a book for you. If you are a spinner that wants to spin knitting yarn then read this book and watch the video ‘Spinning for Lace’ they both have great tips.
If you are a spinner that spins for fun and knitting is a very far back burner hobby, then this is not the book for you.
All in all an interesting read!

27/100 Weaving the Rainbow by George Ella Lyon, Stephanie Anderson (Illustrator)

This is a really neat children’s book that introduces the processes of raising sheep, shearing, spinning, dyeing, warping a loom, and weaving. Since it is only about 30 pages long, all of which have very few words (and beautiful pictures) this is a lot of information to get across to the readers. I believe that this was done very well, the entirety of the processes done by the farmer were done in the most environmentally friendly manner; dyeing with natural plant-stuffs, shearing gently, etc. If you are looking for a way to introduce children, or even adults, to the world of textiles this is a beautiful way to do so.

23/100 Great Mythologies of the World (Great Courses)

This ‘Book’ took me over 20 hours to listen to.  It was supposed to be over 30 hours, but I have my speed set to 1.25X since the original 1X just drove me nuts.  This year crafting has taken over my brain and I have been learning as much as I can and doing as much as I can so reading has taken a backseat, for now.  I will get back into it pretty soon, there is a big spinning project coming up I hope to listen to some audio books during!

This is a fascinating series of lectures on mythologies and religions throughout the entire world.  There is not enough information that the listen can be considered an expert on any and all of these, but there is more than enough information for me to get a broad overview of these stories, cultures, and beliefs.  If you are listening to this, or thinking about listening to this and very religious of the Christian/Jewish faith it might do you well to remember that these lecturers are speaking strictly from an academic viewpoint.  There are portions that left me uneasy in some of the suppositions that the lectors made, but keeping in mind that Social Sciences such as these are hardly exact helped.
I thoroughly enjoyed listening to these lectures, though admittedly I do not feel secure enough to take a test on these cultures.  This was a very entertaining listen.

19/100 Humans of New York: Stories by Brandon Stanton

This was a really good book. Admittedly it was more about the photographs than the stories, but while a picture is worth 1,000 words a few words can put the picture in context. There are some amazing life lessons, it was really remarkable how much information the author managed to get out of these individuals. I am really happy that I managed to finish this book, it really helped to remind me that you never really know what someone else has gone through.  The images range from cute to heart wrenching, if you want your guts ripped out or just a reminder of how good your life is, maybe even how much worse it could be then this is the book for you.